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Get Over It

nyI wrote this post in 2014, I think I’ve run it every New Year since. A version of this pep talk/CL bitchslap appears in my book too. It’s my rallying cry to leave all the shit behind and be mighty in 2017. Happy New Year Chump Nation! 

Get over it.

The three words chumps hate to hear. “Get over it” says your remorseless cheater after a half-assed attempt at reconciliation. “Get over it” says the friend who cannot conceive of your pain, and wishes you would just go back to your pleasant, ignorant self again. “Get over it” says your boss, because the drama is effecting your productivity.

“Get over it” feels like insult to injury. A flippant response to betrayal, the worst sort of minimizing. So sorry I’m not healing at your convenience, asshole. Chumps at once see the hidden agenda. The cheater who’s not truly sorry. The friend who feels threatened by your vulnerability. The boss who doesn’t really care, just get back to your widgets. So, quite rightly, chumps dismiss “get over it.” Fuck you, I’ll “get over it” when I’m good and ready. Perhaps not ever. I may go down with this ship if I fucking feel like it. Don’t you tell ME to “get over it”!

So, from one chump to another — let me tell you — get over it.

The pain is finite. Don’t choose it. Don’t keep reliving it. Infidelity does NOT define you. It’s no measure of your soul, of your worthiness and lovability.

What keeps you in pain? Staying focused on your cheater. Their judgments of you, what makes them tick, who they’re with now, what they’re doing — and when the hell is the karma bus coming? Where is the karma timetable? I’ve been standing at this stop for YEARS waiting for that bus. I demand a schedule! Only after that bus arrives will I be able to leave this stop and get on with my life properly! Damn bus.

Note the word stop. That’s what happens when you wait for karma. Your life stops. You live a limbo of anticipation. Your focus is on the bus.

Stand on a different street corner and grab a different bus, chumps. One that’s headed in the direction of your new cheater-free life. Focus on yourself.

Hell YES your job is to get over it.  To reclaim your selfhood. Of course, it’s a battle at times, but every liberation campaign is.

Getting over it is not eating a shit sandwich. You’re not denying that this happened to you and it was abusive. You don’t have to hold on to that righteous anger to know that it was real. It WAS real. It DID happen. That person SUCKS. Getting over it means they didn’t break you.

You’re not going to get over it staying married to an remorseless cheater. You get over it when you start to protect yourself, when you stand up and say “no more.” When you draw those boundaries and enforce those boundaries. When you grieve. When you stop spackling and see the cheater for who they really are. When you let go of what you thought your life was going to be/should’ve been, and become open to the possibility of a new life.

Reconciliation is fine if you just want to survive. To limp along. To endure. I’m not convinced anyone every really gets over it when they stay married to a cheater. Seems like an endless buffet of shit sandwiches if you ask me.

At Chump Lady, I hold out a better vision for you. You’re not just going to survive this — you’re going to THRIVE. This is the painful birth to better days. This is where you discover exactly how kick ass you are. You find that job, you parent your way, you finish that degree, you fall in love again, you make new friends who get you, you get reacquainted with your creativity, you own your successes. All that energy poured into a narcissist — it’s yours now. You gift it to yourself and those deserving of you.

So, of course you’re going to get over it. What is the alternative? What are you going to miss? The betrayal? Being treated like a concession prize? The disrespect? The pick me dance? The humiliation? Oh, I’m going to hold those things close. Gee, I really want all that shit in my life. NO, of course you don’t!

Make 2017 your own. Get over it. Happy New Year, chumps.

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at info@chumplady.com. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • A note to say I have not forgotten about our Xmas Freak contest. Working on those cartoons and will have an announcement at some point this week. (So much freakiness… so hard to choose…)

    Back to our regular scheduled program tomorrow. Hope you’re all enjoying a day off!

      • Thank-you for the nomination of the late entry. Reading what I wrote it dawned on me that people might view my X-inlaws as poor farm people. That is far from the truth. The kitchen island in the kitchen the goats were kept was insured for 30 grand. This was a brand new just built house. My X-mother-in-law was an RN nurse and my X-father-in-law owned a plastic injection molding business. My XMIL also had Guiney pigs on her kitchen counter tops. You’d cut veggies and the things would be squealing at you for a taste. Her fridge was a science experiment in progress. You’d find things in there like embryos floating in solutions. All the needles and vaccines for live stock were kept in there . She prided herself on using the same needles for the last 10 yrs. I checked the expiration dates on the vaccines before. Most out dated by 3-5 yrs. Yet she has won many awards for being a 4-H Leader for the last 20 yrs. She knows how to keep up her image control.

      • That was funny! There’s also another good one by NoKibble4You (Sp?) about visiting her XILs and her XFIL vacuuming flies out of the air because their house was infested with flies year round! In Oregon.

    • Hey, I am new to the site and it’s been my go to daily help over the Christmas and new year period, your advice has been so helpful. My husband of 18 months left me in September stating he was feeling ” not as close to me” and that he felt the responsibility of marriage and my two children ( from a previous marriage) were too much of a commitment , one is 18 and one 13, they are literally no trouble , before this declaration he was literally the most wonderful man to me. He did display impatience and anger at times ( not directed at me) and said he felt his own 5 year old son from his previous relationship was a ” burden” to him. Anyway after a week apart he came back. But he was there in body alone. 2 weeks later he left again stating he was still unhappy and ” loved me but not in love with me” . He moved into his dad’s bedroom. He was going to the gym daily! And worshipping his body all of a sudden! He then after 6 weeks asked to move back, declaring his undying love to me. I let him back. He was kind, buying me presents but I felt he wanted nothing sexually . He told me he loved me everyday but his actions did not match . He went gym every day after work. Then came the moment I found him lying again. Little white lies all of a sudden about going to the gym. Said he was going to work early one Sunday, as a customer couldn’t go later. I knew it felt in my gut that he was lying! I went to the gym , I just knew he would be there and he was! With a woman! Said she was a friend from work. Had been training her . The receptionists at the gym even told me that they’ve noticed something between them for 3 months, told me the gym have been watching them acting ” innapproriately “for 3 months. Touching etc….. . I left the gym and haven’t seen or heard from him since that moment. No apology, nothing! All I heard from his mother in law is that he is fuming with me for embarrassing him at his gym , she also said her sons no cheater and I made it up and that the gym receptionists lied! I have gone NC too,. I know this is nothing compared to what most Chumps have been through but my question is…, was this the start? If he begs me back would I be setting myself up for years of cheating? Am I right to end this without evidence! The lies are bad enough ! Did this sound like the start of some of your marriages. Would appreciate your opinions.

      • Dear, you already have all the evidence you need. You do not need one more speck of evidence to understand that he has decided being home with you is where his heart is. Leaving for periods of time and then coming back? Sudden excessive interest in personal appearance (gym)? New relationship (emotional or physical, doesn’t matter which) with someone who was never mentioned to you? Rage upon being discovered? No concern showed about how you feel? All of that spells time to leave. Done and doner. I would not expect an unbiased neutral assessment of his behavior and worthiness from his mother. Ignore. Your gut and your heart have told you all you need to know. The very fact that you knew to go check up on what’s going on at the gym says it all. Trust is broken and gone. A marriage without trust is a prison. You know that from reading here. Stay no contact and give yourself the time to know your truth. Then please act. You deserve so much more in life than him. Good luck.

          • Thank you Dixie Chump, your words have helped me loads, I just needed someone who had been through this to tell me what I already knew. Everyone on this site need applause, All those going through their own issues yet have the time to help others, thank you Chump Nation .

            • @Chumpalertearly – I’ve just spent 2016 going through a situation similar to yours… RUN – wish I had.

              I stayed, danced a lot, became marriage police, went bat-shit crazy.

              Should have put my foot down, insisted HE left and worked hard to get through heart break and get on with my life… He has lied, gaslighted you, triangulated you and is working through the Narc playbook.

              PLEASE save yourself now.

              • Oh my gosh Morse, thank you! My heads telling me to run but hearts finding it difficult, BUT I know I have no option for my own sanity, I could never trust that man again. I will run and fast at that.

      • Chumpalertearly, I wish I could swing by and give you a hug. You would be setting yourself up for years of pain and heartache, literally until the day one you die. As was previously said, you have all the evidence you need. Actions are the only thing you should ever listen to. Never words. How does he treat you? How does he treat the children? How is your sex life? All your answers are there. Yes, some of us have suffered more but do not diminish your pain and what he has done to you. Be thankful it wasn’t longer and that you do not have children with him but know that he has harmed you and never give him the chance to do so again. Know this, the pain will end one day and you will be awesome. Stay NC, I am so jealous you can do that as I cannot due to children, and be good to yourself. You deserve better and make sure you get it!

        • Thank you GraceInMotion, yes I am grateful I had no children with him, your words are so kind and very timely, I just needed to hear from other Chumps that I need to move on now. It’s hard when your dreams are shattered but I must think about the next 10/ 20 years of potential living hell, thank you and I wish you my best wishes for a happy future life.

      • All of these comments are spot-on. The only thing I can add is…
        The only thing more painful than DDay, is a second DDay (and a 3rd and 4th). It’s the old “Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.” Sadly, it couldn’t be more true. Although none of this is your fault in any way, when you discover he is cheating AGAIN, you add self-loathing to your emotional shit tornado. Whether or not he cheats again, your marriage is over when the trust is gone. As Dixie Chump so eloquently stated… a marriage without trust is a prison. Do yourself a favor and trust that he sucks, sooner rather than later. It will save you years of heartache and painful disappointment. I’m sorry you are going through this. We are all rooting for your here at CN! You can do this!

      • Dear Chumpalertearly, you are absolutely entitled to end this without evidence! You know! What you know is a deal breaker.
        I used to be obsessed with evidence as well. I hired detectives and found out my husband is living with the babysitter! He lied around, that she was just visiting. Ha! For sex? Any way you put it, it’s a deal breaker.
        I figured that he took her on a business trip and I got consumed because I could not prove it. He was mocking me with that.
        But you know what? It did not matter. I knew and that was enough. The moment I figured out he is not whom I thought he is, I stopped listening to his crap. All lies – and he was lying about everything.
        I divorced him anyway. I got custody regardless.
        Please listen to your gut and to the evidence you gathered. Put every word of his into the bullshit pile. It will be easier to make sense of the facts.

      • Chumpalertearly, if you’ve only been married 18 months and all this has happened, I think he’s a bad bet to take back in.

        Your story literally sounds like a Dr. Phil episode. I wonder what you’d find if you did a thorough background check on him.

        Please be tested for STDs. I did and got an unpleasant surprise, but it’s better to know than to let it fester.

        I don’t know how long you’ve been on Chump Lady and how well you know the lingo, but your Cheater sounds like the whole enchilada: disordered, cluster B narcissist.

        I hope 2017 brings you better.

        • Thank you Skinwalker, I will get myself tested. I didn’t mention that the very next day I found him at the gym he had signed up to 3 sex dating sites . One called ” no holes barred …..grim! He had also signed up to video sex sites. Well just to let you know, the divorce papers are in the envelope about to be posted today !!! I simply could never trust him again. Don’t know what the future holds but hope it’s a happy future with someone who thinks like me about what a relationship should be like. I am mustering all my strength today to post these papers an probably wouldn’t have if I hadn’t joined Chumpnation. Your experiences and advice have given me the courage to believe there could be a new wonderful life waiting for me. It’s hard and he’s still in my dreams every night which is annoying , but I must move forward and believe in myself. Hugs to you .

      • My husband of 14 yrs cheated on me; I have a 7 yr and 2 yr old toddler and he does not care. cheaters who are remorseless will never change. I tried to reconcile and in my experience you will ensure more pain and humiliation. Cut off your ties because these ppl have no integrity or moral values to begin with.

        • Thank you Priya, I am continuing NC, he should get his papers soon. Sorry to hear you are going through this with two little ones . Thank you for taking time to give me advice when you are going through so much yourself. I won’t go back there, I think the distrust would almost kill me . Good luck and thank you 🙂

    • I have a New Years tradition to have a fire to burn the bad memories and things I want to let go of. I’ll write the cheater’s name and bad memories on pieces of paper then throw them in the flames. I may even print a few pictures just so that I can burn them, too!

    • Great advice Chump Lady. A New Year, a New Leaf. I’m working on it. Really stupid thing is that I had an early marriage in life and he cheated, behaved horribly, and we broke up after 2 years married… I cried for a year. It was so bad, I cried in my sleep.

      Now that I’m going through this break-up of a 17 year marriage and feeling sad and down about it. I found out online that my first ex-Husband died 3 years ago. And what’s sad but true is, that now that it’s pushing 30 years since he and I broke up with that soggy year of tears post-breakup. I literally felt nothing at the news of his death. That may seem callous, but if you knew the story believe me, you too wouldn’t be too saddened at the news. Any more than you would at the passing of any human being. I’m not callous, but just was that truly in Meh about him now after all that time elapsed.

