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Dear Chump Lady, My husband doesn’t know the OW ratted him out

Dear Chump Lady,

A year and a half ago, I saw texts to and from some strange woman on my husband’s cell phone. I confronted him and he said it was just some old friend from high school. It was nothing according to him.

Well, I searched her phone number and discovered it was his former girlfriend. They had lived together for about a year long before he and I were even dating.

I had a history with this OW. Twenty years ago when I was first married she would call our apartment and flirt with him. I changed our number three times and finally all was quiet. (If I’d read your writings then, I would have never even changed the number! I would have just told hubby to leave. )

As it turns out, technology advanced and they had ways to keep their secrets. She had gotten married but it seems they never stopped talking.

My husband even left me and our three small boys to go live with her and her husband. When he returned, I was sure it had ended. Wrong!

This time he finally had to admit to his actions. Verizon is a wonderful source for truth! Facebook too! She had been posting about him! He agreed to No Contact with her and gave me all of his passwords. But, I was still wondering. After all, I have been wrong before.

So I created an email account and posed as my husband. And I discovered that he had been true to his word. He had not contacted her. But there had clearly been a long term emotional affair… No surprise there. I (as my husband) told the OW that I loved my wife.

She went ballistic! She said she would follow through on her threat. Well, a minute later, I got a text from her on MY phone! She ratted him out! I quickly got another email account to use with her and acted quite surprised. She sent me all of the emails including some he had sent her when they were hiding their relationship. He had even given her my cell number a couple of years ago when I was first suspicious. He told her to never answer my number. Lol! She used it against him!

This long time “dearest friend,” as he called her, had no problem outing him to me. Meanwhile, he knows nothing about any of this. He is still having NC and she doesn’t have any of his current contact information. But she thinks she has just taught him a lesson! She believes she has just ended his marriage. In fact, I already knew everything, even the old emails were known to me.

Do you think I should tell my husband, or let him go on thinking fond thoughts about her? He has not been in contact with her for over a year now. I am inclined to just leave it alone.


Dear Linda,

Boy, this is like a French farce, with plot twists and double crosses and more plot twists. Nothing Is As It Seems! Are they really no contact? Does the OW really believe she’s ratted him out to you, or did she see through your transparent ruse of posing as your husband? Is she blowing things up with “him” to let you think it’s over, and do they have some other way of communicating?

You’ve been fooled before. This much you know — he’s been having an affair (only emotional?) for 20 years. Through your marriage, and through her marriage. So what if you “ended” it? You don’t think they’ve both ended and started up with each other before?  I’m sure things wax and wane at times, but one thing that’s consistent is they keep doing it.

Here’s another thing that’s consistent — you keep trying to thwart them. Whether that’s changing your phone number three times, or creating a fake email account to entrap the OW. Those actions point to the fact that you don’t trust your husband and you have a hard time believing he will maintain NC like he says. That’s why you want “proof.” But let’s face it, can you really trust your proof? Don’t you think, based on past experience, that if he wants the OW, or the OW wants him, they’ll figure out a way to get their fix?

The issue here is that you do not feel safe in this marriage. So you try to control that scary feeling by making demands (he doesn’t meet), or putting up road blocks to his OW access (changing the phone number), or entrapping them both with a fake email account.

This is one of the great bugaboos of reconciliation, IMO — transparency. No chump should feel safe that their cheater is “transparent.” In this day and age with technology and social media, they can do an end run around “transparency” any day. Oh, so you have the passwords to his obsolete, Potemkin email accounts? Great.

This dilemma puts the chump in a very difficult position — trust but verify and be the Marriage Police. And try to be one step ahead on this technology arms race — I’ll see your keylogger and raise you a voice activated recorder! OR just back off, trust them, and give up on verification. Which means you’ll get twitchy and hypervigilant when things feel off. After all, this person has demonstrated to you that they’re not beyond duping you.

How can you feel safe after a 20 year affair? You can’t. And that’s your problem. Not whether or not you should tell your husband you know about his last “no contact” go-around.

But I will answer that question –it’s a no win. If you tell him, he’ll just feel compelled to tell the OW it was you posing as him. And your NC anxiety will again go through the roof. You’re deliberately NOT telling because you have derived a temporary feeling of relief thinking you gamed them both. Ha, aren’t you clever!

But this shit has been going on for TWENTY YEARS. He’s already LEFT you once! And WTF about moving in with her AND HER HUSBAND? Have you spoken to that guy? Is he on board with your husband mooning over (and probably fucking) his wife?

Linda, you do not feel safe in this marriage. THAT is your problem. You don’t trust him and rightly so. So let’s deal with that. Put the focus on yourself — is this relationship acceptable to you? Could he do anything to make you feel safe in this relationship? Have you communicated that? Has he done those things? Could you ever trust him even if he had?

YOU had to tell the OW your husband loves you. Is that true? Do you feel he loves you? Why did he never publicly, for your benefit, tell the OW that he loves you and is committed to his marriage? Sure seemed like news to her. Why? Because he’s leaving the door open for cake. Pay attention to his omissions. He’s probably waiting for this to blow over so they can reunite again. How do I know? Because that’s been the pattern for 20 years.

Linda, get off the crazy train. You can’t control this. I think this relationship is making you feel frightened and off balance. If I were you, I’d end the marriage and let the OW have him. Then they’ll have to go find a new hypotenuse for their triangle. Good luck.

Ask Chump Lady

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  • CL and Linda,
    All I can say is the best feeling in the world is knowing after you leave and have NC, you never have to worry again about being lied to or deceived or put in harms way without your knowledge both physically or mentally.

    Nothing beats that feeling and anything that leads up to this state of being is worth it. Why would anyone want to live with lies or feeling unsafe?

    Linda, forget about your husband and OW, what is going on with you? Figure that out. Otherwise you will just have a life filled up with paranoia and trying to figure out what they are doing and meanwhile your life will be passing you by. Is that the way you want to live?

    Re-read what you wrote above from that perspective, it’s all about them.

    I wish you luck in deciding what to do FOR YOU!


    • Linda, you are being weighed down and suffocated under the burden of his deceit and abuse. You can never win playing the game under his rules. It’s not about either of them now, it’s about YOU. Is this what you want? Is this what you deserve? Is this what makes you happy?

      The day my divorce decree came through, my sister texted me: “You are finally free of the lies.” This is what I wish for you Linda.

      • Kelly, you took the words right out of my mouth. I felt so unsafe in my marriage for over 20 years and once I threw out the cheater ex for the last time, I knew I got my life back. No more stopping on a red light and wondering if his car is parked in someone else’s driveway, no more having to twist like a human pretzel to make him stay, no more agreeing to certain things because a no might make him think of leaving me. What a total waste of life that was. And for what? I did all that for a sorry excuse for a human being! Yikes. Fighting for a prize, that’s a whole different story. Fighting for garbage? Pass.

        Linda, Tracy is right. Forget them. This is YOUR life to live and you only have one. Reclaim it and spend all that marriage police energy on yourself and your three boys. If your husband hasn’t changed in 20 years, I highly doubt he will now.

        • Uf “no more agreeing to certain things because a no might make him think of leaving me” – I was playing that game too for years before I recognized that he was cheating on me. About six weeks later and I have a whole new perspective on life.

    • I looked at his actions NOT his f*&^% fake words of “I want to save our marriage.” I KNEW he was still involved. Despite a “fake reconciliation”, I set up a scheme to find him once more with her….and I did….. and that gave me enough moxie to finally leave the marriage. I have no regrets.

      • I was told over and over chainsaw man wasn’t in her life and she wanted him to stop bugging. Biggest crock of shit ever. It wasn’t until I accessed her email and text to realise the truth. They still lie. It’s in their DNA

        • Yes Baci, on D-Day my ex said he was “sick of lying,” but then turned around and continued to lie pathologically to the present day. It is who they are.

  • I can imagine living this way. It’s all very inauthentic with everybody lying to everybody else about some pretty basic stuff nobody should by lying about 🙁

    The thing about living a lie… is it’s sort of corrupting, don’t you think?

    What kind of “flower” grows out of that kind of bullshit?

    • “What kind of “flower” grows out of that kind of bullshit?”

      May it be waist-high thistles and thorns while he wears a kilt regimental-style.

  • “Why did he never publicly, for your benefit, tell the OW that he loves you and is committed to his marriage? Sure seemed like news to her. Why? Because he’s leaving the door open for cake. ”

    CL nailed it.

    He’s keeping the OW on ice, for later. Throw him to the curb. Don’t tell him about your fake email account-thing. There’s no point. You’re not going to convince your husband to truly love you, or convert him to quit being a cheater. You’re not going to convince the OW that she’s a skank. Just focus on yourself and get the hell out.

    • LiningupDucks – “You’re not going to convince your husband to truly love you, or convert him to quit being a cheater. You’re not going to convince the OW that she’s a skank. Just focus on yourself and get the hell out”..,.I wish someone had told me this truth in the first year of my marriage .. I would not have spent 14 years trying to be the “perfect wife” so my husband could love me and be faithful to me & eould not have something precious time communicating with his numerous affair partners trying to convince them not to be SKANKS!…. The truth like you have pointed out is -that there is no convincing cheaters or skanks.. Just get out.

  • There are far worse things in this life than divorce, one of which is living with the fear of yet another betrayal. Take it from those of us who have done everything possible to save our marriages. The second, third, fourth (if you’re a masocist) discovery hurts as much, if not more, than the initial gut punch. Your husband is a liar, who does just enough to keep you in your place. Fuck ’em. The only person I would tell about your discovery is her husband. After all, doesn’t he have the right to know about what a lying sack of shit he’s married to?

  • Linda:

    I lived like this for a long time too. It sucked. After the very first discovery of the OW I NEVER felt loved again. Yet I stayed. He promised NC. He said he loved me. I thought things would be better. But……I never trusted him again. And with good reason. He would be better for a few weeks, maybe a month and then distant again and of course that was because he never really stopped talking to her. She held on for dear life. They were madly in love ya know!!! I accepted far less than I deserved and I did that out of fear.

    I can tell you this……nothing feels better than having him gone. I no longer feel like the sacrificial lamb, keeping things together for my children and the extended family. I no longer have to be the detective in my own home, wasting all of that energy on trying to “catch” him!! That is over. I can once again enjoy life. I am slowly building my self confidence back and likely what I see in the mirror. I cannot believe someone I loved so much could destroy me the way he did!!!

