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What to Do If Your Man Loves You but Has Another Woman

Updated on December 30, 2018
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Ian has experience in relationship and marriage counselling.

How can he still love you, yet he has another woman? That is the big question, and it can be quite confusing. For a man to have two or more partners is morally wrong in the eyes of most people, except in societies where polygamy is accepted. For him to claim that he loves them both is an even bigger controversy.

Many people (both men and women) are involved with more than one partner at the same time, even when they appear to be in happy monogamous relationships. Many times, they do so in secret and get away with it.

Is it always about love? Sadly, most of the time the affair is really just about convenience and has nothing to do with love.

But there are times when love is involved. When he really loves both ladies, because each of them has a unique quality. It may be hard to believe, but it happens. The moralistic approach on which arguments for fidelity and monogamy are based, may not apply to such situations.

Those situations are with us and in my opinion are here to stay. Polyamory provides one way to address them, but is not yet widely understood or accepted. Yet we must talk about them and explore the challenges they present.

This article is for a woman who finds herself in a situation where her man says he loves her, but he loves another as well. Whether he has confessed, or you caught him, it can hurt quite a bit.

What to do when you discover that he's seeing someone else, and says he loves you both?

Whether you are his wife, girlfriend or you are “the other woman” and have just discovered that he is married, this article is for you. We’ll attempt to explore some of the things you can do, which in my opinion are practical and can be helpful in dealing with the dilemma.

Consider ending the relationship

The quickest solution is to consider ending the relationship. If you aren’t married to him, and you really feel you can’t afford to share him, there is no reason to keep hurting yourself. He’s not the only man out there afterall. Studies indicate that this is particularly easier for relationships that haven’t been going on for too long. Besides, there are many other men who believe in exclusive love and sooner or later you will find one if you look patiently.

It's not advisable to keep yourself in a relationship with someone else’s man if you are not happy about it, or if it can potentially compromise your personal safety. Remember while you are hurting, ‘the other woman’ could also be hurting if she has found out about you, and you can't be sure what her reaction will be. At the end of the day, the choice to end it or stay and try to make it work is yours. If he promises to change and be yours alone, then you have a reason to hang in there. You will have to use your sense of judgement on that one.

Sometimes however, ending the relationship may not be as simple as it sounds, according to Dr Lisa Ranking, a psychologist. This can be due to a variety of reasons. It could be because you have been married for some time and have children. The history you share can itself make breaking up very hard. It is also possible that until this moment, he has been the perfect gentleman, treats you well, makes you feel loved and has those qualities that make you happy, and you just aren’t ready to let him go because you love him.

Talk to him - Let him know how you feel about it.

Before you make any decision, put a few things into consideration. Try talking to him and let him know how you feel about the situation. His response will tell you a lot about his true feelings for your relationship.

If he has been treating you well before this, there is a real possibility that he truly loves you, only that he fell for another at the same time. If he is afraid of losing you, he may even reconsider his feelings for the other woman, and hopefully will not see her again.

If he clearly explains that he loves you both, and doesn't want to loose either of you, he is a brave man and deserves you to listen to his reasons. If he can successfully convince you, then you must negotiate boundaries regarding how your relationship should proceed. Agree on what is acceptable and unacceptable.

Don’t give him an ultimatum. That will only cause unnecessary pressure. If he wants you, he will choose you. If you manipulate him into choosing you, neither of you will be happy and the relationship will be doomed.

Secondly, if you are married, ask yourself, ‘is there something about your relationship with him that could be the reason he is seeing someone else?’ Openly talk to him and ask him to be honest with you about the matter. Be as objective as possible when you listen to his side of the story. If he suggests something that can be corrected, that is a good starting point. I have learnt from experience that no single relationship is perfect. In most cases however, the issues can be resolved if both parties put some effort into it.

Ask him if he is willing to share you with another man.

Does he say he loves you both, so much that he can't let either of you go? If his answer is yes, then ask him if he is equally willing to share you with another man. If he can have another woman, he should be open to the possibility of you having another man. This will help open his eyes and get him to reflect on the reality of the pain he is causing to both you and the other woman. It could bring him to reconsider his actions.

If he can't afford to share you, then he is quite selfish and you must think carefully about how to proceed.

Evaluate your feelings about the relationship.

Most importantly, you need to evaluate your own feelings for him and the relationship. Do you love him enough to put up with the drama that can accompany polyamorus relationships? Are you willing to be with him, despite knowing that you'll be sharing him with another? This will help you determine if you should stay.

If you are getting everything else you want from the relationship apart from exclusivity, then you must decide which is more important to you. For example, if he provides for you and spends quality time with you without ever bringing up the other woman, you can decide to turn a blind eye and concentrate on your own relationship. This isn’t easy because whenever he isn’t with you, you will always assume he is with her. You must find ways of living with it. Getting activities that keep you fully occupied when he isn’t around can be very helpful in preventing your mind from coming up with things that may hurt you even more.

Would you accept to be in a polyamorus relationship?

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Consider seeing another man

You could consider getting your self into an affair with another man as away of getting even. To be honest, society tends to judge women who engage in extra affairs more harshly. But I wouldn’t blame you if you thought about it or if you did, afterall, if he can ‘cheat’ then so can you. This is where your values come into play.

There are some things to think about before you decide to engage in an extra affair. Are you ready to manage the stress that comes with having multiple partners? Will you have enough time for yourself and for both men? Think about sexually transmitted diseases. For this point, you must confront him especially if you have proof that he has other women, and he doesn’t want to come clean. If he doesn’t care about your safety, he is probably not the right man for you. If you decide to let him continue seeing the other woman, there must be an agreeable plan for keeping sexually transmitted diseases out of the picture.

Do not try to fight with the other woman.

It is understandable that you are in a lot of pain and possibly very angry. But chances are high she is equally in as much pain, if she has found out about you. Therefore what ever happens, DO NOT resort to violence. Trying to fight her will hurt you even more. It will only make the situation much worse for all of you. You could end up doing something that will get you in jail, or you could end up with a thorough beating that will injure you physically and psychologically.

There is a real chance that the situation is not her fault, unless she is your best friend and knew about your relationship in the first place. Therefore if there is anybody to be angry with, it's the man who has caused such pain to both of you. I must emphasize that any kind of violence, whether against your man, or the other woman, will make the situation worse. Stay away from violence or even the thought of it.

© 2018 Ian Batanda


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