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Dear Chump Lady, My husband was using prostitutes

Dear Chump Lady,

I recently discovered your site and have been getting a lot of good tips and healing from the sharing of stories, support and advice between the “chumps”. I’d like to share mine because it seems somewhat unusual and I’d like to hear from anyone else out there who has been chumped like this. Basically, unlike most of the things I’ve been reading on your site, my husband didn’t have an affair partner, or even a series of them; rather, he chronically used prostitutes and even kept a woman “on retainer”, paying her a monthly fee for several years. (Before you ask — yes I’ve been tested and I’m clean, thank god).

As backstory, I am 34, my soon-to-be-ex is 48. We have been married almost 6 years. He was married once before and was divorced after having an affair. His prior divorce was bitter given the affair, and had damaged his relationship with his three children and created an understandably hostile situation with his ex. I had little experience in this type of situation and just tried to do my best to build our relationship. Looking back on it, this was a fool’s errand with a person who had a demonstrated history of cheating; but he was “sparkly” and I was not using good judgment. Ultimately, however, I managed to build a strong positive relationship with my stepchildren and a civil and decent relationship with his ex-wife.

There were warning signs of his problems all over the place that I delusionally ignored. He spoke of his ex with nothing but rancor, blaming the affair on her not understanding him, not being sexual, blah blah. He said she forced him to admit he had a gambling problem and go to Gamblers Anonymous, not realizing that he “just liked to gamble for fun.” Early in our relationship, I discovered that he and the AP from the first marriage were still in contact but as she lives thousands of miles away, he said it was just a friendship. I also discovered suspicious emails, computer bookmarks for porn and dating websites, etc. Ultimately, I discovered several Craigslist postings from him looking for a prostitute in a city that he was traveling to for business, and exchanging emails with another prostitute in town trying to set up a meeting. There were several such incidents prior to our marriage. I confronted him, he gaslighted, I believed and reconciled. It was foolish, but I just couldn’t believe that he would actually do something like visit prostitutes. It was not in keeping with my understanding of his personality or character.

Over the marriage I stopped looking for these awful things as sort of an “ostrich” defense; I didn’t want to find them so I didn’t. Again, this was foolish and short-sighted, and I accept that. The physical and emotional intimacy of the marriage deteriorated so significantly, however, that on D-Day I googled some old screen names that he used to use on dating sites. Long story short, I found profiles of his on multiple sites including Ashley Madison and Sugar Daddies that were detailed, graphic, and definitely his. I confronted, him, he gaslighted then admitted, but told me it was limited to the sites and that he hadn’t met anyone in person. I didn’t believe him, but I also had no hard evidence (I’m a lawyer), and so didn’t know what to do. He refused marriage counseling, told me he was committed to the marriage, and eventually told me I just had to get over it. I stayed for a year in an increasingly lonely and desperate situation before I told him I was leaving, found a place, moved out, and filed for divorce.

Filing for the divorce prompted him to come clean to me. He met me in a restaurant and proceeded to tell me that he had a sex addiction, and that he’d been using prostitutes regularly throughout most of his adult life, including both marriages. He admitted to seeing at least 5-10 prostitutes during our marriage (obviously it was more), and to finding a woman through the SugarDaddy website that he paid a monthly salary to for two years until I confronted him on D-day. I’m sure there is much, much more that he hasn’t told me that will eventually come out. He told me that he was getting help and wanted me to hold off on the divorce and let him try to get better. He has come on very strong about how much he loves me, blah blah, doesn’t want a divorce, yada yada.

Long story short, I have refused his attempts at reconciliation. He made several million dollars while we were married, but I was completely financially ostracized during the marriage. He kept me in entirely separate accounts and most of the time I didn’t even know how much money he was making until I saw the tax returns. He repeatedly refused to share our finances despite my requests (now I know why). His initial financial statement for the divorce shows almost nothing left. He is obviously either hiding assets or has dissipated them on prostitutes/women; in either event, my divorce lawyer tells me we are going to look into all of his records in detail and that if that is the case, I should be getting a substantial amount of this back.

He is desperate to avoid producing financial information and routinely cajoles/pleads/threatens me in an attempt to short circuit my investigation into this. While it is hard, I’m pressing forward. I have no access to any marital assets and am living paycheck to paycheck. I am in significant debt because he would not allow me to take anything substantial out of the house and I had to buy all new furniture and everything else I needed to get a new place. We had two big dogs that I love; he said I had to take them or he would put them in a shelter. This required me to rent a house with a yard for them because I would NOT leave them; but obviously it is substantially more expensive. I am extremely fortunate to have a stable, well-paying job; but right now I have dim thoughts about my financial future. But I’m pushing on.

I guess I don’t know why I’m writing this. It just seem significantly different than many other experiences on your site. I am of course feeling guilty, devastated, confused, angry, hurt, etc. I don’t see or talk to my stepchildren whom I love, and God knows what they think of me. He and I work in the same close-knit professional community, and again God knows what he is telling them. He is taking the position that I am not entitled to any of the marital assets because he made so much more money than I did and he kept them separate from my finances.

But most important, I can’t begin to understand the reptile brain that would use people like that; patronizes prostitutes, treats sex as meaningless, betrays people that he supposedly cares about, and lies and lies and lies about everything. My reality is shaken; I feel like I was sharing my bed with a serial killer for the last several years. If there is anyone out there who has shared a similar experience, or can offer any words or support, I’d appreciate it. I feel for all of your pain as well, and am glad you found each other and support each other.

You can sign me (for the Broadway nerds):

DefyingGravity (if you don’t know the song, read the lyrics. They are very healing.)

Dear DefyingGravity,

If it’s any consolation, you aren’t freak of the week. You’re a chump just like the rest of us. Many people here have found their ex-partner using prostitutes. Local hookers, “massage parlors,” Thai sex tourism, Russian prostitutes… I’m probably forgetting some of the stories. All to say, quite horribly, this isn’t that uncommon. I’m sure if you connected with the “sex addiction” support groups, you’d hear stories very similar to yours.

What’s common to cheaters of all stripes, especially the ones who pay for sex, is that there is financial abuse that goes with the emotional abuse. Missing 401Ks, children’s college funds, marital assets of all sorts that are spent on an affair. You got a big roller. More cash to spend, that much more entitlement.

You own your spackling, and that’s good. But you need to take a good, hard unvarnished look at why you fell for Mr. Sparkles — a guy 14 years older than you, waving more red flags than a communist China parade. I’m sure his outwardly worldly success wasn’t lost on you. And with the sparkly people with the failed relationships, there is the sense (just like the affair partners get) of Oh, I’m the Special One They Really Love. All those other lesser people were unworthy — but not me! Mr. Sparkles hurt them, but really they deserved it for being so horrible. But I can save them! I can show them how different I am and how worthy!

In exchange for kibbles, you get reflected sparkles. I am the consort to Mr. Fabulous.

Ugh. From here on out in your life promise me you will only date for character. And not just dating, in ALL relationships look at character and forget the rest.

Because, Girlfriend, you checked your sanity at the door on this guy. He SHOWED you who he was. So many of us don’t get a look that complete. Of course, many of us are epic chumps and we got the red flags too, but moving forward? A guy that admits to cheating on his first wife and demonizes her? GAME OVER. Immediate grounds for dumping. A guy who does horrible things and accepts no responsibility for them? GAME OVER. A guy who stays in contact with his ex affair partner as a “friend”? Is a guy with terrible taste in “friends.” GAME OVER.

What did he have that you wanted so bad? Whatever it was — fix that. You’re a lawyer, you’re accomplished. You’re young and smart. You’ve got all the sparkles and mojo you need. You don’t need assholes like this in your life.

What are YOUR values? Live them.

A note on the money — that was another red flag. A person who isn’t honest and open about their finances is no one you want to build a life with. One of the ways these freaks want you to prove fealty to them is not question their spending. In fact, I bet he probably compared you to his money-grubbing ex, or complained about how much divorce or support was costing him, so that was your cue to do the “I’ll make my needs smaller” dance. I won’t put those kinds of demands on you that those Mean People did. See — I’m worthy!

Until you start to feel a bit… fucked over. And you ask — and yep, sure enough the keys to the Kingdom are closed to you.

I’m glad you’ve got a good lawyer. You might want to consider a forensic accountant too, because creeps like this guy are probably practiced at hiding their assets.

But in the words of my trial lawyer husband “some money is too expensive.” You’re 34. You’ve got a good profession. You can rebuild. Just get a settlement and get the hell away from this wing nut. If going after him for what you’re “entitled” to means years of chasing his gambling debts? IMO, you’ve got better things to do with your time. Just cut your losses and divorce him. Obviously, your lawyer can advise you better on this, but your lawyer is paid by the hour. I’ve got no skin in the game.

It’s not fair, but these narcs usually enjoy the fight. Unless you’ve got some serious leverage on him — and all the evidence of his prostitute use is pretty darn juicy — he’s got resources to fight you that you don’t have. Is he a lawyer too? If so, the illegal activity could fuck with his standing with the bar. Depose those skanks.

I’m sure he would just love to reconcile with you and stop those consequences. He’s just like every other cheater that way. Cake beats divorce. Good for you for not falling for it. Go completely no contact with him and let all communication go through the lawyers.

Last question — what kind of reptile-brained freak uses people like this? A reptile brain you will never understand because you aren’t wired that way. You have empathy and connect. He is disordered. Don’t try to make sense of the crazy, or as I put it don’t “untangle the skein of fuckupedness.” If you want to do some reading on disordered people and how they do the things they do — read over at Dr. George Simon’s site or the equally excellent

It’s 77 flavors of fucked up. You don’t need to know which flavor it is — you just need to get away from it. DefyingGravity — defy him. Escape the long arm of his abuse and get that divorce. There’s a better life over here waiting for you.





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  • OMG! Mine kept his prostitutes on “retainer” too.

    *head desk*
    *head desk*
    *head desk*

    What is that?!?!?!?! WHAT?!?!?!?

    • OMG,, that is the funniest thing I ever heard! Prostitutes on retainer, that is amazing!!! I wouldn’t be surprised if the one that I joined the chump club over did that but I didn’t know.

      He loved his Massage Parlors and Craigslist Casual Encounters so not a far leap to a prostitute on retainer.

      I just find that one of the funniest things I ever heard, lol.

      I am sure in their mind it wasn’t a prostitute but a lawyer, to everyone else it’s prostitute but not to them, it’s a lawyer!!! This is great, thanks for making me cry laugh.

