8 Reasons NOT to Contact His Mistress – Part 1

Editor’s Note:  I get book pitches and media inquiries on a daily basis. I usually just skim through them, not necessarily finding them relevant for this audience, but this headline right here, got me…

8 Reasons NOT to Contact His Mistress.

I’ve never been married but know the pain that being cheated on can cause. And while I have had my doubts about a few of the men in my past, I’ve never been the tire slashing, car keying, email/cell phone checking type. Ever.

But some women are. Even women in their 40s and beyond.

And then there are women who, some may argue justifiably, want closure and who feel the best way to get that is by reaching out to “the other woman.”

This guest post from Rick Reynolds, founder of AffairRecovery.com, is speaking directly to them.Read it, mull it over, then sound off. Do you agree, disagree? Have you ever confronted “The Other Woman?” Share your thoughts (anonymously if you prefer) in the comment section, on the Facebook page, or email your story to contribute (@) womenatforty (dot) com.

8 Reasons NOT to Contact His Mistress – Part 1

By Rick Reynolds, LCSW
President and Founder of AffairRecovery.com   

When cheated on, the devastation of betrayal can make you react in ways uncharacteristic of yourself. Obsessive behaviors take over and you can end up behaving in a way you never believed possible. This isn’t only for women either; this applies to men who have been cheated on as well. If you do happen to find out who the mistress or other person is, the open wound can cause you to act out via confrontation. So what’s the driving force when we feel a compulsion to speak to the other person? Typically it’s to feel better, to take away a bit of our pain. We think somehow that course of action provides more benefits than the alternative. Rarely have I seen much benefit, and I’ve certainly witnessed a great deal of harm. Here are 8 reasons NOT to confront them.

  1. How much information do you really want? If you think you might be able to get more information from the affair partner, you’re right, but it might not be what you want. If you have been with your partner a long time, then you’ve probably already realized that you and your mate have different subjective realities. You can have vastly different recollections of any event. For that reason alone you can certainly gain a different perspective, or details about a specific event. But you’re not gaining anything worth-while, it’s hard enough to process the information from the perspective of your mate, why add to that?
  2. Affair partners can lie. It is interesting how often a hurting mate believes the affair partner will tell them the truth and sorrowfully see the error of their ways after they realize the pain they have caused. It is not uncommon for the affair partner to tell lies and manipulate the situation to get the upper hand.
  3. Talking to the affair partner is comparing apples and oranges. One of the most difficult pieces of an affair to discern is motive. Frequently, there is a compulsion to discover why this has happened. Don’t be mistaken and think the answer lies with the affair partner. In reality, the affair partner has created an illusion of what your mate’s reason for cheating is. So please don’t think the causes and motives thought by the affair partner match those of your mate.
  4. Vengeance doesn’t work.When you’re really hurting, it’s really tempting to think about making the other party experience the same pain that you’re going through. The only problem is this course of action only results in self-inflicted injuries. Don’t compromise your personal integrity by acting in ways you normally would never approve of. Injuring another will never bring the peace you seek and it will only lengthen the amount of time it’s going to take to recover.
Next Week, Part 2: 4 More Reasons Not to Contact The Mistress
Affair Recovery specializes in helping people heal after infidelity. After recovering from his own affair 25 years ago and helping 2,000+ other couples do the same, founder Rick Reynolds and his team have developed research-validated, groundbreaking online and in-person programs for redeeming the losses created by infidelity, betrayal, and sexual addiction. Take the free Affair Analyzeronline assessment, to learn more, visit www.AffairRecovery.com.
Editor’s Note: Inclusion of author’s links and website is not an endorsement of his products and/or services, nor necessarily reflects the views of womenatforty.com.

