It was 10:30 p.m. when the phone rang. I'd fallen asleep waiting for my husband, Michael, to return home from a long day at work. I answered the phone and heard Michael say, "I'm in jail. I need you to come get me out."
"You're in jail?" I asked, now wide awake.
"Yes," he responded.
I waited for him to tell me more, but he was silent. My mind raced through a million scenarios, when finally Michael said, "I've been arrested for soliciting a prostitute." That was a scenario I would have never considered.
My heart felt crushed and a lump formed in my throat as I sat in silence hoping I'd misunderstood what he said. "I need you to bail me out as soon as you can," he continued, assuming it was my responsibility to free him from his consequence. Michael's bail was more than $300, and the police had impounded his new truck as well.
Since we'd moved only recently to Virginia from North Carolina and hadn't had the opportunity to meet a lot of neighbors, I had to call people I barely knew to come watch my children and to drive me to the police station. I was humiliated and overcome with shock, disbelief, and confusion. I'd loved and been married to this man for four years. Michael would never do anything like this, I reasoned. We just had a baby three months ago! We had a perfect life. He was devoted to his family and me. He worked hard and was a great provider. He went to work and came home. He spent his evenings working in our yard or playing with our three children. We were involved in our church. We loved each other passionately and had great sex. We shared our dreams and talked about growing old together. Everything we'd created together seemed so real and amazing.1