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Dear Chump Lady, I’m jealous of the Other Woman

cheaters_as_dog_pooDear Chump Lady,

I am sure that my story is the same one that you have heard a hundred times, I have read versions of it on your site and others… married 9 years, together 18, one small daughter and poof! He is gone. Like emotionally gone. Except that he did not physically leave.

My husband very abruptly announced that he was no longer interested in being married to me in October of 2012. He did not believe in marriage, did not love me anymore – maybe never did and wanted to be done. He spent the next 9 months waffling – going back and forth between being incredibly cruel to me and incredibly needy and sweet. He did not leave the house until July of 2013 for a “temporary trial” separation. During this time, an emotional affair with his friend’s girlfriend came to light.

For months and months I did the whole pick me dance… maybe if I was just a bit prettier, maybe if I was more interested in the things he is interested in, maybe if I could keep the house cleaner and the kid better behaved… I tried and I tried. Until I caught them together at a public event after he had promised me that they were not in contact. After he had spent several months wooing me – talking about new houses and vacations together. Then I realized that it did not matter what I did – the one thing that I could not do was be her. We have no moved from “trial” to separated and are heading towards dividing assets and divorce.

This is what is killing me — the total rejection of all the things that I am in favour of someone else. It make me doubt everything about myself. Intuitively – I know that this is not about me. I know that it is about him and his “friend” lacking moral compasses and engaging in truly selfish and narcissistic behavior. I know that there is really nothing I could do. I also know that I cannot live another second in this insane reality that he has created.

But, I just feel so … I don’t know. Angry one minute, sad the next, then happy to be free of it, scared of what the future will hold for me and my daughter. The over riding feeling though – and the reason I am writing to you – is jealousy. I cannot stand that he is going to get a happy ending. I cannot cope with the OW being a part of my child’s life. I cannot believe that SHE WON! I am a good person, and I did not deserve this – and she gets MY LIFE! My family. It is literally eating me alive. The fact that I did right by my family and my spouse and that he ‘gets away with it’ is more than I can wrap my head around. Why should they get to be happy when I am so miserable?

I don’t really know what I am looking for with this. I guess just a way to navigate this emotional mess that I find myself smack dab in the center of. I feel so shamed and so raw and just so stupid. I believed him. Worse than that – I believed IN him and I feel so so lost in that.

Thank you,

Allyson in Canada

Dear Allyson,

Okay, she won. She beat you in the pick me dance for fantastic fucktard prizes. You got the set of luggage. She got the fucktard.

What did she win? Well, by your own description — a desperately needy, cruel, and unstable man. Yippee.

Oh no! But somehow in your imagination when they’re together it’s happy and wonderful. Somehow he magically had a character transplant with maturity injections and became someone capable of commitment and deep joy. That guy who walked out on his little daughter and you — a guy who abandoned his family and betrayed his friend — that’s Mr. Happy. That’s your prize there.

Perhaps you’re new here, but we call that a sparkly turd. All the sugar frosting and colored sprinkles cannot disguise a dog turd. It’s still a dog turd.

He can dress it up anyway he wants to — she’s his Twu Wuv, it was something bigger than them both (a huge turd castle?), the heart wants what the heart wants — he’s still a turd. And she’s a woman who won a turd.

It’s not about you, Allyson. I’m sorry — that’s at once liberating and infuriating. You didn’t matter to him. Your daughter didn’t matter. That does NOT mean you do not matter. It means he is not the benchmark of your worthiness — he’s someone more at home with fellow turds.

But you invested in him! Surely that must mean something! It means you got chumped. You extract the painful life lessons, and you move forward. You loved someone undeserving of your love. It was a one-way street. It doesn’t mean you were less than, because you’re not her. Thank GOD you’re not her! Do you want to be someone with less moral sense than God gave badgers? Do you want to be saddled with a narcissist? There is nothing here to feel jealous about, because she is not enviable. She just thinks she is.

