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Going No Contact. And Staying No Contact.

Yesterday I got a request to write again about no contact, and sharing your strategies for going no contact.

As I’ve written before, the problem with no contact isn’t the mechanics. That’s pretty simple stuff. You change your number, you block theirs. You only communicate via the lawyer. You keep communication about the children to very short sentences, devoid of emotion, that only deal with logistics of visitation or finances. You route their email to a folder named “Asshole” and you don’t look at it unless you’re with a friend who will read it for you and snark.

No, the problem with no contact is purely mental. It’s not your cell phone plan — it’s you.

Why are you struggling with no contact?

1) Hopium. Chumps can often be disingenious about no contact. It’s taken up in a spirit of “Harrumph! Well, I’ll show YOU!” And you think that your silence will goad your cheater into apologizing, or behaving, or showing you the proper deference and respect. This isn’t trusting that they suck, folks. At the core of this behavior is hoping that they come back to you chastened. It’s hopium. You don’t stay no contact because you still want a relationship with them.

No contact is for you. For your sanity and protection. It is the logical extension of trusting that they suck. There is nothing to say, no point in engaging. The gig is up. You understand who they really are and your silence speaks volumes.

Remember, if you want to end things with a narcissist, nothing says fuck off louder than silence. Disordered people WANT engagement. It’s kibbles. They want a fight, or they want to hoover you and see if their charm still works on you. Don’t give them the chance. Shields up, chumps.

2) Bad habit. If you’ve been married a long time, you’re used to having this person to talk to. To bounce things off of. You thought they were your friend, and you’re having a hard time switching that part of your brain off. You still believe at some level that they have your best interests at heart, that this person can be reasoned with. This is another trust that they suck issue.

Leave the reasoning to the lawyers. And reconsider your values. Do you want to be friends with someone who cheats on you and shows you such little respect? And why would you reason with someone who is a proven liar?

Get out of the habit of talking with them. Also get out of the habit of arguing with them. Why would you believe a word they say? Everything you need to know is in their ACTIONS. If they’re sorry, if they will cooperate with a divorce, if they care a shit about their children. It’s all on display. The words are about manipulation and impression management.

Do you really want to eat the shit sandwich of pleasant small talk? Of this person acting like your friend, while draining your bank account, or suing you for custody, or spending your marital resources on their affair partner(s)?

Treat this person with all the courtesy you’d give your local county tax assessor. It’s just business chumps. And most business can be conducted by email. (Always err on the side of documentation any way.)

3) You refuse to enforce your boundaries. You struggle with no contact because you think you can reason a disordered person into consensus.

Let’s say your cheater owes you child support. And you keep writing and calling and imploring them to do the honorable thing and pay for their children.

It’s kibbles and power to the disordered person. They’ll blow you off. They’ll make fake promises. They’ll deliberately frustrate you. What they will enjoy, however, is fucking with your head. Or they just won’t care at all. You are an annoying buzzing sound.

But you the chump persevere. YOU WILL LISTEN TO ME! You’ll get louder, more strident, more demanding. You might even threaten them with action.

Please skip all that and get straight to action. ENFORCE YOUR BOUNDARIES. They don’t pay child support? You tell the authorities. You call your lawyer. You get a court order. You deal with your local county child support enforcement agency. What you do NOT do, is go through your cheater to get things done. They had that chance. Their actions TOLD you their answer. Now YOU need to take care of this for YOU. No discussion necessary.

You can apply this to every other situation. They won’t move their shit out of your garage. (Sell it. Move it for them to a storage locker.) They won’t honor their debts. (Small claims court.) They won’t visit their children. (Don’t expect them to. Quit twisting on a rope accommodating them.)

Another ways chumps don’t enforce our boundaries is we think the cheater’s emotional state is our responsibility. But they’re so sad! They’re so angry! I must respond. You’ve grown accustomed to your role as Soother In Chief. And Person Whose Fault It Always Is. STOP IT. Not your job anymore. Don’t engage.

Shore yourself up, chumps. You can DO THIS.


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  • Totally agree with the 3 reasons you listed.

    I would like to add one though:

    Morbid Curiosity

    Whether it’s occasionally checking their facebook page or interrogating your kids/friends/etc to validate that they suck (the caveat being you have moved on from any hope, see #1) or… continually checking to see if they’ve been run-over by the Karma Bus, the effect of checking is that it keeps you from really moving on.

    Don’t get me wrong. I understand wanting the satisfaction of knowing that,” yep they suck and they dug a hole”, and sometimes knowing that helps a few people turn the final page, but really… stop checking if you really, really want to move on 🙂
    When they are irrelevant to what you think, say, do and all of the plans you are making, it’s liberating.

    • Thanks Time Heals for adding that last and very very important point of No Contact! Cutting all ties is a must to moving on and completely disconnecting mentally. Taking back your brain and removing them completely!

      Doing this changes everything and puts them where they belong, completely out of your life with 0 power over you.

      It allows you to not only trust that they suck but to trust yourself in knowing 100% that they suck!

      • CL,
        Please write this post. It would have been so helpful for me back about 8 months ago at least it can now help new Chumps and refresh those not so new chumps. It’s so important not to go FB stalking and so helpful to getting to MEH when you stop that behavior.

        I say this because with me the minute I blocked him permanently and stopped looking at the New Girlfriends FB page, I rapidly became free of him and entered the wonderful world of acceptance and cold hard reality and cut all emotional ties.

        Additionally it came with the added bonus of seeing him for what he really is and what he really looks like, a 100% loser. He now has no effect on me other than making me smile knowing he is out of my life forever.

        I now get to revel in being sooooooo much smarter and no longer a chump in action, just in past. It’s been a long hard road but now I can look back and say it was worth it, just getting me to who I am, feeling strong, confident and secure in protecting myself. That was worth everything as I know it will never happen to me again and even if it does, I am so emotionally healthy and happy now that I would immediately walk away the minute I saw something is wrong and I would recover much quicker and go 100% NC immediately without any curiosity as I already know the ending.

        So do post this and soon.

        You have been on a very strong roll of topics lately all perfectly timed one after the other.

    • Yep, timeheals, I wholeheartedly agree with your addition. I’m that unfortunate type too re being nosy and curious about things I can’t figure out. Hence, days after DD I’ve cyber stalked OW, short of pretending to be someone else and friending her on FB. I just really really wanted to know what “makes her tick”, isn’t it pathetic?

      • I have the opposite problem, I do everything to avoid looking at anything that reminds me of ex. Unfriended him and disengaged from anything online that connected me to him or OW right after D-day. Also told my friends and family if they saw or knew anything I didn’t want to hear about it. However, if I happen to see something on a friend’s page that he’s posted it still causes me an anxiety attack. It sometimes worries me how I’d react if I physically ran into him in the street, although he’s moved away and I don’t think that’s a possibility. Still, at some point we’re going to have grandchildren and I’m going to have deal with seeing him at their activities.

        I’d really like to be rid of the anxiety about being around him. It would be so much better if I just didn’t care. It’s been 2 years since D-day so I hope eventually I’ll get there, I just wonder how many years it will take. Is this common after trauma? Is this a symptom of PTSD? I still dream about him almost every night too. Sigh.

        • Yep, yep, according to my therapist this is all PTSD related. Please see treatment, it helps. Even picking up a book on the topic can open your eyes to how triggers work. Takes time to get over this, different time frame for everyone.

        • Lyn I the same. I have been formally diagnosed with PTSD and my version of NC is advoidance due to the PTSD. I do NC perfectly, but its more a out avoiding anxiety than it is about moving on.

          • If you truly have PTSD, then one problem may be compulsively revisiting and reliving the trauma.

            When I was doing that, it was as if I were trying to figure my ex out (as if there were something deep to figure out) and somehow make sense of things.

            Around that time, I read “The Time Cure” and “The Power of Habit”, and the result was I decided to establish one new habit: I would walk my dogs every single day. I walk them three-to-four miles a day now (well, except when it was 4 degrees outside). That small change lead to other changes after a while. Soon I built an HTPC that I always wanted to build, and then I wired my rec room for 7.2 surround sound, and I joined a hiking group.

            It wasn’t anything huge. It was a small, consistent change that lead to more changes, and after a while I wasn’t focused on trying to make sense of something that quite frankly doesn’t really make much sense.

            That being said, I have grown comfortable in this niche and I am probably using work to avoid going further out of my comfort zone, so when the weather warms up, I’m going to have to expand my horizons a bit, but I am not spending much time looking back now.

        • Yes, PTSD, same happens to me.

          You need to block him on facebook, not just unfriend. If he is blocked, you will not be able to see anything he posts on friends or childrens posts, you won’t even be able to see if he “liked” something. His comments/replies will simply not be visible on your feed. I did this with my ex so I wouldn’t see anything he commented to our son.

          • Just did this too! Although I am not NC because we are still under the same roof, I want to make certain none of his contacts, FWB’s, can access anything in my account. Also blocked his toxic NPD dad and his new piece PLUS the NPD aunt.

        • @ TH and Lyn,

          I avoid Facebook all together. I don’t need to know anything about these sick individuals. They can live in their fantasy world, I choose to live in my reality world…because “TRUST..THAT THEY SUCK”… I gained a LIFE, she gained a cheater.

          A cheater doesn’t change they just change partners.

          • I recognized the PTSD symptoms when I first left – I couldn’t believe it. But as time passed, I realized I had been in a subconscious mental battle zone for YEARS and that my STBX was an emotional terrorist. I have suffered from various levels of anxiety since dday, from mild stomach churning to a full blown attack of agoraphobia many months back. Anxiety is another manifestation of fear, which probably derived from the consciously unexpressed, unacknowledged fear many of us lived with on a daily basis – that walking on eggshells phenomenon. What mood is the asshole in, how can I make fuckface happy, is he upset with me . . . what the fuck. Not only do these people suck, but they suck balls.

            • I can identify with the walking on eggshells. It is only recently that I realised how much I lived in a sort of fear. Fear of how drunk he would be, fear of how bad a mood he would be in, fear of how much of an arsehole he would be. Funny how abnormal your normality can be when you’ve lost sight of your own life. I remember one Saturday morning not long after Dday & feeling really happy & didn’t understand why. Later I realised that it was due to absence of that fear. He always came home really drunk on Saturdays & for the first time in a long time I was looking forward to my Saturday evening rather than dreading it.

              • Alice I’m right there with you. Can so relate. I was in deep depression for 8 months before DDay. The drinking had gotten so bad that I dreaded anything to do with him, where as in years before I fought it. I shut down. So down that I considered suicide. But ya know I was actually starting to get better and thought things were fine but then bang DDay. Chumpy or what?? Leaves me for a coworker ten years younger and a month after her husband passes from Cancer Oct 24, 2011 he leaves and moves in. I think I actually was relieved the first few weeks. Devastated and a wreck that my marriage was over but there was a calm in my weekend nights not worrying how much was he going to have or when he would come up to bed and start in on me. I have come to the realization that after 28 months I was free of what I feared. We will make it and we will be happier and hopefully loved like we deserve. We are done being co-dependant.

            • ‘But as time passed, I realized I had been in a subconscious mental battle zone for YEARS and that my STBX was an emotional terrorist.’
              SO TRUE CP! I’ve moved, new state, new job, new everything, but I dragged my PTSD with me. I think I’m doing all right, but a lot of the time I feel numb. I hope my feelings come back someday, I miss them! I tell my sister that I spent almost 100 % of my energy in the past on making sure cheater Romeo was OK. So now, it’s like there’s this huge vacuum that I have to fill. Very weird feeling, that I have such a hard time caring for me for a change. Someone on here suggested telling yourself ‘I love you’, and I do that, and give myself pep talks all the time. I just really want my self worth, and stability back. I also go out of my way to smile at people, and be extra nice and helpful to strangers, and I get some esteem from that.
              I did have one huge blow-up with a supervisor at work about a week ago, it was uncalled for and I wish it didn’t happen (I had a perfect record for four years at this job). I told him I had been under a gigantic strain for a few years, sorry, and please accept my apology. Pretty embarrassing, but I just need to move forward, and watch those triggers better. (I know the reason it happened is that this sup acted just like X that day I freaked out, and all this bottled up agony came pouring out.ugh).

              • PattyToo,

                I had a similar situation when I moved out – the huge vacuum needing to be filled. Like you, I spent almost all of my time and energy focused on the wants and needs of a Whiny-Assed Titty Baby Emotional Bottomless Pit. It takes awhile to relearn how to focus your energy on your own wants and needs because, really, you’ve forgotten that you have/are supposed to have any.

                And that going “out of my way” to smile at people, etc., that you say you do? I do that as well. What I’ve learned though is that I’m not really going out of my way – that’s actually who I am when I am not living under the stress of being emotionally abused, and more than likely that behavior is just a manifestation of your true self. Since you are no longer directing that energy to “Mr. Cheater Romeo,” you are sharing what is a natural part of you with others who are probably much more deserving and appreciative than MCR.

