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Dear Chump Lady, The hope still gets me

Dear Chump Lady,

I have been married to my husband for 10 years, together 14. At the beginning of this year we lost our home to foreclosure right around the time a big job he was waiting on came through. (He’s a contractor). My dad died a couple years ago and my mom didn’t like living in the big house alone and had been planning to move in with us, when we got a new place. So we were all going to stay with her awhile until we got everything together and she was going to sell her house.

Soon after the job started he began not coming home some nights. It wasn’t unusual for him to stay out late working, but all night was not normal. He’d say he worked so long that he just stayed over in one of the rooms, (it’s a resort), with the guy who was working for him. Yeah I know.

The place was 5 minutes from our house. So between the moving and him being gone so much, I asked him what was going on. If he was going to be moving with us or not? To tell me now when I could handle it. He said he’d thought several times in the past it wasn’t working (never mentioned anything to me) and he wasn’t sure we were compatible, etc. So then I said in a moment of anger — fine lets get a divorce. So of course he starts not coming home at all and is all hurt.

Over time we talk and I say I’d like to work on things but he is just not sure what he wants and is going through “emotional trauma.” He starts bringing up all the apparently awful things I’ve done in the past most of which are more than 5 years old and he’s so angry about it all. But he still said he wants to work on it too.

The job is long over now and he’s moved in with a friend. At first he said he was living with a different friend, but when I pressed him for the street name he said he didn’t know it and then confessed to living with a different friend.

I guess my problem is for awhile he was acting so hurt, angry, sad, confused, nobody cares about me, you never loved me… Now he seems fine but still on the fence. I asked about other women and of course he denied anything going on and I wanted to believe it. He seemed so traumatized after all.

Two weeks ago he came and picked up our 7-year old to go play tennis “at the park.” Turns out the park wasn’t shady enough so he went to…. the resort. Yep, the resort where he’d worked, to play there. What I thought was going to be a 2-hour trip turned into 8 hours. He comes back, drops him off and we talk for a bit. I ask about him seeing anyone and again he denies. But this time he says he “talks” to “people” all the time but no dating, just friendly stuff. And he can’t remember the last time he hung out with a girl “friend.”

He leaves and my son goes on to tell me about everything they did, including the girl they brought with them to dinner, and how they drove her back to the resort, where she also works, before coming home — all in my car.

Husband’s excuse is he wanted to tell me that she was there but it was awkward. And they are just friends. Why would he do that knowing our son would most likely tell me?? He says it was wrong and apologized, blah blah. I asked how he like it if I took his truck and picked up some dude? He says, “I know, you’re right.” But he still acts like it was just bad judgement and that she’s nothing, so it’s no big deal.

Sometimes he invites me to do stuff with our son and him, last night it was a sunset cruise?! Yes, I went. It was freaking weird, I didn’t know what the heck I was doing there.

He’s not even come close to trying to have sex with me. I’m just starting to work so I don’t have money he wants, what the heck? I know the cake thing but it really doesn’t seem like he wants to come back, even as a back-up plan, so what is he doing? He never seemed like the kind of man who would get off on playing anyone. Could he be that sick that this is just fun for him? Ugh. My head knows this is messed up, it’s over, he’s screwing other women, but that Hope still gets me.



Dear Peaches,

You’re letting him eat cake. Stop this at once. Quit focusing all your mental power on what is he thinking and what is he doing? And start putting the focus on yourself. Is it acceptable to YOU, Peaches, that your husband live with a “friend” and not come home nights? Is it acceptable to you to be married to a man who doesn’t want to have sex with you? Who lies and minimizes and gaslights you about his OBVIOUS affair?

Are you cool with being his occasional plus-one whenever the fuck he feels like throwing you a bone? Are you okay being married to a guy who does the mental calculus of “I wonder what kind of special treat I can give my wife so she’ll keep letting me fuck other women? Oh I know! Sunset cruise! I me love a shrimp buffet!”

Do you want to spend two nanoseconds with a man who abandons a SEVEN-YEAR OLD boy and yet wants to talk about HIS “trauma”?  What trauma is that you fucktard — the trauma of resort life?

How about the trauma of watching your father date another woman when married to your mother? Of leaving you to probably play games on your iPhone while he helps Ms. Resort in her room for hours. Does the magnitude of that harmful shit register with this asshole?

Apparently not, so Peaches, if you want some respect, you need to start living with respect. Lawyer up today and change your locks. File a motion for temporary support. Let the courts know he abandoned his family and make him pay.

Why does he act like he wants you back, but not really? Why does he whinge about how hard done by he is, but doesn’t do jack shit about therapy? To avoid the consequences, that’s why. To keep himself in cake. To continue the charade that he’s a married family man, but no one is the boss of him, no sir. He can have a girlfriend and an apartment and a family when he feels like it! It makes you the bad guy, the Big, Bad Meanie who is going to divorce him, when gee whiz, he’s just so confused.

Let a judge help with that confusion. Let support orders elucidate him. Go model good things to your little boy, that real men don’t pull this shit, and real women don’t sit back and take it without a goddamn fight.

Give him HELL, Peaches. Stop hoping he’s someone else and take a good hard look at who he is — a man who walked out on you.

You want to have hope? Put that faith in yourself. That you’re better off without this disrespectful, horrid man. Hope for a better future for yourself. YOU control that. You cannot persuade this man with your hope. You cannot hope him into a better person. He’s showing you exactly who he is — a person who does you and your child a grievous harm and then feels sorry for HIMSELF. Not you. Not your son. HIMSELF. And I don’t even think he feels bad at all — it’s totally to snow you into paralysis and second guessing.

So smother hope with a pillow, Peaches. Call the lawyer.


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  • whoa CL – very well said!
    That poor little boy.
    He’s old enough to know something isn’t right.
    His father is a real creep and this story turns my stomach.

    I’m so sorry he’s just a fucktard, Peaches. And, cares only for himself and his dick.

  • btw – I have a contractor here – a handyman who I need badly. He absolutely gives me the creeps by how he continues to make it known his wife gives him no sex (I told him I’m not listening to that BS and walk away) and he’s good looking (like Mr. Clean) and always gives me bad vibes seemingly coming on to me. I’m sure he’s flirting with any woman he can with his sob story. I can’t wait for the work to end so he’ll just leave. But, I imagine, many of these contractor dudes see a lot of lonely women (no, I’m NOT one! thank you very much) and think they are so studly for doing all that manly work for you. I’ll bet he’s found a few tenants at the resort already.. All due respect to the contractors out there but there’s bad apples in every field.

    • Sounds physically unsafe to be in your place with a worker who is talking about sex to you. Trust those bad vibes of yours.

      • lulu and Nord – this guys is really good and does electricity, plumbing and carpenter work – all of which I need done. And, I’ve put him in his place many times asking how his wife is doing and he should go home and tell her ‘his troubles’. (he knows I was JUST cheated on – must think I’m needing sex, asshole)

        ALSO, and this is a biggie – my 190# Great Dane hates his guts (hmm…wonder why?) and I keep him between me and this guy at all times. So, I’m safe 🙂 Thanks for caring.

    • OMFG, Shewiz! is my Ex your contractor? He’s a contractor and I’m now quite certain that he has fucked every woman and man (he would do anyone who would give him a good blow job) who would buy into his sob story too. I guess I should have known because I met him 18 years ago, when my landlady hired him to fix my kitchen sink. He’s a serial cheating Narc who uses his job as a contractor as his hunting grounds. I trusted him 1000% over the years so DDay one year ago was a huge surprise. Fucking the woman whose house he was remodeling, of course.

      Not only did I find out about that, but that he had a prior OW “client” in 2008-9, and when he met me, was still seeing his ex GF for the First 7 years that he “lived with” me in the house we co-own.

      Not surprising then, to find that he was bilking elderly people some of whom had dementia, by overcharging them. He had one old man, 90 yrs old, that he was invoicing for things other people would have done out of charity – trips to the doctor, help with grocery shopping, hell my Ex even billed the man at the rate of $50 per hour to go to breakfast at the diner with him (after noting on the invoice that breakfast was “on him [Ex]”. So he paid the $30 or whatever diner bill, but charged the man $75 for an hour and a half of his time spent at the diner. I only stumbled on these old invoices on my computer recently by mistake and had no idea at the time (2012) what he was doing.

      But also not surprisingly, he was bilking me by pretending to be my monagamous live-in boyfriend for 16 years while fucking every man, woman and possibly child (yes seriously evidence of this) by posing as Nice Guy Handyman. His business card even says on it: “Experienced in Special Requests.” whatever the hell that means.

      So check your contractor’s billing practices carefully. Douchebags are douchebags in every aspect of their lives, for the most part. Is what I am learning.

      • TheMuse…..well that’s just disgusting as all hell. Bilking old people with dementia. You should turn him in anonymously if you have to.

        And are all these contractor’s the same?? I have one that constantly tells me how his wife won’t give him sex …..waaaawaaawaaa. Then looks at me like of course I’m a SINGLE Horney Gal just dying for dick. Puh-lease. I’ve been having some work done on my house over the years and every time he’s here I have to listen to this same story. I know, ‘get someone else’ but I’ve known him for years and he’s reasonable and I know he won’t harm me and I think he has a crush on me. I put him squarely in his place and tell that I would NEVER cheat with a married man. As in EVER. Had it done to me so no way.

        • Gah! When I start dating again, I can’t wait to try out my picker. If he’s married, fuck off. If he cheated in the past, fuck off. If he’s Secrety McSecretpants, fuck off.

          My X had cheated on his first wife. He did the typical “we grew apart” or “she never wanted to do anything” type nonsense. He said after their divorce they were friends and it was all good so I guess that’s what threw me. He seems like such a “nice” guy, he just made a mistake. I wasn’t looking at red flags . . . I was looking at the flowers he was sending me to work and the jewelry. I was sooooo dumb.

          But not anymore . . . this time I’m going to listen to what they say. And pay attention to what they did in the past. That definitely matters.

          • Yup Rumblekitty. This. I didn’t find out until AFTER we were married that X cheated on his first wife and blew up that marriage. P.S. Hope you’re working on your vintage travel trailer for your cool trip next summer. (<;

            • Damn it. Not yet. :(. I haz to pay mortgage and pay down credit cards first.

  • This is my scenario. The OW says, “oh, I love you so much baby, but I don’t even get to see your son. It’s just not fair we can’t be together. He looks just like you. Yada yada yada. “Your husband is being manipulated and thus he’s manipulating you. Get the hell out! He’s all in, and your part of his love game. It is almost impossible to believe your husband would hurt you so bad, but he isn’t who you think he is. You’re husband is gone to cheater land. Once they enter, you are just a pon in his sexual deception of love. A lawyer is the key to your future. Don’t be just another pon/ chump. Fight!

    • Ugh that just makes me sick, thinking she’s asking to meet our son. You’re probably right tho.

      • Peaches, it’s so hard to realize, there is nothing u can do to make them snap out of fantasy land. He is only thinking about her and what stupid shit she puts in his head. The reason he won’t get a divorce is that would ruin the fight to be together against all odds. That’s what drives the sexual excitement. They will talk about the future together with all the “kids” and just how wonderful, perfect it all will be, as she strokes him under the sheets. He’s not thinking of his child, he’s thinking about how “proud” she is that he’s such a great dad. You can take that entire fantasy away by filing for divorce and going NC.

        • ******ALL OF THIS****** ^^^ I couldn’t agree more. Cheaters using kids to fake a level of commitment to OW just makes my stomach turn (mine uses ours now with women to make them think he’s serious about them). He probably even told her you knew about it. And absolutely they love this game, them against the world…lawyer up and end that game.
          Mine also would invite me to do things with our son, for 2 reasons: 1 – he hates being alone (by alone I mean without a woman that he thinks wants him) and 2 – it made the woman he was dating think he was a GREAT guy, still spending time with me even though it was soooooo hard on him, for the good of our son. Gross.

        • I agree with you LML, but I am surprised by how the fantasy can sometimes never be snapped out of. When I read other sites I think the suffering spouse looks forward to the “affair fog” diminishing and gradually disappearing.
          In truth, I have seen more than 7 of these affairs that look ridiculous from outsiders turn into marriages.
          Can only comment that my kids say Dad (and by Dad’s own admission) and his twenty-something wife have fought frequently over their 4-6 year affair and now in their marriage. They insist they are madly in love and soulmates even though the loss and destruction is massive on both his end and mine.
          My point is that my filing for divorce on a supposed “fantasy” did not take it away. It made their affair stronger.
          I wouldn’t have done anything differently, just saying it might be another form of hopium to think that filing for divorce and going NC takes away the fantasy of the affair.
          The spouse and his affair might even get married…

          • But that’s just it Linda. If they don’t escape the affair fog after you go NC and file, you are out of the constant abuse and being used. If they do wake up, then that may be a real chance to reconcile, but they have to be completely broken not just wounded. It’s the living in limbo that hurts chumps so badly, and you can’t get on with your life. It’s getting the strength through anger that gets you to move forward. You have to stop thinking of them, and start living for you.

