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Dear Chump Lady, He says it was just sexting

Dear Chump Lady,

A few weeks ago, I discovered that my 63 year old husband of 25+ years had been having a texting/sexting relationship with a 25 year old woman. He denied it at first until I showed him evidence and our children (ages 18-24) got involved (They were actually who pointed out the obviousness of it all to me.) He had asked our 20 year old son to show him how to put a password on his phone and how to open up a g-mail account. He worked late several times as well, but he only admits to three innocent rides home where “he did not so much as hold hands.” As further information unfolded, I found out that he let her use our charge card to pay off parking tickets (over $1000 worth), but she immediately paid him for them according to him. She just needed a charge card because she didn’t have one. Of course, I had to discover this myself. He says he has every right to loan money if he wants. But I would never make a loan without telling him.

For years I put up with what I consider to be verbal abuse from my husband. An example of this is saying, “Shut the f—k up” to me in front of our friends. Although he hurt me to the core on these occasions, I stayed with him out of loyalty and because there were good times too. However, he ruined many a day with his verbal poison that sent me sulking to my room for hours. He was oblivious to each of these hurts and claims not to remember them.

My husband has always had a sneaky side. Years back he bought a boat and a motorcycle without telling me. They both sit unused and wasted like broken toys. He spends a fortune on books and vitamins. I also know that he peruses a lot of online pornography. I let all of this go chalking it up to “just him.” He wastes a lot of our hard earned money, and he complains that I spend too much.

My husband insists that this texting was harmless and never went any farther. He says that he is sorry it hurt us, but he never meant it to and if I had just left it alone it would have “died a natural death.” After multiple fights, he agreed to go to counseling so that someone could help him understand why he doesn’t think he did anything wrong. He is not kind to me or understanding, and he refuses to take the lock password off his phone. At one point he apologized and said he didn’t want to lose me, but his actions show anger and hostility toward me. I truly believe that he is angry I ruined his fun, and he feels that his privacy was violated.

I moved him out of our bedroom, but I do not know yet whether or not to divorce. Divorce is very complicated for us as we have real estate rental properties together and splitting up investments toward our future (which does not look very secure any more) would be complicated. I obsess all day about finding out the details of what he did and whether he is where he says he is. Clearly I have lost all trust in him. He makes no effort to help me through this, and he does not seem to understand how he has devastated me. We do not speak, and when I try to he says to wait until he talks to the therapist. He says he is sick of hearing me say the same things and ask the same questions.

Tell it like it is, Chump Lady.


Dear Wendy,

Do you really need me to tell you to dump him? His actions are screaming DUMP HIM! What about this situation makes you want to tolerate one more second of it? His utter lack of remorse? His charming habit of telling you to “shut the fuck up” in public? The way he makes unilateral financial decisions to pay off (ahem) “parking tickets”?

He says he “doesn’t want to lose you”? I can’t imagine a more repellant set of circumstances to keep someone. What exactly does he think is required of him to make you stick around? Oh that’s right — NOTHING. He’ll discuss it later at the shrink appointment he will never make.

He is so sorry that he password protected his phone. Wendy, his actions are sending you a very clear message — he wishes to do as he pleases. He has zero respect for you. He will continue as he always has, and if you push back, he’ll tell you to shut up or discuss it “later.”

Do you really believe that all of this is no big deal? Do you believe his “innocent car rides”? Do you think that men who just sext never have sex, even when they’re missing evenings, and even when they “loan” their affair partner significant sums of money? Have you been gaslighted so long that you think this entitled baboon never so much as “held hands” with another woman?


Your reaction to this abuse has been to “sulk in your room” — that bedroom he no longer occupies. Time to up your game, Wendy. Stop eating the shit sandwiches and stop being his chump. Don’t tell me you can’t divorce because of complicated real estate. That’s why God made lawyers — they specialize in exactly those sorts of dilemmas. Go call one today.

Also considerate a forensic accountant. I have a feeling he’s paid for a lot more than parking tickets. Do not tell your idiot husband ANYTHING. Just make a plan of escape on the down low, and then serve his ass. Won’t it be nice to auction off his useless toy collection in the garage? If you think you can’t divorce because of financial security, I would argue you’d be a lot more secure without him — a guy who drains the accounts for his sext friends. Or a motorcycle. Or a boat. HE is your complicated financial problem — dump him like a bad stock.

Your problem isn’t “sexting” — your problem is abuse. He’s an abuser. Emotional, verbal, and financial. He can destroy you without ever hitting you. Don’t let him — FIGHT BACK. This shit stops when YOU say it stops. Time to stop sulking and start filing. Call a lawyer.

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at [email protected]. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • Wendy: I am 2 days…yes, 2 days out from dumping a chronic sexter/cheater/verbal abuser/liar. I am reading one of the books that CL recommends on her site. In Sheeps Clothing, or something like that. Wow. I can’t tell you how much it helps to realize what you are dealing with. I have been fighting out of my weight class, being manipulated by a true master. Call a lawyer, then start reading this book. In a nutshell…his goal in every relationship is to win. To be one-up on you. He does not respect you. He wants to keep you because he doesn’t want to lose. Not lose the you, just lose.

    Nearly a year ago, I wrote to CL asking her advice on what to do in this toxic relationship. She advised me to RUN. I didn’t listen to her and, literally, paid the price. Spent thousands of dollars maintaining a relationship with a broke Hollywood producer who has everyone believing he is a millionaire. The subterfuge is epic. Prepare to be appalled. Don’t waste anymore time.

    2) Book.
    3) RUN.

      • Brilliant Hollywood, LISTEN TO HER WENDY! You got the book (I read that too, along with The Sociopath Next Door). Get the lawyer (that’s why God made ’em for Pete’s sake, as CL hilariously notes), then get out. You will gain everything by leaving, you will lose everything by staying (at least everything of any value).

        Wendy, reading your letter is like watching a horror movie with the scary music, and I just want to scream RUN, RUN, RUN and SAVE YOURSELF.


  • Please, do this now. I have a relative who has been married to this kind of man for over 50 years. She constantly laments that she did not leave him years ago. Now, he is an old man and she feels it is too late. She does not have the emotional or physical energy to leave. Toxic is toxic, and will not improve. Therapy? Waste of time. He is who he is, as you have figured out over time. My relative is now in the martyr stage, saying she deserves a place in heaven for putting up with him. That’s how she copes. Your 63 y.o. husband will age in place and you will take care of him as the years pass. Won’t that be fun? Then you too can be a martyr. What a life. I’m sorry.

