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The Unlikelihood of Immediate Remorse

There’s an article over at HuffPo today on how a cheater should tell their spouse they’ve been having an affair. There’s some discussion on tell versus don’t tell. (I’m not going there — duh, TELL. Yes. Of course.) But what interested me about the interview with Dr. Scott Haltzmann is his peculiar warning that cheaters might “break down in sympathy.” Otherwise, I thought his advice on the whole was good — be honest, expect much drama (short of physical violence), express remorse, commit fully to the marriage, and be immediately transparent.

And then I thought…. yes and no one does this.

Not one single cheater I have ever heard of in my years of reading on infidelity boards, or heard about here, or known in real life. Not one single cheating person has behaved that way. And certainly not right out of the starting gate.

I mean, I don’t want to rule them out. I want to believe they exist with the other unicorns in their fairy forest of “post-infidelity marital bliss.” (Read the article for that nugget.) I’ve just never seen one.

What I have seen, after the discovery of an affair — even after it is confessed (versus stumbled on to) — is denial, lying, blameshifting (you drove me to it), minimizing (it was only once), and other sorts of mindfuckery, paramount of which is controlling the narrative. They dribble out the “truth.” They omit. They obfuscate. I’ve never known a single one to say “Tell you about that time I hired a hooker in Phoenix? Oh sure! Her name was Mandi and she came highly recommended on for discerning business travelers. It was a discreet encounter for $399.99 and included….”

Yeah. No. That never happens.

I’ll tell you what else never happens — they don’t “break down in sympathy.”

Break down? Yes. That happens a lot. Do we project sympathy on them? Oh sure. Mine said he was sorry all the time. But when they lose their shit, it’s for THEMSELVES. Oh fuck! I’ve been found out! People might think horribly of me. My chump might divorce me! They will take away my beautiful cake! I need to control this outcome! We assume this freak out is about us, the chumps — it’s not.

Cheating is a narcissistic act, so to assume that upon discovery the cheater is going to lead with humility? That’s nuts. Cheaters disrespect chumps. They don’t prostrate themselves before their betrayed spouses. Cheating is about gaining advantage, getting more kibbles. Why would a cheater want to lose the upper hand, when not forced? To cheat, especially over a period of any duration, you have to be really good at maintaining a double life — at lying with a really straight face. People with that skill set tend not to possess qualities like shame and deference.

But we sure wish they did. I think it’s very difficult for chumps, especially in the early days post DDay, to discern what they want to see, from what they are actually seeing.

If you want to reconcile, I think what you should take from that interview is the unicorn blueprint. To have a marriage to save, these things must happen. And then watch and see if they happen, and how quickly, and what must be threatened.

If you see a unicorn, let me know.

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  • It was more like a teenager that got caught in a lie. Every painful word and emotion that came out of my mouth was like the teacher in the peanuts cartoon, ” blah blah blah” is all he heard. Not much sympathy or remorse, and holding me tightly and telling me how sorry he was. In fact, when I said “you have to give her up,” he says, “it’s going to be hard, it’s just so much fun.” I really don’t think he ever thought he would get caught, because he had been so good at keeping his little secret. So he was almost dumbfounded that his little fantasy world no longer existed.

    • I am so sorry your husband said it would be hard to give up and it was fun. I just caught my wife cheating during the past month and I have been devastated. If she had said that to me I think I would have completely broke. Even if it was true and I want the truth I think that is an appropriate time to tell a white lie. I don’t want to hear his dick is bigger then mine or I enjoyed it. Convince me it was a mistake and the guy sucked, that it’s easier to give up then eating nails and razors. And I’m sorry if anything I’m saying isn’t appropriate, at this point I’m just so hurt I vent every chance I get.

      • Wondering if your wife and yourself are still together? Did you beat this? I am going through this at the moment. My husband had an affair with my best friend. Unprotected sex. In my house. Lie after lie. Just need to know if there Is a way past the hurt. Right now death seems like my best option. Thankyou

        • bella; there is hope…though it may not look like what you think it should.

          I’m 4 months in after discovery – shocked/devastated cannot even explain what I’ve felt. I had to hear it from a Dr (I had an STD and have only ever had one partner!) and to top it off – my husband is not really sure if this is what he really wants now. We have 4 beautiful babies together – my youngest is just 3.

          I wanted to die at one point also and the confusion of having a partner that I suddenly do not know and who is not committed is beyond hard at some points but I will get through this….and so will you.

          I am choosing to focus on my own healing – and have released my marriage to progress how it may. I cannot control my spouse or his emotions and expecting anything from him is just so painful. I cannot allow his actions or lack thereof to dictate my sanity or my happiness.

          I will try to mend what is broken for the sake of my children but I will not dwell in the hurt. It is a fine line to walk and my faith helps me – please, if you’re not already, see a counsellor who understands the processes of infidelity…you owe it to yourself

        • Bella

          18 months ago I discovered by husband had been having an affair with a co-worker for 7 months (or at least that is what I was told – who knows now actually). As time went on I discovered that he was also heavily using porn at this time, and he started a sexting relationship with another co-worker that he admits would have gone to full sex if the stars had aligned (again, who knows anymore). I stayed, in an attempt to reconcile even though I knew in my gut is was the wrong thing to do.

          Only three years previously (2011) I had discovered he had been sexting another ex-love interest and explicit pictures were exchanged. THAT was when I should have left. But no.

          Fast forward to now, looking back over the 18 months he was very clever and very subtle but more to the point, I was SO stuck probably I continued in my way of excusing things I saw. Truth is Bella, his actions NEVER matched his words. Sure there were some changes but I never really had a sense there was any depth to them, and the changes he did make were often implored from me, and left me feeling empty. This included every session with our marriage counsellor, where I would come out feeling like the whole thing had been for show.

          BUT, at the time, and this is where it gets confusing and hard to admit, I didn’t and couldn’t understand why i was left feeling empty. It SEEMED as though things were shifting, but at the same time I felt uneasy.

          During reconciliation I truly truly lost myself. I failed to honour and respect myself time and time and time again. I spent hours checking up on him online, installed spyware, tracked his movements on find my iPhone, checked emails, phone records and so on and so on. I NEVER felt like I could truly trust him. And the truth was I couldn’t. He had wounded me and us to the core and in all honesty his actions were beige at best, fucking non existent at worst.

          About three months ago, I started to feel “off” again. People had said I would know if he was cheating again because I was now aware of the “signs”. I don’t agree with that. The manipulation, confusion, self doubt and game playing is SO SO SO SUBTLE that you don’t necessarily notice obvious signs. SO again, it was just a sense in my gut, something is off. I think he started to withdraw again, the self grooming was increasing, exercising, changing work hours and so on. Always with plausible explanations. Then one day he comes home from his counsellor and says he is noticing himself noting women again. He’s a sex addict and he really wants to get on top of this and change. He admitted to being half arsed in reconciliation, didn’t want to hurt me anymore, knew he was lacking and empty etc etc.

          At that point I said to myself “no more” and I asked him to leave. I knew that he would never change, I knew it would always be this cycle and I knew that each moment I stayed in the ring I would lose a further part of myself. Yes I loved something about him but I know now it is the FANTASY. The thing that always seemed to be on the horizon but never materialised.

          Now he has moved out. I KNOW he is with someone else, I just don’t know who – I am sure that will be revealed in time. He is already treating me like a stranger and a nuisance.

          In the weeks building up to him leaving he became increasingly detached, callous and stopped pretending he was anything other than a cold hearted bastard that he was, in reality, all along. Now I realise he had probably engineered this to some extent, had his ducks lined up and with me kicking him out, he has retained some degree of image. Sure he’ll tell people we’ve split but the story won’t reflect the truth.

          What I guess I am saying is, I really don’t believe there is ever a change, and even those who reconcile “successfully” do so at great cost to themselves, hardened, forever untrusting to some extent and reminded every day of what that person did and is capable of doing again. That is a life sentence.

          Coming to terms with the truth, with the reality with all the loss I face right now also feels like a life sentence. I am afraid but I know from reading here that will one day end. It isn’t a life sentence.

          I would say cut your losses. It isn’t a good place to be and will only end up killing your soul in some way.

          And while it pains me to say it. He WILL do it again. And more than likely it will be WORSE and more painful the next time.

          Be strong Bella, you are not alone.

          • Our experiences are so similar! Comforting to know I’m not the only one who has had to endure this bizarre mess of incessant cheating and predatory behavior towards other women — the next target for an affair or fling,

        • Bella I know this was awhile ago but I had the same thing happen to me…i wonder if you got thru it and how…

      • I know Ben me too my ex husband destroyed our 21 year marriage 3 years ago to a DRUG addict in our home, she still makes me sick to this day. He flaunted the full affair in my face and my kids faces. My son only 9 at the time my daughter 13. He DISGUSTS me and now lives with the second TRAMP. I will never forgive me as long as I live. May KARMA take over.

    • Testimony! My name is kendra and am from United State, This is a very happy day of my life with the help of Dr Thomas has rendered to me by helping me to get my divorce husband back with his magic power and love spell. i was married for 8 years and it was so terrible because my husband was really cheating on me, and was seeking for a divorce but when i came across Dr Thomas email(drthomasherbalhome21@gmail. com) on the internet on how he help so many people to get their ex back and help fixing marriage/relationship. He makes people happy in their marriages/relationships. i explained my situation to him and then seek his help but to my greatest surprise he told me that he will help me with my case and here i am now celebrating because my Husband has change totally for good. He started begging me to forgive him that he is very sorry for all the troubles he caused me, i was really surprise and was also happy, so that was how i forgave him and now we are living together happily than ever before,and He always want to be by me and can not do anything without my present. i am really happy with my marriage, what a great celebration. thank you dr thomas who helped me a lot, if you need his help you can contact him via email: (drthomasherbalhome21@gmail. com) . He’s a man of his word.

  • “To cheat, especially over a period of any duration, you have to be really good at maintaining a double life – at lying with a really straight face. People with that skill set tend not to possess qualities like shame and deference.”

    What a jem that is CL! You pretty much nailed the difference between “them” and “us” in two sentences!

  • No unicorn sightings here…this is what the STBX has done so far.

    1. Be honest – No. STBX lied about having multiple affairs and is still lying/blameshifting/gaslighting.

    2. Expect much drama – Yes, but from me, because my whole world had just fallen apart. Oh wait- and from him, when he threw a TANTRUM when I told him to break it off with the OW. A full out crying, screaming, ending in fetal position tantrum. Chump me thought he was having a breakdown. No – he just wanted to keep his side dish available.

    Hot Pocket side note – after first dday, STBX asks me, “But you’re still going to my department head’s birthday party tomorrow with me, right? We can’t back out without explanation.” Yeah, because I really felt like celebrating.

    3. Express remorse – No. I mean, yes – for HIMSELF, that he would have to give up his 19 year old OW if he wanted to commit to the marriage (he was 37 at the time and had been her teacher two years prior to the affair).

    4. Commit fully to the marriage – no. Not when I asked/begged/pleaded for him to do so. Not even when his therapist told him to do so (he stopped going after that).

    5. Be immediately transparent – no. I mean yes – he gave me all his passwords, but only after he erased everything. So I mean – no.

    29 days until the divorce is final…and counting…

  • My ex was very honest about his first affair. It had been going on as an emotional affair for months (while I just watched him), then he actually told me he wanted to fuck her (so romantic, no???). After I freaked out, I assumed he would see that perhaps that wasn’t a good idea, but … he went ahead and did it anyway! But at least when I asked, he admitted it.

    I, good unicorn hunter that I was, believed the honesty was a good sign. What I didn’t realize was that he just didn’t think he needed to lie, because what he was doing was OK and justifiable. He was entitled! We don’t sneak around and lie about taking things we’re entitled to, do we? Took me a long time to figure that one out!

    After the first affair I was so invested in ‘re-building the marriage’ that I spackled like hell, took a long time to realize he wasn’t going to do his part in repairing the damage the affair caused.

    7 years later. the second affair, takes me about 2 weeks to figure it out and turf his ass. Six months later, he’s trying to convince me to reconcile, and I decide to just REALLY LISTEN to what he was saying. No trying to convince him he was wrong, no trying to get him to see the consequences of his behaviour for himself as well as me and the kids. No more trying to show him how much happier HE would be if he just made a few tiny efforts to make us happier, and to be less negative in general. Just LISTEN. And a few questions to clarify.

    What I heard was HORRIFYING. Affairs are no big deal, just something that happens when a marriage isn’t going well. That very serious physical threats are no big deal, because he never actually did hurt me physically. That his unsatisfied sex drive (yeah, because his peri-menopausal wife had been having sex w/him ONLY 3 or 4 times a week.) practically forced him to have an affair. That the thing he would change about how he acted during our marriage was that he should have been clearer about his needs. That he really had not thought (AT ALL) about what his decision to have this second affair would mean for our marriage and our kids. That he hadn’t thought (at all) about what our separating would be like for the kids, or for himself. That during our marriage, he really had not made any efforts to make me, or the kids, happier. Never even occurred to him as an option. (He would sometimes modify his behaviour, usually temporarily, in the face of the possibility of losing me or losing his full-time relationship with his kids – I took that as a sign that he realized he was wrong and realized he was hurting us! CHUMP!) That he did bring home his work stress and dump it on us. That he didn’t even remember frequently turning down my attempts to keep us more connected. That he doesn’t know why he’s like this. Clearly implied that, since he was like this, but didn’t know why, it wasn’t really his fault, or his responsibility.

    He talked about reading the books about rebuilding a marriage that he never read after the first affair, and the ones about being a better parent. He mentioned seeing a therapist, perhaps the one we saw for couple’s therapy after the first affair. He appeared to briefly admit that, even if we didn’t reconcile, those things would make him a better partner and dad. Then he did NONE of those things.

    So I’ve discovered the secret to unmasking what tries to look like a unicorn. LISTEN, and WATCH. They can’t fool us about the monster under the unicorn suit, unless we help.

    • Thats so true Karen, you have to let them show what they’re made of. When I moved back home, after him crying and begging me, last June, I told him- if you keep seeing her, even as a pal, I will not be your wife!
      Then I sat back and observed. It was horrifying! He still saw her, but thought he was hiding it better than he was. Really broke my heart again, but if thats the way he is, not for me. I told him ‘i know what you’re all about now’. I don’t even think he understood! So now we are getting divorced as we speak, no more chances!

      • There’s actually a sense of relief in finally seeing what they’re really like, isn’t there? It’s like ‘Aha! Now it all makes sense! I am not crazy, not twisting things, not confused, not missing some crucial understanding about his fuckedupedness. That’s just who he is, and this is just what he’s chosen to do.’


        • Absolutely! My moment of clarity came when she actually tried to tell me) after originally admitting to the affair) that the OM was ‘a friend.’ Clarity broke upon me like the first wave on the shore, “She thinks I am total idiot, and has 0 respect for me.” The next day, another story: in order to make some holiday travel more convenient, I asked if she could change her return flight (returning from seeing the OM) from one airport to another. I even offered to pay for the change because it would make it much easier on the kids. She tells me she changed the ticket and that it cost $250, but she didn’t have any confirmation of that other than a few numbers she scrawled on a sheet of paper. Then she got ANGRY when I said I needed to see the emailed confirmation. Once again, she’s thinking I’m an idiot and she can get away with scheming me out of $250… just because she can. That left a real clear impression on me of how she things about me. I was almost glad, because now it means I’m not crazy, I can quit being hopeful, etc.

        • Exactly Karen and mine I don’t get it he’s half BALD, two back teeth missing and lousy I’m bed’

    • That listening idea is a very good one. If you are upset/trying to save things, it can be hard to hear what’s really going on. But if you listen, most of the information will be right there. That’s great advice.

      • It’s really hard, though, to do that when all you want to hear is remorse and all you want to see is a good person, not the monster who is breaking your trust and heart.

        It’s taken 6.5 months to START sinking in that the person I’m married to is a bad guy. He will never change. I kept having hope. He just came back from a business trip to Colombia. I, of course, read his emails. In one, a friend back home offered to hook him up with his “hot niece” living there. What does the prince do? He agrees! Such a great guy. They didn’t, since he was too busy with work. But they did correspond. Of course, when confronted, he says he was just doing a friend a favour and that she would have come out with his colleagues as a group. Yeah, sure. Even if that were true, what the hell is he doing agreeing to hook up with some guy’s hot niece? He’s fucking married!

        I also found an old email to a friend — one he hadn’t seen in a while — in which he recounted his life these past couple years. This is what he said about me: “I eventually married (Sad). Who would have guessed.”

        He’s just a liar and a piece of trash. I’m finally feeling it in my bones. Finally feeling that defeat and that sense that I just don’t care anymore as much. His sparkles are wearing off. My hope is exhausted.

        I’m finally getting ready to move on. Inch by inch. Slowly. It’s taken a really long time. And I probably will vacillate more, playing the back and forth game. But this is now starting to affect me physically. I’m constantly nauseous, having nightmares while he sleeps beside me, feeling like I’m loosing it mentally — I mean really actually loosing it.

        Oh, how I pushed and pushed, hoping this douchebag would turn out to be prince charming with just a little therapy and spakle. Never happened, and never will. I just kept getting hurt.

        I knew I should just listen and watch and that he’d do it to himself. But I couldn’t just let that happen. I was an Amazon Chump — pushing books and therapy and trying to make him understand that my reactions are normal and that he should be sorry and sympathetic. Fuck, am I stupid.

        Anyway, suffice it to say that watching and waiting is hard when you’re watching your life set on fire and waiting to finally have the axe fall (because you know that will eventually happen with these dickwads). I am just putting off the pain right now.

        • Me too Sad in Seattle I was so proud of my ex husband and his career and all he did was use me to clean shitty diapers, cook, laundry and SPIT ME OUT! It’s painful but I’m at a year now out of this hill and trying to move forward!

  • Right on: People that have that particular skill set etc…
    These folks have practiced lying and deceit over a lifetime. They are also experts at blameshifting, deflection, diversion, and turning the tables.
    One doe not have to be particularly bright to get good at this. All it seems to take is a lot of practice, no conscuience, a lack of empathy and feeling entitled. These folks are the definition of NPD, ASPD etc, and the world is full of them.
    We tend to think these folks are smart etc. But, really, if one has no conscience, it is easy to prey on others, even without smarts. I could be dumb as a rock and , at least for a while, steal purses and valuables at work easily. I could do all types of bad stuff and , probably, get away with it.
    See , going through life as a sociopath can lead to some rewards. Some people get ahead because they are monsters and are never brought to justice. These folks walk among us.

    • Arnold,
      It seems you have read a lot on mental illnesses like NPD, BPD etc. I have too. Call it, untangling the skein…or whatever. Even now, when things start making no sense to me…I resort to reading them up. Some solace somewhere…don’t know why I keep going to those…anyways.
      What surprises me however is this: The medical/ medical info kind of sites give the description according to which, these guys are very easily distinguishable, have control issues, may not be able to keep jobs…and so on. While the experiences of some of these guys on sharing sites as well as our experiences of our own partners suggest that these people are very well functioning guys, “folks walking among us”. Why this disconnect? Why, until a person is bitten by a snake (BPD, NPD, etc.), the snakes are not discoverable? Why all this information makes so much sense to me today…while I myself might have thrown it away, had all the affair thing not happened/come to light? Have you ever pondered over these….

