What to do when you fall for a married man

Gaurav Deka
a man and woman at dinner date

The very nature of human life is defined by its precariousness, its uncertainty. Yet, all of us desire stability, sustenance and safety. And that’s why we plan, we strategise, we aim – with little knowledge that when it comes to ‘falling in love’, all such controlling measures can evaporate in one single moment. And that’s why it’s a fall, a free fall! Not without its consequences though. Some survive and some perish. But sometimes, some of us choose the way to suffer and perish with full knowledge. And that’s definitely emotional suicide. One of the ways to do is to simply fall for a married man in India!

If falling is inevitable, let’s at least fasten our seatbelts and hope to prevent it from being a bumpy ride.

What to look for

Let’s start with the pros first – given that the dark side is known to almost all of us. It’s not so bleak you see, if you have your intentions and expectations well in place. In a way it’s pretty streamlined: you don’t have to take over the numerous duties that automatically would have been dumped on you had you been his wife. We all know what I’m talking about.

Related reading: The Bait

You only get his love, the good sex perhaps and the once in a while secret dinners or getaways – along with the everyday phone calls.

The idea is to keep the spice alive: which mostly is the human tendency of pining for things which aren’t completely attainable. That’s more than half the reason why women fall for married men.

Is it the sex or love?

If it’s only the lust story, then one can do away with the ‘no hang-ups’ business.


‘decide your own worth’ Image Source

But unfortunately, for women it doesn’t work that way. Something that may start as a casual office fling will eventually find an emotional hook to lodge itself in the heart with such permanency that pain is inevitable at the end of such an experience. Keeping emotional boundaries for yourself is the trick. But then such things aren’t taught to us in this country.

What about damage control?

As implied above multiple times, there is no way that the collateral damage can be prevented in any way. If you are really looking for survival in such a relationship, I’m sorry but you’ll have to have the skin of a rhino! You’ll have to have a very clear sense of boundary and you’ll need to do away with ideas like jealousy, insecurity, sudden absence of your partner, along with the thought that he’s still having sex with his wife and you may not be the only girl in his life. If need be, seek professional help. But if you want to hold on to this relationship and make it run, you will need it way down on your priority list. Your driving force or even your poison has to be something else: career/ambition could be one of the options. The other could be unwillingness to commit. And so on.

How aware are you of your self-worth?

Related reading: I love my husband, but sometimes I love the other man a tad more

Ask yourself open-ended questions: Do you respect yourself? Are you really happy with this? Are you okay with being the second person in his life? Are you okay with being the dirty secret?

No matter how much he complains about his marriage and talks badly about it, remember he isn’t leaving it for you.

Ask yourself, what is that hook that is keeping you here, with him. Is it truly love, or is it something else?

What’s your stake?

Legally, financially and emotionally, you clearly have no claim. He may not be available to you the way another boyfriend or a husband may be available to you. He may be a very kind-hearted gentleman. But he is practical too. Otherwise, e would have left his wife a long time ago. And that’s exactly what makes him unavailable, although those everyday phone calls may make you believe that he is always around. Remember, deep down it’s as much a secret for him as it is for you. Therefore there is fear too. Don’t let this fear get the better of you. Always keep friends close by. It’s okay to reveal it to that super-close bunch of people (2 or at the max 3 in number) and keep your support group ready. This will also help you end your guilt trip – if you have one.


Perhaps the woman in this story by Urmi Chanda-Vaz has taken these lessons to heart and was therefore able to walk away so easily. Or the woman in this account by Tuli Banerjee, who seems to have found the perfect way to continue the affair without getting too hurt in the process.

I suspected my husband was having an affair because he asked for paneer

She became obsessed and wouldn’t take no for an answer

I had an affair with a married man

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