    FYI…….after five years of this OW sneaking around with my husband and lying to hers….she is now living with my STBXH and she has met one of my children. SHE HAD NO INTENTION OF EVER LETTING HIM GO and he had no intention of loving me the way I deserved. I only wish I had stopped the crazy after the very first discovery on Dec. 28, 2007!!!!!

    I wasted my time and it sounds like you are wasting yours. You deserve so much better than what he is offering you!!!!!!!!!

    • KIMMY- “I can tell you this……nothing feels better than having him gone. I no longer feel like the sacrificial lamb, keeping things together for my children and the extended family. I no longer have to be the detective in my own home, wasting all of that energy on trying to “catch” him!! That is over. I can once again enjoy life. I am slowly building my self confidence back and likely what I see in the mirror. I cannot believe someone I loved so much could destroy me the way he did!!!”… IT’S TRULY AMAZING HOW THE FEELINGS OF A STRANGER CAN MIRROR MINE EXACTLY!!!…

      Not having to worry who he is with, where he has been, who he is sleeping with now & what lies he is telling is the greatest feeling in the world!!!!,,,like yours my STBEX “never had any intention of loving me the way I deserved” & I was one hell of a good wife! … My only regret is the wasted time & energy in chasing after a man who did not deserve my time,

    • CL’s “You don’t feel safe in this marriage” and Kimmy’s “I no longer feel like the sacrificial lamb, keeping things together for my children and the extended family” pretty much sums up how I felt for 2 YEARS after d-day.

      As much as I didn’t want to divorce, I’ve discovered there are WORSE things than ending a marriage – namely, not feeling safe with my husband, always being the marriage police, and doing the “pick me” dance with no chance of winning.

      You’ve been playing games with this man for 20 years, Linda, and you still haven’t won. Do yourself a favor: quit this one, and go find someone who doesn’t play games.

    • Weird. I had my first dday 28 December 2007 as well. Had my 2nd over 2 years ago and that was it for me. He didn’t keep on with the same OW, he simply carried on with multiple OW. I assume the one I caught was only by chance and, if his subsequent behaviour is any indication, he had sidepieces throughout our relationship. Don’t give enough of a shit to find out but yes, I wish I had gone with my instinct and followed through on the divorce after the first dday. He talked me out of it and boy, do I feel stupid now. Live and learn, though, right? 🙂

  • The OW freaked out because he ended it with her (this time) by saying that he only loves her and he never loved you. He told her that he will always love her. Yes, he left the door open for them to get back together at some point in the future. He is a lying liar who lies and she deserves him.

    Life after divorce is peaceful. Dump his ass and get off this merry-go-round.

  • I’d say print off her stuff, and put it in a safety deposit box–where you don’t see it to ruminate over it. Hey, the more documentation for your divorce, the better.

    Yes I said divorce. Because I suspect you’re going to split up over this now… or later. As CL pointed out, he still left the door open to more “cake”. Does that ACTION say “I’m really working on this?” Where does SkankaWhoreus get off thinking that she’s entitled to “threaten” him over whether or not he gets to love his own wife of twenty years and mother of his three children?

    Because he’s fostered that kind of relationship with her, that’s why.

    Don’t tell him. You’re going to need all the ammo you can get your hands on, and by keeping this to yourself, you’re helping you.

    • Fabulous advice, Chump in the Sand!!!
      In my experience, the most difficult thing to do is shift your emotional and intellectual bearings to get to a point where you’re in an aggressive posture and able to move forward with only yourself (and your children) in mind. You’ve been in a hopeful state of mind that you can fix this or wait it out until your husband turns into the man you want him to be. The sooner you can convince yourself that your marriage is already over and take the steps to officially end it, the sooner you can get yourself to peace and happiness.

      Save everything!! Emails, voice messages, Facebook postings and IMs, and use them to get the best settlement you can. Want to make ass-wipe sorry? Go after his $$ and financial assets. No one says FU better than a divorce court judge ruling that everything goes to the chump!

      • Ha! “Go after his $$ and financial assets.” Exactly! Nothing will show you what is really important to them like taking away their treasure.

          • Even in some no-fault states, infidelity can be a factor in determining the amount of alimony awarded. Also, if your lying cheating bastard is deliberately maintaining under-employment, courts in some states also consider that. Also, if he is living with the OW, as he has in the past, his alimony can be cut off. Finally, any income he receives from other sources can also be considered. Ask around and find the most aggressive lawyer you can. The money you spend will be well worth it!

  • Oh, and BTW…

    the thing about RIC books is that cheaters can read them too…to figure out what to say and how to negotiate the image that you want from them so that they can keep on cake-eating.

    And even then–if you’re thinking he has a form of sex addiction, Marsha Means tells you to give you a year to decide where to go with this–I think you’ve given him much longer than that, and you know what your gut is saying.

    • That’s why some of them use Facebook and probably other social media chatting. So long as they don’t route chatting through SMS, there is no phone record–it’s just on FB. At least for now; in Europe, FB has moved to their Messenger App. I don’t know what kind of evidence trail, if any, that will leave.

  • This post reinforces one of the very first benefits I experienced after my divorce; Freedom from fear. I never have to buy a VAR again, I never have to buy key-logger software again, and I don’t have to track him on his iPhone. I am completely free of the bullshit. I, just like you, did not trust my husband and for good fucking reason.

    I can’t tell you how awesome it is to wake up each morning knowing the rest of my life is in front of me and I don’t have to wait for the other shoe to drop. It done dropped and it’s over. I don’t have to stalk, worry, or whine. My life is my own now. Nobody is lying to me and I don’t have to worry about getting my heart ripped out.

    The thing is, if you have to live this way; with this kind of fear that he will betray you or you have to change phone numbers and play detective, is the marriage really worth it?

    • It is amazing what our “normal” can look like after years and years of this sort of abuse.

      For 20 years this man has been emotionally abusing you and has created a drama that has kept him in a constant supply of ego kibbles.

      For 20 years your marriage has been a lie. Not your fault, but he has created a senario where 2 woman have been doing the “pick me dance” over and over again and this is just how he likes it!

      This is not a marriage. For you it has become a sort of jail. But you need to take him out of the equation and free yourself to the possibilities of a real life of happiness – either by yourself or with somebody who loves and respects you!

      I understand where you are at. I lost myself for years being the marriage police trying to change the unchangable and wanting to make somebody love me who clearly did not.

      There are no gold stars for this – just a wasted life and a big booby prize ( your cheater).

      As women we tend to think of marriage as something we must sustain or we feel like failures. Your H is long gone. Nothing to salvage here. The biggest accomplishment you can achieve now is to move on and free yourself from this twit. He’s not special. Just the average cheater. Let OW have him.

      Oh yeah – time to email her husband now.

      My OW’s stbx and I became friends over the years. Had a steak dinner recently with him. He’s dating again and getting a life too. He is on his way to meh and likes this site!

      • I support informing the OW’s husband, but I would caution to not disclose what documentation you are gathering. That’s your business. You can’t control his response to OW–in a fit of anger, he could spill all the ammo you’re stockpiling for your own well-being, and once OW knows, you can assume your current husband knows.

      • “I lost myself for years being the marriage police trying to change the unchangable and wanting to make somebody love me who clearly did not.”
        THIS is something I have to remind myself of every day. I cannot change the unchangeable. And I cannot make somebody love me who clearly did not. Even now, as I am going through the divorce, there’s a little nagging voice deep inside that wishes like hell that he’d realize what a huge mistake he made, and come running back with his tail between his legs (Instead of her mouth). But another little nagging voice keeps telling me to think about the fact that he obviously didn’t love me..or he would never have done this to me or our children. It’s words of wisdom like Lisah’s and CL’s that keep me on the right track. Oh I veer off daily, of course. But at the end of the day, I try to think about what was WRONG in our marriage, instead of what was RIGHT. Because the wrong outweighs the right by miles and miles.

        • Sandy, even if he did come running back now, your ex wouldn’t be doing it because he had realized he loved and valued you. It would only be because HE’s not happy right now and wants you to fix that for him (as usual).

          Been there, done that, it’s disgusting.

        • Yes Sandy, the bottom line is that he really didn’t love you (me). That is a hard pill to swallow, but when you do, it finally feels fantastic to be free. So he didn’t love me? Time to move on, because we are loveable, loyal and a hell of a lot smarter NOW than we were before.

    • Rumblekitty, the best revenge for me? OW is now monitoring my ex’s emails, comings and goings, etc. LOL. Nice foundation for a relationship.

      • The OW in mine is too high on sparkles and moon-beams to think he would ever do this to her! I got news for her . . . she better put a lawyer on a payment plan because her day is coming. Waaa – Waaaahhhh <—– (sad trombone)

      • I’m fairly sure that OW will keep my STBX on a short leash because she knows he can wander. On the other hand, she’s so delusional she thinks that every man out there wants her, so maybe she thinks STBX won’t stray.

        I can tell you one thing, though, OW absolutely will cheat on STBX. It’s who she is. She has no problems sleeping with married men. He’s not the first, and he won’t be the last. She doesn’t respect those kinds of boundaries at all!

        • kb, a friend’s husband left her for an OW who was known to like married men. Friend’s ex married OW, and now, about 6 years later, OW is having an affair. Not sure if the OM is married. You can’t make this crap up.

          • When I was interviewing lawyers, I told one of them about OW and said that I feel a bit embarrassed for STBX because he has such bad taste. That part rankles, actually. I could understand if he cheated on me but traded up. I’d be madder than hell, but hey, if Ms PhD Super Model with a Million Dollars walked into his life, at least he’d be looking up in the world!

            I have no idea of the fantasy land that passes for his mental state, but that he’d choose her over me–or even just choose her when she radiates Bad News–well, who’d want to stay with someone like that?

    • Beautifully said, Rumblekitty.

