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Dear Chump Lady, Please decode the cake

cakeDear Chump Lady,

Please help me to decode this.

I have been in a relationship with my partner for 2.5 years. When we met, he told me he was divorced. I queried as to why, and he advised that he and his wife had married young. (He was 27) and that they had simply grown apart in the two years that they had been together. I had recently been engaged prior and my ex had run off without any warning so I simply thought “hey I’m sure that could happen” and we started a relationship.

He was hilarious, good looking and absolutely adored me from the get go. I still felt unsettled about his past, as I am a firm believer that you need to understand why your relationships end so you can move forward, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt as overall he was a top guy, and myself as well as everyone else loved him.

About six months into our relationship, he left his facebook open and I saw that there were a series of email messages between him and another woman from back when he was married. They were discussing how good the sex was between them and how they missed each other. I confronted him with the fact he had an affair and he stumbled and said “it was never physical.” Well bullshit, I told him I had read it and he better come clean. He confessed to a three-month affair during his marriage. Said it was the worst mistake of his life, he had lost everything over it and he would never forget it.

I struggled with it, didn’t know whether to break up with him over it. But again, he was such a great guy! Surely when you lose your marriage over an affair you learn your lesson right? WRONG.

I actually apologized to him for judging him on his past and who was I to judge someone, as they were no longer in that place in their life? Chumpy isn’t it?

Six months later, I saw an email pop up on his iPad, it was from ‘melanielovesadam@…’. This woman had just had a child and had sent him a text with a picture of a new born son with the text message ‘my new toy boy’ xoxoxo. (Vomit)

I confronted him, and he denied anything until it basically became painfully obvious that he was lying through his teeth. I made him open the account and checked the trash. There were hundreds of messages between the two of them, telling each other that they missed each other, they loved each other, and hey wasn’t the sex exactly 9 months before the birth of the new born son amazing? I deduced that had slept with each other after we had become official (only once of course) and it turns out that the affair started six months after he had married his ex and had continued in either an emotional and/or physical fashion ever since. So technically they had been involved for over four years in one shape or another!

As you can imagine, I went ballistic and ran from the house. From that minute he was all remorse. He apologized to my family, his friends, my friends. He enrolled in counselling, he read books like “Not Just Friends”, he went to church, cut off all contact with her and basically handled any trigger or emotion from me by telling me it was not my fault, he loved me and he would do anything to spend his life making it up to me. I started to feel safe again. Sounds like successful reconciliation right? WRONG.

Thirteen months into recovery, he takes me shopping for engagement rings, I am a bit wary, I share my concerns, but we now have a stronger relationship as we can talk about anything and I feel like he really gets me. I ask him if she ever tried to make contact again, he tells me that she never has and if she did I would be the first to know about it. We proceed forward, he lodges annulment papers so that we can marry in the Catholic church, he plans to ask my father for my hand on our next family holiday.

Last week I found a picture he took of his penis and sent to the other woman, turns out she called him about five months ago, he picked up the phone and they just “started talking again'” then oops I accidentally sent a picture of my penis to her???

WTF, why go through all the counseling, all the grovelling, the apologies to family and friends and then do this? He said it was never going to get physical at all and he “never meant to intentionally hurt me.”

I just don’t get it?!!! Now he is grovelling again, telling me I am his world and he will fight to earn my trust and the right to love me again. I feel like I am in an episode of the Bold and the Beautiful.

WTF is going on with my perfect, lying, cheating POS boyfriend? People are saying, maybe it’s not so bad, as he didn’t sleep with her, but WTF??!! What is with this mind bend, a perfect, warm beautiful man, who likes to send pictures of his penis to a married other woman with a child?

Please help.


Dear Melissa,

Gee, and I wonder why I’m skeptical about cheater “remorse.” Okay, first things first — this is his child with her, right? I’m sure he denies it (if you asked. Did you even go there?) Melissa, I think you need to brace yourself for the idea that he NEVER ended it with her and he has another life with her and their child.

Look, people don’t enthuse about the great sex they had before they conceived, and send a picture of a newborn to a guy who is NOT the father. That doesn’t happen, Melissa.

What you have on your hands here, Melissa, IMO is a sociopath. Yeah, they’re really sparkly. And yeah, they fake remorse really, really well. (If they want something. But if they take you for a dry well of kibbles, they show no emotion whatsoever. Gig is up.) This is all a big game to him — how much cake he can stuff in his gob. You, her, and god knows who else that’s privy to his penis pictures. The guy who cheats on his wife, gets another woman pregnant, disavows his responsibilities, and sexts his junk — this is who that man REALLY is. The sparkly hologram who read “Not Just Friends”? That guy is a con artist.

You’re catnip to a guy like him, because you were vulnerable when you met him. You had another idiot who just waltzed off and ended an engagement. (Hugely shitty, but at least he didn’t fuck with your emotions and pretend like this POS.) That means, when your boyfriend went all full sparkles on you, and made noises about commitment, you were IN. Failure is not an option! I get it. Mine targeted single mothers. Same dynamic. They want the try harder chump. The person whose got a deep, vested interest in making this work. You don’t want to connect the dots about who he really is because then you think if you do that, you have to connect them for yourself. I’m not worthy. No one will ever love me. This is what people do, they abandon me. What’s wrong with me?

Nothing is wrong with you, except you need to work a bit on your picker. Totally curable condition. Unlike Mr. Sparkles there, who is a disordered freak and will always, always, always no matter how weak his knees get from groveling, be a disordered freak.

Why does he do this? I don’t know. Why did Mengele conduct experiments on children? Why does Jody Arias think her ugly haircut will prove her innocence? You want me to get inside the mind of a sociopath? I leave that to the professionals. (Try the Dr. Simon books up there in the Amazon box and Lundy Bancroft’s “Why Does He Do That”?) There is no understanding them — there is only getting AWAY from them.

You have more than enough information to understand that this man is toxic and dangerous to your well-being. You need to go total no contact with him forever. It’s a blessing that you learned these things before you married him. You’ve escaped. I know it hurts, but I promise you don’t have the sunk costs that a lot of chumps here have.

Please resist the urge to figure him out. That’s wasted energy. We call that “untangling the skein of fuckupedness” here. Work on you. Grieve who you thought he was and what you thought your future would be with him. Be kind to yourself. Good people absolutely exist and they are out there when you’re ready for them. You were right to trust your instincts and you were totally right to end it. You’re off to a great start in getting over this. I’m sorry he wasted several years of your life, but you will learn a ton of good about yourself that you can take forward. (((Big hugs)))

Ask Chump Lady

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  • Perfect timing, as always, CS. It’s amazing how many of these letters could have been written by me. Wait, what does that say about ME? And count your blessings, Melissa, that you are going through this hell before you walk down the aisle.

  • Oh honey, honey… Right, it wasn’t physical. He merely has a child with this woman. Classic socio. and I’m so, so sorry. There is no worse cheater, than the “remorseful” cheater who’s actually no where near being remorseful. Its a mindfuck on top of a mindfuck on top of a mindfuck. (the “skein of fuckupedness” as CL so brilliantly calls it).

