AMANDA PLATELL: It's hard to forget Boris Johnson's philandering
Yes, it’s joyful news for Carrie Symonds. But, writes AMANDA PLATELL, it’s hard to forget that philandering Boris Johnson has left so many paying a heavy cost for his happiness
The chorus of congratulations that greeted the message posted on Carrie Symonds’s Instagram account over the weekend — that she and Boris are engaged and ‘hatching a baby early this summer’ — is as it should be. In essence, here is some good news in a sea of often grim headlines.
But, while the friends she was addressing sent their heart-shaped symbols in response, and Boris’s political colleagues gave him a patrician pat on the back, I was struck by one thought: I cannot imagine how Marina, his loyal wife of 27 years, must have been feeling, nor their four adult children.
No one can blame Carrie, full of the joys of impending motherhood, for wanting to shout her happiness from the Downing Street rooftops. And it would be churlish of me not to accept that the couple seem very happy together.
The chorus of congratulations that greeted the message posted on Carrie Symonds’s Instagram account (pictured) over the weekend is as it should be, writes AMANDA PLATELL
But I can’t be the only one who, on seeing the Instagram snap of the youthful Carrie smiling into the camera as a man kisses her on the cheek, mistook the dishevelled, red-nosed, unshaven bloke for Boris’s dad, 79-year-old Stanley.
And her politically hardened, media-savvy future husband should have known better, and could have told his young fiancee that perhaps this was neither the wisest nor kindest way to release their joyful news to the world.
The more formal and more respectful route of a single statement from the Prime Minister’s office was done simultaneously with Carrie’s post, meaning no one even noticed No 10’s missive. It was all about their joy, not a thought for Boris’s family.
But equally, no amount of rewriting history can avoid the uncomfortable truth: that Carrie and Boris have pursued their own happiness at the price of another’s; the wife he left behind. For however much Carrie’s friends have briefed the media otherwise, she and Boris began their affair when he was a married man.
I was struck by one thought: I cannot imagine how Marina, his loyal wife of 27 years, must have been feeling, nor their four adult children, writes AMANDA PLATELL. Pictured: Mr Johnson and Ms Wheeler in 2016
Carrie is not the first woman to fall for an attached man, nor will she be the last; and it does take two to tango their way to infidelity.
Boris is, unquestionably, very persuasive. He is — how can I put it delicately — a well-practised boulevardier. Those cosy suppers a deux must have been dripping in well-trodden cliches from his side of the table. That he was free, really. That his ‘relationship’ with Marina was over in all but name.
They think it’s all over? Well it certainly is now. And from that Instagram post, I’m afraid Carrie looked uncomfortably to me like the cat who got the cream — and her tomcat. Never a good look for a couple, least of all one that has robbed a wronged wife of her self-respect and dignity.
Whatever the truth, now that Boris is to be a father for the sixth time, surely he should stop and think about what fatherhood really means?
His children’s lives have been punctuated by headlines about his indiscretions and they’ve been forced to live in the spotlight of his insatiable appetite for infidelity.
In November 2009, for instance, Boris had a daughter, Stephanie, after an affair with 39-year-old art adviser Helen Macintyre, who worked for him in an unpaid capacity while he was Mayor of London.
It came after his previous mistress, Petronella Wyatt, had an abortion and, on another occasion, a miscarriage.
On discovering his latest affair with Carrie, his eldest daughter, Lara, told friends her father was a ‘selfish b*****d’.
Whatever the truth, now that Boris is to be a father for the sixth time, surely he should stop and think about what fatherhood really means? writes AMANDA PLATELL
It is believed Boris had a meeting with his clan last week to tell them of his ‘happy’ news. Not all of his children even bothered to turn up for their dad’s latest disappointment.
They’ve been collateral damage in his life for so long, they are weary with it all.
Which brings us to another tricky question: is Boris even divorced from their mother yet?
Less than two weeks ago, we thought it was all over when, in 93 seconds, a court decided the division of his and Marina’s joint assets. That’s not a decree absolute — the official, legal end of a marriage.
To date, there is no evidence of the decree absolute — perhaps it is pending? But what we do know for certain from Carrie’s post is that the couple were engaged, with a baby on the way, some months before Boris’s divorce was sealed. Even that scrap of dignity was denied his wife.
Carrie is not the first woman to fall for an attached man, nor will she be the last; and it does take two to tango their way to infidelity, writes AMANDA PLATELL
I know what it’s like when another woman enters and destroys your marriage. That’s how mine ended. The pain of betrayal doesn’t just break your heart, it sears it for ever.
So what lies ahead for the soon to be thrice-married Boris Johnson?
The new father-to-be (again), who is about to turn 56, will be trying to run the country while dangling a baby on his knee — because I am sure Carrie will expect him to do his bit. How long will the honeymoon period last with a crying child wedged between him and his sexy, young bride? Good luck with all that, Carrie, with a man who has hitherto enjoyed your full-on, 24/7 devoted attention.
Of course, we all wish Carrie well with her pregnancy and her new baby. Maybe she will be the first woman to tame Boris.
Yet the careless emotional carnage he has left in his wake should serve as a warning to any woman who falls in love with him: Be careful what you wish for.
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