And he wants you to be jealous, because that’s the pick me dance, and that provides kibbles to the cheaters. So please, I know it’s hard right now, but stop giving a shit about them. Start focusing on your new turd-free life. And stop worrying about Ms. Won-a-Turd being around your daughter. You’re the mommy, that love is primal, no one takes that away from you. This is your chance to model to your daughter how to be a badass. How you don’t tolerate disrespect. How you rebuild and reinvent yourself when life kicks you in the teeth. Do not model pick me dancing and turd envy.

You’re going to be fine, Allyson. You got the luggage set. YOU won.

This column ran previously. And somewhere in Canada, some OW idiot won a turd. I’m sure that worked out for her… 

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  • Hehehe, “turd envy” ? I love CL’s humour!

    Ditto what CL said – THANK GOD YOU’RE NOT HER! The “winner” of said turd. No need to be jealous of a turd collector. She didn’t win anything. Meanwhile, you got to free yourself of the turdboy, to go and gain a life. If you ask me, you were the winner in all this. Escaping from turdsville is something to be celebrated ? Congratulations!! ?? Hope you’re enjoying your skid-free new life ????????

    • I think this column wins for most turd usage ever. I guess I’m just driving home the point in my over-the-top way.

      Turd! Turd! Turd!

      • Gotta love the word TURD. You made me love it, CL. The frosting&sprinkled covered turd is my fave cartoon. Please make a coffee mug with this turd ?

      • Sometimes “turd turd turd” is the 2×4 we need. Glad you are on the mend.

          • Love it! But instead of recycling the turd, maybe just make the original into fertilizer for your new life to flourish from. Turd-tastic!

    • Hahaha…. “skid-free new life”.

      Okay, this is gross, but we chumps love to share. My XH always left skid marks in his underwear. I never understood why this was such an issue for him.

      Even my preteen and teen boys don’t have that problem. Dude… get yer shit together…. like, literally.

      That detail was completely overshadowed by the affair and divorce, and then it popped back into my memory just last week. I started laughing out loud to myself when I remembered!

      It’s not my problem anymore! She must find it so sexy in this catch of man she bagged from the office! Congratulations, Schmoopie, you won a walking, talking turd!

      • Mine wouldn’t dare leave skid marks as that might tarnish his perfect image. Of course he always did insist on doing the laundry (in spite of complaining about being stuck with that chore in MC). Hmmm, I wonder if he was hiding something…

      • Yeah mine too, in fact i bought him black underwear so i didn’t have to look at the skid marks.

      • OH MY GOD MY ExH DID THIS! He’d leave his skid marked boxers sunny-side up for me to pick off the floor. Who on earth would think it’s acceptable to leave shit stained boxers for his wife to clean up? An entitled, self-obsessed, utterly devoid, spoiled narcissist, that’s who. 9 years later and I still shudder when I think back on it. The literal crap these people put us through, honestly.

    • I so needed to read this today. I detest feeling replaced, or worse, as if I never existed. 35 years of marriage and 3 kids (who he has forgotten apparently) and he’s on his adventure with the slimmer, stupider, tattoo wearing “Christian” OW.

      Posting on FB about finding his the “love of his life”… the fear of course is that it was always ME! I’m the problem! (YET i also find myself ruminating about what my flaws really were/are. I mean, I’m not faultless in our marital problems and if I had known then what I know now…actually, if I had all the truth I probably would have filed sooner. Ugh again.)

      thank you CL. “Sparkly turd” – made me laugh.

