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The Chump Cloak of Invisibility

You want to know something weird? As I was uploading my book and going through the various forms about how to catalog and market it, I discovered that there isn’t a single category for infidelity.

Oh, there are categories and subcategories for all sorts of afflictions like eating disorders, OCD, suicide. And there are umbrella groups like “abuse” — which I didn’t file the book under because most people, at least initially, resist the idea that infidelity is abuse and wouldn’t look there.

Yet actually they don’t have ANY place to look because infidelity is not a category. I’m not a sociologist, but my guess more people are cheated on than off themselves, or have bulimia. Goddamn infidelity is common — so WHERE IS IT?

In the end I went with “Divorce/Separation” and “Relationships/Family” (rather broad).

But it underscored something that prompted me writing the book in the first place — the chump experience is invisible.

Unless it’s tied to the cheater’s narrative — are you winning them back? did you make them cheat? will you be a lucky soul who gets remorse? — we’re just bit players in the narcissist soap opera.

And look, who wants to out themselves publicly as a chump? Weirdly, cheaters don’t have as much hesitation, judging by the articles on HuffPo and in glossy magazines about how fabulous it is to be a mistress or a player. How naughty and edgy and paradigm shattering!

Early on, I once appeared on a HuffPo video panel with Dr. Tammy (of the New Monogamy infamy) and she said off the air as we were all chatting with each other “Oh, I don’t know anyone that admits to being cheated on.” And I said “Really? I’m pretty out there with it. I call myself ‘Chump Lady.'” She smirked.

Then today, I got smirked at again. I spent the day at the Texas Writers’ League “Agents and Editors” conference, where tomorrow I pitch an agent. We’re encouraged in the literature to just sidle up to these people and pitch our books. An absolutely dreadful suggestion (and one that is apparently very profitable judging by the number of paying guests in the room). Who wants to mix at a cocktail party of 300 people who want to tell you about their fiction ideas? Clearly not the agents.

“See, they’re deep in the Amazon jungle, lost on an adventure tour, when they’re visited by an Aztec God!”

(This was a real pitch by a real person, who was very nice and spent three months in Peru. And for all I know it’s a future best seller.)

You’re supposed to razzle dazzle these people with your Awesome Ideas and coolness factor and marketability. Because these are the gate keepers of traditional publishing — the people who publish Cameron Diaz’s latest cookbook! (I wish I was making this up, I’m not.)

They give you this little field guide with photos of agents, so you can Meet Them and pet them like zoo animals. I wound up standing behind a cluster of them waiting in line at the bar. One turned to the other and turned her name tag inside so no one could see she was an editor. They laughed. And one of them, who looked older, and worked for a very respectable publishing house, I wanted to meet. (I had ID-ed her in my field guide.) So I asked her politely if I could pitch her my book and she looked seriously annoyed.

Okay, she probably just wanted a beer and to schmooze with her fellow incognito agents, but apparently we were at cross purposes. I read the literature (and paid the fee) to attend an event to meet agents, and she clearly didn’t want to be met. But (heavy sigh) went along.

I explained CL in under 30 seconds, and led with the blog has 2.5 million views.

She — honest to God — wrinkled her nose and sneered “That sounds quirky.”

And then “I don’t do self help.” Said in the tone of voice of “I don’t scrub latrines” or “I don’t eat dog feces.”

Lady — be warned. You’re a future cartoon. I’m taking notes tomorrow.

And look — I had no expectations other than a polite, brief introduction and a thanks but no thanks. But I can’t help but think that part of the brush off was I just identified myself as a chump. I write about being chumped. I find the humor in it. I draw cartoons. I try to help people who were chumped liked me.

Maybe she’s just an asshole and sneers at everyone. But the “self help” comment — really? Is self help such a bad thing? OMG you’re a SELF who needs HELP!

Honestly, I don’t expect tomorrow to go any better. On a note of exquisite irony — the agent they paired me with worked on Bill Clinton’s memoirs. Yes, I got paired with the woman who helped the world’s most famous philanderer write a book. I loved Clinton as a president, and I miss the days where the nation’s biggest problem was whether or not the leader of the free world got a blow job, but come on, the guy was a hound dog! You think this person wants to hear the chump point of view?

Are we invisible? I think we are. I think most people shut the fuck up about being chumped. You don’t want to emotionally vomit on people, but why the shame? Why the invisibility? Why are WE mortified? We didn’t rate escorts or fuck our personal trainers.

Thanks for buying my book. I know we’re out there. And they’re going to hear from us.

Or at least they’re going to hear from my “quirky” ass.

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at [email protected]. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • If you can’t get the sincere attention of an agent, I think that down the road, there will be a bunch of agents who regret not giving you their attention. Just keep at it.

    I have never been secretive about what happened to my marriage. However, I have, seriously wished I’d never told people outside of my immediate family. I think it did more damage to me than it helped. People are still bogged down with all the typical opinions (I didn’t give him enough blow jobs, he cheated because I didn’t like progressive rock…whatever that is…you know, it was somehow my fault) and that has been just about as damaging to me as the infidelity itself was.

    I ordered my copy today. Rock on, Tracy. This is good stuff.

    • Are you kidding me? See if you had given him blow jobs while he listened to progressive rock, it would be ok.


      I can’t believe you have “those who you thought were friends” telling you that you should have given him more blow jobs, that is so rotten. Wow, over the top.

    • He cheated because you didn’t like “progressive rock”?

      So… if you had just played “Yes”, “UK”, and “Kansas” all the time, he wouldn’t have cheated?

      I think your cheater beat my cheater’s “You leave socks on the bathroom floor” in the lamest excuse for cheating ever category. I did not think that she would ever be unseated either 🙂

  • Maybe if you’d bought her a drink she would have put her manners on. I can’t wait til she sees her cartoon. Because I think the book’s going to take off, and she’ll wish she had been less snarky.

    I agree we shouldn’t be the ones to feel the shame. But I do feel too humiliated and I hate like the dickens to be made such a fantastic fool of for two freaking years. So, I don’t feel like advertising my naivete at this point.

    But, also, in my case, I have always been so protective of him. Too bad it wasn’t mutual.

    I’m so looking forward to getting the book. I can already imagine it lent out and lost, so I think I’ll order two copies.

    Finally realized

    • yeah, a screwdriver for her, with snapshots of your cheater last husbands to look over for maybe a fun time

      Tracy, how you held it together, girl you are so strong

  • Writers’ conferences are weird. I’m not sure people really sell to an agent very often.

    Anyhow, just a few thoughts – your work is sexy in a bizarro-world sort of way. Thongs in the bed and all kinds of weird stories.

    It’s also very funny, with the weird things cheaters do. You are able to take things that are sad and horrible and make them funny.

    Yes, I think our culture looks down on chumps. That could be part of your pitch.

    On the other hand, you could pitch the amazing ability of chumps to survive and go on to better lives.

    Depending on who you’re talking to, you can make it more about a serious sounding guide to surviving infidelity or a pitch for something funny.

    Anyhow, good luck! Anyone who picks up your book will make money. Their loss if they don’t.

    • “Depending on who you’re talking to, you can make it more about a serious sounding guide to surviving infidelity or a pitch for something funny.”


      “A feel-good, do-good book when the reality of infidelity feels bad”?
      ” Inspiring victims of relational trauma to growing a spine while soothing the soul?”
      ” Keeping the sane parent from getting incarcerated for assault with a cucumber, with intent to sodomize”?

      • Trust that they suck! I think that’s super-redundant. Or, “how about a book about a guy who hopped around in a sleeping bag????” nah.

        You’ll never believe the shit these guys say…

    • My asshole answered the ow door wearing only a sheet, I was waiting for him to take him to our new home he left me in, I saw him put his shoes on, and (long story about the new broken fridge, god) and finally I rang the bell, I know stupider than shit I was treading where no one of earth should have been, and he answers the door naked and in a sheet

      Why, why, why, and what the hell is wrong with me, why why why why kicking myself holy crap

      • Nothing wrong with you, Beach. He’s the one who answered the door in a sheet. The shame and the sin is all on HIM, not you.

        • Seriously.

          Of the two of you, it’s much better not to be the one in the sheet answering the door at the O-person’s home.

          I remember the point when I heard a little *click* go off inside my head that signaled the end of my willingness to risk my self and my sense of dignity for my jesus-cheating X (and his fellow jesus-cheating OW). It wasn’t meh, but it was the twinkle in meh’s eye. It was the core of the earliest instinct to trust that my X sucked, and to stop trying to make it so that he wouldn’t suck.

          There was no way to explain the data to myself logically to get me to that point. For me, it just came emotionally when I realized that every interaction with him/her as a unit or with him about her or her about him was demeaning me, diminishing me. As CL would say (but that came years later), I was feeding them kibbles. And I grasped that this was a mug’s game, that they *liked* the kibbles, but that I never felt anything but degraded after such interactions.

          While you are still in the early process stages for coming to terms with the new reality that’s been hurled at you, it’s *very* hard to limit the occasions where you make yourself vulnerable to the cheater. But until something like the *click* of early meh goes off, maybe that could be a goal for right now: only do things that support your health and dignity. Beach-centered things only. Expect nothing from cheater; do nothing for cheater. Feelings will be all over the place. My feelings were so erratic. But the mechanics of my behavior I could manage, and bit by bit that helped me fake it into making it with regard to keeping safe my sense of self.

          Hold the fort…

      • Nothing wrong with you, beach. I would love to have caught the Jackass bare-assed in his truck with his married OW skank, phone camera in hand. There’s nothing like seeing him answer that door wearing a sheet for confirmation that he truly sucks. Don’t blame you for catching him when he’s up to no good. It’s all on him.

  • OMG, Tracy, I’m sooo not surprised. Here’s why:

    a) The agents sound like they have travelled for the equivalent of a convention. We all know what happens at conventions now…at least half of them likely had fuckdates lined up after from sites like Assholes Fuck Finder, Trashley, and Venerial Match.

    b) OF COURSE chumps are invisible. We are moral, realistic people. Our vaginas aren’t sparkly, or play Disney music when items are inserted, or magically create disco ball ambiance. Our penises don’t ejaculate rainbows. We can’t compete with that with our spouses, and hey, right now, we can’t compete with that in our entitled, self-centred, feel good culture. That’s where you come in.

    c) You are a pioneer here, chick. A trailblazer. Someone who says, “No way, fuck off” to the bullshit entitlement.

