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Your Most Un-Meh Moment

i-will-not-lose-my-shit-i-will-not-lose-my-shit-i-will-not-lose-my-shit-ive-lost-my-shit-3fa32So I’ve been getting my son off to college this week — his first year. I’m sure those of you with college-age kids can relate to the endless trips to Target and the time warp sensation as you pass the toy aisle. Hey! When did you outgrow Thomas the Tank Engine? Aren’t you going to beg me for some legos and threaten a meltdown? When I did I get so old that baby wipes aren’t in my shopping cart? Or fruit roll-ups for that matter.

And then it dawns on you — you will never buy these things again until you have GRANDCHILDREN. Jesus Christ! You’re old enough to be a GRANDPARENT. Upon reflection you realize your own grandparents were YOUNGER than you are now when you were born.

Where did that towheaded toddler go? Oh right, he’s off to college to become an economics major.

Time flies when you’re being sued for custody. Oh those golden years of his youth. I deserve some sort of victory lap for surviving all that and raising this gargantuan man-thing.

And it would’ve been all bittersweet and magical, this taking my son to college experience — except that I bred with a fuckwit. Less than 24 hours before my son’s freshman orientation, his father texted to say he was going to drive up for the parent convocation. And my son shared this with me (the text came in that very moment) as I was dealing with an insurance company because a tree limb fell and crushed my son’s car. (Thousand dollar deductible, thank you very much.)

And I kind of… just maybe… lost my shit.

If you want to encapsulate my entire parenting life, it was that moment. I’m on the ground doing crisis management, multi-tasking a hundred expensive, time-sucking tasks and the fuckwit is swanning in — last minute, uninvited — for some parenting glory.

Consider — this man owes me thousands in unpaid child support. He dropped the kid’s health insurance years ago without a word (meanwhile selling a home for a half million and working under the table.) He has not paid a dime towards son’s college expenses. He did not send son a Christmas gift, or recognize his birthday, or high school graduation. However, he IS available to drive four hours north to come to a parent convocation.

Yeah. I kind of lost my “meh” in that moment. What I probably should’ve done was recognized that his father being there or not is now my son’s problem. I don’t control what fuckwits do, and neither does my son. If he wants to hang out awkwardly with a fuckwit, that’s his business. I can eat the shit sandwich of co-existence.

What I did instead is tell my son that SUCKS. And fucking hey, I EARNED the right to be here, NOT HIM. And the bastard OWES ME MONEY and he’s got a LOT OF NERVE to show up today of all days.

My son didn’t look thrilled at the news either, still it was his news to deal with, not mine. He texted his dad not to come, it wasn’t “a good time.” (Interesting word choice. That’s how his father blew him off years ago with scheduled visits and paid-for airline tickets, his father canceling with less than a day’s notice.)

The fuckwit wrote back that he was going to be there anyway, but it was fine if son didn’t want to see him.

Son said “He’s trying to make me feel guilty.”

Then I felt guilty. Then I felt bad that my un-mehness might tarnish his otherwise happy day.

What happened is, after I lost my shit, I tried to let it go. We enjoyed our evening. Had a steak dinner. Did another round of shopping. Got up butt-early to move him in, made his bed, matched all his socks, enjoyed how excited son was, had a nice lunch together — and then with his permission, I skipped the parent convocation.

Did I skip it because of the potential fuckwit sighting? Or did I skip it because I would’ve had to kill four hours before it began, and it looked like two hours of speeches in an outdoor tent?

Not sure, but I skipped it. My son wanted to find the cross country coach and meet his new roomie. I was kind of cramping his style.

Still felt bad. He deserved to have parents with no drama at his convocation. I didn’t deliver.

But then again, I didn’t feel THAT bad. I raised a really great kid, who got into college with a half-ride academic scholarship. It took a ton of parenting work to get him there — my son knows it and I know it. I enjoy all the intimacy that goes along with that hard work. His father does not. The fuckwit can swelter in a tent and pretend to be parent of the year all he wants to, I won.

It’s still a work in progress though, to internalize that I won. Lest you think my Chump Lady alter ego has it All Worked Out — I still struggle with meh. So today, as a Friday challenge, I thought we could all share our most un-meh moments. And how we got past them.

Here’s to new beginnings (and empty nesting!) TGIF!

 

 

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  • I can’t get too detailed on this one for various reasons, but here goes.

    After several years had passed, he wanted occasional email contact “as friends” because he “missed my friendship”. We exchanged a few undetailed status update emails on life with large time gaps between responses and I started to think maybe I actually could be all Zen about it.

    Then he wrote me a big complaint email about his wife and asked for my advice, because, don’t you know, I am always so wise and he really misses that etc. La la la.

    That pissed me off. I told him he was violating her privacy, it was totally inappropriate, this is exactly why our marriage failed and he was repeating history, on and on.

    Then I wished I hadn’t sent it because why the hell had I even walked down this road! Foolish. So I wrote again and told him never to contact me again for any reason.

    Later, it became possible to block a sender (yay for technology advances). No more douchebag cluttering up my email. Whee!

    • Wow, that is so incredibly inappropriate to reach out to you under the guise of missing your friendship, only to complain about his current wife to his ex-wife. I’m just flabbergasted! This guy has no common sense or any sort of judgment. What a whack!! I’m so glad you told him to never contact you for any reason. It just goes to show that these cheaters never learn from their mistakes or from any life experiences. You really didn’t lose anything by divorcing his ass, he’s the same moron that he always was and always will be. Shaking my head…

    • If that is your worst non-meh moment with your son…congratulations!

      The best part about breeding with a fuckwit is as that as the kid(s) grows up, you get to be more and more honest with them.
      It’s all no surprise to your son. Even I remember your son’s cancelled vacation – so your son definitely does.

      As they continue to grow and mature, you will both find comfort from your shared history, no matter how tough, and even laugh about it. Really, only the two of you know how ludicrous those moments were and it will be a relief that he can share those ‘memories’ with you.

      He knows the sacrifices you made and will be able to process and articulate his past even better as time goes on.
      He is going to meet tons of new people, some with better stories and some with worse. This will enable him to better judge the actions of both of his parents. College will bring fresh eyes to his past.
      I promise you that you will be appreciated more than ever.

      You now have four years to mentally prepare for the joy of graduation (don’t forget to make hotel reservations ASAP). If you’re lucky, there will be two graduations.

      I attended the smaller ceremony where my son walked across the stage and the awards ceremonies with my other son and now daughter-in-law; fuckwit got the graduation with several thousand people.
      Then there is the wedding someday but chump nation will help you through that too ?.
      Bask in the joy of those Target trips and making his bed. Those are the precious moments to treasure.

      Last – “not a good time” is one of the best revenge lines a chump can hope for. Right now it’s a Convication. Before you blink, it will be when fuckwit needs him…just as much as your son needed him as a child.

      • Great post Rebecca and CL! Related to the “not a good time” line, my adult daughter now refers to X as “my distant cousin.” And uses him only for money. Meanwhile, I’m getting all the funny stories and pics of my dear darling granddaughter as she starts school.

        WARNING TO CL AND ANYOTHER POOR COLLEGE PARENTS: Now is not the time to see Toy Story 3

      • At what age did your kids start to “get it”?
        My boys are 13 and 10 and I feel like they are just starting to understand that they can have no expectations of the exhole. This is sooner than I thought it would happen.

        • My boys are 11 and 13, and are starting to understand. I had an “un-meh” moment yesterday after their dad (who had uncharacteristically agreed to look after them for a whole week, arranged months ago for my conference trip) let it slip that actually OW was looking after them for part the time while he went away. He knows they would hate that, as did I. Worse, he refused the offer of the boys’ grandfather to step in. After a rare explosion where I criticised their dad as selfish and stubborn, for the first time the younger boy plucked up the courage to text his dad to tell him they didn’t want this.
          To cut a long rant short, I don’t think these “un-meh” explosions are such a bad thing if they are rare and proportionate to the thoughtless behaviour. I suspect it’s validating for the kids to know that it is OK to be disappointed and angry, and to learn about setting boundaries, rather than tiptoeing around, fearful that the absent parent will be outraged and reject them even more.

          • Vastra – ‘I suspect it’s validating for the kids to know that it is OK to be disappointed and angry, and to learn about setting boundaries, rather than tiptoeing around,,.”

            This is excellent.
            Tiptoeing around real events causes a lot of superstitious thoughts and God know what else.
            I guess it’s why Steven King continues to be prolific.
            When you hide things, Evil crops up in every corner..

            When us young folks of the 60’s grew up, everything was a Big Fucking Secret.
            OMG – the ‘C’ word!
            I never liked secrets and backstabbing because of it and, although I didn’t have kids, I’ve always kept my moral compass on never keeping secrets. (within family especially!)
            I knew my Dad was having affairs on my mom. I heard him on the phone back when one house shared a couple of landlines on one line.

            Bottom line – I HATE LIARS!
            Personally, I think this puts Liars into perspective:

            http://www.spectacle.org/0500/lies.html

      • What a wonderful response Rebecca. My daughter calls my x her “biological father.”
        All three adult children see clearly and the drama has become non existent. Because no one gives a damn about x or his life or his feelings.
        I have too many un-meh moments to mention. Good news? In time, with meh, they mean nothing.

  • My last un-Meh moment was Easter this year. The week before I asked both my sons if they were working because I was making dinner. Neither was scheduled. So I made plans and bought a beautiful leg of lamb to grill, candy etc. On the Thursday before, my eldest tells me his father has invited him and his brother over for dinner and did I mind. Now you must understand my eldest has Asperger’s and the memory of a dried trout. I blew up! And went off like a firecracker. I said that if his father wanted to share a holiday dinner with them he needed to call at least a week in advance to make sure plans weren’t already in place.

    Now rewind to Christmas and he texts them 36 hours before he is planning on going out of town to give them their gifts and buy them dinner. Youngest couldn’t/wouldn’t make it. So Prince Charming meets Eldest in the parking lot at Wal-mart and hands him the gifts. Needless to say the stockings he gave them looked like something you would give a five year old and the gifts were gift cards in unequal amounts. This mess I had to clean up on fucking Christmas Day.

    Not only did I tell them to inform Prince Charming (I think this was the first time I referred to him as that in front of my sons – they laughed) about the week in advance rule. BUT if he wanted to celebrate Christmas with them, it also needed to be arranged a week in advance and they had to open presents in front of him. I was not going through what I went through at Christmas again. Needless to say, they both texted that they had to work and wouldn’t be available most of the day and I had plans to make dinner for them. They did not know that I basically told Prince Charming the same thing about a month after Christmas.

    “Oh, okay” was the reply they got. NO card, no store brand candy, nothing. Both of their birthday’s have passed, one got lunch and a card and as far as I know the other nothing. He is such a fuckwit. He is the one ruining his relationship with them not me.

    My therapist asked me last night if I felt sorry of Prince Charming yet. And replied only on those occasions that mark growth points for our sons or when we do something really fun. But it lasts about a nano second. HE made the choice to leave.

    • Wait, lldodd60 – – I’m pretty sure that my eyes must not have believed what I was reading the first time I saw your post, hence this one. Does your therapist WANT you to feel sorry (i.e. have pity) for this galactic asshole, or is s/he hoping you WON’T feel sorry for him? I think the word “yet” is confusing me. Do you think you should “get to a point” where you feel sorry for him?

      • He is making sure that when I do it is fleeting. Fleeting moments are healthy, obessing over his screw ips is not. He says I am healthy because I dismissed them quickly.

      • IMHO, ClaireS, I believe the “feeling sorry” is recognizing how disordered these people really are. I recognized right away that ex was not someone to envy and I did feel sorry for him. He is missing out and had what most men want! That’s what all my guy friends say! He had the best life with me and our three kids but instead he chose to honor his dick (and in that process blew up our marriage and the good relationship he had with our children). He will never get that back. He can not undo that mistake. He pretends now, to love the Owife, but in reality his life has become meaningless. He has all the trappings of success but he sold his soul for it. Meanwhile the kids and I rise up to life’s challenges every day and we have each other. That is the best gift. We KNOW this. I feel sorry for people who will never recognize the poor choices they made gave them the life they are now so unhappy with.

        • Drew, I could have written every one of these words. My ex makes me mad at times with how he behaves these days, and I will never not be upset by how he treated our kids, but I know he’s an empty, unhappy person, who threw away the best things he had in his life, including TONS of the healthy positive rewards an authentic life brings, in order to get …. kibbles, and some strange, for a few months. It’s actually quite pathetic and sad.

  • In these kinds of lopsided parenting situations it is very diffult to get to Meh. Meh is letting go of the hurt and injustice of the affair to your relationship with yhe cheater. The problem with Meh in parenting is that children will just accept so little in order to have a relationship with the cheater. They will accept broken promises and bad behavior, and still wsnt that person in their life. And its hard to deal with that injustice on top of the fact that the cheater doesnt do any of the heavy lifting. Its just endless.

    The only thing that gets me through is the no contact and the fact that I know my daughter sees it and she is only 4. She says things like, “I live with mommy. I only visit daddy.” She sees the difference. Its amazing.

    • Agree with you PigletWiglet that parenting makes it hard to have meh some days. My ex had multiple affairs, Ashley Madison account, and the works 3 years ago. We did the reconciliation play (because in hindsight it was all pretend changes) and at the beginning of this year the behavior changed and after denying everything, lo and behold he’s on websites asking to take care of other women financially and sexually. He likes to tell people we divorced because he lied and I got fed up with it. I always chuckle at that line 🙂 his classic minimalization and compartmentalization.

      I lose my meh when he’s a Fuckwit to the kids. I could care less about him and we got along fine at my son’s birthday party. A month later, he says he’s not attending my daughters birthday because “I did not make him feel welcome enough.” WTF?!? Hearing my turning-4 year old cry asking for her dad and calling him to see if he can come made me lose my meh… he had to go wash his car during the 1 hour of her party but managed to ask why we didn’t leave him cake to try when he picked her up (his weekend) made me lose my meh. Him neglecting to refinance his car out of my name post-divorce then being late on payments which hit my credit made me lose my shit.

      Still working to find the right boundaries in coparenting and contact. Unfortunately, one call about the kids leads to him finding a billion reasons to call so he can chat with me every… damn… day. Working on that one. Ironic since the kids will say they miss their dad or want to talk to him and I’ve just been honest – “I have never denied your dad calling you or visiting you at any point.” They’re settling into their meh too though it’s hard to see them still believe all his false promises.

      • Someone wrote on a thread recently that it doesn’t violate “meh” to get pissed about things that would piss off anybody.

        Your ex is goading you. He sounds like an immature jerk. Sorry you’re dealing with this.

        • To me, Meh is the moment you look at someone and think “What did I ever see in YOU?”. It doesn’t really eliminate the past, or mean that you won’t get upset at things the person might still do if you have kids especially. It’s just an absence of romantic feelings I guess.

          And the best thing is that there isn’t really a timeline for this process. It can happen at any time. Immediately, even. I never would have believed this but I have had it happen a couple of times. The best way I can describe it is like you had a spell on you, and it breaks. So don’t despair over how long it will take. It may be sooner than you think.

  • I appreciate your candor. It is indeed hard to maintain meh with someone you bred with. On some level, though, I believe that our children’s self- esteem demands that there be something good they can see in their other parent. Something, anything. After all, they share a lot of DNA with that person. Also, children really want to believe that at some point, when they were conceived, there was love involved.
    Am I wrong? What do other people think?

    • I sidestep this. I’m not the person to say what’s good about my son’s father. I do, however (and did the evening before college) tell him what a great person his dad’s mother was. There’s shared DNA there. She really was a terrific person, who adored him, and to fuckwit’s credit, he did look after her. (He also inherited her estate and cut his sister out… but that’s another story…)

      We aren’t their PR machines. I should point out in my case, that my son’s father suffers from diagnosed mental illness. So it’s difficult to parse out how much is personality disorder and how much is illness. My brief second marriage was to a serial cheater.

      I think these things are very difficult when there’s infidelity.

      • I should also add, my son doesn’t suffer from low self-esteem. He’s pretty cocky (like a teenage boy). And he’s got very good boundaries. Much better than his chumpy mother.

        I’d like to think some of that is in part to me modeling assertiveness (after being a total chump).

        • Heck yeah, and part of that also comes from seeing his mom get mad partly ON HIS BEHALF. One of the things that elevated my boundaries from wobbly to strong was seeing my own opinions about the fuckupedness of situations reflected in the views of others. It helped me to to confirm that my view was right, no matter how much someone else tried to guilt, bully, manipulate, or fib me into believing something else.

          Here’s the thought process I envision (at least over time, if not specifically in this situation):

          Dad texts, son thinks “I’m not OK with this, but alright, whatever.” Son tells mom, sees her lose her shit. Son then thinks “I’m not OK with this, and mom is REALLY not OK with this, so I don’t have to deploy the ‘whatever’ defense. I’m going straight to NOPE.” Seeing you get angry about this stuff models that it’s ok for him to be angry about it, too.

          Also, WELL DONE on the parenting front. You raised a healthy, smart, non-fuckwit while simultaneously keeping the fuckwit brigade at bay. That’s really something to be proud of.

        • I don’t know you personally, but based on your blog, I have to conclude that any son of yours is absolutely terrific regardless of who his father is!

            • By the way, I know you hear this all the time, but this blog has been like precious balm to me every week during my recovery from the trauma of infidelity. I’m a year and half out from DDay and I still need it. Thank you.

              • Oh god I so agree with you! Chump Lady and Chump Nation are just wonderful – life saving, empowering and a reminder that we can get through this together.

            • Congrats Tracy on having a amazing son with of self esteem and boundaries. 🙂
              Question now, is what are you going to do with all those clean unused towels and tons of hot water?

        • Good for you! I’m so sorry to hear all that.

          My 52 year old brother just passed away. My parents are still alive and I am thankful for that….But, I honestly don’t know what my father and younger brother -37 and from my fathers’s second marriage ( the one he left my mother for) were thinking when they decided to allow my dad’s second wife ( he’s had three) to come with them. My sister put her foot down! Thank God for Bossy older sisters who feel the need to run everything…lol. and told them ..” No Way Could She Come to the funeral or anything else!

          They listened. She helped them drive because my Dad can’t drive at night and my 37 year old brother only had four hours of sleep after getting off work and couldn’t drive all night. ( Ha! My 29 year old Marine son managed to drive 12 hours home in the middle of the night after working all day. He’s a Marine!! What can I say?…lol.)

          Anyway, they dropped her off to stay at the beach when they pulled into town just a couple of hours before the funeral because she’s rich after suing her last husband who cheated on her. She reaped what she sowed!! Karma…yes!!…

          She didn’t show up for a thing. My brother asked me If I wanted to see her before she left. I told him I didn’t have time. I was respectful as I could be. She’s his mom but No Thank-you!! On top of all that it came out years ago that she molested my brother (the one who died) when he lived with them for a couple of years. She also tried to make out with my other brother while he visited from college once. She’s about 20 years younger then my Dad.

          Your son will be fine. Honestly he will. We’re all in our 50’s now and still deal with this but we manage! Bless you as you find some extra special time with your husband now!!

