Sofiia Karkadym made headlines over the weekend for being at the centre of a "bitter love triangle" – but there's one thing the internet got wrong with her story.
The 22-year-old went viral when it was revealed father-of-two Tony Garnett had left his partner for her 10 days after she came to live with the family to escape the war in Ukraine.
Ms Karkadym was instantly branded a "homewrecker" – even though, as University of Melbourne social scientist Associate Professor Lauren Rosewarne told news.com.au, she wasn't the one with the home to wreck.
"I never thought or planned to go into their home and take Tony from Lorna. That never crossed my mind," Ms Karkadym, who maintained nothing happened between the pair until they'd left the family home, told The Sun of the vitriol she'd faced.
"As far as I'm concerned, they destroyed their relationship long before I arrived. Their relationship was at fault. None of this is my work. It was my decision to leave when I did and Tony decided to come with me."
She added that her own relatives told her she'd put other UK families off hosting Ukrainian refugees.
"My parents said they were ashamed and cannot go outside because of me. They say that because of me nobody in the UK will take in Ukrainians. Every UK family will now think, 'I can't take in a refugee because she will take my husband from me,'" Ms Karkadym said.
"It's more than about me, Tony and Lorna. It's deeper. It's about everything, about the war, refugees, helping people, everything. In my country, it is important for refugees to get the help they need and this has done the opposite.
"You cannot understand what I feel. It's your country, you have your family here, you have everything here. And now I have people writing to me saying I'm a horrible person, that I did a bad thing for my country. Everyone in the UK is thinking the same thing because I 'took' [the] man from the family – but all of this is lies."
if the man is married and he has an affair, he has wrecked his home".
Asked why the blame falls on the so-called "other woman" when a man has an affair, Dr Rosewarne said it's "because women are expected to be able to temper their libidos in ways that our culture pretends men can't".
"Women have also long been tasked with [the] duty of sexual gatekeeping – that they are somehow not only responsible for their own desires, but also for men's too; that somehow the duty is on them not to tempt men," she said.
"Obviously these ideas are underpinned by antiquated gendered stereotypes that many people still clutch to."
Dr Rosewarne added that "if the man is married and he has an affair, he has wrecked his home".
"Blaming the other woman just allows us to frame the man as some kind of hapless victim to his penis, rather than an adult who made his own decisions," she said.
In a piece for Time, Los Angeles-based relationship psychologist Brandy Engler noted that society's tendency to blame the person who your partner has cheated with (rather than your partner) can be because "it's easier to turn to rage and a desire to attack another person than it is to deal with shame".
"Our minds create this monolithic idea of her as a terrible person. As for the man who cheated, the betrayed woman likely still loves him," she said.
because women are expected to be able to temper their libidos in ways that our culture pretends men can't".
"Also, if the public narrative is to put the burden of blame on men, that would make us feel hopeless and sad about men. But if we can villainise one woman, we still have reason to hope – and it provides a collective discharge of angst about our fears of betrayal.
"Women have historically been a target for social anxieties, by the way – think witch burning, stoning, etc.
"To be clear, the person who breaks a vow or a promise is the guilty party."
In order to combat the "homewrecker" narrative, Dr Rosewarne said we need to recognise "that we might like the rhetoric of the idea of men being governed by their penises, but in reality they are adults who can and do make decisions on their own all the time".
"To pretend they are inadvertent victims of a temptress," she said, "sounds rather biblical, fanciful and incredibly sexist."