    I only want to add one thing and I agree about not trying to figure it out, but your mind is going to fight you on that one. Yes, indeed and its a nightmare. I know. One question that I’m sure is forefront in your mind is…

    “If he had a baby or is even in love with this other woman, then why isn’t he with HER?”

    As my brilliant friend, Nina (the dairy farmer) used to say to me when we were talking about our school district and our son with autism:

    “Oh, Laurel… STOP MAKING SENSE!”

    So, here goes… He isn’t with her because part of the “fun” is to fuck someone over; someone who ACTUALLY gives a damn about him. I’m not joking. Its the sneaky, sneaky pulling one over on the “real” girl friend/fiance/wife. He’s with you, and not her because you make him look good. She does not. I have no doubt that you are a piece of eye candy yourself, and come from a good family and probably have a great job and/or money, great friends, nice home… on and on…

    He needs a FRONT, and unfortunately, he saw in you, a perfect candidate for that. The other woman is a skanky hoe. She is not front material, but you are and that is why he is with you and not her. He is one messed up cookie; that’s for sure!

    Its absolutely disgusting and I am positive there’s a special place in hell for sickos like this. And then there’s karma… Did you know that the HPV virus can cause penile cancer?

    just sayin’ (of course I wouldn’t wish that on anyone– almost.) >:-)

    CL always has the best advice and I just want to close with you being especially mindful to being kind to you. You have suffered a severe trauma and I recommend finding a therapist who specialized in this to help you cope with this. You might have to go through a few to find the right one for you.

    (((hugs))) and please just know that you’re a fantastic woman with much to offer. Socios ONLY pick fantastic people. After all, they (think they) deserve the best.


    • Wow, I never thought about it that way. That I was purely a front. It’s sickening. So hard to reconcile the image of the perfect man with this sick SOB that has literally made me so ill, I haven’t been able to function properly. Last time this happened I basically had a breakdown and had to head away for a week at a health spa just to learn how to eat 3 meals a day. I lost 7 kilos in a week, this POS cried and couldn’t believe ‘what he had done to me’. It’s disgusting how selfish these people are and the mind games they play. I haven’t seen him now for 9 days and have been full NC for 3. It really really hurts and I’m very scared ill never find someone who loves me, but not a reason to stay either.

      • Melissa, I had 31 years invested and in the end it took everything I had not to jump off the balcony to stop the pain from all the manipulative BS that was going on. Once I got out of it, I could see a lot more clearly how manipulative he was. I am so happy that you found out BEFORE you got married.

  • Get away from him as fast you can. Spending penis pics to women is not okay. I speak from experience since my husband did the same thing. Not the sign of someone you want in your life. Unfortunately we have to co-parent somehow, I would much rather never see the sick SOB again. Go no contact and don’t drive yourself crazy with the why, there’s no explaining it. He’s quicksand, don’t let him drag you down.

    • You’ve had to deal with all that in 2.5 yrs and you’re not even married yet? Just THINK what you’ve got to look forward to after he marries you!!!’ Cut your losses and get out now! The signs are all there…trouble, trouble and more trouble!

      • True, It’s amazing how much I have been through, basically because ‘at least he didn’t run off like my ex’. I think the sick thing is he knew I wanted ‘someone strong’ who would stand by me and not bolt when times got hard. We haven’t even had hard times yet and he’s already mucking around. Sad 🙁

    • I love that-he’s quicksand. That ceates a good visual I can remember in moments of weakness. (One week from today I have to go back to my house and throw him out, with a cop if necessary, because I have a court order!).
      One of his lifelong best friends told me something similar, ‘he’s fucked up and don’t let him drag you down in the gutter, where he’s going’. Thanks Mike!

  • Melissa,
    If I didn’t know where and who he was with right now – I’d say you had been dating my ex husband. Seriously – he was that “good” at the double life and the con as your POS.

    You are SO LUCKY in that you have no ties to this sociopathic a-hole. I was married 25 years, two beautiful grown children, shared history, totally invested into the relationship to the point I kind of lost my old self. Like you – found out about an over four year affair with the married OW he left for, and also found out he’d had two other affairs prior to that one. Thankfully – there were no other children than ours in the mix (that I know of) – but it was a 3 year process to extricate myself from and I still have bumps in the road to progress. I know it probably doesn’t feel like you are lucky – but BELIEVE ME – you are! And you have all the facts neatly in front of you. Don’t let him spin one more lie – kick him HARD to the curb and run in the opposite direction. Go NO CONTACT – there is no reason for you to have any communication with this dirtbag. Any opening you give him will allow him to manipulate – and if he is truly as close in make up to my ex – he’s an EXPERT MANIPULATOR. Shut the door and get down on your knees and thank God that you dodged a very destructive bullet. Don’t worry – he’ll find someone else who will be the next target of his con game.

    But it won’t be you – you got away!! Hooray!!!!!!

    • I really hope so, isn’t it sad when you know you need to run away, but your self esteem is so rubbish you actually consider if you can do better? And you wonder if the guy will get it together and just be wonderful for the next woman instead of you. I hope you are doing okay, you sound lovely and I hope you are doing really well away from this POS.

      • Melissa,
        It is sad when they do a number on your self esteem until you truly feel like “this is the best I’ll ever have.” I KNOW. I’m right there with you. My self esteem took such a severe beating from my ex that I still struggle with feelings of hopelessness for the future, ever finding another person to share my life with and just becoming this “nonentity” neutered person that people all know, say how pleasant she is, but no one ever really includes in their lives and no one ever dates.

        However – that’s my own head spinning that doomsday scenario – not reality. I have had more friends and acquaintances reveal that I elevated my ex throughout our marriage. He always loves to think of himself as “Mr. Funnyman/Popularity” who doesn’t give a crap what people think – but the opposite is true. He cared very much – and I do think he was purposeful in selecting me as a target because he wanted that social status, that respectability, that “family man with the beautiful, adoring wife and kids” at that point in his life. I think it sustained for 20 years because I made it very easy to be married to me. But when I didn’t – when life started to get too real and too hard (childrearing, weight gain, debt overload wracked up by him to sustain the appearance of success) – he soured pretty quickly and went looking for a new target. This stage of life meant someone who could bail him out, put no demands on him as a father or husband and would just be his “fuckbuddy” and caretaker to look after him as he starts to decline in health. And that’s what he has now.

        So I guess my advice to you – take it or leave it – is to understand that your worth and self image is just as high as it always was. The fact that he has royally screwed you over is not at all to do with you or your worth. He just has an objective, a target, a goal for himself – and you don’t fit the mold completely. You have the prestige, but not the sleaze he apparently requires. So – even though it is incredibly hard to believe in your heart that he is so much less than what you deserve, and his leaving you doesn’t do anything to your value except enhance it (because you are free of that a-hole) – please believe it. You are better than him. He is a mess – his “loving” you didn’t do a thing to increase your value. You were the mark for a grifter, simple as that. It may not feel like it – but you are holding all the cards and he has left the table to play penny craps.

