Metro-East Living

Breaking up with Chip isn’t so hard to do after all

Columnist Michelle Schrader is giving up her longtime fling with Chip.
Columnist Michelle Schrader is giving up her longtime fling with Chip.

I am breaking up with Chip. Why, oh, why did I ever take him to bed? I should have known we’d get caught.

“Michelle, what’s this crunchy stuff on the sheets?” my husband asks. I pretend to be asleep. He picks up the half-eaten bag of Lays on my nightstand and his sadness fills the room.

“You are not the girl I married,” he says.

He’s right. She would have finished the bag.

I was 30 years old when Mark and I said “I do” but I had given my heart to Chip long before that. We’d curl up in bed together and watch episodes of “Seinfeld” and “Friends.” Sometimes chocolate would join us. The nights were long but the junk food was good.

Then I got married and gave up eating in bed. Until recently, that is. I was watching reruns of “Seinfeld” on TBS, when I felt the old longing return. Mark was at a meeting. I was hungry and alone. Well, to be honest, Jerry, Kramer and Elaine were in the room. But we needed snacks to make it a party.

“Do not feel guilty, Michelle,” my old high school friend, Sheila Shearlock, said. “You have nothing to be ashamed of.”

It was the morning after Mark caught me with the chips. They say confession is good for the soul and I knew Sheila — a junk food addict with desires that rival my own — would give me absolution.

“The only people who don’t eat in bed are the ones who never tried it,” Sheila said. “I’m not ashamed to admit there has been chocolate in my bed. Potato chips, too. I buy the party-size bags.”

If this was true, then I wasn’t alone. There were other bedtime bingers out there. Hey, maybe we should start a club.

I asked my friend, Lori Browning, of Belleville, if she would like to join.

“I’ve done a lot of things in my life but I’ve never taken potato chips to bed,” Lori said. “I’m not judging you, Michelle. It’s just something I’ve never done. I have eaten pizza in bed once. But that was in a hotel room and I was sitting up and I put towels down first.”

OK. So Lori is a good girl. She’s not naughty like Sheila and me. The thing is — and this is a pretty big thing — I think lots of women have nibbled chips in bed. And those little wrapped pieces of Dove dark chocolate, too.

“Write about it,” Sheila said. “It will make other women feel better about themselves.”

That’s what I’m here for. To make other women feel better.

As for myself, I have kissed Chip goodbye.

Our relationship was crumby to begin with.

Michelle Schrader: