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So What Have You Done for YOU Lately?

tracyweldI didn’t realize quite what I vein I tapped when I asked for your best resentments. OMG — you’ve really made this awarding a mug thing difficult. It’s like trying to judge the Pain Olympics. I am so sorry for the plague of cheating, narcissistic fucktards out there and I propose that we begin shuttle service to Planet Narcissist immediately. (The only solution is a some kind of cosmic penal colony, preferably on a freezing planet with very little oxygen.)

But some of your posts gave me an idea (TimeHeals and Stephanie, I’m talking to you) — tell me, since DDay, what have you done for YOU lately? We’ve got over 300 comments of resentment — I want to hit just as much inspiration now, or more. You guys write to me off site and I know a bunch of you have gone to school after 40, gotten new degrees, lost weight, learned a skill, made a new friend.

It doesn’t even have to be awesome — don’t get competitive. Your only benchmark is YOU. If you’re in the early days and your big accomplishment is you fed your kids and took a shower — you’re in. What are you proud of? What’s been hard won? What fantastic indulgence are you enjoying now that fucktard is out of your life? Tell your fellow chumps.

I’ve mentioned it a few times here already, but I did several thing in my early days that helped a lot.

1) I found a job. Not an easy thing right after DDay, having only lived in that town a few months. I was steadily freelancing, but now I needed a gig with benefits that I could support myself and my son on. There’s not a lot of publishing work in Amish country, but I found a job at a farm newspaper and loved it. Even though it paid less than I made working for Jesuits 20 years earlier, I took it. Having a deadline, a community, and a steady pay check made the next couple years so much happier for me. I had a place to throw my energies, folks who appreciated me, and work and travel that kept me so busy I didn’t have a lot of time to dwell on life’s suckitude.

2) I bought art. Right after DDay, my parents surprised me with $500 at Christmas. I bought a piece of “outsider art” with it from a local gallery. It’s a carved stone head. I love that thing. I would never just plunk down that kind of money on an object (especially when you’re making less than what Jesuits pay), but I did it anyway. I still love looking at that head. It gave me such a thrill to buy it.

3) I learned to weld. (That’s me up there in my welding hat.) After I moved out, I took a local course on metal smithing, which for that semester was welding. The first class was all about how not to kill yourself. Later I did nearly that when my piece wasn’t properly grounded and electricity shot through my hand and cauterized a neat hole through the fleshy skin above my thumb. (A HOLE — clean through my hand!) Or when I nearly singed my eyebrows off trying to apply a patina. (It’s a crazy process that involves noxious chemicals and a blow torch.) It was totally kickass. You haven’t lived until you’ve used a plasma cutter to cut steel. Once you get over the intimidation factor, it’s exhilarating. My cure for the infidelity blues is to find your welding class, whatever that is. Makes some friends, injure yourself in new and interesting ways, and find your creativity.

So tell me, chumps, what have you done for you lately?

 

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  • Kicked ass at my first ZUMBA (I’m 58)
    Lost 65 pounds
    Grew my hair out – it looks fab
    and
    (drum roll)
    learned how to smile and laugh again!

      • Thanks, Danette
        It’s a long road which I’ve found started earlier that I ever imagined.
        Tho my STBX is still covering his tracks financially, I’m hoping we can actually divorce before the end of the year.
        THAT, my friends, will be the best day of my life. Bar none. Births, weddings, birthdays, holidays, successes for my kids, my family, my loved ones. All of it wil;l just be enhanced by the sparkle that will be my freedom from the buiggenst mistale I have ever made in my life. Now don’t get me wrong – had I not met my STBX< moved myself and my kids 5 states away, left the best job I ever had, suffered the full-term loss of a baby boy and celebrated the eventual beautiful baby – my beautiful 15 year old who has been the light of my life – and eventually as a result of all have found love and respect and compassion and caring from a widiwed man who has been a dear friend for over 20 years. Karma.

  • Refinanced my house, with just my name on the loan. Signed up for a golf clinic at the county golf course this month. Small steps but helpful. I am 17 months out from DDay. This sounds old but time does heal. Don’t forget to breathe.

  • 2 years from D-day, 18 months from when he moved out. My previous career took a huge hit during the recession, and I’ve been a SAHM past 8 years anyway, so I went back to school. More than halfway through a Masters in Public Health, 3.9 GPA!

  • The day after I threw him out, I had already been scheduled to return to school, and finish my degree. I was almost always the oldest person in the room, but I didn’t let it stop me. 4.0 the first semester. Not because I’m so much smarter than everyone else, but because it gave something to just me. I loved the process, the learning, the focus on something other than the train wreck of my life. I’m graduating, hopefully at least summa cum laude, Summer 2014.

    The second thing that stands out is I competed in the Warrior Dash. At age 45. Climbed hay bales, scaled rope walls and crawled in mud under barbed wire. It was the most liberating, exhausting and thrilling thing I could have done for myself. Even though it’s completely ridiculous. The sense of accomplishment I felt when I crossed the finish line was truly empowering!

    This was a great idea! Thank you!!

  • I have packed all of my belongings to move closer to my kids. I move today. I’m hoping that a new place with no memories of her will get me out of limbo.
    Pray for me

    • You’ll do great. After I moved out when I had my kids, I could be the dad I needed and they needed me to be. No drama…no second guesses.

      • Anyone who packs up and moves to be closer to their kids is going to be blessed. This will turn out better for you than you can ever imagine. I will say a prayer for you, but you are accumulating your own blessings.

        • I AM MOVED IN!!!!! Thank you Doop, TennisHack and Chumpprincess. My kiddos are running around outside right now they seem to be very happy. On a grr note I brought a painting and some coats to my W and she made the underhanded comment oh you brought me some things a heads up would have been nice…….I ignored it. Just set the shit down abd talked to my kids. ‘Meh’ No? Lol love you guys

          • Good news, rccola!
            Another characteristic of chumps, our loved ones remain a priority for us.
            My ex, meanwhile, is preparing to move thousands of miles AWAY from his kids.
            Sad.

            • Z,

              I wish my x would leave the kids with me and move thousands of miles away. She doesn’t deserve the love these two younglings give her. I say she can move with new man to whatever hell they want and I can raise them without any interference from her….Wishful thinking I know.

              On a good note, I am looking up sculpture classes and traditional art classes. I’m gonna do this!

  • So its only been officially 1 month since I spoke to my ex and although that sounds short, it had never been done in 7 1/2 years…EVER. So I am kind of shocked by it.
    Since then:
    -I have gotten Botox (which I have been wanting)
    -Gotten my second cartilage piercing

    Brief note on the two above: I am petrified of needles, I have never even gotten my blood taken. So if I ever get in an accident and they need to know what type of blood type I am im basically screwed lol. I figured nothing could hurt as much as what he put me through,(the last one getting a woman pregnant) so whats a little needle?

    -Took a painting class
    -lost 20 pounds (Ive gained almost 70 since high school when we met. I know I dont look it but its still a sucky feeling) :/
    -went to a dolphins game (yes, I know they suck) in my company’s executive suite
    -started walking my dogs more
    -Gotten a massage
    -Started getting closer to my family and spending time with them more

    I still struggle every day wondering about why I wasnt good enough in his eyes and if this woman and baby will make him happy but Im trying to move on and actually do something!

    • Oh yes and found a way to get myself out of the huge financial hole that I dug when being with him, within 2 years!

    • It’s more than likely that this woman will have the same complaint a few years down the line. It wasn’t you. You know that, right?

      • Eh yes and no. I try to tell myself that but its still hard because he always used to say taht he just wanted someone to understand him and when he gets upset to just leave him alone. He always used to say that I was 99% perfect I was just missimg those things and apparently this woman has those things (then again all 16 [those are the only ones that I know of] girls had those attributes when he cheated on me but then poof! It wasnt enough). Shes older too and I know he likes that. But it does feel good to know that he has already come back and said he was leaving her while she was pergnant (CL I hope youre right about there being a special ring for those who cheat on pregnant woman, even though I think she should be in her own ring as well).

        I just alwaysa felt like his story changed based on what he was feeling at that moment and when I didnt get it that is when he would say I didnt listen.

        About a month ago he came over balling his eyes out saying that he had more connection with the dog than her and couldnt live without me. Me, being stupid sadi I would take him back and he said he was leaving and just needed a place for his things. Later in the week you could tell he was re-thinking it and I got very upset and told him he should have never called me if he was going to do this and hopefully everything works out even though noting has and I said that he useed me for comfort. He then THANKED me for helping him realize that Im not the right one for him and I could be so hurtful and now him and her are getting along well and what not. All within one week…Always seemed to change however he felt at that moment.

        Couldnt stand that I pointed out that his relationship was forced and they lied to each other. Apparently, I have no boundaries and say the most vicious things sometimes according to him.

        • Nope, he says hurtful shit to you in order to get you to defend and say something back. Then he accuses you of being vicious. It is not you, it is him and you need to go NC.

            • Yep, thats already done ๐Ÿ™‚

              It does kind of bother me at the thought that they could make it work but Im trying to get over that.

              Probably one of the hardest things to oversome is the insecurity that it was our combination that caused his reactions; that if he was with someone stronger or someone that listened to him he wouldnt be like this.

              One time I recall was when we were engaged. I had recently (4– 5 months) found out that I contracted an STD from him (before then I had no idea he had slept with anyone else [come to find out there were at least 8 that he had sex with], I thought it was just kissing and flirting). I was trying to let it go and move on. He promised me that once we were engaged he would never cheat because then it is on a new level.

              When he was outside and I decided to look through his phone and founding sexting between him and this girl at work (it was mostly her) which is the girl I think he got the STD from. I freaked and started screaming and even pushed him and pushed a table in his direction. He then jumped towards me and pushed me against the wall screaming for me to get the F out of his house. When he let me go he kept pushing me when I was on the ground trying to get my things. He then started cutting himself saying that he cant control himself around me and I drive him crazy. I started crying and trying to help him.

              I know people say I shouldnt feel guilty over that situation but I do feel bad that I did push him, I was just so upset and hurt that it was happening because he “wasnt happy”.

              Point being, He used to tell me that he no longer gets mad like he used to with her because she just walks away when she gets upset. Grant it theyve only known each other for 4 months, but it still feels like maybe it was the combo and he wouldnt have been that bad if I did just leave him alone when he asked. (By the way when I say leave alone I mean if he started getting upset he wanted to just walk away and wanted me to be ok with it, it especially happened when I would start crying. He would tell me to stop and leave him, alone for a while).

              • Kristina L.,

                I hope this helps but reading your posts, my conclusion is that there is nothing to save about your relationship. He’s not healthy for you, or anyone. Who he is does not reflect who you are. Only you reflect who you are. That is the point of CL’s post today…what good things have you done for you? Good luck to you.

              • Healthy relationships aren’t characterized by one person walking out when they get upset. That’s conflict avoidance.

                It’s also another way of showing you that it’s all about them.

              • Thank you Matt. It is much appreciated.

                kb, that is a very good point, I never looked at it that way. I do remember feeling like he was basically saying this isnt worth my time and controlling when I could spek or could be heard. I also knew that he used to do that to give himself time to come up with a lie if he was caught doing something.

                In regards to the choking situation, I kind of know that deep down I cant “make” him do anything, because what Ive been through has never made me cheat because thats not who I am. But I still struggle with CL’s “Trust that they suck” mantra. The concept of not having him is not what bothers me, its the concept that he could succeed with someone else is what bothers me. I think because it would make me feel like a failure. I tried so hard with everything for him. While I was driving 40 minutes just to see him for 30 when he lived on campus for a semester and taking his clothes home to wash he was having sex with someone else.

                He cant live without me and I am so amazing, then Im just not right for him and I make him feel like he doesnt do anything right. I didnt know what the hell I was doing to get this. And to hear him say that he doesnt react like he did with me to her hurts so bad. But then he cheats on her and has better connection with a dog, but then they are getting along…?? I always fell like I am missing something or I got something wrong. I know people say you cant make sense out of nonsense but he had a way of making you feel like you were crazy and stupid for not being able to understand.

              • You know, now thinking about it, after he realized that he got her pregnant and had only known her for a month (but had partially already moved in, but was calling me from her house). He came over and cried to me saying, “as fucked up as this sounds I thought that I was just going to hang out with her for a month or two and just come back like I always do”. I never thought he realized his pattern because he supposedly left me because “they had the one thing that I didnt”. But he actually did know what he was doing.

              • Kristina,

                He is/was emotionally abusing you. I know what that looks like. I’ve been living it for almost 28 years. I’m still living it and I’m not even living with my STBX anymore.

                Trust CL on this – your H sucks!! If he has a great relationship with her, she sucks! You know who doesn’t suck? YOU!

                He treats/treated you abominally – that’s what HE did. That’s not you, that’s him. He has convinced you that you did something to deserve his treatment of you because in his mosquito brain, that makes his behavior all okie dokie, and if you accept what he’s telling you, then you’re validating his bullshit. Get a broom, a mop and some air freshner and clear that bullshit and its residue from your life.

                I can tell by your posts that you are a kind and decent person. He’s a monkey’s ass. You deserve better than his treatment of you. You deserve to be honored, respected, cherished and loved. A monkey’s ass can only do what a monkey’s ass does – shit. If you want shit, then you want him. If you want something that’s not shit, accept that HE SUCKS and YOU DON’T.

              • Holy Crap !
                He cheated at least 8 times.. gave you an STD… got T.O.W. pregnant..
                and you STILL TOOK HIM BACK ?
                OMG… just WHAT IS A DEAL BREAKER ?
                Go to FB , “Cheating Should Never BE Tolerated “… a compliment to CL.
                Never put up with Cheating !
                N- E- V- E- R !!!!!!!

              • Kristina L
                If you are not in therapy, please see someone, it will help. I see some mutual violence in your posts where you are not sure you reacted appropriately and I think you need to figure that out with a good therapist. It may well be that you both have issues dealing woth anger because of reasons no one on this board can know. Finding out about yourself and being your best person is way better than worrying whether your ex’s new girl deals with him better than you do. You will find someone who loves you, not him.

              • Whether he succeeds without you is immaterial. From your posts, someone not in your shoes can easily see that (1) your relationship with him was unhealthy, and (2) his relationship with the OW was unhealthy. Conclusion = he’s a guy who has unhealthy relationships. Those kind of people, unfortunately, exist.

                The important point is not whether any cheating partners can succeed without their chump partners. The important point is that the chump partners can succeed first on their own and then second in a healthy relationship. SO first you have to be on your own and heal up. Wishing you all the best of luck in that endeavor.

              • You have to stop thinking he cheated on you. He is cheater and he will cheat on anyone. Its a disease not a personal attack.

              • He’s a psychotic FREAK!!! He was fucking cutting himself?

                honey, honey, honey… next time, he’ll cut you.

                look, if you were right for this nut job, there would be something wrong with you. Oh, this bimbo is making it work with him???

                yes, of course she is.

                She’s a fucking masochist and its all sick and twisted.

                you pushed him. is that all? you feel guilty?

                why, honey?

                He tore your fucking heart out and then put it on a plate with ketchup and slobbered it all up in one big gulp. belch. You had every right to defend your honor and I think he got off really easy.

                you don’t make him crazy. he already was, is and will forever be so…

                I am grateful that you are out of that situation. And BTW… he’s LYING. Don’t listen. Please do not be in contact with him. He’s a sadist who derives much pleasure from fucking with your sweet head!

                big (((hugs)))!!!

              • Pretty sure cutting oneself is a red flag for Borderline Personality Disorder.

                So… on the theme of “what are you doing for yourself?”, did you consider maybe a little time with a No-BS counselor just to go over why you allowed all of this for so long?

              • Whoops! The post about the kids was for RC.

                Kristina,
                PLEASE give yourself a chance! Just TRY your very best to go NC 1 hour, then 1 day, then 1 week at a time…READ all of CL’s main posts over and over so that they can sink in. Youv’ve given him so many chances … Please give yourself some!

              • Just reading through this all again and I hope it doesn’t feel like we’re judging you, in any way. I’m sure this idiot is very charming and “nice” (when it suits him). He’s a master con artist and he was with you because he found in you someone he could easily manipulate. There’s a darkness that lives within this man, that is too scary to even fathom. Timeheals mentioned that cutting is a marker for Borderline personality disorder and she is right. He is also extremely abusive— toxic, AND dangerous. But I also agree that some good work with a qualified therapist (and it might take a few to find the right one) can help you to understand better just what you have been dealing with. (((hugs))) again. We’re here for you.