        • Best wishes to you this coming year! My youngest, also a boy, just started his first year of college, also. His older sister and brother went away to school, but Youngest decided not to exercise his brilliant brain all throughout high school, and his grades dictated that he will do at least two years at a nearby commuter school. Once he gets the good grades going, then he can transfer if he wants. He’s working part time,going to school full time.

          Part of me is kind of glad he’s going to be around for another couple or few years, (although, I am not happy about the reason.) I’m very close to him, and when the inevitable day comes that he does leave me, it will be bittersweet.

          Here’s to new beginnings; second chances; the circle of life!

    • @Ali I get what you’re saying, and I think I’ve heard other people bring up points like this before. I don’t think you need to believe that some love was involved in your conception, in order to grow up to be a healthy, functioning member of society or anything. The moment of conception is nothing magical, nothing that has true meaning in the rest of their lives–they won’t remember it obviously–the everyday, and how they are brought up and what environment they’re brought up in long-term is what matters. Children that result from bad situations totally different from ours (like rape, physical abuse, drugs, etc.) can grow up to be lovely people, and the fact that there may have been no love in their moment of conception doesn’t matter. It doesn’t reflect on them, not one iota.

      For myself, my kid is very small and doesn’t remember my ex ever living with us, so I have it kind of easy in terms of maintaining my goal of never “bad-mouthing” my ex in front of the kid. My therapist, my parents, and others have pointed out that if I’m the one constantly ripping on the ex, my kid will feel curious about him and sympathetic and think it’s just passionate anger, not facts, making me say that stuff. But the fact is, my ex only likes the beginnings of things, and the shiny and the new and the strange. He can’t maintain anything, be it a relationship with a person, a project, a job, etc., and he never has. He only talks to and spends time on people who he thinks he can get something out of (money, ego strokes, etc.). My child will see this on her own, in time. I need do nothing but stand back and (painfully!) let it happen. Life is real, and I can’t hold that back from her…much as I might want to shelter her from ever feeling let down!

      So yes, I’m trying to make sure I never direct any attention to ex specifically when in front of the kid. The ex just doesn’t deserve it. But I will show emotion when it comes, and I will speak truth when asked. If I’m feeling sad because I’ll miss my kid while she’s away, I’ll say that plainly, emphasize that it’s okay to feel sad sometimes, and there will be no guilt trip involved. If I’m asked “Why did Daddy leave?” I will answer as matter-of-factly and age-appropriately as possible. She’s smart enough to draw her own conclusions about intention, infliction of harm, etc. from just the facts. I’m sure I’ll update here over the years and we’ll see how this grand plan goes! Heh.

    • My kids father is a self-absorbed asshole. I would never lie to my kid and tell them he’s a stellar upstanding guy, because he just isn’t. When he forgot holidays and birthdays, that shit was on him, not me. Also, my kid’s self esteem is not dependent on me lying about Dad and making excuses for him.

      My kid is older now and knows what Dad is. My kid has healthy self-esteem, is nice to old people and animals, and when she tells me about the latest flaky phone call or ridiculous email from Dad, we have a big chuckle.

      If I had lied all these years about what a great guy he is, I’d look like the asshole now wouldn’t I?

        • +1000. From experience.

          The silence and the secrecy were horrible. We were steeped in an existence full of lies, abuse, and NO ADULTS seeming to notice, let alone tell the truth. The void did so much damage to us kids. Fastest way to make someone crazy short of sleep deprivation and physical torture: deny the truth of what they KNOW they’re living. Gaslighting a chump is horrific. Gaslighting a child is worse. They’re literally dependent, don’t have forums like CL, and don’t have adult friends who *might* say something.

          With one caveat**, I say: Tell the truth as a journalist would — just the facts — in a very neutral tone, as if you were describing a car accident you saw. You don’t want to scare them too much, but you also don’t want to spare them. Car wrecks are harmful and To Be Avoided.

          And if cheater doesn’t come through for holidays, birthdays, vacations, LIFE? Tell the truth: “Honey, I’m so sorry. It’s not you. It’s not normal. That’s NOT what normal parents do.”

          ** find out, from a family law specialist, exactly what constitutes parental alienation in your state or country. Find out what you CAN say — meaning, run the exact words you’d like to say past the attorney, and see if they pass. What I listed above would not constitute parental alienation in my state.

          • ClaireS – “And if cheater doesn’t come through for holidays, birthdays, vacations, LIFE? Tell the truth: “Honey, I’m so sorry. It’s not you. It’s not normal. That’s NOT what normal parents do.”

            I’m glad you said this. As much as we need to come to realize that normal spouses do not cheat or abandon their families and it is not us but it is completely them, I think that it’s just as important that kids know this too. Normal parents are there for their kids on the important events and know about the not so important things. They know who their friends are and what they like and don’t like. They recognize that they are their own person and not a miniatures to be dragged out and displayed.

      • I have a friend who did just the opposite, Rumblekitty. She’s a fellow Christian and believed with all her heart that she should never say anything negative about her N husband around her children. In fact, meeting her initially made me feel pretty guilty about being so transparent with my kids. (I spoke the truth, and of course they saw a LOT of crying and frustration when dad neglected all of us.)

        Today, now that Friend Who Did PR is finally leaving, her kids blame HER. My kids? They know the truth of what ex did to me, they’re seeing his neglect repeated in their own relationships with him, and I don’t have to do a BIT of explaining.

        “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” Or make you really mad, if you’re a disordered narcissistic asshole. 😉

        • I wouldn’t say I was negative, I was truthful. There’s a difference. 🙂

          There is never a reason to gloss over the truth. Ever. I can’t imagine the mind fuck that is to the kid, watching the Chump still talk lovingly about the person who ripped the family apart. It doesn’t make any sense.

          Sometimes the truth hurts, but that’s life. Everything in life isn’t perfect and nobody should feel like they have to bubble wrap their children against reality. My parents divorced, but I wasn’t up at nights cutting myself over it. (My mother didn’t make us feel like it was the end of the world either, because it wasn’t.) My Dad was a complete and utter dickhead, but surprise, I’m still here and it still has absolutely no bearing on me. That kind of attitude is what I instilled in my kid.

          • I think that NOT addressing the truth, and pretending everything is ok, can lead to depression. It’s irrational and very confusing to kids and adults, too.

          • I completely agree. I grew up in a dysfunctional alcoholic family and was in my 30s before I understood that it was NOT normal for daddy to sleep in the car parked awkwardly in the yard in the middle of the afternoon. Or mothers to nail their blinds down and lock themselves in their rooms for weeks on end. I assumed all seventh graders did their own laundry.

            You have to establish what normal means for your kids. Their mental health and development depends on it. Our society depends on it.

            • “You have to establish what normal means for your kids”
              an excellent explanation of why stating the truth and having the balls to stand up for yourself establishing acceptable normal behavior making clear what behavior is unacceptable and abnormal between two people in a relationship.
              Regretfully I didn’t stand up for myself making it easy for X to lie and feel superior. Not setting boundaries made it look as if I deserved to be mistreated because if I hadn’t wouldn’t I stand up for myself? I was living in denial, making excuses being “nice” the good wife because the man I married didn’t mean to treat me like shit.

          • As someone who during the marriage kept doing PR work for the EX when the kids had already figured out he was an asshole, I did them no favors – and they have pointed it out to me themselves. In fact, I’ve been chastised repeatedly for telling them he was this great guy when he wasn’t and they saw it. It has taken time for them to be able to completely trust what I say because of it.

            We do ourselves (and our children) no favors not being appropriately honest about these people.

      • Rumblekitty tells it like it is.

        I am the son of a cheater dad and chump mom. I am the brother of a chump sister with deadbeat dad to my 21 yo niece. So, I write not as a parent, but as a dude who has seen the three women I love the most hurt by douchecanoe dudes.

        My dad married OWife. OWife was all up in my shit when mom took me to the dorm my freshman year (way back in the nineties). Mom suffered in silence. Now I look back and think she was weak. She should have scheduled time with me away from my cheater dad and his whore.

        My chump sister has raised a daughter who, in my opinion, has terrible taste in guys. My niece’s dad bought her a car when she graduated high school. He owes my sister thousands, and has never been to a school function for niece. I went to many school plays with Match Girl to see my niece, e.g., Grease. My sister has modeled chumminess.

        Again, as a child of divorced parents, I can say now that I focus on the times my mom was weak when dealing with my now dead father. I didn’t need her to do PR for him. I asked my mother a lot of questions after I got chumped. I know now for example, that my father cheated on her while she was pregnant with my sister.

        This could get really long, but heres my point. Fuck that dude and his swooping in. Tell your son you never want to see his dad. Tell him you will schedule times with him when you have the chance of running into his father. If (when) douchebag tries to weasel in, your son knows where you stand. You needn’t do PR for that guy. I’d say be as negative as you want to be. His dad sounds like a predator based on his cutting his sister out of the estate. Be strong – that’s what a boy wants to see. He needs to see his mom be strong. Anger is a great display of strength to a guy. It’s cool. You did great.

        • Wow, Ian! Thank you!

          I’m a strong fighter/survivor of multiple Traumas, including two cheater alkie parents. Your perspective validates how I’m handling things post abandonment and DDays 1-10: my kids discovered. To my adult kids, I tell it like it is but find as time goes on and NC expands, there’s not much to say about STBX– my life is too full of great things! To my middle schooler, I don’t say much but am open to her feelings of grief and anger. She also discovered the cheating before me so she knows enough of the horror for a lifetime.

          No fake (eat shit sandwich) all together family-time for me? I’d rather be climbing mountains alone while kids and STBX do anything- not that that has happened yet!

        • Speaking from experience as a super Chump I kept my mouth shut while X lied and blamed me for his leaving. I thought I was taking the high road, I mistakenly thought that by not saying anything and X tearing me down people who knew me would surely see he was lying to excuse his behavior.
          I was wrong, and now I realize it was what I did the entire marriage. Magical thinking that everything would be okay and I’d be appreciated for remaining quite and not confronting the truth. X is an asshole and only took advantage of my stupidity.
          Eventually he convinced my son that I’m not worthy of respect and by keeping my mouth shut and being “nice” I allowed it to happen.

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      Not if you have to lie. A family that is fed lies is a family that is rotten and will crumble over time. Children have excellent bullshit detectors- we train them to ignore them. You can fall back on the old maxim, “If you don’t have anything good to say, say nothing.” if you want to take the absolute moral high road. But I don’t think these sperm donors who abandon their children deserve protection.

      But part of growing up and being an adult is learning that people are shitty, and that can include one of your parents. Does this suck? It sure does. What’s new?

      Life is hard. Candy coating the character of their parent will only cause them more pain when they are older, need to someone to co- sign a college loan or a mortgage, perhaps the sane parent is gone or tapped out, and the Freak Parents says…..This is not a good time.

      I never thanked anyone for telling me a lie. Give them the truth, raw and wriggling. It will save them years of therapy.

      *Most people are not in therapy for someone telling them the truth. Think about it.

    • There was love involved at least on my side. I’d like to think there was love involved on the “other side” too but I’ve given the benefit of the doubt to her on countless other things and have been sadly proven wrong. I’m just at the point right now where I want to keep the kids out of the conflict as much as possible and not badmouth their mom anywhere around them (and I have directed my family and friends not to do so as well).

      I remember when I was a kid and both hearing both sets of my grandparents say some not so nice things about one another here and there. And I was about my kids’ age when that happened. I didn’t like that then and I haven’t forgotten about that. I try to keep that in mind even though it’s so very hard not to scream about their mother to the heavens. They don’t deserve to hear about it even though it’s probably inevitable that it will happen.

    • Ali, my kids were adults (barely) when the shit hit the fan in our lives so keep that in mind. I initially tried the “we just need some time apart, it’s a mutual decision, no one else is involved” lines with my kids which was absolutely not the truth, so that they wouldn’t hate or be mad at their dad and everything would be all sparkly when he came back home (which at the time I was sure was going to happen). What that resulted in was my son feeling sorry for poor ol’ dad who was all alone [son not knowing about massive porn habit and dad’s series of stripper girl friends] so son felt he had to pay Dad extra attention. So I did all the parenting work and my ex reaped tons of pity and attention. I finally heard one “poor ol’ lonely dad” comment too many and told my kids the truth about why we separated. My daughter had already cut her dad out of her life due to his refusing to help pay for her college and wanting her to leave the expensive school she loved to go to a local, cheaper, community college. After hearing the truth (and accidentally running into his dad’s stripper girlfriend his dad on a spur of the moment visit) my son cut him off too. Do they need to believe he’s a good person? No, because he isn’t. Telling them otherwise would be a lie and I won’t do that again. They need to know that he is an emotional wasteland so they don’t make the same mistake I did of believing he’s capable of loving them. He isn’t. Better the ugly, painful truth than a beautiful lie.

      • I have to say too, in all honesty, that I never was a big fan of the “worry about your kids’ self esteem” movement. I tried to raise my kids to be good, honest, caring individuals and when they failed to be any of those things they got called out for it. “Hey kid, you’re acting like an asshole (or whatever age appropriate word I was using at the time). Knock it off!” My evil MIL used to give me lots of parenting books that were all about never damaging a child’s precious self esteem by telling him he was doing something wrong. That’s how she raised her kid. I rest my case. So far, and my kids are now 24 and 22, I have had no regrets especially since people regularly tell me what fine human beings my kids are. I’m pretty sure no one is saying that about my ex.

        • xMIL lectured me a couple times about my mothering–yaknow, about disciplining my kids, and the like. I remember being so confused, trying to figure out what her point was. Point was, her son apparently was bad-mouthing me behind my back. I’m not perfect, but I’m pretty solid as a mom. Ask anyone (except xMIL or the Coward. They weren’t around and didn’t see nor appreciate everything I did and do for my kids.) And, seriously? Hopefully she realizes that she has no room to lecture me. She won’t get the chance ever again, anyway. She’s a wonderful grandmother, and I still believe she was a really good mom, especially given theat she was abandoned by a cowardly husband herself. But lecture me on my mothering? She should have realized her kid had done well to find me. But neither of them did. Too bad for them. My kids know I am a good mom, and their opinions, as well as my own, mean more to me than theirs.

  • If even Chump Lady can lose her shit on occasion, that gives hope for the rest of us. So thanks Tracy for fessing up.

    I won’t be near ‘meh’ until the Kunty Kibbler is out of the house, but the “swooping in for parental glory” part certainly resonates.

    Fellow chump 4a.m. 4ever gave me yet another great piece of wisdom on this just this morning, as KK made another such attempt at this:

    “She can mirror good behavior in short bursts. It will either be just enough to keep your girls bonded, or so little that it makes them question her motives.”

    I told her that her insights — much like Chump Lady’s — are like little hits of adrenaline to my system. It must be what cheater kibble feels like.

  • I think it’s more about security (for children). They want to know that BOTH parents love them and will be there for them. When one shows up last minute (without the heavy lifting), the children do not see the injustice of it all. They just want the love and admiration of both. It’s very difficult to be the heavy-lifter and keep your mouth shut for the kids.

    • I agree Mavis up to a certain point depending on their ages. I never knew what love was and spackled his Good Guy image while he led a double life.

      When he abandoned my granddaughter I told her he was selfish and let her know through modeling how to say NO and speak up for herself. Kids have to find their voice AND know how to use it.

    • Mavis, I agree that all kids want to know that both parents love them and will be there for them. But the reality is, some kids have a parent (or worse yet, both parents) who do NOT love them in any healthy way and who will NOT be there for them. Keeping that truth from kids makes them grow up feeling crazy or like there’s something they are doing wrong, or both.

      So I don’t think we need to editorialize, but we do need to be honest about a parent’s poor character and selfishness. Because those will continue to have impacts on the kids’ lives, and they will deal with that much better, if they understand what they’re dealing with.

      Many chumps spackle and manage the cheater’s relationship with their kids during the marriage. They need to step out of that, and be way more honest.

    • I agree that all kids want to feel loved by their parents. I also agree with KarenE, I, as most chumps, have learned that not everyone is capable of healthy love.

      My X’s version of “I love you” really means “you make me look so good/you are so very useful to me.”

      So I tell my kiddo that there are different kids of love. There is love between grown ups, love between sisters, love between siblings, love between a kid and their mom, and love between a kid and their dad.

      In our case, we have a mom/daughter kind of love, which is one of the strongest kinds of love that exists, she comes from my body, I started loving her the moment I knew I was pregnant with her, that love grew even more with each move of her growing body inside of me. That love grew with every single of on our times nursing, every time I changed her diaper, cuddled with her, soothed her as she struggled with colic, dropped her off and pick her up from nursery school, pre-K and every day since she started elementary school.

      That is the love I focus on when we talk about love. If she asks about her dad’s love, I tell her that it is a different kind of love that is felt between her dad and her, and I remain vague, stating that over time, that love, like ours, will evolve and change.

      Then I refocus on our own love, and how we can show our love to each other while we are together or apart.

  • Mine was last night. Still very fresh on my mind. Earlier this week my daughters phone was messing up so she had to get an old one of hers fixed to use. So I start getting her text messages on my iPad. She gets one at midnight on Wednesday and I see that she has texted someone that I don’t know thanks for taking her phone to get it fixed and the reply was “Glad I could help”. I haven’t seen my ex since last football season and the first game is tonight (daughter cheers) so I’m already psyching myself up all week dreading to have to see him. Something just told me that text was to and from his new girlfriend. (The first one since our split two years ago that I know of) the kids haven’t said a word about her so I have no idea how long they have been together. I felt they should have given me a heads up. I stewed all day, spiraling down about it, whining cause I’m alone and cheater has a girlfriend so long story short at 5 o’clock yesterday I was screaming at my SON when he happened to call me on an unrelated note who took daughters phone to get it fixed. He finally said “Well it may have been Kelly” and I said “Well there it is. Thank you son for finally having the balls to tell me. Then I hung up. I’m so embarrassed and ashamed of my behavior. The kids probably didn’t tell me to protect me. I texted son at 2:30 this morning my apology. No reply yet. I just really lost it when I should just been thankful that my daughter was polite to someone who did her a favor and just asked my son outright what I wanted to know instead of brow beating him and then sarcastically shaming him. Ugh! I suck. I know I should have been ready for it but I wasn’t.

    • You don’t suck. Sans technology, something very similar happened to me. I got screamed at because my brother kept a secret about my dad’s second wife. I didn’t get an apology. For a couple of days I was outraged. Then it passed; school, my friends, and my two hard-core hobbies filled most of my time and thoughts. Plus she acted pretty reliably after (made food, did laundry, the “normal” stuff). In short, it died down.

      Okay, so you lost it. More important? You demonstrated for your kids: People make mistakes. Sometimes people get really upset. People of good character admit their mistakes, and say sorry. Excellent lesson, if you ask me, especially given dad’s example (betrayal, lying, abandonment).

      • Thanks ClaireS. He did text me back and said he accepted my apology. But I’m going to call him when he gets off work to do it in person (over the phone).

    • Sketchyokgirl, you are doing great. You just won’t allow yourself to be gaslighted or lied to by the people in your life, even your kids.

      I think you have just done the most important parenting of your life. You’ve shown them clearly what decency and boundaries look like and how they hurt people. Really hurt them.

      This is going to really spur your kids’ awareness of what really went down with your Asshole ex and you.

