Steffanie Rivers

If a person is exceptionally gifted in one area of his life, then he is proportionately deficient in another part of his life that probably is just as – if not more – important. Take Tony Parker for example: He’s the San Antonio Spurs basketball standout who helped his team win three NBA championships, has been selected to the NBA All-Star team three times and was voted NBA Finals MVP in 2007. Most people would agree that Parker, who’s not even 29 years old yet, is an exceptional athlete.

And after last week most people also would agree that Parker’s behavior in his personal life was negligent at best and adulturous at worst. It’s hard to believe the Tony Parker we see on the basketball court is the same person who has admitted to having an adulturous affair with the wife of a former teammate. Incase you haven’t heard the latest celebrity news, Parker’s wife of three years, “Desperate Housewives”actress Eva Longoria, discovered incriminating Facebook messages and hundreds of text messages on her husband’s cell phone from a family female friend. That female friend is the wife of a former Spurs teammate who is in the middle of her own divorce. Parker admitted the affair to his wife, and they both filed divorce petitions last week. How could something that started with such a lavish wedding somewhere in Paris have ended so badly?

You could blame Parker’s behavior on immaturity, because this 28-year-old allowed his impulses to overcome his intellect. Some people believe Parker’s untouchable celebrity status that comes with being a professional athlete is what did him in. Afterall, women throw themselves at him just because of who he is. But this highly skilled specimen who finesses his way up and down a basketball court out-manuevering and out-scoring his opponents forgot to log out of his Facebook account. And as poetic justice would have it, his wife learned of his secret.  And as if that isn’t bad enough, the guy didn’t have sense enough to erase the hundreds of text messages he exchanged with his mistress and his wife found those too.  Why keep hundreds of old texts anyway? The mistress, turned out to be a friend and (now estranged) wife of a former teammate. Now that’s sloppy. How can someone so skilled in one area of his life be so careless in another?

Parker is not the first high profile man in a seemingly happy marriage to get caught with his pants down (Jessie James and Tiger Woods), which leads me to believe my original conjecture is true. It also could mean the next time you meet a highly successful man who is focused on success you should run the othe way, that is unless you don’t mind being cheated on, but I digress.

How do couples start out like Britain’s Prince William and his fiance’ Kate Middleton with so many expectations and excitement for each other, then end up like Parker and Longoria? Clearly they didn’t communicate enough with each other and too much with someone else.

Whether it’s a royal couple, a celebrity couple or just a couple of no-name people who decide to marry, money can’t buy happiness. Honest communication, trust and respect are the foundation of any great relationship. Mix them together with all the passwords to your social networking and email accounts and you get eternal love. Leave out any one of the aforementioned and you could have a mess on your hands.

Steffanie is a freelance journalist living in the Dallas, Texas metroplex. Send questions, comments or requests for speaking engagements to Steffanie at [email protected]. And see the video version of her journal at youtube.com/steffanierivers.