Ian Tyson's affair to remember - Macleans.ca
 

Ian Tyson’s affair to remember

Evinia Pulos explains why, after 55 years, they are still inextricably linked


 

An affair to remember

The strains of the song are there in his letter. Ambivalence. Regret. Above all, longing. “I’m not coming back,” Ian Tyson wrote to Evinia Pulos in September 1960, two years before he penned the folk classic Four Strong Winds. “This is where I’ll make my mark if I’m to make it at all.” She could come join him in Toronto, he ventures, where he is carving out a creditable career in the city’s nascent coffee-house scene. “If you loved me, you could [make it here] too,” he writes. He cajoles, lectures and eventually pleads. But ultimately, he bows to the improbability of their shared future, signing off with a half-formed invitation: “Maybe I’ll see you down here some time.”

A more lyrical formulation of that thought—“I’ll look for you if I’m ever back this way”—would become the rueful coda to Four Strong Winds, which CBC Radio listeners in 2005 voted the greatest Canadian song of the 20th century. It is a phrase imprinted on the nation’s soul. But for Pulos its meaning is personal. She was, after all, the dark-eyed beauty Tyson had in mind when he hunched over a guitar in his manager’s New York apartment and put his thoughts to music. The two had met in art college in Vancouver in the mid-1950s. She was 18 and he was 22. Their chemistry was instantaneous, but complications ensued. In 1957, they parted company.

Now, 50 years after the song was written, Pulos reveals a stunning corollary. Through nearly six decades and a combined six marriages, across thousands of kilometres that until recently separated them, she and Tyson have been carrying on an epic love affair—a physical and emotional bond that lasts to this day. “Basically, we’ve come full circle,” she says in an interview from her home in Kelowna, B.C. “We’re in each other’s lives for whatever we have left. He’ll embark on various relationships or affairs, but they don’t last. He always comes back and calls me.”

Tyson, now 78, declined interview requests for this story. But in a recently released book, he describes Pulos as his “soulmate” and acknowledged that their emotional connection continued after they went separate ways. “We’ve been lovers for 55 years,” he told John Einarson, author of Four Strong Winds: Ian & Sylvia. “How many people can say that?”

Their attachment has caused others pain. The letters, the phone calls and the furtive hotel trysts that went on over decades were not the secret they thought. Ian’s ex-wife and former musical partner Sylvia Tyson described Pulos as “the third person in our marriage,” borrowing a phrase from Princess Di. Yet Pulos, now 74, says the depth of this attachment cannot be understood outside the story of their troubled early days in B.C.—and their mutual belief they would never feel as strongly for anyone as they do for each other. “Without sounding maudlin,” she says, “it really is a love story.”

Vancouver in 1955 would be unrecognizable to its current inhabitants. You could drink at a beer parlour but not dance or sing—activities seen as gateways to dissolution. The beatnik movement was a rumour, and the term “hippie” was not yet in use. So the free-spirited students of the Vancouver School of Art tended to stand out, and keep to themselves. “We went everywhere together,” says Mary Spain, one of the students. “We were all very close friends. We had a lot of parties together and there were a few couples who got together.”

Not long after Pulos arrived that fall, Spain pointed out a sleepy-eyed boy in the year ahead of them. A few weeks later, as the gang piled into Pulos’s Chevy Impala for an afternoon outing, he slid in next to her and introduced himself. “I can’t say why, but it was just a given that we were going to be together from then on,” she recalls. “We just clicked.”

Pulos had left behind a traditional Greek family in her hometown of Vernon, B.C. Her father Curly, a successful restaurateur, had sent her off with a sobering admonition: “If you get into trouble, don’t come back. You will no longer be my daughter.” And get into trouble she did. The following year she got pregnant, and she and Tyson began frantically searching for a way to terminate the pregnancy. “It was a terrible, terrible time,” she recalls. “Where would we find the money? How do you find a doctor? How do you go about getting an abortion in Vancouver in the 1950s, for Christ’s sake?”

Tyson bought a ring in case they couldn’t find a willing physician. Pulos wore it and the pair took out a marriage licence. But in the end, her gynecologist took pity, giving Pulos the name of a doctor who had lost his medical credentials years earlier for performing abortions. He was running a proverbial “back alley” practice out of his Vancouver home, and she spent two days there before returning to her rented room to await Tyson. “I remember him coming in, taking three and four stairs at a time,” she says. “When he saw me, he just threw himself on the bed and cried.”

They emerged shell-shocked—too rattled, perhaps, to navigate the normal shoals of a young relationship. By then, Tyson had taken an interest in music, bashing out guitar chords at late-night parties and channelling the sounds of Johnny Cash. He drank heavily, says Pulos, and in time his attention swung toward a redhead named Elaine Smith, another student at the art college. “When Evinia found out about my shenanigans [with Smith], she broke it off and split for California without finishing art school,” Tyson recalls in his 2010 memoir The Long Trail, which contains a brief section on the period. “She was very hurt.”