                Your feelings will come back gradually. Right now you are probably still healing and sorting through what are your genuine feelings and what feelings you developed (and will probably shed/discard) as a coping mechanism while living with MCR. That blow up with your supervisor? Shit happens. Forgive yourself and move on. Because I know I am still sorting through all kinds of emotions, before I respond to anything I perceive as negative or a new boundary violation, I always stop, take a breath and evaluate why I’m feeling the way I’m feeling and consider what is an appropriate response. Therapy has helped me with that.

                Given some time, you are going to be living your best life PattyToo. You got this.

              • Thx for the ideas and encouragement!
                That’s really interesting about having developed feelings as a coping mechanism from abuse. That helps alot to see it that way. I AM a naturally kind and giving person, too bad Narcs use that against us! I think the thing that saved me for 32 years was that I mainly raised my sons, not much help from Titty Baby Man, so they are all kind, thoughtful, just plain good guys, that love their Mom.
                The part of the abuse that cut the deepest was the ambient abuse- when I heard what that was, I was jumping up and down, hitting my forehead! That’s it! That’s what he did to me! Some people apparently live with you and grow to despise you. Like when Lyn said her husband looked at her like she was something disgusting, and even wrote about her as he watched her, well, the depths of a partner’s hate are impossible for me to understand.
                Sorry to sink back into the slime, I’m just so glad I finally get what happened to a idealistic young Hippie girl who took a leap of faith and married a sparkley guy. Onward to my better, peaceful life!

          • Nice Susan!
            That’s a bumper sticker and a t-shirt.


            Nothing truer than that one, New Mantra.

            • I like that too! I really wanted a LIKE button for that!

              Another cup, t-shirt, magnet, etc. for CL to carry.

        • You can actually change your settings so that you don’t see anything he posts anywhere, even on mutual friend’s pages.

    • This is an important one. Morbid curiosity. How are they doing? Does their life suck, as perhaps it should? Or is their life great, which you find hypcritical/grating/annoying but which, at the same time, gives you a satisfying sense of disgust that, yes, they truly suck. Either one is bad. Even checking is bad. Best not to be like the character in the horror movie who just HAS to go down and investigate the noise in the cellar (even though there was just a news flash on TV that there’s a serial killer loose in the area). Best not to peep down in that cellar. Best to get to — and to embrace — MEH!!!

    • I don’t go to FB at all. In the beginning, friends would tell me and then I realized I was just hurting myself with this morbid curiosity. The more I learned my worth, the more I mattered and the ex no longer mattered. The pendulum of worth shifted. All of our marriage, I made him first. Now that I’m divorced, I really don’t care if he is six feet under. The weirdest part is that I find out things about him by sheer accident. Whenever a channel of information finds its way to me, I make sure it’s shut down even though I don’t care. Self-protection is part of my extreme self-care practice. I don’t want to be caught off guard in a moment of weakness, so I enforce my boundaries ALL the time. No exceptions. He leaves messages to our son and I never ask what he says because it’s all irrelevant.

      • I like the “horror movie” analogy because it sort of highlights that part of “victim status” can be engaging in behaviors that a neutral third-party (or horror movie audience) could easily tell you are apt lead to bad things happening 🙂

      • I do the same, mostly to manage anxiety. My grown sons don’t talk of their dad at all, and I’ve asked other friends and family not to tell me anything. I wish it didn’t have to be so extreme but like you I shifted from putting him first in my life to putting myself and my sanity first. I now protect myself from any unnecessary angst and feel a lot better, although I still have the dreams, etc.

        • Lyn, when I have dreams I simply look at them as part of releasing the past. Fortunately for me, my dreams have mostly been NOT wanting to be with ex. I am working on myself spiritually, too, so right before I go to bed, I ask for peace and calm during my sleeping hours. I also pray for my ex because I sincerely believe that whatever I put out there, good or bad, comes back to me. It works for me.

  • Perfect timing, this post. I could use some ChumpNation advice too, in respect to this issue.

    “Remember, if you want to end things with a narcissist, nothing says fuck off louder than silence. Disordered people WANT engagement. It’s kibbles. They want a fight, or they want to hoover you and see if their charm still works on you. Don’t give them the chance.” – Tracy says it perfectly. And I was somewhat forced into no contact when my ex walked out 5 years ago and left for a foreign country. His last communication with us at that point demanded a divorce immediately to marry his girlfriend (who he’d had the entire 10 years of our marriage); and when I told him that divorce didn’t happen immediately (especially w/kids ages 2 and 5 and no job or $), he told me icily that he’d talked to an attorney, and that divorce was decided in the jurisdiction where the children are – if I didn’t proceed w/a divorce immediately, he would take the kids overseas and I’d never see them again. Yep, that did it. Got my first protection order, a “missing person” divorce, and life went on.

    Fast forward 4+ years – he shows up back in the states – but after a few phone calls to me where I set my boundaries well (no contact; pay C/S; and no lying) he’s left us alone for a year. Now the protection order is set to renew, and I have to see him in court. I think he’s enjoying this – he claims “he has a great relationship with exwife and kids” (he hasn’t seen us in over 5 years); and that a CPO is “bad for his career”. Our 2nd hearing was set for Tuesday, and our bad weather closed the courts. He drove here anyhow, and then CALLED ME and TEXTED ME to find out if the courts were closed (I didn’t answer or respond). I think he’s missing the point of a no-contact order…lol I admit, in the first two years, I was still very chumpy, and feeding his need for kibbles. I told him that I knew he “did his best” and other such BS. But for the past 2+ years, I’ve avoided or ignored him; I think he sees the CPO hearings as a way to fu** with my head (it’s working). Oh, and he’s pointed out that even though our divorce decree states that his parental rights are “suspended and terminated” – “as soon as you’re dead, those kids are mine…” (the divorce decree protections end w/my death, which is one of the many reasons for the protection order…and he knows that. Creepy.)

    So chumps, what would you do with this mess?

    • You enforce your boundaries.

      He violated a NO? Did you report it? Did you add that bit about “as soon as you’re dead…” to the report?

    • Talk to your lawyer. He/she should reassure you on this one, I think. You have a legal court ORDER that terminates his parental rights. AND he hasn’t seen his children in five years. He made a very scary threat. I cannot see on what basis they would renew his rights. How old are your kids? They might get asked by a judge. I’d get them in therapy. If they don’t want to see him, that generally rules the day.

      But the threat on your life is totally creeptacular. I’d think a judge would see it that way too.

      These disordered assholes, the kids are just pawns they use to get back at you with.

      I’d argue you need the PO now even more than ever, seeing as he’s moved back to the States!

      I think what you did before worked very well for you — you took charge and got divorced anyway. He didn’t show. Keep taking charge. Stand up to him in court, stay no contact — you are abiding by your own order that way — NC goes both ways. And I’d give the judge proof of those calls and texts — he BROKE the order of NC!

      Wishing this to be over for you ASAP! Please let us know how it goes. And I hope you have a tough lawyer who sees through this crap.

      • Yep, violating the No Contact Order should be easy to prove. Proving that he made a ‘Terroristic Threat” or “Criminal Threat” may be more difficult (and something a DA may not try to do), but I would think that comment was enough grounds to issue a PO for many judges.

    • The court hearings relate to the extension of the protection order – the “grey area” is that he HASN’T been physicaly violent for the past five years – largely because he was on another continent. The attorney (seems to be a bulldog..) believes that we have a good chance of extension with the 5 different calls (reported to police – when they called him, he claimed it “wasn’t him”…lol. Caller ID was lying 🙂 ) and the threats to kidnap kids and hurt me. Of course it’s his word against mine, but both kids are dual citizens, so that makes it more dangerous for them.

      They have very little memory of him (the youngest was 2 when he left; the older despises him – he’s lied to her so many times, she’s given up). He really doesn’t seem to care about them at all, unless it’s to request pictures (no) or when he’s called drunk (3x) to request that I or the kids tell his parents/friends/co-workers that he’s a “great dad” (“sorry – it’s a bad connection..I’m losing you…). I was advised NOT to change phone numbers so he couldn’t claim that I kept him from talking to kids – but rather that he hasn’t even tried. I would say less than 10 calls in 5 years would prove that.

      No contact was lovely. I’m hoping for five more years of it 🙂

      • Report the violation asap if you have not already. What he texted to you was a threat.

        A PO only works on people who are afraid of going to jail and only if you report every single violation. It doesn’t matter if it’s a violent violation or not, each time you don’t report you’ve given them an inch which they will use to go a mile.

        BTW, I just renewed my PO this spring and my ex contested it, but thankfully did not bring a lawyer of his own. Meanwhile I spent nearly $2K on mine to make damn sure I wouldn’t lose the order. It was money well spent. I was a complete nutcase leading up to the court date, I was so afraid they wouldn’t renew it so I think I have an idea how you feel.

        • Dat – you are right, both law enforcement and the attorney have told me that CPO’s only work on people who respect the law. Considering he continues to violate it by calling/texting, and considering he owes almost $100,000 in child support, I don’t think he fits the “cares about following the rules” type.

          I have also paid a couple thousand for an attorney – although he claims he has the “best lawyers in the state” working for free for him, he’s showed up 2x w/no lawyer and just tries to charm the judge. I am dreading the confrontation of the next hearing – since I’m sure now that he’ll show, I will have to tell my story, which is still hard for me. I still hate admitting that I allowed myself to be so fooled, and even worse, that I was physically abused. I know it shouldn’t be my shame, but that’s still a battle I fight with myself. Thanks so much for your reply and advice. RDM

          • He owes 100K in support and he wants more rights with his kids? LOL! I can see the judge laughing now.

            Judges have seen it ALL. Don’t be scared. There are a lot of abused partners out there and you’re not a chump anymore. Don’t be ashamed. He’s despicable.

            Oh, and anyone who represents himself in court (who isn’t a lawyer) says “wing nut” to judges. My son’s father has done this repeatedly. It never ends well for him.

            My understanding of PO orders (I had a few temporary ones) is that if they’re violated you can go to jail. I’d say impose those consequences and let the legal system deal with him. Do NOT reward his escalation with contact. That’s what he wants — to break you. Crack open that opening so he can manipulate you. NC is very powerful — so stick with it!

            • Thank you so much ChumpLady for this site – a light bulb has truly come on for me since finding you, and this community has been so valuable as I have been forced to re-confront the “dark side”.

              It’s funny – he didn’t pay CS for over 4 years (balanceof $80k) and then they caught him when he re-entered the US. His first step was to apply for a reduction, and it was granted (I chose not to engage); in the 19 months since then, he has made 1 full payment, and 3 partial payments – he drives over 100 miles round trip to try to flirt with the case worker when he does pay. When she refused to see him last time, he threw a tantrum in the lobby, and told the receptionist that he’d get her fired. Classic.

              At this point, we’re just documenting everything and waiting. The temporary order protects the kids for now if something happens. It’s been very sobering to have 2 attorneys and a family therapist recommend to me to move and/or make plans to go “off the grid”. He’s a creepy guy. At this point, I’ve chosen to “hide in plain sight” – we have a strong support system, and I don’t want to completely screw up the kids since we’ve come so far. The trick is getting some…any..consequence to stick to him. He’s had a life of charming and using family influence to avoid any repercussions. Not sure what he’ll do when and if they finally stick. That’s the big, scary question.

              • You can subpoena that receptionist if your lawyer thinks it would help. My ex could charm the cops very, very well. When I got my PO I subpoena’d his brother because he was the only person who ever had my ex rage at them (other than me). It helped a lot, well that and the wiccan scythe 😉 among many others. My initial PO hearing lasted the entire day. My renewal hearing lasted 20 minutes, the judge totally dismissed my ex’s arguments that he wasn’t dangerous and that I was trying to screw up his life.

        • Can you create a Will that names guardians for the children? Can that be brought to the CPO court date for review by the judge?

          • US does not recognize the concept of dual citizenship so you can only renounce the “other” one and only if you’re no longer a minor.

            • Hmmmm. DD has two passports and birth certificates, but is still a minor.

              Chites, when I wrote my will I appointed guardians-one my best friend, one my sister. My bestie is my executor, and agreed to do so eyes open. According to DD, the look on Mr Fab’s face was a picture when she told him. Mr Fab, of course has not written a will, despite my putting it in the separation agreement, and she told him straight up she will not be happy to fight the Downgrade for her inheritance.

              In any case, Chump Nation it is academic! Myself and DD are now living 8000 miles away from them.


    • The protections for you may end with your death, but the state will still have a protective interest in the children! Get together with a child custody mediator and ask for suggestions — I’m thinking a long list of potential guardians as well as a large life insurance policy for the future support of the kids and a good trustee in place.

