What Is a Side Chick and Are You One?


Key Points

  • The term "side chick" came from hip-hop culture and refers to the woman someone is cheating with or keeping as a secondary option.

  • Check out seven crucial signs that likely mean you're a side chick.

  • Many people get hurt when someone cheats.

Call it fate or call it biology: There are certain reasons you vibe with some people and not with others. And in the quest to find true love, you may fall for someone unavailable — someone who is already in a relationship but who is kinda, sorta into you, too.

If you're a woman in this scenario who's pursuing the person already coupled up, you may become the "side chick" if you get too intimate with your crush.

The term “side chick” became popular via hip-hop in the early 2000s. A side chick is a somewhat misogynistic term for a woman that a man or other woman dates on the side. She’s not the “main chick,” but something on the side — like fries or onion rings.

Charming to be compared to food items, right?

A side chick isn’t something most women want to be. But unfortunately, you might be one without your knowledge. What exactly does it mean to be a side chick, and how can you tell if you are one? Keep reading to find out.couple walking with third woman behind them

What Is a Side Chick?

A side chick is a woman who someone cheats on their primary partner with. “Side chick” is another way to describe a mistress or “the other woman.” Relationships are complicated, and people cheat for various reasons. Selterman et. al found that there are eight primary reasons for people's cheating: "anger, self-esteem, lack of love, low commitment, need for variety, neglect, sexual desire, and situation or circumstance."

Despite the reason, the cheater feels something is lacking in their relationship. Maybe their needs are not being met emotionally or sexually. Perhaps they’re upset with their partner and looking to hurt them. Or maybe they’re just bored with their relationship and looking for some fun. In any case, cheating is never okay.

Infidelity hurts everyone involved — not just the person being cheated on. Often "the other woman” is unaware she is the other woman. Finding out your so-called “new love” has a significant other can feel like you've been cheated on too.

But how can you tell if you’re a side chick?

You're probably right if you think you might be a side chick. When something feels off, or you have a gut feeling that something’s wrong, you're probably right. Gut feelings are almost always right; it’s one of human's best natural defense mechanisms. If you feel something about your relationship is not quite aligning, it could be because you’re a side chick.

Seven Signs You Might Be a Side Chick

If you suspect your boo might not be totally honest with you, consider the following seven signs you might be a side chick and why you should reconsider your relationship.

1. Your Relationship Is Mostly Physical

A person sleeping around on their partner is not looking for an intense romantic connection. They're seeking a distraction, better sex, or an ego boost. They don't care about you or your feelings if you're a side chick. They don't want to get involved with you beyond physical intimacy.

The cheater avoids other forms of intimacy at all costs, meaning no cuddling or pillow talk. If you notice that your relationship is mostly physical, it could be because you’re the side chick. If they avoid staying over after sex, are overly physical with you (e.g., they prefer making out or sex to conversations or actual dates), or rarely suggest more than “Netflix and chill,” you’re probably the side chick.

Someone who wants a real relationship wants more than sex. They are interested in spending time with you regardless of what you’re doing together. They want to get to know you on a deeper level.

2. You Don’t See Them Very Often

A person juggling a significant other and a side chick only has so much time during their day. You could be the side chick if you’re dating someone but only see them occasionally.

When you're seriously interested in someone, you make time to see them no matter how busy you are. If your new lover constantly concocts excuses for infrequent dates, they may be lying to you. People have busy schedules, and sometimes things come up unexpectedly. But if canceled plans or infrequent dates are a continuous pattern, you’re probably the side chick.

Cheaters trying to keep their side chick a secret from their full-time partner can’t randomly disappear. They must maintain the facade that they are loyal and must ensure they fulfill typical partner duties before running off with a side chick.

The side chick will always come second to the primary partner. If your lover is challenging to schedule dates with, it’s not because they're playing hard to get. They juggle kids' birthday parties, anniversary dates, and family obligations. Their partner and family will always come first, so you’ll always be last.

3. They're Difficult To Get a Hold Of

Does your new bae disappear after you’ve just seen or been talking to them? Maybe you go through a period of talking to them every day, and then suddenly, they ignore your messages for a week. Or maybe they only respond to you late at night or during certain times of the day. They claim it’s because of work or social obligations, or maybe they're not good at checking their phone.

It’s a lie.

Everyone has their cell phone at every point in the day. If they are not responding to your call or text, they don't want to. They're likely with their main chick, so they will not respond. They don't want to make her suspicious.

And, of course, there is always the possibility they're dating multiple other people at the same time. They may have their main girlfriend and one, two, or even three other side chicks. The possibility of this is even greater if you met them on a dating site. A 2015 study of 47,000 participants — still cited in 2023 data — found that roughly 30% of people on dating apps are married, and another 12% claim to already be in a relationship. There are even dating apps specifically designed for married people.

This is your cue to really dig into the relationship status of your lover. And even if they're single, infrequent communication is a sign they're not serious about you. You will always be a side chick; don’t expect anything more from people like this.person using cellphone

4. They Don't Go Out of Their Way To Please You

When people are truly in love, they go above and beyond to please each other. If they want to keep you by their side, going out of their way to make you happy ensures you don’t run off with someone else.