      So knowing that I could become Meh about someone who affected me that negatively all those years ago. You would think I would more easily realize that this too shall pass. And that all that angst and wasted days and nights lost to post-breakup depression should be avoidable. However, though I have the proof of it in my experience and feelings. I still am struggling. I’ll admit it was easier to get over my first ex-H. since I was in my 20’s and could go out and date and party and drink to distract myself. Now in my early 50’s I can’t even drink like I did, the body rebels. And there are no easily found cute guys to distract and help boost a wounded ego like then either. Don’t worry, I wasn’t a heart breaker to any of those guys. They were just fun dating transient things for both of us. No harm, no foul.

      To be really frank that is the hardest thing about this break-up as opposed to that one. I am left alone and I’m older and feeling the loneliness acutely. That’s being British about it, I often feel it’s eating me alive. I want to feel better in the New Year. What do you do about being the dumpee. Feeling left, lost, alone, and lonely because of it. They’ve moved on in the blink of an eye and left you sad. I’m not trying to wallow, I’m just trying to cope. I have no children, just pets. And only my Mom to talk to except one long distance friend. Which is why I am here. Feeling lonely and isolated sucks. Also, I’m not religious, which would be an easy fix if I were, since I live in a very religious town.

      How do you all deal with that? You who are also dealing with the awful loneliness after losing what you thought was your love and spouse? What do you do to cope? Maybe I can get some ideas for the new year because I do want to Get Over It.

      • Hi there, WTCS:

        I happened to see your comment because I am still subscribed to this blog post.

        CL blog post conversations move very fast and once there are new posts, the conversations in old posts die down quickly.

        I just want to send you a lifeline to let you know you’re not being ignored, but many people are not seeing your comment.

        I suggest you copy and paste this to the Private Forum using the “General” subcategory and people will see it and respond.

        I look forward to seeing you in the Private forum,

        Skinwalker

        • Thank you Skinwalker. That was very nice of you to let me know how to post on this site and how to navigate it. I will do just that.

  • Reconciliation is fine if you just want to survive. To limp along. To endure. I’m not convinced anyone every really gets over it when they stay married to a cheater. Seems like an endless buffet of shit sandwiches if you ask me.

    NEVER A CHANGE OF INGREDIENTS! Exactly the same ol’ crap three times a day; more, if you include snacks.

    • For me, I could have put it behind me if he were remorseful and behaved accordingly. Though I now know it was a farce, I really liked him and enjoyed being with him aside from loving him very much. I will miss the man I thought he was for the rest of my life. I will never regret leaving him though. I was so miserable and sad. I thought about killing myself just to flee the pain. It was horrible. Staying with him when it was so clear nothing was ever going to change harmed my children too and I am the only one to blame for that. It has been almost four months, about five years from the first DDay, since we moved out. The best thing I ever did. Second only to having my children.

      • Mine was remorseful, finally… but to live w the consequences of the betrayal never goes away. It is always there. Not a fun way to live. I wish mine never ever wanted me back. I wish he just left . 6 yrs out and still miserable.

      • And even if you didnt see him with someone at the gym, he already walked out on you a number of times. Hes inconsistent and marriage is not a commitment to him. Hes ’embarassed’ that you showed him up. Who cares? Hes trying to deflect blame. Keep that in mind when you have to communicate with him – he is probably still trying his new life on for size and it might not all be set up yet so he might be back for kibbles. Dont do it. Hes not worth your time.

  • IMO the trick here is to know that ‘getting over it’ is not a straight line.
    For chumps all too used to being hard on themselves it can be a real skill to recognise forward motion when there are setbacks, bad days, more shit and all around feelings of never ending hopelessness.
    If you have lived a certain way with a certain someone for a long time and you had certain expectations of you life then all of that suddenly ending is going to require a whole lot of emotional, psychological, social and spiritual rejigging. And real life with all its daily demands just ploughs on regardless. This is why we HAVE to be gentle and kind to ourselves as this shit is HARD and it takes a while.
    So keep perspective as you go. On days you feel like you own the world and you have made it, don’t let the inevitable bad days make you feel like you are back at square one. Conversely on the worst of days don’t imagine that those world owning days will never happen.
    Trust that you will make it through. Don’t hold on to the past but give yourself enough space to heal properly.
    Be diligent about self care. Be diligent about asking for help. Be diligent about what helps you and when.
    Don’t ever give up hope. Assume you will get over it even if the universe seems to be going at its own stubborn speed. Annoying.
    Make what happened to you about your strength, your resilience, your values, your desire for your best life. Shit happens. It what you do with that shit that makes you who you are. Hold tight to your values.
    Happy 2017 to all chumps. A hug to each and every one.

    • Good point– it’s important to realize that setbacks will happen on the way to “meh.” I always felt like it was the end of the world when something hurtful would happen, like I thought I was moving ahead, but now I’m clearly moving backwards, and all of my work was for naught!

      However, I think that I’ve gotten a lot of those “firsts” out of the way (first time my ex acted like a robot, first time I knew the OW was in my kids’ lives, etc.), so the setbacks are much fewer and farther between. For those of you who are just starting down this nightmare path, it really is possible to get over it. I think about my ex less and less, and where at the start I was threatened and hurt by the OW being in our kids’ lives, now I mentally shrug because I am mighty, and she is not worth my time.

      Let 2017 be mighty for all of you. We are all deserving of a fresh start.

      • Love this, Cap and MO! Such an important concept. Back-slides are almost necessary, and particularly valuable if they are new “firsts” that you survive and learn from. Sometimes they’re lessons we have to re-learn. But we are learning and growing.

      • Yes, yes, yes. I used to wonder if maybe I was just a tad bipolar, because I learned even as a teenager that any day I was euphoric and on top of the world, the next day would likely be a “low” day. Not a dreadful day, but returning to normal DOES seem low compared to the high of extreme happiness. Being aware of that phenomenon helped me to shrug it off rather than “feed the low” with more negative thinking.

        Also, a slight tangent, but for those taking ADs, remember that you are being chemically protected from lows at the expense of feeling the highs. So as you make progress and bravely step back from taking ADs (and only when you are ready), remind yourself that you will need to get used to having more peaks and valleys again. The valleys are scary until you remember that they are transitory.

        • Very true about coming off ADs.

          I needed the chemical numbing to stay at least a little bit sane with snake’s escalating emotional abuse over the years. When I finally escaped, and started weaning off, the intensity of emotion could be scary at times, but I’m getting better at accepting the highs and lows as they come.

          I’m pretty meh about snake now, even unmedicated, but dating? Hoo boy…. Hopefully there will be someone with whom the highs are real and genuine and won’t come crashing down in my future.

      • I received an incredibly nasty, verbally abusive email from X a couple of weeks ago over a shared expense for one of our sons. The vitriol in his words put me into a state of anxiety and pain I haven’t felt since divorcing him three years ago. Mission accomplished on his part, although I did have the fortitude to not reply.

        Instead, I contacted my attorney, who says there are a number of things we can do to stop him from attacking me every time I have to communicate with him. But they are all quite costly and time consuming. In the end, I chose to not respond legally because I can’t afford it.

        I need to accept that there will be days when he is still able to mentally beat the shit out of me, including when he does something cruel to our sons for sport. But I also need to acknowledge that those days have become fewer and fewer.

        Still, to know there is someone in the world who truly hates me is painful to me. I wish I was stronger. But I cannot change who I am.

        • Chutes and Ladders,
          I think that I understand much of what you are experiencing. I try to apply the ‘Get over it’ approach that Chump Lady proposes not to minimize the extent of the damage done but to give myself a bit of a mental/emotional/physical vacation from all the garbage routinely slung at me (and people who care about me). Please know that you do good in the world and some of us appreciate what you do!

        • He hates you because you make him hate himself. So any time he lashes out like that try to remember and relish the fact that he is probably stewing in the knowledge that he is loathesome. They DO know they are shits even though they don’t let that thought surface very often. At least, I believe this to be true.

      • I was on anti-depressants for most of my 29 yrs with my husband. I divorced him in 2012 and have been off the medications with no problems since then. I always blamed the depression on working in a prison. Now I see a new doctor and if they ask if I have ulcers I say, “No I divorced him.” It’s true. He walked out the door and my stress level went down 10 notches.

    • Capricorn, thanks for the reminder about the crooked path, with the ups and downs, this healing requires. It’s one of those days when my head is spinning and I’m at a standstill but real life is not letting up.

    • Feeling stuck and down and alone. And I don’t even know if there was infidelity. He admits to a lot of LIES and attention-giving female pals. Years of failed promises to change. No guarantees to he honest 100% in the future, he says.

      • Wren–we have your back here, so don’t feel alone. If the jackass that you are married to admits to lots of lies, admits he can’t be honest in the future, has lots of female pals, he has cheated. I’ll bet a year’s salary on it.

        The question you have to ask–do you feel good in this relationship? Nurtured? Cherished? Your talents are being fostered and your esteem boosted? No? Join the club, and then join the club of us that got out. You don’t need proof of infidelity. What you really don’t need is a dishonest partner. Hugs!

        • Dear Wren – Oh my, I feel for you. Please be strong, get your stuff in order and act.

          Please listen to what he SAYS – he is telling you exactly WHO HE IS. An entitled POS, not interested in what you feel or want.

          You don’t need or deserve this – BIG HUGS

      • Wren, He’s an admitted liar and he has female “friends”… That’s all the evidence you need. Staying with him will be more of the same pain and heartache. Save yourself and abandon that sinking ship. Life will vastly improve for you without his BS! (((hugs))) You are stronger than you think!!!

    • “… suddenly ending is going to require a whole lot of emotional, psychological, social and spiritual rejigging.”

      Excellently put

    • I agree that healing is not linear. Just this morning I was looking through my ex-SIL’s instagram page to see what he looks like now (apparently she’s not close to him either; the last photo she took of him was in 2014). We split in early 2013 and the divorce was final 2 years ago, yet here I am looking back. It’s normal, but I do get frustrated because I thought I have moved on by now.

      I hope 2017 is prosperous for all Chumps out there!

    • Cap, I think I hear you saying “Trust that they suck. Trust that I don’t.”
      That’s a thought I can cling to, and hope that others can too. Fellow Chumps, your insights are precious to me and have been so helpful, bittersweet, and hilarious. You are strangers who know me better than anyone, even myself at times. May 2017 bring blessings and peace to all of you!

    • Stacey, yes! I’m trying like hell to get there. Like Cap wrote, for me the biggest part, after trusting that he sucks, is trying to accept that it is a forward-and-back process. Even though “logic” tells me to “give it up already” and in most ways I am, the waste of 16 years on this monster is soul-sucking and howlingly painful. I cry more days than not, and I hate wasting this on the situation. I’ve tried like hell to channel this rage into clinical work that furthers the cause of raising awareness, but it feels like small repayment right now.

      Right this morning I was confronted with evidence from his Everpresent Asshattery. He took the AffairWhore to NoLA for an expensive B&B weekend, for the whole Lovebomb-Largesse chapter from his Narky playbook, (did the same with me, did the same with Pre-Me-Chump) complete with public posts designed to jab me. Clearly he is trying to buy himself a new Mommy-Caretaker supply because I got wise to him and stopped giving an actual F*ck anymore.

      Twisted my gut, but was a reminder that he is like a shark and hurting/maiming is his instinct, as evidenced 16 years of trying to tear me down emotionally, spiritually, and financially, the physical problems I have as fallout from constant stress, the sick events of his discard of me, and his current belief that he is completely entitled to do as he pleases.

      There is no care, no insight, no remorse. Truly antisocial. There is no room in my life for this any longer. I’m swimming to Meh as hard as I can, and CN has saved me. I wouldn’t be on this track but for CL and all of you; and for this I am eternally grateful. I hold hope the land of True Meh, and the hope that one day I’ll have a real partner who is just that – an equal partner and not a whining BabyMan.

      • Hi ClosertoMeh: For a long time I was affected by what XH was doing and fixated on “knowing”. But that would set me back time after time. So once I was NC, I also blocked on Facebook and asked my kids to not tell me anything about their Dad (they are all adults). Even my sister-in-law (X’s sister) with whom I am very close agreed to not bring him up when we were together. This all helped tremendously and gradually I obsessed less and less. Now, I may think of him, but it passes very quickly because I have no clue what he is doing or who he is with.

        • Yes, FinallyFree is so right. ClosertoMeh, he will repeat the cycle again and again. Best not to watch and work on your healing instead. By having No Contact with him including social media you can focus on moving forward and building your life.

        • Finally Free,
          Yes, absolutely, NC is the way. He, she, and all of both of their family members, as well as many mutual friends, have been blocked on social media immediately since the discard. I immediately shut down any contact and have not spoken to him in 6 months and have only sent communication through my lawyer. However, I have someone who screens information for me. This new information relates directly to the in-progress divorce case, so I have to encounter it sometimes, because we *will* be going to court. Blechhhhh. Every day I’m so grateful I will not have to co-parent with him. I couldn’t even.