      Just wait for those numbers to add up.

      I think this was a turning point.

      Love you. Sending laser beams of support.

  • For two Mother’s Days in a row my ex has planned vacations – out of state – for him/the affair partner now wife/and our two boys (age 15 and 20). Last year he took them to Florida for a beach vacation and to learn to scuba dive. How could I say no to that or even ask or hint that it bothered me? I sucked it up and spent the weekend with my mom and made the best of it. This year, a month before mother’s day he announces to them that he has booked a cruise to celebrate mother’s day with their step-mom. A 7-day cruise…when he contributes nothing…not a dime…to our older son’s college expenses and pays the minimum child support required by state law for our younger son while “self employed” and hiding income. When my sons sheepishly asked if it was OK for them to go away for MD again…I started crying. I couldn’t help it! The tears just came out. 52 weeks in the year and the cruise has to be that week?? But I quickly stopped and realized what a fun opportunity this was for them both. Something I can’t afford because I pay the bills and shit like that… I did tell them honestly that it was hurtful to me and that I was sure their dad intended it to be – but that I truly wanted them to go and have fun and all I asked for is a phone call on MD to check in. I then did what I call “flip the script” in my mind by asking “what is the positive here??” I asked my sweet new husband for advice as well, and although he was very, very angry at my ex’s behavior he immediately said that we would make that weekend (and week) all about me. He then planned a three-day trip for us to the mountains (we both LOVE the NC mountains) and we enjoyed a teenager free weekend and then the remaining week after work watched movies, ate out, and made whoopee without worrying about shutting the bedroom door! 🙂 It ended up being a wonderful time for us to connect as a couple (we had only been married a few months at that point) and I was able to greet my sons when they came home relaxed, refreshed and genuinely happy for them and ready to see all the pictures. Oh, and the AP/wife didn’t get to go on the cruise with them!! Her daughter had a “breakdown” right before they left and she was unable to leave her with family and had to stay behind (her daughter, sadly, struggles with mental health issues). I’m sorry if it makes me a bad person, but it was poetic justice that she wasn’t able to go. It also forced my ex to actually focus on his sons and spend time with just them. In all, it was a total WIN and I am actually hoping he takes them on another trip at the same time next year!! (but I’ll never let him know that because it would take away his reason for doing it…I’ve become smart like that in the last few years 😉

    • So, for all you newer Chumps with kids going through divorce now, THIS is why I had it put in my divorce decree that I get EVERY Mother’s Day weekend. I did say he could have every Father’s Day, but there is NO reason my ex-husband and his AP/Wifetress EVER need to spend Mother’s Day with MY kids. I knew he’d only want it to screw with me.

      • In my state (or city?), it is standard for decrees to specify mothers get Mother’s Day and fathers get Father’s Day. Smart of you to think ahead (cuz he probably would have tried to screw you).

      • It’s in our separation/divorce agreement that we each have the kids every Mother’s Day/Father’s Day and alternate Christmas Eve’s/Thanksgiving’s etc. until they reach the age of 18 and can decide for themselves. My oldest was 18 the first time his dad pulled this stunt. Oldest son rarely sees his dad (has only spent one night in his dad’s apartment in 4 years) but of course being a teenager he wants to go diving and on a cruise (where he is legal to drink in Mexico…how fun was that!!). How could I tell my youngest he couldn’t go on a diving trip and then on cruise when his older brother is going? I was/am in an impossible “no win” situation. I did, however, talk to an attorney who stated that he has now voided our agreement. Soooo…I have not adhered to it in ways he can no longer dispute (financial stuff like keeping a certain amount of life insurance payable to him…it’s now payable to my new husband…guardian info. re: my younger son has been changed in my will, etc). He can’t pick and choose which parts of the agreement he wants to follow, so as far as I am concerned it is now null and void in its entirety. He can’t back out on child support as that is enforced by the DSS in my state, and he provides no other support anyway. So, he has screwed himself in a way.

    • What a beautiful, heartfelt post…and a happy ending to boot!

      I love the way you you were able to turn this situation aound by focusing on spending time with your mom and then your new husband.

  • “It took a ton of parenting work to get him there — my son knows it and I know it. I enjoy all the intimacy that goes along with that hard work. His father does not.”

    This! Yes!!!

    ….yet you still get to hear the endless blameshifting that the kids aren’t close to him because of something YOU did, not because of his disgusting, neglectful behavior.

    I’ve gotten pretty good at brushing it away. nocontactnocontactnocontact

    I know the truth, my kids know the truth (even if it’s hard for them to admit about their own sperm donor of a dad), at the end of the day I believe that even LimpDickster knows the truth.

    I AM MIGHTY, even with occasional relapses of chumpiness and intermittent losses of meh. He SUCKS to infinity raised to the power of infinity. The End.

    • Yeah, my X still spouts the nonsense that “Tempest alienated DD15 from me,” even though he knows she is strong-willed and cut him off herself at age 13. I forced her to have a dinner with him 3 months after D-day (when she was already NC with him) and it was disastrous. He tried to blameshift his affair onto “marital problems” and “I thought your mother didn’t love me anymore.” She shut that down immediately, told him it was ALL his fault, and faced away from him the rest of the meal.

      And yet it’s still my fault she’s alienated from him. ho hum.

      • Hats off, Tempest! To raise children who recognize injustice and call out bullshit – well, there is no endeavor more worthy during this life experience.

      • Maybe you should do your JOB, Tempest, and teach her all about the awesomeness that she just can’t necessarily see with her own eyes, and know with her mind which is not as awesome as his is, Tempest! Clearly, that’s why, she doesn’t adore him.

        By the way, when we transcribe the Cheater Script this will be in there: “We split up because we grew apart/had marital “problems.”

        • I know, Stephanie, yet ANOTHER failing on my part. No wonder he cheated (cue my sad face).

          I think the “We grew apart” line warrants an entire chapter in the Cheater Handbook.

  • ‘I won’. One of the most difficult aspects of getting to Meh was knowing I did indeed win the moment I threw him out and filed. It took me two years to get my power back and to fully understand and know I could only control myself.

    My therapist said, “He will hang himself and cannot maintain any relationship.” This was key in standing back and allowing my adult children and granddaughter to experience the disordered and his mentally ill whore without my interference.

    True to my therapists statement he had minimal contact and each and every time the noose got tighter. Last thanksgiving there was a last minute invitation and I was dumped. It hurt like a motherfucker and I saw it for what it was, image control and USE.

    Each child has told me the same thing. I don’t know who he is. That easy going laughing dad is angry and knows nothing about their lives. They met and came up with their own plan. The wound see him not her. In her absence they report personality changes.

    I had a setback engaging with the entitled last month and opened the door for entitled rage. Never again.

    My granddaughter was also abandoned. She has had a hard life with many disappointments. At 59 I have a 16 year old granddaughter . At her graduation I will be there as always knowing and celebrating the life I was involved in for 18 years. I will know her friends names, her struggles, and accomplishments. I will be forever in her heart.

    My life would have been very different if I had not found this blog. It gave me hope and a future. MEH, it’s real.

  • Since X left I’ve taken what I called the high road and ate shit sandwich after shit sandwich..,
    Son has spent every holiday with X and his GF, I don’t her from him on my birthday or Mother’s day.
    Evidently it’s more beneficial for him to believe sad sausage stories and my high road has back fired.

    Son graduated from college in June, he gave me one ticket to his graduation and informed me X and his young gf would be there with four Switzerland friends. My thoughts raced to sadness that my son wouldn’t be celebrating with an intact family, how awkward it would be for me to be alone, looking pathetic watching parents together smiling, watching their child walk across the stage, chatting and I get to look at the lying piece of shit and his young GF, and the Switzerland Friends who are no longer my friends smiling, relaxed and loving life all who have had little to do with my sons’s education.
    I was the one who went through infertility treatments to have him, talked to him everyday since he was conceived, read stories, played with him, music camp, read to him, took him to mommy and me, crafts, nature walks, swimming lessons, science camp, birthday parties, taxi, sacrificed so he could do these activities, last minute school projects, volunteered in all his classrooms almost everyday, went on every field trip, Room mom, PTA, ran the Scholastic Book Fair for his schools, band mom, took him to lessons and this is how it all plays out. His father had little to no interest in his education. After devoting my life to my son and his education I’m treated as the outsider.
    I found out the graduation was going to be on live cam. I called my son and told him I would feel uncomfortable being there under the circumstances but I’d be watching on live cam. He got upset with me.
    I haven’t had the un meh moment yet, Now that my son is an adult, a college graduate, I feel as if my time has come and deservingly so. I feel like it would be freeing . Not sure when or how at this time since my son isn’t speaking to me. He will when the newness of his graduation wears off on proud Dad. Aggravating and sad at the same time.

    • I feel for you. I attended my son’s university graduation with his brother last year. We were told x was going to be there as well. I literally was losing sleep beforehand worrying I would lose my shit and have a meltdown.
      Fortunately x had a job commitment and had to bow out literally days before. Made the visit so much more calm.

      • I was losing sleep too, exactly what I was afraid of, me having a major meltdown, as memories came flooding back to me. Thomas the Tank Engine, looking back at him in his car seat, first day of Kindergarten.., then looking up and seeing the jackass with his much younger GF and the Switzerlands,
        I would have been a mess. Not to sound paranoid but knowing him this was another opportunity to hurt me.
        You were so fortunate to have yours back out.

        • That’s my biggest fear in thinking of interacting with my ex — that all those terrible, painful feelings will come back or that I’ll be overwhelmed with rage. It would have been so nice to talk things out at the end of our marriage, but we just couldn’t communicate. Talking to him was always like talking to a rock. The only way I know how to cope is to stay away from him, but it will be hard when we have grandchildren and have to interact again. We attempted to talk to each other at our son’s wedding but it was awkward and painful.

      • My daughter will graduate college in 2 years. I am hoping X will adopt his usual selfish position and not want to fly out-of-state to be there with his AP/GF. My daughter may not even tell him she is walking unless he asks. I have no desire to see or communicate with him (I’ve had enough mindfuckery, thanks). Mostly I hope that if he is there, I don’t stab him with a plastic fork.

        • Why limit to plastic? Upgrade. Use the metal tongs in the serving platters. They’ll get farther up his rectum.

          • Oh, Chumptitude–you have no idea how apropos the chopsticks are!!!! I have been studying Chinese language on and off since my undergraduate days, have a secondary degree in Chinese history, and my house is filled with Chinese art, furniture, etc. My kids also studied Chinese, and we were gearing up toward a family vacation to China in the near future.

            Instead, 3 days after D-day, X (then-H) went to China for a conference, supposedly by himself, but instead took his Chinese AP (now live-in GF). Fucking sociopath–he knows he is fighting for his marriage and still takes his fuckbuddy on a trip he knows I would have loved to have gone on. [BTW–that wasn’t even an affair I knew about until recently; I divorced him on a gradwhore affair from 8 years prior.]

            Now, despite this additional betrayal, I still love Chinese history, and Chinese language, and the people in the Chinese community in which I am immersed, just as I still love the English (even though Cheater X is English). But well-positioned chopsticks in X’s privy areas–ahh, the height of revenge fantasies!!

            • Oooooh you just made me mad all over again with that story!! I am happy you’re recovered from such a horrible insult. But I’m sickened by his cruelty.

              Ok I am calming myself by remembering that news of the cheating is a gift–the golden scissors. Fuck him. What a prick.

              • Thanks, Miss Sunshine. I’m not sure why indignation from other chumps acts as a salve, but it does.

                Yes, Hannibal is a horror, and that much more dangerous because he’s cultivated a veneer of civilization and has an Oxbridge accent. Thankfully, I now trust that he sucks so much that he and AP/GF could perform half the positions of the Kama Sutra in front of me, and I’d be bored.

                Your “golden scissors” comment really hit home–I’m headed to the second anniversary of D-day (Sept. 11th) and am fully realizing that d-day *was* a gift. I had tried to leave Hannibal before for emotional abuse, and always got suckered back in. I was this ||close to asking for a divorce when D-day hit (the devaluation those last few months was horrific). I now realize I am [WAS] such a chump that I’d probably have been talked back into trying to work things out with him if I hadn’t discovered his gradwhore affair. D-day was my get-out-of-jail free card.

                It’s very strange to consider the worst thing that ever happened to us (knowledge of our cheaters’ betrayal) as also a gift. I need to keep mulling that one over.

              • In my case the cheating was cruel, it was horrifying, and it was the final straw in a heap of devaluation, emotional neglect, and contempt. The discovery and ensuing loneliness was humiliating.

                But I had been so unhappy, too, and at the point of wondering how I would ever get out. I hoped that when the last of our children went off to college that we could recover some of our intimacy.

                It wasn’t meant to be.

                There were times where the thought of growing old with him gave me revulsion. I felt a lot of guilt over it, too. Not any more. Now I know that he really never was who he presented himself to be, and that my sense that something was “off” about him was on. I should have trusted my gut.

                But how could I leave him? He was Such A Great Guy!

                Where once the memory of his actions–the lies, the secret meetings with OW, his thrill at my ignorance–made me flush with anger and shame, now I am so grateful that he is gone because of it. He can’t hurt me any more. He can do whatever he wants now. He can be as smug as he wants, and lie all he wants, and continue with passive-aggressive, avoidant behavior–and it’s not my problem. I no longer feel embarrassed by his social awkwardness. I’m no longer disappointed by his withholding heart and his begrudging contempt for me. I’m not put off by his constant anxiety and bad moods. I’m not obligated to work on intimacy with him. (The sex was good, but it was just sex. I can’t remember making love together.)

                I honestly felt trapped in so many ways. I just didn’t know why. Now I do. And that “why” is what gave me my freedom. It’s funny how that works. But it all makes so much sense now.

                He and she deserve each other. I am thankful that I am out.

              • One day, I promise, you will be thankful that he set you free.

                I think the hardest part is remembering that he never lived up to the potential you saw in him. Because that wasn’t him. He is a cheater–that’s his character: entitled, cruel, incapable of real love. He is impulsive and stunted.

                The education, the accent, the affability, the professional accomplishments–all a mask. He’s dead inside, actually. It’s so confusing for so long. So hard to see.

                It takes cheating to help us see it all so clearly. The cheating is, for some of us, the line in the sand.

                How COULD he?

                He’s a cheater. Cheating is not a stand-alone character trait. It’s just the one that ties all the other shitty traits all together. We are blind and then we see, finally. It takes time apart, but it comes eventually, in spite of ourselves spackling, overlooking, mis-interpreting, even years later. We see the image we made of them, but they are not our image. They are cheaters.

                You’ll get there.

              • I’m 100% positive that in spite of your ex’s fabulous accent and intellect–or quite possibly because of these–he makes it a habit to flex entitlement. I bet a LOT of people know him to be a prick. I bet he fucks a LOT of people over.

                Come to think of it, xH had conflicts with a lot of people in his life. (I toy with the idea that he’s a covert narc.) Hmm. Something to mull over.

              • Doesn’t sound like there’s much doubt that yours was a covert narcissist. I’m sorry you suffered the prototypical devaluation, emotional neglect, and contempt, all while being the sane parent. The cheating is outright cruelty, some of the emotional abuse is more subtle but saps us nonetheless.

                I marvel at the emptiness and lack of connection in cheaters that allows them to psychologically decimate their lifetime partner & other parent of their children, and often to heap insult onto injury. You’re right–it’s selfish entitlement; they are OWED their orgasms and their power trips and their pursuit of happiness, even when it is attained on someone else’s back and mental health. Part of me wishes I didn’t have this newly-acquired knowledge of the underside of humanity; I guess the best we can do is put it to good use (including training our children that emotional abuse alone is sufficient to leave).

                How long were you married, Miss Sunshine? and how many years out?

              • I was with my xH for 20 years, starting in grad school, and married for 17 and a half years by BD. He was gone 6 weeks after that. I’ve been separated for 5 years, and divorced for 4 of those.

                I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. But it’s made me a better person. God’s truth.

                And you know what’s super fucked up? I’m texting someone RIGHT NOW whose friend was just dumped by a cheater. I’m going to bring her over to this site. I know you’ll welcome her, Tempest.

                HUGS to you!

              • Of course we’ll welcome a new chump! (I wish the problem of infidelity would just go away, but have no expectations in that direction). Have her mention she is friends with Stephanie/Miss Sunshine so that we’ll know that she is new.

                Hugs back!

            • Sorry–I was Stephanie, then someone took that name, so I was Miss Sunshine, but on the forums I’m Stephanie. Confusing….

    • I’m sorry Brit. About 15 years ago, I was like your son. It took my bio-dad’s mask slipping, and me being chumped myself, to finally “get it.” He will come around, it will take some time. I’m sorry it’s happening now, because I know how much it hurts to go through what you are going through. I’m dealing with that with my oldest girl, right now. *Hugs*

      • Thank you Susannah, your words mean so much to me, (brought tears).
        I’m sorry you’re going through this with your oldest daughter as well.
        I appreciate your thoughtfulness.., =) made my day.

    • Frankly, your son is treating you badly and has no right to be upset with you. He’s telling you, “I’m offering you very little gratitude or consideration, but HOW DARE YOU NOT SHOW UP TO BE TREATED THAT WAY?” The apple didn’t fall very far from the tree, here, which sucks.

      I hope he grows up and eventually sees the value in what you did for him. I’m sorry. (gentle internet non-creepy hugs)

      • Thank you Pucksme, you’re absolutely right, it’s as if he thinks I deserve more humiliation without any regard for how I feel. It’s good to hear someone else’s words on how I’m feeling
        His father has always just given him kibbles and has no genuine interest in him.
        Sadly, he’s being used and brainwashed by the monster.

        Yes, the web cam was a better view. hugs to you and thanks so much =)

  • X and GF moved into their new home with all the upgraded amenities the same week.
    It was too much happiness from their end for me.

  • Right there with you, sista! Just dropped mine off too and her dad drove up to “help,” aka stand awkwardly around in the dorm hallway as she and I hung photos and put her things away. I think my fuckwit isn’t quite as fuckwitty as yours (not that I’m bragging!) so it went pretty smoothly but I had a fog of “this isn’t how this is supposed to be” the whole time. …As I did at her prom and her graduation and her graduation party, and as I will undoubtedly have at her wedding and the birth of my (our?) first grandchild…. I’m pretty meh most of the time but I still get pissed that he fucked up all these milestones for me and my kids. I can still be pissed, right? Can I have some mayo on my shit sandwich please?

    Best wishes to your son — he sounds awesome! I’m dreading how I’m going to feel in about a week when the excitement of her new adventure wears off. But today I feel pretty stinking proud of her!

  • I am taking my last child to college as I write this! CL, you must be a mind reader because last night I was thinking how I am losing my shit. Mind you, in the last year, I have lost my dad and niece and two of my children have graduated (high school and graduate school). X attended the funerals and graduation events, all of them, and I was cool as a cucumber and sooo proud of myself! This experience has been a horror. X is disabled and really cannot help in any way, but also insisted on being here for the “big moment”. My poor daughter has spent more time attending to her dad’s needs than moving in. Thankfully, her brother is missing two days of his college classes to help. I do not know what I would do without him. Unfortunately, while he does the heavy lifting, I am stuck with trying not to pick up a hammer and…One more day. One more day. What sucks is that this should be one of those Hallmark card moments and not something I am trying to get through. But I refuse to lose my cool in front of him because my daughter does not deserve that as her move- in memory. It is a good thing I am not an alcoholic or I would have already started drinking!

