She was a lady. Beautiful, smart, and sensual, she turned heads everywhere she went! Yet, she always found herself in the role of a mistress. She would start relationships and, a few months into them, realize she had been dating a married man! She’d then break those relationships off, only to fall in love yet again—with a married man.
Why does this always happen to me, she’d ask me during our therapy sessions. “I want to have a real family,” she would say, “and I always meet married men… Where is my problem?”
Women who attract married men should consider their own families first. Did your parents cheat on each other? It’s possible they did, and you don’t even know about it! Children who grew up in families where adultery was a common thing tend to adopt one of these three models of behaviour:
- They date married men/women
- They cheat on their partners
- They get cheated on
Unfortunately, once present in your field, cheating cannot be easily eliminated.
So, how can you stop it?
- First, forgive the parent who used to cheat. Tell them, “You have the right to make your own choice. They, after all, are your choices and do not define me.”
- Second, respect the parents who have been cheated on. Don’t feel sorry for them, and don’t (unconsciously) try to be like them. If you start viewing the situation through the perspective of “There are two roles in life: the role of a wife, who is cheated on, and the role of a mistress,” and you pick a role, you will always be unhappy.
Now, there is one other reason that women fall in love with married men: they associate relationships (and commitment) with pain, and therefore strive to avoid it.
Do you equate commitment with pain? Do you keep on living with your parents’ worries and fears? Do you hold resentment deep within?
In my practice as a psychologist, I often work with clients to uproot suppressed fears and worries. Once I successfully locate the roots of their current misfortunes, I can help them lead better, healthier lives. As a result, many of my clients stop attracting unavailable men!
Sure, breaking things off is never easy—especially when you have feelings for that person. However, if he is married, you know for a fact he has been both lying to you and deceiving his wife. Is that the type of man you wish to be with?
Ask yourself the following question: “Do I wish to be with a married man?”
If you really wanted the best for yourself, if you loved yourself, would you really choose this? Be strong, be honest, and love yourself. Answer honestly.
If your answer is “No! I want to have a happy, healthy family. I never want to be in the role of a mistress ever again!” then you should speak with this man. “I am not the type of woman,” you should say, “who likes to play your mistress. I want a husband. I want children. And I want loyalty.” If he doesn’t choose to get a divorce and marry you within a year, you should leave him. Leave with your head held high. Keep your dignity and, even if you are in pain, leave with good memories and respect for him and your relationship. Know that a better relationship is yet to come. Allow yourself to cry and go to therapy. Change your job and your hair color, if you think this will make you feel better! Heal.
However, if your answer is “Yes, I like being a mistress!” then don’t feel the need to change much. Remain respectful towards his wife. Know he will always put her first. If you respect her and appreciate her, your relationship can last for many years, sometimes even a lifetime. And, sometimes, the wife is happy with this situation as well (as it eliminates the need for her to give her husband sex all the time). Just remember one very important rule: if you are a mistress, the safest situation for you is while he is married! If his wife finds out about you, kicks him out, and you become the new Mrs, not at his choice but at his wife’s choice. That’s when you will be in danger! A man who is used to having two women will always have two women. Once a cheater, always a cheater.
Behavioral models are difficult to change, especially if people are not aware of them. Each couple is different, and you have to see what works for you.
We support you in your truth.
Psychologist, family therapist, author
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