    Someone who points to the invisible victim, and says, “Look! People really do get hurt when you act selfish–you may think it’s just about you, but the emperor here has clearly subscribed to a nudist lifestyle here!”

    Someone who says, “Yep, there IS someone at fault and to blame here, and yes, you bloody well SHOULD feel bad about it,” and “Yes, you are an underdog who is an overcomer in waiting–now hightail yourself to get to the overcoming part!”

    You are someone with 2.5 million hits behind your back, and you will take each hit to bitchslap each egotistical narcissist who gets in the way of getting your vital message out.

    Now go run up some stairs, and do a victory jump with your arms up high like Sly…

    • “Venereal Match”!! and…

      “don’t play Disney music when items are inserted.”

      Ha ha ha! Oh man. Thanks, Chump in the Sand.

      You’re probably right about the convention mentality. Ugh. The things that would never occur to you.

    • I wonder, do the agent get a cut of the profits from each registrant? You should never have to pay anything to get an agent. It sounds fishy.

    • “Our vaginas aren’t sparkly, or play Disney music when items are inserted, or magically create disco ball ambiance.”

      Speak for yourself, CitS! Mine shines an entire laser light show! 😉

      • Oh, you two!!!! ROTFLMRO!!!! Sounds like a new cartoon!

        AND, I just purchased 3 of one the most amazing books EVER! (except for the Bible)
        So, poo on that agent! Her life must be pathetic & she will never benefit from one of the best books ever written!

        So looking forward to reading it & then writing my review! This Nation will make it an all-around best-seller!

        PS: The ‘trouble maker’ that posted that review/drivel at Amazon—–I decided she does not deserve a response from me & I hope her review gets removed for the abuse it is. Hasn’t even read the book! Silly girl…… I saw what Mr. Chump Lady posted & I do not believe I would have been so tactful!

        Forge on, Nation, with field-guide in hand!

    • Chump In The Sand is right, you are a trailblazer and thank God for it. You’re speaking for all of us, a big bright light. We are rooting for you. They should look who you’ve attracted – really smart, witty followers who say things like “bitchslap each egotistical narcissist who gets in the way.” Have you bitchslapped a narcissist today? I mean really, you gotta love it. . .

      • No 🙁 but I really really wanted to Bitchslap my STBX when he sent one of the most naive couples from our church (who do not know what he has done) to my home today to collect our daughter after he was told yesterday that he could not have her as it is my weekend and we had plans. He just assumes if he gives me 24 hours notice I should just say yes.

        Boundaries anyone?

  • Oh that bitch, she a cheater either as a “wayward wife” or OW, mark my words. I would say OW.

    I am invisible, even to my family, my children now, they want me to be over this, for me and their dad to just talk and be friends, I might ruin a wedding I am so weird, one of them told me that.

    Yes I am so god damn weird, I was fucking true, their whore dad did all this shit, but ohhhhhhhh I am the weird one. And just this evening, my mom is annoyed I didn’t want to go to this stupid even that was filling a library parking lot with couples, I said . mom don’t you think me at a thing with all those happy couples is sort of going to trigger me. so under he breath she says…I’m so tired of this.


    And, ok, get me going on Lifetime, all the movies a guy cheats, they ride off into the fucking sunset fucking, and there is no mention of the wife that was screwed over.

    I feel invisible tonight.

    Tracy, take a cigar tomorrow, smoke it as you talk to her, or maybe not it will make your hair stink.

    Who cares if you can pitch to them Tracy, there are a ton of chumps out there and NO ONE IS BRAVE ENOUGH TO PUT THEIR ASS ON THE LINE LIKE YOU.

    I swear to god, I seem a mess now, but you should have seen me before finding your site.

    Thank you TRACY.

    Yeah, how many cheaters you pitching to Tracy, maybe they all are, see there I go triggering again.

    You can do this, you already have. If they are too stupid to see the huge picture of this becoming a movie, which maybe it could, well, they are not out of the box thinkers.

    • Beach, you’re weird? Me too! At least that is what my NPD Cheaterpants told the light of his life! I think by weird, they mean truthful. They just don’t remember exactly what that looks like. It seems we are supposed to just go on as if nothing has happened…you know, like when someone passes gas.

    • Dear Beach,

      So sorry you are surrounded by such emotional infants.

      Got a little bit of that from my best friend & from my son, as well. Didn’t want to hear mention of it, even in passing…….

      Then, my son’s wife cheated….

      My son’s objections were actually pretty mild in comparison to what you experienced, but of course, even that stopped when I held his hand and his heart through his horror of dealing with a cheating mate. Never would have expected he & I to have THAT in common. But, it did draw us even closer than we were before.

      So glad I have a precious son through all of this!

      Hang tough, Beach……AND ForgeOn!

  • I wish I had a cloak of invisibility to spy much better, well not now, but would have loved it before, god, hit them in the head with a cast iron pan as they did the bad bad thing in the whore bed


    Sure, I could have said fucking, ok

  • Oh, last thing, and to this day the whoreman still says, do I have to hear about this, you are ruining my evening

    fuck him

    • Beach you are fucking awesome.

      I seriously would have been done for assault if I had caught my STBX in the act. Credit where credit is due awesome one.
      As for their dumb ass attitude that we are at fault for being human in response to their crap. OMG my response, grow up dipshit. I omitted the dipship part when face to face with STBX yesterday. My response to your crap (being upset and angry at your lack of respect and your overwhelming sense of entitlement, STILL!) is not because I have decided to go Jehad on the world No my only issue is you.

      Hang in their beach, hugs to you. if you need someone to be weird with there is a que forming over by me. 😉

  • Yes, because according to the “pundits,” cheating is ultimately the “cheater’s” fault, that somehow the chump deserved it.
    Thanks to CL for sting the record straight…………

  • “I think most people shut the fuck up about being chumped.”

    I was completely open about everything to my immediate family, but then also to anyone who will listen. And this has become more of the case in the past couple of months. I have found that keeping it to myself and “being invisible” kept my anger up, which was not doing me any favors. I probably tell too many people, so that is something I need to work on, but the good news is that I think I’m improving.

    And most importantly, congratulation to Chump Lady on being published!

    • I told countless Verizon agents, people in the grocery line, the cable people, att while on hold, wow, so many and almost none therapists, only had three appts for that but when I finally did I got meds, whew

      I unfortunately told a woman doing my hair once, and I then realized she was an OW and she destroyed my head, and did not talk to me, so, I learned you can’t tell … you know..

  • They think chumps are stupid, but under a cloak I never got to have, I would have had a gps, telescope, camera, and Kleenex to cry with and extra soft for my nose.

    And a thermos of coffee with hazelnut creamer in it, no sugar, it is sweet enough

    I think in my anger, I am actually maybe heading towards meh, I really don’t want him back now, I just don’t like his pompus attitude, he is a shithead

    Tracy, get great coffee in the morning, and remember, many of them are cheaters so they see you as carrying a cross and a wooden stick to drive into their hearts


  • 5 will get you 10 that editor’s an OW….. it would be irresponsible not to speculate [wink].

    Seriously, your book will be fabulous, and save lives. I’m planning on buying a copy for my shrink…not that she’s a chump (AFAIK) but so she can share the rich wisdom. She’s loved every nugget I’ve told her.

    Editors (as you probably know) are in such a privileged position that they most often think their shit don’t stink, in my experience. (A friend and very published fiction writer was staying here last fall. His agent decided she no longer wanted to handle fiction, so he had to approach the juggernaut to find someone to work with his newly minted novel. Oy! And this fellow has contacts, as in, the writer the NY Times is writing about, who was in his MFA program and all that kind of stuff. He’s a super nice guy. Super, super nice. Still a rough climb and he was on tenterhooks.)

    Agents can be a little easier to work with, if you find the right one. (who doesn’t like a cut?)

    But–you are Certifiably Mighty. And you have Chump Nation at your back, willing you on. If a million plus hits on your blog doesn’t demonstrate an interested audience, what would?

    Go get ’em.

    • she is gonna get wrinkles on that nose of hers, big deep grooves on her nose, and she is going to have dark lines in them, and blackheads, that is what she gets, for being a smart ass and doing her little stupid bewitched I am a bitch nose thing at you

  • This is another chump who had learned to be loud and proud.
    Anyone who knows me, knows the truth behind the end of my marriage. I will NEVER be ashamed or embarrassed to tell the truth.
    People love me because I come as a package – I am a great friend, a hard worker, a terrific mother and a lovely person…and, yeah, my husband pulled the wool over my eyes and had an affair (one that I know of or he’s gay – who knows) with a woman the kids and I knew. Take the whole package or leave it but the infidelity and fuckedupness that I survived?
    I earned the right to be a proud survivor and I am going to make it as public as possible.
    I’m also on a lot of meds from the depression that followed the pile of ash of my marriage.
    Guess what? I am proud of that too and tell everyone about the meds and the depression.
    I spent 4 years climing out of that pit of betrayal and I am proud of myself.
    No one will change that. That is my meh! And I am mighty.

      • Wow Rebecca, gotta love that pride. I went public with mixed results, but in the end, I do not regret I told so many people that my ex was a cheater. Some days I feel bitter that so many sided with my ex, but now I think the affair revealed who my real friends are. I just couldn’t swallow all the shit being shoveled my way anymore, couldn’t accept living in a abuse-laden environment which was poisoning me and my lovely girls. He wanted me to keep everything private. From where I stand now, that looks like control. I think there are so many cheaters out there, there’s lots of pressure to keep it quiet, or sell the “we just grew apart” lie.

  • I call the OW whorehey, and littlebanger, which serves two purposes I didn’t realize at first, she got the name as she has these short horrid bangs on her fb page to this day with this dress on that looks like green curtain material like on gone with the wind and her curtain dress…so I named her littlebanger

    I have a lot of names for whoreass, dickhead, jerkoff, I also call him whorehey

    I think I may hate them both now, where is my meh? Why am I not in meh?

