After the Petraeus scandal broke, many of my friends wondered what the hell was going through Paula Broadwell’s mind to get into such a mess.
But depending on the age of my friends, the question was either oriented toward Paula Broadwell or the general Petraeus.
My older friends very very critical of her behavior. They said she was the one who seduced him by flattering him through her biography and following him everywhere. After all, when you look at her, she’s quite attractive.
One of my friends is married to a professor, who sees a lot of young and beautiful female students. She told me she has noticed many times some students trying to seduce him by sending him sweet letters and following him in every of his lectures. Once, he crossed the line and had an affair with one of his former students. But it didn’t last, because of her jealousy and the age difference. My friend asked for a divorce. But while they were separating, she realized she couldn’t really let him go. So they canceled their divorce. And now, her husband is remaining very distant to his students, female and male.
Some couples do survive an infidelity. It depends on the strength of the bond you have with your significant other.
My younger friends don’t think the same about the Petraeus scandal. They say it’s his fault. He seduced her. After all, Jill Kelley was also after him. So he must have something attractive. His position could also influence Broadwell, who saw him as a mentor.
Love isn’t rational. It speaks to our unconsciousness. He may have speak to her beyond words.
Personally, I feel a little pity for Broadwell. She was the one who had the most to lose in this affair. Petraeus may have stepped down. But his career, at 61, is behind him now. While she, at 40, has still a lot to prove. Her work is now discredited. And she can say goodbye to any promotion in a close future. Harvard dismissed her.
The risk was high.
And she blew it because she was jealous. Hurt too.