      These monsters fantasize that all that’s keeping them from having a wonderful relationship with their kids is you. And that after you’re gone your grief stricken kids will just naturally reach out to the comfort of their father figure even if he is a total stranger. Then they can all have a great big group hug and get started trauma bonding with each other. Shut that shit down ahead of time.

      I bless the day that the OW decided she just couldn’t put off having that baby any longer and was pregnant during the child custody negotiations. One of the ex’s sisters and her husband actually kidnapped their own kid (age 17) and sent him off to some backwoods wilderness reform school to work off the anger they themselves induced in him. When the ex’s sisters showed up in town (from out of state) to lend support for the divorce — you bet I freaked out about it.

      • Chumpalicious 🙂

        We just went down this road too, and your post encourages me that I did the right thing. New will; trust to protect all assets and make sure he would not benefit financially from my death AT ALL; detailed, written instructions to family and attorney in the event of my death to file for emergency guardianship of the kids…this was the scariest part of our last conversation – he really thinks that the kids would WANT to see him – THEY DON’T EVEN REMEMBER WHAT HE LOOKS LIKE! The youngest was in diapers when he left and is now 8; the oldest had just started kindergarten, and is now 11! They haven’t talked to him in over 3 years, and he truly thinks that when he offs me, he’ll just show up, and they’ll run to him with open arms. Pathetic and chilling.

        My in-laws sound like yours. My MIL used to call me from overseas, crying a couple times a year for the grandchildren she’s seen once (my daughter) and never (my son; ex actually denied he existing until he was almost 4; that’s another story). Ex FIL showed up in the states last summer “demanding” to see them – that was a nightmare. Unfortunately the ex’s new wife “hates kids” so I don’t expect he’ll have a diversion anytime soon.

        • RDM — you go girl! 😉 That’s getting the bases covered.

          That trauma bonding — they call that “healing”. Seriously sicko.

  • I think I fall into the Bad Habit category. My problem is I seemed to get lulled into conversations with him when we are discussing our child. We were together for nine and a half years, so that ease is still there. It’s only been a year and a month since D-day and six months since he moved out for the last time. I find now I’m recognizing more and more when he’s chatting me up to make himself feel better. Not always in the moment, but after the fact I can now recognize him trying to get me to talk to him so that he feels not so crappy about abaondoning his family. I figure the more I can recognize it, the more I can cut it off. It only infuriates me afterwards so I’m going to be working on this in 2014!

    • And you are talking to him to make yourself feel better, too. It’s a big hit of hopium, and then when you crash, you feel even worse. That’s why/how NC works so well. You have to keep reminding yourself that your contact with him is a gift he doesn’t deserve. It causes great pain in you. I hated watching my ex walk away to go be with her. It caused me such agony, that I knew I had to cut it off 100%. And we have kids together. I have NO reason whatsoever to speak to him–save two instances: 1) to request written (e-mail) permission to take our minor child out of the country and 2) to document in writing (e-mail) that a child support check was late. In each case, I kept contact to BARE minimum, even when he tried to engage me with a rant. I treated it the way T. Berry Brazelton had taught me to treat a toddler tantrum–I simply replied something to the effect, “Let me know when you’ve figured it out.”

      NC is the only way to go–and the longer you go NC, the stronger you look and actually ARE. You give the cheater no satisfaction, no reassurance–(s)he doesn’t deserve anything from you, and you must remember that you get nothing from them. They simply aren’t capable. (I’m only talking about non-dangerous cheaters.)

      BTW, I am not the Stephanie from yesterday’s post. Hmmm…should I change my name?

  • I wish I had done this the very first second I even had a hunch he was cheating.

    Now, I’m in a miserable marriage with a man in “recovery”. I stayed because I was afraid and I couldn’t believe he was this “monster”. I also have 2 kids that adore their father.

    Now, fast forward 2 years and I am financially protected, have happy children, a humble and lovely husband….. Sounds good huh? NOPE, I KNOW the monster is just lurking. The moster didn’t die ( Hollywood got that right at least). I don’t actually care if he fucks hookers any more. That’s the problem folks… I don’t care.

    Now, if I throw his ass to the curb, my kids get to eat the shit sandwich. So, being a major chump, I sit around and wait for the “hooker fucking monster” to re appear …

    My life is a real blast ( note sarcasm). Please listen to Chump Lady on this one.

    • you can plan. you can hide money. if you do the grocery shopping, you can bleed the account little by little. you can escape just like I did. it takes a lot of lying, a lot of manipulating, a lot of time and a lot of balls 😉 or ovaries as my bff says, but you can do it. and my kids are doing ok. no longer in a 3400 sq ft house w inground pool, private schools are gone, and shopping is done with a calculator, but my kids are happier and doing ok.

  • It IS hard to go no contact at first, but after walking on eggshells for months before XH left, I found the lack of drama to be a much-welcomed relief. For those of you who can’t imagine going no contact – especially if you’ve been together for decades – just try it. You’ll be amazed by what it does for your self esteem.

    • Yes, the no contact is very serene and easy to do.
      One minor issue I seem to have is that, somewhere in the faint recesses of my puny mind, I still wonder if I will ever get an apology and full disclosure. I know, intellectually, that this is never going to happen(it’s been 20 years now since I discovered my First wife’s cheating and 8 since my second’s).
      For some reason, sometimes, I expect that they wil act like normal people with consciences. Ain’t gonna happne, though.
      I am very happy and life is peaceful with the no contact.

      • Arnold I have the same “apology on my deathbed” fantasy but know it will never happen. At least I’m not going to hold my breath for it.

        • I would only bother to hear that apology if my ex was on HIS deathbed AND at least 3 doctors verified that he was REALLY going to die. Then maybe I’d show up to hear it, MAYBE.

      • Oh, Arnold, you big sweetie!

        We all have that fantasy, but being here makes me realize it’s never going to happen, and even if it did, it would not bring the satisfaction I’d hoped it would.

      • You know, it’s funny – SO many people told me so many times that “He’ll be back, ” or “He’ll regret it,” that I went ahead and prepared my comeback speech years ago. I’ve never used it because he’s never apologized, but in my head, he has. That alone allowed me to move forward and let go. It’s funny what you can trick yourself into.

        And if he ever DOES apologize? Boy, have I got some good comeback lines… 😉

  • Excellent advice. Thank you CL.

    I am 98% no contact. I do emails or texts regarding our child. Sometimes there are a few issue I need to address and I send these via email. However, there are occasions (VERY rare) when it’s just easier to speak directly. I’ve done this once in the last 4 months and it was only about our child. I actually write down what I need to say so I don’t get “sucked in.” I make sure I cover the points and then end it politely.

    After a telephone conversation I follow up with an email that puts the details in writing and ask him to confirm the details so I have it in writing. Then I go NC and retreat.

    I have to say that after our recent telephone interaction it was so transparent that he was the still angry man he’s been for the last several years. I didn’t get pulled into it. It was just an observation. The process and details of the conversation also confirmed that he’s a huge narcissist. And that he’s still living an angry, sick life. For me, it was actually liberating. Trust that they suck is so right on.

    Now back to NC and getting it all in writing. I’m still working on 100% NC. I think as the years go by and my child is older and the divorce final, I can finally do this. 98% is pretty darn good!

  • This again came at perfect timing but I have another question for Chumpnation out there…..what do you do when you have been forced into co-parenting meetings with a parent coordinator now going on 3 years and that is his ego kibble. If feels like a rock and a hard place…if I say co-parenting is happening and we have matured through the process and it is no longer productive then he always screams back seee she won’t co-parent with me…..

    since when does co-parenting require a face-to-face meeting once or twice a month.

    Any advice appreciated..


    • I have a friend that is in co parenting hell ( court ordered). She cannot win. So, my advice is to smile and grin at the counselor until your ex or she gets bored.

      There is no winning with these guys and COPA’s. If she responds then she is an angry bitch that is trying to alienate the kids father. If she doesn’t respond ( or just minimally answers an email) then she is an angry bitch trying to alienate the kid from his father. She cannot win.

    • If you have a court order, eat the shit sandwich. Always be the reasonable one. Always make an attempt at consensus on co-parenting. You need to be the grown up. Just document when they don’t live up to their obligations.

      Keep it solely to logistics. Visitation. Who pays for the orthodontist when. Remove ALL the emotion out of it. I’m sure he tries to bait you. Don’t take it.

      I know… it takes superhuman strength to live like this. BTDT. ((hugs))

      • I have to agree that in therapy my STBX looks like magic. It’s a bit of a waste of time.

        As for co-parenting. That’s a nice term but I’m not sure it’s possible with a cheater. I’d say we do parallel parenting. If we have issues around school or logistics, I’ll text him. Otherwise, it’s just a damn draining mess. I believe my child will eventually “get it”, but for now, I just let my cheater “parent.” The less I involve myself with his parenting the better off my relationship is with my child and I’m happier.

        I know therapists like to tell you to be “civil” for the children and I’m all for that. Civility can mean that you avoid arguments and being treated like a doormat. I don’t model for my child that it’s ok to put up and cave in to a bully.

        It’s a tough lesson to learn and I’m still learning it, but no contact is the best way. Logistics with the kids, period.

  • This comes at the most crucial time for me. I am 7 months post BD. As of Sunday, I am going NC for the second time. Like what most of you say, it’s not as hard as one would think. I think my “reasoning” was to protect myself and also let him see life without me. I was wishing that this was just a “phase” of midlife. A crisis. I was focused on myself and our two small children (2yr. and 6yr). I was seeing my friends and being engaged through work. I have an incredible, supportive group of friends and family that are continuously baffled by my husbands actions and comments. I was NC for a solid 2.5 months…then came Christmas. I opened my heart and our home for him to spend time with our children. He was in tears the whole time. He has been living in own apartment since August. The two months before that, we was living with his mistress (an affair that was 4 weeks fresh). I felt bad for him. He looked awful and was waffling so I got sucked into being a “hopaholic” once again. During the holiday break, we went out together as a family for dinner, we built fires, played with the children. I don’t know what his incentive was but I did it all because I love him. He is my family.
    Tuesday was our Wedding Anniversary. He was out with her the night prior (I found this from looking at our bank account). He never acknowledged me/our lives. At three o’clock that morning, I texted him that he is never to be near me again…NC. The response, “if that’s what you want…”
    I was very speedy in getting things rolling with my attorney once he ran off in June. I changed the locks, shuffled money, filed a separation agreement.
    It’s back to NC for me and to move forward. I read how there are many spouses that will go on years like this. Waiting for a magical fog to lift. This time NC feels a lot more frightening than empowering. Once step in front of the other.

    • Sally I’m so sorry to hear you got ‘played’ again by the sod. You really did, at least, deserve kudos for being so kind to him at Christmas – what a complete bar steward! That’s one of the many problems with these, I hesitate to say ‘people’, they feel so ENTITLED to any kindness anyone shows them – it’s like water off a duck’s back to them – and it is so hurtful. Let him cry his tears of self-pity – he’s the ONLY person to exist in his mind – the rest of the world, and all the people in it, are merely there to make sure he’s a happy bunny. Everything, everyone – a means to an end and the end is him.

      I kept breaking NC – (it was hard to Trust that He Sucked – took a sea-change in my overall understanding of life and my attitude to other people – i.e. I had to really GET IT that truly shitty people do exist!) but, honestly, after last episode of mindfuckery from him, I’ve been completely NC for 7 weeks now, and I have found it to be liberating – he isn’t the first thing I think of when I wake up anymore and I’ve started to recover my sense of humour!)
      He’s a shit and you deserve to be appreciated for your lovely heart – he only appreciates himself. Stay strong – you’re lovely and deserve so much more! NC is the way to go!

      Jayne xx

  • I am still in the Morbid Curiosity category, unfortunately, but only as a form of soap opera entertainment. My emotions are not mixed up in it. No pain or outrage, but a sick fascination remains. It is amazing to me how much information can be found reading between the lines of short facebook posts. Did he really get back in touch with his high school girlfriend after OW broke up with him? Yes, he did! Will she leave her husband for XH? Tune in next month… YES, SHE DID! Then plot twist! He immediately breaks up with her once she became free. Oh no he di’nt! YES, HE DID! And now her X seems to be trying to win her back, but she is threatening to move 1000 miles away. Is it a bluff? Will she do it? Tune in again…

    I know it’s super lame of me, but I can’t look away from the train wreck that I left behind. Not just yet.

    • I am the same. I often check OW’s Twitter feed. I hope to get to the point where I don’t feel the need to look but I can’t look away just yet. Bizarrely enough it has helped me to ‘trust that he sucks’. Within six months her tweets had gone from bragging about her happy life with her wonderful man to ‘Can’t sleep. Am bored’ & how she was sat in the house on her own watching tv. He hasn’t changed one bit & now she’s the one sat waiting for him while he’s off pleasing himself. Plus the selfies she uses as profile pics are various degrees of hilarious.

