A love triangle can be fun or can be tough – depending on where you sit in it. But even if you enjoy it, there’s a high chance it’s still not that easy for you to handle.
If that’s your case, follow this reading to explore your options, engage in some serious self-analysis, and make some relationship decisions. You can master your love triangle – or find the strength to go in a different direction if you feel trapped in it.
Every triangle has three points. One point is a person who is in various stages of involvement with two others. The other two points are those who are in a competitive relationship with each other, whether they know it or not. Both are vying for the affections and love of the same person.
Love triangles can look cool when we see them in the movie world. But in real life, it’s a sticky and serious matter, with so many contradictory feelings and drama involved. In the end, it’s not a fantasy: we are talking about relationships and people’s hearts here. That’s why a love triangle relationship is so hard to navigate that it’s hard to make this experience positive for everybody within it.
Based on the prevailing emotion in your love triangle, there are 3 basic types of this relationship: rivalrous, confused, and multiple. Let’s not guess what is what, but explore them all below.
In this love triangle type, two people are competing for the love and affection of a third individual. Each of them may not know about the existence of a third party, and this person prefers to wait and remains indecisive, which makes the situation even more dramatic.
One example of this is affairs. These can go on for short periods or years, and this third person has no intention of changing their behaviors. If they get caught, a person may manipulate their primary relationship by insisting the behavior is all in the past and will never happen again. This is not being honest. Finally, the injured individual will have to make a decision – living a life accepting the bad behavior or leaving.
In the case of the split object love triangle, two people are in a solid, monogamous relationship – until one of these partners meets and develops feelings for a third party. And so, they may begin dating this other person to see where things may go in this new relationship. The choice to explore other options can be honest – or it can cause a difficult time for others and become cheating.
There is nothing wrong with a split-object love triangle as long as two people are honest with their primary mate. Making the time not that difficult might be in the form of, “I think we need to start seeing others” or “I know my choice can cause you suffering, but I want to be honest with you.” Yes, it’s painful, but it’s the right thing to do.
Remember, there are three people with their feelings and relationship ideals here, and two of them aren’t yours. Don’t be selfish – there are some others to consider in the world.
Related reading: ENM Relationship: What Is Ethical Non-Monogamy?
The multiple love triangle involves more than three people, which makes it even more complicated to remain ethical. Most likely, dating multiple others requires lying and manipulating them into competing for love and affection.
Dating so many people is not healthy dynamics because it’s hard to focus on anybody, meet their requests, and find an adequate response after dedicating enough quality time to each person.
If you don’t like being in a love triangle but cannot get out of it, it’s worth coming back to the basics – and understading why this situation happened to you. For your assistance, we’ve created this list of most frequent reasons for a love triangle relationship:
Related reading: How to Build Trust in a Relationship: 15 Tips
As you can see in the list of reasons above, not all love triangle situations are monstrous. Sometimes, people just mutually agree to explore others to have a more fulfilling life. This way, they arrange a love triangle as a compromise that works for all the people participating in it.
But remember: it means something bad if that dating and sexual adventure comes without notice. Here, all the confusion, suffering, and even world wars happen.
If you are the one who is going outside of your partnership for love, romance, and sex, it’s important to recognize your responsibility for the events to meet your partner halfway and develop a dig. Here are some considerations for you in this regard.
Related reading: What a Fear of Commitment Does to Your Relationship
A “crush” on someone is not a triangle unless the actual dating occurs. You should recognize this truth to hold responsibility for what you’ve done – and not blame yourself for what you’re not responsible for.
Longing for someone and thinking about dating and an affair with them but not acting upon that longing is not a triangle – it is unrequited love. So don’t call yourself a bad person with bad thoughts and feelings – we’re talking about actions – and actions only.
Your actions can hurt more than one person. If you are the perpetrator of a triangle, your world could be pretty amazing, and even an adrenaline rush from the excitement. But events have a way of happening, and now you realize how much hurt you’ve caused.
Don’t lock yourself from their pain – be present. That’s part of your responsibility – and a very important thing for their healing. If you’re not there, it will take much longer for them to cure from the wound you’ve caused.
Being loved by several people at once satisfies a selfish need or desire of us. If you are the outside person, you are willingly risking the breakup of a partnership. In both of these cases, it doesn’t matter what happens as long as your desires are met, and that’s selfishness.
Switch off that selfish need and try to look at things from a different perspective. Was the triangle pleasant for other people around you? Or are you the only one who benefited from it? Feel the difference by walking in their shoes.
Remember: you cannot change the past – but you can change the course of events in the future.
Once you’ve identified your role and feelings about a love triangle, along with reasons and responsbility behind it, you are ready to act upon it. Here are some considerations to help you navigate such relationships – now and forever.
If you keep two or more on a string, you have to think about your reasons. And there may be several. So be honest now: is there a positive answer to any of these questions:
If you still recognize yourself in some questions from the list above and it causes you confusion, you’ll need to see a therapist for more stable progress.
Related reading: Loving More Than One – Is It Possible?
You’re not a bad person for getting hooked up with two or more others as long as your motives are not those listed above. This is not a game you are playing for control. You may alternate among guilt, confusion, pressure, and more.
If you are the “victim” of an unfaithful lover or spouse, you will experience a range of emotions – sadness, despair, anger, and more. Embrace those feelings and keep talking to yourself so you can get them out and analyze them.
One thing you have total control of is taking action when in a love triangle. If you are honest with yourself, you should now understand that they cannot last indefinitely. Unknowing participants will find out; knowing participants will tire or demand that their partner or the object of their love make a choice, or they will leave.
You can stay in a love triangle, even while it fizzles, or even enter a new one. Just remember, the prospects for your future romantic satisfaction will be slim. Relationships are funny that way – if you are looking for permanent love, this is not the answer for all of the reasons already listed.
If you are in a love triangle with two competitors, who do you have a better connection with? Who do you trust to care for your heart more? Who seems to understand you better? It may be difficult, but choose that person and move forward with them. You’ll break a heart, but they’ll still be standing.
If you have been cheated on while you have remained doggedly faithful, you have been betrayed. Analyze how you feel about that. Will you be able to trust again? And especially if they have cheated more than once, is this a pattern? Remember, you have a right to a stable, loving, and loyal mate. As difficult as it may be, and though it will bring you pain in the short term, you may have to end it and move on. there will be a future for you – go find it.
A love triangle is messy, and unless all parties agree to this relationship, it will usually not end well. Before you get into such a situation, think long and hard about the possible consequences for all three of you. Feelings and emotional well-being are at stake.
Here are some final tips for you to support you on the way out of:
We’re a dating app, but if you’ve just left a love triangle relationship, our best recommendation is not to jump into dating immediately. Remember that a love triangle is a complicated relationship with lots of feelings and emotions. Every person who has ever been in one can attest to this reality. If you are now a single one after a love triangle, you are probably experiencing some pain, including feelings of betrayal and loneliness. You are vulnerable for new experiences.
If you begin dating now, you may easily jump into the first relationship that comes along – it’s called a rebound relationship, and it usually doesn’t last long-term. You are setting yourself up for all of those painful feelings you’ve been trying to recover from. It’s important that you take time to heal.