      Last summer, I found several strange phone numbers stored on my X’s iPhone “favourite” list. This was in the middle of EA (PA?) and some really bad juju in the relationship generally speaking. And no, I wasn’t snooping (at that point anyway). We’d just be in the car or in a restaurant (etc.), a call would come in, and he’d dive for the phone. The whole Austin Powers top-secret maneuvering gig. So I pulled a few numbers off there when he was on a walk, and asked my BFF to dial them up. At that point, I just couldn’t handle what I might have found. So she calls them up and tells me that she got some chick’s voice mail, but the next time she called (after I asked her to dig for more), the number was no longer in service. How many words are there to describe the bottom dropping out of your whole belief system? The next thing I know, I’ve signed up for this thing called Phone Detective. I’m absolutely, utterly MAD to find out who the fuck he’s been phoning and who’s been phoning him, as a favourite. I actually paid close to 100 bucks for this fucking service, to tell me what I already knew: I CANNOT TRUST THIS GUY. THE RELATIONSHIP AS I HAVE KNOWN IT IS OVER.

      I think of this episode now and weep for myself (and the 100 bucks I could have spent more productively, like at Chapters, or Sephora, or take-out sushi). I get this zoom-in vision of myself sitting at my desk at work and actually SIGNING UP for a service called “phone detective,” and I want to bitch-slap myself. Like DUDE! How could you have let yourself sink so fucking low?

      For me, this is CL’s best posting so far, and I’m really grateful to you for posing the question that’s at the heart of everything we discuss: TRUST. Once it’s gone, so is respect. And without those two things, how can we possibly say there is “love”? How can we consign ourselves to a life where we’re being Austin Powers instead of ourselves?

      “I can’t tell you how awesome it is to wake up each morning knowing the rest of my life is in front of me and I don’t have to wait for the other shoe to drop. It done dropped and it’s over. I don’t have to stalk, worry, or whine. My life is my own now. Nobody is lying to me and I don’t have to worry about getting my heart ripped out.” PREACH

      • TRUST. Once it’s gone, so is respect. And without those two things, how can we possibly say there is “love”?

        Beautiful! I think you get it!

  • No don’t tell your husband you did this, sure the ow already has talked to him and they figured out it was you.

    And who cares, they are garbage.

    Don’t be all freaked out over oh no they know. Be freaked out over you let them walk all over you so many years of your life. Why don’t you let them have eachother, it is so deserved. Two asshole liars together.

    So many other emails could be opened, and disposable phones and there are so many women in the world and look, you are married to an asshole.

    Why would you want to put yourself through this any longer?

      • Pathetic? No. Understandably scared, freaked out, pissed, sad, lonely, and every other legitimate emotion of a woman who is learning that her life partner has lied to her for twenty years. He and his fuck buddy (because I promise you no guy carries on a “secret agent”affair for 20 years without fucking) are the pathetic assholes.

  • Also, the thing is, look at you, making all these emails and going undercover, look at what this has made your life.

    Maybe think of opening some agency and get info do it as a line of work. Who knows.

    Please refocus, who is this woman who is putting so much effort into this horrible man she is married to? Put all that into you, and what you really want.

    I can’t believe you really want a lying cheater this badly, to do all this under this much pressure, you must be one fantastic creative woman. Use it for you!

    Sure he thinks this is a joke, and the ow feels some power trip. Please walk and never look back.

    • One of my therapists asked me once- Do you need to focus so much on what he’s up to, because you’re afraid of addressing your own issues?
      Sometimes it’s just a huge diversion, so we avoid doing our personal work.

  • Linda, do you really want to do this for the rest of your life? Aren’t you worth more than to sacrifice your time and peace of mind worrying if they’re in communication?

    I don’t want to sound unkind, but I sense a lot of denial here. You never mention a physical affair, but honestly, they’ve lived together once. It’s been 20 years of contact. Do you honestly think they haven’t been ringing that bell all along? Just because you haven’t found the idiots naked in your bed doesn’t mean it isn’t happening.

    You’ve been hurting for 20 years. You’ve been busy covering your bases, doing perimeter checks, and acting as your husband’s warden, and it hasn’t changed a thing. Not permanently. I know what it’s like to get emotionally invested because you want the “win,” but really, what kind of prize is that? You’ve spent 20 years driving yourself crazy, and the only thing you’ve won is a prize dickweed that hasn’t divorced you yet.

    I say let her have him. I say line up your financial ducks, talk to an attorney, and stop spending your days policing someone’s phone and email. Live your life. Find someone who actually DOES love and cherish you, and let those two twu wuvs have each other.

    We’ll be here to help get you to the other side. Hugs.

      • You’ve been hurting for 20 years. You’ve been busy covering your bases, doing perimeter checks, and acting as your husband’s warden, and it hasn’t changed a thing. Not permanently. I know what it’s like to get emotionally invested because you want the “win,” but really, what kind of prize is that? You’ve spent 20 years driving yourself crazy, and the only thing you’ve won is a prize dickweed that hasn’t divorced you yet.

        WOW ,,,,,,,,, pretty much dead on.

      • Linda,
        That’s completely normal.

        The only way to get strong and stay strong and dare I say get Happy eventually is to get him out of your life.

        It’s amazing how things change for the better once you remove them from your life and take care of you. Then you become sooooo strong and clear minded over time.

        Eventually you may even laugh at the fact that you allowed yourself to be tormented by this loser. To me men and women who behave this way are all losers and they can’t possibly change because they are work allergic, have zero depth,no character and very little creativity.

        I see mine now as my low point and there was no where else but up to go to from there. Now if he ever crosses my mind which is pretty rare these days. I just want to take a shower with disinfectant. LOL.

        Looking back I just shake my head and say, “What the hell was I thinking? and I laugh.” Without question, I saw and heard the most insanely retarded and crazy things, things I couldn’t even imagine. Really funny in they were so crazy and really mean and cruel as well. Often there was a maturity level there of a 4 year old. This guy had two grown kids too from his one and only marriage that ended about 12 years ago. Poor kids.

        Took a while to get here but I did and I can say now that although I don’t ever want to go through this again, I am in a weird way glad I went through it. It gave me an amazingly strong foundation to build the life I want upon it. I have no doubt that I will get that life. Wish I was younger like in my thirties or early forties when this happened but it happened when it happened and it made me really love and appreciate myself for the first time in my life. I truly don’t care what other people think of me any more. I am fully capable of making all decisions by myself for myself and that feels great.

        The best part is I trust myself and feel that I am in the best hands to protect myself and best of all, I make me happy and proud!

        These are all of the things that lie ahead of you after you get through the beginning part which is hellish, I will not lie but god almighty it gets sooooooooooooo soooooooooo much better.

        Just look at what he has caused you to feel like you had to do? It’s really bananas and certainly not helping you. It’s hurting you more.

        Stop the hurt asap. Good stuff awaits after, I promise! : )

      • Please listen to what others are telling about the physical aspect of it. I speak from alot of experience. Look at CL. Her ex brought the OW into their marriage!! It doesn’t matter on one hand whether he fucked the OW during your marriage, because you deserve to be treated with honesty and respect and you haven’t been treated that way. At the same time, do not allow his gaslighting bullshit to convince you it has not been a physical affair. I was lied to for such a long time about this and wish I acted on my suspicions much sooner than I did.

        • I am not sure if they were physical in recent years. However, I know that in the early years of our marriage, he had a few other whores. One of them was really young. He was 40 and she was 20. I almost feel sorry for that one. But what killed me was that I discovered he was still involved with that old skank years after I thought we had worked through everything and had a solid marriage. I was so betrayed!

            • It’s an old saying, because it turns out to be true!
              Every time a cheater gets bored with life, or feels the normal stress of day to day living, what pops into their head? Hmm, check out that neighbor, I bet she’d let me! That’s why they’re so hard to change. To change, they would have to work on it, come up with strategies for coping, etc.
              Naaah, it’s easier to find an equally damaged, or desperate person, and see if you can fuck them.
              God, I’m so glad I don’t have cheater-brain!

  • I lived this in my marriage. From the get go, my H had his old girlfriend in the weeds. I found the emails, I followed the trail. She called me at my office a week before Thanksgiving one year to let me know that he was cheating on me. But I already knew. Then she sent me every email that they had exchanged. Who did I blame? Her. But I never trusted him again. He had work phones, he had a work cell phone and he had his cell phone. We changed the number on his cell phone after he promised me he would never contact her again. Guess who called him on his new number? I asked how she got it and he actually looked me in the eye and said “I don’t know.” Lie after lie after miserable lie. But I stayed. We went to counseling and he still continued to be with her whether emotionally, online (oh yes, online .. cyber sex) and in person. 8 years into this huge fucked up life we called marriage she passed away. Still waiting for him to leave me for her because, of course, he made those promises to her too. Thinking it was done now that she was gone, what? Wait! His high school girlfriend found him on Facebook. Within a month of finding each other, they had met at a hotel and slept together. A month after that he asked me for a divorce. Guess what? I let him go. Best decision EVER! Oh, we played the “pick me” dance for a while, but even that was more to get even with her than to get him back. It pleased me to know that the love he professed to her was as deep as the love he professed for me. Even now, he continues to write me emails telling me how much he misses me, how sad he is that he let me get away and I discovered that he needs to have that second woman in the mix. Where it used to be the first girlfriend and me, now it was me and this girlfriend. The 2nd best thing I ever did was enforce a no contact with me 2 months ago. I went through my lawyer and I haven’t received an email or anything from him and life is great. No more lies, no more party to his “feel sorry” for me bullshit. Best advice to you … dump his sorry ass and move on. Let him have his honey. Obviously the grass isn’t greener or he would have already left you for her, but because you have allowed this to go on for all of these years, he really doesn’t need to. Stand up girlfriend and let go. You will never trust him…you don’t trust him now. I never trusted my XH after I found out about the first affair … EVER. I was always looking, always wondering, always checking up. What a hell of a way to live your life. And I know because I lived it. Fortunately, mine was only 10 years worth. Let go. Move on. Enjoy your life because right now, unless you really enjoy the detective work, you aren’t enjoying your life in the way you could be. He’s not worth it!

  • Linda: my H had a EA with an old girlfriend he reconnected with on facebook. After I discovered where he hid his secret cell phone I monitoredtheir “relationship” until she ended it and I told him to destroy the phone in front of me. They are still friends on facebook. To what extent I don’t know he says they are NC. But recently he has added a new friend (another long haired blonde) and deleted his relationship status Trolling says my therapist Trust that this will never be over for you.