        The world is full of possibilities – and you are free to go discover them. Go and discover them – believe me – you will do way better than this douche. Facts don’t lie – but he does. Celebrate your freedom and I will do the same. Whatever the future holds – the bitterest truth is so much more empowering than the sweetest lie. You and I were fed the sweetest lies to the point of diabetes. Time for both of us to be healthy and sugar free! Every good thing and all the best to you (and me!) 🙂

  • All great insight from brilliant Chumplady! I also want to add, sweet Melissa, be careful you aren’t getting addicted to drama. This life of he said/she said and snooping and confronting is way too dramatic! It means your relationship is wrong. Look for the guy who cares enough to make you feel safe in life.
    My (32 yr) marriage seemed so fun, and then dramatic, and now at the end, just a dramatic MESS. I’m not interested in that stuff anymore, and I’m firmly on my way out the door to a lovely, peaceful life!
    Step away from the drama Queens.

    • This, this, This!! Drama produces all sorts of lovely brain chemicals in addition to stress. Brain grows dependent on them. Calm can actually feel like withdrawal.

      • It’s amazing how the drama drains you, it’s horrible, but it also feels like I’m coming off some type of narcotic. The physical pain is disgusting. I just try to remember the only reason I feel like this is because of him.

  • Dear Melissa,
    Welcome to the Chump Club. I know your anguish and how they use hope to string you along. After I got rid of mine he has popped up here and there, continually telling me he was through with the new one he ended up with and how she was nothing but a F-Bitch. My reply, I thought that was MY name?!
    I remember very well being where you are right now. I have actually gone back to my very first comment on CL and read them all up to now when I needed strength, and I cannot believe how far I’ve come. I actually love my life! Stick with us, the advice you’ve been given here is spot on, and CL is always accurate. I’ll just add one thing rephrased from my therapist to fit your situation “that picture of his junk was a gift TO YOU!”

  • Melissa – I’m so sorry that you are finding yourself in this position. But as all the rest have said, THANK GOODNESS you have discovered his true self before you married him, and also THANK GOODNESS you have found your way to this site. KEEP READING everything on this site. All of Chump Lady’s articles and the very, very smart things others have written in response. There is a very smart and healthy perspective here.

    One thing I would like to add as a caution in case you end up on this road with your POS. The addiction game. If he goes to counseling and they say he’s a sex addict and he comes to you vowing to attend his SA meetings and do his 12 steps – please, PLEASE, DO NOT get sucked into this form of reconciliation. I got sucked into this for 18 months, during which time my STBX would devoutly attend meetings and “talk the talk”, but his actions would speak his truth very loudly. What you said in your letter above really rang a bell for me “why go through all the counseling, all the grovelling, the apologies to family and friends and then do this?” … to answer this question you would have to get into “Untangling the Skein of Fuckupedness”. All the answers that have any relevance are in CL’s articles and the responses. Your POS is not capable of providing you with any true answers. And i know he *wants* to, and he’s *trying*. I promise you – he simply isn’t capable.

    I found this site a few months ago and it has helped me immeasurably. JUST KEEP READING! * TRUST THAT HE SUCKS! * Do not waste time trying to Untangle the Skein of Fuckupedness. * All he wants is EGO KIBBLES! And you are most definitely going to want to do the PICK ME DANCE. We all did/do. Speaking of PICK ME and addiction – you might be a little addicted to him right now, you must absolutely go NO CONTACT. I promise you, this is the best way to get distance and perspective on who this guy really is and break your connection/addiction to him. All you really need to do is 2 things: Keep Reading Here and No Contact. If you can do that, one day at a time, you are going to get away from this guy. And sometime really soon it’ll hit you – the impact of the bullet you dodged.

    Sorry for all the shouty CAPS 🙂 … and GOOD LUCK! (((Big Hug)))

    • Thank you, that’s exactly it, I kept saying the whole recovery process. I needed to find out, what your ‘why’ is. He told me that his inability to say no, because he was a people pleaser led to depression. The depression then led to an affair. I actually, felt sorry for him. Poor thing, got depression and blew up his marriage. I’m such a chump!!

      • Melissa – we are all chumps here. You’re a positive, hopeful person, as am I, and I would guess most of us here, we just got in bed (literally) with the wrong person. 2 main things finally opened my eyes and made me realize that as much as he “wanted” to get better, he simply was not “capable” of doing it. The first was I found myself saying over and over to him “You have to stop doing things to hurt me!” He would promise to do something for me (efforts to show me I’m important to him and that he wants to put our marriage back together) and then he would completely blow it up. Do the exact opposite of what I had asked. And when I would look at him, incredulous, it was like he would snap awake and say “Oh my God, I don’t know why I just did that!” Finally, I had to remove myself from his spear so that he no longer had any opportunities to hurt me.
        The second thing was I found myself saying repeatedly, “I can’t be your moral compass.” You have to know not to call your children “idiots” and “morons” even when I’m not there.
        I finally realized it did not matter how much he *said* he wanted to change. He simply wasn’t changing and I came to believe he was/is not capable of change.
        And, BTW, I’m firmly convinced its all because of something terrible that happened to him in his childhood. Poor little guy! OY! I had to get to – SO WHAT! EVOLVE!!
        I really do wish you the best. Stay strong. No Contact makes staying strong much easier 🙂

  • I know it doesn’t seem like it right now, I’m sure your heart is breaking, you feel crazy and hurt, but really it is lucky that he couldn’t keep his knife out of the cake long enough to get you to the alter. You will find someone who will love and respect you, really you will.

    You are not alone. The first time I caught my ex cheating he did the reconciliation thing very well too, so well I trusted him again and spent another 10 years with him before I caught him in an affair. I know now he never stopped, he just went deeper under cover, the reason my female friends disappeared over time? He either fucked them or he made passes at them so they felt uncomfortable around me. He only got careless after he convinced me to marry him. So instead of being able to kick him out I had to spend $30K on lawyers and give him nearly half my shit to get rid of him. I hate the damned Reconciliation Industrial Complex with ALL MY HEART.

    • That is so so horrible. How do these people sleep at night? Take advantage of forgiveness and reconciliation and then shit all over it so easily. I hope you are doing better now. This is super tough, the mind games are atrocious 🙁

  • Melissa – get out now and run for the hills! As much as you think you love him, look at all the red flags he is throwing. I wish I had seen the flags before I said “I do”. Be thankful you are not married to him, and even more thankful that you don’t have children together. Trust your gut and go no contact. It may be hard but you’ll look back on this POS and be thankful that you left him. Leaving and going no contact is the hardest part, but the payoff is better than you can imagine. ((((hugs))))

  • He is a liar. He is really, really comfortable lying to you, to his ex wife, probably to the slut who got pregnant. Those two deserve each other.

