You’ve always been a devoted and loyal boyfriend…but that changed when you met a very special girl.
Argh. You never thought you’d have this problem EVER but here you are — IN BIG TROUBLE.
You blame the new girl a little. If only she’s not as beautiful, not as smart, not as funny, and not as sweet, you’d be living your life like the content man you used to be.
At first, you thought you could control it, that you won’t go too far. But it seems like you’re falling madly in love with this new girl. But maybe you’re just bored with your LTR.
Or maybe you’re going through some existential crisis.
Or maybe it’s the “grass is greener” syndrome.
Or maybe, just maybe, it’s all of the above AND she’s still the one for you!
UGH! Why is life so complicated?!
It’s a wonder you’re still in one piece, buddy. Go get yourself a beer and chug it down while we try to solve your love problems. You deserve it…or rather, you need it.
In this article, we’ll try to figure out if you’re actually falling for the other woman (that it’s actually the real deal — you know, hardcore, genuine love and not just fluff) and then after, we’ll come up with a plan on how you can crawl out of the mess and live a more peaceful, authentic life.
Are you ready?
Let’s do this!
First, we have to be sure of your feelings.
Here are 10 questions to know for sure if you’re already falling in love with your side chick
#1 Is she your first thought in the morning and last thought at night?
The moment you open your eyes, do thoughts of the other girl just effortlessly enter your mind?
You might wonder if she’s already awake or if she’s still sleeping like a cat.
You might imagine her staring at her closet as she picks out a dress.
You might feel giddy knowing that you will be kissing her that day.
All of these thoughts enter your head even before you get out of bed and even if your girlfriend is right beside you.
It’s a shame, really. It gives you a cheater’s guilt and makes you feel like you’re Don Draper or Don Juan but what can you do?
You just can’t control where your mind goes!
You get on with your day and you think of her more than you think of your girlfriend. Then at night, even if your girlfriend is cuddling you, it’s the other girl that’s on your mind until you drift off to sleep.
#2 Do you now find your girlfriend’s quirks annoying?
You used to find it cute that she leaves her shoes on the floor but now this makes you feel like you’re living with a kid.
You used to find it cute that she talks in her sleep but now you want to stuff her mouth with your socks.
This means that you’re no longer using the rose-colored glasses of love when you look at your girlfriend.
And if you think the other girl is always cute, then you’re using the love glasses on her which is a clear sign you’re officially falling in love with your side chick.
#3 Do you share more with her than with your girlfriend?
Let’s say that on your way to work, you saw a dog walking backward. Do you want to share it with your girlfriend or to your other girl?
Or let’s say your boss shouted at you and you feel like shit. Who do you want to get comfort from?
If you choose your new girl, then you’re falling for her. Likewise, if you’re more curious and engaged with your new girl than with your girlfriend, then you’re clearly already in love.
#4 Do you want to impress her more than your girlfriend?
She’s into fitness?
You want to get ripped all of a sudden even if your girlfriend loves your body just the way it is!
She’s into indie rock?
You now listen to the Pixies instead of your girlfriend’s favorite jazz bands!
When you choose what to wear, do you care if your girlfriend likes it or your other girl likes it? When you choose your perfume, your profile picture?
These might seem superficial and could just mean you just want some validation from the opposite sex because you’re a slightly insecure guy.
But once they affect your bigger life choices — say, you want to change careers or quit smoking to impress her, then you’re in deep trouble.
That means she’s more than just a side chick now.
#5 Does being with your girlfriend give you tremendous sadness?
Being with your girlfriend is a lot different now.
It has been stale for a while. It’s just like hanging out with a roommate and it makes you feel sad how she once was your everything but now all you have are awkward silences.
But this doesn’t mean you’re in love with your other girl though. It could be you really have relationship issues you need to fix and you’re just getting the fun from the other girl.
What makes this a sign that you’re falling in love with your other girl is when being with your girlfriend makes you feel sad because you wish she’s the other girl.
You wish it’s the other girl sitting on your couch. You wish it’s the other girl kissing you. You wish it’s the other girl you’re sharing a meal with.
The feeling is so strong. You know if only she’s your official girlfriend, then life would be more beautiful and fun.
#6 Do you find yourself fantasizing that you’re already a couple?
You cringe when people say “when you know, you know” when asked how they can tell if they’ve found their soulmate.