      • Closer to Meh (I love the name, by the way, as it can also be read like Closer To Me > as in leave the cheater, gain back yourself) I think I got involved with the same BabyMan! 17 years down the drain for me. I am just so very thankful to the Almighty that I didn’t procreate with this f*cktard. And yes, before the discard he got involved with this single mom OW and I suspect he is attracted to the Mommy-Caretaker quality (that I also seem to have).

        Very, very creepy.

        I am NC now except for legal stuff like you as we will have to go to court to finalize this legal shit. I am taking it one day at a time as this stuff drains the heck out of me.

        May 2017 bring us closer to Meh!

        • CeliA, Thank you for the alternate name interpretation! I love that so much! Agreed, this is so draining. May 2017 bring us less creepiness and More Meh!

  • I have been married to a serial cheater and compulsive liar for 27 years. He cheated from day one until the day he walked out the door (yet again) for good for the latest other woman. It was always my fault, he said. I wasn’t doing something right or enough or whatever the excuse for his cheating at the time was. And I ALWAYS took him back, because I believed him…I had to be doing something wrong, right?!?! I mean, that’s what he said. So for 26 years, numerous affairs…9 that I know of, and I’m certain there are many more I don’t know about, I kept eating that shit sandwich. August 2015, he left, again lying about the why. Only to find out that he was hooking up with some whore that he knew from high school, who knew he was married with kids at home. He moved her from Dallas to our hometown, and shacked up with her at his brother’s house. Then later moved in with her in their own house…short lived as it was…she left him 3 months later. All during this time, I continued to eat that shit sandwich…he wasn’t sure what he wanted…part of him wanted to come back home…blah blah blah. I bought it, hook, line, and sinker, as usual. November 2016…she is back…they went on their 16th vacation together in a year again after Christmas…while he didn’t bother to even buy our kids crap for Christmas…because he couldn’t afford to. My divorce will be final this month, January 2017. I am ready for a new life. A real life. And maybe at some point in time I will meet a REAL man. It HAS been hard, but I’m tired of eating those shit sandwiches!!!!

  • I’d say it’s proof that the best revenge is a life well lived, but it’s not really revenge at all, I suppose. It’s just getting a move-on.

  • I needed that and it makes all the difference coming from a chump. I’ve come a long way but I still have a bumpy road ahead. One step at a time.

  • This year is my year. One year ago I was frightened out of my mind (what happens when you’re undergoing treatment and your spouse is checked out with whores and texting them about how he’s ready to leave) angry, and disgusted. First disgusted by the triple lives he led, and then by the fact that when I finally did leave (almost one year ago, this month) he laid on the mindf***, heavy duty.
    What a year it was. Was. That shit is over. 2017 is MY year. Cancer free and Cheater free. Ride on and be mighty, Chumps!!

  • The shock of it all nearly did me in. After that, navigating waters I never thought I’d be in was a struggle, but I trusted CN to help me through the tricky parts. Here’s to healing and a brand new year with a brand new start. I am cheater free. This will NOT define me. Or any of us. CN is mighty!

  • Part of setting up and enforcing my boundaries has been that I am selective who I listen to about select topics. For example: I love my sisters and their support has been priceless, but they have never experienced infidelity or narcissistic abuse or divorce. Sometimes I need to be in the (virtual) company of people who “get it.”
    So, when someone who has been there, done that (or written the book about it)offers advice or says “get over it,” I listen. And it helps.
    The jokes help too. The jokes really, really help.

    • LouisvilleFlower
      The jokes do help. And the language. I love the fruity language. Seems so appropriate and satisfying ?*^*^%#*•€%^

      • Since DDay, I have been impressed with the words that have come out of my mouth! In MC, I swore a lot. STBX hated it.
        STBX: please don’t use those words…
        Me: you can fuck people and I can’t say “fuck”? You are offended that I call a married woman w/children who knowingly slept with a married man w/children your “co-whore” or “fuck buddy”? Really? Because LANGUAGE is the problem here?

        Marriage counseling sucked. I did get in a few zingers, though.

        • Oh louisville, my STBX said the same thing! My calling his AP a whore was the problem, not the fact that he HAD AN AP!! What-the-fuck ever. My language pre-DDay was mild, and I really never used the word fuck. Now, I use it ALL the time! Luckily my kids are older teenagers so I’m not saying anything they haven’t already heard a million times from friends and the music they listen to! Lol.

          • Eyes, it took me a while to realize that STBX had always been critical of strong emotions coming from me, and cursing is certainly an indicator of extreme emotion. So, I now swear like a sailor. My kids aren’t super young, so it has been a lesson for all of us: there are times when it is appropriate to swear, and times that it isn’t (i.e. at school or around your grandparents). STBX disagrees, but fuck him. My house, my rules.

            • That is one of the more sanctamonious points about ex NPD – he would be clinically polite in any emails just to wind me up and then tut in disgust if I called him out on his behaviour. He felt that just because he acted like a pompous twat he could lord it over me who was ‘out of control and bitter/angry’ . I think louisvilleflower is right – they can’t deal with the strong emotional reaction – they don’t know what to do with it because they have no maturity of emotional makeup to respond. So they just deflect it to try and maintain control. Leaves you feeling completely invalidated – but this is where you do feel like you are stuck and not able to ‘get over it’ – yes heard that a few times this year… so looking at it from the point of view of understanding why they are doing that emotional ‘blanking’ is how I have come to go around it instead – because there is no getting over it as long as you are left emotionally hanging waiting for any reaction from them.

          • My 28 daughter found vomit worthy tweets between X and prostitutes just after DDay. She emailed him and referred to them as whores and he wrote back, Don’t call her that! At this point, he had sold me this story that there was just one EA when in fact he had squandered over $60000 on expensive hookers. When she sent him screenshots of what she has discovered, he could only answer, What do you want me to say….
            He’s so delusional that he holds them in the highest regard; they are so beautiful, they are so worldly, they are so much fun to be with…I kid you not, he said those things to me.
            I’m ashamed I was committed for decades to someone so dumb and damaged. That’s really what I have trouble getting over ?

            • Me too. 20 + years.
              Unchumping means I see what is there, rather than what I want to be there. It is taking off the rose colored glasses and running them over with a steam roller. I used to think that would be a sad way to view life, but it makes you appreciate what is truly real and good. I don’t believe in fairy tale love anymore, and I am happy about that.

        • Thank god my STBX KNOWS he has not a leg to stand on with the whoremat. I call her all sorts of AWFUL names and he has never told me once to anything. He knows I’ll probably kill him if he defends her. I was a faithful WIFE. She is a dirty whore that got involved with a married man. She was married too. What do you call someone that poaches someone else’s significant other for their own gain? A WHORE! She sells her body to other men for her own gain. She is a WHORE!

        • I called mine a ‘sexual predator.’ He was mightily offended. As more information rolled out about him, guess what he was? A sexual predator.

          • Skankboy is a sexual predator, too. I’ve said this before, he would show way too much attention to young girls. When he would do that, it always gave me a creepy feeling in my stomach. He lives with the skank who has a now 15 year old daughter. Before CN and no contact, I said to him….”what are you doing? If that girl gets angry at you she could falsely accuse you of molestation.” He said, “don’t you think I have thought about that.” AND, what kind of mother would let a man she had known for 8 months move into her house with a young daughter. Too freaky for me! Ewwwww, just ewwww.

            • My STBX moved in with the whoremat two weeks ago. She has a ten yo daughter. Who ON EARTH would let someone you’ve been texting for a few months MOVE IN with you and your kid?! He is a STRANGER and she only kicked her own abusive alcoholic husband out in October! What a shit show!

              • Sad Shelby….that is just sick! I didn’t move in with dickhead until both our kids were out living on their own!

              • The OW in my case made her 4 kids, 3 boys-1 girl write letters to my husband. She made them write things like, “We love you Daddy”. The kids had never met my X-husband and she hadn’t either since my husband was 1-2 yrs old. She bombarded my husband with these cards and notes. Every day he’d receive one. She pretty much brain washed him into feeling her kids were his responsibility. Last I heard he had her oldest son in a headlock telling him he had <"shit for brains." Someone has,"shit for brains", and it isn't one of her kids.

            • At least she waited 8 months. My STBX was in with his howorker less than a week after he was done with me. She’d only been boinking him 5 days. Her daughter plays referee in their relationship.

              Poor child.

              • No, he was having the affair for 8 months. He moved in 2 weeks after Dday and that is only because he had scheduled a vacation to go back up north. He would have moved in Dday night, I’m sure of that.

            • Mine is that kind too but he moved in within a month(from when he claims he met her-suuuurrreee!) her daughter is 11, young enough to be his granddaughter….

    • Lousevilleflower, you are so right. My bestEST friends who always had my back, pointed at the emotional abuse from my husband early on, were always by me even though life threw us all into diffetent countries- they tell me to stop whining and get over it! And I know they will always be there for me but they also do not understand the full depth and the extent of the pain from betrayal. The CN helps a lot. We know it. We get it. We can empathise. We don’t question the chumps’ sanity. We believe that it happened and it was abuse. Thank you all!

      • Non-chump friends are great cheerleaders when you make progress, though! I started dating and felt weird about it because I am not yet divorced. I was reluctant to tell friends but I shouldn’t have been. They have been supportive of everything new that I have tried – from yoga to new hairstyles. I have found it essential to have both chump and non-chump support.

  • Well, there is the emotional component…and then there is the legal mess to sort. The emotional is often connected to the legal, so this is where we often get stuck and cannot see our way to Meh.
    Cheaters use the kids, property and support to continue to wage war against the emotional component. This is why Meh can be so hard to achieve.

    The only thing I found helpful is to look at every legal component as simply “business”. No contact and/or Gray Rock in every area, boil it all down to strict legalities.

    What the cheater does going forward in his personal life is NONE of my business unless it violates the legalities already set in place…and we have the legal system to handle that as needed. Divorcing ourselves emotionally is different however…but this component is simply a case of recognizing that this person is evil, does evil, and as a result, is incapable of repentance bar any Divine Intervention. They are reprobate and will continue to remain so. We have no choice except to shake their dust from off of our feet and stop looking back as if we could have helped them/us. Every time we look back, we become a pillar of salt (tears) all over again. I lost nothing…I am authentic, everything I am stands on solid moral ground regardless of what he is or has done. None of my years were considered a waste where my own character development is concerned.

    Once that sunk into my head…that he is “reprobate”…I understood that nothing he can say or do would surprise me…and I no longer considered it “personal” anymore. Once I clearly saw the soul of my betrayer, I realized that this is a person whose rejection and abandonment of me…is actually a huge compliment to my own values and integrity in contrast. It is just who he is…nothing personal, and certainly no indication of what I am. He could no longer stand to look at my “light” without seeing his own darkness.

    I choose to look at the whole thing as being “delivered from evil”. I am grateful for a fresh start and to be finished with that chapter in my life.

    • “He could no longer stand to look at my light without seeing his own darkness.”

      WOW simply spot on perfection, poetry! So true so true!!!!

    • The story of Lot’s wife looking back towards the destroyed city and turning to a pillar of salt took on a new meaning for me after my divorce. Lot’s fleeing family had been warned not to look back, but his wife couldn’t help but take one last wistful look over her shoulder at the life she once knew as it was being destroyed. The story is a warning to keep moving forward, not to get stuck wishing for what was. I admit I still fight that longing to look back sometimes.

      • Yes…I had wondered why looking back was dealt with so severely by God. Then I realized that her yearning meant that she did not think much of all the evil saturating in that city…that it was okay to live with and among it as long as she was getting what she personally wanted…like Switzerland people do. The other thing is that she had family who chose to stay there who were being destroyed…family that scoffed at Lot’s warning to flee. So having escaped so terrible a fate probably did insult God to see her disregard His instructions…she put her own human desires/longings above God’s righteous judgement…not a smart thing to do when God is pissed and driving the Karma bus.

        Maybe that is why I don’t look back…nothing to see…everything of real value is still intact going forward.

        • Excellent writing today, Sweetz. I agree–our honesty and integrity is too much for them to endure. They can’t stand that we don’t join them on the dark side. Nothing personal. They are just evil.

          • Sweetz – Yeah – my STBX talked about he and his coworker he moved in with – how they found a way to circumvent something at work at get more money and no one else knew about it. So proud of himself for that, he was. He is very sneaky and evil. He was trying to get me to drink towards the end. I was reading the Bible more and trying to find my way closer go Jesus Christ. He looked at me with disgust and said, “I didn’t sign up for this.” He wanted me to watch porn with him. Uh, no.

            It’s hard when he uses the kid, property and support to manipulate and scheme. But I have to remember – I’ve been delivered from evil.