      • I understand how you feel. My ex works in healthcare too and first showed his turdiness with a nurse. I was with my turd over 1/2 of my life. He has told stories to others that make me out to be the bad the bad guy. He has told me that I don’t know how to be respectful. I don’t respect him and his choices, the lies, the secret life, the emotional abuse. I am glad to be rid of him. He has now moved on to an even younger woman than the affair person that sparked the divorce she is 20 years younger than him and only 8 years older than our oldest son. The current youngling turd lover left her husband to be with the turd-master. She has a toddler child, I just think…boy he wasn’t always great with our own children as they grew up, I can’t imagine him with a step child. It does all suck. I have felt as you stated, I’m not perfect. But healthy people discuss what they need or what is wrong, they don’t lie for years and betray their family. My mess all started 5 years ago and my divorce has been final for 2 years. It can be still painful, I know I am forever changed by his betrayal. I am angry at times, but it helps me move forward. I wish I had divorced my turd-master a decade sooner or … well I do wish I had never married him. People tell me at times to get over it, to stop being angry, but honestly once I express my anger, get the feeling expelled I feel healthier and I take another step forward. I cannot take advice from anyone who has not had a partner betray them, they just don’t know what it is like. I want to scream at times…I am moving on…but as I move through the shitiness of his turdome I am pissed off and mad!

        • AimsBeck,
          You have every right to your feelings.
          You earned that right the first moment he cheated.
          If you feel better when you can lock it out that is great, but when you want to dwell on it, ponder over it, whatever YOU want or feel like doing, that is your right and no one can ever take that away from you.

          I am so sorry for all the hurt you and your children have suffered.

  • Well….my sparkly turd semi moved out of the house last night. We signed the divorce papers last Wednesday. I asked him on Friday when he was going to move out- said he didn’t know and poof 3 days later- he’s out. But…but…I don’t matter here…our 10 year old does. He never told her he was moving out, never called her to say goodnight. We’re waiting for the house to close any day now and the child he gave me full custody of will be moving out of state with me. Trust that they suck…I’m getting there- seven months out- being cheated on for a year and a half after nineteen years of being together- I’m getting there. At the beginning I used to think- how fair is it that this guy gets to walk off into the sunset and be happy after what he did to me? I’m at the point now where I know I will be the winner in the end. I get my beautiful 10 year old that he will soon abandon completely. I get to be at her wedding and hold her babies- he will be a distant memory.
    I allow myself to think of moments when he and the OW are together. I think of them sleeping together, going to movies and baseball games and beer festivals, cooking meals, watching movies etc. In my thoughts they are blissfully happy….I allow myself to think these things so I can get it all out of my system…so these thought don’t creep up on me when I least expect them. This has helped me tremendously. This and his actions. My Tuesday is coming.

    • Pret,
      YOU are mighty in CN’s eyes and in our hearts.
      We are proud of YOU.

      Off with the cheater into never never land with shitface to build a “turd castle”
      CL, “turd castle” what an image ???

    • Pret,
      While you’re imagining the dynamic between them, cooking meals, going to games…also don’t forget that somewhere in one or both of their reptilian brains, deep down and usually distracted…they know for sure what a couple of shits they actually are. One day, one of them will look at the other, and see the other as expendable. Guilt has a way of coming back to haunt, no matter how mich of a lurv fog sets in. Deep down, they both know the other is shallow. That cannot possibly constitute a secure, attached feeling necessary for true happiness.

      Give it time, and your cheater will be trying to edge back into your daughter’s life. He will one day emerge from the fog and realise what he might have missed / lost and will start the “re-write history” chapter. I’ve been through this. They try to characterise the end of the marriage as “fault on both sides” and “two sides to every story”. I would suggest, although not yet at this young age, your daughter might benefit from hearing the truth, spoken without bitterness, about how her father behaved and the choice he made. This way, when she enjoys the gaslighting he will visit on her some day, she will be armed with the facts.

      I only have to look at the princes Harry and Wills to see that as the years pass, and the truth comes out, that the OW eventually gets her proverbial arse kicking that she deserves, and the cheater gets discredited and outed for his ludicriously selfish behaviour.

      I would be willing to bet that you are in fact an attractive and good person. You just couldn’t be controlled by your cheater…you didn’t allow him to keep his little secret, his emotional affair, what he no doubt thought of as his entitlement. This makes you better than he deserves. You aren’t willing to kiss his butt like OW does. It simply does not matter what boring little things they do together…at the end of the day, they stil have to deal with their consciences, and no matter how distracting the sparkles and glamour, at their core they have self-loathing.