    • Not yet meh-time for you. Meh comes at different times for different people. Don’t sweat it. Sure, if you still have that burning hate in 2-3 years down the road, you probably need to do some work on that, but I think meh comes when you realize that you are oh so much better off without dickwad in your life.

  • 9pm CA time, Amazon has Tracys book up, I just ordered it with my prime shipping!


  • HAHA! Please do take notes tomorrow! I think your idea to start this blog, and to write about survival and life on ‘the other side’ of “glamorous” infidelity is refreshing. We exist in a culture of immediate gratification. When we feel uncomfortable, bored, or unsatisfied, society allows us to jump to ‘something else’. We’ve normalized pornography, secret lives, and the sense of entitlement. It’s about time someone redefined standards, and spoke up about what it’s like to be chumped by a motherfucker who never deserved the attention of a decent person in the first place. It’s about time someone offered truth to a group of broken people, and a safe ‘place’ to learn it, and heal. Not long ago, I had no words to describe my feelings. I did not know if I was “over reacting”. My therapist said I was “naive”, and wanted to work with me on owning ‘my part’ in the demise of my marriage. He told me that it was not so much my husband who let me down, rather it was “my expectations”. I tried to wrap my head and heart around this, but it still didn’t feel right. Was it really wrong to “expect” a man to be faithful to his bride? There was little to no help out there in cyber space- no experiences to reference to really help me sort my feelings. I was not sure if my STBX’s “truth” was really as big a deal as I had made it to be. Was I being dramatic? Was I “old fashioned”? My STBX knew my struggles, and used them against me. To hold me a captive audience to his ‘shadow of doubt’ show. It wasn’t until I found your site, that I was able to connect words with my feelings. Reading your posts, and the other reader’s comments helped me to become grounded again, and speak up for my good values-not be ashamed of them. Thank you for doing what you do-I no longer feel like a freak show. I no longer feel alone in a world that I need to catch up in. And I owe a large part of my recovery to you, your site, and the amazing, inspiring followers. Divorce rate is at approximately 50%, and no one is talking about the shadow side. There are millions of people out there that have no idea how to “Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life”. (hehe I didn’t even really know how to ‘identify’ a cheater…or an authentic life, for that matter) Hearing someone “call a thing a thing” is the very thing every person needs when they experience D-Day. You are a brilliant pioneer in this and I wish you great success! If I were a publisher, I would be lining up to talk to YOU. I can’t wait to read your book! Best of luck tomorrow! Cheers!

    • I second all you have said Hypnopompic… & as someone who works in Mental health I love your name!.. & know the feeling wanting to wake up believing that ,all the heartbreak was just a “hallucination” or figment of my imagination!

      • Third this. It’s time for the truth to be told. One of the hardest parts of all of this for me to accept is that there’s no perspective out there, not only for the chumped, but also for their children. My children aren’t loving life with my ex-cheater and the Owife. Oh, but they’re “resilient.” That the narrative for children who have been chumped by a cheating parent– they’ll “get over it” because they’re “resilient.”

        Some days, that might be true. However, I’d like those who glamorize infidelity to see my children when they are crying and asking why their dad destroyed their family. That’s the true narrative much of the time.

        • That point about glamorizing infidelity and your children’s truth is what need to get out there as part of a book review on Amazon. You are correct, no one talks about the reality for the children. Mine were old enough to make their own choices.
          You are a wonderful example of advocating for those that done get seen or have a voice.
          It gets better. I promise.

        • There are some days I am so sick of the phrases,” you are so strong” and “children are resilient”, that I want to smack them with my strong hand and have them talk to my 3 year old who felt she had to stick up for her big sister because the OW was yelling at her. Or my 12 year old who spent a year with stomach pains that seemed to coincide with driving into the parking lot of the dojo where his dad hooked up with the OW. Fuck “resilience”, our kids are not play dough!

    • Hypnopompic, that’s one of the best posts I’ve seen on this site, and I agree wholeheartedly with every single word you wrote. BRAVO

      I bought my paperback copy of the book on Amazon today, and once I finish reading it, I’m going to post the most positive and thoughtful review I can. Although I’d dearly love to post one now, I’m very angry that one reviewer felt free to respond very negatively when she clearly hasn’t read the book yet (and is further saying stuff about Tracy and the blog that isn’t true). I don’t wish to contribute to the same ignorant knee-jerk and foregone conclusion, even if it’s to support Tracy. I’m also going to try to be as measured as I can, as another reviewer insinuated that we are a bunch of zealots, cultish devotees and/or sycophants. That really pisses me off. It’s bad enough having been chumped, but then to have my ability to think critically called into question? *I don’t think so.*

      I sincerely hope everyone in Chump Nation will buy the book and add an Amazon review that reflects the best part of our camaraderie and hard-earned wisdom. It’s a small but important way to pay back the many gifts we all receive on this blog, every single day.

      Congrats again, Tracy. You deserve every possible accolade that’s coming your way. Big hugs and MAJOR RESPECT.

      • With you, FMT! Loved what you said also, Hypno…..

        Ordered 3 copies today and will write glowing review ASAP! Will get Kindle version as soon as available…….

        Yeah, that is another way to tell how authentic all of us are here in the Nation—–we will actually wait unti we have the book before we write a review. And, as you stated, I will be sure to stay measured & coherent! Zealots, my a__!! We are the ‘best of the best, SIR!’

        Forge on faithful ones, ForgeOn!

  • The agent kind of reminds me of this “Golden Girls” episode. Sorry, can’t help myself.

    Perhaps people are uncomfortable talking about chumps because of the shame it entails. Nobody wants to believe that at any point, something completely out of your control can happen, hurt like hell, and turn your world upside down. That is, self-help, chumpdom, and the like is for wusses.

    Nobody wants your discomfort to make them uncomfortable.

    Others are simply want to validate their own behavior.

    The truth of the matter, is my ex-husband is the one who should feel ashamed, not me, and anyone who thinks otherwise can bite me.

    • “Nobody wants your discomfort to make them uncomfortable.”
      “Others simply want to validate their own behavior.”

      I think you’re completely right about this. I’ve found that good people, really GOOD people don’t recoil when they ask and I tell them I’m recently divorced from a cheating bastard. Others will wrinkle their noses and change the subject, which is cool with me, but it’s always them that asked about my marital status anyway. Don’t ask if you don’t want to know why I’m divorced, asshole. Oooo he cheated on you, how unfortunate.

      • I hear you. When people say, “I’m sorry” my reply is “He’s the one that is sorry.”

        • I loved my one colleague, whom I don’t know really well but who divorced her husband about a year ago, who told me that most people would say they’re sorry, but she wanted to congratulate me.

      • Dr…. and Rumblekitty, you’re discussing the meat of a truism that I’ve learned from going through this ordeal. Not everyone you know is going to magically intuit how difficult it is for you and some will simply have some sort of discomfort or dislike.

        “Nobody wants your discomfort to make them uncomfortable.”

        It is just one of the not-so-pretty defensive aspects of human nature. I used to take it personally, not any more. I accept it… but oh yes, I judge the fuck out of those people.

  • Last night I wrote: ‘Is it just me, or do others find it difficult to share their purchase on social media’. Though I haven’t been secretive at all, I’m far from shouting this from the rooftops. Not because I think I should be ashamed, but because of people’s opinions, that could come back to hurt me (professionally, I’m self employed) or the children.

    And that troubles me, since I shouldn’t be defined by something done to me. But I think it is the harsh reality. And the only way to change it is openness…

    You go Chumplady, you have brought so many of my doubts into words, making it easier to express myself, even to understand myself. The problem here though is, many people have this distrust of American self help literature… Wonder why?! 😉 It’s difficult to explain how and why your message its so different.

    Should be a Dutch translation!

  • Dear Chump Lady, I hope your book triumphs. I’m going to buy it and put it in our library so the English speaking people in my country/city can read it. I want to write an article promoting it. Oh God do I know the sneering of people who have the power to sneer at beings they consider less than – while this country was going through a particularly nasty stage of xenophobia I got sneered at and thwarted by a bank professional who was supposedly helping me with my late husband’s estate (not a cheater husband by the way). He gifted me with problems that cost thousands in the local currency to sort out. Those sneer-people aren’t helpless twits – they’re powerful twits, and they deserve comeuppance. My sneer-baby will never see it, but yours will because I predict massive success for your book.

    • That’s a great idea for as many of us as possible to also buy a copy for our local library.

  • The hardest part is being understood by “the others” (who haven’t ever experienced the life altering state we all have on this site). The internal struggle and frustration of narrating your story only to be greeted with vacant looks of just get over it already… It feels like I’m in a void screaming for help and no one around to help!! Even worse with professionals we must turn to (judges, lawyers, therapists) who JUST DON’T GET IT!!!!!
    Worse still is when I have shared my experience and I’ve had attempts to silence me with defamation threats 🙁
    Thank you CL you have made a huge difference to my life and many others. Many blessings to you.
    I so look forward to purchasing your ebook.

  • I have a theory – these people who “don’t get it” actually do – they just don’t want to see it and they’re threatened by those of us who do. I say my truth with the understanding that it can come back to bite me when I least expect it through friends I thought I had and people talking behind my back and smearing me: I expect it so am not surprised. I act as if they know what they are doing. Surprise goes both ways – I have good friends and I didn’t expect some of them either. There’s always people who are waiting to hear the truth, aren’t ready to hear it now (but will be later), and the truth needs to be out there. Otherwise, you have this cloak of silence and pretences going on that Chumpdom does not exist. Many people have written in to say Chump Lady has put voice to their experience and this is life saving work. Let the truth out – and let the chips fall!

  • Never mind the “wrinkly nosed” “Self help” hating Editor. She’ll be cursing the day she refused you when she sees your “Quirky” Chump ass on the NYT Best seller list laughing your Chump ass straight to the bank!
    They can sneer all they want but you do more good in the lives of chumps here on a daily basis than they could imagine doing in their lifetime. Sheesh!

    • I met a woman at the conference who is going to do the conversion for me next week after the July 4 holiday. She can also put it in ePUB form for Nooks and iTune books and other media — so I’m on it! Sorry for the wait. Turned out to be more complicated than I thought.

        • I’ll wait. .. Because I read all my books on kindle but just as a Fuck u to the Editor…[ChumpLady, I never used to swear before I found you! 🙂 ].. I’m going to order a hard copy to put proudly on my shelf .

