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Dear Chump Lady, Why can’t I accept that he sucks?

Dear Chump Lady,

My husband and I separated six months ago. I was 36 weeks pregnant when I discovered his six week affair with his accountant from his emails (purely by accident — I didn’t suspect a thing). I also had a toddler and was suffering from extreme morning sickness.

When confronted, he didn’t deny it, he simply packed his bags and moved in with her. She was married with two kids so she left her husband to be with him. She and my husband are still together.

I have since had the baby and he comes to visit now and then. He and OW have split up and got back together several times so I know all is not rosy there. However, I just can’t accept that he truly sucks. All the evidence is there — he cheated on me while pregnant then abandoned me and the children. He also left his first wife when their second child was six months old so he is a repeat offender.

But he is a really sparkly person and every time I see him, I seem to get sucked back in to missing him and the life we had together. I find myself wondering what he and OW have that is so much better than what we had. What do they talk about? Do they talk about our kids (she hasn’t met them yet)? Do they eat the same dinners he used to cook for me? Go to the same restaurants? Visit the same hotels? I just can’t seem to move on and accept that he truly sucks, that she isn’t somehow the winner here and that their relationship is irrelevant to me. My heart and my head are at war and my heart is still winning. Help!


Dear Lisa,

If he doesn’t suck, what is your definition of “suck”? Drowns baby kittens? Kicks elderly people in the head? Steals drugs from cancer patients?

Sure, if he did THOSE things, you would see that he sucks. My examples aren’t rhetorical. In every instance, he would be harming a vulnerable population — baby kittens, elderly people, cancer patients. Only the really despicable would sucker punch a weaker person. Only truly dreadful people prey on the vulnerable, right?

Vulnerable like say… a woman 36 weeks pregnant with a toddler.

This man cheated on you during a time in your life when you needed him most. He then abandoned you with a newborn and a toddler. Just ran off with NO explanation (what could he say? I am filth?) — a complete shit and total coward — and you want this person back?

What kind of sparkles eclipse that lack of character? Blinding sparkles?

He’s an asshole. He did this before (please tell me you weren’t the OW in that scenario). This is who he IS.

Who is that? A man you cannot trust. A man who cannot be relied upon to support his family and the mother(s) of his children. A lot of chumps blame themselves for their cheaters infidelities. What are you going to blame yourself for — carrying his child? Taking care of a toddler? Did kibble production fall so low he had to go find it elsewhere? Do you really want the sort of narcissistic monster that demands more kibbles from a pregnant woman who is otherwise occupied, you know, gestating a human being? Do you think you can keep up with that kind of demand? Because you cannot. NO ONE can. It’s batshit disordered.

So why do you miss him, why can’t you trust that he sucks? Because you’re mourning the dream of what You Thought It Was. You invested wholly in that dream and you thought this  man was your security. He gutted you and now you need security more than ever. What’s more scary than being cheated on while pregnant? Being abandoned. Feeling twice as vulnerable now, you’re naturally afraid, and so you do that chumpy thing — you return to the very person who gutted you and demand that he heal you. He must make it better. He must reverse this. Only he has that power to bring the dream back!

Fuck him. Fuck the dream. That dream is dead. I’m sorry, Lisa. It’s time to rely on yourself and cut this toxic man out of your life.

Does he cook the same dinners? Go to the same restaurants? Visit the same hotels? Yes. Because he’s not very original. One kibble source is as good as the next. When that kibble source flags he will find another. (Apparently, he’s already keeping the OW off balance, dumping her and taking her back to increase the pick-me kibbles.) He does all the things he did with you because that’s his schtick. No one is special. Read that again: NO ONE IS SPECIAL. He only treats women “special” to lure them in as a kibble source. When they get vulnerable or tired or divert their energies to someone that isn’t Him and His Needs — he bails. When he needs a new sucker, he turns the “special” sparkles back on.

You miss the sparkles. You miss the illusion of being special. I get it Lisa. Been there, have the multiple D-Days and resulting humiliations to prove it. Listen, the sparkles are a halluciangenic drug. It’s just a feeling of “special.” But the hangover is insane and withdrawal is painful. If he truly thought you were special, if he cherished you, if he were CAPABLE of cherishing you, he would not have cheated on you.

That doesn’t mean you’re not worthy of being cherished. You are. But love yourself first. Love yourself more than this asshole. Love your children more. Call a lawyer and make this guy your EX husband. Nothing here to save.  (((Big hugs)))

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  • OMG, Chump Lady, that is a really inspiring post, and exactly what I needed to hear this morning! My STBXPartner has the blinding sparkles, and he knows exactly how to turn them on and off. Everyone thinks he is the most honorable, loving, terrific guy they’ve ever met and that I’m lucky to have him. I have to leave not just him, but all of “our” friends who are just bowled over by his sparkling. I am, too! He knows how to get around and under my resolve every time I see him or speak to him, so I have to go NC. I have to get back on my feet! I let this fucktard ruin the last year of my life, since he started his affair. A year of “pick me” dancing. Makes me sick. I am in my second day of not responding to his phone calls, e-mails, or texts. I really needed this post to remind me of the disrespect and humiliation that he brought down upon me. AND to remind myself that I AM A GOOD PERSON, even if I don’t take this cheating fuck back. I’m fat, and everyone (including my mother) thinks that I should forgive him and take him back. It feels like the unspoken advice is, “It’s hard for a fat girl to find a man. Better not lose this one.” But the only way I can do it is to cut off the part of me that knows what he did. And no matter how fat I am, or how much the world tells me I don’t deserve better, I THINK I DESERVE BETTER! WTF??? As Patti LaBelle would say, “If he don’t like the way my clothes come unfastened, he ain’t worth me anyway!!” Thank you so much for this site!

    • LG, never forget your worth. NEVER. Who the hell thinks you need to keep an abusive man around because you’re fat? Infidelity is abuse. It’s disrespect. It’s endangering your health. It’s emotional abuse.

      Don’t internalize other people’s judgements. Don’t sell yourself short. I’m 5’10” squidgy around the middle and middle aged. And my hair is weird. Apparently at 43 I had a better chance of being hit by lightening than remarrying. I’m remarried quite happily. There’s a lid for every pot. (If you want a pot — not everyone is required to couple up again.)

      Know your worth and stay NC!

        • LoyalGaga,
          I was ‘fat’ too keeping my alcoholic Narc company on a barstool. Guess what? When I stopped living HIS lifestyle I lost 35 lbs. You can too.
          I remember thinking that he left me because I got ‘fat.’ But guess what (giggle snort) the OW has now ballooned up…most likely living his unhealthy lifestyle. And I am now thinner (but with a squidgy midsection as CL says) haha.
          I started out walking walking walking. I strapped on a pedometer and got in 10,000 steps a day. I didn’t have to make meat and potatoes for dinner every night eating at 9pm. So he could get drunk before dinner. I eat salads and fruit and whole foods something he sniffed at.
          I’m in bed at 9pm every night now.
          Another benefit I save money now. Something unheard of when I was with the XH. He was never content with anything. He always ‘needed’ something else to fill the void in his soul. We were always in debt. We wouldn’t get one thing paid for and he’d be lusting after another. I don’t owe one dime except for my house and have money in the bank for the first time since he ran off with the OW.

          Good riddance.

          • Thanks, Gio. I have to start taking care of myself better as you describe. I am great at taking care of him…not so much at taking care of me!

        • Dear LoyalGaga,
          We are only as beautiful as we let ourselves believe & the fact that u kicked your cheating partner to the curb makes u beautiful to me!
          By the way , a guy who cheats will cheat … It had nothing to do with the way you look.. Halle Berry’s husbands cheated on her Brad Pitt cheated on Jennifer Aniston.. These are women that the world considers ” slim & beautiful” .
          I am slim, I think I’m pretty good looking :), I take good care of myself, I’m not frigid & I also brought money to the table but my STBEX cheated on me with at least 10 women ( the ones I had proof of & I’m sure there were many others I did not know about!) … You are not the one with the problem LG.. it’s the loser who cheated on you who has a problem!

          • Thank you 13YC, I think I am just stuck trying to figure out WHY (or as CL would say, untangling the skein of fuckedupedness). Because I would never do such a thing to another person NO MATTER WHAT, I just can’t get my head around it.

            • Dear LG,
              I TRIED “untangling the skein of fuckedupedness” throughout my miserable marriage!.. The truth is there is no untangling.. No reasoning to what makes a cheater cheat!… My freedom, peace & true joy began at the beginning of 2014 when I realized it did not matter why he did what he did… What matters is it is no longer my concern.. It no longer affects me.. I’m free from the misery. The wondering ‘where he is’ , ‘who he is with’ ” why is he so mean to me’, ‘ ‘what can I do to make him love me” etc… I’m free.. & believe me it feels great!

      • This cannot be emphasized or repeated enough! I sometimes fall into “last chance saloon” thoughts because I’m 10 years older than CL and the dating pool is very shallow at this end… I’d rather be alone than sell myself short by tolerating any relationship that makes me feel disrespected and “less than.”

    • LG – “I’m fat, and everyone (including my mother) thinks that I should forgive him and take him back.” YOU DESERVE BETTER. Size doesn’t matter. Everybody deserves to be treated with respect, and personally, I came to the decision that I’d rather be alone with my dogs than married to the serial-lying-cheating-narcissist I’d been with for 20+ years. YOU ARE A GOOD PERSON and there is something better out there. BELIEVE IT.

      • LoyalGaga, you are not your size. You are YOU and YOU will likely evolve into a much healthier and happier person – chubby or not chubby – when you divorce your cheating ass hat. Love yourself fiercely! As for your current “support system”, WTF?! Who needs support like that?! You wisely know they are WRONG! Ignore them and look to your new support system – Chump Nation!

        If it helps about a year ago I was 65 pounds heavier. I am now considered thin. So what?! I am still the same good person on the inside. My challenges remain the same. My dreams and hopes remain the same. My coating has changed but nothing important has. I was valuable then, I am valuable now.

        Hugs to you!

