Stay in Touch

Check out CL's Book

Dear Chump Lady, He was my *best friend* — Now what?

Dear Chump Lady,

I recently found out that my boyfriend of years, who I lived with, cheated on me with his friend’s ex-girlfriend.

One day after a fight with him, I open my computer and noticed that he was still signed into his facebook account. Already mad and suspicious of cheating, I go looking for messages from a specific girl and sure enough, the proof is there in black and white. I truly can’t describe to you the flood of emotions I felt. I immediately grabbed one of his things and started bashing it to pieces. I must have blacked out for a moment because next thing I knew, my hands were raw and bleeding.

I kicked him out that night, but continued a heated back and forth of trying to get him admit to it. I already had the undeniable proof, so his continued lying felt like little jabs to an already gushing wound.

One of the major blows from all this is that I really didn’t see it coming. He was the most loving and caring boyfriend I ever had and I always thought he cared a little bit more for me than I did for him. So when I found this out, I was in an elevated level of shock and disbelief. I’m having a harder time losing my best friend and accepting that he wasn’t the person I truly thought he was. Sometimes when he’s contacting me and professing his love and regret, I feel like I’m punishing myself more by not just giving in to him to ease my pain. “Because after all I hurt so bad because I wanted to be with him right? So why not just stop being stubborn and be with him?” I know that’s bullshit, but sometime I think that maybe it’d be easier and less painful to keep him in my life as a friend to avoid the shock of losing all contact.

I’m pretty sure that all I can do is bite the bullet and hurt a lot for a really long time, but do you have any advice for when my emotions turn from anger and disgust to nostalgia and longing?


Dear JMR,

Sweetie, “anger and disgust” are your friends right now. The fact that you feel fury and disgust are indications that big warning signals are going off, trying to protect your well-being. LISTEN to yourself. Nostalgia and longing, on the other hand, are the bargaining stage of grief, as is thinking you could keep him as a friend. Anger and bargaining/denial are duking it out right now. You’re at war with yourself. I get it.

Look, cheating on you is either a deal breaker, or it’s not. I’m pretty clear here at Chump Lady which side of the fence I fall on — it’s a deal breaker. You sound young. You’re not married to him, thank goodness. That means you don’t have a lot to lose if you walk away from this investment. Yes you have shared history of some years together, you lived together, you considered him your “best friend,” but you do not have the harder ties of adult life like children, a mortgage, aging in-laws. If you had those things, I would still shout LEAVE! But I’m just trying to point out to you, if you stay with guy who cheats on you, the sunk costs just get worse.

Oh, but he’s going to change. And he’s sorry.

He’s young. Maybe. But IMO it’s still a very bad risk. As I say here you can’t unring that bell, or unfuck that whore. He has cheated on you. And as long as you stay with him, you’d have to do the mental gymnastics every day to live with that reality — and trust me on this — that is its own kind of hell. Not trusting your “best friend.” Realizing that a guy who can appear so loving, is quite capable of stabbing you in the back. You’ve got everything to gain by leaving this guy, and not much to lose other than your hurt feelings and humiliation.

But you’re losing your “best friend.” No, you’re not. Best friends don’t do this, JMR. And going forward I want you to try and be more savvy and less chumpy. (We’ve all been there. You’re among chumps, here.) It stuck out to me that you wrote — you always thought he was a bit more in love with you than you were with him. To me that could mean, you guys weren’t a good match — things were a bit lopsided in terms of attraction or interest. In which case, yeah, maybe he started sniffing around. He’s still, however, at fault here because if that were the case, he should’ve spoken up and broken up, before he cheated. He didn’t do that. He’s gutless. Gutless people don’t make good partners.

Or he could’ve cheated to get your attention and change the power dynamic, so that you’re doing the humiliating dance of “pick me” — strike again! Idiots who want you to dance for them make bad partners. Another reason to dump him.

Lesson for you? If you find yourself in a relationship that feels lopsided and unreciprocated — this is not the relationship for you. Move on!