            Sometimes when we’d be camping with his family and friends and they’re getting drunk and the language would get nasty and weird – tons of profanity flying in front of our daughter – I would cringe and hate it. They all thought I was just weird. Now I don’t have to deal with that any more. I gave my motorcycle bag with boots and pants and jacket to one of them. I won’t be needing it anymore.

            They are just evil.

            Time for me to find new, other ways to go out and build a life. I’m almost 60, but it’s never too late.

        • Sweets, “Then I realized that her yearning meant that she did not think much of all the evil saturating in that city…that it was okay to live with and among it as long as she was getting what she personally wanted…like Switzerland people do.”
          This is very powerful because sometimes we do get caught up in letting evil prevail because “it’s not that bad” but it is that bad. We do need to fight against the darkness, leave it behind and go forward towards the Light.

        • Looking back was so much worse than Lot offering his virgin daughters to the men of the city if they’d just go away. I can’t wrap my head around how that was in line with Lot being a good man.

          • I guess Lot felt/believed that he had to do “something” to protect the Angels that were sent to get him out of the City. Lot was in a panic and certainly would have followed through were it not for the Angels blinding the men outside the door…but that is no indication that what he was proposing was anything “good”. It was not. Women back then were seen as property compared to the value of men…it was customary to give women away for various reasons, including to thwart a “greater harm”. There was no Law or Ten Commandments at that time defining the terms between the gray areas of good from evil in detail…that came much later in history. The evil for which Sodom was being judged was something that defied even the worst behavior of rabid animals. Their conscience’s were seared even to below the base level…at least, that is what God said, so I’d have to agree.

            Lot would not have been deemed as being “a good man” by Christ’s standards, nor even of the standards of the Old Testament Law prior to Christ. I suppose that he was only considered “good” compared to the level of evil which vexed his soul by the standards prevailing in Sodom. But keep in mind that God gives us all a conscience…and they had no excuse based on that merit alone.

    • Sweetz
      I am going to print this out and read it everyday.

      My biggest struggle is to accept that STBX is not a good person. He is not going to “get it” somewhere down the line and regret all the hurt he has caused. This is who he is. I will get over it and move on eventually. I can recognize that I am already down that path even if I am not all the way there.

      Sucks for my kids though. That is what knocks me back every time.

      • GMF,
        It’s okay to have a hope in the core of your spirit that your X will someday repent and “get it”…if for no other reason than what awaits him on the other side of Eternity if he continues as he is. What is not okay is waiting and pining for what that “could” mean for YOU. His repentance means that the Angels in Heaven will rejoice, which would be good for him…do NOT hold your breath…the marriage is just part of the collateral damage that his depravity has gone amuck.

        But YOUR life going forward is a whole different (better) story and has nothing to do with him or what happens to him. Your kids have a front row seat to a “show and tell” to teach them the difference between good and evil. Use those painful opportunities to teach them as best as you can.

        He is rebellious and dopamine/pleasure seeking…let him go…he belongs to the Kingdom of Darkness and there is nothing you can do to fix that. It was never in our power to do so…that is OUR lesson to learn. He KNOWS right from wrong and made his choices…repeatedly. If one of your kids walked in and saw their dad even so much as kissing his whore, even at a very young age with no moral “training”, they would be horrified. They would instantly know that it was a huge betrayal and would lose respect for him. So your X KNOWS good from evil, but chose the evil regardless.

        • My ex…before I even knew what was going on with this current whore…was living at his brother’s house. His brother and SIL were allowing my husband and his whore to shack up in their house. Then my kids would go over, and they all lied to my kids about who this whore was. And yes, they did make out in front of my 9 year old daughter, and not a one of them saw any wrong in their actions!!!

        • Thank you for this! I needed it today. There are no bridges back to me even if he would want to come back. I have closed the door after he blew up the house.

      • yes – this; ex was simply not a very nice person. That is really hard to cope with. That I was living with, looking after, spending all my time with someone who was ‘not nice’ is nearly impossible to reconcile. I made mental excuses after excuses for why he did so and so, and failed to stand up for me with his family; did not compromise on ANYthing the list goes on… the frustrating thing is that he pulled off just enough ‘good deeds’ to other family members and friends to get them all sucked in – which is why i come off looking ‘bitter’ . got to love that long term manipulation and sick plan. At this point it is never ending because he is dragging me through the legal system after pulling the plug on mediation. I am so grateful for all the posters on this site who tell the warning stories of what lengths these psychos will go to to blow up your life and leave nothing to pick over. A year down the track he has blown out the finances; got me to sell the house me and the kids are living in and sucked me into legal fees – and had the audacity of telling the kids (at christmas) he has found new love and how happy he is.

    • Sweetz,

      This: “None of my years were considered a waste where my own character development is concerned.”

      And this: “Once I clearly saw the soul of my betrayer, I realized that this is a person whose rejection and abandonment of me…is actually a huge compliment to my own values and integrity in contrast.”

      We are sad about the lost years…about the life in constant anxiety and rejection and denial…instead of connecting deeply and enjoying the birth and development of our children. The past 6 years of my life I was so focused on our relationship, trying to figure out his distancing and rejection of me, that I was not there 100% for my son. I spent hours and hours trying to talk to him, discussing his attitude with friends and family, reading on marriage and relationships. All the while my son kept growing, doing things for the first time that I could not full heartedly enjoy because I was perpetually sad that I could not connect with my husband.

      You are right. If I look at those lost years not as lost but as the investment into the development of my own self, then the perspective is different. I am not different in that my values stayed the same. But I am different in that I am stronger now and I have a voice. And I can use “fuck off” as much as I please now!

      And I completely agree with your next statement. I just told my cheater (who is desperately trying to find a way to postpone the divorce in the hope that I would give in) that I am getting out because he cannot have ME as his wife and whores on the side. “YOU want the whores, fine. But you can’t have me as your wife. Not worth it. Period.”

      And on a side note, I enjoy calling them whores and seeing his cringed face: for him they are his soul connections!

      He just (10 min ago) offered to live in an open marriage instead of divorcing. He said that women in mid 40s get fucked up in their heads and want younger boys and he does not mind!!!! Hahaha!

      Better abandon me and I take it as a complement to my values!

      • Marriage is a “Closed” system…not “open” to include others intimately. What he is proposing is trying to break down your own morals and get you to rolling in the mud along with him…basically calling you a pig just because HE is willing to be one. He thinks he is so great and central that you would even consider that shit. Projecting.

        BTW, I lost many opportunities too…put my own grandchildren on the back burner…friends…and all sorts of opportunities by being the marriage police and trying to appease a man who could never be satisfied by anything except for variety, strange and the forbidden. But I have managed to recover and make amends for my neglect since X left. I am grateful that my friends and family understood the stress of what was happening to me even before I did.

      • Sweetz,

        Thank you for this thoughtful, beautifully phrased piece. “Once I clearly saw the soul of my betrayer, I realized that this is a person whose rejection and abandonment of me…is actually a huge compliment to my own values and integrity in contrast” is very helpful to me as I try to retrain my brain not to be bogged down by a dozen years of insults and false allegations by my abuser. It is really important to feel deserved confidence and self-appreciation in order to do all I need to do–find a decent paying, secure full-time job, work, raise young children, one of whom has special needs, etc.

      • All the while my son kept growing, doing things for the first time that I could not full heartedly enjoy because I was perpetually sad that I could not connect with my husband.

        This resonated with me sooo much. Thank you for verbalising something that I couldnt myself quite pinpoint

        • Missed all these great posts yesterday, too busy on the farm. I love the collective wisdom of CN, thank you Chumps, you are mighty!

    • I copy, pasted, and printed this to carry in my journal. I agree completely. I gave my all to my marriage and the fact that my husband is a serial cheater who has been so foolish as to have had children with one of the many women he has cheated with has filled me with so much self-doubt. But this perspective really helps me understand. It was never about me. I was/am good enough to be treated with respect. I am worthy of being loved. I will no longer accept anything less than total commitment which he is not capable of, therefore I will divorce him. I have really found strength on this site. I too attempted to reconcile after he cheated and fathered a child. Years long affair by the time I found out, one of many. Even though he was really cruel and proud and barely even apologized. He said he was tired of me crying, tired of talking about it. We have six living children and I didn’t want to take him out of their lives. He swore he had no contact with the woman other than as needed for the child. I believed that for several months until she became pregnant again. And as you can expect, no contact become one time and one time because several times. All lies. Mind you this was about 3 months after giving birth to my seventh child who was born still. After suffering PTSD from the traumatic birth and my child’s death, I was in survival mode. I could not lose again. So I hung on with everything I had. I was so low and he was still so cruel. So heartless. The evil woman was the same. I am finally at a point where I love myself enough to end my own suffering- by leaving him. I no longer admire or respect him. I pity him. Any man who could destroy his family with no regard is lost and me and my six children are leaving this sinking ship. I am sad but not devastated. I was devastated the first time I found out. I was broken and thought I would die when my son died. I am at peace with my decision to divorce now. My only regret is that I didn’t leave two years ago. He does not deserve my love and now he no longer has it.

  • Infidelity does NOT define you. It defines the cheater, the way they think, manipulate, and gain power and control. It will define every action they take and giving them centrality in your life keeps you stuck. Knowing they take that shit with them is the release we need to get over it.

    We know the ‘it’ is a giant mountain and we need to process every perception we had, reevaluate every memory, every promise, and look at the role we played until we have clarity, knowing this person meant to harm. It takes a great deal of our resources to finally see we indeed deserved better. It is by far one of the most painful journeys we encounter until indifference sets in once we detach, detox, and take back our power.

    I have been amazed and empowered by so many chumps who were here since I found CL in 2014. We were in a heap of broken chumps, devastated by facing the unknown together. We supported each other every step of the way through discard, divorce, and settlements. It was and uphill battle requiring baby steps, and pushing ourselves to face every fear imaginable. The greatest asset I had was knowing I was not alone. Meeting the Mighty Northeast Chumps was what eventually helped me see that I could thrive. Get over it. Yes, and know you will live better.

  • I have found it very interesting to see the reaction of the ClusterFuck B Sociopath when I did exactly what he told me to do-
    “Pull up your big girl panties and get over it”
    Hearing this was agony during early days.
    I still hate that statement. I love that I listened though, and found CL & CN.
    Definately meh now. Not checking in as often as before, but I consider that a good thing that I’m releasing the lifeline that saved me.
    I’m like a little bird learning to fly again without its mommy CN. ??
    Oh, and my new sweetie might be taking up some free time too❤️
    Much love to all going thru the absolute hell of betrayal. You will survive, you will be over it someday on your own timeline. These fuckers who tell you to get over it? Drop them now and don’t look back.
    Happy New Year Everyone

    • Yeah, Ex-orcist! After all you were through with your demon X, so happy that you are moving on happily!! (but do check in every once in a while with your wit & wisdom, and with updates)

    • I got the ‘move on get over it’ from ex fuckturd early in the piece – in fact a few weeks after D day!! – after 24 years he had ‘done all his crying’ (where – in the wardrobe?) and now I had to bloody well catch up to where he was at because it was making him uncomfortable. So if that wasn’t a huge red flag of ZERO empathy I don’t know how clearer I could get the message. Never mind that the kids were in shock as well – they had to just act like nothing happened – it was so weird 2 of them stopped visiting. I have to keep reminding myself this has been their WHOLE life experience – only 1/2 of mine so they do not even have any frame of reference of being without this person. How absolutely devastating and not something I had experienced with my family of origin. It is at the core selfishness without any checks or self reflection – then all the crazy self deluded narrative that has the cheater blame everyone else so they can be free of any wrong doing. That is one of the scary things – he fully believes he has done nothing wrong – only going as far as writing to one of the kids ‘maybe I could have gone about it differently – but that is a moot point now’ – WTF – who says that to a 16 year old. So I have noticed – they give a little ground then snatch it back with the next justification. Its a mental formula that ensures their ego doesn’t get tarnished. In a sense I believe these NPD types are essentially talking to themselves because it doesn’t stand up to a reality check. They truely are living in their own heads.

      • Whodoesthat – I read texts between STBX and our daughter. He admitted to making me out to be the bad person to justify leaving us and moving in with 22 y.o. coworker (daughter was very angry he did this and how he lied about a number of things). But then texted her that he did what he did because he was unhappy and we all make mistakes in life.

        What kind of father says that to his preteen daughter?

        But, like you said – it’s the crazy self deluded narrative that has the cheater blame everyone else so they can be free and believe they have done nothing wrong. Sick and scary. And that’s the model for my kid. Sickening.

        • FindingPeace: “What kind of father texts that to his preteen daughter?”

          Mine. DD13 (at the time of D-day) cut off all contact with then-Husband upon finding out that he had had an affair with someone 32 years younger than himself years earlier. I force her to go to a pre-Christmas dinner with him (she now tells me that was my worst parenting mistake evah), and he pulls the same line, “There were marital problems…I was unhappy….it’s not ALL my fault!” She says to him, “YES, it is,” and refuses to speak to him the rest of dinner. He tries again with an email months later, “I thought your mother didn’t love me at the time.” (hey, idiot, that line didn’t work the first time). She has refused to answer any emails or texts from him for over 2 years.