Tyson hitchhiked to Los Angeles in the spring of 1958 in a vain attempt to win her back. Two summers later, they met again at a hotel in Vancouver, where he implored her to come join him in Toronto. By then, he had all but abandoned his aspirations to work as a graphic artist, and was making a healthy $250 a week playing folk songs in the coffeehouses of Toronto’s bohemian Yorkville district. “You might just love [Toronto], but you’d have to give it a fair trial,” he urged Pulos in his letter of September 1960. “Just think what it might be like if you actually take to it.”

Pulos, however, had embarked on a life that would lead over the next three years to California, then back to B.C. and the first of her four marriages. Yet both carried around a sense of loss. In the fall of 1962, Tyson holed up in his manager Albert Grossman’s New York flat and—as he put it in his memoirs—let his mind drift “back west to open country and my beautiful Greek girl from the Okanagan Valley.” He had for the past three years been singing alongside Sylvia Fricker, a masterful harmonizer from Chatham, Ont. They became Canada’s celebrity duo, appearing together on the cover of Maclean’s in August 1965. Sylvia’s vocal part on the much-covered Four Strong Winds would make theirs the definitive version. They married in 1964, but Pulos was never far from Ian’s mind.

In 1966, Tyson invited Evinia to visit him in New York, where she met the Byrds and Peter, Paul and Mary. “He and Sylvia had this unbelievably horrible apartment in New York,” she recalls. “There was an old clawfoot bathtub in the living room, with a piece of plywood on top of it. They used it for a table. They were that poor. But Ian and I would meet there all the time.”

Today, Pulos ponders the effect of the unwanted pregnancy on her and Tyson’s lives. It unleashed emotions they couldn’t control, scuttling a potentially viable marriage, she says. But she’s not sure any live-in arrangement between the two of them would have lasted. In its stead, they had mutual sorrow, which can be a powerful emotional glue. “Maybe the experience is what has bound us together all these years,” she says.

At her home near Kelowna—an expanded lakeshore cabin less than an hour’s drive from where she grew up—Pulos curates the mementos of that life, and others that followed. There are dozens of Tyson’s letters. There is a photo of Jack Bruce, a former roommate of Tyson’s from Calgary whom she married on a whim in 1963. They’d had a summer fling that turned serious, and Tyson, she says, had phoned from Toronto the day of the wedding, begging her to back out. He told her that Bruce, an engineer and downhill ski star, was the wrong person for her. “I’ll see,” she recalls telling Tyson. “But I went ahead with the wedding, and I didn’t see Ian again for years.”

Her life then became a whirlwind: during her years in California, she had found her way onto the periphery of the Hollywood crowd, and got a bit part in a Frankie Avalon vehicle, Beach Blanket Bingo. She met stars like Vincent Price, Yul Brynner and John Wayne. She and Bruce moved briefly to Toronto, where Pulos had her only child, a son, but the relationship soured and he took a job in Houston. She moved there to ensure Bruce would have access to the boy, and was soon drawn into the city’s oil-fuelled social whorl. She divorced in 1969, and did a photo shoot around that time for Playboy—only to persuade the magazine at the last minute not to publish the images. “My friends in Houston told me I’d be ostracized,” she says. “I didn’t see the big deal.”

She has never had a great affinity for Tyson’s music—her tastes lean more to progressive rock. But she could never stay away from the man himself. Sometime in the late 1960s, the pair re-established contact, and began to meet. “We were both cheating on whoever we were with,” Pulos says matter-of-factly. “We always did.” In 1975, the Tysons divorced, and Ian began reinventing himself as a cowboy singer. He moved to Alberta, bought a ranch near the foothills town of Longview, and set about becoming a serious horseman. On trips to Texas, whether shopping for horses or playing music, he would meet up with Pulos in hotels. Even after he married Twylla Biblow, a younger woman he met at Ranchman’s cabaret in Calgary, the affair went on.

Pulos tells these stories with neither regret nor triumphalism. Through three more of her own marriages, she says, she felt locked in a “wicked game” with Tyson, where one would tempt the other, and they’d wait to see who buckled first. Pulos’s cousin and lifelong confidant, Pauline Boone, says Pulos was no homewrecker. “I don’t think any of her marriages ended because of infidelity,” she says. Yet Evinia was strangely stubborn where her relationship with Tyson was concerned, adds Boone. “Even at games like Scrabble, she hated to lose or fail, and it was as if she felt the same way about Ian. She didn’t want to give up on the relationship.”