    My ex left me at the age of 60 for someone 10 years younger. I was devastated initially, and then as the years passed realized she did me a favor. He is no fun when ill, and he resents aging. She can have him. I had the best years, and the lovely children and grandchildren, and am now unencumbered. Good luck.

  • Preach it Sistahs!

    Abusive relationship. This is not going to get better. You’re in your 60’s or approaching them? Do not waste any more of your life force in this situation! You’re still healthy–what happens if you stay and eventually you’re not? Do you think for one minute that you will be cared for? Heck no! At that point, he’ll dump you in a cheap nursing home so the house is free for him to frolick at will.

    Run while you still can. Please.

  • Wendy,

    Sounds an awful lot like a guy who wants to relive his younger days again. Give him that opportunity – let him go waste his money on his own time and not yours!

  • He used your SON to help him set up a password and a gmail account?

    Game over. Get an attorney ASAP. CL is so right about the forensic accountant too. My H got busted with some fairly innocent flirty texts. I could find no proof of any kind of affair and he also agreed to MC ( where he proceeded to abuse me.. That’s another story but heads up DO NOT GO TO MC WITH HIM).

    Anyway, I shut my mouth and acted like everything was fine. I pulled bank records for 10 years back and hired a PI. Let’s just say the texting really was nothing compared to what he was actually doing…..

    Call that lawyer today.

  • Wendy, I’m just getting out of a 20 year + marriage, after thinking, like you, that our finances were so entangled and complicated that it couldn’t be done. It can be. I finally got enough of his crap, and found the courage to end it. He was the “texting” type – of course, the messages were “not what I thought they were” and I “misunderstood”. Buy and read In Sheep’s Clothing. It’s the playback for bastards like this.

  • Wendy –
    Don’t fall back on the “our joint finances are complicated” excuse. Take it from someone who’s ex not only was a serial cheater but also created a quagmire of debt that he hid pretty effectively from me. Lost my beautiful, historic home, lost my credit, went through bankruptcy (as did he separately) and had to re-home my darling dog because the condo we went to didn’t accept them. Even with all that – kicking that waste of human skin out and getting a lawyer were the best things I EVER did.

    Don’t let the longevity and shared “good times” of memory cloud your judgment here. He is a user AND an abuser. Anyone who says that cheating isn’t “abuse” has never gone through it on the chump end. Get a lawyer, that forensic accountant and sell everything he bought on the sly before you legally separate. Then empty the bank accounts and serve his ass. Believe me – you are not protecting anything by staying. You’re not protecting your financial future (I’d lay money he’s been hiding assets or spending more than you know) and you aren’t protecting your children (they are adults and seem to know the score) and you surely are not protecting yourself by staying.

    Have you even considered that his sleeping (yes – he’s been sleeping with her -don’t kid yourself) with this 25 year old means that essentially you have been sleeping with her and every guy who’s climbed on for a ride? And if she’s willing to involve herself with a married guy over twice her age… discriminating and careful do you think she’s been in the sack? My ex’s mistress was a phys-ed and HEALTH teacher, for God’s sake, and she happily and without a care gave my ex genital warts…..and he then exposed me to it. It HAPPENS.

    Lawyer, financial “get out” plan, and then kick him out and don’t look back. He’s not sorry – he never will be. You will drive yourself insane waiting for an apology that will never come – not in any real or heartfelt sense.

    Good luck!

  • Wendy- When my cheater entered his sixties, after a rollercoaster ride through his MLC fifties, I thought I had made it home-free of all his kinks and peccadilloes (which I only had proof of, when he was 59.) Surely he would put all his craziness behind him? Think again. The sun never sets on their thrill-seeking entitlements and abuse. Viagra, Cialis, and technology have been his greatest boon. They are who they are no matter the age. Free yourself from continuing to be his drudge and becoming his nursemaid in later years.

  • I feel like I have sisters! Thank you all so much for your advice and guidance. I found out the other day that he continued “giving her rides,” but just once (ya right), because of her ill health and her difficult life. You are so right. He will never change or believe he did anything wrong. This site and all of you have been my life line while going through this. Thank you.

    • Wendy- funny how the cheater is all compassion for his playmate but can spare none for loyal you and his kids. When all was revealed, out came my cheater’s “altruism”: “she was down on her luck,” “she lost her job as a veterinarian’s assistant,” “she is recovering from a cancer scare” (- cervical CA from HPV..hmmm, and now I’m exposed to her STDs???– compensable in NJ by the way,) “she needs a friend,” “I just took her out to dinner and she wanted to pay me back by giving me a blowjob in her Cadillac Escalade SUV” (I guess my Honda Fit isn’t big enough) “her BDSM Master doesn’t appreciate her,” “she’s recovering from bronchitis” – he was so concerned, he was always messaging her to see if she was well enough to come out and “Play.” “We just met in a supermarket and struck up a conversation” – Yeah, an on-line supermarket, where all her escort wares and appetites were on display. He even coached her to say how they met in this benign venue and they were just “good” friends.
      Stay strong!

      • funny how the cheater is all compassion for his playmate but can spare none for loyal you and his kids.
        Truer words were never spoken! On Dday, I called the OW and left a message telling her who I was and she was with my husband. (This was a 3 year affair) She called back 10 minutes later, and had no idea that my H was married. He told her from day 1 that he and I were divorced. Once my H found out I had contacted the OW, he was pissed as hell at me, because I ruined THEIR relationship. Not one ounce of compassion, regret, or worry about what he did to the kids and I. He was worried about how much he hurt HER, and terrified that she would never talk to him again. No problem..he destroyed my life, self-confidence and heart. But worries. SHE was the only one he cared about! BTW, the OW told me on the phone on DDay that she was done with him. That lasted just about 2 weeks, and they’ve been back together ever since, so in love, so happy, with a bright and shiny future together now that he was finally able to get rid of me. So fellow chumps that have experienced should get us so damn angry that we run the other way and get a divorce in progress! It doesn’t always work that way though. Problem is..he’s had 3 years to check himself out of our marriage; I found this all out in the span of about 10 minutes. And as I’ve said on posts here before..I never even got the chance to do the “pick-me” dance. On DDay, he made it clear that he wanted to spend his life with HER and not me. As long as she took him back, of course. And what’s funny about that..when she ignored him for 2 weeks after Dday..he texted me all the time. But once she took him back..he was off to the races..leaving me in the dust, with no glance back at all. I was and am absolutely nothing to him.