      • Hello! I really need advice for a very difficult situation. My husband is a serial cheater period but especially with prostitues. He is also very verbally abisive & has in the past-been physically as well. Anyway, my situation is a little different in terms of financial circumstances. We won a settlement & bought a home for my sons birth & I nor he can kick each other out. We were told that when a couple divorce that they loose the home granted to my disabled child when that happens & I don’t know why( & don’t want to ask) So I’ve decided that I would be willing to continue to live together while divorced but don’t know how to avoid my son loosing his home. It seems like an extreme burden on myself to potentially be the one to risk all this. I am certain I want a divorce. I have tried moving on by telling him I’m done but he found a way to stalk & sabatosh all my efforts & personal emails in the past. He is very controlling & hostel when it comes to communication. I just need to know a way around this all to begin living my life for me again. I’ve felt trapped due to responsibility & lack of support for my sons needs. I cannot work & every effort I e made to go to school or pursue a job (because he quit his job &I is home to care for my son)he interfered with by not taking my son to his appointments when I’m at school forcing me to miss a ton of days to where I couldn’t complete my degree(in nursing). What am I to do without involving the estate officers over my sons account ( who said we loose the house)? Please help.

    • @defying gravity…..
      You and I are in the same boat. Very similar situations. Hang in there, I am. It’s only been since 14 days since I discovered “his” 80 picture photo shoot with his escort from Craigslist on his phone.

  • “I don’t see or talk to my stepchildren whom I love, and God knows what they think of me. He and I work in the same close-knit professional community, and again God knows what he is telling them.”
    These people know him, they’ve seen him do this twice now (ESPECIALLY his ex-wife who I’m sure is feeling validated by this, and won’t be hiding any of it from the kids). My ex is also a douchebag and says bad things about me, but everyone who knows him (they don’t even have to know me) knows how badly he treats people and they don’t buy into it. The few that do (usually women he’s sleeping with, until he dumps them) can go jump as far as I’m concerned. Don’t worry about this.

  • DG- “Basically, unlike most of the things I’ve been reading on your site, my husband didn’t have an affair partner, or even a series of them; rather, he chronically used prostitutes and even kept a woman “on retainer”, paying her a monthly fee for several years.”

    Prostitute or not they’re still affair partners and multiple prostitutes=serial affairs, multiple affair partners. There’s no sugar coating it. That’s you trying to minimize what was really going on. That needs to stop, for your own sanity. There is absolutely no reason why you should even be thinking of trying to minimize what was done to you or protect the scum bag. He needs to get what’s coming to him in full force.

    If he’s continually threatening you, take that seriously. See if you can get a restraining order of some kind. The damaged relationship with his children was another cue. I’m betting that damage hasn’t been undone, if anything, it’s only been intensified.

    Kudos for not falling for the reconciliation BS, stay strong. Fix your pecker as CL says. You’ve got support here.

    • Feistypants, thanks for your comments. To clarify I wasn’t saying that it was in some way less bad that my STBX was using prostitutes instead of an “affair”. I had just read lots of posts here about affairs or multiple affairs and was just looking for input from those who had a similar experience to mine. I certainly am not trying to minimize what he did.

      In any event, it’s really just apples and apples. You are right. The method of the cheating is less relevant than the cheating itself.

      • Hi DG,

        No words of wisdom for you, just of solidarity. I was married to one like that too and no, I never figured it out either – the using people, the paying for sex. It was just gross.

        Mine was super sparkly too; made a lot of money and came off as really important. I was attracted to the reflected sparkles too. Made me feel important, like I was somebody.

        Anyhoo, I’m sorry you’re going through this. Hang in there.

        BTW – your name, Defying Gravity, is an interesting one. I assume you’re referring to not being dragged into his pit of hell but have you seen the movie Gravity? I saw it yesterday and Sandra Bullock’s fight for survival kind of reminds me of leaving a cheater – so scary, the BS never seems to end, but worth it in the end.

        That moment where she’s spinning in circles, attached to that space arm that was going to drag her into the depths was especially poignant, with George Clooney telling her she “must detach” to save herself.

      • I realize this post is over 2 years old, but I found it during a Google search and THIS IS MY LIFE right now. I’m still trying to process it all. Defying Gravity, if you’re still getting notifications that someone responded, I would love to hear from you! I would appreciate any and all advice. A forensic accountant?? I never heard of one and I need one. I called a private investigator to get any financial information I could, but he said he couldn’t help. Please contact me if you get this….

        • I am in the same boat now. My husband who us 66 years old and we have been together for five years became impotent even using viagra. He completely pulled away from me and started seeing prostitutes to try to “fix “his Ed problem. I found out he has been doing this since last October and the final time was this past July. After two days of him denying it he finally admitted it all. He says it happened six times with different women and it didn’t work. After the explosion of my anger we have decided to see a narrative counselor that has come highly recommended. Husband has been very upset and begging for another chance. He has been very transparent with everything since I found out on August 3 and oddly enough his Ed seems to be much improved. After both of us having std testing I have gone back to relations with him. He knows the consequence of ever doing this again. I will divorce him in a heartbeat and tell all of our combined children why! Was his explanation lies? Probably , but the marriage counselor seems to believe him. He’s been a good husband in other ways do I decided not to pull the plug yet. Will it work? I don’t know. The pain is still with me but I have tried to let go of the anger because I can’t live that way. Hopefully he will now stop I do know he loves me and our life together, I do believe that

  • You didn’t miss the red flags you knew the red flags but chose to ignore them until they were glaring and waving back and forth in your face. But you are one of the smarter chumps out there, once you acknowledged what was staring straight at you – you got out. Just like CL stated you need to get away. It’s unfortunate that so many chumps out there attempt reconciliation thinking that they are the special ones. Follow CL’s advice some times the money isn’t worth it, but your sanity, freedom, and real life is priceless.

    • Sag: you and chumplady are absolutely right. I did choose to ignore obvious red flags, and that’s on me. I’ve learned from it and will not do so in the future. Thanks for your input.

      • DefyingGravity (I just looked up the great lyrics): I ignored red flags, too. I’m so sorry to hear your story, I know the agonizing pain you must be in now. The feeling of sleeping with a man so unknown that it makes you question everything, sends your world careening, and another weird feeling that I can’t explain – for me, like I was nothing, meaningless.

        Then again, my stbx left me & would never consider reconciliation…he was done with ME. Parting words, “I don’t want to still be arguing with you when I’m 70.” WTF! Was that a joke? Oh, I’m sorry you had to argue over your ads on adult friend findr dot com, etc. My fault. I think he left because I found out who he really was.

        Unlike your story, he never contacted me, I always had to call him re bills, etc. He made me chase him, made it look like I was calling him over & over (shut off notices!). Fucker. I so hate him. He has the same disorder as your stbx, tho, and they all use the famous CL “MindFuckery.”

        But back to you. I hope you consider CL’s forensic accountant idea. My x owns many websites, domains & URLs I don’t know the names of because he uses a proxy service (I saw 1 bill w/ sites named and fee for proxy or I would have never known). He has his own VPN & specializes in SEO. He knows how to hide. And I am currently jobless, unable to afford the accountant (or food).

        You, however, have an income & resources, tho you said it’s still tough $ wise. Fight for the $, that will really “chap his ass” (thx CL) and you deserve it. Money is freedom, tho truer words were never spoken (on so many levels) when Mr. Chat Lady said “some money is too expensive.”

        If I could make a suggestion, watch or listen to something funny every day. Come here, this blog makes me laugh out loud. I watch Modern Family before/instead of the morning news. The news isn’t ever funny unless someone farts while their live. Anything to make you laugh. It probably feels like nothing will ever be funny again, but it will, and one day you will be living proof of triumph and help another man or woman whose entire world has just collapsed. I hope it helps. All the best to you.

        P.S. Baths with Epson Salts (sp?). The magnesium will help you relax.

        • GREAT point about watching something funny! I watched Bridget Jones every day for at least 2 months, and Golden Girls marathons, and Sex & the City!

  • Regarding your “Ostrich” approach, one of my favorite CL sayings;
    “when you stick your head in the sand…..
    you get fucked in the ass “!
    Is there a cartoon T shirt with that ?

      • I just can’t help but notice, and I’m NOT complaining, that when addressing the subject of adultery, it does not lend itself to anything but “base” language! While trying to “discuss” with my husband his affair he often told me I was being disgusting! Well gee, I can’t think of anything more disgusting than screwing around with a married woman on your wife of 40 years! A hole! It is what it is, disgusting!

        • Exactly. When I found out about my BF paying prostitutes for blow jobs (and keeping them on “retainer” UGH), he tried to deflect and put it all on me, deny, lie more, etc.

          I finally looked at him and said (loudly lol) ‘you are fucking whores’ to which he replied, ‘you are exaggerating’ ‘it’s not what it seems’ ‘they aren’t really whores’

          He was paying them for sex so, yes, prostitutes, hookers, whores, sex workers seems to apply.

          *head desk*

          I don’t like to judge sex workers, but I had to make a point and ‘whores’ was the word that best summed up the situation. He was offended by me using that term… O_o

            • I agree. I no longer see prostitution as a victimless crime. I feel sorry for anyone who is forced into the work, but otherwise, I think they’re just as bad as any other OW/OM.

              • Could not agree more.

                I was with a serial POS cheater. While engrossed in investigating his treachery I ended up lurking for awhile on a prostitute review site forum. There was a special section of the forum specifically for the prostitutes to talk about their “work”. In many threads they discussed “what to do” if one of the “crazy psycho” wives found their number and called them to question them about their liasons with their husbands.

                These whores-because you are right-they are whores, sat there on this forum advising the other whores to lie to these distressed wives and gf’s and tell them they had the wrong numbers etc. Insulting these wives and gf’s, calling them “crazy” and LOLing the whole way through their posts.

                They think it’s funny. They know exactly what they are doing while they boast and brag about how they made so much $$$$$ in so many days. And I find the “oh the poor sex worker” (“sex worker” another euphemism for whore) trend that seems to be popular in the public forum really disheartening. There seems to be absolutely no sympathy for the wives or significant other’s of these scumbag johns that sleep with these whores. Sign of the times I guess.

          • OMG!!

            When Baron Cheater Von FlamingTurd got caught using BDSM prostitutes and I called them whores, he told me they weren’t really whores. He said that they talked (he and his dominatrixes) and they were paying their way through college. One was even studying psychology! Wow! Impress me why don’t you?!

            WTF Dude! You’re paying someone to treat you like a trained circus bear or seal and using all sorts of bodily fluids in the process and you want to argue with me about calling them whores? You were participating in an exercise sexual in nature and you were paying them for it. A paid dominatrix is a whore. And you Flaming Turd? You’re an idiot.

            • Not really whores? Psh, opinions on prostitution as an industry aside, if they were getting paid to perform sex acts, they were whores in the most literal sense. Look up “prostitute” in a thesaurus and “whore” will be a synonym.