  • “And look, who wants to out themselves publicly as a chump?”

    Me, me, me – I’m a Chump and I’m proud!!!

    There should be an International Chump Pride Day!

    • Yeah, that would be even more inclusive than Gay Pride!

      Oooh! Oooooh! If we had a Chump Convention, we could swarm a city and use up all the hotels and ruin a bunch of “love nests” for that weekend….

  • Totally true! The common mind-set is that if you have been cheated on then you must have “done something wrong” and are a “little less” in the eyes of society.
    I tell everyone. I’m tired of being ashamed. The shit happened and I’m trying to deal.

    I bought your book yesterday.

    Thank you, Chump Lady.

  • I’ve ordered two copies! One for my mother and one for myself.. apparently being a chump is hereditary. Thanks so much Chump Lady!

  • Chin up, Tracy!

    FWIW, I can kind of understand an agent wanting to shy away from “self-help”, and I also understand why the genre has become a pejorative in publishing circles. I am betting you understand why that is true too; after all, it’s part of the reason you felt compelled to write your book: a lot of self-help is really all about making excuses for terribly bad behavior. Broadly, a lot of material published as self-help is not terribly helpful and can be split into one of two camps–Victimization or Empowerment–and both camps are largely populated by rogues and charlatans.
    I would guess (because I have only read the teaser and this blog) that your book falls largely into the Empowerment camp, but is pragmatic and does it without going to Utopiaville like Tony Robbins or “The Secret”.

    That being said, I figure many (if not most) agents are assholes unless they are working for you. That’s alright if they’re on your side and playing hard-ball for you, but they’re not usually fun at parties 🙂

    • Thanks TH.

      I totally get the self help prejudice. And I didn’t even categorize my own book as self help. It’s under Divorce and Separation and the uber-broad Relationships/Family. (Although maybe that’s the self help ghetto, who knows?)

      Honestly, the whole thing is like dating. You’re going to have your 50 bad coffee dates before you hit on a match. You’re going to be judged lacking by someone who looks like an undercooked potato. You’re going to meet perfectly pleasant people who aren’t suitable.

      Perhaps I’m reading too much into it, but I was just struck by the attitude of “Eww. You’re writing about THAT?”

      Well, yes, Eww if I’m writing about unicorns and hopium and affair proofing your marriage for $400. But that’s not the message.

      Honestly, I’m pretty happy to just have the book out now. Sales records speak for themselves. Fuck ’em and feed ’em fruit loops.

      • Agreed, CL, sales speak for themselves. Watch them fall over themselves trying to sign you after you hit 100,000+ sales! Ha! The joke will be on them.

        Plus, this agent sounds like a dinosaur–stuck in the paper and glue world of 19th century! You already demonstrated a base of major interest electronically through your blog. Plus, if she had any business sense, she would realize the tremendous emotional energy around this topic, which translates into major sales. Who care what you label the brick…gold is gold!

        Thanks for writing the book, Chump Lady! It is past time to remind the world the world that cheating is the problem….NOT divorcing a cheater!

        • This attitude is one reason why publishing is in trouble. Two million hits and the editor smirks. How many books start out with a writer who has a big blog platform plus access to Huffington Post and other media outlets without an organized media tour? And of course, I detest smirking, as the indicator that the smirker feels superior to the person he or she is talking to. It is like dating. And I won’t date a fucking smirker and a smirker doesn’t deserve to be your editor. The well-honed picker always bypasses the smirkers.

      • I have to go on 50 bad coffee dates before someone is going to accept my chump cult sparkly vagina self? But I don’t like coffee that much.

        Congrats on your number 1 rank in divorce. Half of the baby stuff I bought on Amazon was because of its rank. Don’t worry about anyone throwing out a bad review. It’s going to happen with a book
        I plan to get two, one for me and one for my therapist.

        Thank you CL. I’m thinking of those who are about to be validated and get their sanity back because they clicked purchase for your book. I was never going to stay with my cheater but this blog saved me in so many ways.

  • Hi Tracy,
    Congratulations on finishing what I know will be one of the best books I ever read, and one I will recommend to everyone I know. I can’t wait until my copy arrives!
    I suggest you wear one of your T-shirts to the conference. Your pictures tell your story in a very interesting, snarky way. You could write on the back: “Ever been cheated on?” Let them come to you!
    Maybe being an editor is a job that attracts a lot of narcissists, who then tend to be cheaters. Your book outs them. It’s a smack down to those who deserve it. You will need to find the editor who was chumped and appreciates the wisdom. Someone who won’t be able to put it down.
    Oh and for Carol and others- my XH got a blow-job almost every day, even if I was 9+ months pregnant, to keep the king happy. Married 34.5 years & divorced 8 months & never putting up with that shit again. Go Tracy!!!

  • Talking about infidelity to people who are close to you or not, who have been chumped or not is akin to talking about failure.

    That’s the reaction I get from some I chumped people, or people who refuse to see their own chumpiness. Who wants to be around a loser?

    I don’t mind quirky. That’s ok. It’s hard not to feel like the Ebola virus of relationships around people who act as if it’s going to to rub off on them.

    That’s my observation. I’m ok with it, as I have chosen to move forward in just about everything I am doing, including dealing with the reactions of some people when they hear my absurd experience.

  • I should add….

    I cannot wait to read about your response to this. You have a great kick-ass way of setting things straight. No smoke and mirrors. I love it!

  • I have found that no one wants to know, because they are scared they will catch chumpiness from me and then THEIR life might get turned upside down from no fault of their own.
    “Oh but he is a great provider”
    “Oh you HAVE let yourself go since (youngest child)”
    “Really how bad can it be”
    and that’s from people who should have my back, or at least my children’s backs.

    Its cool to be the player, its shameful to be played. Wrong as it is, that’s how society sees it.

  • I can’t believe there is no category for infidelity. After one useless MC session when things got so incredibly shitty — after ILYBINILWY but before the D-Day text: (I wish you were here!) the worthless therapist recommended Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix. I read part of it hoping to get out of my mental spiral of terrified negative thoughts and actually thought some of the ideas I tried were “working” despite the fact that I was alone in trying to fix things. I searched the index for infidelity, as I strongly suspected something had happened. I thought maybe one incident or something, but there was nothing in the book about it, which I despairingly took to mean that it was beyond the scope of marriage repair. I had no idea at that point he had been carrying on an affair the whole fucking time.
    Tracy, your clarification is possibly the single most helpful factor in my navigation of this terrible process. I can’t wait to read your book and I will get a copy for my therapist too. Great idea namedforvera. I would love to share the clarity and understanding with some one else who desperately needs it.

    • Good point: like everything else, IMAGO is a wonderful idea when you have reciprocity, but it DOES NOT WORK WITH NARCISSISTS.

      After 7 years of busting a gut trying to fix this thing, I am afraid that the therapists who say there is no cure for narcissism and they cannot be helped, is correct.

      • Under IMAGO, affairs are classed as ‘catastrophic exits’, along with murder and suicide.

      • Nothing works when we try to have a relationship with a narcissist. One person is in a relationship; the other doesn’t give a shit about the relationship.

  • Also I love the cover because my D-Day was just before Valentines day when he told me he was in love with OW. I had managed to make cards for my 5 year old’s class and I made one for my STBX that said: Unhappy Valentines day. I do not wish you well. Just the beginning of the rage that followed.

  • Now this hits my hot button. When I finally accepted that I was a chump, when I could say it out loud, only then did I accept myself for what I truly am and begin to heal. The editor who sneered at you amuses me with her self-absorption. She fits the profile. She doesn’t get it, yet. One day when she, her daughter/son, sister/ bro or best friend gets recycled or replaced, or simply left behind, she will eat her words and ditch the attitude.
    No more shit sandwiches–from anyone. Shame on her.

    Your nation is growing…we are pulling eachother through this muck. Thanks, Tracy. You helped me save myself by inviting me into this community. Bless us all.

  • What is it that I’ve read before– people want to believe that the world is inherently fair and just, so they ascribe the cheater’s behavior to a spouse (chump) who has somehow encouraged it, I believe? That allows them to believe that it will “never happen to them” and that they are not behaving like the chump did, so their spouses will never have any reason to look for some strange.

    Society isn’t open to the opposite narrative– yes, you might have married someone disordered. You might be married to someone who has been happily leading a double life and enjoying his/her cake. You might be married to someone who happily has unprotected sex with someone he/she met on the internet and then comes home and has sex with you. You’re a good spouse who works hard/takes great care of the house and kids/has sex with your spouse way more than the national average/still has a rockin’ body/whatever… and you still might get chumped. That’s not sexy. That doesn’t encourage people to spend their money on splashy weddings. We still want the Disney princess, happily ever after narrative. It sells, and it’s much more fun to believe in.

    That’s why chumps have to stay in the dark, ashamed of what *they* brought upon themselves… because to believe the opposite narrative is eye-opening and scary. That’s why infidelity is sexy in the media as well, and the chump is portrayed as a nag, as someone who has let him/herself go, as abusive, etc. Those who haven’t been chumped (yet) don’t want to hear from strong, confident people that they were chumped and that it wasn’t their fault (subtext: Yes, it could happen to you.). It’s like the way we used to view physical abuse– well, clearly the wife (since it’s more often the wife) did something to anger her husband, and he just lost his temper. That wasn’t talked about either. Women used to feel shame and were encouraged to stay with their abusers.

    Infidelity is like being overweight in today’s culture. It’s one of the last things we can make fun of and ascribe blame to the victim. Oh, it happened to the chump because he/she’s a bad partner… just like being overweight is always the result of doing nothing but eating Twinkies and watching TV all day, so it’s clearly the overweight person’s fault. We still make fat jokes. We still think infidelity is no big deal.

    I think that our culture is shifting slightly in its attitude toward overweight people, especially now that we are better informed about how some people genuinely struggle and how there might be other factors that contribute to obesity.

    We haven’t yet started the shift in the perception toward infidelity, but it’s starting here. Hopefully, CL, your book will really get the ball rolling and be able to reach out to those who haven’t found the blog. I know that I looked for literature that resonated with my gut– This isn’t your fault! Leave him!– and all I found were “how to stay together” rugsweeping books. I imagine that there are many more people like me out there who will be grateful to find your book since we are LEGION.