    • Oh, he’s been giving her rides, all right. Wendy, my biggest fear for you is that he is secretly moving finances, or opening hidden accounts, or spending all your money on the OW. Don’t ignore the high probability that he is setting things in place to dump you at his convenience. Lots of the disordered types (and your husband is an ABUSIVE asshole) financially devastate their betrayed spouse, along with the infidelity and eventual abandonment.

      Be proactive, because he is NOT your friend or any sort of husband. Talk to a lawyer ASAP. Start looking into finances, making copies, printing out records. Open a separate account of your own, if you don’t have one already. Don’t let finances keep you married to this monster, because I almost guarantee, if you stay with him, he is going to financially devastate you and eventually dump you anyway. Strike first, while the advantage is yours. He is a filthy pig.

      • “….. my biggest fear for you is that he is secretly moving finances, or opening hidden accounts, or spending all your money on the OW. Don’t ignore the high probability that he is setting things in place to dump you at his convenience. Lots of the disordered types (and your husband is an ABUSIVE asshole) financially devastate their betrayed spouse, along with the infidelity and eventual abandonment…”


        You have described an abusive and highly controlling man.

        At his age he is NOT GOING TO CHANGE. EVER.

        Under no circumstances should he know anything about what you are finding out and what you are planning.

        Lay low, act normal, get the goods, line your ducks up so that he can do nothing but comply and then strike totally unexpectedly from out of left field.

        If you know that he will have an ugly meltdown(s), get a protective order and/or learn how to defend yourself–with lethal force if necessary.

        It is time to say, “ENOUGH” and then follow through.

      • This is so true, the financial devastation. Mine swore in court that all he made was $100K a year. Judge believed him even though my atty was ballistic that he was lying. Even had a forensic accountant that couldn’t find what was so well hidden.
        Turns out, sure enough…after the divorce (20 years married, three kids) he made one million several years in a row.
        And there’s caps on child support. No windfalls for the BS.

        He went from loving to leaving to a monster. Protect and serve yourself. And yes, I tried everything to get more…once they head out, they get even more elitist and entitled and blame the BS.

      • “Don’t ignore the high probability that he is setting things in place to dump you at his convenience. Lots of the disordered types (and your husband is an ABUSIVE asshole) financially devastate their betrayed spouse, along with the infidelity and eventual abandonment. ”

        This times 100! Follow the money Wendy. Run a credit report, on yourself and him so you can see what kind of damage you are dealing with (never tell him or anyone you did this – this is for putting you on the right path only). Once you have an idea of how much debt there is, you can start your plan –

        Don’t say a word to him. Become an Oscar caliber actress. Stay in separate rooms, but just continue to allow him to think you are “sulking” and that you will “get over it”. Don’t let him get wind of how serious you are. Get your ducks in a row with the help of an attorney and let your lawyer have him served.

        I would bet that over the years he’s been spending thousands of dollars of your family money on his “girlfriends” and toys. He’s more a danger to your financial and physical well being together than apart (stress is a killer Wendy).

    • Wendy, your husband is so compassionate to this poor unfortunate girl, but he could care less about how you feel. What is wrong with this picture?

      It’s the same treatment I got from my ex — hated Christmas shopping with me, but waltzed in with gifts picked out by him and howorker on their shopping spree! Left me at home with pneumonia to go to a party where he danced all night with her! Hated going on vacation with me and the family but spent months traveling to horse shows with her as “her coach.” No matter how many times I explained how much this behavior hurt me, or how many times he said “I’m sorry,” the behavior didn’t stop. Look at their actions, not their words.

      In the end my ex gave me a bunch of bogus reasons as to why “I caused him to fall out of love with me,” but he never ONCE mentioned that he was in love with his coworker and planning to break up her family and have her to himself. I finally discovered this about a year later when I came across a document he unwittingly left on a public server. Do you know how much time I spent beating myself up because I didn’t know the truth?

      They don’t act sorry because they’re not sorry. Don’t spend any more time gathering evidence or trying to convince yourself that deep down he truly cares. Get the hell out of Dodge! Talk to a lawyer, hire an accountant, whatever you need to plan your escape route. I’d also suggest talking to a counselor to help you deal with breaking the news to your kids, etc. Your husband has had the upper hand for years, it’s time for you to make a stand. He will never change as long as he believes you’ll keep taking his abuse.

      I was terrified of being on my own, of ending up completely broke, of being an outcast. I’m here to tell you that life can be a lot better. It’s not easy, it’s heart-breaking to go through, but it feels so much better to be in charge of your own life. Best of luck to you and many {{hugs.}}

      • You are all so helpful! I never thought of most of these things because I am so damn trusting. I will take your advise. And thank you for the great chuckle too with the term “howorker.”

        • Yeah, I love that term, too! Never heard it until I met all you wonderful chumps here!

          My cheater had a few of those……


          Forge on, friends……

  • It’s so sad that hateful comments and fear somehow becomes “normal”…

    Please take this advice, get a lawyer, and run. You deserve peace and tranquility for the rest of your days – not more of the “normal” you’ve accepted for your marraige. Yes, there were good times – but he will not change, and will likely get worse.

    Yes, there are good attorneys and accountants who will figure out the financial end. But the price of living without someone who treats you with scorn and hate? PRICELESS.

  • Wendy, my cheating ex is 62, 10 years my senior. I was about to say he wasn’t verbally abusive, but he was, just not outright. He thought nothing of pointing out cute college girls and how cute they were (good luck with that, you geezer, who can barely get it up with Viagra) as a way of trying to make me feel jealous. Didn’t work, but it’s abusive & manipulative all the same.

    I have no absolute proof that he got physical with anyone, but yeah, he most definitely did. All I know is that when I saw his profile on Match after seeing suspicious texts (that I couldn’t read, but saw notifications on his phone), I dumped him in a New York minute.