Another way I could read your line about him being a bit more in love with you than you were with him, is that he’s always been a fake. I would’ve said that about my serial cheating ex-husband before I discovered him cheating. Here’s a red flag I didn’t pick up on when I was dating him — he was rather over the top in his affections for me. He called me all. the. frigging. time. (Why? Now, I see it was to figure out my whereabouts and keep me on the hook, so he could eat cake.) I felt a bit bad at the time that my love for him wasn’t as exuberant as his love for me. Know why? Because normal people don’t go from zero to 60 in their affections. Healthy relationships take time to develop. If you read about narcissists, there is a term for this phenomenon called “love bombing.” It feels AWESOME. But so does cocaine, apparently. Both are artificial highs, addictive, and really, really bad for you. Love bombing is to ensure your buy in, so the narcissist can later abuse you.

If your boyfriend is one of these kind of creeps, he’s going to try to get you back on the hook after the break up with more love bombing. It felt so good, don’t you miss that? Thus the nostalgia and the longing. The rational part of your head is going to remember — no, he just cheated on me with Ms. Trampypants. The reptilian part of your addicted brain is going to chase that high.

If that rings true, JMR? Kick him like a drug. (Or just kick him. Sounds like he could use a swift kick.) Either way, kiddo, you need to end this. Good people are out there — hold out for one. You’ve got your whole life ahead of you, don’t waste it on this guy. ((Hugs))

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at Read more about submission guidelines.
  • You didn’t say how long you lived with him. Break ups are so hard but take his things send them to him via a mutual friend or post in mail. Take his name off the lease. Change the locks. Listen to “I will survive” at least once a day! Go no contact. You are young and there are lots of men out there. Concentrate on yourself be your own best friend.

  • As CL says, Grown-up love is conditional love.

    And that’s for a very good reason. Just jump ahead, past the youthful chumpiness, straight into older and wiser, “Well, THAT was a waste of my time.” Don’t wait until you are older and wrinklier and more complicated and tired to figure all this out.

    CL has given you very good advice. Ignore it at your own peril. Do the hard work now and you will not regret it later.

  • I can’t add much to CL’s incredible insight but JMR consider your body/brain’s reaction to finding out. Have you ever reacted to bad news like that before? You blacked out and woke up bleeding! This is not your run-of-the-mill bad news, ask anyone here. Don’t give anyone a second crack at causing you that kind of grief.

    • Not knowing what else you have for investments with this guy other than a bit of history and a shared home. You learned a valuable lesson in believing your gut instincts when you mentioned that you suspected his cheating earlier.

      Don’t give this guy a Second Chance. Find some else and give them a First Chance.

  • Chump Lady, as always, you’ve opened my eyes to another red flag that I totally missed. The over the top devotion and emotional attention. One time I was on a business trip to Washington, D.C. and he called at night when my day was over. His phone bill was $400 that month. He could not get enough of me. Flattering, yes, but I really was head over heels in love. An intellectual equal, we simply adored each other, from the beginning. It was not until 35 years later, that he needed a new playmate. While I relished in the wonders of our lives together, he just could not deal with my being ill. I got well, but it was not soon enough. In the short span of 3 years, he took it upon himself to cheat. I lost my husband, my lover and yes, the one I miss most of all…my best friend. It ain’t easy, bein’ easy, and I was, but I won’t ever be again.

    • Yoder, that was my situation too. I was very ill … still am … and my husband left when he decided that I couldn’t be “fixed.” But hey! He told me that he could still be my friend. I shot back, “How can you be my friend after what you’ve done to me as my husband?”

      • SoOverHim, in my situation I was Type II Diabetic and I beat it. He did not know HE created it. Stress Induced diabetes. Did not know there was such a thing. I am now better than I was before. It took three years to overcome it, but I did and it was not easy. On the other hand, he is now in ill health and as soon as he has recovered to a point that I can leave, I will do so. I have many things already packed and in storage. Skeleton list of clothes in the closet, etc. Can be out the “instant” it is feasible. Scary, but I can hardly wait. Excitement beginning to replace fear. It is all healthy, I think.