              Wow, I can’t even imagine what justifications they had to explain away how they weren’t really whores.

            • Best story I’ve heard regarding prostitutes was somebody I knew that discovered her husband had been using prostitutes, contacted the girl herself and engaged her to serve the divorce papers on him at his office. He is a lawyer. She got the woman to dress herself up as cheaply as possible and announce to everyone in the office and waiting area as she came in – who she was and why she was there …. he was apoplectic. ha ha

          • Oh no, no, no Samiam! My husband told me that his AP Is so smart, strong and sweet! Smart? I think not! Strong? Nope, has to have my husband (or any man to take care of her)! Sweet? Oh come on! He did not even pay attention to the fact that when he would come back to me, she would send me his most inflammatory texts to her just to piss him and me off! She is devious, gold digging, disloyal and a plethora of other troubling things! So I asked him if the tables were turned would he describe me in such glowing terms?? All I heard then were crickets!! Yeah, that’s what I thought! NOT! We all know I would have been sitting on the curb with the rest of the trash and rightfully so!

            • His prostitutes knew about me. He also had a couple of hook ups I found out about later (he shot video with his cell phone…idiot…gotta love having live action documentation) who told him they wouldn’t make out with him because he had a girl friend, but they could do other stuff. omg. omg. omg.

              So everyone knew about me and I was totally in the dark. At the end I said ‘do you have any idea just how f-ed up this all is and how f-ed up you are for doing this?’ He just shrugged.

            • Mine said about his AP:
              “We talk as good friends do.”
              Him: “Yes, yes that’s correct.”

              Good. friends. fucccccckkkkkkk yoooooooouuuuuuu!

          • Yes, got that response too! “She wasn’t really a hooker” – well, why did she have a website dedicated to sex for money? lol.. and the others, Craiglist ads in W4M, linking to sites for payment pre-‘date’ – “They weren’t hookers!!” Whatever you want to call it dude, a hooker’s a hooker… He found that term about his ‘friends’ just as offensive. Can’t believe I ever tried to reconcile, thank god the woman he finally left for who is with our son when he is there now seems to not actually be a sex worker.. our first MC said that all my STBX wanted was a sex worker, and that scared me into staying for years-

        • Oh Roberta, I don’t get this concept either.
          The things my STBX has done are DISGUSTING and he did them. but if I even reference what he did in conversation without being graphic it is like I am assaulting his hearing and his dignity that I would even consider speaking in such a way in his presence. Then he would follow this up with the projection that I was only speaking this way because I was unwilling to deal with my issues. I have to laugh at the whole you aren’t saying these things out loud are you? how dare you? these things are meant to be a secret………!

          STBX has always held this persona of being an upright (Christian born and bred) decent human being. Even a crass joke in his hearing by non christian friends would invoke a tut of disapproval. I guess the joke was on me.

          • What finally shut my xbf up was him saying ‘I want us to be friends’ me saying ‘I’m not friends with people who lie to me…go back to your whores.’

            He finally just STFU, walked away and moved out a couple of weeks later.

            I’ve been married before. I will never marry again. It was so much easier to break up with a live in bf than go through a divorce. I don’t have kids so I know my situation is different in that respect.

            I have no idea why people who don’t plan to be honest and who plan to live these lives of lying, hiding and cheating get involved with any type of relationship. Just f- around and leave the rest of us alone. ugh

            • Because cake. We are the ones paying the rent, scrubbing the toilet, buying the groceries. This is our use to them. Simple. We are the stability they use to keep a roof over their heads and chores done. Can’t f around as much when they have to work more to pay for their own rent.

              • Exactly. I finally said the day before I ended it for good…

                ‘I’m not the wifey, I’m not the mama, I’m not the maid and I’m not the cook. It is not all about you. I have never done for another person what I did for you and your response is to pay hookers for blowjobs and reject me in every way possible including sexually. How do you live with yourself?’

              • Love this, samiam. This is it, in a nutshell.

                “I have never done for another person what I did for you, I have never done for another person what I did for you and your response is to pay hookers for blowjobs and reject me in every way possible including sexually. How do you live with yourself?”

                And yet, they do live with themselves. Quite easily, in fact. The momentary guilt/Shrek Cat Eyes of remorse (my X was particularly good at this), then the rationalizations and blameshifting starts. I still get a good laugh over what my X said shortly after confrontation, that he was planning on moving the computer out of our bedroom (chronic porn use, Craigslist casual encounters, Escort Files, God knows what else). Haha! Like that was the problem. I told him he could put the computer out on top of the hot tub, but it wouldn’t make a difference. The ugliness wasn’t inside the computer; the ugliness is inside him.

          • Sammie D! Oh the “Christians”! My Ex, very devote, Southern Baptist, Deacon in his church, going to massage parlors and “massage therapists” who have bouncers for “receptionists” (can you spell p-i-m-p?) 3 times a week, spending $1000.00 a month! You know what he says to ME…?

            “I know you *think* you’re a christian, but you’re not…”

            And – Got very upset when I charaterized his behavior as using “hookers”! The work that these sick, sick people have to do to convince themselves that what they’re doing is “normal”. Boggles. The. Mind.

        • My husband said I was disgusting in thinking he has the hots for his best friend’s girlfriend. His affairs have been with my my best friend and my cousin’s wife amongst others of course. Somehow I am the one that is disgusting for thinking this other girl is fair game too. I guess his charms did not work on her and he had to take his anger out on me instead.

        • I thought I was the only one who had been married for over 40 years on this site. I say ‘had’ rather flippantly because we are still married and co sharing our marital home. Because of a bad investment neither of us could afford to move out, but all that will change and very soon. My husband is in Thailand playing golf with his mates for his must have holidays, this is his fourth trip in 3 years. That alone should have been a red flag for me because it was men only and I don’t fly. I was happy for him to go the first time because he works so hard. Eight months after returning the first time (March 2012) I found out by accident photos of strange Thai women, porn videos, and I love you messages sent to different Thai women on his mobile phone. I was looking at his phone because it was new and I wanted to see if it was easy to use because I was looking at purchasing a new one. I had no reason to check up on him before. Fast forward to today he sneaked out yet again last Friday and not one hour after he landed at Bankok he was already posting a photo of a woman sitting at a table having a drink with him and mate and his mate who is okver 60 has his arms around a girl all of 25 years old. So that is the straw that broke the camels back, what he is doing is not only sick but it is cruel to me. It’s that cruelty that is making me sick. I am 59, have diabetes and suffer with anxiety. When he returns, probably next week the shit will hit the fan because I am done. At least if I wanted to find a partner, God forbid, I don’t have to go overseas like he does because none of the women in this country would have him because they are too smart. He is desperate because that is the best he can do. And I always thought my husband wouldn’t do that. He’s 68 acting like a horny teenager. I will ask him to move in to his mates place seeing as he spends all his weekends with them and see if they keep his bed warm at night. Has anyone else had this happen to them after a longish marriage? My mother said to me “they put one man on the moon, why didn’t they put,them all there?”.

          • Alex, I have been married for almost 30 years. My husband told me he never had other woman besides me( we came from old china) . Last year, he went to thailand with company. After his coming back from Thailand, i accidentally ” tricked” him to say that he paid for hand job. ( Now, he is denying it). This year, he decided to try a white woman. So he went to pay a prostitute while i was out of country. He said he was just curious and believes that his ” man power” is diminishing. he told me that he was so nervous that he could not get hard. So the prostitute did blow job.
            On the one hand, I feel so hurt. But on the other hand, I kind of understand him. Life is so short. So after questioning him for some details for twice, I kept quiet. But, every day, i think about the betray many many times. I keep thinking about if he is going to do it again since he did not “do her”; what I should do if he goes to use prostitute again. My mind is going nuts. Please, help me! Is this man trustable?
            By the way, he was kind of mean before, short of patient. he went to stripers for many years; watched a lot of pron; i told him i was not happy about it. he said if he was the only one watched it, then he was wrong.
            Now, he is trying to be nice after my discovery. but still very irritable.

        • this comment refers to smart ass texan mention of “when you stick your head in the sand, you get fucked in the ass.”

          somehow these comments were pushed down the chain of comments

      • I believe that one belongs to me but it would be an amazing t shirt for sure. It makes me laugh just visualizing it. This is why I know it’s mine, I laugh hardest at words that bring visuals to mind.

  • Keep digging Defying Gravity. Mine also tried to hide assets and swung between being nice to try and persuade me to settle without looking to being threatening when being nice didn’t work. Don’t know why he thought he could threaten me. I wasn’t the one with garbage to keep hidden, like being “lickteaseu” or “58andGreat” or “lickuup58” or “mrinjector”.

    My lawyer wasn’t much help in the search for where the money went. He subpoenaed the records, but I’m the one who dug because who knew better than what was “normal” and what wasn’t than me. Also, the thought of paying him $$$$ to try and find the money trail didn’t appeal to me. I think it would be money well spent for you, however, to hire a forensic accountant.

    Don’t walk away with nothing even though the thought of being done with it all is appealing. You earned a right to all that you have coming to you.

    By the way, there is no such thing as being “addicted to sex”. It’s just a way for soulless cheaters to alibi what they are doing. They might as well say, “The devil made me do it.”

    Hang in there.

      • I second that for sure. I was such a chump that mine told me he was a sex addict 3 months into the relationship, WTF? Yes, I was quite a chump indeed. Oh looking back all I can do is laugh at my chumpy little self for being so chumpy. I have no idea what I was thinking. Really.

    • Annie: my STBX is doing the exact same thing. Alternating between trying to be nice and persuade me I don’t need to investigate further into where the money is, and then threatening me when that doesn’t work. Then trying to reconcile because as he says, “neither of us will find another person that we are so good with.” The insanity of that statement after what he’s done is mind boggling.

      • Mine said ‘I think we really do care about each other so we should stay together.’

        I laughed in his face and said ‘people who care about each other don’t lie, cheat, sneak around, expose other people to STIs and f- with people’s heads. Clearly you don’t care about me and never did.’

        Poor boy was offended….by the truth.


        • Mine said: “I don’t know what you’re so upset about, you got a couple of good vacations out of it.” *IT* being our marriage…. And, he was stone cold serious.


  • DG, sorry you are going through this. You should check with your lawyer, but I think the money he spent on prostitutes could be considered dissipation of marital assets and you could be entitled to half that amount.

  • I do hope you are going to get in touch with the ex-wife? And the kids? As an abandoned and abused wife, I would find it quite comforting to be validated, and it really confirmed ‘it wasn’t me’.

    What a completely horrible wierdo. Lucky you are young, don’t have kids and can get away.