    This jumped out at me: “I ask him if she ever tried to make contact again, he tells me that she never has and if she did I would be the first to know about it.” <————— "the FIRST to know about it" THAT is the HYPERBOLE of a narcissistic sociopath who REALLY thinks you're stupid, my dear.

    Oh, this is FUN for him! He's got it all under control.

    Control. That's the name of the game. And he's got you right where he wants you, you adoring, sweet girl, you!

    Get away from him as fast as you can. He might get ugly when he realizes he cannot control you any more, but it will hopefully be short-lived, before he moves on to his next victim. He'll always have Miss Instant Message (Miss Instant Whateverthefuckhewantswheneverhewantsit). But he'll always require the front that a woman like you can provide–the girl who makes him look sincere and wholesome, you know, when he's not slinking off to fuck someone else.


    Go no-contact, full stop. Tell your friends and family that you do not want to hear about him, hear from him, and they are NOT to speak about you with him. He will use everyone around you to try to get to you–with words, facial expressions, carefully contrived "gestures" of "love." BLEACK!

    RUN!!!! You can and will do WAY better.

    • YES Stephanie, well said. The control of women is the game. It’s really all that matters deep in their souls. My H has huge insecurity issues ( and I spent decades trying to reassure him to feel good about himself, as did our sons). Its
      How we Chumps lose our sense of selves, shoveling kibbles at the Narc that won’t even help fix himself. Why should he? He loves this game, and his sickness gets worse and worse.
      Then for fun he fucks the neighbor and publicly humiliates me.
      Clearly in his mind a woman is just there to use.
      Not any more, Shitforbrains! At least not this woman.

    • I love what you wrote about using everyone around to get to you…. My STBXH sent my Father a card for Father’s Day and also sent one to my Fathers’ girlfriend on mother’s day ( my mom is deceased). He NEVER lifted a finger to do that kind of stuff before. It makes sense though… as he probably thinks he can manipulate people into feeling sorry for him (Dad’s girlfriend deceased husband was a cop- sympathy points) and that he tries to project this image that he really misses everyone yet he does nothing other than be an asshole. The actions don’t match the words. If he is so fucking sorry than do something about it. I even got a letter from STBX’s mother this weekend and basically she throws it on me – that she hoped that we could just move on and thought our talks helped, etc., etc, but never once mentioned what her POS son did or how he is to right his wrongs. It is ridiculous!!! People are just starting to find out that I filed and they are shocked. His poor image is going to get a bit tattered especially since people can put a face to the married with two kids ho-worker he was screwing since they all saw her mug shot on the front page of the paper (she works in the jail and he is a piece of shit cop). I am just so glad that other people like you point this stuff out. And I believe it now makes perfect sense about the front that was put on (nice family, house, wife, etc.) as rumor has it she was booted from another job because of her slutty, inappropriate ways. Wow, go figure…. Thank you all for putting things in perspective.

      • Cops… ah yes… and jailers, other cops, dispatchers, records clerk, Chief’s secretaries… it’s an incestuous bunch in the Law Enforcement “family.” Makes me completely ill.

          • My ex is still very fond of wearing firemen t-shirts, especially in public, great conversation starters! Even packs a bunch when going on vacation. The ladies just love the savior type of career. Vomit.

            • Oh, his favorite reads ” Just lay down and do everything the nice fireman tells you to do” with some stupid cartoon picture. He’s 55. Gag.

              • Oh ya… I bet your fireman has a sticker on his car, too! Those firemen get mileage out of that sticker! I always joked that next time I would marry a fireman and my therapists said they’re just as bad as cops. Both professions have so many entitled, above-the-law, arrogant, self-absorbed people. I have been around cops for 20+ years. I can count on one hand how many I know who have NOT had a little somethin’ on the side. It’s sick. Used to be a proud Law Enforcement wife. Sick.

              • Yes their entitlement…… I guess he was screwing her in the back of his truck after he would move the kids booster seat. I laughed at him saying dont you bust people for screwing in cars – you’re a pathethic piece of shit. Oh and I guess one time it was in the f.o.p parking lot. They all must be so proud of their brother in blue. Douche bags…

            • Ugh. Mine did the same thing, but with cop stuff. He would go to the bars with some of his cop gear still on, to make sure to have lots of conversation starters for the ladies. It worked! Women get off on that, apparently. Which would be fine if he didn’t have a *wife* and *kids* at home!

  • OMG, he reminds me so much of my ex sociopath freak. Although as far as I know, my ex never impregnated anyone else, he certainly did the other things your partner does. Including sending pictures of his dick to other women (he claimed he did this as a joke and they thought it was hilarious), taking off his clothes and running naked through a public park with another man, getting blow jobs from other men in his office at the bank, and constant, constant texting to the various women and men he was fucking. Mine had so many affairs and anonymous encounters with other men, I’m not sure how much cheating he did, but by his own admission, it was many hundreds of encounters with men.

    WHEN THEY MAKE A LIFESTYLE OF CHEATING AND LYING, THEY CANNOT CHANGE. That’s really all you need to know. That freak you are with feels absolutely no remorse, no matter how much he cries or how many books he reads (my ex watched that movie “Fire Proof” and supposedly realized the error of his ways). He just wants you to provide convenient cover as a normal, married man while he eats cake with the skank and babyu (I feel sorry for the baby) and fucks every other woman he can. It’s a lot of fun for him to lie to you, to look right into your eyes and promise he’s never going to do it again. Of course he’s going to do it again, it’s what HE IS.
    Watch this video from the Henry Rollins Band, called “Liar”. It might not be your cup of tea musically, but it is absolutely chilling, and IMHO, it spells out EXACTLY what most of us here are dealing with. Truly the mind of the sociopathic liar.

    Thank God it wasn’t YOU having that guy’s baby, and run as fast as you can. Block him in every way you can, and go NC. There is no other way to heal.

      • Ugh, my cheater LOVED Henry Rollins, and used to play this video! I guess it was a sort of tutorial 😉

    • Haven’t heard that Rollins song since it first came out decades ago. Definitely appropos. Especially in my case, since my narc is in law enforcment.

      When he yells “Sucker!” he might as well be yelling “Chump!”

    • I particularly liked the part “I’ll turn you into me”. Isn’t what they are all trying to do? Make us as shitty as they are? And if we never become that awful, they will break us at any cost. Control….. It’s all about control, well, that and their enormous egos.

      Great link, GIO, thanks.

      • ” ‘I’ll turn you into me.’ Isn’t what they are all trying to do? Make us as shitty as they are? And if we never become that awful, they will break us at any cost…”

        Amen Tamara, that is exactly it!

    • Heh…havne’t seen that Henry Rollins video in years. A classic and kind of perfectly sums up the disordered.

  • Melissa – he is saying all of these things to you/ pledging to get better / going through the motions of recovery (all these actions are in front of you, of course) because you are OF USE TO HIM. You are making him look good. You provide him with a social safety net. By keeping you around, he can still appear “sparkly.”

    But notice what he did as soon as he thought you weren’t looking? He sends pictures of his penis to another woman, and fed you a total line of bullshit to explain why it happened.

