As if dating isn’t hard enough, what happens when you find out you are stuck in a love triangle? How to End a Love Triangle?
Let me start out by saying there is nothing OK about a love triangle. I mean, the essence of a love triangle is one person controlling two people in a hopes of having their cake and eating it too. And if you tolerate being in a love triangle, you are allowing yourself to be played in an embarrassing manner.
However, for those that find themselves in a love triangle and realize it’s time to exit, you can’t approach this scenario the same way you would a “normal” breakup. So before you feel like your love life is turning into The Bermuda Triangle, check out my top three tips for exiting a love triangle:
Being a happily married man of ten years, I’m not well-versed in the trials and tribulations of love triangles. However, like a doctor who never had to suffer from a broken leg, I can easily look at situation, and offer a way to fix it. See, as a manners expert, I can usually suss out any and all unmannerly issues, and a love triangle is surely a breeding ground for rude behavior. Yet even with my astute ability to call bulls—t on jerks of the world, a love triangle is not something that should be tolerated by either parties.
See, unlike realizing it’s time to end a normal relationship and may teeter between whether it’s right or wrong, when you’re stuck in a love triangle, there is no debate. The person in question may be the man or woman of your dreams on paper, but the reality of your relationship is more like a sheet of flypaper lit up and disappearing into the ether. With that, it’s only proper to be direct, blunt, and not beat around the bush.
Take Henry, from New Mexico who realized that one of his fellow law school classmates was also dating his “girlfriend,” Emily. Ironically, they found out when she invited both of them (and other friends) to a large study group. Things got hairy when both wanted to kiss her hello. Needless to say, some eyebrows were raised at the awkward encounter and it was obvious Emily wasn’t being totally honest. So, being a gentleman (which is the FIRST key factor to keep in mind), Henry packed his things up and left. The next day, he called Emily to cut things off. He didn’t give her a chance to “explain herself,” despite her crying.
In fact, to his credit, Henry didn’t go ballistic (even though he had the right to)), nor did he point fingers—he simply let her know it was over. He was blunt, straightforward and left it at that. Emily knew what she did, so why was there a need for further explanation? What was she going to say? “Well, the thing is… See, what really happened was…” I don’t think so. Why do you get to rip into someone for lying to you? Sure, you’re entitled to but you’ll only sink to their level. When you yell back at a yeller, you’re saying there is a debate—as if you may, in fact, be even remotely in the wrong. You can’t allow it and you can’t tolerate. Keep calm, and simply cut them out of your life forever.
Meet Your Frenemy
As I said above, I’m a firm believer in NOT tolerating love triangles. Don’t give me the old, “But I love them and they love me! We can work it out,” because they don’t love you. Like, at all! They’re playing you and will as long as you let them. When you allow someone to pull you along, it will only make them stray farther and your chances of making it as a couple seem less likely than the New Orleans Pelicans winning the NBA title next year. It’s like telling a child, “OK, OK, I was really upset at you for eating that cookie when I asked you not to…
But here’s money to go buy an entire box.” With that, as I said above, you can’t even give your love triangle an ounce of patience. However, even though you wish nothing but bad things to happen to Mr./Mrs. Wonderful, you have to remember the third party in this relationship. So, I recommend engaging that third party, and not the ex. Allow me to explain.
Take Chloe, who tolerated Zach’s repeated infidelity because he was “the one.” Wait, no, he wasn’t. The only one in the relationship was Chloe, and she was actually one of many. Despite her “love” for Zach, Chloe realized that it was over when she saw Zach cuddling up to a woman in a coffee shop. Chloe approached them, watery eyes and all, and yelled at Zach in front of complete strangers … and the other woman. She didn’t answer his phone calls or texts. She was checked out. However, she got wind of who the other woman was (by way of some Facebook stalking) and decided to reach out to her.
It’s like the ancient proverb, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” and in a love triangle, they may not be your bestie but they may be your best bet for intel. So, reach out to the other person and ask them if they knew about you, how long they were together and so forth. Dig deep and ask away. Why? Well, because you’re going to have questions, and the desire to have them answered may lead you back to the original source of your pain. Because of that, you have to resist the urge and find your answers; picking the brain of your frenemy may be your best bet.
Put the Person on Blast
Folks, I’m not a bitter person. Sure I get upset, but luckily I have thick skin, which also allows for negativity to roll right off. See, grudges are not my thing. However, understand I don’t like being a welcome mat that gets walked over either, so if someone wrongs me, I’m not going to walk away so quietly. With that, a proper person can walk away and doesn’t stick around for the back and forth, but does say their piece.
I think about that when dealing with love triangles since I can only imagine (and your emails back up my theory) that keeping quiet is rather difficult. However, one of the best ways to get back at a person who wrongs you is to be honest about who they are if someone else asks. For example, if you have a terrible boss and someone asks what it’s like to work for that person, you have the right to be honest. You owe it to that person and to your professional integrity. After all, why let someone go down a bumpy road that left you with bad memories?
When it comes to a love triangle, you can’t let the ex get away with it. Chances are they will be a repeat crappy dater. Knowing that, and not wanting others to go down that path, I recommend putting them on blast … properly that is. To blast someone properly, you can’t hit the social networks and paint the town with your negative feelings about them. No, that would make you look terrible. Instead, when someone asks you why you broke up, don’t hide what happened. Or if you do happen to encounter someone who is dating them, and they ask you about it, it’s your duty to be honest and save them. Again, don’t be childish, just be be honest.