              • I do currently have a therapist and am quite comfortable with her but I’m not sure if she helps me the way I need. He had only put his hands on me one other time. And I know that is never ok but sometimes I wonder if I just kept my mouth shut and did what he asked when he was getting upset It wouldn’t have resulted in so many holes in the walls and broken doors and it would’ve been better ( he knew he had anger issues and would tell me to stop talking and leave him alone when he was getting angry. It just felt so often he told me to stop and half the time he used that to come up with excuses).

                I just found out today that he proposed to her. He’s known her for 5 months, it’s been less than a year since he called off our wedding and he’s already engaged. I know I shouldn’t be but I am devastated. I always used to tell him that he has this vision of this house, 2 kids, three dogs and a wife and having this perfect life. But over the wife’s head he had a please insert here sign, as if it was interchangeable. He would tell me that’s crazy and it’s not true but that’s exactly what he did. It bothers me to think that she’s all happy with the life that I tried so hard for. He got everything he wanted.

                I know I kept going back to him because part I loved him/ he made it sound like such an easy fix/ I didn’t think anyone would want me. Someone once told me that they felt like I had battered wife syndrome but I feel like that may be too extreme.

                Do I think I can find happiness one day with someone now? Yes. But there is a part of me that want to see them fail because of everything I’ve gone through and don’t want me initial feeling of failure on my end. I feel like he’s done more for her than he ever did for me. How come I didn’t deserve that in his eyes. I had claimed to me that he doesn’t love her and is only with her for the baby and financial reasons but then he proposes? Everything he does and says is a riddle to me. That’s how I always felt and that’s why he said I didn’t understand him.

                I know he’s already cheated on her with me ( mind you I believed him when he said he was leaving,I always blindedly believed him, whenever he spoke the fog came over me). Part of me wants to tell her like I wish someone told me. Another part wants to tell her to get back at him. Another part want to tell her almost as a way to verify that he will never speak to me again because I know if I went down that road he would never forgive me for ruining his whatever he has planned. Part of me doesn’t trust myself not to speak to him again. That would be my insurance. But the other part says she can figure it out herself.

                I’d like to think that they won’t end up together and that he will do the same but my insecure side worries that if she has a different personality and is more like him in the way she deals with things then he could be happy. I’d like to see them go down in flames sooner rather than later but I have a feeling that having a baby together will bring them even closer and make him watch himself more and make it work.

              • Someone that is violent doesn’t deserve your time. My wife was the same way. She punched me in the face numerous times. Threw shit. Broke shit. I got the same thing she wanted to be left alone when she was angry and I had a hard time doong so cause I hated being.upset with each other. They suck. Youre abused so was I . So am I. I get to start a new life. I don’t have to wonder any more about who she is talking to or texting. Its my time. And its yours.

              • RCC, my heart goes out to you and everyone else who’s been physically abused. The emotional abuse mixed in with the physical. No one ever would stand for being struck if the abuser hadn’t done a major mind fuck first.

                I hope you’ve had some therapy for this. I always wished my sister had seen another therapist besides the one who told her that she seemed to be coping well. My sister can separate intellect from emotion in a lot of ways, but those emotions need the work that a good therapist will demand.

                STBX has never struck me, but infidelity is emotional abuse, and I know that I’ll need therapy to deal with the longer term repercussions, though I think life without him will seem like freedom.

              • Kb,

                I am seeing a therapist, it still rocks my world that I allowed her to hit me as much as I did. Her anger was crazy, from 0 to 1000 in less than a second. I don’t get it and probably wont. All I know is that it wasn’t my fault she hit me….Funny that I can think of the physical abuse that way but not the mental/emotional abuse. I still make excuses for her. Ugh stupid shit. I’m hoping that I can begin to see this as freedom and not a complete loss.

              • In regards to the cutting, he’s done that since I’ve known him in high school. When I met him he told me that I was the one that got it to stop but 7 years later I’m the cause of it. He certainly didn’t do it often and before that I think it had been a few years since he did it if that makes any difference. He was weird like that, he could do something so extreme and then just stop. He would start smoking cigarettes contact antsy and then could just stop cold turkey. Same things with cutting and alcohol. I could never call him an addict because he could stop at an instant. We would fight about his behavior because I always worried about his health and by me nagging him about it it just pissed him off more and was more ammo for the whole ” you make things worse not better”.

              • Kristina L

                I went through 4 therapists, only one of them was helpful to me. If your therapist is comfortable to you but isn’t able to help you, find another one. If all you do is go to sessions and talk and get nothing from the therapist, not good. It sounds like you need some structure and “homework”. Mindfulness or CBT type therapy might be what you are looking for. The first therapist I saw got upset when I told her I needed to find someone else, that is a RED flag the therapist is not professional and certainly not mentally in an appropriate place to help others.

                I also saw a 5th therapist who practiced EMDR for my PTSD issues.

                SUPER RED FLAG of abusers is one where they tell you it is your fault they did whatever destructive thing they did AND telling you that ONLY YOU CAN FIX THEM. Your ex is seening black and white, either you are his savior or you are his evil demon. That’s mental illness that YOU CANNOT FIX.

              • Kristina–I’m glad you’re in therapy.

                If you aren’t sure you’re being helped in the way you need to be helped, you may need to shop around a bit more, even if you like your current therapist. Look for one who’s experienced with emotional abuse victims as well as infidelity (and infidelity is a form of abuse.

                Two categories of your comments scream abuse survivor to me. First, you talk about your fears that your X will “win” by being with the OW. Abuse victims will often cite their desire to “win” as a reason for staying with someone who’s physically and/or emotionally abused them. Relationships aren’t contests, with the winner the one who’s able to last the longest. Rather, relationships are reciprocal. Both of you should benefit (see CL’s posts on how she felt when she met her current husband v. how her Narc behaved).

                Second, you mention that if your behavior had somehow been different, your X would have refrained from behaving in an off-the-wall, unacceptable fashion. This, too, is common of abuse victims. They blame themselves, just as their abusers blame them (“Hey, it’s not my fault I called her a slut and a worthless fat bag that no one else would have. She didn’t give me my spaghetti in a 2:1 pasta to sauce ratio.”)

                You can’t live like this because these people do not have normal rules. You will have to sacrifice yourself every waking second in order to figure out how to please them, and for them, it’s a huge power trip. Look! You’re their dog! They train you!

                So yes, talk to your therapist about all of this. If you’re not working on the emotional abuse/infidelity connection, start shopping around for a therapist who does this sort of stuff routinely. It’s going to take some time, since that bastard worked on you for a long time, too. Maybe there are some support groups for abuse victims. Contact your local women’s shelter if you want referrals.

                Above all, take care of yourself!

    • Kristina, it so isn’t you.

      My H commented that his OW whined: you never talk to me.

      Ha ha ha ha ha hahahahahahaaaaaaa…

      It isn’t you. Its him.

  • I completely re-landscaped the back yard – fixed the sprinkler system (by myself!), hauled in, planted, and nurtured trees and shrubs, selected gorgeous perennials that are thriving, got all new outdoor furniture. It became a sanctuary. I learned to grill, which was a big deal because that was definitely his purview.

    I reclaimed my home.
    I repainted, redecorated, took down art we had selected together…I’ll fill the walls as time passes and new pieces speak to me.

    My home is once again a place of peace and serenity, as it was before The Troubles.

    • Yes! Yes! Yes! I couldn’t even feel comfortable sitting on my deck with a glass of wine because my husband was in recovery. I am so done with dumbing down my life because of his lack of control and moral compass!!!!!!

    • This is badass. I am hoping to do exactly what you are doing once I get a promotion and refinance the house in my name. Cheers to you!

      • Thanks Rachel! It has been awesome. You can start the process now in your mind’s eye…your imagination and vision will be all ready once you get the re-fi! In my next life, I want to work at the garden center.

  • 1. I stopped dumping sugar in my endless cups of coffee. Have lost 45 pounds and am 8 pounds away from no longer being overweight.

    2. I colored my hair. It is now the warm, nutty brown of my thirties.

    3. Bought a up-lift bra. Fraudulent but makes me feel so good about myself when I look in the mirror.

    4. All the care and attention I lavished on my unfaithful husband has been diverted back to me. I deserve it and I SINCERELY APPRECIATE that attention.

    The reader comments inspire me! Keep up the great work, fellow chumps! Hugs to you, survivors and warriors!

  • I kicked his ass to the curb. I divorced him. Purged the house of ALL HIS SHIT.

    That felt good!

    Got a new bed and new linens–Queen instead of Cal King. (Overstock.com has great deals on mattresses and they deliver to your front door. No sharky salesmen. Can’t say enough how happy that’s made me.) Put the like-new “old” bed on Craigs List and sold it for a couple hundred dollars from my garage.

    I’ve sold quite a few things on E-bay and Craig’s List. That is actually pretty fun!

    I finally put my foot down on his “vacation” home that was eating all our income and forced xH to sell it, FINALLY! What a weight lifted off! The hemorrhaging was over! I finally exercised my strong opinion and insisted rather than hoped he would let go of it. Got a nice tax refund on the hundreds of thousands of dollars of loss we’d incurred to pay for his dream piece of shit. It is a MIRACLE it sold. It was ugly and had so many problems. Thank GOD that is over. I used to work my ass off at that place. I’m sure the last time we were there, he was texting the twat troll while I cleaned the tenant’s toilets. Nice.

    His mother kicked me off the family Costco account, like a punch to the stomach to find out in line as I was paying, so I have my own account now. Fuck ’em all. Bought tires for my car at Costco.

    Bought his half of MY verrrry modest house. Financed it on line (At bankrate.com as recommended by consumer advocate Clark Howard–so I knew I could trust them) faster than xH could take a breath. Paid him his half lickety split–at the BOTTOM of the market. (Sucks to suck, my friend.) When he whined about having to pay a $30 banking transfer fee, I shrugged my shoulders and laughed. I think he was stunned. When he demanded interest, I sighed and wrote him a check and dusted off my hands. He’s an ass.

    Went to Ikea and Craig’s List and started furnishing the house for the first time with furniture that an adult would have, as opposed to what a college kid would have. I am in my mid-40’s. It’s about damned time. Didn’t have to get his approval. Ikea delivers. My car holds a ton of Craig’s List finds.

    I’m getting ready to put in a new floor in my home, to replace my 1980’s vinyl. Home Depot sells a vinyl plank that you click together like a puzzle. All the reviews say it is easy and looks great. I finally ripped out the 1950’s cabinets and blue formica counter top (have the bruises and cuts to prove it, like a boss) and am getting Ikea cabinets for my verrrrrrrry small kitchen. Finally! I replaced all the light fixtures inside the house. Looks SO much better than the painted-over dark fixtures this house used to have.

    Took my kids and dogs on a road trip to LA. Been on a few other vacays. Arranged all by myself. Went to Vegas with my girlfriends for girls’ weekend.

    Did I mention? I got a second dog. Because I wanted to. xH HATES that dog and has threatened to kick her because she barks at him. She knows a jerk when she sees one. And he can stay the fuck off MY property, that’s what he can do.

    Bought cheap tools (and put tools on my Christmas list) and learned how to build a fence to replace one that was falling over in the back yard. I built that fence. My friends are impressed. So am I. Fuck yeah. Youtube is my home improvement BUDDY!

    Went into the attic crawl space to replace the bathroom ceiling fans. Found out that quite a few of my female friends are adept with tools and even one has been in the attic crawl space to do work on her home–her husband bragged about it. I’m going to look for a man like that. My home improvement friends are hugely inspirational! So is Youtube.

    I volunteer at my kids’ school. I moved two of my kids to two colleges. I have been here for my kids and they know it. We have a lot of good memories and laughs that xH will never have with them.

    Went to a couple of SF Giants games. I love going to baseball games. xH would never go with me. Now I go with friends.

    I have made a lot of new friends. I have gained a new perspective on divorce and single parenthood. I think I’ve inspired a few folks.

    I wear a lot of dresses now. Ross has them for cheap!

    Life is good for me.

  • Gained 8 lbs of lean muscle in 9 months (Confirmed by hydrostatic measurement — doesn’t sound that impressive but it takes a lot of hard work at age 44). Right now I’m evaluating VC funding for a new business.

    Most importantly, I stopped apologizing for being me, cut all the dead weight phonies out of my social circle, and learned to smile again.

    I could have never accomplished any of this being married to my cheating, conniving, social climbing ex.

    • 8 lbs of muscle in 9 months is incredibly impressive, especially at mid-40’s. Wow, wtg, you have inspired me!

      • I agree. It is very impressive!

        I’ve lost weight, but stage 2 will be going back to free weights. Squats and deadlifts–oh the delicious pain!

  • Well I did a few things for myself:
    (1) Went to the local thrift stores and bought a whole new wardrobe – I could afford new, but I LOVE thrift store shopping and was never ‘allowed’ when married.
    (2) Took up running again, this time with my new dog that my ex hates and I adore – we run once or twice a week and it’s good for both of us
    (3) Tore apart my house – I love building and renovating as a way to de-stress and so I tore apart my entry way and started with that. I put it together again with the help of friends and family and it is amazing
    (4) I cooked and invited friends over for supper, I had open house parties with potluck as a theme
    (5) I indulged and went to a waxing place to have my legs waxed (I have a standing appt now for my indulgent streak – once every 8 weeks)

    Oh and I cut my hair short – my ex always hated short hair and I wouldn’t cut it because he complained so much. I love my new haircut!

    Oh and the big one – I almost forgot. I got two tattoos. I never liked tattoos before, but this was a monumental change for me and I wanted to honor it – so on one shoulder I have my old nickname that I think represents me as a person and on the other I have a baby goose on water sleeping which represents my son (we called him goose) and I have his initials on the edge of the water.

    • Ooooh!

      (4) – so important. My H was deeply antisocial and had no friends, so this is a BIGGIE for me.

      Thanks for the reminder!

      • I couldn’t believe how much I missed having people over…now I have neighbours drop by unannounced for coffee or tea, friends pop by to see if I need help with putting up drywall or taking down drywall and I have friends to ask me over for dinner and I do the same and it is wonderful!

  • I’m still married and trying to work on things, but things aren’t as they were. There’s been a huge change in my attitude. All of you folks here at Chump Lady (and Chump Lady herself) are responsible for a seismic shift in my world view. Watch out!

    What I’ve done for myself:
    1. I had took the plunge and went back to graduate school while working. My employer is paying for it. In the past, I would have foregone it because DH hates “babysitting” the kids. I’ve worked damn hard to further his career. He can do the same for me.
    2. I’m setting realistic boundaries in our relationship. I do things for him and make it clear that I care about him. I also stand my ground on his narc tantrums and don’t let myself be drawn in.

    • Me too KT, and it’s damn hard and I don’t think it will last, but I will always know I gave it my best. I lost 35 lbs and feel great. Then I went and signed myself up for a motorcycle class (on my own!) , passed and got my license, bought a HD 1200 sportster and now I turn heads when I’m cruising along! Feels great!

  • I exercise 5 days a week, walking, biking, weight resistance training. It’s glorious, it frees my mind from all the claptrap surrounding my former life with Uncle daddy.
    I got my last two daughters off to college. Now I am working on moving out of my big, old, needing-of-major-repairs house, and moving into a smaller 2 bedroom, just enough for me and the girls when they come home.
    I go out to dinner every Friday with a group of girlfriends I have had since well before my marriage. I was never able to hang out with them while Uncle daddy was around. He was very jealous of any time I spent with those awesome females.
    I am that much closer to “meh.”

    • I want to get to more exercise and that is awesome Cindy! Hanging around with supportive friends is soooo important

  • I have made a concerted effort to reconnect with dear friends with whom I did not spend much time over the past 14 years, due to working fulltime, being married and raising a daughter. Now that I don’t have that married thing going on (and therefore the STBX spends a certain number of days with our daughter) I have been able to rekindle a social life of my own.

  • I will want to revisit this once I file and am free. In the short term…

    1) I went on a diet and lost 55 lbs. I have a couple of pounds more to go to reach the weight I was when I first got married. Initially, I wanted to lose weight to increase my chances of getting a better job, but loved the fact that people started to notice that I actually look good. This is a huge ego boost, as my STBX is currently “withholding affection”–not that I’d want him to touch me ever again.