        • Thank you, JamBerry. I love your advice to “love myself fiercely.” How great that would feel!

    • LG, what does being fat have to do with the appalling treatment you have been subjected to? Absolutely nothing. I am 5ft 6ins tall and slim and have received exactly the same treatment as you. My sister is fat, has been married for 40 years to her 1st and only love who still adores her. You and I just happen to have pick rotters (Australian term for rats). My problem was I couldn’t compete with 20 year old Asian prostitutes and nor do I want to at 62 years of age. Please stick with the no contact rule. Every day will make it easier for you and eventually you won’t give him a second thought. Be strong because you are worth so much better and more.

      • Ditto, Marie! I’m 5’10”, slim, blonde and kinda pretty if you squint hard enough and 14 years younger than ex NPD who had the same proclivities as yours. Prostitutes–the ultimate supply for the disordered! How convenient for the ex-h often had “work” in Perth, just a hop, skip and a jump to Southeast Asia. How can they compete with a loving and beloved, educated, smart, hard working at a REAL job that benefits the helpless, talented woman like me? The disordered don’t want reciprocity in a relationship. They’re children playing pretend games with toy acting and mouthing the script he’s written.

        • Wow, our story is similar. I am from Melbourne and my ex husband would never take me travelling when he had to go to Perth on business!! Eventually a 20 year old Asian prostitute caught his eye. I played the fool and looked the other way for way too long thinking that he wouldn’t do anything to hurt me. Instead he nearly destroyed me. Having said that, I am the one with the strong character and just as well because I am still standing.

          • Girls!

            I am in Sydney, and my story is the same!

            I am even blonde and, at age 45, still pretty reasonable looking.

            Yet that didn’t stop my husband of 20 years from making regular visits to Thailand where he spent as much as $50k / year on Thai hookers.

            It seems to be an epidemic in this part of the world. We should compare notes sometime in the forums!

            Thanks for reminding me just how unspecial my cheater is. He’s just like all the rest of them, a big loser who karma will take care of for me. I trust that he sucks.

            You should see the big, bushy eyebrows on the current one. She looks like Groucho Marx, and I think she’s about 12… Which could quite possibly be a problem for him after settlement when I alert the AFP.

            • “…nearly destroyed me..” So true. It’s uncomfortable to even look back at the pain. It felt like one of those horror movies you see advertised on tv. Things that couldn’t really happen in real life were happening to me. I carried that scream inside me for the longest time. Photos he’d texted me of his trip to Thailand for “work” had the same background I later found on his Russian’s whore’s facebook page. $500 dinner in Sydney. A half dozen trips in one night to an ATMs in Melbourne each time he visited. Later claiming the culture regarding sex in Vietnam and Thailand is very different than in the States which he seemed to feel gave him a free pass on integrity. Behind that secret door, was a dark, ugly, disturbed, creature willing to take me down with him.
              I’d travel with him once or twice year to Australia and had so many fond memories. I spent many days exploring cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Hobart, Perth, Canberra), beaches and small towns (Dubbo, Lauceston, Broken Hill) . Someday I’ll be able to think of them with feelings of disgust for him ruining them.
              Solidarity with you from the rainy Northwest corner of the States!

    • LoyalGaga, the kind of person you want to be with is not a limp dipstick that cares about your weight. Your mom is probably from another era or outer space or both. You really absolutely deserve and can find better!

      • LoyalGaga,

        Ignore your mother, she knows not of what she speaks, God bless her. There are some men who like nothing more than a woman with plenty of meat on her bones. Listen to CL. My grandmother used to tell me that nobody wants a bone but a dog and he’ll toss it aside for a piece of meat.

        Change your internal dialogue. It takes time and effort (as I am still working on it) but it will be worth. Stop asking yourself who would want you and start asking yourself who do want and what qualities are non-negotiable. As CL constantly admonishes us – KNOW YOUR WORTH. I don’t know what you consider “fat” per se, but one man’s “fat” is another man’s dream woman.

        I lost a lot of weight during this shitstorm, but I’m still the same me. The work I’m doing is internal, which has helped me maintain the weight as I try not to eat anything that does not honor me physically. I’m trying to make honoring myself a total process – thoughts, behavior, food, etc. I am still a work in progress.

        I’m sending you lots of (((BIG HUGS))) because no one should, particularly your mother, tell you to stay with an abusive POS because of your weight. You are beautiful and I don’t have to see to know that. Your spirit speaks it loud and clear.

          • Thanks, ChumpP! I love your “diet plan”: I try not to eat anything that does not honor me physically. ” That one thing would change my life! And thank you for your kind words. I think my mother is just responding out of her own abandonment issues – my father did the same thing to her, and it took her years to get over it. DEJA VU ALL OVER AGAIN! 🙂

    • With respect, I think you might want to “detach with kindness” from your mother, if she thinks that you need to settle for a cheating asshole just because you are fat.

      Fat has nothing to do with physical attraction! I see Big Beautiful Women hooked up with really handsome guys, and some Big Men hooked up with women whose looks would make even the most hetero women think about shopping the other side of the aisle. In both cases, the person seems to radiate a beauty. This beauty comes from being happy in one’s skin.

      If you’re not happy with your skin, now’s the time to figure that out. Do the therapy for that as well as for having been mindfucked by your STBXPartner. The result will be a much more centered YOU, and once you learn to love yourself, you’re more likely to love and be loved by others. Knowing that you have value–now that gives you your own sparkle! 🙂

      For what it is worth, my Cheater says that I’m too thin. In fact, I now weight what I did when we were married, but Cheater has to find some kind of fault because OW is over 200lbs. Cheater doesn’t want to admit that she’s fat (she is 4 inches shorter than I am, so, the extra weight really rounds her out). Instead, I have to be too thin.

      So weight has nothing to do with cheating.

      I wonder if these same people who are telling you to stick with your cheater because you can’t do better (bleagh!) would say the same if he hit you a couple of times. Would they tell you to forgive him and take him back?

      Detach from these people. They are not your friends.

    • Being overweight doesn’t mean you’ll eat shit sandwiches just cos. I’m not skinny either and I’m not in my 20s, the thought constantly crosses my mind that who wants a fat middle aged woman…but we’re wrong. I think we shouldn’t be caring about anyone else but ourselves at the moment. My plan is to become the love of MY life, about time I was the love of someones life, and then it won’t matter whether I have a man or not. But maybe I’ll have a man for the right reasons…not just someone who is keeping me from being alone cos I’m fat!

      • Yea, I’m pretty sick of the shit sandwich diet! I love what you said, “My plan is to become the love of MY life.” That’s beautiful! Thanks!

    • Passed through the stage wondering if I was good enough. That ended when I began to “trust that he sucked.” What I look like on the outside is NOT the most important part of me.

  • Chump Lady – you must be psychic as I really needed this post today. It would be our wedding anniversary and I was busy remembering what a great day it was and how great the years that followed were. But the truth is, he totally sucks. I was never the ow by the way – met him a few years after his first divorce and believed his crap about what went wrong in that marriage. Thanks for posting this today. You are right – we deserve better and although it hurts that we will never be that intact family I always dreamed of, I do believe we will be happy again one day.

    • Lisa, our hearts go out to you. As Chump Lady says, there is a special place in hell for cheaters who leave pregnant wives. Get rid of him so you can move on into the beautiful life you and your two children deserve. We are here for you! Many hugs!

    • Sending you good thoughts on this day. For me, our anniversary after dday was really hard, but after that, it was like something heavy lifted. I guess i had been dreading it so much… I hope that as you move past this day, it helps in your healing process…

    • Lisa, wow, I’m so glad I’m “psychic” and could respond on a day that must be especially difficult for you.

      You WILL be happy again. NC is the trick. Lawyer up and only communicate by email about children and finances. Nothing personal. He is NOT your friend. (((Big hugs))) You’re not alone. Lean on us for support.

  • The postings that deal with these squirmy little parents abandoning their families make me want to scream from any rooftop. A toddler and a pg wife mean that life is, wait for it, REAL. And who made that choice? That poor excuse for a man made that choice. Is it fun to come home from work to more work? No. My daughter had 5 children in 6 years (don’t ask, I have no clue why) and her husband and she are so exhausted they can barely put one foot in front of them most days. But they realize that they both made the choice to do this, and are in it for the long haul (I hope, no guarantees, as we all know). It is hard damn work, no question.

    So, your husband is a shirker. He will always be a shirker, therefore, divest yourself of his shirkiness sooner rather than later. Try to get him to be there for his children, but do not worry about his being there for you. You do not need him and his inability to accept reality. He is not a man of integrity, and never will be. Think of him now as someone who can give you free time, a valuable commodity with a toddler and new baby. Readjust your thinking to that end bc you have many years ahead of you in terms of parenting. That may sound clinical (or cynical) but he has shown his true self (twice, apparently). The end.

  • Bravo CL! These super sparkly evil toddlers create so much cognitive dissonance. It is so hard to wrap one’s mind around the fact that no one is actually special to them because they are so good at making the one they are with feel as if she/he is oh, so fabulously loved up. It suits their agenda for kibble in the moment. It doesn’t actually mean spit and they just don’t care what damage they leave in their wake. It is not that another man/woman is better, it’s just new and sparkly supply. Probably the new supply is working super hard at the pick me dance (especially yummy kibbles) and not requiring accountability of the assclown to keep the waters smooth. No cheater wants to deal with the icky stuff like having someone actually show their pain and call them on their shit. New kibbles are so much easier to manage and more comfortable. And, of course, it is all about what feels good – to them.

    As far as not being original, when I found out the ex had gotten married to the woman he had overlapped sex with me (as often as possible during his courtship of her!), I also learned that they honeymooned the last place he and I had vacationed.

    I’d like to note also that until very recently he still tried to worm his way back into my good graces as if nothing had happened! He clearly doesn’t think she’s that “special” or have any respect for her either. Yes, I still miss the sparkles almost 2 years later, but once you know what someone like this is capable of, you can’t unknow it. People are the sum of all their parts, you can’t order ala carte. I know it would require selling every bit of my self-esteem to the devil to buy back into a fucked up relationship with a disordered entitled pig. Please, please trust that he sucks and live an authentic life free of this monster.