  • Please listen to the experienced wisdom here –

    It just dawned on me the other day that I met exH 20 years ago this summer. Two decades of my life wasted on this loser. I learned after he left our 10 year marraige that he had been in contact or involved to some degree with his high school sweetheart our ENTIRE MARRIAGE. It was all a lie. Sure, he claimed they were just “old friend”; I did the cell phone bill monitoring; there were other OW too who were “just friend”; I was “crazy and insecure”….blah, blah, blah.

    It’s all a game to them. You cannot change him, the OW, or any of it – you can only choose to STOP PLAYING. Let the crazy, soul-less cheater freaks play their own sick game of life – but if you ever want a chance of peace and sanity, leave now. Don’t waste one more minute. You can’t get it back.

    • AGREE! I think I’ve read something like this on a narcissist abuse help website – “the only way to win with them is to not play”. The more you check up, the more you try to “catch” them, the more exciting it is for them. The more you fight for them, the more fun it is for them AND the AP who thinks they’re winning a “prize”. Give that contagious piece of shit away to the first skank stupid enough to take it.

      • Love this, ” Give that contagious piece of shit away to the first skank stupid enough to take it.” Uh, can I have the T-shirt? I happily let POS ex have his stupid OW skank and my life (and my children’s) has been better ever since. Looking back my ex seemed preoccupied at best when he spent time at home. He was never really present. Sort of “incapable of love”. I don’t delude myself into thinking he is capable of “loving” anyone. Fucking, yes. Loving, no. People like this are great actors but if something seems off it is likely your gut telling you the truth. Listen to your thoughts, you have been beating a dead horse, your entire marriage has been an exercise in futility. You can not save it. Save yourself and your boys.

  • Linda, please put down the spackle and back away from your cheating husband & his whore. You are so focused on the two of them and not on what’s truly important which is YOU! You need to realize that these cheating assholes are like cockroaches and will scurry around to find hidden/secret places to meet & ways to communicate. Do not trust a Verizon phone bill or any other carrier phone bill-if he has a smart phone there are all kinds of hidden/secret apps that allow the user to use wifi to send text messages and make phone calls that will NEVER show on your phone bill (trust me I know all about this now) More tools to help aid these fuckwits. It doesn’t matter if you think you have have squashed this particular OW aka cockroach……in all reality there are plenty more of these disgusting roaches out there. I can’t imagine that this is the life you want to live.

    Think of it as a sinking ship Linda with only one life preserver-SAVE YOURSELF & JUMP!!

    • YEP!!! I discovered the secret apps as well. I was monitoring his phone bills and his data usage was VERY high at certain times during the day. I had to get a VAR to catch him talking to her. NEVER AGAIN do I want to live like this!!!!

        • Michael-there are apps out there for smartphones that allow cheaters to have hidden, password encrypted files on their phone. The one my stbx has on his iphone is called “My Secret File” which not only tells them if someone tries to log on to it, it snaps their picture and records the time and date. Nice huh? FUCKTARD! I was smart enough to get into the itunes purchase history to see that he bought it so I didnt get caught snooping on that. It hides behind the calculator function on the iphone. There is also Text Plus app which lets yo call & text using wifi so the numbers wont show on your phone bill. How I figured out the porn was the extreme data usage that was appearing on the bill-then I saw it. Google hidden apps & free texting, etc and you will be shocked at all the tools cheaters have. Or they could go get a pay as you go phone with internet & messaging with a completely seperate phone. It’s like I’m having to play James Bond to collect evidence. I can’t tell you how much I’ve learned about the seedier side of life from my stbx-massage parlors, porn addiction, backpage on craigslist, secret phone apps…….What a total asswipe. It was an education I didn’t want but hopefully will help in the custody hearings.

          • Holy shit I had no idea ,, I mean other than FB but you can’t hide that shit. Thank you so much for the tips and shit I guess I have more digging to do. Good luck CC I hope it works out for you 🙂 thanks again

  • Marriage is about teamwork, each working together to reach the same goal.
    M ex never understood that, nor does yours. In this case, your H throwing the game by bringing in outside players.

    Deep breath, and time to walk away.

  • You know, reading these posts, I noticed how it’s easy to say “skank” and “whore” about the OW, but the guy doing this is “cheating husband”.

    I’m glad CL calls a spade a spade, and doesn’t buy into “wayward”.

    I’m not saying not to call the OW names, but somehow, “cheating husband” still sounds too nice in comparison.

    Is that just me?

  • You are absolutely right Chump In The Sand…..cheating or wayward is far to kind a moniker to bestow on these individuals. I’m all for Asshole, Fucktard, Fuckwit etc. Sometimes I think we just use the less vulgar of the terms to not offend anyone on the board. Although being cheated on has really brought out my inner angry bitch!!!

  • “I am inclined to just leave it alone.”

    ***…you can’t just, “leave it alone.”
    If you could, you wouldn’t be here asking the question.

    You are living in a limbo of distrust, and there are value conflicts which must be either resolved as a committed couple…. or unilaterally removed from your life in order for you to return to emotional health.

    So here are some questions for you:

    Is this man in therapy working hard on his personal issues to find out why he cannot commit exclusively to his wife on all emotional and physical levels, and why he feels the need to lie…whether by commission or omission? Does he acknowledge with no defensiveness that third party intimate relationships suck the life out of a marriage? Has he sincerely and repeatedly apologized for betraying your trust? Does he respond to your concerns with honesty and empathy, or does he shut down and refuse to discuss these issues? Is he willing to go above and beyond ordinary measures to VOLUNTARILY prove that he is making every effort be trustworthy?

    If the answer to any of the above questions is, “No,” then you have to ask yourself: Am I willing to spend the rest of my days living like I do now? Is this a real marriage or a pretense of one? Do I respect myself so little that I am willing continue to live a lie for the sake of peace?

    Sounds to me like both of you are conflict avoidant. And I can guarantee that ALL marriages–even the best ones–have conflict. One facet of enduring marriages is having learned to resolve conflicts together–not running from them individually. The fact that he has been quiescent for a year is no indicator that he has done his “me” work or has changed. You need indisputable proof.

    You did not say whether you are getting individual counseling or marriage counseling. I highly recommend both for the sake of values clarification and as an aid in making decisions that promote your emotional growth and health.

    The only person you can “fix” is this relationship is YOU. Work on fixing yourself, and insist that he either fix himself or get out. He will either step up and do the work or he will continue to be evasive, sneaky, disloyal, and untrustworthy. It won’t take long for you to see which way the wind is blowing.

    The choice of whether to continue in this limbo is completely up to you, and you have much more power than you believe. Act like it. Insist on honesty and reciprocity. If he can’t find it within himself to provide you with these, then you need to step out and go it alone. Which is more important..being married? or being sane?

    We only have one “go” at this life. Don’t waste yours. Best of fortune to you!

      • There’s a problem with this “Is this man in therapy working hard on his personal issues to find out why he cannot commit exclusively to his wife on all emotional and physical levels, and why he feels the need to lie…”

        Yeah, my ex went to therapy every week “working on himself”, that was a lie too. He went to therapy only to convince me he was doing what he was supposed to do. I found his workbook after he’d been going for a year. He’d filled out the very first simple exercise, he hadn’t done any of the rest of it. Untrustworthy people are untrustworthy.

        • I have several thoughts about your comment….

          Why wasn’t his therapist discussing the content of of his journal entries with him during individual sessions, if it had been assigned as a behavior workbook?

          Effective counselors are skeptical and have excellent Bullshit Meters. They do not allow clients to F-off and not do the work. Good counselors are not afraid to confront. Being a counselor is not a popularity contest. If everyone likes you, you’re doing something wrong.

          That having been said, there are people like your husband who are so pathological that they will never grow or change in counseling. Addicts are some of the most treatment resistant clients. Further, if treatment takes place within the confines of marriage counseling, it is the ethical responsibility of the counselor to take enough time to assess thoroughly and then convey to the injured party that there does not appear to be any chance for growth or change.

          • Since today has been declared “Potty Mouth Friday,” I’ll paraphrase it a bit more colorfully:

            Linda has tolerated this man’s bullshit (and avoided the conflict with him that she so dreads) for too long.

            It is time for her to metaphorically “woman up,” draw her line in the sand, and write underneath the line, ” Either shit or get off the pot.”

            [And I suspect she is going to need a no-nonsense counselor to support her because nothing about doing this is easy…even for people who are accustomed to setting strong boundaries.]

            • Oh, Notyou, if only there wasn’t conflict! We have too much conflict because I am a bitch (meaning I refuse to accept his crap). I am terrible to live with (meaning I will no longer allow him to be unemployed since I discovered he was calling that whore from our bed while I worked late) and I am fucking crazy to have ever thought he was talking to the OW, even though I had written proof. Oh! There has been plenty of conflict! I am so ashamed to live like this.

              • Ok, so Linda.

                You have:
                -proof of affair, EA or otherwise
                -stayed longer than what an almost reasonable RIC would ask you to stay (1 year)
                -no honest, open, trustwothy communication–defensiveness being oft used

                So…. Linda….
                what’s on the “pro” column here? A roof over your head? Surely there are other means of keeping the rain out.

          • notyou, I have no idea what went on. I’m talking about my ex going to personal therapy to work out his shit and he wasn’t committed to it. He simply went to make me think he was fixing his shit. He didn’t do the work – and as for effective counselors, I think he had a good one but a therapist can’t do shit if the client is lying to them.

    • And I can guarantee that ALL marriages–even the best ones–have conflict.

      Especially the “best” marriages. How does crap ever get worked out and how do reasonable compromises ever get reached if everybody is trying to avoid stepping on toes?