      • Thanks for the advice Marci. I am writing a letter to my daughter so that in the event anything happens to me….she will know the truth. I have pictures of him and the OW together strolling hand in hand as I was walking right behind them and they didn’t even know. The cheater never “bonded” with his child (something he blamed me for BTW) so even at 10 she realizes what a loser he is. She told me she never had “high expectations” of him so she’s not disappointed by him…needless to say I was stunned when she shared this with me. He’s already re-written history and laid the blame of 18 years at my feet….but I’m grateful for his feelings of “entitlement” because it allows me to see him for who he truly is…and that is someone who is incredibly ugly on the inside. Also, I can’t explain it but I have this feeling of “peace” because I know that he will “wake up” one day….but it’s too late now so one day won’t matter. The karma bus hit 2 days after we signed the divorce papers- he got into a car accident and the car he loved so much ( more than his kid and I) is beyond repair….can’t argue with “justice” like that.

        • Yes, isn’t that interesting. My now 16 year old daughter said the same. (She was 14 at the time of the announcement.) (Socionark never (like since birth) seemed to care about her because she’s a girl perhaps? And his personality profile is women are good for screwing or they are just taking up oxygen. He is a bizarre combination of serial cheating womanizer and chauvinist at the same time.) The interesting thing is that lack of bonding made the divorce extremely easier on my daughter. She told me she’d never been happier as we moved from our beautiful family home in the lovely neighborhood into our crappy rental. She doesn’t hide out in her room anymore, she said friendships are easier at school because she feels happier…) My son, who had a semi-relationship with his father (because he’s an accomplished BOY and his father could brag about him for his own sick self-ego-glorifying) had a harder time even though he was 3 years older.

          • This chain of posts really resonates. My daughter started crying last night after I told her about the counseling I had arranged for the children as part of the divorce proceedings. I held her and asked why she was crying and she said I just hate this whole divorce thing. I was actually strong and able to empathize without crying and becoming outwardly emotional. I told her I understood and hated it too. I told her that I was sorry but I could not fix it and neither could she. This is a disappointment in life that we just have to accept. She stopped crying and the evening went on normally. Seemed like a big step in our house.

            I agree that there is a boy, girl difference. The girls have just detached from stbx while the boys are trying to maintain a relationship minus the youngest. But I see that relationship as more of buddies than father, son because of his arrested development. I just hope they will pass him.

            • I strive to be strong for my daughter like you. It’s been 15 months and I’m still in RAGE — rage that he took so much from me for so long. Rage that he’s got his career, his girlfriend, his mountain home (that he bought with his mom’s inheritance and I was stupid enough to sign the quitclaim because he was also pissed off that I never co-mingled my pre-marriage separate property.

              This man had nothing when we met — he was straight out of college. He leveraged my career to launch his. My money to build our assets. My career to care for our daughter while he travelled and had affair after affair.

              Now he thinks he’s found “the one.” Truth is, she’s his next victim. He likes successful women and she makes the big bucks.

              But it still hurts. They both travel constantly for work, so the thrill is still there. He flies to see her once a month. She flies to see him once a month. I’m sure they Facetime fuck. Whatever. She only sees her young children two weekends a month. What a woman!

              Wow, did I digress! My 15yo daughter needs to see me strong. My emotions are so close to the surface that any trigger brings tears to my eyes, which she can’t deal with.

              Daughter and I finally got into it the other night. She admitted she misses her father. It’s difficult for her to process this turd is in fact her father — the only one she has and the only male role model in her life. Just as she’s on the brink of dating. How lovely!

              All my nurturing and attention cannot protect her from this shithead of a father. A man — no a boy — who took great pains to project himself as a devoted husband and father. This shit sandwich is hard to swallow, for sure. Ugh.

          • Mine also failed to bond with his daughters. He was never very interested in them. Now they are 17 & 20 and my biggest cheerleaders to leave him.
            He recently said to me, “I always thought of them (our daughters) as yours”. WTF? they are his flesh and blood, he was in the delivery room when they came into this world and he has lived with them every day of their lives. But he feels very little for them or anyone else.