      • Yes, what I have seen online totally underlines how much the X sucks! And I do find some of it pretty hilarious. But it is also beneath my dignity, if I am to be honest with myself. I think (I hope) that this is the final stage of my interest in X. The last hurdle to clear. The facebook phase.

    • This made me laugh! It’s so true. I think, “No, it can’t be.” And then, “Yes, it is!” It’s like a soap opera.

      Still, best to leave that train wreck behind.

      • Totally agree that I shouldn’t be fb stalking. Not entirely sure why I do. I think it comes from the same place that makes me want to read People magazine and the tabloids at the grocery store.

  • First time poster here. My cheating STXH cheated on me from day 1 of our relationship. My struggle with no contact comes from my hopium… Not hope that we’ll be together but that my cheating STXH can be persuaded to agree to favorable divorce settlement. My dday was August 2012 (two weeks after the birth of our first son) but I tried to reconcile (alas I never saw a unicorn) until I kicked him out in December 2013. I’m due to have our second son next month and even though he’s shown me time and time again his lack of character, I still feel like we have to talk to him given the situation. I have already decided not to let him into the birth room but it’s hard to resist talking to him about my pregnancy.

    • If he’s disordered, he can’t be persuaded to a favorable divorce settlement. He’s the father of two and he’s cheating, so responsible, reasonable behavior doesn’t seem like his thing. So don’t expect it of him. The person to leverage a favorable divorce settlement is an ATTORNEY. Do not take this on, you’ve got a very full plate. Kick hopium and decide once and for all to divorce this creep. Leave communicating about it to the professionals and get child support.

      I’m sorry. It’s an awful time in life to go through this, as you’re vulnerable enough. I think there is a special place in hell for men who cheat on pregnant women. (And for women who fool men about the paternity of their children.)

    • I KNEW it was hopeless, no cheating at that point, when I was pregnant with baby #3 (number 2 was a miscarriage), but stayed because I felt powerless and hopeless. I now have a cheater and 3 kids. All I did was put myself in a worse situation and gain another child (so wouldn’t give him up) while living with a controlling narc who cheated. He needs to know medical info only. tell the doc to write down important info he should know about the baby and text/email it to him. He doesn’t care about your cravings at 1 am, he doesn’t care your feet hurt, he doesn’t care if you need a back rub. Imagine finding out you have AIDS and that your baby has it bcz he cheated and then you got pregnant. How much does he love you now?

  • I wish I came across this website 13 years ago or even last year!
    I was the classical CHUMP… I was overdosed on hopium. Played the pick me dance perfectly, . He cheated on me consistently for 13 years, even had a kid from an extramarital affair and this classical chump kept on forgiving. Kept on believing ” he was a better person than his actions & that he was going to change!”

    It reached an end when my sanity was at risk and I read Love must be tough by James Dobson.. I finally realized he was never going to change, that he was well aware I was a chump & had played me perfectly. I filed for divorce on the 31st of December last year and he was shocked, indignant & terribly angry that a Chump like me could actually want to leave him!

    He was more shocked by my doing the 180 & No contact & my meh… To be honest I was shocked too but I guess every chump has a breaking point & mine came. I wish I knew what Chumplady knew after he began cheating on me.. I would have saved myself 13 years of heartache.. But I can begin to live again!

    Will share my unbelievable story soon & I know I will be needing some advice from the great people here on how to navigate the divorce process.

    • Welcome 13yeara chump. You sound like you’re doing much better and have taken some important steps. It helps to share your story with other chumps.

      • Thank you Lyn! I spent most of 2013 reading “reconciliation” websites & books! :)…. I bought into all his projection and blame shifting & believed if I could only do more or be a better wife, he could love me or be faithful!
        I cannot believe the amount of joy that descended into my hear the moment I decided enough was enough… My lightbulb moment was when I realized I was becoming too depressed to be a good mom to my wonderful 9 year old son & that I would live in misery & not have a life if I stayed with him.

    • Would love to know if there ever was or will be a post about “REASONS” cheaters cheat. There are so many.

      • Cheaters cheat because they are selfish, self-absorbed, character-disordered, entitlement-centered, shit covered beasts from hell. It really isn’t any more complicated than that, in spite of what they try to get us to believe.

      • 1. They cheat because they want to.
        2. They cheat because they feel special and entitled to having whatever they want, whenever they want it.
        3. They cheat because disorder leaves them empty and dead inside, so they must constantly find outside excitement/stimulation to feel alive.

        There really are no other reasons beyond those. All the other excuses boil down to those three things.

        • Yeah, I know, but (sorry there’s a but) I’ve been told I’ve been a shitty girlfriend, ignoring his needs (yeah, mostly sexual), apparently my three year long battle with anxiety and depression (yeah, he totally contributed to it if not caused it), was the main culprit behind his affair. I’m still struggling with this because I know I’ve been a shitty partner (although a great mom and he acknowledges it.)
          One other thing, and I would love to get anyone’s feedback on this is, that before he started his affairs and we had regular arguments, I’ve made a comment to my cheater that “I don’t really care if he finds someone else”
          Well, shortly after ive made that statement he did and now loves to throw my comment in my face with saying “see, you wanted me to so I did.”
          I feel like there’s no good defense to this. I did say it out of anger but does it matter now? Btw, whom he found was a married woman.

          • No it doesn’t matter and that is just blame shifting and deflection, MEANT to put you on the defensive, tell him to fuck off. And being told by him that you are a shitty girlfriend is just more blame shifting, it’s all your fault bunch of crap.

            Of course when he says “see, you wanted me to so I did.” you could respond with “cool, I want you to get the fuck out of my life now, think you can manage that one too?”

            • I see your point. There’s nothing left to say. I guess being a new chump, it still hurts deeply that instead of suggesting counseling or a separation, he decided to take up with a married whore. It’s as I had the power to stop it… 🙁

          • No. Your depression, your comments, your behaviour…your WTFever…were NOT the causes of his affair. He chose to cheat. He had other options, from talking to you honestly, to seeing a counselor or pastor with you or alone, to ending the relationship before fucking someone else. You are NEVER responsible for someone else’s behaviour, only your own. Don’t buy into the blame shifting, gaslighting BS.

          • Two things:

            When you say “great mom and he acknowledges it”, it’s like you’re not gonna believe anything good about yourself unless he confirms it. What makes him the authority? You know certain things about yourself. Know them. Don’t look to him for approval. He has a motive for keeping you down on yourself, and believe it or not, the occasional compliment is part of the manipulation.

            Also, in my case, ex wanted daily anal sex, which I could neither enjoy nor physically accommodate. In a discussion about it I told him, “I challenge you to find a girl who likes anal and will let you do that to her every day!” Of course he already had her but supposedly hadn’t sealed the deal until I challenged him. So now he tells me that I brought all the cheating on myself. He has these occasional bouts of anger at me for “making him” ruin his own life. I say wtf-ever. He was a cheater before he met me. Every time I think about that challenge I smile to myself. I’m so happy I said those words in anger and sped the whole process up. It saved my life.

            Bottom line: an unhappy partner has the right to leave. They are not handcuffed to your side. Cheaters choose to keep the person they’re unhappy with while building a secret relationship with a third party (or sometimes more). It says something about THEIR character that they do this, and nothing about yours at all. You see you’re not party to that decision being made. Whether you were a shitty gf or not (his words, I’m sure) is completely irrelevant.

            • Thanks for your input. I agree that my own self esteem does not allow me to see how I cling onto those rate compliments. I know I’m a good mom but he has told his AP that I’m not (due to my depressive personality), so I’m still struggling with that part of the betrayal.
              The part about me making a comment “go then find someone else” when we were arguing is a tough one to swallow bc I DID say it, he says now that I essentially ended the relationship then and he just didn’t get around to telling me he’s already found someone but wasn’t necessarily “hiding it.” So much mind fuckery, even my therapist can’t decode it.

              What about a clever response to his “you told me to do it!”? Something that would shut him up for good?

              • Tell him to go stick a fork in his eye. I bet he won’t do it. You know why? Because he’s just smart enough to know how destructive that would be.

                As well, any real man with any integrity and any intent of staying faithfully married to a woman he loves would NOT take your words literally. He would not make unreasonable demands on you until he’d backed you into a corner. He would have been a PARTNER, not a petulant child who takes angry words literally.

                But these guys (and chicks) do not know love, they are not mature, they lack integrity and any character whatsoever. They are cowards who blame-shift. What he did was wrong. He knows it, you know it, you know he knows it, and the worst part for him is that he knows that you know. So fuck him. He’s not trustworthy, AND he is so fucking spineless as to blame you for HIS actions.

              • And by the way, you CAN NOT shut him up for good. All you can do is ignore him. If he had the sense to shut the fuck up, he wouldn’t be the loser he is today.

              • Miss Sunshine, even if you had not indicated it, I would have suspected you were Stephanie from a mile away. The great advice, so well spoken, and always somehow good to read.

  • What a timely post. Thank you!
    I am guilty of 1, 2 and 3. Yesterday The Fake Person called out of the blue and I answered to discuss some family and financial matters. (We are still not divorced.)

    The problem was that he came home for Christmas to take care of some business. There was an unexpected emergency in the family so not much was accomplished. After the initial crazy arguments I decided to be civil and kind of “enjoyed” his company. We had quite a nice time together. Then he left. And is distant and “busy”. Of course it’s my fault to let myself be caught in hopium, loneliness and stupid compassion.
    Yesterday The Fake Person complained about his work and our son and life, but of course got SO upbeat when I mention my state. ( He asked so I didn’t want to pretend I’m great).
    The well of good advice opened: “It’s easy, chump. If you just tried.” He is right. I must go NC or LC as much as possible.

  • I NEEDED this today. I got sucked into an hour long ‘conversation’ last night with my cheating husband about not understanding his needs. ‘I just didn’t get that he needed more sex. And without it he was blinded by desperation.’ No consideration that I was working full time, with 2 toddlers, while he, in all of his brilliance, was at home and working on starting a fabulous bio-tech company. He had to cheat. Nope, couldn’t talk to me about it. It is my fault now, 10 years later, for breaking up the family. Reconcile? Well, he can’t stop cheating now if I am not going to have sex with him. These are his basic needs that I ‘do not have the emotional maturity’ to understand. ‘Other people get him. I am naive and don’t understand men.’ You, dear husband, don’t get that I am not staying with a liar and a cheat. Good riddance.

    • Oh God, please don’t stick your head in that blender again. What a POS. I’d say “I have the emotional maturity NOT to CHEAT, you fuckhead!”

      But really, just don’t speak to him. Please!

    • Oh God, exactly the same story I got. I turned him down too much 10 years ago when going through thyroid cancer, endometriosis, raising two kids and trying to work. I wasn’t in the mood enough for a person who was constantly gone on business trips and gave me so little emotional support. What kills me is I still feel such shame over not meeting his needs!

      • Lyn, the Fake Person complained that I didn’t love him. While he was having his affair, which I was unaware of it – it was the 4th year – I withdrew from him. He was nasty and neglectful and absent most of the time. One night he had back pain I didn’t react very lovingly. Just matter of fact and next day bought him serious pain killers etc
        So you see it’s my fault. Or we can share the fault, or whatever.

        • Don’t beat yourself up about it. How can you have a healthy, normal bond, with normal ups and downs, with someone who is so self-absorbed and disordered?? You can’t. And you can’t then blame yourself for the inevitable outcome. You tried, but you were hobbled by the fact that you thought you were dealing with a whole, up-front person with normal maturity, emotions, character. It’s a total mind-fuck. Bottom line: when it was hard, YOU didn’t cheat. YOU didn’t abuse him. None of us here were 100% perfect partners. I don’t know anyone who is–but not everyone gets cheated on, in spite of their imperfections. Cheating is on the cheater, 100%.

        • The Fake Person claimed you didn’t love him. Unfortunately, I’m realizing that, story after story here, cheaters wouldn’t know love. They simply have no idea what love is. They had it coming in from us chumps, and then they tossed it for a quick fuck or for a disordered OP peddling fool’s gold.

  • One technique I read about (can’t remember where, sorry) is to create a new email address just for the ex, and automatically set any emails from him to forward there. (One step further removed than filtering to a folder.) Then, you have three options: 1) Set a regular schedule to open that email (“co-parenting” guidelines I’ve seen suggest once every 2 weeks), 2) Open it only when you feel strong (you get to decide when), or 3) Never open it. Give the login to a friend, and have them write to you to summarize just anything that needs a response (“Bob wants to know XYZ”, not the four paragraphs of vituperative comments that preceded that.)