  • “He gutted you and now you need security more than ever… Feeling twice as vulnerable now, you’re naturally afraid, and so you do that chumpy thing — you return to the very person who gutted you and demand that he heal you.”

    Yes, Lisa, this is the key. Read up on “traumatic bonding” (Lundy Bancroft and others have written on this topic). It ironically creates very powerful bonds. This does not mean anything is wrong with you: it’s a natural response. You are only human.

    No Contact is the main solution; the other solution is to find healing in other places. Enjoy your little ones, spend more time with loving friends and family, see a therapist, read inspiring books – whatever brings you strength, and makes you happy and proud. I know that with two little ones you probably don’t have much time to devote to yourself, but this is the path that will allow you to heal from the damage he’s done and emerge into your new life.

  • Lisa, my ex didn’t abandon me financially during our children’s preschool days but he didn’t like the tumultuous nature of taking care of young children and found every excuse he could to travel for business. Around this time I started finding love notes in his pockets from a “student,” or so he assured me. She was just someone who had a crush on him as a professor, perfectly harmless according to him. Funny that he never mentioned this until I found the note, though. Another time I received a phone call from a strange man who asked if I knew where my husband was? When I answered that he was at a certain place the man told me that he wasn’t, that he was in fact somewhere else. I confronted my ex about this when he got home, around 2 am, and he made up some other reason to explain it all away. These incidents stayed with me but I was exhausted, taking care of two small children with asthma and just trying to get through every day with a minimum of sleep at night. Often I would go from one bedroom to the next all night long giving breathing treatments. I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown from exhaustion and had no energy to even contemplate getting a divorce, plus I had no physical proof of my ex having affairs, just suspicions.

    Fast forward to my kids getting older and leaving home. Once again, I’m struggling with empty nest syndrome, I’m isolated and living on a farm where my ex insists we live, although he’s never home. Just as my kids get married and move away my ex surprises me with the announcement he wants a divorce. I’m struggling with the kids leaving and instead of supporting me, he leaves too. I go from being a wife and mother one week to living alone in a big old house wandering around and wondering what happened to my family.

    These guys are all about themselves. Even if your husband came back, chances are very good he would leave you again, just when you really needed him. They have emotional deficits, they can’t be there for you like you need them to be. I know it’s harder than heck with two little kids, but I can tell you from personal experience you’re in for a life time of pain if you stay with this guy.

    • Lyn
      My husband was never home during our marriage, he was married to his job to the point of obsession. As our children got older, he struggled to make connections with them due to his lack of investment and they became part of the reason he left (so he said… although sleeping with someone else seemed more obvious to me!)
      I lost all of them in a very short space of time, son and husband the same week. Daughter, her boyfriend and dog a few months later.
      The adjustment was huge. My grief was bottomless. Everything I had ever held dear to me was gone, my whole family. But it got better, adjustments have been made, my relationships with my now adult children are changed for the better. We rock.

      My ex missed nothing… it took him 2 years to even ask for a photo of the kids.
      He totally sucks.

      • OMG. It’s been almost 3 years since the divorce was final and I just realized that my ex has NEVER asked for a picture of the kids. I think he has pictures of them that are 10+ years old in his office, but that’s it. Freaky.

        • I actually tried to divide the family photos with him. He said it made him uncomfortable. I’m planning on making boxes for the kids but can’t be bothered to deal with it yet.

        • You guys just made me realize the ex didn’t bring any of the family photos with him, or ask for a copy of the data stick where we have back-ups since we went all digital. He didn’t bring the folder where we kept the little cards and mementos the kids had given him over the years.

          Been almost 2 years now since I kicked his ass out, the kids refuse to see him except for dinner once a month. How sad that he isn’t even interested enough to want the photos.

      • I told my ex that when I felt up to looking at the old family photos I’d scan them for him, but he said he didn’t need them.

        Verity, I think it’s so hard because we tried for so many years to hold the family together only to have it so utterly come apart in the end. My ex moved away to be closer to his married coworker girlfriend, and now we don’t even speak. It’s the weirdest thing that a person who was central to my life for 36 years just disappeared! Not to mention losing in-laws who I thought of as family, plus our home, etc. But I’ve had a chance to build the kind of life I want without feeling obligated to take care of anyone else and that is a real gift. I may not be as well off financially, but I feel a lot less lonely than when I lived with him.

        • I hear you. I was married for 38 years, and it all went up in smoke. It was very surreal to me. But I do love not having to answer to anyone anymore. My ex never asked for any pics of our children either, and did not take one stick of anything from our home when he left. I left him 1/2 of it as I was moving into an apt. He put it all in storage and he and OW started out with all new things.

          I still have a relationship with his sister (meeting for lunch tomorrow) but the rest of his family is gone. His mother could never stand up to him, and accepted his decision and the new wife pretty quickly. I now only have resentment toward the fact that his wife has a relationship with my gkids, and did immediately, saying that she ‘loved her new family’. Ugh. My ex did not get that I struggled with that. He said, Well, you can’t have too many people to love you. True, but hurtful in the extreme. Insensitive asshat.

          • I think HE needed too many people to love him, duh. I’m so sorry they have to continue to take joy from you.

      • Verity, my husband was never home either… EVER.. when the kids were younger and even into their early teens, always busy doing other things, work, shooting, sailing, surfing, seeing other women as “friends” (still to this day don’t know whether these friends were physical affairs or just emotional), then he just up and left to be with one of these “friends”. He said to me a couple of weeks before he up and ran off with the blonde that he had nothing in common with his kids or me. I said to him at the time that maybe that was because he never spent any time with us. That will be 3 years ago in May. Has he got one photo of the kids… not one. He left everything that the kids had given him, every fathers day card, every photo and has never asked for anything.
        I have an incredible relationship with both my kids. They are the most amazing people. Love them with all my heart.

    • “I’m struggling with the kids leaving and instead of supporting me, he leaves too. I go from being a wife and mother one week to living alone in a big old house wandering around and wondering what happened to my family.

      These guys are all about themselves. ”

      Ding ding ding!! we have a winner! Lyn I feel your pain, but that is what happened to me, too…and my sister….and my sister in law….. Kids gone (not that the sperm donors did much parenting once the sprouts hit adolescence anyway, if ever), and hubby off on various kinds of sprees. One of my assorted asswipe brothers-in-law even said he didn’t see what was so wrong with him wanting more varied sex “after all these years.” Cheesus.

      Then–“Oh! I have to go find my self”–“my dick is like a dowsing wand, didn’t you know?” It points the way.

      I guess these disordered jackasses (of any gender) can’t deal with the reality of parenting at either end of the stress picture (very young-as in Lisa’s story, or teen-to-young adult), so they bail out. What they miss, alas is so much treasure. I, for one, don’t care a bit about what they lose. I do however care a lot about what the kids lose.

      • What is weird is our boys played soccer growing up and my ex was at every game. I couldn’t call him an uninvolved dad, but maybe his being around had more to do with living through the kids, I don’t know.

        One of my best friend’s husband left after their son graduated and stopped playing soccer too. In fact, he married a woman in his office with a young child (broke up her marriage) and now he’s back to going to soccer games with her kid. He doesn’t see much of his kids from his first marriage now that they’re grown.

        My ex said he loved the OW’s kids who are 4 and 7. I hear they call him Uncle.

        It’s like they wanted to start over in every way — younger wives, younger kids.

        • My ex spent every weekend at horse shows with our daughter, but I think that was to get away from me. I always thought they were close but my daughter soon enlightened me after he left. She said she’d spent her whole life seeking his approval and got nothing but criticism. She hasn’t seen him since.

        • Pre-schoolers and school-aged kids often give unquestioning admiration and appreciation to anyone who treats them halfway well. EGO KIBBLES! Babies are hard work, without a lot of return, if your idea of return is kibbles. Adolescents start to see people for who they are, and are often not easy to deal with – low kibbles!

          It’s very clear what these narc idiots want, and it’s clear where they can get it.

        • New baby! A boy no less! I walk around shopping centres and see fathers doting on their babies and it makes me think that his baby needs a father, he needs to be there with him….but my babies needed their father too and he didn’t care less about them. He (50) did the right thing by miss 22, just not by anyone else…and I do wonder why. Cos he sucks? Yeah I guess…

  • Lisa,

    Does he suck? Yes. Yes, he does. At an industrial-strength level. Dude could suck a golf ball through a garden hose. He sucks so much you should refer to him as Mr. Hoover. Yes, he sucks.

    Most likely he is a master manipulator, which is a dangerous type of emotional predator. Dangerous to you, dangerous to your family. But even giving him every benefit of the doubt, he is a man who does not know his mind. Does not know what he wants, where his obligations lie, or how to act in this world. And that kind of person can be just as dangerous as the predatory kind. After all, a drunk driver can hurt you just as badly as a serial killer.

    Go no contact as much as co-parenting permits, love your children, and demand better from anyone you let into your life.

    Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

    • “But even giving him every benefit of the doubt, he is a man who does not know his mind. Does not know what he wants, where his obligations lie, or how to act in this world. And that kind of person can be just as dangerous as the predatory kind. After all, a drunk driver can hurt you just as badly as a serial killer.”

      Nomar, this is spot on. I think sometimes this can be the key that helps us chumps let go. I know it was liberating for me to finally realize, “It doesn’t matter if he won’t treat me well or can’t treat me well – the end result for me is the same.” It can be too hard for our chummy little hearts to see our spouses as monsters or villains. But that’s not necessary for us to leave. It’s enough to realize that they are hurting us, and that won’t change.

      • Yeah, trying to figure out how much intent is involved and what kind is just untangling the skein. Pain is pain, and at some point we’ve got to say enough is enough.

        • That is a good point. I used to wonder whether my ex was incapable of being there for me emotionally, or whether he just didn’t care. I guess you’re right that the end result is the same no matter the cause.

