"When we are in love we often doubt that which we most believe."
-La Rochefoucauld

When I was twelve, my mother discovered my father was cheating on her. At the time I was in seventh grade, barely awakening to a sense of attraction towards the opposite sex, and hardly apt to deal with the situation. My mother had a clear solution – divorce.

My father was an outstanding man in the community; he owned his own business and was found to be trustworthy by all his customers. The woman he had found himself attracted to was a woman my mother had known for years. They were friends and had often gone to bars together. She was a petite woman, with small curves, a large heart, and pretty eyes. She was not outstandingly attractive, but my father fell in love with her personality. Her name was Elizabeth.

My mother no longer talks about her or my father. It's as though they never existed – we didn't even attend their wedding three years ago. Out of spite, or maybe out of jealousy towards Elizabeth, my mother attempted numerous relationships with other men. Rich men, poor men, younger men, older men, you name it – she tried it.

At an early age I decided I would not be my mother and I wouldn't be an Elizabeth. I didn't want to be a girl who was desperate to be loved or one so desperate that I would take another's. Love, I felt, would come to me like it does in the movies – a perfect stranger with instant attraction, and I would give him my all. I would wait for love.

It took me six years and three months after my mother's discovery of my father's betrayal to realize that my mindset towards love was wrong. I found that you cannot escape women like my mother and I found that I couldn't escape being an Elizabeth. Love did come to me, but it came to me with a price.

He made me smile, and for those few moments I could forget that I was the other woman – I turned away from the fact that I became what I hated most.