          • It’s ok if the ex marries the AP. At least you’re not tied legally to the ex any more. The point of divorce isn’t to try to get the ex to snap out of it, it’s to divorce ones self from a jerk who treats you like shit. A side effect is that it might rain on the affair parade to cut off the cake, but that’s never the main goal. The main goal is to cut that crap out of your own life.
            Let the schmoopies get married, for all I care. Idiot move, if you ask me–in my case the OW would be running up quite a nice standard of living if they ever divorce–she would legally be entitled to half of ALL earnings and community property, including any retirement savings and earnings, if ex married her. And from a guy who was obsessed with leaving money to his kids? Not unless he suddenly got his shit together to create a will that cuts her out of all survivor benefits. But why would I expect sanity from an insane, self-centered, impulsive coward? I wouldn’t. I just shake my head.

          • You wrote: “They insist they are madly in love and soulmates even though the loss and destruction is massive on both his end and mine.”

            Why do Tori and Dean come to mind????

          • I don’t find it surprising that they end in marriage, but I would find it surprising if those marriages lasted more than a few years. I’m sure they think the marriage will be different than their first – but the thing is, most marriages are great in the beginning. They may stay a while trying to “prove everyone wrong” about the relationship, but it won’t be happy and I seriously doubt it will end well. Regardless, let the cheater play this game with someone else. Odds are that’s how it will end up anyway, why waste precious time and give them the power to hurt you more?

            • lale, my marriage was NOT great in the beginning and I stayed 37 years! I am a slow learner. 🙂

            • lale–
              THIS time, they’ve found their soul mates.

              But I read a really interesting quote–can’t remember where, nor the exact words. It was something like,

              When seeking your soul mate, beware the content of your soul.

              I’m not surprised these disgusting idiots are attracted to each other.

          • “My point is that my filing for divorce on a supposed “fantasy” did not take it away. It made their affair stronger.”

            Nah . . . image management. Besides, they may be “soul-mates” whatever the fuck that is, but they are still assholes. They want the world to think they are in the middle of the most specialist special love in the world, but I don’t buy it.

            My X and his hole are already engaged, but she has no idea what he’s capable of. I give it 5 to 6 years, and they will rip each other apart. In the meantime, they insist they are the greatest love that ever occurred. These are people in their mid 40’s by the way. It’s like junior high all over again. They cannot fathom that the reset of the world could give a fuck less.

            • Oh, yeah, that was the entire basis of the relationship jackass had with his MOW. He was 18, she was 12 and had a crush. Let’s ruin 4 other lives over that! It lasted all of 4 months. She was very lucky I didn’t call her husband.

              • Ex and MOW lasted a whole 6 months before she went back to her husband. Apparently being “soulmates” has an expiration date HAHA. But not to worry chumps he was spotted with her again in a milk freezer, smelliest place ever.Yuck I’m sure his new gf doesn’t know about MOW. But it’s the secrecy that’s so deliciously wicked isn’t it…. Asswipes.

            • “They may be “soul-mates” whatever the fuck that is, but they are still assholes.”

              Love it! You’re a hooooot!

            • RK, love ^^^this^^^ and you are spot on! “They want the world to think they are in the middle of the most specialist special love in the world, but I don’t buy it.” Every time my family (and his) gathers to celebrate my children’s milestones (ie graduation, holidays) my ex goes running up to my father and shares that blowing up his family was the “best decision I ever made!” It makes me laugh. Ex is her third husband. Previous two (out of three! One lucky one got away) relationships that ended in marriage were to men who cheated on their wives and then married her. Mrs. OW times three! Her LinkedIn profile should state how she uses her degree in family and marriage counseling to really make ends meet. How special! Lol PS to those who know their Cheaters are fucking someone who is married. If I were that spouse and someone had told me my ex was cheating I would have been grateful to know the truth.

              • I had enough proof to confront Jackass because I know what he was telling me. I don’t know what MOW was telling her husband. Given the circumstances (the death of her brother) she could have “plausibly explained” some contact and just erased FB messages. I am pretty sure he also started a fake FB page under another name. So I just let it go. But if I had printouts, cell bills, etc., I would have let him know.

          • Same here, Linda. In my case, the NC and divorce proceedings have done absolutely nothing but make his “love” for the OW even stronger. I think he has this huge weight off his shoulders, because he has nothing to hide anymore, and he’s free to be with the OWskank. Which actually makes me feel bad, even considering the things he’s done.

  • Well said, LML – I’m a chess player and, although moving a pawn is good strategically at times, this guy should get Fucking Mean Ass Queen on his ass. Attorney!

  • Peaches- You wrote “Sometimes he invites me to do stuff with our son and him…” What, you need some sort of special invitation to join him and your son while you’re still MARRIED? This isn’t some once-a-month grown up boy bonding time thing that was pre-arranged with you fully in the know. This is “this new girlfriend is gonna love that I have a son, I need to show her how much I care about him.” Waaaaaaaaaaaaay out of bounds. It’s on another planet.

    “Husband’s excuse is he wanted to tell me that she was there but it was awkward.” READ: “this is totally inappropriate and my wife will freak so I won’t tell her b/c she’s not the boss of me.” The cake is spilling out of his mouth (and I’m kinda hoping he’ll just choke on it while he’s at it to be blunt).

    “Over time we talk and I say I’d like to work on things but he is just not sure what he wants and is going through “emotional trauma.”” This is your cue to do the “pick me dance.” DO NOT DO IT! Don’t even THINK about it! He’s not confused. He knows exactly what he’s doing.

    “He leaves and my son goes on to tell me about everything they did, including the girl they brought with them to dinner, and how they drove her back to the resort, where she also works, before coming home — all in my car.” Wow. Just wow. He’s setting such a crappy example.

    Furthermore, Private Speech, the whole mechanism that allows us to actually keep thoughts to ourselves and keep secrets, doesn’t begin to develop until age 8 (I have an MA in Early Childhood and they don’t start silent reading until 2nd or 3rd grade for this very reason-they can’t read silently yet!) Your son can’t keep secrets yet. Now is a perfect time for you to come in and teach him “it’s not okay to tell lies.” He’s not dumb, he’s picking up that something’s wrong. This is the time for the cop to pull the speeding parent over and have the kid in the backseat chime in “mommy I heard you say you were going 95” when the cop asks “do you know how fast you were going?” “No officer, I’m sorry I don’t.” What’s your husband going to say when he hears his son call him out: “it’s not okay to tell lies dad”?

    Peaches, CL is right. You’re getting screwed over. Stop enabling it and start protecting yourself and your son. You’re in good company here.

    • He is not confused, he knows exactly what he is doing.

      Fiestypants you could not have put it better. When weare in that emotional state of what the hell is going on they pickup on it and twist the issue to see how much of the emotion you are feeling they can get you to own. And in their heads they are striking up the band and waitng for the dancing to begin. I myself have been so grateful to this site as it was by reading other post that I realised how often STBX was throwing out the ques and how often I was giving him the Pick me Dance entertainment package. STBX now struggles as the rules of the game have changed and I don’t dance anymore for him.
      Peaches please stop dancing to your cheaters tune. Instead find some kick ass songs and dance around your home with your son and create some positive energy.

    • Yeah, I thought the same thing about him showing off how much he “cares”. He says he has no money but they went shopping before dinner and he bought him a bunch of toys in front of her. Jerk.

      • Total jerk and he’s definitely trying to play the “look how great a dad I am!” card in front of the new gf. BARF. You want to be a great dad? It’s called: don’t cheat on your wife or use your son as a pawn!! If he wants to attract girls he should get a puppy instead. Puppies don’t know they’re getting used. And at least when he comes home to the place he’s staying (not your house), the puppy will have pulled down all the curtains, chewed up the rug, couch etc and peed somewhere.

        • ” If he wants to attract girls he should get a puppy instead. Puppies don’t know they’re getting used. And at least when he comes home to the place he’s staying (not your house), the puppy will have pulled down all the curtains, chewed up the rug, couch etc and peed somewhere.”

          LOVE that word picture!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Hmm.

        Peaches you should find a way to contact the OW. I bet she thinks he’s divorced or separated.

        Look at how it happened. He went to work at the resort. She works at the resort. He started staying overnight at the resort, basically pretending he didn’t have a family to go home to. Then he moved out. Now he is having “visitation” with his son and playing happy family with her all day.

        If OW isn’t paying attention, from her end he sure looks unattached. Doesn’t go home at night, has his son ALL DAY without mom.

        I would blow up his little fantasy and tell OW that her boyfriend is married, and was always married. I’d then see what info I could pump her for that I could put in my “divorce lying asshole” file. I’d skip to the lawyer knowing I’d ruined his little relationship. But I’m bitchy that way.

        • That’s good advice. I like it. Of course if she’s a real OW (and not a dupe), she won’t care that he’s married. But as you point out, there’s a good chance she doesn’t know.

        • Agreed – I’ve seen a lot lately where the cheater says the faithful spouse cheated on THEM to the AP, to get pity and explain why they’re “separated”.

        • It is entirely possible that OW is a “dupe.”

          Still does not in any way minimize or create any kind of defense for the fact that the HUSBAND’S behavior is the issue at hand to be addressed here by Peaches.

          Allowing the OW to occupy “rent free” space in her head will only complicate the REAL issue: How to effectively deal with a cheater.

          In her shoes, the only reason that Peaches should give passing attention to the OW is IF getting proof of an affair will help Peaches gain leverage somehow during the divorce process. And, I suggest hiring a professional for that job should it become necessary.

          Attorneys (and judges) don’t like to deal with emotional, petty ugly that serves no useful legal purpose. It clogs up dockets and makes their jobs hard. Or as Sergeant Joe Friday (Jack Webb) always said on the famous old TV show “Dragnet”: “Just the facts, ma’am. Just the facts.”

          Further, an OW (or OM) is never in any way superior to or better than a chump. If it hadn’t been this particular OP, it would have been somebody else. A cheater will take an opportunity to cheat. It’s as simple at that. Believe it.

  • Don’t do what I did, Peaches. Put up with the mind fuck for over 20 years. He wants to be with you to the extent that you allow him to – on his OWN terms. Ask yourself – if your son were dating a girl who treats him the way your husband does, what would you advise your son to do?

    • Uniquelyme, I put up with this kind of crap for 20 years as well. The not coming home, all the other women who were always just “friends”. Peaches, stand tall, show how amazing and strong you are to your son. Don’t enable him to treat you like I allowed my ex to treat me. Go no contact, call a lawyer. Sending you big hugs.

      • Uniquely me. I unknowingly put up a serial Cheater for 35 years. I forgave 2 “one night stands” early on in the marriage and believed after remorse and MC that we put that all behind us. Hardly. I now realize he had probably at least 10 affairs, I can name 7 now that I have started connecting the dots. He is also proven to be a con man, dishonest in business, and in 3 lawsuits over it! Run don’t walk!!!! I wasted my life loving and standing by this sorry excuse of a human being. Filed for divorce in April and fighting for my home, reputation (guilt by association?) and sanity. illI am having a private investigator do a work up on him, since I don’t want anymore legal surprises. I would love to send his AP his court records! But he’s such an accomplished liar and manipulator he has a story for everything. What a horrible shame that its taken me this long to understand how long I have been played.

    • Bingo!

      And quite frankly Peaches, because you are writing to CL now means your inner voiced screamed loud enough for you to hear and see the red flag(s) waving. Listen to your gut. Your instincts are never wrong. Pull a full Mama Bear and protect your son and yourself from further bs.

      I doubted what I was feeling because the verbiage never matched the actions or listened to my gut feelings because he LOOKED like a “nice guy”. I am wrangling myself out of nearly an ENTIRE marriage of deceit. Don’t traumatize yourself any longer.

      • “Pull a full Mama Bear” should be part of our lexicon–meaning to marshal all one’s effort to protect the kids.

  • Peaches, your husband by his actions has made it clear that he does not want you as a partner but is happy to use you as a smoke screen when it is in his best interest. Your comment about the cruse indicates that your intuition is in working order and it was telling you something is off. I myself have often had that feeling when out with my STBX and although our situations are different, the play by the cheater is still the same. Some have an underlying desire to keep you dangling. CL put it well “throw you a bone” to keep you in the game because as long as you/we remian engaged with these idiots they are able to justify in there barron minds that they are still the good guy. I am sure for many if not all of us at some point in our relationship with the cheater they were the good guy, why else would we stay? But the truth is it is just a mask and while you remain engaged you are just a part of his production.
    I encourage you to take CL’s advise and get a lawyer. Love your son and yourself.
    I pray the best for your cheater free future.

    • Re: I am sure for many if not all of us at some point in our relationship with the cheater they were the good guy, why else would we stay? But the truth is it is just a mask and while you remain engaged you are just a part of his production.

      As Lundy Bancroft writes in his (terrific) book “Why Does He Do That?” (about abusers), if you went on date #1 with a guy and you spilled your drink and he yelled in the restaurant, “You clumsy bitch,” there would be no date #2. Of course they know how to act charming when it serves their purpose….it’s to lure you in. And you keep waiting for the first date guy to ‘come back’. But he’s gone…he’s gone….

      • I second that. Everyone should read that book. He’s a professional in Assholes 101.