    He’s spent the last 8 months stalking and harassing me. Why? Probably because he’s the type that likes to have a comfortable “home base” to operate from. He wants someone to be there to take care of him, and he’s not the picture of health, so the likelihood that I’d have ended up caretaking him was huge. It’s all about him and what he wants. Waaaaaaaa….. Swallow that shit sandwich from and idiot that one of my male friends commented, “He cheated on a woman who was way out of his league? He’s out of his fucking mind, and it’s never coming back.”

    Stop worrying about whether or not he’s actually been sleeping around. He’s a lying, cheating, manipulative and abusive son-of-a-bitch, and you deserve better! Find the meanest lawyer you can, get all your financial records copied (yeah, leave the originals in place so you can prove he altered or hid them after you file–judges love that), get a forensic accountant and get his ass out of your house. Sure, it may take longer to get divorced, but the clock doesn’t start until you file, and every day you don’t is another day he’s sideswiping your bank accounts, so do it sooner, rather than later.

    Take him for everything he’s got and have yourself a really nice life while he tries to find a young bimbo who actually WANTS more than a sugar daddy.


    • “He thought nothing of pointing out cute college girls and how cute they were (good luck with that, you geezer, who can barely get it up with Viagra) as a way of trying to make me feel jealous. Didn’t work, but it’s abusive & manipulative all the same.”

      These old dudes kill me with viagra. Cheating is so stressful to the body, if these turds lived an authentic life they probably wouldn’t have ED. Viagra, porn, Rogaine, Just for Men, hell why don’t you just eat right and exercise.

      • Bahahaha…According to his Match profile, he’s “Athletic and toned.”

        I’m sorry, I’m just gonna roll around on the floor and laugh for awhile…

        • I have yet to see an “athletic and toned” man over 50 on Match. Most of them look like hell and have terrible head shots. These days, I wonder how many of them are still married…

          • Yeah, but they ALL are looking for women who are ‘athletic and toned.’ Hahaha
            They’re all such asshats. Once you ask to meet them in person and they disappear off the planet I assume they’re married.

            • Oh, and also their age is 60, and what age range would they be willing to date? 35- 42 or some nonsense like that, LOL!

        • My ex is 62 years old and screwed a 20 year old Asian prostitute last year and is bragging about it to his work colleagues like a teenager. That was the final straw for me. He is a sick bastard who thinks he is still 20. Our daughter is 35 and our son is 31 and they don’t think their sire has done anything wrong. He is on RSVP looking for females no older than 40 who have to be slim and athletic with a bright and bubbly personality who will travel with him, as he stated “a partner in crime to do it with’. He never took me or the kids anywhere. I am the attractive, articulate one but I have standards which he thought were too high. I simply got too old for what he wanted on his arm.

          • Big whoop, he has to pay women to have sex with him….that’s just sad and desperate.
            As some of the ladies have said here

            “You’ve had his best years – and they were only so-so.”

      • When I went to get the mail yesterday, I noticed pieces of paper scattered over my porch and driveway. I picked them up, and saw they were pictures of naked teens. The trail led to my neighbor’s trash, which had been tipped over and sifted through, probably by a dog.

        He’s a divorced guy in his 60’s who works a lot and lives alone. Now that I know what he’s doing late at night, I’m keeping a closer eye on how he interacts with MY teens. Eww!

  • Forensic accountant for sure. You’ll kick yourself when it’ s all over if you don’t. I was such a mess that I actually felt sorry for exNPD. Gambling, prostitutes, living the high life as he traveled the world on “business.” His daughters tell me he continues to do so. Where is that money coming from? Sure isn’t enough to live that way from his Social Security or retirement. You came to the right place for tough advice from the Chump Lady. I’ve been here for over two years and I ‘ve yet to read a reply or post that isn’t clear minded, direct and spot on. Listen to her now or you will wish you did when it is all over. And it will be all over. Make sure it’s your way, not his.
    It takes courage to ask the question. You have enough within you to make the break.
    I never thought I would, but I wake up happy and hop out of bed most days now. You will too.

    • That’s the thing, it’s so true we are better off without the gaslighting USER! Wendy, you will never know til you get away how much better each day can feel!!
      You have been mentally twisted and manipulated by this dude for sooooooo long, you are in a mindfuck fog. I was too. I kept trying harder and harder to fix fucking everything that could never be fixed, because all these Narcissists want is to win, use you, trick their family, and step on your neck if you get uppity. Wendy, you can’t tell what’s going on because he’s brainwashed you into thinking he’s more important.
      -You and the kids are important (and decent)
      – Real estate should not keep you with him
      – You’ve sacrificed your personal happiness to a MONSTER
      Please be careful as Hell when you make your plans for freedom! He will probably try to destroy you in every way, because you dared to step out of place. Don’t tell people (your own kids, family, co-workers) what you’re planning, because someone will let it slip! Also be careful he doesn’t see you on this site (ooops!). You might want to change your name on here.
      Someday you’ll be free of this Jackass, he’s a real scary creep, in my humble opinion. Then you’ll see- life can be sweet, who knew?
      ChumpLady and the crew, that’s who!!

      • Oh, and one more thing, you two owning rental properties together will probably be a big bonus for you! The court will value them in the divorce, and YOU GET HALF! Maybe you could live in one of them.
        You’re a lot luckier than BS’s who find out all they own is a bunch of debts!
        And you also get half the stupid, useless toys that are rotting in the backyard, or the cash after they get sold.
        My X is just the same. I’ll see your boat and motorcycle, and raise you a vintage Jaguar, a Stella scooter, and a Ducati!
        Good luck, and strength to you!

  • 63 and 25? Wha the…?

    It’s a hard one to swallow (at least it was for me) but if your spouse doesn’t have respect for you, you don’t have a marital relationship. Period.

    People can change but genuine inside out change is a far, far rarer thing than commonly thought. 63….. that’s an old dog. Even if he were motivated to do so (which he doesn’t seem to be), I would seriously question his capacity to learn a new way to live a life of integrity.

    Sorry you have to go through this crap.

  • There is lots of good advice here. My stbx did all types of tom foolery, with his money, health, and just a plain jerk to live with. His vision for me was to retire in some isolated place were I would provide nurse and maid services for the old fart. I thank GOD because I didn’t end up with something I can’t get rid of, or death, or the “horror” of him having an outside kiddie.
    Cheating doesn’t do a body good and all of that deception is starting to take a toll on his health…NOT MY PROBLEM! Every woman is not a wife and he is terrified that he will find someone who will do the same to him. Funny how OWomen aren’t good enough for him to consider for a more permanent relationship. Kids are grown and now I’m free of this grumpy old man.