    PS Forensic accountant. I would also tell every one.

    • I do plan to contact his ex and the kids. My lawyer has advised that I wait until after the divorce is final. Thanks for your thoughts and support.

  • I don’t see any reason for you to feel guilty, this man was lying to you from square one. Why isn’t he slandering you like he did his first wife, It must be because you are a lawyer. Not only were you in the position of spackling his unwonderfulness after his bombshell exit out of his first marriage, you get the honor of seeing him play the dog who has learned new tricks only I see it isn’t working on you. Hooray!!! He only came clean because he wanted you as his cake, and I am sure his idea of coming clean wasn’t all of the information.

    You have nothing to feel guilty about.

    • “He only came clean because he wanted you as his cake…” Exactly right. It was no coincidence that he did that a week after I actually filed for divorce. It was his last ditch effort to win me back by finally being honest and vying for my sympathy. The crazy thing is, there is a voice in my brain that is in some nutso way sorry for him and wants to help him because he is “sick”. I have outvoted that voice because as kind and empathetic as she is, she is wrong in this circumstance. I am listening to my gut now, as I should have from the start. Thanks for your input.

      • ^^^ YES, YES, YES!! ^^^ I kept trying to figure out what in the world could have happened in his childhood that hurt him so badly that created this behavior in an otherwise pretty good guy. I kept imagining him as this little baby version of himself, holding him, and wishing I could have protected him from those hurts. When I shared this image with my therapist, she said (must imagine strong souther accent) “Girl, you’ve got to set that baby down! Drop him off at daycare, leave him on his mamma’s portch, but girl! Set that baby down!”

        I’m laughing now recalling this moment, but it really was a huge transitional moment in my healing. Because I did, in that moment, I set that baby down. And anytime I found my thoughts going to that soft caring “poor him” place, I reminded myself to “Set that Baby Down!!”

          • OMG..I love this! Set that baby down! Really, I think all of us in this type of relationship, as caregivers that we are, want to find the source of the pain and heal it. That never gets anywhere. Hell no! Set the baby down..that baby bites and hurts…you can’t fix him.

            I’m still struggling with coming to terms with an ex that was having sex with prostitutes. The mind fuck that is part of all of it , is mind blowing. You really don’t know what hit you. Who can be trained to decipher lies to this degree? It sucks when you really were in love but you have to save yourself.

  • Good advice.

    Here are some random comments.

    1. The need for “hard” evidence.–We don’t need evidence you can use in a court room. For one, how we get the evidence isn’t typically admissible. 😉 Also, our cheaters are very good at gaslighting us, letting us know that our evidence isn’t as good. I think Chumps get stuck because we know that our evidence rarely consists of letters detailing their plan on how to cheat on us and leave us holding the bag.

    2. Cheaters cop only to what they think you already know. Your cheater admitted having a profile on cheater sites, but used the excuse of distance to tell you that it was “just” flirting (read Emotional Affair). Only after you filed did he start to come clean, but only in the context of “poor me, I have a sex addiction.”

    3. Putting a woman on retainer means she’s a long-term mistress. This is the very definition of a “kept woman.” Yep, he’s keeping her! Is she his original AP from Marriage #1? I bet that she doesn’t see herself as a prostitute!

    4. If said woman is still being kept, then yes, he’s hiding assets. It’s up to you to determine if this is money too expensive to pursue. Double check with your attorney to see if a forensic accountant would be worth it. While I accept that prostitutes and your STBX’s lifestyle make for a pricy combination, a man who made several million dollars over an 8-year marriage is a man who knows where the money is. If he’s still keeping that woman, then he’s getting money from somewhere, and by his own admission, this has been going on for some time. You’d be entitled to that money, at least in my state.

    5. If it’s too expensive to pursue the money (and if he’s got millions, then he can afford to put you off), then get what you can and go. I love the idea of deposing his skanks. That’s part of the court record. It’s a leveraging point on a settlement. On the other hand, if it looks as if you’re going to be screwed over financially, then at 34 you can still rebuild (but I have a line on voodoo dolls, if that’s any help).

    I am sorry that you’re going through this. It sucks, and it sucks epically. Good for you for filing! Once the divorce is final, check out some therapy. After 8 years with a narc, you’ll need to rediscover normal.

    Best of luck!

    • “Rediscover normal” …absolutely right. I feel as though the world is upside down, and its been a long time since I’ve known about this. It will take a lot of time to get back to a new normal. Thanks for your support.

  • DefyingGravity,

    “I guess I don’t know why I’m writing this. It just seem significantly different than many other experiences on your site. I am of course feeling guilty, devastated, confused, angry, hurt, etc.”

    Hum, seems like the way you’re feeling is very familiar to the rest of us on this site. I hope this post helps you put aside the singularity of your experience and lets you know that a bunch of us got chumped. Lots of us otherwise smart and successful and wonderful people in our own right fell for the con. It happens all the time, and it’s been going on for eons. When I first found this blog, I questioned whether I really belonged with this community. Every day I read a new post and set of comments, and I feel such commonality, I know that I belong here. Screw the details, you got chumped, and you sound like you’re figuring out how to never go there again. That makes you a member of this community. In my opinion, it takes a village to heal a chump.

    • So true, DG. Everyone’s story is a little different, but there seem to me to be very common links throughout. I’m new here, but I’ve lurked and read many posts and comments, and pretty much every one makes me go. “Yes, wow, that could be me but for a few details and different circumstances. Boy, it would be good to talk to them and share experiences over a cup of coffee, a beer, whatever.”

      I almost liken it in some ways (absolutely no disrespect meant to any armed forces members or anyone else here) to being in a kind of minor war, or being a crime victim. I understand what some people end up with is not too dissimilar to PTSD. What everyone goes through is a bit different, but what we share and our feelings about what we are dealing with would be similar in many, many ways.

      • It is absolutely PTSD. My therapist diagnosed me with PTSD two days after D-day. At first I thought maybe it was an exaggeration, but as the weeks and months went on, I had all of the symptoms. I will be forever grateful for her recommendation of xanax and hard exercise. Those two things saved me when I thought I was slipping under. I would never compare my experience to the experiences and sufferings of combat veterans, for whom I have the utmost respect and compassion. After what I went through mentally, emotionally, psychologically, I have gained a whole new appreciation for what veterans go through – even though I have no idea . . . having never been in a war zone.
        On the crime victim aspect, I read somewhere about a study that indicates that victims of infidelity suffer more PTSD and psychological trauma than rape victims. I don’t know if that’s true – seems like comparing an apple to an orange. But I can say it felt like a psychological rape – from the person I trusted and loved most in the world.

          • Hi Defying,
            So sorry to meet you here, but glad you found your way here where so many people understand how you’re feeling and care to see you get to a healthy and safe place.

            I was diagnosed with PTSD as well. My therapist pointed out that if a chump has any history of early childhood betrayal of trust, like sexual abuse by a beloved uncle, (I do) and/or rape by a stranger when a teen (again, yes) ….that the earthquake of infidelity is hitting an already damaged foundation.

            It really makes me mad because I don’t want to think of myself as a victim in life in any sense, and I worked so hard to overcome those negative early experiences and right after D Day I remember wondering how in the world I was going to get through all of the wracking, draining emotion that I knew lay ahead of me again. It’s so exhausting. All for my cheater’s ego and excitement.

            I’m really sorry you are going through all of this mess, but it’s heartening to read about your clear rejection of his maneuvers. I wanted to tell you, regarding that voice that sometimes feels sorry for him because he is “sick”… I am reading (along with CL’s book) Lundy Bancroft’s Why Does he DO That? and it is such an eye opener!

            He explains that abusers (and cheaters are abusers) are not driven by their feelings as much as by their thinking. They have an attitude of entitlement and they thrive on the power and gratification. So it’s not so much a matter of his being sick and needing your help.

            Wishing you the best and lots of healing thoughts.

    • Ali: yes, this thread has absolutely made me feel much less alone in my experience. In fact, as Chumplady says, the behavior patterns of the cheaters is eerily similar.

  • DG
    I’m assuming you will be No Contact with this oxygen-waster from now on.

    On the financial side of things, if you still have copies of the tax returns, that could be a good basis for a judge to order a discovery – sorry, you are likely more savvy about legal procedures, but I have done some tracing of financial records in the past and there are definitely things a good forensic accountant can achieve if you give them clues to start with.

    It seems likely that the differential between your two incomes should be a basis for a support claim and/or a settlement.

    Not likely you could pin the callgirl payments on him as a waste of marital assets since they usually are made in cash. Even the retainer would have likely been cash since the girls don’t usually file tax returns.

    Don’t torture yourself with the details of what he did. It’s over. I have been down that road – horrifying myself with reading their online profiles, dirty little messages, accounts of their trysts, and other twisted and sick little hobbies Forget him. Perhaps ingest enough information first just to recall that it makes you queasy, then do something symbolic to let it all go. My therapist suggested I figuratively put all the mental rubbish in a box then throw it off a bridge. It worked for me. Now three years later I just laugh when I think of some of the ridiculous things my ex did.

  • Whoring, gambling, and cheating?

    What? No booze and drugs?

    Oh well, I guess he makes up for that oversight by threatening to drop the dogs off at a shelter (no empathy–dogs go through separation anxiety often–and a probable death sentence for the dogs).

    Good luck. I hope your lawyer manages to extract at least a pound of flesh from this guy. In my state, the 5-year mark is kind of important in terms of marital assets because that’s really when they start considering everything attained while married as being joint assets.

    That is, of course, if he hasn’t squandered it all on hookers and casino games.

  • As far as I’m concerned it does not really matter one jot who or what cheaters cheat with. Be they hookers, ho-workers, women, men, horses, cracked plates! – it’s the damage they cause that’s relevant, the selfishness and destruction too.

    As far as the gambling thing goes, I know a woman whose marriage broke up because of her husband’s clandestine gambling. She felt so betrayed, as if he had cheated on her. She almost lost everything. While he was flitting away her money he never gave a thought to her or their daughter who could have ended up homeless. It’ back to that sense of entitlement really

    • I don’t know. For me, it was worse that it was prostitutes. I wanted us to have a good sex life, I didn’t deny him, he denied me, I am adventurous about sex, etc.

      For him to not have a sexual relationship with me and pay (he’s an f-ing cheapskate so that was insult to injury) prostitutes made it so much worse.

      • Sounds like he wanted people he could use to masturbate rather than an intimate act with someone he has to please.

          • They all are and manipulation is second nature to them. They lie so much that they convince themselves.

            Time and distance are the recipe for moving on and realizing from afar the bat shit crazy of them when you look back at everything that happened.

            Looking back now, I would not have gone on a second date, let alone get into a relationship with the x serial cheater.

