The Reverse ‘Dear John’

Dear Wife Of The Man I’m Seeing,

I have often wondered how the confrontation between you and I would be when the time finally came, I have fantasized about it even; always seeing myself in the position of power during the
face-off, telling you off with as much haughty derision as I can muster – almost as haughty as
Jay said to Tom in ‘The Great Gatsby’ – your husband by my side nodding approvingly as I
berate you without pity… “He does not love you” I would say, “He loves me”. A wide
somewhat evil smirk spreading across my face.

I certainly did not think it would be today, I certainly did not think it would be through an
email, l certainly did not think I would be typing it to you barely three feet away from you in a
hotel room toilet, locked in, and naked while you bang heavily on the door at the other side.

How did this happen though? We were always so careful, trysting as far away from your social
areas as possible, or so we thought; never arriving at the same time, never leaving together
either, never going to the same scene more than once… Your loud banging breaks me out of
my reverie. I catch the last part of your yelling:
“…I am not leaving here today, come out of there you whore!”

Whore?? How dare you?! I am seething on the toilet seat. You are very lucky Michael
persuaded me to stay in here while you mouth off on the other side. Of course you would think
l whored out on your husband, silly woman. I wish I could somewhat mollify your anger by
telling you it was certainly not a whoring on my part. That I did not set my sights on your
husband, that it just happened; like the strike of a match, sparks flew the second I saw him,
cupid almost had no hand in it. Ten years of dating, searching for my prince charming, I was
exhausted, parched like a desert traveller. And out of nowhere, almost like an oasis, an illusion,
he showed up. A tall drink of water in more ways than one. Wise and perfect, he showed up.
“M in M together forever,” he would often say to me. We are made for each other Michael and
I, you have no idea… I am interrupted again, this time by Michael’s booming voice.
“Stop this! Calm down and listen to me! We are not at home remember!”

That brings a chuckle out of me, strong, capable and tough. That was my Michael. I must
confess, hearing him yell at you like that right now is such a thrill. You were always such a
nag, yelling and complaining at everything and everyone. You are weeping now, bawling
actually, like a child whose mother just smote him. I can barely hear you as you sob and talk:
“…to flush thirteen years of marriage down the toilet.”

Now I have to cover my mouth with my hands to stifle mirth. I’m literally shaking as peals of
silent laughter escape me. I’m sorry, I am not being insensitive to your plight. But seeing as I
am in the toilet as you say this, it just seemed apropos. Oh my days. My sides hurt. Mollify
your anger? Yeah right!

Laughter whittled down to a giggle, I realize you are no longer crying. It is eerily quiet now,
you are sniffling, I suppose, what is happening? I lean forward, ears trained on the door. I hear
“…it was a mistake Moni, I swear I do not know her. She is just some girl I offered a lift, one
thing led to another baby. I am sorry. No one can hold a candle to you, certainly not a prosti…”

My ears are burning! Sweat is streaming down every pore. I cannot believe what I am hearing.
He did not just call me that! I shake my head. He’s just saying that to pacify you, to get you to
leave perhaps, surely you must know this. I shake my head, listen again:
“…you are the one babe, it’s you and me, M in M together, forever, remember? I swear on our

I am dizzy now. Breathing through my mouth. It seems my nostrils can’t take in enough air.
There is constriction in my chest. My God, I have been such a fool. What was I thinking? How
could I have thought he would leave you for me? How many times does that happen anyway,
one out of ten? All my hopes and dreams dashed like the speed of a cheetah. I was fantasizing
alone I realize, deluding myself so wantonly.

It is even more quiet now. I imagine you are locked in his embrace; forgiving him his
transgressions, no doubt, believing him his lies. I am vengeful now, hurt, heartbroken,
humiliated. And I am no longer sitting here, it’s over anyway, what have I got to lose? What
else have I got to lose?

I am no longer sitting here, in this dank toilet, cowering like a sewer rat. I have one ace in the
hole – make that two aces; he lied you see, your M in M lied. I am no prostitute. You will see
the second I step out of here that I am no prostitute. He does in fact know me, he has known
me for a while now. After I press ‘send’, I will unlock this door and you will see, that you know
me too. Far longer than he has known me, even.

And why wouldn’t you, when I am your sister?

Yours sincerely,

by Maymunah Zubair

𝘔𝘢𝘺𝘮𝘶𝘯𝘢𝘩 𝘡𝘶𝘣𝘢𝘪𝘳 𝘪𝘴 𝘢 𝘕𝘪𝘨𝘦𝘳𝘪𝘢𝘯-𝘣𝘢𝘴𝘦𝘥 𝘞𝘳𝘪𝘵𝘦𝘳, 𝘑𝘰𝘶𝘳𝘯𝘢𝘭𝘪𝘴𝘵, 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘝𝘰𝘪𝘤𝘦-𝘰𝘷𝘦𝘳 𝘢𝘳𝘵𝘪𝘴𝘵. 𝘞𝘩𝘦𝘯 𝘴𝘩𝘦 𝘪𝘴 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘸𝘰𝘳𝘬𝘪𝘯𝘨, 𝘴𝘩𝘦 𝘤𝘢𝘯 𝘣𝘦 𝘧𝘰𝘶𝘯𝘥 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘥𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘸𝘳𝘪𝘵𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘧𝘰𝘳 𝘭𝘦𝘪𝘴𝘶𝘳𝘦. 𝘏𝘦𝘳 𝘣𝘰𝘰𝘬 𝘰𝘧 𝘴𝘩𝘰𝘳𝘵 𝘴𝘵𝘰𝘳𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘪𝘴 𝘶𝘯𝘥𝘦𝘳𝘸𝘢𝘺 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘸𝘪𝘭𝘭 𝘣𝘦 𝘱𝘶𝘣𝘭𝘪𝘴𝘩𝘦𝘥 𝘴𝘰𝘰𝘯. 𝘍𝘰𝘭𝘭𝘰𝘸 𝘩𝘦𝘳 𝘰𝘯 𝘐𝘯𝘴𝘵𝘢𝘨𝘳𝘢𝘮 @𝘮𝘪𝘴𝘴𝘰𝘨𝘺𝘯𝘪𝘴𝘵. 

Photo credit: Pixabay