I am still in the “pain” period, but think I am moving on quickly to anger. He can’t decide. He “cares” about me but is not in love with me. He won’t admit to anything even though (using technology skills I didn’t know I had) I caught him. This is so painful — close to how I felt when my mom died suddenly when I was 22. I never thought anything would be worse than that. But this is.
I’m sorry you were chumped. (((Big hugs))) from Chump Nation. We want to help you through this pain.
Here’s your mission, should you choose to accept it — stop caring what he thinks.
You summed up in a very short letter exactly what the problem is with the chump condition — we look to the cheater for direction. Oh, he “can’t decide”? His love-o-meter tilts toward “caring” but away from loving you? He won’t admit to anything?
Fuck him. Right this minute stop giving him any power to hurt you. Are you going to put your life on hold while he decides? Are you Door Number One, Two, or Fifteen? Are you the consolation luggage set?
He doesn’t get to dictate the terms of your self worth. You do. It’s either acceptable to you to be a lukewarm option at his pussy buffet or it isn’t.
If it’s not acceptable to you — start calling the shots. Tell him to leave. Lawyer up. Make a plan.
But whatever you do, stop looking to him to explain this or validate you. He’s incapable. He’s too high on cake. He’s unnerved that you busted him, but now that you have, he’d prefer the option where you pick me dance your heart out to win him back. You’re supposed to cling to “HE STILL CARES!” Wow! Maybe there’s something to work with here and if I Just Try Harder and Improve Myself he will LOVE me again!
That game is rigged. He didn’t tell you and he didn’t break up with you because he enjoyed having both his affair(s) and you. He likes cake. Now he’ll goad both you and the affair partner(s) into round after round of the pick me dance so he can be central. If he walks away from cake, (and that’s so hard for cheaters), it’s only because you’re demanding accountability. Cheaters like the easier option. If they think they can snow you into accepting cake, or feel they are clever enough to take it underground, they’ll do that. If they think the affair partner will accept their side dish place, they’ll go with that status quo.
But here’s what he WILL NOT do — give a shit about you. He doesn’t “care” — his actions demonstrate that. He cheated on you, lied, and when confronted was not contrite — he played the poor ambivalent sausage.
There is no way through the infidelity shit storm without pain. If you give your decision-making authority to a cheater (will he choose me? will he win me back? will he explain this?), you’re choosing more pain. If you start enforcing boundaries and value yourself? The pain is finite. You’ll snatch your life back from this loser.
He can’t decide? Doesn’t matter. YOU decide.