  • My kids seem intimidated by their mother, they know she sucks but it seems the less a parent invests their time with kids it’s as though my young adult kids are desperate for a nugget of attention from her.

    Being the full time parent means rules, accountability, the not so fun stuff. The absent Parent waltzes in and out at their own leisure. I do believe my ex knows she creates imbalance but it suits her agenda.

    There are times I boil on the inside when my kids allow her manipulation.

    Chump Lady I get how and why you lost it for a moment. You’ve once again tasted that shit sandwich for the benefit of putting your son first and foremost.

    Teenagers, even those who are off to college are mostly thinking of freedom from Parents in general.

    I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but it would have been nice if just this once while you were sorting his car insurance and the shopping and setting up his home away from home he had told his absent father to go fuck himself.

  • Mine was when I found out the X claimed my son as his dependent on his taxes and I was about to pay a lot of money in tax even though my son had lived with me most of the year, I pay his phone, his health insurance, all his expenses, his graduation and senior year expenses, while idiot X never paid child support etc., but sucked money of the divorce and got half of my pension for being an abusive cheater that blew up our 20-year marriage by going on a cruise with another woman.

    So yeah, I lost it. Luckily the same person was doing both of our taxes, and realized the X had lied to him about my son living with him most of 2015. He told the X that I was going to fight the issue with the IRS which would make life hard on both of us and the X finally gave in, and had to pay his refund back to the IRS. I got my refund and took a nice trip to Israel and got my meh back. It felt good to finally win at least one round, thanks to a tax preparer with integrity.

    • That is a great PSA for people headed into settlement–GET who is allowed to claim children IN WRITING in the divorce decree. I didn’t; an email battle ensued between me and my X, which I won because DD20 lives with me (but not without a snarky fight). I lost my cool, too, and told him that since I had not followed my lawyer’s advice to subpoena his credit card statements to recoup the amount spent on affair partners, I’d claim DD20 and we’d call it even. [X then called me “nasty & vile” ; 0]

      • And it is important to document expenses even after child support is over for those young people you support while in college or trade school.

      • I told both my kids they could claim themselves in 2015 and gave them my tax preparers name. And because my teen college kids are always desperate for cash – they had their taxes done as soon as they had their W2’s. I’m quite certain asswipe assumed he could claim THEM because he got the house – although neither kid really lived there. But too late pisshead – they already claimed themselves….
        Dipshit whined because he had to pay in $5000 last year. Waa waa – what the fuck do I care? Hey guess what dumbass? I got back over a grand with no dependents no more ‘marriage credit,’

        (That just shows how much I’ve been paying in for taxes the past 20 years compared to the asshole X! I was very stupid! He made more money than I did, yet I paid in thousands more throughout the year (because I claimed 0) and then when we owed, come April 15th, we split it!!! Yep – I was an idiot!)

      • Good advice, Tempest, and nice job evening the score! I get to claim our youngest, while X gets to pay his private school tuition. Our state just passed a law giving a huge tax exemption for private school tuition . . . but only to those parents who can claim them. Snap!

        • Good thinking, Other Kat! The beauty of it is that X pays DD20’s expensive out-of-state tuition (I got an Agreement Incident to Divorce specifying that; he agreed because DD20 was the only one talking to him at time of divorce). BUT, he makes too much to claim the education credit, and since I claim her, I get to take the deduction for the education $$ he pays. Win win!

          • In my case, my lawyer figured out that xH would owe more child support if he claimed the first kid, while I claimed the other two. The Coward just thought I was being fair with this arrangement. Sure I was.

            Then he called me as first kid was about to graduate uni, reasoning that he should next be able to claim middle child when he could no longer claim first child. This was the second time ever that I put my foot down with him. EVER. I finally adopted an attitude of, “What’s in it for me?” And I said so to him over the phone. “What’s in it for ME?” And every time he wants to claim one of the kids on the taxes, I refuse to allow it. And he knows I will produce volumes of documentation that the kid lives with me (at least during school breaks), that I provide more support financially than he does, etc. So he backs off. And he’s SHOCKED at how much I provide for the kids financially, but only when I tell him he can claim the kids if he is willing to take over paying for their auto insurance, and taking over payments on their car, flying them home for school break, helping them move their belongings, cosigning their leases, etc. “Let me know when you’ve transferred the insurance, m-kay?” Crickets. I am reminded again that he never appreciated what I did for our children. Still doesn’t care unless he would have to fork over $$$.

            What’s fair is that he shouldn’t have fucked us over when he did, but he did, and I now look out for ME. It feels so awesome!

  • Thank you for being so honest, Chump Lady. I think some of us do see you as a supernatural being, so it’s very encouraging to see that even you still struggle with not letting this crap matter. Thank goodness “meh” is here 99% of the time, and these blow-ups take up so little of the time, right? That’s why the blow-ups stick out in our minds as such exclamation points — we’re doing such a great job of keeping it together all the rest of the time that it truly is an “event” when we lose our cool. That’s something to be proud of.

    My most recent un-meh moment was probably a couple weeks ago, seeing that a ex-friend who bought my ex’s false narrative / impression management schtick was invited to a ladies’ weekend away with mutual friends, which I was not invited to. My heart just sank seeing this hater all cozied up in my friends’ social media posts. But it’s okay…every time these moments pop up, we learn a little bit more and we remember *why* we keep the boundaries we keep. I’ll never be okay with people who shrugged and threw parties for the man who wanted to drive my toddler around town drunk as a skunk, amongst 9000 other things. The safety and wellbeing of my family is paramount, and no desire to “just be agreeable” will ever trump that.

  • It’s a lot easier to be at Meh when things are going well.

    When tress fall onto cars, when money’s tight, when dinner gets burned……PLUS fuckwit makes some selfish demand…..that’s when Meh really goes out the door.

    I’m still at the “gain a life” part, therefore I have a lot of stressful days where Meh escapes me. Working on that.

    • Yes, I lose my mind all the time because I’m nowhere near meh. I’m still finalizing the MSA, but I’m taking notes: every Mother’s Day – check, who claims kids for taxes – check. Thanks CN.

      But I’m hopeful that when I reach meh and then lose my mind for a moment, I’ll know it’s normal, bear it with grace, forgive myself, and regain my usual peaceful state of meh – like the others here. Thanks CL.

      • Neverwouldhveimagined – if you’re still finalizing your MSA, be sure to include a very specific paragraph about splitting or otherwise assigning all college costs, and also at what “level” of college (i.e. “commensurate with all tuition, room, board, & other expenses requires for attending XYZ college”. Your MSA & divorce decree are the only time these post-turning-18-years-old college costs can be legally agreed to & are legally binding forever. This is unlike custody agreements where all time-share & custody payments are (unfortunately) potentially renegotiable every single year until a child tuns 18 or graduates from high school. So custody agreements do not bind the other parent to pay college costs, but your final divorce decree can do that.

        • Ok, thanks. I hear what you are saying and will get right on it. So far, he has to contribute to the 529 (college fund) every year until they’re 18.

  • I went in to the school office to excuse my son’s absence one morning when my kids were supposed to be dropped off by dad. This was more than two hours after the school day began. As I’m leaving, in waltzes my ex and the kids to the front desk to sign in late. I was flabbergasted, and immediately blurted the question of WTH were they doing there so late. My ex hands me a grocery bag with my oldest daughter’s shoes in it and angrily demands “smell these!”. Apparently he discovered the night before that her shoes were on the older side and were getting that stinky old shoe odor, so he took all the kids shoe shopping the next morning. Of course it was all my fault, I found out when I confronted his stupidity in the parking lot outside after the kids went to their classes. If I had been “doing my job”, i.e. buying new shoes every 6 weeks even though he was not contributing at all and I was working full-time+ and didn’t have much time for shopping, he wouldn’t have had to spend his precious time/money and the kids wouldn’t have been 2+ hours late. I was selfish. So anyway, this blame shift made me break my grey rock streak. I lost it and huffed over to his car, where I expected his idiot tramp to be sitting in the passenger seat, and found instead the tramp’s brother who happens to be very introverted. Well he was sitting there all scared and I was all geared up to yell at the tramp, so I went ahead and yelled at him anyway, first asking him who the hell he was, and then shouting that he needed to knock some sense into my ex, since he stupidly thinks that shoes/fashion are a higher priority than school attendance. Later, after I calmed down I wished I hadn’t taken it that far, specifically showing my ex exactly how to get under my skin (by hypocritically attacking my parenting). The kids found out about my confronting the brother and I had to face the music, so I admitted that I had lost it and made light of the whole thing. We laughed at my blunder together and that’s how I recovered.

      • JBaby – I’d say that was damn mighty of you to vent at some guy in the car with your angry X right there. Little ole you up against 2 big men.
        I bet they were both mighty scared of you and your anger.
        I’m proud of you!

      • Hindsight. I always think of better responses later…after I’ve snapped unexpectedly. I’m much better when I can anticipate running into him. He totally blindsided me this time.

  • My kids father abandoned them in their teens for a howorker not much older than they are. He moved 1500+ miles away. No job to runaway to; he just has always been a conflict avoider and couldn’t face others knowing. On one particular winter day, I was busy jump starting one boy’s car battery, and later helped to push the other son’s car out of a ditch when he slid off the road. I had my own internal meltdown, as I was sick of being my kids’ only dragon slayer, while their Peter Pan father ran off to be with Tinkerbell. When things calmed down, it occurred to me, however, that while he may not be here for the occasional messy stuff, he’s not here for the really great day-to-day stuff either. I win! You won too, Chump Lady!

    • I can so relate to this. When my son slid off the road last winter and I had to hire a wrecker or when I had to scrounge up $1200 to help him pay for a semester of college… sometimes these things just make me want to cry and wonder why am I always the one who has to deal with all the shit. But then I remember I got to see him go to prom, I got to go to scholarship night, I got to move him into the dorms and lots more. I win !

  • I read this several times and truly I don’t belive you “lost it” or that you were “UN-meh”. I’m “meh” about my neighbors down the street. I don’t think about them one way or the other. Now, let’s say they texted me at the last minute when I was under pressure getting my daughter off to college and said they coming to dinner at my house tonight. Well duh? Of course I’m not “meh” at that point. I’m pissed and offended. I’d text them back “ummm, no you’re not.” Just because a meltdown or anger comes because of something fuckwit did doesn’t mean you’re not meh. It means you’re a normal human with boundaries. I know you felt bad about your son. Unfortunately, these kids have to work with what they have. I’m sure he didn’t want dad there but it wasn’t worth the fight for him. When you got angry it only showed your son that being angry isn’t the end of the world and anger is normal. Being meh doesn’t mean any of us forget the injustices. Being meh means you’re not at home in bed crying in your soup over losing the love of your life. Being meh means you intellectually realize you chose a fucktard but you forgive YOURSELF… not the fucktard. I personally applaud you and how you handled the whole thing. I just moved my daughter off to college and I thought I was going to die. The emotions were on overload and it was all I could do to leave her without having a public nervous breakdown. So cut yourself some slack on this one. Fuck meh and whatever it’s suppose to mean and fuck the sorry excuse for a human that pretends to be your son’s father. You got through it and your son isn’t a dummy … He knows the score. As for parent convocations, I’ve given myself permission to skip a lot of that stuff. I attend the really big important ones and let the rest go. I’ve sat in every parent meeting for 18 years through two kids. I’ve earned my “listen to stupid boring speeches while looking attentive” badge several times over ??

      • Well David if anyone knows the truth about DA then it’s you. So if you said I’ve done good then I’ll take that and have a cold beer to celebrate because lord knows I’ve done enough fucked up shit (like marry DA) to last a lifetime or two ?

      • Thanks! I tend to speak in analogies because I’m (was) a kindergarten teacher and there is no way to get through to young kids unless you relate it to something they know. I love the basic principle of “meh”. IMO, there’s no greater goal. But I do get aggravated when meh is applied to situations that would piss you off regardless. Of course it’s more personal when some dead beat dad/mom swoops in to take credit and bask in the lime light but you’d be just as pissed if some stranger intruded. It doesn’t mean you’re not “meh”. It means you’re human. It’s not a sin to be be human ?

    • Bev – i applaud you. Fantastic words of wisdom!!! Would you be able to read my post below and give me your most intellegient feedback? Im usually the one giving advice but i am stumped on this whole meh thing

      • I answered you below. I don’t pretend to have all the answers but after reading your story I am amazed that you’re as sane as you are. Having a loving father saved me. I can tell you that for a fact.

        • Bev,

          For some reason the site wont let me reply to you under your response down below. So I replied to you under neverwouldhaveimagined post which is just under your post down below.

      • I agree. Becoming justifiably annoyed/ angry at nonsense is not in my opinion loosing meh. It’s very hard not to become upset when stupid does as stupid does.

  • Less than 3 months after my divorce was final I find out via facebook stalking from my designated fake “pain shopping” account that OW and Ex-Douchecanoe are…engaged.

    This of course fills me with all sorts of feelings, mainly that we have a very young (3 years old at the time) daughter who was of course going to be impacted by this. So I muster up the energy to send them a “congratulations on your engagement! I wish you two all the happiness you deserve!” text. OW was so funny she thought I was sincerely congratulating them. I also pieced together that they had gotten engaged weeks earlier and that OW has told Ex-Douchecanoe to tell me directly and was pretty pissed that he didn’t tell me and instead I found out via facebook.

    Anyway, I find out that they are officially moving in together even though they have been living together for the last year anyway, just unofficially. I suggest that since OW is going to me a stepmother to our young daughter that we should meet up finally (I’ve been asking to meet her for a year). I suggest going out to get a beer and just chat woman to woman, mother to mother to try to get to know one another. It’s a shit sandwich for sure but since I have a great personality and get along with pretty much everyone I figured that I could probably find some common ground with her. (Typical doormat chump, huh?)

    OW and I make plans. Then she cancels on me. We make plans again, she cancels on me again. She suggests another date, I rearrange my vacation so I can meet with her. She cancels on me AGAIN. Obviously I am pissed. I send a heartfelt and brutally truthful email pouring out my heart and pain to her. SO MUCH REGRET.

    Next time I have to go to Ex-Douchecanoe’s house with OW officially now living there and I can hear her in the house. Once I get my daughter in the car I ask Ex-Douchcanoe if she can come out to say hello to me as I would like to meet her. He says “it’s not the right time, you need to learn to control yourself and your temper.” (I was incredibly calm) He slams the door in my face and I hear him lock the door. I yell and knock on the door “why don’t you come out and meet me you bitch!?!?!” And I walk back to my car. I’m standing on the sidewalk about to walk into my car and I hear “You wanted to meet me?” I turn around and see OW in all her whore glory. I say “Yeah, why are you so afraid of meeting me?” She says “Now I see why Ex had to leave you, you are crazy.” “Oh yeah, well you are a homewrecking whore!” “You are embarassing yourself in front of the neighbors.” “They aren’t my neighbors anymore so I don’t care. I hope they come outside so I can warn them that you like fucking married men and breaking up families!” It ended about there, I know I threw something out about how ex-douchecanoe was a man-child and he was her problem now and to enjoy her prize.

    It went something like that. I got back in my car and drove home, shaking. Ex-douchecanoe served me with an order of protection a week later. We went to court after a month and the judge was pissed at him for even wasting their time and dropped the order. But in the meantime it was scary, and hands down my least “meh” moment.

      • The best part of this whole experience was when I had to go to court for the order of protection I hired a lawyer and he cross examined my ex and his first question to him was “Your fiance that you mentioned, is she the same woman who you were cheating on my client with when you were married?” My ex had a look of horror on his face, looked at his lawyer, the judge, and when they didn’t object had to squeak out “yes.” Then the judge told him to speak up because she couldn’t hear him, so he had to say yes even louder. It was worth every penny of the $700 I spent on the lawyer.

        • It never ceases to amaze me how these cheaters turn all horrified and deer-in-the-headlights when someone dares to call them out publicly on the fact they cheated.

          • My X did the restraining order bit too.

            The allegations from the county court website were:

            1. I yelled obscenities at him and threw the divorce complaint at him . (Hmm…it was the day before my b-day and I was leaving for holiday. I just handed the fucker a waiver of service 2 minutes before the door bell rang with a process server. He could have told me not to answer the door or admitted what he did. Nope – he ambushed me. I definitely yelled some obscenities in front of the neighbors.

            2. I texted him that his whore is trash and deserves the disease her mother died from. Ok, not classy. HIS sister-in-law sent me a pic of whore hanging on him at XMILs house. The whore was wearing his college sweatshirt. 2 weeks after our 70 day divorce. Yes, I just a tad raw with emotion from his betrayal.

            3. That I told him that if he went on vacation with his “friend” (aka: whore – while we were still married) that I would book the seat next to him and her. Their tickets were booked 2 weeks after he asked for a divorce – before papers were filed with the court. I was very un-meh. He also alleged that I was on standby at their connecting airport, which was a complete fabrication, but added some nice drama to their affairytale I’m sure.

            Oh, also that I called him trash and his parents too. Since when does lying become a crime?

            I didn’t go to court as it wasn’t served. Schmoopie did her own 10 days before (Injunction Against Harassment). Guess she must have hounded him to do the same. I find it appalling that he wasn’t kicked out of court for this – but it is what it is.

            It’s been 3 years. They are married now. I am with someone that treats me with respect and reciprocity. The whore is welcome to her cheater – not that she waited for my permission to take the scumbag in the first place. She got her first cheater husband that way too.

            I’d imagine that she’ll do the same restraining order bit when she tires of Xh’s lame mediocrity. If they do it with you they’ll do it to you.

    • Strawberry, I’m feeling really mad at OW just from reading your story! Sheesh! To provoke you and then point a finger and call you crazy…that’s what it’s better just to stay the heck away from them. It’s so hard when you have a little one, though. So sorry that happened to you.

    • I’m sorry, StrawberryJellyfish, that you had to endure all that when you were trying to take the high road.

      A lesson to us all–don’t bother taking the high road with moral miscreants; it’s like wrestling with a pig–you end up dirty and they like it.

    • Strawberry-
      My heart broke for you reading that. I want to bitch slap that whore.
      No where near that….but I have seen these assholes always defend the OW. I will never understand this. They are willfully obtuse or downright delusional about the character of these road whores. Why???
      Not the person who loved them…but the trash can that wanted to bust up a marriage?

    • I feel like I would’ve handled your scenario exactly as you did. All the way down to the driving home shaking. Hope you feel better about it now. THEY sure handled it in the worst way possible. But unlike us chumps, they probably didn’t give it another thought, whereas we dwell on our regrets and torture ourselves.

  • He runs cross country. Having a high school athlete in cross country introduced me to the term “personal best” –

  • Eighteen months after I finally went NC with Mr. Cheaterpants, I made the mistake of emailing the woman who had turned out to be his girlfriend (Cheaterpants was secretly dating us both while also claiming to be divorced, but was still married as well–what a piece of work!)

    I knew Cheaterpants had broken up with her eventually, so I was hoping she could clear up some lingering questions–like the timeline, and did she know I existed, and whether she was told he was divorced, and what lies did he tell, etc.

