Relationships are messy. When two people come together, and feelings are involved, situations can become complicated quickly. An element that makes relationships even more difficult is when a third party gets involved – especially if one party doesn’t realise it.
Mistresses are a topic many avoid talking about, but these complicated relationships are a fact of life. Often, these situations don’t occur with the intent of causing any hurt, and sometimes they go undetected.
- What does mistress actually mean?
- Why do people have mistresses?
- What do people look for in a mistress?
- Why do some prefer being a mistress?
- What happens in a mistress relationship?
- Tips to spot if your partner has a mistress
- Common mistress misconceptions
- It’s complicated
Today we’re looking at what it really means to be a mistress, and we’re shedding some light on the relationship dynamic. Since this is a taboo topic, many would rather not talk about it. But, we think it’s an important topic to explore and educate on. Keep reading to find out more.
What does mistress actually mean?
The term mistress is used a lot, but what does mistress mean?
When you hear the word mistress, you might think of a woman who tears apart families and marriages. Mistress comes with various negative connotations, mainly thanks to their portrayal in movies and TV. While we don’t condone cheating and going behind your partner’s back, many mistresses don’t purposely go out of their way to hurt anyone.
The term mistress refers to someone in a sexual relationship with a married person. Often, the married party secretly starts sleeping with the single person once or twice, but these relationships can continue for years without anyone knowing.
Typically, mistresses are associated with marriages. However, a man doesn’t need to be married to have a mistress. If he’s in a long-term or committed relationship, the woman he’s sleeping with is still a female mistress.
Why do people have mistresses?
Many people can’t understand why anyone would want a mistress, and the concept of sleeping with two women is hard to understand.
Men have many reasons for wanting a mistress, whether it’s for convenience or frustration. Those who explore the mistress lifestyle are usually deeply unhappy in their relationship, leading them to look elsewhere for companionship.
Mistress relationships are usually only sexual, allowing the man to continue to provide for his family without getting caught up in an emotional situation. If a man feels like his needs aren’t met in his marriage, a mistress offers the chance to have sexual encounters without the baggage of dating or divorcing.
Women who are mistresses are usually career-driven and younger, allowing them to indulge in the relationship without any attachment. This independence suits both parties, allowing them to continue their sexual meet-ups without any extra fuss.
Though it seems confusing to some, this long-term situation is easier to maintain than sleeping with different women. Once the two parties agree, it’s easy to meet up and get off without the “getting to know each other” stage.
Is there a male equivalent of a mistress?
Though we’re focusing on the female mistress dynamic, men can fulfil this role too. It’s more common for men to have mistresses, but some women also engage in these types of relationships.
Of course, it’s a more uncommon pairing, but unfulfilled women in their marriages also look for men to explore sexual relationships with. The word “mistress” doesn’t refer to men, and the opposite is “master”, but this doesn’t fit the situation either. Instead, male mistresses can be referred to as “paramours” or simply “affairs”.
A key difference between male and female mistresses is that men look for younger women. When women look for another lover, they don’t always pick men of a younger age – often, they pick someone the same age or older.
What do people look for in a mistress?
So, what makes a good mistress? What do men look for when they’re secretly opening their relationship?
If a man is looking for a mistress without strings attached, he’ll look for an independent woman. It’s essential that the woman isn’t interested in marriage or a long-term relationship, as this could affect his primary relationship with his wife. Remember, the nature of these relationships is transactional, and the wife is the ‘public partner’.
Mistress situations often start with both members agreeing that the relationship is sex-based only, limiting emotional damage in the future. With this in mind, men often look for women between 21-26 as these ages are usually career-focused and not interested in a companion.
Also, some men prefer to meet mistresses with higher maturity and knowledge levels. This leaves the woman at an equal level, and often men meet mistresses through work or in business situations.
When it comes to looks, men tend to place this above personality. This makes sense, as relationships are more physical than romantic relationships. Other attributes include reliability, an open mind, and physical fitness.
