There are consequences to our choices. One completely stupid choice on Arnold’s part has irrevocably altered the course of his and his family’s life. If there is anything for all of us to learn from this tragic situation, it is that we should think twice, maybe thrice, before we do something we know we shouldn’t do. And that doesn’t extend just to things that are dishonest or immoral. I caught Oprah one day when she did a show on this very subject. One heart-breaking story involved a mother who had left her four children in her van for the two minutes it took for her to run into the house. She even thought about it, knew she shouldn’t leave the kids alone, but, because it was a pain in the neck to get all four kids out of the car and back in again, she convinced herself it would be okay for just a few minutes. One of the children played with the cigarette lighter and the car caught fire. Two of the children were severely burned. I think about that Oprah show every time I’m tempted not to wear my seat belt, to drive faster than I should, to drive after one glass of wine too many. What if the worst thing imaginable really did happen? I would be asking myself, just as Arnold is, and just as I’m sure you’ve asked yourself, “What was I thinking?”
We must take responsibility for our actions. This one falls squarely on Arnold's shoulders. Up until now, he hasn't exactly stepped up to the plate. Time will tell if, now that the cat is out of the bag, he will show his children how to man-up.
So, yeah, Arnold made a really dumb choice and, boy oh boy, is he paying for it. I hope, however, that from this very sour lemon, Arnold and Maria make a little lemonade for their kids and if they do, then they will have been good parents who, through a difficult situation, will teach their children some of life’s greatest lessons.
Shela Dean is a Relationship Coach, Speaker & Amazon Bestselling Author of Frequent Foreplay Miles, Your Ticket to Total Intimacy, Frequent Foreplay Miles for the Remarried, the author of the popular Everyday Foreplay blog, and the creator of her trademarked ReDate Your Mate program designed to help couples climb out of the rut and regain their Relationship Mojo.