          Sad, but they don’t realize that teens and pre-teens actually have a higher EQ than they do as middle-aged cheaters.

  • I have always said that love is a choice. Even when you don’t “feel” it on some days, you still can make the choice to love. By that same token, you can choose not to love anymore. After everything STBX has done and continues to do, I decided not to love him anymore. Somewhere over the last few months, my feelings caught up with that decision. The only thing we can control are our thoughts and responses. It took months of counseling to get me to that point?

    Still working on the anger and the ever present shit sandwich that comes from not being able to go true no contact when you have kids together…

  • I heard an interesting TED Radio hour yesterday, about the science of happiness. One speaker said that data suggest the effects of any traumatic experience, good or bad, only significantly affects one’s level of happiness for about three months. — Three MONTHS!!! — I, and the show’s host, were flabbergasted! Lose a leg in a car accident, get married, lose a child to cancer …. Even those catastrophic traumas? Three months, and then the average person returns to, basically, their own “happiness baseline.”

    I’m not at all religious, except when it comes to science, so I felt I had to give this some thought. Obviously, it’s been over two years and I still have residual impact from the trauma of my betrayal and divorce.

    So, what I decided was this:
    1. One big ol’ trauma is bad enough, but most of us then have to suffer ongoing micro/macrotraumas by having to continue to interact with (or at least hear about) our STBXs: divorce trials, managing kids together, even just well-meaning friends giving us updates on X’s shenanigans. As has been said here many times, it’d be so much easier if they were just dead. By still being alive, the trauma renews itself.

    2. Past a certain point (and only you can decide for yourself what that point is), I do it to myself. I keep myself in the rearview mirror of my life by reexamining things XH said or did. (To wit, I just posted in Forum two days ago about something XH said to me over two years ago.) Currently, my own life doesn’t have enough stuff in it to keep me distracted from the past, and I’m not yet Zen enough to be at one with the universe to sit quietly for hours without distraction. (Yet another Harry Potter marathon, anyone?)

    Yesterday I met a guy whose truck had run out of gas and he’d had to leave it on the (busy) road. I saw him start walking, gas can in hand, to one gas station — which was closed — then on to the next. In my car, I beat him to the next gas station and bought him a gas can full of gas, which was just ready by the time he walked up. By serendipity, he walked directly to the pump I was at (saving me the trouble of running around trying to find him). I asked, “Is that your black truck broken down on Powers Road?” He said, “Yeah….” I said, “Well, you’re not having the best of days, are you?” He said, “Oh, it could be worse. It really could be much worse.”

    That attitude right there? I have it, but sometimes I think I don’t have enough of it. I’ve sort of accepted I’m a bit of a depressed person — I worry and fret about the future and the past. So perhaps most of everything I’ve been experiencing since those first three months (or, let’s be generous and say six months) is just my resting state of happiness, which clearly needs some work.

    • As part of the dead cheaters club, I can say some of it gets easier. I don’t have to hear about his shenanigans or worry about seeing him with OW. In other ways harder, any remorse I thought I might get one day will never happen. He escaped all his bad choices in one fell swoop, I now have to see him canonized as a “saint” now that he’s dead at 40 years old, and have to keep my mouth shut about what an evil fuck he really was. I also don’t like people looking at me as someone to be pitied, they all assume I’m terribly grief stricken. I guess with these cheaters it’s a no win situation regardless. We are all mighty!

    • NWBiblio
      Another thing to ponder on is that (scientifically) we overestimate the effect of good news or good things happening to us and underestimate our coping skills when bad stuff happens. Thus lottery winners one year on are significantly worse off happiness wise than people who had suffered a traumatic loss of a limb.

      Also. The book you recommended to me F*ck Feelings seems to be sorting out stuff you can do and can’t do as regards happiness etc.

      My own therapist HATED the word happiness. She hated it. She always thought we would all be much better off using the word, comfortable. Which implies well being ok, not too bad.

      Also, that stuff coming up for you it stuff that comes up when your psyche feels that you are able to process that piece of info so far from that being you not focused enough on now things, it is a sign that recovery is active and not hampered. It’s a good sign although tough to endure.

      I feel the same mood wise as you. I call myself a pessimistic optimist, I’m cheerful a lot but kind of serious at the same time. Over thinking is my hobby. But that’s who I am. Easier to accept I’d make a great grumpy batty old lady than try to be an airhead.
      Just sayin’….

  • This post is so timely for me! I was going through a box of pictures and things last night – trying to get things organized and cleaned up since I’ll be selling the house in the spring – and came across a birthday card that STBX’s whore had given me a few years ago. Yes, she was supposedly a “friend” of mine. I was triggered BIG time, and since then have been wallowing in that “I can’t believe the person who said they loved me could do this to me!” I filed in September, but feel like we’re just in limbo because there’s a 6-month waiting period in Michigan when you have minor children, so we haven’t even started talking settlement yet. Most days I feel strong and mighty, but not last night and this morning. CL’s post is exactly the 2×4 I needed today. Thank you, Tracy! Bring on 2017!

  • New Years is so arbitrary as a time to “reset” and start fresh. Why can’t we human beings give ourselves that gift on any damn day of the year?!! But the cultural support for everyone doing it all at one time is powerful support, so let’s not fight it.

    This post is probably the most powerful and helpful one CL has ever posted, and that is saying a lot. We all experienced great psychological harm from these cheating fuckers. But WE are the only ones who can move away from that harm, protect ourselves, and allow ourselves to move on. We only further harm ourselves by remaining trapped in rumination, perseveration, facebook stalking, and yes, endless posting on CL about their shittiness. I am guilty of most of those things even after the divorce was final.

    I whole-heartedly gave my ex more than 30 years of my life. I cannot get them back. I cherish the son who resulted from that fiasco and am grateful I managed to exit with a good settlement. My future is wide open. When I posted my story here the first time back in May 2016, I expressed defiance and determination that I would not give my ex even one more day of my life. He already got more than he deserved. For New Year’s 2017, I renew that vow to myself. Someone wise and wonderful reminded me the other day that we either get busy living or get busy dying. I hope we all choose the former with every ounce of energy we have in our beings.

    • Love you, Dixie. You are a mighty force! Your generous compassion and heartfelt kindness help inspire others on this journey.

    • Dixie, great post.
      For New Year’s Eve I was feeling good with a little help, my friend said something about x and her x hanging out and probably having a good time. I shut that down. Usually I would have made some comments but he’s just not worth it to me anymore. If he’s riding high on the hog, or down in the dumps that’s his thing not mine. We do need to move away from it and we do have to celebrate what we put in to our “relationship “.

  • Great reminder, Tracy.

    To me the critical step to getting over it is putting me first. After all those years of my to do list containing all the things I would do for ex, kids, house and me last. Now its me first. I find it is so healing. Today since its kind of cold and wet, may be reading delicious books in front of the fire, homemade soup and a dog walk later. No consideration given to ungrateful selfish people.

    Being chumped has given me permission to no longer tolerate bad behavior from anyone. And to not get angry about it – just move on. I don’t owe anyone anything. Just to me, those I love who love me back.

    That’s the recipe for getting over it.

  • Whilst I agree with the ideology of get (the fuck) over it, I have found it an incredibly impossible thing to achieve in reality. I have done the things I thought would show my mightiness and rebuild me. Kicked him out. Check. Focus on me. Check. Go back to uni and get my undergraduate degree (winning scholarships and topping one department and going close in the other in my double major.) Check. Now in the final semester of my Masters. Check. Continuing to work alongside this in a 0.5 role. Check. Getting another pay rise. Check. Raising three young adults who have empathy, humour, and (I think/hope!) boundaries. Check. You get the picture. But along the way I have lost every piece of friendship – and I felt at the time that I had some long and deep ones – I have gathered along my nearly 50 years. I made a huge effort 12 months after D-day to not discuss it with them, asking them to stop bringing it up, please, as I knew I was still struggling and they were going to get sick of it if they weren’t already. And the cheater, sad sausage sympathy was starting to become apparent in them.

    Because I had a deeply remorseful, ‘one affair only’ (yay him!) cheater who tried so damn hard to make everything okay again. To apologise to me for his shit, getting counselling and trying to learn about what allowed him to fuck up our lives for his shitty and selfish crap in fucking in our houses, around our kids, and on our property (and yeah, romancing) someone I considered a lifelong friend, during the last fifteen months of our 29 otherwise fantastic years together. So they all judged me as too harsh. ‘He’s so, so sorry for losing the plot. It was terrible that he did it, but it was a huge brain fart.’ I know. But it didn’t fix my broken heart, or cure me of HPV or take away the subsequent cervical cancer treatments I required. I have worked my arse off to move on and gain a life. But I am more miserable now, despite my fucking hard work, than ever. It pisses me off no end. I can’t work out what the hell is wrong with me. And don’t tell me I haven’t tried hard enough! Or haven’t thought the positive thoughts, or employed mindfulness, or cleared my life of negative people, or got enough therapy, or tried meds, or worked on improving my own life. 2017 will see eight years tick over since D-day. I used to be so fucking kick-arse! So get over it is a superb idea. But how? I thought I had done, and am still doing, all the right things to heal myself. Nope. What have I missed? This is so obviously no longer about him and his choices. But me. Something in me that can’t find any peace or joy. So yeah. Get over it is really great advice. But what am I doing wrong? I mean I accept it all. And I haven’t rug swept or denied any of it, or stayed with the cheater.

    • Hey, I am new to the site and it’s been my go to daily help over the Christmas and new year period, your advice has been so helpful. My husband of 18 months left me in September stating he was feeling ” not as close to me” and that he felt the responsibility of marriage and my two children ( from a previous marriage) were too much of a commitment , one is 18 and one 13, they are literally no trouble , before this declaration he was literally the most wonderful man to me. He did display impatience and anger at times ( not directed at me) and said he felt his own 5 year old son from his previous relationship was a ” burden” to him. Anyway after a week apart he came back. But he was there in body alone. 2 weeks later he left again stating he was still unhappy and ” loved me but not in love with me” . He moved into his dad’s bedroom. He was going to the gym daily! And worshipping his body all of a sudden! He then after 6 weeks asked to move back, declaring his undying love to me. I let him back. He was kind, buying me presents but I felt he wanted nothing sexually . He told me he loved me everyday but his actions did not match . He went gym every day after work. Then came the moment I found him lying again. Little white lies all of a sudden about going to the gym. Said he was going to work early one Sunday, as a customer couldn’t go later. I knew it felt in my gut that he was lying! I went to the gym , I just knew he would be there and he was! With a woman! Said she was a friend from work. Had been training her . The receptionists at the gym even told me that they’ve noticed something between them for 3 months, told me the gym have been watching them acting ” innapproriately “for 3 months. Touching etc….. . I left the gym and haven’t seen or heard from him since that moment. No apology, nothing! All I heard from his mother in law is that he is fuming with me for embarrassing him at his gym , she also said her sons no cheater and I made it up and that the gym receptionists lied! I have gone NC too,. I know this is nothing compared to what most Chumps have been through but my question is…, was this the start? If he begs me back would I be setting myself up for years of cheating? Am I right to end this without evidence! The lies are bad enough ! Did this sound like the start of some of your marriages. Would appreciate your opinions.

      • Chumpalert, you let his mom get in to your head. That’s all. Unfortunately, you have to think of them all, all of his family as the enemy, even if there are one or two that “side” with you at times. It sucks but for the majority of the time that’s how it works.
        I’ve been in a work situation where my boss is grooming his next “victim”, we all see it just like the gym workers “saw” what you thought was going on. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it’s a mother f*img duck.
        Stay strong, the lies are Enough. You’ve done more than your share in trying to fix this thing but now you need to look out for your interest. No one else will!!!!!! Hugs!!!

    • Horsesrcumin, I am so sorry to hear that you are still struggling. I just wonder if the primary reason for that is that your cheater was “not so bad” as some of the others we read about here. That is your description of him and I think you need to challenge that thought a bit more. By using those words, it is as if you are criticizing yourself for taking all the (really appropriate) steps that you did. I can almost hear you suggesting ever so quietly to yourself that just maybe you over-reacted and maybe the consequences to yourself were not worth it. I am sorry if I am completely incorrect on reading that into your words. I do encourage you to think carefully if that might be true, because if so, you may be subconsciously holding yourself back from truly getting over it. The passage of time alone won’t solve the problem. You also have to actively embrace your new reality and accept it as an improvement. I don’t know if you have tried therapy … you sound so very busy that adding anything more seems daunting. But I think some careful exploration of your “he wasn’t really so bad” thought could use some careful analysis. Because trust me, he totally sucked. (((Hugs.)))