Certainly more elemental forces lay behind the mind games. “With us, it was always a very physical thing,” Pulos says. “Ian will make reference to this very day to the great attraction we had.” There was also admiration. “He’s very funny, very clever and he speaks very well,” she says. “When he goes on concert tours he brings himself down to do the cowboy talk. But he has a great command of the English language. He reads all the time. He has a huge library.”

Why, then, don’t they simply move in together? Why spend the rest of their lives sublimating what had all the hallmarks of true love? One reason is Pulos’s distaste for country living. Tyson, who divorced again in 2008, has invited her several times to come live with him on his 640-acre spread, she says. But, in keeping with the spirit of Four Strong Winds, she always declined. “I was never meant for that life—a house in the middle of nowhere with nothing on the horizon.” Another explanation lies in Tyson’s well-publicized struggles with the bottle. About that, too, Pulos doesn’t mince words: “He’s a mean drunk, and he always has been.”

So these days they’ll go months without seeing one another (they last met more than a year ago). Yet they speak once a week or more by phone, and few subjects are off limits. When Tyson took an interest a few years back in a woman from Denver, Pulos acted as a sounding board. Around the same time, she spoke to him about a man she’d met and admired. He got terse with her, but eventually admitted that he was feeling jealous. By the end of the conversation, he was laughing at himself.

Neither romance came to much, and last week it occurred to Pulos that, outside of her family, Tyson is the person she has known longest. Their stories are now inextricably linked—in music and in life—and when she hears Four Strong Winds it elicits a response familiar to anyone haunted by a love they thought they’d left behind. “It can make me melancholy and, depending on my mood, even depressed,” she says. “It just brings back so many memories.”


 

Ian Tyson’s affair to remember

  1. Am a big fan of Ian and Sylvia, together and individually.  This article was interesting, but I’m not sure I wanted nor needed to know all this.

  2. ”  Pulos’s cousin and lifelong confidant, Pauline Boone, says Pulos was no homewrecker. “I don’t think any of her marriages ended because of infidelity,” she says. ”

    Seriously? I never cease to be amazed or appalled at the excuses that we will make for family.  If what Pulos has said about her and Tyson is true, what we have on our hands here are two enormously seflish, destructive, careless, remorseless, cake-eating, two-timing scoundrels of the lowest order of human being.  Six failed marriages between the two of them, which means, at a mininum, six innocent people used and abused so that these two could carry on what they thought to be some great romance.  Pathetic.

    • mister pavane, you are just what you describe ian and evina as being and dont realize it.

      • Since I am clearly ignorant as to the reality of which you speak, please educate me.

  3. And the point of this story is?????  What a pathetic life these 2 have had.  I’d be ashamed of talking about it publicly.  Like a previous poster said, what about the people in their lives that they took advantage of or hurt?  Sick.  Didn’t need to read this and wished I hadn’t.

  4. Very interesting story; except the non-sequitur of the first paragraph, which tells us that “Come down and see me some time” means “I may see you some time if I’m ever back.”

  5. Wow, Ian Tyson is human. Big deal. Life is never as cut and dried as people want to think it is.  This story could belong to a lot of people, if they would give themselves over to the fact that things don’t always go as planned.  But that love can survive – what ever that love looks like.

    • Sorry, but things went EXACTLY ‘as planned’ for these two.  They made decisions to repeatedly get involved with other people while still messing around with each other.  One could try and overlook it the first time, but SIX marriages between the two of them over 50 years?  There is a fine line between being ‘human’, as you put it, and acting inhuman.  Infidelity is a cancerous, destructive scourge that blights our society and destroys relationships and famlies. I say this as an atheist, don’t accuse me of being some extra-moral religious zealot.  Perhaps this cuts too close to home, as I’ve been on the receiving end of an unfailthful spouse, but I get really irritated when people try and pass off this disgusting behaviour as someone just ‘being human’. It’s a fairly common excuse for an all too common occurence.  We all have feelings and attractions for people who AREN’T our spouses, but being ‘human’ means making decisions to NOT act on them… the people who do choose to betray their spouses (especially repeatedly) for their own selfish desires are giving in to their base instincts, and being ‘animals’… not being ‘human’. I don’t give two hoots that their ‘love’ survived, I’m only thinking about the love and years lost by the people that they betrayed over the last 50 years. They should have done the honourable thing and broke all contact with each other, or bit the bullet and been miserable with each other. She said it best herself… she couldn’t be with him long term because he is a ‘mean drunk’, so she basically spent 50 years cherry picking the best of him, and letting the other women in his life pick up the pieces.

    • Hmmm, sounds like something someone would say to justify their own lousy behavior.

  6. I have to agree with the critics, yet when all is said and done, we are attracted to this kind of story.
    Deep, lasting love has a powerful appeal

    • It’s not love. It’s self serving narcissistic lust and infatuation, drawn out over a long period of time because neither of them had the fortitude to hash out their feelings in a normal relationship life cycle.

