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My Parents Are Married, But My Dad Has a Mistress

It’s complicated

A Black woman assists her elder father with his collar as they prepare for a party.
Photo: Cavan Images/Getty Images

My parents met at a party in New York City during a double date in the early ’70s. The couples switched partners because my mother and father had better chemistry. Less than a year later, they married.

They are technically still married, but have been separated for over two decades. I assumed they loved each other dearly in…




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Carolyn Desalu

Carolyn Desalu

Essayist + lifestyle writer. Bylines in Thrillist, Catapult, Essence, The Globe and Mail, Atlanta Journal-Constitution + more. Literary agents, holler.

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