Author’s note: to the women who have found themselves in a place they thought they would never be. To those brave enough to have shared their pain and darkness with me, thank you.
Soul mate, twin flame, whatever deep connection you feel, some women experience something they never thought they would: being the other woman.
I see you. Not the home-wrecker or desperate woman you are often portrayed as—although you fill yourself with enough self-hatred to take on these titles.
I see you believing your love, this love, is different. I see you committing yourself to someone who will never fully commit to you. I see you holding faith and trusting the words he speaks. I see you in those quiet moments of pain, loss of dignity and self-respect, shame and guilt—the moments you are torn, confused.
Drowning in a pool of sweet promises, intense feelings of love, broken promises, and devastating feelings of despair.
These are brutal waters to navigate. I see you sitting, waiting, trusting, loyally patient, and giving your all to a man—to “choose” you as their only option. A man who can only ever give you a part of himself. Such a complex situation, and you know you are judged, even despised. Hell you judge and despise yourself.
Regardless of how you got here, it’s a sh*t place to be and one that more often than not will leave you reeling in a pit of grief and torment.
Dear girl, that other lady’s husband may promise you the world. You may feel connected at the soul. But your soul will be left splintered and torn.
While I know you feel like being faithful and waiting is the right thing to do, I would question, what it is doing to your life? What is it doing to your essence? I know you feel joy and passion, but you also feel sadness and loss.
Sometimes there’s a reason for this; there’s work to be done and lessons to be learnt. But I see you sitting at home, waiting, patiently living your life based on his words, his promises. Waiting for his calls. Waiting for the briefest moments of him.
Dear girl, words are just words, and without actions, they will always be just words.
I see your internal light starting to dim. Your spirit breaking and your internal chatter increasing. Your insides are tearing themselves apart, and your energy is diminishing as you sneak around—as you live this lie.
I know your emotions and feelings are real. I know you love him, and I know you want to believe him, but at what cost to you? How many questions will you ask yourself? How much heartache are you willing to endure?
Dear girl, I know it’s real and raw for you and perhaps him also. I know this love seems like nothing you have ever felt.
But it’s like a mirage; you can see it, you can feel it, and it looks and feels incredible. You move closer and closer, and as you finally think you’ve reached this destination, you see it’s an illusion. It’s a beautiful illusion, and the devastating truth will slap you so hard, cold and painfully across the face, it will take you the longest time to recover.
Dear girl, he’s not going to leave her for you. Why?
>> He doesn’t want to be the bad guy. He’s comfortable and he’s afraid of judgement and consequences. He doesn’t want to face his truth and admit to doing wrong.
>> Guilt—plain and simple. He doesn’t want to hurt his wife, despite the fact his lying and cheating if discovered will cause her no end of pain. If children are involved, he can’t face the shame of doing this to his family.
>> Maybe you scare the hell out of him. Maybe his feelings for you are intense and he’s terrified that he could sacrifice everything and you walk away. He has no strength of character.
>> He likes having his cake and eating it too. It’s comfortable. He gets what he needs and wants from you and her. It’s a win-win for him.
>> He will always have his life to return to, whilst you will be left picking up every dirty, broken piece. He’s in the driver’s seat; he’s always been in control.
I see you deciphering all of this, but you didn’t need to be told. You already know. You love him, but you know he’s selfish and puts his needs first. Always. You can see it’s not about you, or her; it’s about him. What he wants and what he needs. It’s always about him.
Dear girl, I know you want to be with him but not like this. Not when it breaks up another relationship. Not when vows are shattered. Not when it causes so much hurt.
I know you didn’t mean to end up in this mess. You didn’t want to cause anyone pain, but the truth is there’s pain all around. Your guilt and shame keeps you vibrating at such a low energy. His double life, secrets, deceit, and lies are causing him more wounds to heal. And whether she is aware or not, it causes a horrible ripple effect. If she discovers this, she will feel broken, humiliated, and question every part of her self-worth. If she doesn’t find out, her whole relationship is built on lies.
Dear girl, waiting for him, like some sort of option, is not unconditional love. It is enabling—enabling him to always have you at his whim. To always have one foot in your door.
I know walking away will feel like a big part of you has died. You will feel your heart splintering, and it will stab your chest relentlessly. You will feel like you cannot breathe, and sometimes maybe you can’t. You will feel like you are completely broken, but now you have the opportunity to put yourself back together and heal in a way that makes you feel whole.
Dear girl, you get to make a choice. A choice to let this wounded and damaged man go. To let him sort his sh*t out, without dragging you further into his sordid mess.
I know you saw a future with him. I know he asked you to wait and have faith, because he has never loved a woman the way he loves you, or so he said. I know it feels like torture because maybe, just maybe, it will all work out. But his wife matters, and I know you know that; I know the truth that you could cause another such despair kills you inside.
He has unfinished business, and he needs to walk the path—he needs to walk. Don’t enable him. Don’t give him the option to be this man, to cause you both pain.
Dear girl, you are better than that. I know you have lost your way, but you can set yourself free.
Send him light and send him on his way. Anything that starts with secrecy and lies is unhealthy, but you already know that. His choices will lead him to his own lessons and his own karma; you don’t need to be a part of that. You don’t need to keep drowning in your putrid pool of shame, guilt, and loss of self-respect. It happened—learn from it and walk away.
Dear girl, people will judge you. They will speak harshly of you, but you can learn from this experience and grow into a better person. You can use your lessons to teach others.
When the night falls and the darkness whispers and wraps around the edges of your sadness is when you are brave enough to acknowledge to yourself that no matter what he says, how many times he makes promises, you are likely to be nothing more to him than the other woman.
Dear girl, close the door behind him. And with love and grace begin your own path to healing. I know you will never again allow yourself to be an option because you deserve someone who chooses you.