            Which is why now the fact that this happened and I have escaped mentally and physically intact and can look back on it all with a balanced self, it has become ridiculously funny to me because he was so pathetic that in my sane state he wouldn’t have made it past a 1st date without question. The loser alert went off when I met him but then I ignored and completely got sucked in by manipulation.

            I now know why it happened at that time in my life but I will never ever ignore my gut again.

  • Defying Gravity, my counselor told me to spend my time figuring out why I stayed instead of why he did what he did. She said that was the true piece to unravel. Although you don’t feel this way now, I believe you are lucky to get out while you’re still young enough to find another relationship. I’ve got 36 years sunk costs and the thought of getting married again seems fairly remote. I know it does happen, so I don’t rule it out, but part of me would be happy just to be by myself and explore my own interests after a life time of putting my needs last. Anyway, try not to be too hard on yourself. If you were a teller at a bank and one of your customers seemed normal, then pulled a gun, you wouldn’t blame yourself for being duped. These people are very good at pretending to be normal. It’s what they do.

    • ‘ These people are very good at pretending to be normal. It’s what they do.’

      Well said, Lyn!

  • DG…Yes, it doesn’t really matter who and what they cheat with, he’s still a liar and a cheat and a thief.
    My XH left me for his howorker who was fully informed of his past and knew about all of his marriages and affairs (something I didn’t know about when I married him) and she chose to run off with him because she was so dang special. I sure hopes she finds out she ain’t but he is getting a little long in the tooth….

  • You think your story is weirder than the ordinary chump? Sorry, but no. The Jerry Springer Comparison Olympics breaks out at CL almost every day. Take my cheating ex-wife (please). She was a middle-aged mom who hooked up with dudes she met online playing World of Warcraft. And she cheated with numerous guys for somewhere between 12 and 25 years. And I know my story pales by comparison with others around here (service men betrayed while in war zones, women betrayed while pregnant, men who pay child support for years before discovering they aren’t biologically related to their kids, etc., etc.).

    Take solace from the fact that whores and hidden money and online skank trolling are as commonplace for serial cheaters as are briefcases and Herman Miller Aeron desk chairs and golf-centric continuing legal education seminars are for corporate attorneys. It’s just their stock-in-trade. You basically caught a carpenter with a hammer in his hand. Except he’s a cheater not a carpenter. And his hammer is his dick.

    ” . . . he chronically used prostitutes and even kept a woman ‘on retainer.’”

    I’m guessing she billed against the retainer in six-minute increments, too.

    You can’t make this sh*t up.

    Hang in there. Your Tuesday is coming.

    • Thanks Nomar ‘The Jerry Springer Comparison Olympics of Cheating at Chump Lady’…no kidding.
      I had just ‘saved’ my cheating XH from ‘dying.’ As soon as he recovered he ran off with dick in hand. I should have stepped on the cord when I had the chance.

      • ‘I had just ‘saved’ my cheating XH from ‘dying.’ As soon as he recovered he ran off with dick in hand. ”

        Yep, blue lips and the whole nine yards.

    • Yeah….my ex didn’t frequent prostitutes, which would have been way more classy that doing anything that said yes. Other than that, sounds like the much the same experience. If there’s a ‘normal’ for this case, you’re it.

    • “You basically caught a carpenter with a hammer in his hand. Except he’s a cheater not a carpenter. And his hammer is his dick.”

      Nomar, this is ridiculously funny,

    • I definitely don’t think my story was weirder than anyone’s; I just hadn’t seen a lot of posts about a prostitute habit as opposed to “affairs”, however those are defined. I know there is a lot of very strange behavior out there from these sickos. As many here have said, and I agree, it doesn’t matter as much how the cheating happened. I get that. I was just looking to see if anyone else had a similar experience.

      And thanks for your thoughts and support. Six minute increments was hilarious!!

  • Dear Defying Gravity… one thing that hasn’t been mentioned yet, that should… if he’s the kind of guy that’ll fuck you over on money, and fuck anything else that moves… what on G~d’s green earth makes you think those tax returns are *ACCURATE*? Oh, and your name’s on them too, so you’re liable. I would *definitely* get a forensic accountant. Considering what the two of you were/are worth, it’s enough to make it worth the IRS’s while to go after any “inaccuracies”. I might not disclose your findings right away though. I’d contact the IRS and ask for amnesty… and help, before you make use of the information in legal proceedings. They’re some of the nicest government employees you could ever hope to deal with… provided you’re proactive and truthful. Seems like your STBX has screwed a lot of things in his lifetime… but he’ll be sorry he ever screwed the IRS. And during a divorce, it’s really hard to fight a battle on two fronts.

    • I love this!

      I do know some of the IRS people personally, and yes, they’re very nice. They also don’t like cheaters at all. 😉

    • Once a long time ago, a friend’s high school age daughter was threatened by a bunch of older bullies at her school–these bullies threatened to kill her coming off the school bus and made the threats in front of her parent and me. The school refused to do anything. The head bully’s parents allowed her to live in her own house on the family property, no supervision, at 16. They refused to do anything until my friend said he was calling Child Protective Services and the IRS. Problem solved. Dirty people are deeply afraid of the IRS.

  • It sounds like he expected a divorce and that’s why he kept the money separate. He knew his flaws and that you’d end up leaving.

    DefyingGravity – the fact that his stepchildren like you is a great credit to you. You’re in a terrible situation with them since you have no legal rights, but I do think that in the long run they know your character and they know his. You bought his lies about his ex-wife, but they love her and so they wouldn’t and they’ll see through his lies. Certainly his wife is going to completely understand why you left! The only thing she won’t get is why you fell for him.

    Anyhow, I hope you can hang in there and figure out a way to have a relationship with them, maybe through his wife. Perhaps you could let them know you care through her and then see them after the divorce is final? Talk to your lawyer and maybe a therapist on this, that’s my advice.

    You’ve been through a lot, but you have a lot going for you now. You have a good job and you aren’t in debt and your finances will get better. At some point you may be able to find a smaller place to live with your dogs or a friend to share your house and bills.

  • Thank you all so much for your kind words and support. I can’t tell you how much it means to me to have the advice of people who have been there. I will definitely take your suggestions about the money situation; but much more importantly, you have all made me feel that I am not alone and that someone out there understands the unbelievable pain and loss I feel. Thank you again.

  • Another example of how cheaters not only have sex with others, but also rip us off financially. I think this is often overlooked as another form of abuse. I know I made my financial decisions based on money that X was planning to abscond with when he hit the road. So he fucked his bimbo and fucked his family over.

    How does one not feel anything but disgust and contempt for these lying, life-altering assholes?

  • If his reputation is important to him, I’d have your lawyer make him a cut-and-dried offer. You’d ask for a flat sum adequate to keep you financially stable for a couple of years and that was within his means to pay (or to pay within a year). In exchange, you could agree never to discuss the reasons for your divorce with the people in your professional community (he’d have to agree to the same).

    You would need to retain the right to speak all you wanted to your family, his Ex, his children, etc.–people who have an emotional stake in the demise of your marriage. You need this for your own sanity.

    The goal would be to get a reasonable sum of money as inexpensively as possible and to make the whole mess go away as quickly as possible.

    You’d have to be prepared for the fact that he would break the agreement and start bad-mouthing you very quickly because narcissists can’t resist opportunities to make themselves look good. But since your goals are to get out with reasonable financial integrity and to move to “meh” as soon as possible, learning to ignore what he says about you, himself, and everything else is something that is already going to be on your agenda. You’d be stuck taking the high road, but frankly, that is what “meh” amounts to.

    If you let him know you are not afraid of a fight and a fight on all fronts, he might hand over some funds–especially since he’d know he was still getting to keep more than a court would allow.

    You were a chump, but a chump who only buried her head in the sand for 6 years. We who denied our chumpiness for much longer salute you and your “quick-learner” status! May you also be a model of attaining “meh” with speed and grace.

    • Eilonwy: you are right on with the legal strategy. That’s the way to go.

      As far as him bad mouthing me; the way to handle that is to put a clause in the agreement that if he breaks that agreement, I am also freed from the “nondisclosure” clause. That way I have some protection.

      Thanks so much for your kind words and support.