  • After I found out about my husband’s affair, I told him that I felt so betrayed by him. He proceeded to tell me that I had betrayed him by not being so in love with him that I responded to his sexual needs all the time (and I mean ALL.THE.TIME!!!). We’ve been married 20 years (full of neglect and abuse on his part) and he couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to fuck his brains out every day, twice a day! It’s funny how they turn everything around on you and take no responsibility for their actions. I was a damn good wife…better than he deserved and he still turned it all around on me. I would hire a lawyer and never look back if I were you, especially since he has such disregard for the emotional well-being of his son. To take your child to rendezvous with a whore is unacceptable!!!!!!! GET.OUT.NOW!!!!!

    • Oh gosh! My husband has been saying the same thing- that I didn’t respect him enough so he lied to me all the time for years about anything and everything. I’m like, yeah I think it’s the other way around asshole. Definitely turns everything around on me. He used to go out with his friends and come home as if he were just getting off work. The times I’d find out about it, he’d say ” you should tell me to go out with my friends then I wouldn’t want to.”

      • WTH? Peaches, this dude is seriously playing with your mind. Stop thinking of him as your husband and look at his actions.

        He took your son on a date with his skank to make himself look good to her? He is emotionally dangerous to you and your boy. You know what you need to do – it will be hard and it will be scary but neither you nor your son deserve this kind of ‘family’ life. The life that awaits you on the other side will be so much better.

        Wishing you strength and courage.

    • Cheaters love the mind fuck. Mine told me he cheated because I didn’t tell him I loved him often enough.

  • It’s amazing how these cheaters are all exactly alike. The more you read here, the more you see that only the details are different: some hop down stairs in sleeping bags, some dance around in skin-tight, flesh-colored leotards to Peter and the Wolf, some step out while their baby is having surgery, but underneath, they are all the same.

    My ex pulled the same stunts — took our son on a date with him and his OW, claimed nothing was going on they were just friends, decided the two of us were totally incompatible and never should have married after 20 years of him saying I was his very best friend. And I’ll bet if we could see a show of hands, about 95% of the chumps here have this same story.

    Peaches, your husband is a garden-variety cheater, exactly like all the other pigs here. I am sorry for you and sorry for your son, but seriously, you need to get out now. Your husband is enjoying his affair, is trying to impress OW with what a “great dad” he is, and very well may be moving money into accounts where you can’t find it. Lawyer up, and DO NOT discuss your plans with your husband. He is no longer your friend, is not your partner and does not have your best interests at heart. I understand your hope, we all do. But read through the many stories here, and you will see that your husband is just like the rest and is not likely to ever change.

    • Well said GIO. Exactly what my garden variety cheater said. After 25 years together get the “we are so fundamentally different”. In the beginning I was trying to persuade him to change his mind……fast forward 19 months I say yes we are fundamentally different. You suck I don’t. Bye bye.

    • One of the most unforgivable aspects of my husband’s affair was how he used our children to set up “play dates” with OW and her kids, and even said to me — of course I’m not doing anything — the kids are right here! Immediately after they snuck off to have sex in a parked car. I told him that I never wanted to put the weight of keeping our marriage vows on the shoulders of a 12-year-old, a 10-year-old, and a 6-year-old. Asshole!

    • GIO,

      You are so spot on with this observation and advice.

      Flaming McCheaterTurd, at his Ho’s urging, attempted to double date with our oldest daughter and her husband. He raised her as his own, but she isn’t his biological daughter. She calmly explained to him that she and her husband would NOT be double-dating with him and his HoW, that it was NEVER IN LIFE going to happen and questioned his sanity for even asking. She also warned him that if ever asked her again, she would cut him out of her life. The HoW was more surprised than him. She thought to ingratiate herself and marginalize me WITH MY OWN CHILDREN – who are adults and who knew she was the HoW. This shit is even more insidious when you have young children who cannot object, refuse or stand up for themselves. They internalize this crap with their limited information in all kinds of unhealthy ways.


      I lived with your husband’s ugly cousin for over 25 years and this shit doesn’t get any better. It is soul destroying when your partner puts you in the position of supplicant and an unwelcome guest in your own marriage. Been there, done that, won the Arthur Murray Trophy in the Pick-Me Dance Contest. What your husband is doing to you is mental and emotional abuse and it will break you down and you will lose all that you are if you continue this relationship. IMHO, including your son in a date with his HoW is an abuse of your son. Listen to CL and kick this dirtbag to the curb. It is not easy, it is painful, but the pain of ending this relationship will be finite (even if it may not seem like it at the time). You deserve better than this pig from hell and so does your son.

      • Chump Princess, I love your daughter! How great is it that she put your X and the HoW, who is the poster child for evil HoWives. Unbelievable.

  • I’ll offer a couple of observations from my own similar experience.

    1) Why the “hurt, angry, sad, confused, nobody cares about me” garbage? That’s text book gaslighting. The best defense is a good offense. I got this every single time he caught me cheating. I was lucky if he only talked about how ‘traumatizing’ it was for him — a couple of times he actually swore at ME. Yeah….nutty stuff.

    2) Why is he on the fence? Because, among other things (like $$$), being married keeps him from being ABLE to be in a committed relationship with anyone. As long as he has a psycho wife (you!) he can’t possibly leave (being such a nice guy and all), he’s got an excuse for not being available. Worked out great for my ex. Kept Skankalina on a string for a couple of years that way.

    When somebody wants to work things out, it actually looks like it. There’s counseling, conversation (other than lying when asked a direct question0, quality time together. This sounds to me like a garden variety jerk getting everything his way at your expense.

    As much as it sucks, try to see things for what they are, and not what you want them to be. You deserve better than a husband who would throw your well-being under the bus.

    • Yeah….well that’s going to be “every time I caught him cheating”, which I’m ashamed to say was 6 times.

  • My ex’s affair partner became a friend of the family (before I knew about the affair). He already had a pretty solid relationship with our daughter. This angered me greatly when I found out what had been going on (right under my nose, for years). Don’t let that happen. Don’t give the OW the privilege of having a relationship with your son. Kick this loser to the curb and rebuild. It will take time, and work, but it is really worth it. My life is 100% better now than it was. I’ve never looked back.

    • Cheaters are all the same, gender issues aside. Mine invited one of his to attend church with us and then back to our home for lunch and I had no idea except that crap feeling that there was something about it I did not trust. And they just sat in the lounge room and chatted with my kids like it was all normal .

      His ass is to the curb, and am at the plan drawing stage before the rebuild.

  • Peaches, Chump Lady is right. He is getting off on how special he is, he has his wife at home waiting with baited breath for him to honor her with his presence and the other woman who is waiting for him to choose her over you and he doesn’t have to be accountable to anyone. What father takes his 7 year old son on a date? knowing full well the boy is going to tell his mom what they did.?
    He feeds you bullshit and you accept it. You are the “sure thing” at home, even IF he did come back, what about next time he has a job with an attractive woman in the area; he gets “confused” again? I am sure you don’t want your son treating women this way but that is what he is learning, what wonderful father/son time! special.
    You asked straight up for an honest answer and he lied to you and doesn’t respect you enough to not involve your 7 yr old son in his deception, I think he knew danm well your son was going to say something and it was a test to see how far he can push you. he’s getting huge strokes off of this.
    I think you got your answer and the next time he decides to grace you with his presence the locks are changed and his stuff is in boxes in the garage. Not another word needs to be spoken, talk to a lawyer and let him deal with it. He had his chance to be honest and deal with his responsibilities and he didn’t so you have to. I would not be surprised if you find out he has been stashing money aside in preparation to leave. Sorry but I have ben there and seen other women in your shoes and it never works in the woman’s favor to be a door mat. Get your life in order, take care of your son and yourself and set some boundaries and rules, take control of your life back.
    Good Luck! I know it hurts like hell but it isn’t going to hurt less years from now.

    • “A test to find out how far he could push me” I think that’s dead on

  • Einstein is exactly on target about “Why the “hurt, angry, sad, confused, nobody cares about me” garbage? That’s text book gaslighting. The best defense is a good offense.”

    When I read what you wrote it got my dander up on your behalf because that’s exactly how my cheater played it. And he played it up big time, based on the most ridiculous circumstances, and totally gas lighted me. It wasn’t hard. I was so naive and trusting, and although I thought he was really being dramatic and I couldn’t understand what he was really talking about, I never suspected what was really going on.

    While he was busy feeding me all of that bull, he was sleeping with his new girlfriend in our bed, and flying around the country with her, staying at top resorts, etc. Introducing her as his girl, sending photos of her to his son, proud as hell. While I was crying myself to sleep nearly every night, trying to understand why he was holding me at arm’s length some times and acting almost normal at other times. Ugh.

    But all the while he was pretending to be confused and needing time to think, etc., resenting imaginary bad treatment from me, i.e. times when I forgot to turn my phone back on and he had been trying to reach me (one time), and that was all bullshit anyway, since he was with her at the time. And that I hadn’t consistently adored him loudly enough while worrying over my son who is ill and was getting worse, and while I was working an exhausting job, often 10 hours a day with a horrible boss, etc.

    If only I had known how classic his behavior was! Your husband has lulled you into a state where you accept an incredible amount of disrespect, just as I did. I hope you can keep reading and posting here and allow things to come into a sharp focus for your situation.

    He is abusing you, over the top, and your little child, too.

    • “I hadn’t consistently adored him loud enough” — great way to put it. Mine said I should be texting him throughout the day telling him how proud of him I am.
      And the imaginary bad treatment-no kidding, I never know what he’s complaining about either. Some of the things he brings up are like some little situation that happened years and years ago and I’m like ‘what the heck?’ Its like he’s having to dig so hard to think of stuff to get mad about. One thing he said was when he cut his arm (8 years ago) that I didn’t bother to come to the emergency room because I just didn’t care. I definitely was there. I freakin drove him home! Is he just messing with my head or does he really believe this crap??

      • That’s what we all call rewriting history. People who do questionable things to others actually start telling themselves a new truth. If they repeat it often enough it becomes more and more believable. And this is how people can destroy their family and still get up in the morning and look at their lying cheating faces in the mirror.

        • “People who do questionable things to others actually start telling themselves a new truth. If they repeat it often enough it becomes more and more believable.”

          Exactly this. My cheater ex repeated his lies so many times that he started believing them. I’ll never forget the day our teenaged son came home and told me that Dad believed the lies he was telling. He was completely undone over his father’s craziness. Out of our five kids, the only one who has contact with him any more is the one who lives 3 states away. And she rarely talks to him.

      • Peaches — glad to see you here! Let me point out something — your comments so far about about yep, he does this and this and this! You’re relating to the other chumps and perhaps realizing your cheater isn’t that unique.

        Please take it a step further. Instead of giving us about how much more he sucks — start telling us what YOU are going to DO about it. Or ask questions from the folks here who’ve lived it. Sweetie, you need to bust a move and start drawing BOUNDARIES with that guy. You KNOW he sucks, he’s sucked for a long time. Start making him your PAST.

      • He wanted you to text him all day telling him how proud you were of him??? WOW. Did he expect you to bow every time he passed you in the hall, as well? Much of an ego on that man? LOL. Awful. So freaking awful it’s comical. If only he were someone else’s joke, right? Hopefully before too long he will be.

        In a moment of very rare candor, about two months after D Day, when I was giving him shit about the way he beat me over the head about that solitary incident when I had not picked up the phone after having to turn it off at a function and being too spacey and distracted afterward with my grandkids, etc. for a few hours to realize it was off…..the way that he literally harped on that and brought it out routinely for nearly a year as evidence of my “neglect”! ….. when I demanded to know how why he had magnified it out of all reason, you know what he finally admitted?

        “Because it was all I had to work with.” WOW. The truth at last. It was literally all he had to work with. Pathetic pathetic pathetic, yet he didn’t hesitate to try to weave it into some mythical pattern of abuse. And why? Because his nine months of wooing his affair partner by phone, email, and text had finally come to fantastic fruition exactly a month before the day that I didn’t turn my phone back on, and she had flown up to meet him two or three times that month, and things were really off and running in his thrilling new love life. That’s why. The Day of the Dead Cellphone? Yeah, she was with him in our bed, eating breakfast in my place at the table, having her coffee out of my mug.

        And the really effed up thing about his campaign of disinformation against me is that he actually did brain wash HIMSELF with all of that repetition. He still thinks sometimes that he cheated because I had let the ardor die and had lost the spark, stopped appreciating him, thus not feeling compelled to call him that day, etc.

        Otherwise, he has to face himself square on, and that’s something he is only beginning to do, but not for too long at a time, because it interferes with the good opinion he needs to have of himself.

        He believes his own propaganda because he invested himself so thoroughly in it in order to carry on that double life for two years and still like himself. Or I should say LOVE himself.

        • There is a special place in hell for cheaters who bring their hoPartners into the family home, have sex with them in the marital bed, and allow those people to touch things that belong only to their partners.

          • I sure hope so! I just got notice from the IRS that my SSN has been stolen and someone filed a false return under my identity for 2012…my first thought was that it was the Professional Mastubator that came into my home, screwed my husband in my bed, and used my computer while he was undoubtedly passed out drunk. She who he later moved in with and who became my stalker. She left her browsing history on the computer and looked through my files, facebook, etc. I won’t know for sure b/c the IRS protects the privacy of identity thiefs. They suck. Here’s hoping for an uncomfortable spot in the burny place.

