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It starts with that grating feeling in the pit of your stomach, works its way up to the base of your neck, and shakes your intuition awake. Your man is seeing somebody else—you think. Besides running up on him vigilante-style with Joey Greco and his “Cheaters” camera crew in tow, your other option is to do your own behind-the-scenes investigative work to confirm your suspicions and vindicate your snooping. Y’all know the drill: check pants pockets, sniff shirts, rifle through car consoles, dig in gym bags, scan store receipts, crack Facebook passwords and read text messages. Those who seek shall almost always inevitably find, so when you uncover proof of his doggishness, the first step is usually one of two things: a) confront him, or b) confront the other woman.

Sometimes she’s completely unaware that dude has a girlfriend, or even worse, a wife. In that case, it’s kind of hard to hold her responsible when your man has worked just as hard to deceive her as he did to deceive you. But sometimes she’s just a bold, brash and brazen heifer who could give two pieces of nothing about y’all being in love since college, your two kids, or your plans to get married next fall. She’s just trying to get hers. And that? That right there is the brand of other woman that makes you want to grab your sneakers, pop off your acrylics, snatch out your earrings, and slather some Vaseline on your face. They make it real hard for a lady to stay ladylike.

I’m not saying it isn’t fair game. I mean, a homewrecker does open herself up to a certain brand of “hood justice,” as archaic as it might be. But all too often, we get so completely blindsided by our hatred of the recently discovered other woman that we forget to give just dues to the brothas who are at the whole root and source of the situations. They get to scuttle around unscathed—and in their simple little twisted man minds, sometimes convince themselves that we’re fighting over them—while our female bravado flares up, acts out and puts all of our good, God-given common sense in a chokehold. While we’re stalking, threatening, and following the side chicks (and don’t think I don’t know that you’re doing it. Calling her boss and telling him that she has crabs. Shame on you!), the dudes are relishing in their adventures and have become the #1 storytellers at the barbershop because we fail to throw the whole blame and responsibility at them, not the fool broads they slept with.

Had the man kept his penis in its compartment, you could have spent this valuable time shopping or eating or making love or knitting a sweater or doing a floor puzzle or any other doggone thing you wanted to do aside from having your heart crushed and feeling the need to beat another woman to a pulp in order to defend your honor. There were two people in the relationship: you plus him. So while it may seem like a natural reaction to attack the intruder, the real individual to address would be your—now former—boo.

As far as I’m concerned, confronting the side chick is one big, long, sometimes bloody and bail-money-needing vent. It’s a temporary distraction from acknowledging the pain of being played by someone we love—or at least kind of care about—and an opportunity to take it out on the jerk that infiltrated your life while your guard was down. But I think there’s more regret than affirmation when it comes to rolling up on the other woman. Text her if you must. Call her, stop by her job, mail her a letter, and keep setting off the motion detector in front of her house if it makes you feel better. But don’t forget to put the man who was the reason y’all met in the first place on the same kind of aggravation installment plan. In fact, make his a double.

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  • Beef Bacon

    The person I would hold accountable is the person I am in a relationship with, with one exception:

    If she knew of our relationship, than two people WILL be held accountable.

    Otherwise, it is his @$$ on the chopping block. Screw the numbers games and all that blah blah. I ONLY expect to be treated, as HE would want to be treated. If he does not want me to cheat, than guess what. NO CHEATING ALLOWED!

    I listen to women of all ages, give men a pass when it comes to monogamy. I am not naive and in no way feel as if all relationships can be cheat proof, however, would women be as easily forgiven and taken back if we played the field and had sidepieces? HELL NO!

    I feel that woman should consider themselves the MORAL GATEKEEPERS! I see some woman saying, if married men didn’t hit on me blah blah blah….well, I will not feel sorry for YOU when those shoes becomes yours to wear. If and when you discover he’s married; tell him to kick rocks, because YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW. You will become the one calling or texting or stopping by the job because some unsympathetic woman does not value YOUR marriage/relationship.

    It is easy for the ‘other’ woman to say, he calling me, or if you were doing what you should be doing than…..lol. Lying on your back every now and then hardly constitutes a relationship of any kind. If a man only comes to you when he needs some or when he is mad at his WIFE/WOMAN makes you nothing more than a live hand job.

    I met this dude, gave him my #, all for his wife to call me. After talking with her for an hour, I understood that she was hurt and that this could be ME one day. I was forced to empathize and understand what that woman was going through. I felt her pain and decided that I would not be the one he uses to cause her anymore pain.

    I would not want it done to me, therefore I shouldn’t DO IT to others. It is easy to be Selfish; it takes sacrifice to do unto others, as you would have them do unto you.

  • We all have dealt with this in some way or another. I just want to say that when I do get off my year of not dating and “if” this happens again (prayerfully not), I will be sure to not confront anyone. No questions, no answers, etc… The story is all the same and the lies are all the same. The reality is they did it and at 25+1, I really don’t care why. It is no point to the excuses, just walk away and keep it moving.

  • La’Toya

    Women confront other women because at one point or another we all should know how it feels to be hurt by a man and the audacity to put another female in the position is unbelievable. So the comments about confronting the other woman makes no sense, especially in the heat of the moment. I just broke up with my boyfriend of over a year (but I’ve known my entire life) not even a month ago. I went to his house and there was another female there. There was no way that she didnt know that he had a girl, she simply didnt care. There is no way that he didnt think I would eventually roll up on them, he simply didnt care. She knew he was in a relationship, she wasnt even surprised. I flipped on both of them and havent spoken to or seen him since. I dont think I was wrong. He could of ended our relationship first and she could of required that of him. It’s ok though because they both will see that day again, the same way she got him will be the same way she’ll lose him!

    • Missy

      latoya, i am somewhat confused. how did this other woman know your man had a woman. did he tell her…was he just too damn fine to be alone….was the other woman a mind reader….what? not being a b*tch about it, just wondering how do you know that your man did not tell her that you broke up earlier and he was not available in the single market. it’s just not always the other woman’s fault. let us know b/c i am sure there are some others who are curious about this.

  • huh

    Confronting the other woman just makes you look tacky. The only scenario where that is remotely acceptable is if ‘the other woman’ is actually a friend of yours or someone that you know.

    But if she’s a perfect stranger..? NO WAY am I taking myself down to that level to wag my finger in her face, when in reality my man would be the problem, not her. And if she’s someone coming on to him, then HE needs to be the one to set her straight. If he doesn’t, then once again he’s the problem.