  • Wendy, don’t you think it’s high time that you and your lawyer tell your “entitled baboon” to STFU? I do. Also, it is so true that unencumbered=AWESOME!

  • Dearest Wendy,

    All the chumps here know of what they speak!

    In addition to reading “In Sheep’s Clothing”, check out Dr. Simon’s web-site, Manipulative People & read his information. Sign up for the feeds, as well.

    Dr, Linda Martinez-Lewi has an excellent blog called “The Narcissist in Your Life.” I recommend you sign up to receive her newsletters, as well.

    William “Bill” Eddy is another author whose resources will be exactly what you need during this time. Check him out at “High Conflict Institute”. There will be a place to see the books that he has written. I have read “It’s All Your Fault!” & “BIFF”. Am now reading”High Conflict People in Legal Disputes”.

    Another site that helped me break free from situation similar to yours:
    “Baggage Reclaim”-Natalie Lu (sp?)

    You have been used and abused far too long. The advice to make a quiet, careful plan is right on! I did the same. And, be sure you do all you can to be a quiet, calm, peaceful person in the meantime. I do not mean you have to eat the poo sandwiches, but the more peaceful the situation, the more energy & thought you can put into doing what you need to do.

    Forge on, friends…..

    • “Dr. Linda Martinez-Lewi has an excellent blog called “The Narcissist in Your Life.” I recommend you sign up to receive her newsletters, as well.”

      Thanks for recommending this blog. It’s wonderfully informative.
      I think “The Narcissist in Your Life” blog would be a useful addition to resources.

      Also, it would be interested in having the Chump Lady interview her.

  • Gosh I feel like a fool when I read the amazing responses from the very gutsy women on this site. Wendy, I think you know what has to be done no matter how much it breaks your heart. Kick him out now before he destroys you mentally. Close to the end of my 37 year marriage (he was planning to get rid of me and he never mentioned it to me), my ex and I were having an argument and he looked in my direction but not at me and told me that “my standards were too high, not everyone has my standards”. I was puzzled by that but eventually he sent our then 28 year old son (now 31) into tell me that I was leaving and the amount of money I would be getting. He was and always will be a cunning rat. He is a very duplicitous person and he always managed to turn every situation around to be my problem. He stole money from a job 31 years ago and naturally got the sack. I was 6 weeks off having our 2nd child and our daughter was 3 years old. I stood by him but I wished I had not. I could write a small book just here but can I say to you, get yourself a lawyer and get moving. I am 62 years old and it can be frightening but you will get through it. My best wishes to you.

  • Let me just tell you…….he is trying to show you who he is. Believe him!!!!! I suffered five long years of broken promises by my soon to be ex-husband to finally dump his mistress, to stop is destructive behavior and become the father and husband his kids and I deserved. He just continued to lie and deceive and treat us with no regard. I lived unhappily for those five years and protected his reputation to all of our family and friends. From what I can tell within the first 6 months of knowing her and only “talking and texting” (yeah – right!!) he bought her an $1100.00 watch for Christmas! You don’t invest that kind of money on someone you haven’t been sleeping with!!!!

    Trust me……he is hiding more from you than you think. Talking about it makes him uncomfortable because he would then have to tell more lies. Lies he will catch himself in because he can’t remember them all. That is why they like to stay silent!

    I finally asked my husband to leave a year ago and while I am still trying to process through this divorce, I finally feel free!!!! Free of the worry about where he is all of the time, free of the mistrust that could never be repaired, free to just be me again!!!! Even if I am completely broke I will at least have my authentic life back!!!! That is worth way more than any amount of money.

    Please do yourself a huge favor and eliminate him from your life. You won’t be sorry!

    • Kimmy: This reminds me of a Maya Angelou quote that I have always loved, and for some reason ignored just when it would have helped me most: “People constantly show you who they are. Pay attention and believe them the first time.”

  • Wendy, you can do it and CL is right on, do it “on the down low”. Let him think everything is OK while you prepare, see a lawyer and line every thing up.

    If you live in a fault state you may want a PI – in my state proof of infidelity means “instant” divorce, no separation period. If that’s true in yours then a PI is needed. If you are in a no fault state, don’t bother. He paid $1000 in “parking tickets”, he sure picked an expensive place to park his penis…

    Jedi Hugs! Now go kick some ass, and when he gets served and complains? Tell him to shut the fuck up!

    • Datdamwolf…
      You are SO funny!! ‘He sure picked an expensive place to park his penis…hahahaha’

      …and when you serve him with the papers and he complains be sure to tell him ‘to shut the fuck up.’ Right on!

  • Oh, Honey, get out now. You cannot imagine how wonderful it feels to be away from an abusive, cheating piece of scum. Freedom and peace are beautiful things.

    • ^^^THIS.

      The kids and I were walking on eggshells for months before he left. Once he was gone, it was quiet.

      We eat dinner at a reasonable hour. We watch the shows we like. We can use our cell phones and computers without him checking histories. We don’t have to stop talking when he speaks.

      Freedom and peace ARE beautiful things! Try them yourself and see!

  • Hey Wendy!

    Just a ‘side note’ about your letter to CL…..You stated that he is involved with ‘a woman’. Sorry Sis!….Any female who carries on with a married man is NOT a woman! That would be ‘whore’!

    And the reason there was ‘not so much as even holding hands’? Too busy holding other body parts!

    Just thought you could use a chuckle! 🙂

    Forge on, friend!

    • OMG ForgeOn priceless, “any females who carries on with a married man is NOT a woman! That would be a ‘whore’!

      Yes 100% correct and in my view I would add ‘skanky to the start of it. She’s a skanky whore!

      • Will remember the ‘skanky’ next time!

        Yes, real men and women, real ladies and gentlemen, have moral compasses.

        Reserve the terms for those you have earned it…..

        Forge on, friends!!……

  • When I was in my mid twenties I was pestered by one of these DOMs (dirty old men). Believe me Wendy, as rude as he is to your face, it’s nothing compared to how he disparages you behind your back. Like all that smash mouthing was somehow supposed to ingratiate himself to me. GET MAD and GET EVEN, Wendy. Do it for all the old gals who didn’t/couldn’t. Like that old fart’s wife, who knew what he was up to, watched him like a hawk but was helpless to do anything to keep him from making a nuisance of himself. Maybe having him out on the prowl was the only time she got any peace.

