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A side piece is a person someone in a long-term relationship has a physical relationship with. Usually the term side piece denotes females, but some women use the term side piece to describe men they have similar physical relationships with.
The term side piece makes clear that the lover is seen on the side, outside of the main relationship. Piece here is a shortening of the slang term for a woman, “piece of ass.”
When it is applied to women, side piece is a more colloquial term for the word mistress.
The relationship between a man and his side piece is strictly sexual. He does not have emotional feelings for her and in most cases doesn’t even date her, preferring instead to meet up simply for sex. He may cancel plans or make them at the last minute to fit in with his main relationship. A man and his side piece don’t discuss his other relationship, and often won’t talk about any part of their personal lives. Despite this emotional distance, a side piece isn’t a one-night stand. Instead, a side piece carries on a relationship with an attached man for an extended period. A cheating partner may have just one side piece or many side pieces.
Without an emotional connection, a side piece can be any fantasy a man wishes. Since he doesn’t need to deal with her problems or the mundane realities of her life, it’s easy to see her as the perfect woman. Keeping a side piece is easier than sustaining an emotional relationship, as both parties have no obligations or responsibilities to one another. Some men may want to leave their main relationships for their side pieces, who seem much easier to be involved with.
A man should make it clear to a female that she is a side piece. While some women will happily accept a physical relationship without strings, this kind of arrangement can be difficult for others. If the ground rules are not made clear from the start, she may become emotionally invested and make his life more complicated. For example, she may tell the man’s partner about the affair.