      That being said, I’m not saying screaming matches. Shouldn’t need those if crap is getting worked out 🙂

  • I can’t remember where I first read this but it is true:

    If a man wants you, nothing can keep him away.
    If he doesn’t want you, nothing can make him stay.
    Stop making excuses for a man and his behavior.
    Allow your intuition (or spirit) to save you from heartache.
    Stop trying to change yourselves for a relationship that’s not meant to be.
    Slower is better.
    Never live your life for a man before you find what makes you truly happy.
    If a relationship ends because the man was not treating you as you deserve then heck no, you can’t “be friends.”
    A friend wouldn’t mistreat a friend.
    Don’t settle. If you feel like he is stringing you along, then he probably is.
    Don’t stay because you think “it will get better.” You’ll be mad at yourself a year later for staying when things are not better.
    The only person you can control in a relationship is you.
    Avoid men who’ve got a bunch of children by a bunch of different women.
    He didn’t marry them when he got them pregnant,
    Why would he treat you any differently?
    Always have your own set of friends separate from his.
    Maintain boundaries in how a guy treats you.
    If something bothers you, speak up.
    Never let a man know everything. He will use it against you later.
    You cannot change a man’s behavior. Change comes from within.
    Don’t EVER make him feel he is more important than you are…even if he has more education or in a better job. Do not make him into a quasi-god.
    He is a man, nothing more nothing less.
    Never let a man define who you are.
    Never borrow someone else’s man.
    Oh Lord! If he cheated with you, he’ll cheat on you.
    A man will only treat you the way you allow him to treat you.
    All men are not dogs.
    You should not be the one doing all the bending…compromise is a two-way street.
    You need time to heal between relationships…There is nothing cute about baggage. Deal with your issues before pursuing a new relationship.
    You should never look for someone to complete you. A relationship consists of two whole individuals. Look for someone complimentary, not supplementary.
    Dating is fun; even if he doesn’t turn out to be Mr. Right.
    Make him miss you sometimes. When a man always know where you are, and you’re always readily available to him—he takes it for granted.
    Don’t fully commit to a man who doesn’t give you everything that you need.
    Keep him in your radar but get to know others.
    Share this with other ladies.

    You’ll make someone smile, another rethink her choices, and another woman prepare.

    They say it takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate them, a day to love them, and an entire lifetime to forget them.

  • Linda, long story short; if you reach a point of trust with this asshole he will do it again, or simply never stop…

    7 years into my relationship with ex I found he was cheating and drinking in secret (recovered alcoholic, stay away from them). We had long talks, he went “transparent” and for a year I monitored him. He regained my trust, stupid; I was so stupid.

    10 years later I find he is cheating with someone and he mindfucked me because he felt he was entitled to two women. Did the whole reconciliation thing while he continued his affair, the 3rd time I found he hadn’t cut it off I said we were divorcing. He refused to leave, eventually I ended up having to get a protective order, so he moved in with his OW. During this time I had a PI on him to prove adultery because he wanted alimony and in my state proof of cheating means he can’t have it. Know what we found? Within 3 weeks he had signed up for Ashley Madison, gone on a trip to NY to hook up with a high priced prostitute and to bang a married woman. He started cheating on his OW within a month of moving in with her. These assholes do not change, they just go deeper underground.

    I know now that my ex was cheating on me from the very beginning and during the entire relationship, I was just too love blind to notice. I’ll say this, unless you CAN regain the trust you will be miserable. But I don’t think you should try, most chumps here had a similar experience. The only trust you should be aiming for is to trust that he sucks.

    • Datdamwuf, you got it. Unfortunately, cheaters love to cheat. I swear it’s in their DNA. I’m pretty sure they’re really sorry when they’re about to lose everything but once they’re comfortable again, they go shopping once more at Whores R Us.

  • This man has been shitting on you for 20 years. Stand outside your marriage and look at it as realistically as you can.
    My husband and I hit a bad patch and talked about divorce. Was not worried about whether I could live without him, I knew I could emotionally, I worried about the financial ability of looking after my children. By the time the financial situation was rectified he and I got over the bad stuff but it helped me to understand that I could go on without him if I needed to. If you can manage the financial situation then you need to discuss what to do with an attorney.
    These chumps are telling you that once he is gone you can actually breathe again. Take their word for it. Healthy love has been missing in your life for 20 years. It is time you got out of jail.

  • Here’s my story of this week because I’m still living this shit. My loser ex has been going to therapy and acting like he has really changed and talking of getting back together and about how he is going to fix all this – well this Wednesday night he was missing in action. I was grilling and he was suppose to come over and hang with our son and have dinner. So I’m calling at 6 and I call like 6 times in a row. Still no answer. If someone would do this to me I answer at the 2 or 3 thinking an emergency. Nope not him. I get a text at 8 saying he was having a real shitty day and just had to blow some steam off because he was so mad and he was bitching a worker out when I was calling him. This is so typical of his behavior. Next morning he text me he’ll call me when he calms down and can talk. Is this guy for real. He is so dumb. He calls and he’s all joe cool. He tries to tell me some dumb story and I don’t buy it. It took him all night to come up with such a lame story. Anyway I tell him I don’t trust him and just to give up because his stories really suck. He gets mad tells me he doesn’t need this fucking shit and hangs up on me. Really he doesn’t need this shit. That’s when I realized he’s back to his old ways. He was with his OW. We were just talking the night before about his therapy and what he’s learned. And he can see his future as a family. He hasn’t learned anything. He’s all talk and remember I’m the one that has been waiting a week for my results on the STD’s and pap. Well I got it back on the same day all this shit happens- I have some kind of bacterial infection, not an STD so he feels he’s off the hook . I’m taking flagyl. He goes on about how I don’t know or understand his emotional hardships and sufferings plus his physical hardships?! He’s the victim and I should really walk in his shoes. This guy is delusional and plain stupid. That’s when I realized all this worrying and being upset is just too consuming. I don’t want to be looking over my shoulder all the time or wondering when he’s going to cheat again or if is can trust him. You are always right this relationship will never be a safe place and this way of living is unacceptable.

    • Repeat of my post above: Yeah, my ex went to therapy every week “working on himself”, that was a lie too. He went to therapy only to convince me he was doing what he was supposed to do. I found his workbook after he’d been going for a year. He’d filled out the very first simple exercise, he had not done any of the rest of it. Untrustworthy people are untrustworthy.

      My last betrayal was when ex told me “I haven’t seen her in over a month”. He went directly from my house to hers after that conversation. I verified it. When confronted he responded “I said I had not seen her, I did not say I was not GOING to see her”. Fucked up people are fucked up.

      Get a lawyer, get out and find peace Rain. Jedi Hugs!

      • ” So I’m calling at 6 and I call like 6 times in a row.”

        “The Pick Me Polka” ….. Stanza 2: Line 3.

        Please don’t do that!!

        • ANYBODY is a no-show without a call or text at an agreed-upon get-together does not deserve your time. Friend, family, fuckmate OR fucktard. Nope.

          You sit and eat when the food is ready, enjoy the gorgeous spring weather, and when he calls with a story,”Sorry. I expected a timely text or call if you had a legitimate reason to be late. I don’t make future plans with people who can’t respect my time,” and hang up. And follow up–no future dates.

          My cheater ex-boyfriend was never on time,never called,nothing. I learned to expect that kind of respect after the end of that one.

  • Linda:

    You’ve had excellent advice from CL and the other contributors.

    Marriage is built on trust. Infidelity–both physical and emotional–destroys that trust. You don’t trust your husband.

    I don’t blame you. A man who lied 20 years ago about his old flame, a man who left you to go live with Old Flame and her husband (wtf?), a man who starts texting Old Flame 1.5 years ago–he certainly doesn’t inspire trust!

    But if you believe OW, then you’ve just had confirmation that he’s been NC for quite some time.

    The problem is that with all the stuff she’s sent your way, she would expect some kind of reaction from your husband. Nothing. Okay, so now she has to contact him again to see what he’s doing with all that crap she sent you, thinking it was him. At this point, both of them know they’re being played, and your husband can’t trust you. But he can’t say anything, because that would out that he’s been in contact with OW.

    Also, you still don’t trust that he’s stopped talking with her.

    So you see, this isn’t really a healthy relationship, nor is it likely to become one.

    If you want a healthy relationship–and I believe that all of us deserve that–you have two options. The first is to come clean with your cheating asshole of a husband, and then have both of you in joint and individual counseling. There are no guarantees here. Remember, you control only you. The counseling is for you to come together as a couple to figure out shared values, etc. The individual counseling is for you, Linda, to figure out why you’ve accepted this farce as a marriage, and whether you truly wish to carry on with the status quo. You can’t control whether or not he cheats. You can control how you will deal the situation. Do you truly wish for him to stay? If so, what boundaries do you set for you (not for him; he has to set and keep his own boundaries)? Will one boundary be that you deserve being married to an honest man? Note that you can’t keep him from lying, but you can control whether or not you will tolerate being married to someone who lies.

    With this option, if you have nagging doubts, you’ll end up being Marriage Police and wondering how many disposable phones and fake email addresses he has.

    The other option is, frankly, cleaner. Go to a lawyer, take the emails. See what your options are, work a settlement and get a divorce. Get some individual counseling to work on you and why you stayed in a marriage where the guy left you when you had small children. In this marriage, you’ve been Plan B from the start. Once he’s gone, you can live life honestly, and that will feel like freedom!

  • Ugh, my dear Linda. I haven’t read the comments yet, so sorry if this is redundant. First of all, this is NO WAY TO LIVE! Where is your sense of ‘I’m fabulous, a catch, and I need a man that longs to sip my bathwater!’ If you settle for this shit circus, he will be happy as hell. I agree that, of course he’s fucking her. Like our wise CL said once- that’s what grown-ups do! They don’t focus 20 years of attention on someone, just to to chat over coffee!!
    My X told me that BS for 32 yrs! Now that I’m safely away from him, his guy friends are coming forward to say- Yeh, he was cheating on you. Do you know what they thought? That I was purposely turning a blind eye to it! OMG, I fucking hate that! I was being lied to by him, and believe me, he was a very cool lier.
    Linda, I think you should maybe look at yourself, and your childhood, to see why you think this is all you deserve. Something is probably there, a bad role model, or maybe trauma. That was my issue, my parents were not in love, and I accepted terrible behavior from my X , at the same time he was love-bombing me. It was all so damn confusing.
    Hope you find help here, us Chumps need to stand up for our civil rights, and one of them has to be the right to be respected in our own home, don’t you think?

    • Lol! Love that comment “…man that longs to sip my bathwater!” So funny and true. Was watching the news tonight and it profiled a woman who’d lost her legs in the Boston bombing last year and it flashed onto a pic of her very devoted husband who tears eyed was saying that she was the best thing in his and their family’s life. Sob! Very sweet. And isn’t that what we all deserve?

  • Have you talked to OW’s husband? That is a really weird set-up they have going over there.