    2) I got a better job. I loved my old one, but it would barely pay rent, let alone support me with 2 dogs, pay on a car, etc. The new one doesn’t leave me a lot of room for spending, but I can definitely support myself on the pay. Plus, it’s a big step up in responsibility and opens up future prospects in what is a niche market.

    3) I bought a gaming laptop. At 6.5lbs, it’s not exactly the most portable device, but I can take it with me on vacations or when I compete with my dogs. Currently, it’s serving as a desktop replacement until I am in a new place sans STBX.

    4) I went clothes shopping with a vengeance. I’m not typically a shopper, at least not for clothes (but give me a big budget and an online electronics/computer parts store and watch me go), but I need a new wardrobe to go with the new job, which has a more corporate dress code. I love suits. They look good on me. I need more. I wore a skirt to work for the first time in 10 years.

    5) I fix food that I like to eat. Oh sure, I do give a nod to STBX’s tastes, but no longer do I feel constrained to plan our meals around them. I’m eating way more vegetables (I go through about 4 lbs or more of vegetables by myself) and a lot fewer simple carbs.

    Post-Divorce, my fantasy list includes:

    1) Build new computer rig (TimeHeals, I’m with you on that one!). I love gaming, and I hope to find some sane people to play tabletop games with.

    2) Spend a LOT more time training my dogs. I got into dog sports a couple of years ago, and love it. Also, I enjoy training the dogs and working on specific behaviors. I will be able to do a lot more with the dogs once STBX is out of the picture, as he consciously subverts what I do with the dogs.

    3) Buy a house with land. I’ve been driving around looking at property. I think I’d go mobile/manufactured if the land were right (need level land for the dogs). Bonus for large outbuildings (dog training in the winter), and I’m considering chickens. Not sure what do do with the dogs at lunch, but I can figure it out.

    4) Save up money for a couple of years, then get a late model van for–you guessed it–dogs! I have wanted a van since we got 2 pets, and certainly with the 2nd dog.

    5) Start going to church again. I’d stopped in order to be able to spend more time at home with STBX since he was always working. Sunday mornings were one of the few times we did have together. I miss church, and the really nice people I met there. Also choir, as I sang for several years in the choir.

    6) Have friends over to the house and cook dinner for them without worrying that the smell from the wonderful garlic sauce would linger for the rest of the evening. STBX hates any kind of kitchen smell, which is rough when you try to cook dinner.

    7) Eat leftovers for meals. STBX hates leftovers, which means our food budget is hellaciously high. In grad school, I’d make a meal out of a cooking magazine, and then have it over the next few days.

    8) Buy a deep freeze to deal with leftovers so I can have a cooking free week every once in a while.

    9) Put in the garden I want. I’m not a great gardener, but I love herbs and roses. I’d grow vegetables, too. Also, I want fruit trees.

    All of this is in the fantasy land. I will check back post divorce to update. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • My counselor urges me to do something for me as well. I just can’t find anything I want for me, that I can obtain, personally, or otherwise. Right now I’m still living for the kids, and fighting the eternal custody battle.

      • chmpattny: any local Meetup.com groups? I do not go regularly, but I have done a few hikes, pickup soccer, and am considering a book club. You could also start your own.

        • CL, I love that advice – “start small.”

          I beat myself up for so long because people kept suggesting I “do xx for myself,” and the ideas just weren’t right for me. Trouble was, I felt like a failure because I couldn’t figure out what WAS right for me. So I’ve been trying harder to appreciate the little things I’ve done for myself along the way (a massage here and there, getting out for a walk, putting on makeup and nice clothes to run errands). Now I find myself working up to bigger things like attending yoga classes, making more of an effort to connect with other moms from my son’s class, joining Match (um, that one didn’t work out!), signing up for an intro to glass-blowing class, etc.

          Many of us have isolated for so long that we need to be easy on ourselves if it takes time to get back out in the world.

      • One of the most helpful steps I took, when I could not envision a life or having interests beyond asking “why?”, was to join a Rebuilders group. It was a group based on the book Rebuilding When Your Relationship Ends. We met each Sunday evening for ten weeks. It got me out of the house and I was surrounded by people who were dealing with endings (with many different reasons for those endings) and who were at different stages of healing. We had some group outings and gave each other a lot of support and encouragement. My group was not through a church, but many are. Before this, I was not a real joiner, but rebuilders and AlAnon helped me find the face to face support and honest interaction I really needed.

    • Leftovers are AWESOME! All the flavors have mellowed, sometimes they’re in their perfect little glass containers so all you have to do is heat a serving, and it’s so tidy and neat….

  • Bought new gear and started climbing again. The Douche always refused to go, so my favorite hobby was stuffed in the closet the last 12 years. Now me and my kids hit the mountains every weekend and I’m a belay machine.

    I also slurged and bought a new thermostat. It doesn’t sound very interesting, but this device is so cool. It looks like an old iPod and it remembers my habits and programs itself. This is something I never would have considered when living with my ex asshole.

  • For me, it hasn’t been that long since DDay #2 really (11 months almost) and since my Divorce was finals (5 months).

    The first thing I did was just start walking my two dogs. That was just to get myself out of the house for something aside from grocery shopping since I work from home.

    I have walked those dogs about 3 miles a day and have worn out the soles on two pairs of shoes. There have been multiple benefits to this activity:

    1. It is usually my moment of Zen. I get out of my own head and just tune into the moment while walking.

    2. I am now known to all my neighbors as at least “the guy who walks his two Shar Peis every day. I see them, we wave, and sometimes we chat. I am getting to know my neighbors for the first time in all the years I have lived here (8 years).

    3. Lost more than 45lbs without dieting, better bone density.

    As I recently posted, I am now waiting for parts to begin building my HTPC/Gaming right, and I have spent the better part of my spare time over the last week preparing for that.

    I have also done home repairs, whipped the yard back into shape, managed to invest about 8K more into various stocks in my brokerage account and am saving for a new car.

    I have joined a couple groups on Meetup, but I haven’t actually gone to any Meetup events yet. In due time, I expect.

    Things seem to be going very good right now. I am now generally optimistic and happy. Much happier for much longer than at any point while I was married.

    Looking back, I don’t know why I married somebody who seemed to create so many problems and so much drama and make so little a contribution. Things are definitely on a better track now.

    • err… “gaming rig”, not “right”. and “final” not “finals” (I am not taking a test unless typing here is that test). ๐Ÿ™‚

      • “Looking back, I donโ€™t know why I married somebody who seemed to create so many problems and so much drama and make so little a contribution.”
        Ditto that THs, that is exactly how I feel! I know part of my problem was falling for him being ‘childlike’, which used to seem fun. Not so much as things snowballed over the years. Now I figured out what I like, it’s sure NOT drama and babyish behavior, I love peace, and security!
        I hope to get a dog, maybe next year, Shar Peis are really cute!

  • I am sure xH also has a lot of cool stories about all the adventures he’s been on with his hot new babe twat troll.

    The difference between him and me, though, is that his new life is built on lies and deceit and a shit ton of overwhelming destruction, none of which can be overcome by any degree of awesomeness that he seeks in his trips to Hawaii or kayaking or sailing or whatever he is doing. If he’d done all he’s done without hurting his kids, without being a complete fraud and coward, I’d imagine he could sleep well at night, knowing he is living a good life.

    We chumps have earned any of our blessings and accomplishments the righteous way, and these are so much more soul satisfying, however modest, than any frantic thing the cheater does.

    Good on you all. I’m so proud of all of us.

    • For what it’s worth, I personally don’t think a cheater can ever lay claim to the mantle of “living a good life.” You can’t live a good life without honor, and someone who cheats on their spouse and/or the parent of their kids defines a person without honor. It’s kind of like saying Bernie Madoff, pre-conviction, had an awesome life with all his wealth and possessions. No he did not. Stephanie, I would rather be you or me any day!!

        • His life is so frantic because he’s still so empty of any feeling inside. He’s trying to cover his messy insides with a frantic life on the outside. I think cheaters try to feel things other than emptiness, and a lack of feeling. That’s part of why they cheat. No question, his internal life is not awesome, consequently, his life is not awesome. Trips to Hawaii, etc., do not make a life awesome. Your life is awesome, Stephanie!

  • Since dday 6 months ago (and I am 49 years old and will be 50 next month but thats another post), I have vacationed alone with our son, reconnected with my family and friends, grown my hair out, lost 20 lbs. I also will be going to Alaska, a trip that was on my bucket list and one that fucktard himmed n hawed about forever.
    Oh yeah, I have now gone more than 3 consecutive days of NC…never did that before! Gettin closer to meh?

  • I did a local mud run/obstacle race for fun. This fall I will do it again with my son, and then upgrade to a Spartan Sprint obstacle race. I am not quite in good enough shape, but I will do it anyway!

    I refinanced the house; it is ALL MINE ! I painted some walls, and the fence. I really want to renovate the kitchen; maybe in a couple of years.

    I traveled overseas, without the kids (they’re going with me in January)

    I joined a couple of Meetup groups.

    I have gone out to concerts and the theater with friends.

    I started tinting my hair, and have splurged on massages every 5-6 months.

    I have started taking time and reconnecting with old friends.

    I have discovered who my true friends are…

    … kids come to me full time the end of October when the exH moves away. It will be difficult to maintain the ‘me’ time (and dating? probably impossible), but I will try.

  • I was a SAHM for the second decade of 20 year marriage. After separation, I started a new career as a freelance writer. It’s a struggle, and I’m still not making quite enough to entirely support myself and my son, but I’m steadily building up work.

  • DDay has only been 3 1/2 months for me, but since that time I got a full-time job (had worked part-time for several years after being a SAH mom). I also rented a 2-BR apartment and decorated it with colors I love: clean, fresh white and soothing blue. I have also lost 20 pounds (Divorce Diet) and am crossfitting 4 or 5 times a week. I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in! Too bad for STBX–he will enjoy none of this awesomeness ๐Ÿ™‚
    Sometimes I feel numb about all of these changes, rather than excited, so I’m glad we’re celebrating each other this way.

  • This is fun! 16 months post d-day and my life is fantastic. Here is what I did:

    1) Got a cheap apartment for me and my two large dogs in an old victorian house in a small town outside of the city where X and I lived. At first this seemed like a major hardship, but now I couldn’t be happier. A good friend and I went thrift shopping and made the place look amazing (found an antique bed for $20, and a set of giant vintage classroom maps for $10 – luckily the thrift shop look is totally my style)! Took out an interest-free-for-one-year credit card and fenced in the back yard (w/ permission from land lord) for the dogs to run free. We are all happy here!

    2) Went back to school 3 months post d-day (had been planning to do this anyway before d-day, but was so dreading the hostility and resentment that X would have directed toward me as a full-time student with no job). I enrolled in a 12-month accelerated BSN program (nursing), and just graduated a couple of weeks ago (now looking for a job – had one phone interview last week). I am 44. I think this experience, more than any other, is what helped me to move emotionally away from X in a relatively short time. I was a part of a fairly small cohort of students, so I was never lonely, had plenty of social contact, and of course was crazy busy. Also, the practice of nursing is very inspiring to me, and gives me a sense of purpose.

    3) I notice that a lot of people (women mainly) have written that they lost weight, got a haircut, got a new wardrobe, etc.. I did this too. I do not think this is a small thing. It is huge. Since all of this happened, I have tried to remember to not leave the house looking like I am in the middle of cleaning the garage (where I live, really anything goes). I try to put myself together to some degree even to run to the store. I feel like this is an important way of taking care of myself, and feeling like I matter. It gives me a ton of confidence.

    My best advice for others: find a way to stay busy, take care of yourself physically, shop at thrift shops, and read your Chump Lady daily!

    • I think for women what we do with ourselves physically is important in some way. Pre dday I was a mess, slopping about in sweats and generally not doing anything with myself (turns out I was in a serious depression – not getting off the sofa for a year might have been a sign and odd that Ex never even noticed). Now I look great. I get myself together every morning, dress well, my hair looks fab, my skin looks better than it has in years and I’m almost back at fighting weight. I wasn’t huge before dday but had definitely put on some pounds.

      Looking so much better makes me feel better and gives me so much more cofidence. And the compliments are genius.

      • Agree. Also, and since I’m still with STBX, I will say that I think STBX hates that I look so much better. He keeps trying to get me fattening food, and has been telling me that I look “awful” and “too thin.”

        Well, the other day I saw a woman I’d not seen in 20 years. Her face seemed a bit familiar, but she recognized me right off the bat because my newer shape looks like me from 20 years ago. She couldn’t get over that I didn’t look as if I’d changed.

        I know the games that STBX is trying to play, and one of the big things I’m doing for me is not playing them. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • My STBX moved out in March & called it quits in April. In July I was laid off after 14 years at my job. Two pretty huge hits but I am doing nothing but taking care of myself right now!
    1) The very first thing I did was to get rid of the recliner where STBX spent so many hours trolling/texting/chatting on his mobile devices. I posted a picture of the trash guys throwing it into their truck on Facebook so STBX could see it then blocked him. That felt great! My son & I are re-painting, re-arranging & reclaiming our home.
    2) Just reached my weight loss goal (started last fall) of -58 pounds.
    3) Started indoor rowing & set a goal to row one 1 million meters by April 1 – am over 400K now. Joined a new gym with state of the art rowing machines & a coach to step up my game.
    4) Took up krav maga self-defense training & am learning to take down a miscreant any way possible – kicking, punching, elbowing, taking a weapon, etc. It’s an incredible way to release anger physically & is also a hella workout. It’s soooo fun!
    5) I’m still in therapy & joined a divorce recovery group for additional support.
    6) I read Chump Lady every single day!

  • Okay, started to write and started in with my negative crap. I erased it. hooray! does that count? lol

    but working backwards from the most recent here is some of what I’ve accomplished since August 2, 2011:

    1) Despite abject terror, I sang a song in public. a fucking solo. and no one threw anything at me! (oh, and I was wearing a nice dress, too– no nude body suits. lol)

    2) I found a way with NO MONEY to purchase an apartment and then decorated it to the tasteful, yet restrained hilt! (ask me how.)

    3) I installed wordpress – LOL

    4) I built my entire website (with the exception of the e-commerce part) from scratch. (mind you, wasband used to call me a Luddite which was true, but not any more) I was determined to build my business up so that I could be financially solvent.

    5) I learned excel – a little bit (this is akin to root canal without anesthetic)

    6) back to NOW. What am I going to do today that’s good and right and moving past this disgusting crapola? Hell, I’m working so that search engines CAN pick me up and I so want to give out my website because I’m just so damned fucking proud of it! But ya know what, I don’t really give a shit. I have no shame in being a frequent contributor to this wonderful forum that Tracy has so generously allowed us to have with this amazing, amazing group of people! This is who I am. We know who CL is. She’s not hiding. And if y’all want and/or need to remain anon, I understand that completely, but I am tired of fucking hiding behind a computer screen.

    *I have nothing to hide.*

    This is my website that I made and if anyone here wants to contact me for a little free decorating advice, (paid is good too!) ๐Ÿ™‚ or even a little cyber cry, I would welcome that. And if this smacks of blatant self-promotion— well, yeah… it is. haha! and that’s good, because all of my life, I have often let fear take over; afraid to really breathe the air, lest someone else didn’t have enough; afraid to sing out loud; afraid to leave my cheatin’ husband… I have much faith. I know that there’s a better tomorrow! Let’s all promote ourselves; leave our comfort zones. Let’s all be badasses! Let’s not let fear rule our lives!

    http://laurel-home.com

    If I can do this, ANYBODY can!

      • Laurel,

        You are the complete Shiznit (shout out to Snoop)! I am currently in an empty apartment so when I can AFFORD to start to outfit it, guess from where I’ll be ordering?! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

        Will there be a CL contributor’s discount?

    • Laurel, I LOVE your style! One dream of mine was to own a little home furnishings store full of eclectic treastures – I love those finishing touches. Kudos on your beautiful website and gorgeous work!

        • haha! You mean I don’t have to lie in bed all nekked and video myself and post it you-no-where, going on and on about my book and how special and nice I am (I’m not. fuck with my kids and you’re dead and I’ve also been known to block people on fakebook, just because they listen to Kenny G.) I have my limits. ๐Ÿ˜‰

          But truly, I am so overwhelmed with the genuine kindness I’ve experienced here. Thank you all so much! I am truly grateful!