          • I reached that conclusion, too, Lyn. But after reading Dr. Simon, and some long discussions w/my kids, I concluded that he was certainly capable of being a much better husband and father than he was (smart guy, incredibly hard working when he put his mind to things, socially awkward but not totally clueless). He chose not to make that effort, not to make ANY effort to make our relationship work, to be a good dad. And he made that choice, consistently and persistently, because he truly feels that he shouldn’t have to make ANY effort, the kibbles should just keep flowing freely. Pure entitlement.

            That conclusion doesn’t change how I feel about my decision to get him out of my life. But it does give me a certain feeling of disgust towards him. And that feeling is not improved when he basically admits all that, and then says that NOW he will try (which he did a few months ago). Oh, while I was unhappy and your kids were unhappy because of how you treated us, for a decade and a half, you had no motivation to make any effort. But now that YOU are unhappy because of all you’ve lost, it’s worth the effort. Disgusting.

            Not hard to trust that he sucks, now.

  • “People are the sum of all their parts, you can’t order ala carte.” I like this, so true. Ex and OW (when I initially contacted her to try to get her to butt out) said “but that’s not all of me”. It is the sum of who they are, people with no character or integrity.

    • ^^ This! I so relate to. I think it’s how I was able to see my x as so sparkly… It doesn’t matter if he’s funny or romantic, if he’s also a thief, sell out, and pathological liar. Or if he’s a tortured sad soul with mommy issues.

      I wore some some seriously dysfunctional goggles, and when it all comes into focus as one person, it’s quite scary. I now often wonder if other people could see that in him all along, just not me- or if everyone who knows him is fooled.

      • My Knight, I would swear you have just described my ex husband. I can tell you now, not one person can see it in my ex. Everyone thinks he is just the most fantastic bloke. Your last quote “or if everyone who knows him is fooled”. You hit the nail right on the head.

      • MKISD, I think he fooled some people but not some people in my family. Something was off and I thought my role was to defend my marriage and nuclear family from my extended family’s criticism. That was because of FOO issues I had with them which complicated the whole mess.

  • (((Hugs))), Lisa,

    He SUCKS. Truthfully, I think you know that, but you want to believe that what you thought about him and your marriage was real, but sadly it wasn’t. What you know now is the truth, and I know you know that sucks.

    A man who would boink another woman while his very pregnant wife is hanging her head over a toilet and chasing a toddler sucks.

    A man who would walk out and leave you weeks before delivering his child sucks.

    A man who would abandon his children and leave you to raise them alone sucks.

    A man who did the same thing before sucks (royally).

    Your children have more empathy and maturity than he does. He’s the person who bails at the first hint of reality. As much as that SUCKS, keep in mind that life has a way of handing us all hard situations. If he’d stuck around and let you do the reconciliation dance, perhaps gracing you with staying in your marriage, what do you think he’d do if you or one of your children became ill or you had financial troubles? Lisa, he’s the guy who would bail and let someone else pick up the pieces if he burned toast, let alone needed him to be faithful and love you with all he’s with while you chuck your lunch or give birth to his child, because, oh sheesh, that stuff is messy, that stuff isn’t fun, that stuff makes him choose to be a man or run.

    And what did he choose? His fun, his needs, his escape from life. The real him sucks. Trust it.

  • Lisa,

    So very sorry that you have to endure this at such a time – I was practically sleepwalking through those newborn/early toddler years – and to have this on top of that. Hugs and prayers to you.

    But remember – you will have the incredible, irreplaceable gift of BEING THERE for those special moments – and he have that up for his own selfish crazy time. You deserve so much better, and so do your little ones. Do not waste one more second on him – you will never get anything authentic from someone who was capable of screwing around on a pregnant wife. That’s a special kind of evil. Instead, take that energy and focus on you and your babies. Love YOURSELF enough to draw healthy boundaries and live in truth. YOU are lovable and precious – he is not worthy of you anymore.

  • Lisa, my husband did the same when I had a 3 yo, 6 month old, financially dependent on him and living in a foreign country where I don’t speak the language. I’m six months down the track, just gaining my confidence after 3 months of almost no contact where I reached into that deep dark place to move through the grief. I know exactly how you feel. Trust me, he SUCKS. Our kids will be better off without that role model in their lives. We need to fix our pickers and move forward to a much sunnier future.

  • Lisa,
    I had a repeat offender too. He cheated on his first wife by having long term affair on her. When I met him he was divorced and “learned a lot and would never go through that again”. Surprise! Turns out he learned nothing and did the exact same to me. The only difference was his affair in our marriage was considerably shorter, but only because I found about about it. If I hadn’t I’m sure he would have dragged it out as long as he could.

    The point to all this is, people like this don’t change. They cheat, they “over-lap”, they pretend they are happy in their marriages and all the while are trying to fuck the receptionist at their office, some girl they friend-ed on Facebook, or the neighbor down the street. This is just what they do. (My STBXH watched his mother and father cheat on each other relentlessly while growing up. They are like a pack of hyenas.) He cheats like it’s a sport.

    The greatest lesson I learned from this is I will NEVER EVER go with a man that has cheated in his past. If he talks shit about his ex like she was an ice queen who never gave him any attention, I’m running away like the house is on fire. The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. People like this just don’t change.

    I’m lucky I don’t have children with my dirt bag, and I’m also very lucky the bullshit is finally over. Stomp all over that dream you had that he was someone of value, because he’s not. Any person that would leave you with a small child while you are pregnant is a waste of air.

    If you need more proof of what an asshole he is, get a lawyer and have him served. He will show you a new level of asshole; trust me.

  • Lisa,

    He abandoned his children. HE ABANDONED HIS CHILDREN. His own flesh and blood. His babies. He abandoned them. This is the kind of man you want to love? If he could do that, what else would he be capable of? Yeah he sucks. Pretty sure you can’t make a happy family with someone who could abandon their own children.

    • Yes! That’s it isn’t it. If he could abandon his children, what else is he capable of? You can’t get much lower can you!

  • I agree that No Contact will help you SOOOOO much! It’s hard to implement when there are kids, but you can keep all information and discussion to e-mail, even ask a friend to receive the e-mails and only send you the practical info. If there’s a child pick-up, do it somewhere public or at someone else’s home, and FAST, no chat. Have the child or children ready and hand them over. DON’T let him ‘visit’ the kids at your place, unless there’s no other choice – and in that case, he walks in the door, you walk out (leave a note with any info he needs).

    You REALLY need support right now, from family, any ‘real’ friends he hasn’t managed to hijack, or paid assistance if you can afford that. Plus a good therapist, that goes without saying!

    Another thing that helped me get it into my head that he SUCKS is to make a list of everything mean, selfish, insensitive or unpleasant thing he’s ever done. I started it and was amazed how much poured out onto the computer screen! Then I just added things as I thought of them. Then I re-read it often, especially when I was feeling tempted or like I was being sucked in.

    No Contact, and TIME, they will free you from this jerk!

    • I made the list too – this is great advice. Any time I was feeling like I was wrong or he wasn’t as bad as he was, I pulled out that list. It’s three pages long and still doesn’t include everything. It always put me back on the right path. I’m amazed now that I put up with all of that crap!

      • I’ve said this before, it’s also a good idea to write down the good things. I knew I needed to leave him and yet I kept thinking but I LOVE him. So I made a list of all the reasons I loved him and all the reasons he sucked. It was so illuminating. As I wrote down the reasons I loved him, every single one had a caveat; and most of the time it was that he really hadn’t acted that way, or done those things very much in the last few years. What I loved was the facade he put on in the beginning and which he would pull out less and less frequently as the years went by. What I loved was a memory of him that was not in any way based on the reality of our life.

        • This is really insightful. I have done some similar mental tallying over the past month, as I am nearer to the goal of having my retainer fee at the ready.

          I do remember that I was attracted to him because he read widely and liked music, theater, and restaurants. He liked doing different things. However, since we’ve been married, he’s too tired for most of those same things. Now, if we visit relatives during the holidays, he’s all about going different places. If I look at actions rather than listen to his words, I see that it’s important for him to appear to like all these things so that people have a high opinion of him.

          So I got suckered in by the facade, too.

  • Hi Lisa,

    It’s real tough, but putting that good ‘ole proverbial mirror up to your own reflection is essential right now. What do you see? A woman abused. Ok, we’ve all looked at that face before. Heartbreaking. Now the next step. Do you want to keep looking at this woman for years and years? Hell no.

    So the sooner you restore your image the better.

    And here’s the thing, as you start to restore your own self-worth, I can promise you your cheater will feel challenged. I’d even venture to say–if all goes well–he’ll try to compete with you rather than beg for kibbles or try to screw you over. An interesting new dynamic will develop. Why? Because he can’t stand that the mirror’s on you now, not him.

    Meh–is a priceless commodity for a chump. 🙂 These cheaters can’t stand when they’re not the center of everyone’s universe. Our success and our indifference sends them right to hell. How come? Because in their warped socio/narc minds, they start to see us now as a rival, a worthy adversary to compete against. And this is the best position we can put ourselves into. Maintaining this position is tough–it’s against our chump natures–but it’s possible. And essential to our long-term survival.

    So, Lisa, whatever will restore your self-worth–going back to school, running a marathon, community activism–start doing it now. Pour all your passions, intelligence, and kindness into something for YOU. And if nothing else, at least it will heal you, and by damn, you’re entitled to a brighter future and you are a worthy adversary!!! ((hugs))

  • Lisa,
    I was 7 months pregnant when I first saw signs of his infidelity. I was terrified and held on for dear life. I spackled my ass off becasue the alternative (being alone with a newborn) was just NOT something I wanted. His crappy ass behavior continued until I found even more damning evidence when my daughter was about 9 months old. At that point he’d been having an affair with the final OW for about 6 months.

    I danced the pick me dance, insisted on counselling and tried EVERYTHING to be the person he wanted. All the while he denied, denied, denied, and blame shifted until he was blue in the face. About 5-6 months later, he admitted the final affair. We tried to reconcile – he lasted 6 weeks of (possible) honest behavior before he abandoned us completely with the bull shit line of ‘This is not the LIFE PATH I want to be on’.

