What To Do When You’re In Love With A Married Woman

Updated July 01, 2020

Falling in love can often be the most complex and memorable event of human life. It’s a difficult journey to maneuver but becomes even more difficult as we attempt to navigate societal expectations and relationship norms. Sometimes our love might fall outside of these expectations, for example, we might fall in love with someone who is already in a relationship. We all seek love, but sometimes our love story becomes more complicated than we intended.

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Falling in love with a married woman is hardly ever something we expect from our lives. Most of us do not plan to start dating a married woman, as a relationship with a married person can be productive with confusion, conflict, and often deceit toward at least one party. Even so, love comes in many forms, and sometimes love comes to us through a complicated relationship even without our meaning for it to happen.

When you’re dating a married woman, it is likely that you will receive a lot of judgment from either yourself or outside parties. It can be challenging to maintain trust and intimacy when she is in another relationship or when you’re worried about others finding out or casting judgements. These difficulties may lead you to wonder if the relationship is worth the trouble. The woman you’ve fallen for is likely pretty incredible, you may wonder if it is even possible to get over her. You are not without choices.

Decide What You Want

When it comes to love affairs, non-traditional marriages, or being involved with someone already in a relationship, everyone has an opinion. Usually, it’s a strong opinion and not necessarily a kind of understanding one. You may be significantly criticized for falling madly in love with a married woman. Only you truly know what your situation is, and it is vital that you keep this in mind as you decide what you want to come from being in love with a married woman. Is this a relationship you hope ends in her divorce and your own marriage to her? Is this a situation where you want to stop having feelings for her because it goes against your principles? Is she perhaps in an open marriage, and you’re trying to discover where you fit in? There are many different scenarios where a lot of different questions arise. What you want from love and any given relationship is essential.

Despite everyone else’s opinions, there is not necessarily a right or wrong answer here, but perhaps there is a right answer for you. Of course, this is all dependent on what you want. Take some time to consider what you’re looking for in this relationship.

Have An Open And Honest Conversation With Her

Perhaps the most challenging part of being madly in love with a married woman is not knowing exactly where you stand when the future is concerned. Does she love you, or is she just looking for some excitement? Would she ever truly consider a relationship with only you? How long is this going to last?

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As these thoughts can be distressing, it may be beneficial to talk with the woman you are falling in love with and clarify any points of uncertainty. This isn’t easy; having an open and honest conversation is scary, and most people feel uncomfortable showing their vulnerability to others. However, it is crucial for you to know where she stands and what she wants. In all relationships, there is a necessity to have honest communication in order to gain trust and build intimacy. This is especially important if you are in love with a married woman or in an equally complicated relationship.

Accept That You May Not Get What You Want

Knowing what you want from any relationship can help you better invest in your relationship and overall happiness. However, the person you are in love with is already in another legal relationship. Be prepared to accept that she may choose to stay in her marriage regardless of what you want. It may be hurtful to sit around and wait for her husband to leave his wife only to have them stay together. Oftentimes a married woman has spent years of sacrifice and dedication on building a marriage and/or family. Even if she’s only spent a few months of marriage with her partner, these are not easy things to abandon, also if the two of you are madly in love.

Being able to accept the outcome of any situation, even if it’s not the outcome you wanted, is crucial to help avoid emotional distress. Being able to prepare yourself for adverse outcomes can help strengthen your resilience. Embracing an accepting attitude toward a negative result can help you work through the pain of receiving lousy news without reliance on harmful coping techniques.

Many psychologists use the idea of radical acceptance to help patients through painful situations. Radical acceptance focuses on understanding what we can and cannot control and accept this philosophy. You probably felt like you couldn’t control falling for a married woman, few of us seem to be able to control every facet of our attraction to others. While you can control how you express your love for someone, you cannot control how they feel or how they choose to reciprocate (or decline) these feelings. This concept of radical acceptance may be able to help you if the relationship with the woman you are in love with does not continue the way you want it to.

Acceptance could be especially important if you did not know the woman you were dating was married. If this is the case, you are likely to feel betrayal and pain on many levels. Hearing “I’m a married woman” from the mouth of the woman you are dating can come as a huge shock. While you don’t have to accept her decision to date you without telling you about her marriage as a moral decision, you can accept that you’re able to control whether you stay or go.

Be Kind To Yourself

Being in love with a married woman can bring up a lot of judgement both from yourself and others. Very few people are willing to understand what it is like to have fallen in love with a married woman. It’s important to practice kindness toward yourself during this relationship, no matter the outcome. Whether or not the two of you end up together, you’ll want to make sure there’s someone who is able to look out for you during all of this confusion. That person can be you.

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Sometimes it can be challenging to show ourselves self-compassion when we’re feeling upset or in a situation where we might assign blame to ourselves or others. Self-compassion expert, Kristen Neff, Ph.D., recommends responding to yourself as you would to a friend going through the same thing. For example, if you’re feeling guilty for having fallen in love with a married woman, imagine what you might tell a friend had they been in that situation. A friend may remind you that you can’t necessarily control who you love or that no matter what happened, you were always honest and true to yourself. Of course, you can lean on your social support systems as well, but it can also do wonders to be that friend for yourself as you navigate this relationship and its corresponding feelings.

Loving A Married Woman Who Is Not Your Wife

If you have married yourself, and you have fallen in love with a married woman who is not your wife, your relationships become all the more complicated. There are various confusing levels of emotions and trust being dealt with here, and it may be wise to look into marriage counseling for further insight. Married people often find themselves in complex situations and seek all kinds of marriage advice either from trusted friends or professionals. ReGain therapists can help you work through these complex emotions, whether through couples counseling or individual counseling.

I’m Only Attracted to Married Women

Perhaps your feelings of love for married women go beyond a one-time love affair. Perhaps you find yourself consistently drawn to married women and are often in love with married women. If this is the case, you may want to evaluate what it is you seek from love and why you believe that married women can fulfill it. As this is a difficult task and question, it may be wise to seek additional professional help to help you sort through your pattern of being in love with married women.

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Dating a married woman is no easy feat. After some self-reflection, you may discover that a relationship with a married woman is not for you, you may decide that you want to give it a shot only to be shot down by her. With the tools of radical acceptance and self-compassion, you can prepare yourself for any outcome of this relationship while strengthening your overall mental health.


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