“What is it about love that makes us act so stupid?” – Under The Tuscan Sun
I have always suggested that those who choose to be the other woman need to keep ourselves in check. Don’t fall in love with this man who is obviously unwilling to make a real commitment to anyone. Remember, there is a woman back home who he has made public commitment to, and yet, he is still doing things with you. To give this man control of any type would lead to your own downfall.
I have gotten lots of mail about women who feel like they are the ones leading double lives. That they, not the men, are having to be untrue to who they really are. Honey, sit down we need to have a talk.
While rule #1 is for you to be discreet, I never want you to devalue who you are. YOU need to look out for you. That’s why rule #2 is to decide what’s in it for you. Don’t be going into his thing looking for a happy ending. And if for some reason he starts putting demands on YOU, grab your purse and get to the door. Trust me on this, you have more power over him than he is letting you know. YOU hold the cards in this arrangement.
He stands to lose everything, especially in states that are not a no fault divorce state. He can lose his shirt if it’s found out he’s been with someone else. If, for some reason, he starts getting pushy with you, or g-d forbid violent, you need to remind him who really is in control. You are better than letting this man rule your life and tell you who to be. You decide who you are going to be. If that’s his mistress, then enjoy it, don’t be miserable. If it’s a single woman, then be single. You do not owe him anything.
I care about you way too much to have you giving your power to man who doesn’t deserve it. Own your decision. But don’t let HIM own YOU!
What would you do, if the married man you’ve been seeing was suddenly single? What if… his wife moved out? What if… he asked you to come be with him?
What would you do?
Is this a wonderful thing, or is it the worst possible outcome? What had been a completely non-committal relationship is now, what, available? Dating?
The rules and roles have completely changed. If you were once an escape from his every day, real life, you are now his real life. If you were to move in with him, you would now be the woman to who he is committed. It would all depend on which type of cheater you are with to find out if the adage is true.
“A mistress who becomes a wife, leaves a vacancy”.
It is up to you if you want this to be serious. You may not have ever wanted this to be something real. For many women I have talked to, dating a married man was simply for fun. While there often comes a change in emotional ties, it was usually never seen as a serious thing. If you want to keep this casual “no strings attached” this may not be your best case scenario.
Is it love? Or is it a continuation of the fantasy?
So… what would you do? What DID you do?
I know I know, it sounds like I’m turning you from mistress into prostitute, but I’m not. Just, stay with me for a moment.
When a man approaches you about being his mistress, and he will, know your worth. He is asking you to break a social more by being the other woman. know that you will garner no sympathy when this falls apart (and it will). No one will feel sorry for you no matter how you spin the story.
He gets to play patty cake with a beautiful witty woman (that’s you) while also having the stability of a committed relationship at home. The best of both worlds, if you will. While, yes, he is risking being caught, and losing half of everything, he is also getting off on the danger of it all. The risk is what makes it worth while. Well, that an sex with you. And his wife.
So what do YOU get out of the deal?
Don’t be afraid to ask, straight forward. If he starts asking you to send him “naughty photos” or even to join him for coffee after dinner back at his hotel room, be a grown woman, and ask “what’s in this for me”. Now, don’t be a snide about it. You can play the coy, bat your eyes, take a sip from your espresso, ingenue if you like. That tends to go over better with most men who want to feel like the hunter and dominant one. If he responds with, what do you mean?, just explain that you know this isn’t going to go anywhere, since you KNOW he is married/in a committed relationship, and it seems that he is getting the better end of the deal.
Now, YOU are going to have to decide what the deal breaker is. What is your worth as the other woman? Is he really that great of a catch that you’re willing just to give the store away? Do you want chocolates? dinners? jewelry? an apartment? Or are you looking for something simple, a man who you don’t have to take care of and only have to deal with on a rare occasion for a good time, no strings attached? (which is a string all its own)
If nothing else, I would suggest demanding you get orgasms. That he makes sure that you get yours. The sex can’t always be all about him (if you decide to keep this thing going, of course you can indulge his fantasies, but right now, it’s about YOU).
So you need to decide what you want out of this. After all, you won’t be getting the man, in the end. What is your time, and respect worth?
Right now it does not matter how it is that you found yourself in the role as the mistress. If you choose to continue, there are rules that must be followed. Most important of them all, is the rule of discretion.
I do not care if he wants to parade you around in public, or even introduce you to his friends, YOU will keep your head. You will not lead to his or your downfall.
I know this is the time of spilling the beans about everything to anyone *yes, I keep this blog, so I know*, but you as the mistress, you have a new role.
You are officially the keeper of secrets. Your secrets, and his.
You can no longer chat with your girlfriends about who you are seeing, when you are seeing him, or what you are doing. If it involves the man who is taken, it is officially off limits. Sure you can say that you went to the movies, but I would suggest you not say with who, or even that it was a date. Too many questions happen, and no matter how large your city, it is still small and people are always connected.
I am not saying you need to blatantly lie to those around you, but you will learn to deflect, change the topic, or just steer the conversation so that you don’t have to answer questions. It’s not as difficult as you think it may be. But if you’re usually an over sharer, your friends might be curious if you suddenly become private. Ease into it.
Example – you are a classic over sharer and your friend wants to know how your weekend went. You and John Dear spent the weekend in a gorgeous new hotel downtown, complete with room service, walking around, and drinks at a club. What do you tell your friend?! You could tell her nothing too exciting, but you did take a trip downtown to check out the window shopping. Oh did you hear about this new club *where you had drinks, but don’t tell her that part* near the new hotel? It sounds like so much fun! And that new hotel looked gorgeous you had to take a look inside. To-die!
You have just shared enough, so that if you ever slip and say how nice the hotel is, she’s not confused, and you have a “new” fun place to go with your friend for drinks. Why not stop by the restaurant at the hotel, too, and have the same thing you had last time. Just in case you ever say how yummy it was.
Now, if you normally keep to yourself, this may not be an issue for you. Just be mindful. After all, there are few things more embarrassing to a woman than knowing her man is having an affair. One being having everyone else know he’s having an affair.