  • Dear DF – You are definitely not alone, and I’m so sorry that you are waking up to find yourself in this horrible reality. My story is very similar to yours.
    Some short answers: (And I know of what I speak)
    • You are not alone, there are several of us chumps here with a similar story.
    • Long term “relationship” with the hooker = Affair Partner.
    • Your understanding of your husband’s character was an illusion. He has shown you over and over again who he really is, and now you MUST believe your eyes. (This one was verrrrry hard for me)
    • His “coming clean” to you – desperate ploy to fake an “illness” that you need to “help” him through (we come by the name “chump” with verve!)
    • He obviously has financial “idiosyncrasies” that he would prefer not see the light of day. Use it. But protect yourself. (This was Ex’s Achilles heal)
    • My opinion is you should not have to walk away from this situation in debt. Get what you can to set yourself up on a new path and care for your large pups (they are expensive, I know, I got my Great Dane in my divorce. Settlement talks almost fell apart over her)
    • If you had a good relationship with your step-kids, they will come back to you, Period. Believe it. Find any way you can to let them know you love them and care about them and that your door and heart is always open to them, and they will be there when they are able.
    • I’m not a professional in this area, but unless you signed a pre-nup, half of the assets (and debts) during the years you were married are split 50/50. He can “say” or “believe” whatever he wants, law should be on your side about this. (50% – PLUS half of the missing assets on top of that….this is where I got an advantage over Ex.)
    • You don’t know what he is saying about you?? Get your story out there. I never once took on my Ex’s shame as my own. (Now, I had to be careful here as the girls were only told age appropriate information, so…) I didn’t post it on FB or anything, but my friends and family and some colleagues, I spoke my truth. It is not my job to minimize his shameful behavior or protect his reputation.
    • And sadly, there will be some (Tracy, what do you call these folks?) The “smug unknowing” people? You will lose some friends who will totally surprise you and land in his camp. Let them go. It hurts, but let them go.
    • You’re reality is shaken. Indeed. I still wonder how/if I will/should trust my own judgment truly, ever again. You will find peace with this eventually, I highly recommend as many others have, a good therapist. And I highly recommend you interview them to find out what they know/what their experience is with narcissists and borderline personality disordered. And read all the books that Tracy/Chumplady has recommended here on her site.
    • Lastly, it’s not you. He is very, very good. He wears his masks well. So did mine. I guess we are both just lucky that prostitutes and not murder was their way of “acting out”! – But, we both need to fix out picker.
    So – “Short Answers” not so short…
    And if you want the long answer, here is my story, we have much in common:
    My EX had a first marriage and has three adopted daughters, he and first wife were not able to get pregnant, so adopted 3 girls at once. When we married, I became the step- mom to three gorgeous girls 8, 7 and 5 years old. It is my belief that 1stW was clinically depressed and never bonded to her 2 older adopted daughters, she did bond with the youngest. I had not been married before and had no children and I feel the girls and I all bonded very nicely. I fell in love with them.
    At the 5.5 year mark of my marriage I found out that my then husband was frequenting “massage parlors” for sexual services. Through his credit card account I was able (…yes, he used his credit card – wanted to get the points, idiot.) was able to see how long it had been going on. Almost our entire marriage, it turns out. And, I learned later from him that he did this during his first marriage as well.
    Having grown up around AA (my father was a recovering alcoholic) when husband was diagnosed as a “sex addict” I felt this fell under “for better or for worse” as it was a “sickness” that required “recovery” (As others have said, I now think “sex addiction” is a crock). It had also become clear that my step-daughters required protection from this man, who to the rest of the world, was a deacon in his church (I stopped attending this church when the pastor started to malign other religions and my gay friends “lifestyle”) and who received a “Man of the Year” award from a prestigious charity this same year. Over the 6 years the girls had come to live with us primarily as their mom continued to suffer depression and simply did not have the tools or energy to be a proper parent (example: when oldest was 10 she arrived at our house after weekend with mom with a black eye and fingernail scratches down the inside of her arm, she said when mom “popped” her it caused her nose to bleed as well). How could I possibly leave these children with 2 completely dysfunctional and abusive parents?
    I tried reconciliation for 18 months. Finally, October 2012, I said it is time to divorce. He immediately became vicious. He cut off all contact between me and the girls and if they tried to reach out to me and he found out, he would punish them. He told them I am a bad influence, that I mentally and emotionally abused HIM for years, and he was going to protect them from me. (YUP! I’m the Abuser!) My Ex’s father and his wife of 20 years were very involved in the girls’ lives and I had become very, very close with them. They encouraged me that I had to get out (they knew the whole story) and they promised they would do everything that they could to help the girls.
    My divorce was final on July 3rd, 2013 (And yes, in the state of FL, if you can document the depletion of marital assets through his misuse/abuse then half of that $$ is yours – remember how I said he charged much of his activities on his CC? … Yup! But at least he got to use those miles to go fuck the woman that he met at his brother’s wedding 3 years before and obviously stayed in touch with (in Arizona)!)
    In December 2013, I moved back to NY near my family, 2 months before I left, I broke No Contact (No Contact is BLISS, btw, do it asap!) to ask if I could visit with the girls before I left. I got a one word reply “NO!”. The girls have always continued to call and text me, but we had not seen each other.
    Today the girls are 17, 16 and 14, and to a large degree they have figured out how to stand up to their dad and have basically told him to sod off when it comes to talking to me or having a relationship with me. We text, Facebook, FaceTime, talk and even send letters in the mail (the youngest wanted to practice her writing skills). I have always believed in my heart that the girls and I became family when I married their dad and that when they are free of his control, we will all come together again.
    Although I’m 47 and single and have no prospects of children of my own, the house I bought and the life I’m building is to accommodate a large family. Now, this is totally corny, but completely true: this little voice in my head keeps assuring me, “If you build it, they will come….” (oiy!) And, indeed, my father-in-law and his wonderful wife are coming to visit me in my new home for a whole week! I “got them in them in the divorce” you see.
    Big hugs to you! Now, go use the power in your name! Go Defy Gravity! We’re here for you.


    • Oh, I forgot how committed I was to my vows, especially the “in sickness and in health” part! I hope I meet someone like me in the future!

      • I said the same thing to my therapist…I want to meet someone like me…

        I decided the best thing to do is to take care of myself the way I used to take care of those losers…I deserve it.

        • Doop – I was 37 when I married. I only wanted to be married once, I wanted to be sure, this was it, and I took my vows seriously. His was not my fist proposal, but with the others, I just couldn’t imagine a future. Everything seemed right when my Ex and I came together, I felt like Ahhh, this is what I was waiting for. I did not have one moment of uncertainty. Giving up, throwing in the towel on him and my marriage was devasting, but I think one of the strongest things I’ve ever done. To all of the Chumps that had to make the hard decision and do all the heavy lifting on their divorces. You are indeed, SO mighty. I’m convinced he wanted out (once I saw behind his mask I think he knew he couldn’t stay with me) but he didn’t have the balls to do it. This shit is hard.

          • FLBright – you are my chumpy doppelgänger! I had the same experience choosing to fully commit and finally wed. I didn’t know my own strength (but I suspected I was strong) and know I know the depths of my resilience. Pretty expensive tuition.

    • FL Bright…what an awesome inspiring story you just took the time to write for Defying Gravity and all of us. Thank you so very much. Bless your heart. You made my day.

    • Echoing Syringa: I am so thankful for the time you took to write your story and give me such thoughtful advice. Your story is actually very beautiful in a way in that you rose above such difficult circumstances. I am very very grateful to you. Thank you for making me feel like I am not alone.

      • DF – I guess I really wanted you to know you are not alone. I remember how helpful this was to me. Keep reading here. So much wisdom and seriously, best of all WISDOM here.

        Bunch of smart chupms for sure….

        Syringa – Thank you – 🙂

        • Ha! Freudian slip maybe… but the CAPS were supposed to be HUMOR! Best of all, such great HUMOR here!

    • It must be heart-breaking for step-parents in situations like these. I’m glad your ex-in-laws are able to be there and that time is working things out for you.

      • Thank you Diana L – I’m very lucky… we are ALL very lucky that the Grandparents are who they are.

  • Defying Gravity –

    You are definitely not alone in that type of betrayal. I found out my husband started cheating on me with hookers (at least that I could find actual record of) while I was pregnant with our first child. This continued for 10 years and another child before I found out.

    He was the sicko that rated the prostitutes online, and had chat convos with other perverts to scope out new girls to make sure they weren’t undercover cops, and to set up dates for sex parties. He lived a sick double life, and was very compartmentalized – I never had a clue. He insisted on doing all our finances, so I never saw the money leaving, just vaguely wondered why we couldn’t seem to shake our debt even with his six figure salary. Going back over the records, he had been spending an average of $800 to $1000 per month on hookers, sometimes as much as $2000 a month.

    When I tried to get him to add that lost money back into my settlement, he was affronted and said that I had spent money on my hobbies like gardening and knitting, so he could spent his money on his own hobbies! They are seriously disturbed. I never did get that money, but I did get a long settlement to get me back on my feet.

    The pain is immense, and sickening. My husband had his favorite girls too, and sexted them on his phone thousands of times a month, and took them on dinner dates, even without sex. It was all fantasy and kibbles. It is horrifying that this man who I thought was so moral and honorable was supporting human trafficking and rating young women like meat. It was humiliating to me, and it was compounded by the fact that his parents forgave him immediately and commonly wrote on their facebook page about how “proud” they were of him (unfriended now!). I guess people don’t see the enormity of it unless they are the ones affected by it. I am especially galled by those who say prostitution is a victimless crime. I can guarantee you that if you ask my children, they will respond differently.

    Best of luck to you as you navigate the divorce. It gets better with time and no contact. But don’t feel that you are alone. It is a sad club, but we are here.

  • I can relate to your story, especially the money part. My ex is a class A Narcissist and if you haven’t been properly introduced to this kind of personality disorder, read up on it. It took me months to internalize the understanding of what a lack of empathy means in a relationship. It answers the question ‘what kind of person does this’ — a person who does not feel empathy is not a human being. They are lacking what makes you human.
    From my perspective having gone through a divorce and lost the house that I owned before I got married. I will add my opinion concerning your ex’s money. Get yourself the ‘Splitting’ book about going to court with your ex. Get yourself the right family law lawyer. I agree with CL it’s expensive to go after ‘his’ money that he doesn’t want to share. That’s up to you whether it’s worth it. BUT make damn sure he cannot come after anything you have….i.e. Pension, 401k, community debts, etc. That’s what you need a lawyer for.
    Think long term, what could the ex control me with? Good news is you dont have the household ‘junk’. You have your own stuff. That’s the right move.
    You also need to understand that family court dividing assets doesn’t mean a bank divides it necessarily. You may be on the hook if it was martital property or cosigned.

  • Dear Defying Gravity,
    I am so very sorry to join the receiving line that has to welcome another member to our yucky sub-club…but, I am here to tell you that you are not alone in your experience and your life is going to get so much brighter now that this particular seedy and dark underbelly of society will not be a factor in it.

    I was checking the boxes when I read your note. Except for the financially successful spouse, I could have written it. (Mine was a low-earning mooch.)

    Now that “meh” is in the headlights, I like to truncate the retelling of my story. Excuse the bullets.

    -I am one of the many Chumpy Lawyers here. You are not alone.
    -The ex was sparkly, handsome, charming, and hilarious. Until he wasn’t.
    -I also do not have children of my own. What I did have were three miscarriages, three failed fertility treatments, and Mister Shit-Bird and his last (for now) OW had a baby that arrived one week after the decree was issued. I bitch about that Blessed Event a lot here on CL b/c they used a name we had picked out. And because it is just so unfair. But, I am thankful for dodged bullets.
    -In the time between failed fertility treatment #2 and #3, the Shit-Bird realized he “wasn’t feeling anything” but “didn’t want to cheat” so engaged the services of a backpage body rubber, who, back when I used to waste oxygen discussing her, I referred to as The Professional Masturbator. But, I didn’t know about her yet…
    -During that time, Mister Shit-Bird began to be a very active alcoholic/addict.
    -I asked him to leave our lovely, formerly happy home to figure out if he wanted a life together or if he wanted to be the town drunk. I did a lot of the Pick-Me Polka after that moment of strength.
    -I thought he was staying with a friend, but he had actually MOVED IN WITH THE PROFESSIONAL MASTURBATOR. Into her home. Who MOVES IN with the hooker? My guy! I thought the deal was you weren’t paying them for the sex, you were paying them to go away. At least by that point, he was gettin’ it for free and no longer misusing marital assets. Hey, I try to look at the bright side! I did learn that she had an overnight visit at our home while I was away for work. Gross. I learned many things about her during my Nancy Drew, Girl Detective phase. What a waste of my brain cells.
    -I hosted an intervention, he went to rehab. The night he went in for treatment, I discovered where he had been living and with whom. The Universe was kind to him with that timing. While he was in treatment, the Professional Masturbator stalked me, which was neat.
    -After he got shipped off to rehab, graduate, and dried up for a few months, he became hypersexual. I think the folks in the business would call that a substitute or cross-addiction. He was sending numerous and extremely explicit texts to rehab connections. He was on a job out of town and began trolling CL for casual encounters. Gross. Thankfully, by that time, we were no longer roommates and I also escaped yucky stuff “down there.”
    -I got the dogs, too. I’m a Broadway nerd. I questioned the reptile brain, and wondered how could my spouse participate in the denigration of so many women, including me?