But now? You totally get them!
This new girl just feels like a soulmate. You want to get married, have babies, grow old together. You want to do all of it with her.
Man, oh, man. You’re crazy in love with this chick!
#7 Do you have a strong feeling she is the one?
You hate it that you started this way because starting a relationship when you’re still with someone is not only stressful, it has many disadvantages.
First of all, you’ll hurt your girlfriend. And because of this, you’ll both feel like you’re doing a crime.
You’ll feel like there’s just some sort of bad energy if you start your relationship…like karma is on its way to find you and kick you both in the ass. A good amount of time should pass before you two decide to be together if you want to start in a healthy way.
However, if despite all this you have a very, very strong feeling that this girl could be the one, then she might just be.
Sure, we really can’t be sure because only time will tell but what we’re sure of is you’re in love with the new girl right now.
#8 Is your girlfriend now the enemy?
You used to be a team but now you’re writing a different story of your life.
A totally different book with you and your new girl as the main characters. In this book, your gf is the villain that gets in the way of your happiness. It sucks! You feel like a jerk. But it is what it is.
Your new girl is now your everything.
We can’t be sure why this happened — if your relationship just needs fixin’ or you’re really meant to be with this new girl or you’re just cursed never to have true love because you suck at LTR — but one thing is crystal clear: you’re now in love with your side chick.
#9 Are you seeing her for more than six months?
If you’ve been seeing her for just a few weeks, it’s expected that you’d be always on a high because of the intoxicating love chemicals and the many other things infatuation does to your mind and body.
There’s nothing that the new girl could do wrong in the first few months of your togetherness because if you’re infatuated, you see the other person as perfect. All of their flaws are adorable!
As time passes by, we become calm and the haze of infatuation starts to wear off.
According to some studies, the “in love” feeling could last up to two years but generally, the chemicals start to wear off on the sixth month.
#10 If there’s a zombie apocalypse, who would you rescue first?
Sometimes it takes a really big life event for us to find answers to the hard questions.
Why wait for that to happen when we can just imagine it?
Close your eyes and paint a clear scenario in your head.
Watch a zombie film if you like. So it’s the apocalypse. Who do you call first? Don’t think too much. Who would you run to when you only have a few moments left to live?
By now it should be clear to you if you are truly, madly, deeply in love with your other girl or she’s just an infatuation.
If you chose your new girl, the answer is clear and you probably should break up with your girlfriend.
It’s sad but imagine if your girlfriend would not choose you and instead would try to rush to another guy. You might as well know earlier than stay in a so-so relationship when you’re clearly in love with someone else. It’s not fair!
If you’re still not sure
Then you gotta take a break from all of this.
Unplug, my man!
Take an effin’ break from these relationship stuff for just one second!
Okay, make it a week or two so you’ll get clearer answers. This thing can’t go on forever. It’s not sustainable, it’s not healthy, and it’s totally unfair for everyone involved.
The best way to do it is by giving yourself enough breathing space and distance from them so you can assess the situation wisely.
Here’s what you should do during your retreat:
1) Clear your mind
Do some sort of meditation, walk in the woods, watch paint dry. The important thing is to be completely alone with your thoughts.
Don’t text either one of them. In fact, don’t text anybody except the food delivery guy.
Tell them you don’t have a phone signal or whatever excuse. You need to do this for your own sake.
2) Focus on your life and what you want
Go back to your grand life plan.
Think of the life you really want in the future and ask yourself how your decisions about your relationship will lead you to that dream.
3) Ask yourself if you’re going through something
Are you depressed?
Do you feel joyless in other aspects of your life so you want to have adventures in your relationships?
Think hard. You might want to be single for a while and fix yourself first.
Once you’ve done some soul-searching, go back to the questions above. You’ll surely have a clearer answer after.
The four possible scenarios
There are many possible scenarios for this type of dilemma because this is a truly complicated situation and it is dependent on so many factors. This is just an attempt to simplify things so you won’t get too overwhelmed.
- Scenario 1: You love them equally and you want to keep them both.
- Scenario 2: You love your girlfriend more so you will break up with the new girl.
- Scenario 3: You love the other girl more so you will break up with your girlfriend.
- Scenario 4: You realize that even if you love them both, you’d rather break up with both of them and just be single for a while.
Understand that since you’re already deep in the mud, there’s no painless or safe direction.