    • This is not an example of “deep lasting love.”  These two wouldn’t know “deep lasting love” if it bit them in the arse.

  7. yes..i can see where some of Ian’s fans are disappointed to hear of the “other ” woman ..but if you read any of the numerous articles  and books written about Ian ..he  talks about us ….
      Passing a moral judgement is certainly your perogative…OBVIOUSLY you have led an exemplanary life .!…  
      There are hundreds of stories  written about star-crossed lovers  who for many reasons were unable to make a life together ..[ how about Charles/ Diana/ Camilla]…. and for the record ,our relationship was never the issue in any of our marriages ..”show biz”  as you know is lethal for most married couples …too many temptations .
      Being as judgemental as most of you are is not a surprise …but given the world we live in ..rather hypocritical and naive ..and quite frankly undeserved ..when the public idolizes stars who have passed away [recently Whitney Houston,] whose life was an addiction to alcohal and  drugs..or celebrities  who have children by their latest boyfriend and are glowingly featured on the cover of every magazine .. one has to ask ..why you are so indignant ?… surely you all have friends who have married more than once or have been unfaithful….[statistically speaking there are alot of us out there!!!.]…i do not think you would heap as much abuse on them !…one has to ask why?
       Evinia [Pulos]
     

    • Well, if you have to ask why, you probably won’t understand if someone tries to explain it to you, but, what the hell, I’ll give it a go.

      Of course you don’t understand the indignation of it all – you probably need to be reminded of the definition of the word:  “angered at something unjust or wrong”.  You can blame the ultimate failure of your respective marriages on the full moon for all I care, the bottom line is, what you two did to your six spouses over the last fifty years is wrong – period.  I know that it is wrong because I’m pretty sure that none of them ever condoned it or liked it.  Once again, I have no religious filter on all of this, I’m an atheist who believes in the simple policy of being honest and truthful to the one that you love, and tringy to treat others as I would like to be treated.  

      As for your sarcastic implication that some of us have false senses of moral perfection, I say this:  You know what? I have lead an exemplary life, thank you very much. I was faithful to my wife of ten years, and she would have been the first person to state that I was a devoted and doting husband.  One day, she got in touch with an old flame, and then made a series of poor choices that resulted in an 8 month affair. When I finally found out, I was devastated.  She couldn’t even explain what I had done or hadn’t done to cause it, she just stated that we had ‘grown apart’.  I get to now sift through the ruins of my marriage, and dig through almost a year of lies and deceit, and being pushed away, and for what?  Maybe, years from now, she’ll say “my affair had nothing to do with the failure of my marriage, we had grown apart”.  That line of reasoning is garbage – if we had truly been so far gone, she should have said so, and divorced me before jumping into the bed of another man and then leaving me in the dark for a year. In the case of you and Ian, the same applies. You didn’t need to drag your respective spouses along for the ride, but you did anyway.
      I’m not fan of Ian, so there is no disappointment, no shattered illusions or dashed expectations. All I feel is indignation in reading about how you rationalized everything that the two of you did over the past half a century.  If you can find one of either of your ex-spouses and have them state that your continuous affair had NOTHING to do with the failure of your combined six marriages, then I’ll gladly eat my words.  I’m stunned that you would try to bring up the moral failings of others (statistics, celebrity divorce, etc.) to try and minimize the wrongness of your actions.  Stating that ‘everybody else does it’ hardly justifies anything.

      I find it fascinating that you would presume that since most of the people you know are cheaters, that I and the other people disgusted by your actions are also cheaters and are simply hypocrites.  I imagine that you tell yourself that and many other things so that you can sleep at night.  Come to think of it, as I read this board, there seem to be two camps of people on this board – those who refer to it as disgusting and pathetic, and those who try to rationalize it by calling it ‘complex’  ‘being human’ and “deep lasting love”… which is the same as dividing it into camps of people who have cheated, and those have been cheated on.

      • totally agreed re: the ‘growing apart’ crap – heard it myself  get a divorce on that basis first & stop trying to find ‘happiness in the arms of a home wrecker/cheater with no morals either! Yet I hope you read my other replies to you as maybe it’s even more complex that we may all think….a lot of us we are/were in the same boat as the 6 cheated upon spouses, however, the human psych is SO VERY hard to fathom …each of the two situations for me were deeply scarring yet I fear in this non-cheating 2nd marriage that very situation is or could easily happen if something doesn’t give, though neither of us would resort to another’s so called ‘charms’. This I know to be true.  interesting comments all in and thread here.  I still am a folkie amongst other genres and will always adore ‘Four Strong Winds’. ph

    • There may be a lot of you out there, but that doesn’t make your behavior acceptable. You seem to have the mentality of a typical other woman.  No class, no dignity, no morals, no decency.  The fact that you would actually post on your own story and indignantly try to justify your lousy life choices does not surprise me.  There is nothing special about you.  You are quite common.  My advice is, go buy yourself a clue, you badly need it.

