Paula Broadwell is protesting a double-standard in the response to news of her affair with former General David Petraeus, sexism she believes was made apparent by the language used to cover the scandal and his hastier professional recovery.

"I'm the first to admit I screwed up," Broadwell told the New York Times in a profile published on Saturday. "Really badly, I know that. But how long does a person pay for their mistake?"

Broadwell had an Army Reserve promotion to lieutenant colonel after it was revealed in late 2012 that she and then-CIA director David Petraeus had engaged in an extramarital affair. Petraeus resigned and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for giving classified information to Broadwell, who wrote a biography of the celebrated Iraq War general. By the summer of 2013, however, he had rebounded to take a job as a visiting professor at the City University of New York. Petraeus as also joined a New York-based investment firm.

But Broadwell's recovery has been slower, the profile explains. The Army Reserve revoked her promotion from major to lieutenant colonel, she lost her security clearance, and her attempt to earn a doctorate was scrapped after the FBI seized the computers containing her dissertation research because they contained classified government information. And Republican lawmakers who once viewed her as a rising political star immediately cut off contact.

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