I’ve had multiple encounters with married men, and each one made me more apprehensive about getting married myself. I could pull a “Sydney Leathers” and disclose their identities, but it’s not my place to ruin a marriage or compromise any of their television producing and directing jobs. Besides, I already exposed one married dude who hit on me on an airplane. I think that’s plenty.When I first moved to LA, I met a guy who said he was 35 through my job at a camera store. I was 23 at the time, and the oldest guy I had dated was 28, so a 30-year-old seemed SO old (cut to me at 26 dating a 50-year-old). His name was John and he seemed very nice and smart. He asked me out and we went to a movie. He told me about his life at Harvard and directing commercials, and yadda yadda yadda. I was really into him and we hung out a couple more times, until I got a phone call.An unknown number was calling me on a Saturday afternoon, and while I never usually answer, for some reason I felt compelled.I answered, “Hello?”The woman said, “Hi, who’s this?”My stomach immediately started to hurt. I knew right away who this woman was.“Melissa, who’s this?” I said.“How long have you been fucking my husband?” Oh, sh*t.“Umm, who?” “John, my husband, oh you didn’t know he’s married? Did he tell you he’s 42 or did he lie about that too?”“I don’t know who that is.” Good one, Melissa.“I’m not mad, sweetie, I just want know how long this has been going on.”“You must have the wrong person, gotta go, byeeeeee!”I set my phone down on my desk and said out loud, “Whoops.”She kept calling me back and I had numerous voicemails asking me to call her. I didn’t really have anything to say, or want to get involved any more, so I just ignored them.A few hours later, John called and apologized. He tells me his marriage is most likely over and the reason he was so enamored with me was because he felt a connection between us. Yeah, your penis in my vagina. (JK we didn’t have sex.) He kept telling me how amazing I was and how he wished he was 10 years younger and not married. Real cool, dude, why don’t you say that in front of your wife WHO YOU’RE MARRIED TO, IDIOT.So yeah, the first guy I dated in Los Angeles ended up being married, older than he said, and a director. That’s not an LA cliché at all.The second married guy I came across was actually someone I met from Twitter. We had conversations (through direct messages) about normal stuff at first, like our cats and how many anti-depressants we’re taking. It slowly progressed into more flirting, and I actually met him in person (with a group, not a date). I decided to Google him, because that’s the first step in the stalking process, and I saw he was married. Son of a b*tch.I confronted him and he said that (surprise!) his marriage was boring and that he was most likely separating soon. That sounded familiar. He also said he felt a crazy connection between us and wished he was 10 years younger and not married.Here’s where I suck: I kept talking to him for a week. I think I was more interested in his motive, because I couldn’t imagine being married to someone who wanted to cheat on me. This guy had been a drug addict and had a lot of mental health issues, so I was most likely just another girl from the Internet to satisfy his craving.For the week I talked to him, I received texts like, “Wife planning trip with friends to spa next week, u will be mine,” and, “Making out isn’t cheating, right?” and my favorite, “Wife using phone, don’t text.”It felt oddly intriguing and I think I was more into the covertness than into him, but then I put myself in his wife’s shoes and realized how shitty it was. I didn’t want to ruin someone’s marriage, so I stopped talking to him. I should’ve done it immediately upon hearing he was married, but I didn’t. I had just gotten out of a relationship and was really sad and depressed, so any attention was good attention.I later heard from multiple girls on Twitter that this guy did (and still does) the same thing with them. Oh, and he has kids.The most recent married guy I encountered was my favorite. This was a few months ago at a party where I didn’t really know anyone, so I was sitting on the couch looking at photos of other people at parties on Instagram. FYI -- no one is really having as much fun as their Instagram photo looks like they are. A guy sits next to me and does the awkward, “Hi,” where I know he’s trying to talk to me but also trying to make it not obvious. I also immediately notice a wedding ring on his finger.We ended up talking about music and he tells me about his music video directing job. Wow, what a nice guy. He’s married but he just wants to have a normal innocent conversation with a lonely girl on the couch. I’ve finally met a-- wait, what’s he doing with his hand? He’s putting his hand in his pocket while I say hi to someone? It’s his left hand, hmm, what did he get out of his pocket? Nothing. Oh, but he no longer has his wedding ring on, it must’ve been bothering his finger. NOPE. He asks for my number. I give it to him, so I can get his number and ask for his full name (not to talk, to Google this motherfucker). He gives it to me, and I pretend like I’m texting someone and find his Facebook page instead. I see his wife AND a newborn baby. Wow, congrats! You seem like a really great guy.After these encounters, how am I supposed to trust a potential husband? I’m not making a generalization that all guys will eventually cheat once they’re married, but instances like these are far from reassuring. I’ve had men tell me they love me more than anything, only to find out they cheated. How am I supposed to be vulnerable enough to believe the nice things guys say to me? How am I supposed to truly know a guy won’t be an asshole?Ugh. Anyway. That ring-hiding douchebag followed me on Twitter when I got home that night, so I tweeted:
He unfollowed me immediately.Are my encounters with married men typical? Is the bullsh*t they spew all the same?