        • My case was the family camper. I loved that camper and the camp we set it up in. We raised our kids there every summer. When she told me that she had brought her guy (guys ?) there that was the last time I could go there other than to sell the place. I still resent the loss of that of our family refuge.

          I shutter to think of the sense of invasion when that loss is the family home. Wow.

      • He knows full well the truth, do not go down the rabbit hole where you think your husband is delusional. I did that. My ex nearly died in hospital 6 years before I found him cheating, I spent every day with him and half the night. But after DDay he said I left him there with no help.

        Same shit, different cheater.

      • Interestingly, ex is still stuck in talking to the kids about ‘why’ we divorced and of course it’s never because he’s a serial cheater but due to numerous other reasons, the latest being that we once had an argument in the car and he says I kicked him out of the car. Mind you, this happened 10 years or more ago and I didn’t kick him out of the car, I said I wasn’t going to keep arguing and if he wanted to keep arguing one of us was going to have to get out of the car. So he did. But this is of course now me kicking him out of the car.

        The thing is, we’re swiftly coming up on three years since I kicked him out, he’s still with final OW and he STILL spends so much of his time with the kids talking about the divorce and why it happened. And it is never, ever his fault.

        • I am convinced that my STBX has a little book somewhere that he has jotted down every little shitty thing I have done and uses it to counter balance the weight of his cheating. As it could not just be because he is a lying cheating passive agressive piece of crap.

  • Peaches, I went through the EXACT same situation beginning in January. STBX left without a note. He did the back and forth for months. In April, I found out about the many women he had been screwing. I filed a week later.

    I just got my STD tests back, and I found out that he have me HPV 16 at some point after my last negative test on 11/2/11. The HPV 16 has caused me to develop cervical cancer. So, please, please, please don’t let him back. You never know where he’s been and what he is picking up along the way. Go NC immediately and file for divorce. It’s the only way.

    • OMG Kelli!!

      I am so sorry to hear this! I am so hurt and angry on your behalf. I would like to poison, stab, shoot, kick and shit on your STBX. I can’t think of a strong enough curse word or invective to call someone who would so carelessly risk your life in this way.

      (((HUGS))) to you and I wish you a full recovery.

    • Kelli, really, no words. I will however send hugs and prayers your way.

      • Kelli,
        I am so sorry for what he did to you. It makes me so furious and that is exactly what I feared for myself. These faux people have to get what’s coming to them for being so friggin selfish and downright sadisticly evil. I know that you can’t keep using and abusing people without it eventually catching up to you one way or another.

    • Thank you for the love and support! I really appreciate it. I know I am going to be ok–if only through sheer determination to be!

      If you feel inclined, you can check out his Cheaterville profile here:

      Please don’t mention the cancer, because that is a bomb we want to drop in court in a few weeks. The element of surprise is very necessary so he can’t come up with an excuse before court.

      • Jedi hugs Kelli.

        I’m still dealing with what my ex gave me during our “reconciliation”, fucktard is not a good enough description of these assholes. Good luck in court!

        You may want to ask CL to remove that link, he could find your post from that.

      • Wow Kelly..many hugs. You are amazing…! Thanks for bringing to light, once again, how serious cheater consequences are. Positive healing vibes for you. You will get well.

    • So sorry, Kelli! this makes me so angry… I too got tested but was fine thank God but I’ve recently befriended my Cheater’s Ex, who he cheated with for seven of the sixteen years we were together and it turns out he gave her an STD that caused her to need a hysterectomy last year. And she’s only about 50. The utter selfishness of these cheating Narcs is just sickening! I hope your gambit in court works.. I hope that he is made to pay for what he did to you!!!

      • Thank you, Muse. I’m waiting on biopsies for staging, but I will most likely have to have a hysterectomy too. I’m 31.

        • I ask, why don’t the cheaters get an STD that makes their dick fall off?
          It’s so unfair that the chumps get infected by these creeps

        • Oh Kelli I’m so sorry. Words can’t say enough, but my thoughts are with you.

          • Hugs Kelli….SO sorry this happened to you. He should be charged with a crime and I’m serious. It IS a crime to infect someone unknowingly with a disease that could kill them. Think HIV. I just checked out his loser cheater profile. What kills me is that these guys can go into any honky tonk and get skanks to fuck them on the spot. Eeewwww.

  • Peaches,

    1. You are already separated. He’s living apart from you. He’s seeing another woman. You write about your husband taking you along when he takes out your son–which sounds like a typical divorced dad custody day.
    2. Fiestypants and Einstein have laid out why your H hasn’t made the separation official. He doesn’t want to pay child support. He wants the tax deductions. He doesn’t want to split family assets. He likes being married in a legal sense so his affair partner(s) can’t pin him down either.
    3. You don’t know exactly where he spends his nights? Or with whom he is living? You allow your HUSBAND to be vague about these things? You need a lot more information about what this guy is up to. You absolutely should see a lawyer tomorrow, as soon as possible. CL has good advice in her book about why to see a lawyer and how to find a good one.
    4. Is he giving you the bulk of his pay? If so, that is a very good thing because you may be able to argue that you have been separated since he stopped coming home and he’s established a level of support. If he isn’t giving you money, you need to change that immediately. Your attorney can tell you if the formula for support in your case is likely to be higher or lower. But get support and medical insurance and spousal support, and ask for it to be taken directly from his pay.

    You are hoping for what all Chumps hope for when they find out about an affair or when the spackling and denial can no longer cover up the fact that their life partner is abusing them emotionally through betrayal, gaslighting and “blame shifting” (at which your husband seems to be a pro): you are hoping he is having some temporary crisis and things will go back to the way they used to be when he came home at night and for all you knew, nothing in your world was wrong.

    Here is what you need to hope for: Financial security for you and your son. A home that you can make your own. A kind man who would never dream of abandoning you without explanation. The cheater whose actions brought me here did to me what your husband did to you. But we didn’t have a child, so when he had his crisis, trauma, etc., he just slipped away, no explanations, leaving me in a financial crisis of my own. That’s what narcissists do. The foreclosure gave him an escape route–you could live with your mother and he could live with whoever the hell he’s living with, probably that woman he took to dinner. And he just shows up and takes his son out as if you two had negotiated a separation. YOU NEED TO ESTABLISH CUSTODY AND VISITATION RULES. He shouldn’t take your son for 8 hours without telling you where they are going and when the boy is coming home.

    If you don’t stand up and fight, as CL says, you will lose a big swatch of a wonderful time in your life. You have a young son. Your mom is alive and can be a help. Maybe the two of you could get a side-by-side duplex. You are still young. There is joy and love and laughter ahead. But not until you face that your husband has already made his choice; he just doesn’t want to pay for it.

    • Every word here is spot on. It actually hurt my heart a little to read it, because it brought back all the memories of how awful it was going through dday, separation, divorce. But now on the other side, life is so much better!

      Peaches, LovedaJackass is giving great advice here.

  • Wait a minute, Peaches did you say you all moved in with your mother? So he’s pulling all this under your mother’s nose as well?! I really hope you’ve got a momma bear by your side.

    • Yes, feisty pants, she’s being really supportive thankfully. She called him a “turd” today-she’s 67- priceless! She said if my dad was still alive he’d beat the crap out if him, she’s right too, even at 70 my dad was quite intimidating-and freakishly strong.

  • Wow. My ex was great too. Never home, “at work” or out “playing racquetball”, while I was happily holding down the fort, raising three children, and caring for our family. And making excuses for him and his inability to be engaged. It’s amazing how much work I did while Mr. Wonderful lived his life! He was so Sparkly and I was content with crumbs but it took me twenty years to figure out why my marriage always felt “off.” That and the existence of his latest OW who gave my ex an ultimatum. Leave wife or I will tell. Both which would have netted her that awesome man. All my ex ever valued was to be a pro racquetball player and me and the kids just stood in his way. So Peaches you have a gift before you now. A choice. Stay or leave. You know WHO HE IS. And you, and your son, DESERVE better. I have a son who is 23. He was devastated when his father walked out and five years is still really struggling. He loved his Dad. I can not make what my ex did ‘better,’ for any of our children. This alone makes me wish I had walked sooner.

    • “…it took me twenty years to figure out why my marriage always felt ‘off.'”

      Isn’t this the truth? I never understood why I felt so off kilter in my marriage. Couldn’t put a finger on it, there was nothing concrete like unexplained absences…he had an airtight excuse about everything. But always my gut was screaming that there was something off.

      The best thing about this whole situation is realizing that my gut was 100% right. I will never ignore it again.

      • Me too. I could never figure out why our life together had so many damn hurdles. That was HIS negative karma vortex spinning even way back then. Life is so much more peaceful now, it’s like problems solve themselves before they even get on my radar.

  • Peaches. I had the same story. First it was working out of town. ( he got a ticket, it came to our house, blew a red light on the street his secetary lived on). Then it was living with a friend. No address given, you will trust what I say. Look into my hypnotic eyes. I am telling you the truth. Then I tracked him to her house. Ohh the heat went out at his friends house. He Always had an excuse. ALWAYS. He was so convincing he made me think I was crazy. How dare I accuse him. Soooo I had a visitation agreement drawn up with no second parties allowed. If he was going to see my son, he was gonna do it alone. he wanted overnight visits. He lived with the ow. While we were married.. They must all read from the same cheaters manual, and add their own twist to it. Go walk crawl run away. Protect yourself and your child

  • Peaches,

    If cheating is a deal-breaker for you, and it should be; pull the plug on old dude.

    But see an attorney first (on the low down), get your ducks lined up, and then abruptly serve his ass with divorce papers while simultaneously going no contact.

    Don’t explain (He but well knows why).
    Don’t argue.
    Don’t question.
    Don’t plead or beg.
    If he tries to engage you; tell him simply to direct all comments and question to your attorney.

    SHOW him with BEHAVIOR (not words) that you are NOT now nor EVER will be a doormat.

    I have seen the “rare” reconciliation, but it ALWAYS resulted from the chump getting a backbone, instituting immediate and painful consequences along with some very prolonged (time wise) boundary setting.

    It’s called commanding respect, and it will restore your own self-respect.

  • I’d follow through with the divorce, too…no matter how much he begs or appears to have changed.

    Because if the consequences aren’t commensurate to the offense. No lesson is learned. If no lesson is learned, he WILL do it again sooner or later.

    Oh, and read this link all the way to the end of the article about the kind of no-nonsense marriage counseling it takes to truly repair a marriage after adultery (’cause I know your’re still harboring that kind of hope). Most cheaters will not do this kind of work. They are too cowardly to face themselves and the damage they have done.

  • I think he took your son on that date on purpose. He knew your son would tell you about it, he WANTED your son to tell you about it.

    Because if your son tells you, then he doesn’t have to. Your son brought it up so all he has to do is say “She’s just a friend it would be awkward if I told you.” So he can blame it on your son.

    He knows precisely what he’s doing when he takes your son on dates with these women. He’s getting your son to like the other women and get attached to them so it’s easier for him to manipulate the child against you.

    Get rid of the hopium pipe. You’re dealing with something far more sinister than it looks like. And this will go back and forth and all over the place until you pull the trigger. Do it.

    • I agree, Kara.


      Until you can see an attorney and get a plan executed, don’t allow the child to go anywhere with him that you don’t go. This may not be has hard on you as you think it will be; because under those circumstances, old dude is likely to cut that crap out pretty quickly. School should be starting before too much longer and should make it easier for you to personally “monitor” weekend excursions. Just make SURE that you can keep your cool and bide your time if you decide to do this. You have to be STRONG, honey. Otherwise you are just in for more of the same old sh*t.

      • This is such good advice. That’s a great start. “NO, you aren’t taking my son anywhere after the little excursion with your girlfriend. You can sit here in the living room for an hour with him. Then hit the road.”

    • Kara is 100% correct. Of course he knew your son would mention going out with some woman the son had just met. Disordered like playing these kind of games. My ex often told things to our son that he KNEW son would tell me — sometimes it was things he thought would hurt me (usually he was right), sometimes it was stuff he thought would be to his financial advantage in some way or otherwise of benefit to him.

    • I agree too Kara. My ex kept ‘bumping into’ slutty howorker way before he out and out confessed. He’d take my kids out for a few hours and guess who they’d ‘bump into’? This was miraculous considering she lived nowhere nearby. I was totally chump then and he knew it!

      Also after I kicked him out my then six year old told me she was often there in the car when he picked him up from summer camp way before I knew anything was amiss. Kids are not stupid and even if they don’t know exactly what’s going on they get a sense of things – that something is not right. I HATE the way these lowlife cheaters use their kids when they should be protecting them. It is so abusive to my mind – almost like they’re grooming them and making them complicit in their sleaziness.

      • Grooming is exactly what they’re doing. It’s the “come meet Daddy’s new friend isn’t she nice?” Bullshit. Get the kid to like the OW so they won’t get mad at Daddy.

        • Kara, Tonya, Peaches and others. I don’t have kids but I love my nieces and nephews to death and watched them grown into fine young adults, and now my great’s are coming up.