    • holy crapballs! I just checked out my page views and the graph went off the screen, practically. I am so overwhelmed with your kind words! It really means a lot to me!

      And absolutely. Of course there’s a chump discount!

      • Laurel,

        In my next life, I want to come back as you!! Your website, your sense of style is incredible!!! OMG!!! I was completely bowled over!!

        You Rock More Than A Porch Swing!!

      • I’m kinda speechless. (for once. haha!) Really. I can’t thank you enough for all of your kind words. But I just want to say that I didn’t just wake up and voila I could come up with this stuff. So, if you want to open up a little store or make your own website, you can do it too. I always feel that I don’t do enough. Its overwhelming though, sometimes and I still get this crushing sadness, too much of the time. Its so fucking debilitating and I don’t need to tell most of you that. I have plenty of days where I’ve done absolutely nothing, but watch House Hunters and read blogs and oh, watch ballerinas on youtube. I recommend Olga Smirnova!

        At least, I got rid of the dead weight. I started my biz in 1996 when my kids were very young and within a few months got some very nice jobs. Then, about 13 years ago… I would be driving to my appointments and trying to figure out, how much money I would need to bring in before my husband could quit his job that he hated. That’s how much I loved him. I just wanted him to be happy. Isn’t that what love is? wanting your loved ones to be happy? Then, he got fired and that’s when he decided (with all that time on his hands now) to make some new “friends.” Women friends.

        He really does suck, doesn’t he?

        • Yes he does Laurel and on top of his sucking he is a total idiot because he lost you! Too bad for him and good for you! Really despite the fact that we all feel so unlucky we really are the lucky ones when you really look at things based in reality! We are not them and we hopefully have removed them from our lives so that our lives can be filled with great people! Just like the ones here and there are more offline, many more!!!

    • That’s fantastic Laurel, how come you get the talent for everything? I’m sure some gorgeous man would like you to come design for his home! ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • thank you so much! so sweet! I just wrote some sarcastic piece of shit about how it doesn’t matter, because here I sit— alone, but I’ll leave it at that. I’m sure that he must be out there somewhere… I keep praying…

  • My last Dday was 2-15-13. (yes, the day after Valentines day. ironic isn’t it?) My ex moved out on 4-28-13 & the divorce was final on 7-27-13.

    Since then I have:

    Replaced the brake light on my car that has been out for over a year
    Watched a few Youtube videos and then fixed the faucet in the bathroom that has been dripping for many years.
    Cleaned out and reinstalled the carb on the lawn mower that was starting to sound like it had asthma.
    Got 2 birds stuck in the chimney out of the house (alive)

    But what I am most proud of was what terrified me the most. Occasionally a bat gets into the living space of the house, and in the past the ex would “dispatch” them to great beyond. Well, it had to happen and last weekend I was woke up at 2am to a bat flying around my bedroom. Now my cats were quite thrilled with this new toy, me – not so much. So I kicked the cats out of the bedroom, opened up a window and took out the screen and whoosh! The bat flies out! The not so proud part of this post is that while I was doing all those things I was crawling around the bedroom with a blanket over my head and trying not to scream out loud and wake the kids. But I what kept me going was thinking “I don’t need no stinkin man! Cause Screw you I GOT IT!” ๐Ÿ™‚

    I have since called an pest control guy (who of course I refer to as Batman) to block off the areas along the roof line where the winged creatures of satan are getting into the house, on the last opening he will install a one-way door so when they leave at night to feed they cant get back in. Its not cheap, but I can afford it and then I wont ever have to go through the damn near panic induced heart attack of the last bat episode.

    I can thank my ex for the motivation for everything I’ve learned to do on my own. Its amazing how good it feels to know that over and over I can say

    “SCREW YOU, I GOT IT!!!!!”

    • I spent a lot of time in a Biology department with a strong ecology and environmental program. Getting bats out without killing them is awesome. Once you get the bats out of your house, put up bat houses on your property to keep the bats there so that you can benefit from their desire to kill and eat all sorts of flying insects. They won’t migrate to the bat houses until you exclude them from yours, though.

        • I don’t hate all bats, nor do I kill them if I have an option. However, when they are winging around my bedroom in the middle of the night I want them OUT! But its not like Im out to exterminate them from the planet, they eat a ton of bugs and really beneficial to the environment. And I am putting up a bat house on the end of the barn/garage.

  • I went to a tall ships festival all on my own. I’d wanted to go for months, but stbx had cancelled all those plans. When he was out the picture, there was no reason not to go. I climbed and explored all over those cool ships all day long, and then had a giant bucket of cajun shrimp for dinner. It was awesome.

    My next goal is to try driving a locomotive. Seriously, you can buy a hands-on lesson to drive a train at a local museum. I’ve wanted to try it for years. Stbx always said it would be the dumbest waste of $x ever. I can’t wait to schedule a throttle time. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I now have a new vision of women’s empowerment.

    Move over “Rosie the Riveter.” We now have “Chump Lady the Welder!”

    A very nice picture!

    Your devoted fan,

    Chump Son

  • Made tons of new friends, weeded out the old ones, got in better shape, got back to the things I love, have a much better relationship with my kids, got more closely connected to my family, realised that I had been living someone else’s life and it was time to live mine.

    A work in progress….

      • Yes he does Laurel and on top of his sucking he is a total idiot because he lost you! Too bad for him and good for you! Really despite the fact that we all feel so unlucky we really are the lucky ones when you really look at things based in reality! We are not them and we hopefully have removed them from our lives so that our lives can be filled with great people! Just like the ones here and there are more offline, many more!!!

  • Several things:

    a) Went back to the gym. Lost a ton of weight and managed to get back the six-pack abs that I haven’t had since college.

    b) I had 7 tattoos at D-Day. I now have 15.

    c) After living out of a duffel bag for the better part of a year, I secured myself a cozy little one-bedroom apartment in the suburbs. The complex itself a dump, but my place is PERFECT. It’s my little sanctuary after a year of misery, mindfuckery and fuckupedness.

    d) Bought myself a really expensive Tempur-Pedic bed. I spent way more than I should have, but that purchase was pure post-mindfuckery manic spending. I should mention that I haven’t slept this good in years.

    e) Bought myself a flat-screen TV that I can watch all my favorite movies on. Big movie buff over here so that was important.

    f) Kept a detailed journal for over a year. I haven’t written in it since April. Haven’t had the need to. For me, that shows that I’ve really made tremendous progress in my healing.

    g) Haven’t missed a single Oprah’s lifeclass since they started airing. Tremendously cathartic.

    h) I’ve been HAPPILY single. There may not be a cure for depression but there’s definitely a cure for codependence. It’s possible through time and self-resilience. I never thought I’d be this happy by myself but I’m having the time of my life over here! Sure, I’m young enough to still be Mr. Lothario…which I’m definitely guilty of. Other times I just stay home on Friday nights watching TCM and eating pizza. I love it!

    And Most importantly…

    i) I started reading and contributing to Chump Lady!!!! Definitely would NOT have made it through the past year and half without Ms. CL and all of you, past and present, who have shared your stories. <3 <3

  • Since I am not exactly sure what Dday stands for….in the last 3 years since this mess has been going on I:

    1. Took a galssblowing class for 12 weeks and hung out with Rock-Star’s of the art world…nothing like playing with 1200 degree glass to take your breath away (and leave oh so many marks)

    2. Bought my own house with only MY name on the mortgage and I am slowly but surely making it mine.

    3. In that circa 1974-79 house I have currently gutted an entire kitchen re-wired, re-plumbed, installed drywall, cabinets, appliances into the new kitchen.

    4. Re-did the dining room this past weekend.

    5. Cleaned up a badly neglected yard and gave it some TLC

    6. Bought a car that “IIIIIII” wanted and picked out not one that I was told I had to buy.

    7. Got a 3rd dog (rescue from a friend moving) to add to the hairy dustmop horde that already lived with me.

    8. In general made worked on myself….tried to fix my picker….got involved in the neighborhood…and got feedback that I wasn’t a bad, evil shrew that was unlovable……..but that I was a good person and people actually liked me….which I am trying to get my heart to accept…but those marks are going to be there for a VERY long time.

    9. Read Chump Lady religiously…..

    • D-Day refers to the day (or night) you found out that your spouse was cheating. Whether you caught him red-handed or read suspicious texts, whether you found out something or found out everything, it’s basically the day that you found out he was cheating.

      • Thanks Chris….I couldn’t figure that one out….I’d have numerous ddays over the last 20 some-odd years……

  • My D-Day was May 16, 2012. I moved out of our family home on June 15, 2012 and my divorce was final on August 19, 2013. All of my decisions from the moment I found out where he was and what he was doing became about financial security. The courts didn’t quite see things my way with regards to morality or even alimony (damn me and my ability to be self-sufficient!). I was not able to stop my 45 year old STBX from moving his 30 year old whore-friend half way across the country to live in my house with my 13 year old daughter (4 mos after D-Day) but I made sure he did not take 1/2 my 401k or pension that legally he was entitled to. So, at 45 years old, he has ZERO retirement. And I don’t care.

    Even though the road has been hard – who wants to be in their 40’s and find out their husband leaves you for someone he has so much “in common” with (after 17 years of marriage) – I have had many good moments.

    1. Bought and upgraded my first house that is 100% in my name. Got a kick-a$$ interest rate. Within 6 mos of D-Day. Good luck with the maintenance on our old house….and if you decide to sell. Hope you finally address the rotten windows and door frame. And the HVAC that needs to be replaced. Good on you!
    2. Bought 100% new furniture…that did NOT come as a “5” piece set. Sorry Rooms to Go but you are NOT my friend. No stupid colors or some big oversized Lazy Boy recliner. Bought lovingly, piece by piece as I found things I loved. Colors that I love! Blues and teals.
    3. Rescued 2 dogs! Our beloved dog died 6 days after I left the house. Although we knew that 2012 would be his last year, I didn’t expect it to happen so suddenly. ExH said he would never have another dog because they were too troublesome and got footprints on the deck…or pooped. Stupid stuff really – and he said this years before our doggie was even sick. Never hook up with someone who is cruel to their Mom or dog. Lesson learned on that one!
    4. Did all the losing weight, cut hair stuff. Most importantly, I got fit!
    5. Vacations or day trips with just my daughter and myself. No drama, no stress. We eat, sleep, shop, sit on the beach, whatever we want for as long as we want.
    6. Slow but surely am making new friends – all of the others – well, they proved who they really are to me!
    7. Meal plan and cook whatever I want in MY kitchen. Includes fish and seafood. No, you are NOT allergic to fish/shellfish ExH….you just don’t like it which means that no one gets to eat it. But I do now!!

    That’s some good stuff I think. We won’t talk about dating. Not going there yet. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Oh..and no offense to anyone who has Lazy-Boy or Rooms to Go furniture. I like to kick back with my feet up too…I just don’t need a chair the size of a car in my living room. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I’m too fresh out of the gate, and haven’t done anything yet. At this point, I”m proud of myself for breathing. Particularly proud that I didn’t start taking some mind-numbing drug (that would have felt so nice, I bet!), starting downing wine by the bottle, whored myself out to overcompensate, or threw in the towel at a cozy mental recuperation house. I’ve somehow made it through dday, filing for divorce and the initial custody agreement, still on the high-road. I’m going to need a lot of therapy, but dang it, at least I went through it. I didn’t numb it. I’ve dealt with it all honestly.

    I’m looking forward to reading all of your posts and being inspired.

    • I’m willing to bet you’ve already done more than you ever imagined you could. Breathing is a damned important thing. You’re not just on the high road, you are on the road to a better life for you and your children. That’s a big accomplishment–own it!

        • I took the same approach – I didn’t numb it. I faced the pain, head-on, determined I would emerge from the experience a better person with a more fulfilling life. I have and I’m confident you will too.

            • Yeah–don’t numb it.

              I remember feeling a great deal of pain one beautiful sunny day, and I told myself that this was good–pain was a necessary part of my healing, and I was hurting, so I must be facing the right direction toward healing. I processed that pain. I also bought myself a really nice jacket that day, and I love it so much. It is bright lime green, tight-fitting, and I wear it a lot and think of my independence. It reminds me, too, that once I was in a lot of pain, but I made it through.

              I also remember standing in the supermarket, and so worried that I was going to lose my freaking mind with the pain. I realized I had a choice, that I COULD just go ahead and lose it–and also likely lose my kids and my reputation. So I took a deep breath and made a choice to get through another day. And I looked over at the tabloids on the checkout stands, at all the beautiful women gracing the covers who’d been cheated on and dumped. You know their names–Halle Berry (who cheats on Halle Berry??), Reese Witherspoon, Sienna Miller, Elin Nordegren, Jennifer Aniston, Sandra Bullock, Shania Twain, Elizabeth Hurley… For you guys, there is Justin Timberlake (who cheats on Justin Timberlake??), Robert Pattinson–I’m sure there are others…. And I thought, you know, if these people can survive in the public eye?? I will be ok, too. I will be ok.

              And I got through it.

              • Stephanie – Really well done. Congratulations. Those days were really hard days. I hope you have made it to a better place. If not, you are on your way, keep the faith and No Contact! Big Hugs.

    • Good on you! Facing it, not numbing it, while oh so painful, gets you through it.
      I remember the pain being so overwhelming, now it is just a memory…… and I always pat myself on the back for coming through it intact.
      Cheers to you LUD!

  • Since I spent so many years carrying his jobless weight, we had to rent the places we lived. We never could save up enough for a down payment, and apparently that was my fault, because I spent money on frivolous things like food, and clothes for the kids, and health insurance, but he spent ‘our’ money on important things like new shocks for his bike.
    Well, once I lost the dead weight, I managed to sock enough away for a down payment, and at 44 I bought my first home.
    My landlord of 13 years, who knew what I had been going through, was also my real estate agent for the purchase, and he was as proud of me as if I had been his own kid.

      • I love my place! It’s all mine, I’m closer to work, I have triple the space I had before, I no longer have to share a bathroom (3 bathrooms! YAY!), and I’ve decorated it to please ME.
        Feels great to be here!

  • I take care of myself. Walk daily, lost 30 pounds, go out with girlfriends, and most of all took the high road. It’s the best way to go. My son asked me if I was the female version of Benjamin Buttons. That’s when I knew I was okay.

  • 1. I bought my own house.
    2. After a seven year hiatus, I’m finally joining a singing group. I’ve missed it so much.
    3. I bought a fabulous and expensive “liberation” ring that I wear on my left hand’s middle finger (symbolism of the finger wasn’t originally intended, but I do think it’s funny).
    4. I took my kids on several day trips this past summer that I normally thought I wouldn’t be able to handle by myself. We had a blast each time.
    5. I bought myself some great back-to-school clothes; when I was with XWH, I might buy one or two things because he always made me feel guilty about buying anything for myself. I splurged this time!

    • Funny that the first trip or two without Ex but with the kids were weird, as I was so used to him being along. Then I realised that all our family trips were planned and executed solely by me and that the only difference on these trips was that he wasn’t there and that we didn’t have to deal with him throwing a spanner in the works unexpectedly by suddenly announcing, in the middle of some activity or adventure, that he had to get back to the hotel to take a crap. Not kidding – this actually happened several times and he would desperately hunt down a taxi and rush us all back to the hotel so he could have a dump.

      • I should add that I have now had a number of trips with the kids and they’ve been a blast. We have one place we’ve been to twice, that is totally tacky and the kids totally love it. And we have had a great time both visits. Ex has taken the kids on exactly one holiday in the past two years, paid for and arranged by his parents, a few months after dday. He spent the entire time texting final OW and arguing with the kids. All his subsequent trips have been with final OW. Yes, the kids have noticed.

      • Oh yeah, I’d forgotten about that. Lol. I always thought it was me yet now if I do stuff with the kids I am consistently calm and happy. I wonder how Miss 23 is coping with the crap attacks?

      • This is hilarious. Same experience here, except we had to wait in the hotel room in the morning until he made this very special visit. We’ve missed and been late for so many events because of this.. We now have a code word for it and always burst out in laughter with the kids (they are young adults)

      • Oh my god, all our activities are scheduled around when he has to shit. If he has to shit, we have to rush home. Traveling, everything is planned around when he thinks he’s going to need to shit. We can’t go out in the morning until he’s had his shit. He chooses restaurants based on whether the food will make him shit. Seriously, what’s the big deal?

