“I’m tired of being a side chick – what do I do?”


I have been seeing my man for two years and ever since we started dating, he has been promising to leave his steady girlfriend, whom he has a child with, for me.

But it looks like he is all talk and no action and frankly I am tired of being umakhwapheni. The other day I found myself in tears when I had a flat car tyre and couldn’t call him to come help me, yet I say I have a man. The relationship favours him because he has the best of both worlds. He expects me to avail myself whenever it suits him.

Whenever I threaten to leave him and get a steady boyfriend, he becomes angry and acts jealous and emphasises that I should be patient because he plans on dumping his baby mama. Should I believe this man or am I just wasting my time.

Power couple and co-authors, Mo and Phindi, advise

Tired side chick you are very bold, calling another woman’s boyfriend, “my man”. How long you’ve been cheating with him is immaterial, he’s simply not your man. As you put it, all you really are is just a “makhwapheni”.

In reality, a nameless secret that cannot even take a mere selfie with him for social media publishing. By the way, do you know that he will never refer to you, especially in your absence, as “my woman”?


Of course you may think you’re in love now. And yes, we get it, you’ve been together for two years. You’re most probably faithful to him, while, after a brief stolen stint with you, he’d go be with his real woman.

Some kind of love you have. A HELPLESS VICTIM Hence, making yourself a helpless victim doesn’t fly with us. You choose to subject yourself to his controlling, selfish and immature behaviour voluntarily. And in the process you’re blocking other possibilities of awesome relationships because you’re obsessed with a control-freak that doesn’t love you.

Let’s tell you why being a makhwapheni is completely lame for everyone involved, for especially for you He’ll never leave her: There is a reason why she is his actual girlfriend, and you are not. If he was going to leave her for you, he would have by now. There is nothing that is forcing him to stay. He is with her by choice. His girlfriend is not the only one being played here, you too, are being played. ¦ You have a choice: There are men out there that are single and ready to mingle. There are also men out there who have all the qualities you like without the extra baggage. And even if there were none available, it is better to be single than to be a secret girl. There are plenty of reasons not to settle for being a makhwapheni.

 ¦ You are your parents’ daughter: Self-respect goes a very long way to even finding your own partner. Do you feel you deserve to be the secret on the side? Remembering who you are by treating yourself with dignity and pride is an attractive trait. You deserve fireworks and butterflies from a guy that is all about you, just like his girlfriend does. You should never have to be someone’s second and secret choice.

¦ Think about their child: Your caring nature as a woman ought to make you think about the countless and very adverse risks you’ll be putting the child into, should they separate because of your selfishness. Is it worth it? Would you want your child to grow up fatherless only because of some woman who could not govern herself?

 ¦ You are dropping the ball on another woman: Even if you don’t like his girlfriend, you have to feel at least a little guilty for what you’re doing behind her back. You can’t possibly be that heartless towards a fellow woman, especially over a selfish and immature man. How would you feel if the roles were reversed? The girlfriend believes she is in love with the perfect guy and that he is all about her. Finding out that this is not the case would be devastating. And then imagine not just the heartbreak, but the rage she’ll feel towards both of you.

¦ You are enabling bad behaviour: Guys often play women like this only because they can get away with it. Women need to keep their expectations high and make it clear that this stupidity is unacceptable.

¦ Relationships born out of an affair don’t last: You may know of one or two relationships born out of infidelity that lasted, those are exceptions. But even those suffered a great deal of trust and commitment deficit, because both partners know exactly how they got to be together. The rule is, such relationships are more likely to be dysfunctional, as your cheating boyfriend is more likely to do to you what he did with you. After all, if he was willing to abandon a committed partner, why should he not be willing to do so again with you?

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