    Nope, all I got was silence and then a terse, “I think we both need to move on from that difficult time.” Bitch, I *was* moved on! Was just looking for some “help a sister out” ratting on Mr. Cheaterpants! I had the folding chair out, and the bucket of popcorn, ’cause this was gonna be good! Thwarted!

    And that, friends, was how I learned that comparing notes with the other chump is just untangling the skein of fuckedupness in disguise. Now, back to our regularly scheduled state of “Meh.”

  • On a side note, Chump Lady, I’ve never even had kids, but you can usually still find baby wipes in my shopping cart. Clumps of dog hair around the perimitter of my kitchen? A few quick wipes, gone. Need a spot or two clean up of the bathtub without breaking out the scrubbing bubbles spray and the dishrags? Done. And nothing, but nothing, takes care of that white deoderant smear on your black shirt like a baby wipe. …. and fruit roll ups? Ummmmm yea, I’ve come up with some rather “adult” uses for them too… but I’m a pretty creative girl.

    Have a mighty weekend, chumps!

    • GiveTimeTime – you crack me up, and thanks for the tips. I’ll add, Baby Wipes for cleaning off puppies little bottom area since she has a little flap over her little bottom area that, if the urine isn’t wiped off regularly, she could get a URI, until she grows out of the flap. I love the idea of getting those sweat stains off black!

  • My un-meh is very different from the normal persons as I dont have a living person to torment me but rather an endless supply of moments to reprocess now knowing that he was a long term chronic cheat.

    I am a HUGE extrovert…I do lectures about death where I make whole auditoriums of people laugh – THAT degree of extrovert…and Im trying to process profound grief and betrayal in the silence of my own heart but my non-meh infractions are when I spew the beans to a person who probably doesnt need to know because I hit my (admittedly low) capacity of quiet introverted reflection.

    If it were up to me I would give womens conferences about betrayal and cheating, I would write a book and tell the world, but I am still marginally committed to not needlessly hurting my children and inlaws.

    • Unicorn – ahh, what a damn shame you can’t expand on your talks because I know you would have some really great things to help women out there. It’s a double edged sword. I understand about not hurting the family. (do your kids know he cheated?) You know women (and men) would love to hear you expound on adultery, and then death. It has happened to many people. They were mourning until they went through all the papers of their double lives. You sure sound like my kind of gal. I’m an extrovert but I could never get up in public – like that kind of extrovert – so I applaud you for your strength. You have much wisdom to share.

      • Adultery and death are really complimentary topics…the grief from them…similar in some ways and yet with important differences. And both are, unfortunately, part of the human experience. It’s a shame, IMHO, that we don’t discuss them more as a society…and I’m so grateful that CL has provided this forum.

  • I like to read a lot of biographies, and one thing I notice over and over is that In The Long Run, your average cheater lives a generally fucked up life. And I think the problem is that not enough time has passed with any of these cheaters to see how their story will play out, in the end. You usually don’t even know till after they are deceased.

    I had a pair of notorious cheaters in my family. I didn’t grow up around them so I didn’t know much about them. I do know when they passed, both their funerals were ghost towns. Literally, no one there. Meanwhile, my chump uncle’s funeral was Standing Room Only, with people breaking down in the aisles. He was loved, by many people. They were not. I bet that’s how it ends for most of us. Cheaters are cheaters for a reason. They suck.

      • Thank you, UnknownComic! There is a saying around here that I like. “It all comes out in the wash.”. Kind of the same thing, in the end, there is only the truth and consequences left.

  • Tracy, you actually handled it very well in my opinion. Entitlement and boundary busting got that reaction from you. You and your son did all the work to get him where he is today and your fuckwit ex wants to show up – for just the parent meeting! Entitlement! Me, Me!! Your son tells him not to come and fuckwit ex does what he wants anyway. Boundary busting! Me, Me!! At least you know he hasn’t changed one bit, not that you thought he had.

    Cheater showed up to help move daughter in to college for her first year. While we were hauling boxes from the car to her upstairs room and unpacking them (heat and humidity in the south in August – not fun), he was sitting in the corner of her room by the a/c texting. I ignored him and just kept doing what she asked me to. She got frustrated with him and asked several times for him to help. He had her futon and a few other big items in the back of his truck. He backed it up to a grassy spot and pushed her stuff out. Said he didn’t want to leave his truck unattended so she and I carried the heavy stuff too. She was short with him several times that day much to my delight.

    When she moved out this past spring and back in last week, he was conveniently out of town which I was fine with and she seemed to be too.

    • Yeah, I think sometimes you just have to stand back and let them show their true colors. Their selfish behavior speaks volumes and is usually self-evident (though it still doesn’t keep me from calling them motherfuckers in my head,… or under my breath… or out loud over a glass of wine with my friends).

  • It never ceases to amaze me how CL writes such timely messages for such a diverse range of readers. You always have a nugget of wisdom for all of us, no matter where we are in our leaving a cheater and gaining a life journey.

    You wrote: “If you want to encapsulate my entire parenting life, it was that moment. I’m on the ground doing crisis management, multi-tasking a hundred expensive, time-sucking tasks and the fuckwit is swanning in — last minute, uninvited — for some parenting glory.”

    Yep, nailed it. My EXH always preferred to stand back, let me do all the heavy lifting and decision making in parenting. This left him free to criticize from a safe distance all the parenting mistakes he felt I was doing, but also he would literally puff out his chest and claim his share of the parenting glory when things were going great. They are cowards and utterly lazy.

  • IMHO, allowing our children to see us get angry or indignant at fuckwit behavior can be beneficial. It helps them know boundaries and that it is okay to rebel against boundary violations. It also keeps us connected to them–we’re not these parenting automatons following Rules of Positive Parenting as if they are programmed into us; we’re real people who can get hurt (and warmed) by other people’s behavior.

    For that matter, I personally do NOT think it is damaging to go off directly on the cheater if NC is not fully possible. Yes, it shows them that they can still get under our skin (kibbles), but how often did we choke down their nonsense while married to them? Did choking down toasted shite sandwiches make us feel better? No. Did it improve their behavior to have no consequences? No. So a few well-placed verbal missiles in their direction are justifiable.

    • Tempest, I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I would posit that it’s our responsibility as the sane parent to call out fuckwit behavior. When I was having an Un-Meh moment this week (X’s wedding invitation, with nastygram note included as a special bonus!), I received emergency chump relief on the forums and got my meh groove back.

      Roaring made a point that I think applies here. She said she was “raised in an alcoholic home and learned early on that Crazy was normal. It’s not.” Likewise, my poor kids have been raised in a home with a disordered fuckwit and learned early on that disordered fuckwit-ness is normal. It’s not.

      So, now I call out the fuckwit when he fucks wit my kids. No, it’s not okay to text e-blasts of hate to S17. No, it’s not okay to refuse to fill out D20’s FAFSA, jeopardizing her college education. No, it’s not okay to register your car in S22’s name, crash it and make S22 financially responsible. I know good, loving fathers and you, sir, are not one of them.

      My kids need to know that when you love something or someone, you take care of your precious. It’s up to me now, by word and deed, to model this for them.

    • @Tempest and Eve:

      Yes, Yes and Triple YES!!! Hugs and Kisses and Hugs and Kisses!

      I’ve already modeled piss-poor behavior. That can be the warning of how not to act when married to a Fuckwittard. The rest of my life should be a model of how to enjoy your life, have good boundaries and call a Fuckwittard a Fuckwittard when necessary.

  • My un meh moment came about two weeks ago when in packing up my stuff to move i came across dozens of pictures hidden in a common place area as i was removing my own personal important papers. Pictures of three different whores pictures mostly of whore juice where my house, my truck, my car had been turned into whore slave bondage house central while i was at work. Naked photos of bruised and beaten asses, legs, backs and pictures of whore lady parts in my living room, in my truck, in his shop, in my car, back porch, kitchen and in my bed! From the asswipe who swore on his childrens lives there was only one whore and none of them were ever here he would NEVER stoop so low and have such disrespect for me! How dare i accuse him of being that big of a slime! Well i knew better but had no proof now i do. I screamed, cried, yelled at the trees for an entire afternoon and then the meh came back i felt absolutely nothing for the asswipe. A strange calm overcame me and my heart was at peace finally. I knew at that moment this pod creature ive known for 30 years never loved me for a minute i knew chump lady was correct. They are not sorry, never sorry just sorry they get caught. That he continued to lie even when it no longer mattered and every feeling i ever had for that pod was gone. Not completely at meh but real close and i feel great. I treat him with indifference and no longer care what happens to him. Bye bye motherfucker and good riddance!

    • Kar Marie

      What a fucking EVIL monster. You have your dignity and peace now.

      The thought that his whore called me by my nickname, a term of endearment he called me since I was sixteen nearly killed me. No one else ever called me this except for him. She had to have heard him use it when he called me while cheating. There are some bells we can never unring. Yet we know that iceberg existed and it’s as cold as hell. In the end it gave me more strength and resolve to live better. Love and Peace to you always.

      • Yes doingme it finally and completely sunk in. He is a complete monster and im glad to be rid of him forever soon. He also has a rude awakening coming and i will miss that part but im sure i will hear about it!

    • Kar Marie-whenever they swear on so and so’s life it’s a big fat lie. That fucker is disgusting. You will be fine and happy away from that sick son of a bitch.

      • Exorcist thank you i agree everything thing is a big fat lie but chumpy me believed it when he swore on the kids lives. That sealed it couldnt tell the truth even swearing on his kids lives. Well i know better now and fuck him he has sealed his fate with his own kids being an asshole. And away from that sick, nasty, lying motherfucking pod is where im going.

    • Kar marie, it would have been so tempting for me to publish those pictures to the world! If you didn’t, you showed a lot of restraint. There’s nothing more wonderful/awful than discovering what you suspected was true all along. I’m really glad you spent the afternoon getting all your emotions out until you felt some resolution.

      I discovered some very incriminating writing my ex left behind which validated that my guts were telling me the truth all along. After I found it, I sat up all night long just contemplating his words, and by the time I went to bed at 4 am I also felt a sense of peace that God had removed me from such a horrible situation. After reading what he wrote, I realized there was nothing I did or could have done that would have changed the outcome of our marriage. For at least a year I toyed with all kinds of revenge fantasies of exposing him by sharing it with the world, but in the end I was worried what that would do to my kids. It’s filed away, along with my divorce papers. Some day those papers will be discovered after I’m gone.

        • I have copies of his texts, which were either lies, or abuse, or dumb-ass shit (like asking me if WE should invite the kids to our trial! NO SHIT!) on thumb drives marked for each of the kids. I don’t think they realize how bad their sperm donor treated me and how psycho he really is and how much shit I put up with!

    • What a slimebag!!! Hand copies of those photos and writing to your attorney. I would suggest you don’t hold on to them yourself. They’re safe with the attorney and you won’t have to chance seeing them and having them hurt you again. Or put them in a safe deposit box in the bank.

      • Divorce is long over. Wish i seen them before that it would have been an all out war. Im being kool for now til the house closes then adio motherfucker! Whats a month more? But he wants to be friends. Ha! My friends or my husband dont fuck people in my fucking bed. I have his friend right here. Badda bing!

  • My most un-meh moment came the day my five year old had to have her two front teeth capped after a “root treatment,” which is like a root canal for baby teeth, and four (Count ’em FOUR!) cavities filled. I promise I make her brush her teeth. She was a preemie born 14 weeks early, so everything is complicated with her.

    Anyway, I was nervous, because my baby was having a lot of dental work done, and the dentist was using IV sedation, which was another reason for me to be anxious. Not that I don’t trust my dentist, but still… She’s my baby.

    I had gone round and round with her paternal DNA contributor about the payment. After insurance, it would be $996 out of pocket. He didn’t understand. He didn’t think she should get IV sedation (it’s worth it to me to pay $500 to not give my child a life long fear of the dentist). He didn’t see why they couldn’t just pull her teeth, versus capping them. There was a reason that the dentist explained beautifully–I forget what it was.

    So, after sending his attorney copies of the estimate, insurance stuff, and doctor’s notes, along with paper copies I personally put IN HIS HAND, and electronic copies I emailed, he got the time and location wrong. Our dentist has 4 locations, and they do dental surgery at only 1 of them. The location for the procedure was written on every copy I gave him, along with the time.

    He showed up at the wrong place, at the wrong time.

    He decided that it was somehow my fault. That I was purposefully keeping him away by telling him the wrong place and time. He had his check in hand to pay his half of the procedure, but in his anger at me, he decided to keep the check. He refused to pay his half.

    I was PISSED! I told him that he was absolutely worthless (which he is), and that he had no right to make any judgement about me or how I raised my daughter. I told him that since I had sole legal and physical custody, he had all of the parental rights of an uncle. That’s him, Uncle Dad.

    That was March. It’s August, and he hasn’t paid any of the girls’ expenses–totaling about $500/month–since the Uncle Dad comment, which I refuse to apologize for. It’s absolutely true. He won’t pick up the children anymore for his supervised visitations. His grandmother does it. He ignores my emails about the expenses, medical information, school stuff.

    But, it’s whatever… I’m planning to take him back to court in September. My judge is running for a seat in the appeals court, so he won’t make any decisions, like sending dead beats to jail for not paying their child support.

    • Kelli – the fucker purposely showed up at the ‘wrong place at the wrong time just so he could have an excuse not to pay (Probably didn’t really have a check written out). What he did is something my asswipe X would have pulled. Like in our divorce papers – the items I was to retrieve from the house was on a list. The kitchen set was accidentally listed as “Kitchen Table,” So guess what I got – yep – the kitchen table. Not the chairs that went with the table.
      Bullshit like that – fuckers!

  • I love chumplady. It has provided so much support and insight into this sucky adventure, I call “not how I pictured my life”. It’s these columns or blog posts that I appreciate the most now – once you have rescued yourself from the Foty (sarcastic father of the year) – how do you co parent when you are doing all the heavy lifting and the X waltzes in and out at their convenience etc. How do you tame that boiling anger, stop reacting, stop having the flip flop stomach moments of “what now?”. How do you deal with the hurt of missed mother/father’s day while your kids, desperate for any crumb, go on vacay with X and the newest edition of Pink Cow (he met the original on Farmville on FB ). Financially, I have handed over the child support chasing to the authorities (highly recommended if your state/province/country has this option) but its the variable reinforcement of intermittent dedicated parenting (I call it the love smother parade) for Pink Cow 2.0. that drives me crasy. In my head, I write these scathing responses to his requests but hold back from replying because the narrative would be “I’m the crasy Ex-wife”. Or the sarcastic replies of “thank you for attempting, 7 years too late, to parent”. Its more annoying than anything – it’s the jabs in the emails, whose implicit assumption is that *I* haven’t been doing my job. To which I want to scream – where were you?! Are you f*cking kidding me? And to have my father and my kids say “well at least he was there, showed up, cared enough to ask” the take what you can get. Maybe this time, he will stick around and I think no, no he won’t. He only has to put on a parade for a short time and then we get the shaft all over again and I have to pick up the emotional baggage of another betrayal. My post is all over the place but its my frustration at this latest round of “do my bidding for the sake of the children – they should be OUR priority”

    • PhysicsGal–no doubt it is maddening to do all the nitty gritty work of parenting while Cheater waltzes around sprinkling fairy glitter. And it’s maddening to pick up the tab for the school supplies the child needed YESTERDAY, while Cheater plunks down $$ for an upgraded iphone or cruise.

      But….children know deep down who they can count on, who has their back, who is reliable. Think about how how big a check you would write, up front, for them to know the stable parent is YOU. That check would be larger than what you’ll typically have to spend on school supplies, or extra time to finish their science project. It’s an honor to be the one to actually parent our children, and forego lattes for a month to pay for their new calculator. And it pays off through their enhanced respect for us. Can’t really put a price on that.

    • @Physicsgal

      I ignore a lot of comments from people because I know that people don’t get it or they have to rationalize their own choices. The one thing I no longer sit still for, even from my children, is when they give the EX credit for stuff any parent SHOULD DO or is SUPPOSED to do. Chris Rock once had that in one of his stand up routines. You don’t get to pat yourself on the back for just showing up where you should show up or doing what you should do. Bare minimum much? First of all, I never want my kids to think parenting is “bare minimum.” If they are parents one day, I would prefer they be good parents and not minimal parents. I don’t editoralize, but I’m clear, “I’m sorry. I don’t give people special credit for doing shit they’re supposed to do.” My kids always laugh and say, “you’re right, ma, you’re right.”

      • Amen ,Chump Princess,any sentence that begins with “At least he…..”just sends my blood pressure high, I just feel like screaming out loud, apropos of Chris Rock-( another cheater himself apparently,with Rosario Dawson , rumor would have it)”You’re supposed to, you low-expectations-having-mf”

  • This thread is so very helpful as I organize, shop (purchase) and pack for my two boys both going back to school – while their father is so very busy with his (yet another) new job and getting his (yet another) new car registered. My boys know what the deal is – they love their dad but I am not his PR person anymore and with all of this bullshit, he is making his truest self very clear to them.
    We have so much to do but my boys and I are doing all of it with with love, honor and joy – and he is missing all of it. His loss for sure.
    And now back to Target now for the 3rd trip this week!

  • I still had the password for his email account so one particularly bored day, I snooped. This was after 6 months of no contact.

    I saw an email from likely OW #2/ex-gf/current gf, complaining about his lack of dedication to the relationship (HA!!!!) and expressing bewilderment about how he could be having such a hard time getting over “that shrimp and her huge tits” (me).

    Well well well…

    I sent her an email back from his account (but identified myself) and pretty much called her a pathetic slut, and pointed out that if she was interested in a man that was “dedicated” she shouldn’t have gone sniffing around a married man. Lastly, I told her that, even though she might be taller than me, but she clearly wasn’t better, cause ex was treating her just as badly (if not worse) than how he treated me.

    Naturally, a mere 10 minutes later, ex is blowing up my phone, leaving messages about how she’s going to report my actions to my job (which I wasn’t worried about as I didn’t break any company policy or send that message from a company device) and ordering me to apologize her. I told him to go fuck himself and turned off my phone for the rest of the day.

    But while it felt good to tell her off and cause ex some aggravation, I ended up getting really depressed for about a week or two afterward, because I had interjected myself into his sordid drama, demonstrated their power to hurt me, and probably confirmed every claim he made about how crazy I was.

  • CL,

    All superheroes have flawed moments – that’s how they retain their humanity while remaining superheroes. Your moment with your son was important – he saw that his superhero mom was human and reinforces that he doesn’t have to be perfect all the time.