        I CANNOT WAIT until I can take the kids places and not worry about when he’s going to need to shit.

        • Hahahahahaaaaa
          Laugh for the morning, thanks for starting the day off right!
          My X has gastric issues too, and I really think it’s all part of being a Narc, they are so focused inward. Maybe if they did the therapy they need so badly, these body problems would magically clear up!

        • Sounds like all these Narc’s have a bad case of “Shy Ass”! (they can only crap in certain, NON-public, bathrooms)…. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • The divorce was (finally) over 3 years ago now, but for all practical purposes, I’ve been a single parent for over 5 years. The youngest just graduated high school in May, and both of them are on their own with decent paying jobs already. So —

    I sleep in. That’s what I do nice for myself. I sleep in, any day I want, for as long as I want.

    Actually, that’s really only a luxury during the winter months when the sun comes up later. This time of year I get up with the light and have a very leisurely morning coffee while the world comes alive. Here’s my favorite bird:

    http://www.birdweb.org/birdweb/bird/swainsons_thrush

    It’s the only bird who’s song trills upward.

    • Sweet! I used to work as a park ranger and wildlife researcher at Olympic National Park in WA, and remember a coworker pointing out this bird’s song to me as one of his favorites!

      I have been having my leisurely morning coffees here in the midwest, listening to cardinals and orioles.

      :o)

  • So…am I the only one who gained the weight I lost after dday, and then some (hehe!)?

    Well, since the STBX was kicked out of the house, I have:

    1. Started working full time, something I hadn’t done since the beginning of my marriage 15 years ago. With my family’s help in finding the job/moving the business, I am now part of a company that has the largest warehouse of concession machine parts on the West Coast (theater popcorn machines always have to keep popping!).

    2. Like Laurel, I had to learn Excel (or in my case, how to fake my way through Excel) and I set up a website (not nearly as cool as Laurel’s, but it’s out there – http://www.emrconcessions.net).

    3. I’m getting to learn how a business works from the ground up. I was SO EXCITED the first time I processed a credit card payment.

    So, I had to figure out a lot of computer stuff that has always been STBX’s realm fast. Haven’t had to call tech support once.

    Unexpected, and not too bad.

    • Well…you might have noticed that my list didn’t include “losing weight.” I weigh about the same as I once did, although now I walk everywhere (no car) and I mostly eat vegetarian.

      Oh, wait a minute, I think I lost about 200 pounds on the day I separated ๐Ÿ™‚ How about you?

      • I lost weight at first – I had picked up about 8 lbs. since I was in my 20’s, so it wasn’t that much weight, but I did get very thin – forced myself to try eat 3 meals a day.
        Then, as time and the pain went on, depression set in and I lay on the couch – a lot.
        Picked up all the weight I had lost and then another 10 lbs.
        I moved to a city and I found it quite lonely, really tried to get into an exercise programme, but I am not consistent with it. (It rains a lot, so I tend to lie on the couch a lot.)
        I have changed it up recently though. I now have a Personal Trainer and it has honestly changed my entire energy level and lifestyle. I know it’s expensive and had to use my credit card – which I don’t do often. It’s one of the best decisions I made.
        It’s getting me moving (I walk every day and meet up with him twice a week) injury-free and our goal is to get me running again. I am turning 56 this year and used to run, but had to stop because of knee and hip injuries from overdoing it a few years ago.
        I want to run again, 10kms will be my goal, no more half marathons, but that’s ok. Any weight I lose will be a bonus, I am not overweight for my height or age, but ridding myself of 10 lbs. would make me feel lighter and my clothes would fit me better.
        He put me in a boxing ring the other day and taught me the correct stance, jabs, uppercuts, and he is amazed and impressed with my right hook. I punched into padded “shields” he held up and I tuckered myself right out as he called out what punches to throw. I should have done this when I had all that anger!
        It was totally invigorating, liberating and awesome. My eyes were shining and I felt empowered. I abhor violence, but this was amazing – I can’t wait to put those gloves on again…….

  • Let’s see – I have been out of the marital home since April- real DDay in January 2013, right after New Year’s, but I suspected before then.

    I was abused into being afraid of ever being without my STBX – getting my own place, preparing to move out and then announcing it to him as a fait accompli was a profile in courage for me. It’s nuts, because when I met him I was living in my own place and raising my daughter.

    I signed up to volunteer once a month for now; looking into other opportunities.

    Reconnected with old friends, started going out after work to jazz performances, dinner and plays with old and new friends, when finances allow. One friend reminded me when I hesitated accepting a dinner invitation that I no longer had to adhere to a curfew. Just the thought was liberating.

    I don’t clean unless I want to. I watch whatever I want on television without criticism. STBX was very good at the subtle put-down about everything.

    I have looked into joining a yoga class and I have begun researching a group or choir with whom I can satisfy my lifelong desire to sing. I used to sing years ago with the school choir and it was one of the greatest pleasures of my life. I’m not a “singer,” (no one will be following) but I can carry a tune pretty well and that seems to be more than a lot of singers I’ve heard lately can do.

    I had also started writing again, and had actually begun a book and started collaborating with a friend of mine who is an editor, but that has been hold until I get further along in my therapy. The panic attacks and stress began impeding my ability to focus and write.

    I am slowly rebuilding myself from the inside out to be the person I want to be and not the person someone else needs me to be. It is scary sometimes but life is supposed to be scary sometimes – but only in a good way.

  • I forgot! I lost 40 pounds! And just today a very attractive man in his late (maybe) 30’s tried to pick me up. I’m 58 and I don’t think he had a clue! And he was adorable. I chatted with him briefly and then continued on home from work with a smile. What a great end to my workday!

  • You guys are ****AMAZING****! I’m astounded especially how many people lost weight and bought homes. Who knew divorce was so good for your health and the economy? ๐Ÿ˜‰ Keep the good news coming. I’m on the road tomorrow (Wed.) and won’t get a chance to check in until late, but I’d love to see as many positives on this post as we had resentments.

    Trill upward!

  • The past 4 years have been quite the adventure.

    Separated 4 years ago, not really knowing anything except that he was ‘unhappy”.

    Found out 3 years ago yesterday that he had been having a very, very long life outside of our marriage. He was and is in some sort of thing with his law partner but who knows what it is. He never wanted back; never explained or admitted anything. “No one’s business”.

    Finally divorced, civil and religious, as of this summer. I had a kick-ass legal team (had to fire the first lawyer) and children that stood with me the whole way. He lost his kids.

    I moved into New York City and built a whole life for myself.

    1. I couldn’t get a job so I volunteered in a position that was not looking for volunteers. I cleaned closets, re-did files, cleaned the refrigerator, anything…4 months later they offered me a job. It is the greatest and hardest thing I have ever done but I love every minute of my job. I was a stay at home mom for 24 years.
    2. Made new friends and kept the old ones. I make sure I have something to do every weekend day or evening. It takes lots of planning but I force myself and I always am glad I do. It means a lot of cooking and inviting people over, joining meetups and going WAY out of my comfort zone.
    3. Toned up my body and my attitude – my boys say I dress really well but still age appropriate. Doesn’t take a lot to make a wow wardrobe. Tried new colors and new styles.
    4. Learned to take vacations by myself, go to the movies by myself and when I am where no one knows me, I practice eating out by myself. It is a work in progress.
    5. Lightened my hair and indulge in a good manicure on a regular basis. I make time to do my own pedicures.
    6. Went on an upside down roller coaster, went white water rafting, took up skiing again. I am willing to try anything.
    7. Just 3 months ago, I took a deep breath, had professional photos taken and started dating. First dates are half-hour coffee meetings, usually after work where I don’t get all spruced up. Second dates, we split the bill. I don’t want to owe anyone anything and any relationships have to be equal. Yes, I am on high-alert but will give people a chance. I am not selling myself; what they see is what they get.
    8. Last week I went to a beautiful Japanese spa with a communal, clothing-optional hot tub. Yup, at 56, I took off my clothes like everyone else and got in. I am proud of my body that delivered and nursed 2 kids, had breast surgery and doesn’t look like it did in college. I figured this body looks better now than it will at 75, so what the hell!
    10. Got my own financial planner, my own accountant, new doctors, etc. I am in charge of where and how I live.

    This is all from someone who was hospitalized for suicidal thoughts twice and am on medication. We all do what we have to do to get there.

    There is so much you can do while working towards to ‘meh’. Never thought I would be here and that this would be my life but it is and I need to make the best of it.

    • Bless you Rebecca! Reading your accomplishments brought a huge smile to my face! You are fantastic and I just fell in love with you and all you have done and are doing for yourself.

    • Rebecca what an inspiration you are to me! I am limping along but doing much better than 6 months ago Thanks to CL and you all. Unfortunately I am suffering from Clinical depression (Dr. Sez “He broke the camels back”) and all I want to do is paint and blog again but I just can’t seem to do it, it’s like he broke my spirit. Also the weight (probably 30 lbs) I just don’t care….But I’m on meds and it’s better, and you inspire me to try harder. Thank You! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Very inspiring Rebecca – I am so impressed! Your courage is awe-inspiring.
      I hope you take time to celebrate and pat yourself on the back often.

  • Well I learned to cook spaghetti an grilled cheese and tomato soup. I took up gambling. Not a good hobby BTW. Got a big screen TV so I can play xbox hockey.

  • Bought a new couch thst he hadn’farted on while texting his ” she bitc”and purchased double artwork featuring a bird each and hung them so they face away from eachother unlike the pairs i collected ( and sold in a garage sale) that were always l adoring ovebirds!

    • – Bought a new couch thst he hadnโ€™farted on while texting his โ€ she bitch-

      Funniest thing I have read in a while!

  • Everyone-you are all very inspiring!
    Im still kind of in limbo because Im fixing things on our house to list it at the end of this month, it’s the last thing tying me to him then I can relax!
    I went to school, got my degree, but that was a few years ago but it was huge to me. I’m planning on moving back to CA, I grew up there and X never wanted to live there, but I have two sisters and we want to live near each other! Very excited about that.
    Reading Chumplady is my secret pleasure, all of you keep me going!

    • Oh, and I changed my diet to almost vegetarian, and it made me lose 15 lbs as a bonus! I eat salads and vegtables I grow and it just makese feel light and happy!

  • My first huge accomplishment was walking out on my ex, with kids in tow. I mean I literally WALKED (about a mile and a half, that is). I had a friend who had made arrangements for me to stay in her friend’s for-sale house “just in case.” I lived there with my girls for a month, then found a place to rent.

    I had been working as a librarian part time for the 10 years I was a stay at home mom. I persuaded my employers to allow me to work full time.

    I’m going back to school for my master’s in architectural history/historic preservation–and I’m in my 50s. BTW I applied to the program *before* I left my ex. Had I stayed, I would have had to decline the acceptance. I was floored the program accepted me, because I don’t have any formal training in architecture. I have two years left, and am still trying to figure out a thesis topic.

    Unsolicited advice of the day: if anyone out there has a significant other with anger/abuse problems, please make contingency plans in case you have to leave abruptly. I didn’t believe I would need to leave without warning, but I am so grateful I had a friend who insisted I make those “just in case” plans.

    And gosh, my accomplishments sound so impressive in writing, but I still have many sad days, and I still struggle to untangle all the s*it my narcissistic ex was feeding me. CL, you site has been such a help to me!

  • I bought a horse! Waited my whole life to have my horse. Heard the ex say too many times “a horse?? are you serious?” in “that” voice. . …yes, actually,now that you mention it, I am serious. And a boyfriend. I think I waited my whole life to find him, too. A horse of my own and a boyfriend. . ..life is good.

  • I found out in Feb 2012 and have done the following for myself:

    1) climbed a mountain, the highest peak between Japan & Australia *exhilarating*

    2) travelled to Sri Lanka with a girlfriend

    3) bought a huge Aquamarine in Sri Lanka which I got set into a ring for myself that I wear on my left hand

    4) Moved all the joint savings into my own account (waiting to buy my house)

    5) Put in place a consistent exercise routine

    Next steps:

    Get a full time job (had stepped off the ladder to stay home with kids but kept my hand in, freelancing)

  • This is so inspiring!!

    1) I got my financial affairs in order.

    2) I took my child on a holiday, just the two of us! We had a great time!

    3) Started working part-time and I enjoy it.

    4) Bought some new furniture that I love.

    5) Applied to take graduate classes and was accepted!

    I’m taking care of my child, my home, my dogs and myself. And yes, somedays it’s a shower, eating and walking my dogs but I’m doing ok. He will NOT be the bookend of my life!

  • Best things I continue to do for myself since the separation and divorce:

    1. Reconnected with friends I haven’t seen in years, which has been fantastic.
    2. Dropped 20 pounds and feel the best I’ve felt physically in years.
    3. Bought myself that MiniCooper I’ve always wanted ๐Ÿ™‚
    4. Started taking cello lessons and have mastered Mary Had a Little Lamb and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (watch out Yo-Yo Ma!)
    5. Remodeled a bathroom all by myself and have the scars on my legs to remind me it was worth the effort!
    6. Remind myself every morning and every night how grateful I am to be ME again and not living under the strain and stress of a draining marriage.

    For those of you out there who haven’t found your footing yet, keep the faith. You will find the strength to put down your ex and stand on your glorious own two feet with confidence, pride and joy. It can’t hurt to buy a fabulous pair of heels to make it look as good as it feels!

  • 1. I started going back to church and found great comfort there. When you feel unloved it’s good to remember God loves you. I got involved in the choir and played a piano solo during the offering one Sunday. That was a big deal for me because I have performance anxiety.

    2. I joined a support group that was fabulous and served as a pseudo-family. They gave me an “uncelebration party” on my 32nd wedding anniversary. They gave me a dinner party after I moved out of my friend’s house into a home of my own.

    3. I bought a house that was built the same year I was born. I thought we could take care of each other. I have started small remodeling projects and have gotten lots of compliments on how it looks so far.

    4. I signed up for a watercolor painting class. I exhibited with the class in my first art festival. I sold a painting and made good friends.

    5. I took my first Jell-O shot at a Christmas party and played tambourine with the band. I always wanted to play in a band.

    6. I booked a flight to NYC with a girlfriend.

    7. I opened myself up to a relationship with a man who was interested in me. We knew each other for many years through work, and he is also divorced. Our relationship has grown and letting another person into my life has been one of the scariest but rewarding things I’ve done since the divorce. I’ve learned a lot from him and feel incredibly grateful for his presence in my life.

    8. I learned to love and protect myself instead of putting everyone else’s needs before mine. I had a great counselor who I’m still seeing to help me navigate my new relationships.

  • Not divorced yet, so my main achievement has been the change in attitude and re-focus on me (re-claiming my life is what I call it).

    Small achievements I have reached – took a bread making class. There is nothing more soothing and rewarding than kneading bread is what I have discovered. Who would have known that. Originally from Europe, I always wanted to learn how to get this delicious crust on the bread.

    Of course joined a gym and it has served both as body and mind healing as well as mother-daughter bonding time (my daughter goes there for free). At 23 she is exactly half my age, but people at the gym think we are sisters.

    And the not so small one – I am finally ready to leave my well paying job for my dream job (that would pay about half). I am talking about a job that would have me live in foreign lands. Husband no longer has a say. Because of him I declined such offer two times already. I remain number one on a list of candidates and should a position opens I will be the one to get the offer. Waiting for the call. Keeping fingers crossed.

  • 3 Years from Dday. 16 Months Divorce.

    1. Brought season tickets to the Kennedy National Symphony Orchestra (POPS series) for only myself. This indulgence forced me out the house to listen to beautiful music. I also learned to enjoy my own company.

    2. Like so many through the process of elimination as a result of my separation/divorce found out who are my real friends (old and new).

    3. Learned to accept the many acts of kindness from strangers. So many wonderful strangers from the 68 year old beautiful divorcee to the wise cable guy helped me through this crazy madness. I accepted their kind words, some made me laugh, others gave me sage advice, or just smiled at me when I was down. I made a few close friends from strangers.

    4. Moved into the city out of the suburbs (A big dream realized!). I am in the process of purchasing a condo in my name only with beautiful skyline views of the National Cathedral. Secured my pre-approval loan!!!

