I consider myself a well-traveled and seasoned squirrel and thought that nothing much surprises or shocks me anymore. However, I stand corrected as I was just recently extremely surprised, shocked and significantly disgusted.
I refer to an agency named Ashley Madison and their services. I came across this in the papers and apparently they have run adverts on TV in the USA. Their slogan is “Life is short. Have an affair.” and it hails itself as the “world’s #1 married dating service specifically for attached men and women who are looking to have an extra-marital affair.”
That is right. It is basically a dating service that specializes in linking those who wish to have extramaritial relationships and romps with other unfaithful married individuals. When challenged and accused of encouraging adultery and for being a “Home Wreckers Incorporated”, their reply is “Ashley Madison does not encourage anyone to stray … Providing a service like ours does not make someone more likely to stray any more than increasing the availability of glassware contributes to alcoholism“.
I have not included any links cause I do not want to inadvertantly encourage any of my readers to stray over there. However, I suspect if you really want to, you will find your own way there. Certainly business is good with 2.5 million members signing on for their services. Furthermore the company even boasts that their business is recession resistant and even seems to be booming in the current economic crisis.
The reason, the company claims, is that many people are trying to avoid the trauma and costs of divorce (including trying to sell the home in a depressed real estate market) during this period of recession. So instead, they hang on and take advantage of the service to have several discreet affairs.
Wow, good business model! But hang on, it is basically immoral and it is encouraging the breakdown of the family unit even if both parties remain married and have separate swinging affairs through this agency. The CEO of Ashley Madison is Noel Biderman who is married with children. I wonder how he explains his work to his children and if any of his children’s friends parents make use of his company’s services. Heck, would he be so philosophical if his own wife cheated on him.
I also came across another company that provides alibis. It claims that “it provides professional assistance to facilitate a private maritial affair“. They can send an official invitation for you to attend a conference or trade show in the city of your choice, call your spouse to seek confirmation of your participation and hence give your alibi credibility, provide phone forwarding services, create websites of the non-existing hotel and provide all the bills, letters and documents to assist in the deception. This allows you to have your extra-maritial tyrst in complete confidence and stress free. The same service can even create false reference letters for job applications.
Isn’t all this illegal? Apparently not but I think it should be. The family unit is the most important part of the fabric of our society and the marraige vows are meant to be serious and a lifetime commitment to each other. Anything that causes the breakdown of that unit is to be avoided as so many people end up being hurt when the family unit fallls apart, especially the children. Infidelity should not be encouraged, let alone facilitated. This is an immoral business.
I would never be involved in a company that promotes infidelity or gives false references. I draw the line here and will not cross it. The furthest I will go is to have a company that gives fake excuse notes (with forged parent’s signature) for kids who want to skip school and can afford to pay the price.
I jest of course. Yet, in this confused world that we live in, there will probably be those who would condemn my “kid friendly” service while having no problems with using Ashley Madison.
On a totally semi-related matter, the result of the poll for “Husband of the Year” award, the winner is Ireland. Congratulations Ireland. Despite making your wife carry the heavy crate of Guiness, voters liked the fact that you were romantic enough to hold her hand while she was doing that. In the spirit of the award, the Irish husband gets a one week trip for one to the Guiness Brewery and the Irish wife gets one week free of her husband and a week free trail with Ashley Madison.