Written by Emily Abbate on CafeMom’s blog, The Stir.
When you find a man who wants to wine and dine you and makes you feel truly beautiful, it makes you feel all warm and happy inside. But that heartwarming feeling can quickly turn to heated anger if you find out there's another woman in his life; another woman whom he tells the exact same mushy gushy goodness. And before most women can even blink their eyes, the hatred ensues. The other woman. You hate her. She stole your man. How could she live with herself? BAM -- the tears begin.
Let's be real here. So often ladies get mad at one another when they should be getting mad at this two-timing man. As someone who's been "the other woman" and had absolutely no clue he was in a full-fledged relationship with someone else -- that label, well, it's just not fair.
I'm not saying homewreckers don't exist. I'm just saying that not all "other women" are homewreckers with no regard for a man's marital or family status. Thus, I present you with seven reasons not to hate the other woman:
1. She probably had no idea: It may not be easy to hold back your anger at first, but until you know better, you have to assume that this woman didn't have a clue about you either. Just like in the courtroom, innocent until proven guilty. Besides, if you don't freak out on her the first second you have, then you can get her side of the story and be able to piece things together in your own mind.
2. She's probably just as upset about this as you: Granted, you care more about your own feelings than hers. But considering she obviously cares about the same man as you do -- she's probably upset that this thought-to-be-awesome man is actually a scumbag.
3. She probably believed she was cared about. Heck, maybe she was: This is probably the worst part. When you meet someone and it's new, you're not exactly entitled to ask EVERYTHING about their past right upfront. While it's new and exciting, she probably didn't want to know exact details yet while she was still feeling things out.
4. It's not her fault there were other problems in your relationship (aside from him cheating): Unfortunately, that's typically why men stray in the first place. I'm not saying that him cheating is YOUR fault. It's not. I'm just saying that usually when things start to go south or there's a problem the two of you can't work out, that's when he starts looking elsewhere instead of focusing on the issue.
5. She's probably a good person: Again with the benefit of the doubt notion from before. If you don't know this woman, you have no idea if she's a bad person. For all you know, you two could have potential to be besties. Although, I'll be honest, that could get a little awkward.
6. Forgiving her will help YOU move forward: You need to figure out if this man is worth your time and effort, considering the circumstances surrounding this "other woman" scenario. Forgiving her, whether or not you really interact with her, will help you focus on what really matters: how YOU need to cope with this sticky situation. (Oh, and my suggestion is to get the hell away from this two-timer.)
7. And most importantly, no woman ever wants to be "the other woman": OK, so the exception to this rule are those home wrecking women I mentioned earlier that thrive off of this horrible relationship-ruining feeling. However, any woman with a good conscience is just looking for a good man, a good companion. Being "the other woman" isn't exactly a holy accomplishment.
Have you ever dealt with an "other woman" situation? How did you handle things after you found out he cheated?
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