    I just can’t imagine how awful it would have been if Viagra had been around then. He was a walking boner anyway. As it was, I had to get the father of a friend (same age as the perv) to pay him a visit and express in no uncertain terms how unwelcome his attentions were. That stopped it. For me anyway, I’m sure it didn’t really change him. I moved out of town shortly after that. (I was married at the time to the ex, but he had moved on first to a new job)

    As much as the betrayal by my ex hurt me, and especially my kids, I thank my lucky stars that the OW’s deputy sheriff’s husband didn’t get a couple of friends and put and end to the affair. She sure did me a favor as I can see in retrospect a lot of dirty old man tendencies that would eventually have blossomed fully and made old age with the ex a living hell.

  • Wendy, this guy has been gaslighting you for so long he got you all confused and second guessing yourself. DO NOT believe anything he says, he is an abusive POS! Get out, take charge and leave him behind. Believe me you will be much better off in the end. The life you are living is not a life. Get out and leave that sorry excuse human waste, dump him!!

  • Wendy everyone here has said it better than I ever could but you deserve better. I live with a POS like your H and am sorry I didn’t dump his ass a year ago (when I first came to this site ) Don’t let him know what you are doing but find as much finacial and other info that you can copy it and store it away from your home. Talk to a lawyer and know your rights. Get copies of his credit reports ( not that hard really) and see where the $$ is really going. See a therapist for yourself not for marriage counseling you have been beaten down emotionally and have changed your behavior to avoid conflict and appease him. Make a plan to get out soon.

  • Wendy,

    You husband is a foul pig and slop is too good for him (and calling him a pig is actually an insult to pigs everywhere) and you deserve better.

    My STBX is an emotionally abusive Baboon from Hell, who pretends regret but has never shown any true remorse. It’s all an act, and even that is only on occasion. Your Baboon from Hell won’t even fake it. He’s just continuing to gaslight, minimize and blameshift. He’s not just an asshole, he’s the entire ass.

    I’m at the tail end of 50 and when my STBX decided he was in “Lurrrvve” with Reverend I’m-A-Whore after 25 years of marriage, I too, thought it was going to be too involved to get a divorce. It has been, but it is not as bad as I thought and has been more of an inconvenience to him and Reverend I’m-A-Whore, since they wanted a quickie divorce and quickie new marriage. Listen to everyone else – a good attorney will help you sort through all of that. The scariest thing for me has been the thought of a bleak financial future because in staying with my STBX, constantly trying to work on the marriage, allowed him to commit financial abuse against me in addition to the emotional abuse. Listen to everyone and get out now before he spends everything on himself and his nasty side piece.

    At 63 years old your “Entitled Baboon” (LOVE THAT, CL! LOLOL!) is who he is – an abusive piece of shit. He is not going to change. He likes himself just the way he is. He is only going to get worse or one day just become too sick to continue. You’ve had his best years – and they were only so-so. Sweep those leftovers into a pile and leave it for people who thrive on “waste management.”

    I am finding that a scary fresh start is better than a shitty remain the same any day. (((HUGS))) and Good Fortune to you Wendy.

    • “You’ve had his best years – and they were only so-so.”
      That is such a good line. It’s usually the woman that talks about giving her best years.

  • Wait. A divorce is is too complicated because of property splitting? What is more complicated is remaining in a marriage with a sociopathic a-hole who has you trained to just take whatever crocks of shit he dishes, which is apparently a lot.

    I also love how you ruined the party with the cake and cheating conga line. She is not the first, you know.

    You should read “On My Own: The Art of Being a Woman Alone” by Frances Falk. Then leave.

  • CL,

    Bit of a derail. I can (obviously) post on the blog again, but the spam stopper is still keeping me out of the forums.

  • Wendy,

    I am so sorry that you are going through this. A lot of people on this site have been/are in your shoes. Chump Lady and all other commenters are right on in their advice to divorce the scumbag asap. Definitely do it on the down low!
    You also need to be vigilant for the sake of your sanity to not blame yourself, and see a therapist to help you through this emotionally. I can tell you I’m ten years out, and I am still reeling from the abuse I put up with! I go back and forth between anger at him for treating me like shit, and shame for putting up with it!

    Good luck! You have family here.

  • Wendy:

    You’ve come to the right place. Believe me when I tell you that it’s time for you to take off the Shit Sweater that your asshole of a husband knitted for you and throw that motherfucker into a burning fireplace. That needs to happen YESTERDAY.

    Here are my thoughts:

    1) It sounds like your marriage has been a radioactive no man’s land for a long time, long before he ever got involved with Ms. Hooker (more on her later). “For years I put up with what I consider to be verbal abuse from my husband.” STRIKE ONE. He seems to think nothing of telling you off, probably because you had the audacity to tell him what the fuck was wrong with what he was doing, instead of blindly agreeing with him.

    And then this: “However, he ruined many a day with his verbal poison that sent me sulking to my room for hours.” Sulking? For hours? That’s a rather regressive behavior more akin to a grounded child, and I’m curious where your husband was during those hours that you sulked alone. Either he was out and about, or downstairs on the couch not giving a fuck. Either way, that should’ve been your first clue that this is NOT a man who values your feelings whatsoever. He seemed to enjoy having an almost parental-like, “How dare you question me?” control over you.

    “He was oblivious to each of these hurts…” WRONG! He just ignored them. Because he thinks he’s right. And because he’s an asshole.

    2) “As further information unfolded, I found out that he let her use our charge card to pay off parking tickets (over $1000 worth), but she immediately paid him for them according to him.” — Wendy, that’s not even REMOTELY believable. I don’t know where you live, but in Philadelphia, parking tickets can be paid by cash, check, credit card, or money order.

    Secondly, let’s assume for a second that the 1k went to parking tickets. You mean to tell me this girl has a THOUSAND dollars laying around that she can use to pay parking tickets but DOESN’T have a credit card or even a debit card that will deduct the money right from her bank account?

    Unless you saw the specific charges on the credit card statement, I’m gonna go ahead and call BULLSHIT and assume that the money was instead used to buy some sparkly shit for the young lady, who paid your husband back with sex. “Holding hands” my ass. Your husband essentially paid escort-level prices for sex with a glorified hooker.