        • I think part of the problem, with Anti-Social PD especially (psychopathy, sociopathy) is that the researchers focus on the ones they can easily get their hands on to study; the DUMB ones who have ended up in prison repeatedly. And because DSM classified Anti-Social primarily based on problematic, obvious behaviours like rule-breaking and irresponsibility, which are very ‘expensive’ problems for society, that’s what gets studied.

          There needs to be a LOT more info out there about the super smart psychopaths, the executives of Enron type, and the everyday ones, who get away with a lot because people just aren’t prepared to recognize it and set limits.

          It doesn’t help that our culture really encourages narcissism and the ‘rules are for fools’ attitude. It blurs the lines of what’s acceptable and what’s not, what’s normal and what’s not.

          We can’t go around suspicious of everyone, but we do need to know the big flashing warning signals, and we need to teach our kids that there is another category of person, those who do NOT care about us, and that we need to treat them a bit differently, cut them a bit less slack, be more clear on our boundaries and limits.

          • Yep. The high functioning sociopaths get away with it all, and my guess is there are more high functioning than low. Many people think sociopaths are all blatant criminals or murderers, which also allows the disordered to blend into society. People don’t suspect the high level politician (IMHO, most all politicians in DC are NPD, and that is for both parties), the Oscar-winning actor, the CEO of whatever large corporation. Or even the guy next door whose achievements are smaller, but he still holds a decent job and appears to be a good guy.

            My ex qualifies for diagnosis of sociopath (his official diagnosis is NPD) but I doubt he will ever be “caught” although I know he has done illegal things and he certainly does dangerous and immoral things on a daily basis.

      • annudi, I have thought about this, a lot. I think there are a number of reasons the personality disordered wives I was involved in went undetected.
        First, there is me, a child of an abusive alcoholic trial attorney. Without getting to into it, let’s just say my background and coping mechanisms made me both a prime target and a terrible picker. I own that, although I did not ask for my childhood.
        Second, there seem to be levels of sophistication(high functioning vs low functioning NPD/BPDs etc). I can tell you with little doubt, that if you met my first wife, you would be impressed with her, inititally. She is very bright, very good looking, and extremely charming. She has honed her skills in impressing folks.
        Third, like many of us, before the cheating, I had no idea what a personality disorder was. My therapist and divorce attorney, upon hearing of some of my second wife’s behaviors, directed me to start looking at BPD. But for the cheating, I may never had figured this out. I would have stayed and doubted myself “am I too sensitive that getting doused repeatedly in the shower with freezing water is not funny to me?”, “am I missing the humor when my wife turns to me while playing scrabble, after spelling the word “penis” and uses it in a sentence as if to prove it is not a bluff word””””Penis. My husband has no penis.””””
        Was I wrong to feel that my wife waking me from a sound sleep to describe the body of the man she was with that night was abusive. Maybe she was just being conversational.
        See, I look back on these things(and there are many, many more) now and am horrified that I failed to recognize it as abuse. I feel stupid.
        But, the abuse of the disordered is so insidious, ramped up gradually, after you are enmeshed with kids, mortgages, vows etc. that one doubts oneself.
        I know that many of these types present a remarkably positive impression until one is entangeld. Then, the mask comes off.
        The low functioning BPDs doe have trouble with jobs, credit, and other signs. But, the higher functioning ones and the NPDs seem to do well many times.
        The book that made this the most simple for me was Richard Skerrit’s “Meaning from Madness”.
        It is an e-book and can be found online. I also read Shari Schreiber’s articles, Tara Palmatier’s stuff, and the abusedmen website.
        It’s been an education. SOmetimes, I wsh I did not know these people existed. The world is a bit scarier knowing about them. BUt, it is neccessary so as to avoid them.

        • You are right Arnold. “But, the abuse of the disordered is so insidious, ramped up gradually, after you are enmeshed with kids, mortgages, vows etc. that one doubts oneself.” This sentence almost sums up their modus operandi. But, world is a scarier place after this knowledge. How can such people excel at doing such things, without getting noticed? Why does everybody (except the victims) take them still to be normal with some idiosyncrasies, just the way anyone would be? How can we save ourselves and our loved ones, even the society in general, from such guys?…I mean I do not wish even my worst enemies go through it all. If we leave them, they continue their trail and plunder some other innocent souls. Can we get them all identified and left on one island/ country/ continent to avoid the others getting hurt 🙂

          • I wish they could have the mark of Cain.

            I’d settle for a tattoo of “cheater” on their foreheads. The next unsuspecting chump deserves to know.

          • They do this stuff behind closed doors. They have practiced and perfected their public persona.
            Here’s Skerritt’s take on the NPD: They are deeply flawed and hate things about themselves. They cannot stand for others to see any flaws. Contrary to the popular view that they love themselves, their grandiosity is really a cover for self loathing.
            So, along comes you or I. With their practiced persona and charm, you fall for them.
            You get married and may ignore little red flags because their other qualities are so great. Then, gradually, you start being criticized and devalued.
            Here is the reason: Thye need to present themselves as flawless to the public. You, having now married them, are viewed as a extension of them, a reflection of them.
            So, if you demonstrate anything to outsiders that they percieve as reflecting poorly on their flawless image they want to project, they come down hard on you.
            While being courted, you did not reflect on them. Now you do and need to be roped in and controlled so the image of perfection is not harmed.
            I have seen experienced and read about this a lot. When my wife and I were in public, say a family gathering or a party or something, if I did something that she was embarrassed by(usually irrationally as I was being normal and appropriate, but had triggerred one of her irrational fears) there would be hell to pay_ usually a couple days of the silent treatment.
            This is why they change after enmeshment. You are now a reflection/extension of them. Thye realize you are loyal and invested in the family, so you are a hostage. So, they can abuse/berate/criticize/ deride/ ridicule you to make you fall in line with little fear that you will bolt and leave your kids behind.

            • Wow Thanks Arnold! hat explains SO much..:/ i gained weight after getting the first desk job I ever had, and turned 50 (menopause (sorry) Being depressed (I know I was now) I didn’t want to exercise and I gained about 20 lbs. He didn’t say it, but made me ‘feel’ hideous, I felt so horrible about myself I didn’t even want to go anywhere…except for work (barely). I thought it was just me…but now after a few months away from him I don’t feel so bad, actually I know I don’t even look so bad and am starting to WANT to get back in shape…

    • Agrred Arnold but one thing I learned and that told my daughter now 15 is that even though dad CUTS me down constantly I’m proud of myself for being FAITHFUL to my marriage and my belief in God!????

  • Oh she was sad alright — sad she got caught. First response? She asked me what the big deal was, couldn’t understand why I was upset. Accused me of cheating, too (not true). After a few days, became very remorseful. Said I could ask her anything and she’d answer truthfully. Not. Refused to end contact with her AP because they worked together. Ugly times. Desperately wanted to reconcile, but only on her terms. After 3 months of bullshit, I filed for divorce. We had been married for 12 years.

    • Excellent Geoff I’m proud of you you DESERVE so much BETTER. I did the same after finding out about my ex husbands first affair through our young son. I was DONE, he hadn’t touched me in 5 long years and now I know why, very painful!

  • Maybe in certain cases where the cheater had a one-night fling at a work convention, or something like that. Maybe. But those with long-term affairs, multiple cheating sessions, endless lying, manipulating and cake eating….. no. None of those things ever happen and they never will.

    Those who are capable of carrying out long term cheating, multiple affairs, complex lies and gaslighting or blaming of their chump spouse….. those people do not have the capability to feel shame, remorse or accept blame. They often PRETEND to feel remorse or say they are sorry, but that is only because it is in some way to their advantage at that time. Perhaps for leverage in a divorce, to give them time to empty out bank accounts, to continue their facade of being a decent person, to avoid paying child support, etc.

    Narcissistic cheaters feel extreme contempt for their chumps. I think they also feel extreme contempt for their affair partner, but they will conceal that contempt until the affair partner is eventually dumped or cheated on themselves.

    • “Narcissistic cheaters feel extreme contempt for their chumps.”

      That’s exactly it

      • I agree, they feel contempt for us, the chumps, AND for their affair partners. I refused to talk about the AP w/the ex, because she was irrelevant to me, but he made asides about her, while trying to reconcile w/me. ‘Now I have to go to another city every month just to get some sex’ and ‘that was never meant to be a long-term relationship anyway’. Did he think that speaking disrespectfully about another woman would make me like him better?

        I think they feel contempt for pretty much anybody, except perhaps for people who are bigger sharks than they are. BLERCH!

  • Very true, very true. My ex told me at one point “she’d felt bad long enough” about her affairs! I recall looking at her and realizing she was someone I didn’t even know. It was a very scary moment. And lie? The capacity of these people to lie astonishes me to this day. And I’m in advertising!

    • My STBX similarly “felt bad long enough”, although he phrased it as being “stressed.” As in, I guess it’s stressful lying all the time and living a double life (having a wife and a girlfriend at the same time for the better part of a year). Didn’t stop him from continuing to cheat even after dday, even during when we went to marraige counseling. Assured me that the OW “felt really bad” about the affair, too. Yeah….right. She continued to have sex with him (and also cheat on her own husband!), so I doubt either of them felt bad at all….they just said that to make themselves look or feel better. Because when you actually “feel really bad” about something – you stop doing it!

      Something my cheating STBX failed to do. He failed to feel bad about it, and therefore he failed to stop.

      • Articles like the one in HuffPo just don’t take the reality of these selfish assholes. The only attempts at reconciliation I’ve seen, whether it was in my first marriage or in others I’ve known whose marriages were nuked by infidelity, were inspired by cake-eaters who wanted to maintain the status quo. They’d been pulling this shit off for so long, they figured they could do it again. After all, we’d shown ourselves to be easily duped, right? When I asked my ex why she had done this, she said “because I wanted to do both”…and when I asked why she wanted to reconcile, she answered “because I picked you”! Oh, gee. Thanks. I feel so…special…

        • When I was freaking out right after dday and trying to get him to see just what his affair was going to do to me and the kids he said to me ‘you don’t love me, you just want to win’. I was totally gobsmacked because he really believed this. He really thought that he was this big prize and wow, his wife of two decades and this young girl he’d known for a couple of months were both wanting him. Add to that the other affairs going on at the same time and he must have felt like the cat’s meow. Now he has his young OW, one of his kids doesn’t talk to him, his parents go along with the situation but aren’t happy about it and he has no friends.

          I so win.

          • Nord — “you don’t love me, you just want to win” sounds like classic projection. It’s how he feels about YOU. I don’t love you, I just want to win (more cake, kibbles, etc.)

        • See, that is the type of thing, Geoff, the “I picked you” deal, that a normal person could never bring him or herself to say. This is the clue: even if a normal person felt that, he or she would know how incredibly egotistical and outrageously assholish it sounds. But, these folks truly beleive what they say and are so narcissistic, that they cannot see how they come off when they do this.
          I had a similar thing with my first wfie. When I confronted her withthe fact that she had been out until 1-3 in the morning for 112 out of 180 nights in 1994, she never disouted the accuracy of my records. BUT, she was mystified as to why I would have any problem with it. She said ” Of course I get more time off than you. I have more friends(affair partners) than you.”
          My XW was magna cum laude from law school. Yet, she had no perception of how she came off a a NPD in saying that.
          Same with your wife. No normal person could say that without feeling like an idiot, embarrassed as hell. But, they think the world revolves around them. You should have been grateful that the queen chose you, you peasant.

          • My ex said that I shouldn’t even believe my eyes (said this to my mother also, when she was arguing him out for a R with me) if ever I see him naked with 10 other girls. Even in those moments, I should know that those women meant nothing to him and that he loved me and he chose me. He loved me more than any other man could ever do…and he failed to understand, why I make so much noise when 80% males were like him (the statistics was so staggering) and all women knew this fact and put a blind eye to it.

            • Good Lord Anudi,
              “if ever I see him naked with 10 other girls”

              That is beyond crazy! I don’t think there is an island or continent big enough to hold them all!

    • “she’d felt bad long enough”? How about you/us feeling like crap long enough while you continue the with the affair. Oh how they hate being preached to about what they did. They feel as though we are preaching. Well maybe if they understood how we felt and showed us the Unicorn named “Remorse” Our preaching about what’s happening here on this side of the fog we chumps call Reality, it wouldn’t seem like preaching.

      Stating that you looked at her and realized she was someone else hits home here on my end. “I’ve Change” she says indicating that she’s not the person she used to be. NO SHIT! Makes me wonder if she really changed or if the real person finally came out. I always thought when people change as the get older, We mature.

      When I look at my wife now, every once in awhile I see glimpses of the woman I fell in love with. And I smile. But then when she starts hammering on her iPhone like a high schooler she morphs back into the ugly shallow person she has “Changed” into.

      • I hear you Bud – as far as I’m concerned, the real person was the cheater. I remember a particularly chilling moment (in hindsight) shortly after my ex and I had gotten together. She propped herself up on her pretty little elbow and proclaimed “Oh you haven’t seen my evil side yet..haha” I thought she was making a risque joke. She wasn’t. The Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde analogy is apt.

    • I got that too, Geoff, that’s he’s sick of feeling guilty and has forgiven himself. Oh, and that I should forgive him too since it takes two to make a marriage work. How lovely for you! You destroyed everything that was good in our lives and you want me to move on like nothing happened. How convenient. Move along, now, nothing to see here but a broken heart, destroyed marriage and shattered life.

      Throughout this process I’ve frequently had moments where I realized I don’t know my husband at all. And I don’t. Holy fuck.

  • The advice from HuffPo might apply to someone who had a *one-night* stand.

    Maybe they could do all those things – be honest, take inevitable drama, express remorse, commit fully to the marriage, and be immediately transparent.

    But *not* someone who had a long-term affair. Anything that required planning and scheming and lying…..I haven’t seen or heard of an affair cheater who did that.

    • That’s what I thought. The advice might work if there’s a one-night stand. In fact, the advice to be open about the one-night stand is pretty controversial. I think I’ve seen on other sites that you shouldn’t tell your spouse about the one-night stand unless you think your spouse will find out. The idea is that the cheater was operating under impaired judgement (alcohol, etc.), is deeply ashamed, and would never cheat again. Confession is seen as more damaging to the marriage than the secret.

      I’m not saying I agree; I’m just relaying the advice and rationale.

      The HuffPo advice here doesn’t apply to the spouse who frequents prostitutes, or who conducts long-term affairs. It can’t. The cheater’s not going to have that Damascus moment in which the bright light of their sins strikes them blind until they confess all.

      My STBX likes having his feet massaged. For nearly the entire marriage, he’d have his feet massaged at night. The day I discovered the affair, I kept my mouth shut. I’d seen the texts, the plans for the quickie (does she know that they’re all quickies?), so I know that he was a more than willing participant in the affair. What’s he ask me for?

      A foot rub.

      Yep. He sure wants to confess all to me.


      • I have to say that the idea of getting too wasted and accidentally falling into another woman’s vagina (or onto another man’s penis) is just a little far-fetched for me. If you have any respect at all for your spouse or partner, it just ain’t gonna happen. I know that alcohol can lower inhibitions, ruin your judgement, etc., etc., but I’ve always thought that was more of an excuse for an existing proclivity.

        • I agree, but I can see this happening when one person is already attracted to the other prior to excessive alcohol consumption. Should you be drinking with someone you’re attracted to who’s not your spouse? Nope.

        • Me too. I have never bought being drunk as an excuse. In my experience, having been drunk, I never would fuck someone in that conndition.

        • Thank you. Amen too. If you really love someone, no matter how hammered you are you can only think of them. It would never even be a fantasy because they are good fantasy.

  • I’ve recounted this before. My XW told me that she was entitled to more time off from the kids than me, that she was entitled to spend more $$ on herself than me, and she described in detail, the physique of one of her affair partners unsolicited.
    Once these things happned, I knew I was dealing with a different species. Had neve heard of the personality disoreders, but when I did research them , she fit.
    No, serial/long term cheaters are a different breed. Even those that paeear all warm and fuzzy like Charles Kuralt, a long time cheater, are just wired very differently.

  • Our marriage only would have “worked” (and I put that in quotes because it wouldn’t have been a true marriage– just a dysfunctional mess) if I had begged and pleaded with him to “pick me,” taken blame for his A (“I’ve been a terrible wife… no wonder you had to turn to someone else!”), and then gone overboard with sex, attention, playing the role of perfect wifey, etc. I would also have had to turn a blind eye to the fact that he either never stopped the A or found another partner because there’s no way that he would have given that up completely. I really didn’t have any clue that he was having an A until the day he left open (deliberately, I think) the window to the secret email account. He was THAT good of an actor, and it only proved to me that I was married to a stranger and that I needed to get away from him. He showed NO remorse– only self-pity that the cakefest was over and that he’d have to give some of his precious paycheck to me for CS.

    Staying with him would not have been a marriage. It would have been a prison sentence. Any “crimes” that I committed in the marriage were not severe enough to deserve that level of punishment.

    Oh, and he’s definitely getting married to the OW in about a month or so. Those aren’t the actions of a person who is trying to correct his behavior and become a better person. Those aren’t the actions of someone who is truly remorseful for what he’s done. I’m so glad that he’s the OW’s problem now.

    • “Staying with him would not have been a marriage. It would have been a prison sentence”

      Feel exactly the same way!

  • My X after being caught red handed.
    First denial.
    Then confessing he’d been doing it pretty much since day 1 (12 years)
    Then – “he’s never satisfied. Sex means nothing to him. He’s been this way his whole life”
    ” I love you but not that way anymore” ” I got tired of lying”
    All Said with dead fish eyes, cold and robotic.
    Then came 2 months of trying to get him OUT! I changed the locks, he left all his stuff, he wouldn’t stop coming by. Thank God I caught him and found CL, because he would still be lying, denying and twisting things around. Getting angry at ME if I questioned him…talking to me on the phone in front of people listening to make it sound like I was a nag and a crazy bitch and I didn’t trust him when HE was calling ME 10 times a day! I am becoming incredibly calm, this new life alone seems to suit me! 😉

    • Same thing here, sounds like the same guy, down to “I’m tired of lying” and then continuing merrily on to this day lying away to anyone that’ll still listen. Luckily it’s not me or our children anymore

      • Oh yea, I forgot – “You don’t love me, your’e just embarrassed”

      • During bogus reconciliation, the ex kept telling me how “good it felt to finally be honest” and how wonderful it was to be “100% true.” Yeah, unfortunately he was still lying and cheating, of course.

        Because pathological types never admit to anything they don’t think you already know or are about to find out, we never know more than the tip of the iceberg. I know a stunning amount of terrible things my ex did, and still does, but I also know that’s likely only a small bit of what he is really doing. Nothing would surprise me.