  • I was definitely love bombed, and I can see that STBX is love bombing the OW to lure her into marriage with him. That’s a huge red flag, though back when I was 19, I thought that it was terribly romantic… more like terribly over-the-top and borderline stalking.

    I tried breaking up with him long ago when we were only engaged (not for cheating, for something else), and I wish that I had stuck to my guns. The only thing I would have had to return to him (gladly!) was my engagement ring. We didn’t live together at that point, had no children, no other ties. I had my chance at a clean break, and I blew it.

    17 years and three children later, and although I love my kids, it sickens me to know that I’m trapped with him in my life for at least another 14 or so. JMR, get the heck out of there– please don’t entrap yourself with marriage, children, and shared financial assets. Make a clean break now so that you can move on with your life and share it with someone who is healthy, caring, and selfless.

    • “I was definitely love bombed, and I can see that STBX is love bombing the OW to lure her into marriage with him. That’s a huge red flag, though back when I was 19, I thought that it was terribly romantic… more like terribly over-the-top and borderline stalking.”

      I’m right there with you, MovingOn. The same thing happened to me, and at 19, too. I had no idea.

      STBX is doing the same thing to the OW, and he started when she was 19 as well…creepy.

      SOOOOOO glad I know better now! Better late than never.

      • I also met my ex at 19! I didn’t even get love bombed… mine never treated me super great to begin with. I told myself his cluelessness was endearing and “real”. Nope, it was just selfishness. And I was just a young dumb-ass. My ex never really was that “sparkly”… maybe that’s why I don’t think he’s a true NPD. Just an asshole.

        I worry that I could be susceptible to being love bombed now because I’ve never experienced it before and I could use some freaking wooing right now!

        • Yours was clueless, too? I swear there must be a basic cheater mold that all these cheaters are made from…

        • Dang it aE, I was thinking the same thing. I don’t know if women love bomb men but I think I would be putty in my current state. My intention is to wait 1 year before dating. We’ll see how that plays out in real life, but I hope it will help.

          • oh, I’ve waited my year. Just started dating. Luckily (or unluckily?) no love bombs yet.

            • Waited about a year as well. I’ve been on a few dates but it’s still very scary for me. There really are some nice people out there–and some weird ones. 🙂

              • Nord – so far mostly weird for me… even the ones that started out nice ended up turning weird in one way or another. Or I guess I could be the weird one 🙂 Think I’m gonna take an internet dating break. I think I’ve talked to every decent-seeming guy on there within a 50 mile radius who is willing to consider someone my age with kids. Don’t get me started on the dating double standards. I’ve got school starting and a couple other things going on to keep me entertained for at least a few months. Then maybe I’ll be back on again.

          • Dating. It must be surreal at first. I doubt any of us ever expected to be dating again. Well good luck and don’t settle for any weirdos or liars. We’ve all had enough of that.

      • Ex love bombed me as well and he did it to current OW, who was the same age I was when I met him. And that seems really creepy that so many of us have ex’s who have picked APs who are the same age we were when we met the assclowns.

        • Oh yeah! I thought it was just me. I remember meeting his one and only friend at the time who called him a “coy thing” because I was 23 and he was 30. Now a different friend called him a “fossily thing” because she is 23 and henis 50. All I see is a “thing”

  • You feel like you are losing your best friend, but are you? Imagine that he is a girl instead of a boy, let’s say your best girlfriend, and your girlfriend betrayed you in a similar manner. Would you be so quick to forgive?

    Please, please, listen to everyone who has posted. Leave him. If you stay, he will think, deep down, that you can tolerate being cheated on. Statistics shows this to be true. Most betrayed spouses who stay with their cheaters are cheated on again. Sometimes months later. Sometimes years later. The cheaters think to themselves, “Well, if you didn’t really mind, I’ll do it again!”

    My STBXH would consciously verbalize this mindset to me. I would tearfully ask him to stop some bad behavior (not cheating, but other bad stuff) and he would say to me “Well it can’t be that bad. You’re still with me, after all.” So he wouldn’t even make an effort to change. And why should he?