    • Yes: “It’s one of the last things we can make fun of and ascribe blame to the victim.”

      I have recently seen jokes in a family-friendly major magazine that treat cheating like it is light-hearted humor. Makes me upset…

      • Yes, well said, Moving On. One thing I know is before I was Chumped, I could not relate to anybody who meekly said…’oh, my husband cheated on me’. I was too happily married and thought – whoa – that sounds catching (like a cold) and could not empathize remotely what they were going through. Just so glad it wasn’t happening to me! But, nobody ever really made it sound like a big deal – like yeah, they were ashamed of themselves or something so the conversations never went very far and I just nodded in pity. And, believe me, if you’re happily married, most ppl are going to know you can’t relate so I think they drop it without details.
        In fact, I can’t think of more than one person who has admitted to being cheated on.
        Now, when I ask why a marriage ended and if cheating was involved. The answer is ALWAYS yes. NOW, I can relate. I can rage with them. In fact, the more I speak out about the injustice of it and how it should be illegal for the amount of pain it causes (somebody said right up there with rape and murder and I agree!), they get far more from me emotionally.
        See, that’s what *I* got from Chump Nation. The need to get the word out that these cheaters are ALL selfish bastards. Stay out of my way if you don’t want to hear my opinion on that! HA. Many thanks for opening my eyes which I never thought would be open on a subject like this. My God, the wasted years..

  • CL, just keep moving forward. Please don’t be discouraged. How many rejections did J. K. Rowling receive for Harry Potter?

    That agent’s attitude is why your book is so important. Chumps need to be heard, and they need to be hear what you have to say.

    Anyways, did you know your book is now #1 under “Divorce” at Amazon? Congrats! You totally deserve it. The cost of your book is nothing compared to the hundreds/thousands of dollars I spent on the RIC’s books, CDs, counseling sessions, etc., in a futile and misguided attempt to save my marriage.

      • Yep, #1 in divorce. Four great reviews, one crazy person who says your blog whips people up into a frenzy of hatred against retarded people because you say fuck, or something like that.

        Just bought my copy!

  • I thought some more on your question about why there isn’t a clear book category. [Flashing warning: sociologist hat on head]

    My guess (and it’s just a guess) is that doing good research on infidelity is too difficult. It’s about identifying a sample–you can maybe get the chump, but getting the cheater to respond? Problematic. And respond honestly?? Well, alas we all know about that one….

    I’ve seen the clinical studies, but those samples are so limited. And they are mostly focused on treatment approaches, and are *mostly* representative of the RIC. Or the college student samples– I don’t think what college kids are doing w/r/t cheating generalizes to married/partnered adult couples very well.

    So you get studies on sex addiction; studies on porn consumption; starting to get work on the use of Trashly Madison type sites. Work on shame (Brene Brown). Work on Character disorders (Simon). Pepper Schwartz et al. do work on marriage that includes infidelity, but it’s not the focus. And, her work comes out of looking at sexual behavior. In other words, work on different pieces of the puzzle, but nobody puts it together like you do.

    Maybe that’s the crux: the world still sees cheating as primarily a sexual behavior, not as a power maneuver, abuse, manifestation of NPD, etc.

    Finally, much of the work in the RIC seems to be self published by whatever “Institute of Saving Your Fucked Up Marriage” that the author runs. It’s probably mostly sold online via their site, and at the costly seminars.

    So we are lacking a good solid layer of basic research–and without that, trade books (i.e., books for a general audience) are going to be harder to do. Unless, like you, you’ve basically done your own research.

    I did try trawling the literature when I was in Amazon chump mode, and even then the articles were pretty scarce on the ground.

    So, certainly there are a few good books. (I found Dennis Ortman’s Transcending Post-Infidelity Stress Disorder helpful, for example. Not a perfect fit, but helpful.) Again, this book is based on his research practice, so it may–or may not–generalize to the wider population.

    So that’s my $.02. Leave it, or take it if it’s helpful.

    • I’m afraid you’re onto something… Just like rape is not about sex, but about power (overpowering someone), infidelity is not about sex, but as CL wisely states, about cake. Kibbles. Excitement, fantasy, things that seem to run out in normal life for some people.

      Just before my D-day I heard about a friend who was suddenly left by her husband, I seriously thought: you must have known, people just don’t just pack up and leave their family, there are probably two sides to her story. Boy, have I since grown in the empathy department… The wrinkled noses, frowns, kindness towards cheating ex by even close friends and family members? Hate it, but understand them. I only now truly understand my own mother, who dealt with my cheating dad. Doesn’t come much closer than that. But I didn’t get it.

    • “I’ve seen the clinical studies, but those samples are so limited. And they are mostly focused on treatment approaches, and are *mostly* representative of the RIC. Or the college student samples– I don’t think what college kids are doing w/r/t cheating generalizes to married/partnered adult couples very well.

      So you get studies on sex addiction; studies on porn consumption; starting to get work on the use of Trashly Madison type sites. Work on shame (Brene Brown). Work on Character disorders (Simon). Pepper Schwartz et al. do work on marriage that includes infidelity, but it’s not the focus. And, her work comes out of looking at sexual behavior. In other words, work on different pieces of the puzzle, but nobody puts it together like you do.

      Maybe that’s the crux: the world still sees cheating as primarily a sexual behavior, not as a power maneuver, abuse, manifestation of NPD, etc.”

      NamedforVera, that comment is worth a whole lot more than $.02. Absolutely brilliant. Makes me want to switch my academic discipline and take up social science research so that the chump experience can be properly researched and represented.

      • why thank you (bows and blushes.)

        I agree that it’s worth doing right. i’ve seen a few polemicals that try to encapsulate the whole picture, but as I say their polemical stance undermines the credibility (even if I personally agree…)

        Now for the grant. I no longer have an academic appointment, so…

  • Ironically, that conference sounds like another “pick me!” dance. Ugh.

    We feel frustration and shame because unless one has been personally chumped, they have no idea what it feels like to have other people judge us, deep down believing we chumps somehow deserved it.

    That smirky agent? I’m guessing she’s fucking a married man.

  • Tracy, This won’t only be a book (it already is, I ordered 3 copies), it’s going to be a movie, a la He’s Just Not That Into You. You should not only have this project in mind but the next and the next. Better prospects, better meetings, better sales if it’s treated this way. Weird that infidelity is denied (terribly old school, perhaps, was she elderly?), I certainly haven’t shied away from the truth of what happened, by God I REFUSE to add more lies to this pile of wrong. You’ve got it so together with your “platform” of success, years of blogs, animation, and most of all the bitter truth of your subject matter PLUS a righteous road to recovery for your readers that you’re going to make this happen. Thanks for keeping us posted…we’re here waiting for more results.

    • I can’t tell if you’re being facetious or not, but actually, this is a great idea. I know in our culture of false celebrity intimacy, we feel we know famous people. Just the way the media is these days. But SB really does seem like the real deal, and I bet this is a discussion she would get behind.

      • Yep, she was with that douchbag while in the exciting moments of adopting their own baby. Can’t imagine what she went through but not much different than TOO many on this blog. I’m sure she’d relate very well to our discussions, if she’s not already here.

  • Last night I was watching an Oprah interview with J K Rowling. She was turned MANY MANY times and then an agent picked it up. Look at her now.

    Infidelity (and more so sudden abandonment) is like having leprosy. I believe people subconsciously think that if they get around you, they may get it on them and it may come to their doorstep.

    Maybe all 2.5 of us need to target a chosen publisher and all write saying, “What are you thinking?!” This woman is the New Age (albeit foul-mouthed) Mother Teresa. Publishing her book is a public service. Not doing so is like watching baby seal get beaten on the rocks.

    (Queue the music): I think Steve Winwood said it best for the publihers and for all of us in ChumpNation: When You See A Chance Take It

    Happy weekend.

  • Lord. I was standing waiting for my daughter yesterday, returning from her first ever day trip with a bunch of other 7 year olds. Although I was among the first to arrive, none of the other still-married mothers bothered to come up to me. It is like it does rub off on them. The dads, they still talk to me, enquiring how I am holding up. Like they used to when I was still married. Its like am either dangerous or they just don’t want to know. As if I turned into an endangered species or so, over night.

    I can only agree with all here. I have read a whole lot of self-help-how-to-save-your-marriage books. I did the pick me dance for 4 months and it was the most degrading thing of my life. I still walk around the house shaking my head at what I did an how I was used by my stbx of 20 years. I am smart, did 2 degrees in Economics, have a high paying executive job, but let me get manipulated to the max at home. That new exec job must have been the dealbreaker for him, or the perfectly good reason for fucking his howorker and my former best friend. The more I stood up for me, the more reason he found blaming me for his unhapiness.

    Although I found this site months after he moved out, it made me find back my sanity. As I sat here reading all the explanations of pick me dances, ego kibbles, cake and living with a narcissist, it made me cry. I was so so relieved. I thought I was mad, making things up, thinking it was me. Still gaslighted… It was such a aha moment for me, I will never forget it. Tracy, you have become my hero. Every day you kick my ass and tell me to stop whining. Every day you go into a topic I can relate too. And you disect it and make me see more light. I am almost divorced, on the way to meh. Standing waiting for my daughter, this blog came to mind. And it made me smile. Because I am me, and you all can go f*ck yourself. The ones that are worth it, never left my side. The ones who wanted to hear, are still here. Everybody else fell off the wagon. Boehoe – their freaking loss.

    So, I bought your book today! In print, at Amazon, over here on the other side of the atlantic! I checked every day, and I could buy it! Some 15 comments already on amazon, not all positive. So, we should all buy, comment on amazon and make Tracy a best seller. She tells a story that needs to be told, it will save many more chumps from collapsing. Thank you thank you!

    • I’m on the other side of the Atlantic as well. I bought my copy at we need to crank up the reviews on there. Want to help?

      • Did that! And wow, what a troll in that first post. Must be a cheater or ow.

        • Lisa – people are already writing reviews on the book in the UK and they haven’t even had a chance to read it yet? Oh ya. That’s the Cheater Nation, it’s worldwide, apparently.

