High Infidelity

I am sitting comfortably in the living room on this peaceful day, looking out the snow slowly melting, vanishing from the roofs, trees, and roads. I have had just finished a quick online chatting with a dear friend in Indonesia, which leads me to a simple summary: fidelity is almost nonexistent in Jakarta.

I have heard so many stories about people I know who are engaged in affairs. I have heard the stories from both sides: from those who should have committed to monogamous relationships but keep playing around, and from those who are officially single but playing around with committed persons.

I hear stories about girls being mistresses and guys having one (or more). I hear stories about a guy seeing someone’s fiancee, and a girl who occasionally sleeps with a married man. I hear stories about a girl bringing a new bag that cost five times her salary, bought by her married boss. I hear stories of a male colleague who was being sexually harassed by a married lady, and everyone thinks it’s funny (not wrong, just funny). I saw a married man filled some woman up in a bar, and a committed girl vanished in a hotel room with some guy. I had client who offered me an apartment, and a vendor who offered himself if I need it. I had single friends who were in relationships with married men for a couple of years, and my friend who just chatted with me, is married but ready to break his own vow.

The survey result chart on the right was done by MSNBC.com and iVillage in February 2007 to find out about what their readers think about love, sex, and fidelity. The survey result shows that it’s never OK to cheat for any reason, and not only sexual intercourse and oral sex, even sending a sexually flirtatious e-mail to a co-worker is also considered cheating. (click here to read the complete result).

Adulteries, affairs, or infidelity are everywhere in the world. But personally I feel in Jakarta it reaches the point where fidelity is an utopia and an absurd concept. Worse, Jakarta people are now more permissive, and those who commit infidelity are no longer frowned upon. Cheating becomes justifiable. The lack of moral boundaries, combined with presented opportunities and specific needs (money, sex, intimacy, thrills, you name it), are blamed as the triggers towards infidelity.

What I don’t understand is why people condone this behaviour. The married (or committed) people keep seeking excuses to continue their infidelity; the singletons seem do not care whether the persons they like are married or committed to someone else; the persons who are cheated on accept the situation and continue their lives with the shadows of the third party.

If you think you know the answer, feel free to share your thoughts.





  1. johnorford says:

    where do ppl find the time for all these flings?

    my personal opinion, ppl are too selfish…


    numpang sidak lagi mbak :)

  3. Maybe because the society allowed that kind of thing, so people involved think it’s ok to do it, no one care.

    Or maybe it becomes lifestyle in Jakarta? Coz I’ve seen people doing that and they are proud of it.

    Sad isn’t it.

  4. Now, please don’t worry.

    Well, we know humans are monogamous by choice, not by nature. They stick to this moral rule, because it’s convenient, because there is dependency involved, because they internalized the moral and because their behavior used to be kept in check by the small community they belonged to.

    Nowadays urban citizens are relatively free if social control (city air makes free). And noth sexes are relatively independent of each other financially. So the urge to play around can be realized relatively easy.

    But the two other factors (it’s convenient and it’s internalized) are generally in tact. However to a slightly lesser degree.

    The rule for most people still is: no fooling around. But then as it happens it does not need to be the emotional catastrophe it used to be. Two financial independent partners can work it out: split up or talk it over to secure a new start.

  5. spew-it-all says:

    It’s true that monogamy is a choice not natural factor. So when people are cheating, it’s entirely a moral issue. As concept of monogamy is traditionally believed by most people, it becomes sort of protection for relationship. But this makes people tend to fear to be honest about themselves. If a person decides to like someone else after being together for 5 years, he/she wouldn’t dare to say it but play behind her/his partner back.

    We should not deify marriage and monogamous concept as the ultimate goal of relationship. They are just a social construct!

  6. V. Melly Limengan-Chendrainy says:

    In Indonesia is a different fenomena, listen to those songs with lyric’s content about affair like TTM by Ratu (Teman Tapi Mesra) means Friend but intimate, Kekasih Gelapku (My Secret Lover) by Ungu and a lot more. All those songs are hit song so of course they will be more to come.That means people love it.

    I personally hate it. Do not commit if you couldn’t.

  7. Hmmm..pff..congratulation mba..your post has just made me even more scared of getting married. which one is more terrifying, being single and lonely or married and misserable?

    well, if one can always stay young and live the sex and the city life forever, perhaps single and happy.

    but in reality, really, which one is less terrifying?


  8. Finally Woken says:

    @Mulia: There are those who are single and happy, as well as those who are happily married. But it’s like sunshine in Norway. It’s rare. But it’s there.

    Happily married? Here’s one example: Anita, who met her husband when they were in junior high (13 years old), and now they’ve been married for 13 years or more. Two gorgeous boys. A loving husband (the husband was my boss) whom she still adores too. Here are the example of her posts: My Birthday, Papah vs Tora Sudiro, He’s So Sexy.

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  10. aroengbinang says:

    it’s the paradox, part of the facts of life, and hence no one can eliminate it from earth.
    it’s like questioning why there’s darkness…
    you can tell a person how hot the fire is, but until you touch it, you won’t get the true understanding.
    Just be thankful that you never touch the fire…

  11. theunspunblog.com says:

    Because these people are unhappy and do not realize that they themselves are responsible for their own happiness? So they seek for happiness outside of themselves and what they already have, in the hope that it would bring them more happiness?

  12. In addition to flirtatious mails and text-messages being considered as cheating, can a husband who loves his job more than his family be considered to be cheating too? I’ve seen this a lot;

    A husband who works until late at night and rarely has time for his family. But of course he defends himself by saying that he does it all FOR his family.

    The same thing of course can also apply to the wife, can it be categorised as cheating when the wife cares more about the children that she does to the husband?

    My ex-boss once told me that when a man and a woman get married, it is normal that they become to love their children more than they love each other.

    I think that’s ridiculous.

  13. Anonymous says:

    My better half , supposedly the wiser and older one, has been doing business in Jakarta for the last 2 years. In Oct 2007 while we were in London on holiday an errant sms from an Ayam ( this is confirmed) shattered my world. Hey my sweety I know who you are!

    Yes people are selfish. He tasted forbidden diseased fruit.

    When I cut open his briefcases at home I found sex drugs . Ticket stubs to bangkok and Hong kong with a woman he picked up apparently at a bar in either the grand hyatt or the mulia.

    Yes he was proud to do it in Jakarta and throw money around. Flash the cash the these desperate whores flock . Apparently he claims it was a fling but done in a group. SICK….. Normal for business in Indonesia.

    But he risked not only his life but mine. And now after 15 years everything is shattered.Broken.

    As for the ayam I don;t know if he still keeps her or the retarted Tobby looks after her.

    But she had a good life for at least 8 months. Glamorous …Glamorous life…..who can blame her . As for him when the reality of STDs slammed him in the face he stopped visiting Jakarta. but really it is too late….

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