    Another thing: Before I was married to my cheater, I lamented all of years I put into the relationship. I didn’t want to give up on that. But now that I’m married and have two kids, I really REALLY wish I would have gotten out before I had life-long ties to him and his family. When I could have made a clean break. I greatly underestimated how much more difficult it gets when you are married with kids. People had given me advice on this, but it seemed vague to me. Please learn from my mistake (and other fellow chumps) and get out before your life gets much more complicated. The worst thing I regret is that my narc-cheating STBXH will always, always be around to influence (and hurt) my children. And my family, since their hearts are breaking over this, too.

    • Duck…

      I had that as well… not wanting to give up on the years you “put in”. I think it’s because before you have kids and you know your biological clock is ticking. And even though older people can tell you that you’re still young, you don’t feel young. After all, you’re always the oldest you’ve ever been. It’s all relative. And no matter your age, if you are truly committed to someone you can’t imagine not being with them.

      For me, for instance, my ex basically threatened to end our relationship if I wouldn’t move to this smallish town so that he could practice where he grew up. Because he’d already been offered the job there and he thought it was good, etc. He didn’t even look anywhere else, even though I asked him to. So, I “compromised”, he proposed, and I came here with him. Basically giving up my career prospects in the process (which is why it was a relatively easy decision for me to then leave the workforce when kids came along). I’m actually finding this weirdly humiliating to admit. But how old was I when this happened? 26. Young. Undeniably young to anyone who is at least 27 🙂 But I had already put 7 years into the relationship at that point and needed to move forward, have kids, etc. He was the only real relationship I had known and the only future I could envision was with him. I couldn’t let it end just for some stupid reason like where we lived, could I? Grrr, I’m mad at young me. But in that way, not being able to envision another future for myself, I felt the same then as I did when all this other shit came down 8 years later.

      We all know this shit sucks no matter what your age. And age shouldn’t really be a factor, it should be about how you deserve better, no matter what your age. You deserve true happiness and trust. But I, of course, totally agree with you that time is on her side and the fewer ties she has the easier it will be to move on.

  • JMR…. adopt a new mind set.
    He is not your “best friend” rather he is your “worst enmeny”!

  • I am so sorry you are going through this JMR, but I will echo, GET OUT while you can. I think back to the first time that my h revealed to me his true colors. I knew I should have broken up then, but I was lonely and vulnerable and I made excuses because I didn’t want to lose him. Yes, I had been love bombed and it was like a drug.
    Now years later, he has alienated me from all my old friends, and the “friends” I have now are mostly his friends. So losing him as a friend is that much worse.
    I clung to my anger to get through that phase. I chose my music to remind myself of why I was angry. I kept some of the texts to read when I need my anger. It’s wasn’t fun being angry all the time, but it kept me from relenting to his hoovering, so it served its purpose. It’s better to just get away and move on, but until then, stay strong.

  • I was also not married to the X – but, “love bomb” ing – yes, that’s exactly what it was. After all the lies and the “I still love you very very much” – I just couldn’t see how continuing to move forward would work….. the trust had been broken and there wasn’t any way to bring it back. It was like living in the twilight zone. Without that trust, you got nothing. Once its broken, its broken.

    I know its so painful but you have the opportunity to make a clean break – no kids, no marriage – get out now and go no contact. It hurts, I know it does – it’s withdrawal and it’s just really really hard. The best friend thing is so hard to lose – but like someone said above, if it was a girlfriend? You’d be long gone. Courage JMR – you can do this.

  • I’ve said this many times….. choose your pain….. or he will do it for you. That is just a really really bad idea.

  • Ah, withdrawal.

    Really, it kind of is. Breathe. Exercise. Join a book club. Join a wine club. Get.Out.There.

    Remember, by his twisted way of thinking, he’s the best choice you’ve got. *He* thinks so little of you that he’s convinced that a shit sandwich is better than starving.



