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Dating a Married Man? Here’s Everything You Must Know 

Dating a Married Man? Here’s Everything You Must Know 

Updated on Sep 13, 2023

Reviewed by Julianne Cantarella, MSW, LSW , Certified Relationship Coach

Dating a Married Man - Here’s Everything You Must Know

Dating a married man can be complicated. It is like a walk on a tightrope. You have to constantly balance your own emotions along with the emotions of the man involved.

Affairs like these usually turn out to be nerve-wracking experiences. This mostly happens because women often don’t understand what their “already-married” partner truly wants from them – emotionally, physically, or even psychologically.

Does all of this sound like you? Are you involved with a married man? Do you think he is your Mr. Right?

Then this think-piece is everything you will ever need to steer your way through the complexities of this unconventional relationship.

Things to Know Before Dating a Married Man
Benefits & Dangers of Dating a Married Man

Is It Okay to Date a Married Man?

There is no simple answer to this question. You need to weigh out all the outcomes and decide for yourself if you can actually keep up with the demands of such a relationship.

Dating a married man is similar to relishing hot chocolate fudge – both are devilishly good but sinfully bad at the same time! While marriage enjoys the highest position at the altar of relationships, courtship with a married man is considered a social taboo!

Even if we are to set aside all of that, you still cannot deny that a relationship with a married man can complicate the lives of several people at the same time! It is a wobbly emotional roller-coaster ride with a lot of legal and financial issues to follow.

Dating a married man will stigmatize you with a lot of condemnable titles, which might not be a pleasant experience in the long run. You might forever remain the “other woman” in your man’s life and your identity will always be masked in mystery.

Further, dating a married man will ensure a lot of sacrifices on your side – both mental and emotional. If you think you are up for all these challenges and more, sure, go ahead! But always be clear in your conscience and guard it well…

Dating a Married Man – 15 things to know

It might seem like any other normal relationship in the beginning. But an affair with a married man is very different from dating a single man who has never been married. It is a completely different ball game altogether.

If you do choose to go ahead with this relationship, you must have a clear picture of the realities of dating a married man. Here is a list of 15 things you should know before you take the plunge…

1. Legally, it is wrong!

First and foremost, it is completely illegal to date anyone who is married. You may not be directly involved in a legal suit, but the man you are dating may face legal and financial issues if his wife decides to file a case against him.

Things will get uglier as the case proceeds and your relationship with the man will suffer too!

2. It will not last long

Sorry to break it to you, but flings and affairs with married men do not last very long. Chances are high that this affair is for the temporary gratification of his physical and emotional needs.

He might just get back to his wife after the rough patch between them is over. It will be wise not to have high hopes for this relationship.

3. You are temporary

If he keeps this affair a secret, it is highly likely that he will never leave his wife to be with you.

There are chances that his relationship with his wife might not be all rosy and he will leave you once things get back on track with her. You are only a short-term distraction to his marital problems.

4. He might find someone else

If a man is cheating on his wife with you, it is only obvious that he might cheat on you too soon. Once he gets bored with you, he might wander away to find someone else to replace you. In such a case, you might not really have any other option but to continue his pursuit.

It is never a good experience to chase someone who replaces you with somebody else and you will most definitely face mental health issues sooner or later.

5. You can never trust him completely

No matter how romantic he might try to get with you, at the back of your mind, you will always find everything to be an empty expression of love. You will always doubt his intentions.

When you date someone who will lie to his wife and cheat on her to be with you – you yourself would never completely trust such a person. Think about it!

6. His stories are not always true

If your man says that he is not happy in his marriage but cannot leave his wife because of “xyz” reasons – be sure to know that it is not always how he portrays it to be.

You only know his version of the story. The reality might be completely different. It may be that he is a “womanizer” and this is probably not the first time for him.

7. You will be labeled

No matter who makes the first move in this relationship, you will always be labeled as the “home-wrecker”.

Let’s face it, our society doesn’t have high regard for women who get involved with married men. You will forever have to deal with the stigma.

You may brush it away by saying that you do not care! Further, you may cut yourself off from everyone who advises against your relationship with a married guy. But is it a sensible thing to do?

8. Be ready for collateral damages

Say, you are dating a married man who has kids. Once your relationship is exposed, it is bound to hurt his wife and children.

It will be like you attempted to steal their father away from them and that is not an easy burden to bear for the rest of your life.

Let’s imagine another scenario- you are completely oblivious to the fact that he has kids too. Even then, you will feel guilty for hurting them even if you did it unknowingly.