        • I said from the beginning– my ex was clearly relieved that I “only” thought that he had been cheating on me for 17 years having multiple affairs and at times group sex with women he sometimes brought to stay with us in our family home and who our children and I thought were family friends and co-workers. If he is relieved that that was “all” I knew, I can only imagine what else he did….blech! The possibilities are mind boggling.

      • Kelly,
        A few weeks ago, the last time I talked to him he called to inform me about something financial. After hanging up I thought about the conversation for a minute then called him back and asked him if he was lying. He said “about what?” I just laughed, he had lied so much that even though we barely speak his mind must have been racing trying to figure out “which lie this time?” Asshole.

  • We never have the entire truth. And I can assure you that we don’t want to. Still, its the lies and betrayal of our sacred trust that’s the issue for me. I asked and asked what he was up to, and STILL he could not come clean. In fact, he mocked me telling me that he was working for the CIA. (Cunning, Idiot, Asshole) :/

    If these creatures could apologize, show REAL remorse, empathy, love, concern and understand the word “commitment,” then of course, we wouldn’t be in this situation in the first place.

    Sure, my husband had stopped being intimate with me. Quite frankly, it didn’t bother me because having sex with him was like having sex with a nervous, self-absorbed, machine. However, I had reconciled all of this with “he’s a nice man and devoted to me.”

    right. that is… until D-day number one and then I’m afraid that I lost my mind. (thank God, I did eventually find it!)

    And yes, he minimized, obfuscated, denied, and I had to drag an apology out of him. (after D-day #2)

    One thing he did say that I believe is that he actually didn’t think that he had the ABILITY to hurt anyone. A person lacking a soul cannot understand how they even have this power and that I think is in large part what the issue is. We are assuming that they are an intact human being, but they are not.

    I also think that telling them what they did wrong while I’ve done it a zillion times myself, is a waste of time and energy. How can one explain what white looks like to someone who’s never seen?

    • yes, to the entire truth part. I believe my ex told me a lot of truthful things. Especially if I directly asked him a question I believe he probably kept as close to the truth as possible (probably just because that strategy makes sense). Might he have left out some things? Probably. He was the king of the lie by omission, after all. But he told me enough that at the time I thought it was the whole truth. Now, with the clarity of some time and distance, I’m pretty sure he must have left out a bunch and maybe threw in a few lies. But now it doesn’t matter.

      I especially agree with

      “If these creatures could apologize, show REAL remorse, empathy, love, concern and understand the word “commitment,” then of course, we wouldn’t be in this situation in the first place”

      It is a Catch-22, ain’t it? It was pretty much inevitable that their true colors had to come out at some point. It sucks that we’re the ones that had to pay the price, but at least it opened up our eyes and gave us a chance to escape. And maybe learn some things about ourselves in the process and eventually find some real happiness.

      However, I do believe that the know what they did was wrong… otherwise, why would they hide it? That Dr. Simon, what does he say? Something about that how it’s not that they don’t see, they just disagree?

      • I believe it’s because they like the control, the power of screwing with someone’s head. They’re sadistic in a way, and they’re also cowards. I mean, why tell a lie when the truth will do? Just because of the cake?
        When I asked my ex-wife and her paramour — both together and separately — if they were having an affair, they both swore on stack of bibles they were not. At the time, I thought the guy was a good friend. I also thought had a pretty good bullshit sniffer. Wrong.

        • They definitely are cowards… my ex had an affair because it was easier than communicating about our problems and dealing with them. And having sex with a new chick is a lot easier and a lot more fun. If you have no morals at least and don’t think about any repercussions. But I’m not sure if my ex is that sadistic that he enjoys messing with people’s heads. But that’s just mine… I’m sure there are plenty that do. And maybe I’m kidding myself.

          • Absolutely, it was the cowardice! WAY easier to just get a new woman every ten years or less (ours lasted longer bc there are kids, and I don’t give up easily (translation: CHUMP!), when the current one is wise to you and her loving heart is worn out, than to make the small efforts required to maintain a good relationship, or to repair the mess you’ve made. As a matter of fact, if he’s true to his father’s form, the relationships will be getting shorter and shorter (maybe because as he aged, so did the women he dated, and they got wise faster!) LAZY cowards!

            You and I know that when you do this, you lose out on some very rich things that come w/long term relationships. Attachment, trust, companionship, shared memories, shared futures, long-term family and friendships, and most valuable of all, SOMEONE WHO KNOWS YOU WELL, AND LOVES YOU ANYWAY.

            Lazy cowards, and stupid to boot.

          • you are definaetly kidding yourself an affair is a type of domestic abuse and the chump wife that puts up with it is a fool in deed.

          • This is exactly what my soon to be XW did. Was too cowardly to communicate to me about problems in our marriage. NC is the way to go!

        • It’s totally about control. I asked my therapist yesterday why the ex is still such a shithead to me and she said he needs control and doesn’t have it. It’s abuse, essentially. And it is.

          • Here’s my ultimate chumpdom: Right after my ex was served with divorce papers, I asked her why the hell she did what she did for so long, Her answer? “Well Geoff, you stayed”! Yeah, she liked that cake and I just kept shoveling it to her. Oh yes, I’m a chump, big time!

      • oh yes, he absolutely knew what he was doing was wrong and ironically deplored that type of behavior in OTHER men. (there’s some psychological term that describes that phenomenon), however, not having a true sense of self, he cannot conceive that he has the power he has. I think that’s why we get the “what are you going on and on for and behaving like I destroyed you or something.” In their minds, that’s an impossibility. At least, that’s how it was in my situation. Actually, usually when I do call him on something or tell him how for instance this upcoming weekend is a trigger for me… I’m met with a thunderous silence.

        • I experienced the same phenomenon, Laurel. We had a mutual friend whose husband had been caught in an affair – she was devastated. My wife (at the time) goes up to her and proclaims how “she would never cheat” on me, and that this poor woman’s husband was essentially “deeply flawed”. My ex continued in that vein several times with me, insisting that we be open and honest with each other, and infidelity was the lowest crime imaginable. Then, when I discovered her affair(s), she couldn’t believe how angry and betrayed I felt. Go effing figure.

            • Projection is the term, I think. My ex-h-NPD did this in so many areas. When I talked with my therapist about whether they know they have the trait they are railing against or not, she thought that if you are pretty far down on the NPD spectrum, probably not but have some sort of discomfort about the particular they are ranting about, but don’t have the capacity to understand it they possess it themselves. He projected his own incapability with true intimacy by trying to convince me for 12 years that I had a serious problem with it but he understood because of my family of origin issues. This is probably the worst thing he did to me–trying to damage my sense of self for his advantage.

    • That is it. The color of the sky in their world is different. You simply cannot explain that something is hurtful or wrong to someone who operates from a fundamentally different set of values. You could point out to Ted Bundy that he had murdered ccounless people, hurt families etc and he would just ask you to pass the ketchup.
      I do not know how these folks are created. But, beneath the veneer, you will find a person wired very differently thatn a normal person.

  • When my cheater-ex ‘broke down’ two years post Dday, I just remember turning around, looking up to the sky, and thanking God for answering my prayers. God had given me the clarity to see through all the bullshit.

    • Yes Laurel, 13 years before my D-Day, I was pregnant with our third child and suddenly suspected my “loving” and “devoted” husband was having an affair with one or the other of two co-workers. After much protestation, he ultimately convinced me (along with my mother, two sisters, and even a few of my friends) that I was crazy and that he adored me (loved me “madly” is how he put it). Fast forward 13 years and I finally find out that yes indeed, he had in fact been having affairs with not one but BOTH of these women, and at times would even engage in group sex with them, and that it had been going on for 17 years. My first reaction on that grim morning after D-Day– “I’m free, I’m free, I’m free”. Heartache and angst came soon thereafter but I have since recovered from that by holding onto the truth that was so apparent in those initial moments–I was finally rid of his web of deception and suffocating lies.

      • Me too. When my private investigator friend called me to tell me he had caught my wife redhanded, rather than grief or anger , I felt relief bordering on euphoria.
        This was because I had been gaslit so long that I thought I was losing my mind. And, on some level, I knew this was my get out of jail free card, away from the abuses other than infidelity.
        I knew people would understand why I was divorcing with infidelity in the picture. I do not think I could have convinced folks about my wife’s abuse as a valid reason for leaving.

        • Arnold – My situation, too! The cheating was my ticket to leave. And validation to *myself* that I wasn’t crazy or too sensitive or any of those things. I was suffering with a spouse who truly didn’t love me, as shown in his daily actions. My subconscious had known this for quite awhile, I think, even though it took my spackle-chump brain years to catch up.

  • After my phone call telling me to get health insurance because he wanted a divorce, I immediately checked the email and Facebook…found nothing. 2 days later I was dropped from Facebook as his wife, my friends I took to the marriage with me were also dropped, and the OW was added as a friend. Chump me still flew to Saudi Arabia(he is Air Force and was deployed 13 days after Dday. While there I borrowed an Abaya (long black cloak women have to wear there) from a “friend” of his. I was there for 3days and got the time and space speech…apparently the 6000 miles between us was not enough space…I spend the next week trying to figure out his new email password…I knew I was missing something. Finally on day 8 after I got home, bingo I was in. I found his plane ticket back to the states so he could blindside me with moving out. So the dutiful wife that I am removed his car from our driveway and took it to the dealership to have warranty work done….oh and then he would put have access to it. My bad
    Day 9, I know he is on a plane to the states, I use the email to change his Facebook password and bingo, messages to the OW….
    When he arrived at the house to move, strangely I wasn’t there. I was out with friends..oops so sorry to screw up your schedule. I helped him pack….he couldn’t understand why…I was trying a 2prong attack of the pick me polka/doormat as well as focusing on myself for the worst outcome. I only hinted about the OW never confronted at that point. I wanted to drag it out for 2reasons, 1that he would realize the mistake and come back, and 2 to get 100% on my feet without him.
    Long story short, not really, the abaya I borrowed belong to the whore….such a nice guy…and when I did confront about the emails proving the affair he lied and said they had planted it because they knew I would find it but it was all fake and no affair was happening….he only knew of the 1email I found…not the other 4….that was when the switched flipped.
    I am just over a year out from Dday and 6months from it being final. I still miss the him I thought he was but realize everyday it was just an Illusion. When I start to miss him I remind myself of every lie I know of and all the bad things he did to me in 5 years, then it turns from missing him to thinking how could I have been so dumb. But everyday I forgive myself a little and realize its on him not me. I was a good wife. I was honest, loving, and faithful. Me forgetting he wanted a glass of wine on our honeymoon does not equate with a double life..and yes that was just 1 of the stupid shit things he gave as a reason.

    • What do you need to forgive yourself for? He’s actually boringly predictable and how old? Five, Six? I rather like your moxie. And yes, they make crazies out of even the best of us. Its all fucked up.

      How can it be any other way?

      • I need to forgive myself for being duped/chumped. There were little red flags prior to getting married and I spackled them away. The 2 big red flags prior to the marriage…1lying and 2 a profile on adult friend finder resulted in me kicking him to the curb. Both times he suckered me back and I fell for it. He didnt really change, he just took the bad behavior further underground until after the wedding. Then it resurfaced in an even worse form. That’s what I need to forgive myself for…that and forgetting his glass of wine. Thank you for the compliment on my moxie. 🙂

    • You forgot to get him a glass of wine on your honeymoon, and THAT was one of the reasons he gave for cheating? Unfreakingbelievable! One of the things my ex threw in my face was the fact that I had failed to find her a seat promptly enough at a dinner party. So the next day, she went out with her boss after work, went home with him and screwed the guy. Haven’t looked at dinner parties quite the same way since!

      • Yes. 2weeks prior to our honeymoon he mentioned that he wanted to have a glass of wine at Epcot Center ( honeymoon at disneyworld). Did he remind me while at Epcot? No, we had dinner there and he ordered jack and coke….but somehow I forgot he wanted a glass of wine…he’ll he didn’t even remember how was I supposed to? I love the dinner party excuse, that’s freakin fantastic! Even through all the hurt and the pain I a, still able to laugh at how stupid they are….if you like that Geoff…here are some more: I called him stupid one night 5years ago when drunk at a game night with friends…he had given a ridiculous answer that made the whole room go WTF? I just didnt. Use my filter and said what others were thinking….that was his one example of how I was abusive…note I apologized that night and abided by my word to never to do it again
        2nd I asked him if the plane ticket home from saudi was cheaper for Friday vs Thursday would he be ok with me staying 1extra day…that was me being manipulative.
        3rd, he asked my opinion about a light fixture he installed in the shed, he had changed locations from its original place. I said I liked the original position better but to leave it becaus eit wasn’t that important….he said that was me being ungrateful…
        I could go on but my sides are hurting from laughing at myself falling for it and saying omg you’re right, I did call you stupid, I am a bad wife…. Whatever. Dinner parties and wine…we should hook the 2 of them up!

        • I’ll paraphrase Winston Churchill and Lady Astor: Geoff, if I were still your wife, I’d poison your wine! And, I’d retort, if you were still wife, I’d drink it!

        • I didn’t kiss him the ‘right way’ when he came home from work. Yep. That was one of his ‘reasons’ for his many affairs.

      • Geoff,
        Same thing here, before someone got him a chair at my company annual Party (formal dress) he just left me there. I thought I would die of shame…ONE time I ask him to do something to support my career and he dissapears with 250 people wondering WTF? He said I “embarrassed him”, but he wasn’t too embarrassed to take the money I made…

        • You have a chair story too? Is there some official “Behavioral Handbook for Lying, Cheating Assholes” that I’m not aware of?

          • Yes I believe there is. We have never heard of it because we are not lying cheating assholes so it would be of no use to us.

        • Wow 2chair stories, a glass of wine, And non ironed clothing…I wish I could say it doesn’t surprise but it still does every time I hear something new. I guess I am still a chump. Lol

          • This is great! Started my day off laughing, Thanks everyone, I know it’s not really funny, but at least now I CAN laugh…

          • I’m a veteran chump but new to this site, and I can only say I wish I knew about Chump Lady before now! I will share my story someday, but for now I am just enjoying the validation that you all provide. Reading Chump Lady’s articles and your comments has helped me more than therapy ever did. So thank you.

            Obviously, the comments trigger memories and emotions that I have tried to bury, but this site has put everything in a whole new perspective for me. For that I am truly grateful and I feel like a new, empowered woman, and that I am living so much more “consciously” since visiting here.

            Anyway, the ironing issue brought back a fond memory: I had ironed a shirt for XH one morning and he insisted that I iron a different shirt that he wanted to wear that day. After a “discussion” as to why he couldn’t wear the shirt I had already ironed, I ended up ironing the different shirt. Found out later that he’d had a nooner set up with his OW. Guess he wanted to look extra dashing that day. Talk about NPD mindfuckery.

            More – much more – to come!

            • I packed a bag for a hunting trip for my H not realizing what he was “hunting”. But this is the best story. My H has a difficult job and gets up early and travels 1 hr to work a 12 hr swing shift. I get up with him in the AM make breakfast, lunch, coffee and pack it all up so he can go out the door. When the weather got cold I would go out and start his truck so it could warm up and defrost alittle. One morning he informed me I didn’t start his truck “soon enough”. Last time I did that it can be below zero he can start it himself!

      • “Haven’t looked at dinner parties quite the same way since!”

        Geoff, I laughed out loud at that!

      • My wife justified her staying out until 3, one time when she was scheduled to return from a trip to see out toddlers after a week away, by ssaying that I had given her the wrong floor for picking up her friend at the airport that afternoon. This minor inconvenience justified her punishing me and the boys by coming home 12 hours late, drunk as usual.
        I deserved to be taught a lesson for making a mistake. I wonder what the boys did? Thye went to bed crying that mom had not come home.

    • You forgot to get him a glass of wine? Isn’t it incredible the stupid shit they use as excuses for cheating and then dumping their families? Mine complained I didn’t play board games enough.

      • I would be willing to bet my life savings that if he ever once asked you to play more board games, you would have done it for him…just a guess though.

        • Mine complained that I didn’t iron his shirts one evening when he was really tired and leaving on a work trip the next morning. This proved either that I didn’t love him, or was just a generally mean person, depending on the moment.

          This after he had told me 3 times over the previous 6 months that the little things I did to show I loved him were ‘just normal’ and ‘didn’t mean anything’. (He had accused me of not showing I loved him, I reminded him of all the little things I did and said to show that, he was mad, I think because he knew he didn’t do that kind of stuff.) The first time, I figured he was just being mean bc he was mad. The second, not so sure. After the third time, I figured he meant it, and stopped. Ooooooh, he hated that! Big cut in the kibbles!

          And all this from the man who, for probably 6 years, would be late about half the time coming home after work to be with the kids so I could go to work two evenings a week. I explained how hard it made things for me at work, I talked and cried about how much it stressed me, and how it stressed the kids too because they felt my stress, I stormed, begged, threatened, did EVERYTHING. But he apparently DID NOT CARE. I call CHUMP!

      • If he wasn’t complaining about board games, it would have been something else. It was just an excuse to justify his bad behavior.

        Mine complained of similar (minor) things, as if they were a reason to cheat. Ridiculous.

        • I read books before I go to sleep. This was really, according to him me ignoring him.

          • Oh, I read them in the evenings after dinner in the living room while he was working or reading on his computer. That was ignoring him too because I was absorbed in the book (not him). Additionally, I was WAY over on the over side of the living room in comfy chair (about 6 feet away at the most) and he always sat sideways on the couch with his legs taking up any space I could sit. Two adults reading in the evening seemed rather peaceful to me, but I was supposed to watch him while he read, I guess.

            • YOu were supposed to watch him with an adoring look on your face, pausing every few moments to stroke his arm and tell him how wonderful he is, then going back to just staring at him with adoration and basking in his wonderfulness. Sheesh…get with the program! It’s all about him!

              • OMG I’m an avid reader.
                But, he wouldn’t let me watch anything I wanted on TV and for about 8 years jerked me around about getting a TV in the bedroom so I could watch what I wanted. I used to sit next to him on the couch to read, but then he gradually kept turning the TV up louder and louder and louder so I couldn’t concentrate at all. Said he couldn’t hear…..
                The last couple of years I just stayed in the room, and a couple of times when we weren’t “getting along” he actually told me “Go to your room”.
                And you know what, I was happy to, just so I didn’t have to talk to him or even be in the same room. But what a pompous ass, huh? He even told me once when there was something I really REALLY wanted to watch to “go watch it on the computer”. And I TOOK this shit! Ay Yi Yi.

        • My ex told the counselor he asked me to “get up out of my chair, get off the computer” but I wouldn’t do it, I still sat there every evening. Doesn’t sound too wacked right? Until you know that I work from home, and so yes, I need to sit in front of my computer…

          • I read these post and I say to myself; I thought I was the only one. Are they crazy! I work 3 days a week. Have 4 day weeknds. Everyone at work evnies my schedule that I worked 16 yrs to get. Who doesn’t like it. Quess who my H. It was the one point in our relationship that I REFUSED to change. REFUSED over all his screaming and hassling.