Why do some prefer being a mistress?
It’s easy to focus on why a man wants a mistress, but why do women prefer being a mistress?
It might be hard to believe for some, but some women don’t want the stress and attachment that comes with a committed relationship. Instead, these women want to fulfil their sexual needs while still concentrating on their careers and personal lives – much like the men in the situations.
This need for independence makes younger women prefer the mistress life. In their early 20s, establishing a career and starting their life is their priority. Falling in love and having children aren’t at the front of their minds.
Depending on the situation, some women enjoy being a mistress because of the lifestyle and financial gains that come with it. This isn’t true for all relationships, but married men often spend money and gift their mistresses with lavish purchases, almost buying their silence.
What happens in a mistress relationship?
Typically, a mistress relationship starts slow and then becomes a frequent occurrence.
When the man isn’t happy in his married life, he’ll start looking for women in bars or other public places and strike up a conversation. Once the relationship begins, the two usually meet up for drinks and dates when the wife is busy or after work hours. This keeps the relationship hidden from the wife and out of the public eye.
If the mistress relationship continues for years, the two often fall into a pattern, making meeting up easier than ever. This is also why men prefer to enter mistress relationships with one woman – it’s efficient and easy to hide.
Throughout the relationship, the wife remains in the dark about the secret meet-ups. Since the other woman doesn’t publicly meet her husband, she can continue to live life as his wife without knowing. This isn’t an open relationship – it’s an affair.
Where does a mistress fall in a relationship?
Usually, the mistress uses the relationship as the married man does – it’s not serious and just for sexual intercourse.
However, complications can arise if the other woman becomes emotionally attached to the man. Feelings of jealousy and sadness are common in these situations. Even for emotionally distant participants, it’s hard to be physically intimate without developing an emotional connection.
But, in most mistress relationships, the mistress never gets involved in the relationship. The whole dynamic is hidden, so if you’re looking to enter this type of relationship, you need to have a frank conversation about what you want and your boundaries.
Tips to spot if your partner has a mistress
Do you have a gut feeling that your partner has a mistress? This is a horrible feeling, and you might want to investigate whether your feelings are correct. Here’s how to spot if your partner has a mistress.
- They are more emotionally distant than before. This could point to a new interest they’re not telling you about.
- They’re spending more time on their appearance than they used to. While this could be for a confidence boost, it could be to impress someone else.
- They’re always out. If your partner starts leaving more often, especially in the evenings, it could point to activities he’s not telling you about.
- Money is disappearing. While not all men give money to mistresses, if you notice your joint funds disappearing, a mistress could be the cause.
- They can’t keep their story straight. A mistress might be on the scene if they can’t seem to stick to one story, and you catch them in lies.
- They start accusing you of cheating. Sometimes, guilty people deflect their problems by blaming the other party.
Of course, the only evidence that can actually prove your partner has a mistress is catching them in the act. These signs are never 100% proof of cheating, but they can signal something is wrong.
Common mistress misconceptions
Did you know there are common misconceptions about mistresses? Here are the top things the public gets wrong about affairs.
- The woman is intentionally a villain. Many mistress situations don’t start with the intent to become an affair. Often, they’re chance encounters that snowball larger than expected.
- Mistresses are sugar babies. While some women receive financial benefits from their lovers, many don’t enter into the relationship for material reasons.
- Mistresses are young women. Many imagine the mistress as a much younger woman, but this isn’t always the case. Any age might become a mistress.
- While there are certain features men look for, there’s no one “type” of woman that becomes a mistress.
- Mistresses don’t fall for the man. This happens much more often than the men expect.
Mistresses and infidelity are complex matters. Each relationship is different, and most of the time, feelings do get caught. We don’t condone affairs or cheating, but it’s important to be informed on these topics. At the end of the day, mistress relationships will happen, and it’s best to know about them.
Have you ever been a mistress? What are your opinions on this complex topic? Let us know in the comments.