        • Pret, you – like me – are excessively lucky to have daughters with such intuition. Mine was 13 when I found everything out, and has always been even more emotionally mature than her d-bag DNA donor. Because of this, we’ve spoken openly about EVERYTHING, and have an unbreakable trust relationship. It’s what helped her in front of lawyers, counselors and therapists to get across the point that she refused to see him.

          Luckily, the d-bag in my situation went to jail for a violent offense related to the married bitch he abandoned us for (Kharma much?), and so he lost shared custody, and we have a long-standing protective order against him while he serves out a TEN YEAR probation sentence. She hasn’t seen him since she was 15.

          She starts her senior year in high school this month, and she’s told me that she wants to legally change her last name to my madien name after she finishes high school. I took back my madien name during the divorce for my own psychological health. She now sees the benefit and knows he’s a loser who abandoned us and that name is too much of a weight on her. This amazing girl: a 4.2 GPA athlete who plays four instruments. Yeah – such a tough life with stability and love around you for 23 years (since high school). D-bag.

          I just can’t tell you how blessed you and your daughter are to have each other, to be able to move forward in your lives free of that asswipe, and make all your memories your OWN, custody-hassle free. Just one year of it for me and my girl was enough to make us go mad. I’m truly happy for you not having to deal with that f-tard. Seriously. The more you read about the hell most shared custody families go through, the more you’ll see how all this hell was worth it to break free, and if given the choice, you’d do it again to rid yourself of that asshat. (((Hugs)))

          • Thank you guys for your kind words…I was able to get through the day because of you all. I will admit, it was rough when I woke up and realized he never came home and didn’t “bother” to tell his daughter and I that he had moved out…but I cheered myself up by depositing the very first child support/ spousal maintenance check…it must have truly killed him to write that check…get used to it asshole. Thank you chump nation!!!!

            • One thing about that child support. You mentioned depositiong a check. If you were being Chumpy like I was, I didn’t think there was a “need” to do the formal paperwork to have his wages garnished, and I trusted (again) that a f-ing cheater/liar/douchebag was going to make good on his word. What the f was I thinking?!

              After 2 months he stopped paying. After that, he stopped paying his court ordered payments on the credit cards and loans that were divided. Guess who it ALL fell on when that happened? Yep – me. I was done with that f-tard and filed to have support garnished.

              I want to encourage you to get with your lawyer to have that official DHS paperwork filed in the courthouse to have his wages garnished. It’s no hassle once it’s done, and is direct-deposited to your checking account. No more begging, having to see or talk to him, bounced checks, waiting, bullshit excuses, etc. and I promise, any douchebag who walks away from his/her children literally could care less if said children are being financially cared for.

              Then, when my support payments stopped AFTER they were garnished, I called the DHS rep, and it was resolved within that same week with his employer, and things were back on schedule, only he had to pay what he missed to me WITH INTEREST! LOL! Not kidding.

              I’m in the final 8 months before mine turns 18; you have 8 more years of this and live out-of-state from him. Seriously – file to garnish wages.

              • Kibble Free Mighty Me- we spent about 15 hours in mediation- everything is in the paperwork. The first payment was by check because the asswipe was trying to delay starting the payments. Starting next month, it’s all being deducted from his paycheck automatically and it’s all in the divorce decree. After being played for a fool for a year and a half I don’t trust this guy to wheel my garbage to the street! And I will not hesitate to contact DHS the day it doesn’t appear. No more chump me. You’re right- a guy who could lie and cheat on me for over 600 days is worst than an animal. I will never trust him again. I also made it absolutely clear to him that I want nothing, nothing to do with him Don’t call me, don’t text me and don’t show up on my doorstep. His daughter is ten, she’s smart enough to tell him about her life…he doesn’t need to talk to me. It was also arranged that he could speak with the school if he suddenly became “concerned” about her academics. When he visits her in Florida, I told my mom to open the door, hug her granddaughter goodbye, wish her a good day and ignore the piece of shit as though he doesn’t exist. He wanted to be with his “soulmate” because with her it’s “effortless” ….have at it asshole!