    When you come out on the other side of the firewall~ when you realize (and trust me, when another man realizes) you are worth so much more than this, Lord Skankbottom will have moved onto the next Chump. Ex-Chumps just aren’t as much fun. He will leave you alone. It will be bliss.

    • ^^THIS^^.

      JMR – Do. Not. Prove. Him. Right.

      oh, and now he’s sorry and professing his love for you and how much he regrets what he did to you? CL had a great post back in May last year —

      “Let’s substitute cheating for “pushing you down a flight of stairs” and see if sounds less ridiculous.
      “I know I pushed you down a flight of stairs, honey, but all the time I was watching you flail about, hitting the landing, and breaking your collarbone – I was loving you. Really.”

      Yeah. You’re not buying that pile of crap, are you? And you said he cheated with HIS friend’s girlfriend? Not only is he a shitty friend to this poor guy, he’s an exceptionally shitty friend to you. This is NOT how we treat people that we love, care for, respect, honor — hell, I wouldn’t even push a complete stranger down the stairs, but that’s because I expect my actions to reflect upon my character and who I am.

      you are better than this, JMR. Much, MUCH better than this.

  • Sear JMR,
    So sorry for you, I know how much it hurts, I’m still feeling withdrawals a few months later, but less and less every day. Despite missing who I thought he WAS as soon as I had proof I had to admit to myself that person I loved is NOT who he IS.

    One thing that set off a red flag for me years ago was when he told me he had also slept with his best friends ex-girlfriend (years before we were together – smirking about it too). I couldn’t believe that his best friend wouldn’t care, that they would be so callous about sleeping with the same girl that his friend had been “serious” with. I mean maybe I’m wrong but to me that’s a total lack of respect for all involved and I’m not a prude – and he acted as if it were the most normal thing in the world, as if they had both gotten over on her. Which maybe they did. I hadn’t thought about that in a really long time, and I’m glad for the reminder.

    I hope you continue to come here for support, CL and Co. Are articulate, compassionate and here for you. And most importantly there are ALOT of years of experience that everyone generously shares. Oh and Laughs. I never thought I would laugh again but thanks to this site I have. I am very grateful we did not marry or have kids together. It’s bad enough as it is.

    Your hands must have scars, I would look at them when you need resolve…just imagine the ones on your heart…… ((((((((HUGS))))))))))). XO

    • My ex told me when we first met about a ‘mistake’ he had made – he slept with his friend’s girlfriend a few years earlier. Of course I was impressed with how honest he was being, admitting to doing that and didn’t see it for what it was: a sure sign that he lacked a decent character and had no integrity.

  • “Your hands must have scars, I would look at them when you need resolve…just imagine the ones on your heart…… ((((((((HUGS))))))))))).”


  • Oh Lord yes the ‘love bombing’. I should have known when my character began putting his hands on my shoulders, looking deeply into my eyes, and saying, “I would never do THAT to you!” (THAT, of course being the whoring and cheating that both of my b-i-l’s were up to. Well, this week’s fun revelation, in the never ending cycle of fun revelations (yes I am trying to move out, real estate moves slowly!) , is that he was JEALOUS when the cheating BILs talked about fucking their whores…never mind the crumpled heaps of SILs whose lives were destroyed…one of whom had been a second mother to him (that much older). Geeze.


    So there’s my chumplady question: how do you move past feeling crummy by being taken in for 25 years and counting? Just totally, utterly taken in by the lying and double lives? I mean, when they put their hands on your shoulders, look deeply into your eyes…and lie their heads off. For years. It’s hard not to feel like your own BS detector needs an adjustment (or maybe it’s just clogged?)

    • I’ve been married for 25 years too, to my predator. He’s not capable of looking deeply into my eyes, however. That truly sucks.

    • Oh I got that same thing, loving touch on the shoulders and looking into the eyes. How do they do that without bursting into flames?

  • I think that this is the most cunning and dangerous type of socio. He treats you like you walk on water to your face and then turns around and does whatever the hell he wants as if you don’t even exist, when you aren’t looking.