    I was devestated. He sucked me back in over and over and over again through out this whole process with his lies, gas lighting, and faux emotions. I found out about two months after he left for good that he had slept with numerous people over the course of our entire relationship. He admits to 5 – only because that’s what I can pin on him. I estimate the actual number to be 20+.

    I’ve been there. We all have. The abject fear of being abandoned while so incredibly vulnerable (with a young child) is probably the worst stress and pain I have ever felt. The funny thing is, I held on so strong thinking that my child deserved an intact family. Once he left, once I got my head right, once I really SAW what he was – our family is intact BECAUSE of his absence. His presence in our house is what caused the pervasive broken feeling.

    Now, I see his manipulations plain as day. I can pinpoint the exact emotions he’s trying to solicit, the reactions he wants. It doesn’t work anymore because I see. It drives him nuts actually. I read tons of books, websites (this one is the BEST!), and have talked through this craziness for well over a year at this point and can honestly say that things are SO MUCH BETTER! I feel good, I look good, I’m happy, I’m divorced and ecstatic. I didn’t feel that way before – I felt horrible for a long time. But now – life is amazing. I have ups and downs, but on the whole – everything is moving up.

    I normally don’t write this much, but I think your letter really hit me this morning because of your situation. I am so sorry he’s such a dick – but your husband is a dick. He’s an asshole, a fucktard, a douchenozzle. He sucks giant donkey balls. I don’t know how far out you are from him leaving, but I know you will be ok and I know things will get better. You will see his suckiness and one day you will laugh at his attempts to sparkle at you – because you will see the turd underneath it. Hold on, hang in and believe in yourself. You will make it out alive and better than ever. 🙂

    • I find it interesting that a lot of these cheater types strike when we are most vulnerable. I was going thru menopause and suffering from the empty nest syndrome. What is that all about? Are they bullies? Do they despise weakness perhaps in an attempt to rid themselves of it ie. a projection? Are they choosing to cheat then so that they have a better chance of getting away with it and then coming back or are they just pure evil?
      In any case, you know that you can never be vulnerable or safe with these types and isn’t that what rea love is all about?

      • Moving on @51

        My STBX left a year or so after a 2nd trimester miscarriage. Apparently, I didn’t get over it fast enough, and he couldn’t believe I wanted to try again. We were trying to have a baby when he left. I think you are right about leaving when the spouse is vulnerable. He hated my weakness and that I couldn’t get past it like him. He sucks. Any man that uses a miscarriage or a woman’s grief in her face sucks.

        • My cheater was at the height of his abusiveness, when I finally became pregnant after a long history of infertility. He put on a show with friends and family about how “delighted” he was but at home he gave me the cold shoulder, refused to share in my/our joy, and pretty much cut off any intimacies. I was an emotional wreck. Later after I miscarried, friends and family were surprised to hear me utter my impression that my husband wasn’t ready or enthused about fatherhood. Apparently, he was milking my/our loss for all he could get, playing the tragic figure, while at home he was still so remote. That was a major RED flag for divorce right there, and stupid me still couldn’t comprehend that his behavior was intentional!

      • They leave when we are vulnerable because it is a time when we need them the most…and they are not interested in meeting someone else’s needs. The relationship is a one-way street where all the energy flows towards them & from us.

        • Meg I am going to repeat this to myself anytime i doubt myself. This is sooo true. Everything is about them. They are never there for you, unless it suits them, as they are getting something from it (admiration, image management), but never just because they love you and you need them.

    • You know, this might sound counter-intuitive, but I’m sitting here at midnight wondering if in some ways (clearly not in others!) parents who get out of relationships with NPDs when the kids are really young have done the kids a favor.

      The alternative being the kids bearing some of the brunt of the lying, the withdrawal, the blaming, gaslighting…all that. One might, for example, ask why my young adult daughter is deeply depressed, although doing a damned good job of forging on with her life despite. Possibly, just possibly, having a jackass father who withdrew his attention, affection, constantly criticized her mother, but never was really ‘there’ for either one of them… all during her adolescent development: do you think that might possibly be related…hmmmm.

      Not that I’m discounting the sheer effort and exhaustion of rising young’uns–it’s just that the challenges are different. And, all in all, I’d say it’s always better to get out earlier than later!

      • Even parents who get out and have to share custody are doing the right thing by their kids, big time. Because at least then the children spend part of their time in a home where there is real love, caring, empathy, and no lying, blaming, gas-lighting and sulky withdrawals.

        While we’re with these idiots, our lives are such drama and turmoil, and their behaviour affects everyone so much, there is no clear space for the kids to feel safe and recognize healthy love. We can’t provide sanity while in these sick relationships.

        CL is so right, one sane parent makes a HUGE difference to kids. We can’t control how our kids will react to their narc parent, or how our kids will turn out themselves (if I were a praying person, I’d be praying every day for my kids not to become either narcs or chumps!). But we can provide a safe and loving space in their lives, where they can be kids, be themselves, and grow as they should, at least part of the time.

        We owe our children this, after having made the mistake of breeding with a fucktard.

      • I kept thinking-how could mine do this to our daughter right at the beginning of adolescence when she already was going to be dealing with just that. It’s been a rough 2.75 years but daughter is doing better, looks back now and sees the unsatisfying things that were there all along about her dad, the “not there-ness”.

  • Lisa
    I was in your shoes 33 years ago, all I can say is RUN ! I had 3 children 7, 9, and 10 and was 36 weeks pregnant with my 4th when my first D Day came. He was with the AP for 6 months by that time but never said a word until I caught him. He lived with her for 2 1/2 years. I was frozen in limbo, no job no support system and a new born to care for. He did support us financially while I danced the pick me dance . Well guess what I was the “winner ” The OW divorced her husband and took her two children to another state when my then husband refused to marry. Over the next 30 years I always her how “she was the biggest mistake of my life” Well lets fast forward 30 years. He found her on the internet, she was married to husband #3 . It took 2 phone calls and one in person contact and they were sitting in a Burger King planning their future. I knew he was cheating again the red flags were waving I just couldn’t find the proof and naturally he denied it . His favorite line was “What kind of man do you think I am , that I would ever do that to you again?” Well he was cheating for 18 months when I finally broke into his email and got my proof. My 4 adult children were devastated, the older kids remember her from the first time, I had to explain it all to my younger. I filed for divorce and 4 days after I moved the furniture I chose out of our family home, he moved her in. She divorced husband #3 for him and now they are my ex put it “where destiny always knew they should be” I wasted 44 years of my life on this POS . He was always passive aggressive and now I see how I was a life long chump , catering to his every need (and some if you know what I mean were a little off) He never put me first never made me feel loved. I have been divorced for 1 1/2 years and still have the same feelings you have. I am 62 years old and starting over. My children are very support 3 of them won’t have anything to do with him. My 5 grandchildren see him once a year a few days before Christmas and he doesn’t give any gifts to any of them Gifts are purchased for her children only. TRUST THEY SUCK RUN RUN RUN

  • My husband just walked out with no explanation. We only interacted a handful of times face-to-face or via email. Each time, it was like communicating with an old friend.

    Each time, I would remind myself, this man is a threat. He is harmful to my well-being. I never hesitated to put myself first because when he broke his vows, he relinquished the promise to be put first.

    He proved me right, because as if cheating and abandoning his wife was not abusive enough, he became a vindictive lunatic as the divorce progressed.

    Your first problem is that you are operating under the assumption he is a fully functional, decent human being. He is not. Mentally pinch yourself every time you forget that.

    • Your last three sentences in particular are priceless. I have printed them out as yet another important reality check. Thank you!

  • Huge sympathy to Lisa. I think most of us can understand why you are struggling with this. Your brain is wrestling with how to reconcile the person you were first attracted to, to the complete piece of shit who has just left you high & dry with a baby & toddler. For all of us decent types, it is a complete mind-fuck.

    I’ve had friends who were convinced that their husbands must have brain tumours because they couldn’t believe that they’d behave so badly & just walk out of their lives. However, you have to believe Chump Lady & all of us – he sucks. He really, really sucks. A bit of sparkly charm is not a redeeming feature in this scenario – it just isn’t. DON’T BUY IT.

    As for anyone who thinks appearance has anything to do with any of this – it absolutely doesn’t. I know women of every category of attractiveness who has been cheated on. If you view it as you – you still have this all wrong. It has nothing to do with you – it has everything to do with their sense of entitlement to having an affair. How you look only features in the equation, if they want to beat you up about it.

    • My husband had throat cancer with surgery, chemo and radiation. I was ‘convinced’ that they had radiated his head too much which affected his brain. After talking to his step-mother, she said ‘oh no, I’ve known him for 35 years, this is what he DOES.’ Cheats on wives. She told me that she had seen him plow through many women, some gems, some not. She considered me one of the gems. The bottom line, is that there is really no excuse for these cheating, harmful wastes of skin.

  • Lisa

    I have a 50/50 parental plan with my STBX, who had multiple affairs, long term to ONS…As a result we have to interact frequently, but a year and a half out from D-Day 1, six months of the pick me dance, and 7 months since she moved out…I finally trust that she sucks, mainly from my kid’s reaction.

    Yesterday, my 7 year old was playing Minecraft on the couch next to me…he looks at me and says “Daddy I love you, so I am going to build a love garden in Minecraft for you and mommy”…It took all I had to neither break down in tears or scream at the top of my lungs “DO NOT DO THAT!”…so I helped him build it all while thinking what kind of person blows up their family for cheap sex in hotels or the back of cars…She never once thought of the kids and my only role was to be their babysitter so she could get her rocks off…sick…She even once told me “I did nothing to the kids, they were asleep or with you when I was out, so they couldn’t have been effected”

    She is never going to change and neither is your husband…but now you get to parent as you see fit. You get to demonstrate good values and what it means to be a good parent and person without him undermining you with his douchebaggery…I know it is of little consolation, but is better than spending a life being abused by sparkles! Trust me he really SUCKS!

