Cheaters lie, liars cheat. We all want to feel exceptional, but unfortunately, most of us can be snowed like gullible kindergartners. Why yes, the tooth fairy DID leave me a dollar! She’s going to use my molars to build a castle.
I recently got a letter from a very kind woman who told me she was a unicorn. Upon discovery of her husband’s affair she did all the right things. She lawyered up, accepted no blameshifting bullshit, and began moving toward divorce.
But then she missed him. There were the kids. And he promised a post-nup! A REALLY favorable one.
Long story short, they reconciled. Everything seems pretty okay. He’s sorry, takes responsibility. Crisis dealt with.
I wrote back, said that I sincerely wished her the best, but please get the post-nup.
She wrote back that essentially, hey, they’re fine without it. Plenty of money, no worries, etc.
Look unicorns, you want to gage the depth of your cheaters’ sorry? Demand a post-nup. Put that sorry in a legally enforceable property settlement. Get a credit report. Know where ALL the money is going, so that if you ever have the misfortune of another D-Day, you’ve got a faster track to divorce, with all the messy particulars worked out.
Oh, but he promised me a fair settlement.
Gah! I’m sorry, I can’t fold your promise and tuck it in my wallet. A cheater’s IOU and $4 bucks will buy me a latte at Starbucks.
But isn’t it enough that he promised? He seemed really deeply remorseful when he said I could have the kids and the 401K. I don’t want to take advantage of his guilt. Maybe people will think I’m money grubbing, or just reconciling for the security. Maybe he’ll think that. So, I’ll be the bigger person here and wave off his generous offer…
Look, a post-nup is a completely useless piece of paper if you don’t use it. (Same with pre-nups. I believe in those too.) The only person who controls if a cheater cheats again is the cheater. So he/she should be tripping all over themselves to give you this assurance of a fair settlement. If they’re NOT? That’s a BAD SIGN.
Note that I said FAIR settlement. I did not say 100 percent custody, everything they own, and the right to gouge their eyes out with a rusty spoon. A fair, enforceable PROPERTY settlement. I’m not a lawyer. Talk to your lawyer about the particulars. No one should sign something that is criminal or unenforceable.
But unicorns — I encourage you to look divorce proceedings squarely in the face and DEAL. Those “sorry I fucked the barmaid” promises should come with collateral. Sorry is as sorry does.
Because as much as you don’t want to believe it, shit can change. That person you love, who already played you (but is so very sorry), can play you again. You’ve got money now? PROTECT IT.
No one who is truly remorseful would take offense at your self-protection. The cheater has just destroyed your home life, your sense of personal safety, and above all your trust.
And they want you to take their word for something?