    He thinks that you’ll never find out. he really does! That is why he denies, denies, denies until the cows come home, because you are trying to be onto him and potentially spoiling his little nirvanic world here. He has the doting, (no doubt, drop dead gorgeous) loving girlfriend to come home to, and when she’s not home, (or he’s not home) plenty of delicious (pick your favorite flavor) cake… with extra frosting, (the really sticky gooey kind) and a dollop (or two) of fresh home-made whipped cream, just for good measure.


    One thing I will say is that IF you were friends– platonic friends, there would be no problem with him seeing other women in a romantic way. However, that is not the case, is it? He’s portending to be the love of your life! Its the betrayal of your trust and lies (even in the face of the blatant truth) that no true friend would ever do to you.

    He’s one sick cookie.

    The problem here is that this man CANNOT change. I don’t care how much he pleads, begs, promises, cajoles… on and on… he will not change. He cannot. You can’t put back something that isn’t there to begin with. Part of his brain (the part that controls empathy and love) IS NOT THERE. The fervent love that he vomits out of his lying mouth is an act that he’s perfected since childhood. Its not something he actually feels, because he is incapable of his.

    He will wait until the heat is off and then go back to his sexcapades, only this time he will be sneakier about it. He’ll keep a private PO Box… cell phones, on and on…

    The scariest aspect is that he may APPEAR to have changed. He will pull out all the stops to be the most doting attentive partner you could ever hope to have. I know someone like this and if I hadn’t witnessed it with my own eyes, I wouldn’t have believed it. In fact, the woman he betrayed (with half of the population of NYC) was not married but THEN, went on to marry this nefarious creature three years after her D-Day. As I have said before. Some people are masochists.

    Please protect yourself from this virulent predator. Protect your heart, your soul and get A-WAY from him. Who he really IS, is the dude who preys on women on fakebook. The other dude is a fraud– a con artist of the nth degree.


  • Once you go no contact (and it sounds like you should be able to go true no contact), I think you will be pleasantly surprised by how quickly you get over losing your “best friend.”

    He’s not there to suck you in, so the rose colored glasses come off, and you realize that he really wasn’t as great as you always made him out to be. Even besides the cheating, I bet he didn’t treat you right. This doesn’t happen out of nowhere, but we chumps are so great at spackling and adjusting to our new reality.

    You start to breathe easier, laugh more, and realize you haven’t been this happy in years. Getting away from walking on eggshells feels amazing, especially when you didn’t even realize that you were walking on any!

    Concrete suggestions? Figure out what works for you. For me, I reconnected with (real, true) friends and family. For several months, I made plans pretty much every evening because I didn’t want to be alone. I’ve always exercised a lot, but I took things up a few notches. I took up a couple of new hobbies and attacked a few others with gusto.

    I followed the “fake it until you make it” mantra, and I made it pretty quickly, considering we’d been together my entire adult life (13 years.)

    It is so much harder to get past this when you have permanent ties (i.e. kids) that pretty much require contact. You (and I) are lucky to have gotten out relatively unscathed. Please don’t give up this opportunity.

    Cheaters rarely rarely rarely stop at one. Change is so hard, even when you’re not personality disordered and entitled (just look at how many people have already abandoned their New Year’s resolutions.) It just breaks my heart to hear of people who could get out before kids who give their cheater another chance, believe he (or she) has changed, and then have kids, finding out about another D-Day a few years or decades later.

    If you leave him, you will find happiness. If you learn from this, spend some time figuring out who you are, watch for red flags, etc., you will find a real man who treats you properly. Please don’t settle for far, far, far less than you deserve!

    • Amy, I have been doing this “Fake it until I make it,” just to survive the business of getting a new book out and promoted. Here is what I have found, if I act cheery, in short order, I become cheery. It has been amazing and I didn’t know I was doing it. Really good advice. Thank you. It werks for me.

      • I remember reading once about some science behind it. If I remember correctly, just the act of smiling makes us feel better (releases endorphins?)

        I was the queen of faking it, until one day I realized my happiness was real and no longer faked.