      Also, just as an FYI, I have never heard of you or your ‘boyfriend’ and judging by the Youtube clip, I haven’t missed anything.

    • I can understand your loving Ian all these years. He is a beautiful and talented person.   I have read his books and the books and articles about him.  I never heard the details you shared about the pregnancy.  He bought you a ring and you got an abortion.  Doesn’t sound like you loved him then and since you share these details now, you are still trying to hurt him. Do his children know these things you chose to share?  Ian, I feel sad for you in this situation.

      • From what I read, it sounded more like the choice to have an abortion was made between the two of them, and he only bought the ring in case he couldn’t get out of marrying her.  Ian has admitted in his memoirs and other interviews that he had more than one affair while he was married, so I think she probably dodged a bullet.  

    • Sorry, Evinia.  I have to agree with Steven.  If the two of you were so in love, why didn’t you carve out a life together rather than subject 6 spouses to the pain of a rejection that they didn’t deserve (and likely didn’t understand)?  Entering into a marriage with one person when you are in love with another person is selfish. I have to wonder if either you or Ian know the pain of that sort of betrayal.   

    • Love is not periodic or occasional banging in a hotel room . . . or wherever. Love is sticking to a commitment when all one wants to do is run. It’s tossing clothes in the washer and not leaving the car with an empty gas tank. It’s doing whatever the other needs in time of sickness . . . carrying on past the smell and mess of the sickness. All you have described is a myth supported by carnality.

      As for indignation, for me it is stoked by your blatant lies. Your relationship was never the issue in any or your marriages? Not only is that a lie, it’s treating Sylvia as a non-entity. She has been honest about the destructivenss of your presence in her marriage to Ian. Interesting, isn’t it that she continues to be successful across the planes of her life including her new ventures? These days, Ian can barely speak let alone sing. She was certainly pretty as a young woman but now she is elegantly lovely. And have you seen her neighborhood?! It’s certainly not “in the middle of nowhere with nothing on the horizon”

  8. Charlie Gillis did an outstanding job on “an affair to remember”.  That much is obvious!
    Everyone of us is complex, particularly emotionally. It follows that a relationship between two people is like a Gordian knot. I think the every day rules of conduct that apply to most of us keep things on an even keel. Yet, sometimes I wonder if the few who break all the rules, battle the odds and are in it for keeps, are the only people among us that really know what love is all about. 

  9. Wait let me get this straight, someone actually thought this was an important article to write?  An let me guess these two people and those close to them were happy to discuss details.  I am sorry but in all honesty I have never even heard of these people, they are just another example of what’s wrong with people today.  Is this there way to make themselves relevant for a few moments, a second shot at 15 minutes of fame?  The glory of the dumb choices they made in life needs to be relived and retold?

    In reality I would have never heard of them or this story if not for the information provided on a site I am a member of that helps those that suffer at the hands of people like these.  Wait what was that lovely quote from the other indignant self described “other woman” yea the one where she compares herself to that of Princess Diana and Camilla Parker Bowles.  Really so you fancy yourself that famous not likely but hey live your dream.  I will say this it is not a moral judgement being passed and I do not dare think that I have never made mistakes in my life.  But and this is a big “BUT”, I have never and I would never ever give my whole heart and soul to someone in front of family and friends and make the pledge of marriage and then cast aside those vows and the feelings of my spouse to satisfy a long lasting sex drive.

    What you had was not Love, it was sex and lust and I will give you passion.  When you love someone you forsake all others and you in good times and bad you work together and your honest.  You do not have emotional affairs or sexual affairs with someone else while your committed in marriage to another.  So if you in fact ever did any act that would break the vows of your marriage and would break the trust held with you and that spouse then you did in fact cause the breakdown in your marriage.  You cheated those people out of having a whole spouse that was going to love only them.

    Even sadder is the fact you felt you had to defend it and state lousy excuses such as show biz being the reason or hundreds of stories on star crossed lovers and blah blah blah…there are hundreds of stories on serial killers too, or even better so if everyone else jumps off a bridge you going to jump too??? All the cool kids are doing it…

    Listen you put your business out there on front street and thought it would be received better my suggestion would be hold off on releasing the sex tape since this concept backfired on you and take your lumps.  Your both cheaters get over yourselfs and try an apology letter to some of your victims the next time.

  10. Ouch, some real hatred out there, people with a great deal of baggage.

    • Does the fact that we’re speaking from the other side of the fence make what we’re saying any less true?  Also, I might have some baggage from having been cheated on, but I didn’t pack the bags and strap them to my back, my cheating wife did. Have you ever been betrayed by your spouse?