    3) You then catalog a series of MidLife Gone Wild purchases such as books, vitamins, a boat and a motorcycle. You then add: “I let all of this go chalking it up to ‘just him.'” So tell me something: When did it become okay for a man to not only verbally abuse you, but also show clear and utter disregard for your shared finances?

    It sounds to me like a classically dysfunctional and passive-aggressive way of buying shit just to get a rise out of you. Does he really read ALL of those books and take ALL of those vitamins? Your husband sounds to me like the type of person who’d light up a cigarette right in front of you only days after you quit…..AND blow the smoke in your face. And he’d do it for the same reason he bought that shiny boat: For the fuck of it.

    4) “He says that he is sorry it hurt us, but he never meant it to and if I had just left it alone it would have ‘died a natural death.'” — Did he actually use the word “us”? Because it SURE as hell doesn’t seem like he was thinking about “US” when he was out spending YOUR money on some Pretty Young Thing. And something did die a “natural death”, all right. It was his sense of dignity, compassion, and loyalty to a loving and long-suffering wife who made more than enough concessions on behalf of (and excuses for) his fuckheaded choices.

    But notice how the problem, according to him, isn’t his shitty behavior. It’s you bringing it up and trying to talk about it. See how he switched that around? It’s YOUR fault that this is a problem. Not that he went behind your back both financially and sexually.

    5) “At one point he apologized and said he didn’t want to lose me, but his actions show anger and hostility toward me.” — Are you just figuring that out? Sounds like he’s spent many years building a motherfucking monument of hostility towards you. Every dollar he’s spent on Shiny Toys that he doesn’t even play with, not to mention the sexting, the credit card charges, the “late nights”, the “shut the fuck up”‘, and the books he never reads. This is clearly not a man who cares at all for your emotional well-being.

    6) “I obsess all day about finding out the details of what he did and whether he is where he says he is.” — And THIS right here is the classic Chump Trap, something we’ve ALL fell into and nearly suffocated inside of. Instead of worrying about ourselves, instead of pulling ourselves together and figuring out how to rebuild and regain our lives, instead of SURVIVAL, we instead get lost in this Chump Maze in desperate search of the DETAILS. It’s a parasite that damn near devours us from the inside. Wendy, take it from all of us at ChumpNation. This is a puzzle you won’t EVER solve. And even if you get all the pieces in place, the image is STILL going to look out-of-focus.

    What exactly do you want to know anyway?

    a) Did he fuck her? YES. Probably multiple times. No man who shells out THAT much money on some young whore would be okay with just a hand-holding in return. And if holding hands is truly all he got, then he’s dumber than you think he is, and that’s even MORE of a reason to dump his pathetic ass.

    b) Has the sexting continued despite your desperate, pleading protests and your insistence that such behavior hurts you tremendously? YES. The only problem in his mind is that you keep bringing it up. Cheaters HATE to be told no. And your husband sounds more than willing to continue this illicit affair just to fuck with your head. Check the boat in your garage if you don’t believe me.

    c) But wait. Doesn’t he care about the life you’ve created together and how you’ve stuck by his side through thick and thin, in sickness and in health, through temper tantrum after temper tantrum? NO. His actions speak loud enough to wake the dead. Your husband has shown absolutely NO accountability or remorse whatsoever for his actions. He bought home a delicious chocolate cake for the two of you to share, only he ate the whole thing and left some “leftovers” for you in the toilet. Disgusting visual, yes? Not nearly as disgusting as his behavior. It’s time put a stop to it.

    7) “We do not speak, and when I try to he says to wait until he talks to the therapist.” — And there you have it. He doesn’t want to talk unless there’s another grown-up in the room for him to throw the blankets over and expose his nasty, duplicitous Dutch Ovens to….that is of course if he ever gets around to going to the MC appointments.

    Seriously, Wendy, your husband’s whole life sounds like one big stack of delayed decisions, right alongside the unread books and untouched motorcycle. Is THIS the kind of life you envisioned for yourself as a newlywed? Being married to an angry, middle-aged snapping turtle who thinks nothing of cursing you out IN PUBLIC and blatantly spending a THOUSAND dollars on some whore?

    I notice the details are rather scant on the actual affair. That’s probably because there’s not much of a “relationship” to speak of. She’s probably just some young, penniless skank who’s bilking your husband out of money while telling him what he wants to hear (via sexting) and every now and then giving him a piece of ass in exchange for his monetary services. And your husband, like the stupid-ass that he is, probably believes he and this girl 38 YEARS his junior (who’s just a year older than your oldest child) have Something Special together.

    Now, that’s all speculation, but if ANYTHING I wrote in the above paragraph has ANY factual basis, then that’s even MORE of a reason for you to Get. The. Fuck. Out. Of. That. Marriage. You didn’t put 25+ years into a marriage just so he can piss away money on Shiny Shit and some young whore. You deserve better, and the only way you’re ever going to get better is to scratch your husband off the list of Important People in your life and to write your name at the top of the list.

    And finally…

    8) “Divorce is very complicated for us as we have real estate rental properties together.” It’s funny other commented mentioned dirty old cheating husbands and their Viagra. Because nothing gets a divorce lawyer more turned on then getting to sift through all this shit. Wendy, you’re going to have divorce lawyers LINED UP around the block begging to take your case.

    Most divorce lawyers can barely stay awake through divvying up book and record collections and negotiating custody of the dogs. You’ve got PROPERTY and ASSETS and your #1 priority is to find a motherfucking pit bull who’s going to see to it that YOUR interests are taken care of. Let your jackass husband spend all the money he wants trying to get some young “bubbleheaded bleach blonde” (thanks, Don Henley) to sleep with him. From here on out, you need to concentrate on YOU.

    It’s time to put YOU first. You’re no longer going to be another shiny toy banished to the garage or vitamin pillbox or Tolstoy novel collecting dust on the shelf. You need to divorce yourself from your beast of a husband and his lecherousness. Act now. Don’t delay. Find yourself a lawyer.


    • Chris,

      LOLOLOLOLOL!!!! This is the most hilarious, spot on advice I have ever read outside of CL!! Preach on with your bad self!


      Laugh out Loud and then Please, Please, Please Listen to Chris!