9. You will never be his priority

You will always come second when it comes to his properties. No matter how good you are to him or how much effort you make to make this relationship work, you can never be his priority. His wife and kids will always top the list.

He will never risk losing his relationship with them to continue an affair with you. If need be, he might just take off and abandon you for good.

10. Your conscience will hurt you

Dating a married man can bring you temporary pleasures. After the honeymoon phase is over, this relationship will be the source of guilt and repentance for you. You can never really experience true happiness in this relationship.

11. You will never be at peace

Even when you both share the best moments together, you will always be anxious at the back of your mind.

You both will constantly live under pressure to keep the relationship hidden in the closet. You will never be able to look at him as an individual – he will always be a married man to you. Dating a married guy will rob you of your mental peace!

12. Your patience will be tested

You will always live at the whim of “your” man. You may have to wait for him to take time off his family schedule to be with you. And, you might have to wait for him to get away from his family before he can indulge in a call or text you.

A normal relationship usually moves forward to the next step – partners move in with each other, or they travel together or get introduced to each other’s family. When you get involved with a married man, all of that is out of the question. This affair will never move into the next phase of a relationship.

Also, if you expect him to break up with his wife or his marriage to end, that is just wishful thinking. If he were to do something like that, he would have already done that.

13. You will never be his “one and only”

You will forever be an option for him. He will always be with his wife and might even have affairs with other women apart from you. You will constantly live in the fear of abandonment and betrayal from his side. This relationship can never satisfy your desire for an exclusive relationship.

14. Are you really into it?

People are most tempted to do anything that is forbidden. So, if you were tempted to get into a relationship with a married man in the first place, it was because of the taboo associated with it. Initially, the hush-hush factor may seem delightful.

But when this slowly becomes a part of the routine, it will lose its thrill and you will question your decision to be with this man!

15. You can never really win!

No matter how good you are to him or how much you love him, the moment you two have a disagreement, he will compare you to his wife. He may even go to the extent to say that his wife is better than you. That my friend, is a hard-to-swallow comment, and your self-esteem will be injured.

He might regret cheating on his wife if things start to go downhill with you. You will forever be on the losing side, no matter what!

Benefits of Dating a Married Man

Sure, dating a married man can be very complicated, but there are some benefits to dating a married man. If there weren’t any benefits, people wouldn’t do it.

Whether you’re actually involved with a married man or wish to engage in a relationship with one, here are some of the benefits you might derive from this “forbidden love” affair…

1. No strings attached

Let’s be clear, affairs with married men usually revolve around sex instead of emotion. With this knowledge, you can actually enjoy the relationship for what it is without any expectations or returns.

You can surely get involved with a no-strings-attached relationship with anyone. But in the case of extramarital affairs, you can be sure to never feel emotionally attached to someone who’s already taken.

Also, when you are in love with a married man, there are no burdens of expectations that exist in any long term relationship.

2. Boosts your self-esteem

The fact that a married man cheats on his wife to be with you, means you are better than her; you must be special. A married man has so much to lose by sneaking around with you – a family, social status, friends, and a career.

This very fact that he is willing to risk it all to be with you, will make you feel extremely desirable and will be enough to boost your confidence by a thousand notches. Who doesn’t like a free confidence boost?

3. Financial stability is hot

Research has proven that women are biologically hard-wired to put more emphasis on financial stability to ensure the survival of their offspring. Whether you want children or not, that’s just how the brain works.

Married men are definitely financially stable in their lives. As compared to single men, most married ones have a financial plan in place to secure their family financially.

Financial stability is something all women want from their relationships. Women find this trait of the married man – as the provider for the family very irresistible!

4. You can be your #1 priority

The best part of dating a married man is that you never have to make him your top priority. Why? – Because he will never make you his number one priority. His wife, kids, and his job will always come first for him.

When you are not with him, you can focus on yourself. Your decisions will never affect him. You can continue to enjoy the fun secret relationship you two share and still be your own topmost priority!

5. It’s always discreet

While some women may prefer to show off their relationships, others like to keep theirs a secret. If you are one of the latter types, dating a married man is your thing.

When you get involved with a married man, he will do anything in his power to keep the affair under wraps. There will be no cute selfies with him on social media or introduction to each other’s friends and family.

Dangers of Dating a Married Man

While you may feel tempted to fall in love with a married guy, bear in mind there will be consequences – and not good ones, really! 

Don’t believe it?

Here is a short list to remind you of all the things that may or can go wrong if you date a married man…

1. You’re lying on a bed of lies

If your relationship is built on lies, how long can it actually sustain? You will have to lie at every step to keep it going.

