No one ever dreamed of being the third party in someone else’s relationship. It is never an ideal position because everyone involved always gets hurt. More often than not, it’s the other lover that gets the short end of the stick. Aside from tarnishing your reputation, you also get half the deal that you originally signed up for.
When you are involved with someone who lied to you about being in a relationship, it ends up being worse because you invested yourself in something that was based on a huge lie.
What happens when you find out that you’re being cheated with?
The revelation usually comes out of nowhere. Most people are reluctant to admit that they’re cheating with you, especially if they think they can get away with it. But once you find out that you’re the unwitting accomplice to an affair, you have no other choice but to deal with the situation.
Unless you’re willing to continue the affair that could hurt an unsuspecting person, the next step to take would be to call your lover out. Some people are scared to acknowledge the problem because of the consequences involved – like losing a loved one or facing the hard truth that someone you cared about lied to you.
It’s not that you don’t want to admit the truth to yourself. It’s just that doing so would entail facing the pain that you weren’t ready for when you involved yourself with a person who’s cheating. [Read: 9 sure ways to know if you’re dating a cheater]
Should you stay or should you go?
The best thing you can do for yourself is to leave the situation before things get out of hand. Remember that there are more than two people involved now. You can’t just sweep this under the rug and hope for the best. Being in a relationship with someone who’s cheating only offers a temporary reprieve from being single.
Staying with this person does not promise you anything except for a date whenever the original partner is unavailable. Your main priority is your own well-being. Would you be happy as the third party? Is being with this person worth hurting someone else over?
If the answer to both questions is yes, then this article isn’t for you. You’re better off reading about how you can get away with an affair. And if you’re irrationally selfless, you might be more concerned for your lover. What will happen to them once you’re gone? Will they be happy with their partner instead of you?
Well, if you really cared about your lover, you would not condone their abhorrent behavior. They need to see that cheating is inexcusable. Even if they did love you, they should have done you the courtesy of breaking it off with the person they’re with before starting something with you. [Read: Love triangles and its confusing complications]
Then what should you do?
Even if you haven’t decided what to do yet, you can still consider the very obvious option of breaking things off. Here’s how can start off that course of action.
#1 Distance yourself. Before anything else, you need to stay away from your lover. You cannot make a decision that’s best for you when they’re involved. Don’t let them influence your decision because they forfeited that right when they decided to cheat with you.
#2 Think. Now that you have the space and time you need, it’s time to think about what you’re involved in and what your next step is. It’s important that you consider every aspect, like why you started dating the person, and how you can prevent this from happening again. What you decide on in the end will shape your future – whether it’s with your lover or not. [Read: How to end an affair and get over it completely]
#3 Acknowledge the truth. Don’t just ignore the fact that you are part of an affair. You are the other person in the relationship, and no one will believe you when you say your lover likes you more than their partner. It’s more of a “your-lover-likes-you-TOO” scenario. You came in second, and that’s how it will always be, unless your lover makes the necessary arrangements to break it off with their original partner. But then again, as they say, “If they cheat with you, they’ll cheat on you.”
#4 Consider it a hopeless situation. If you think you still have a chance at being the only one in your lover’s life, think again. If they wanted you to be “the one,” they would have made it happen in the first place. In order for you to get out of this with the least amount of damage, you need to trash any idea of a future and focus solely on yourself.
#5 Hash it out with your lover. Some people think that running away from this situation is a better alternative. You can do that, but you’ll only end up returning or living a life with regrets because you chose not to face the problem. You must discuss this with your partner, so you can get some closure. Make them answer to what they’ve done so you can move on without any lingering questions.
#6 Break it off. Finally, it’s time to rip off that Band-Aid. Even if your lover promises that they will end things with their partner, you have to step away from the situation for a while anyway. Picking up where you left off is not an option because cheating is a serious offense. Give yourself some time to think about what you really want without your partner muddling your emotions. That way, they’ll also have some time to think about the consequences of what they’ve done. [Read: 8 most common post-breakup mistakes you should never commit]
#7 Delete them from your life. Breaking it off is probably the easiest part. Moving past the situation is much harder. When you’re hurt, it’s harder to look at things objectively. You will feel angry, depressed, and maybe even a little doubtful. At this point, you will have to remove all traces of this person from your life. Delete them, block them, and avoid anything related to them at all costs. [Read: 7 resolute ways to resist the urge to call your ex]
#8 Avoid them as much as you can. If you live in the same city, there will always be a possibility that you could encounter your lover. You can’t control fate, but you probably know where they usually hang out. Even if it galls you to sacrifice going to a nice place with nice food or hanging out with your common friends, it is still better than facing an awkward and possibly painful situation when you run into your ex-lover. [Read: 14 things to keep in mind when you run into your ex]
#9 Never engage the official partner. Now that you know they were cheating with you, there’s a slight chance that you probably know who they’re actually dating. Do not go near these people at all costs. Avoid them when you see them, and try not to do business with them. Even if they never found out about your affair, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
#10 Move on with your life. After taking the necessary steps to remove your lover out of your life, it’s time to get back to reality and resume your daily routine. The only difference is that you’re not in a relationship anymore. Don’t worry, though, because now you have a chance to find happiness that’s not based on a lie.
Do not allow anyone to rope you into an affair because it was never designed to give anyone a lasting connection. A relationship that’s borne out of duplicity will never make anyone happy.