          “get the kid to like the OW so they won’t get mad at Daddy”.

          That just makes me completely sick to my stomach.
          I’m shaking because I thought my sitch was bad – a 7 yr old boy being subjected to this?? It’s just very disturbing to me. I just don’t think it gets any lower than that.

          Peaches – STRENGTH~~~

    • Exactly… this guy is FUCKING COWARD, who let his SON do his dirty work for him. Peaches… PLEASE, if you can’t muster up the strength to get away from this man for your own sake (I know it’s hard), do it for your son. He has shown you that he is not above mindfucking your son to get what he wants. Ick, ick, ick, ick, ICK!!!!!

      • My ex pulled something like this. After I kicked him out and was away for a few days he tried to get the kids to meet final OW. Kids flipped. Then, a few weeks later, he had one of the kids and ‘accidentally’ ran into final OW. Went for a snack. then told my kid to not tell me. Kid came home and was so stressed I knew something was up. Kid told me, crying, and was so upset because ‘OW was so nice to him’. I was enraged and would have killed both ex and OW if they had been anywhere near me for putting my kid through that shit.

        Get out and don’t look back. These people are toxic as fuck.

  • Dear Peaches,
    I am sorry if I come off sounding harsh but I have to be completely blunt and honest with you. After reading your story, your husband sounds like a very weak pathetic shit head. He really has no guts to even tell you anything truthful or anything at all for that matter other than he has been thinking how it’s not working and never discussing with YOU, after the fact that he basically moved out and already cheated on you!!! BITCH COOKIE OFTEN?

    Your response of Let’s Get a Divorce was the correct response. It obviously is what you are feeling you need to do for YOU as it was your first response, therefore it came from your gut. You remember that thing in the pit of your stomach that I am fairly certain alarmed you many times over the 14 years when things were really wrong with this asshole. That’s how it got to this point. Ignoring and Hoping. How did that work out for you so far?

    You are both too scared of the consequences of what the truth is. He is so weak, he can’t face the fact that he wants out or will look like the complete shit that he is. He just wants what he wants without any consequences. You just want to believe he isn’t a piece of shit when you know he is so you are confused and scared and full of hopium. The confusion comes from wanting to believe what you wish were true but you know what the real truth is as he has clearly showed you and you can’t face it. I know I have been there and it’s a really hard fact to face.

    Yes, it’s very hard to think that this man in your life and Father of your son for 14 years could be such a selfish piece of shit and not give a shit about you, your feelings or your son or his feelings. But hey, welcome to the I was with a weak, pathetic,selfish asshole club, you are now a member. What you do with your membership is your choice.

    Membership here includes many things, great advise from other members who already went through what you are just starting to face now. A lead Chump, CL, who takes nothing lying down and learned from her mistake and all of her falling down along the way on the road to getting out and moving on with her life to a far better one! Many other Chumps who went through divorces, some of which are lawyers themselves and can help you navigate through this stuff. All here have a knowing ear (or eyes in this case) and big hearts who understand the pain and trauma of this experience. We all know the only through this to get out and be done before it destroys you. If read all of the posts, you will see time and time again, everyone here wishes they paid attention to their gut and got out sooner. Also, everyone here is better for finally getting out. Don’t get me wrong, it sucks hell but not when you get through to the other side, then you will know incredible happiness and inner peace inside of yourself because of yourself.

    Clearly he went and needed what he felt he needed to do for him without a second thought about you or your son, so what’s stopping you from doing what you need to do for YOU?

    Be joyous he doesn’t have sex with you, Lord only knows what or where he has been sticking his deceitful penis. You can be happy, safe and secure in knowing he most likely didn’t pass any STD’s to you. I still recommend going to a Gyno for a check up just to make sure.

    Take off the Shit Colored Glasses and face the reality that you just wrote for all of here. HE IS A SELFISH PIECE OF SHIT who decided your relationship wasn’t working for him and never discussed it with you. He robbed you of your choice! He is a thief and a LIAR.

    Additionally, he exposed your son to a very unhealthy relationship in how he is treating YOU, his mother and how he just moved along to another woman. He is showing your son that women are things you can throw away and just go out and good a new one and all is Fine and Dandy. In other words this is normal.

    If you’re ok with that then I am ok with that for YOU.

    It’s certainly not ok with me. I would kick his sorry ass to the curb, inform my son that you treat women with respect and cherish them if they are a good woman and that what his Father did was not kind,loving or mature. The normal way to have a relationship is to sit down and discuss things if there is a problem, or if one person decides that they are no longer in love and want to leave then they proceed with a fucking DIVORCE after discussing it with their Spouse! You don’t make unilaterally selfish decisions about a relationship with someone. You have to involve that other person when it effects and affects them.

    Stop smoking HOPIUM, it just delays your Happiness without an ASSHOLE and later on will make you wish you quit smoking a lot sooner!!!

    P.S. When someone loses a job, yes, it sucks but you work on getting another job, not going out and fucking another woman or women. Get your shit together and fast, go to a gyno, get a therapist, and see a lawyer asap, or maybe reverse that order, LAWYER FIRST! If he was so traumatized, why was he able to get another job? He obviously could function enough to do that? What’s the excuse for Fucking Another Woman? He was traumatized by you? I think he has that a little backwards based upon his actions.

    Good Luck Peaches and we are all here if you need us!!!

    • Thanks Deborah, I know you are right. I’ll be rereading your post several times tonight. “Happiness without an Asshole”- I like that 🙂

      • Please listen to Deborah and the others — it’s time to start drawing boundaries. Don’t react to his crazy. YOU get in the driver’s seat now. YOU start calling the shots in your life.

        • You don’t know it yet, Peaches, but there is a gift in this horrible situation. Based on your description and your responses, you’ve been very passive–allowing him to do whatever he wants without consequences. You have a chance to claim your power as a woman and a mother–to set standards for how you expect people to treat both you and your son. To hold your son’s father accountable for his behavior and put yourself in a situation where (as much as possible) you make the calls about your son’s life. To take control of your financial life. To get out of a marriage to a man who has abandoned you and your son and start to heal. I’m nearly your mother’s age and I can tell you that the pain of betrayal hurts worse than anything else I’ve ever experienced. Everybody here knows the anguish. But you can’t get to the other side without doing the work you need to do to rebuild your life. One action at a time. One day at a time. Step by step.

    • The normal way to have a relationship is to sit down and discuss things if there is a problem, or if one person decides that they are no longer in love and want to leave then they proceed with a fucking DIVORCE after discussing it with their Spouse! You don’t make unilaterally selfish decisions about a relationship with someone. You have to involve that other person when it effects and affects them.

      This!!! Deborah, love love love what you have written

    • “You don’t make unilaterally selfish decisions about a relationship with someone. You have to involve that other person when it effects and affects them.”

      So well said.

    • This is a GREAT post. I am in almost the same situation as Peaches. My husband (20 years) moved out and in with another woman. The kids visit him twice a week – while she lives there with him. No pursuit of the divorce from his side. I learned everything about the fact there was another woman from my children. No honest communication from husband. I’ve seen two lawyers, but I am just SCARED. I stand to lose in this financially. I can’t stand reading “protect yourself, see a lawyer”, over and over again – – this is no protection for me, I make more than he does, and I’ve seen two lawyers and the news is all bad for me. But I know Chump Lady and Chump Nation are right: I just am having the damnedest time with acceptance and the follow-through. The tackling the finances and the bureaucracy. The lawyers. How do you all do it? Trying to face it just wells up the tears.

  • oh Yes, I forgot one more piece of advise, If you haven’t already purchased CL’s book, go do that. It can at least shake you up a little bit from your confusion.

  • Thank you so much everyone. This has really helped me see things more clearly. I do have a question about divorcing though, I’m kind of scared to go all hard ass on him. He has more money and more friends than me. What if he fights back? Or does something stupid like take our son and leave. I doubt he’d do that cause his business is here and all but it still bothers me. Has anyone had it backfire on them?

    • Peaches,

      Again, have that confidential talk with a good divorce attorney BEFORE you make a move, and keep your mouth shut while you are getting your ducks lined up.

      Hopefully, where you live is large enough that busy bodies won’t see you and put your business on the street. If not, go out of town for a consult. Many consults are free; but most attorneys do want a retainer. You just need to explore your options.

      *I had DVD proof of adultery (OW was married and they worked for the same employer in the same office) obtained by a PI as insurance against any unfair treatment. All I wanted financially was my fair share under the law.

      You aren’t trying to punish or take him to the cleaners here…just to set healthy limits and get out with as much of your dignity and finances as intact as possible.

      If you have any specific questions, please post them. There are many here who can help with details about how to handle yourself during the planning phase. Right up to and how to handle any potential physical abuse on his part.

      Just ask…the answers will come in droves.

    • Peaches here’s the thing. You can’t control him.

      I doesn’t matter if you are nice, doesn’t matter if you are mean. He will do whatever he wants to do. So therefore you should do what is best for YOU.

      He is not your friend. Hell, right now he is not even being friendly towards you (riding OW in your car?!). So don’t worry about hurting his feelings. He has already shown you (his fake marriage grievances) that he is quite able to fabricate and twist reality to create justification for his bad behavior where there is none. So you could bend over backwards to please him in a divorce and he could still be red hot mad. So why consider his feelings or reactions at all? Just get yourself a good lawyer, who is your advocate, and follow their advice.

    • Expect him to fight back. Enforcing your boundaries with entitled cheating wing nuts is never easy. But fighting back is your LAWYER’S job. There are legal ways to force him to pay support, and court ordered visitation is just that — you only have to share him on court-ordered days. The law backs you up on this. He doesn’t bring your son back? You call the cops — the cops have a COURT ORDER to work from.

      But really Peaches, he sounds like a pathetic slacker who really just wants to play daddy for impression management when it suits him. He wants to be free to fuck around on his own time. I doubt he wants more child care responsibilities.

      Just DOCUMENT everything that has happened and give it to a lawyer.

    • See that lawyer first. If you’re honestly worried that he’ll take your son then it’s no longer “don’t talk to strangers” it’s “don’t talk to your dad.” Your son lives with you. You tell the school/daycare not to let dad pick up your son, or to call you if/when he shows up. You don’t let your son go with his dad. Get your backbone. If he says something to you, you can respond with “you walked out on your wife and son when you started your affair. You can’t have both.” That is the truth. “But I need to see my son!” “Your son needs an actual man, a father that won’t lie and use him as a pawn to pick up women. Go ahead, look your son in the eye and tell him you’re not going to see him because you chose sleeping around with other women over him.” You need to go hard ass on him, set your boundaries and set them strong. You’re not going hard ass right now, which is why you’re getting walked on. Lawyer up, use your voice, protect your son.

      • You have to be careful what you say to your son here…there’s a lot of talk about “parental alienation” right now, and it could hurt Peaches in court if she won’t allow their son to see his dad “reasonably”. I’d suggest setting up visitation that is convenient for YOU and your son, not what Dad wants. And know that it will likely be continued if it’s working, so be sure it’s how you want it to be. I agree with CL, it’s very unlikely that he’s going to try to get a ton of time with your son. I wasted a lot of time and energy worrying about these things. I know it’s impossible not to, but I will say the sooner you get it over with the better. I wish I’d taken him to court immediately.

        • True, that’s why I said see a lawyer first. If she’s really worried about dad taking her son then she needs the help from the lawyer in what she pursues and she needs to address that promptly. I agree with Lale on the visitation part. If you’re not comfortable with dad having time with your son alone then adjust the visitation to what’s comfortable with you until you know what steps you can take. Set the rule that you only meet at grandma’s or something while you or grandma is present. It’s not unreasonable though to point out to him that he just walked out on 2 people and he can’t have his family life AND the AP, just get your ducks lined up for that.

    • You are scared to go all hard assed on a man who is screwing women and deserted you?

      He wants you scared.

      Screw him. He doesn’t get what he wants anymore.

    • Peaches,

      !. First of all, his friends won’t help him in a divorce action. That will all be settled between the attorneys, if you’re smart. Go NO CONTACT.

      2. If he has more money than you do, the courts will take care of that because some of his money will come to you as child and spousal support. A divorce will cost money, no doubt. But you have over 10 more years with a minor child to think about. He will probably scream, cry, throw a tantrum and do all manner of stupid nasty arrogant selfish stuff to get you to give up and accept the shit sandwich he would like you to eat. So what? What is worse than the way he is disrespecting you? And you are worried about going hard-ass on HIM? You say your dad would beat the crap out of him (so to speak). That’s what parents do when someone hurts their child. Take on some of your dad’s strength and resolve.

      3. Our friend notyou above suggested you stop letting your husband take your son anywhere without you. He has already shown he is not to be trusted. Set some limits. “If you want to see our son, come to the house and spend two hours. You can come over at 7 and stay until 9.” YOU NEED A CUSTODY ORDER. That will protect you if he is a law-abiding citizen. He has a job, friends, and a girlfriend. He isn’t going anywhere.

      4. Start writing things down. Do some sleuthing! Find out where he is living. Hire a private investigator if you need to. Keep track of when he calls, what he says, when he shows up. Try to figure out where any money or assets you had are or have gone.