    • Fool Lisa. You know what I like to do if I feel somebody is ignoring me and a group possibly looking my way silently shaking their heads? Well, I’m not shy at all so I Love to go over and join in the group and find out how everybody is doing. Genuinely. I don’t like to feel paranoid and assume they’re treating me like leprosy. I know that is my low self-esteem playing tricks on me. I don’t think groups like that know what to say exactly so they avoid, like when they just find out you have cancer. Don’t know any better.

      Therefore, I find it infinitely more important for myself to confront them directly. When or IF it comes around to asking how *I* am, I unabashedly tell my story – and too bad my voice is so loud because it usually echoes in a room, but I wave my hands the same way. No – I firmly believe people need to be confronted and nobody should be ostracizing us for our ‘new status’. See how mighty I’m doing?! That should be the motto – not slink away. You go girl.

      • p.s. …..and doing it with humor always lightens the situation up. I’ve learned a lot of humour from this site!

        • …and, most importantly, the amount of people who come up later to say their ex cheated on them or other such problems in their marriage. Great way to connect with folks as this seems to be a pretty common occurrence in our society today.

  • Another thing I just rememberd. It rubs off the other way to. I had an insurance guy come over yesterday. Me being in the process of restructuring finances and all that. He actually thought that I was a helpless, emotionally distressed little house wife who should listen to his advice. At my word that I would manage, he acted shocked. Said that I had no clue. God! Me, who applied for a job as head of insurances some 5 years ago, but turned it down because of the poor salary package, me being in charge every day off millions of money and having a secondary law degree. Me doing contract and legal work on a regular basis. But noooooooo, here she is, divorced and miserable. No way a woman in the middle of a divorce could have any brain or self worth. Sjeez.

    • Also if he patronizes you enough maybe you’ll be convinced to buy one of his rip-off “investments.”

      • Hah. No way. Just the assumption that I must not have a brain is a definite deal breaker. Had enough of that the last 20 years 🙂

        • Oh, the financial sharks out there! Beware – us newly singles are definitely targets. Set HUGE boundaries here. I’ve had the unfortunate problem of some workmen and 2 BIL’s make inappropriate comments to me about how their love-life at home sucks. They have learned to protect their eyeballs from my fingers when I shove them towards their eyes that this is inappropriate conversation, assholes. Oh God, these people that come out of the woodwork are making me sick. Thinking *I’m* fucking vulnerable? No. I’m fine – just in attack mode towards users.

  • Oh, fuck–you PAID to do the Pick Me dance at a convention.

    The psychology of that–it’s gotta be a thing. Like, the more people want you, the more bitchy and entitled you become. And you KNOW that these people are not necessarily popular or likable in any other context–so, BOY, when they get to a convention, they really WORK that arrogance.

    The picture in my mind of those bitches rolling their eyes at each other and then of one of them rejecting your pitch without really grasping what you’ve created here makes me want to get in her face.

    I wonder if we chumps are like that–something about our personalities or posture invites hostility or abuse? But if you fucking hurt my FRIEND? I will come AT you, bitch.


    Don’t these people realize their days are numbered, anyway? What with all the self-publishing and social media taking over??

    • I totally agree. They probably complain mightily about having to attend the conventions, and secretly cannot wait to get there and be courted, and wield a little power. Puke.

  • Hey CL, here is a link on Amazon about key words:

    this could help you end up in search results with the RIC books, for example when I search Amazon for “surviving infidelity” your book is not in the list that comes up. “Not Just Friends” does. Test out different key words you think people will use when they are cheated on and doing the Amazon Chump dance.

    I just went ahead and bought the paper version of your book, that way I can donate it to the library :).

  • Tracy, I knew I was getting divorced and could not stay with cheater, but had no idea how not to get out of his toxic narrative. Your blog helps me do that increasingly better every single day. We have been humiliated into going underground, or feeling often humiliated after we tell our stories. It’s time for the full blown critique. It’s your story and our stories. They are erupting all over the place and you are the one who can bring this together, make sense of the fallout so OUR passion and lives have a chance.

    Here is my take on the hard sell. Worldwide popular culture values the Anna Karenina story. Oh poor Anna and Vronsky never had a chance with their pure love and amazing sex. She was trapped in a marriage with a cold-hearted saint and was shunned to death by a community. Oh, if their love/sex could have been acknowledged! If they had a place; she would be alive today!

    Your book pokes holes in that story/fantasy that is oh-so-loved of: true passion between souls that meet in ‘impossible circumstances’ of being involved with others. They are caught between the hard place of socially contrived honesty and the true honesty of their hard places. Or they are people aware of others but simply swept away by the truth of an emotional and sexual connection with someone who is not their spouse.

    You GO Tracy!!

    Imperial Russia does not exist anymore. Even when Imperial Russia did exist, affairs were an integral part of the culture. Let’s retell Tolsky shall we? Their particular “love” was possible BECAUSE OF THE DECEPTION. For many, it’s sexy to lie. many find it sexy to make another feel like shit so they can get to orgasmic throes. It’s sexy to compete with each other sexually WHEN the stakes are high and there is great humiliation to be brought upon someone else’s head (not their own please), for the sake of the ‘truth’ of cheater sex. In other words, cheater sex is culturally specific, made to be viewed as counter culture in the best of ways—it’s outside the dominant heterosexual paradigm. Cheater sex is viewed as HONEST sex because it frees the cheaters from the trappings of heterosexuality.

    Our stories say: that’s a lie. Ask the woman who gave her husband all the choices in the world to divorce when she felt something was terribly wrong. Ask the man who was gaslighted for YEARS AND YEARS. Ask people who were mindfucked into submission to labor for a lying asshole.

    We have passion. We love sex. We really love orgasms. Hell we even hate what happened to Anna. But fuck why do we have to be shit upon for years and then be made to feel like we trapped our spouses in marriages they did not want. They wanted us dammit, to get their cheater sex high and then live off the fact that they ruined someone else. Oh, how powerful they are. But they also feel bad, oh poor cheaters, they do understand the pain they caused (they say this as they plug away at their iphones)

    We have a different stories. Stories of being deceived and violently invaded our young children ripped from us. That pokes the holes in the sexy cheater sex. Oh, you tube culture does not like that.

    But you know what is sexy? Having a voice. Having your life back. There are paradigms for that too. (I haven’t seen any, but I am sure there are, isn’t there a film Gloria, what about The Good Wife (don’t know it very well). Are there stories of us out there?

    We are the fallout, the soulful and we also can have amazing sex. Truth and authenticity, steaming hot intelligence. That is what your book offers. Truth to power. The power of those who made use of the trust people infuse into marriage so that they could get cheater sex by dehuminizing through deception. It’s not true sex. It’s cheater sex. The deception and the sex ate interwoven. But the sexy sex fall apart when we deconstruct it through humanizing the chump. Many people hate that. I love it.

    You GO Tracy!

  • I’m not surprised you are having trouble pitching this–it is niche market. The number of people who have been chumped, realized it, have avoided the reconciliation swamp, and are seeking ways to help themselves is relatively small (if you are the sort of person who thinks in marketing terms). But that doesn’t mean the editors aren’t being idiots for giving you the brush-off without looking at your site. Most people pitching a book are trying to catch a wave–ride the crest of popularity. You are writing to an unfilled need–and that means there isn’t competition in this market, even if it is small.

    I agree with a lot of other posters who have said they hope you are pitching the humor. It is too easy to think of infidelity as sad or depressing (because it is), but you stand out for approaching it with wit and energy.

    I’d describe you as a combination of Tina Fey and Erin Brockovich with cartoons. Your writing has edges and heart and humor.

    I also hope you are pitching the fact that your strategies are good for dealing with any narcissist. In fact, I’m hoping your second book is about surviving and thriving after having become entangled with a narcissist (whether or not the narcissist included cheating in his or her bag of selfish tricks).

    I’m glad I can buy your book, but it deserves a lot more readers–because people need it and because you are a wonderful writer about hard truths and difficult experiences.

    • Very, very excellent insights, IMHO, Eilonwy.

      “I’d describe you as a combination of Tina Fey and Erin Brockovich with cartoons. Your writing has edges and heart and humor.

      I also hope you are pitching the fact that your strategies are good for dealing with any narcissist. In fact, I’m hoping your second book is about surviving and thriving after having become entangled with a narcissist (whether or not the narcissist included cheating in his or her bag of selfish tricks).”

      Also DDW’s research into search terms–we can use those ourselves to nudge the algorithm, although whether there are enough of us I wonder…..

      Aren’t we mighty, though?

  • I just bought two copies, one for me and one for–for I hope nobody, but statistically speaking, it is likely I will have to replace it in the near future after I give it away to someone who will be as shell-shocked as I was.

    One reviewer will be recognized as someone who was banned from this site. I replied to her post in a way that I hope is civil and constructive and shows us chump-heads to be sensitive and kind, and not at all in the way we are accused of being.

    Oh, Tracy!! I can’t thank you enough for the true happiness you’ve helped me reclaim!

  • BTW, Amazon is reporting that your book is the #1 best seller in Divorce right now.


  • I think sometimes these smug bastards only think of the “failed” relationship when you bring up infidelity. OOoo bummer, your spouse cheated on you. So sorry. Get over it.

    They don’t consider all the other things that come into play when the person you’ve made a commitment with completely fucks you over. As everyone on this board knows, it’s not just the infidelity. Now you have to worry about where you will live, if you have kids you have that mind fuck to deal with. Now you’ve got to scramble to regroup and if you had an agreement to be a stay at home parent for 20 years, now you have to worry about how the fuck you’re going to survive. You’ve got chumps that want to leave but don’t want to be separated from their children. THIS IS SERIOUS SHIT! I haven’t covered HALF of the crap you have to contend with!

    Somebody explain to me why this is reviled as much as it should be. It affects the chumps life in every single area. It’s a big deal. I know, I’m preaching to the choir.

  • As soon as I can buy the book on my country Amazon site (next week, I hope) I’m in for at least three copies. One for me to read and re-read into dog eared glory. One for my e-reader for travel. And one to send to the idiot marriage counselor who knew stbx was cheating while asking me if I had “weight issues” and revealing the astonishing fact that I “seemed very angry about the situation”.