    There have been times when his mask has slipped and revealed who is REALLY underneath that sparkly facade – and you need to see that he is being exposed for who he REALLY is. You’ve been afforded a glimpse at his REAL character and you need to believe it. Don’t spackle over this and find ways for you overcome this – this is HIS shitty behavior, not yours.

    These types of people are so twisted in their own narcissistic minds that they will use this against you, too. The next time he is caught acting without any honesty and integrity (and TRUST US, this will NOT be the last time if you continue to stay with him), he will justify his further acts of deception — it’s as if their thought process is: “Well, Melissa knew what shit I did before, she was aware of it… she could have left earlier if it really bothered her, but she didn’t, so I can get away with this shitty behavior too. Hell, she’s practically granting me permission to treat her like dirt, so why not?”

    Step away from this craziness. Please read up on narcissists and borderline personality disorders if you need to, but realize that these people DO NOT CHANGE. Please keep reading through this blog – it’s a lifesaver and will help you to restore your backbone to step away from this destructive littler fucker and go no contact.

    • As I said today, time to get off the crazy train. It’s true, the mask has slipped and its time I saw the real man, not just the hologram version. Thank you

  • Melissa – He has shown you who he is. Believe him.

    Get out while you can. Before you marry him. Before you get pregnant by him. It gets a hundred times worse when you are married, have kids, or have years of shared history together. It’s hard to leave now, but it only gets *harder* if you wait.

    If you two stay together, he will continue doing this same behavior. Bet on it.

    Your boyfriend is texting pics of his penis. He lies about having an affair and illegitimate child. Do you want this to be your life? If you stay with him, it will become a permanent source of pain. One of the things that hurts the most about my situation with my cheating-narc STBX is that all of this has hurt my family, too. They got to know his family due to our marriage, and all of their hearts are breaking over this.

    Don’t over-think it. Just get off the sinking ship. The Titanic is going doooowwwwnnnn.

    • My ex texted penis pics, and posted them online, and had dating profiles on every site, and repeatedly cheated, and is an alcoholic.

      Today, I got the signed divorce papers back. I shed a small tear for my lost hopes and dreams for this relationship, made myself a nice drink, and came here to remember why I never, ever want to see this person ever again. I thank god every day we never had children. We had a dog, I have custody, and he will also never ever see and mishandle my big lovebug again.

      Good riddance to trash.

      • Cheers Jewells! Glad that part is over. I wish you nothing but good things, or in the alternative, strength to know you did the absolute right thing.

        How exciting to have the rest of your life, cheater free, ahead of you.

      • Funny, I’m freshly divorced as of last week and I didn’t even shed a tear. I just glanced over teh papers and then carried on with my day. I felt nothing. I have kids with the idiot, though, so we do have some small contact. And it hurts my kids like hell that their father and I cannot speak to one another. They have no idea the depth of bullshit he put me through when I discovered his serial cheating so they can’t understand what’s happened. But I feel ok, other than financially scared to death.

        • Happy freedom at last for you! Good luck, forge on ahead and life will be great, you’ll get what you need after all that craziness you survived so well, Nord. I always enjoy your comments!

  • Hi Melissa,

    Long-time lurker here, but your letter inspired me to post.

    Get out.

    Wish I had left when I was in your place eight years ago, when I used to believe that the “crazy” ex-girlfriends stalking my then-boyfriend had poor boundaries and an inability to let go of such a great guy. Oh – and the two illegitimate kids (one who he’s never met) – he was trapped by cunning women, that’s all. And his crazy ex who stalked me? Poor lamb tried to shake her, but had been too kind (I later found out he slept with her and kept her on the hook while things played out with us).

    Now married, I have a five year old daughter and a profoundly broken heart. I have found about the on and off sexual relationship he’s had with the morbidly obese, disabled mother of his adult son. I’ve learned of the the 3 year affair he had with the wife of his college roommate – which included sex at a rest stop and on a golf course. He exchanged dirty pictures with them, including pics of his ribbon-wrapped penis on Christmas each year (requiring him to sneak off while his toddler was playing with her new toys on Christmas morning). He had an emotional affair with a college fling – texting and emailing her under my nose – including while we were away on my birthday.

    He had unprotected sex, risking impregnating his affair partners – including the disabled (at least according to her SSDI check) troll that he had twice impregnated before we met. He denigrated me to his affair partners and told them he was in a lonely marriage – all the while telling me he loved me every single day. He watched me work my ass off and had my daughter in day care full time while he was unemployed by choice (retirement by age 37). Putting it on paper – it seems pretty obvious that he is a pathological liar and selfish to the core, right? But I’m still here – still waiting to see how his “transformation” plays out; still half-believing his promises to never let me feel short-changed again; still swallowing every last shred of pride and good sense to provide an intact home for my daughter and, once in a while, catch a glimpse of the man I loved more than life itself.

    My problem is that I’ve doubled-down on a bad hand so many times that it’s hard to cut my losses. But, trust me, I was you eight years ago. I tell my husband that if I could turn back time to before we were married, I would walk away from him. I don’t have that choice, but you do.

    • But you do have a choice!!!!!!! Don’t give away your freedoms, like I tell people all the time- God bless America, I can do whatever I want!
      I would urge you to at least consider taking your lovely, innocent daughter, your principles, and your years of youth and go. Call Legal Aid if you’re poor, or ask your relatives to help you, but please don’t waste your life with Psycho-man.
      He sounds alot like mine, the stupid ‘retirement’, many women over the years, and just me working harder and harder to make our life work. Im almost divorced, and moved out months ago. Maybe you could try a seperation, you might see how much better you can feel! Best of luck- you need it

      • Agreed, PattyToo.
        To be clear, my comment refers to not being able to turn back the clock 8 years, not the lack of choice now. I am a smart professional with lots of resources. I will be fine financially, irrespective of whether I stay or go. But emotionally, I’m still here. I know the man I loved was a figment of my emotionally imagination, a projection of my romantic optimism – whatever. But I was mad for him and can’t bring myself to leave his ghost while there’s a chance – however bleak – that I can find my way to happiness with him.

        • Well, WastedHeart, then your screen name is appropriate. You wasted your heart.

          Give up on “that chance.” It doesn’t exist. Why don’t you leave and then see exactly how hard he tries to do right? Oh wait. I know — he’ll only pretend to make the effort contingent upon you reconciling with him. A very conditional sort of “remorse.” It’s just an act to hoover you back into his sick dance.

          You know he’s crazy, and that you need to cut your losses and run. Listen to yourself. It’s like you’re under a spell.

          • Absolutely right, CL! ‘Leave and then see how hard he tries to do right …’ My ex wanted so badly to come back, 8 months after the separation. But he did NOTHING to make it happen, once he saw I wasn’t opening my arms. ZERO NOTHING NADA

            This despite our actually-very-good life and our two gorgeous kids, who he claimed to miss so much (because by THEIR CHOICE he sees them only about 15% of the time).