        Good luck getting your book out and promoted! With your attitude, I’m sure it will do well!

        • I think people respond to you differently when you are cheerful and happy, and you actually influence THEM to be more cheerful and optimistic.

          It really does work.

          I also practiced dressing better–always hair and makeup done (I don’t do a lot, but better than nothing in my case) and chose the more feminine and flattering outfits from my existing wardrobe on purpose. Of course, the BD Diet is helpful for one’s self esteem, as well.

          Yes, fake it if you have to, and you’ll quickly realize you’re happy.

          Honestly, one day you won’t miss HIM. Get out there and don’t waste any more time on him, find your true love. New love can be SOOO exciting!

          • Today I cleaned up, make up and all, just to go to Walmart. The butcher said to his assistant, as I left the meat counter, “That’s a good lookin’ woman.” I laughed all the way home.

            • Ah, and that’s how it works.

              That lifted you. It will feed on itself.


              Another thing I do–well before BD, and it used to make xH grumpy–is spread good cheer. I smile, and speak kindly, give sincere compliments freely (boy, does that catch people off-guard, especially women), make people smile or laugh. Your expression goes a LONG way. Sadly, there aren’t enough really nice people in the world, and you will find that being kind is tremendously uplifting–very powerful. How nice to be a good person. It is so reassuring to know that you are VERY different from the skanky, nasty x and OP. You are classy! Prove yourself right.

              • I actuallly think there are loads of nice people in the world. I’ve discovered since dday that my negativity was actually just me taking on teh ex’s negativity about everything. He’s one of those who runs around saying ‘be positive!’ but who actually shreds other people behind their back and always acts like the world is out to get him.

                Here’s the thing: when you divest yourself of the asshat you will realise at some point that the pre-asshat you will come back. I feel it so strongly these days and people comment on it often. Suddenly I’m back to being this positive, happy, cheerful, funny person with loads of energy. I have my moments, mind you, of being grumpy and a pain in the ass but it’s no longer who I am a lot of the time. When you’re with someone who is treting you badly, whether you know it or not you’re reacting to it and the reaction is generally not nice.

                Dump the clown and go have a great life. One day you’ll look back and feel very relieved that you got away clean.

        • Amy, thank you so much. Someone just sent me something and I feel like I want to shout it from the roof tops. It is so simple. When we all have those terrible nights, or days, or are just trying to get through the next hour, think on this; “Don’t give up 15 minutes before a miracle.” We can all be a lot of things, but we should never be quitters. We may be chumps, but we are not quitters on ourselves, that title is for the cheaters.

  • Jmr

    he stabbed you in the back.

    hes not your friend.he never was.

    you thought he had every reason to believe he was your friend.

    hes not a friend hes a fiend

    hes a back stabbing loser

  • JMR, just keep reminding yourself that while very often in life, our feelings are a reflection of our reality, sometimes they’re NOT.

    You FEEL like he is or was your best friend, but he actually isn’t and wasn’t. I think your friends are better than that.

    You FEEL like you need him back, but you actually don’t, and getting him back would only bring much greater pain down the road.

    That way you can keep on dealing with your feelings of pain, anger, longing, sadness, grief, disappointment, fury … all those things so many of us have experienced and may still be dealing with, but still DO the right things to protect yourself and get away from this horrible person, and into a better life.

    As much as you can possibly manage, No Contact is the way to go. You’d be AMAZED how much better you feel when you don’t have to deal w/him at all. To me it has consistently made a world of difference. Then talk to your friends about what you’re feeling, bring those feelings here, write them down, sing them out, get yourself a good therapist if need be. The painful feelings will fade, gradually, fortunately. And you will have far better men in your life, and far better friends.