    The EX always had me as the barometer of what was appropriate behavior and what wasn’t appropriate behavior. Sometimes he listened and sometimes he didn’t. He is a covert passive-aggressive probably narcissist and is very manipulative. I have seen a couple of my children become involved in relationships with people who exhibit these traits. I have to be very clear with them now about appropriate boundaries. There is an additional problem because in the short term, whoever the EX has as an SO, influences (not controls) his choices. The OW/Wife is crazier than he is. Before I went totally no communication of any kind with the EX, when he would over-step or upset the adult children I would text or call him and basically tell him if he did that crap again I would find him and fuck him up. Totally un-meh, but necessary, even though he probably enjoyed that he could get me to talk to him. I realized it was a game to him. Since the divorce and his remarriage to the potential bunny-boiler, he totally says and does inappropriate things because he’s crazy and so is his arbiter of appropriate behavior. He’s also still extremely passive-aggressive and manipulative. Occasionally, he will upset one of the children enough for them to share it with me (out of frustration) and I lose my shit. I then apologize, explain to them that I can no longer fight this battle for them and they will have to decide how best to handle the situation in a way that is comfortable for them. It helps when you remain the steadfast, dependable parent that they know they can depend on, which most of these cheaters are not. Kids know when we are angry on their behalf and they know your anger is justified. They just don’t want to feel responsible for solving your anger or feel that your anger is their fault.

    We don’t need to be perfect parents – the goal is to be good parents. Your son knows you’re a good parent CL because he knows his father is not. Recognition of facts is not the denial of whatever love he has for his father. Your son can still love his Dad and recognize who and what he is. That is an important cognitive ability that many people lack. While it was a monetary lapse, it was still a teachable moment. We are all doing the best we can within the confines of fucked up situations which none of us chose. I, for one, think most of us are doing a stellar job of swimming through the bullshit.

    Hail Chump Nation!

    • Uh hello. Not monetary lapse – Freudian because your son’s sperm donor hasn’t met his monetary responsibilities. That should have said “momentary.”

  • My most un-meh moment was just this past week…..

    Timeline that led me to me losing my shit:

    My last dday was 6 years ago. Been happily divorced for 4 years. 50/50 custody w/3 kids (teens). My meh has always been transitory even practicing no contact through parallel parenting because ex-wife is a covert-narc and is truly disordered. Even with all of this, I am still grateful for my life with my 3 kids and the simple thinks like sharing a loaf of bread with my kiddos that is right out of the oven. They love bread!

    Ex-wife has been driving my kids and their friends around drunk this summer. Kids have seen ex-wife passed out drunk. Yes I called police, lawyer, and am seeking full custody. I have this under control.

    My kids also been victims of emotional abuse from her. (ex-wife telling my 12 yr old, “I hate you” or “I wish you would run away” on several occasions). I also have this under control.

    My 14yr old daughter just recently was passed out drunk, in the mud, mimicking her mother’s behaviors. I was with my precious daughter when she was unconscious and rushed her to ER in an ambulance. She awakened 5 hrs later. Her BAC was .258. Daughter is OK thanks to the good lord. Yes I have this under control also.

    The day after this happened, justifiably, I went through my daughters phone to try and see what led up to this. What I found while going through my daughters phone and what was the most disturbing was the texts between my daughter and my ex-wife. Ex wife was clearly manipulating my daughter to lying and disrespecting me even on my parental days (ex: EXWIFE: “can I take you to lunch” – DAUGHTER: “what do I tell daddy?” EXWIFE: “tell him you are going to Jane’s house” – ON MY PARENTAL DAYS WHILE I WAS AT WORK). Ex-wife was also offering to drive my kids around on several occasions on my parental days making sure I wouldn’t know about it. Interesting enough and before I found these revelations ex-wife recently projected onto me that I was the one “invading her parental time”. Mere projections from a covert narc.

    Lastly while going through my daughters iphone I also found some things that I shouldn’t of seen. You see, for whatever reason, my daughters Iphone and my ex-wife’s Iphone somehow sync together. In other words, I saw all of my ex-wife’s real time phone logs. I should of just stopped looking but I didn’t. I found out she is still fucking the AP from 6 years ago. He is still married with 3 kids. Honestly I don’t care who she is fucking. She is also fucking another married man with 2 kids. Honestly I don’t care. I also found out she has been fucking my oldest son’s travel baseball coach also (who was a good friend of mine – so I thought). Honestly, I have to admit this bothers me. All this “Divorce-Policing” reminded me of the moment 6 yrs ago on dday sitting in a White Castle Parking lot at 3am going through my then-wife’s phone discovering her serial cheating. The only difference was that now – I didn’t turn to stone as I did then. The only feelings I have for my ex-wife today is indifference.

    I broke my no contact because of all of the above and I LOST MY SHIT. By doing so all I got in return was the same as I did 6 years ago after dday….I got nothing but all the narc abuse all over again (lying, manipulating, minimizing, projecting, etc.). The pain has started again and it hurts. As long as ex-wife walks this earth, this is how it will be for the rest of my life. I know this for a certainty because I know her better than anyone.

    So here is my question…..How can you stay at meh and NOT lose your shit while all her destruction seems as it will never stop?

    • If any slut, ex wife or not, was driving my child around drunk, or encouraging her to drink, I would become the most un meh person on the planet !!! I would call the police on her ass. I would take her to court to revoke visitation. I would make her sorry she ever met me.

      This is your children’s safety here and other children’s safety as well. As well as other innocent people. Get that slag off the streets. I don’t care if she fucks the entire Infantry but this is unacceptable.

      • Agreed anita and my wrath will propel me to stop this. How can u possibly have meh and not care ehat she is doing when it involves ur kids?

    • Actions, not words. Of course you’re going to lose your cool after finding out wife is encouraging your daughter to lie, screwing friends of yours, etc. The problem was that you thought confronting her would change anything. It doesn’t. They cannot be reasoned with. Instead, take the action you’re taking–try to get sole custody. But don’t talk to the X.

      • Makes senseTempest. I am very mad at myself for breaking my longest no contact streak. I did think confronting her would change things. My reasoning was how could anyone human deny all the while getting caught holding the smoking gun? How can any one put their children through this? tThat must be the answer – even though she is “human” but more fitting – she is a disrodered human. My kids lost their innocence this summer – i can see it in their eyes – in their faces – i feel it in my soul. I guess i will have to accept that my meh will always be transitory as long as she walks this great earth even after i get full custody.

        • I know. They look like ordinary humans, they produce sentences, they smile or frown, and thus we conclude they are ordinary humans. But they aren’t.

          ‘Meh’ will be getting you and your kids to a place where what she does matters very, very little. You’re doing a great job being the stable parent.

          • Thanks tempest you are correct. I meant to say that my peace (not my meh) will always be transitory while she still walks the earth.

            As for my meh, its hard not to care what she is doing when it directly involves the emotional and physical well being of my kids. I know you know this. But that will change with the legal proceedings. Legal proceedings should have been my 1st choice with zero contact to her as this was unraveling. I live, I learn, once again.

            As for her fucking my sons coach, it only bothered me cause he was a friend. I honestly don’t care who she is fucking, hence meh – but my friend? How can one not care what she is doing when it is your friend?

            • SuewChumpedALot, good heavens — IMO, you can’t NOT care that a person who you thought was a friend is sleeping with your disturbed, destructive, and abusive ex-wife! This isn’t about her. It’s about a different person.

              At the LEAST, if I were a friend who had decided to date a wingnut ex of a friend, I’d say something. It’s kind of just a “friend rule,” in my book. (In my book, it’s NO dating friends’ exes, but…)

              So be upset, I think! I would be. Cripes, your actions shout that you’re a wonderful human being. It’s okay to rail for awhile that Evil Strikes Again with someone you thought would at least be fair, or aware, or something like that. I’d be as mad as I wanted for awhile…

              AND I’d remind myself that coverts — and she’s good, having gotten away with all this — tend to prey on those who won’t notice. He’s an idiot. When you can convince yourself that he’s an IDIOT (shouldn’t take too long), then maybe try to let the anger dwindle so that crazy and moronic don’t get any more mental real estate?

              You have been through hell. I’m so sorry. You must be exhausted. I take heart from your posts, ’cause I’ve got a covert better than any I’ve ever seen — including when I was an Asst D.A. Sending good thoughts your way.

              • Thanks for caring Claire. Means a lot to me. You are a wonderful person for sharing your thoughts with me. I also wish you great thoughts.

                Yes im exhausted. But i will get back to living in the present and because of that my peace and serenity will be there waiting for me. Life is good – so is the surprise fruit loop omelete my 12 yr old just made me as i just walked in the door from work. I am so grateful for these moments.

              • Look dude, you ask me to reply so I will but be warned I’m shooting straight here.

                That bitch needs to die (no, you don’t need to kill her). When you’re describing a situation like yours then “meh” does not apply. This whole meh thing is great and it’s a great goal and everyone should get to it.. But “meh” has never once meant ignore that your kids are in danger. I have a great friend that reads CL (Teri ?) and I had the horror of watching while she did every thing in the book to protect her child from evil/NARC/sex addict dad. It was awful and the courts don’t support you and she barely made it out. But she did make it and so did her great kid.

                The first step is of course document and document again. All those phone texts, screen shot. The next thing you do is try to get your daughter to a good therapist. Her life is not over at 14!! Hell, I did some shit at 14 and I didn’t grow up to be a serial killer or a cheater. The next thing is to forget being “meh”. We’re not talking about you whining that you still love her. Get that part straight. We are discussing that she is endangering your children. That being said, talking to her is a lose/lose. You cannot possible come up with anything to say to her that will change her. Forget talking to her. Unfortunately, when you stop paying attention to a NARC they ramp up the drama. My bitch of a mother was/is the same way. It’s a learning curve. True narcissists are a differnt breed. I would highly recommend you speak to a good therapist and let them help you learn how to deal with your ex. There are books out there too.

                If you have to placate her somehow in order to ensure your kids’ safety then I’d play her game for now. It may not be “meh” but I would do it until my kids were older and wasn’t influenced by “mommy said it was good to pass out drunk” crap.

                I don’t mean play nice. I mean play smart. It’s war with some of these fucktards. Meh is great if it only means your gripe is back child support or I don’t like the OW/OM (not to minimize these very true complaints) but your complaint is safety and well being. There are ways to disarm a narcissist. The most important fact to know is that if they don’t get the required attention from you then they go to the next most vulnerable attention source. That would be your kids. So, get hooked up with a good therapist and get your daughter to try a therapist. Please don’t let her believe for a second that some drunk incident at 14 will define who she is forever. I’ll bet she’s a great kid and she’ll be okay because she has a father that loves her.

        • Sure, you’re doing the right thing, and you love your kids. You will insure their safety, and your peace may not be transitory. Have faith. Their story may be like mine.

          My mom was a disordered alcoholic who had dangerous relationships. My dad documented everything. My mom drove my sister and me around while she was drunk a lot. (In fact, we played games in the car parked outside the bar while she “visited” with her “friends”.)

          It’s always worse than you even know (you only see the tip of the iceberg), but my dad worked with his lawyer, successfully declared her unfit, rescued us by getting full custody (I was 12), and took great care of us until adulthood for which I am forever grateful.

          My mom died young largely due to her lifestyle choices. I was in my twenties, and my dad honestly couldn’t have been happier. Understandably, he was forever furious she had neglected us and risked our safety.

          I pray she is at peace now.

          • neverwouldhaveimagined,

            Your story put tears in my eyes.

            I will also pray for you that she is at peace now.

            Being forever grateful to your dad is where your peace lays.

            Being forever grateful to have found the strength to leave your cheater is where your serenity lays.

            • BEV-
              “That bitch needs to …” is exactly how i feel. I hate her for what she has done to me, my kids and my family.

              The whole meh thing has been explained. I couldn’t give two flying fucks who she fucks, hence meh. We are talking about my kids safety, emotionally and physically in which meh has no place in that discussion. The only word that should be used when your kids demise is being set up by a covert narc is ABUSE.PERIOD.

              Everything is documented and lawyer feels confident and he mentioned it will be exhausting. Exhausting just means more redbulls for me. Bring it on!

              I have been divorced for years now. My contact with her has been a minimum of gray rock with spurts of no contact. Interesting you mention, when you stop paying attention to a narc they ramp up the drama. Just the beginning of this year i went complete no contact because she would corner me with all this I miss you bullshit – in person – when kids were by my side. I told her to fuck off. So i then clearly stated my boundaries which was complete no contact. My life has been a living hell since then. She knows she can get my attention through the kids. Thats what makes her truly evil.

              Thanks for saying my daughter is a great kid because she is. I had the best talks with my daughter this last 2 weeks in regards to this. Each of my conversations with her started and ended with me telling her that i will always love her. She then would tell me with her big copper eyes that she loves me too.

              • Just so you know…the demands for interaction in front of the kids is one of my stbxs tricks…along with stalling in the divorce. I usually don’t make any face to face appearances.

    • To answer your question: You remember that your kids need one sane, sober parent. You call police, your lawyer and seek custody. If you have anything to say about the behavior, you put it in a gray rock email. You keep some stuff under your hat until you need it.

      All that said, she’s one sorry piece of work. Please let us know how the custody battle goes. You might also press for supervised visitation if she breaks the rules.

      If I were going to lose it with anyone, I would lose it with the travel baseball coach, who should not be sleeping with a player’s parent under any circumstances. He’s a sleaze too.

      • Hi LAJ. Yes i will keep all updated. And yes only supervised visits. My attorney said we should get all of it but it will be exhausting.

        You mentioned “shes one sorry piece of work” – i believe shes a piece of something else. Hehe

        As for my friend/coach, not sure what im going to do. Baseball just ended and next wave of games start spring 2017 but fall and winter training is here in a month. My initial reaction is to pull my kid from the team along and my $2600.00 member fee from this organization. The dilema is my 15yr old son loves this team. My son does not know what his mom did. I mean baseball to me is about your kids. Watching them play. Seeing that they are facing winning or defeat with integrity. Breaking bread with all the other familes. Baseball is innocent and that whore and dickhead coach tool that away.

        • Why should your son have to leave the team? Is the coach himself married? Do you have evidence he slept with your X? The powers that be might be interested in knowing coach slept with one of the parents (and may ask him to step down). Or perhaps the coach’s wife could be notified?

          At a minimum, let the coach know you know with your contempt for him.

          Sorry,SureChumpedaLot. You have had to swallow a lot of poison here.

          • Hi tempest. I agree my son shouldn’t have to leave the team. That was just my initial reaction and I haven’t acted on it. I realize for my sons sake he shouldn’t have to suffer for this. Thank god i took a breath before i acted out of anger. I will just have to eat those shit sandwiches sitting through triple headers for 3 days straight – every week – week after week – month after month seeing and knowing what these two have done. The innocence along with peace and serenity watching my son play baseball was just taken from me. Now its going to be full of drama and contempt. I just think it sucks!

            Coach is divorced and I don’t have have smoking gun proof. I put those PI days behind me now that I’m divorced.

            Now the higher ups knowing is an something I contemplated and will probably be pursued. But once again my word against his.

            The coach knows that I know. Crickets.

  • Two un-meh moments. Keep in mind Fucktard’s OW is his subordinate and so was (different job now) my youngest son.

    I saw on FB that my youngest son had friended OW. I lost my shit. I wasn’t going to call son until I got my emotions under control. That lasted about 5 minutes. I was yelling at him on the phone, sobbing, yelling, cursing, sobbing, yelling. He was stammering apologies. Of course I followed up with another phone call to him, but so not cool of either one of us. I deleted my FB account.

    The second was sitting in a bar after my birthday dinner. Youngest son was asking for advice on a woman who reports to him at work and she kept making sexual advances. He wanted to know what he should do. I looked at him and very seriously said, “Why aren’t you asking your father?” It took him a minute, but he broke out laughing and said, “Good one mom, now tell me what to do.” Even though it was funny, I probably should have let the barb pass.

    • I love the story of you and your boy in the bar, Annie. You did right. He’ll remember that moment. Give his father hell. That jerk earned it. And the sooner your boy learns not to fuck his coworkers the better.

      I haven’t read all the comments in the last couple hours, but as a non-parent I see something interesting. Since the overwhelming number of Chump Lady commenters are straight lady chumps. There is a certain dynamic. What I would like to offer is it’s different for boys.

      Guys will have their relationship with their father regardless of what their mom does. So give yourselves a break. You’re doing the best you can, and a boy will always have some feelings about his father and a relationship that you won’t be privy too.

      I observed from my time married to a woman and being their when her mother died that it is much the same for girls. Match Girl still loves her daddy and it’s been a fucking rollercoaster between her and him. Inscrutable. (My word of the week. Much love chumps!)

  • CONGRATULATIONS TRACY! YOU ARE SO FUCKING MIGHTY!

    Look what you did! You raised a man and that man is in college. His life rocks because his mother ROCKS!

    Wait until he graduates. That was the single happiest weekend of my life, bio-dad and his lame family in attendance notwithstanding (same non-involvement, lack of meeting his parental obligations, didn’t even know which college she attended. AND THAT’S BECAUSE OUR KIDS KNOW WHO THEIR HEROES ARE.

    I am so happy for this wonderful news. And the rest of your life will rock – adult children are awesome.

  • Hi Tracy, First, pat yourself on the back for being a mighty mom. We all read through the lines of your postings that you are a fiercely loving mom. Also, while this is an exciting time of transition, there is not a little sadness attached to it. After I dropped my youngest at college, I went to the grocery store. I alternated between elation and crying, aisle by aisle, about shopping and cooking for just myself.

    Fast forward to a lunch with my almost 30 year old son (a married man now). We were discussing some family business that involves my ex and me. It’s clear that affair partner, now wife of ex, will walk away with the lions share of dad’s estate. Couldn’t stop the tears in the car on the ride home: the unfairness for kids, and bitter taste taste of feeling devalued by dollar sums at that moment. I don’t feel devalued, in fact I won the family, but I was having a very un-Meh moment. The good news is that it passed swiftly.

    Enjoy your time alone with your husband, for the first time! But let yourself feel teary about Toys-R-Us and all those stomping grounds of childhood in the rear view of your not-a-minivan:)

  • This was a great post for me today. The replies have been equally helpful. I suppose “back to school” season is probably a trigger for a lot of jackasses to ramp up their faux parenting crap.

    I also think we need a new cartoon–perhaps CL ripping off her Superwoman cape and towel whipping the Cheater with it in a temporary fit of un-meh.

  • I guess my most un-meh moment came a little over a year ago. My eldest son was graduating from Graduate School. He lived with me for his last two years of school, rent free while I paid all living expenses. He worked part time and paid for his car, insurance and food.

    He only received 4 tickets to his graduation and his dad claimed 3 of them for him, his mother and new wife (OW). That left son with one remaining ticket for either me or his brother. I was infuriated.

    I told son I was very proud of him, took him out for a celebratory dinner, got him some gifts but ultimately decided not to go to his graduation. I didn’t want to ruin his day because I was pretty sure if I saw his dad or new wife, I wouldn’t be able to be meh or take the higher ground. I was there for his high school graduation and undergrad-graduation in another state. I felt bad but it was a little too soon. Ex married OW less than a year after our divorce and had her move into my ex house less than 6 months after I left.

    I topped off that un-meh moment with a reply to the ex’s email when he discovered I wasn’t going and he “thanked me” for all I did for our son (vomit). I basically told him that I didn’t have to be thanked for doing what I was supposed to do as a mother and I certainly didn’t want any thanks by the likes of him.

    Should’ve just ignored it!

    • That is ridiculous!! His father kept a ticket for OW at the expense of eldest son’s brother being able to go? Unbelievable. You showed remarkable restraint.