Also, the truth is that the man lied to his wife to be with you. He can and most definitely will lie again to get you out of his life and be with someone else.

Lies can never build a strong base for a healthy relationship; not to mention you will never be able to trust him at all!

2. It’s too scandalous

Who doesn’t like to gossip about “that woman” dating a married man? Everyone does. Once you associate yourself with someone already taken, you become the hottest gossip everywhere you go… or even do not go.

Whenever you are out in public you will always feel all eyes are on you and your relationship is everyone’s favorite thing to talk about. It will wreak havoc on your mental peace.

3. It’ll be full of condemnable titles

It’s all fun and games till his wife comes to know about your affair. Usually, the wife doesn’t find any flaws with the husband and always blames the woman involved.

If you happen to be that woman, you will be called names such as “the home-wrecker” or the “the mistress”! You will be scarred for life and not to mention how badly it will affect your self-image.

4. Be ready to feel neglected

When you are with a married man, you are never his top priority. You won’t always get what you want from him when you need it.

He will always sort things out on his home front before indulging in you. Needless to say, you will always be at his mercy.

5. Too many rules

There are way too many restrictions when you are involved with a married guy. You cannot get in touch with him whenever you want to. You’ll have to wait for him to text/call you first. You cannot be seen together in public or around his neighborhood.

A secret affair can only thrive when you both meet in private or if you’ve the qualities of a proficient liar. All these rules might add to the thrill initially but unfortunately, with time, all this will begin to feel burdensome and unjustified.

Why do women date married men? – 10 Reasons

Many women prefer to date only married men. While it may seem like an edgy impulsive choice, it has practical reasons behind it. Let us explore the top 10 reasons why women prefer to date married men!

1. Pre-selected best option

Married men are the chosen ones. The fact that they are wanted by other women (their wives) makes them all the more desirable. They are too lazy to do the hard work and find the perfect partner for themselves.

Women lust for men who have already been certified by other women as “perfect partner material”. They prefer to copy the preferences of other women to make their lives easier! 

2. Immediate ego-boost

When a married man falls for another woman, it makes her feel powerful and desired!

She feels desired, and that is a huge boost to her self-confidence. If a man makes an effort to woo her instead of his wife, it makes her feel prettier and better than his wife.

Any woman likes to feel desired. But, there’s a certain thrill to be desired by a married man. It makes her feel like a “Messiah” to provide physical and emotional support to the unhappy married guy!

3. It’s hassle-free

Today women are more independent and focused on their careers. They do not have time to indulge in relationships mostly because relationships ask for time and maintenance.

Since married men have their priorities straight – family, kids, jobs – they seem like more than a perfect option for the modern independent woman.

When a woman dates a married guy, the arrangement is such that it doesn’t disrupt her focus. In spite of being in a relationship with this man, she can go on with her life like he never existed, because married men are less demanding.

These affairs are purely based on pleasure so both feel satisfied without the worry about their relationship.

4. The financial stability is great!

Women like to date men who are financially stable in their lives. The perfect example of such men is – no points for guessing – married men! They usually have stable jobs and provide for their families.

Women choose married men because they can provide them with most (if not all) material pleasures. This quality makes married men more irresistible compared to their single counterparts.

5. Maturity is attractive

Women like to date mature men. And for all the right reasons, married men are far more experienced as compared to single men.

Married men are experienced players both in life and “between the sheets”. They can deal with any unforeseen circumstances with ease and can please the woman in bed too! It’s like hitting the jackpot.

6. Mate poaching is a thing!

This is a term from psychology used to describe the behavioral patterns of the female species in the animal kingdom. It basically means to lure away the male partner from his mate and prevent them from mating.

Women who get involved with a married man can also be called mate poachers as they lure the men away from their partners. Women find the idea of a domesticated man absolutely irresistible!

7. They have faced daddy-issues in childhood

Women usually get involved in complicated relationships such as ones with married men because they might have experienced a negative relationship with their father in childhood. These women usually look for men who may have similar attitudes towards them in relationships.

They usually fall for men who are emotionally unavailable or end up in an affair with a married man. In both cases, they misinterpret domination as affection. It is as if they deliberately want to be in a toxic relationship.

8. Failed marriage of her parents

If a woman has seen difficult marriages among her parents, it may be possible that she has lost faith in the institution of marriage.

Marriage is a joke for her and she feels absolutely no guilt or remorse to ruin another marriage.

9. Sometimes, jealousy overpowers

Have you ever come across women who get jealous of other women’s happiness? Yes, there are so many of them. These ladies get so jealous to see another woman happily married that they run from pillar to post just to steal the husband away.