      • I would say as a woman cheated upon many years ago married young at 22 in ’76, spent 22 years sorta’ single and took 5 yrs the upper end, to get over it and much cognitive counselling throughout each relational discord, then an escalating abusive relationship  – I DID fall in love with this man; adored his creative and musical talent and back then, several of my own but I didn’t ‘see’ the red flags or his own angry drinking and abuse as a sing to leave ( I couldn’t – kept hoping that somehow I would one day make him happyl Though I’d say that this man was infinitely more a soul mate than the other two – doesn’t mean it worked out. Now I’m re-married for the 2nd and last time to an also cuckolded man who DIDN’T take anything but anti-d’s and self meds., who when we met and talked and dated for over a years, WAS still on anti-depressants )1st time ’cause he was too ‘lonely’ after divorce!? eventually lied about why to me (S.A.D.D) and smokes pot every night – actually they all did and I never thot it was any big deal ‘live and let live’ yet I never had the need for or did any prescrip. or recreational drugs or drinking. What’s my point? you may wonder. Even within a marriage, though it’s not near the deepness of true love, LOVE IS THERE. Neither of us I know would even consider an affair ever!  A main point is even being married I am often lonely even when he’s present. The books and magazines I read, he won’t, I have a modicum of Christian or higher power belief system; he does not believe in anythin (or read on some electronic device) anything but sci-fi and the BIG BANG theory.   Even though treated abominably by the 2nd long term commonlaw there IS still that bond of ‘sorrow’, what could have been and occasional emails just to see that all is ok.  He even made the complete turnaround, STOPPED – completely utterly unbelivable turnaround, every addictive substance right down to over-eating and now attends Church every week.  I’d like to think that I was somewhat integral for his happiness now and perhaps a good time to close with and mention another famous country singer, Clint Blacks’ “I’m Leaving Here a Better Man’. I hold no malice towards any of these experience or men – just compassion and as Evinia,I believe said, a modicum of sorrow.  Lonely does not mean unloved. It means we need to find the means to love ourselves more for having had the rough times teach us hard lessons and let the people who love us ……….well, love us.
        ‘help ever hurt never’  Patty H. ( sorry for long comment!)

        •  p.s. my 2nd husband is STILL on Effexor and really has no intention of
          coming off. The ‘shrink’ suggest cognitive counselling in tandem – he
          won’t go.  So between his ‘altered state of mind’ and puffs from nightly
          pipe – how are ever in synch. mentally, emotionally. He’s a very good man, helps others when the ask and helps me immensely as I am in some disability but the missing link is that ‘some/any of the same interests’ conversation inability from him…just thot i should clear that up. ph

  11. Soooo….. we’re supposed to think what?  That this is romantic?  Tragic?  Ill-fated?  Or, as the “heroine” (ahem) herself claims, star-crossed?  Oh, wait, I know.  Two incredibly cruel, selfish, narcissistic, thoughtless excuses for human beings are having a pity party and feeling sorry for themselves.  The irony of it all, of course, is that they truly deserve no better than each other, but a real relationship (you know, the kind that requires commitment, fidelity and hard work) between them wouldn’t have lasted a year.  Puh-YUKE!

    • And I just wanted to add that there are thousands and thousands of people who can claim that they have been lovers for over 50 years – their pictures are in your local paper every week.  These are people who are looked up to by their proud and loving families.  On the other hand, there are very few who can claim to have been lying, cheating, bas****s/bit***s for 55 years.  That takes a really “special” kind of broken person.

  12. After reading this drivel I feel an intense desire to take a bath.

    •  I always thought “Four Strong Winds” was a terrible song anyway.

  13. It’s interesting to see an article like this and to see the different responses. Those who have been betrayed and those who have not seem to be the two camps represented here.

    Well, I’m in the camp who has been betrayed. Better yet, I was the innocent victim caught up in the love affair of two “star-crossed” lovers with a 25 year love story. 

    It’s not at all romantic, but it certainly is tragic. 

    To think that the man I loved, and who had pledged to love only me, was lying all the years we were together. To think that every happy family memory I have with him was a lie. To think that I placed so much trust in another human being, who promised never to betray that trust, only to have that trust betrayed the second the opportunity to run back to his one “true love” appeared. Maybe I could have been informed that I wasn’t that “true love.” Maybe I could have been informed that I never could be.

    Maybe I wouldn’t have had to live through the worst agony of my life. Maybe I wouldn’t feel that I really know what Hell must be like.

    But…you know…it was “true love” so that makes it OK. My own “true love” isn’t important. My own years of loyalty and dedication mean nothing. The deepest sentiments of my own heart are worthless because he had “true love” with someone else and never bothered to tell me about it. 