The effort won't be there if a person doesn’t feel for you. When you’re the side chick, romantic gestures such as bringing you flowers, offering to help you with a task, or sending you cute texts throughout the day will be few and far between — if they happen at all.

A lover will never go out of their way to please a side chick because they don't truly care for her. There may be signs of affection at the outset of the fling, but these are merely to seduce you and will quickly drop off once the cheater feels comfortable that you're in their bed for good.

Cheaters are not interested in pleasing a side chick because they care little about whether you stay or go. They may put up a little bit of a fight if you call them out on their bad behavior, but this is solely to keep you happy so you continue sleeping with them or feeding their ego in whatever way they need.

If they start treating a side chick like a main chick, there’s a greater chance you’ll catch feelings. And a messy situation is not something they want to deal with.

5. Your Relationship Lacks Emotional Intimacy

Emotional intimacy is an essential part of every healthy relationship. The basic progression of any romantic relationship should always eventually include a deeper emotional bond. Every relationship is different, and some people prefer to take things slow. But if you've been dating for a while, there should be a natural progression in your feelings.

You may be a side chick if there’s not and forward momentum. Does your boo change the subject if you bring up the topic of your relationship status? Have you tried but failed to get him to talk about anything touchy-feely? Does sex lack emotional warmth?

You're likely a side chick if you answered "yes" to any of these questions. When people are in love, they crave both physical and emotional intimacy. It might be hard to keep your hands off each other's bodies, but there should also be a delving into one another's minds. Humans are social animals who seek close bonds with others. You may be a side chick if your partner doesn't ask you about your goals and aspirations or shuts down when you inquire about theirs.

couple facing away from each other

6. You Haven’t Met Their Friends

Being in a relationship with someone means being involved in every part of their life. If they're serious about you, they will want you to be around for all of it. That means that at some point, they'll want to introduce you to friends and family.

Unless you’re the side chick, a person in love wants to show you off to everyone they know. So, if you’ve been dating for a while and have not met any of their friends, you could be a side chick. For obvious reasons, an unfaithful person won't want to introduce their side chick to close people. They don't want to risk their primary partner finding out.

Likely, something is up if bae acts strange whenever you discuss meeting their friends, co-workers, or family. They'll likely have every excuse in the book for why now is not a good time. They may even become angry with you for bugging them about it. These are all signs that something is amiss. When they don't want to make you part of their life but are fine using your body, you’re the side chick.

7. They Won’t Let You Near Their Social Media

Social media is a part of most people’s lives. Almost everyone has at least one social media account: Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, or LinkedIn. Social media allows people to share their lives and connect with others. Connecting on social media with the person you’re dating is normal. It’s another way to be a part of their life and communicate with them.

Most people have no problem sharing their social media profiles with someone they’re dating unless they’re hiding something. You might be the side chick if you’ve been dating someone for a while but have yet to gain access to their social media. What else makes sense for why they won’t accept your follow/connect request?

You’re the side chick, and they don’t want you finding out about it. Alternatively, worse, you may expose them to their main chick. If you see their social media profiles, you see their real life. You’ll find pictures of their friends, family, and their partner. Keeping you out of the loop keeps you in the dark about what they’re up to when they cancel your plans for the 100th time.

You're a side chick if a partner goes out of his way to keep you off their social media.couple lying in bed while man on phone

What Do You Do if You're a Side Chick?

If you’ve experienced any of the above situations with the person you’re dating, you’re likely a side chick. Dating in the modern day is tough. Social media and dating apps have complicated the dating process. There's an endless supply of dates at your fingertips. Your next new hookup is only one swipe away. And that’s great for you when you’re the one doing the swiping.Couple sitting while man holding another womans hand behind her back

But dating apps go both ways. It’s just as easy for the other person to replace you as it is for you to replace them. So when you finally meet someone you think might be the real deal, it isn’t easy to give up on them. You want it to work out so badly that you will ignore red flags and mistreatment.

But if you find out you’re a side chick, it’s not just your feelings involved. You may try to make excuses for your new boo's behavior. They may tell you that their partner is a terrible human being or that you are the one who is saving them from sadness. But at the end of the day, what they are doing is wrong. And if you’re aware of your side chick status, continuing the relationship is wrong of you, too.

Side Chicks Rarely Become Main Chicks

Monmouth University psychology professor Gary W. Lewandowski, Jr. claims, "Rarely [does] infidelity lead to a real relationship." If you find out you’re a side chick, end the relationship. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you are unique. Occasionally, people leave their primary partners for their side chick, but that’s not usually the case.

Most people who cheat on their significant other never intend to leave them. If they did, they would have already done it. You can continue your relationship with your fling, hoping they will eventually fall for you and leave their partner.

But don’t get your hopes up. You will only be setting yourself up for more heartbreak and disappointment. Plus, if they cheat on their partner with you, what makes you think they will be faithful when you’re with them?

Never Settle for Being a Side Chick

Dating is tough, but if you're interested in monogamy, you owe it to yourself to find someone interested in you and only you. You will never get the love and attention you deserve as a side chick.

Confront your partner's bad behavior and tell them you won’t be their little secret. Whether or not they have a significant other, you deserve better. An honest, loving partner will make you their world — not their side piece.

Never settle for less than what you are worth, and never settle for being a side chick.

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