What’s On Her Mind??

A couple in the neighborhood separated, recently. Married for 15 years with a teenage daughter, the reason for going separate ways is the entry of the Other Woman.

What factors led to this, that they took this extreme step, or who is responsible for the problems in their marriage… well, I don’t know the details (and I will not get into that), and I am not going to speculate too.

The only thing that is on top of my mind is The Other Woman.

The Other Woman is someone who is in a relationship with a man who is legally committed somewhere else. Each woman would have different situation/circumstances, that led her to be in the shoes of the Other Woman. These situations are never black or white and thus have a lot of grey areas. While most of us would label them as vamps or home-wreckers, they might not be necessarily the same.

What ever the circumstances, that made a woman, the Other Woman, I wonder what goes on in her mind…
She knows that the man is married and with a family, so…

  • Does this thought ever cross her mind that she could be jeopardizing the happiness of all in the family? And may be even breaking a home and changing the course of life for all the family?
  • Does she feel powerful in that relationship?
  • Does she believe that she is doing a noble deed by way of comforting, helping or consoling the man (if he needs that!)?
  • Are the emotional connect, physical gratification or financial gains important than moral or logical standards?
  • Does she ever take a guilt trip?
  • Does she sleep well, in peace?
  • Can she trust that man? I mean, can she expect loyalty from him?
  • Does she think of her future with that man? And what if he never leaves his family or dumps her too, later?
  • Does she ever think about her reaction, if there was another woman in her own marriage?
  • Does she ever think of the wife… her mental state on knowing about the other woman’s presence in her married life?
  • Does she ever think that she would be the target for the anger and wrath or may be even curses?
  • What’s her mental make up…of high self-esteem or a low self esteem?
  • Is she able to cope well with the knowing looks or accusing looks from the people who know about her relationship status?
  • Is she ok with the loose talks or labels on her personality (typical Indian social psyche)?
  • Is she happy with her presence as a ghost in a marriage?
  • Does she feel responsible for her actions?
  • How does she find living with the tag of “The Other Woman” ?

And I also wonder, if she would like to stop being The Other Woman…

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34 thoughts on “What’s On Her Mind??

  1. A wonderful deep thought into all the possible thinking the other woman should have done had she been sane enough to realize what she had actually been getting into.

    But unfortunately people stop to think and reflect long after they’ve done the deed. The deed they should have thought before doing.

  2. Wow! That’s a lot of questions. I feel the other woman has to be commitment phobic otherwise she would not go for a married man. Guilt … of course to an extent, it must be there. No if she wanted to stop being the other woman she would not be in such a relationship. But why are you wondering about the other woman – she may be free, its the man who should be the one to blame. He willingly went for such a relationship

  3. @ Chatterbox : Yeah right, if she was sane….

    @ Swapna : Thanks 🙂

    @ Phoenixritu : Right about commitment phobia and may be they like the thrill factor too.
    The man is definitely to be blamed but the OW is guilty too!!

  4. Shilpa, nice points..but they are one sided..

    a lady’s heart is very soft..it melts easily..she is very vulnerable to emotional people and wherever she gets an emotional support, she goes there..morally and ethically the other lady and the man – both are equally wrong; but do we know the complete story?

    when the man must have liked the other woman, he may not even have disclosed about his marital status or anything..the lady may have fallen into the wrong trap..and when she must have realized, it may have been too late..when things are of hearts, nobody sees whether a house is broken or children are going to suffer..this is one of the reactions of a lady..

    second, maybe the man must have disclosed that he is married, but not happily..he simply would have lied about his married life – maybe he is not happy, or his wife is cheating on him..these things again attract a lady..

    third, there are many ladies who prefer married men..it is quite possible that she must have purposely made the man fall in love with her..many points you have mentioned fit in that situation..

    a very thought provoking post..but it can be looked at from many point of views..

  5. Yeah, thats my question too – How does she like to live with the title of Other Woman ??? Certainly, a little thot process can help in the long run.

    But does the Other Woman think that this man can ditch her too, for some other woman, later ????

    Good thot provoking post !!!

  6. I am sure she is getting something out of that relationship just like the man is. Maybe she just doesn’t care (just like he doesn’t) beyond her own inclinations.

    This woman is better off without such a man though I can understand the anger against the other woman, I have seen in many such cases the man might find someone else if this other woman does leave him.

    In some cases I guess the other woman might be in love with the man. A pathetic hopeless situation I must say 😐

  7. Shilpa a lot of people don’t care for social stigma, if she is in love or if there is monetary benefit she may not care.

    And unfortunately in our society the stigma is there for the wife also – she might find her family blaming her for not keeping the man happy 😐

  8. Very insightful post…
    I’m sure she feels all of this. And I’m also sure that not all “other women” do this for a power trip or monetary benefits. In affairs of the heart, logic and right or wrong often go out the window…

  9. A bold post Shilpa.

    You have covered so many questions here. Similarly there is THE OTHER MAN situations as well. But whether its a MAN who intrudes or a WOMAN, the society always brands the woman as the house-breaker.