    I am healing and you will too. It takes a lot of work and self-reflection, and finding great counseling and safe support…this is not a topic I shared easily in my real life. May you have sturdy shoes to wear on this rocky path.

    • Thank you so much for your story! The similarities are so incredible among many of these stories.

      I fortunately have not had a nancy drew phase as you call it. I’m sure I will find out more details than I want to know when I look at the financials, but other than that I have actually not obsessed over or tried to discover any more than the bare minimum that he has told me. Not sure why, I just haven’t. At least I’m sparing myself that aspect of the pain.

      Best wishes on your healing process, and again thank you for the support.

  • My ex did not sleep with prostitutes. . . That I know of. So I cannot comment on the reptilian brain. I know most reptiles don’t sleep with prostitutes though.

    My ex did, however, the economic abuse thing– Would not disclose his total earnings (he bought and sold shit all of the time on eBay, Craigslist, and Amazon in addition to his normal salary and bonuses), we kept separate accounts, and better yet, he kept a “tab” on me. That’s right. I had to pay for my grocery items, half of the health insurance, half of the car insurance, and “depreciation payments” on a car that was paid in full that he would not title in my name. So bet your bottom dollar that he pleaded poverty, lost his job, and hid assets when we were doing the PSA. He did that while taking lavish vacations and shacking up with the other woman. Classy.

    My advice is to have a candid discussion with your attorney about how much it is going to cost to do discovery and how much you should reasonably expect to get. I know you are strapped for money, and I would never suggest not going for what you are owed, just remember “the point” when it is just as well to lose a lunatic.

    PS: Don’t try to make sense out of him. You cannot make sense of crazy.

    • Yes mine did the money hide also, had his own account he moved money to electronically. Just a real shithole situation, the cherry on top of the shit sundae served up to me. All pretty with spackle cream.

      They need a lot of money to make themselves look super special, swing that money men of mlc age you got the grey hair where the sun don’t shine but swing that money.

  • DG,
    I can relate to your situation. When I first met my ex, he seemed so “nice” but over time, I found out he had frequented prostitutes, and kept several on call as his favorites to return to time and again. He went to strip clubs and appealed to the strippers’ self-interest to meet him outside the club for prostitution. I could not understand how this so-called “nice” guy got involved with prostitutes, not giving a second thought to how he could have been arrested, gotten STDs, lost his professional license or passed STDs onto his “respectable” women he “needed” in his life (i.e., me). He showed disdain for women in general. He consorted with prostitutes, web cam girls, setup x-rated dating sites, orchestrated several “threesomes” and basically was a porn addict that refused to admit he had a problem. Women were his hobby. He had loads of porn on his computer, photos of nude women on his phone, photos/videos of cam girls, videos of chats with them, videos of him having sex with his prostitutes, etc. He always told me he was not cheating on me and it was all just “harmless fun” but I finally decided he and I had a different definition of loyalty and we are no longer together. Just wanted to write in support and let you know you are definitely not alone.

  • Oh, hey, look who else kept prostitutes! Uh, this one didn’t end so well, in spite of all his money, and I think his wife needs to read the Chump Lady. I really feel terrible for her and for her kids.

    Something about this story screamed, “CHEATER!! CHEATER ON A YACHT!”

    Here’s the obit:

    Aaaaaand here’s what we now know about this jerk:

    • Miss Sunshine, you and I are had EXACTLY the same thoughts! Chump lady’s thread yesterday high lighting cheaters and their salacious secret life with prostitutes was PERFECT timing with this news breaking story! The poor widow chump in this story deserves a free Chump lady coffee mug and a hearty welcome for certain. I hope she has a supportive network for her and her kids. Maybe, just maybe Ashley Madison websites, etc. will experience a (brief ) downtick in activity. As all the narcissist cheater/prostitute lovers are thinking, “Gosh, that could have been me”! “Maybe, I’ll send some roses to the ol’ wife.”. . (LOL) What do YOU think?

      • I think that these guys think they are way, WAY too clever to have something like this happen to them, and that THEIR prostitutes are special, to match their specialness. Sure, the story sent a shiver down each of their spines (well, it would if they HAD spines), but then they quickly remembered, “Hey! That would never happen to me. I’m awesome.”


    • “She showed absolutely no regard for this person she injected with heroin,” Clark said.

      And he showed absolutely no regards for his wife and 5 children. And no regard probably for that hooker either.

      Seems like a fitting end for them both. One dead and one arrested. I just feel terrible for his wife and kids.

      • She was a ‘Hot Pockets’ druggie killer!! In another online article I read it said that in the video she stepped right over his convulsing body and drank what was left of her glass of wine and sauntered off. Ha!

    • ……and the prostitute was described in most articles as a high-price prostitute. Seriously?? What a hideous looking whore.

  • The Making-Needs-Smaller-Dance, keep dancing it, fellow chumps! It’s just like the Pick-Me-Dance where the AP is tapdancing about in a glorious costume, but your costume doesn’t sparkle as well as the AP’s. Add more sparkles?? Oh, sorry there’s only a few left. That’s because the cheater gave all the sequins and sparkles to the AP. I had a hard time dancing in broken heels and I look hideous in ruffles. Throw those shoes away Defying Gravity! 50 points if you strike his head!

  • My story was very similar to yours DG.

    A few years down the line and the huge huge loss of money still grates, unfortunately. I’m hoping it will gradually lessen over time.

    That being said, I can make more money. I can’t “make” more years. I am just glad to be away from him.


  • My ex had a secret child with his favourite prostitute …. Not his only prostitute – just his favourite one
    It’s neat

  • CL, do you have any thoughts on how to tell the difference between a disordered person who is keeping money secret and separate because they want to cheat on their partner and someone who wants to keep things separate because they’ve been burned and are scared?

    • Doesn’t matter to me. If they don’t trust you then you shouldn’t be with them.

      Good relationships that work are based on trust.

      I asked more than once of my lying crapweasle before d-day that if he didn’t trust me then why was he with me. His response was ‘don’t say that.’

      *head desk*

      My new relationship requirement is a shared cell phone account…lol

  • I deserve the rank of Sergeant in the Marriage Police. I knew mine was a veteran cheater, but I hadn’t yet gotten over the naive notion that I could somehow fix his problem. So, as I watched his behaviour I became strangely fascinated by his intense need to chase, to conquer, to praise the ARs, and to juggle multiple ones. All while unemployed and being supported by me.

    Using a keylogger, I watched my creep trawling through the pickings on adult work dot com. In fact I installed a logger that sent me reports by email so I could sit in the other room getting a running report of what he was doing online. I grew to profoundly hate him, but concluded that he wasn’t going to walk away without learning a lesson. It is awesome when you get passwords for virtually all they are doing online. I can’t elaborate on all I did to him except to say he was left in the end with only the clothes he had on when I had the cops escort him away. My mistake to pick such a loser in the first place but I fell for the sparkles and charm.

    Cut to three years later. I still have his passwords and they work. Go figure. It is way more than just interesting to know exactly the path his life has taken since then.

  • I’m Ela from Italy. My husband left me for no reason on 24th of May 2011. He moved in with another woman, I felt like killing myself. I’ve tried different spell casters and went to different churches to pray but all to no avail. My life was very bitter and sorrowful. Then one day, a friend of mine told me about a man called Da abacha. he said him gave him some lucky numbers that he played in a lottery and he won 5 fives consecutively. I didn’t believe it because I’ve worked with so many of them and it didn’t work. He begged me further so I decided to try this great man called Dr abacha. I contacted him and I gave him the necessary information. after the days which he gave me, the next day which was on the 29th of July, I received a call and it was my darling husband. He apologized and came back to me crying for a second change and he even gave me money to start up a business as a means of compensating me on that very day before leaving. I’m now a very a happy woman and our marriage vows were renew again and ever since he has shown me love like never before. Thank you dear Dr abacha, I will forever be grateful to you. You can reach him in this she will solve any problem you are facing now. Try him today and share your own testimony. i know some people will look at it in the other way round, don’t ever hide your problem, because if you do, you will never find the solution. also share your problem with friends, they might be of help to you. thanks for taking your time to read my testimony

  • My situation isn’t exactly like yours, but it makes me wonder. Four and a half weeks ago, I found his ashley madison account on a secret email account. I clicked on it and it took me directly into his account where he’d been exchanging emails with other women. This was from a man who “acted” like everything was perfect between us for several years. I’m 49 and he’s 51. We lived together as a married couple, but weren’t married…because he’d been there…done that. I responded to a text he sent me while I was reading the info. I told him I was in his AM account and he needed to get his crap and get out of my house. (Yes, it is MY house that he moved into.) I started to look at other things and saw an email to a woman he’d apparently had an affair with during his first marriage. I never knew he had an affair. He asked her to coffee or lunch too but he did say he was living with someone. Then I saw something from adult friend finder but then the emails started to disappear. Apparently, he started to delete everything from that email account while he was at work.

    I had NO idea any of this was going on and it floored me! I am a therapist with a private practice and was actually proud of the “healthy” relationship I had with this man. Ha! It was all a lie. He ended up telling me that he only met one person for lunch and that was because he wanted someone to accept him for who he was…even if it was just over lunch. I still have no clue what it was that made him think I didn’t accept him for who he was.

    I didn’t see him until yesterday, when he brought some things back that he took from the house. (I let him come get his things a couple weeks ago while I was out of the house.) He cried, tried to hold me and kiss me, told me he missed me, and that he screwed up. I found myself softening, but I didn’t cry (and I sure as hell didn’t kiss him!), and I didn’t let him in the house. However, I did cry once I got in the door. I truly felt hope that maybe it had all been a misunderstanding. Then after composing myself, I looked up his info and found two new dating profiles on Match and Plenty of Fish. It showed him as online looking for his soul mate! WTF??

    This sure doesn’t feel good, and I’m so sorry there are others suffering out there. I actually have been beating myself up wondering what I could have done better. I am thankful for you Chump Lady because you are helping me through such a difficult time. I never found absolute proof of an affair so I’ve been waffling. But I know that I’m not okay with a man in a committed relationship having a profile on a cheating website.

    • Terri: glad you made it here. I was where you were: found lots of online evidence, but never found “absolute proof” so was waffling. It was a mistake. I spent six years in this marriage because I didn’t trust the online evidence. I promise you, even though you might think he’s different, or that you were good to each other, or that maybe it’s just online fun, IT’S NOT. There is more, and you don’t know about it.

