Should you befriend your husband’s mistress?

Monday, February 22, 2016

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LET’S face facts. Women are competitive by nature, and once they learn there is another woman satisfying the needs of their man, they will want to know who she is and possibly try to befriend her.

After all, they say you should keep your friends close and your enemies closer.

Local personality Amelia ‘Milk’ Sewell ruffled many feathers after her recent revelation on a local television show that she was one of popular dancehall artiste Bounty Killer’s mistresses for seven years, and that she and his wife at the time, D’Angel, knew about each other. In her view, it is important for the mistress to know the wife so she’ll know how to act in her presence.

But is befriending your husband’s or boyfriend’s mistress the right thing to do?

Iva Louise, a mistress for over 40 years, has told All Woman that befriending your partner’s mistress is not a good idea as you have two separate roles that need not intermingle.

"There are boundaries and principles that a mistress should apply in relationships. The role starts from within. To be a mistress you have to be wise, you have to be flexible, you have to have compassion, you have to have empathy, you have to have understanding; otherwise you will not be able to leave room for him and his wife to cope. She was there before you, and had her reason to be there. A good mistress wouldn’t want to change that and shouldn’t want to change that."

Louise, who also penned a book, Mistress Secrets: A Memoir, stated that many wives exist in a fairy tale, thinking they should be the be-all and end-all for their husbands, whereas the husbands have other ideas.

"When that happens, if she sees a restaurant bill it becomes a fuss, and he has to explain. In reality, he needs his space and freedom. As men, 99.9 per cent will have someone on the side. The other one per cent who don’t, it’s out of fear. A wise wife will determine what she values in her husband and decide whether that outweighs his extramarital affairs."

Louise also said there are certain rules that a mistress should follow.

"Being a mistress, some of the things I didn’t do was to call him at his home. I never brought suspicion to his wife, I respected her for that role she played, and as a woman myself, I could understand that. I didn’t call him at certain hours, I didn’t send him home with the smell of sex. Everybody has their own body smell, so you think of the wife who he should be going home to and you make him have a shower. As a mistress you’re protecting your side, and if that man is important to you, you take responsibility for that role and give respect where it is due," she pointed out.

On the other hand, sex therapist Dr Sidney McGill said a woman should never try to befriend her boyfriend/husband’s mistress.

"The relationship is an exclusive one — between you and your spouse — however, when you allow anxiety to become a part of this union, usually referred to as a dyad, and the man finds a way of draining off this accumulated tension in the relationship somewhere else, and in this case continuously with a stable third party or parties, this become a triad," Dr McGill explained.

He pointed out that triads — you, your spouse and his mistress — tend to be very unstable and when you are aware of the third party and you have befriended her, then you have officially declared that you are comfortable with this extension.

"Befriending the mistress also means that you have opened up yourself to be lied to; you have also shown your man that even if he eventually decides to get rid of this mistress, then it is okay to get another one. This [befriending your partner’s mistress] does not allow you and him to address the real problems in your union (his stressors) or ways in which he could find new coping skills. Since his mistress is carrying some of his emotional burdens – especially in the sex act and intimate conversation – it is less likely that he would be interested in focusing on addressing the existing problems in your relationship."

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