    I’m also puzzling over the OW’s response. They’ve been no contact, but when she heard that he loves you, she said she was going to carry through on her threat. Which means 1) she has told him in the past that she might rat him out (and he has not told her that you already know) and 2) he told her didn’t love you and gave her some other reason for reconciliation with you and no-contact with her.

    The other possibility is that once you had him say he loves you, she knew it couldn’t be him and so she faked telling you all. That also means he tells her he doesn’t love you and is only reconciling for the kids or the money or whatever.

    Anyhow, don’t tell him what she’s done. Focus on figuring out what you want to do, collect evidence, talk to a lawyer, talk to her husband, etc.

    If you decide you want to stay, telling him may make him mad at you, not her.
    If you decide you want to go, you should get your ducks in a row before telling him.

    • If you decide you want to stay, telling him will do absolutely nothing. He’s not going to be thankful you care so much that you hunt that deeply. He’s not going to me mad at her. He’s not going to be scared straight that he can’t hide his secrets.

      Plus, if you do stay, and he is going to repeat or continue his behaviour, you’ve just shown your hand about how far deeper he needs to hide–which continues the doubt-distrust-hunt deeper vortex.

      • Yes , IF you stay…. it will show him that he ‘got away with it’ and that you will tolerate this type of behavior. Please don’t ever tell him what you’ve done.It will show how truly pathetic you really are.

  • Hi Linda,

    I’ve been through a lot of the same sort of drama with my STBX, so you’re certainly not alone. I will reiterate what everyone else has already said: “GET OUT! GET OUT! GET OUT!”

    When I was still in the midst of the hellish 24/7 investigation that was my “marriage,” I came upon this quote from the late Nora Ephron. The last line was so dead on that I copied it into a note on my iPhone to keep as a reminder. I hope it helps you, too.

    “The plane landed, and I went home and straight to his office in our apartment. There was a locked drawer. Of course. I knew there would be.
    I found the key, opened it and there was the evidence — a book of children’s stories she’d given him with an incredibly stupid inscription about their enduring love.
    I wrote about all this in a novel called Heartburn, and it’s a very funny book which was turned into a film. But it wasn’t funny at the time. I was insane with grief.

    My heart was broken. I was terrified about what was going to happen to my children and me. I felt gaslighted and idiotic and completely mortified. I wondered if I was going to become one of those divorced women who’s forced to move with her children to Connecticut and is never heard of again.

    I walked out dramatically, and came back after promises were made. My husband entered into the usual cycle for this sort of thing — lies, lies, and more lies. I entered into surveillance: steaming open American Express bills, swearing friends to secrecy, finding out they couldn’t keep a secret, and so forth.

    There was a mysterious receipt from James Robinson Antiques. I called them, pretended to be my husband’s assistant and said I needed to know what the receipt was for so I could insure it. It turned out to be for an antique porcelain box that said ‘I Love You Truly’ on it. It was presumably not unlike the antique porcelain box my husband had bought for me a couple of years earlier that said ‘Forever and Ever’.

    I mention all of this so you will understand it is part of the process: once you find out he’s cheated on you, you have to keep finding it out until you’ve degraded yourself so completely that there’s nothing left to do but walk out.”

    • That is a freaking awesome Nora Ephron quote. And ain’t it the truth — you need to keep finding it out. Over and over. Until you trust that they suck.

      • Ever since I found CL and all of you I feel that each day’s discussion speaks directly to me in the way I need. I agree with my whole heart. Surveilling your husband as a self-taught PI is a horrible way to live. I hated but felt compelled to look through his emails, texts and stuff all the time. It was terrifying. My heart raced in fear in anticipation of the hurt. I felt that crazed, out of body experience that the chaos of him brought to my life. Never again. He had the audacity to say that I was invading his privacy. Even after Dday. I am going deep into therapy. For me this kind of terror and chaos echoed my earlier family experience. I used my wits to gain control and it felt as though I could learn “what was really going on with him” by searching his nauseating stuff. but really dealing with cheaters is by definition a life of chaos and hurtful instability. If you have to mine emails and diaries to learn the truth about a person’s feelings and behavior get out fast. I learned that my creepy man wrote his journal with me in mind. It’s Bakhtin’s dialectical theory of language at its worst. When we were still living together he was frenetically emailing on the couch (yuck) I began to feel terrified and shitty and enraged. It’s happening right in front of my face (it did). I told his to shove his cell phone up his ass and get the hell out.

        The sad part is he probably got off on that. The focus Linda should be on you and your life. Let the troll cheater psycho fucker swing past your consciousness so you can get to you. He will never change.

        • Chumpectomy, I have spent the last months observing him. Really trying to step back and see who his actions reveal. I gave up believing his words. I have discovered that I don’t have enough resources to “fix” his issues. Once I stopped believing his lies, I realized I have a problem that I can’t ignore. You are right–he won’t change . Why should he? It is working for him! Short of an act of God, and I am a believer, he will cling to his old behaviors.
          Funny thing, after today’s support and advice, I am glad I did the emailing. I learned about her, him and myself. I was so needy. I had to try to figure out what they were up to. Now I am more focused on how he makes me feel. Believe me, I don’t feel loved by him. So sad. I also realized that the OW is very controlling. How pathetic is he to keep going back to her!

    • Wow, thank you for posting this. You know what’s sad? Had I read this years ago, I may have believed that my case was different. It wasn’t. I had to find out over and over again until I internalized it that he sucks big time.

    • Ephron was pregnant with her second child when she had this D-day, BTW. Another great Ephron quote about this episode and the book and movie it inspired:

      “I highly recommend having Meryl Streep play you. If your husband is cheating on you with a carhop, get Meryl to play you. You will feel much better.”

      Don’t know who the male equivalent of righteousness and grace would be. Robert Redford, perhaps?

      • Sadly, Meryl’s co-star in the film (the cheater husband) was none other than King Lothario BadAss Jack Nicholson, which was probably nothing but ego kibbles for Carl Bernstein (Ephron’s real-life cheating husband).

        “I cheated on my pregnant wife AND Jack Fucking Nicholson is playing me in a movie! I’m SPECIAL!”

        (Mind you, Nicholson was the SECOND Bernstein alter-ego immortalized in film, the first being Dustin Hoffman in “All The President’s Men”).

        Can you IMAGINE the sense of entitlement Bernstein must’ve been carried around? He probably felt it was his RIGHT, goshdarnit, to take up with OW!

    • Yes I agree. I kept reading over and over their text and email until I had degrading them to “junk status”. Chainsaw man is a POS. when I think of him or see his picture that’s all I see. I’m sorry but that’s the only way that I can confront this whole thing.

      I used idealise Groceries but now I feel vanilla. We have to strip away all the sparkle, the memories and positive thought to get on woth life. I can’t for one second put any value on them otherwise I begin to go backwards.

      Some days it’s damn hard work

  • You know who that asshat was? Carl Bernstein – All the President’s Men. I read Heartburn after Dday, very good book. I take solace in how successful Nora became after this episode in her life.

      • Yep. And she was happily re-married to author Nick “GoodFellas” Pileggi for over 25 years until her death in 2012.

  • Well, fellow chumps, you have been awesome! First a few clarifications. I know she bought the emails because I could see her twisting his arm to go back to her. She came up with sweet reasons at first and then began to berate him and call him names as “he” refuses to agree to resuming their relationship. When “he” said he loved me, she really went crazy. So I am sure there was no recent contact and I now know he has been telling her he doesn’t love me all these years. They had never broken off contact until a few years ago when we moved. I guess they both got new numbers and didn’t know how to connect since she lives quite a distance away. She finally found him when he got a Facebook account.
    I also know he isn’t fucking anyone. Prostate surgery killed that. However, I am dead sure he is always on the look out for ego kibbles and at our age, many women are understanding about those “problems”.
    As for the OW’s husband…he loves my husband and calls him pet names too. Soooo…

    You all are helping me sort through my feelings based on just facts. If you knew my husband, he would surely charm you too. But charm doesn’t mean a thing. I need to face facts plain and simple!
    I already contacted an attorney last year and I have been getting my ducks in a row. I live in a community property/no fault divorce state. I have been the primary bread winner. I make roughly 4 times what he makes. So I am not worried about getting his assets I am worried I will have to pay him!
    If I back off, I think he will find himself cake and kibbles. My lawyer says to wait until he is oh-so-happy to explore his new life. Then I get a separation and later have him sign divorce papers after he has already been living on his own income. That way the judge won’t give him alimony. And yes! I have electronically stored all the evidence. I can get it when I need to for court.
    So, what do you think? Is there anything else I need to do concerning him? He won’t go to therapy and I don’t think it will help with NPD anyway.
    As for me and therapy, I am seeing my doctor next week. I can get my insurance to cover it with a referral. But, I worry I won’t find a good therapist…I have had one before who told me anything CH wanted to do was just dandy!

    • Linda, put your energy on finding a good therapist. You don’t have to hit the jackpot the first time around. Be vigilant. You will find a great fit. Remember, time to put yourself first.

      I don’t mean to be unkind but now it’s clear why your husband chooses to stay. He doesn’t want to give up the lifestyle. The next thing you need to do is dump his sorry ass as soon as possible. He can go live with the OW. Who knew the hypotenuse would be the OW’s husband?

      • Agreed. He stays for two reasons. Money and respectability! He fancies himself to be a wise older gentleman who gives family and career advise. I thought he was just lazy. But no. He turned out to be a lying scumbag.

        • Ok, but let me see if I have this straight: you are staying until he gets an income so that you won’t have to pay alimony?

          Now, pardon me for asking, but…what’s in it for him to go out and get a job? Because clearly “nagging” or any form of suggestion to get one isn’t going to get him to get out and get one?

          I’m not saying that your financial reason for biding your time isn’t reasonable, but it’s still dependant on HIM doing something that he sounds unlikely to do?

          • He has a job right now. Soon he will be getting his inheritance too. It is in the final stages of probate now. His pattern is to leave when he has any money in his pocket. Usually I do the pick me dance and then take him back once he is broke again, and he is always broke again.
            Now that I have more insight, thanks to you all, I will do the hooray I am free dance next time! He won’t suspect a thing. He is truly in love with himself and can’t imagine me not taking him back. It is just a matter of timing.
            My attorney told me to keep quiet and get all the papers signed when CH is feeling rich and happy.
            Of course, maybe he will see the error of his ways and turn into a unicorn. But I have the court papers ready to go! I just need opportunity and courage.