    • I’m sorry that happened to you cheaterssuck, but you handled it with grace. My ex didn’t attend our child’s law school graduation. Instead, cheater took my son and his wife out to eat beforehand. His excuse was that he wouldn’t be in town, but I think he just didn’t want to be around my parents. He was afraid there would be a scene.

      It broke my heart for our family not to be able to celebrate an important milestone event that we’d all worked towards for so many years. I have the hardest time forgiving the ramifications his unilateral decisions have visited upon our family for now and forever.

  • My x was not interested in attending the parents convocation of our last child. No he spent the day screwing ow. I had no idea, boy was I dumb. I managed, DS struggled but he graduates this year with honors. I am so proud of him. He has managed no contact early on and sees with clear eyes the kind of man his father is, a real dickhead.
    Since the divorce x is making pitiful attempts mend broken relationships with his kids. Of course he blames me for all that is wrong in his life. He just doesn’t get it. Being a shithead to mom doesn’t win you any prizes. And these now fully grown functioning adults have vivid memories of his crappy behavior towards them.

    • My most in meh moment centered around this ow as so much damage to my family was done during his relationship with her. He laughed when I mentioned her name and said that was years ago. I was pissed for days.
      He refers to her as a fat troll. All of the distruction to relationships and my family for someone he calls a troll. Idiot.

  • For neither the first nor last time, I am so grateful I didn’t have kids with XH. I have so much respect and admiration for those of you who have to continue to navigate the world with your deplorable Exes because you share children (and by “share,” I mean “you do all the work and s/he shirks it all only to do the ‘fun!’ stuff”). — No contact was my salvation, and you can never truly have that 100% if you share kids. You are all truly mighty.

    I will also say that kids are not without experiences of cruelty and injustice, even at a very young age — Kathy Mihalic in sixth grade springs immediately to mind, “bully” is putting it mildly. But it’s especially unfair for any of that to come from cheater parents, when home and family are supposed to be “safe zones.” But my own childhood included an alcoholic father who changed the very fabric of our day to day lives. And, y’know, I still loved my dad because he was a great guy when he was sober. Was it unfair to my mom (who did all the heavy lifting) that I loved my dad? Yes, probably. But my mom also told me once, “You can’t choose your family — you can choose your FRIENDS, but not your family. So if you don’t like them, that’s OK. But you still have to be nice.”

    I don’t know where I’m going with this except to say that I know that all parents want to be the best loving and supportive role models they can, but an occasional outburst or “loss of shit” will be overshadowed by all those days you “show up” and do the things that need to get done to keep your kids on track. — I just think you guys are all awesome, that’s all, given that my most Un-Meh moment was regarding an IRS thing and that’s only money. I can’t imagine trying to navigate the raising of sentient intelligent human beings with these semi-humans.

  • My son’s desire to remain in close contact with his dad is undoubtedly the biggest shit sandwich I have to eat. Son knows his dad is nuts, knows his dad is a user and a loser, knows his dad refuses to work any regular job for over six years now. Ex has mind fucked son repeatedly, and uses him as his number #1 kibble dispenser, as son learned long ago that to have a relationship with his dad means smiling and nodding as dad goes on and on about his latest insane scheme to become famous. Ex of course interprets this to mean son agrees with him. Despite the fact that ex plays pretty much zero part in son’s day to day life or expenses, ex uses son as Facebook fodder for “likes” and comments on what a great dad he is.

    On the rare occasions son has challenged his dad, it means a nearly endless barrage of text messages, emails and calls demanding son apologize, berating son, mind fucking him, blaming and guilting him. This goes on until son apologizes or allows the status quo to resume. I believe this has caused son emotional damage, as he seems to have internalized that smiling while accepting shit is normal relationship behavior required to keep affection.

    Ex still owes me over $40K in child support arrears, money I will never get and ex never intended to pay. I’m the one doing all the heavy lifting of parenting, yet son recently said that he knows his dad is a manipulative loser and that one day he will have to cut him out of his life, but he is not prepared to do that yet because “then who will he have.” Son said this in front of his soon-to-be-step-dad, which left Nice Guy feeling bad and like the proverbial chopped liver.

    Sorry, I’m rambling as usual. The punishment for breeding with a disordered fuckwit lasts for a lifetime, sometimes it’s very hard to accept. The chump often does all the work while the cheater takes all the credit, and many children are okay with this setup because it’s all they know and they do not want to lose the “love” of the cheater parent.

  • Tracy, I haven’t read all the comments yet since this is the start of the college semester and I am crazy busy. But here’s the scoop on convocation. It’s sort of that moment where the college starts to pry kids out of the parental grasp and get them into a group. It’s a PR event designed to get kids focused on the seriousness of this stage of their lives (while orientation is often social) and to let parents know we are on the ball.

    Lots of parents don’t go. It’s a giant snooze. And it’s an artificial event that for some people may provide a transition to this new life where your kid is now on his own, in theory. Until he needs money, food, or car repairs.

    Trust this: He will miss his bed at home. He will miss food cooked by people who love him. He will miss his pets, if you have them. He will miss Nomar. He will miss you.

    And you were mighty. You knew just when to let him go. Sending big chump love to you as you go through another life transition.

  • Oh God, you are my hero. I love your blog. I haven’t posted previously but read daily since I discovered you several months back. I don’t post because it’s been waaaaaaay too many years (almost 15) since I kicked my craptastic mid-life ex out and divorced him. You are amazing! Yeah, meh is a wonderful feeling, ain’t it? Thing is, we’re human. We have our limits. And sometimes, we meltdown. Have the meltdown, soothe yourself, understand you made it, and carry on. I have so many stories like these too. And the rare/occasional bizarre encounters with my ex do continue since we do have children together. You never can completely eradicate their presence when you have children. They’ll lurk out on the edges of your existence to come into play when your kids have big events in their lives–graduations, weddings, have kids of their own, etc. I just got sick and tired with his fuckupedness and expending my emotional energy playing his freaky mind games. It’s a benefit of becoming totally detached from them.

  • When my grandson was an infant I was watching my son snuggle with him and I started crying. Son asked me what was wrong and I said my heart was breaking at the thought of the GF holding MY grandson (he knew what had happened). The thing of it is, my lying cheater had died two years before and I had no idea where she was. These horrible people only lived on in my head and yet they still had the power to hurt me that much. I can’t imagine what it must be like to eat the sandwich and deal with it, in reality. All of you who have to do this on a regular basis have my deepest respect. You are truly mighty!! BTW – it helped immensely when my son answered “I wouldn’t have let that fucking bitch get anywhere near my son”.

  • So this is the same fuckwit that just showed up out of the blue at one of your son’s high school events from across the country right? Damn he is cheeky and self absorbed. I have been meh for a long time but I majorly lost it last week. First, ex emails that his car isn’t working well and that he only has “$35 to his name” (indicating he has blown through the over $200K he illegally stole from our joint 501K earlier this year and we had a court date scheduled for this week.) and that he might have to cancel his visit the next day with our son. I stay calm — court with deal with him, I will prepare son that his dad might not again show for one of his few visits. Dad just doesn’t show up the next day with no more messages. Fine. Son is upset, we go do something fun. Two day later ex’s sister calls me to tell me he is in hospital for trying to commit suicide. I comfort sister, I begin the process of being their for our kids as they navigate the fear, uncertainity, self doubt, etc. that this news brings. I write it off as an attempt to avoid getting arrested for contempt at the upcoming hearing and am angry at him for hurting the kids again. But I didn’t lose my shit. Then I go to his FB page (which I never do) since he is an inappropriate sharer and I want to know what my kids will see esp. anything suicide note related and be able to help them with it. There is a 3 page ranting post the week before about how awful it is that we totally trust people who turn out to be dishonest. Apparently his “boyfriend” he lived with and thought he would spend the rest of his life with broke up with him on Christmas morning. They were in an open relationship and apparently part of a “throuple” (I needed to google that one.) He talkks about the last 6 months being hell because the ex boyfriend continued to see other member of their throuple without him and he didn’t feel the boyfriend was being completely honest with him about why he broke up and wouldn’t talk to him about it. Apparently that week the boyfriend moved out of their house (don’t konw why he stayed that long) and he was outraged that someone would leave in such a mean way and would be untruthful and waste TWO whole years of his life. All the rage from 25 years of him lying to me and abusing me and risking my health over and over, from all the hurt he has caused the kids, from his complete inability to take responsibilty for hurt he has cause but wallow in his own lesser pain. . all of it shot through me intenseley and I went ape shit crazy. There was a broken dish (ok, possibly 3), some kicked walls and furniture, some shouting. Don’t know why this particular thing sent me over the edge after years of meh with all else he had been doing and I was grateful the kids weren’t there to see it. But I felt might uncool and like I had lost a bit of my power.

    And then you know what I did fellow chumps? Yesterday when we went to court — and he didn’t show — instead of my lawyer asking for a bench warrant to be drawn up we asked for a show cause to be served him and a new court date for Nov. Because he had told the kids he was going into a 4 week intensive therapy program and we didn’t want to mess with that. Came home and found a message from him to the kids that he had been relseased from the hosptial and was home and feeling great. Turns out that intensive inpatient therapy program is just for an hour or so a day — or maybe not even that he was pretty vague.

    So now I feel uncool and re-chumped. . .but I will get my groove back. Reading all of your stories here that you so generously share make me realize I am not alone in dealing with this level of douchiness or having the occassional backslide.

    • Good Lord, your ex is a real piece of work. I know you know this already, but wow, you are so well rid of him.

    • No way, wow, how horrible. I can’t even imagine how a person can be this terrible. I would have lost it, too, so don’t feel bad. And you were being considerate and kind even if he is just shallow and manipulative. He really sucks.

    • Carolyn, Karma is just beginning to rear it’s head for your ex, now help it along by nailing the SOB to the wall in court, I mean WTF, he blew through 200K???, how the hell did he manage to withdraw it without your consent, please make sure your lawyer secures the rest of the joint assets and puts them in your name, after that tell the ex SIL not to call you about the SOB, he can drop dead for all you care. Stay Strong

  • Chump Lady, your honesty is such a gift.
    Your ‘un-meh moment’ is one we can all recognise! And yes, doesn’t it always involve injustice and the fuckwit.

    My most un-meh moments happen when the kids do something that triangulates me with their father (always involving secrecy, stuff arranged behind my back, failing to mention and other reminders of disrespect and being dismissed).

    And also teenage things (one child in particular) that reflect the selfishness, lack of empathy and complete failing to appreciate mutuality of relationship that is the hallmark of their extremely narcissistic father. And that is my fault: I am accepting the same sh*, and failing to teach them a vital, vital lesson that will make their life in the world easier. I must do better.

    Its hard, sometimes.

  • X decided to have an appraisal done on the house we bought for me to move into after the separation, even though we’d just bought it and it had recently been appraised by the bank for $16,000 higher than the purchase price. I took the high road and said that I was willing to accept the bank’s higher appraised value instead of the purchase price and that he could add half of that equity onto his side of the ledger. But no, the market was so hot, the house was surely worth way more, he wanted his fair share! So he hired an appraiser.

    Fine. The appraiser shows up and is immediately drawn to our neighbor’s new fence, which abutted my house. Why? Because X gave them permission to build it that way because it was more “aesthetically pleasing” than building it lengthwise along the property line. He did this while I was otherwise preoccupied in the weeks following my father’s death.

    As he walked over to take a look, the appraiser could not believe his eyes and basically said, ok, I know your husband hired me, not you, but I can’t in good conscience leave here without telling you all of the many ways in which this fence is a disaster, which he proceeded to list. He told me I needed to do everything possible, including paying for it myself if I had to, to get the neighbors to rebuild it. The worst part, he said, was that the fence would only affect the market value of the house (by narrowing the available pool of buyers to the 0% of the population that thinks it’s cool their neighbors have access to half their yard and can close it off with their own fence), not the assessed value of the house itself.

    I lost my shit. I immediately called X and angrily listed, in a rage that could be called “sputtering,” all of the problems with the fence that his own appraiser had told me about (first mistake, outing the appraiser, who then denied having said anything), reminded him that he was the one who signed the legal paperwork to allow it to be built, at a time, no less, when I could barely function, let alone consider the “aesthetics” of a damn fence, and that he needed to call them ASAP and ask them to rebuild it.

    Oh man did he relish the gift I’d just handed him . . . “There you go, always making me the bad guy, always blaming me for your problems, you really need to grow up and accept some responsibility. They’re your neighbors, you have to live with them, you talk to them about it. Oh, and I can tell you this, they’re not going to, but if they do rebuild the fence, it’s going to be an aesthetic nightmare.” Click. I could feel his smug little grin from across the airwaves. At least I didn’t get in the car to go scream some more at him in person (by this point I’d been here long enough to know that I should cut my losses and let it go).

    A couple of weeks later the appraisal came back . . . at @ $12,000 *less* than the bank’s original appraisal and only a few thousand more than the purchase price. Why? Bless him, the poor appraiser couldn’t stand by his initial claim that the fence wouldn’t affect the assessed price of the house and his report included multiple photos of the fence, with big arrows pointing at it and captioned with, “Abutting fence!!” X’s attorney wrote a terse letter to mine saying that they were willing to accept what they believed to be an “extremely low” assessed value on the house and would not revisit my previous offer to allow the bank’s original assessment to stand.

    Even better, when I explained the situation to my neighbors, they could not have been more gracious or understanding–it turns out the wife had always wanted the fence to run the other way to begin with. They called their fence guy the next day and had it rebuilt a few weeks later, without even asking me for a single penny. I just wish I could have seen the look on X’s face the first time he got a good look at it . . . I was so tempted to rub his nose in it but haven’t said a word. In some ways it’s actually good that he knew how upset I was about it so now he knows how happy I am that I won the fence battle!

        • I’m in the middle of refinancing the mortgage since I ended up getting the house and all of the equity (thank you, bulldog attorney–basically X ended up paying for an appraiser to alert me to the problem with the fence). So the house has to be assessed yet again . . . if it comes in higher than the assessment X paid for (which should be the case unless the market has gone down since the fence was rebuilt), I may not be able to resist mailing him a copy 🙂

  • CL, I think that you should draw a cartoon of him sitting in a tent, sweating bullets pretending to be parent of the year. That would be great.

  • My most Un-Meh moment – just a few months after DDay – moving my queen size mattress alone from one room to another. Struggling under the heavy bulk, it fell on me and smashed me into the wall. I burst into tears, screaming in rage, swearing and spluttering and practically foaming at the mouth “HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO DO ALL THIS ALONE! HE LEFT US TO FUCK WHORES! FUCK WHORES, FUCK WHORES! EVIL IS REAL EVIL IS REAL!!!” Yep, I lost my shit – with my 12 year old daughter right down the hall. She came in, helped pull the mattress off me, held me, cried and said “Everything is gonna be ok, Mom. We don’t need him. We don’t need him.”

    Not my proudest moment. I am so ashamed I put my poor little girl through that.

    • You just made me cry. Seriously. My face is wet. We all know that pain. I’m sorry you felt it, too.

      You know what, though? You showed your little girl that bad things happen to good people, and it hurts like a motherfucker, and you STILL TAKE CARE OF SHIT. You help each other.

      Carry on, my sister. Carry ON! You’re doing it right.

  • Hell, Tracey, we have all done worse! You get to keep the Mighty crown for another year.

    Congratulations on inserting your offspring into the Higher Education System!

    I reckon a non-Meh moment is allowed. Too much serenity is probably as bad as too much freakoutyness.

    Lotsalove,
    Meh

    PS- No blame either for not sitting in a sweaty tent, and I hope you picked up some new, exotic pine cone elves

  • OK, I’ll surrender. I guess my most un-meh moment after divorce – and it was sincere was when he told me he had prostate cancer and hadn’t told anybody else. He seemed ashamed of it. I had survived breast cancer so I knew all the huge challenges he faced while he inhabited those scary machine while they’re checking lymph nodes, etc, blue piss from the dye they put in you. I wished I were there for him….(hey, I did love him)
    Myself? I was in the hospital for 6 days at the time surviving a fall off a 75′ cliff from fixing a dog fence. I was on Heroin-type pain medicine.

    He didn’t elaborate all the tests he went thru but I knew he did. He doesn’t like to show ‘weakness’.
    I wrote him the most heroin-induced love letter that I don’t remember writing….like I wanted to be there while he went through all those awful tests, like I did. How he shouldn’t have to go through those on his own…..and how I was the only one that could take care of him….blah blah.

    Well, after everybody got well, he threw that email in my face – he actually ‘saved’ it! He never saved anything!
    He sent it to me after I told him to get lost. I re-read it, and it was the sappiest thing I’ve ever written –
    So, I said, I was high on Heroin doses of pain meds at the time and didn’t mean a word.
    Yes, it was cruel (about saying that about my concern for his cancer) but I really don’t remember writing a word of it.
    He was oblivious of my serious injuries and why I was in the hospital so long.

    Very strange times.

    • She-chump, your most un-meh moment was a love letter? I think that’s too funny. Awe, it probably got his hopes up. Then, you were like….psyche! Just the pain meds talking. No way. Nope.

      • awww…thanks NWHI – nope nope nope – I don’t remember writing any of that. LOLOL

        He asked me to keep his ‘news’ a secret.
        Cancer? That’s not a secret in MY life….so yeah, I admitted I shared with loved ones.
        He was irate as I was when he told everybody I had BC. How could I possibly do this to him?
        (in itself, it was quite funny at the time)
        I reminded him cancer is an issue for everybody in society and the only people I shared it with were the ppl that really cared about him.
        You can’t do cancer alone. But he wanted to. And, he did.
        Left everybody he knew in my circle of great family who also cared about him.

        When you think about it though – there ARE some articles on the internet that says sexually transmitted diseases can lead to prostate cancer. I guess he didn’t like me pointing that out. :-/

  • Un-meh moment? Does this count?
    We’re at the bank, splitting up the last of the cash. He wants to deposit a check to both of us and then write me a check for my portion. We are both listed on the check and both present. I request my portion from the teller in cash. Narkles the Clown is unhappy with this. The teller complies with my request. I move to the side and put the cash in my purse. He tries to small talk me. I say nothing. He continues with the “why won’t you talk to me? I just want to talk. You know I will be in your life forever. You need to learn to get along with me.” So I threw my purse over my shoulder, grabbed my keys and screamed in rage “Get away me, leave me alone, go fuck your whore!” And stormed out.
    Yeah, I’d say that was pretty un-meh. Thank goodness for No Contact, the path to the truth and the light.

    • AllOutofKibble – yep – that definitely qualifies!
      Kudos for telling him how you really feel out in public.
      I’m not shy about that, but, unfortunately I haven’t had the opportunity.
      I like to make public scenes if I can, but only if they’re warranted 🙂
      I would hope to not swear if there are kiddos around.
      But, we can finesse your sentence at the bank to….hmmm…
      “Hey John, (cuz he’s just a john), please go back to your hooker with your money”.
      (sorry it’s late and I’m not very funny)

      Hopefully you will be fully N/C after this.

  • Ugh: Around eight months ago I broke one of the CL Commandments: “Thou Shalt Not Confront the AP.”