    • They will give any excuse for being a pr–k rather than admit they are. You could be the best wife ever but for some men it will never be enough

  • “be honest, expect much drama (short of physical violence), express remorse, commit fully to the marriage, and be immediately transparent.”

    To be fair, my ex did a lot of this immediately. That’s probably why I thought we stood a chance. Was his remorse all that I thought it should be? Not really. He did not beg me and promise me that he would do anything to keep me. But he did seem really sorry about it and the fact that I was hurting. He listened to me scream, yell, etc. He answered all of my questions. At the time I believed truthfully… now I believe he was probably at least mostly truthful. Not bad for a cheater. (I’m grading on a curve) He stopped the affair and let himself be monitored (which is how I know it was, at least at that time, over). Yeah, we had some shit where they continued to text a little for the few days immediately following. And when I would look at his phone or check his email sometimes he would demand that he get to look at MY phone/email. But he was, at least temporarily, a pretty good boy. And I was beginning to reward his good behavior with the kibbles he required and starting to do the pick me dance.

    The fully committing to the marriage part is where he screwed up. Sure, he SAID he was fully committed. But when push came to shove and I was forcing him to prove it and SHOW me (i.e. cut out the other woman completely from his life, even though there might be a professional cost to that and some explaining to do), that’s where he failed. In a huge way.

    And here we are.

    • I could have written so much of this:
      “my ex did a lot of this immediately. That’s probably why I thought we stood a chance. Was his remorse all that I thought it should be? Not really. But he did seem really sorry about it and the fact that I was hurting. He listened to me scream, yell, etc. He answered all of my questions. At the time I believed truthfully… now I believe he was probably at least mostly truthful. He stopped the affair and let himself be monitored (which is how I know it was, at least at that time, over). And when I would look at his phone or check his email sometimes he would demand that he get to look at MY phone/email. But he was, at least temporarily, a pretty good boy. And I was beginning to reward his good behavior with the kibbles he required and starting to do the pick me dance.

  • Also my cheater did at one point say it was almost a relief to be caught. Guess that double life thing was kinda hard. Who woulda thought?

    I actually think it is possible to live a double life (maybe not for years?) and feel shame. Guilt seems like it would be the more difficult emotion for them to feel. Once my ex was caught I think shame was his primary emotion. Because it is a very self-centered emotion. It was about how could HE have been this shitty person. He kept saying he’s not this kind of guy. It was about how could he hide it so no one found out what he did and what a shitty person he is. I believe he felt bad about what I was going through, but mostly he was worried about himself, his image, and he wanted to contain the damage. I guess he thought I would never leave, break up the family (because that’s what I’ve apparently done now… not him… by the way), so he concentrated on containing the damage at work (where the OW happened to be). And by doing that and essentially choosing her over me and his family, it caused me to leave.

    Deference, not so much. “Breaking down” in sympathy? No.

    • here’s my quick take on the cheater feeling “relief” after having been caught: Mine also expressed how relieved he was “now that it was out there” and he was (falsely) committing to renewing the honesty and openness in our marriage. In hindsight, I find this “relief” is a way for them to take the blame off of themselves, and put it all on you for agreeing to stay with them despite the blatant revelation of who they *really* are and the harm they’re willing to put you through.

      For me – it was after few months and a couple more D-Days later, I was furious and asked him what on earth it was he wanted from ME. If he wasn’t interested in giving up dingbat OW, that’s fine – but why on earth did he expect me to stick around through this crap? His answer: I could have avoided the subsequent D-Days, since I could have left him as soon as I found everything out on D-Day #1. So in other words, since I was making an effort to salvage our marriage in light of knowing what he’d just done, I must have been asking for more shitty treatment.

      It’s as if this was his internal dialogue upon being caught: “What ‘relief’ now that BB knows! Now that the mask has totally fallen off, and my ugly true self is exposed — hell, if she chooses to stick it out with me, why – that’s her OWN damn fault. Not my problem!”

      IMO, The only thing they feel bad about is loss of cake / status / other’s positive perception of them. It’s not guilt. It’s not remorse. It’s not shame.

        • BB and Geoff – Wow, that is amazinly f***-up of your spouses to say that. Geez.

      • True, true BB. You know how we all look back and replay conversations (that chump hobby I won’t miss)?
        My little liar laid in the bed holding me as he confessed, finally, that he and his ‘friend’ across the street were sexual. I didn’t get so mad, because I was just exhausted from all the sleazyness, and then he said – You’re the best wife in the world!
        I told him it had to stop, it never did. I realize now he was thrilled that I didn’t explode or stomp out of the house, and his sick mind took that as permission!

    • This also:
      “Also my cheater did at one point say it was almost a relief to be caught.

      Once my ex was caught I think shame was his primary emotion. Because it is a very self-centered emotion.

      It was about how could he hide it so no one found out what he did and what a shitty person he is. I believe he felt bad about what I was going through, but mostly he was worried about himself, his image, and he wanted to contain the damage.”

      I’ve started talking and telling people and he’s quite concerned about who knows, and has asked me to tell him who I tell, so he’ll know what to expect. Yeah, right! It’s just the tip of the iceberg. When I serve him with divorce papers I am going to send emails to everyone I can think of and tell them we are getting divorced and why, including some higher ups at his job to suggest they audit his receipts from biz trips, where he often met up with his strumpet. I intend to cause him as much shame as I possibly can.

  • Just because someone breaks down doesn’t mean they really feel remorse. Narcissists have shallow emotions and can often be good actors. Or they just don’t feel things very deeply at all, and they think that’s normal. I guess it is normal…for them.

    Not good for others, however.

    • Many of them are good at PRETENDING remorse, but they never really feel it. My ex bragged that he could cry at will. He was an expert at pretending to have feelings, but it was all an act to impress others with how wonderful and sensitive he was.

      • This is another reason we chumps need to forgive ourselves for not realizing this sooner. Some of these people are the best of actors, even convincing themselves that they care (they don’t) when it is convenient for them.

        • Mine used to cry. I thought he was “sensitive” Now I think it’s ALL bullshit. I have no ficking idea if ANYTHING was real. Mind boggling, just freaks me out.

          • Toni, I now know it wasn’t real, at least not for a long long time, and even before was probably ever only very shallow and never what I thought. I am coming into acceptance on that. Oh hell, am I finally getting to MEH??????? Wow…….

      • Yes, Glad, they pretend at all sorts of things, including love, fidelity, devotion and any semblance of honesty or integrity. Once another “bauble” catches their eye (or crotch), the con begins in earnest. I don’t understand how they’re able to do it so ruthlessly, and frankly, I don’t want to. Issue a One Way Ticket to the Island of Lost Spouses, asap.

    • My ex hardly shed a tear during our very long marriage, but when he decided he wanted out of our marriage so he could be with his married coworker he cried me a river. It was so out of character that I worried he had a brain tumor or something. I felt incredibly sorry for him, worried about him, etc. It wasn’t until later that I learned what was really going on. He used my compassion to make me feel sorry that he was cheating on me and leaving me. I’m sorry, but it took me way too long to realize I was the one who truly needed my own compassion. After he left he was definitely not sorry, he already had all his legal ducks in a row while my head was spinning just trying to comprehend what was happening. Don’t feel sorry for them when they cry those crocodile tears, they are just crying for themselves.

  • LOL – Immediate remorse? Didn’t see that.

    The first time, my ex-wife drug out a litany of petty things that had happened during our marriage (everything from being my being grumpy over a game of Scrabble to the way I cut my hair–I kid you not).

    The second time she said, “When we had that argument about the camera, I decided I didn’t care about you anymore”, and this was apparenty about 3-4 weeks after starting a new online romance with a former boyfriend.

    Yeah, remorse? Never saw that.

    • Me either TH, even though we were married for 25 years and he professed to adore me, I never saw one bit of regret. As soon as I caught my ex, he didn’t come up with even a petty excuse. He just looked at me with dead cold eyes and I knew he was gone. When I asked why he never told me and what he he had thought was going to happen (he had been cheating on me with multiple affair partners for the previous 17 years), he said in a deadened voice: “I just always thought we’d be together…” That was the best explanation I got.

      • Horrifying to see that look in the eyes of someone you loved, and thought you knew!

        But he really did think you’d always be together, because he wanted it all, all the good stuff you brought into his life, AND the cake too.

  • I just found this website and thank God I did. It’s offering me some really helpful insight into what other people are going through and what my stupid ass husband might be thinking. Here’s the thing: I need to know if I’m a chump or not. Maybe I’m in denial but my situation does seem different and I’d like your advice on whether I am behaving in a rational way (because I feel like I’m in the middle of an out-of-body experience right now. I’m stupefied and stunned.)

    My husband of 15 years has always been the picture of integrity and honor. A real boy scout in every way. He helps around the house, is a devoted father, was very loving and kind to me and my family. We both have good careers and he has always been very supportive. A few years ago, I noticed that he stopped wanting to have sex with me. This wasn’t really a problem, frankly, because his drive was always much, much stronger than mine and I was happy for the break. I am not someone who is into wild and crazy things. For me, sex is more about love and intimacy, an expression of closeness. I wasn’t hanging from a trapeze or anything. I’ve never been that type of person. Shoot me. I’m sorry.

    I also noticed that he seemed less interested in what I had to say and wasn’t on me all the time to spend time with him. He just seemed distant. Well, about two years ago, I checked his phone and wasn’t there a message from a woman. Nothing too damning, just “Hi, wanted to call and wish you a great morning…” or some such. But I could tell by the sound of her voice that this person was closer to him than a colleague. She had a very flirty voice and she sounded very familiar with him. Don’t I find out after checking the number on Google that it was an old girlfriend of his from his hometown. I became a yelling, crying mess (which I’m not proud of. That’s not me either). He swore they were just friends and he would end all contact with her.

    A YEAR later, after still feeling so much distance, I figure out the password to his computer and check it. Wow! Holy Shit! My world came crashing down. There must have been a hundred emails to his same woman. He loves her. He has always had thoughts of her. He thinks about her night and day. He wishes he could be with her. She’s the most “amazing” and beautiful woman in the world. Lots of really raunchy stuff on there, too. Which I won’t even repeat. It was so filthy (on both sides) that I can’t even believe it was from my husband. What he wanted to do to her. Memories of their time together all those years ago. How he wishes he could be with her every day. It was disgusting and heartbreaking. I think the emotional stuff was worse than the dirty things. But they both nearly killed me and left me in stunned silence. I confronted him and he broke down in tears. He admitted that he started calling and emailing with her SEVERAL YEARS BEFORE but that it was just emails. Nothing ever happened. I should say that my husband travels for work a lot and I have no idea what he does in the hotel rooms. I have no way of knowing. I just trust. He is gone maybe four or five days each month.

    For a year, everything seemed okay. I checked the phone and computer all the time. I have all the passwords. Then, more recently, I find MORE emails to this same woman. Apologizing for how he suddenly disappeared. How he still thinks of her all the time. How she’ll “always be in his heart.” I think it would be easier if this was a one-night stand with a random slut. The fact that this woman is someone he had a romantic relationship with for many years tears me up inside. I look on her Facebook and she’s pretty and very successful. I keep dreaming that she’ll get run over by a pick-up truck or burned in a horrible fire, which makes me feel horrible about myself. I’m also so furious with him it’s getting hard to get back to a normal life.

    I think he truly does have remorse and he swears that he’ll never have contact with this woman again. He also swears that it’s only been emails, that he only saw her once for lunch a few years ago while he was home visiting his mother when she was ill. He says they never had a physical relationship. It was just an emotional affair.

    Here is where I could use some feedback. Is it the same if it’s just an emotional affair, just email and the phone? Should I even believe him that’s all it was? Is it possible for us to get back to a normal life? He told this woman he LOVED her. That she was in his mind 24/7. And the sexual things he said would curl your hair. It’s just unbelievable. I need advice. This is very new for me and I’m so sick about it, I can hardly work or be around him without wanting to smash in his face with a brick. WTF???!!!

    • If it didn’t affect your marriage (badly), you wouldn’t be posting here, would you?

      So how long do you intend to go on policing him and snooping? What happens when you stop? How do you know there won’t be more romances that destroy your marriage in the future if this woman gives him the shove?

      How many years have you been dealing with this altogether already?

      • I found the first phone message two years ago. I found the mess of emails and text messages a year ago. Now, here it is again. And when he finally broke down and admitted it, he admitted that it’s been going on for at least five years. He says he loves me and doesn’t know what he would do if he couldn’t be here with us every day. That he wants to be home. He didn’t offer any explanation for why he indulged in this behavior, just that he’s really sorry. He looks awful. Tearful and broken. I think he wants to be here with us and I know he loves the children. It just feels to me (and from what I saw in the emails), it seems like he really loves this woman and maybe always did. And he sure does seem like he wanted a physical relationship with her (if he hasn’t already had one.) If he loves her so much, why wouldn’t he just leave us? I feel so many things right now: anger, disbelief, confusion. The more questions I ask, the less I know. The emails weren’t just sexual (although they were VERY sexual), they were very loving. Frankly, I think this woman is “the one who got away” a long time ago and I feel like she’s going to haunt our lives forever. I just feel like leaving would destroy our children’s lives. It would be so horribly embarrassing. He says he’d do anything to just be forgiven and he knows what he did was wrong. But it keeps happening. And with the same person, too.

        • NC, please please please get out and do not allow him to abuse you any longer…because that is what this is, out and out abuse. Of course he had sex with her, over and over again. How silly to claim otherwise, except that is what these sickos do. Because it is not damaging enough to find out what you have found, they have to add to the mindfuckery by lying even now. It is laughable that they all follow the same playbook, but it’s what they DO. You are being abused, you and your children are being betrayed. It took me many many months to realize that, but once I did, I was free. He is the predator. He is not sorry he hurt you, he is not sorry he did this, he is only sorry he got caught. He wants his cake and eat it too, he wants the illicit pleasure, he wants the power and control. He is NOT a great guy, and despite what you say about his wonderful love for and relationship with your children, IMHO a loving father with a great and genuine relationship with his children will not risk causing them immense harm, but isn’t that what his behavior has caused? He cannot be that worried about the health and welfare of his children when he is out doing things that will, quite simply, destroy and blow up their world. He has not only betrayed you, he has betrayed them.

          Believe me, I know. I am 1 1/2 years out from my D-Day. My ex was the “most loving” husband and father, claimed he adored us and told everyone he met. But last year I found out that he had been having a 17 year affair with 2 co-workers. There’s more but you get the picture. And so you don’t think this is somehow too different from your situation, after I kicked him out on D-Day, he claimed he “loved” one of those affair partners more than me now, though he still loved me, and he was now going to finally marry her. I had a choice, I could do the pick me dance and get him to stay, for a while, and police him like the pathological liar he is, or I could move on. How long would the agony have lasted if we tried to “work it out”? You know and I knew even then–the rest of our lives, or until I finally had enough abuse. So I kicked him out. NC, your husband even had a second chance when you caught him the first time, and he showed his true colors. What is that saying? “When someone shows you who they are, BELIEVE THEM.” He has shown you over and over who he is, you have no choice but to believe him now.

          You say that YOU don’t want to damage his relationship with your children, that YOU don’t want to devastate the children by having to sell the house, that YOU feel sorry for him because he seems really really sorry, and that YOU cannot bear breaking up the happy home your children have. But you have to understand, CL, as mind blowing as it is, that HE HAS ALREADY DONE THIS. It is gone, destroyed, everything you worked for, everything you thought existed, everything you thought he was. I am sorry, but speaking from experience, he probably was never really the man you believed him to be, instead he is probably just a shallow version of the person he pretended he was, and now you know. You cannot be held hostage to the abuse, you cannot believe that you would be the one blowing up your family and everything you hold precious—HE ALREADY DID THAT, AND HE DID IT WITH HIS EYES OPEN, WITH GLEE, WITH NO SHAME AND NO GUILT. What do you think that makes him NC? Not a healthy person, not a good father, not a loving husband.

          NC, these guys are like actors in a one-man play starring…surprise, their awesome selves. They play to the only audience they really care about…themselves, their most favorite and important person. They are profoundly self-absorbed, absurdly shallow, and childishly self-centered. And if they can manipulate you into believing they are really really sorry, then all the better for them. They get it all, two women clawing for them, the facade of a happy home, the pretense that they are decent men and loving fathers…. The one thing I know is that perpetuating the lies and lack of authenticity for the “sake” of the children does not in fact benefit anyone at all, it just continues the abuse.

          I know that is hard to envision now, but I am 1 1/2 years past D-Day. I was quickly divorced. I began dating a wonderful man 6 months ago, and I just got engaged to be remarried. I never realized how shallow my ex was until I saw the depth and real emotion of my fiance, and his real devotion to his own children. If I had tried to reconcile with my ex, I would still be caught in the living death of false reconciliation. It makes me nauseous to think about how happy and free I am now, and how deadened and destroyed I would still be if I had stayed in that farce of a marriage.

        • “he’s really sorry. He looks awful. Tearful and broken”

          There is a BIG difference between being sorry for what you’ve done, and for feeling sorry for yourself. Your husband is sorry he got caught and now has this mess to deal with. I went through something very similar with my STBX 4 times over a 5 year period. The last 2 times he was cheating with the same ho-worker that he stills swears is “just a friend” and they never had sex. I know for a fact that they sent similarsexually explicit emails to each other and said the “I love you’s”, that they had make-out sessions in his car after work, etc. That’s just a friend?

          Please, trust your gut instincts. That was my biggest mistake, I didn’t listen to my gut and I suffered for 5 years in hell before I finally woke up.

          Don’t listen to his words, look at his actions. Its easy to cry and look sorry. But its what he has done (over and over) that should speak to you the loudest.

        • Newly, I’m so sorry. Straight off, I’ll tell you his claims they haven’t had sex during this years-long affair is total nonsense. They are meeting during his work trips, I would guarantee you 100% of that.

          Have you read Chump Lady’s article on Eating Cake? because that’s what your husband is doing. He wants you and the family for cover and security, but he wants to continue his affair for thrills and excitement.

          He’s been carrying on for five years. He’s a piece of shit, a lying cheater and a scumbag, not the wonderful father/husband he has pretended to be.

          DO NOT TELL HIM YOU ARE LEAVING! Get your ducks in a row. Talk to an attorney. Make copies of all financial paperwork. Know how much is in every bank account. Move as much as you can into accounts you can access. because with cheaters like your husband, once he knows the game is up, you are not going to believe how rapidly he moves to wipe you out, leave you with nothing, and go to be with his “soulmate” lying piece of shit affair partner. You have to be smart and you have to prepare before he does.

          • I would recommend getting separate bank accounts set up, but only talk half. It doesn’t matter that he is a asswipe. If you take more than half he can come after it. At least my understanding.

