Mailbag: I’m The Other Woman

Mailbag: I'm The Other Woman

The other woman is easily one of the most hated women, like, ever. You hate the other woman more than the man that cheated, because you’re too busy loving him to hate him. She can just easily be the target of all your misplaced anger in a situation when you feel hurt. You should be angry at your guy for being a dick. You should be angry for yourself for forgiving him. But instead, you’re angry at her for existing.

Other womanhood is what initially fueled my hatred for Taylor Swift. How dare that bitch sing to some other girl’s BOYFRIEND, about how horrible she is. In any other situation, the girl talking shit about you to your boyfriend is the evil one, but Swifty somehow made people feel bad for her when she tried to steal someone’s boyfriend, because she wore Converse. Being in the band doesn’t make you a good person, Taylor, it just makes you unpopular.

We hate the other woman so much, that we hate the other woman even when we are the other woman — so…the other other woman. The woman. We hate the woman. She sucks too. All this is to mask the fact that we really, really hate him…or hate ourselves for not hating him.

I was the other woman once. Not for a long time, and not while I totally knew he was seeing someone else (though I kind of knew), but because I was completely head over the heels for the guy. I was so blinded by my feelings for him, and content believing his lies that nothting else mattered. My situation looked almost identical to this reader’s.

Hey Veronica! Ok, this is extremely long and annoying but I just can’t stand it anymore, I need your help. I am desperate.

So last fall, I broke up with my ex and everything was fine. I moved on pretty quickly when I met a new guy and we started crushing on each other pretty hard. I thought I could really see myself clicking with this guy and being good for each other, regardless of officially “dating”. We literally had everything in common and to this day, I still believe that. So, we eventually slept with each other, but nothing was too serious. Christmas break happened and we moved on and I kinda forgot about him.

When we got back to school spring semester, we hooked up again. I then began craving him all the time and we would sleep together about 3 times a month. I was so crazy about him because we got along so well…when it was on his terms. That entire time, he never texted me during the week or even on the weekends. If we saw each other and things worked out, that’s great, we’d hook up. If it were up to me, I would’ve been with him every single night. I literally am in love/infatuated with an asshole. Then, he started talking to some girl and we stopped.

This semester, we have had sex a few times. He is dating this girl still. I would never had slept with him if I knew they were actually still officially dating. Each time we’ve hooked up this semester its ALLLLL been on him. She is completely obsessed with him and it bothers me so much because I still love him for some fucked up reason. He is such an asshole but I can’t stop. All my friends tell me to move on, but they also see his good side too. Every time we’re in a room together, he’s looking at me from across the room and flirts and etc.

When I found out they were an actual couple, I called him out the next time I went home with him. He swore up and down they were not together. He admitted they were talking for awhile, but broke things off…obviously a lie to me, because I saw she tagged him in some Instagram picture about the best boyfriend ever (ha!). I’m a stalker, I know, but I’m pissed. He swore to me they were done and still fucked me.

Here’s my actual question:

Should I tell her she’s been cheated on? I don’t plan on being with him even though, after all his lies, I still like him. I just want him to know he can’t hurt people. It’s not fair to me, and it’s not fair to her. WHAT DO I DO!?!?!?!?

I think you know, but don’t fully believe, that you’re not in love with this guy. Trust me, I’ve been there. I’ve obsessed over guys. I’ve stalked a Facebook profile enough times that I could type any letter in the guy’s name into the search bar, and he’d be the first person to come up. I’ve recognized a guy’s sister from photos. I’ve searched a guy’s handle on Twitter, to make sure I saw every single mention of him on the web. I’ve known about his best friends’ parties, and I’ve felt truly psychotic for the amount of virtual attention I’d given to a guy I practically ran away from when I saw him sober. I’ve had late nights giggling, and non-awkward mornings, and I thought they meant we were meant to be. From our limited face-to-face, sober interactions, he seemed like the kind of guy I’d really be able to fall for, so I did. But I wasn’t in love with him. And neither are you. You don’t fall in love with somebody when most of your time spent together is after drinking and before coitus — which is exactly why he’s not in love with you.