    5. Maintaining an exercise routine helped me from doing evil spontaneous acts against the coward. Found joy with my uncoordinated body through Zumba. Always feel like I’ve gone to the club getting my dance on! Rediscovered my love for running. Now share my running experience by volunteering as a running buddy for Girls on the Run.

    6. The best thing I ever did for myself was going on an impromptu vacation five days after my divorce date alone. I alternated laying out in the sun on the beach, pool and my terrace. It was an indulgence that I will truly remember for all the wonderful people that brought me pretty drinks with umbrellas. Loved the Canadians! Toasted me to a bright future with lots of adventures and laughter. My friends still can’t believe that I went on a trip alone! I loved the independence and plan to schedule another solo trip!

    7. I use to allow him space in my head to make me feel bad about saving for a future or an emergency. His attitude was to live for today. I did not go to panic mode during the recent government furloughs. I did give me a chuckle when I was informed that he was having serious financial issues due to his live for today attitude. I will never again doubt my ability to make sound financial decisions.

    Wow! This was a great exercise on focusing on positives!

    • I love that idea of a solo trip! I might have to do that… I have been thinking of at least a weekend yoga retreat

    • May I join for the trip ๐Ÿ™‚ Taking account of my past life, I realized that we rarely went on vacation as family. Most of the time it was me with the kids and their friends. And this goes back to the time when they were babies (now late teens and early twenties). Husband was “too busy” to join. In the rare occasions when he joined we ended up regretting it, because he always made us do things interesting to him. Now the kids simply do not want to join and I do not blame them. Since they left the house, husband and I have been on only one long weekend trip with friends. This was about a year past DDay. Honestly, I hated it… A solo vacation sounds sooooooooo much better

      And congrats on the condo. I am from the same area (just across the river, but still inside the beltway).

      • AHA,

        Yeah, maybe the trip doesn’t have to be solo, but rather just not with a total selfish a-hole!!

        So, are you guys in “reconciliation” right now?

        • A reconciliation would assume some effort on both sides, no? Well, I see none on his. Except his decision not to get on a plane to spend time with the AP from last summer. She emailed him when she arrived at the beach with her younger kid. Apparently they have a condo and she’s been spending 2-3 months there ea year (I guess she doesn’t work, apparently has a drinking problem, and is divorced). Husband knew such trip (regardless of the excuse he uses to cover it up) would have meant ending our marriage. They are still in communication, though, but it is long distance (another country). Boy, how I wished he did go on that trip. As for me, I guess I chickened out when time was appropriate to file for a divorce, or maybe it is that I haven’t hit the rock bottom yet. However, I have definitely changed and for better (may I add) both on the outside and inside.

          • AHA yeah, that’s why I put the word reconciliation in quotes… it almost never is a mutual effort.

            In my case my now-ex did totally fail on any real attempt to save our marriage (he didn’t fire his AP which was my sole requirement before I was willing to “work on the marriage”) and in hindsight I do realize it was easier for me to make a decision that way. If he’d even made a half-ass effort I probably would have ended up wasting a lot more time with him before ending up in the same place I am now (i.e. divorced).

            There is no “appropriate” time for divorce. If he isn’t meeting all of your demands, such as cutting off contact, you have a right to stand up for yourself. Obviously, you have to do what’s right for you, but I’m just saying as scary as it is to imagine a completely different future (I was a SAHM with two very young kids and he was my first love that I’d been with since age 19), I have found it to be hugely liberating and generally a huge relief. I’m not going to say there weren’t tough times, really tough times, but I am a much happier person now.

            I really do still want to believe in the reconciliation unicorn… but if you are miserable with him and it’s been a long time since Dday, you should think about whether you will ever really be happy with him again and if you might be happier on your own. I think you would be… especially since you have gone through a lot of personal growth.

            • I think I just need to get to a complete meh before I can take this final step of getting a divorce. The sad part is that life hasn’t been fun with him even before the affair(s). So, maybe it is just the 28 yrs history (married for 24) or maybe I am stuck to the “status” of being married

              • Can you get to “meh” while together? I think if you stay you need to be able to love and trust him again. That’s good old unicorn! Or maybe the decision should be based on what you think will make you the happiest in the long run.

                I think the shame of being divorced, and that you feel your personal business is so exposed was one of the hardest parts of it. Plus, for me, it was losing the dream of how my children would grow up. They literally will not remember what it was like to NOT shuttle between houses. But on the plus side since they were SOO young, it also made it slightly easier. Because this is just their new reality. I’m also materially much less well off, but I’m going to do fine on my own. But I will admit some feelings of jealousy with married friends who can afford to do much more. And have a built in partner in crime for their activities. Then again, I’m now completely in control of the finances so if I want to buy something “dumb” for me and am willing to sacrifice somewhere else to get it, I can! And I can usually locate a friend to do a lot of the things I want to do… or do some of it on my own!

                I can admit all of these tough things and also say that my kids and I are still MUCH better off now and that I made the right decision. Good luck!

              • Another Erica – I cannot trust him, but I can love him. After all recent discoveries, the question becomes if I can continue to love him more than I love myself. I am still trying to figure that one out

      • Our only trips were work (fishing) or to see his Mom, I called them “oblications” looking forward to the day when I can travel alone…when I was younger and single I went to NY, Seattle, Europe, can’t even imagine that now financially but baby steps…

      • It was the best trip ever! Planning my next solo vacay to somewhere warm but still no idea where. Your more than welcome!

        My ex always insisted that we live in the middle of nowhere. I love living in an urban area with shopping, restaurants, parks, public transportation and musuems within walking distance. Near so many great running trails! I love my vibrant, diverse neighborhood!

    • I lived in the DC area for 16 years. I love the neighborhood by National Cathedral! I used to live off Foxhall Rd. Say hi to the Bishop’s Garden for me! Enjoy your new digs.

  • Oh, I just thought of one more thing…

    9. Drove 11 hours in the car by myself to visit my cousin. My ex used to insist on driving on long trips and I’d never navigated such a long trip on my own. I got lost a couple of times but didn’t get too off track. Since then I’ve gotten a Garmin so next trip should be easier.

  • 1) First and hardest accomplishment that sounds easy: started mowing the lawn, which was like a public announcement of my marital status.

    2) painted my family room and then painted my room and got a new bed

    3) deleted almost all his music and started downloading things I like. He was always the music guy, I had almost never bought a song for me. So, now I have my own music collection!

    4) go to hot yoga once a week. Run. I am in the best shape of my life… though I still need to lose those last 5 lbs.

    5) took the GMAT and then applied to and got into a Master’s of Accounting. I’m in the program now and I’m definitely the oldest in class (and even older than a few professors) but my classmates are all really nice and I do hang out with them socially. In fact, on Friday I’ll find out if I become VP of the class!

    6) had a brief friends with benefits fling with my GMAT study buddy ๐Ÿ˜‰

    7) did the high ropes course as part of orientation for my school program… involved climbing trees and walking across wires and things… I pushed myself and did stuff I was definitely not sure I could do!

    My biggest indulgences are probably just that I can let the house kinda look messy and not feel bad about it. I don’t have to make super fancy dinners and try to impress anyone else. Who not only never impressed, he was barely satisfied. I can buy myself clothes… and shouldn’t feel guilty, but I still do a little. In general, though, is nice to know I can spend money however I want and on whatever I want.

  • It will be 8 months Sept. 16th since I walked out of a 1 yr. long traumatizing relationship from hell and I have so far done the following…..
    1. Had my Thyroid removed as it was growing like crazy from stress back in June. (I know this doesn’t sound like a good thing) but I feel so much better now that it is out that it’s been a new lease on life now that my hormones are at normal levels and I have lost 12 pounds since the thyroid has been gone. It was hypo due to Hashimoto’s disease so I look great and have a thin neck again and no flashes of depression followed by flashes of anxiety due to imbalanced hormones anymore!
    2. Reconnected with some amazing old friends that I grew up with who have really helped me laugh and get through this hell as we shared and laughed our hell’s together.
    3. Connected with people through work in the fashion biz who also became friends and are going to help me start a side business of ready to wear dog clothes. Inspired by my long haired chihuahua named, Diego Rivera, who needs a good fashionable coat in the winter months and I haven’t yet found one in a store or online that I like that is simple, elegant and made of wool and lined, so why not make my own?
    4. Started dating again three months after I left the a hole and found that my picker and my instincts are sharp as knife! I haven been on about 6 dates with different men, connected with one but got drunk from nerves as the place he picked to meet was around the corner from where my ex a hole lived and never heard from him again. But I still had a good time and saw that there are nice men out there and don’t regret that I didn’t hear from him again as I still had a good time. Didn’t have sex and not ready for that just yet but I am open to meeting someone, but someone of my choosing who will be a million times better than the last one. If it takes time to find him, I’ve got time, as I am busy building my life again from almost scratch.
    5. Started to let my grey hair grow out last September and I love it and get complements all the time!!!
    6. Couldn’t travel this summer but had my College roomate and her daughter visit me over the Long July 4th weekend and another friend came in for her birthday from L.A. for a week back in July and had a blast.
    7. I will be meeting wtih Diane Von Furstenberg on a business trip to Paris for a textile trade show in a week and a half and am so looking forward to that!
    8. Found this place shortly I ended my relationship and am soooo grateful for you CL and everyone else here. The remarkable thing is that you started this site shortly after I started my relationship back in January of 2012, wish I knew about you back then! The help this place has given me has been incredible along with another website I found called baggage reclaim who is from a blogger in England. You both have saved me and helped me get my badass back and for that I am forever grateful.
    9. Even though I am now starting to have more good days than bad days, the bad days when they come are pretty bad but my friends always help to pull me out of them and I love them for that. They tell me it will get better and that I can’t rush it and that helps so much. The upside is that my eyes are wide open now and I think anyone who tries to pull a fast one on me will have a very hard time succeeding, my heart hasn’t hardened but it will take more than a gust of hot air wind to open it again which is a good thing, I have finally become my own parent!!! I am now a grown up at 48, lmao. I like how that feels even though it’s very hard at times. The growth happening is huge and that’s all good for me!!!

    Love to mah Peoples, ma Fellow Chumps and Chumpettes!!! xoxo

    • Deborah, I’m a thyroid cancer survivor so my heart goes out to you. Hope you are feeling better these days. Makes a huge difference when they get the meds regulated correctly.

      • Lyn,
        Wow, glad you are ok and an awesome survivor. Yes, I haven’t felt this good in about a year as far as my health. The doc was great and the endocrinologist is great and hit the dose of synthroid perfectly post op. So it’s a huge improvement as I do feel great now healthwise. Hope you are feeling well! The thyroid when it’s out of whack really fucks with your whole body and mind and you can feel that it’s chemical and not mental which is so weird in and of itself as you have no power to control it.

  • This is great!

    I now walk around my own home naked without anyone groping me or making sexual comments.

    I started to travel other places then where he wanted to go!

    I sold my house in 1 day and bought a much smaller home.

    I planted a garden and grow my own vegetables.

    I go where I want and do what I want. No questions, no guilt thrown at me. It’s an amazing and freeing feeling!

    I started dating a man that is trustworthy. That’s the most amazing thing I did for myself. Worked out my own kinks and found someone who is honest, they are out there! I keep trying to distrust him but he keeps coming back as honest. I don’t even know how to act! Trust changed my life! So simple…

    Love this site, thanks Chumplady and keep it up!

    • I love walking around naked in my apartment knowing that it’s because I feel like it, not because I’m trying to pry anyone away from a video game.

      It’s great isn’t it? I know it sounds suuuuper cliche and hipsterish, but it feels so FREE doesn’t it?

      • LOL. This reminds me of how my ex would always ask “are going to sleep naked tonight?” with a drooling face when we would chat online. That was his idea of being flirty to get me in the mood. Did it ever work? Umm, no! I stopped sleeping naked when our kids were old enough to get out of bed on their own. Now every time the kids are with their dad, I sleep naked. Nobody knows but me, but oh it does give me a chuckle. ๐Ÿ™‚

        • I love being able to walk around naked – naked and clean, naked and dirty, naked any way I want. No one criticizing, no one dictating or commenting or making me feel “less than” by ignoring me and powering up the porn machine. I am so not totally over the entire relationship, but I do relish those things that make me feel free and make me feel good.

  • Lemme see…what HAVEN’T I done? It’s been a while since I’ve been out of that relationship, so I’ve got nearly 5 years of stuff I could talk about. Hmmm…

    1) Immediately following the breakup, I went to therapy. I was in therapy for 7 months, but it helped a good deal. I haven’t needed to be in therapy since then. ๐Ÿ™‚

    2) Speaking of which, during my last month of therapy, I started dating the man who is now my husband. Aaaaaand…

    3) ….While I was dating the man who became my husband, I was able to dive into an interest I always had, but never really got to explore: Horror movies. Classics, indie, foreign, all those good ones. I had always loved horror movies, or had a deep interest in seeing them, but never had anyone to explore them with until I met my husband, who also loves horror movies.

    4) I dove head-first into my first degree, theatre. I added 8 more shows to my resume and a conservatory program!

    5) After graduating the conservatory program, I got accepted to my first-choice university for their BA program in Journalism.

    6) Got married.

    7) I took up pole-dancing classes and I feel I have really found my zen with it. It’s replaced the gym for me. Instead of weight-lifting or cardio classes, I go to pole classes and my body is in GREAT shape! I can climb to the top of 11-foot poles and do fantastic power-tricks on them. I never would have dreamed of that with my ex! (Plus my husband is reaping the benefits of my improved body as well as improved happiness!)

    8) Moved to a new city in a new state. For the first time EVER.

    I’m SO much happier.

  • Hi, this Chump fell apart, was completely devastated and took FOUR YEARS to finally decide that she was worth more than the disrespect she was getting.

    But she also after 20 years SAHM retrained for a career, reinforced that with going back to college, and got a job. Gone to al-anon to learn serenity and letting go.

    Slowly it is getting better, the terrible anxiety on waking up is receding, some good life habits (tidiness for one!) are starting and I am NOT the person I was in, even, 2009.

    I am looking forward to really believing in myself as a valuable human being, and not hesitating to ask for things/understand that I am not responsible for other people. So a work in progress.

    • Congrats Patsy! The important thing is not how long it took, but that you did you figure out that you are worth more!

      I know I’m not the same person I was either… well, I am at the core, but this experience has changed me in ways that are so far all for the better. I would have rather not had to go through it, but apparently I needed to in order to grow. Without the infidelity, and how he responded to it (ie. didn’t really do anything to try to save the marriage), I would never have realized that I deserved more than what he was giving me. And that I could be a much happier person without him.

    • Oh Patsy,
      I’m about 8 months in, and am limping along too…but limping FORWARD! I still find myself reaching over to the other side of the bed when I wake up, and it breaks my heart every time. And I don’t talk about it much anymore because I know people think I should be over it…Thank God for CL we’ll make it, we’re just all different!

      • anotherEric, you hit on an interesting point. This experience changes you in fundamental ways. I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned is not to depend on another person for my happiness. I’ve also really learned to love myself, and to take better care of myself.

        • Ditto for not depending on others for your happiness. I majorly struggled with this one. I used to wait around and ask husband or kids how we should spend the evening or where we should go for vacation, or as simple as to what they wanted me to prepare for dinner. Not anymore. I have found my voice again.

        • Lyn –
          Ditto re: not depending on others for my happiness. But another way I have changed is that I have, weirdly, GAINED confidence from this. Not totally all round… because gotta say I probably still lack more than I should regarding potential romance, etc. But in most other ways my self-confidence has increased, which I’m especially seeing in myself now that I’m back in school.

          I think it comes from the fact that I now know how strong I am. I was able to leave and start over. I’ve also know that I’ve been through a lot of shit and came out of it a better person. I’m not bitter and am actually much more social and laugh more than I have in a LOOONG time. I’m not afraid of very much, either, because I feel like no one can do worse to me than what I’ve already been through.

          • I laugh a lot more now too, and I shocked my youngest son at his wedding when I gave an impromptu speech. I used to be so shy I could hardn’t stand in front of a crowd, much less give a speech. He kept saying he couldn’t believe it, and that my speech was really good. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • I’m training for a marathon and running personal-best distances on a weekly basis (18 miles tomorrow!).

    I am redirecting my free time to new activities, and making a boatload of new friends.