        • NewlyC–

          Serial cheaters are very predictable (and a 5-year affair qualifies him). Here is a list I came up with off the top of my head of 15 things that will indicate your sad-at-the-moment husband is not truly engaged in reconciliation:

          15 Signs That Reconciliation Isn’t Happening:

          1. He refuses to answer any question you have (not matter how trivial) about his inappropriate relationship(s) (who/what/when, where, etc.);
          2. He refuses to send a “no contact” email or doesn’ t let you read it or witness it being sent;
          3. After he’s sent a “no contact” message, you discover any contact with any former partner (including contact he claims was simply to “put an end to it”);
          4. He talks about how hard all of this is on him;
          5. He talks about what a good person the affair partner is (e.g., “You’d like her if you got to know her);
          6. He conditions anything you ask of him (e.g., counseling) on you not leaving;
          7. He suggests that you share responsibility in any way for his improper relationship;
          8. He refuses to give you a password to anything (phone, email, social media, bank accounts–no exceptions);
          9. He insists that you not tell the affair partner’s spouse about the inappropriate relationship;
          10. He is breaks an appointment for individual or couples counseling;
          11. He asks you how long it will take for you to “get over it”;
          12. You find a secret cell phone or email account;
          13. He refuses to explain any financial transaction (e.g., cash withdrawals, online purchases, etc.);
          14. He refuses any polygraph test you propose;
          15. He suggest that perhaps you have cheated as well.

          Others may add additional factors. The point is to be on the lookout for these behaviors. You don’t owe anyone reconciliation. It is a gift you can choose to give or not, if it is within you to give (for many of us, 5 years can’t really be “gotten past). But if you notice one or more of these 15 behaviors, he isn’t committed to rebuilding the marriage and hasn’t left you anything to work with. At that point, he’s made the decision for you.

          • wow, good list. We had problems with #2,3 and #5,6,7 definitely happened. Oh and 9. 11 as well, but that was after he was already gone.

          • Oh geez… I’m checking off each and every one of these, Nomar. It’s like they all follow the same stupid playbook for cheating. *sigh* there’s really nothing new under the sun, is there?

            • Yeah, I remember it being a bit spooky when I found an infidelity support site a week or so after D-day and the veterans there proceeded to tell me *exactly* what my ex would at each step of the (false) reconciliation process. This went on for weeks. It was a huge relief, like a doctor telling you how an illness will proceed, when the fever will break, etc. No less painful or nauseating, but easier to bear.

            • Yes, it is amazing how similar. My STBX said/did most all of these things. So emotionally hurtful. He felt so entiteled.

        • you are definaetly kidding yourself an affair is a type of domestic abuse and the chump wife that puts up with it is a fool in deed.

      • Affairs are like cockroaches. If you find one, there are tenfold more that are undetected.

          • Arnold, you are probably right, but boy does that ever scare me. What I already know about my STBX’s sordid affairs is bad enough. I think I neer want to know about the rest, what’s under the iceberg.

        • Totally agree, Arnold. Like Dr. Phil says about rats … you may see one but there are 30 more hiding in the walls.

        • might I add once a cheater always a cheater they move on to the next victim sad but true.

    • ((((((Newlychumpified))))))) – the parentheses indicate hugs.

      So sorry for your situation, but glad you found us.

      The facts you describe are very common for those of us here. IMO? Not a close call. Yes, they’ve had sex. Yes, he is lying. Grown ups don’t engage in the conduct you describe based only on sentimentality. We get laid. Yes, it’s been going on a loooooong time. Yes, you’d have to have some serious mental issues (likely a personality disorder) to live a double life for that long. Yes, it is extremely rare that reconciliation is possible with such a person, and only then when the cheater truly does the heavy lifting (e.g., LOTS of individual and couples therapy) for the rest of their life (like an alcoholic goes to AA meetings). And yes, even then what you patch together is a living hell of hyper-vigilance and a general sense that you’re only together because the Marriage Police stay on the case. You deserve better than that.

      Should you go back to your “normal life?” Well, you didn’t have a normal life. You had a lie you were living. The cheating and lying have been part of your normal life and you just didn’t know it. Now you do.

      I’m sure others will weigh in, but my advice would be to file for divorce ASAP and begin to disengage. Nothing gained by hysterics. As emotionally unconnected as he is, it won’t register with him anyway. Just begin moving away from this abusive jackass and toward a better life.

      Praying for strength for you for the difficult couple of years that lie ahead.

      • You need to really get a handle on this: Your husband is an abuser. Do not stay with an abuser.

        • might I add once a cheater always a cheater they move on to the next victim sad but true.

    • First off sorry you are here. This site will help you sort out a lot of what is going on in your head/heart right now. You’ll still cry and feel like crap for quite some time but hopefully you’ll eventually get a laugh or two. I’m only 6 months into my rodeo and from my experience you will be a mess for awhile so stay strong.

      I don’t think your situation is really any different than any of us here. He’s having a EA and you most likely haven’t found out about the physical affair (yet). Being a chump is being lied to, being played to believe something other than the truth. So to answer your question. You are a Chump.

    • He’s lying. It went physical. Polygraph him on that.
      Even if it did not, you may never be able to get past this betrayl. Few do, despite the “pay for reconciliation services” sites calims to the contrary.
      Truth is 30% of couple touched by infidelity stay together. Of that 30% , about 7% report being happy. So, you have about a 2.1% chance of having a happy marriage after this.
      Do not buy into the Industrial Reconcilliation Complex Industry claims of the possibility of a stronger, better marriage. It is bullshit.

    • Add me to the “oh yes it’s been physical, he just hasnt copped to it yet” line.

      What you do next is up to you – I’d throw him out of the house and tell him he has to earn his way back in. And I’d consult an attorney stat too, for protection if nothing else.

      ((hugs)) – you came to the right place

      • I agree with Fallulah Gigglepants. As hard and devastating as it will be for you and the kids. Insist that he move out ASAP! The man you thought he was is gone and the ASS that is there now must leave. Be a Cake Nazi. “Get out, No Cake for you!”

        I’ve been in your situation and I didn’t act on this as soon as I should have. He has made shitty choices and Shitty choices get shitty consequences.

        • “Cake Nazi.” LOL. Love this term, and the reference to “Seinfeld” (showing my age there).

          The Cake Nazi says, “NO CAKE FOR YOU!”

    • Newly, I am glad you are here with people who will support you.

      Like others, I wouldn’t believe that it was never physical. But even if that were true, he has betrayed your trust on an ongoing basis for five years. Your husband will likely continue to lie, and just get better at deceiving you. My husband has been promising to break off contact with the OW for a year, and everytime I check he is still calling her and seeing her. I am so tired of policing him. I am not even trying to reconcile any more, just trying to make sure that my kids are not exposed to their affair.

      Please see a lawyer right away. Even if you are not making the decision to leave him yet, a lawyer can help you take the steps you need to protect yourself if you do. I finally saw a lawyer yesterday (after putting it off far too long) and found out some things I wish I had known before. Now I have some things to do before I can proceed with filing.

    • NC,
      I feel for you, I truly do, as everyone else on the site has said. You remind me so much of myself when I first “found out”. Horror, shock, feeling sorry for him, I was so totally freaked out and then I found this site and read every word from when the Chump Lady first posted and I truly believe it saved my life.

      I had no one else to turn, no one I knew that truly understood the way the people here do. And though I didn’t want to listen, or follow the advice (“I CAN’T” my mind kept screaming) but in the end I had no choice. Because no matter what he had been saying for years he lied the whole time. It took a anonymous letter sent to my job and an actual ‘sighting’ to finally convince me.

      We’re here for you, and so so sorry. As stated above, I’m sorry you are here, but glad you found CL

    • Hugs from me too. This is terrible. I agree it probably was physical, and either way will be hard to live with in a normal life. I have been divorced for 2 years, and my cheater ex (with prior sexual affairs) is now living with his latest OW who he swears was “only” an “emotional affair”. They never had sex. Ha! I guess screwing around while I was pleading to stay married did not count.

      Good luck to you in the next steps, whatever those be for you.

    • Ugh, I’m sorry Newly, that you had to go through this. And everytime I hear other people’s stories I get so pissed off!! These cheaters just suck!

      I have to say I also believe he has had sex with her… you said yourself he suddenly lost interest in sex with you a few years ago. That was what first tipped me off about my own husbands affair was how his interest in sex dropped off. I also felt some relief at the break at first, until the suspicion kicked in.

      But emotional affair, sexual affair, the hardest thing about any of it is the fucking lying they engage in. They live this lie and force you to unknowingly live it as well. There you are cluelessly trying to do the best you can to please him, take care of the kids, etc., and he’s betraying you! And when you find out your whole world is turned upside down.

      You already gave him a chance a year ago. And he fucking blew it! You could try therapy and learn more about the motivations (in other words, why it’s all your fault), etc. And then he’ll have you play the pick me dance. But I’m not sure you (or any of us) can live up to these idealized versions of life and love they have in their heads. Although these versions they seem to prefer actually feel empty to those of us who crave real intimacy. We cannot compete with the excitement, newness of an affair partner. Or the fact that they don’t even really experience REAL LIFE with these people. You know, dealing with the kid problems, the household chores. Normal people like us want a real partner. But these folks just want their ego kibbles. And they don’t care who gets hurt in the process. It’s all about THEM.

      Good luck, I know it can take some time to figure things out. You are going through a lot right now. This site can help. But you deserve so much more than this shit that you didn’t ask for. You deserve respect from the people that you love. You deserve to be able to trust the people that you love.

    • “Here is where I could use some feedback. Is it the same if it’s just an emotional affair, just email and the phone? Should I even believe him that’s all it was? Is it possible for us to get back to a normal life? He told this woman he LOVED her. That she was in his mind 24/7. And the sexual things he said would curl your hair. It’s just unbelievable. I need advice. This is very new for me and I’m so sick about it, I can hardly work or be around him without wanting to smash in his face with a brick. WTF???!!!”

      I am very sorry to welcome you into the Circle of Chumplings. We didn’t ask for our spouses to cheat; they just did.

      First, you ask if an emotional affair is the same as a physical one. CL has a blog post on that. Opinions are divided. However, as pretty much everyone here has said, the chances of your husband having a 5+ year emotional affair with a co-worker are pretty much zero. They’ve been on work trips together. They’ve sent several very sexually explicit messages to each other. You’re not naive and stupid. You know they’ve had sex.

      Second, if you read the linked article, you’ll see that cheaters have to be willing to do the work, and they have to accept the very real probability that their actions have irrevocably damaged the marriage. In other words, the burden is on them to prove that they want to make a real go of the marriage and rebuild trust, AND they have to accept that they have no right to demand that you forgive them. The vast majority of cheaters will not be willing to do any of this. There’s a reason that so few marriages touched by infidelity survive, and why those marriages that do survive are very unhappy.

      The third issue is that you can “hardly work or be around him without wanting to smash in his face with a brick.” That shows you that his actions broke your marriage. Can you honestly see yourself trusting him after all of this?

      Talk to lawyers and get an exit plan. Talk with a financial planner experienced in divorce planning. in a no-fault state, you’re entitled to 50% of the marital pot, including his retirement and pension. Establish credit under your own name, and know where all the assets are buried (retirement, pension, investments, etc.). Get therapy to help you sort through the gaslighting and give you support through the process.

      And don’t tell your husband until you’re ready literally to walk out the door with kids and family pet in tow.

      Best of luck, and sorry that you’re now part of the group. Yes, you did deserve better than this!

    • “Just” an emotional affair? Like that makes it any better??!
      IMHO and unfortunate personal experience, it can be as bad as a physical one in many ways, if not worse in many other ways. It means your husband has a real investment in and attachment to this woman, and he is diverting precious emotional energy, devotion, memories, and time that should be going to you to her. NOT OKAY.

      • I agree, pandaqueen. I meant “just” in the sense of limited to being an emotional affair, not that an emotional affair is trivial. In CL’s blog on emotional v. physical affairs, there wasn’t a consensus that one was worse than the other, and certainly everyone thought that all were bad.

        Oh, and that you can never be sure that the emotional affair has never been physical.

      • My H talks every night to the OW on the “secret cell phone” sometimes when he gets home he will talk to me, sometimes he acts like he is miserable to be in same room with me. That is the price of the emotional affair on a marriage!

    • NC Reading your post I know where your head is at. My H of 23 yrs about 1 yr ago suddenly I could just tell things were not the same but could not put my finger on it. Long story really short he has been involved with an old girlfriend he discovered on facebook. It is an EA as they may only have seen each other 4 time in the last year. He is cake eating, getting ego kibbles from this woman and now wants to divorce me and be with her. It is so sophmoric. they have a secret cell phone (not too secret as I know where it is hidden and monitor it) The messages are so insipient it makes you want to throw up. It is easy to concentrate on the OW and blame her and believe me in my case this woman is a pathetic predator, after the easy life she thinks awaits her on my husband’s salary. I have hung in there this last year because I had really hoped that it would blow over and he would come to his senses. My therapist says I am gradually emerging from denial and hope to reality. My suggestions to you:
      1. See a lawyer. It doesn’t commit you to action but it gives you some idea of what is involved, the divorce laws in your state, what you are entitled to.
      2. amass all your financial papers, make copies and keep them off premises. You may need them in in the future and you want to know where your finances are standing. You never know what he is doing with his $$
      3. Get copies of his credit scores. Check to make sure there aren’t any unusual transactions,secret credit cards or accounts.
      4. See a therapist for yourself. You need someone to talk to who is non commital and there for you. If you want to try marriage counseling later then you can but right now you need to sort this out in your mind.
      Honey I have been there am still there. I wish I could reach out , hug you and say “This Sucks, Men Suck How could he do this to you” Start thinking about what you need. Let us know how you are doing.

    • Dear Newly- yes! They had sex! And tons of it, while reveling in their good luck that you bought his lame story!
      I’m going to give u the same advice that Gladitsover did, namely, start your plan of escape, and do it right. Do not feel sorry for him whatever u do, he’s a phony and he USED you to make himself look decent while he acted like a piece of filth. Get angry, but hide it as well as u can while u call Legal Aid, use a friends computer with new email account, make copies of his pension plans and whatever else u can think of.
      Time to be loving on yourself, he does not deserve you any more!

  • I think it may be “prostrate” … otherwise this is a whole other article 🙂

    And yes… chalk me up as another example to add to your list of not breaking down in sympathy lol

  • Newlychumpified, my heart goes out to you. My husband of 36 years did the same to me. Became involved in a very emotional affair with his married coworker (former grad student). I had told him over several years how much his relationship with her bothered me, but they worked together closely and it wasn’t like I could fly around with them on business trips and sit between them. He assured me repeatedly that they were just friends, but that was all a lie. I found a journal where he had written about his love for her, how he was planting seeds to break up her marriage, how he bought her clothing and jewelry and loved to see her wearing them to work. Even with the journal in my hand confronting him he still denied there was anything going on. My advice to you is that it will not end. He hasn’t been able to give her up. I can assure that although going through a divorce after so many years is an incredibly difficult experience you can get through it and end up happier on the other side. I’m one and a half years post D-day and living in a small house of my own. I’m dating someone who treats me really well and helps me to realize what a messed up situation I was in before. It hasn’t been easy, but it’s so much better living with truth than constantly feeling like you have to check up on someone to monitor their lies. You deserve better.

    • Divorcing him means a few things. A) it will break the hearts of my children, who are totally devoted to him. As much as I hate him right now, I don’t want to damage that relationship for their sake. B) We’d have to sell the house (which would also devastate the children) because maintaining it would be too expensive if he had to maintain another one C) I feel so sorry for him. He seems legitimately sorry. I’ve never seen him so broken and sad. D) There is NO divorce in either of our families. We have so many friends together. Breaking apart that life seems unfathomable. We’ve worked so hard for the many good things we have and for the happy home our children enjoy.

      The part from the latest email to her that killed me the most: he said he was “making the best of his situation and getting by the best he could.” Oh, and he was just focused on being a good father right now and centering his life around the children. But that she was always in his heart and in his mind. And that he dreams about her all the time and wishes things were different. I feel like I want to go all Lifetime TV Movie of the Week on this woman. Push her off the Grand Canyon. My main feeling is that I don’t want to hurt our children. But they’ve seen the tears (even though they don’t know what they are about). He looks like the sad victim and I’m the screaming bitch. But I can’t correct that assumption without damaging their relationship with their father. This is awful!

      • I wrote what I wrote before I read this, but I will reiterate that they can still have a close loving relationship with their father, but this is a farce of a marriage. Please… he is very fuckedup! And all the kings horses and all the kings shrinks cannot put humptyfuckedup together again!

        • ps: re: screaming. believe me when I tell you that I’m the queen of this… but it doesn’t help. Perhaps start a blog and let it out there or find a good understanding shrink. Or let it out here. Yes, he’ll be the calm “reasonable” one and we come across like the crazies. Of course. This is crazy making stuff.

          Just be thankful that you are a whole person with the entire gamut of human emotions. He is not capable of this. I’m so, so sorry.

      • Completely understand your feelings I didn’t want to stir it up either. Very much the same situation for me too. Married 19.5 yrs. 3 kids. Oldest graduating HS. 15 and 12 yr old boys. We have been living in her small home town (less than 800) for all our married life. She is a teacher there (23 yrs). We have many friends most through the school staff. She has an even larger presence by including all her past students. Everyone knows who we are. Plenty of divorce on her side of the family. None on my side. So trust me when I say that I understand it will be a HUGE shock. It always is

        My prediction is that after about a week his tears will dry up and his sadness will disappear, he will then continue the affair and go and see her. You’ll get mad at him and demand action to remove the other person from his life. He won’t because he doesn’t want to hurt her. Then he will begin to get angry at you because you now know his dirty secret and because you want to talk about it to much. He at some point won’t want to talk about it any more. He’ll tell you it causes to much pain and is to stressful for him. He’ll make promises to you that he will break. It never goes away.

        I know I’m stating what happened to me but I would bet everyone here went though some level of what you are feeling. Key is to stop feeling sorry for him. He is the one that hurt you.

        • Bud is right. His tears are going to dry up really quickly, and then he is going to turn on you. You will be blamed, lied to, manipulated and abused.

          But here’s the important thing….. he will start moving finances to screw you over in divorce. This is almost guaranteed. He doesn’t give a crap about you or your kids. For that matter, he doesn’t really give a crap about the other woman either. He’ll go to her all prepared to start this wonderful new life with his true love, but once the smell of new wears off and they are waking up together every damn morning, the fun will be gone.

          You need to protect yourself and your kids. I wouldn’t tell him immediately it was over, because that lets him get a head start. I would talk to a divorce attorney first, start getting finances in order and taking care of important paperwork. Then I’d throw his cheating ass out of the house and divorce him so fast his head spins.

          Your kids can still see him and have a relationship. You need out. You are living a terrible farce of a marriage. He is a POS lying skunk.

        • I agree with Bud—his prediction is exactly what happened in my case.

        • “My prediction is that after about a week his tears will dry up and his sadness will disappear, he will then continue the affair and go and see her. You’ll get mad at him and demand action to remove the other person from his life. He won’t because he doesn’t want to hurt her. Then he will begin to get angry at you because you now know his dirty secret and because you want to talk about it to much. He at some point won’t want to talk about it any more. He’ll tell you it causes to much pain and is to stressful for him. He’ll make promises to you that he will break. It never goes away.” THIS!! Bud you are spot on!