            Sitting back to watch him do absolutely nothing was a big confirmation for me that I was right not to accept trying again, and a big confirmation of who he actually is, not who I wanted him to be.

            • They never do the heavy lifting. My ex would go along with whatever plan I devised to fix whatever problem but he rarely, if ever, figured things out for himself and then put a plan into action. It got to the point where I was solving his employment woes for him. Now he’s trying to do it all himself. Not going so well.

    • Wasted Heart, I know how you feel, I really do. But you still have the option and ability to leave, you always do. It’s like the Wizard said to Dorothy, you had the power in you all along (he said something like that anyhow…). And I agree with PattyToo, this is America, you can do whatever you want to do, HE IS NOT THE BOSS OF YOU!

      • Wasted heart, please see a therapist, do that one thing for you, I hate to think you will spend another decade hoping for a unicorn. At least try therapy.

        • I hear and appreciate the comments of all and, for the most part agree. Of course I’m in therapy, have a generous post-nup in place, set boundaries, exposed the parents’ depraved behavior to the adult son (mortifying both of them) and keep periodic appointments with HIS therapist. He is now working regular hours at a company he owns and taking on more household/family responsibilities. It may not last; in which case I’m gone. He may stick to his promises and,despite our best efforts, I can never get that *ick* smell off him (anyone ever read Pet Sematary? You’ll get what I mean) … in which case I’m gone. But I will know, for me, for my daughter and, just a little, for him,that I gave this marriage my all, even when both odds and justice required otherwise. Stay tuned.

          • Well, I hope it works out for you. I do understand the huge love, and how it makes you keep tryin. When my H was good, and when he focused on me, our love was the best I ever had. We had a great family. I think, but never know for sure, that he needed to inject trouble, and be the ‘bad boy’.
            C’est la vie, i left when I got too sick of it.
            Glad you have a career, you can take care of your family, even if it ends up being two of you.

          • Wasted, I get that. I had to do that, too. In hind sight do I wish I had left sooner? Most times, but I know myself well enough to realize that I had to be completely sure there was not one more thing I could have done, not one more time I could have turned the proverbial cheek, or I would have always wondered “what if”. He had to cross that last line. Now, my what ifs are “what if he had actually killed me? What if I had contracted some awful disease? What if he had succeeded in totally alienating me from my family, including my kids? Those, I can deal with.

            The tricky part is to set where that last line will be. It is different for everyone, and no one, not your therapist or mother or any of us here can tell you where your line is. But, do set one. Try and get some perspective on your own life, and figure out just what the last straw will be. I had to do it, and though it was ridiculously difficult, it didn’t kill me. I know I made the right choice.


      • Wastedheart – You do have choice. You absolutely do. Keep reading here to gather the strength you need. You still have a choice. I hope a seed is planted and will flower.
        Best of luck to you.

    • It’s so sad to read these words. Read them over to yourself. Read them out loud. It might have a different impact when you hear them.

      You do have a choice. He wants you to think that you don’t. That’s exactly where he wants you. In a state of utter defeat. That’s how he gives himself permission to do whoever he wants. (Yes, I did mean to say “whoever.”) He knows how much you hurt, he just doesn’t care. He figures that you know anyway, but you’re still there so he’ll just fuck off any time he wants.

      And in a state of defeat is not where you belong. He’s wrong if he thinks this is a free pass, because you probably feel the powerful emotional sting of having to swallow the pill that he is not the man you fell in love with, and your heart is still trying to love that man. He doesn’t understand that inner conflict because I doubt he’s ever felt that kind of emotion in his life.

      He isn’t the man you fell in love with and never was. I had the same problem with my ex. I kept telling myself “That’s not who he used to be! Why did he change?” then I realized he WAS always like that. No big change ever happened. I just wanted to believe that this wasn’t him. That way I wouldn’t have to swallow that pill.

      But I did, and I needed to. I think you do too. It’s like cold medicine. It tastes AWFUL, but it helps you get better.

      Don’t resign yourself to the defeat of his cheating ways. Look at yourself as King Leonidas’ foot and he’s the Persian, and divorce is that big hole in the middle of the city. He’ll be the one falling into darkness, not you.

    • Hi WastedHeart, I know that it must be so very hard. But this man is not treating you right. This guy has been emotionally abusing you. It’s not going to change. Take your time, and know where your line is. Sounds like you have been taking this shit for way too long and you have no self esteem left. Take your daughter and start a new beautiful life. I am sure it will be special just the two of you even. Imagine the relief of never having to look over your shoulder again. Is he really worth your peace of mind? As my priest told me last week ‘ why throw your pearls to pigs’ take care of yourself.

    • ” But, trust me, I was you eight years ago. I tell my husband that if I could turn back time to before we were married, I would walk away from him. I don’t have that choice, but you do.”

      I don’t know how many times, I have thought about going back in time to the night I met my STBXH on May 25, 1984. I wish to God that I would have gone to a DIFFERENT ticket kiosk at the other end of the train station! 29 years wasted knowing him and suffering a boat load of pain. Oh yes, there were good times and I have two kids I love to pieces. . . . if I knew what I know now- I would have never interacted with him that night where in 29 years followed wherein my ‘hopium’ and spackling’ brought me to where I am now.

  • Melissa, sweetheart, run run run run run and NEVER LOOK BACK. He is evil to the core. You may not feel it or realize it yet but you are “lucky.” You have found out who he is and what he is before you got married, had children, contracted a venereal disease or worse. You have found out who he is before he squandered and stole decades of your life and then left you without a backward glance, before he either abandoned your children or spent his days tormenting them and you with custody and support proceedings. Please please please just go no contact and get away. He is a soul-less predator, he will never never stop. He wants to use and abuse you as he has in the past and will in the future if you allow it. Don’t let him. I know it’s scary but look fear in the eye and tell it (and him) to get lost.

    As so many posted above, I had this same guy, but I was married to him for 25 years and we had three beautiful children who are now teens and young adults. Once I caught him last year he knew the jig was up and he just (pretty much) evaporated. He is now off claiming he will marry one of his group sex affair partners. Her children had to be DNA tested to determine whether my ex or her husband was the father. He had been having an affair with her and her best friend for 17 years. Luckily my ex was not the dad, but it was not for lack of trying.

    Melissa, my ex was a sparkly narc too and told me he loved me every single day, and EVERYONE was jealous of us–we were the golden couple and had the “perfect” family. That’s pretty funny but it’s the story with so many of us here. But even with all that, and me being 52 years old and having been married to him for 25 years, I kicked him out, divorced him pronto, and moved on. Now, a year and a half later, I am engaged to a wonderful non-sparkly man who I adore and who loves me and my children (who have incidentally been abandoned by their own father). I also never realized how much the lies, deceit and gaslighting sucked the life and sanity from me. My life is wonderful now and I am SO MUCH better than I ever thought possible either before or after my D-Day. I shudder when I think of the dark dreary nightmare I would still be living if I tried to work it out with him after D-day.