    I have worked hard to overcome my anxiety in order to learn to ride horses. I will be competing in my first horse show this weekend.

    I have a life beyond the mindfuckery and am better able to recognize it my other relationships and deal appropriately (jettison!)

    And when I need perspective, I read here. I almost always find a smile and an attitude adjustment. I am grateful for my new chumplady vocabulary and concepts, they have helped me step out of the ‘skein’.

  • Visited a lawyer and got information I’ll need if I ever get out of limbo
    Reached out to old friends for support
    Spend time each day writing songs and building up a musical network

  • And … though maybe not everyone wants to hear this … made a concerted attempt NOT to lose weight (6 foot 1 and 165 — can’t really afford to). Forced myself to eat well even on my worst days
    And signed up for a fencing class

  • I started college, I put it off our whole relationship because I knew he wouldn’t support me through it. I became a decently good cyclist this year from riding off so much anger. I’m proud to be in the ‘fast’ group. I took a trip to the Dominican Republic all by myself. (I didn’t have that much fun, but no one needs to know that part.) The reason I didn’t have fun was because he wanted to get back together right at that time, how convenient.

    As much as I hurt on a daily basis, I’m proud of myself. I’m proud I can get out of bed now and have a happy day. I’m proud that I can say, I’m a good person and I treat people well. My smiles and laughter are not all the way back, but I’m proud that I can see it from distance. I’m happy I’m me; and I’m excited to see what I do with my life.

  • I want to do a lot of stuff but so far in planning only for the really fun stuff. I have researched and am going to book a trip this spring to swim with humpbacked whales on the silver bank. This is something I’ve wanted to do for years but ex wouldn’t even consider it.

    Mostly small stuff;

    I finally got HVAC after 20 years, I replaced all the light fixtures in my old house.

    I painted my living room shades of purple with white trim, everyone thought it would suck but it’s beautiful.

    My basement bedroom is a bright lemon yellow now

    I let my cats out in the fenced back yard a little while every day (ex wouldn’t allow it)

    I quit my EMDR therapist and feel my PTSD is much better and under control, still not gone but I think that is too much to hope for as long as ex is alive there is a real risk. But I’m in a place where I’m not looking around corners all the time.

    I’ve gained back the weight I lost during the crazy shit and am a bit healthier now.

    I joined Meetup and have been to a few but not met anyone I really clicked with as a friend. I am scheduled for a photo shoot at JCP so I can put up a dating profile.

    I researched and expect to get a puppy next summer (Doberman, ex “forbid” another dog)

    I am about to have my kitchen renovated but he cost is freaking me out and I’m procrastinating, need some encouragement on that, even though I have the initial specs from the contractor I picked.

    • Dobermans are fun dogs. I hope you like activity!

      Also, I absolutely recommend getting a very good trainer and doing the puppy classes/obedience thing. Not to denigrate pet store obedience classes, but a high drive dog like a doberman (or any of the herding or working breeds) needs to have a very good foundation.

      Current dog training is based on operant conditioning (i.e. clicker training). Operant conditioning was first used with marine mammals (because yelling “NO” at a killer whale and then punishing it for doing the wrong thing makes soooo much sense–NOT!), and then made its way to horse training, and from there to dog training. It’s also known as positive training, and it’s based on well-researched, studied, and verified behavioral science. Go read Karen Pryor’s “Don’t Shoot the Dog” for a good introduction. Cesar Milan has lots of press, but isn’t held in high esteem in professional dog circles, since his ideas about dominance are just wrong (i.e. scientifically unverified and in fact debunked). Good trainers cost more, but you will learn more in an hour with a good trainer than you will in a series of classes at the local pet store.

      Enjoy your dog!

      • Thanks, I’m a dog person and my last was a Great Dane but I can’t get one now cos if I had to carry him I couldn’t do it. I am a good trainer and I intend to go shutzhund with Dobe puppy, defense and agility, I can not do tracking cos I won’t be able to keep up (bad knee). Trust me I will have him in obedience training for socialization to go along with my own training and I look forward to the protection/defense training where we are both going to learn.

        • Sounds like fun, and you’ll have a great time! My trainer did mondioring. I do agility with my BCs. Fun stuff! I got into it because Dog #1 was reactive. We rescued him from the local shelter and STBX was going to return him because STBX reacted completely wrong when dog became reactive. STBX thinks you control dogs physically. He said Dog #2 was “too much dog” for us a few months after we got her–a rehomed farm dog with no house manners. She’s lovely now, but still needs work on house manners. He still doesn’t understand that if these dogs weren’t exercised both physically and mentally each day, they’d be hell to live with. He is so not getting the dogs, and I think I can get the local dog community to say so, if push comes to shove.

  • After a steady diet of isolation with my ex and the shit sandwich, I decided a few weeks ago that I would really look at people that I meet daily – the bank teller, the store clerk, people in the elevator, everyone – really listen to what they are saying and speak the truth (no more spackling or pretending). I figured I would feel less lonely/alone in the world this way. The response was instant! I have met more interesting people in the past few weeks than I have in many, many years. One day, I met a woman as I passed a hospital. She looked lost and asked me where she was. She had tripped on the streetcar that morning and had been taken to the hospital by ambulance. They had released her but she was unsure of where in the city she was. So I walked her to the subway station chatting all the way. People everywhere have the most interesting stories and they are willing to tell me anything! Yesterday, I met possibly the most interesting person yet at my part-time job. There was absolute electricity when we were talking and his story was unbelievable yet it is true (I googled him later lol). After I left, he texted me: “That was a great ‘first date’. Would like to see you again.” It is renewing my faith in humans a little at a time.

  • I’m 3 1/2 years out from dday. I was blindsided & it hit me very hard but for myself:

    -learned to horseback ride (was able to spend 1 hr/wk only thinking about not falling off)
    -took a history of Judaism class (got two dates from a single rabbi)
    -traveled to Moscow, Russia to see a friend who had being living there at the time
    -drove to NYC myself (it’s now a snap)
    -studied Italian
    -went back to school to become a paralegal (no job yet)
    -got a beehive for my backyard
    -learned to knit socks

    Odd thing is I’d like to share all that I have done with my pre-dday husband but he is gone forever. ๐Ÿ™

    • I often wish to share things I see or do with someone, it is how humans are, you will find someone to share with, give it time

    • I totally dig that you got a beehive. I am dying to do the same. I have made a pretty good life as well but I also wish I could have shared it with the person I thought I was married to.

  • Boy, I have done a lot in a year.
    -Went to therapy-now understand that it is not my fault.
    -Bought D4 All Clad new pots and pans-Kitchen Jewelry!
    Love to admire them
    -Oh, bought revenge jewlery-oh la la
    -Really connected with daughter, who was always quiet in the last few years since H had turned into critical grump
    -Went to Miami for a few days with daughter
    -Playing more golf
    -House is messy- no more H with OCD
    -Eat lots of fish, H did not like fish
    -Lost weight-will lose more just for ME.

  • I took the kids and left 2.5 years ago and moved in with my mom. I expected to stay with her for 6 months so I could get my life together, but have stayed because she enjoys the company and had been living alone for 19 years after my dad died. She is 92 and my kids have learned alot from her. I am lucky because she not only is my mom but my best friend.

    I bought myself new bedding which included a floral print comforter. Something he never wanted. I gained 15 pounds since living with my sweet tooth mom, so I just joined Weight Watchers and a gym to knock off 50 pounds before I turn 50 next year. 5 of my friends and I are celebrating our 50th birthday at an island where we will be served cocktails with umbrellas!

    I took my sons on a weeklong beach vacation last month. We love the beach STBX hated it. So it was wonderful to stay on the beach and in the ocean all day long if we wanted. No worrying about getting back to him to do what he wanted.

    I started scrapbooking. I always wanted to do it but never seemed to have the time. Once the kids started every other weekend with STBX I filled the hours with that and I love it.

    I can cook what I want, when I want. Seafood and Chinese are not taboo at my mom’s. She’s tried more things in the last two years than in 90!

    Most importantly, I have finally learned to stand up for myself. My STBX was not only a cheater but an emotionally and verbally abusive dickhead. It has taken me all this time to finally stand up to him without fear. I never expected that it would take this long to overcome my fear of him. But I have. In fact I am no longer afraid to voice my opinion to anyone. It is a great feeling to have my confidence back.

  • learning how to drive buses since god’s not helping me. see my previous post in resentment blog.

    just joking. its learning to laugh again. i miss it. i need to see the humour in life and doing the handyperson stuff around the house. I taught myself how to tile the backsplash and learning about plumbing so i can change the sink and toilet in the bathroom. sink is almost in and plumbed up.
    not much but it’s a start.

      • Plumbing is pretty badass. I sweated a pipe once in my old bathroom remodel and felt it a huge accomplishment. But I also had to call in a professional for the big stuff. Way to go on the home improvements! There’s a huge intimidation factor, but it’s so liberating to get past it and enjoy the results.

  • Let’s see…
    He left everything…I mean EVERYTHING behind after 13 years together so the 1st thing I did was got rid of all of his crap. Took about 2-3 months.

    Spackled all the gaps in his “tool/junk” room so the AC will work, put a desk and chair and all my art supplies in there so that when I feel the desire again I have a studio to paint

    Got speakers for my ipad for my “studio”

    Redid the bathroom in rainbow tie dye…It’s so bright and happy! Of course new bedding, that was #1!

    Going to therapy/on antidepressants

    Bought a TV for my bedroom! (He used to make me watch anything I wanted to watch on my computer, in the bedroom, with ear buds ’cause he had the TV in the living room so loud)

    Put pavers in front of my apt. And gardening again.

    Got new glasses. Also got new sunglasses ’cause he gave mine to one of his crack whores. I have sun damage in both eyes so good sunglasses are crucial.

    Plan on going back to Yoga on the beach when it cools off.

    My officiant biz is taking off from word of mouth.

    I know I’m doing so much better and maybe this list will remind me. Just feeling a little “stuck” right now…

    Love you guys, this is awesome!

  • After D-Day, I did the following:

    – Bought my first new car ever!
    – Went to NYC (a trip that he had ‘promised’ to take me on) and have been back a few times since!
    – Bought my own house
    – Resumed writing short stories about my family and my adventures navigating the divorce landscape!

    Life is good!

  • I just went to my first Divorce Care session. I hope this helps to push me out of Limboland.

    I’m beginning to ask for help when I need it. That has been difficult for me, but I’m finding that people want to help; my adult kids in particular. It makes us all feel good!

  • I learned to manage money. This may sound odd from a woman who’d managed a household for 25 years – but I never was given access to bill paying – it was his job….hence the financial Titanic I found my on post-D-Day. I was determined to learn what it was to manage bills, budget and by doing so kept my children and myself afloat, kept them in clothes, the same school district, activities and fed in spite of losing the majority of income via him.
    I kept my hair great – in spite of his cutting money to the bone – my hair never missed a beat.
    I lost 40 lbs (though have gained a few back since getting more comfortable in my current state – now am working back down ….again!
    I treated myself and my girls to a weekend at a truly “grand hotel” resort near where I live. A resort that I have dreamed of since my parents used to drive us by it on the way to Florida when I was a child. Thanks to Groupon and some smart budgeting – I was able to share three days over my 50th birthday with my kids and just RELAX!
    Now I hope to be able to purge him from my thoughts forever. That truly would be the best thing I could ever do for myself!

  • I lost weight & I love the way I look in jeans.
    I moved house, took everything I wanted / needed to start again with me. I love the fact that I can have it how I want & surround myself with things that reflect my taste.
    I became an expert in disassembling & reassembling furniture. I built flat pack furniture on my own, put up blinds, fixed a broken drawer & a door that had come off its hinges. I plumbed in a washing machine. Small fry compared to some of the DIY achievements I have read here but it’s a start.
    I got a small bonus at work 3 weeks after Dday & blew it all on a beautiful silver & diamond ring. In the past I would have saved it for ‘us’.
    I used to do most of the cooking & all of the meal planning & food shopping. After Dday I couldn’t face cooking or eating but am slowly starting to enjoy it again. I love being able to eat what I want when I want & experiment without worrying about anyone else’s taste.
    I enjoy being able to watch whatever I want on tv without someone constantly flicking through channels during ad breaks & causing me to miss the start of the programme.
    I have started to rebuild my social life, sometimes I have to force myself but I’m always glad I made the effort. I have had some bloody good nights out & have laughed a lot.
    I am 5 months from Dday & have just instructed a solicitor to start divorce proceedings. I have learnt I am stronger than I thought I was, have some amazing friends & family and that I can laugh at adversity. That’s why I love this blog & all the people who contribute. I wish I’d found it a lot sooner.

  • Periodically tracking FedEx and UPS packages working their way here from both coasts. They allegedly arrive tomorrow.

    Nervous anticipation ๐Ÿ™‚

  • You guys are all my heroes! There is some really unbelievably awesome stuff going on here. People who have been devastated rising just like phoenixes out of the ashes! It goes to show you that you cannot keep a good chump down!

    • I found online a watercolor print of a Phoenix rising — it has graced my fridge for about 8 months and now it will make me think of all of you, my fellow Phoenixes (Phoenii? Phoenices?).
      What a flock!

  • My D-Day was 1 1//2 years ago, divorce was final 1 year ago.

    The day I kicked my ex out, I went to a jewelry store at the mall and bought myself a beautiful “freedom” ring the color of the ocean. I got the quickest divorce possible after 25 years of marriage and 3 kids. I got my ex to waive alimony though I earned tons more than him (he can thank his perverted secret sex life for that). I remortgaged our home into my name, repainted the rooms, and replaced many of our household items. My children and I now keep the house messy at times (ex was a neat freak). I replaced a leaking pipe under the sink, and a broken clothes-dryer switch myself, saving money on a plumber and repairman.

    My kids and I got another dog (my ex hated the first 2 we had). The kitty who lives on my third floor (don’t ask ) now has a round little tummy though she used to be skinny, as ex would never let me feed her up there, instead insisting kitty needed to come down to the first floor to eat (and brave our dogs). Now if someone spills something, one of the dogs pees on the floor, or there is some sort of mishap, we just take it in stride calmly, knowing that ex would have been screaming and we would have been walking on eggshells.

    The year of my separation and divorce was my best professional year ever and I became a named partner in my law firm. My money does not disappear as fast now (now that I don’t have a husband who is secretly siphoning it off to use on his various girlfriends and pornographic hobbies). Old friends who I lost touch with returned (once I lost the ex who they hated…who knew?).

    I lost 25 pounds, dyed my hair to its original dark brown and grew it longer and more feminine, got a kick-ass makeover at Clinique, go for facials and waxing regularly, updated and spiced up my wardrobe, started wearing dresses again, and got some sexy shoes. I no longer drink alcohol except on special occasions, don’t feel the need now that ex is gone.

    I now will tell people off if I need to (though still very rarely). I tell people what I really think and will not tolerate lies or passive-aggressiveness in my life or that of my children ever again. I ALWAYS follow my gut. I do not trust sparkle and am teaching my children the same.

    I achieved meh. On a Tuesday. Not that long ago. I no longer feel stunned and bewildered by what my ex has done. I went and still go to a counselor and make my children go too (they were abandoned seemingly overnight by their narc-sociopath father).

    I decided the last story in my romantic life was not going to be the horrible tale of what my ex did to me (a tale worthy of a Lifetime Original Movie, as so many of our lives were). So I started dating before my divorce was even final. I met a truly wonderful non sparkly man 8 months ago and we are now engaged and planning our wedding in June 2014. I see how solid, true, committed and loving he is, and cannot believe what I fell for from my ex who I now realize was shallow, hollow even, and just pretending to have emotions for so long. It is so obvious now. CL calls her husband the Great Miracle and I cannot say it better than that. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • And while my life is generally kick-ass now, I’d like to share a few smaller and nastier but still somewhat enjoyable “victories” (so un-meh of me):

      My ex’s “main” AP, who I thought was a family friend until D-Day, and who worked with my ex in his consulting business, has recently disappeared from his website along with her best friend (my ex’s other AP–oh don’t try to unravel this skein, Chumps, it’s too twisted). Word is my ex has recently dumped these two AP’s (with whom he had affairs and group sex for 17 years of our 25 year marriage), and has left for greener ($$) pastures. Sadly, main AP already left her husband as soon as she found out my ex and I split, divorced him and left her teenage sons behind, since my ex was promising to finally marry her immediately. I guess she forgot that my ex is a lying sociopath…… Luckily, the DNA tests on her youngest son comfirm her husband was the father and not my ex.