      Divorce is a crucible, just as betrayal is. You are already in an awful situation that has many dangers. You may not see them now because you are living with your mother and your situation is not dire in terms of your living arrangements and child care. There are Chumps here supporting 3, 4, 5 kids on their own salary, trying to make mortgage payments or rent on a big enough apartment for the family. But you have zero protection NOW from him taking off with your son–for 8 hours with his affair partner, without telling you. He’s already done that. Next time it might be overnight. You have no protection from him dissipating any family assets. Do you have enough income to buy a home? Put your son through tech school or college? Get braces if he needs them? That’s what the family court system can help you with.

      • Everyone is right about a lawyer, Peaches. I found out the hard way! STBX has promised to pay me X amount of dollars each month, wanted to work out a settlement without attorneys. Guess what? He stopped paying me..shocker! I wish that I had hired an attorney right away! Financially I am broke. My Dad borrowed me the money for the attorney’s retainer. I’ll be paying Dad back slowly probably for the rest of my life, but thank God he helped me. I ended up having to go to COURT just to get some damn temporary support! I had to get a court date just for that, which meant waiting with no money, other than my small salary. After the hearing, the judge didn’t give his ruling until about 2 weeks later. I got temporary child support and temporary alimony, both of which Dumbass fought. The kicker? He makes THREE TIMES what I make! Turns out most of his money was going to the OWhore during the 3 year affair they’ve been having. I can guarantee you..the same thing is probably happening with your husband. I’ve never heard of a situation where the spouse was NOT giving money and gifts to the AP. You need to protect yourself and your son IMMEDIATELY. Had I done so, I wouldn’t be in the horrific situation I’m in now financially. It will take me forever to dig out of the mess he’s caused me by not helping out financially. And of course, he hasn’t paid a single bill since he left in January for the OWhore. Please please please follow the advice you get here! We’ve been through it..we’re going through it..and we’re sticking up for each other!

  • “…most attorneys do want a retainer…”

    That’s if you decide to hire them. But you can talk to several and get a feel for whom you think could work best with you.

    You need to have a very clear picture of what you can and cannot do before you go forward.

    • If there is any way to quietly ask around, I would do that. In my area, lawyers are fiercely on your side during the consultation, but somewhat less motivated (or concerned) once the fee had been paid. As with any profession, there are those who are in it because they care – and those looking to make a buck.

  • Oh, and Thank Heave you have your MOM and HER place to live. This is tough stuff under the most peaceful of circumstances.

    I recall one poor chump on here who was living in her car. Some of the greedy shit cheaters do never ceases to amaze.

    If you think he’ll retaliate by trying to cut off $$…there is this little thing called, “interim spousal support,” that an atty can advise you about.

    Laws differ in different countries and in different states in the US. I divorced in the US in a Community Property State. Children were adults so no custody issues.

    How income and property will be assigned is the second question you should ask.

    The first should be: How expensive can an ugly child custody battle get?

    Good luck to you.

  • My biggest regret in life is that I didn’t value myself enough to realize that what I wanted and needed was worth more than what xH offered me from very early on in our relationship. He never acted like he loved me, respected me, valued me. And, sadly, I was ok with whatever he was willing to give me, however begrudgingly, even as his second (or third or whatever) choice that I was.

    Really, I was his back-up plan, the boobie prize, when the other women he admired more didn’t admire him back. Yay, me!

    Yay, you!

    You have a guy who thinks so little of you that he is willing to openly date another woman while married to the mother of his child, and to say to you, you know, I’m just not sure I want you. And you’re willing to put up with that. That’s sad.

    What’s sad is that you aren’t completely disgusted and repulsed by a guy like that. I did that, too. It’s my biggest regret.

    I wanted the white picket fence–a husband and a couple of kids, a career, happiness. xH said he wanted that, too. But in truth, he showed me such a lack of respect and lack of regard and certainly not love, starting from the time we began dating. Other women interested him more, and he wasn’t shy about telling me, and asked me to keep our relationship quiet, because it might deter other women from wanting to date him. And I was ok with that. I figured I would take whatever I could get–and there I was, back in his bed! I figured he’d let me know if we were going to break up. And he did break up with me–twice–before I took him back both times. I was really young and inexperienced and shy. But I had a real boyfriend!

    My ex pointed out from very early on that he “would do anything” to be with our mutual friend, “L.” L and exH had so much in common, you see. Even from day 1, he was treating me like a drone, or, as another chump posted here on another section, an appliance. And there were many women just like “L,” each his soul mate, until the final OW came along, the one who finally rescued him from me.

    I didn’t even respect myself! Why would he respect me? Let alone he’s not respectful, but I put up with that crap! How pathetic!

    Are you an appliance–a place-holder for him? Is this what you always wanted to be to your partner in life? Your best friend thinks of you as someone he can confide in about a woman he likes enough to abandon his family for. Is that good enough for you?

    Because I recognize myself in your story, and your story makes me really sad. Why would you (why did I) pine for a guy who doesn’t love me? He doesn’t even see you! You exist. He doesn’t actually care for you.

    My older self would ask my younger self–is this what you want? Does it seem like he loves you? Is this a man who feels happy when you are happy, who dreams of a life and future with you as his partner? Is this someone who collaborates and builds a life with you? Who hurts when you hurt? Someone who values you–sees really great qualities in you that he wants in his life, too? Someone who respects and adores you? Who misses you when you’re gone? Who cheers for you? <—- I want that guy. My ex is not that guy. I don't think you have that guy, either. I think that guy exists. I'm close to believing that guy might want this girl in his life.

    How about you? I think you can and should do better, my dear.

    • Miss Sunshine, So TRUE. I do think though that in spite of our naïveté we were rock solid catches and that is what drew our disordered to us. I grew up in a dysfunctional family, who hasn’t?, but I was loved and at nineteen I was so sure of myself. Had a great group of friends. Did lack experience dating though. So have that on my list of things to work on. Pay attention. IMHO I think the disordered will eventually repeat the familiar pattern, it’s not like my ex ever examined his behavior . My ex isn’t going to be a changed better man for his POS OWife. He’s going to be the SAME person. So naïveté I believe had a stronger influence on us Chumps than lack of self respect. Frogs on a slow boil I suppose. I just always thought his behavior odd at times (and with each life challenge he grew more and more ugly) because if you had asked anyone in our community they all would have said we had a great marriage. Lol.

    • “My older self would ask my younger self–is this what you want? Does it seem like he loves you? Is this a man who feels happy when you are happy, who dreams of a life and future with you as his partner? Is this someone who collaborates and builds a life with you? Who hurts when you hurt? Someone who values you–sees really great qualities in you that he wants in his life, too? Someone who respects and adores you? Who misses you when you’re gone? Who cheers for you? <—- I want that guy."

      Miss Sunshine, I want that guy too! A good description of what all of us want. I've been looking for the past nine years and may look for the rest of my life, but I will NOT settle for less than *that guy* ever again. If I have to live alone the rest of my life without a relationship, then so be it. I'm not afraid of being alone. I am afraid of living a mediocre life with a mediocre partner.

    • Yep, Miss Sunshine….that was me as well. I should have seen it, and found it unacceptable, by month three.

      However, I think once we get through it all, we are better, stronger, happier people for it, so take heart Peaches – there are really good days on the other side!

  • “I’m kind of scared to go all hard ass on him. He has more money and more friends than me. What if he fights back? Or does something stupid like take our son and leave. I doubt he’d do that cause his business is here and all but it still bothers me. Has anyone had it backfire on them?”

    Okay Peaches, your questions are feeling a little familiar because fear of my cheater’s reaction was what kept me in the relationship far too long. What’s your fear about? You wouldn’t have these fears if you didn’t have some experience to feed it. Has he done some things that make you worry about him being “stupid” or otherwise explosive? Listen to that quiet voice in you and respect it. When you ask if it backfired on anyone else, you might be asking if anyone experienced their cheater escalating into a total jerk before the thing was over. That answer is “yes”. That’s why you build a support system with people like attorneys and private investigators and law enforcement (if you feel threatened). There are some who see their cheater disappear into the sunset at the first sign of confrontation, but there are many who experience full-on custody battles and long drawn out court battles. I was afraid for my life and went into hiding after I left, but my cheater was a real sick psychopath. I say, prepare for the worst and celebrate if it doesn’t develop into that.

    You sound like someone who has been trying to manage his disappointment for a long time. Consider abandoning that effort. He knows how to control you by being perpetually disappointed. I don’t even buy that he’s disappointed, he just sounds like a spoiled brat to me. Responsibility for his happiness belongs squarely on his shoulders, not on yours. It’s time to address what you and your son have had to put up with from him. Gotta love someone who calls a turd a turd. Glad you have your mother’s support.

    • My ex who initiated our divorce went bat shit. He had already groomed the community, and my story is here if you have the time, but in the beginning I sent him an email informing him of how I felt. Scared. And that I wasn’t going to appreciate being killed because he happened because he chose to have an affair. He’s a peace officer so it was t quite a struggle for awhile and isolated doesn’t even begin to describe our property. I did call the cops on him at one point…. Looking back I think you need to address this with your future lawyer as well. My settlement happened because I knew his secrets. But Entitled Narcs are scary to divorce. Read everything you can. And educate yourself. On Divorce. Finances. Dissipation of assets. Narcs. There is a wealth of info online. And my very best wishes. I know you want to believe he’s confused but people who do these things are not normal.

  • Peaches, you know why you need to do all of the above? Because any day now he’ll announce to you that you are through and that he has found his true love. Don’t let him be in control any longer. Take control away from him.

    • Absolutely, and not only that, he likely will have spent, moved or hidden money or marital assets to his advantage. Don’t let him get that kind of a head start. You need to get your attorney and start the ball rolling before he does.

  • Peaches
    Looking at the bigger picture:

    1. He’s a contractor. Do you mean a general contractor? Does he have an incorporated business? You say he “has more money than you”. Do you simply mean his pay is higher than yours or that he keeps money elsewhere (ie. under his company name). If this is the case, then you need an atty who can get you some help digging out the forensic financial details, if you yourself are not experienced in such things.

    2. Why am I suspicious? You say you foreclosed on your home. Did any equity remain after you declared you couldn’t keep up the mortgage payments? If so, where did that money go? Not to husband’s company I hope. You may need to pursue that if the house was in both your names…even if it wasn’t it was marital property.

    3. He moved you into your mother’s house, thereby getting you out of a marital home. You say your mother sold the “big” house. I hope to heaven she didn’t “lend” him any of the proceeds. So now he has established a situation where he is not seen to be housing you.

    4. Typical female me…postulating and projecting…but does not all this possibly look like he’s been planning to set it up so that he departs with the least possible payout to you. He may already have been planning this for a while. Sorry to suggest such an awful thing, but I’ve suffered a scheming-over-the-long-term scum spouse and sometimes you need to sit back, have a drink, and see the big picture. Then you can start seeing him as the adversary he is, and then the hopium will dry up so fast.

    5. You deserve better. It is out there. Be strong, think clearly, and have patience.

    • THIS. Marci is right — sometimes the cheater has prepared way in advance to fuck over their chump. Don’t think for one second he is too “nice” or would “never do something like that.” You would be amazed at the stories here, the horrible things cheaters do without one drop of remorse or conscience. My ex was willing to go further than most to fuck me over….. dude hasn’t worked a real job in years, let our house foreclose and declared bankruptcy and now has gone to court to get child support waived. But being left financially devastated after the cheater dumps you is all too common.

      • Oh geez….I hope that isn’t the case, but sounds pretty fishy. It would explain the delaying tactics. Peaches needs documentation of the affair, and a good attorney — and there isn’t a MINUTE to spare.

    • Wow, Marci. What a thoughtful and insightful post.

      Peaches, you really need to read this and line up your ducks, without telling your cheater your plans or consulting with you. It seems impossible to a chump that someone you loved and cared for could treat you in such a malicious and calculated way, but in your situation, Marci may well be right. He has manoeuvred you into a place where to the outside world, it may well look like the marriage is well over, you are both amicable about it, and your living/financial/child custody arrangements are established and agreed.

      You need to see a lawyer.

    • I said above that this reminds me of what my cheater did to me–and looking back, it was all planned well in advance.

  • PS Peaches:
    All the behavioural stuff can be put in a storage box once you’ve made the decision to divorce and go as NC as possible while your son is still a minor. So, your cheater’s dramas/blame games/stories are all for the benefit of his own act..the one where he gets cake, gets treats on the side. The stories are his sucker act for the subsequent woman or women. The stories he comes out with about you are just to keep you playing the game of hope, and supply of cake. Giving up reconciliation hope is a powerful move for you.

    He may be very adept at playing his contract work status as a smoke screen. Does he get paid in cash? Big red flag –

    • Peaches,

      These two posts from Marci have cut through all the obfuscating issues to the crux of the matter. (The more Marci posts, the more I like her style–tons of common sense and a backbone to implement it.)

      If you can wrap your mind around the following concepts and hold fast to them, you will be able to survive and take back your personal power.

      (1) It doesn’t matter “why” the man is behaving the way he is. ONLY his behavior and the damage it is causing are what matter.