    • Chris, If I knew you in person, you would be my BEST FRIEND!!!! Not only are you a witty, great writer, but you give great advice. Thank you so much for your humor and spot-on advice. I know that you took a lot of time and put a lot of thought into it. It is deeply appreciated.

    • “He bought home a delicious chocolate cake for the two of you to share, only he ate the whole thing and left some “leftovers” for you in the toilet.”

      I love it…………that has made my day 🙂 excellent post Chris! Spot on.

    • OMG Chris, I absolutely love it! I wish I had you as my friend when I was going through this shit with my asshole ex. Awesome, incredible advice! WOW JUST WOW!! 🙂

  • I will have the final money for the legal retainer in a couple of weeks. STBX will get a huge surprise.

    Anyway, here’s the deal. You have had great advice. If you want to put your POS STBX off the scent, just go back to status quo. In these people’s minds, if you just go along with them, then clearly you’ve forgotten the whole incident. They’ll be a bit more careful, sure, but they disrespect you so much that they think you’re stupid.

    Go find a good lawyer, one that specializes in complicated property settlements. The attorney I plan to hire told me that if I had assets in excess of $1M (hahah!), I should go see So-and-So, who won’t talk to people unless they have at least that much. You probably have a similar choice of lawyers in your area.

    Funneling funds to pay for schmoopies is a real no-no. Forensic accountants can help here. They’re not cheap, but if you’re talking a lot of money that’s tied up between the two of you, that can affect the split. Again, the lawyer can help.

    It probably won’t be pretty. One of my friends, who has a rental business, spent over a year trying to divorce her POS cheater, as he didn’t want to lose the brains behind the business. In the end, she did take a hit, but she’s winning back the business because he has no real head for it.

  • By the way, everyone, you can go to YouTube and watch Dr. George Simon … Look up Dr George Simon +Character Disturbance. I have the book (Audible) but love watching him talk. He’s so spot on about Predatory Aggressors. CL and Dr. Simon are a real one-two punch to knock you out of Pollyanna-land.

  • I’m sorry Wendy but your husband is a loser and you need to ditch him. However, you need to do this carefully. Get a lawyer, watch your money and get out. Get copies made of account balances, credit cards, etc.

    I discovered my STBX was cheating via texting. He denied it was sexual. Blah blah blah. It was. I lawyered up and got him the hell out within two weeks. He was reluctant and a big pain in the ass but I GOT HIM OUT. You can too. You may not get everything you want but trust me, getting this person out of your life is worth the extra dollars it might cost you.

    I can’t tell you how much better I feel now that he’s gone. I don’t dread weekends when he would come home drunk. I don’t wonder if I’m going crazy. I don’t think I’m useless and ugly. I don’t obsess over what I might do to make him “happy” or be his arm-chair psychologist. And I promise you, I had NO IDEA how abusive he was until I got him out. I thought I was “crazy”, “over-reacting”, etc. But no. The relationship was absolutely toxic.

    Listen to the advice here and be smart. In my opinion, the longer a cheater knows you are on to them, the more time they have to muck around with money and just about everything else and while that might sound a bit paranoid, it’s also quite likely especially if you have money. (Even if you don’t.) A good lawyer is worth the expense.

    I wish you the best.

  • Just think how awesome it will be when his behavior doesn’t embarrass you any more because he’s not your husband any more!!! (It’s awesome.)

    He’ll never dump you, by the way. He likes the benefits of being married.

    Time to kick his sorry old ass to the curb and live a fresh, clean life. He’s such an embarrassment!! What a jerk! There is something SO lonely about living with someone who treats you like shit. There is something so liberating about ditching the dead weight. Do it!

  • Wendy you are definitely not alone.
    As you can see from All the marvellous chumps who have taken the time to write thoughts, feelings and suggestions to your post.
    It does take time to process the crap your (may I say) STBX has dealt you.

    I believe many (if not all) chumps have the moral compass that is different from our cheating shit for brains ex’s. Having this moral compass means we do not fully understand how the cheaters can lie, cheat, deceive and abuse loving spouses, children and family.

    But they do!

    It took me nearly 12 months to fully work that chink out.

    But you now have to look after yourself. Lawyer up, get all your financial papers ready. Do it quickly, quietly and kick his sorry ass to the curb.

    Because he has shown you who he truly is .. A big smelly shiny …

    And a truly wonderful quote that I read here at chumplady which empowers me everyday.
    “Know your worth”. You are worthy and deserve to be treated as such. So Wendy, know your worth.

    Cheers Bellzero

  • I can believe there was no actual sex. Why would the young woman want it? She can sexy him and get tons of money from him.

    I don’t think it makes a difference though. He is financially unfaithful and mean to you. He tried to hide what he was doing from you and he actually asked your kids to help him! That is sick!

    The money situation sounds scary. The best thing you can do is to get legal advice without talking to him.

    What do your kids think you should do?

  • You think your financial life is complicated now? Try a few years down the line when you finally get sick of his abuse and file. What are you going to do when you stand before a judge and he asks you why you’re asking for a settlement when knew he was cheating and you tolerated his abuse for years? Get out now. Throw his ass out.

    Get to a divorce and family law lawyer NOW. Get the best one you can find. Talk to as many as you need to. Remember – your H can’t use a lawyer you’ve already spoken to, even in just a consultation. That will limit who he can use and will give you the chance to gather information. You need a forensic accountant a.s.a.p. Worried about money? Don’t be. If your lawyer’s any good, he/she will petition to have your legal costs paid for by your H.

    Never held hands with her and he gave her 1K. Do you really believe that? Maybe he didn’t hold her hand because she was holding something else.

    Do NOT allow this man to abuse you anymore. Do it for yourself and do it for your kids. Don’t let them see a mother who allows a man to treat her like garbage.

    In the meantime, start gathering any financial paper you can get your hands on. Make copies or take the originals. Get them out of your house. Don’t put them in your car (that’s the first place they look). Birth certificates, bank statements, old tax forms, retirement account numbers, etc. Go on a search of your house. Don’t over think it. Better to toss stuff later than not to have it on hand when you need it. Look everywhere. I found pension account papers in stashed in the eave of my tool shed one day. That’s how devious they are.

    In the words of my father, “If you stay you have the money. If you leave you have your self-respect. The choice is yours.” As hard as it was to battle him, I chose self-respect.

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