  • Dear CL, do you know how DIFFERENT your site is? Empowering Chumps (therapists can’t side, you know) is so needed.
    I fall into the band of Hopium (still). But with thanks to you, I saw his blameshifting, refusal to own stuff, stubbornness, and moral equivalence (your yelling in the car park is as bad as my little few mistakes make out of depression (don’t mention I am still seeing her) – as the disordered thinking it really is.
    I can’t believe I used to try and reason with that crazy. That I married that crazy. That I really loved that crazy.

  • Hi chump lady and fellow chumps!!!
    I’m finally in no contact with my ex cheating , narc husband!! Took a while as yes I felt sorry for him but wen I met my now amazing husband…he helped me , encouraged me ….before I met my now husband , he would walk merrily into my house, sit down , chat with the kids, eat my food etc…I was afraid to say anything cause I did not want to upset my kids…crazy hey? We’ll cut a long story short, my now husband got involved , and now ex picks kids up outside house…best thing ever!! I can see now that No Contact works wonders!! I’m at peace, they not our friends!! …he still owes me lots of child support but I’m waiting till I have the money to nail him with an attorney…kids do have a relationship with him, and see him …my eldest is 14 and knows exactly why we divorced but he is very sociable and most weekends with his dad he makes plans with friends, but still in contact…
    My issue is that my new , wonderful husband was a chump and still gets treated like a doormat by ex wife and his own daughters who are 13 and 15……..his ex wife is bisexual and was sleeping with women while he was married, she made him join in most of the time( asked why he allowed this and his answer was” I wanted to make her happy” wow!!! Then they met another couple and she took off with the guy and forced him to be with his wife…. He carried on like this for 2yrs… He put up with it cause” he was scared she would take him to the cleaners” with his business…. He finally left and she married this guy….cray cray!! Since we met she has interfered , and their kids play him like a fool…every time they never like something, they complain to her and she sends him rude emails…instead of ignoring, he responds justifying stuff… So he’s showing his daughters that he afraid of their mom! He’s a great dad but I can’t stand watching him being treated like doormat! He helped me but he’s not helping himself….I see this poor man scared of his ex and kids! He pays child support, does everything he should but he can’t seem to say I’m not going to accept this kind of behavior…. I’ve tried to help him but he don’t listen…. His kids even cancel him a lot on the day that he supposed to see him, only call or text when they want something… They don’t even ask how he is, I told him he’s having a one sided relationship, with no respect! They also tried to break us up… His eldest watches our every move, and complains to him abt me…I’ve now put a stop to that…told him to tells her if she’s got nothing nice to say abt his wife to keep quiet…she knows she has full control cause she can just tell her mom and sees her dad as a scared mouse…how come my husband could help me but he can’t seem to do the same for himself….
    Even when he drops them off after a weekend together, they just get out the car, no hug, just walk to their door….my 14 yr old son even thinks it’s strange and feels bad for his step dad! ….just this morning my husband said we should plan a vacation with all the kids….I told him yes with his 2 step sons but I’m not paying for his kids who treat him like a doormat….he just walked out the door , thinking I’m unfair?? Sorry but I feel respect has to be earned!!! Why should I accept that kind of behavior? Oh they even complain to my husbands parents abt him….it’s a struggle , cause he helped me but can’t see that I’m trying to make him wake up and stop being such a chump!!
    What do you all think???
    Sorry so long but so frustrating!!! I love my husband but don’t care for his daughters manipulation and lack of respect!!


    • I’m having a hard time figuring out why you got married considering you want to dictate his relationship with his daughters and think it’s your job to “help him help himself” (seems too codependency for my taste).

      You might not be getting responses because… if many folks are like me, they might be wondering if you didn’t learn some important things from the first marriage before you got married again?

      • welllll, I may get bitch slapped for this, so apologies if I overstep my boundaries…
        the relationship with his daughters is his business. If he chooses to leave it as is, it’s none of your business. They aren’t little, they have a mom, they don’t need another. If he wants to whine (not saying he is, just if he does) then HE needs to change the rules with them, not you.
        It isn’t your relationship to fix. If he doesn’t fix it, it’s all on him.

    • P: Here’s what I told my STBX once his whore delivered their luv child: “I don’t tell you how to raise her kid – you keep her out of your relationship with mine.” He didn’t like hearing that of course, and if he’d managed to listen to me and been able to stick up to a possessive, controlling bitch, things might have gone much better. As it was, they came to blows (shoving) over that fact that my son doesn’t respect things because he didn’t make his bed in the morning to look like the maid at the Hilton did it. My son has also heard the “you only come around when you want something” nonsense. Just who is supposed to be the adult, anyway?

      Irony of ironies, the only 2nd wife I ever saw who had some patience and compassion with a step child was my ex’s older sister, and I’ve been around the block a few times observing this stuff at professional association meetings. Gripes about how much the kids from the previous marriage cost are thick in the air. Well, did the kids ask for this situation?

      Since you rescued a chump you expect EVERYONE to be grateful. It never works that way.

    • I personally don’t think a man should be married if he is having conflict with his children. He needs to raise his kids and put them first.

      • I agree, Stephanie. So often after divorce, people rush into dating and then marry again before they have healed from the divorce. It’s damaging to the kids, and bad for the next marriage. My youngest is 17 and I’m not even thinking about a serious relationship right now. I have friends of both genders to hang out with and sometimes I get lonely. But I know I’m still working on my picker, and until it gets better serious dating is not happening.

        • We’re in the same boat, then. My youngest is 17. I would have to literally abandon him at home if I were to start dating right now, and I won’t do it. I will not let a man into my kids’ home right now, as it is their safe place where they can relax. They don’t need more disruption in their lives right now. NO WAY would I let anyone get in between my kids and me–there will be plenty of time for that later.

          If my kids had been much younger when all of this blew up, and if I shared custody, things might be different. But my ex walked away and became more like an uncle to his own sons, and I am it for them.

          Like you, I am lonely at times, but I am also very busy with work and being a mom and a friend, and I am fixing up my house and taking care of other responsibilities so that when I am free to date in about a year, I can be fully present and sane and truly happy knowing I did a good job.

          • I’m with you Sunny. Getting to know someone else is an investment of time that I don’t have. I managed to get my son through all of this without him becoming an angry, acting out teenager. He’s a pleasure to be around, but that might not be the case if I rocked his boat. He has plenty of friends from highschool that he can observe with less than stellar stepparents, and I know it would cause him lots of apprehension.

            • Good job, Mama! Same, here. I am reaping the rewards of maintaining a good relationship with my kids–that is, seeing them happy and confident.

    • Surviving chump, I agree with the other posters here. Your H’s relationship with his children is his to navigate. It sounds like he knows what you think and he continues to do what he thinks is appropriate. You can’t change that, no matter how many times you tell him your views. Only he can. It took me a long time to learn that I cannot, cannot change anyone. Heck, it’s tough enough to change myself. Intellectually I knew it’s impossible to change anyone, but it took a while for my heart to embrace it. As they say, the longest distance in the world is from the head to the heart. Maybe letting go is best. Giving him support whether you agree with his behavior or not may propel him to engage in a different behavior with this kids. Best of luck.

  • I have no reason to communicate with my ex, as our son is 17 and handles visits with his dad on his own. Ex owes me over $25K in child support, but since he doesn’t bother to hold a job, not much I can do there. I do have a case against him with the state child support agency, but they are useless. If ex ever gets a job, I will immediately go after him. I’m sure he realizes that, and it’s a large part of why he doesn’t work.

    I have ex blocked on Facebook so I do not see anything he posts in reply to our son’s messages. It’s not enough to unfriend your ex, you need to block him/her. Then you won’t even see if the person “likes” something a mutual posts.

    I have not seen or spoken to ex in more than two years. Minimal text messaging, but that is quite infrequent. The most communication I’ve had with him in a year was our angry back-and-forth texting when he gave my suitcase away to some friend of his recently.

    I get bad PTSD symptoms when I even think of contact with my ex. The very thought of seeing his car when he comes to pick up our son makes me sick. He does not come near the door, he stays in his car. I dread the inevitable day I see him in person at some event of our son’s.

    I do not look at my ex’s websites, I do not Google his name, I do not look at most of his bizarre videos. I admit that I have watched his latest video several times, was watching with a friend and laughing so hard we both had tears running down our cheeks. But I’ve never watched his motivational videos or most of the other craziness he posts on youtube. I’ve never looked at his Twitter account. I’ve never looked at his or LinkedIn pages. I know it would all be exaggeration, lies and craziness anyway.

    I do hear about some of his activities from our son. I only care about anything that could be related to employment, as that directly affects me. But ex seems to be getting crazier by the day, and I’ve started to lose hope that he will ever hold a real job again.

    On the very rare occasions I think of Googling him or some such thing, I consider how sick that will make me feel and how pointless that pain would be. That stops me. I absolutely have PTSD after the nightmare of my ex, and though it’s been years, I am still sick at the thought of him. NC or LC is the absolute best gift you can give yourself. It is very hard to heal otherwise.

    • You have it all together Gladitsover! My STBEX got served with the divorce papers today and I plan to follow in your footsteps to get his toxin completely out of my life.

    • Glad I did the same when trying to go NC in the beginning. I would have a terrible urge to contact him and then I’d ask myself “Is it going to help me or hurt me to talk to him?” Almost every time the answer was “it’s going to hurt me” so I wouldn’t call. Those were baby steps in learning how to take care of and protect myself from him instead of trying to please him.

  • I was unable to be completely NC after the first Dday. He came back and forth, leaving and coming back and then leaving again for 6+ years. I lived in a state of complete anguish that entire time, working full-time and taking care of our 4 kids. I would try hard to go NC, but would obsessively look at our cell phone records to see where he was, and how often he spoke to the OW, and look over our credit card bills and be further traumatized by seeing where he went with her. It felt toxic, and it wasn’t good for my mental health. He was like a drug, and I felt withdrawal pains those first few years. Then, after all that, I found out about his simultaneous OW2 and in an instant, in my mind it was finally over. I had absolutely no interest in ever speaking to him again. I didn’t care what he had to say. We talked a few times about the kids, and he would try to engage me again, but I just felt done. No more anguish, just a dawning certainty that he was never going to be worth my love. Meh! I finally got the divorce, after filing for years. I beamed at court as we signed the papers. I felt free from all that anguish. Being NC feels amazing!! I feel happy. Taking him out of the space in my head left me room to be kinder to ME. All that pick-me dancing was exhausting, and now my energy is enormous, and directed at me!

  • Glad it’s over you rock!! No contact is the best medicine!! My ex cheated with 2 woman at the same time….eeeew the second one was ongoing for 20 yrs!! He relocated another women from Kansas City to irvine California to work with him because” she was very good at shipping” I love your advice abt blocking in fb… Read my post above…would love some input on my now new ” chumpy husband ….his ex wife also puts up pics of her new happy family with her affair partner and tags their daughters so it’s in my face…I really want my husband to block her…she’s not friends with him on fb but his kids are. So when she tags them and he goes on fb in front of me …it’s to show us both up but he don’t get it cause he’s a chump and says I’m insecure?? I explained more in my above post…frustrating!!!

  • Thanks Chump Lady,

    I really needed this reminder.
    I have realized that I have been living in hope even though from the start I decide to “no contact.” I was so angry that contact would have made me look like a raving fool and I wanted to keep my integrity at all costs. Over time I had thoughts of maybe some contact would let him know that I still cared but now I realize he wouldn’t have cared anyway. He’s living the dream with his french whore. I have continued to find out of his happiness and lifestyle and its so painful that now is the time to do away with that also. Monitoring and listening to people telling me of their activities is only inflicting pain on myself. I find 35 years is very hard to let go of.The pain they have caused my family and I have brought up so much resentment and I’m trying to come to terms how they can be so cruel.
    He has applied for a divorce and from this forum, everyone says that it gets much easier after the finances are settled and divorce is done. I hope this is so and helps me to move on.
    I hope 2014 grants me peace and acceptance of a past that was destroyed by a narcissist. All my life I have never wished harm on anyone but now I wish there was Karma. I don’t like feeling like this and one day I hope to feel indifferent about this whole situation. To me that would be the ultimate.
    Peace and luck to all my fellow Chumps

  • OK I am sorry for the long post, but I have read and re-read this comment of Stephanie’s on going and staying no contact, and I know many of us have repeated all or parts of it for the benefit of ourselves and our fellow chumps… but it bears repeating because it is brilliant! Thank you Stephanie!!

    Stephanie wrote this on 6/2/13:

    “How to go no contact:

    Remember the golden rule: (s)he doesn’t give a SHIT about you, nor what you think or feel. So spare yourself the humiliation of sharing that with the WAP. (They do not care. You’re pissing into the wind.)

    So catch yourself. It’s really hard, but it’s good exercise. Never share your thoughts or opinions or feelings. Never ask for theirs–their opinions do not matter, and they’re not in your best interests, anyway.

