Heartbreak

11 Subtle Signs He's Downgraded You To Side Chick

Photo: Felix Mizioznikov / Shutterstock
woman looking frustrated putting her hand through her hair

Modern dating feels more difficult than ever. As if navigating dating apps and dealing with ghosting isn't enough, many of us are having to learn that we've become a side chick.

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Also known as a mistress, side piece, or the other woman, the role of a side chick is to do all the things a girlfriend might do — but secretly, and without much emotional commitment.

How do you know if you are the side chick?

Perhaps the worst part about becoming a side chick is not even realizing that it's happening.

Whether you were in a committed relationship with him before and you're realizing the dynamic between you is changing or you're wondering if maybe you're actually the other woman, here's what to look for.

Here are 11 subtle signs he's downgraded you to side chick:

1. He seems colder than you

Is his overall demeanor one where he no longer seems to be as interested as he once was? If you notice an overall “chilly” vibe from him, chances are that he may be checked out of the relationship. Guys who have downgraded their girls often will seem slightly more disinterested and may also be less interested in actually keeping you happy.

2. You’re no longer his top priority

If he’s looking to downgrade you or dump you, he’ll stop making you his number one priority. Rather than just be around when you need him, he’ll start to tell you that he needs more “friends” time or that he’s just “busy.” The less effort he’s putting in, the more likely it is that he’s downgraded you.

3. You begin to feel the need to work twice as hard to keep him around

This is just one of the common signs you're the side chick. If you regularly feel like you have to up your game just to keep him, chances are high that he’s either checked out, cheating, or planning to leave.

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4. You’re disappearing from his social media

Is he now all of a sudden super-low key about your relationship with him? Is he just “in a relationship,” but it no longer says your name? Sorry honey, but this is a sign that he’s really trying to hide the fact that he’s taken from someone. It’s also a very strong sign that he’s trying to gear up for a more or less drama-free breakup.

5. His friends haven’t seen you in a while

This is a big red flag if you used to hang out with his friends a lot.

When a guy is cheating on his girlfriend or preparing to cheat, he will often try to separate his girls from his friends as a way of reducing social damage and drama. This is also a tactic that guys use when they are worried that their friends could want to warn the girl about his actions.

6. You stopped seeing his parents

When a guy is serious about his girl, he’ll introduce her to his parents and his friends and flaunt them. When he’s decided that she is no longer “main chick” material, all those people will slowly fade out.

7. You’ve caught him on a dating app

No, he wasn’t there looking for new friends. You know what he was there for. Stop deluding yourself. At best, he’s cheating. At worst, he’s looking for a new main chick.

8. Other girls have called you a homewrecker

Warning sign? More like a red alert! If you’re noticing that people are starting to act like you’re doing something terrible when you mention dating him, there’s a problem. The problem is that they know he’s dating someone else and that you are now the other woman.

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9. He's hiding his phone from you

Maybe he'll leave his phone out, but turned off notifications so nothing pops up on the screen. Or he changed his passcode and won't tell you what it is. But when you confront him about it, he gaslights you and brushes aside your complaints like it’s nothing, but still gets defensive.

This is often a sign that he’s trying to chat up another woman because he’s ready to switch relationships. Or, it’s a sign that he’s cheating. Either way, it’s not a good sign for your situation.

10. He stopped sharing his day-to-day details with you

You can often tell how close you are to your partner by how much they share with you. If he used to talk your ear off when it came to everything he's done, but now he's starting to keep his lips sealed, it could be a sign that he's gabbing to someone else. 

11. He’s been bailing on plans more and more often

If he bails on you regularly, the writing is on the wall. The fact is that a guy who bails on plans with you doesn’t deserve you and isn’t even empathetic enough to actually maintain appearances about it. 

What to do if you're the side chick

Finding out you're the side chick is painful. Not only has the girl code been breached, but now you're dealing with heartbreak as well. No one wants to feel like they're not a priority, and they deserve better.

If you've become the side chick without your consent, the first thing you have to do is determine whether or not you really want to be with him. At this point, he's been caught cheating — while relationships can rebound from infidelity, is it a dealbreaker for you? 

Let him know you know what's going on and show him the receipts. See how he reacts and stand your ground. 

Ultimately, it's your relationship and your choice, but the person you should always put first is yourself.

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Ossiana Tepfenhart is a writer whose work has been featured in Yahoo, BRIDES, Your Daily Dish, Newtheory Magazine, and others.

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