 

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  • racheldachel

    Personally, I’ve never understood the rationale behind confronting or being angry/upset/hurt by “the other woman.” I mean, if I am in a committed relationship with a partner and said partner cheats on me, why should I be hurt by the third party? Did the third party make and break promises to me? Did I share intimat4e moments with the third party? Did I share dreams and make plans with that person? Unless that third party is a friend or family member, I don’t see the point of harboring anything but pity for her because honestly if he’d cheat on me, he’ll likely cheat on her, too.                                                                                                                                                                              

  • womenatforty

    I agree with everything you said – it’s all logical, but I think the emotional impact of having been cheated on by someone you loved and trusted leave many women searching for answers/resolution etc., and some of them feel that reaching out to the “other women” will help them get there. I agree with you and the author though, I think it rarely helps anything or anyone.

  • Sara

    Hi Rachel,

    I thought the same thing until the following happened. My husband, and his mistress took pictures of her and I, had me take pictures of him and her, and then she took pictures of him and I at two very public events. We are both prominent leaders in our community of 50k people. After I made the discovery, 1.5 years into the relationship, staring at the photos, ON our computer, I felt like a monkey; the depth of the humiliation was heart wrenching. Further, under false pretense, she befriended me. I actually felt close to her at one point, not knowing of the adultery.

    During this time, I have held back for fear of losing him, $, work implications for him, the kids. After the discovery, she showed up at the company Christmas event 7 months into our reconciliation, knowing full well I would be walking in with the boss. I was sick on my stomach that she didn’t have more respect for me not to be there. Still, I sucked it up.

    The first mistress, 7 years ago, broke off as soon as I found out. Once or twice a year she would contact my husband, and in the spirit of transparency, he showed me, said he didn’t reply, and that was that. She contacted him during our downfall over the last 6 months, and he bit. He texted her back. Again, I sucked it up in that I did not contact her (just so you know, I did have it out with him about responding). But it had the feeling of her being lecherous because it was just after the time I had kicked him out for 6 weeks. Again, I sucked it up.

    What I mean by sucking it up, is that I never called her back, texted or confronted her in any way. I realized it was him. So, yes, the relationship and he are one issue, but the other issue IS her. All this time, I was remembering that she too came to a Christmas party that she knew I would be at. Again, there were pictures. I did not know about this affair at the time of this Christmas party. But again, in retrospect, I felt like a monkey.

    I am 20 and 15 years older, respectively, than these two women, which somehow, intensified my humiliation.

    Because I have had no contact, one on one, with either of them during this time, the whole thing had a feeling of being surreal. BUT, I AM a REAL person with REAL feelings. I am not a nobody.

    Meanwhile, I have decided to divorce because my husband is not over #2. In my recovery, I have realized that talking to each of them was important to my closure of the affairs. Important because, I am important. I am important to myself now. My anger is important. My pain is important. It is important to me, now, that hurt feelings are important. My hurt feelings are important.

    Did you see The Helper? The line “You is smart. You is kind. You is important” rings true to me here. I am smart, and I am kind, and, yes, I have become important to me. And in that importance, this is what I did for my own closure.

    I have kept the mistresses’ phone numbers. And this morning, I called each of them. I wanted them to know that at least one of my teen children know about the adultery and how would they feel if their children knew. How would they feel if their husbands knew. That I am a real person. And, because I am real, I am important. My real voice, my real voice message, my real text, validated me to me.

    Predictable, he-who-must-not-be-named called. I texted him that this was between the women and me. This was no longer his business. And, predictably, he called me crazy.

    And unpredictably, my relief was enormous. I deleted their phone numbers, and I no longer wanted to hurt him, his reputation. And I deleted their phone numbers. I no longer feel the need to be in touch.

    I have never been a big fan of the word ‘closure:’ I thought it superficial. But today, it applied to me and what I did for myself because, I is kind, and I is smart, and I is important. And whether or not they know this, doesn’t matter. What matters is me. I did this for me. I think my intentions for me were right.

    There is more to the story, as there has been some fallout, but that is my part of why I made contact. I am open to feedback.