          I could have been NewlyChumpified word for word. My STBX broke down, sobbed, and was remorseful for about 3 weeks. Now in one breath he will say how remorseful he is for the way he treated me and then turn on a dime and look straight at me as say “I fucking hate you” with the coldest and meanest look in his eyes. He resents anything and everything about me. We do have a wonderful 8 year old son – what kind of man says that to the mother of his child as if I’M the one that did something wrong? and yes I consider him to be a fantastic father and will stick to that all day long. But that is NO reason to keep YOU in a tortured state because how does that allow YOU to be the best mother or best person you can be?

          After the 3 weeks of remorse, he clammed up completely. It was then when I realized it was never going to get better. I had always maintained that I would never be the one to file for divorce. But I knew it had to be – and honestly when that realization hit me, I ran to the bathroom and threw up. When I told him I was filing for divorce, he sobbed and sobbed, but didn’t say he was sorry, didn’t say no, please don’t do this. He said nothing.

          I’m in the same boat, dreading telling our son. Possibly losing our home. BUT, the relationship is dead. It saddens me to no end that my STBX simply couldn’t be a man, handle his business and serve me with papers and end the marriage respectfully. Hell yeah that would have been awful. But instead he buried his head in the sand, didn’t make a single move to end the marriage he so badly wanted to have ended and had a 9 month long aaffair with a coworker and turned a bad situation into sheer torture, completely decimating me.

          He said he’d give me the money for filing and wouldn’t get an attorney. But the money was never coming. He would have us STILL living in this limbo hell if I hadn’t finally woken up and realized he was never going to give the money because he has a pattern of just getting stuck. So I raided my retirement to pay for it. He “won”. He’s getting the divorce he wanted and IT STILL ISN’T ENOUGH because he still lashes out at me, telling me everything I did wrong in the marriage. None of us were perfect but I did not deserve the punishment of a lifetime! He’s very nice to me most of the time but when he’s not nice, man it’s bad. He’s dragging his feet. He’s threatened to get an attorney after promising he wouldn’t and he’s threatened to not give spousal support as promised. I could think he was a good person all day long but when I look at his ACTIONS and the horrible things he has said to me, there is a very messed up person there. And let me point out we’ve been together for 23 years – since we were teenagers. I grew up with him – I NEVER saw this coming. Ever.

          NC – please don’t ever think it is YOU that is ruining anything or breaking up anything. IT’s NOT! Your husband set this in motion. He is simply not man enough to do the right thing. It feels so unimaginably horrible for you right now. WE ALL have been there. I had days where I felt like I couldn’t move, breathe. I never could see the day where i’d stop crying. I cannot promise you enough that time does make things easier. I’m still just as angry and I have days where I go backwards, but more often than not, I can think of these things now and it doesn’t elicit any emotion from me. I’ve also met someone who is wonderfully kind and thinks i’m “cute as hell”. The divorce should be final by the end of the summer. I can’t imagine how i’ll break down that day. But I also never imagined that the person I was fully committed to for the rest of my life could drag me through such an amazing nightmare. Your husband is NOT the person you think he is. He may still have the qualities you think he has, but he now also has those new evil qualities that allowed him to make a fool of you for so very long. Don’t ever forget that. Hang in there. It DOES get easier.

      • A) Yes, that sucks. HE should not have done this to them.
        B) That sucks too. HE should not have done this to all of you.
        C) He made this choice repeatedly for five years. He is not sorry about what he has done to you and your children, or he could not have maintained this behavior for so long. He is sorry that he got caught, and he is sorry that he might lose what he has.
        D) This sucks too. HE is hurting a lot more people than just you and his children.

        I so understand needing to protect your children. Why doesn’t he feel that? Just remember that you are not the one hurting your children with an affair, HE IS.

      • You should do some research re telling kids. There are two schools of thought, but, the majority opinion seems to be that telling the kids is best for them. If you do it, do it with no editorializing-just the facts, mam.
        Kids are confused by divorce, sometimes. Thye should know that this is their dad’s doing, not yours or theirs. Thye also need to know that bad behavior has consequences.
        Nothing worse than keeping the kids in the dark, IMO. There have been enoguh lies (on his part) already. Tell them the truth.

      • A) it will break the hearts of my children, who are totally devoted to him. As much as I hate him right now, I don’t want to damage that relationship for their sake.
        Comment: Yes, it will. But he did it, you did not.

        B) We’d have to sell the house (which would also devastate the children) because maintaining it would be too expensive if he had to maintain another one
        Comment: You will find another home, maybe not as big or as fancy, but a nice place where you can feel safety and peace.

        C) I feel so sorry for him. He seems legitimately sorry. I’ve never seen him so broken and sad.
        Comment: Yeah. I’ve seen that before too. Cry me a river.

        D) There is NO divorce in either of our families. We have so many friends together. Breaking apart that life seems unfathomable. We’ve worked so hard for the many good things we have and for the happy home our children enjoy.
        Comment: Yeah, that does stink. I broke off contact with any mutual friends who still thought my ex was a “great guy”.

        You really just have to decide what you can take. If the things you list here are worth the price of living your life without trust, never knowing when your husband might decide to pull that trigger that you are not willing to pull (because it is pretty obvious these things dont matter that much to him or he wouldnt be risking them), that is your choice and more power to you.

        • And I am truly truly sorry he has put you in this situation. Chump Lady and her people are here for you.

      • Newly,

        I know how scary it is. I had been with my husband 14 years – since I was 19 years old. I could not fathom a future that he was not in. I was a SAHM with a 2 year old and a 8 month old when I found out. I guess at least they didn’t know what the hell was happening and they have accepted their new reality pretty easily. But they will also never know the type of childhood I dreamed and planned on them having.

        I gave my ex a chance as well and he blew it. I ended things only when I knew that staying would seriously kill my soul. When he had broken my heart so completely and totally I knew I deserved more. Even then I hoped he would prove me wrong and fight for the marriage and do what I had asked. He did not. He just blamed me.

        So, I was scared shitless of my unknown future, but what I did was mostly concentrate on the day to day, because that wasn’t too different at least. I then made plans for the future and made small changes in my life to start putting those plans into action. And then went back to focusing on the day to day with these new changes incorporated. And I will tell you, I AM SO MUCH HAPPIER NOW! No, I’m not with anyone else yet, so even alone I am happier. I didn’t realize how unhappy I had been with my ex until he was out of the house. The moment he was gone I felt a huge sense of relief (when I wasn’t also feeling scared). Some of that was just because the insane misery of our “reconciliation” was over, but some of it was just that I hadn’t been truly happy with him for years. I’m not saying I’m a major success story yet, I have a way to go there. But I am happier now than I have been in a long time.

        Please, do not stay with him for the kids or because of the money/house. See a lawyer, find out some specifics. We only get one chance in life and we deserve to make the best of it!

      • A) Stay and you will model dysfunction to your children and they will see this abusive, unhealthy cheater/chump relationship as normal. B) Ask anyone who has ever moved — children and adults survive not growing up in the same house forever. C) Do not feel sorry for him. He’s playing you. Put your focus on YOURSELF. Bad actions have bad consequences — consequences that suck for you and your kids. The sympathy belongs to you, not him. He CHOSE to cheat. Don’t let him do the sad sausage routine. D) Be a trailblazer. No one wants to divorce. My parents are still married, my grandparents, etc. I’m not less of a person because I won’t have a 50 year marriage. I’ve been happily remarried for going on 3 years. I’d take those 3 years with a good man over 300 with a cheater.

        Newly, you aren’t different than other chumps. We all agonize over divorce. It’s terribly unfair — but the OW isn’t the problem. Your husband is. Tell him to go to his Twu Wuv. Don’t dance. Show him the door. Lawyer up.

        Otherwise, you get the marriage you settle for — a guy who is brazenly in “love” with another woman and who disrespects you daily. This shit stops when you say it stops.

        • CL is right about your kids. My STBX came from a family where the parents stayed together in spite of his father’s decades long affair with another woman. My late father-in-law was a total scumbag. Not only did he not divorce his wife, but when his wife finally died after over 20 years of living in the knowledge her husband was cheating on her, he didn’t even marry the Other Woman until days before his own death–effectively screwing her out of his state retirement and military pension. His sons, my STBX and his younger brother, had dysfunction modeled as normal, and both have failed marriages as a result.

          Trust me that my late father-in-law was the only winner in that family.

          Don’t let this happen in yours.

      • Newlychumpified, I understand completely where you are coming from. Both my parents and my ex’s parents married when they were 18 years old and are married to this day. I always expected that coming from parents with very long marriages, that we’d have the same experience. But as you know it’s so hard living with someone who you know doesn’t put you first. I did it for many, many years. My experience is different from yours because my ex left me right as my children grew up and moved away, so we didn’t have young children living at home. It was devastating to be left right at the time I was already grieving the empty next, though. It was like my ex thought, “well, the hard word of raising a family is done, now it’s time to have some fun” and left me high and dry to begin all over again. I remember feeling so disoriented in our grocery store one day and thinking “Last week I was a mother and a wife shopping for a family, and now I’m here shopping for just myself.” I’d never lived alone or been on my own. It was really hard. So I didn’t have a choice in the matter since my ex left me. But I do relate to how difficult it is to dismantle a life you’ve put together for your children. I wish you all the best and understand the depth of pain you are struggling with. A good counselor is a must in the situation you’re in. {{hugs}}

      • I divorced my Ex of 23 years with 2 middle school children. (Elementary school at the time) Their relationship with their father is better than ever. He now has to spend quality time with them without me. They love the one on one time with him. Do not use the children as a reason to stay in your marriage.

      • NC: I don’t have children but I had a AH HA moment last night in thinking about my present situation and my life as a child. My Mom was married to a serial cheater. Stayed with him until he had the decency to divorce her to marry a woman 20 yrs younger than he. I’m sure one of the reasons she stayed was “for the children” even though my father was not much of a presence in our day to day existance and I often wondered as I got older why she didn’t dump his sorry ass. Fast forward to today: I am married to a man who is involved in an EA with an old girlfriend discovered on facebook. I should just dump his ass a bad situation gets worse as weeks go by. Why my inertia? Could it be I am modelling my mother’s response to her own marriage’s disintegration? We are examples our children follow whether we like it or not.

    • NC,

      so sorry you have to be here, but so glad you found us. Your husband makes me wanna vomit. And yes, please listen to everyone above me. There is no “only.” That is one of the 6 or 7 words, that cheaters use who are guilty as hell! He’s had sex with her. And what makes me really nuts is that he hasn’t even bothered to get rid of the evidence! Neither did my husband. Most of them don’t. Let’s not even go into the hows and why of all of that for now.

      Now, please… Leaving him is NOT going to destroy your children’s lives. As a matter of fact, you are far more apt to do that IF you STAY! What message are you sending them? Think they already don’t suspect something or even know or will even find out just as you have? In any case, its a highly dysfunctional household. I guarantee you that there will be no awards for martyrdom and that in time, your children will not only respect your decision but will admire and want to emulate their badass mamma.

      Please, for the love of God… throw that idiot to the curb and let her have him. They deserve each other!

      Second of all. What’s embarrassing about leaving a fucktard? BTW, yes, yes, yes… so many of us have “wonderful,” helpful, really nice, nice, husbands– until we find out the truth of their double life and see a side of them we had no idea they were even capable of.

      Honey, the jig is up. Please get thee and your precious children to a lifeboat. Please seek a counselor for yourself because this is the stuff of nightmares and he has already done a great job of pulling the wool over your entire head.

      OH, why don’t they leave us to be with their sextresses? That is a really great question. I will tell you what I think may very well be the answer. What fun would that be? Honey, its ALL about fantasty. Its all about escaping their “ho hum”, “boring” life. Its because they are empty soulless creatures who get off on the sneaky, sneaky… and also desperately want and NEED all the trappings of a “normal” life. This is why he’s breaking down. Its not YOU that he wants. (not that you aren’t worthy. You sound like an amazing woman!) Its like you and the kids and the house are his appendages that he cannot function without. Well, he’s going to have to learn to have to do so.

      After all… lame, disgusting pun as it is… He’s made his bed.

      I’m so, so sorry, but we will always be here for you. Whatever you decide. But this is the reality of your situation. He is what he is and all the therapy in the world won’t be able to help him. (((hugs))) and much strength.

      • “OH, why don’t they leave us to be with their sextresses? That is a really great question. I will tell you what I think may very well be the answer. What fun would that be? Honey, its ALL about fantasty. Its all about escaping their “ho hum”, “boring” life. Its because they are empty soulless creatures who get off on the sneaky, sneaky… and also desperately want and NEED all the trappings of a “normal” life. This is why he’s breaking down. Its not YOU that he wants. (not that you aren’t worthy. You sound like an amazing woman!) Its like you and the kids and the house are his appendages that he cannot function without. Well, he’s going to have to learn to have to do so.”
        Laurel, this is so right.

        My STBX came home today and when he gave me my cell phone, which was on the counter, he said, “we’ll have to get this upgraded.” That is not the comment of a man preparing to toss me aside to welcome OW into the home. I know OW is pressuring him to divorce me and settle down with her. He, of course, is doing his delaying tactics with her!

        I bring stability into his life. I’m his anchor. OW is fantasy. She is where he can be the Knight in Shining Armor Riding to the Rescue. They can also indulge in sexting and whispers and all sorts of flirting. The reality is that he gets to sneak off 15 minutes here and there. Enough for a coffee, enough for a quickie.

        That’s classic cake-eating behavior, and it’s very abusive. It shows that I’m there for his convenience. Interestingly enough, so is the OW.

        • Ha! My X kept buying me things too, right up to the end, trying to get me to “upgrade” to things I didn’t need, and knowing that in the end I wouldn’t be able to afford stuff on my own anyway, I turned him down. Boy was he insulted!

        • kb your post helped me understand somewhat what is going on with my H. As soon as I leave he will have to face up to the truth that he is an adulteror and his wife left him because of that. He really hates that quality in other men. Even though he says our marriage is over he continues to wear his wedding band. Also his family will not be happy with what he has done and won’t forgive him for it. The OW is a loser; he is married to a winner.

          • Janet, my STBX doesn’t know I’m going to divorce his sorry ass once I’ve paid down my debts and become liquid enough to afford a small place of my own (and that will not take that long to do!). Like your STBX, mine detests men who cheat. Right now, he is enjoying the fantasy; it’s not cheating if you’re entitled.

            • I think mine also thinks he isn’t “cheating” because he never SEES this woman. They communicate by cell phone. I’m sure they haven’t seen each other in about 4 ms. For the life of me I don’t understand it. If I was the OW and “so much in love” I would be down here to see him. I don’t monitor his every move it wouldn’t be that hard. But then I think he would see that he is this adulteror and that would ruin his self image of the good guy.

  • NewlyChumped, you already know the answer because you’ve already lived it, do you want to keep re-living this the rest of your life? You said: “For a year, everything seemed okay. I checked the phone and computer all the time. I have all the passwords. Then, more recently, I find MORE emails to this same woman. Apologizing for how he suddenly disappeared.”

    Even after you found out about this woman and he promised to break it off, he just gave it enough time to where he thought you trusted him again. From my own experience and other forums, the cheating spouse always denies anything they can. And the pity party? Yeah, my ex was the king of the pity party, be calm and listen to him, his pity is for himself. They all say they have not had sex. Mine said that too, then he gave me an STD. Then he accused me of cheating because his saintly affair partner could not possibly have infected him. (BTW, go get tested and never have unprotected sex with your husband again)

    So, will you spend years monitoring him, never trusting him, letting him hurt you over and over again? Using a condom for sex because you can’t be sure where he put his dick? will you keep loving him under those conditions? And aren’t you wondering if he’s set up a new email account you don’t know about?

    How happy have you been over the last year as you obsessively log into his email and check his cell phone and wonder if he’s really alone in his hotel room every month? You get one life, how will you spend it?

    • I honestly feel like, if this woman would just disappear, my life would go back to normal. He’s never been like this before. I think she is his weak spot. If she left and stayed gone, things would go back to the way they were. I am hoping he’s scared enough to lose us that he’ll forget her and stop acting like an ass.

      There is a part of me that really wants to call her and see what kind of person she is. Tell her that we are not just a bunch of faceless people. We are a woman and children with thoughts and feelings. I’d like to ask her … beg her…. to just leave our family alone so that he can hold strong to the vows he took. If she just went away, I feel like that would happen.

      Have any of you ever called the other woman? If so, how did that go? Because my husband knew her many years ago, they have a lot of mutual friends. She knows his family. I have asked about her and looked at her Facebook page. She has what seems like a nice life. People tell me that she’s “sweet and friendly.” Maybe if I call her and beg her to stay away, she will? Is this a totally ridiculous idea?

      • The problem isn’t really her, Newly. The problem is your husband.

        • Agree with Geoff. Your husband is the problem here. She knows you are there and doesn’t care enough about you to stop it, she might care some for the kids because they are part of him and because he has bragged them up. Calling her and giving her a piece of you mind is understandable and might make you feel better but begging will most likely do nothing. It might even make it worse by empowering her. She then gains control. I know this is not what you want to hear but it’s true.

          Now, I’m all for blowing up her world with exposing the real b…ch to her friends. Making her life a bit more difficult. But then he’ll be mad at you for making her upset. All and all It sucks big time and all you can do is stay strong and do what you have been reading here.

        • Also agree with Geoff. You said, “I think she is his weak spot.” That’s kind of like saying banks were John Dillinger’s weak spot, or young boys were Jerry Sandusky’s weak spot. No, the weak spot was their character. And your husband has horrible character (see CL’s articles regarding Dr. George Simon’s study of the the character disordered). The other woman can climb aboard a rocket to Jupiter and it won’t improve your husband’s character one jot. It also won’t reduce the number of willing affair partners left on this planet by any measurable degree.

        • Listen to Geoff.

          It is not the Other Woman’s fault that your husband cheated. Sure, she was available. Sure, she knows he’s married and is okay with poaching on your turf. Even so, your husband had a choice.

          He chose her.

          You are starting to engage in the Pick Me dance. Unfortunately, when he chose to cheat, he chose her.

          • I agree it does no good to contact the other woman. She is not a person who cares about you. It is your husband’s choice to engage in a relationship with her and he is the one you must deal with. Remember to take care of yourself and treat yourself really well. The best thing you can do is put energy into your own life. That way, if your marriage doesn’t make it you’ll have a good network of support to help you get through the hard times.

        • Geoff is right you know. Would you do this? No you are an honorable person,committed to your relationship. I have been tempted in my 23 yrs of this relationship, hit on etc.. but would not even involve myself in a friendship with another man too risky. Would not encourage it. Why? Because I would never want to cause the person I love any pain.

      • she won’t stay away. she doesn’t care about you. She cares about herself. And it’s your husband that should be showing loyalty to you, anyway, not her.