      Oh and recently, an old “friend” of my ex emailed me a screen shot of AP’s Facebook profile pic, asking me “what the fuck was [your ex] possibly thinking?” I just laugh and go on with my wonderful life. The world may never know.

  • I did plenty for myself and a lot for my kids. But right now (and I know this is immature but I can’t help but laugh) I am laughing at what my sister in law did for me. She is truly one of the kindest, most generous, rational and classy people i know. I put her on a pedestal. To make a long story short, in a total uncharacteristic move, she gave the OW the finger as the OW was driving by the ex’s house (presumably to keep an eye on him).

  • I haven’t accomplished half as much as so many here. But I am very proud that I’ve been travelling w/the kids, which intimidated me a lot! We did 4 long-weekend trips over the past year, and then this summer went to FRANCE for two weeks!!! WOO HOO! It was a long-planned trip, from well before the separation, and the kids had been so disappointed to think we might cancel, so I burned up some savings and we had a GREAT time, so fun, so relaxed w/o the negative critical ex along, and such a pleasure!

    I’m already trying to figure out how long it will take to save up for another big trip – maybe the Grand Canyon?

    It’s so inspiring to hear about everybody’s progress, no matter how small or great the steps so far! You guys are my inspiration!

  • I was just starting my last year of nursing school when I discovered his affair and he left. I thought I would die, and I sure didn’t think I could continue. But, I did. I graduated with highest honors and I received the award for the highest grade in pharmacology. I got a prized job on the transplant unit at the University of Kentucky Hospital.

    Once I was settled in my job, I renovated the marital home and put it on the market. It was sold in 30 days and I signed a contract to build a new home. It is lovely. I’ve had a delicious time decorating it and upgrading the landscaping.

    Once I got settled in my new home, I divorced my husband.

    I do still experience a great deal of sadness about what he did to me and to our family, but I still feel like I have a fabulous life. He can’t take that from me.

  • I used the frequent flyer miles (unbekwonst to her) to buy myself a plane ticket to Hawaii and spent a week there. I grew a ponytail. I redecorated the house and had a new bathroom put in. I started dating and have been getting laid regularly for the first time in 10 years. This isn’t the life that I expected or the life that I wanted. But it’s a new life, and a better life. Much, much better than being married to someone with schizoid personality disorder.

  • You guys are all FREAKING AMAZING.

    The Reconciliation Industrial Complex must suppress this good news — that life is so much more improved after divorce from a fucktard.

    I was thinking the other day, when I first was going through a divorce 14 years ago — there was no cheering squad, no It Gets Better. I should’ve found a divorce support group, something. Instead I soldiered on, doing the single mom thing in a land of Stepford Wives (until I got hip, sold my house, and moved into the city — my first act of liberation took nearly 3 years though). How much better it would’ve been if I’d known a bunch of ass kicking chumps like you guys.

    Thanks for all these comments (and keep ’em coming) — and all the support you give one another!

    • I did go to a divorce support group–once, about a year ago. We sat in a circle and we each had five minutes to get out whatever it was that we had to get out. Some people had been coming for YEARS and “meh” is the last word I would use to describe these poor people. I figured that the group couldn’t be helping them all that much… but I guess some people prefer to stuck in a different kind of hell that I sincerely trying to avoid; The borough of bitterness. But then… we had to say our name… and it was repeated back to us via the entire group (about 25) in unison, ala AA: “HI, LAUREL.” Each time, I heard the group echo the person’s name back, I cringed. Hey, I’m not an alcoholic and I had no idea that this was 12-stepped based and good ol’ married to Lois, Bill W. (founder of AA if you don’t know) used to hit on the pretty women at the AA meetings… (the proverbial “13th step) yuck. So, finally, after sitting through about 20 other people, I was telling my story– and was nearly finished when the leader cut me off curtly, saying: “I’m sorry, Laurel, but there’s a five minute time limit.”

      of course, I never went back.

  • It has truly been inspiring to read everyoneโ€™s accomplishments. I feel small in comparison and have had a hard time identifying my accomplishments, but Iโ€™m going to give it a go: Dday was May 20th 2011/ I moved out January 2012 (but was still โ€œworking on itโ€)/Asked for Divorce Oct. 2012/Divorce Final July 2013.
    1. I didnโ€™t kill him (Iโ€™m actually surprised there arenโ€™t more stories of people getting shot in the ass)
    2. Fired my therapist who said the: โ€œif youโ€™re pointing a finger, there are 3 pointing back at youโ€ thing. Fuck all those people.
    3. Took the Great Dane with me when I left. (She is much better therapy:)
    4. Traded in the gas guzzler that needed to hold a family of 5 (plus a Great Dane) for one that just needs to hold me and the dog. And negotiated the shit out of that deal. (Ex would have paid sticker โ€“ he wouldnโ€™t have wanted them to think he couldnโ€™t afford it!)
    5. Met a nice man through friends that says my name with a sexy foreign accent and disappears while Iโ€™m cooking dinner to check my oil for that long drive I have the next day (on the old car)
    6. Even though I think this sexy foreigner is pretty awesome, I am moving forward with plans to leave the hot swamp I moved to when I married the ass, and move back to the northeast that I love. With family, 4 seasons, and a real wardrobe. Hey, I love tank tops and flip flops, just not all year โ€˜round.
    7. I have faith in myself that if this awesome new man and I donโ€™t figure out a way to make things work, Iโ€™m going to be OK. Iโ€™m focusing on me and what is best for me in the long run.
    8. And I’m going to buy my first house! I’m not sure when yet, but I’m looking ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thank you for all of the wisdom and support and inspiration you all share. xoxo

  • I bought a new condo and decorated it the way I like things. I got two tattoos. One is on my left shoulder. It is a side profile of a butterfly with Live, Laugh Love beside it. The other is on my ankle an orchid with Stenght written beside it. I go to hot yoga, run and go to the gym. It hasn’t been an easy year and I’m not quite at Meh yet but I’m on my way. This web site has helped me through many a lonely evening….

  • My first act of freedom was to destroy the mickey mouse bar in the basement with a sledgehammer; the one X made the week I had our first child. While I was in the hospital for 5 days (C-section), X took the week off to build his dream bar. He would come to the hospital to visit me and son for about 20 minutes, then get back to his project. When we got home from the hospital on Sunday, X went back to work on Monday… his “vacation” was up.

    I painted the whole basement and made it into a nice family room for me and the kids.

  • You know, I didn’t think I’d done all that much until I added it up.

    1. Paid him $18,000 to buy him the hell out of this house.

    2. Reclaimed his Man Cave (which he had half-assedly painted ketchup red with brown-mustard ceiling and window trim and baseboards — ugh! — by repainting it myself with seemingly endless coats of primer, then a lovely sunny yellow with end walls that are the color of Kraft mac-n-cheese powder. And white baseboards and window trim. Then I ripped all the nasty old carpet out, cut it into manageable pieces, hauled it to the dump in the back of my Kia, and had gorgeous pistachio-green carpet installed. The carpet is green, but it’s also “green” — made of cornstarch, of all things, and gives off no toxic chemical fumes. And it’s super soft.

    3. Bought myself this ring, which I wear instead of my wedding band. Because now I’m married to Adventure.
    http://www.google.com/url?sa=i&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&docid=D4WolwubD62iJM&tbnid=5W3WH_bzQWGF4M:&ved=&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.craftstylish.com%2Fitem%2F96340%2Fadventure-ring-fine-silver-word-jewelry-not-all-who-wander-are-lost-ring-world-traveler-gift-sizes-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-13-14&ei=CKEsUsWgM4eOrgHAjIGICA&psig=AFQjCNFn2ptMN5jjyuTMZAsA3u4BYNgKKg&ust=1378742920894609

    4. Bought a lovely solar-plexus chakra necklace, which I wear always. To remind me to listen to my gut.

    5. Signed up to volunteer at my local women’s shelter and community center. So now, once a week, I tutor a sweet, funny Vietnamese gentleman in English as a second language.

    6. Bought four Riedel wine glasses to enjoy my thrice-weekly glass of wine or champagne. Ex does not drink, nor does he enjoy adult foods. He generally eats very much like my teenage daughter, except he’s 43. That used to frustrate me so much. Not anymore. I eat fantastic, simple, whole-foods meals that I make myself with pleasure, devotion and ingredients from farmer’s markets. It’s heavenly.

    7. Am setting up the reclaimed Man Cave for my new hobby, food photography. Also, it will be an exercise room.

    8. Sang lead in a performance with my best friend at her church one Sunday, in front of God and everybody. ๐Ÿ˜‰ It was Patty Griffin’s “Mary.”

    9. Am systematically unloading furniture, BBQ grill, whatever, that reminds me of the ex. Stuff goes out to the curb with a “free” sign on it, and magically disappears from my life.

    10. Am learning home improvement, project by project. Next up: sanding the deck down to the bare wood, then staining and sealing it.

    11. Did the fabulous Color Me Rad 5K Run with my best friend, the one who sang “Mary” with me. What a hoot. We had a ball.

    And one thing I for sure have on my bucket list to do sooner rather than much later or never: go to Burning Man. I’m not sure how, but I’m gonna.

  • I learned how to put myself as the yardstick for my life, and to not give a shit about anything outside of that.

    This goes beyond meh. I used to be really codependent, now I’m happy to pursue (or not), what *I* want, weighing everyone else’s needs against mine when deciding.

    That includes my kids. Paradoxically, I’ve learned that taking care of myself before my kids means that my kids are better off for it. It’s a little like the “oxygen masks on yourself, then on the kids” rule for riding an airplane. Sort of obvious once you live it, but totally counterintuitive when you’re codependent, or in the post-D-day fog (or both).

  • Just bought a brand new, full-size, plush bed, just for me! I’ve been sleeping on a king-sized bed for 18+ years with the kids and pets.

    When I was eight months pregnant with baby#1, he moved out and slept next to his bar in the basement (I’m guessing because it left him out of nighttime parenting responsibilities and gave him access to his gay porn).

    It arrives on Wednesday!

  • I too was totally blind-sided after our 30+ years together fell apart when I discovered 30+ years of cheating. It took me a long time to get through it (longer that I thought was “normal”, but now realize there is no time line, only when one is ready).
    1. It was a really good thing I didn’t have “an Uncle in the Mafia”, so I didn’t actually get to kill him. Glad my conscience is clear and I can look in the mirror EVERYDAY and know that I am good, kind, honest and that I gave my marriage and family my very best.
    2. I bought a townhouse and stayed in the town we lived in for 4 years facing my pain and angst. Then I rented the townhouse out and moved – all by myself – to a charming, pretty city. Secured a job, an apartment and while I was extremely lonely, I am slowly making friends through work and Meetups (only go to a few events, but I’m forcing myself out a little bit more). I love my city now. At first, the loneliness was killing me, but I faced that too and now love my surroundings even though I still do most things on my own. Both my kids live in the same city, so I get to cook us dinners once a week and go to movies with them sometimes. It still makes me feel needed. They love me and support me in my quest to finding meh.
    3. Couldn’t get myself into a regular exercise routine no matter how hard I tried. So I recently signed up with a Personal Trainer – my energy level and zest is returning. I see him twice a week, but walk every day, otherwise he’ll kill me if I miss a day. (joke). Because I want to. My body is starting to crave the exercise again. It’s an awesome feeling to experience that simple pleasure again. I mentioned in a previous post that he put me in a boxing ring the other and I let fly into padded shields he wore. It was AWESOME! My right hook is something to behold. My eyes shone and I felt exhilarated and empowered. We both realized I still have some residual anger bottled up there. Can’t wait to do it again! It is expensive to have a Personal Trainer, but I tried so hard on my own and couldn’t do it. Now I can and will. Our goal is to get me running again, injury-free.
    4.Realized I have burn-out (I work in Health Care) – at the same time I hired the Personal Trainer and I applied for and got another position at work. It’s Part-time, not Full-time, but because I have lots of seniority, I’m hoping I can pick up another shift a week to make it full time. My hours are going to be different – no more waking up at 4:30 am anymore – no wonder I was exhausted and had no energy after a long day on my feet, caring for others. I will have all morning to myself and work into the evening, without having graveyard shifts.
    It’s scary, I worry I can’t pay the rent, but I ‘m taking the chance.
    5. I adopted a cat. She sleeps with me, she’s soft and loves sitting on my lap. It’s a warm body to come home to and a reason to come home.
    6. I finally got rid of the marital bed. I didn’t realize how much negative energy having that stupid bedroom suite had. I bought a beautiful bed and night stand, new bedding and cleaned up all my clutter. It’s elegant, simple, uncluttered, neat and tidy! Kitty and I love it!
    7. Part of my de-stressing from the work burn-out included recently taking my very first cruise ever – I went to Alaska. I so needed that break and the rest. I got an awesome deal, will pay it off, and don’t regret doing it one bit.
    8. Sanded and stained a table and a room divider. It looks awesome. This may not sound like much, but for me it’s huge. Seriously it is huge.
    9. I am generally more optimistic and happy – I don’t feel that the loneliness is such a heavy load anymore. I actually prefer it this way. I know I am strong, courageous and a good human being.
    10. Instead of marking D-Day with a sad, heavy heart, I now send thanks and gratitude that I found out what a serial cheater he was instead of living in insulting ignorance. I now mark it as Liberation Day. I also see that him moving on so quickly and not trying to win me back when I left is actually the very best gift he could possibly give me, instead of staying stuck in grief that he didn’t. I found peace about the forgiveness conundrum through this wonderful site. This site, CL and all you wonderful people here have helped me to move on. My thanks to you all.
    I am also learning to let go of the consequences of the whole infidelity crap. Forgiveness, grief and letting go kept me stuck for so long, and I am finally breaking free of it.
    11. Life is awesome.

    • Lynn, those are some AMAZING accomplishments. I sometimes think about moving somewhere less expensive, but the thought of leaving my friends and family behind is too scary.

      • GIO – thank you. It was very scary. And very, very lonely.
        My daughter is at University here, my son (when I moved) was in University in Vancouver, which is a ferry-ride away. However,he would be in the States every week-end playing Lacrosse, but it was closer to him, even though I still didn’t see him much. He has now moved here and works in the North, and he is on a 1 week-in and 1 week-out schedule.
        I have no other family in Canada, so I understand your concern with leaving family and friends. I won’t pretend it was easy.
        It was very hard leaving my friends where I had lots of support, but to save my sanity, I took the plunge. I felt that I had no other choice – stay or slowly die – it was that bad.
        The city I moved to is actually more expensive, so it doesn’t really make sense. The town I lived in (we had lived there as a family) was small, there wasn’t much to do there and I would run into xh and his numerous GFs. While no-one knew he was bi-sexual, people knew he cheated on me a “couple of times” which is untrue – it was over 30 years of cheating. I needed to get away from that – I needed to define myself for myself, not the story people knew about me.
        However, I now rent an apartment in a cute “Village” within the city. I am within walking distance of the downtown core and usually walk there or ride my bicycle. There are gorgeous bike and walking trails. My work is 7 minutes away by car or 40 minutes walk, or a bike ride away. There is lots to do compared to where we lived before. The Inner Harbour area is truly beautiful and I love the whole city and city life.
        It’s hard to make friends here, but I’m persevering and it’s happening slowly. Even less chance of meeting someone – 7 women to every man, but I love my surroundings and the new start.
        I’m glad I did it. The only complaint is that it rains a lot here – as much as in Seattle. My problem is I don’t go out in the rain much because, as we all know, sugar melts. (bad joke.)

    • Thanks for sharing Lynn! I wonder someday when I finish my degree if I could get enough courage to move away and start fresh and meet new faces. I think I really want to but I’m very scared. This helps, thanks again.

    • Lynn, this is a wonderful post to read, you are such an inspiration. It takes a hell of a lot of courage to look what could have been utter devastation in the face, spit in its eye, and move on, but that is exactly what you did. I was married 25 years, otherwise very similar to your story, found out it was all a lie, my ex never looked back or even pretended to want to work things out after D-Day (initially another source or intense confusion and pain, but I also now accept this as a merciful turn of events). I have been working out twice a week with a personal trainer—I think I’ll try to get myself to daily walking….and that boxing sounds intriguing!

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