    Honey, if I can do it, you sure can, and your life will be great. Just GET AWAY.


    • Very, very happy for you Kelly. You give alot of us hope! You’ve been through so much, it’s good to know life after CAN be beautiful, and your kids are loved too. Fantastic

    • Yep, discovered years of cheating (which isn’t all that bad, according to the ex, as he had ‘lots of good periods of no cheating’ and am now finally divorced. I am financially fucked like you wouldn’t believe and may end up on the dole and I am SCARED because I haven’t worked in a lot of years and have really struggled to put my career back together. But I don’t have him in my life anymore and that’s the best thing. the worst thing is what this has done to the kids. Melissa, get out now, please. You will never regret it once the initial pain passes.

      • Nord, hang in there. Congratulations on your divorce coming through! I’ll be there soon- my goal is to be divorced by the end of 2013. I TOTALLY relate to the financial shit and fear that you have along with the anxiety of the immense work before you which in putting your life back together.

        I am 51- like you I worry about falling down, and not being’ on the public dole’ etc. We have brains though- we WILL get through this. NO MORE will our ex-narc spouse rob us of our energy both emotionally and financially. NO MORE will we waste time ‘worrying’ about our ex and throwing good money, time and energy after bad.

        This I can say about my ex-narc: He robbed me of my self-esteem, finances and confidence. He did however not take everything. He did NOT take away that I am a ‘good’ person and ‘really care’ for other people around me. I have two great kids that are healthy. Except for being 60 lbs. over weight, I am in good health, (I intend to lose the weight so I can do every sports activity I want and there are many I want to engage in! ) I have friends and family I can love and trust, I have a graduate degree and I am respected amongst my peers. I have this blog site for support. Now then. . . what else do I REALLY need?

    • Thank you Kelly, that’s an inspirational story! Where did you find this non sparkly narc? I have had two in a row!

      • Thanks PattyToo and Melissa, my now-fiancé has been my brother’s best friend since high school, and was divorced 6 years ago. I knew him and his ex-wife through my brother, and would see them at occasional family events, etc. After my divorce last year, I forced myself to get more active on Facebook, and that is where we reconnected… commenting over photos of each others’ children. He messaged me about a photo I had posted, and somehow we got talking and decided to meet for dinner. It’s hard to explain, but it was clear to me pretty early on that my fiancé was so different from my “adoring” and sparkly ex. Little things showed me almost immediately that he was the real deal…sort of like “look at what he does not at what he says,” but even what he says has a heartfelt quality that all the grandiose declarations of my ex lacked. Sometimes I am astonished that I didn’t see through my ex years before but he was good and the differences are subtle, yet once you have the real deal they are somehow astonishingly obvious. I cannot believe I allowed myself to live without real love and in a sham of a marriage for so long. I am sometimes still angry over the years my ex stole, but I am thankful I did not go to my grave deceived, alone and unloved….which was my future if I had not caught my ex and kicked his dead-ass out. Good people are out there, and you will find them. 🙂

  • Mellisa:

    CL and everyone else is right. Don’t marry him. You are lucky that you’ve learned all this about him before that paper is signed. He’s a cheating narcissist. He always has been. There was never a point when you were together that he wasn’t a cheating narc. He’ll still be one even after you’re gone. He’ll probably be a cheating narc well into his old age. People like him don’t change.

    He’s not sorry. He’s not sorry he hurt you. He’s not sorry he lied. He’s sorry he got caught. You forgive him again, he’ll just do it again. Only this time he will try even harder to keep it from you. He won’t stop. He’ll just dig deeper underground.

    It may suck to hear it, but he never really loved you. He loved the idea of using you. He loved that he could play you. He loved how good you made him look. He could show you off, say how in love you are, talk about how he wants to marry you to your friends and family, and then go in the bathroom and call his whore.

    And that’s what she is. A whore. A slut. To me, a slut is someone who employs deceit, dishonesty and trickery in their sexual relationships. This woman is involved with your boyfriend and she’s married. She has a child with someone who is NOT her husband. She’s a slut.

    Which is why he can’t be with her openly. He gets too much of a thrill out of being Mr. Casanova and well..she’s married. She can’t exactly have a relationship with him when she’s already got a husband.

    So why doesn’t he break up with you and go be with her? Why doesn’t she divorce and go be with him? BECAUSE THEY ARE BOTH SPINELESS COWARDS. They’re both too scared to lose their cake. Too scared to lose their meal tickets. And too scared of how really mundane the reality of actually being together will be. There’s no thrill if it’s not illicit right?

    He will only ever lie to you. He will only ever want you around to use you. Curbstomp that shit and get out.

    • Melissa,

      The tone of your letter suggests you really know what you must do. And you have come to the right place for support and warnings–fully paid for by years of sorrow–to stay away from the hopium.

      Kara’s comment suggests the symmetry between your boyfriend and his apparent baby mama. If you feel safe–and I realize that is a mighty big if–you might let the other chump in the situation know about his “wife” and “son.”

      I know it is not an easy call on what to do, but my heart goes out to that poor man as well.

      Good luck.

  • what’s with the triangulation that these kooks always employ? Seems like a constant theme to always be playing people off each other – forming alliances and forging emotional connections by finding common enemies.

    • Yep, triangulation is one of the best-loved tricks of the disordered. The presence of triangulation is pretty much diagnostic of disorder, IMHO.

      • They triangulate for the same reason they do anything else they do – because it WORKS, quite often. Gaslighting works, blame-shifting works, pity parties work, fake remorese works … At least for a while, or sometimes years or decades.

        When you’re trying to control someone so you can keep getting the kibbles that you’re entitled to from them, whatever works is valid, I guess.

        • Oh, and I forgot to say, all that stuff must be in the Narcissist’s Handbook that they’re keeping somewhere. ‘Cause they all seem to know it, and they all seem to do similar things, no matter how different they are otherwise ….

        • It’s funny, because for people with absolutely no ability to self-reflect or own their own behavior, narcissists have an amazingly good grasp on the behavior of others, and how to manipulate it for their own benefit. I think it’s instinctive, for the most part, not something they are even consciously aware of. But wow, they know EXACTLY how to work and manipulate people, what to say, what to do, even the facial expressions to wear. They are brilliant at obtaining kibble.

  • What I find really awful about this subject: BPD/NPD wingnuts who cheat on their spouses, lie, blame shift, project guilt, pretend to be remorseful, have no shame in repeatedly cheating (I could almost forgive a ONS, but probably not!)……………………….is that it is so F#$%ing common.

    It’s as though they’ve gone to university and studied a 3 year degree. But they haven’t.
    It’s all instinctive like a duck swimming. It totally freaks me out how common it is and how alike they all are.

    I’ve learnt more about PD’s than I ever wanted to, but it still shocks me.

