The ‘other’ in an extra-marital affair
Michael C. Gray

The ‘other’ in an extra-marital affair

Alyssa felt guilty when she had sex for the first time. She was the ‘other’ woman. He was married, with kids. Four years later, she’s still part of the extra-marital affair.

Alyssa Mendonca (name changed) is a software engineer.   

The guilt descended after our first date. It was a quick meeting at a coffee shop near my office. He had to return home in time to put his daughters to bed. We were both jumpy and kept looking around, hoping we wouldn’t spot anyone familiar and hurriedly thinking up excuses if we did.

After he left our date, I started thinking about the evening. Would every meeting with him be like this…him rushing home and me, left alone with nothing but my thoughts? Those thoughts were brutal because they left me feeling like I was a home-wrecker, a slut, a woman with no morals.

You see, Raul was married and as far as the world and I knew, happily so. He had two lovely young daughters and a pretty wife. Theirs was a model family, except for me. I was the ‘other’ woman.

Identity crisis 

We are all defined by and given identities based on the relationships we have with people. We are someone’s daughter, sister, aunt, cousin, girlfriend, wife, boss etc. What happens when one day, you are given an identity that changes your life in a way you never thought it would?

There were a handful of people who knew about Raul and me, his best friend and a few close friends of mine. Each of them had warned us against continuing our relationship. One day, out of the blue, my friend asked me if I enjoyed being the ‘other’ woman.

I had no answer for her because till then I hadn’t thought of myself as one.

The ‘other’ woman was this vamp-like character, hated by all of society and confined to the dregs of existence by all movies and TV shows. She was heartless, cold and ruthless. I wasn’t anything like her.

Related: My Friend’s Husband Is Cheating, Should I Tell Her?

Too deep in love

I felt what we were doing was morally wrong and could hurt someone. I knew that even if he said he loved me, he wouldn’t leave his family and I didn’t even want him to. I knew that what we had wouldn’t last forever. I knew that my church would disown me if they knew about this. I knew and accepted all of this.

What I wasn’t ready for was the guilt that would follow me around.

The first time we slept together, I was so overcome with guilt I started crying. As much as I was happy that I had slept with the man I loved, his wife’s face kept coming to my head. There was a point in her life when she had felt the same way about the same man. Was I robbing her of that? Did she love him the way I did, did she please him the way I did? What had she done wrong to deserve this?

The thoughts never ceased. They would clamour for my attention every time we met, every time he kissed me or touched me. I spoke to him about it and he told me I would’ve to get off my moral high horse to see things more clearly. I tried breaking things off but I was too deeply invested to stay away for too long.

Four years on and we are still together. I am still the ‘other’ woman. I still feel guilty but I have learned to live with that guilt.


Have you ever been in an extra-marital affair? What were your experiences? Share your thoughts with us by leaving a comment below or via Facebook, where you can find us on Love Matters Naija and Kenya.

did you find this useful?

Tell us what you think

Recent Comments (26)

  1. Just started seeing a married
    Just started seeing a married man and the guilt is overwhelming…he spends the whole night and following day with me.I cnt stand the thought of his wife and kid being all alone at home because of me. The weirdest part i like him a lot and our chemistry is just out of this world.I want to stop it but he does anything possible just to be with me. He is the sweetest guy i have met…gives me piggy back rides and kisses me in public. We are so happy together only problem he is taken.As much as i try i cnt just let go.Ever since we met it was that instant attraction and bond.

    1. Damsel,

      so sorry!
      This is a difficult situation.
      You know it’s wrong, even though it feels so good. It’s up to you- do you want to be with a man who cheats, and who will never be fully with you, or do you want to be respected and have an honest relationship?

  2. the man is not yours.he will
    the man is not yours.he will never be.the sooner you realise it the better.find your own man

    1. Thanks for your comment!
      Thanks for your comment!

    1. Thanks for your comment, Dave
      Thanks for your comment, Dave.

  3. you’ve committed adultry..
    you’ve committed adultry…seek advice from counselors or church council..It is very wrong and shameful..ur children will be of the same type.

    1. You think adultery is genetic
      You think adultery is genetic?

  4. Let us not be quick to judge
    Let us not be quick to judge.Not all married couples founded their relashionship with love.Others came along as a result of mistakes e.g forceful marriage due to impregnating,pressure from parents or friends,early marriages and self despiration e.t.c.Then later this prince or princess charming comes a long and you surely fell in love.Kenyan men and women,our relashionships is based on how will the community think of you more than what you need, feel or deserve

    1. That’s a very interesting
      That’s a very interesting point, thank you!

  5. when your guy gets bored with
    when your guy gets bored with you you’ll be the “SLUT”

    1. Angie,

      we don’t allow harsh language here.

  6. It’s adulterous to engage in
    It’s adulterous to engage in a cheating relationship with a married person. It is the sole cause of very many single men and women in Kenya

    1. Thank you for sharing your
      Thank you for sharing your thoughts, Sam!

  7. what if someone wants to
    what if someone wants to marry you as a secondwife…is it still wrong to be with them?

    1. Hi Diva,

      Hi Diva,

      Its allowed by the law, but its up to you to decide whether its ok for you or not.

  8. If he cheats with you, he’ll
    If he cheats with you, he’ll definitely cheat on you too. The society has condoned with the wrong and it seems so justifiable, but wrong is wrong. Why accept to be the other woman when you can get your man and be his woman?

    1. Thanks for sharing your
      Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.

  9. I am in a love web just like
    I am in a love web just like looks wrong,getting started was easy leaving is a hill task,the guy is too good bu. Deep down me he will never be mine,I need to walk out but when?

  10. If it is OK with you, I guess
    If it is OK with you, I guess nothing is wrong. For some people like me it is a choice I made and I have to accept the bad and good. I have my two beautiful kids, I work very hard for them and I love their father. Whenever he finds time he will pass by to see us, if he does not we are fine with that. A little negative thoughts here and there but the good surpass the bad. Having a man every day in the house is all in the mind. I never feel the urgency. So its never about him being yours, it could be a persons choice and you love that space that you can never get from a man that is your own. This choice might come coz of different life situations. Never judge, just let it ro quesera. Every daughter is born and dreams of this Mr perfect, wedding and a happy life there after…wait until you lose your spouse at a tender age and they leave you with a baby or babies…you’ll tell your story after that. Only those married men at 95% get interested. Never judge

    1. Thanks for sharing your story
      Thanks for sharing your story with us Liz.

  11. Was widowed at a young age.I
    Was widowed at a young age.I enjoy a close relationship with a married man.I am working and sustaining my only child and his cousin so I do not depend on him for any financial support unless he feels like.What I like is that he is mature and very understanding.We understand each others boundaries.You may want to judge me but thats your own problem.If for anything,adultery is not the only sin.People have sins!Some hate others,some do not even help the poor,name them.I do not understand why people judge us so harshly!I am happy and that is what matters to me.

    1. Thank you for sharing your
      Thank you for sharing your story with us Achieng.

  12. Its almost the same case…
    Its almost the same case with me though I have a beautiful daughter with him. But he always rushes back home to attend to his family which makes me feel am so left out.. I don’t know if I shud move on or still stay..

    1. Hey BB, have you talked to…

      Hey BB, have you talked to him about this? It is important that you talk about your concerns with you partner to better inform you decision. All the best. 

LoveMatters Africa

Blush-free facts and stories about love, sex, and relationships