    I don’t know what I would have done without this site, without Tracy’s wisdom and humour and without the collective intelligent of Chump Nation. I read here every day. It gets me through, focuses me on that Tuesday when I will reach Meh even on the days and nights when I doubt myself.

    It is just amazing to me that we can read about the most intimate, kinky, outlier sex acts/relationships/fantasies in the free paper available to anyone walking past a newspaper box and no one bats an eye – but when the possible flip side of that is articulated, no one wants to hear or acknowledge that there might be consequences to unknowing spouses, children, family members, friends. Don’t get me wrong, I’m an old hippy chick and I don’t want any kind of return to the 50s – but damn, there needs to be some balance here. And Tracy is a pioneer in bringing us to that balance, no doubt about it. For that I am so, so grateful.

    So fuck’n A, let’s get this book front page on Amazon. Chump Nation is mighty and caring and welcoming and healing, and the world needs to know.

    • I think you are in my country, if I have followed the discussions correctly… I bought it at, as I do with all my amazon purchases, since we do not have a local amazon over here. Mine is to be shipped monday 🙂

      • Ow, I am sorry, I think I misread. There is an expatchump over here too. Got ahead of myself.

      • Hello FL – nope, just across the line in Canada. You’d think that the book would be up on the .ca site if it was up on the .com site, but I haven’t found it yet. I’ll keep checking periodically…….

        It’s a kinda long weekend up here so maybe that accounts for the delay!

      • Lisa – you are in ‘DE’? Does that mean Denmark? I’m so ignorant about the world.

  • This is going to see off topic for a few lines, but I will bring it around. Bear with me. Last night I had a long talk with my best friend, who lives on the other side of the country. she is worried about her daughter, who is married with children and raising step-kids from his previous marriage. My friend and I are the same age and both have been chumped in the past year, and we have talked for hours about cake and ego-kibbles and the pick-me dance and the general shittiness of being betrayed. She does not suspect that her son-in-law is cheating, but she sees some symptoms in her daughter–very tired, lots of sleeping when there is child care available, for the first time in her life no friends that aren’t connected to her husband, very touchy with her FOO about boundaries, etc. Not herself. Once we talked awhile, I said, “She’s losing herself. He is so controlling that her life is being pruned down to nothing but him and the children, including his, and the work she does to make money.”

    What I’ve been thinking about is how long we let abusive relationships go one, letting one thing slide after another until we hit D-Day, or the second or fifth D-Day or the non-cheating equivalent of D-Day (e.g., alcoholic spouse is arrested, disordered spouse stops working, physical abuse begins). I know I did this because I thought it was my responsibility to save the marriage EVEN IF IT MEANT LOSING MYSELF–who I am, what I want to do with “my wild and precious life.” I think back to a moment last September, when the Jackass for the first time in our long friendship told me that he wasn’t going to be accountable to me for his time or his actions (and essentially that he didn’t care what I did either) and my response was to get upset and explain what was wrong with that idea (blah blah). His words should have stopped my world. I should have left him standing there, gone inside and thought very carefully about what I had heard and what it really meant. Of course, on some level I knew that he was in “exit” mode and something had changed, and I suspected something was up with his buddy’s sister. But I went into “defend the relationship” mode instead of “save my own life” mode.

    We’ve been sold a fantasy about marriage. I’ve been to two lovely wedding this summer where the pastor gave exceptionally wise advice about the need to live up to promises, stay engaged with the spouse, be honest, etc. But who sat anyone down and asked, “What if things go wrong? What if he or she cheats? Where are your boundaries in this? Have you articulated these things to each other? ‘Till death do us part’ only counts if both parties are all in.” Tracy, your work threatens a whole lot of mythology that puts “the marriage” ahead of the survival of a chumped partner. The legal bond has been stretched to or beyond the limit by the cheater’s diversion of time and money and the physical proximity and true intimacy has been diminished or ended by the cheater’s investment of time in the affair. What’s left are the hopes and memories of the chump and the kids and the “cake” the cheater is trying to preserve. In some ways, the chumped are luckier than those who are living with subtle, day-to-day abuse and control but can’t even articulate to themselves that it isn’t OK to waste their lives in a relationship that provides no “soft place to land,” no comfort, no respect, not joy-filled love. For me, this site has opened up a lot of thinking about how hard it is to be responsible for your own life in a culture that tells us we are nothing if we aren’t in a couple. Your book opens the door to thinking about marriage as an “abuse-free” zone, and to thinking about abuse in the broader sense than just the physical. Most people are still in the old way of thinking but Tracy’s work and this community is starting to shift the debate. There will be resistance, but there will also be people who get their lives back.

    • Agreed. Two or so weeks back CL had a post about what we lost when we entered into the relationship with our cheater and the responses were so profound I felt they should be bound into a textbook and be required reading for any 8th grade girl or boy.

      • Exactly. And the first red flag before marriage should be starting to lose things in order to stay in the relationship.

  • The many aspects of damage that infidelity causes are invisible. Abuse thrives in the dark. This is why this book and CL’s message are so important. She’s exposing it as abuse – emotional violence. We, as the soldiers of Chump Nation, need to fight to get the word out – just like we fight and bring awareness to other forms of violent abuse.

    CL, maybe that’s part of the pitch; these agents need to recognize that it is violent abuse; talk up the idea that cheaters are abusers causing emotional violence and that chumps and their families are victims (not willing participants or causers) of this abuse. A comparison can be made to rape – a victim doesn’t “ask for it” or cause it.

    • And I use the word “victim” here to make the point of comparing infidelity to other crimes of abuse. I know we are not permanent victims. We are MIGHTY!

      • This is abuse, and not just emotional. The fact that the cheater is out there having sex with God knows what diseased person, is abusive and life threatening and it is very much physical.

        Just ask my friend with a lifetime of herpes to contend with, cuz he didn’t think it was a problem or notice he was viral. Thank goodness it wasn’t AIDS or worse a bunny boiler OW with a penchant for homicide.

        It’s abuse in my book.

        • I had a different friend with a cheater boyfriend who got mad at her and while having sex one night said something very confusing, along the lines of “This is because you did blah blah … ”

          In the intimacy of the moment she couldn’t figure out what he might have meant…. later she had herpes. Thanks to the asshole cheater.

          I believe that falls in the violent category, and retaliation for whatever perceived wrong? it is really too bad he can’t be convicted.

          Later this same jerk was found to be a rapist and tried and convicted. but not before physically harming my friend.

    • So much of what we read about here exposes cheating, like rape, as an act of power and control. There may be a percentage of people who get into affairs because the marriage is in one of those “low” periods and someone at work or on FB shows some interest and the person feels desirable again, and the cheater reigns himself or herself in, recommits to the marriage and learns a lesson. But those who are serial cheaters, those trolling craigslist and Ashley Madison, those who gaslight, mindfuck and tell lie after lie, those who divert family income and trash the spouse to the AP, those who swear they want to reconcile while at the same moment their phones are full of texts from the AP–that’s about power and control. Entitlement and superiority. That’s about “you’re not the boss of me” instead of “we are partners.” The affair is the most egregious symptom of a relationship between an abuser and the person he or she is abusing.

      • This totally resonates with me. Infidelity is not about love or sex, it’s about power and control. I know I did not deserve the abuse, but it is so hard to imagine why someone you love would abuse you for no reason. I cannot imagine the smugness, the sense of entitlement and superiority, the selfishness that makes an affair possible. It’s beyond me. Thanks to Tracy and ongoing reinforcements from Chump Nation, it will never again happen to me (us).

        • I have come across a number of professionals/therapists/experts & so on over the years that do indeed understand that adultery is all about abuse/power/control—-sexual abuse/emotional abuse and so on. (on-line info)

          Also, while resarching divorce/separation issuses, some state laws view adultery &/or refusal of marital relations as variations of abuse.

          All of us chumps already know this, but to realize that experts/authorities/laws sometimes address this is vindicating. Problem is not all states or all professionals understand.

          So, “LOOSE THE ABUSER” could be the sub-sub-title to Chump Lady’s ‘leave a cheater, gain a life’!

        • It took me a long time, and reading a lot of posts here, to figure out why the Jackass kept smirking at me. We can’t imagine the cause of the smugness and the smirking because we don’t think we are better than other people. We literally can’t imagine thinking the way they think. We would never do the things we do.

  • LovedaJackass wrote: “Most people are still in the old way of thinking but Tracy’s work and this community is starting to shift the debate. There will be resistance, but there will also be people who get their lives back.”

    I agree, Chump Lady and Chump Nation are changing the marriage landscape. Chump Pride is being born here, stories are being told here that burn down the closet where they used to hide. Chumps are starting to claim their power, their voice, and their value as people in a narrative that previously disempowered, silenced, and devalued them. To me, Chump Lady is like Elvis: a live spark landing in a barn full of methane. We were ready, and she was there. BOOM!

    • Totally agree. I know there are people who think I am too open and perhaps am embarrassing myself by saying what happened. I don’t see it that way. Ex tried like hell to keep me quiet and his family did as well. Hell, nearly 3 years later they’re still in damage control and obsessed with what happened, trying to spin it to my kids and anyone else they can grab the ear of. But while I don’t talk about it much anymore because really, does it matter that much any more? – I’m not afraid to say what happened and I am very happy to tell anyone who asks.

      Fuck these people who try to keep us silent about the bullshit someone visited upon us. I’ll speak about my life the way I see fit and if anyone doesn’t like it they can kiss my sweet ass.

      • We are only as sick as our secrets, as they say in AA. There is nothing shameful about having been a loving, faithful partner to a jackass cheater. The Jackass’s first words, after minimizing his relationship with “his friend —–” was to say “you better not go public with this.” I told everyone in my life who needed to know. I’m not covering up for him and his semi-literate MOW or making him look good to other people. These people should have a brand on their foreheads: Liar. Cheat. Abuser. Jackass.