    Those of you who wish to justify and romanticize this story, just go right ahead. Continue putting down those of us who see the real tragedy and the real victims in this mess. I pray you never find yourself on the receiving end of similar betrayal, because I wouldn’t wish this on the worst human being, but if you ever do, be sure to come back here and tell us how romantic and justified such a situation is.

    •  Well, I kind of hope it does happen to them.  Might make them a little more empathetic…

  14. Great to see the morality police out in full riot gear (please, don’t miss the sarcasm here).  I didn’t read anything that implied that these people planned to marry others and keep each other on the side.  It sounds more like a woman who fell for a womanizer and tried repeatedly to get on with her life, only to be drawn back in every time she crossed his mind.  She sounds like a woman with such low self esteem that she could be dragged around by the attention of men, instead of seeing her own real value.  I wonder what happens in a persons life that sets them up to be like this?  

    I see him as the entitled narcissist, and she as a woman so deperate for validation that she was willing to risk her relationships to take whatever crumbs he might hand out.  He’s been a womanizer all along, and she was just one of his many conquests.  

    • A little sexist there, don’t you think?  They were equally narcissistic and skanky.  It takes two to tango and these two are the “dancers.”  Their spouses are the ones who were betrayed and taken advantage of.  Of course she’s broken.  So is he.  That’s why they could do this for 55 years.

      • You couldn’t be more wrong, furthermore, Evinia has been asked, many many many times over the years, to write about this….now I wish she hadn’t.
        You all assume they cheated, with each other, during all these other relationships…no, they did not…But over the course of 55 years they would reconnect. Sometimes only by phone or letter…Dirty minds always take things to 
        the lowest most common level.  
        this horrible ‘shanky’ person as you call her, spends her time and money rescuing abused and abandoned animals…what a terrible person she is….hm

        •  Honey, you need to get your head around the concept of an emotional affair.  I never said they had sex for 55 years straight, so who’s mind is in the gutter?  Do some reading.  An emotional betrayal can be infinitely more devastating than a physical betrayal.

          •  *whose*  oops…

          • Yes, an emotional affair can be devastating.  It can do unbelievable damage to a relationship.  But if Ian continued to feel attached to Evinia while he was married to Sylvia, and Evinia stayed appropriately out of the picture, can she be held responsible for his continued feelings?  If he continues to pine for her long after she’s out of his life, how is that her fault?  It’s conceivable that she could be, as Sylvia put it, the third person in their marriage without her being involved at all.  

  15. In all this discussion the most telling comment was made by ahv1 ” I would never heard of them or this story if not for the information provided on a site I am a member of. . . . . .”  Do you people have nothing better to do with your days than monitor the media for “the bad guys”, in the case of your group those that have had an affair.  

    It never ceases to amaze me that there are groups of people who condemn everyone who doesn’t adhere to their way of thinking.  Does your group have any empathy for those of us who are just “human”?  

    I understand very well the hurt of being cheated on, who doesn’t?  Whether it was your first “true love” at fourteen, or a spouse at 34, it hurts – a lot.  However, neither of the two people in the article were responsible for YOUR hurt, and I didn’t hear any statements that encouraged anyone to follow in their footsteps.

    If a person feels strongly about an issue, they can go to one of the sites and vent.  Do you need to put down an individual for being honest?  

    • Well, I’m a regular reader of Macleans online, and usually read the stuff with political focus. I do indeed have better things to do with my time than be a media monitor for this stuff, and trust me, I don’t go out looking for this. That being said, when I read this story, I did indeed media monitor, but I will confess that this story struck a chord with me, so I did mention it on another site that I follow, which is a support site for those who wish to find constructive means to deal with infidelity.

      One of those constructive means is to call it out for what it is and not let it be cast incorrectly as a ‘great love affair.  

      Of course, if we were actually spending our time looking for these articles, would it make what we have to say any less true or invalid?  Sorry, but the phrase ‘just human’ is a cop-out no matter how you try to spin it.  There is nothing wrong with voicing strong opinions on this subject as it is an immensely destructive and prolific aspect of our society.

      One thing you said stood out for me in particular: “It never ceases to amaze me that there are groups of people who condemn everyone who doesn’t adhere to their way of thinking”… sorry, but the general opinion of society on this subject is that infidelity is unfair to the person being cheated on, and is inappropriate behaviour, period.  Why else do you think public figures take heavy damage to their image when they’re busted? Why else do people do what they can to avoid having ‘adultery’ included in their divorce filing as the reason for the marriage failing?   This whole matter of infidelity being wrong and destructive isn’t simply ‘my way of thinking’, it’s one of those simple truths that we all understand – and often try to circumvent. If there was nothing wrong with infidelity, we would tell our significant others after we were intimate with someone else… but how often do you think that happens? Would you tell your spouse if you had been unfaithful, or would you try to hide to “avoid hurting them’ (common excuse).  So, NO, I’m not exactly coming from a minority position on this one.