When I was a junior I fell “in love” with the guy I met immediately after I broke up with my boyfriend, which made his “perfect on paper” resume even more perfect. He was good-looking, and funny, and we certainly had chemistry, but the real driving force of my attraction, was that I’d had all these serious feelings floating around in my head, because I’d just exited a three-year relationship, and nowhere to put them. Enter lover boy. This seemingly perfect guy to put my feelings onto, so I didn’t have to deal with getting over my boyfriend.

I think that’s what happened to you.

This boy you’re lusting after has become more of an obsession than anything. Someone to occupy your boy crazy brain. You’re doing crazy things, like sleeping with someone who you don’t-totally-but-mostly know is dating someone else, because you’re just so fixated on being with him. You’re obsessed. You’re infatuated. But you’re not in love.

Before you do anything regarding her, you need to figure out how to deal with him. The first thing you need to realize, is that for most of this, he hasn’t really been such an asshole to you. He gave you no mixed signals. You were a hookup to him — just a hookup — that doesn’t make him a bad person. You demanded nothing more from him, and he never suggested he was going to give you something more than that. Your own contentment with the situation is not his fault. You made a choice. That choice was that you’d rather be in his life, but insignificant than not be in his life at all. It’s better to get the burnt bread than go hungry (#HungerGames). You may hate/love/hate him for being the source of your longing, but he’s likely completely unaware that you want anything more from him than his penis.

Maybe you two would have been perfect for each other. Maybe if you’d met in a situation where you were both ready for a relationship, you would have been in one. It does seem like he liked you. At the very least, he’s very attracted to you, but it doesn’t matter, because that ideal situation doesn’t exist. The reality is, you met him at a time in your lives when you were looking for someone to love, and he was looking for someone to fuck, so you became that for each other. Unfortunately, shifting from the girl he takes to the frat house to the girl he takes to his parents’ house is nearly impossible, and you need to accept that. You need to move on from him, which will not be easy. Stop texting him, stop stalking him, and STOP sleeping with him. Cutting him out of your life is the only way to at least start to move on.

Now, as for her. I know she’s totally the most awful person in the world. You hate her. And she’s annoying. And she posts petulant statuses denoting her love for him, because she’s so “obsessed” with him, and he totes doesn’t even like her that much, because, like, if he did, why would he have been with me?* But none of that matters. He’s her boyfriend. She’s allowed to be obsessed with him. Hell, you are, and he hasn’t even shown you that much affection. As much as you like him, based on his perfect rap sheet, and good looks, she likes him more, because it’s based on actual time spent together. As betrayed as you felt when he lied to get you into bed, she will feel more betrayed. You trusted him because you wanted to. She trusted him, because he’s her boyfriend, and he made her feel that he cared enough to trust him.

  • *Because you let him.
  • So, should you tell her? I think so, but maybe not for the reasons you have in mind. Don’t tell her to ruin his life. (We’re going to stop caring about his life, remember?) Don’t tell her for some sort of satisfaction on your own part, and don’t tell him so that his bed will be more readily available to you. Tell her because she’s being played a fool here, and it’s the right thing to do. Tell her, because if it were you he was dating, and her on the side, you’d want to know. Tell her, because while indiscretions are not the fault of the “other woman” initially, when you refrain from doing anything about them, you’re just as guilty as he is.

    I know you like him. It makes sense that you’ve rationalized this all in your own mind. It makes sense that through all of this, even though you feel guilty about hurting another girl’s relationship, you still went home with him that night, because you wanted to believe it wasn’t true. You wanted him for yourself. It seems insane, and irrational, but you feel like you have such a connection that it must mean something…and if you’re soulmates or something, that would make it okay. But he’s not your soulmate, he never chose you, and you’re still miserable. Holding onto the fantasy of being with this guy is never going to make you happy, but ridding yourself of the guilt associated with other womanhood, and letting him, her, and the vision of “us” go eventually will.


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    Veronica Ruckh

    Veronica (@VeronicaRuckh) is the Director of Total Sorority Move for Grandex, Inc. After having spent her undergraduate years drinking $4 double LITs on a patio and drunk texting away potential suitors, she managed to graduate with an impressive GPA and an unimpressive engagement ring -- so unimpressive, in fact, some might say it's not there at all. Veronica has since been fulfilling her duties as "America's big," a title she gave to herself with the help of her giant ego. She has recently switched from vodka to wine on weekdays. Email her at

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