            • No, he won’t be a unicorn! He has a history of PRETENDING to be the unicorn, but if you look closely, that pole sticking out of his forehead is taped on.

              • And let someone else “win” this “catch” for a change. You have a life.

    • No Linda…at ‘our’ age we really aren’t understanding of prostrate problems. I mean if I was married or in a long term relationship and my husband/lover had his prostrate removed or whatever then I could accept that and it would be ‘just life.’
      However, recently an old school mate found me on Facebook and we went out for awhile and he told me he had his prostrate removed because of cancer. I asked him what that meant and he mumbled jumbled a whole lot of nothing. After a few months I asked him point blank if he could get an erection, more mumbo jumbo BS. FINALLY I found out what it was all about. All he had was a FLAP! He had to sit down to pee. Which I get that would be awful for a man. Until one night he whispered in my ear …’How would you like to make the “little guy” happy?’ Eeewww. Fucking Eeeewwww. What do you think he wanted me to do? Suck the flap? Gawd men are icky. Like a woman would have a double mastectomy and ask some new guy to ‘massage her breasts’. Men just make me want to puke these days.
      I just wanted to scream ‘Get out of my house!!’ when he said that but of course I was polite and asked ‘what movie would you like to watch?’ After that I tripped all over myself and even made shit up that I was going back to my cheater X.
      Being single sucks the Big One girls. That’s why we stayed where we were for so long. So don’t be harsh on yourselves. Finding a hard man is good to find. Jeebus they all have such hang ups at a certain age, more baggage than the airport.

  • And wise Chump Lady, I do feel very off balance. I went for years thinking this was all behind us. I could live with his laziness and his other flaws. But this betrayal is too much. I am always policing him. It is no way to live.
    I wake up in the night and see him there. Then I give him the finger as he sleeps. Pathetic behavior on my part. I have become a shell of the person I used to be!
    The only upside was losing those last 5 pounds.

    • I did that too. My husband would walk by at night (I slept on the couch cuz it was so hostile in bed) and my lip would curl and I would flip him off. It freaked me out, it was so unconscious and instinctual. Like being possessed. But I learned your subconscious knows exactly whats going on and is screaming at you through those behaviors to try to wake you up.

      On the conscious level, I actually believed him when he said there was no other woman. Until I discovered her, a full six months after he had moved out to “get away from my craziness” Fuck him a million times over. And his back stabbing, Judas-kissing, two faced sisters too, who were going along with it.

        • Oh, yes, a bunch of church going middle aged married biddies who would castrate their own husbands in a minute with no anesthesia if they dared pull anything like it. Unreal. They were the first to welcome the bastard child when it arrived like he was going to be the new Christ child. They are seriously nuts, the bunch of them. FOO issues galore. I think I was set up to take the fall for their hostilities toward their mother, who was a jibbering imbecile in long term care at the time. too much.

          I my brother had messed up his life like that — he’d bloody well be on his own.

        • One of my ex’s sisters apparently knew all about ex getting blow jobs in his office from various dudes he worked with. She knew about the affairs as well, and thought OW was a really nice woman. She herself is a crazy cheater, so I guess it was no big deal, despite the fact that she is a HARDCORE FUNDAMENTALIST CHRISTIAN. All of his sisters are his biggest cheerleaders. They think he is wonderful no matter what he does.

      • Chumpaliciois, I am a Jewish woman. When I read the “Judass kissing” my heart felt sick. I ignored the whole Pharosee business because I need this forum, but this is too much. Please do not freak me out with racial slurs. I would never steal or lie to you and I should not have to say that. Are there other Jews who follow and post on CL? Do you feel similarly? Thank you.

        • Sorry Chumpectomy, I really did not realize that could be taken as a racial slur.

          I’ll use Benedict Arnold next time. I doubt that will disturb anyone.

          HOpe you don’t mind my potty mouth too.

              • Not hiding anything here and you can’t hide racism behind superficial intellectual bravado. Oh yes, you are right to correct my spelling but you don’t shame me for something you should learn. That’s a cheater’s trait.

            • WOWZER… Chumpectomy….THIS conversation is reminding me of that Jane woman where she got her knickers in a bunch because we were swearing too much for her.
              I’m Italian, and by gawd you better not say ANYTHING about my race. No making fun of spaghetti or tortellini or calling us wops or dagos or anything of the such!! I will be oh so mad.
              I will be policing your posts to make SURE you don’t offend us Italians!
              Uncle Guido? Chumpectomy just made a jibe at us…..

              • Chumpectomy…and BTW..
                Aren’t we all just talking our ass’s off here thinking we’re amongst friends where we can say whatever the hell we want without someone getting pissed because we say fuck or fuctard (thinking we are making fun of people with disabilities…we are not) or judas kissing without someone saying we are being racist?)
                Get the fuck over your self.

        • I’ve never heard Judas-kissing used as a racial slur. I don’t think of Judas’s actions as representing Jewish people at all. He was one of Jesus’ disciples.

              • Hi Miss Sunshine, Thank you for your research. The story of Judas and his betrayal of Jesus has been used to dehumanize and violently attack Jews throughout history. The stereotype of Jews as tricksters who would sell their grandmothers for a penny is still in use. Although Jesus and all his disciples were Jewish, lots had gone on between then and now so that Jews and Christians are hardly one big happy family–the work of interfaith groups aside. I personally took shit talk from the Catholic girls in my neighborhood. And Gio, your ancestors actually nailed Jesus to the cross and have historically gotten away with murder. As you suggest, it may be because they were scary and threatening so no one would survive any stereotyping of them (Asterix and Obelix aside). But also because they converted! So no harm done! I am not a Republican, although some of my family is so you may not want to talk to me anyway. You can make fun of gefilte fish anyday BTW. Just don’t call it smelly. I love but am not crazy about spaghetti because I can eat the whole pot, so there you go. If I got over myself I would still be with my ex. That would be bad, although I do get sick of my obsessive thoughts about my ex’s affair and wish I could be an inanimate object to escape sometimes.

                I am sorry for bringing this up because it is really off point and I know that Chumpaliciois was simply making the point that her sisters in law were betraying horror shows. I too know the pain of such betrayal and I apologize Chumpalicious for taking what you were saying to let off my own fear and steam. I really am sorry although I do bristle at the term—now is not the time and I did not explain myself with any grace at all. I am also sorry to Linda and everyone else who had to sift through this to get some good information.

                I love this blog and community. I would love to get back to the business of healing, learning from others and getting my life in order. I apologize for the derailment— for myself too. It would do me better to write about my daily terror of my ex taking my son from me. I am amazed at the clear headednesd of CL and the writers here. Write on dear Chumps!

        • It’s not my intent to get embroiled in any type of semantic argument, since as Chumpectomy so rightly points out, we are here to heal, and we all need this forum. Having said this, though, I truly don’t see anything that could be interpreted as a racial slur (and after 25 years of working with international students of many different races, ethnicities and creeds, I’ve learned to err on the side of linguistic caution). More, I’m certain Chumpalicious didn’t intend to cause offense, nor did I read any sarcasm into her response.

          Maybe it’s just me, but it seems more productive to keep the anger directed at the right people: the fucktards who cheated on us, and anyone who was complicit. Peace.

          • Foolmetwice…Exxxxcuusssee me as Steve Martin would say…but there are people here who get all upset when we say ‘Fucktards’ because they perceive that we are making fun of people with disabilities. Whatever.
            Chumpectomy is all upset because she thinks what she HEARD is racist. What the fuck ever.
            I’m not talking to her anymore. Because I think she must be a Republican. Now there is someone I’m prejudiced against.

            • One of my boys is actually mentally retarded. His IQ is around 60. The name fucktard makes perfect sense to me and I am not offended in the least. These cheaters are retarded in their development of character and morals. They are absolutely not up to normal standards of thought or behavior. They are simply fucktards.

  • With the Nice Guy I’ve been dating the past six months….. not once have I snooped through his closets looking for hidden gay porn. Not once have I looked at his phone to see if he’s texting another woman. Not once have I wondered where he is, or who he is with, or if he is lying to me.

    Sweet relief from the disordered. It is priceless. Linda, give yourself the gift of freedom.

  • Hi Linda,

    I can’t offer any better advice or suggestions than what has been posted. I’m really sorry you have such an asshat for a husband. I know it sucks to admit that this man you so very much believe in doesn’t have your back, but he doesn’t. I know it hurts and it’s not fair but he really doesn’t and you deserve someone who does.

    If you want to keep up this marriage then that’s ok too. It’s really up to you. However, there’s no win in this for you from my perspective.

    I wish you the best.

    • Putting it in simple terms: you don’t have to eat the whole cow to know it’s Beef! Trust that they suck. It will never get better than this. And just when you think it can’t get worse it does. Save your sanity and save yourself!

  • Oh Linda, I have been where you are!!! Every time I start to feel really sad that my relationship is over, I read stories like yours and then I only feel grateful that it lasted a short time and my baby is still a baby and mostly oblivious to what’s happening. I believe in the Charles-and-Camilla thing now. There really are couples like this, who commit to a lifetime of fucking everyone else over. Why don’t they just get married in the first place? Not fun enough, I guess. My X has an x-girlfriend, who he only was with for about six months, but their we-are-not-together relationship has lasted for years and years. She went on to get married and I ended up with him. At first, I wasn’t even threatened by her because they weren’t dating for years before he met me…so it’s not like I stole him or something. He didn’t want to be with her! But then, he sort of did, too. My D-Day, as we say on this site, was when I found out that when he told me he was visiting his old college buddy in San Diego, he was actually with her. He was gone OVERNIGHT and our baby was about 4 months old. So he left me home alone with a new baby to be with her. When I found out, he swore up and down it wasn’t sexual. We went to counseling for a while, and I won’t go into all the details, but about six months later, I found a text on his phone from her that said

    “I am thirsty for you.”
    and he replied

    I absolutely could not believe this on so many levels. 1) who says that? who? that is so fucking retarded. who says they are thirsty for someone else? Even Lauren Bacall couldn’t croak that phrase out with a straight face. 2) gross, and ew 3) He had promised, promised, promised to stay NC with her. Up and down, cross his heart, swear on our baby’s soul, he would never speak to her again. Again, he said it wasn’t sexual.