      • Thanks, Dixie. I trust that he suckED, I guess. And I left him. But I struggle to see that he suckS completely. You are right. But whether it is past tense or current is irrelevant to me really. I chose not to continue on with someone so fucking disrespectful and who obviously didn’t love the way I love. So, I trust that his affair showed me something in him I don’t want in my life. I don’t know that I frame it as ‘not so bad’ – as unprotected sex in my houses, with a woman I invited to holiday with me and us, etc, is pretty fucking bad! But I guess I had a wonderful, close relationship with someone who up until then had 1000% appeared (and acted, talked, etc) to have the same values as myself. Then he ruined it all. ‘Cos he was a selfish fucktard. And sucked/sucks. I wish he’d been an arsehole always. I would have left one of those far earlier.

        Loads of therapy. Spent over $10k and so much time trying to untangle the skein. Some pretty good. A lot was rubbish. I learned nothing new, really. Just reiterated what I already knew about life, choices, etc. I don’t think I, personally think he wasn’t/isn’t so bad. My previous friends on the other hand … I left their shit. I wasn’t going to hang around people who judged my reaction to someone I truly loved totally ripping my heart to shreds as an overreaction. But I sure appreciate your insight, Dixie. There are certainly some nuggets of truth in there.

        • Your strength of will is inspiring. You are right to dump “friends” who would give a cheater an “it was only once” free pass. As for his present level of sucktitude, it really doesn’t matter if he is now the male version of Mother Theresa. His actions proved he totally sucked at one time. He proved his character includes the ability to be that sort of a person and thus he is permanently that type of person. He was also that type of person for all those years he seemingly wasn’t. He just took a long time to reveal it. Good luck to you … you deserve happiness. We all do.

    • I’d like to give you the missing component…but I would get crucified on this particular site. You have indeed done all the things we are encouraged to do (in spades I must say)…yet, there is ONE more thing to do…to believe…to ask for, in order to have Peace of mind. Please consider going over to Divorce Ministers site and tell him what you just wrote here. He can give you the help that you need.

      May God Bless You as you seek His help.

      • Sweetz. I appreciate your thoughts and have read DM’s blog from time to time. I guess it is a hard thing for believers to get to grips with, and I am glad you find solace in your faith, but if you don’t believe in a sky fairy and a couple of books written by men long ago, there just is no way to convince your brain otherwise. I did grow up with exposure to Christianity, and for many it seems to help. So much hatred and bigotry is justified by those who identify with some religion or another. I just don’t believe in the way you do. But glad you feel it supports your journey.

    • You sound so awesome and I’m so jealous! I hope I can be half as mighty as you are. I’m so sorry for your pain. I am so fearful that I will end up that way too. Doing well or even amazingly well and still sad and “broken”. Maybe this will be your year! I’m sending you good thoughts for your emotional state to match your accomplishments!

      • Thanks Shelby. You will find what works for you. I used my fury at giving him my everything to take something back for me! It drove me through that degree. The fifth I had started, but the only one completed! Motivation I could quite happily have done without ?!

    • Horsercumin–You are right; you have done everything you should–check, check, check. Losing all your friends to his sad sausage, “I just made one mistake!” bullshit is saddening and infuriating (ask me how I know). It prevents us from fully moving on because the injustice and lack of validation from people who should have had our backs, is a horse-sized pill to swallow. Sounds to me like you are clear in your own mind that he sucks, don’t surround yourself with weaker-minded people.

      My recommendation? Move. Far away, start afresh. Make the decision in your mind that YOU are dumping those friends (rather than seeing them as abandoning you). New job, new house, new hairstyle or fashion style, while you’re at it. If you have job flexibility, move to someplace with an active chump meetup group (check the forums) so that you immediately have at least a basic support system. Scary, but fulfilling in the long run. I have made several drastic moves in my life (largely connected to educational or job opportunities), and while there is a lonely adjustment period, I don’t regret a single move. And it sounds like you’re lonely where you are, anyway. Hugs to you!

      • Cheers Tempest. Moving is on the cards after my Masters thesis is submitted in August. My youngest is off to uni this year, so I stayed the course to keep her in a school situation she was thriving in. I am a far freer agent this year. Still untangling assets, but once I can free up some capital, business opportunities will be more thoroughly investigated. I would possibly like to do a PhD. But recognise I do need a semester or two off after this to get my shit together! Suffering a little burnout even just sorting and editing my lit review. Never had that until now. Previously it flowed pretty easily. I have truly wonderful and supportive supervisors and I am so grateful for them both and what they each bring to my work, and to me, personally.

        I have done a lot of the truly-terrified-but-do-it-anyway shit. And you are so right. And it definitely was me that dumped those disloyal, but mostly lifelong ‘friends’. Also a recovering alcoholic brother, who lives on the other side of the world, who seems to find new and inventive ways to prod me even when I have told him once, a couple of years ago, very clearly, that I am not interested in a relationship with him anymore. Geez. When you’re blocked on all social media, but you find a new one, why not request to follow me ten times in two days? And use a different email (to get through my email block of him) to group message the whole family about how mean and unforgiving horses is. Again. Maybe the tenth time you request a follow, I will change my mind? Looked up how to block, yet again, on yet another site. And did it. Weirdo.

        Absolutely. They never understood any of it, and obviously never understood me at all. No loss. But yeah. I guess I am lonely. To a degree. But have no motivation or desire to make new friends. I’ve analysed the fuck out of that. Am I scared to trust? Maybe. But mostly I just feel meh about humanity these days. I empathise, but keep my distance in order not to be disappointed further. Ahhhh. Yep. Right there. Must be a trust issue ?.

        I am sure making hard work of this final slog to the finish line, and wondering why I am even doing this to myself quite a lot. It’s a humanities grad degree, so not really pushing myself into a higher salary bracket as such. It just felt like I wasn’t done yet at the end of my undergrad. Hmm. Yeah. There’s a lot driving my dissatisfaction. For sure!

        Thanks for your suggestions. I agree and will be again making changes as soon as I can, Tempest.

        • Congrats on that upcoming Master’s degree! Thesis writing is the pits (but you’ll be glad when you’ve completed it). You held in until daughter graduated high school, now onward and upward! You’ve got this!

    • Horsesrcumin, I haven’t a comment on other’s comments that you haven’t trusted that HE sucks, but I would address that your “friends” haven’t accepted that they should recognize that HE sucks (and they suck for not believing your truth).

      The first time he fucked you over wasn’t when he screwed her, it was when he put her phone number in his cell phone and hid it. Or when he bought her “just coffee”. 10000 more betrayals later, then he screwed her, and fucked you over again.
      The last time he fucked you over hasn’t happened yet. His playing sad sausage, one “mistake” and getting your “friends” to buy it is yet another betrayal and you are fucked over. … again.
      Hard to get over something still happening.

      I’d print out the above paragraph and have it ready to hand out to the next “friend” who tries to tell you that it wasn’t that bad or blah blah blah. Then ask them to reconsider if they really are in your corner.

      • Thank you Wilma. I would, but it won’t be required. I got those people out of my life. Disloyalty in any form is not a goer for me! They can go jump as far as I’m concerned. They can think he’s the king of the world, or trust that he sucks, whatever. Who cares what they think, or (more likely) don’t think?

        To clarify. She was a mutual friend. Her number was already in both our phones, long before he even considered fucking her. He texted and conversed with her (as did I) with my full knowledge and often in my presence. Their modus operandi was open and mutual friendship. No one suspects friends to be playing the gut wrenching game of betrayal. The more they communicated, the more he talked about her, the more legitimate their friendship appeared. To everyone. Including me, until near the end, when I one night felt a bit … shuddery? about why she texted him late at night – “what you doing?” while we were cuddling (etc) on the couch, semi-watching a movie. I sat bolt upright and looked him in the eye and asked him if he was playing me for the stupidest woman in the world. I had no suspicions up until then. He looked me dead in the eye and smiled kindly, “oh God no. Never. I never would, and certainly not with that screwed up loser!” Held me tight. Kissed me deeply and said, “I think she’s drunk. Ignore her. I do.” Okay then. Jesus. How red do the flags need to be?

        • I’m so sorry Horsesrcumin. I myself was color blind before and didn’t realize the red flags thrown my way. But that was it right there – the way he described the OW as a ‘screwed up loser’ was very telling as to how easily these asshats can resort to manipulation and gaslighting (don’t mind her, focus on us) to keep you invested.

          Just imagining what STBX was saying about me to the OW was enough for me to get chills in my spine and view him for the scum that he is.

    • Horses, you’re buying into the “you were too harsh” aspect of it. Harsh…. was it not harsh that to get to his “one” time cheat, he told you a shitload of lies, he told that bitch a shitload of lies, he plotted and planned how to do this because it takes a bit of doing to get those pants to drop or that skirt to come up before his wee wee landed into her swamp thing. He didn’t just trip and fall into it. Poor clumsy thing. He planned it, she complied and then they betrayed you. Now that is harsh. He’s sorry, for exactly what, lying, planning, getting caught, being a crybaby bitch after he got caught, what is he sorry for, giving you HPV, what the hell is he sorry for!!!!!! He is a monster in Get clothing. Keep running away from that.

      • Hi flutterby. You’d think so. I would think so. But the truth is, I sent them off after a celebratory party- along with our 3 kids and her 1 – to our lake house, where I would join them the following day. My friend, and my partner. Who the fuck does that? Me. I trusted him. He did not plan it before going. He decided to fuck her at about 1 o’clock in the morning. She was happy for him to climb into her (my daughter’s) bed. No questions asked. He agrees that it would likely have happened anyway. Maybe later. But I provided the opportunity. However, I also always told him I would anewer a phone call from him or the kids at a young hour if they were in trouble. Lying in bed for about an hour, trying to decide whether you should try and fuck your partner’s friend or not seems pretty problematic to me. But hey, I get consequences. He made deliberate plans to fuck her for about an hour before he did. And I have no doubt there were subconscious plans happening for some time before the opportunity arose. No doubt whatsoever.

    • Horsrsrcumin, thank you for sharing this with us and being so honest. I don’t have any advice for you, and my gut tells me that it might be better to just validate you: I’m doing the best I can as well but I just don’t feel like my life is as good today as it was when I was happily married, or that it ever will be as good in some very significant ways as it was. I was happily married for 24 years. DDay 1-10+ happened beginning 12/27/14. I too am doing all the right things to gain life, but most days I feel like a zombie and like I’m just pretending to be OK. Maybe this is as good as it’ll ever get for me. Maybe all my best years are behind me. I just don’t know. On good days I have hope that the best days are ahead. On bad days I don’t. Some days I just don’t even want to live but I have children and I feel responsible for them –for being the one sane parent, so suicide really isn’t an option.

      I try to take each day 24 hours at a time and do the best I can and try not to beat myself up too bad or compare myself to anyone or anything including my old life. I try to help other people and my children. That seems to give me some comfort. I think only time will tell how this is all them turn out for all of us.
      Hugs to you. You are not alone.

      • MotherChumper99, I appreciate your thoughts (and solidarity!) It isn’t that I don’t ‘have a life’ – not at all. As you say, one day at a time. I guess my vent here is that the get over it mantra, whilst yeah, being the aim, causes me a lot of angst. Because I’m not. And it feels like life is such damn hard work now. The constant mindfulness and pressure to keep forging on.

        I attempted twice in the first 18 months after D-day. And I have kids. And was aware of the terrible effects, but felt I just couldn’t go on. That is how bad I was. Prepared to sacrifice my kids’ mental health because I just couldn’t stand the pain any more. And I am terribly embarrassed to write that. Both attempts occurred at times when my children were not around and they do not know about them, thank God! I still have days where I toy with the idea. But the actual ideation phase is over, thankfully.

        Most days I just get on with it. Doing the best I can. But the contentment and feeling of wellbeing that I was lucky enough to feel a great deal of my life has gone. And living is really hard now. I can do hard things. I do do hard things. I didn’t have a bubble wrapped life. I worked hard in a physically dirty, demanding, uncomfortable business (that I nevertheless mostly loved.) But when every day is emotionally hard, it wears at you. I know I just made my original comment here, to put the load down temporarily, somewhere. I felt I was gonna ‘get there’ – as in feel better one day – more times than I didn’t – the first five years of this. But that optimism has gone now. The last two and a half have become considerably bleaker.

        Two years in for you. You are actually doing great. I think you know that. For most people, I still believe that it takes probably about at least two years to process and start feeling like all the ship steering is starting to take effect. All the best as you continue to gain a life!

    • Horse, I can so much relate to what you have been saying. I am still with the Cheater for a couple more days, now discussing divorce et al, and hopefully will file soon.

      However, during the whole 2016 (the main DDAY in early Jan 2016) I have “worked” a lot on myself and still feel stuck. I travel with work, so there is always opportunities to meet with new people. But I don’t engage, I don’t connect. I went to see the CATS show in NY a month ago. I watched it, but did not see anything. I listened to it, but did not hear anything. I just sat there completely immersed in my thoughts.