    • My ex once said he didn’t understand why he had to be home if we were just sleeping. I was waking up 2-3 times a night to breastfeed at that point. WE WEREN’T JUST SLEEPING.

      Your wife is deluded if she thinks slinking off to screw someone else while her kids are alseep doesn’t affect them!!!

      I’ve said this before, but it always amazes me the amount of overlapping BS everyone’s cheaters seem to spew.

      • The skank OW my ex was banging used to hire a babysitter to come to her house at 5:30 AM so she could fuck my husband in our van after their exercise session. Classy. Meanwhile, her two little autistic boys, both under the age of 5, were at home waiting for her.

        • Babysitter + 5:30 a.m. + FAMILY VAN = Wow!

          I thought my ex wife’s lunchtime BJ hookups in her boss’s car behind an abandoned shopping center took the Skank Olympics gold medal, but what you describe will require a photo finish.

    • Yup, the cheaters do not realize how they have emotionally detached… The lack of the being present in the relationsihp (couple and family) is what affects the children and the relationship!

      One of my daughter’s favorite memories of time spent with her father is a bike ride, just the two of them, just before she turned 11. He only did it because I insisted/suggested the activity. An example of how disengaged he was. He never thought to do anything like that with them.

      • A thought, mine never thought to do anything. Ever. Even in the beginning. Stuff just didn’t occur to him. So howcome he thought to find himself OW? Howcome he had that idea and, sorry AND the gumption to actually follow through and go get her? A lot of my friends find it very surprising, as in they didn’t think they had it in him.

        • Nat1- It is a mind-blower before you truly realize who they are, that they can rise to the occasion of multiple infidelities and all their moving parts, especially when you have never known them to initiate anything. Until that day when you make the link that yes they can be self-starters for things that directly benefit them. Birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas – any kind of gift-giving, use of endearments, or other thoughtfulness and my cheater was flummoxed (or couldn’t be bothered) to pick up on what might please me or a family member or friend. It was as you say, “it “just didn’t occur to him.” I can’t tell you the countless times I was in his presence and he couldn’t even bother to open a door for an elderly or disabled person, a mother with baby in arms, whatever. Such a degree of self-absorption and lack of self awareness, I could not comprehend. My cheater was helpless in most things (home, workplace, friendships, marriage) but he always had an enabler (ME) facilitating his life and smoothing over the rough spots. He was just so stressed out! The guy couldn’t turn on his computer without it crashing, and yet somehow he found his way to all sorts of websites, set up profiles, advertised on CraigsList, e-mailed, texted, used Google maps for directions to OW, IM, whatever was required to satisfy him and him alone.
          I think many of us feel our marriages were like zyx321’s daughter and her bike ride with her Dad, until we realized we were the only ones who kept the tires inflated and were doing all the pedaling.

  • Lisa
    This guy exposed you and your child to life threatening diseases while you were at your most vulnerable. You want the life you thought you had but not what was actually there. His actions were heartless and cruel. How many children and wives will he abandon? Such a coward!

    1 Corinthians 7:15 “15 But if the unbeliever leaves, let him do so. A believing man or woman is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.”

    • 1 Corinthians 7:15 “15 But if the unbeliever leaves, let him do so. A believing man or woman is not bound in such circumstances; God has called us to live in peace.”

      I really, really like this quote. 🙂

  • Lisa, you are badly in need of a sparkly turd reminder, because that is exactly what your STBX is: a big, steaming, stinking, sparkly piece of shit. I totally understand about the craziness and the sparkles and the pain, however. I’ve been there, done that, bought the tee shirt.

    I’ve posted this before, but here’s what you need to do:
    Go to whatever craft store is near you, and buy a small square of brown Fimo clay.
    Also buy a small bottle of glitter glue in whatever color pleases you. I used metallic gold for mine.
    Buy a cheap craft paintbrush.
    Go home and mold the brown Fimo into the shape of a turd. Bake in the oven as per directions until it is hard. Let cool.
    Use the paintbrush to apply a coat of glitter glue over the turd. Let dry.
    Whenever you need a reminder of what your STBX really is, take a look at that glittering piece of turd. THAT’S HIM. His sparkles only are on the outside — a thin veneer over the stinking filth that is his REAL self.

    Call an attorney and set yourself free from that scum. He needs to be paying child support, don’t let him off the hook.

  • Keep the friends fire the enemies. i ask myself why i didn’t see what my x was/is. on his death bed he put my name in his obituary as the dumped wife. And he left me when i was vulnerable. these men are cowardly little boys and cant take responsibility of any kind.
    they react to all pressure by having sex. There is nothing thereand we owe it to ourselves and to the country that we live in to make sure they know that infidelity is and will not be tolerated. thank you Muriel

  • One of the roughest things here is that you can’t go No Contact. Having kids together requires you to do deal with him, even if just via email. And each time you see his name pop up on the screen, the wound reopens anew.

    No contact, by the way, is no picnic either. Right now, I am so filled with rage and I have nowhere to put it. I am 8 days no contact…8 days…and I feel great about the fact that I’m sticking with it. But where do I put the rage? Where do I put the feelings? Where do I put the pain? I can’t/won’t give him the satisfaction of so much as an email or letter. So where do I put all this prurient anger? I certainly don’t want it to stay inside me, where it takes up time and energy.

    • The rage is tough. It into a journal, and one day I took a long drive and screamed at the top of my lungs along lonely stretches.
      I considered spewing it all onto paper, and then burning the paper in the outdoor fireplace, but I did not want the kids to ask what I was doing (this was during false reconciliation before we had formally decided to divorce, but after I found out that then husband and OW were on a business trip together, when he’d said she would not be present.

      • I like the write it and burn it route. Then again I find fire very therapeutic. Lol. That makes it sound like I’m a pyromaniac doesn’t it? I also had a good time burning all of his BDSM books. That took A LOT of lighter fluid. Those glossy photos are really hard to totally destroy!

      • Anger is a useful emotion if you use it to propel yourself towards a better life. It gives you courage to do things you normally wouldn’t, and it provides emotional separation between you and your ex. I remember how uncomfortable I was when the rage and anger stage hit. I grew up thinking that I had to keep anger inside, but it was just too much to contain. Know that once anger has done its work you’ll come out of it and feel at peace. You just have to hang on while you’re riding through the worst part of it.

        For me the best antidote to anger was the peace I found in prayer, and listening to podcasts by Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyers. Also talking to people who had been through betrayal and divorce and who were further along in their recovery helped.

    • HC, keep up with the NC. You will have withdrawal symptoms but each day it gets better. I am now just over 2 months NC after 44 years of knowing my ex. Gut wrenching as it has been, I am starting to feel better. I completely understand the anger/rage and pain. I could have gone to jail at the start of this awful journey. It may not be of any use to you but just before I stopped contact I read the following – “Holding onto anger is like holding on to hot coals getting ready to throw them. No one gets hurt but you”. So true. Keep on putting one foot in front of the other. You will get there trust me because nobody was angrier than me. I can’t believe I am not any longer. All the very best to you.

      • I did go to jail when I caught them fucking at the Econo Lodge. Someone called the police. There were no guns or blood and no one went to the hospital. But I sure got in a lot of trouble. Trust me: You.

    • Kick boxing, walking, jogging and weight training mixed in with prayer, reading the bible and listening to christian music. It is a safe way to release the stress while getting physically and mentally strong for the upcoming battle. My routine helps to keep me balanced and focus. It takes time but it does get better.

      • I agree with you jinx. I have a heavy bag which has worked wonders along with the exercising. I also starting going to church with my kids right after dday. It was what I needed. I am divorced almost 5 months now and boy, do I see much clearer. I do have bouts of anger every so often but when I do, I try and focus on all that I have accomplished. He lost everything and barely got anything financially, whereas I kept everything. I do live in a no fault state but the judge recognized that most all was mine to begin with. That was a blessing. So now, ex is a 40 year old, living in an okay apartment, with a car payment, other bills, and a very poor character. He is a running joke with many. I on the other hand, sleep very well at night and cherish the little things. It takes time but you will get there if you want it bad enough. 🙂

        • Thank you all. Thank you. Thank you. I do journal and I have a great therapist. I have loving and supportive friends and family, and I do try to rotate who I unload to. I also try to exercise…and I LOVE the idea of working the heavy bag. Thanks, Casey! I’ve also decided that I’m finally going to fulfill a lifelong dream and learn to play the guitar and write a song. Even if it’s a song that no one ever hears but me. Put all those feelings into making music.

          Each time I start to devise some scheme through which to exact some measure of revenge, I realize that it will only make him feel important (Kibbles!) and he will adore that. It will reinforce every delusional idea he has about himself. It will also paint me as the “psycho-ex” and give him the perfect story to explain why I just disappeared from his life. I refuse to give him anything more in this life. Not even that satisfaction. (As much as I would love to give him a swift kick in the nuts, I won’t do that either.)

          Mostly, I’m going to keep reading this blog and participate in the support network. I’m going to keep reading about character disordered people and educate myself about how to recognize this kind of disease earlier. This experience, as painful as it is, will not define me.

    • The rage and the pain are so strong, but you’re right to show the ex INDIFFERENCE. Because if you show it to them, they WILL make you feel worse. Whether it’s by blaming you, by twisting what you’re saying, by understanding what you’re saying but not giving a fuck …. And it will make them feel important again – KIBBLES!

      Pour that rage and pain onto paper, onto the computer screen, and also into caring ears. Friends, a good therapist, a support group …. My friends saved my sanity in the first months after I kicked the jerk out, and still heard rants from me periodically for another year after that! I tried not to burden any specific one too much; I rotated who I ranted to, whose shoulder I cried on. And when I was feeling OK, I tried to be there for them too (although many told me it wasn’t the time for that!).

      No Contact, and TIME. It’s been 20 months since DDay #2 (and it took 4 months to get to NC, because of kids, hosue etc),and I feel SOOOOOO much better, it’s amazing, relally. You’ll get there too!