    Practice non-engagement. Do not let them suck you in. They will provoke with the most outrageous statements. Observe that–also note how they talk endlessly about themselves, unless they are blaming you for something. It is really quite fascinating, actually. Once I understood the pattern, it was actually very interesting to observe how closely he stuck to the script–”Oh, my life is so hard, the kids never want to see me, oh!” He would sweep all his transgressions under the rug as if to say, “Enough about my responsibility, what about making me happy?”

    It’s sad, really, because your best friend is no longer there for you. Know it. Stop hoping (s)he will care. (S)he does not. Act like it.

    Remember that they usually do not want to share child rearing with you. If they did, they’d be at home. They’re not at home. So stop telling them about that cute thing that Junior or Fluffy did this afternoon. They don’t care. And even if they do, sharing about the children/pets is an intimate act. It sets up an expectation in your mind that you share intimacy with the cheater WAP. You don’t. They don’t care.

    Invite them to enjoy the life they chose when they deliberately sacrificed a life with you. Do this by being silent. You’re not their friend, you don’t do chores for them any more. They chose that. Being nice will not make you seem like a better choice for them. They don’t care for you. They cheated on you. They enjoyed it.

    So shut the door on them.

    Keep a journal, on e-mail if you want to. I wrote a list of all the ways he was shitty to me and I edited it regularly. I also wrote a list of ways he was shitty in general and edited that, too. I wrote a list of all my worst fears–that has been fun to look back on, actually, as I realize that one by one, I have knocked out almost all of my fears. You can also outline a plan for each of those fears.

    If you must communicated, do it by e-mail or text. Save the e-mail or text in a draft, and sleep on it. Your first and third drafts are likely terrible and 90% could be edited out. Don’t e-mail on an emotional knee-jerk. (I did it, I regretted it every single time, and I got better.) Get a friend with a big red pen to edit that shit down to two or three sentences, none of which contain a feeling. CL has good advice on that in this column. Just stick to the facts, not your opinions, not your reactions.

    (This may make them crazy. And that is awesome. However, your goal is to stop caring how they feel, because they don’t care about you.)

    Only give NECESSARY facts, ask only NECESSARY questions. With a bit of practice, you will get stronger, just like any other exercise.

    Know the peace in not getting your hopes up, only to have them smashed again and again. Know the peace in gaining strength when you cut out the cancer, when you pull off the parasite. Know the power there is in silence–actually it is quite maddening. You know it, because their silence is suffocating. Fight back by putting up a wall. Take back your mystery–besides, you have some growing to do, and they don’t need to witness any of it while it is still tender and green.

    Keep yourself too busy for the WAP. Make your own plans, fix up your space the way YOU want it (this is HUGE), dream your own dreams, make some new friends, reconnect with family and friends.

    You can do this. It is life-changing. It is awesome. It will make you stronger in the rest of your life, too.

    I’m so much prouder of myself now.”

      • Hugs to you Stephanie. I cannot tell you how many times I have read the above, along with so many other comments you and our other sister/brother-chumps have posted. I have gotten through D-Day, through the divorce, and through the worst, and come out on the other side of Meh (getting re-married in June), and it is thanks to Chump Nation and CL (with a special dose of Stephanie)!

    • “Remember the golden rule: (s)he doesn’t give a SHIT about you, nor what you think or feel. . . . (They do not care. You’re pissing into the wind.)”

      THIS! That is the foundational belief to which you have to orient yourself and fully accept. Sometimes falling off of the No Contact wagon is a means by which this acceptance comes. Over time the interaction with the person becomes increasingly annoying and disgusting to the point that you recoil from having any contact with them (recognizing that an orange jumpsuit is not your best look can also play a part). Some people quit smoking cold turkey, some people need a patch. A few people quit heroin cold turkey, a lot of people use methadone. The most important thing to understand is that staying hooked is personal destruction and usually death.

      Hopium is a strong drug and a hard habit to break. Use Stephanie’s wise words as your jumping off point to rehab. Also, find out whatever all4freedom has for breakfast and have a bowl or plate of that. 🙂

      • Yes. This one took me a long time to finally accept, that he didn’t give a shit about me. I finally got it with the help of my dear, hardass sister. I would send her his e-mails, which of course I was reading through my chump filter, and she would reinterpret them for me. It took many months, but I finally saw the light.

        I’ve been NC for six months now, only seeing him once to get some papers signed. He wanted to come to the house, but there is no way I want him polluting my sacred space. What worked for me in that situation was to take control and tell him I would meet him in the lobby of our local public library, watch him sign the papers, and then take photocopies. Took many e-mails of me just repeating over and over again that I would meet him there and he should confirm, but he finally agreed. There’s a security guard there, too, and lots of people, which made me feel safe. The only thing I said to him was, “I’ll photocopy these”. When I left he yelled after me “HELLO!”, and send the requisite snarky e-mail, but I was thrilled that I avoided any and all drama and didn’t waste any time. Like many narcs, everything with him has to be complex, lots of drama, lots of time wasting, and I am so done with that.

        I had a hard time with silence, I think, because that was one of his main weapons against me and is now being used against my kids. I didn’t want to inflict that on anyone myself, even him. Now I don’t care. He didn’t want to talk to me about what was wrong, how he felt, used silence to cover his lies, decided to screw around instead – fine. Indifference from me.

        My court date for the divorce is finally set for August. I hope this can be settled before then but if not at least I have an end point (although I am sure he will drag things out as much as he can. Slowly, slowly, this whole thing is becoming AFGO – “Another F**king Growth Opportunity”. It will end in 2014, fingers crossed.

        • Yeah, that was the hardest thing to truly accept and come to terms with. He really didn’t care about me and was perfectly happy to destroy me emotionally to save his ego.

      • Right, Princess, we should not punish ourselves for falling off the no-contact wagon. Sometimes you have to be hit over the head a couple times to realize what is really going on, that with our exes there is no there there. That he (or she) simply Does. Not. Care. At least it was like that for me. And yes, orange is so not my color.

  • Yeah, I know, but (sorry there’s a but) I’ve been told I’ve been a shitty girlfriend, ignoring his needs (yeah, mostly sexual), apparently my three year long battle with anxiety and depression (yeah, he totally contributed to it if not caused it), was the main culprit behind his affair. I’m still struggling with this because I know I’ve been a shitty partner (although a great mom and he acknowledges it.)
    One other thing, and I would love to get anyone’s feedback on this is, that before he started his affairs and we had regular arguments, I’ve made a comment to my cheater that “I don’t really care if he finds someone else”
    Well, shortly after ive made that statement he did and now loves to throw my comment in my face with saying “see, you wanted me to so I did.”
    I feel like there’s no good defense to this. I did say it out of anger but does it matter now? Btw, whom he found was a married woman.

    • I said something similar to my ex, I told him he had “more in common” with his dead best friends wife than he did with me… it was a jokey off the cuff remark.
      Turns out they had similar morals!

  • Time heals
    I married my now husband because he his a wonderful man to me!!
    We have a great relationship, mutual respect, fun, loyalty etc….
    He is certainly not like my ex husband!!! Letting people know that things do get better!
    I was in therapy too for a long time and had no idea abt his relationship with his daughters until we married…..I realize that he needs to help himself and he is in therapy for this….yes he took my advice and knows that he’s the only person who can help himself!
    I was asking Advice with regards to the fact that I still think he’s a chump, and would rather be treated with disrespect to avoid conflict…..his issues I know…I’m talking here privately with this forum I don’t tell him how to run his life….all I’m saying is I’m married to a chump too , agreed or not?

  • I went NC from day one. It was the only way I could survive. I was dealing with the emotional fallout from my children and was trying to support a very sick friend.
    I blocked him on FB (the OW had already blocked me!) and refused to take calls or answer texts because ANY contact was too painful.
    The only time I wavered was last year when I was diagnosed with suspected cancer (thankfully it wasn’t!) and needed major surgery. He wanted to “be there” for me, visit me in hospital, started inviting me out for coffee… I refused, saying I wasn’t his responsibility anymore. It was the hardest thing I did. He spent the next few months trying to get information from members of my family.
    Somehow he’s found out my new address and where my daughter has moved her horses to (she went NC too). It’s tempting to think he wants to be back in our lives and misses us but the only thing he wants back is control.
    I won’t deny that I haven’t been tempted to respond, but know that for self preservation I mustn’t let him in again. Luckily the head now rules the heart!

  • Roy just picked the boys up. I walked them through the snow 3 ft high, he isn’t allowed out of the driveway. (detached garage)
    Roy: you look cute, you going out?
    me: k boys, have fun, love you (hugs and kisses to them).
    Roy: What, you aren’t going to answer me?
    me: see you sunday, bye (to boys)
    turned around and came back in the house.
    No contact, it can be done even when you have to stand right next to the jackhole.

    • That’s inspirational, all – thanks! These really concrete examples of how to handle specific situations are so helpful. Right now I have a protection order, so it’s not an issue, but I dread one day being forced back into contact (feeling in any way under his control). It’s very empowering to see how everyone copes with the various situations that arise.

  • I struggled with no contact at first. Like many chumps I tried to reason with my cheater & wanted explanations or apologies. I also felt the need to express my pain & anger in the mistaken belief that he gave a shit about any of it. All I ever got back from him was self pity (poor sausage deserved happiness!), anger (how dare I say such nasty things! How dare I tell family & friends!) & outright lies (‘I have always cared for you & always will’). I would manage long periods of NC then would contact him over related to the divorce. He would then take great pleasure in ignoring my text or voicemail for days in a deliberate attempt to wind me up and he used to succeed. He saw any contact from me as an opportunity to twist the knife further. I have no idea why he is so angry with me for initiating a divorce which frees him to be with his ‘true love’ but I have realised that NC is the way to stop caring why.
    Some tips that helped me in the early days:
    Have someone (or a few people) who you can ring or text when you feel the need to contact your cheater. Tell them whatever you wanted to say & get it out if your system. Your friends will agree with you that your cheater is a steaming pile of shit, this is ultimately more satisfying than actually speaking to your cheater.

    Take their number out of your contacts list & write it down somewhere. This helped me avoid sending drunken, emotional texts or making spur of the moment calls.

    I used to mark off the days when I managed NC on anything other than essential divorce communication. Set a target & a reward, treat yourself to something you really enjoy. Sounds silly but I found crossing off another day on the calendar where I’d been strong helpful. ‘A whole week of NC! I’m going to treat myself to coffee & cake!’

    If you do fall off the NC wagon don’t beat yourself up. Dust yourself down & start again. It’s not easy & you’re allowed to make mistakes. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

    • EXCELLENT advice!!

      I have a couple friends I called when I was most in anguish. Prior to that I would send hurtful text messages to him that, no doubt, he AND the OW read together. No more!

      And I removed his number from my phone. Don’t need it.

      • I too was guilty of sending angry messages telling him how disgusting he & OW were & how appalling their behaviour was. Made me feel better at the time and while I don’t regret anything I said it was utterly pointless. With hindsight it probably just made them feel their behaviour was justified. ‘Look at the nasty, bitter chump who doesn’t understand how powerless we were against fate’. Barf.

    • Believe it or not I actually went to putting smiley faces on my calendar to reward myself for days I stayed NC in the beginning. LOL

  • I think I am doing as well as I am because I planned and grieved for about a year, little less, before I left. Therapist says there are some ppl who go through the whole grieving process before they even file for divorce. I do have moments when I am stupid and forget who I am dealing with, usually over something to do with the kids. Roy typically jumps right through the opening and goes into Super Dick mode which, of course, reminds me to shut the fuck up and remember who I am dealing with. The I go NC again. THE hardest part is not being able to have a “normal” conversation regarding the kids. He uses every single situation as an in road to a mind fuck. I KNOW he is doing it intentionally bcz when we are at sporting events and there are others around, he is NORMAL.
    As long as we have the kids and he thinks he can use them to be an emotional vampire, well, I have to be careful. I don’t think in terms of using the kids for anything. They are on loan to me and I have to get them to adulthood as whole as possible. I don’t own them therefore I can’t use them.

    • Dear All4freedom,
      I like you am doing well bc I did all my grieving for a full year(2013) b4 finally filing for divorce. I was a chump for 13 years but 2013 was a defining year.. I filed for divorce on the 31st December because I was determined to start the new year on a new sheet.
      I feel safe & happy despite the divorce & I think it’s bc I’ve gone through the pain already.
      Best wishes.