        I tried to appeal to the other women to get another fucking job. We even attempted to pay her off to “help” her during her brief exit from my husband’s workplace. Then she came back. And my husband allowed it. And I demanded my half of the money back after I kicked him out 🙂 I had tried to help my husband come up with something she could go do… help her get a better career, whatever. She had no interest in that. And my husband also didn’t even work with me in hatching any plans. I thought we would be a team trying to get rid of her if he really wanted to save the marriage. But no. I even did feel sorry for her when she claimed her husband was abusive, (not like my fabulous husband! fabulous to her, I guess) and suggested maybe she should leave him. But, like my husband, she is all woe is me pity party with no actual solutions. They just like to sit around and play martyr. And fuck other peoples spouses apparently.

      • If she cared about other people, she would not be banging your husband. I tried to get the OW to back off, first by pleading that I wanted to try to heal my marriage. She said yes, and she was sorry and she would step back. Didn’t happen, they just became more deceptive. Then I tried undermining their relationship with distrust. It worked, but not to my advantage. He started being (more) abusive and deceptive to both of us. Then I finally had to threaten her to keep her away from my house. At this point I had given up on my h, but not my children.

      • NC, I called my EW’s Emotional Affair partner, after threatening my EW with it if she ever contacted him again….. She did, and I called him.

        Made NO difference. I got the “we never had sex” bs. She professed love for this guy after meeting him online for 3 months. After another YEAR of this garbage. I called HIM. She still contacted him further. So I then sent a letter to HIS wife.

        My EW went through the ROOF!! How dare I involve her (even though she was screwing her husband)!!!

        There are just too many parallels here. Please learn from us. I really wish I’d had this site 3 years ago.

        Fast forward three plus years…. She is now married to the OM, for over a year. She cleaned out the savings account two days before filing for divorce. I chumped for over a year…. after all, there was no sex…!! Riiiight????

        Listen to your gut, get a lawyer. He doesn’t care for anyone besides himself.

      • I left a message for the OW once, that would be after the first time my ex told me he had cut off all contact. When I found that only 3 days later he was on the phone with her he said she was just so torn up he’d answered her call, poor thing. He’d also told me she was a very sweet person (of course). So I left her a message asking her to give him space to decide whether he wanted to leave me or not, just asked that she not call or email him for a few days.

        She told him that I left a threatening message, that I threatened to KILL her, and that it scared her so badly she deleted the message…oh lordy, and my ex was eating that up, telling me I was so evil, etc, etc. Save me from the liars. So no, in my experience calling the OW is likely not going to help. You have to realize that not only is your husband unethical, so is the woman who’s willing to have an affair with a married man. If she had true empathy in the first place she wouldn’t be the OW.

      • No no no! NC, your life will NOT go back to normal if the OW goes away. In my case, the OW who was a coworker actually left the only place she’d ever worked. I am inclined to believe she and the STBX aren’t carrying on the affair but there has been some contact. Life most definately did NOT go back to normal when my STBX stopped seeing her. In fact, it got worse. He resents me for everything he’s “missed out on”, accuses me of not working harder in my career and because I don’t make enough money, it’s all my fault that we are having financial difficultly in figuring out 2 housholds. Your husband will not go back to you like nothing ever happened because if he couldn’t give her up for 5 years, what makes you think he could now? Also, if you’re STILL checking his cell/email, when do you think YOU would be able to stop that? That is not a marriage.

        I too actually think the OW in my case, seems like a nice, normal person. But then I quickly remind myself that she was hoping to be with my married husband forever and was asking him when would he be divorced (keepingin mind he never made a single move to divorce me). Knew he was married, said what they were doing was wrong and did it anyway. HER going away will not change the fact that your husband had the capacity to cheat. Look at all the people who are not happy in their marriages. Do all of them cheat? NO! I can understand up to a point how one might find themself swept up in a situation and then go, oh shit what did I do? I need to stop this now and walk away. But anyone who continues on long term is making the CHOICE to lie to you every time they look at you , talk to you, act like nothing is going on.

        I did contact the OW, left her a voicemail. Called her on her bullshit. Saying what kind of role model was she for her teenage daughter. If she had a heart, as a mother and a woman, that she would stay away. Like I noted earlier, I tend to believe she has stayed away. BUT, that did not make my husband go back to the way he was. He only continues to become very different.

  • I “ran off” 2 other women. Guess what? He found another one. Its not her fault, the problem is your husbands. Im sorry, I know how hard this is. How much it hurts and devastates your entire life. But you only get to control yourself, no matter how much you spy, and try to be a good wife and run off other women – it wont make any difference in the end. Do you want the only reason your husband is faithful to be because you are watching and tracking what he does? I tried that too. Just made the hurt and the hell last longer.

    • you are a fool angie you can’t run off other women it is your husband you should be running off.

  • NewlyChumped, I feel for you. I was in a similar boat a year ago. It is really hard to reconcile the man you thought you knew with the lying, cheating one that you now see.
    I agree with the other posters that he has physically cheated already.

    Another poster already answered your reasons for staying. I’m going to go through them in more detail, because sometimes hearing the details can help.

    “A) it will break the hearts of my children” Maybe, but this is a no-win situation. Staying with him (he *will* continue to cheat) will likely break their hearts, too. You can only be the smiling, quiet betrayed spouse for so long. Eventually, he will cheat again and you won’t be able to stand him. Then comes the fighting and the resentment and all of that fun stuff. Not to mention that staying with a cheater is a big blow to your self-esteem, which takes a toll, too. Most likely, he will leave you later on (maybe months, maybe years) for this OW or someone else, and that will break your kid’s hearts, just later down the road. Remember that he is responsible for hurting the kids, not you. You didn’t choose for him to have an affair. He did.

    “B) We’d have to sell the house” Yep, this sucks. But keep in mind that how you feel about the house now may change. In my dday, I didn’t want to lose my house, either, at first. But then when I saw how long the cheating had been going on and realized that he was still lying and cheating even when we were in marital therapy, I realized that all of those days spent in that otherwise beautiful house were all lies. The beautiful house had become ugly to me. It was full of bad memories. In the end, I was happy to move. To not be surrounded by the empty shell of my house, marriage, where so many lies were told.

    “C) I feel so sorry for him.” If he is genuinely sorry, then his *actions* will show it. Look at the actions, not the words. Only feel sorry for him when his actions match his words, not before.

    “D) There is NO divorce in either of our families.” Yep, this sucks. But that’s on *him*, not you. He broke your marriage contract, not you.

    • I agree with all of the above, but I’d also add that any chumped wife thinking her children won’t be affected by reconciling is mistaken. My dad had an affair and when my mum found out he left us for a year to live with the OW. During that year my mum was utterly devastated. I was 12, just entering adolescence and trying to work out my identity, sexuality and relationships. When a year later my mum took him back and desperately worked on her looks as he’d said she ‘wasn’t glamourous enough’, as a 13-year old girl I lost respect for her. It definitely affected my identification with her – I couldn’t identify positively as I saw her as a weak victim. As such, I have had difficulties in my relationships with men all my adult life until a few years ago and lots of therapy. Also, two years after he came back, my mother died suddenly of a brain haemorrhage at the age of 46. The memories of her last few years haunt me as she was so broken by his disgusting betrayal. As a result, as an adult woman now, I never take any shit whatsoever from men (Although I do like men and have some good, decent male friends now). Incidentally, I have also just broken off all contact with my wife after discovering her affair at the end of our 13-year marriage. I won’t take disrespect and betrayal from women either. Please kick him out, have the courage to protect your children and know that you can build a different life.

  • newly, Some things to consider: Your H’s emotional entanglement with OW will have you always wondering if he secretly regrets their A ended; if he secretly continues to have feelings for her, pines for her, and misses her; if every love song and TV/movie love scene brings back fond memories of her which he sits there and savors…while you are sitting right beside him. While this OW may choose to stay away, a physical separation is no guarantee that she’s been extricated from his mind and heart. My H engaged in a long term affair which was both emotional and physical. It ended some 9 yrs ago. He still, to this day, has feelings for OW. He continues to love her and misses her everyday. Of course, he would never admit this to me. I had to find this out in a very stealthy way. My point is, your H sounds to be…has been…in an emotional affair with OW. EA’s are of the mind and heart. And, while he may sever all contact with the OW and transform into Mr Wonderful Husband, you will never know what is really in his mind and heart. And, for me, what’s in his mind and heart…means everything. Being present physically in the home is quite empty if his mind and heart belong to OW. I know this may sound a bit crazy. But, this is what happened to me.

  • Spot on. As your last few posts have been. And many of your commentators. Its scary how many of us lived through the exact same marriage thinking “I’m the only one. All these other couples I see are not like this” and staying marginalized. Thanks for letting us — and those to come — know we are not alone.

  • Trailgirl, why do you stay with him if you believe his heart is elsewhere? That’s what I’m struggling with right now. I think I’ll never erase this woman from his mind and I don’t watn to live with the doubts. Why do you stay?

    My husband did write a “no contact” letter, although I didn’t witness it. I put my foot down and said he is to have no contact with her and let her know it. He said he did that.

    • “He said he did that.”

      Well, he also said he always be faithful. So what can you take his word for now? Remember that old saying, “Trust, but verify?” Well, use it. Except not the first part.

      Do you have his passwords? Do you use them to confirm what he tells you?

      If it’s been more than 10 days since D-day, I’d ask him to take a polygraph (about, say, whether he really sent the NC letter, whether he’s stayed NC, whether the affair was physical, etc, etc, etc.). If he really wants to save the marriage, he will be desperate to begin to earn back your trust. He will jump at the offer.

      They all say they’re NC. 90% are just take the affair underground.

      • NewlyChumpified – Yes, you need to verify this. But don’t let him know that you’re doing it! Verify it without him knowing. If he knows you are doing it, he will just be more sneaky. Verify, and then if you find something, keep QUIET about it, and then just keep verifying to see what else you can find. No giving him hints, no asking vague qusetions, nothing from you to let him think you are onto him. Then his true colors will come out and you can see if the No Contact is really in action, or not. In most cases, they do just get more sneaky. Which, by the way, makes the affair even more fun for them.

    • I can’t answer for Trailgirl, but I know that I’m still with my cheater for one reason only: financial. When I found out that he was cheating, I realized I needed a new job in order to be able to support myself. I realized that I’d have a better shot at that job if I lost weight, so I went on the job market and a diet at the same time. I am now the weight I was when I married STBX, and I have a job that will allow me to support myself, as long as I’m not extravagant.

      My next step is waiting a few months for some items from way back to fall off my credit report. I should have stellar credit after that. In the meantime, I’m saving what I can while paying down any debts. I’m digging into his finances (we have separate accounts, so it’s easy for him to hide stuff). I am also cleaning up stuff–digitizing photos I don’t want destroyed, and generally setting the stage for departure.

      • Wow, kb–You Rock! So much raw emotion and devastation in the wake of infidelity (insert picture here of Moore, OK), it’s truly impressive to see someone lining up their ducks like that. Your ducks are marching in rows like they’re in the USMC. Oooh-RAH!

        • In a way, it truly sucks, though. I keep telling myself that once I get past the nastiness of the divorce, it’s going to be a huge relief not to wake up in the morning and think “you lying sonofabitch” when I see him. Then I feel like apologizing to the ghost of his mother, as she was a victim of infidelity, too.

          I regularly look at condos for sale and REO homes.

    • Newly,
      during counseling, XH wholeheartedly agreed to give OW a no contact letter that I would write, and he could review and add his comments too. But when the time came to send the letter, he had alllllll sorts of excuses why it wasn’t necessary now / what’s the point / oh, it’s over – why bring it back up again / etc.

      And he profusely swore up and down that he’d told OW that I knew what happened, that it had to be over, and that he’d ended it.

      Not. One. Bit. Of. That. Was. True.

      Newly – please read through this site. Please read through our comments. These stories will start sounding the same, the details will mirror each other, and things will start to sound and feel awfully familiar to you… because this is how cheaters act. This is how cheaters behave. This is how cheaters try to exhaust endless supply of cake at any cost. Find your backbone here, you’re among friends.

  • Beautiful post, TrailGirl. I feel like you’re speaking directly to me.

  • Love reading everyone’s responses and there isn’t one that I disagree with because we have all lived a similar situation. NC, there’s something else thats been touched on but not clearly spelled out. (I don’t think) Its extremely likely that she’s his first affair. And I guarantee that she won’t be the last, either. To reiterate, what has already been said, if she goes, there’ll be another and then another.

    He needs his cake and the only way he can get it is if he stays married to you. I was thinking about you before when I was with my son on this soggy NY day… I realize that this is all the stuff of nightmares and it must be so difficult for you to take in and believe, but we are all just trying to take you from point A to point B without all of the unnecessary detours and false hopes and years of trying to make a sinking ship float. It doesn’t work. it takes quite a while to realize that this cheating, lying being is really who you are married to. The other one, is the imposter.

    • Very true, Laurel. I discovered my wife had been engaged in at least 4 affairs during our marriage. I made her get tested for HIV.

  • Good post as always, CL. There can never be immediate remorse for damaging the relationship. Not if it has been hidden for any length of time.

    Newly chumpified: I am sorry you have joined our club, but please know you are welcomed and cared for here.
    My xH admits that an emotional affair is just as bad, if not worse, than a physical affair.
    He did both. He still claims that affair #2 was only an EA, but he “left” the family for her (sorta, wanted her, but refused to be the one to file of divorce, and could not even use the word divorce with me!). As for the OW: for her to carry on an A, of any kind, indicates that she is selfish, insecure, and self absorbed. You do not need to know anything else about her.

    Kids: if you stop and think back, he probably has not truly been there for the family. My xH was also a good father and spouse, from a superficial perspective. But in hindsight, emotionally he was not there. Never took the kids to the beach, never took time to be with them alone. Sure, he took the kids to soccer, etc, but that is not the same as being fully engaged. He does not truly understand what LOVE is.
    He thinks only of himself.
    Best of luck to you. I KNOW how difficult this is. This time last year I was in therapy with the xH because after two months, he still had not admitted there was someone else. He just wanted out of an 18 yr marriage!

    Now I am 3 months post finalized divorce, and slowly considering dating again.
    I truly am looking forward to being with someone who understands what loving someone is all about.
    ((( Hugs )))

  • newlychumpified,

    “My husband did write a “no contact” letter, although I didn’t witness it. I put my foot down and said he is to have no contact with her and let her know it. He said he did that.” My ex said he did a lot of things and didn’t say he did a lot of things. Lies. Tell you what, really put your foot down and see what you get.

    Say: Husband, the only way I can move forward is if I can verify that you have really taken action to end your affair. I need you to call the OW right now and tell her you love only your wife and that you never want to see, text, email or have any contact with her again. I need you to do this with me on the phone so I can hear you say it and hear her accept it.

    See if he will do this, with no waiting, no tomorrow, no time for him to contact her ahead and tell her he has to act this out because you are suicidal or whatever lies he tells the OW to keep her on the hook. You do realize he has to lie to her too, right?

    I guarantee you he will not make that call, he will have reasons. He may tell you it’s cruel or something else to trigger your empathy. He’ll say he already ended it, that it’s horrible that you want to hear him do it, that you are awful to not believe he already did it, any number of things…but he won’t make that call.

    • I second this– wholeheartedly Dat. I also do not think he really wrote her a letter. He’s just trying to get the monkey off his back, so he’ll say anything. If per chance, he did, however, don’t worry, it won’t take long before he’s back. And yes, they lie to their paramours and quite often cheat on them too.

      BTW, its not about love or sex or any of that.

      Its about control. That’s all. He’s not capable of love as you know it. If he were, you wouldn’t be in this situation. He’s a big stinkin’ mess!

      • What even if he writes a NC letter or even makes the call where you get to hear every word? ..he could very well tell the OW that he is doing this only to appease you since you have gone hysterical/become suicidal or whatever.

        Even if he gives in to your pressure of the NC bit with the OW he could very well have communicated this beforehand to the OW and asked her to play along.

        So this whole thing about insisting on communicating NC to the AP guarantees nothing…NOTHING.

        Again here, we chumps are operating from our moral compass that if we promise NC we would keep that promise.If our cheaters were that good at keeping their promises we all wouldn’t be here in the first place, right?

        I think this whole thing about asking the cheaters to go NC with their AP by showing us the mail or letting us listen on to the conversation is an act which means nothing.

        It only gives us solace , let’s us think..good, he picked me over her until WHAMMMMM we find that the affair is still on.

        This is something which the counseling industry advocates and is pointless.

        We chumps will remain chumps if we fall for thus one.

        • I think you miss the point, the purpose is to find out if he will do it.

  • Dear Newly,
    What a very shitty deal you’ve gotten. You are getting wise, discerning and painful advice here. It won’t be sugar coated but it’s tough because it has to be to gain clarity about how you’ve been bamboozled.
    I propose a slightly different theory about your husband. I wonder if he isn’t just cowardly. Maybe the realities of married life wasn’t as satisfying to him as he thought so he thought he’d jazz up his day with a little dalliance on the side for an illicit thrill. It was so much fun to anticipate and besides, who was he harming? No one could ever know, would they. It gave him a thrill at work to look forward to after a long, dull meeting. The number of contacts grew and the content became more depraved and illicit, and then wouldn’t it be great if she could meet him at the hotel where he’d be staying and then…Now he’s hooked on the drama and the dopamine rush he gets and he can’t imagine going without. It’s just too addictive. It’s become the most important thing too him. More important than his commitments, his integrity, his children and his word. He’s found out what he really is capable of and it’s shitty-but not shitty enough to end it and be the man he always said he was. I imagine that he was always capable of a complete lack of integrity, but it took awhile for him to find someone he could get involved with. I imagine he’s tried a few others at least-maybe “innocent”flirtation to see if it could go farther. But he’s blown up the bridge behind him. There’s no going back.

    After the intial “pick me” dance, i got a lot of satisfaction blasting my ex-NPD by telling him numerous times what a lying piece of shit he was (prostitutes, mistresses, gambling, alcohol yadda yadda yadda all the while telling me I was the best thing that happened to him, how much he loved me, more yadda yadda.) He had all those years of pulling the wool over my eyes and I wanted my turn to level him. It started out with serial affairs and then he found himself going further and further down that hell hole.

    I wanted every reason to think it wasn’t as bad as I really knew it was. I took me awhile to admit it to myself.

    Hang it there! You can make it.

    • Newly, please try and be gentle with yourself. You have been traumatized, as surely as you now are going to be dealing with PTSD. And it’s going to take some time for all this crap to sink in. The decisions don’t have to made today or tomorrow, but you do have to take care of YOU and YOURS, and not HIM.. Breathe, pray, sleep, eat. You’re surrounded by a community of people who have walked through and survived the hell you’re in. Take good care.

      • NewlyChumpified – Geoff is right, please do take care of yourself. You are in the early stages of grief over this situation, and the stress does take a toll. You can easily lose your appetite, lose sleep, your body can easily get worn down by the enormity of it. In my case, I lost 10 lbs in 14 days, unintentionally, just from the stress. Just keep in mind to tend to yourself as much as you can.

  • Can you imagine the ego rush these pricksters get when a BS and AP are fighting over them? Don’t flatter them. It’s a waste.