    A woman too has a heart which is vulnerable. She would easily fall if she gets a minute clue that she is being cared and loved. Its not always the physical aspect, but being loved and cared upon. As you said, the moral and ethics all fades away or rather is too confusing.

    As Neha stated, what if the man projected himself as neglected and needs love? What if he himself is not happy with his marriage and is looking for solace outside?

    Why blame the lady alone? Everyone is equally responsible. Is she the only one who is breaking the home? The man and his wife are responsible as well.

  10. I agree to everything that the other woman feels…. But why should it be her responsibilty (homewrecker, guilt-trip, think about present wife etc) and not the man’s?

  11. @ Neha : 1. Agree completely that there could/would be n number of possibilities… but both are guilty whatever the circumstances.

    2. Agreed, that the man must have hidden the truth, but that’s truly a selfish thought from the OW’s perspective, about not caring/understanding the plight of the affected children or a broken home. It is said and it is true, Whatever goes around comes around!

    3. Yeah, that’s a possibility, may be for thrills.

    Thanks for sharing Neha. The idea of this post is just to understand what goes on in the OW’s mind.

    @ UmaS : I guess, if she would have thought of these questions, she would have made an early exit from this relationship.

  12. @ IHM : Absolutely right! The woman is better off without such a man! If he was decent enough, he would have sorted his mess at home and then moved on with this woman.

    Yeah, it is said, the OW knows what she is getting into, so the social stigma may not bother her. But blaming the wife for the man’s philandering is terrible (when she might not be at any fault).

  13. @ stargazerpuj : Hmmm… right, but it’s just not right! 🙁

    @ Insignia : The Other Man features in the next post!! 😀 This post is only for the OW!

    A woman can be bold and strong too and can ignore/put an end to the advances too.

    If the man is looking for solace outside, why not settle the issues at home and give due place to the OW. If it’s the matter of heart for both of them, am sure the OW would like her due place and not just Number 2.

    Agree all are responsible for this terrible mess.

    @ Nethra : Ok, If he loves the other woman more than the wife, wouldn’t he (and even she ) give a socially acceptable name to their relationship??

    @ Guria : All the 3 in the triangle are responsible for the hopeless situation (as IHM said) in some or the other way.

  14. Then what would happen to the wife? Probably the sense of responsibility towards his wife and family stops him from giving the relationship with the other woman a name. It’s society’s fault. They should encourage love marriages instead of parents dumping a girl/guy on their children. Though we marry willingly, we might meet the right one after we marry the wrong one.

  15. It takes 2 to tango. And i blame the guy more than The Other Women. Yes, according to many that women is the one to blame. But is she really? I mean, if the guy isnt that happy with his wife or something he should talk to through and try to work it out (especially when your kid is involved) rather than running to other womens arms. If he truly loves the The other he should have be frank with his wife. Be it anything the guy is more responsible for the situation.

    Coming to the The Other Women, personally i never understand how can u be with a man knowing he is with someone else and you are the reason you are wrecking lives of others. And other thing is how can u trust that man? How can u be sure it wont happen to you?

  16. A relationship is a circular maze. You can never judge the entry and the exit by the look of it! And that’s what happens when you try understand their psychology behind such acts be it the other woman or the husband having affair.

    Well written!

  17. Well, the other woman syndrome occurs when the woman at home doesn’t get well with their husbands. Well, i won’t blame them as many guys aren’t satisfied with one wife, they are lustful.It’s like double edged knife. At the end of the day, be a woman or man, in a marriage they look for happiness. If someone else is giving it, they might go to that path. Well, other woman is some villaneous character for many, but thing is they are able to make these men happy. Why is that happening? If an outsider is able to console a man better than a 2 decade old wife, there is something brewing over. Well, humans aren’t robots, feelings changes with time. The more stringent the rules become, more people will try to break it. There will be no fire without any smoke.

  18. @Nithin R S –

    //Well, i won’t blame them as many guys aren’t satisfied with one wife, they are lustful//
    Women also cheat, and they do it at greater risks because many are dependent on their husbands – so I am not sure I agree with ‘many guys are not satisfied with one wife”.

    And if ‘more stringent the rules become the more people will try to break it’ was true – then we should see a lot of defiant women, because there are a lot more of ‘stringent rules’ against women.

    I feel such myths were created to make sure women ‘adjust and compromise’ with unfaithful, irresponsible, undeserving partners instead of leaving them and finding happiness for themselves, because, you see, in a marriage women look for happiness too.

    Men (and women) who cheat are not always happy – and some of them have more than one affairs, which shows they were not suited for marriages.

  19. Well, no woman likes to be the Other woman. Life is too complex at times. Things just happen wrong for many people at the same time. Each breakup leaves more fissures in relations. The man has lost his peace forever as he now suffers from two women, the wife lost hers because people will make fun of her that she could not keep her man, the other woman is unhappy as she is to live the tag forever and she fears that the guy might leave her to return to wife or still other woman, the kids are ashamed of what happened and are ridiculed by peers. It is one unhappy situation.