Mind you, these women do it just for fun, and have no intention to keep the relationship alive in the future. It is like an immoral conquest for them.

10. They fell for the lies

Women who fall for a married man will have the same story to tell. They fell for his lies – he is unhappy in his marriage, his wife doesn’t understand him, he was never in love with his wife and his wife used to torture him.

Married men usually use such excuses to lure other women to be with them. They try to generate sympathy in her mind and use it to create an emotional connection. It’s usually too late when the woman comes to her senses.

In such situations, she has no option but to continue with the toxic affair.

How to date a married man? –10 Ways

Dating married men can be full of challenges. The trick is to set clear expectations from this affair so that you do not end up being hurt.

Here is a list of 10 things you should do to make sure you can keep your sanity while dating a married guy…

1. Be patient

The best way to make this relationship last is not to rush with it. If you try to take the lead to take it to the next level too soon, it might cause more damage than good. The man might feel burdened and walk the other way.

It would be ideal if you let him set the pace for this relationship and make the most out of what you already have.

2. Have a life

It’s important that you set some boundaries and make him understand that you have a life outside of the relationship. When your man has to wait for you, it will make this relationship feel more important to him. He will long to be with you and respect your time just like you respect his.

Do not make yourself available at his beck and call. That way you can keep some stability in your life and maintain your self-worth.

3. Never be the open book

Make sure to keep your relationship with a married man as private as you possibly can. Don’t tell anyone whom you are dating until something serious develops between the two of you.

Once the relationship is out of the closet, it won’t take long before everyone will learn about it and ask uncomfortable questions. It gets easier for people to pass on negative comments for anything they condemn.

4. Do not be his toy

Affairs like these begin with a strong sense of desire and lust but usually evolve into a more emotional bond between the partners. If you ever feel you have suspicions about his intentions towards you, you should immediately take a step back to re-evaluate the whole relationship.

Always keep in mind what you are ready to give and what you are not ready to allow when you are with him. It all boils down to one thing – set healthy boundaries.

5. Do not get ruled by your emotions

When you let your emotions rule your mind, your judgment gets clouded. It becomes difficult to make correct decisions for yourself.

If you get all sympathetic towards him and offer your unconditional support, he might just take advantage of that. Be his girlfriend, not his therapist!

6. Do not expect him to leave his wife

It will be a good idea not to have high expectations and wait for him to leave his wife. If he wanted to do that, he would have done that already.

Also, you might be dating a married man with children. If that is the case, he will almost never leave his family.

So, it would be foolish of you to expect him to leave his wife and family behind for you. You are the one who will end up hurt in the end. Instead, enjoy the relationship as it is, in the moment, and do not look too far into the future!

7. Be practical

Make sure you have your head in the right place. Do not get so involved in the relationship that you lose sight of what is good for you and what is bad. Make sure you know when to walk away from this affair.

You must know that this relationship might not last very long. Organize your life in a way that, even if he breaks up with you, it doesn’t leave you devastated and you still have your tribe to support you through such a difficult time.

8. Make sure you are happy

When your own emotions cloud your logic, you end up making bad decisions for yourself. Never let this relationship dictate your life.

When you started dating a man who has still not divorced his wife, you had certain expectations from him. Make sure this relationship meets all your expectations and gives you pleasure and not pain.

9. Be a step ahead

It is always a good idea to be one step ahead in your head. Dating a married man will come with its own set of issues – typical to this kind of relationship.

If you can think ahead and have clarity about them, you can act on them properly and make the best out of any situation. A little caution goes a long way.

10. Prepare a plan B

No matter how much you both are in love with each other, the fact of the matter still remains that – he is already taken!

He has a separate world, a completely different world outside this relationship. And he probably doesn’t give that all up to be with you.

So, make sure you do the same. Do not cut yourself out from everyone you know. This is because he is still married, you do not enjoy an exclusive status in his life. So, keep your options open, and do not restrict yourself from dating other men too.

Why should you not date a married man? – 15 Reasons

There are no positive reasons for dating a married man. Even the good reasons turn out to be bad as time passes by.

If you find yourself on the brink of temptation, take a look at these 15 reasons why you should never date a married man.

1. He is a cheater

That is a tag he will always have to carry along with him. No matter how good he is with you, a cheater will always be a cheater.

He is cheating on his wife with you right now, he might cheat on you with someone else in the future. You will never really be able to trust such a man.

2. You will be stigmatized

Once you are in a relationship with a married man, you will be showered upon with condemnable titles.