        • Reading your posts Nord and LJ makes me think that there was more to my church wanting to keep my husbands infidelity a secret than protecting our marriage.
          The two women both older in age (one married to the minister the other to the elder my husband confessed to) that I was once very close to now treat me like the enemy. Like somehow I have welded some power they could not.
          By not talking about my STBX’s behavior allowed them to manage the situation and the narrative while he continued the pretense that nothing BAD happened. A pretense he continues to this day. If only I had sat quietly and did nothing in the hope that they could restore him to being a real man and then I could run into his arms and rejoice that no one was shamed by our dirty secret. Life could continue as normal and and and Oh who the fuck am I kidding while I was willing to be quiet the prick walked around like he was fucking 10ft tall and bullet proof, treating me like some lowly servant. Who is just expected to care for our kids except when he wants them to boost his social standing.

          arrgh dealing with these idiots just sucks the life out of you. I want people to know the truth because it is not my job to bridge the gap between him looking like a decent person and who he actually is.
          sorry to all
          a little frustrated with the STBX stamping all over my boundaries yesterday and when I called him on it he stated ” well you clearly have not changed your stripes”
          WTF’s my stripes, no my stripes are not the issue, aaaarrrrgggghhhh!!!!!!!!

          • No, you are exactly right. It’s NOT your job to bridge that gap between the ugly reality and the fantasy of him. The whole arrangement is so outrageous.
            And it obviously just feeds into his smug entitlement.

            Some people would be grateful that their ugliness wasn’t exposed, and act accordingly. But your ex needs to be shamed. That’s what I think. How dare he send the unsuspecting couple to do his bidding? I hope you stood your ground.

            Well, the whole approach those elders are taking is wrongheaded, and I’m sorry you are having to endure it. It’s foolishness. Comfort yourself with the fact that God knows the truth, and none of us ever succeeds at pulling the wool over His eyes.

        • I didn’t know that was a AA teaching, but it is nice to have affirmation that my initial post-dday instinct was a good one. I wasn’t sure it was necessarily wise (what if my ex changed his mind, after all??), but after dday I very quickly realized that I needed to share because I desperately needed support to make it through. And as I started talking, I felt freer. Besides, I had already lost what I most loved in my life, and I felt like there was nothing left to lose anyways (including whatever opinions people had of me because my ex was very public with his new girlfriend immediately after dday at some events in the industry we both work in, and at family events too). Though I think perhaps my situation was easier than many because my ex left suddenly and so decisively that I was pretty sure that our marriage would not survive.

  • To me, Chump Lady is cooler than Elvis. She is also like others who speak the truth about injustice; MLK Jr., Malcolm X, Gloria Steinem, etc. – and infidelity is a personal AND social injustice! When the feminists of the 1970’s were criticized for making politics out of personal issues, they shouted back “THE PERSONAL IS POLITICAL!”

  • Like most of you, I went through a pretty typical married-to-a-narcissist template of being cheated on. This was in concert with a few other life crises , so the initial trauma was devastating.

    What continually amazes me is the insult to injury aspect of infidelity. The horrible thing happens, and then afterwards you realize that many people have little empathy for what you are going go through. Also, you are often left with the after party emotional mess… and because you are a good person you just go ahead and start cleaning the crap up. The cheater knew the score the whole time, now you have to play catch up.

    CL, you faced it at that conference. People want titillating stories about people who break the rules … sorry, but people love the flashiness and shallow aspects of narcissists.

    There is a frightened bully in many people who simply can smell your pain and have some sort of disdain for it. This is why victims of very horrible things like sexual abuse have only recently got recognition because they organized and fought hard for it.

  • As far as I’m concerned, this blog is proof that we chumps are not only not invisible, but we are “Mad as hell and we’re not going to take it anymore.” And agents should be knocking on CL’s door and begging her for a book contract.

  • I went to IC after ending my 42 year marriage I married at 18 so really spent my life with this cheater. Cheating first started when was 24 and on the 4thDDay at age 60 I finally had the courage to divorce the bastard . My therapist was great but my eyes really opened up when I found Chump Lady 5 months after my divorce. I would repeat things in therapy I read on this wonderful site and she would also agree. She clapped her hands in glee when I brought her the trust they suck blog. I stopped paying $125 a session and just continued reading Chump Lady. This site has been like a cool breeze in a hot dark world and I know will help on my way to meh (it’s not Tuesday, so not today) My 4 children don’t have anything to do with their father and the OW so I know I am the winner. I bought 2 copies of the book, one for my therapist and one for me. I thank all you in Chump nation you were a God send to me at a time when I didn’t think I could take another breath. Thanks Tracey I will devour every word!!

  • Tracy,
    I remember when some Big Shot television producer sniffed at Roseanne Barr and passed over her because he didn’t think she was ‘funny.’ Fast forward a few years and there he was on bended knee on national television begging her to come over to his network. I can’t remember who it was now but I sure remember it happening. I hope this happens to the snarky agent and I hope she remembers you.

    I was so ashamed of MY cheating husband not of myself. I was completely humiliated and beyond devastated but never ashamed of myself because I didn’t do anything wrong. But people sure got weird to me. A lot of our ‘friends’ quit speaking to me. People looked the other way and pretended to not see me. I couldn’t make myself go home after work to an empty house, instead I would stop in bars and restaurants and pretend to watch stupid TV shows, tears streaming down my face. I know friends and family got sick of hearing my pain so I stopped talking about it. I got into therapy but it took awhile to find someone I clicked with. I was one hot mess for waaayyyy too long.

    But hey, here I am today. In my little yellow house with green shutters with flowers everywhere. I just a bought a new SUV. First vehicle I’ve ever bought in my life without a man. I’ve started to cautiously date. I reached Meh on a Tuesday. In March. On Cheater Pants birthday.

    I’m buying two of your books CL. One for me and one to hand to the next Chump I meet.

    • People do the same thing to whistleblowers. They are shamed, ostracized, fired, lose careers and friends. Whistleblowers threaten the fantasy narrative of life that governments and companies and organizations are great, wonderful, never make mistakes, that we can control everything and protect ourselves from cruelty and greed abuse and exploitation. People can either live unconscious, in a fantasy world (via spackle) or they can wake up and see that life is messy and complex and not everyone is good. What I’m figuring out at 62 is that as I heal and get myself back, I want to see, to be conscious, to discern what is good for me and what is not.

      Syringa, I’ve got a little cafe-au-lait house with bronzy windowboxes. I just bought muscle car–my first car purchase without a man. Came with a lady boner, as Rumblekitty would say. We are mighty and getting mightier! Congrats on the SUV! I’m not at meh yet but I bought a ticket to a Willie Nelson concert in September and aim to have a date for it. And I’m planning a birthday party for the fall to reclaim that day from the debacle I let the Jackass make of it last year. Just going to invite the people who have helped me through the year. By that time, I’ll either be meh or close to it.

      • LAJ…If you can’t find a date for Willie, I’ll be your date. I LOVE Willie. I took my daughter to see him two summers ago. I got front row seats. I see him everytime he comes to town. He was my mother’s favorite too. We buried her with all her Willie memorabilia…autographed pictures, neckerchiefs, you name it. Mama followed Willie before he was known. I had ‘Seven Spanish Angels’ played at her funeral.

        One of his new songs is ‘Roll me Up and Smoke me When I’m Gone.’ What a howl.

    • Other peoples reactions only makes me wonder what version of the truth they heard.

  • I think you are right, We are invisible or at least the majority want us to be invisible. All because cheating has become way to common.

    • Bud,
      You’re right. I never felt so invisible in my life then after my X cheated on me.
      This from a girl who used to win beauty pageants.

  • For those in Chump Nation who can afford to buy more than one book, please do! And donate it to your local library or women’s center.

    If you’re active on social media, i.e., Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, plug the book there.

    We can fucking spread the word!

  • We are not invisible. Many would like us to be as then they could just go about their lives and not have to pretend they give a shit.
    Others stand shoulder to shoulder with us up to their eyeballs in it to help us at our lowest.
    My church fully expected me to be invisible they even said that they expected me to just go about my life and wait. I don’t do, Wait! For 5 years I volunteered with an emergency rescue organization and when the shit hit the fan after a major storm event we would be sent to the area asap and would wait to be tasked to a job. often those in the position of tasking the jobs did not know their ass from their elbow so we would spend hours waiting. Termed” hurry up and wait” And that is what I saw as the expectation on me in regard to my marriage that it could ( no it WILL) take a long time for my STBX to even understand what he has done but in the meant time just wait. In the back of my head I would think I have unknowingly wasted 8 yrs how much longer am I expected to put into this, 1yr, 5,10 the rest of my life.

    The minister who stated to me in the early days following Dday that I need his ok before I said my marriage is over has recently denied saying such a thing, as I think it has dawned on him he backed the wrong horse. Uhhmm Unicorn.

  • Dear Chump Lady,

    I so need your help I strayed to a web site that was offering feed back on a book, only to discover that I am in such a bad state the I got wiped into a frenzy and due to the fog did not even notice the marks.
    I struggle every day with keeping a sound mind and as a result have found myself giving into such things a grief, laughter, sarcasm, anger, foul language, shock, understanding, strength, dignity, self respect, common sense, appreciation, and joy. I am not sure how his has happened as I came to this site to find a place of pity and self loathing due to being cheated on, as aren’t all sites the same? I am feeling as though you are not keeping up your end of the bargain by failing to explain to me at ad nauseam that I have to take account for my life, including both mine and the actions of those around me.
    I am not sure this site is right for me as it has assisted me to heal in ways I could not imagine on first coming here and now I read that I have been sucked in my a potty mouth! how will I ever bare the sham and explain this to my friends. I am so fucking happy! (sorry for the outburst) where was I? thats right. How ever will I get past this?
    Thank you so much for being willing to be there for me and assist me, I am so sorry that I take up you time with all my issues and now I have written this useless letter to express my gratitude to help fill the void that resinates from being a chump, I don’t like to use the word victim, because well, um I’m Not One!!! (sorry again for the outburst). In closing I would just like to say…………

    I am one very happy chump, I love what you do and that you have put in onto paper. I hope the opinionated people who have chosen to demean your work on that site I strayed to (I do hope you can forgive me and allow me to stay) get served their own turd sandwich and finally come to appreciate what we here lovingly refer to as Chump Nation.

    Sammie D

  • I’m binge reading your archives because I’m new here and I’ve loved everything but this so far. I cannot believe you defended Bill Clinton as a good President! I believe our President should be a good human being and cheaters are not. He is a POS like all other cheaters. Please don’t let political allegiance cloud your otherwise clear judgement. Trust that he sucks Tracy, trust that he sucks.

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