  • Newly,
    It’s somewhat of a long and convoluted story, but, bottom line ~ I made the decision to stay until my kids are launched. But, this is no ‘marriage’ at all, but more a partnership in co-parenting. I do not pretend with my H that we have a ‘marriage’. He utterly and totally killed it. But, we do parent well together; the kids are good. Is this ‘ideal’? Not at all. It has been quite an emotional ordeal…for me alone. But, all things considered (and I mean that quite literally as I labored over this decision), I believe I have chosen the least bad choice of the bad options I had. But, for all intents and purposes, I am as ‘divorced’ as one can be while remaining in the situation…if that makes sense.
    Sooo…to reply to your comment: I do not really care if he has feelings for OW, pines for her, cherishes the memories forever. It doesn’t matter anymore because I have detached from him…let him go and the ‘marriage’ go. But, during my ‘queen of chumps’ reign…when I still loved him and wanted nothing more than a repaired marriage with him, it hurt like hell to know how much he ‘loved’ her…and to worry daily that he still harbored feelings for her. But, that is kind of the ‘curse’ of an emotional affair. I am so sorry you are in this situation. You have some hard choices to make. Your 1st task, though, is to get clarity about the truth and reality of your H and marriage. Keep reading here on this site, and you will get that clarity pretty quick.

    • TrailGirl,

      How old are your kids? I hope they are launched soon… because you deserve to have a life too!

  • Newly,
    Sorry to hear what you are going through. The no sex thing is a big flag for me. Men do not go without sex for a year or two for no reason. He is having relations with this woman. My ex withheld sex from me for 10 months, but she was having plenty of sex with her married co-workers. At least I did not have to worry about an STD. But it does hell to your self-esteem.
    Get a lawyer, and protect your future. Your children love you, and want you to be happy. The current situation is not making anyone happy. Cut ties with him, and focus on a new life with your children.

    • Absolutely this. One of the first red flags was a sudden cessation of all sexual activity. Now, he’d gone for a couple of weeks without sex in the past, but generally that was only when he was clearly feeling unwell. Once a month has passed, unless there’s an obvious health issue, that’s a flag.

      Also, get tested for STDs. This really sucks that you need to do it, but every chump needs to do it.

  • I have not called anybody. Frankly, I think calling the husband of this woman would only bring more pain. I know this sounds horrible, but I’m really not out for revenge and I don’t care about her or her life. I just want her out of mine! Right now, I’m just trying to focus on getting a straight story out of my idiot husband. He says it was just an emotional affair and he’s walking around with a hangdog expression and trying to stay out of my way because I’m going to snap at any moment and he knows it. Last night, I lay beside him and listened to him snore and wondered if I’d ever be able to trust one word out of his mouth ever again. I felt this overwhelming urge to rifle through his desk and his computer. I look at his folded clothes, his room, our photos and I can’t believe he has done this thing. Right now, I”m feeling very down. I look at the Facebook page of this woman and look up her pictures on the Internet and compare myself. This is doing NOTHING for my general frame of mind.

    Has anybody read a book called “Vow?” I was up all night reading it. It puts you in the mind of a cheater so well. So interesting.

    • “he’s walking around with a hangdog expression”
      He had sex with her, I would bet anything on this. He is guilty, *and* he got caught, and he doesn’t want to face the consequences. And he doesn’t want to stop, from what I’ve heard you say. That is key. He is guilty because he doesnt’ want to give up all of the encitement and fantasy of the OW (and there are plenty more like her in the world).

      “Last night, I lay beside him and listened to him snore and wondered if I’d ever be able to trust one word out of his mouth ever again.”
      This feeling only gets worse. All of those minor things that every normal married person happily puts up with in a marraige, all of a sudden they become unbearable – snoring, dirty underwear, etc. When he snored before, you found it annoying but gladly ignored it because you loved him. Now you wonder how many times the OW has been lying in bed next to him, listening to his pig-snores. Before, you gladly helped him by washing, drying and folding his dirty boxers, because you loved him. Now, all you can think of is how those smelly things have been in contact with another woman’s pubic hair, taken off hastily, and then crumpled in a pile on her floor, next to her bed.

      I’ve lived through this hell – continuing to live with a spouse who I knew had been cheating. I was doing the pick-me-dance, so I didn’t show him how much I started to hate his presence and all of the daily things that I used to love about him. In the end, I hated the sight of his face. Everytime he opened his mouth, all I heard was “Lies, lies, lies…..and lies.” Having sex with him (as recommended per reconcillation marriage counseling) was a soul-killing, self-esteem demolishing experience.

      By the way, I have grown to a place where I no longer hate him. I am starting to heal. But this happened *after* I made the decision to leave him, and physically moved out. If I would have stayed, I believe I would have snapped or maybe started some antidepressants just to take the edge off. Moving out avoided these things and it is a great feeling to not hate him anymore. Because another side effect of resenting someone’s presence is that you feel about yourself, too – all of those negative emotions take a toll. It did on me.

    • I would contact her husband. But that’s me. Pain is temporary. I always felt that I would rather go through the pain all at once rather than spread it out. Will it help? Who knows. My wife’s AP is divorced so I didn’t have a spouse to contact. I did have a talk with his 80 yr old father. It didn’t really help, my cheating wife got mad as hell but I sure felt a lot better.

      Stop comparing yourself to her, You don’t compare, not even close. YOU are the better woman. To me it’s all about integrity. She has none. Let the tears come. Bottling it up is not a good thing. In privacy I would SCREAM into a pillow til my throat hurt.

      • My ex had two married women at the same time. One was a fuck buddy, the other he was more seriously trying to get away from her husband. I knew both women and their husbands quite well.

        Just a couple of days after I moved out of our house into my own apartment, I was on line in the grocery store and the husband of the fuck buddy happened to get online right behind me. He asked how I was doing and was concerned for my well-being. I told him I was hanging in there, and then told him flat-out that his wife was having an affair with my husband. He looked surprised, but didn’t say much, just that he would keep his eyes open.

        A few months later, when I stupidly reconciled with my husband (now ex) he told me it was very “malicious” of me to have told the husband. Yeah, right, because his FUCKING the man’s wife was just an act of charity.

        I do not know what eventually happened with that couple. I’m pretty sure the other couple, with the wife really in love with my ex, are now divorced, but ex is not with the woman.

      • Yeah, I agree with BUd. Sorry you are in pain, but you have a moral duty to inform the other innocent spouse, IMO. He has , probably, been exposesed to your cheating husband’s entire sexual history, which, I suspect , is much more extensive than you ever suspected.
        Newly, I suggest you get STD testing asap.

    • Newly,

      I didn’t contact my OW’s husband either. Because I didn’t want to get revenge either… other than maybe thinking I wanted her to be stuck in her miserable marriage (and not free to further disrupt mine). Oh, and my ex claimed he would try to kill him and blah blah blah. I do regret not calling him now. He actually did contact me when he found out on his own later after I had kicked the ex out. And he actually was a reasonable guy (surprising to me after the years of crappy stories I heard about him from my ex). That’s why I feel bad now that I didn’t contact him. He did deserve to know.

      • I didn’t contact the OW’s husband, either, but only out of fear of my husband’s reaction. He has scary rages, and I didn’t want that around myself or my kids. Although I had every right to talk him to him, my STBX didn’t think so. He would have come *unglued* if I called the OW’s husband. But I really, really wanted to. My husband said the OW’s chump already knew about the affair, but I kind of think he was lying.

  • Tell the husband of the OW You owe it to him. It isn’t revenge. Maybe he already knows and doesn’t care. I wish the OW in my life had a husband I would call him in a New York minute!

  • Also, NewlyChumpified, comparing yourself this OW is normal (I did it right after dday, as do many chumps) but ultilately gets you nowhere. Research shows that most Affair Partners are no better looking than the betrayed spouse. They aren’t better packages. They aren’t better people (certainly worse morally & ethically!). They are just *new* and *different*. And forbidden, which makes them exciting. She doesn’t have anything that you don’t have. Seriously. More often that not, when cheaters move in with their Affair Partners, the newness wears off, reality sets in, and the romance/lust fades fast.

    Despite all the advice I read warning me not to find out info about the OW and comparing myself to her, I did it anyhow. I was compelled, in the days following dday. So I understand the urge and the need. For me, I think it was something I had to go through, sort of like the stages of grief. Then I started realizing on the days when I would read more stuff (via online social media) about the OW, those were the days when I felt the worst. I stopped cold turkey and have improved ever since.

    I did stops short of contacting her. I’m glad, in retrospect, that I resisted and did not contact her. I suggest you also resist this urge. It will just cause more drama and often even backfires, making the cheater want the OW even more.

    If you need to tell someone, her husband is fair game, as long as you stick to the facts (no drama) when you do. Just be prepared that you may not get the response you want – he may already know, he may not care, he may not believe you, or he may even get angry at you. But do it, if you think it would make you feel better, or because the other chump deserves to know.

  • NC,
    I did reach out to the other woman but not to confront. I was still in denial at the time and believed her to only be a friend. I thanked her for being such a good friend to my husband and told her I was glad he had her. I even thanked her for letting me wear her abaya in Saudi and then I told her if she ever needed anything from the states I would be happy to send it to her…the response from was nothing, nada, zip, zilch
    On the other hand, I received an email from my husband the next day. He informed me that “he friends there are HIS friends, and you have no business contacting her”. As I was still in denial, which is where you are, it killed me. I cried for hours when I got that email. I mean all I did was say thank you and offer to help her and hell, I couldn’t even get that right! 4 days later was when I finally cracked his email password and discovered she was more than “just a friend”
    I am so sorry for the pain you are in, but it does get better. Please go talk to an attorney and start making preparations to leave. I came into our marriage with over $29k and the house solely in my name. When he left, there was $34k in savings He was n the bank account but not the house or the business I bought. The day after he moved out, I transferred the money into my own account. I didn’t spend it, I didn’t hide it. It was there if necessary for court. My H was spending thousands on his credit card and I couldn’t let him destroy everything! Fast forward 3 months, the joint accounts are all half empty and I get a nasty email from him about the 29k. I gaurantee had it been in there, he would have taken half, which seeing as though he originally only asked for 10k wasn’t going to fly with me. In the end, he got $3500 which was half the $ from the account plus 2k he had said he wanted in his guilt stages of looking like “such a nice guy” I got the house, the car, the boat, the business and my self respect because I gave him everything single thing he asked for but yet still wasnt happy.
    What state are you in? research divorce laws in your area. Just focus on you and your kids, not him. In time you WILL get stronger and realize it will be okay.
    Btw, my parents were divorced when I was 8. I ended up just fine. Don’t worry about the kids, they will be alright.

  • What even if he writes a NC letter or even makes the call where you get to hear every word? ..he could very well tell the OW that he is doing this only to appease you since you have gone hysterical/become suicidal or whatever.

    Even if he gives in to your pressure of the NC bit with the OW he could very well have communicated this beforehand to the OW and asked her to play along.

    So this whole thing about insisting on communicating NC to the AP guarantees nothing…NOTHING.

    Again here, we chumps are operating from our moral compass that if we promise NC we would keep that promise.If our cheaters were that good at keeping their promises we all wouldn’t be here in the first place, right?

    I think this whole thing about asking the cheaters to go NC with their AP by showing us the mail or letting us listen on to the conversation is an act which means nothing.

    It only gives us solace , let’s us think..good, he picked me over her until WHAMMMMM we find that the affair is still on.

    This is something which the counseling industry advocates and is pointless.

    We chumps will remain chumps if we fall for thus one.


    • Do these cheater/ narcissistic types EVER feel or express remorse in their subsequent lives? It’s been 3 yrs for me, and I shut that door and locked it pretty much right away. I moved on and am much happier but part of me still would like some kind of an apology, validation or justice of some sort. I know I was a good wife and partner and I didn’t deserve his cold and cruel dismissal of me. Perhaps I’m being narcisstic myself still hoping one day he will at least appreciate what he had and lost ? Does anyone know of cheAters who later regretted their actions?

      • Why does it matter? If they did, then great for the; they learned something. If not, then oh well, right?

        What’s important is that you don’t stay stuck in victimhood.

      • No, I do not believe they do. If they are personality disordered, they are not even capable of feeling remorse, guilt or introspection.

      • My XH tried to express remorse, some 2 1/2 yrs later. Said all the things he thought I wanted to hear…”he shouldn’t have female friends, he should have been content, he thought the grass was greener, younger woman was interested in him, etc….puke!

        He wanted to know if it was a possibility for him to come home??? If not, he was supposed to go over to her house. WTF. If I ever did, what he did…damn sure I’d never bring her up if I thought I wanted everything back! Hence, me thinking he’s trying to play me some more.

        He did break down three times, while saying, “he’ll always care about me” and how hard it is coming over, picking up our daughter, and seeing all the shelves he put up in the garage! True story…looking back I wished I’d said, “if you care so much about the shelves, you can have them!”

      • In my case, I never got an apology. Just not in them. This is part of being NPD.

  • Always wanted to ask this question but never was sure where to ask it. I’ll probably ask again somewhere. I’m aware that I am probably looking for a reason why she cheated. I am interested to see how many of our cheaters were using Paxil during the times they cheated.

    • My ex is very anti-drug of just about every type. I actually WAS on anti-depressants several times during our marriage, including a trial of Paxil. The narc held that against me, one thing of many.

  • If somebody cheated once and immediately was sorry and confessed it, their partner probably wouldn’t end up on an infidelity board. I suspect that people who work things out after an affair, generally talk less to people about it.

    • I also , suspect, that any real, meaningful recovery from infidelity is far less frequent than the “pay for reconciliation services” sites proclaim, Iris. I would bet less than 1/10 of 1% of cheaters feel immediate regret and confess. These folks are, for the most part, wired very differently than a non disordered person.

  • My husband finally came clean about cheating on me- but it was before we were married. We did break up after because he told me he was finding himself- well he was finding himself inside another woman.
    So its the lies i cant take. If he came clean when we got back together- err we would not be married today.
    Another friend at our engagement party was a girl he slept with – soooo there is no respect. Everyone has a past, but why is she at our party.
    He said he felt better for telling me about cheating. And so did i.
    I always thought that whole ‘finding myself’ thing ridiculous.
    Then the following morning i realised-
    No apology- he felt bad then- he feels better now.
    Never said- i won’t do it again.
    And didnt understand my problem with inviting his friend he hadnt seen in 2 years- since they slept together- but i’m not sure i believe that.
    He said if i want to think about our marriage i can go to my family for holidays. But i packed his things and threw him out.

    Never said I’m sorry- I won’t do it again.

    I gave him a box of condoms

  • Forgave her for sexting ex be naked pics and our bedroom secrets cause she was blind drunk..she professed not remembering having done it..3 months later we breakup cause her kid had a fit over food I ate..month later I learned of her multiple affairs and sexting as early on as our second year together..despite my obvious distress there was no remorse,no regret,no guilt or shame nothing but a cold emotionless empty shell of a human…when I asked why all I got was “I don’t know but I wouldn’t have if I loved you” I have to add during our last 2 years of the 4 year Rs I was verbally and emotionally abused during her almost weekly drunkeness..
    “Your not worth the financial convenience” new guy is wealthy so obviously far more convienient
    “Your going to grow old and fat” now sleeping and dating an obese older man..I was only 5kgs overweight not 50+ like the new guy
    “Your hobby is embarrassing”. (A hobby she intro me to as Xmas gift
    “”Don’t you want to look beautiful for your girl”. Insisted I hit the gym
    “You will never find one as beautiful as me to love you”. She is very attractive so some truth to this one
    “You really don’t understand women”

    I feel ashamed I put up with her drunkeness and abuse cause I loved her and cause I thought as kid grew things would get better ..the kid hated me cause I wasn’t her dad I wonder if that hatred transfer over to ex .

    Been nc for a year now..have chanced by twice all I got was that cold look of contempt CHUMP

  • I am a serial cheater – at least four times with at least four different women. My wife was extra-ordinarily beautiful (sex was also alright), but I became bored with the marriage, and overwhelmed with the additional responsibility of being a father of three (two of which I told her I didn’t want but she got pregnant anyway) and housework (as well as a good half of the house work, child care, repairs and gardening). I loved my wife, but started to fall out of love. I certainly didn’t love the other women. They were younger, also attractive, and targets but I was really in it (the cheating) to get the sexual fix. It’s addicting. You see it and you want it and have to have it (the conquest that is). I can attest to the fact that a cheater does not feel guilt or remorse. It’s having to deal with the fall out when you get caught. It’s all damage control at that point. My ex-wife and I eventually divorced and I know it absolutely crushed her emotionally for the rest of her life, which was just another 12 years at which time she died of cancer. You can tell I am sorry for what happened now, but that was more than 35 years ago. But I now know it is a character flaw that I am unable to control. It may even be genetic since my mother, two sisters and two brothers are all serial cheaters. I am much older now, and in a relationship with another woman, but I am still tempted to wander. Yes look at porn, Ashley Madison, and Plenty of Other Fish. I am sorry to say the social media makes it way too easy, and I am sorry to say, but can predict, that there is going to be a huge explosion of infidelity just over the horizon.

  • I know it absolutely crushed her emotionally for the rest of her life, which was just another 12 years at which time she died of cancer

    And you still cheat ? Are you aware that tou most likely contributed to her illness..the emotional damage infidelity causes manifests itself as physical ailments thru anxiety and stress

    Im a victim twice over and its scarred me for life

  • To any Chump reading this email, Chump Nation needs you.

    Could you spare a few minutes to help drum-up support for Chump Lady’s (Tracy’s) new book?

    Go to this forum post, and see if you have anything to add:

    If nothing else, could you come over to the forum, start a thread, and share some of your experience with that “Gain a Life” thing?

  • Amazing how my husband came back and our marriage restored. First of all i want to thank jennifer for the post she made on how Dr Thomas helped her in bringing back her lover before NEW YEAR . At first when i saw the posting i was so happy and in the other hand so scared,That this might not be real, Then i decided to give it a try in which i contacted Dr Thomas and told him how my lover left me for another lady for the past 5mouths and i have been crying and depressed without him, So i asked him if he has helped anyone called jennifer and he said yes, that was the lady he helped in bringing back her lover, I said good and i asked him that if he can help me in bringing back my own lover, He laughed and said once i have contacted him that I should consider my problem solved. He said that my lover will be back to me within 24hours and do an unexpected thing for me. i said really, Truly when the 24hours was completed i got a text from someone saying am sorry then i decided to call the number i saw it was my lover jack. I was so happy he was begging me on phone, That he is ready to do anything that will make me happy in life, So i told him to come over which he did, As he was coming he came with a brand new car as gift i was so happy and made me had access to his account to prove to me that he is not going to leave me for another lady, Am so happy today and am also thanking jennifer for posting this early. Dr Thomas you are truly a man of your word. He can also solve any kind of problems in this world problems like WINNING LOTTERIES, GETTING GOOD JOB. CHILD BEARING. SPIRITUAL PROTECTION. JOB PROMOTION. CANCEL DEBT/LOAN from any finance company and he can also cure and kind of diseases with his herbal medicine. Friends you can contact Dr Thomas on his private Email: (drthomasherbalhome21@gmail .com) This man is a GOD sent..

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