    He and XW came at me aggressively in front of our young children during an exchange, accusing me of being a bad father and just going off on me. I should have simply driven off, but instead I told the AP that XW has been coming around crying that she misses me, draping herself on me (all true) and that he should reign in his Soulmate. AP snarled “I don’t believe you,” and XW (shocked I’d told him), snarled “He’s lying!”

    I kept calm but looked him in the eye and said, “You’re being used. You have no idea who she is. But you will.”

    It was an awful scene, and again, in front of the children. Shame on me, but I was caught up in the moment and just couldn’t absorb their abuse without some sort of defense.

    Predictable coda: XW has since called off the wedding and is hoovering me even more. My family and friends want me to record her “I still love you’s, I miss you’s, I don’t love him’s, blah blah blah’s,” and send the evidence to AP, but I have no desire to be involved in their drama. Plus the best revenge is to let him have her.

    Anyway, I totally lost my “Meh” that night. Never again, I hope.

    • David, I appreciate you sharing that story. My most un-meh moment might be documented somewhere here on Chump Lady.

      But I too confronted the AP. It never works out the way you want it. And you, like Tempest reminds us, end up dirty, and he likes it. I wish I’d just spilled his brains out on the sidewalk with a tire iron, but that rage has come and gone, and I’m not in prison. Small miracles and whatnot.

      SirChumpedAlot – you bred with a psycho. Sorry she’s putting y’all through this.

      FTG – your story about restraining orders is a good reminder to us all here. Steve Bannon is in the news because of things that came to light from his divorce filings. It’s all out there now and can be used against you in the court of public opinion.

      Tempest – a gift implies it was given by someone or something right? That’s pretty vindictive omnipotent being. Ugh. No thanks. It would be like if every time you wanted to build a new city block you razed the original one first. Don’t need a bomb blast to start anew. And yes, I am getting used to my newfound insight into the depravity of humans, but it’s a lot less rose colored world I live in now.

      brit, It’s hard to go from chump to self-care providing advocate, right? Frequently I know I should be standing up to Match Girl, but because it’s so new to me I just have to come here and get some strength, imagine the most assholy thing I could do, do that, and it’s worked well so far. But it’s not my normal nature, and I have to do it all while nursing my wounds and trying to figure out this new universe.

  • Strangely, I had my two most un-meh moments this week. First, while sitting at work, it occurred to me that it would have been my 35th wedding anniversary. I sat alone and cried that I couldn’t have achieved a long marriage…it takes two to do that.

    Second, my son emailed and said it is his PhD grad in a couple of months. I had to write back and say I had no possibility of getting the time off to fly 3000 miles to be there. I felt desperately sad. He wrote back and said “it’s ok Mom, at least Dad and Schmoopie can be there”. Schmoopie will now get to re-write a little bit of history. She was the third person in our marriage while I raised the kids, she was Cheater’s mistress who sat in the shadows all those years.

    I guess this is the reason I moved so far away. I just never wanted to cross her path.

    • You DID have a long marriage. That’s the horror. And I had a similar experience – with grandson’s high school graduation. For years I’ve been looking forward to that event with this boy I adore. But I couldn’t go. I’m disabled. And X went. And son said, “That’s ok, mom. Maybe you can get to his college graduation.” It just deflates you. “Desperately sad.” Should have been you. Pretty black and white. More horror.

      • Elizabeth,
        I know the sadness you must feel. It is only after a lifetime of seeing milestones pass us by that it all sinks in what they robbed us of. All those years of school, high school, exams, university, grad school…I was there for him all along the way, and now the OW gets to pose in the photos. He knows I will be there in spirit, but the OW has no kids so she is living out her fantasy of being taken for “the proud mother”. She posts photos of them all celebrating Christmas on facebook and says things like, “I love them as much as a parent could”. Ugh. I feel like catching a last minute flight and spoiling the gig for them.

  • I think Men looks different for different people. Personally, it is the realization that I Don’t Want Him Back. It doesn’t mean I won’t get mad at crappy behavior. It doesn’t mean I have a good memory of our time together every now and then. It doesn’t mean I won’t be a little sad on certain dates, like the wedding anniversary. He’s “someone that I used to know.”

    • Not sure I can say “someone that I used to know” – maybe, someone who I thought I knew. But I get it. Good perspective.

      • “Someone I used to know” for 37 yrs….I’ll have to take time to absorb that one, but I do get it.

        I didn’t ‘KNOW’ him at all! But I do now.

        It’s that damn magic carpet pulled out from under your wings that makes trusting anybody ever again an impossibility.
        I want my Mom…

  • Long, long story short …. teen aged son is No Contact with his (officially) abusive dad. Son is supposed to be the one to initiate contact, and chooses not to (after occasionally reminding him I’m not standing in his way). X sends him notes in the mail every month (some nice, some not so nice). Son chooses to remain NC. We rarely talk about his Dad. When we do, 90% of the time, son brings him up. I make the effort to remember good times/things about him as well as the not so good, as we converse.

    X’s relatively large family totally cut us off after CPS got involved.. This has been for almost 3 years. All of a sudden, earlier this month, my son’s half-sister’s husband (follow that??), who is solidly old enough to be my kid’s father in his own right, sends my son an Instagram message. Simple and polite enough. My son gleefully replied.

    So, all excited, he pipes up when I enter the room, “Guess who contacted me??!!!” When he divulged, it INFURIATED me! Why NOW?? You, all of a sudden, give a shit?? REALLY?? …. I smell a rat, because Dad has been frantically trying to reconnect with son ever since court case was over. Trying to maintain my composure, it was obvious to my kid I was NOT loving this.

    Son says, “you don’t look happy”. I couldn’t lie. I told him, after a deep breath, that, in my opinion, his BIL will ultimately try to finagle a meet up with Dad. Son wasn’t so sure. “But Mom, all he did was ask how I was, how big I got, and am I doing any sports?” I said, “You just got this nasty note from your Dad… then, exactly a week later, after years of NC, all of a sudden (your BIL) is interested in what’s up with you?” The lightbulb switched on. “Do you really think so mom?” At that point I had already taken another deep breath and calmed the racing thoughts. ……..”I’m not sure, but its a possibility. Let’s just hope this is a simple nice gesture and nothing more than that.”

    I went on in a softer tone, “Remember xxx, I will not stand in your way if you decide to reconnect with Dad”.

    Son says “I know mom. I hope (BIL) isn’t trying to do that.”
    “Well as I said before, let’s just hope that was just a nice gesture, and leave it at that”, I said.

  • Droping in today…hello all, I am a recovering chump! Un-Meh moments? Got plenty of them. But they have changed… Evolved. My buttons are not ignited by the wounds of him cheating…or the Ho bags he decided to cheat with. I dont engage when he strides down memeory lane trying to elicit some response and I remain firm in my boundaries when he threatens. My un-Meh moments are centered around his treatment of our child. And there are many. Most of the time I suck it down and I explain to my child why that particular behavior bothers me and why I chose to act or respond that way. And then there are days when the flying monkeys are released. I am not proud in those moments but they do serve a purpose. It reminds me that I am human and that I matter and that I have a right to feel angry at the selfishness directed at my child.
    In someways i think it validates the hurt that my child feels but doesnt have the courage to share with her dad…well…cause it will go unvalidated by him. I launch a few texts his way…’ U selfish fuck’ usually starts the ball rolling. And it feels good at the time. That feeling gets replaced by revulsion as I later realize he got a huge hard on from my reaction. Un- Meh. Regroup. Start again.
    In those moments I suffer from indulging the Mama Bear’s reptilian brain. Primal or not I will defend my child, her well being, her home and our bond with the ferocity of a grizzly because at the end of the day she is my cub and I will lay down my life for her.

  • My most un-meh moments are hopefully long past me.

    It was all the texts. Begging, reasoning, attempting to shame him into seeing.

    I first landed on the RIC boards. I am grateful for the community of people hurting as I was, and I made a friend there, and learned some things that were helpful and some that weren’t. I learned, for example, that if I stood still long enough he’d come back and love me, and so I extended a pitiful olive branch, laid out crumbs so that he wouldn’t be too ashamed to find his way back to me. I regret that.

    I wish I would have been instantaneously transported to “meh” with the news that he was fucking a troll, that they were conspiring against his family together. I wish I’d have simply shown him the door and given one final good-bye with empty words, “Good bye.” Or, rather, just, “Bye.” Then brushed my shoulder off.

    But I have a heart, and I was shattered.

    I’m mostly at “meh.” I will never be completely “over it” and I’m good with that. But I am grateful that I am free. He’s an ass.

  • Congrats, Chump Lady!

    My un-meh moment? I get those EVERY TIME I SEE HIM. It’s still fresh the whole thing for me…I’m stuck in one place, did not even move on, wait to re-start my life from scratch, while he’s enjoying summer time with his who re.
    Here I am, the smart, educated, earn good money, can chat with me about his day at work (I actually understand his work), beautiful wife, mother of his healthy child. And there he has been, leading a double life paying a pro. A fat, not even pretty, older than him, dumb as night, has a kid with problems. Now he lives with her. WTF
    That’s a perspective that I’m trying not to think of. It’s un-meh to me.

  • Okay, so I’m not the only one who lost her mind on occasion. I cringe at this “lovely” moment. I honestly cannot tell you why I went to my ex’s office mostly because I just, for the life of me, cannot remember! I’m sure it was of some importance though. I do recall I had my adult daughter with me and we were heading out of town for the Fourth of July. I went into his office parking lot and lo and behold, there is Schmoopies car! His car was not there because word had it that he wrecked it on one of his weekend four hour drives to her condo. Needless to say, I was already “loaded for bear!” He was not in his office, so I wrote on a large post it note that he should not be driving his whores car to his job and placed it on his phone. I turn to leave and we practically run into each other at his office door! I went off! Yelling at him and asking him if his co-workers knew that he was having an affair that broke up his marriage with a MOW? Did they know he was driving her car? Did they know her? I was so livid I can barely recall the vile spew that came from my mouth, but I could have cared less! I finally leave and as I’m heading down the highway I of course get a call from my lawyer asking me if I had indeed done this! I proudly owned losing my shit!!! She warned me that he had called his lawyer and that it would look bad in court if I did anything like this again! I promised I wouldn’t, but I must say it felt bad and good at the same time!
    I do want to let CN know that I am a fairly dignified older woman, but that shit was almost too much to bear! He was lucky I didn’t strangle him and ram her car into dust! I was madder than a wet hen!

    • I love you Roberta! Your posts always make me laugh or high five my computer screen.

      It is perfectly dignified for an older, dignified woman to lose her shit. Particularly an older, dignified woman who went through the shit those two callous ghouls put you through. I’d say those two are lucky you didn’t run them both down with a cement truck.

  • You are all so great! I am loosing my shit all the time and me and ex don’t even have children… so, for me, life is easier I guess. The first time I seriously lost my shit was when the OW, one year after me and ex break up, send me a freaking Facebook friendship request (who does that?????). And I lost my shit again last month when she started stalking me on other social media. I do not have any contact with my ex. I am living in another country… We were not even married… The shit came out three months before wedding day. And I don’t want him back… I don’t undestand why she mess up with me… Anyhow… I want to thank you all! Reading CL posts and your stories gave me sooo much strenght! And help! 🙂 So thank you! You are all great and mighty!

    • You’re mighty, Emma! You’re not even in the picture but apparently you f*k with her mind. Awesome!
      I smell triangulation there on his part, big time. Stay NC, live your life!
      I blocked my SBXH on all social platforms. Even when hand over the baby he must face my father. I really do not want to see him.

      • Thanks!!!! Honestly I would have never made it without this community 😀 You are all great and amazing! I am keep NC and whatever… they deserve each other I guess. We deserve better 🙂

  • Dear Tracy, thank you for this post. I, too, dropped off middle son at college last week. However, we didn’t have to deal with Foty. MS, only uses him for money. Foty and MS did go together for customs-where they set up their schedules, blah, blah,blah. Ex came back from that all excited and had to tell me about it in my driveway ad nauseum. I anticipate the un meh will come at family weekend next month. Foty will surely want to be there for that! He’s a great dad! Just ask him, lol!
    My un meh usually entail youngest son, who so desperately wants attention from Foty. I try to tell myself that eventually youngest will see the truth, but it’s hard. Foty now takes YS to his counseling appointments and sports practices- cause mom has to work 2 f’ing jobs trying to hold it all together. In debt up past my eyeballs cause of ex, credit maxed out, still can’t afford the retainer to divorce his sorry ass….but plugging along daily trying to keep it together for the kids. I will make it. And so will the kids.
    It’s okay to lose it occasionally. We showed up daily….and the kids see that.
    You are beyond mighty and so is your son!

  • I feel very un-meh at the moment. I had such a great day yesterday attending a music festival with a girlfriend from work. I stopped at the grocery store on the way home and ran into another friend. She told me that Fucktard is engaged to the OW. She’s known about it since the beginning of August. Our divorce was final June 9th.

    I expected it. I always said that he was so stupid he’d probably marry her immediately. He also supposedly said, as he showed the ring off, that he felt like a kid attending prom. My comment was, “I wonder when he’ll wake up like the day after prom, full of regret with a blistering hangover.” She also said that a Switzerland friend commented that she knew where my boys got it from. That boiled my ass that she compared their dating different girls/women through the years to cheating. I am more pissed off by the snide comment about my children than Fucktard’s engagement. Then I was told two days after I put the dog we’d had for 14 years down, he went out and bought another dog.
    I swear if I hadn’t had a car load full of groceries I’d have hit the local bar and picked up the first available man. Thank God for groceries because that would have been a horrible mistake.

    This is a lot to think about and I spent most of last night and today doing just that. It still is unbelievable that 28 years meant so little that he’s already making plans for the next marriage. I told myself that it doesn’t matter because I know that marriage is just a word to him and not a commitment. I also told myself that it doesn’t impact my life one bit, only if I let it. I’m determined that I won’t let it. I’m giving myself permission to mutter and mope for just a bit until I can come to terms and name my feelings and then I will be done. I find it (I can’t name the feeling yet, so chime in CN) that in his mind I am as easily replaced as a dog.

  • Annie,

    That sounds so painful. He’s a bad person. I don’t have much time to write all I wanted, but I wanted to give some support. Maybe go to the forums for a quicker response.

    One thought. When I got the personal email last week (not even close to your news) I was afraid to feel sad. I label feeling sad at this point as weak. I want to choose the “righteous” “healthy” path. (Whatever that is.) So, for example, not having sex with every stranger. But, turns out I felt sad. But no contact fixed that eventually.

    Him getting engaged and getting a new dog so quickly just shows how he is unable to value an care for things. In my mind it shows how little he cares about her that he would ask her so soon. Hang in there.

    • Thank Ian. I’m doing okay, actually better now that I went to my Journal wrote everything down, and then revisited a little piece I titled, “Random Things I’d wish I’d Said to Him.” I will share just a few;

      1. Listen to other peoples opinions and recognize their value. Not everyone is an asshole or stupid.
      2. You’re not a great lover, not even mediocre. Pay attention to all of me.
      3. Yes you are aging. Get over it or die so you’ll stop aging.
      4. You wanted dogs, play with them. You wanted kids, enjoy them.
      5. I’m better looking than you.
      6. Don’t put a rain cloud over everything. Enjoy the good, minimize the bad and fucking laugh.

      The complementary piece of “Random Things I’d wish I’d Said to Me.”
      1. Draw the hard line on your values and never compromise them again.
      2. Don’t forgive infidelity. It’s the ultimate betrayal. Move on.
      3. Follow your dreams and exercise your mind.
      4. Getting your degree didn’t cause him to cheat. His lack of morals did.
      5. Love yourself – be yourself. Embrace each day because it is new and may hold untold joy and surprises.
      6. Get up – Get out – Live.

  • Ok I have had many un-Meh moments but my funniest was. XH was not supposed to be with OW but I caught him there with his car parked out front of her house. I very quietly moved his car several blocks away. Walked backed. Shouted in her open living room window that I knew he was there, not to worry about coming home and more over good luck with coming home, because it was going to take you some time to find your fucking car. Then I drove away. I think back on that moment and smile.

    • Moving the car! Awesome!
      You know what it would have made it even awesomer? You go home and quietly change the lock on your door! Hey, even change the door with a very different one, so when he gets home (eventually) would think he got the wrong house. “Where is my home?” You would think this question would resonate at some deeper level…

  • Dateline(in US) had a show on about a man who killed his wife for another woman. He was arrested and while in jail tried to hire someone to kill the cop on his case. At the beginning of the second trial he admitted it and said in a pitiful voice that he didn’t know what got into him. My favorite part is when the OW on the witness stand said she never loved him, never planned to marry him but enjoyed the expensive gifts he gave her. He shot his wife, burned down his house with his two dogs in there and then the OW burns him. I love it!!! Not the murder, the fact that the rat bastard is going to spend 30 years in prison for a fantasy. I don’t think he can appeal his case since he freely admitted in court that he did it.

    • Holly molly, is this for real? To kill the cop on his case?
      About the OW, you can see how these fuckwits change their narrative as soon as the old one doesn’t serve them anymore. Indeed, “of what good is a loser in jail for the rest of his life? Let’s move on, shall we?”
      His wife was (I assume) probably going through some hard time, something that made her vulnerable, weaker in some way. A good example are pregnant women or mothers that gave birth recently. And the bastard decided she’s of no use to him anymore.
      These are not people! Sadly they walk among normal people in broad daylight. How to spot them is the real life skill.

      • His wife was just a nice woman who became obsolete so he killed her. The Oaw said he was relentless in his pursuit of her. He lived Kentucky and she lived in Indiana. He told her he was divorced and was planning on building a house for her.

        • I am an ID TV fanatic. The stories you see on there will curl your toes! We all know these cheaters become absolutely obsessed with the OW/OM and do the strangest things that are completely out of character for them! They get so fixated on what they desire and imagine they are going to get from the AP some of these guys just go over the cliff! And in the end the OW/OM who supposedly wanted them so bad is usually the first one to throw them directly under the bus! It’s a shame, but I love it when that happens! If that makes me a sick puppy then so be it!

          • Roberta, I wrote about this because so many of you, including my brother, have had to try to get to meh but losing it sometimes. You wrote your ex has cancer but not where he is these days. Some of the chumps have to watch the ex get married and live a happy life. Every now and then good old karma bites some chicken shit cheater in the ass and it is “my job” to share the news.

  • Today I went to lunch with my son to celebrate his 24th birthday, I was with his long term girl friend and her parents, I always feel awkward on these occasions because I am the spare wheel, the odd number, but as always we had a wonderful together as we always do. I get on very well with her parents. My son mentioned that his phone was low on battery and he knew his father had called ( several missed calls), he’s on holiday with OW and her children, but son just shrugged and turned the phone off to save the battery. I will talk to him later he said, he really could have cared less. So when you lose your shit, I have done many times, just remember that moment is in your future, when your kids get it, they really get it and they prefer to be with you and put the fuck wit to one side. It will happen one day and until it does, just be kind to yourself about the occasional slip, they really don’t matter in the long run.

  • Hey, I just wanted to get back on here to say thanks for all the kind words about my son and the un-meh moments. I don’t get to weigh in as much as I’d like to these days, but damn, you’re an impressive bunch of mighty people.

    And yep, it’s still a struggle to figure out what’s meh, what’s mighty, and what’s just losing one’s shit.

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