      I REPEAT: It doesn’t matter “why” the man is behaving the way he is. ONLY his behavior and the damage it is causing are what matter.

      You will never figure his motives out anyway and will only re-traumatize and deplete yourself trying to do so.

      (2) Accept at face value that the man’s behavior has and will continue to severely damage both you and your son IF you don’t find a way to move the two of you from harm’s way.

      (3) Understand that you will need direct, personal help and support in dealing with him….from an attorney and probably a good counselor

      (4) That the very first move is to put on your “Big Girl Panties” and your “Business Hat” and begin the process of taking care of you and your child

      (5) As someone advised, organize your thoughts and all the facts that you know. Write them all down in chronological order. Convey that to an attorney and get advice about how to proceed in your own rational best interests.

      (6) KNOW that even if he appears to change it will be superficial at this point (and probably forever) and done in an attempt to suck you back in in order to maintain his “cake eating” status quo. Therefore resolve to follow through.

      Nothing prohibits you from re-marrying a genuinely changed man at some future point; HOWEVER long term evidence of sincere change (as in years of obvious demonstration of change) is the ONLY way to up the odds of even entertaining the notion of taking another chance on a person who did something of this magnitude to his family.

      Look at any “quick fixes” or apparent immediate and radical change on his part with a completely skeptical eye. Humans don’t change that quickly–if ever. Keep in mind that taking a long shot on a proven loser is HIGH RISK behavior on your part and that you need to know exactly the limits of your tolerance for risk and ambiguity (this is where counseling comes in handy)…. otherwise you will destroy yourself by continuing to “bet” on a different outcome.

      He changed the “rules” in the middle of the game. It is up to you to level the playing field and require FAIR rules again. Regardless of how this turns out. You have to do what you have to do…fear or no fear.

      • All of which brings me back to these words of wisdom from some anonymous author……


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

        • Thanks Not you. As always appreciate your wonderful advice. I will print this pearl out.

  • Listen to CL!!!!! She knows of what she speaks! My now exH left me and our two daughters while he tried to figure out what he wanted, me or OW. He continued (and I let him) to come over to our house for dinner on occasion, we went out on dates once a week, he visited with the kids, he called me every single day, etc. We were essentially still together but he didn’t live at home. Weird! AND VERY CONVENIENT for him! You see, he continued talking to and seeing the OW and I thought he wasn’t!!!!! Why??? I have no idea!!! I guess I believed him when he said he wanted to work on things with us and he lived with his parents while he got his head on straight!!! ALL LIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Do not believe him for one minute! CL is right. He is eating cake and enjoying it! He doesn’t want to totally mess it up with you but he wants to see if Ms. Resort is the real deal.

    You don’t want to be a back up plan! Kick him to the curb and let HER be the back up plan. Let her have him! He isn’t worth it!

    • My ex told me he needed time to think. I kicked him out. It’s the only way to go. He needs time to think, to ‘choose’? Make the choice for him. Divorce. Don’t be his option. You’re worth more than that.

      • Kara, Tonya, Peaches and others. I don’t have kids but I love my nieces and nephews to death and watched them grown into fine young adults, and now my great’s are coming up.

        “get the kid to like the OW so they won’t get mad at Daddy”.

        That just makes me completely sick to my stomach.
        I’m shaking because I thought my sitch was bad – a 7 yr old boy being subjected to this?? It’s just very disturbing to me. I just don’t think it gets any lower than that.

        Peaches – STRENGTH~~~

      • Nord – I TOLD my husband *I* needed 30 days to think. He agreed and moved into m/h. Immediately filed for divorce and got rid of all this things and changed the locks.
        Gad, I cannot believe I was that strong, but dammit, I was fucking MAD, especially when I tore the bed apart and found a cheap pair of lacy panties.

        He hasn’t been back in the house since I kicked him out in Jan. He wasn’t expecting it but I wasn’t leaving my home. It’s great advice somebody gave me, especially if you have kids or dogs – DO NOT LEAVE YOUR HOME!!! I tricked him. And, it’s working out well, so far. (well, not a trick – it was instinct kicking him out – self preservation maybe? It was for my dogs)

  • One bit of advice–make a calendar, going back as far as you reasonably can, of all the time your ex has spent with your son since he moved out. Detail the part about him bringing the OW along. This will be admissible in a court. You don’t want him claiming he has your child 50% or more of the time and therefore owes you little to no child support. You don’t want him suddenly demanding to have your child for more time simply because he’s caught on to the fact that his abandonment (and that’s what it is, my friend) is going to cost him money.
    Do it right now.

  • “That’s what we all call rewriting history. People who do questionable things to others actually start telling themselves a new truth. If they repeat it often enough it becomes more and more believable. And this is how people can destroy their family and still get up in the morning and look at their lying cheating faces in the mirror.”

    Spot on. We know a lot of these cheaters are narcs, bi-polar, lots of these type problems. Therapist told me a bi-polar person (W is bi-polar) often construct an entirely new reality that fits their version of how they perceive things . Thus, imagined slights like the emergency room fiasco can become, “You never really cared about me.”. And something with the tiniest kernel of truth (You forgot to make my dinner and you know how tired I am when I get home from work”) can take on a whole new meaning and rise to the level of total neglect.

    As I read the posts and comments here I see tons and tons of this crap. And if you are someone who is trying to do the right thing by your partner, it’s easy to take this stuff to heart, and think, “Wow, he/she is so angry, sad, hurt whatever, maybe they have a point. Maybe it is just me. Maybe I’m the one with the problem. What should I do to make this better?”

    • Excellent post, Chumpguy – that really resonated with me – what should I be doing better? I was never outright critized – it was more covert. Like, you want a vacation? From what?, he’d say. Thankfully, I’m one of the lucky ones that this treatment only went on for about 3 yrs…and, well, we’re almost done all this bs. Strength, all.

  • Hi Peaches:

    Loads of good advice here.

    Your husband has been trying to gaslight you, and as a result, you’re looking at what he’s thinking. You are spending your time trying to untangle the skein of fuckedupness. This keeps us Chumps stuck, and also fuels the entire Reconciliation Industrial Complex. The hope is that if you untangle skein–see things from his perspective–you’ll know what you need to do to fix things.

    It doesn’t work like that. You control only you.

    So, trust that he sucks, because he does. Then start to take control back over you.

    Set those boundaries, but don’t keep raising the divorce discussion. Just find reasons why your son doesn’t have to be with his dad. Try to disengage from talking with your husband. This should be easy, since it doesn’t sound as if he’s all that interested in initiating conversation with you.

    Find an attorney, but don’t talk to your husband about doing so–even if you become angry at him. This is very hard, but you can do it. At this point, your husband doesn’t really believe you’ll divorce him, and he’s stringing you along, making you believe that it’s all your fault.

    Since you’re turning your gaze inward, you’re having a hard time seeing what’s truly out there. Your husband is counting on this. The fact is, you and your son are Plan B. You and your son deserve better, so start looking more at what’s happening to you and take the steps to make that better future for you.

  • Peaches, CL is right, but instead of smothering your hope with a pillow, you need to smother him! And read her book! Be strong for yourself and your son! Sending Hugs!

  • Peaches: CL is right on as usual, especially with this: “It makes you the bad guy, the Big, Bad Meanie who is going to divorce him, when gee whiz, he’s just so confused.”

    As you’ll read on this site, your cheater like most is probably a narcissist. This is all about him making himself feel good in ALL ways, not just sexually. He wants to able to write the script of your relationship and divorce with you as the bad guy; you’re the one who drove him to cheat, you’re the one who left when he was just confused and wanted to work it out.

    The most empowering thing I ever did was to start writing my own script and realizing that his draft was a bunch of bullshit. No “good guy” in the movie of your life is going to be a lying cheater. Be your own heroine and take the lead in letting him, your son, and yourself know that you won’t stand for being treated this way!

    I promise the movie montage you create for yourself will be much more uplifting than his pile of lies, repression, devaluation, and oh yeah, cheating.

    You can do it!

  • Lawyer up, don’t tell your husband anything until you do that. DO NOT HAVE SEX WITH HIM!!!! Please don’t do that, guard your health.

    You said he has been living elsewhere since the first of the year. In my state, 6 months living apart without my consent is “desertion”. My ex was too wily for that though, he made sure he spent the occasional night and went on “dates”. That may be why your husband is taking you on “dates”, could make it look like living apart is consensual and resets the desertion date. If you live in a fault state, find out the rules. In fault states you can often get an “instant” divorce if you can prove adultery. Meaning you wouldn’t have to be separated for 6 months to a year first.

    Jedi Hugs!

    • Before my xH deserted me, I might have supported the idea that “divorce is too easy,” and that a 6-month wait is a good idea.

      These days I deeply resent a paternalistic government telling me that a 6-month wait is in my or anyone’s best interests. Absolutely vile.

      Live and learn, eh?

      • I divorced in a Community Property State where no-fault was one of the options
        …but no-fault required a waiting period.

        One could still divorce on “grounds;” AND, in that same state, proof of adultery could reduce the waiting period to only 1 month.

        Every state has its own little “tweaks.” It pays to know the law BEFORE you make your plan.

        There are pros and cons to the waiting period.

        In some cases a waiting period can be useful to a chump whose cheater has flown the coop and is planning to financially steal the chump blind.

        Allows time for “discovery” for financial fairness purposes.

        Its really hard to try to go back to court and adjust property settlement inequities after all has been done as a consent decree and recorded by the clerk of court.

        We never should allow a need for immediate gratification to cause us to shoot our own selves in the foot. Just sayin’…

        • Thanks for clarifying notyou, I put instant in quotes cos it ain’t really. You definitely need to get all the data before you settle or end up in court.

        • Here in Iowa it is ONLY a no-fault state. But..once you file for divorce, there’s an AUTOMATIC 90-day waiting period. I guess the state thinks you might reconcile or something..what a joke. No-fault sucks, too..because I didn’t do anything was all on HIM. And the court won’t recognize it.

      • Agree, file and then wait on your time, not on the fantasy suck all the family money, abuse everyone emotionally play cheating time.

        Own your time, file, own your time, think this spew on YOUR TIME.

  • You really need to get away from this. I ,like so many others, had all this and I was so blinkered plus I was confused by his sudden change in behaviour so I began to withdraw from him. Subconsciously but I did and that went on for a year or so. Unfortunately, when it came to D day and he made it all my fault, he had a lot of ammunition because I had stepped away from him, which with hindsight I now realise was a defence mechanism because my subconscious got it whilst the rest of my brain was trying to catch up.
    This made it a hundred times worse because some of what he said was true, so I took total responsibility, which just about destroyed me during the so called reconciliation. It was only when we had been apart for a while, I realised why I behaved as I did, it was a reaction to his poor behaviour towards me.During reconciliation I sparkled and danced the pick me dance beautifully because I really thought I had caused him to stray.
    Once he had gone, and I looked through old E mails ( for divorce) it became clear what had happened. He had undermined our marriage, I sensed it and tried to protect myself by distancing myself, he had a field day with that I can tell you whilst carefully ignoring the fact he had stepped away long before I did.
    Don’t let this happen to you, don’t let yourself be undermined and have your confidence destroyed, you are in a good position now, you just have to take a deep breath and start the fight back. Just remember he sucks, not you, however many times he tells you otherwise. Xxx

  • Peaches, I am sure your husband wanted to tell you but it was awkward, sure. It was really awkward that he saw what his life would be, living in a home with you and your mom, and his life looked really stark. Your dad died, and somehow he twisted that painful event of your family into all about him and now he has to look at you and your mom as, wait, he is aging he will die, yes he will die someday.

    The woman at the resort, his co worker is a new vision of his life. It would be awkward to tell you he was screwing her and you and your mom were 5 minutes away, your son also.

    He is in a fantasy, he drug your son and your family car into the fantasy. Your seven year old son. Reality is not in your husbands mind, he had no idea your son would tell you, in his fantasy your son thinks this is ok too. Only your son, sees this for what it is.

    Your son was put in an emotional abusive situation, and now you know. What are you going to do. You are also in an emotional abusive situation, your husband has abandoned you, he also doesn’t give a crap about your mom. What you thought your life was, apparently is too much for your husband, he wants out, he wants to play.

    Do you want to waste your time on a man child? Your son is more a man than your husband, your son speaks the hard truth to you, hear it and take action.

  • I am adding, he took your son there to see what the co worker thought of him. To make sure it was a go before he dropped the ball on you. So, how do you feel about your little son being paraded around?

    I hope angry. I hope you hope for a better life with this emotional child husband not in your life, with you with full custody.

    As for money, what do you mean you don’t make enough money for him now? Stop that right now. File today, then make money for yourself. It is set on the income on date of filing, the living conditions even at your moms, set, the type of home set.

    He will be set in a room, you will be set in a home.

    Protect yourself and your son, please get a lawyer and file today.

  • He ran all our cards up, ignored our kids, cashed in our IRA, got life ins policies on me and the kids.

    While I was thinking why is he doing this.

    He is doing this Peaches because it feels good to him, does this feel good to you? Does this make your mom and son feel good?

    Get your life set now by filing, think about this after you file. Please don’t let things disappear as you think this over while your world demolishes before your eyes.