Also understand that at this point, anything can happen. There are no guarantees. In fact, it is highly likely that they’ll break up with you. Manage your expectations.
However, it’s time to clean up your mess and start a brand new life because you can’t continue loving two women.
If you love them equally
It’s not impossible to love two or more people at the same time. You want your girlfriend for certain qualities, you love the other girl for another set of qualities.
Deep in your heart, even if you did all the soul searching crap, you still know you want them both. It’s so clear to you that you can’t be happy if you lose one of them.
Look, you can’t keep telling lies and feeling guilty every single day. It’s tiring because living a double life is not sustainable, fair, or healthy for all parties involved. At the very least, be honest to them and to yourself.
There’s a possible solution so you won’t be feeling like a criminal.
Here’s how to do it right:
- Tell your girlfriend what’s up.
- Suggest an open relationship.
If she says yes, then you’ll live a guilt-free life. Count yourself lucky if she also wants to open your relationship.
Again, no guarantees that things will turn out well but your situation isn’t really great anymore, is it?
You need to make the next step and face the consequences.
I personally don’t recommend keeping two women not only because it’s unfair but it’s selfish in a loser kind of way.
Look, there are other things more important than relationships so might as well keep things simple in the relationship department so you can focus on yourself! But that’s just me.
If you love your girlfriend more
So yes, you’ve indeed fallen in love with the new girl but you absolutely can’t imagine a life without your girlfriend.
It could be because you’ve been together 10 years.
It could be because you have a child together.
It could be because she’s paying your rent.
No judgment. If you know you can’t live without your girlfriend and that you still love her even if it’s a little tepid for now, then it’s time to say adieu to the new girl even if she’s the most awesome person you’ve ever met.
Here’s how to do it right:
- Confess everything to your girlfriend.
- Break it off with your side chick.
- Fix your relationship and prove to your girlfriend that you’re a changed man.
As you can imagine, this comes with a big risk. But you have no choice at this point. If you realized you love her and you want to restore your relationship, this is the only way to go.
If you love your new girl more
This seems hard but it’s actually easier than the scenario above. It’s less complicated since the other girl already knows you’re in a relationship. This means that you will have a fresh start once you two decide to be together as a couple.
Here’s how to do it right:
- Break up with your girlfriend.
- Take some time off to recover.
- Ask your new girl to be your girlfriend.
This sounds too simplistic but we all know how tough this is. Breaking up with someone who’s been a big part of your life, who you still love but not as strongly as before, is very hard.
There is also that risk that the new girl won’t want a relationship with you. But there’s no turning back at this point. You got yourself in a mess so don’t expect things to be easy if you want to start fresh.
If you realized you’d rather drop both of them
You’re exhausted. You don’t want to deal with it anymore because it’s just too complicated and you’re overwhelmed.
Yes, you’re in love but you prefer your peace of mind. You prefer your sanity over any girl at this point in your life.
You can’t have peace of mind if you ‘fess up to your girlfriend and try to fix your relationship. Imagine the drama you’d have to go through.
You can’t have peace of mind if you break up with your girlfriend and start a relationship with the other girl. You need to grieve and recover before you officially start a good relationship.
What you really want to do right now is run away from your troubles and just restart your life.
A clean slate!
Here’s how to do it right:
- Come clean to your girlfriend and break up with her
- Break up with your new girl
- Try not to date in the next few months
- Learn from the experience
Do the healing. While you’re at it, ask yourself some hard questions.
Ask yourself if you’re really capable of monogamy or you want to try polyamory.
Assess why things happened that way and if there’s anything you can do to prevent it in your next relationship.
You will grow a lot from this experience. Trust me. Your future wife will thank you for it.
I can bet that almost anyone who’s ever been in love has experienced this at one point because we’re not designed to be monogamous. We try our best to be devoted to one person forever and ever but it’s so darn hard because people change.
But since you agreed to be in a monogamous relationship, you broke your unwritten contract with your girlfriend.
Face the consequences.
Man up and make a choice then do the next necessary steps even if it could mean losing both of them.
Give yourself the time you need to prepare for your next moves but please do it. You’ve been in limbo for too long. It’s time to set yourself free and start a new life.
With your girlfriend? With your other girl? Without any of them? It’s all up to you.
It’s time to stop floundering and take control of your life.
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