      I bought many tickets to many shows, ballets, operas, concerts, performances (some are still upcoming) – stuff that I always liked. I go in, show my ticket, and just sit. I am mad with myself that I can’t switch off my mind blubber. I can’t get off the CL and CN addiction now. I understand this is my power source for when I need it most, but when do I check out?

      I guess we should not be harsh on ourselves. There are days that I think less of the cheater and pity myself less because I get immersed with work. There are other days that I sit in work meetings and nod and all I think about is the cheater and how he fucked up the life I thought I had.

      And I still tried (!!! – idiot?) to make him “get it” when he initiated a conversation yesterday and I ended up crying. But this time I knew what to expect of him, I knew he has no empathy, I knew it’s all about him although he now tries to sound “reasonable” and include the interests of our son into the discussion. I knew he would come up with excuses for himself to not do what I expected him to do. But I still agreed to that conversation and I guess it serves me right now. Some of us (me, me, me!) can’t get it from one time, two times or 10 times. We have to try all the different angles. I wonder if this is stupidity or perseverance.

  • Like it or not we have to accept. We can’t let the rage and anger and disappointment control our emotions and keep us stuck. I’ve been told it’ll take about 2 years to get over the It Sucks feeling. So I’m half way there.

    I have no choice but to accept That this didn’t happen to me. It just happened. Like so many things happen to so many people. Surround myself with positive people and do things for myself that make me feel even just a tiny bit better everyday.

    Seems we all have a recipe. Just keep practicing til you get it right.

  • Horsecumin, I have also found it very tough to mentally move on as well. Like you, I’ve done much to gain the illustrious state of meh but spent so much time ruminating about why he did what he did, what he’s doing and generally Facebook stalking, it bores me. I’ve burdened my mum excessively with talk about him and I’m in my fucking forties! Reliant on her for support still. My New Years resolution is to stop it! It’ll be 3 years in April and god knows we weren’t together for decades like some. A mere 12 years! I’m ashamed by all of this to be honest. However I’ve moved home, dealt with a very serious car crash, moved jobs, invested in another renovation home, done a coaching course, got fit, set up meetup groups, tried to gain a new circle of friends, etc. I totally agree that the ‘trust they suck’ part is what holds me back from truly accepting things. And yet he treats his three daughters so badly they’ve washed their hands of him. That’s evidence enough you think, to remind me he is not a good person. I think the trick is sheer mental willpower to stop the ruminating but also being brace enough to look ahead and truly have faith things will improve because like horsecumin, I suspect, I have questioned if I’m not less happy than I was when I was married! But there is truly no going back. He shat on me, my trust, our marriage and did the same to his first wife. Not much more to say. I think the other big challenge is a profound almost self pitying loneliness that is hard to manage and I think the prospect of always being on my own with that self reliance than is so relentless and exhausting at times and that’s without kids!

    • Hi. Good work. Yes. Stop. I only did the hyper-vigilance thing for a relatively short time. I’m not built for police work! My ex was fairly computer illiterate, so no social media presence to stalk. I did the OW’s for a short while. Trying to untangle her skein. When I realised pretty quickly that there was no untangling that knotted mess of humanity, that was who she is, I stopped promptly and never went back. I have focused on myself and my children. Not him. Not her. But finding some peace and a smidgen of joy have been elusive in the years since. And when I read of so many doing well, old (no longer) friends expecting me to be better than I am, and honestly? Me hoping to be more content than I am, I wonder what I’ve missed? I haven’t got close to happiness or peace or contentment since D-day. It’s terribly frustrating. Even when I am mindfully kinder to myself. I know I have missed my own mother terribly during this journey. She died, loving my ex, 9 years prior to D-day. But she would have totally had my back once he cheated. And been an incredible support.

      • Horses, it’s my personal belief that we all have our own timetable in healing from the abuse that the cheater dishes out so freely. There is no cookie cutter answer. We chumps are all different in so many ways, from the baggage we bring with us from our family of origin to just what is our own personal breaking point. I think it is a progression of little victories we string together, one day at a time to get to that place of acceptance that is meh.

        My biggest fight was with myself to finally accept that all the crap in my story happened and there wasn’t anything that I could do to change any of it. It was real. It was hell, and I had to let go of the idea that I had any responsibility for it. The fight was what was so very painful. All those what ifs and maybe it’s. It is a relief to just say …OK, that is what happened. I accept it and will quit fighting it so I can take my hands, eyes and heart out of the past and live in the now.

        The only thing I have any power over is the moment right in front of me, right now. If I do the best I can right now to lay a good foundation for a better tomorrow, things will get better. That is exactly what you are doing, Horses. Your heart and head just haven’t caught up yet. But they will, in your own good time.

        Sending you hugs, my friend.

        • Hugs accepted gratefully, Tessie. I feel that acceptance hasn’t really been an issue for me. Ceryainly not once through the first few years. And I didn’t spend too long playing the exciting game of blame-the-chump. I do know that my original vision of ‘healed’ was somewhat unrealistic. Of course the pain is forever. I had hoped I could contain it better seven and a half years later! (Hell, I thought the ‘2-5 years’ mantra seemed a little OTT!)

          I am not sure I dwell on the past consciously to any great degree. But I know the nightmares have never ceased. I also know (and was very self-aware before D-day) what my life experience brings to my expectations and way that I ensure I communicate these clearly to the people I love.

          I agree that there is no timeline. But I did hope that I wouldn’t feel worse than ever this far along. Thanks for sharing your wisdom and support. Hugs back!

          • Horsesrcumin, I’m really grateful for this thread, as I’ve felt the same at times. You sound like you are doing outstanding work. The only thing I would add is that…to truly heal means to allow ourselves to become vulnerable with others. you sound like a doer, which is great, and I am too…but I wonder if you could spend some quality time with yourself to ask you what truly makes you feel happy and fulfilled? I’m not sure accomplishments do that all on their own. In fact I’m pretty sure they don’t. And I agree with your assessment that you’re probably a bit burned out. I’d suggest some travel. go somewhere, doesn’t have to be expensive. Take a group trip offered by REI. See some astounding nature. Go see a glacier if you haven’t already. Something that inspires a sense of wonder.

            It’s a rough path, and we here all know it intimately. It looks a bit different for everyone, but I suspect you’ll get there. I have hope for you.

            • I agree K. But I can’t seem to convince myself to allow vulnerability again. A very extreme reaction that many of us have, but that needs to be overcome in order to heal. Every time I let the ‘real, vulnerable’ me out it feels far too trusting and I retreat. This is not who I used to be. I was a keen student of human nature, a generally – up until these two fucked me over – good judge of character. I don’t trust myself any more. I thought my picker was good. My bullshit deflector finely tuned, set to high. So in order to be vulnerable again, I have to trust that they were an aberration. But the more I look around at humanity, the less likely that appears to be the case. On the night the OW texted me that six weeks earlier he had ended an affair with her I can recall saying to myself, almost immediately, whatever you do, don’t let their shittiness make you bitter. And guess what???

              Have travelled a little. Doing more in the next two months. It doesn’t seem to help. And I totally agree about asking myself those questions! I ask and ask. And have yet to formulate an answer really.

          • Horses, you remind me so much of me. It’s scary to hear that you are so mighty and yet still not over it after 5 years. It’s 2 years for me since DDay 1 and only 7 months since he moved out with the whore. I feel I have coped with the change in circumstances really well handling the farm, and being grey rock about the contact we still have with the farm and the relationship property dispute. I am objectively proud of my achievements but feel empty and cold about making new friends and about people in general. This is just too much betrayal. Because the betrayal was with someone who was always in the picture, everything about the relationship and the family I thought I had seems false. I think because you were betrayed by your husband and your long time friend, it is especially hard to recover. Yes, trust issues…I heard that I had trust issues for 9 years from the traitor, although I never checked where he went, what he did, and trusted him completely…No wonder you feel cold.
            I can’t offer much comfort, except that I understand how that feels. I still want to overcome this feeling eventually, but I don’t know how, or how to find the balance between trust and naivete. What CL calls discernment.
            Here’s to 2017 and we all learnt discernment. Your achievements are awesome, please be proud of them, even if you can’t feel happy or secure (yet).

            • Hey kiwi! Yeah. We are similar. I agree. However, I was NEVER told I had trust issues. By anyone. I was the most chill, trusting partner ever. I liked it. We communicated (until obviously one of us didn’t!) And I was never in the slightest jealous or worried. Until near the end of what must have been their affair. Over a year into it. I started to feel the slightest bit … fizzy about their ‘friendship’. But I put it down to the long hours I was working. Must be that tiredness, right ?!

              Keep up the mighty, kiwichump. It will pay off. Just a longer road with a lot more hills than it looked like on the GPS!

        • This, Tessie. Such wisdom….
          I don’t believe some of us will ever “get over it,” but that’s not a bad thing. All that crap has made me who I am. It is part of my story. The good, and the bad. It is important to realize that there are some things we have absolutely no control over. Life is going to throw us under the bus but if we remain strong, authentic, mindful, loving, and honest, then we are going to be okay. I have learned what not to do!?I believe the best we can do is to be gentle with ourselves, move forward (baby steps), share our stories, help others, surround ourselves with kindred spirits, and love those who are worth loving. Happy New Year CN.

  • Love doesn’t hurt. I think we get so used to the hurt that we equate hurt with love. That’s not what love is. It’s not easy, it’s messy but in the end it doesn’t hurt more than it feels good. We were “programmed” to expect the hurt. I say hell no. Fuck that shit. I love God, God had not given me everything that I want but He has never screwed me over intentionally like the “Love Of My Life” did. He is my constant, read Psychpathfree.
    Let it go!!!??? Hell ya let that f*ing useless, immoral, abusive thing go, to be free and fly, like a little migratory butterfly, always looking for the next victim.

    • So true, flutterby. I’m so used to being ignored by men that I don’t know what it’s like to have a loving man who actually loves me. But I’d rather be alone then be alone in a marriage. Happy 2017 to you!

  • Took my kids away for New Year had a good time, went to our fav beach and jumped big waves.
    Man child sends lame email that he misses us all and we could do work as a couple to get better.
    Just don’t have the energy for all the drame, barely breathing some days.
    Anyway I feel for his loss but he knew the score and what was my deal breaker.
    He has had 9 months to end the affair that I didn’t know about, has seen people he knows turn into sad sacks after seperating on but took no notice.
    I am heartbroken and dream every night of my younger self being abandoned by him, pleading and making a bed!?
    My mind is trying to process it all. I wake up in pain and on the brink of tears with this gutrenching pain.
    Does he feel like this? The loss of not living with his boys anymore, no more family holidays?
    Anyway I did not reply to the email which said also that we could fix the broken trust, yeah righto.
    2017 is my year to get my house in order, get my kids in a good space, will not be seeking out men!
    Onwards and upwards occasionally backwards a few steps. Time to water my garden which has gone to seed after having kids 11 years ago.

  • Yes not much in the way of assets I’m afraid. The last few emails have been about him getting money from our mortgage which is in joint name, paid entirely by me from separation day and has no current equity!
    Yes he’s a shit, the email probably took all of 10 minutes to compose and had a lot of double!!, think he is losing grip a bit. Has always been crumbs and castles built on shifting sands.
    Grieving yes my dreams seem to guide me atm.

  • Two years out, I believe that as many of you have said, that the journey to Meh and “getting over it” is a process. Some days it is easier than others, some days, you are thrown back into the pain, hurt, anger, and betrayal. For me, I am finding that part of “getting over it” is realizing that I will NEVER get over it. The wounds will heal over to scars and the triggers become more like twinges, but accepting that the person that I loved the most in the world was capable of intentionally inflicting such trauma, cruelty, heartbreak and pain on the people he purported to love the most is still unfathomable to me. I had no schema for such evil. I know the reality. I know who he is, the man he has chosen to become and the pain he continues to inflict for his own selfish purposes, particularly on his vulnerable disabled son. But part of my healing, part of my moving on, is knowing myself and recognizing that his actions and hatred are something I won’t ever get over completely, will never forget and the scars will always be there. I am just learning to be more comfortable with knowing that they are there, recognizing the ebb and flow and not punishing or criticizing myself for the feelings when they come.

  • the hood rat troll whore who had been bonking my husband behind my back. .. .. so nicely called to tell me to GET OVER IT on the day that i found out about her.. … .. mind boggling.

    i filed the divorce papers the next day

  • This post has really helped me remain NC with my STBX who is currently in Bali with his OW while I am at home getting our three year old ready to start back at nursery in 2 days time while trying to summon up the strength to go back to work after my D Day 2 months ago. He flew to Bali to join her as she was away with some friends and he was alone with no one to talk to after he spent Christmas Day on his own. He was apparently in his words ‘teetering on the edge of functioning’ and needed some time to get his head together!!! What does he think I have been doing since he left me? I found this quote today and thought I would share it- ‘If you want to fly, you must give up what weighs you down’. Seeing a solicitor on Monday! Bubbye now cheating husband, hello new life for me.