You will be called names such as – the mistress or the home wrecker. Even if the relationship ends, these societal stigmas will scar your life forever.

3. You will never care about you

Face the fact: he is married!

You are not the only one in his life. For all you care, he might have kids too. So, you will always be at the bottom of his priority list.

He will only make himself available for you when he’s not busy with his wife and family.

4. He will never commit to you

No matter how many times he says he loves you and wants to be with you, he will never commit to you completely.

He will always return back to his wife when things get complicated with you or you both end up in a conflict of interest.

5. There is no future

Needless to say, if you are with a man who has still not divorced his wife, there is no future for your relationship.

Even if he says that he will leave his wife soon, you can never be sure when he will leave his wife, or if he actually would do it. You will forever be stuck in a secret relationship as long as you are with him.

6. There will be loyalty issues

His love, his feelings, and his gestures will seem hollow to you. You would want him to be loyal to you both emotionally, and in bed. But, think about it for a minute. Is it even a possibility?

He is cheating on his wife with you and goes back to his wife again when he is done with you – he can never be loyal to anyone.

7. You are ONLY an option

Just like the fact that you two are not exclusive is true, the fact that you might be replaced by someone else also holds much gravity.

If he is with another woman while he is still married to his wife, chances are that he might be with someone else too, outside this relationship. He can have as many affairs as he wants to. You just happen to be his “flavor of the month”!

8. It will be a lop-sided affair

This affair will never be an equal one.

There will always be one person who will give more and receive less compared to the other. Most times, you will be the former and will have to compromise all the way.

9. There will be no PDA

This is a secret affair. So, you will never receive the public recognition you would want from any relationship.

There will be no cute social media posts or even public meetings. Your relationship will always be under wraps and hidden from everyone’s view.

10. There will be too many rules to follow

You will have too many restrictions while dating a married man. For example, you cannot call him when he is with his wife or family, and you can never be seen hanging out with each other.

If you fail to follow these rules, the relationship will come to an end. Be sure to ask yourself whether you want to be trapped in a relationship with so many restrictions before you start dating a married man.

11. It will always be a secret

A married man has a lot at stake – his family, his job, and his children. He would never want to jeopardize that for an affair with you.

So be rest assured that this relationship will never see the light of day. It will always remain inside the closet. If you do not want to be the mystery woman for the rest of your life, it is a good idea to not date a married man.

12. He will never leave his wife

He would have already done that if he were to leave his wife. Maybe they are going through a rough patch in their marital life, and he wants temporary pleasure from you. Once they resolve their issues between them, he will leave you to be with his wife.

13. You will end up hurt

In the course of the relationship, you might develop feelings for him. If that happens, you will be the one hurt the most once he leaves you for his wife or for someone else. Dating a married man will only give you pain and tears.

14. You might miss out on better opportunities

Once you get too involved with a married man, you might lose out on dating good men. You will be so focused to keep the affair going that you might just miss out on a good opportunity to have a real relationship with a genuine person.

15. It will devastate your mental health

An affair with a married man will drain you emotionally and hurt your self-esteem more than anything else.

The stigma, the restrictions, and the hopelessness will all come back at you, and your mental health will go for a toss soon!


Wait… there are a few more questions unanswered, including…

1. Why do I always fall for a married man?

If you are attracted to married men only, you might prefer a man who is mature and rich in his experiences. You might also feel flattered when a married man is interested in you. It boosts your self-confidence.

It may also be a possibility that you are commitment-phobic and want a relationship with no attachment whatsoever.

But the biggest reason you always end up in an affair with married men is that you feel empathetic towards the sad lies those men tell about their unhappy marriage.

An affair with a married man can provide you with temporary shelter from these problems. But in the long run, you need to address these issues for a more meaningful life.

2. Can a happily married man love another woman?

It might be possible that a man falls madly in love with a different woman while he is still married to his wife.

Such cases are rare and only happen when there is marital discord or no more pleasure in the bedroom. He might want temporary relief from his marital problems and get deeply involved with another woman.

But it is usually that a married man is not happy with just one person. He needs someone else other than his wife to satisfy his needs. He cheats on his happy marriage because he wants more!

A word from ThePleasantRelationship

Everything said and done, dating a married man will never be a smooth ride. There will always be doubts and hiccups on the way.

Not to mention the stigma associated with this type of relationship. You will most definitely need to be very open-minded if you set out to be with someone who is already taken.

Let’s hope this think-piece helps you clear all air around a relationship with a married man.

Are you interested to know more about ‘Summer Fling’ then click here?

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