  20. Shilpa u know what I couldnot understand the other woman’s mind when someone close to me turned herself into one and knowingly ruined everybody’s life(including her own)…sometimes perhaps human mind or rather heart fails to listen to any logic …maybe something like an insect jumping into fire knowing very well what will be the result ….i really don’t know …

  21. I wonder why this society brandish that woman as “the other woman”

    If the man whose family it was, and whose children they are, is not considering all those things like effect on them etc then how can any one expect a outside person to even give it thought.

    She is right in her own position as far as it is not an intentional effort “to break the home”

    she was only finding her place, her man.

  22. I completely agree with Ritu on this. The OTHER woman might be a complex creature. But this married man – I would blame him entirely – for letting his passion/lust/whatever get the better of him. I mean, did he not think once about his wife and more importantly, his daughter?!!!

  23. Nice and controversial thoughts Shilpa, ‘The other woman’ is a tag, a tag which will be applied to the first woman once she is separated and the husband marries again.

    Everyone needs affection, we hunt for one since the day we are born and it is no harm if two people found it and one was married. Here I suppose the first woman was at mistake who couldn’t match up with the needs of affection of her partner and hence separated.

    I hope she understands soon and moves on to her life.

  24. Very insightful post Shilpa!! And a lot of valid questions.
    But just as you said, there is no Black or white, it has lots of grey areas.
    I mean, depends on what goes on behind the scene, and I wouldn’t blame the other women only.
    Because I feel the man is equally responsible in such a case.
    Isn’t it ironical that there is a term “Other women” in our society but no term as “Other man” as such?
    Long time back, when I was in college, we had a neighbour in Delhi, who had a big house. And there were rumours that his lived with the kids on one floor and “the other woman” on one of the floor. The man was a big shot Buisness man and had teenage kids.His wife seems decently beautiful and the “other woman”, she seemed quite the same age has his wife, hardly saw her speaking or going out. Now, again I don’t know what went inside the house or what led to this kind of arrangement, but I just couldn’t point my fingers to the that woman only.

  25. Shilpa, I wonder why we focus only on the woman? I agree with what Neha wrote: the Other Woman could be a victim herself of a man who lies or it be just as simple as that they just fell in love?

    However, when a marriage fails, another person is never the cause. They are simply a symptom of something that wasn’t right in the first place.

    A thought provoking post:-)

  26. hi shilpa! very strong opinions have come out on the very tricky topic that u wrote about. In our country, for a middle class couple, marriage is an inescapable net, u cannot break it so easily. U cannot even live in unhappiness forever, may be that’s the reason infidelity is on rise in today’s time. Try stepping into the shoes of the other man and the other woman some day.

    great post, must say!!


  27. human relationships and the emotions associated with them are a funny animal…one that cannot be tamed.

    and there is always a reason ….a unique reason….behind every such case. No one willingly turns into a villain…unless he/she is insane!

    But I appreciate your efforts to understand her mind.

  28. Generally, in such cases it is the women who get the blame.Men are equally at fault but is it really a fault?May be when one is in love one is not only blind but also mad and deaf.
    I would say it fits in with famous saying–VINAASH KALEN VIPRIT BUDDHI–.
    I would never ever dump my wife for the most beautiful women in the world.I have seen such cases during my working life and most of the relations did not last long enough leaving the children heart broken

  29. Any third person between the couple will definitely lead to a break… sooner or later. Here the third person was an Other Woman but sometimes even our own family member too create such scenarios. There should not be any third person between couples. What can possibly save the couple is their BUDDHI. Nicely said… VINAASH KALEN VIPRIT BUDDHI

  30. @ Aditya : Agree completely, Aditya.

    @ IHM : Thanks for responding to Nithin RS 🙂

    @ Shahid & The Panorama: In a failed relationship or the triangle that we have here, all are responsible in some or the other way. This post is just to explore what thoughts would be going on in the mind of the OW.

    @ The Holy Lama : Bang on!! And as for kids, I read a blog which had poems, posts expressing the anger and pain, for his father had left the family for the OW. It was heart-wrenching! 🙁

    @ Dhiman : I know, what you mean!! It’s very difficult to understand the motives!! 🙁

    @ Makk : She might be right in her eyes but she may not be right!! 🙁

    @ Pallavi : Definitely, he is to be blamed, but the others cant go scott free too! they are responsible too! 🙁

    @ Siddhesh : I wish it was all that simple! 🙁

    @ Dil se : Oh yes, you never know what happens behind those walls. Had seen a similar case, where the 2 women would get along very well, and all 3 were seen going together at parties et al. Seemed like a very weird arrangement!!

    @ A Restless Mind With A… : Yeah, diverse thoughts indeed. Agree on the traps and taboos of our society. As I said earlier, this post is just to explore what thoughts would be going on in the mind of the OW. Thanks 🙂

    @ Mayur : Thanks Mayur! 🙂

    @ BK Chowla : Oh yes, well said! 🙂

    And that’s such a beautiful thought you shared Mr. Chowla!! 🙂

    @ Riya : Yeah, I have seen sisters/sister-in-laws, Mothers/mothers-in-laws or any other relative breaking the bond between the couple. 🙁

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