  • Man, I really had a hard time with the “losing my best friend” part. I was so sad that I even thought for awhile that maybe we could figure out how to be friends and talk or text sometimes. Per CL’s advise, I keep to the NC religiously for over 4 months until the first child support mediation. He was pissed but I was calm and cheerful. I asked him about his dog, his other children and his new job. Ever notice how a narcissist loves to talk about themselves? He kinda forgot about how mad he was and started telling me funny stories about his dog. Then he caught me up on his other children and he talked and talked and talked about his new job. After we were finished and I was sitting in my truck he even texted me to tell me about his recent doctor’s visit. He has high blood pressure and a leaky heart valve. Don’t worry, he is on medication and his doctor says he will be fine. While I was sitting there reading his text, a funny thing hit me about my “best friend”. He never once asked me about OUR son (who he also had not talked to in over 4 months), my 4 dogs, my job, my family or my health. He never was my best friend and that spackling is some powerful shit.

    • Wow.

      That NC is SUPER good for re-tuning the BS detector.

      It used to be so easy to not realize that the “friendship” was one way. Good for you for your epiphany. This really is a time of growth.

    • It’s amazing, isn’t it? I too thought we could be friends at first and he even came over for dinner a few times. He said ‘sure, we can sit and have some wine and talk, it’s just that I won’t sleep here’. And that’s when I realised he loved the idea of me being there for him still, me feeding him ego kibbles while he went and slept with whomever he wanted and gave nothing to the relationship. Because he never did give much. So I put a stop to the friendship bs and that’s about when it got ugly. He realised I wasn’t going to play along nicely, I wasnt’ going to keep my mouth shut about his serial cheating and I wasn’t going to help him maintain that nice guy mask he wore. Nope, I was ripping it off and he wasn’t going to be able to say ‘yeah, it ended with my ex but we’re still friends’ – which is what he wanted, not because he valued me but because it would make him look good and like such a nice guy that even his ex was still friends with him.

      Now he of course says I’m psycho, crazy, negative, etc (just like he told me about the gf before me) and I’m sure he sees me that way – I must be crazy to not want to be around the fabulousness that is him, right?

    • It’s amazing what you see once your eyes are really open, eh? Thanks for telling us about that experience, Robin, I’ve been missing my ex, and you reminded me of how it REALLY is with him – exactly like that!

  • JMR – Were it not for the fact that I think I’ve cried just about all the tears I have the energy for these past couple of days, I think your letter would’ve broken me down. But tonight I’m exhausted for reasons not chump-related. Your “best friend” letter struck a cord with me.

    My most recent relationship was one with my “best friend”… my high school sweetheart with whom I had reconnected almost 28 yrs after our first date. We had actually remained good friends all along. We spent 15 yrs together before I found out he cheated on me.

    You said – “I’m pretty sure that all I can do is bite the bullet and hurt a lot for a really long time, but do you have any advice for when my emotions turn from anger and disgust to nostalgia and longing?” Here’s the thing – Don’t count on hurting “for a really long time”. You may or may not. Sure, it will take some time – BUT – You will heal a lot faster by ending this now than you will if you drag it out. Everything CL told you is right on the money about your grief.

    So, don’t sit around and listen to the songs that bring you down and make you want to bring him back into your life. Either get a good counsellor or a very trusted listener, but don’t discuss this with just everyone. That never works out well, and you’ll regret it. Learn to enjoy yourself and your solitude.

    That’s just a good start… but it’s late, and as I said, I’m exhausted. I wish you well.

  • Hey, found something that helps A LOT when I’m missing the good stuff I had w/the ex, or longing again for the better stuff I never had w/him, but always hoped I would.

    I stop and try to focus on WHAT I’m missing or longing for, rather than WHO. I do want to feel loved and safe in someone’s arms, I do miss chatting while cleaning up after having people over, I miss good sex, I want to one day again feel that excitement when meeting up w/a special someone, and see that same excitement in their eyes.

    Those longings are REAL. They just really, really have nothing to do w/the ex. I didn’t get those things from him even half of what I needed and deserved, and could never have even that again w/him, after everything that’s happened.

    This gets my focus off sadness, grief, and missing the ex, and onto where I’m headed in my life, and what I want to find in the future. Also, I think, a really good reminder of what I need to make sure I’m getting in another relationship; no more spackling!

  • >