We live in an age where marriages ending due to infidelity is no longer rare. While that used to be looked at as the reason for calling it quits in celebrity marriages alone once, it is very much the case with common man too now. But maybe because people have a huge interest in getting to know the stories behind a celebrity divorce, there are tons of articles dissecting their marriage, extramarital relationships and everything related to it. I would be lying if I say that I have never read through such articles, no matter how cheap it sounds. Anyway, it is reading through those that put this question in my mind – “Who is a home-breaker?”

I happened to notice that in most of these stories where a man cheats on his partner with another woman, celebrity or not, “the other woman” was branded the home-breaker. I am yet to see any article where “the other man” has been labeled the home-breaker. But that doesn’t matter, because my perspective on this doesn’t have anything to do with gender.

What I kept thinking is this – why is “the other” branded the home-breaker and not the partner who strayed? I do understand that any human being needs to be a little thoughtful about others and not hurt someone to gain what they want. But while that philosophy sounds nice, not everyone follows it. That may look immoral to us, but on a practical level a lot of people think, “Why should I bother when it is not really my responsibility?” That is the harsh truth too.

A lot of these “other” people get involved with a married person after listening to stories of years of suffering in the marriage; some for the sheer fun of it. And all of a sudden they are the “distraction”, the “temptation”, the “vice” that was strong enough to entice an otherwise noble partner and break a loving family. Maybe because it is very difficult for a spouse or even children to suddenly hate someone who they loved dearly, they choose to put the blame on “the other” too.

Whichever way, if someone who is married doesn’t think about his/her partner and home, why is “the other” blamed for breaking the home? It was broken already either because of a miserable marriage or because of a partner who thought it would be fun to stray and be an asshole for no reason. And while both the partners might or might not have had a hand in making the marriage miserable, the bigger onus does lie on the one who had no qualms in cheating instead of working on the marriage or ending it with dignity first.

So for once, let’s call a spade a spade and accept the fact that one’s family is one’s responsibility. If I choose to betray my husband, I am the home-breaker, no one else. End of story!