    We didn’t break up for good until about 6 months later. I still semi-believe him that it wasn’t sexual. I think he was having soooo much fun having her chase him through the years, trudging after with with longing and affection. Like a Dr. Who love story, she pursued him through space and time. I don’t think he actually wanted to be in a relationship with her, but he sure did love sneaking around behind my back with her. So, ya know what? WHO CARES IF IT WAS SEXUAL OR NOT? It was cheating. It tore my heart into little tiny pieces of bloody heart confetti. I would never have jeopardized my relationship with him by doing something like that. Can’t I expect the same from my partner? It hurt me as much as this life can hurt, whether he stuck it to her or not. I am still nowhere near over him, but I’m over the idea of him, and of us.

    So Linda, he’s a big fat Charles-and-Camilla cheater. Let him go have old horse face.

    • True. And I can’t stand Charles-and-Camilla! My husband claims she is just an old friend. But I found texts where she was calling him sexy beast and they were planning to get together! He was going to tell me he was going to see about a job and then drive the 3 hours to her place. What is sad is that I would have been happy he was going to go get work, ignorant fool that I was. I don’t know how we ever heal from those wounds.

    • Remember when Diana found something where Charles told Camilla he wanted to be her tampax?
      Swear to dog.
      And they are still together waving to the world.
      That’s what I don’t get the thing about the Karma Bus bullshit.
      From where I’m sitting it looks like they have a good thing going.
      Just like my X ass wipe and his Skank Woman. They went and got great jobs at Yale and are living on Long Island Sound.
      I just don’t get it.

      • I believe God will deal with him. How or when, I don’t know. But I am sure God is watching and is a just God. But I remember my grandmother being seriously pissed. My grandfather was a whore. When as a young bride, Grandma would go to church, she would come home and find panties in her bed from time to time. Eventually he knocked up a 16 year old and had to leave town. Years later, he converted to Christianity and got his life in order. Grandma had been counting on him going to hell! Lol! I have to admit tho, I am glad I got to see a truly transformed life. It gives me hope that God is not only just but merciful.
        I would love to see my husband experience that same transformation and I pray that he does. But CH doesn’t seem interested in changing a thing.

      • Gio, Give it time. And in your best interest go do something you love every day. Hugs to all Chumps struggling to take those baby steps forward.

        • Thanks Drew. I know. I know. I know. I do something I love every day or at least I try. Thank you so much for checking in on me.

      • Desiring to be a tampon so he could stay forever up Camilla’s watuzi – remember that line well! I hope they have those words flashing across the screen at his coronation… if he ever becomes King!

        I think it must be particularly painful for the chump when the whole sordid mess is public (as a number of chumps here have indicated they have experienced.) How do you keep a clear head and heal when the media is determined to write you off as the vindictive, scorned woman, when all you are trying to do is maintain your boundaries while remaining NC as much as possible? When the media is portraying the infidelity as a match of soul-mates pulled together by colluding, mystical energies guided by God’s own hand? Such appears the case with the political scandal of Mark Sanford. A premier disordered specimen. His mistress, no better. He has violated the terms of his divorce agreement numerous times. His former wife, using as much restraint as able tries to privately get him to abide by the terms of the divorce until she has no recourse but to use the leverage she has and put it in the hands of her lawyer and have the court enforce the agreement. Out come the cheater apologists who cry foul at the timing and public revelation and blame-shift the pathological behavior of the cheater on the chump. Instead they should question why Sanford continues to disregard this divorce agreement as easily as he did his marriage vows. I feel sorry for his kids, but I hope karma when it comes will be a revealingly teachable moment about the deceits of the disordered.

    • Miss Sunshine, mine was April 2009, we ROCK! And it’s not an easy journey. I will drink to that! Cola, green tea, ice water, strawberry margarita, lemon drop….;)

  • Linda,
    like all the other wise chumps posting here today, when you can, get off the crazy train.

    I laughed till I snorted about giving your stupid h the “bird” while he slept.
    This is the exact response I kept doing while doing the big fat R dance with the stupid exh who was in my life a short time ago. I could not sleep at all during this period and so I would wake look at him and think WTF am I doing, and then flip him the “bird”
    Since our separation my sleep has been great.
    Awesome feeling really.
    “And how do we heal?”
    Well I believe slowly, with very slow steps towards a positive future. . You have the “smarts” an income and a plan. It may seem so far off but to me it’s all about keeping moving forward. Our ex’s are stupid stupid people and this will never change and I believe that “chumps” are positive determined people who can do anything they set there mind too. We have all survived a shit sandwhich cos we are mighty.
    Keep flipping the “bird” chumps.

      • I think living w/ a cheater is exhausting. My home was a great place until my ex walked through the door. And I could not figure it out. Funny how the presence of another wakes you up to the truth.

  • Linda, this may sound crazy, but… If you are waiting for him to get his inheritance before filing and you are the primary wage earner then I have a thought that maybe you ought to move to a state that will give you a better deal when you divorce. I swear I grind my teeth when I read about chumps who get fucked over with no fault states, 50/50 split when you supported the asshole most of the relationship and he had nothing when he showed up? a shit sandwich. And paying fucking alimony to the asswart that cheated, oh hell to the no. My ex also hated to work, and when we divorced he was intent on alimony. Motherfuck me if I was going to pay that piece of shit alimony, no.fucking.way. If I’d been in CA I probably would have killed the bastard, no.fucking.alimony to a bastard that took half my life and spent most of my money for years, no, no. In my state if there is adultery, alimony is out so I made sure I could prove it. Also, I didn’t have to give him half my retirement account. I am serious Linda, you are being pragmatic at this point so what the hell, if it will save you from his financial fuck over, move. Ask a lawyer how long you have to have residency for it to matter and if that meets up with the wait you have anyway based on his inheritance then I say move. Just a thought. You can never have justice with manipulative assholes but if you try, you can get shut of them without loosing all your shit. Trust me, when you reach meh the only thing you will regret is how much money they drained away and how many years you lost believing their bullshit. If I were a different person, I’d have killed my ex, I’d be safe, the world would be safer and a better place. Of course if I was that kind of person I wouldn’t be a chump.

    • Datdamwuf,
      In my dreams cheaters are all gathered up and tattooed to an inch of their lives. Tattooed with the words “I am a liar and a cheater” over and over and over..
      ((( and then all shot. Lol)))
      I agree with you about never having justice but I’d like to think I will not be fore ever defined by this terrible event. I am me, a beautiful thoughtful loving person who happened to trust, love and then marry a Fcking numpty of a human.
      Cheers bellzero

    • I work for the State and I am secure in my job. If I moved, I would lose much of my income and greatly reduce my retirement at this point. I would have to wait 10 years to retire and move. Too long to wait! It is a shame.

      • Linda,
        Perhaps if you can hold out until he gets his inheritance and feels “flush” you can persuade him to sign both a post-nup and a property settlement that favors you financially? Get some excellent advice about how you can protect yourself financially to the max in event of divorce. I don’t know if you live in a Community Property State (I did, but it worked to my advantage slightly) or an Equitable Property State…and the laws vary so much from state to state…but do your homework and cut your losses to the greatest extent that you can. Good luck. You deserve it.

        • Gee! Guess who just got mail from the attorney handling the probate case! He hid it from me…he thinks! Gotta love it! Things are rolling along…

          • Linda,
            Please be very discreet and careful about your personal finances. They get very greedy and crafty when they start planning their exit. Unfortunately the injured party is forced to become a crafty sneak, too, about the money. You are forced to lay low appear to comply while planning your own counter attack. You should probably check your mutual credit and find out whether he has any credit cards solely in his name with balances on the and/ or any other indebtedness that you are not aware of but which might be considered joint indebtedness in a property settlement. You should probably also have your salary monies in a separate account to which he has no access if this is not already the case. Please speak to an attorney and/or financial advisor how to best to legally protect yourself. Put the pencil to the paper and see how you would fare in the long run if you give up any claim to his inheritance as “leverage” to get him to give up any claims on your long term retirement. When dealing with this kind of treachery one must fight fire with fire….and sometimes it takes acting like you are going to be easily duped in order to secure your best long-term financial interests. Get some seriously good advice about this before you act……

            • The ideal situation would be to maneuver him into foregoing any alimony and any claim on your retirement plans….even if you must act like a gullible loving fool for a short interim. This property stuff can get deadly…trust me. I hope you can find a really good attorney who can hep you do this!!

              • I cannot seem to type or get anything posted this morning. *help* not “hep”…sometimes I hate laptops!!

              • Thank you. I will act like the adoring fool. As for finances…we have always had separate accounts. His first wife got screwed when they divorced. I took notice of that and made sure my money was mine. As for his inheritance, that is all his. It is not considered to be a marital asset here. The best I can hope for is that he shares a bit of his money with the kids.

  • I agree with you Drew, my home was happy safe and secure til stupid walked in. Now it’s so much better. No lies, lies lies..

    • In my case, it wasn’t even lies, except when he was actually cheating (and he isn’t a very good liar, so I knew what was happening, both affairs – I was just chumpily chumpy about the first one). It was negativity, crabbiness, demandingness, criticism, judgement on everybody and everything. Of course it wasn’t always like that, but often enough to have everybody in the house tense half the time and walking on eggshells the rest.

      It is SO much calmer, more peaceful, more relaxed, and HAPPIER around here, with just the kids and myself (and the two sweet black kitties, of course!). Took awhile for everybody to get over the stress of the separation, the drama he kept making, then the stress of the kids kicking his ass to the curb as well, but now? So much better without him!

      I sometimes actually feel bad for the narc; what must it be like knowing and seeing that your family is actually better off without you, even above and beyond the cheating? But he was just too entitled and selfish to make the very small efforts that would have made us ALL happier, even him …..

  • Easter is this week and I am going to my son’s church to hear him preach. Then I am going to spend the afternoon with the kids at one of their homes, enjoying lunch and grand kids! My husband has decided he won’t go. No one cares. I guess the kids will be just fine with whatever I decide to do. They won’t be asking me to give him any more chances. Maybe the unicorn will bound into view. Maybe not. But Happy Easter everyone!

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