  • There were lots of damaging things that happened during the end of my marriage. I rank him moving in next door (RIGHT next door, his bedroom and bathroom windows were 3 feet from my driveway) as the number one most damaging and ass hole-y thing he did. It was torture. It made NC difficult because he was in my face all the time. I became a hermit. I avoided my front yard for TWO YEARS. I sat on my patio in back only where I could not be seen and could not see him or his place. I became a hermit. I kept my curtains shut in front of the house and on the side where his place was. I kept my garage door down always so he would not know if I was home or not. It was awful. But I did it. It took a toll on me though. He finally moved away to get married in 2010. Yeah, I got to watch him date, even with all the precautions. When I pulled into my driveway, it was impossible not to see his car and his girlfriend’s car (he didnt have a garage). It was necessary to consciously NOT look to the left when I backed out of my driveway in order to not see him in the shower in the morning (yeah, the shower was at the window that was 3 feet from my driveway. The reason I am telling this is, I would have been better SO MUCH faster if I had been able to really go No Contact. I did, but every day, there was the reminder in my face. It drove me into a pretty deep depression and changed my personality. I am still working on getting back to normal, 4 years later. No Contact allows you to change your thought patterns and your habits. I was successful at keeping away from the phone (I put it in a drawer) and email (that was harder). But seeing his car, or his shadow in his window, or seeing that he didnt come home at night even though I tried my best not to look. That was killer. I felt SO MUCH better when my No Contact really became NO CONTACT when he moved. I had a party with the neighbors. They were angry at him for everything, but he really pushed them over the edge when he moved in next door. Before that, I am sure some of them were “none of our business, so sorry that you are divorcing, there are two sides to the story” people. But after that, they were ALL, “WHAT an asshole”.

      • It was an old neighborhood, mostly homes, but a duplex had been built in the lot next door to our house in the 80’s. Our house was built in 1909. We had bought the duplex to “control who lived there” (ah, sweet irony) because it had become a crack house at one point. I got the house, he got the duplex in the divorce. He had plenty of money to live somewhere else, he just did it to punish me.
        BELIEVE me, I was working on moving as soon as he moved in. Chump that I am, it NEVER occurred to me he would want to live there. It was pretty awful. Our house needed work,which I did little by little as I could afford it, and I had TONS of crap I needed to get rid of to downsize, which I also worked on, having 4 garage sales with the neighbors and giving things to friends and to Good Will. This all happened in 2008, the housing market had tanked. I started looking for a house I could afford while waiting for the market to come back, I got a real estate agent, I had inspections done and fixed things to prep to move. I finally got it all ready to go and moved in 2011. I would have gotten out a year earlier, but I had taken in a friend in need to help her and to help pay my mortgage (another horror story I wont go into). Sometimes I think I should not have done that because it set back my exit by a year, but I needed that money to do the repairs, and her boyfriend moved in and worked on the repairs in exchange for rent. I did take on the torture to get as much as I could for the house. That is on me.

        • I think also that I kept thinking he would leave. The duplex was a pit. I kept thinking he would leave. But then he didnt. And didnt. It all sounds crazy, and it was. I was certainly nuts for quite awhile. I did my best.

          • Violet,
            Roy (code name for x2b) got fired shortly after I left him. I had a fucking PLAN DAM IT! 😉 I moved 5 fucking hours away and then his stupid ass got fired for the 2nd time in 3 years and HE FOLLOWED ME. So I filed earlier than planned, had to do it in our “home” state (residency requirement wasn’t met here) so he couldn’t move in to this house that we also own (long story, in my hometown). SO the judge gives him 30 days in the house WITH ME to get established and find a place to live. FINE. At the end of 30 days, we went to court to establish child support and alimony, he requested longer in the house, I said NO. His lawyer says, in court, you want him to incur more financial strain and obligations by forcing him to move. I responded “IF IT WERE ME, (stressed that part), and I wanted to continue staying in a house where I knew it was questionable that I would be allowed to, I most certainly would not have called the person in charge of that decision a b-word and a c-word daily, nor would I have hit her bedroom door so hard the latch lock ripped out of the door frame.”
            Thank you mommy for being a sick twisted narc, no way am I intimidated by an attorney in court.
            So, to a .10% I sorta understand what you are saying. I knew I had an end date though. Dealing with him for 30 days was TORTURE. I can not imagine doing it for years. I would have been a pine tree, fence building, ivy growing motherfucker on that property line. WOW!
            All we can do is our best. I tell my boys no one is perfect. there isn’t even a perfect cup of coffee (used this analogy with them) because every person likes their coffee a certain way, so perfect to me is weak to another. Perfect coffee to me is gross to their aunt bcz she loves cream and sugar and I like take mine black. NO SUCH THING AS PERFECT. You do your best. sometimes your best is 110%, sometimes your best is 20%. There were days it was all I could do (before I left viva la dickhead Roy) to get out of bed and get the kids to school. Now I get up and make them Martha Stewart breakfasts. Partially to make up for the crap I went thru and forced them to participate in, partially because I am so dam happy to be FREE.
            Who gives a shit if you weren’t perfect and took a dumpster dive into depression? Fuck him. Bright side is he lived in a previous crack house. Gotta find the giggles where ya can. 😉 and you are FREEEEEE! Freedom isn’t free, you earned yours honey.

              • My cheater is still in the house. He won’t leave. He wants happy ‘family time’. NOW he is coming home at nights and doing pickups from sports events. I think he is just setting up for a custody battle. He is blaming me for ‘wanting to put the boys through the hell of divorce’ at the ‘worst possible time for them’. I have twice the income and was the ‘saver’ so I lose half of 20 years of saving for the family to get rid of the liar. Freedom doesn’t come cheap. Luckily, he is away for a week on a business boondoggle. Probably with OW, but just glad to have the house and the boys to MYSELF!!! H intimidates the boys. I need to establish my own authority with them without H stepping in. I thought he was backing me up, but really it undercut my role as parent. I need them to respond to a polite request (we’re talking, put away the dishes or clean your room, without H coming in as the ‘enforcer’.) We have 5 more days of freedom!!!!

            • BREATHE
              ok, you need to speak with a lawyer.
              In IL, the dickadoodle is required to have “reasonable” aka 4-5 business days to get his dick in order to go to court for the temp hearing. My lawyer and I planned it out. He is very expensive (lawyer) for a reason. He called the courthouse to make sure we had a date 4-5 business days required, set the temp hearing and we filed. he was served on a Thursday evening, paid for a private server. our temp hearing was the following Wednesday. he had Friday to freak the hell out, sat/sun, most quality lawyers are unavailable, Monday he went yellow pages to find an attorney who could take the case on short notice. Temp hearing, you can get joint primary physical custody as well as what’cha call it, primary use of residency. get his assed served right before his next trip.
              find a REALLY REALLY REALLY good attorney. do NOT let him help with bathing/feeding/taking care of the kids. if he hasn’t ever done this in the past, that fucker is setting you up. Primary care giver, determines so fucking much in custody. If he is suddenly doing the WORK of taking care of the kids, homework, sporting events, his bitch ass has talked to an attorney, or like me, researched the hell out of it.
              go buy new locks and a digital surveillance system. as soon as you get the temp order, change the locks, get the surveillance system hooked up.
              You want to give him minimum visitation, every other weekend, every wed or thurs evening. MINIMUM. most states do mandatory mediation for custody. you have the power and control if he gets minimum visitation, you can offer more without losing control and you can look like you are willing to work with him. RESEARCH YOUR LAWS. call your city attorney’s office, ask for the best fucking divorce attorney in your area. if you need some advice and I can help, let me know.
              your chuckle fuck is setting your ass up.

  • I also want to add, I WANTED to improve the duplex before all this and he didnt want to put any more money into it than absolutely necessary. So it was also sweetly ironic that he lived there when he was the one who didnt want to improve it.

  • I made him REALLY angry back then when I said I didnt want to be a slumlord and that I wanted to make the place better! He absolutely refused. HAHAHAHHA.

    • You should be proud of yourself for surviving that fucking torture. What a jackass. What an incredibly painful ordeal you survived!

  • So what happens when “no contact” involves no way to reach you in order to plan for visitation unless you decide to reach out first? Blocked calls and bad e-mail address, and unless I send messages through the attorney, no communication. Isn’t that a power play? Made up allegations about “cheating” and making the child a victim to the lies would also be part of the charade. (Btw full support for seven years and child support always on time and directed deposited) 4 years after the divorce and she still refuses to co-parent or engage. Latest attempt to engage was met with her “no contact” until she needed something.

    • When you get divorced, you no longer have any rights over the other person – and contact is a privilege you also no longer have any claim to. Set up (through your attorney) a fixed schedule and system for visitation. (Google “parallel parenting” for sample legal documents.) You and she will not engage. You will only engage with your children. The marriage is over, so the parenting partnership is over now, too.

      • Sad, given that there is a valid parenting plan in place that she has violated since day one. Starting with having son return calls within 24 hours or reasonable time. Her way or the highway. Guess I’m the chump. Could take her to court if I had the money but it’s all going to her. Ps she has a live in but skirts the law so he “technically” doesn’t co-habitat. There should be a “chump lady” site for us.

          • Already tried that route, blocked by the ex, who has all the control since she has physical custody. Doing research on the Internet I wonder if some individuals use “no control” in order to engage parental alienation syndrome… If there is no contact how do you make arrangements for visitation without going through lawyers? (Dates are set in parenting plan but there is still pick up and drop off arrangements to be made.) Schedules made outside of school aren’t easy to work around without contact. No shows because of plans made between ex and child’s friends mother. Curious how others who have successfully done “no contact” worked through this with ex to plan visitation and other shared parenting, anything would be helpful. I have regular contact with school but that only goes so far (relocated by company for job so living out of state, court ordered alimony requires I keep my employment, and sole source of income for her and son since she doesn’t work.. So no options not to move and stay in area) Son has already been through enough, I don’t want lawyers to get involved… But I am saving up for that. Sorry for long post but wanted to provide details so ” replies” have enough facts. Believe me, no contact is great on my end… But still need to figure out how to preserve relationship with my son.

            • You have to file contempt charges against her for blocking contact with your son. Also, you need to modify the custody agreement to include specific times and locations to pick up and drop off your son. As far as I know, that’s your only option.

        Help me with understanding why not being able to co-parent is a good thing. If you are not a gaslighter or psychotic… Isn’t it possible your ex might just be using “no contact” as a tool to further their agenda? No contact will destroy your children if you use it to prove a point that isn’t based on the facts or reality. If your child’s best interest is always your framework then you have a great compass.

        • Psyche, my last post was directed to your comment to me. Btw… Intersting that u assumed that I was a male. Not sure what your politics are… But there is a lot of “anger” assumed toward men. Our “fairer” sex is not immune from being just as difficult. And there are plenty of men that go ” no contact” … Please explain

    • there are actually websites set up for parents to communicate. you set up an account, both of you email to that account for custody issues ONLY. they keep all the emails so neither of you can tamper w them or if your computer gets hacked, my email and fb account has 4 times since this started. I have a super secret email account ONLY USED FOR LAWYER. this way if my email gets broken into AGAIN, there is no info to find. as for the no contact, kids make it difficult but you gotta keep the focus ON THE KIDS.

  • It’s taking me a while to get the hang of it, but I’ve discovered that NC is a very effective way to communicate that “you and your opinions no longer matter to me.”

    When my aunt died, STBX sent me an email during a particularly contentious week in our divorce proceedings with the subject header: “Time Out.” Here’s what it said…

    “I was deeply saddened when {son] told me that [aunt] died yesterday. She was as wonderful a person, and I consider it a privilege to have known her. I’ll always remember happy times with her, and take pride in the opportunities I had to do something nice for her. She was truly special, and will remain in my prayers.”

    The self-congratulatory and piousness tone sickened me — especially when he was being such a selfish, belligerent, uncooperative, judgmental asshole that week — so I did not respond.

    He sent the venom on Monday…

    “It’s more than a little bit disturbing to see that with everything that’s transpired over the past week, this is all you have on your mind. No matter; the documentation you requested is attached.

    There are bigger issues I need to address. First, I recommended a course of punishment for [son]. I need to know if you intend to impose and enforce it. Also, he needs to come up with $150 in short order to pay for his portion of the damage.

    Second, [son’s therapist] suggested an option for [other son]. When I asked [son] about it, he told me nothing was talked about. If there is no further discussion on this, I will make an appointment for next Monday.

    Finally, your lack of cooperation in this matter is very telling. The victimized party (OW’s daughter spied on our kids so our kids retaliated and when I told STBX, his bimbo and he decided OW was the victim, not her daughter) made a gracious and generous offer to have a discussion in an effort to spare your children the ignominy of being arrested and charged with a crime. Your flat refusal and overall attitude have so far been distressing. It’s not lost on anyone that if the victim were anybody else, you would have been halfway through your apology tour by noon Wednesday, and you would have sent both boys over with shovels, rakes, paint brushes, or other tools to try to make amends. But the fact that this is someone you chose to dehumanize and decided it’s okay to hate apparently justifies inaction and irresponsibility. “

    • Don’t respond to the asshole. He’s trying to control you. He’s a self-absorbed jerk.


