Back-up partner, standby lover, spare-tire lover they are called by many names, depending upon the level of justification and situation.

Several surveys and studies have predicted that nearly half of the women already have their backup partner in their mind, while in a relationship/marriage, just in case, the things turn sour.

There could be many reasons, issues, complications for having a backup partner. We tried to narrow down some specifics here. Survey links, References are in the bottom section, feel free to explore it.

Why do people need Backup partners?

Here are some of the reasons why people get inclined towards a backup partner:

You can be “YOU” in front of them.
It’s very hard to be your own self, especially when you are in a relationship. We all have a feeling that we will be judged, so we put up a mask and behave, talk and be the way, how people want us to be. The original “ME” gets lost somewhere in between. However, when you are with this person, you can be your own self without getting judged. You can laugh like a crazy kid, mannerless like a normal human being, without getting a 5-minute sarcastic class on manners.

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The bond you guys have is rock-solid.
We often come across a relationship or maybe we have been in such a relationship, which lacks a good bond. It escalates further to a relationship problem, and eventually leads to bigger fights, blocks in social media accounts and involved in public arguments. But when you are with a person, whom you share a solid bond, can be very satisfying, which gives a sense of completion. You feel like s/he is the person, whom you were looking from a very long time.

They have gained your trust completely.
We all been in thin and thick situations. There are very few people who stick to us during each and every situation. But s/he was with us in all the situations, so they are one of the rarest people whom we trust in our life. This person is one of those, who has your trust completely. However, your partner is not able to gain your trust completely. This is where a vacuum is created, and the backup scenario comes into the picture.

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Compatibility is super awesome.
Compatibility is one of the important factors in a successful relationship, but we see a number of times, the compatibility is not that great which starts the gap in the relationship. It generally starts with keeping secrets and then it goes towards more complex issues in the relationships. But the compatibility with this person is very good and you can be with him for your whole life. Somewhere back in your mind, the person is already your partner.

The connection between you guys is real.
We see people show off their false bonds and moments of having fun, especially on Instagram. Everyone knows, how much is real over there; but what you guys share is real. A real connection. In your current marriage/relationship, the magic, the spark is not present (or it was never there). However, with this person, you have a perfect connection and the friendship is just on point. You feel like, you don’t need anyone/anything else in your life if you have this person as a treasure.

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They take out the best in you.
You are always ready for any challenge which life puts forward with this person. You are very confident that with this person you will be able to achieve anything you want. That’s what is exactly missing in your relationship. Your present relationship lacks the motivation, the encouragement that a person looks for in a relationship.

It feels easy and effortless to be comfortable around them.
You don’t have to care how you look, you don’t have to care if your dress is at the proper place or neckline is appropriately visible or needs to be adjusted. You can laugh, play around freely, do whatever your heart wants, without getting judged. Whereas in your relationship/marriage, you must act decently even though, you aren’t exactly like that from the heart. You get the same feeling as you’re home and you don’t need to do any extra effort to be with them.

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To conclude the post,
I don’t think so, read any post/article will make you change any decision, but at least you should know the consequences for having such a partner. There could be two scenarios for any such situations:

Your current boyfriend/husband is working for the betterment of you and the family and if you are not able to contribute, please don’t create unnecessary competition and war for your partner to win. Life is hard anyway, let’s not make it harder.

On the other hand, if you are really in love with the backup partner or things went beyond, go ahead and discuss it with your partner, it will save both time and energy. You can’t live with someone you aren’t happy with. Mentally and psychologically you will not be able to take it for long, which may result in further psychological issues.

Wishing you all the very best in your relationship. Have a nice day.

Paulhus, D. L., & Williams, K. M. (2002). The Dark Triad of personality: Narcissism, Machiavellianism, and psychopathy. Journal of Research in Personality, 36(6), 556.

Wedberg, N. A. (2016). Partner Insurance: Women May Have a Backup Partner as a Mating Strategy. A thesis submitted in partial completion of the MA degree in psychology, the State University of New York at New Paltz.