There's a lot in Rielle Hunter's GQ interviewto be disturbed by: her pet name for John Edwards, the photographs she posed for, and her claim that "he's very honest and truthful." Perhaps most bizarre, however, is Hunter's take on relationships.
At first glance, Hunter might not seem like the best relationship expert. After all, while involved in an illicit affair with a married presidential candidate, and pregnant with his child, she filmed a sex tape that, according to the Daily Beast, looks like this:
On the video, both participants are naked. Hunter is propped up against the hotel bed headboard, with John Edwards belly-down on the bed between her legs. As Hunter, the campaign's official videographer, holds the camera, a smiling Edwards performs oral sex. Because of the camera angle, Hunter's face is not visible, but her distinctive jewelry is. Not only does candidate Edwards know he's being filmed, one source says, he's also clowning around and "graphically performing for the camera."
Ex-staffer Andrew Young, who initially claimed to be the father of Hunter's baby, claims Hunter simply left the tape at his house, along with a "document" called "The Slut Club." If this is true, Hunter's certainly no authority on organizational skills, or prudence. But in between posing provocatively on a bed and claiming she thought all money she received from the Edwards campaign was a no-strings gift, Hunter offers her take on modern relationships. Here goes:
Let your lover do whatever he wants, even if that means lying to the American people.
I feel comfortable talking now, because Johnny went public and made a statement admitting paternity. I didn't feel like I could ever speak until he did that. Because had I spoken, I would have emasculated him. And I could not emasculate him. Also, it is not my desire to teach my daughter that when Mommy's upset with Daddy, you take matters into your own hands and fix Daddy's mistakes. Which I view as one of the biggest problems in all female-and-male relationships.
... because sometimes lying is part of "being a man."
Did you encourage him earlier to be truthful?
Um, once again, in a male-female relationship, you can offer… I mean, the way that I have learned to keep a relationship going is to offer your advice when asked for it, and love unconditionally when it's not taken.
That must be hard to do.
It's beyond difficult. To allow a man to be a man. The biggest mistake that I find is that women attempt to make men women. You know, we want them to be like we are. We want them to get it immediately and do things the way that we want them to do them. And men are men. And I love him for being a man. But oh, my God, yes, it's been infuriating so many times.
When your lover denies paternity of your child on national TV, exercise forgiveness.
A hidden life, when it is exposed, is a traumatic event for the person going through it. And they're not in their right mind. Anyone going through that should never speak publicly. And what they say, if they do speak publicly, should be forgiven.
Before I met Johnny, I had a lot of judgment about infidelity. Now I have a much deeper and greater understanding and acceptance of people's processes.
He's not afraid of me. He'll tell me anything and everything. Even disclosing to me when women hit on him, and everything that was said, and if he flirted. He has no fear that I'm going to abuse him. And I believe what happened in his marriage is, he could not go to his wife and say, "We have an issue." Because he would be pummeled. So he had a huge fear. Most of his mistakes or errors in judgment were because of his fear of the wrath of Elizabeth. He's allowed himself to be pushed into a lot of things that he wouldn't normally do because of Elizabeth's story line. And the spin that she wants to put out there. He was emasculated. And you know, the wrath of Elizabeth is a mighty wrath.
Never make the first move.
One thing I've learned about relationships and men is that you can never walk across the room for a man. If a man is attracted to you, he needs to take the first step.
Hunter broke a lot of rules in her relationship with Edwards — and we may find out even more if she's deposed as part of her suit against Young. But deep down, it seems, she's still a Rules girl.
Image via GQ.