  • I’ve thought a lot about what makes us chumpy. And one of the main things, I’ve concluded, is thinking of everyone, ANYone, but ourselves. And after a while we have to face the terrifying emptiness inside of us. When we stop untangling that skein, we’re left with ourselves suddenly. And what is there? Sometimes, not a lot. Sometimes all we got is what we don’t wanna be, what we hate. Which is our cheaters. So we can start with that, being the opposite of them. And then what? Well, we remember that we used to love baking. Or traveling. Or we always wanted to learn to rock climb. And then we’re talking, reclaiming all those lost parts of ourselves. Getting a life. And you know what? Chump Lady is right. It’s a choice. To move on and get past it. Acceptance is the hardest part.

    If there’s anything I hope for in 2017, it’s leaving the past where it is–dead and buried. To stay present, and keep moving forward. I come here to remember the price I paid for my independence, for the life I have now. It was very high. I won’t pay it twice. And to keep telling new chumps, it really does get better.

    • Thanks for this. New Chump (4 months) and if I am honest after being left by myself I have concluded that there is not a lot there. I think your post helped me to realize that.

      • Hugs! Once I faced that fact Pkidza, things got a lot better for me. I really had a lack of self, and at least once I knew that, I knew what my task was. Essentially, to become a full-fledged person. And that continues everyday, but it CAN happen if that’s what you want. And I am actually much happier than I was before I was chumped, because I had been spackling over that fact for most of my life. You can do this.

  • This is a great post!!! Thank you CL, happy new year to all my fellow chumps. As I was reading this post on my tablet and agreeing with everything written, my main computer’s screen saver photos were floating by–a decade after Dday, a new husband, a new puppy, my kids happy and a smile on my face. Keeping an eye out for the karma bus (the affair partner/wife has 7 cats, is that karma enough?) but I’m not at the stop any longer. Keep the faith, fellow chumps.

    • Love this, Skatergirl. Chumps deserve happy and I love the
      Future you have painted. Happy kids too! What we all want.

  • My ex-husband had an affair for months with his ex-girlfriend in 2012. He told me about the affair one week asked the wedding, after our honeymoon. I was heart broken, but decided I should give it a shot at reconciling. (I guess I was too embarrassed to file for divorce a week after a wedding). Five years later, I suffered through constant emotional abuse where he constantly criticized me, degraded me and called me the most horrible names, and always brought up this ex gf to tell me how much more beautiful, accomplished, Or how successful she is…how he wished he had stayed with her. (Which is odd since he was not dating her when we met, he was seeing another woman and seeing this particular ex on the side).

    I realized 4 years into the marriage that he is a narcissist and the final straw was when he changed his mind about starting a family. He has children from a prior marriage but agreeed that we would have children prior to getting married, Thankfully, that was what I needed to go ahead with the divorce. we got divorced several months ago. Since we share a lease in an apartment, he’s been living in the extra bedroom for the last few months. 5 more months to go, but he did mention moving out soon. We were having the discussion about how to split the security deposit, and he mentioned how fair he was about not asking for the engagement ring back,

    I brought up the affair, and he said “OMG, that was five years ago. Get over it. Even (insert OW) said it was so long ago and that you are crazy and ridiculous to keep bringing it up.”

    What type of person uses his OW’s opinion to bolster his own argument for when I should be healed?!

    I’m such a chump because I keep thinking he’ll change or we will reconcile. I still haven’t told my family we are divorced. However, I plan on moving to across the country this summer. Since we still see each other daily, it’s hard to grieve or even star the process to get to Meh.

    Long time reader, first time posting.

  • I feel claustrophobic reading this, get away from him you need clarity.
    Find a way to pay the security deposit to him or visa versa and get the hell out. I would have killed mine if I hadn’t thrown him out.
    Move away it really does help massively.
    Don’t make lame excuses like it’s not the right time etc, he is a dog! And you are trying to understand him in the hope he will see it from your point of view.
    What I have learnt in the past 7 weeks with mine is the truth is subjective to them.
    Tell your family tell his tell whoever you feel like, it’s not your shame.
    He’s a waste of your time and doesn’t know what he wants in life, what a douche.
    Get away your future self will thank you.

    • Thank you for your response. It’s actually so refreshing to write everything down to actually achieve some clarity on this. I’m thankful that I’m in a position to make up the difference in the rent for a few months before the lease is up. You’re right, I haven’t pushed for him to move because in the back of my chump mind, I probably hope he will stay and try and convince me to take him back.

      He mentioned today that he contacted a realtor to look at places and instead of feeling elated, I was sad. Whenever I feel this way, I have to reread a secret digital journal I kept hidden from him detailing all the awful things he’s done…it’s a way to heal since I don’t tell my friends or family how poorly he’s treated me. In fact, my family adores him and thinks he’s a saint. I’ve spent the last five years keeping up this image of a happy marriage everyone will be shocked at who I was actually married to. I’m not sure whether to just tell my family that he changed his mind about children, which would make the divorce pretty amicable…or the entire truth,

      My ex reas my handwritten journal last year when I was away for work and took the liberty to read it, and rip out all the pages that pertained to him; his affairs, his name calling, other awful mean behavior and said that my “journaling was unfair because it was slanted and bias.”

      Have you divorced yours?

      • I’ve been reading everyone’s comments and posts over the last few months to get stronger and to move on. My experience pales in comparison to so many chumps here and I’m happy to read posts when people get strong enough to leave such an abusive relationship.

        I’m a chump because I would have put up with his emotional abuse for perpetuity had he wanted to have a family. I still can’t imagine how horrible life would have been for him and anh of my future children he would have fathered.

        Despite knowing all that, I still feel so much resentment. I do not have any children, and now I’m starting over at 34. I currently have no desire to date or pursue any type of relationship…so my chances for a children of my own.

        Anyone out here had their first child at a later age? I’ll love to hear from women who met, married, and had children later in life.

  • We never married it was to conventional for him. Friends 20 years, together 13 two kids.
    We went through this same bs three years ago and I pick me danced like a pro, within a few months his rage and demands of ‘ you don’t give me enough attention came back’.
    I told myself and him if he put me through it again I was done.
    He did. I remember looking at his emails, he gave me his phone to look at that he hadn’t wiped properly. I was shaking and a voice in my head was saying, you have put up with enough shit over the years this is the final straw. I told him to get out and had keys for house which I now pay mortgage on back within a week.
    He knows you have a sweet nature, God your sound too nice, he is banking on you not telling anyone.
    I told people and his Mum because if you don’t they will control the narrative.
    If I had CL the first time around I would not be doing this the second. 7 weeks out I’m getting stronger my heart no longer feels smashed and I just want to get to the end of 2017 and care for myself and my boys. I know this is my year and need to be rid of the drama of the sess pool.
    Read CL and get angry, he is horrible, he makes mine look half decent.
    Like they say ‘you can’t polish a turd but you can roll it in glitter’
    I had kids at 30 thinking it would help him grow up and be responsible, it doesn’t I repeat it doesn’t because they are self absorbed and their needs are primary, save yourself!

    • Lady Batshit,

      Thank you so much for the much needed advocacy. I laughed and shed tears of sadness or (happiness) reading your words of encouragement. I guess I’m still an emotional wreck.

      I’m so glad to hear you finally had enough to leave him. You did all you could to hold that relationship together and he took you for granted.

      It’s unbelievable how people feel entitled to live their life the way they wish, but leave their partners blind to their other lustful pursuits.

      I feel the strength in your words and 2017 will be your year.

  • Ps you owe him nothing don’t feel bad for taking money or material possessions to help you along the road, he has f..ed you over time to look out for you!

  • Jen, I got married at 30. I met him through work and thought God loved me hugely to have brought this guy to me. I was head over heels in love.

    He was against children and kept quoting his child-less couple friends who said the the world was cruel, there was famine, war, cruelty etc and we can’t really give children a good life. He and I talked about family before getting married and I said children were important and so he promised (before the wedding) if they were so important for me then he would agree. I moved to his country to be with him and he promptly started postponing the family thing. (Why do we not listen when they tell us something from the very beginning???)

    Learn the new language. – I did.
    Find friends and make yourself comfortable in a new place. – I did.
    Find a job. – I did.

    Then again: the world is cruel. I turned 33 by then. All that criticizing, degrading, humiliating, minimizing my achievements and maximising his every deed had started with the 1st affair a year into the marriage (which i did not know about back then). But as you said I was ready to take his shit in perpetuity if he had only agreed to have kids. He resisted. Resisted big time. Then he suggested divorce. Reason? We “did not have chemistry anymore, he was not sure he ever loved me, he thought he was not made for family, he was giving me a way out to go and build my life as I was still young”. I wish I had listened to him. I wish I had agreed. I did not. I cried. I begged him to give us a chance. I told him I would never mention having children anymore. He graciously agreed. I stopped all kids and family related talks. I thought we were getting better. 3 months later while tieing his snickers to go for a run he told me casually he would “agree to give me one.”
    One what? One child. That’s it!
    We had our son a year later. It was almost 9 years ago. He went ski’ing during my planned c-section. This was never his project. He did me a favor and he always rubbed it into my face.

    He cheated on me for 12 years.

    I wish I listened to him when he proposed the divorce first time. Or the second time when our son was 5 years old. I cried again then. Let’s work on chemistry , i said. Because I had it. I loved him with all my heart. I was so invested in him, in our family. I asked him if he had anyone and he said no. I said I would give him a divorce if he was in love with somebody but since he wasn’t…please let’t not ruin it. He agreed again. He never had the balls to tell me the truth.

    Jen, my whole family and friends saw only the best of him. Thanks to me.

    So now…when I know who he is…when I finally agreed to his divorce offers…he is telling me to keep things as they are to not hurt our son. He proposed an open marriage. We live in different countries seeing each other twice a year. His idea is to keep doing this and fake it in front of our son.

    But I don’t want to fake it. Do I still love him? I think I do. I love the guy I thought was him. The potential. The glimpses of happiness I see on my son’s face when he is with his father. But I see through him now. He has no empathy except towards himself.

    Jen, I know you feel your biological clock is ticking. I was so restless at 30..31..32..33…even later when I wanted desperately to have the second one while he glued a condom on his dick so god forbid any precious drop could spill. Believe me you are far better off as you are now than with a prospect of co-parenting with a narcissist. It’s horrible. Mine does not even conceal that he is, openly talks about it and promotes it with our son teaching him that only people like him will get somewhere in life while losers like his mother will always be average people.

    Run away, Jen. Writing here helps. People here are amazing! I have been on this site every single day for the past 4 months. This is my power and the chump power we all need. I wish you find your strength this year.

    Hugs.

    • Longtimechump,

      I felt exactly the way you felt when I married my ex-husband at 27. Since he already had two children from a prior marriage, and ten years older, I made sure to ask him early on in the relationship if he would like more children. “He said of course.”

      I wish I could tell you that once he told me he didn’t want a child anymore, that I was strong and I was the one that made the decision to terminate the marriage. But I wasn’t. I started to stand up for myself. Whenever he would call me names I would tell him it was “inappropriate.” Whenever he attempted to gaslight me, I would confront him with clear facts and evidence. Whenever he would compare me to his ex, I would try to ignore it or tell him to just go back to them if they are constantly on his mind. After four years of constant emotional abuse…I did some reading on narcissism and it finally started to make sense to me. I fell in love with his false self in the beginning. He was quite a charmer. He put me on a pedestal and praised me, complimented me and actually told me his ex’s were “crazy” or “dysfunctional” people. He was so kind and I thought he loved me unconditionally. So, it was a serious blow to my heart and soul to discover the affair one week after my catholic church wedding.

      He asked for a divorce because he said we aren’t compatible. He uses any differences we have to cite incompatibility. The only strength I was the strength to agree to give him a divorce. Thankfully, we were able to split our assets quite amicably.

      Knowing what I know now, I will steer clear of that “connection” or “chemistry” if I ever desire to date in the future. That sweet, charming, God-fearing man disappeared pretty soon after the marriage.

      You are a very strong woman for having endured living with a narcissist for as long as you have. You have done both your son and yourself a great service for leaving him. My heart aches to know how much you went through to try and understand him during the course of your marriage. It was crushing for me to learn of an affair that occurred prior to our wedding, but to discover an affair that spanned the entire marriage would be …I can’t even expressed that sadness in words.

      Although I’ve been divorce since October, I don’t believe I can even start starting the timeline from my recovery until I am officially no contact.

      I don’t know whether a happy marriage or future children will be in my future. However, I do know that 2017 is the year for me. For me to reclaim myself as an individual and to start enjoying the hobbies I used to enjoy.

  • When I’m pissed off I read this column over and over again to get over it!
    Its a hard work to get it done.
    But Im on my way to the MEH land.

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