      I am not overreating by saying you should immediately get tested for STDs. And take care of yourself. Sounds like you’re doing a great job. Keep reading here, it will help you. Hugs!

      • Thank you for the support Defying Gravity! It’s hard to stand firm to my beliefs when things get twisted. Like everyone else who’s here, I’ve been trying to read as much as I can on the internet. The sites about reconciliation and building something stronger are actually harmful right now. I think I’ll stick with dumping the loser and getting my life back! But it sure does suck in the meantime. I hope you are breathing easier. Hugs back to you and many warm thoughts to all of those who are suffering from cowardly betrayal!!

  • Hi Terri – I’m not sure if you will be back to see this note, but just wanted to second what DefyingGravity has said. So sorry to welcome you to the club here, but I think you are verrry lucky that you found the Chumplady site so soon into your discovery. You will see many comments on here about chumps who wish they had found chumplady sooner. Read all you can here. It will give you great insight and many “Ahh-HA!” moments. And GOOD FOR YOU that you kicked him right out!
    Stay strong.

    • Thank you FLBright! I am still looking at this site often. I’m looking for strength and validation. I’ve actually had another horrible day.

      It’s so hard to reconcile what I thought “was”…to the reality of what truly “is”. I saw sh**head two days ago. He had his baby granddaughter for the day and asked if I would like to see her. (I was considered Grams to his four grandchildren.) I really wanted to see her – and I’m going to have to figure out what to do about this in the future. Any advice would be appreciated!

      But here’s what happened. They came over but I wanted to get out of the house. We took the stroller to the mall and I had a fabulous time with “little one”. Sh**head actually kept trying to buy me stuff while we were out. I said NO. We came back to the house and spent some time playing, feeding, changing diapers, etc. When it came time to leave, “little one” cried and it broke my heart, but I loved that I was able to see her.

      I felt that stupid sense of hope again because he started crying again and told me how much he loved me and he would ALWAYS love me. I’m sure you know the drill, “I screwed up, I’m so sorry, What I did was unforgiveable…” I checked his profiles again after he left and he actually took them down. That hope started creeping up even more. Until today. The profiles are active again and he’s been online all day. I need someone to kick some sense into me. Would someone who is truly remorseful be on dating and hookup sites? I don’t think so…but then I doubt myself. Other sites say the faster a man looks for someone to ease his pain, the more he is hurting. I really want to call BULLSHIT on that one! But am I wrong?

      When do you start to breathe?

      • Terri – Yes, we’ve all heard much of the same. Having teenage step-daughters (his girls) we had seen all of the “Twilight” movies and during a particularly desperate moment my cheater (in complete dramatic sincerity) told me that he believed I had “imprinted” on him. If you don’t know the series, imprinting is: “it’s like love at first sight, but stronger, much stronger. it’s like the ONE. your absolute soulmate. your one and only. life has no meaning with out them.”

        This is a very tricky time in your process, because every ounce of your being wants what is happeneing to be untrue, and our minds and hearts work overtime to try to find Any Way to make it untrue. It takes a while for the dust to settle and for our vision to clear to realize the unvarnished truth. Please stay strong and true to yourself. Be your own best protective warrior princess. I feel it has been proven over and over again that these cheaters don’t change. Best of luck on your path and Big Hugs.

        • FLBright, I have appreciated your words so much! I had a really good day today. Although my car broke down, I called for a tow and then I went and got a rental. I did not ask for any help. I also went to see a therapist who ended up being a GREAT fit! I told her I was being so nice to Sh**head, I felt like I had cotton candy floating out of my butt! I appreciated her laughter…and most of all I appreciated her taking all of my words and repeating them back to me. She then asked, “Is this the man you want to put your faith in?” My honest answer was NO!

          I know there will be difficult days ahead…but today is not one of them. I am embracing the warrior princess right now. Big Hugs right back at you!!

  • Was happy to find this site. My husband of 43 years just got busted in a prostitute sting otherwise I would have never known of his life long sex addiction. He risked everything for this behavior. He risked our health as well since he didn’t always have protected sex. I am devastated and at 64 facing divorce because I can never trust this reptilian minded man. A broken heart is putting it mildly.

    • Cat, I am so sorry this happened to you! I understand the pain and torment you’re going through right now. I have found strength by reading different articles and all of the replies. Usually, it makes me stand strong…but it’s okay to take a time out and grieve. This hurts! This sucks! It’s beyond understanding to figure out what’s in a reptilian brain…because we don’t have one! How could they have done this? Well, because some people are too selfish to think of the consequences. My heart goes out to you, and many hugs!!

  • After 28 years of marriage I found out my husband has been using prostitutes for at least 4 years that I can prove. Totally caught be surprise on this one. When I first found out about Jackie The Whore he said it was a girl that meant nothing to him, it was just sex. So we went to marriage counseling for three months, worked out major marital issues, were getting along better than ever, besides the torment of the affair. Then the 2nd shit hit the fan. She’s a prostitute. To put it mildly, I went apeshit. While I was struggling to make our marriage survive enduring the tormental thoughts of this “girlfriend”, somehow this “girlfriend” now know as prostitute made my decision to divorce clear and unequivocal. I’m certain this man will no longer be my husband and I am comfortable with that. The enormous barrage of lies to pull this disgusting behavior off, the betrayal, the risk of losing a marriage over a whore makes absolutely no sense to. But I have high morals and am honest, and he is not. He is a fucked up mess who has ruined his life and flipped mine upside down. But you know what? I’ll survive. This is not the man I married. This is not the man I want as a husband. He is a mental/emotional wreck who has ruined his life. We will both loses hundreds of thousands of dollars in the split. But it has to be done. He is not trustworthy. We will remain friends and remain a family since we do have two adult children. It’s sad to me it ended this way. There is simply no way to stay married to a man who uses prostitutes. That is so fucked up. I do still love him, knowing his good traits that I do love about him, but this, no way no how. Yes, he feels bad about it, but that didn’t stop his behavior. I said if you feel bad about something it means you should not do it. My man has slipped into a hole. I actually feel a great sadness for him. He’s ruined his marriage by his own doings. Me, I went through major rage, major sadness (still am) but am coming out of I amazingly quickly, so much so my friends are saying I can’t believe how well you are taking this. I, myself, think something must be wrong because I’m not falling apart. I think letting the rage out full force, screaming, etc. has helped me heal. And letting the tears flow when I feel them coming helps heal. I really believe that. I’ve cried more in past three months than my whole entire life. now I feel somewhat at peace. Disturbed, of course, but coming to terms with it. I’m going to lose a lot of money in this divorce, but that is that way it goes. Been living large for a long time, now it’s time to live down. So, what to do when your husband uses prostitutes? For me it is I have to leave him. Cannot trust him and cannot live a life with a husband who lies and cheats. It’s ruined. Cannot live questioning his whereabouts. Oh, and yes, I did an immature thing. I called his whore a few times and left some really immature degrading text messages. Had to get it out. Fuck that “be the better person”. I had to give the bitch a piece of my mind. Won’t feel right till I do.

  • After 28 years of marriage I found out my husband has been using prostitutes for at least 4 years that I can prove. Totally caught be surprise on this one. When I first found out about Jackie The Whore he said it was a girl that meant nothing to him, it was just sex. So we went to marriage counseling for three months, worked out major marital issues, were getting along better than ever, besides the torment of the affair. Then the 2nd shit hit the fan. She’s a prostitute. To put it mildly, I went apeshit. While I was struggling to make our marriage survive enduring the tormental thoughts of this “girlfriend”, somehow this “girlfriend” now know as prostitute made my decision to divorce clear and unequivocal. I’m certain this man will no longer be my husband and I am comfortable with that. The enormous barrage of lies to pull this disgusting behavior off, the betrayal, the risk of losing a marriage over a whore makes absolutely no sense to me. But I have high morals and am honest, and he is not. He is a fucked up mess who has ruined his life and flipped mine upside down. But you know what? I’ll survive. This is not the man I married. This is not the man I want as a husband. He is a mental/emotional wreck who has ruined his life. We will both loses hundreds of thousands of dollars in the split. But it has to be done. He is not trustworthy. We will remain friends and remain a family since we do have two adult children. It’s sad to me it ended this way. There is simply no way to stay married to a man who uses prostitutes. That is so fucked up. I do still love him, knowing his good traits that I do love about him, but this, no way no how. Yes, he feels bad about it, but that didn’t stop his behavior. I said if you feel bad about something it means you should not do it. My man has slipped into a hole. I actually feel a great sadness for him. He’s ruined his marriage by his own doings. Me, I went through major rage, major sadness (still am) but am coming out of it amazingly quickly, so much so my friends are saying I can’t believe how well you are taking this. I, myself, think something must be wrong because I’m not falling apart. I think letting the rage out full force, screaming, etc. has helped me heal. And letting the tears flow when I feel them coming helps heal. I really believe that. I’ve cried more in past three months than my whole entire life. now I feel somewhat at peace. Disturbed, of course, but coming to terms with it. I’m going to lose a lot of money in this divorce, but that is that way it goes. Been living large for a long time, now it’s time to live down. So, what to do when your husband uses prostitutes? For me it is I have to leave him. Cannot trust him and cannot live a life with a husband who lies and cheats. It’s ruined. Cannot live questioning his whereabouts. Oh, and yes, I did an immature thing. I called his whore a few times and left some really immature degrading text messages. Had to get it out. Fuck that “be the better person”. I had to give the bitch a piece of my mind. Won’t feel right till I do.

    • My husband has been using hookers for our entire 43 year marriage and now he wants to work things out because he finally got busted in a prostitution sting! There is no way trust can ever be rebuilt! “Love with out trust is desperation”!

    • Linda, I am so sorry you are going through this-for you and all the ladies on this forum-I know what you are going through and how painful it is. The lower life form I once lived with did this to me for 7 years with prostitutes, massage parlors etc.

      Just be easy on yourself, and don’t beat yourself up if you fall apart later. I think processing all the deception and betrayal, not to mention the loss of the person you thought you knew takes time and doesn’t follow a set pattern.

      Personally, I’m not really sure there is ever a “getting over” a life altering betrayal like this, more just an acceptance that it happened without becoming embittered, hopefully to move on to greener pastures with people who truly deserve us.

      You’ll survive. You’re obviously wise enough already to be hanging out with CL and friends so you can rest assured you will have a lot of support.

  • Cathy Cathy
    What a sickening shocker. No, he is not worthy of your trust as my husband isn’t either. I can live without deception, lies, a mistrust. I’m sure you can too. Too bad these men went so far astray. They’ve lost what really matters in life. Good riddens you SOBs.

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