      Put your kids on NC with OW/daughter ASAP. Your kids are in a lot of pain, and they are acting out. The last thing they need is more humiliation and “punishment.” I would try to discuss honestly and compassionately about what they did. You might have to make them go on a drive or walk with you, since boys don’t like to sit and talk. They are really angry. They are feeling protective of you. Your ex is going to bully them on behalf of the “victim” OW. Her daughter is being raised by a monster twat, so I give her some sympathy. I think your kids have a duty to make amends, but mostly this is for THEIR character rehab, NOT for their jackass father and the twat he’s currently with. (I would refrain from using that language, of course.) I would tell them that when they take care of this, they can walk away and hopefully learn a lesson. They made a mistake. They don’t need to be crucified. Provide them a safe place, hold them accountable. They will love you for it. Don’t let your ex control this situation. No matter how he pleases himself with big words.

      BTW, the twat is NOT human. You did not dehumanize her. She did it to herself. All the more reason to do your duty and get the hell out and stay the fuck away from her–your sons, too.

      Funny (SAD, not funny) how his sons are “your children” and not “our boys.” Jerk.

      Last point–I don’t trust the OW and her daughter not to exaggerate or outright lie about your sons to their father. They should NEVER be alone with either of these females. I have a friend whose ex turned on his own son when the vile OW-now-wife fabricated potentially devastating (but intentionally vague) accusations against the young man.

      • ChutesandLadders, your STBX sounds exactly like mine. It gets better once the divorce is complete. You do NOT have to impose the punishments that he demands. The joy of divorce is that you get to parent your way.

        I’d strongly suggest that you keep the communication lines open with your sons’ therapist(s). It can be very helpful for the counseling process for him to hear what’s going on from your perspective.

        Don’t be surprised if one or more of your children decide to go no contact with their father. I have five, and three of them are NC. One daughter only makes nice to get money from him, and the youngest (who is still a minor) sees his father once a week for a couple of hours. Despite taking me to court multiple times over the custody agreement, and demanding extra time over the weekends, ex has NEVER following the agreement.

    • I like it! But hey, don’t feel compelled to change. Sorry, I should’ve signed yesterday’s letter AnotherStephanie. I just go with their name when they don’t give me one. If only you all had unusual names like Winifred or something… or if WordPress had some feature to not allow duplicates.

      • It’s interesting that the comments format doesn’t block duplicate names. So someone could pose as someone else, or innocently use another person’s name and then it’s all confusing.

  • “Funny (SAD, not funny) how his sons are “your children” and not “our boys.”

    The man’s use of the word “your” to refer to THEIR children leaped off the page at me, too. He’s a real prize, eh?Talk about distancing from and dehumanizing children!!!

    This triggered my memory of a disgusting article (with some even more disgusting reader comments) that I had stumbled upon. The author of the article (one of those hypocrites who hide behind and twist Biblical stories to support their questionable hypotheses) claims her site is a safe place for frustrated stepmothers to “vent.”

    The article is distorted enough (See the comment about how the bio mother’s DNA will ALWAYS come through) BUT some of the reader comments are downright frightening in their overt and irrational hatred of children from prior marriages.

    I could not help but speculate about how many of these wives and stepmothers were former OWs!!

    • I cannot bring myself to look at that page. It would break my heart. Kids who have fucked-up parents really get screwed over, and it is just so horrible. The selfishness of some parents is astonishing.

      • I just despise any person who would abuse a child. And that includes (especially?) a so-called “parent” who stands by and allows their partner to abuse their children. Fucking weaklings who are neglecting their ONE PRIME DUTY IN LIFE! And it’s the kids who pay. That is so fucking disturbing.

        • Before I became a chump, and was a little on the judgmental side when I heard stories about cheaters, thinking there are always three sides to the story bs… I knew a woman who kept trying to tell me how one should never “underestimate a cheater” and such, at the time I didn’t realize what she meant. I’ve been thinking I should reconnect with her to apologize for not believing her.

      • Well, I read some of it and now I am so pissing mad at members of my own sex. Arhg.

        The men actually sound more reasonable. One man had a FOUR year old step daughter that was bonded to him from a previous marriage and was SHOCKED, SHOCKED when his new wife didn’t like her! What to do?

        The advice? Oh, sympathies, sympathies, it’s not the child’s fault etc., better get her some CHRISTIAN counseling (that somebody else pays for no doubt). Yes, even before a child reaches the age of reason, let’s tell them it’s OK because JESUS LOVES YOU. (who you can’t see, who you can’t talk to, and won’t cuddle with you and read a book)

        OMG, what am I going to do with this rage………

        And yes, it’s ALL ABOUT THE MONEY as much as they protest it’s not.

        • I guess I’ll write a book to work off all this negative energy. I’ll call it The STEPford Children, because that’s what these A-holes want.

        • I don’t think the woman who wrote this article is a Christian in the true sense of the word .(And, of course there are fundamentalist radical hypocrites in all belief systems).

          She reeks hypocrite to me–which is why I find her so repulsive–trying to excuse feelings of dislike, resentment and even hate of children behind the word of God. Trying to convince herself and others that “good” women can feel this way about children without examining themselves about their own issues. Nothing more than distorted self-justification.

          The thing that is so disturbing to me is the dehumanization of the prior spouses’ children.

          And YES, I agree with you that it is usually mostly about the $$.

          I would love to see CL deconstruct such a load of self-serving BS put out there for the public consumption by women who apparently look for excuses to blame children for their own dysfunction and malcontent.

          This is why I would tend to err on the side of supporting any biological mother who has problems with how her children are treated at the other “home.” Call me overprotective, but there are just as many narcissistic, totally self-serving, and mean-as-hell women out there as there are narcissistic men; and it impacts children just as disastrously as the behaviors of narcissistic fathers. Women just manifest it somewhat differently is all.

          The bottom line is that children have significantly fewer legitimate defenses than adults when caught in unpalatable, unpleasant or down right abusive situations.

          • “I don’t think the woman who wrote this article is a Christian in the true sense of the word .”

            Nope, and neither is my Jesus Cheater, or they would take seriously the words from Matthew 18:6 — And whoever misleads one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for him that an ass’ millstone were hanged on his neck and he were sunk in the depths of the sea. (Lamsa translation from Aramaic)

            What these people do, name dropping Jesus and foisting their responsibilities off on “the church”, is the very essence of using the Lord’s name in vain.

            • I’m sure it’s not easy being a step-parent. Then again, it’s the CHOICE of the ADULTs, and the KIDS have NO CHOICE in the matter. Yet, often, they are served nothing but shit sandwiches day and night from irresponsible, selfish, immature so-called “parents.”

              • My step-mother hated me and my two brothers simply for existing. She was my bio-dad’s OW, I am certain she was not the only one, but she is the one he married. They never had children together, and she had no children of her own.

                She was cold and unpleasant all throughout my childhood. Her resentment was always clear. She used to say that we were spies for our mother, and she didn’t like us spending occasional weekends with bio-dad.

                At 13, I said I didn’t want to spend weekends there anymore. My bio-dad made little effort to remain in my life after that, in fact, I only saw him four more times before he died when I was 30. He didn’t even come to my wedding. I don’t know if the step-mother is even alive anymore, and I don’t care.

                Step-parents enter a marriage knowing full well that there are children from previous marriage. If they can’t handle that, they shouldn’t sign on for the job. My step-mother and bio-dad were very damaging to my childhood and to both of my brothers. They were both cheaters, both selfish, both emotionally frozen. They deserved each other, but I deserved a better father.

    • Wow. I read the article and some of the comments. Those women are seriously vile. I cannot believe people actually feel that way and are that hateful, particularly towards kids.

    • broke down and followed the link. Holy Mother of God.
      Her comparison to Abraham and Sarah has a fatal flaw. The child Sarah asked to be removed? It was with THE OTHER FRICKIN WOMAN. So sorry Jilldeibel, you lost that argument before you finished quoting the bible.
      Rules if I EVER find a significant other (marriage? hells no) My kids have a father. Yes, I wish he would disappear FOR ME but for their emotional health in their future, he is important. Any guy I ever (possibly) decide to bring around my kids better be fully aware he is NOT their father, he can hang, play football, video games, be an uncle type figure. If a man tried to come in and act like their father, he would be out.
      As for if (when) Roy gets a woman dumb enough to fall for his bullshit, she better know the same damn thing. My children know they have to be respectful to adults, BUT ONLY IF GIVEN RESPECT. I am absolutely the parent who tells them that if an adult treats you like shit, the adult doesn’t deserve your respect. (ie, my narc mother). Girlfriend may end up being their buddy, their friend, whatever, but listen up you poor gullible twit, my children have a mother and you are not her.
      As for that article, the part about how the daughter was puking and the step-bitch got a text from the MOTHER saying to get the girl a drink of water… Why the fuck wasn’t the step bitch doing something for the child in the first place? Dam, if I were at a bar and there was a random chic barfing in the bathroom I would get HER a drink and help. Get off your ass step bitch and have some basic human kindness. Stupid frickin bitch.

  • I learned this from the author Susan Elliott of Getting Past Your Breakup. Whenever you’re tempted to check your ex’s FB, wonder about his doings and whereabouts, tempted to ask mutual friends about him, say to yourself three times, “It doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter.” It works because it truly doesn’t matter.

  • xboyfriend from 18-19 years ago… been talking to him via email. facebooked his wife before contact to make sure she was ok with me contacting him because I didn’t want to BE THAT GIRL. She was fine with it. Not consistent or constant emails, just here and there over the last 2 months. He lives 9 hours away, so I mentioned a get together, his FAMILY and me w my boys, over the summer. Douche bag emails me back that he hasn’t told his wife we have continued to talk and he would be scared to tell her at this point so it would be difficult to bring up a get together to her. WHAT THE HELL???? Told him I would NEVER have been talking to him I knew he was hiding it from her, that is not cool. Told him esp considering the situation I am currently getting out of, putting ME in the position of being part of him lying to his WIFE was one of the most jacked up things I ever heard of. I also told him not to EVER talk to me again. then I blocked him.
    I did the right thing asking permission from his wife. I would never ever ever be so disrespectful to a wife as to contact her husband with out her being fully aware and completely ok with it.
    Pushed me mentally into that place of when I found out about / admitted to myself that Roy was doing fugly girl. I sat and just CRIED.

    • Asshole. Maybe I’m just so disgruntled in my own situation that I assume the worst of people, especially married men, but it’s possible that whole theory of men will only continue a conversation IF they think there’s even a slight chance of them getting laid? Like that whole Chris Rock standup in which he talks about infidity. I believe the line is: “a man is only as faithful as his options.”
      Maybe it’s true for some men. As soon as the opportunity presents itself, they automatically fantasize about the “possibilities.” That’s just how they’re wired?

  • I am in that put up with no crap state of mind. I didn’t even want to hear what he had to say about how I interpreted what he was saying. I just saw 100 red flags and shut that shit down. Ya know how you can stand in a dark room, rub ur hand on the wall for a light switch and know it as soon as you feel it? I knew exactly what I was feeling and it was like, HOW DARE YOU? I blocked him bcz I trusted my gut and listened to my red flags feeling. Years ago I would’ve been “confused and explain it to me” girl. Today I am “oh hell no you don’t” girl.
    Jerk off. I used to say he was the greatest guy we just didn’t work together. any one ever asks me about him again and I am going with he is a douche.

  • But, no contact is easier said than done. My STBX and I agree on the terms of our divorce, and he accommodates me whenever possible concerning what I want to do with the house, money, etc. I want to mention we have no children. He never asked for any of my retirement and has given me above and beyond what I need as far as the finances go. He keeps up the maintenance on the house too. We have a big yard and to save on expenses, I let him keep it up. But, he cheated on me for over a year before he left and lied to me a lot so I still can’t help but be suspicious. He does like to keep me engaged through e-mails. I will not allow him to see me at all. My New Year’s resolution is to not check his and his girlfriend’s Facebook book account. So far, I haven’t broken it. I even went as far as deleting all of his family and friends from my Facebook account.

    • Maria, block him and OW on Facebook. There is no reason to see anything he says or does, whether through a mutual friend or whatever. That is just pure torture. Then you can’t check the accounts (I understand the gravitational pull that puts on your attention, believe me).

      Once you are divorced and everything signed and sealed, I’d also go true no contact. Remember, he is NOT your friend.

      Good luck!

  • For the very first time since I went NC a couple months ago, I cried. This damn article is so true. It’s the help I need to carry on. Thanks CL. I hope you know how profound the impact of your website and words are and that they reach A LOT of people who thank you too!

  • It’s strange, my stbxw seems to be employing the NC strategy but it’s her that had an affair for 1-2 years after 17 years together since we were 16. The AP is 14 years older on his second marriage, 2 kids to his first and 1 to his current pregnant wife. My stbxw was their childminder! I moved out as I thought we were just separating! He moved in a few days later with my kids! She never contacts me for anything, and never replies to my messages about the kids, divorce or anything!

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