  • Actually you really don’t even have to “trust that he sucks” to know your own worth, command respect, and expect to live a life that does not include such dysfunction.
    Think about it. In an indirect way you are comparing yourself to your partner. (“I hold the high ground; s/he does not!”) Why bother? You already know the answer.

    What you need to trust is, “The only person’s behavior I can control is my own. I’m going to behave in such a way as to create a better life for myself because I am WORTH it.”

    If you had huge thorn in your foot that kept you lame, what would you do about it? You’d extract it in the most efficient and painless way possible. You wouldn’t be concerned about the thorn’s “pathology” because neither it nor your foot is going change what they are. When things or people “are what they are,” you have two choices: Tolerate or Extricate.

    So I have to ask, “How’s tolerating working for you?”

  • Dear Lisa,

    (((HUGS))) (((DOUBLE HUGS)))

    Having a child is a gift and should be the happiest time of your life. Your POS husband stole some of that moment from you and didn’t care enough for you or your children to be there as love and support. Trust that he sucks walrus balls for that reason.

    He exposed you and your unborn child to any number of possible diseases and infections. Trust that he sucks elephant balls for that reason.

    He cheated on you while you were pregnant with his child and while you were being a loving and attentive mother (all the while suffering from SEVERE morning sickness) to a toddler, also his child. Trust that he sucks Tyrannosaurus Rex balls for that.

    However you look at that Flaming Turd from Satan’s ass, he sucks. He couldn’t suck anymore if he had a PhD and 50 years of experience in sucking. To paraphrase Samuel L. Jackson in A Time to Kill, “Yes he sucks! And he deserves to burn in hell!”

    Lisa, the Universe has shown you its favor by removing that extremely toxic and shit-covered baboon from your life. Faith is about climbing the stairs when all you can see at the top is darkness. Trust that you deserve better and that you will receive better once this Cretin from Crap City is out of your life. The Universe knows that you deserve better and will reward you with it once you internalize that he sucks and let him go.

    • Hey CP, thanks for lightening my mood a bit as my analytical and visual brain couldn’t help trying to actually picture all of those balls. 😉

      • Kat,

        I read your post below. I’m glad I was able to briefly lighten your mood. Take care of yourself, hon.

        (((BIG HUGS)))

    • “He exposed you and your unborn child to any number of possible diseases and infections. Trust that he sucks elephant balls for that reason.” <——-THIS

      When you miss what you had with this asshole, recognize that he didn't give a shit about your unborn child. If you had picked up an STI from him your baby could be deformed, blind, have learning disabilities, stillbirth, chronic liver disease, depending on the STI. This is not hyperbole;

      If you can't get pissed off for yourself, get pissed off for your kid. He didn't give a shit about your health or your baby's health. It's OK to get angry, it's OK to hate him for a while, that's what will stop your Unicorn hunt. Get angry, get a lawyer, get your life back.

      • Thank goodness they automatically check for STIs during pregnancy no matter what the situation. If there was true justice in the system this selfishness would be considered in custody determinations. Callous enough when you don’t have a problem endangering your spouse, but downright asshole-ish and evil when you do it to your unborn child.

        • This was one of the most difficult things for me to grasp. I found out 13 yrs later that, yes, he DID have a physical affair with the ‘infatuation’ (I wasn’t crazy after all!!!) and I got pregnant a few months later. I could have been infected with an STD, our child could have developed birth defects… And even _then_ he did not ‘fess up and tell me to get tested.

          It’s not that he thought I would not be able to forgive him, it’s that he was a lying, selfish coward.

          • My ex’s affairs *could* have messed up at least two of my pregnancies. It turns out that both kids are okay, but I still get mad about what could have happened. I didn’t sign up to take that risk, he imposed it on me. My ex thinks that because I didn’t get an STI or STD, that it doesn’t matter. I’ve tried to explain to him that playing Russian roulette is still really scary even when there is an empty chamber. Hearing the **CLICK** is scary enough.

  • Lisa~ Your letter made me cry today. My heart goes out to you in a big way and I’m sending you as much love as possible (without being a creepy stranger). I found out my husband was cheating on me a week after I found out I was pregnant with my first child. I packed myself up and moved 16 hours away. I later found it had been twins but one didn’t make it. I know rationally it was most likely because chromosomal difficulties but I can’t help but wonder as it happened exactly when I found out my ex’s extra curricular activities. Sorry if that’s TMI to anyone. It’s just that I had always wanted two kids and with my age and situation it’s very unlikely that I will have another. Still a little sad over what might have been.

    I do not know if you are like me but having a child was never my ultimate goal. Making a child with someone I love and then sharing the joy of giving birth with that person present and raising a child together were some of my greatest heart’s desires. I’m pretty meh and not missing my ex about a lot of things. But at 35 weeks pregnant this last week I went and preregistered at the hospital. Yeah, there’s a lot of things that suck about my situation not the least of which is being on all sorts of public assistance. But the one thing that made me cry in the last three months is that this child will come into the world without a decent human being as a father present. I know there are amazing single moms out there that do it all the time. I just never thought I’d be one of them.

    I’m lucky that I was able to move so far away because it makes it much easier to draw the line about what a complete waste of human being my ex is. But I can very much understand wanting to share family and kids with someone. If my ex was holed up with someone else who had kids instead of just banging anything with legs, that would be extra hard for me to deal with too. This supposed family man hasn’t even bothered to ask how his child is or what the gender is. I was his second wife too btw and had two stepkids I’m no longer allowed to communicate with. There is part of me that still can’t get over wanting and wishing very hard that things had turned out differently for my child. Pregnancy and birth are supposed to be a time of joy. I can’t imagine that you didn’t feel robbed of that.

    One heart to another I will be thinking of you and your little ones today.

    • Kat, I’m so sorry you’re going through the same thing. But good for you for getting 16 hours away from the idiot. Have you filed? Seen a lawyer? Squared away temporary support orders until the divorce comes through?

      And public assistance? No shame there. That’s what it’s for. All the hate for taxes, I for one am HAPPY to pay taxes to support women and children in times like this. I had a public lawyer for my protection from abuse orders from a legal aid society. (My divorce lawyer sent me there, said no reason you should pay for a PFA while you’re trying to pay for a divorce.) I was so grateful for that support and the counseling I received from a women’s center. Years later when I was out, and I inherited some money, I sent them all a check. Take the help and pay it forward some day.

      • Thanks CL. Yes I have seen a couple of lawyers. Had to wait until I was here long enough to file as a resident, but also held up because they don’t let you divorce while pregnant. As for support….yeah right. We were together for three years but only married for about six weeks when I had my D day. A judge would probably award me a bit but it’s a more complicated issue with state lines and his previous alimony commitments and not worth it if it means poking the beast. I am set to file for child support but once again there’s nothing I can do until the baby is actually born. At the moment my ex (yes I refer to him as such even though we’re not divorced) is perfectly happy to let me do all of the filing, which means paying all the fees and such. Even though he makes about five times as much money. It’s ok, it will work itself out.

        It may be very codependent-y of me but I really hope some day when I am finished with my degree and much more gainfully employed that I can help out another woman or two or three in my position. Either way the career path I want to take is very much influenced by this experience and I plan on doing something that helps others.

        It’s very easy to feel like I’ve been completely trampled in such a vulnerable position. And certainly I’m a little hormonal in this last month, but I also have to remember not to get stuck in victim mode. My son is getting a kick ass mother either way. I just grieve for him and the loss of his Bio dad being a decent man. Hey, I know, it happens to the best of us.

        Lisa’s letter struck a chord today and I grieve for her too. I’m so glad for this site because it so healing to be supported and to support each other through our unique but often frighteningly similar experiences.

        • Kat – I am so sorry that you are going through this. I remember the last few drs appointments alone and scared about what was going to happen. You sound really strong and you will be a kick ass mother. I guess the one positive is I am so close to my two kids now and I am their world. Nothing can change that bond.

  • “I find myself wondering what he and OW have that is so much better than what we had.”


    Your husband has a pattern. Get a woman pregnant, and when she’s too tired or sick to have sex, find someone else to have sex with.

    It’s not that her sex was better or anything. She was just more available to him.

    He makes babies, but he has no interest in taking care of them or even supporting you while you take care of them. You are supposed to be taking care of him.

    Which all adds up to: he’s selfish, he lack empathy, he can’t defer gratification, and basically, he’s not much of a man.

    • Exactly, and I’d just like to point out that Lisa will probably contribute to the statistic that the majority of divorces are initiated by women, because there’s no way her man-child is going to do it himself. And when the grown-ups that staff the court system come down on him for the next 18+ years over child support, she can expect to get blamed as the cause of that too.

      • Yep. I had to file for divorce because for where I live, when you do the adultery divorce route, it is the “victim” that has to file. Legally. So… though I did not want any of this, I am now one of those statistics…

    • Weeeeellll, maybe TMI but, I was horny as hell when I was pregnant. And always keen when not. He just wasn’t interested….so ummm how does that theory apply to me?

      • I hadn’t even started morning sickness or anything yet. I think it can be both simpler and or more complicated than not getting sex. Besides…lots and lots of us had a very active sex life and still our cheaters went out to find other interests. Narcs don’t like to take care of people or have the attention taken away from them. Pregnancy definitely makes it all about the pregnant woman. I think that’s an assault to their need to be number one. And then I suppose there’s always the Madonna/Whore thing. Once impregnated a woman becomes a non sexual person to some of these disordered. Mine was cheating on me before we even started trying. I think he was happily going along with his parallel lives expecting that they were never going to run into each other.

  • Some of the comments reminded me of the insane theory that it’s okay to cheat on your wife because your kids need you to stay together. The idea is that if you aren’t happy, you need an affair on the side, for the sake of the family.

    What’s missing from this picture is that somewhere down the line, you break up the family and the innocent spouse has wasted years of their life on you. They didn’t get a choice.