  • Not angry at you, I am glad you are asking these things and saying them. It is so much better than rearranging yourself to let him continue this.

    You are actually in a very good position, you are most clear now, you are not months into him messing with your head.

    Trust yourself, you are asking because you already know the answer, and I verify you are thinking clearly, he is an asshole that you need to divorce and no way should your son have been in that situation and I highly doubt a court is going to let your husband have custody of your son….

    Document this visit, what happened, the time of it.

    Document it all.

    File he did this, he planned this, not you. I find it a little odd you lost a house before all this happened, HE PLANNED THIS ALL.

  • Peaches, I lived the life you are living now for 5 years and I am warning you: how you are living and being teated is straight ABUSE.

    Eventually it gets so bad you decide you don’t want it any more and dump/file/go NC. Only after this does it start to get better. It gets better. I am starting to have fun. It’s OK to be single. It is seriously not OK to be jerked around like this.

    Good luck, peaches, see a lawyer and file.

  • “Hope still gets me.”

    Reminds me of a poster I saw once: “HOPE = Hold On, Pain Ends.” As CL says, this shit is finite.

    Look, hope is not your problem. Hope is a good thing. Your ability to hope shows that you’re still alive inside and have the capacity for new growth. The problem is the object of your hope. You can hope all you want and that toad at your feet won’t write you sonnets. But focus your hope on that which is worthy, be it people or purpose or passions, and amazing things can happen. When you find yourself directing your hope at your horrible partner, redirect it, much as you’d re-direct a mischievous toddler, onto something you want to bring into your life. Then take some action, however small, to move toward it, even if it’s only googling that idea and reading about it. It might take weeks or months, but you will find yourself growing in new and healthier directions.

    • This is what I am working on. So much better to channel the energy into YOU and your goals.

      • Yep. I believe ANYTHING is better than focusing time and attention and (especially) expectations on a serial cheater. I mean it. I think your time would be better spent studying People Magazine or your utility bill or Sanskrit. Anything. If you can latch onto something with real growth potential, like, say, finishing a college degree or a meet-up group that shares your passions? That’s gravy.

  • All of these guys (swing a cat and hit the nearest one … any particular one of them will do) are interchangeable. But yet, they are all the same.

    To borrow a medical coding reference/analogy, when you look them up in the tabular index in attempts to assign them to a category, they all fall under “Neoplasms, Unspecified Behavior.” There’s no sense waiting for the Staging or further word on whether they’ve metastasized to other areas (the Gordy details of their exploits).

    In these cases, when you hear those words, “You have cancer” ( and you DO!) there’s only one option: Radical Excision. Period. Like cancer, you don’t mess around watching it, palpating it, measuring it against other people’s cancers, making slides of it, staining it and inspecting it at the cellular level under a microscope before taking action. You cut that shit out immediately.

    Don’t wait around to see how your special little cancer will manifest itself. Will it have far reaching tentacles? Will it disfigure you for life? Or will it stay somewhat hidden, surreptitiously doing almost imperceptible but irreparable damage to organ systems while you still look rather “normal” to outsiders?

    Does it matter?! All you need to know is that you’ve drawn the lucky straw and you have a cancerous cheater. Sound the alarm. Movie to reconnaissance mode and save what’s left of your life. You don’t need to wait around to see how your little darling cancer manifests its “unspecified behavior”. Taking the cancer analogy further, who are the luckier ones when they discover cancer? The pioneers who went before you, tried ll the quackery, WTF., or the ones who come long blind and benefit from the experiences of those who chartered the treatments before them? Yep, those who come along later.

    We’re trying to tell you that we’ve ALL been there. We’ve all experienced every iteration of the disease before you, and you know what? ALL were to no avail. All of us, in all our might and combined efforts, weren’t able to alter the DNA mutations that were replicating in every cell structure of our exes.

    We’re telling you, “Run! Don’t walk!” Don’t wait until you lose everything. Don’t wait until you lose your assets, home, self-respect, career, reputation, friends, family, and more like many of us have. We’re the ONLY people who have a right to give you advice because we know. Always remember (and I speak from painful experience here) the longer you walk down that road of dysfunction with him, the longer it will be for you, because you have to walk all that way back to get to Ground Zero and you don’t start YOUR new life till you get back there. And you’ll meet every critic and naysayer on the way back too. So why cause yourself double headache?

    You don’t have to keep hitting yourself over the head with all this. Stop now. Do it. Do it for yourself. he’ll, do it for US because we’re your biggest fans. We may have been slow on the uptake, but we enjoy the hell out of it … And live vicarious victories through others when one of you who come long after us is able to “get it” sooner than we did. We’re not jealous. Wether you on just as if the victory was happening to us.

    Hear that roar? That’s all of us us cheering you on from the sidelines!!!!!! Now go on, Run Forest Run!!!!!

    • God I hate typing on this damn IPad. Sorry for the missed auto corrects caused by my delay. Argh!!!

    • This is *The Master Analogy* for the cheater paradigm. It’s perfect, typos and all.

      • Me,
        So well said and the analogy to Cancer is perfection. I always refer to it as “toxic” but cancer is a far better analogy as that is what it is and everything you said is 100% right on. Love it and love you for writing it.

        I am in a way living proof of your anology, 4 months after I left my asshole cheater, my thyroid wouldn’t stop growing and had to be removed as the Doctor said he never saw a thyroid grow so quickly and it had to come out ASAP! Didn’t even test for cancer until they removed it. Thankfully it was Hashimoto’s disease and not cancer. I had a slightly enlarged Thyroid for about 14years before it starting growing like crazy and had it removed but after the Cheater, it exploded! I know it was caused from the stress of what I went through.

        I can never forget about Kelli who posted earlier that she received HPV16 which turned into Cervical Cancer from her lovely fucking cheater.

        So on second thought Me, your analogy isn’t an analogy it’s unfortunately an actual reality!

        Get out Now is right as it’s only downhill from the point of realization.

        It’s still amazing to me how fucking sick these people are and they walk around with the rest of us completely undetected or maybe a little weird but by the time you find out the depth of their sickness it’s too late! That is the scariest part of these freaks!!!

  • My CH early in our marriage was “staying” with friends. He wasn’t sure he wanted to be married, blah, blah, blah. Well, he told me he had found “the one”. He wanted to take our three little boys to meet this lucky girl. I flipped out! But my friend said I should allow it. She pointed out that most young women would not be happy to see his boatload of kids. So, he took our 3 yr old and our 1 year old. I kept the newborn at home. He also took along his three elementary aged boys from his first marriage. Lol! Once dear Claudia saw that he had 6 very real little boys, she was done!
    And he came home…
    Sometimes, these cheaters are simply stupid. Sometimes, we are chumps. Sigh…

    • Linda2…yeah, Six little boys would put the kibosh to the Skanky luver’s fantasy for sure. Hahaha.

      • I suspect she thought we were either divorced or in the process. He was actually just bunking with whoever…former mistress, etc. In addition he was enjoying my chumpy pick me dance of sex nearly every day. I want to go back and give my young self some sound advice! I was dancing for all I was worth! Knowing what I know now… I would have kicked him to the curb.

  • Peaches,

    He’s throwing you a bone knowing how vulnerable you are at this time. He is NOT A GOOD MAN. Good men don’t abandon their family for a piece of hot ass. You need to detach and undo your thinking about him. Your husband is dead to you. All you share is a son.
    I continued to have maybe a lunch/dinner outside the house with my STBX after the separation because I was worried about my 7 year old adjusting to not having daddy around so much. Almost 4 months out from D-day, she seems just fine. I realized that him asking to have lunch with us was CAKE for him. So he gets to fuck around and still have a family? That’s what he was doing while we were together before D-day. Nothing changed. I started realizing that I didn’t enjoy those lunches anymore like I used to. So, now I drew new boundaries and told him that there really was no need for them because the 7 year old is doing just fine.
    Peaches, it’s easier said than done, but the NO CONTACT thing really works. Even though you may feel the need to tell him how you feel or even tell him how ridiculous his cheater logic is, you must REFRAIN. Any knowledge of how you are thinking adds to his gas lighting and mindfuckery. You will never get a straight answer and if you do, you may choose not to believe it. He is a deceptive SOB, right? Be cool and be silent. Show no emotion in front of him. Keep on this site and keep reading from the old posts to the new. You will learn so much and you will understand that you are not alone. Chump Lady really saved me from extensive pain. You didn’t break it and you can’t FIX it. Just keep on and don’t look back.

  • I haven’t read the other responses yet, but darn, this hit home with me. Our kids are the same age, and my Ex played a very similar game. It took me forever to except that he would behave the way he was. I think he got OW by making them feel sorry for him. And as soon as he had someone saying “poor you,” he started to believe his own BS. He would never say he was having an affair, he just had a long list of grievances that seemed to come out of nowhere. I went from being his friend and wife to someone to wash his underwear and listen to his verbal abuse.

    One day he posted a suspicious picture on Facebook and I asked him to leave for the night so I could think about things alone. He used that as an excuse to stay gone for over a week and verbally abuse me because he said I was keeping him from his children. I didn’t realize until later that he had gone to stay with another woman (not the one from the picture) and was telling her that I had kicked him out and wouldn’t let him see the kids. He accidentally texted me when he meant to text her or I wouldn’t have know.

    A few months after he moved out, he snuck a new OW to his house at Christmas. I say snuck because he went out of his way to make elaborate and needless plans to lie to the kids and I and keep them out of his house so I wouldn’t find out. When that didn’t work, and I dropped the kids over to bring him breakfast, because he was “sick,” he hid the OW in his bedroom until I left. Then he brought the kids home without saying a word about it and let them tell me about his “friend.” It was bizarre.

    He was a completely different man than I thought he was. He hasn’t changed, or had a change of heart, or apologized. Nothing. He just loves the drama and has tried to keep it going even after the divorce. So please, keep trying to trust that he sucks. It sounds like he really, really does. Don’t let him get the better of you by keeping you second guessing yourself. It’s so hard! I wish I’d had CL then so I could have trusted my instincts. Luckily you do!

  • He could also report these lunches/dinners to others as “proof” that you are “okay” with what he has done to you. Helpful in impression management. I know mine was desperate for it appear to all that I was “surprisingly fine with everything” as he reported to his family — after I made clear to them (unbeknownst to him) that I was devastated.

    I sat next to my cheater at a school play, thinking it would help our daughter to see us as a solid parental “unit”. I rethought it when a friend took this as a sign that we were on good terms with each other again. Wrong message to everyone. Later I sat apart from him at a recital, and our daughter was perfectly fine. She acknowledged each of us sitting separately and exhibited no trauma whatsoever that we were. And it gave all a clear message that we were no longer together.

    We are willing to eat shit sandwiches in an effort to help ease our children’s transition. Sometimes it is unavoidable but sometimes our children don’t need us to. We learn as we go.

    • Sorry, this was supposed to appear as a reply to chumpalot’s July 24, 2014 at 3:55 pm.

    • Last night I sat in a school class room listening to a teacher outline my sons upcomming mission trip, with STBX sitting in the next row over.
      Son picks up chair form beside his father and places it in the ile so he can be next to his friend, STBX was left all by himself.. (Nigel no friends) no offence to any Nigels out there. Kids, staff, those with a brain are not stupid they no the score and as long as there is respect no one really cares in the end.

  • Never inquire of someone whether he or she is cheating or if there is someone else. Just go detective and find out. I know it is too late in this case and many of us made the same mistake.

  • Much, much thanks to everyone. And thanks CL for this site. I am finally accepting what I guess I’ve known for a long time-he definitely does suck. I’m relieved to admit it but it’s also really sad. But playing through all these scenarios I know that if he did come back it would be awful, more awful than it’s ever been and I could never trust him again.
    Goodness, now all the horrible mess of filing and talking to lawyers-ugh
    And changing my locks-he’ll love that one
    I’ll be reading this site over and over again to help me get through it

    • Peaches, it will be tough. I’m not going to lie to you. But staying is way more tough. And please do come here often, even just to be reminded that he sucks and you deserve way better. Hopium is a funny thing because our cheaters do have some good qualities and in our weaker moments, we may latch on to that. Always remember, though, that those good qualities and the cheating belong to ONE and the SAME person. He can go be “nice” to someone else until he can’t.

  • Yes Peaches, what Uniquelyme said. It is tough. No doubt about that. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my entire life and I hope to God I never have to go through anything so traumatic again. I can promise you that there is an end to your pain. I never believed it at first either but I do now. It took me longer than most to get over it but that’s the way I am. But I got to Meh and seriously, it was on a Tuesday.

    You have to keep reminding yourself that this person you loved does not love you. As hard as that is to grasp. Because, dang! We are lovable! You must protect yourself and your son. When these people ‘fall in love’ with their Schmoopie’s their heads are up their ass’s and they don’t care about us anymore. We are standing in the way of their Twu Luv. I read a research article somewhere once where it specifically stated that when cheaters have affairs and ‘fall in love’ they actually begin to hate their spouses. We are the ‘enemy’ keeping them from true happiness *snort*
    Let him go Honey.

    Keep coming back here every day and reading this blog. Chump Nation has your back girl.

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