      Have you taken the time to onto any of the other articles on this site and lambaste those who dare to critically analyse and debate other controversial topics like murders and government scandals?  Of course you haven’t, because corruption, murder, rape, robbery, etc. are all things that generate universal outrage – if someone steps up and decries any of the details in those topics, are you going to chide the posters for not having empathy for the subjects of those articles who  ‘just human’?  Of course you won’t, because infidelity is give a ‘pass’ by a lot of society.  

      She’s not being honest, ‘the old one’, not even close. She has the unmitigated gall to say that her 50 year love affair never once factored into the failure of six marriages.  That is about as dishonest and disingenuous as it gets.  It is statements like THAT in the article that got my blood boiling and still do.  The support site that I talked about is for venting about our own situations – this comment board is for those who want to talk about the content of the story at hand, which we are doing.  I fail to see how this is a problem.

      • Perhaps that is because it was not a 50 year love affair, it spanned over the course of…  have you never called an old buddy and rekindled, where you left off, 20 years before, with the odd wonder of how they were, in between???NO, again, don’t say I am telling you this was an old buddy, I am not saying that….but again, you assume they were in and out of each others bed once a year for 50 years….
        Heal your own scars and more on.

        •  Again, Elizabeth – you are the one who keeps jumping to the always “in bed” concept.  And, guess how many affairs, both emotional and physical, have begun because someone “rekindles” an old acquaintance (often on Facebook).  Many, many, many… too many to count.  It’s all fantasy.  Tragic for the spouse who is adult enough to live responsibly in the here and now.  Pathetic for the spouse who is trying to recapture something that probably never really existed. 

          How can you possibly defend this kind of behavior in good conscience?  Says a lot about your morals and boundaries.  If you are married, I feel sorry for your husband.

    • So true….

    •  You know what they say about heat and the kitchen, right?  If she wants to air her dirty laundry in public, she had better be prepared to have people point out that it’s, well… dirty.

  16.    How sad that  these holier than thou, pathetic ,hate filled people feel the need to vent their frustrations and repressed lives on someone they do not know nor who has done  them any harm .
       It  must be terrible to have that much hate eating at your soul, they are to be pitied, small people living in a small little world ,  so unchristian , they should be ashamed.
       Surley they can find better things to do with their time. [apparantly not!]
          animalslovepeople

    •  Can only hope it happens to you someday! :)  No hate, just disgust that people like you would consider this a “love” story.  Do you have the same love in your heart for all sociopaths?  And, you’re right – not a christian bone in my body and proud of it.  Religion is a source of much evil and you are proof of that if your “christian” heart can look at this cruel behavior and say it’s all hunky-dory.  And if they don’t want people commenting on their private lives, they shouldn’t give interviews to blog writers.  I mean, isn’t that the whole point?

      •  And I might add that you “christians” seem hell-bent on forgiving people who have not only not asked for it, but don’t believe they’ve done anything wrong, while completely ignoring those who have been devastated by their actions. Repentance?  Atonement?  Are they in your religious vocabulary?

    • Well, considering that I’m an atheist, you declaring me as being ‘unchristian’ is like water off a duck’s back.

      Why would I be ashamed for standing up for what I believe?   There is nothing wrong with bringing insight from my personal experiences to the table.  If someone was mugged at gunpoint and then commented on a Macleans story about the crime rate, would you tell them to get over it, and stop bringing their personal drama to a comment board?

      It doesn’t matter that these two didn’t do me ‘any harm’… they did a lot of harm to other people, and Evinia decided to pitch it in the public domain as some great love story. Once someone puts this into the public domain, there is nothing wrong with expressing opinion on it.

      What the hell else do you think these comment boards are for?

  17. So, WHO CARES,
    WHO YOU DID,
    A MILLION YEARS AGO!
    YOU are a NOBODY Evinia, and so is Tyson.
    With ALL there is in this world to discus,
    this story disgusts me…
    why trash a marriage, a family,
    and hurt so many, to share
    YOUR illicit affair???
    You are BOTH vain, conceited and immature.

    NOT renewing MY subscription,
    Rap

  18. Evinia and Elizabeth, there are people who will never see this as simply a story.  They will not see that there is no bragging, no suggestion that this relationship ought to be seen as acceptable or not, no attempt to justify, just the simple telling of a story.  They don’t want to understand why or how it happened, they just want to unload and you’ve given them a target.  Stop.  Do not engage.  You offered your story because somebody wanted to hear it and found the others did not.  So be it.  There is nothing to be gained by further engaging in debate, and nothing to be lost by leaving these people to think what they will.