  • I am sorry that you had to go through all of this. I also had someone who did the “repentant” thing and was forgiven by my entire family. He as well went through counseling on his own, went to church and became very involved in the church. They just repeat their usual pattern of cheating for whatever reason they see will justify their deplorable behavior. The only reason these leeches do anything in life, including feigning remorse of their past actions, is that there is STILL something in it for them. I have fixed my picker! These predators will bleed you dry if they can. I WISH YOU WELL!!!

  • I just wanted to say thank you so much CL and everyone else for the advice. It’s made me very clear about my next steps. No matter how much sparkle, you just can’t deny the evil that runs beneath it all. Now I just need to make sure I maintain no contact and get him the hell out of my life. Now I just need to fix my picker!!! ☺

  • Melissa –

    I agree with the awesome advice you’ve already gotten here. Let me just repeat that there is a HUGE difference between being genuinely sorry for what you have done, and just feeling sorry for yourself that you got caught. That was my STBX, all 4 times I caught him cheating. HE was soooo sorry, he loved me soooo much, he’d go to counseling (we went for a year, he kept screwing his ho-worker the entire time) he’ do so anything….

    Well, you get the picture. Even now, when the divorce is almost final (thank god!) he sends me texts about how sorry he is, how he feels like crying, how he… its always about him. Work are don’t mean a damn thing if their actions don’t match, and his never did. He was and is great at saying all the right things, he just has trouble actually doing the right thing. If past behavior is the best prediction of future behavior, then you know what this guy will be like in your future. That’s no life, and trust me – no matter how hard you try, what you do to try and figure his issues out (and you wont ever be able to, trust me here) so you can help the poor trouble guy he will continue to be what he has always been. Selfish. When there is a choice between doing whats right, and doing what makes him happy, he will chose himself. Everytime.

    It took me 21 years to get this in my own marriage, please don’t make this same mistake. I might not have anyone lying next to me at night, but I don’t have anyone lying to me either. You are worth more, never doubt that.

    • Angie, I get those texts too! It’s so weird, it’s always about him, and he doesn’t seem to even think about whether I might feel the same or might think he’s stupid for sending that stuff (although the temptation to forward it to the OW is pretty strong!). And the fact that I ignore that stuff doesn`t change anything either.

      It took me a long time to learn that his words meant NOTHING (except that he wanted more kibbles), to watch his actions, and to stop assuming and spackling.

      You’ve got it EXACTLY right;
      `Selfish. When there is a choice between doing whats right, and doing what makes him happy, he will chose himself. Everytime.` And it`s no consolation that it`s not even what will make him happy on the medium or long term; it`s right now only.

      • Exactly right Karen. They don’t seem to seem or even realize that there just might be conseqences to their choices. They just want to feel happy/good right now, and that seems to be all the farther their “thinking” goes. Well my STBX can go feel sorry for himself somewhere else, Im done trying to fill his bottomless pit of neediness.

  • Melissa:

    The guy is obviously addicted to sex and is a serial cheater. Break it off. You are not married to him.

    Nevertheless, don’t let it embitter you forever from dating someone who lost his wife due to cheating.

    Some people, men or women, do cheat once and seriously regret it. Trust that. Don’t become bitter and blind to the fact that everyone at some point is their life will be vulnerable to an affair.

    Even a guy or gal that previously had a perfect track record.

    So, don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater.

    If you are just dating you should both still be in the honey moon phase of the relationship. If he is already having multiple affairs, he is a serial cheater and almost all are sex or porn addicted.

    • Alex, you’ve left two rah-rah cheating messages on my board. Perhaps you were unclear on the concept of this place? Or you’re a troll?

      Yes, people may be vulnerable to affairs. Some act on it and some don’t — the difference is character.

      “Cheat once” “regret it” “bitter” — wow. So if she doesn’t trust her cheater, she’s “bitter”?

      You’re sending the message for Melissa to move on, but hey, “everyone” can be a cheater, so why be choosey. Better to take the approach that “shit happens” than to be doomed to “bitterness.” That’s fucked up.

      • THANK YOU CL! We chumps here have had had to endure the insufferable, ” don’t be bitter” BS comments from those around us and the ENTIRE Reconciliation Industrial Complex! THANK GOD for CL, THANK ALMIGHTY GOD !!!!!!!!

  • Melissa, your story sounds a lot like mine. Especially the undercurrent of suspicions (truth) it seems we both tried so hard to ignore but could not. My cheater ex-fiance drained me financially, as well as emotionally, did it very cleverly, and had 3-4 longtime married lovers when we met, in addition to new “friends” acquired during our almost 4 year “courtship”, which was really a complete con job on his part, and complete chumphood on mine. Toward the end, I got some clear warnings, that I still ignored and moved in with him before needing to flee a few months later. So, I know you might be hearing all these warnings now, and be just as vulnerable to staying with your Douche Bag as I was with mine, but please, honey, do what I didn’t do at first — RUN, don’t walk, and never look back. There is no real love to be lost, he is incapable of loving you, or anyone else, as human beings deserve. Once the grieving process is over, no matter how bad it is (mine almost ended in suicide), I promise, your life WILL be so much better without him!

  • alex, you sound like someone i know. sincerely hope you’re not the son of a sociopathic, alcoholic serial cheater in matthews nc who 15 years after their divorce, still blames his ex-wife your mother for cheating, but cheated on her, and still lies about it, just like he lies about cheating on ex-girlfriends and at least one ex-fiance. if by chance you are this unfortunate son, the truth is hidden in plain sight. hope you will stop enabling your predator father, and hope even more that you are not wired to follow in his footsteps.

  • A book to recommend to all (and Melissa, here new to CL): The Sociopath Next Door by Dr. Martha Stout. Was a best seller, but chumpy me just discovered it a few months ago. One of the best books I’ve ever read, on many levels, including the deeply philosophical and practical. Should be required reading by high school. On sale now for $8 at Barnes and Noble. Best $8 I’ve spent in a long time. Bought every copy they had and giving them to my circle of peeps. CL, and fellow chumps, has anybody read?

    • An excellent book! And I agree – it should be required reading. Just finished reading it a second time after a newer relationship deemed it necessary. Guess you could say I’ve got skills to practice and the realization that sociopaths come in all shapes. Another book I’d recommend is Attached; the New Science of Adult Attachment by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller.

  • Repeating as my new mantra “Nothing is wrong with you, except you need to work a bit on your picker. Totally curable condition. Unlike Mr. Sparkles there, who is a disordered freak and will always, always, always no matter how weak his knees get from groveling, be a disordered freak.” Spot on!

  • Hello I am very new to this blog. I am just ending a relationship of 8 years, 3 of theme leaving together. He is a serial cheater and I thought he was a UNICORN, silly little girl I am/was not sure my Dday was 5 days ago. How can I manage to stay NC if he keeps going to my work and waiting for me, wanting to talk to explain… to gaslight me. How can I make him stop?

    • Call the cops. Or workplace security. Tell your boss what is happening and stay no contact. If he pushes it, you start restraining order proceedings. Lawyer up! And document the work place stalking. That’s what it is — stalking. This is about CONTROL, not “explaining” his abuse to you.

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