I woke up to about 25 different articles showing photos of what was supposedly an “adorable backstage moment” (Insider) between Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston last night at the SAG awards. Of course, the Interwebs are full of commentary and excitement over this very brief interaction which is unsurprising. What IS surprising is how many people seem to be all for a romantic reconciliation between these two talented actors. Normally, I don’t comment on celebrities – mainly because I think what they do with their private lives should remain private. But this one? This one got me going this morning.
Has everyone forgotten that during their marriage Brad thought it would be a good idea to cheat on Jennifer? Did they forget that is the reason said marriage ended? Why, if you love Jennifer Aniston and think she’s amazing, would you be rooting for her to get back together with someone who treated her this way?
Because while I think Brad Pitt is a good actor, I also think he was a shitty husband. In the photos I saw this morning from the SAG awards, he’s got a hold of her wrist. In one shot, she’s walking away from him while he’s still holding on to it. Bruh. You had your chance. You chose poorly. That ship has (hopefully) sailed.
People who cheat almost always regret doing so, especially when they realize the relationship is truly over. And to be clear, the one who usually decides the relationship is truly over is the person who was cheated on. The cheater’s regret doesn’t come right away. The cheater is too drunk on the feelings the new person has elicited in him/her to understand the consequences of what he/she is doing to the marriage. Everything is new! Everything is exciting! Why would they want to be stuck with the same ol’ ball-and-chain when they can have their soul mate?
And off they go into the sunset of their new-and-improved life.
What we don’t usually see – like we did last night at the SAGs – is the sad and clingy wrist-grabbing that inevitably comes years later when the cheater realizes what (s)he’s lost. There are tears and apologies. There are attempts to see if the door back into the relationship is cracked open even a tiny bit. There are multiple acknowledgments of how massively they have fucked up their lives. Interestingly, though, there is very little acknowledgment of how they have fucked up their former spouse’s life or the lives of their children. And it is usually when they see their former spouse has actually moved on from the marriage that these shenanigans begin. Because yes, people DO eventually move on from cheaters and their bullshit.
Sometimes, particularly when they have children together, people manage to create some type of civil relationship or even friendship after an affair ends their marriage. Maybe that’s what the camera caught last night at the SAGs. Maybe there is some sort of respect that emerges eventually or a fondness that has never left.
My personal hope is that the cheater has the good sense to stop the wrist-grabbing. Stop the apologies and shows of regret. Stop trying to see if the door is cracked. You had your chance. You chose to leave. Your soul mate turned out to be a run-of-the-mill homewrecker. That sucks for you.
My favorite photo from last night’s SAGs? It’s the one where Brad, still holding onto Jennifer’s wrist, looks longingly at her backside as she walks away from him.