  • CL, do you know that scene in Raising Arizona (do you know the movie?) where Holly Hunter as “Ed” holds their stolen baby and busts out crying, “I love him so-ho-ho-ho-ho much!” That’s the feeling I’m feeling right now about your blog. Thank the Lord Almighty Baby Jesus I found you. Finally. After 3 D-days. I’m only about halfway down the comments. I’ve been gorging on your blog and your readers’ comments since Monday. My 3rd D-Day, (is there a differentiation between a D-Day that you intuit in your gut and a straight-up, undeniable evidence confrontation D-Day?) was Saturday. Maybe fourth if you count the red herring tattoo artist he shit sandwiched me in order to continue to hide his real girlfriend. Ugh. And he’s all boo hoos and I love yous and my stupid, stupid heart still hurts and my thick head is being stubborn. You’re like my Chumps Anonymous support group. He wasn’t remorseful Saturday morning at 10am when he was being an asshole about my terms of reconciliation. At the time, I guess I still believed in unicorns. But so full of remorse by 12pm when the chain of discovery of his drunk Friday night finally made it back to me. So full of “I’ll do anything that you want.” Not sorry. Just sorry he got caught. I know it. Thanks for telling me, like I need to hear it, what I already know.

    • Welcome Heather! (((HUGS)))

      He’ll do anything you want? Great. Nice divorce settlement pronto, no fighting. He can convey his apologies via his lawyer.

      I had 4 D-days myself. You get a big enough dose it’ll cure you. Please get away from this awful man. You’ll be so happy you did.

      • Jedi Hugs Heather. I second CL but I’m betting “anything you want” will not include an easy divorce.

    • “You go back in there and get me a baby Hi, the got more than they can handle!”

  • Hi Lisa,
    That guy sucks. Wait one day and go back and read what you wrote to CL. You may say “Wow, he does suck.” It’s harder for all of us to see it in our dopey cheaters.

    The longer I’ve been away from her with NC, except for child care logistics, the more I believe in my heart that my STBXW SUCKS! And not just to me….for everyone who gets close to her. It does help to continue on the road to “Meh.”

    The next hard part for me is this thought: “Holy shit, Why didn’t I see how sucky she was long ago?” And then the realization that I will have to learn to forgive myself for sticking my head in the sand for so long.

    Not anymore. I’m awake.

    Fuck that guy. He sucks. You’ll see soon enough.

    • I think, like me, you didn’t see it because of spackling and concentrating on the good qualities, but now we know people are the SUM of their parts, can’t just pick the good things and if not as good things are even noticed, hope that will change. I even thought my x was a sort of chump (not using that term at the time) because he told me about being dumped by a high school person- that he was someone who understood pain so would not intentionally or even unintentionally inflict it. Fast forward twenty years and that was the person he made secret plans to marry and to throw everything away for without telling me until he was good and ready and everything was all set.

  • “That doesn’t mean you’re not worthy of being cherished. You are. But love yourself first. Love yourself more than this asshole. Love your children more.”

    Lisa, this. Until you know your worth, until you love yourself (in a healthy manner), you will not fully realize that he SUCKS. Big time. Forget whether he takes the OW to the same restaurants, whether he cooks the same dinners, etc. It doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you focus your precious energy on yourself and on your children. He doesn’t deserve one more minute of your time. Work on honoring yourself. Once you know your worth, it will be so clear how much he sucks. Refocus. Having him back in your life will mean more of the same crap except the pain will keep on escalating to levels that you have never even imagined. Getting rid of him means getting rid of the pain that only cheating can bring. The pain you know may be better than the pain you envision you’ll have as a divorced, single mom, but chumps who are have reached “meh” know that kind of pain is finite. The pain staying with him is, alas, infinite. Do you really want to spend the rest of your life being in constant pain?

  • Hi All – My first time posting…but have been reading, re-reading, absorbing and finding great comfort and support on this site for awhile. Thank you CL!! And thank you to all who have posted, for helping me not feel as incredibly alone as I did at the begin of this process.

    I was struck by this particular thread because it is showing me how sad & devasting this can be at every stage of motherhood, for different reasons, but the overall pain is the same.

    Lisa – who was pregnant and had a toddler. Kat – who found out durning her first week of pregnancy with her first child. Lyn Z – who is now dealing with it again…30 yrs down the road.

    In my case, I was in the process of trying to get pregnant when I found out my husband was having an affair. Now it is too late for me, due to me age. Some people say to me “be glad you found out before you got pregnant, because then you would have be alone and dealing with this!!” Which I totally understand, I know it could be a struggle, but at the same time, I feel I would have maybe been blessed with a child at least.

    The kicker to this is that my husband was told at a fairly young age (maybe 20) that he would not be able to have children. He told me this when we first started dating, he broke down completely. After we got married, almost every Mothers Day he would appologize to me for not being able to have children, and how bad he felt for me. I would always tell him that I loved him regardless…we were in this together.. He would also make comments like “All I ever wanted was to be a dad. I’m not a man” etc. I was heartbroken for him. Well….life went on….and after 14yrs of marriage…without going into all the details…we met a doctor who said there was a retrieval procedure he could try…even though he agreed that it didnt look good. He did the procedure. Doctor said it went well….they found something to work with!! My husband cried when I told him. I was so happy for him…for us. So, soon after I began the whole fertility process. And this is the exact time my husband chose to start having an affair?? Reasons??……..
    *Cold Feet
    *All of my, out of the blue and incredible, list of short comings. I was now blamed for everything that ever wrong with our marriage and even how I might fall short as a mother. “You are a terrible saver, how are you going to save for a babies college education?”

    Or maybe….it was never about me, or us getting pregnant. Maybe it was about him being a man. Now he was one….according to a test tube.

    I am now alone, and in the process of divorce. 22 yrs together. Its been a terrible 2 yrs. He has moved on to “really good friend” #2.

    Sorry for the long post. There is so much more to the story. I feel like I can post on every topic CL, so perfectly, describes. And while Lisa’s letter was really about getting over sparkly (which I can totally relate to as well) it was more the motherhood aspect that struck a cord with me (cord…how appropriate).

    My love and support to all of you on here…and thank you again!!


    • Similar story here, Kara. Recurrent pregnancy loss. The big affair started during the (unsuccessful) fertility treatment era…and the story ended when he impregnated a woman he had known for a month. They used a name we had discussed. They suck.

      • OMG Doop, I hurt just from the fact that he took her to “our” special restaurant . . . I can’t imagine how you feel after they used the name you were going to use. Unreal!

  • Your husband has no ‘higher self’ he is a man who operates from his ‘lower self’.


    There are two selfs – the higher self and the lower self.
    The higher self is human spirit clothed with soul.

    The lower self (the carnal self) the body of desires, is a reflection of the higher self, distorted by murky ethers.

    The lower self is an illusion, and will pass away; the higher self is God in man, and will not pass away. The higher self is pure and will not do to others what they would not have others do unto them.

    The higher self is justice, mercy, love and ‘right’- the lower self is what the higher self is not.

    The lower self breeds distress, slander, lewdness, murders, theft, and everything that harms. The higher self is mother of the virtues and the harmonies of life.

    The lower self is rich in promises, but poor in blessedness and peace; it offers pleasure, joy and satisfying gains; but gives unrest and misery and death- It gives people apples that are lovely to the eye and pleasant to the smell; their cores are full of bitterness and gall.

    He/She who knows well the lower self, knows the worthless illusions of the world, knows of the things that pass away.

    He/she who knows his higher self, knows God; knows well the things that cannot pass away.

  • Sorry, I posted those links on the latest post without reading the post itself.

    He left his first wife when their second baby was six months old. You knew this but still got involved with him, had children with him? Don’t tell me he left his first wife for you? Regardless, the best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour. Honey, you’ve been had by a pro’, who sounds like he didn’t even conceal his shittiness.

    I feel for your children, and you’ve obviously been through a difficult time. But really, what did you expect?

    • Glasto – I have been beating myself up about exactly this. What was I thinking. I know hindsight is a wonderful thing but he did show signs of being an asshole by what he did to his first wife. As far as I know, there was no cheating and I believed the spiel about how they were unhappy and arguing all the time and how it broke his heart but splitting was the right thing to do. I met him a good few years after his divorce. He also swore he would rather die than go through another divorce and he could never forgive himself for leaving his first children. I guess I was well and truly sucked in. He convinced me I was the one and he would love me forever, much like he has done to this new woman. If I was an idiot, what does that make her for believing him after he has done it twice. He is clearly an excellent liar and manipulator. He really does suck.

      • Don’t be too hard on yourself Lisa. The prevalent explanation for marriages ending is that two people grew apart or it just didn’t work out. That’s what we hear from everywhere. There are a lot of women and men who decide to get divorced during pregnancy where there is no infidelity involved. Although I will say I think a good portion of those involve a narcissist not being able to handle the transition from being the sole focus of their partner. I am a person who has made mistakes and learned from them. It’s not that crazy to think someone may recognize mistakes and change. (For a normal person) It’s not crazy to believe in second chances. (For a normal person) My ex spent 16 years with his ex and fought extremely hard for his 50/50 custody. I looked at a 16 year marriage as a success. I looked at his fight to keep his kids in his life as a sign of his character. He too was super adamant that he had absolutely no desire to go through a second divorce and wanted his second marriage to last. And then he proceeded to marry me and impregnate me while cheating. So you can’t always know how something is going to go. Now I don’t care what the situation is, if I meet a man who doesn’t see his kid I know he doesn’t have a worthy character. But we also had that close encounter with a narcissist and it’s like interacting with another species. Sure, now we may be able to see the red flags but how the hell does one predict human behavior with non humans? So DO NOT beat yourself up. Some day the mother ship will come and take them all home.

        • Kat, I LOVE this:
          “But we also had that close encounter with a narcissist and it’s like interacting with another species. Sure, now we may be able to see the red flags but how the hell does one predict human behavior with non humans? So DO NOT beat yourself up. Some day the mother ship will come and take them all home.”

          Thanks! And it sums up about how I feel every day when I read the comments on here about people’s exes and I think, WHO DOES THIS? Who are these people? Every day I am blown away by the stories of the awful things these people have done…I can’t even conceive of how people behave like this. But then…..your comment sums it up. And yes, maybe the mothership will return for them one day!

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