    • Pret – my X texted my teenage stepchildren while they were at school… “I’m leaving ICSTMC. We’re moving out on Friday.” He gave them 3 days notice, by text. I was in their lives for 11 years.

      If he gave you full custody, consider it a blessing. I would love to not have to co-parent with this fuckwit.

    • Pret, I am an older woman now. I’ve been cheated on so many times in my past, had my heart broken by my daughter’s father, as he wooed a nursing student while I recovered in the hospital after giving birth to his child.

      I’ve been married now for twenty years and change to my second husband. It is not a great marriage; there is no infidelity at play, but that’s not the only thing that can make for an unhappy relationship. In this case, it’s largely his drinking, but there are other issues, too. Some his, some mine.

      But anyway, what I’ve discovered over the years, is that it’s our children who are the constant, and who provide so much of life’s joy to those of us who have them. My three are all young adults now, and the payoff has begun to arrive. It’s so gratifying to see them come into their own, find success in school and career, and find their life partners. It hasn’t been smooth sailing for any of us, but, we are, by and large, very happy people who enjoy one another’s company immensely!

      And, you will get that with your daughter as her dad will likely miss out. That there is the true prize. I’m a little envious, in a good way, that you still have so many years of hands-on mothering left to go.

      Yes, your Tuesday is right around the bend, and you will awaken to see your daughter’s beautiful face on that fine day!

    • The part that hit me right in the gut was that he didn’t bother to call to say goodnight. When I busted my ex GF in bed with her chiropractor I was immediately expelled from her and her 4 yr old daughter’s life. She wasn’t my child, but I was the Daddy in the house that she had known for the past 1.5 years. We had bonded and were very close, just to be ripped apart. I learned later that he moved in with them a week after I was gone. It’s been a painful road and I have had to enforce strict no contact to protect myself from the anguish of being put through the pick me dance, and for her little girl’s sake. Anyway, my point is that your ex is missing a huge opportunity right now, one that many of us never get. Stay strong. I’m rooting for you. Welcome to FL. Let’s start a club!

    • Pret–when you gussy up their life, and imagine them living the life of Reilly at the expense of you and your family, it is maddening. I assure you the day-to-day reality is very different. People who start long-term affairs lack compassion. Not only for you, but for their affair partners, too.

      My X is living the Jet Set life, with new 20-year younger GF/AP. He bought a new mod house overlooking the water, decorated to magazine-style level. The two of them fly all over the world, staying in top hotels, spend holidays in resorts, eat at fancy restaurants, attend dinner parties with sparkling conversation (well, probably not entirely, since the AP has the personality of a turnip). And yet….last I heard, AP was about to go on anti-depressants as the realization that she had left her sweet husband for my X–a critical, narcissistic asshole–began to sink in.

      I, on the other hand, made sure I filled my life with the things I value–people of high integrity, time with my daughters, the love of 4 dogs. Thus, despite a string of unfortunate events (mostly concerning house repair after house repair, single parenting a surly teen), I win. And so will you–each week, make sure you take steps to build a life of integrity, engage in self-care, and jumpstart all those hobbies & activities you probably gave up while married. You won, even if you won’t be convinced for another half-year.

      • The new perky gf/ap won’t be happy when the money runs dry. There aren’t enough antideprssants to fuel that love when the money runs dry. That plug will be pulled, and she will run like the wind. Protect yourself, Tempest. because you will suddenly look like a future to that shit for brains man.

      • Tempest,
        Turd castles only last for so long and up to the time that they actually crumble, there sure is a lot of stink going on.
        Meanwhile YOU are a woman of integrity. You have moved on. Life with your precious daughters and your loyal dogs has not been easy, but, your life is now filled with love and respect, loyalty, hope and peace are present in your home now. They live in your heart and in your soul.
        “Whatshisname” killed any right to ever dwell in such a place with you. YOU are so far above him.
        He will have to find another sheshell to coax into his turd castle.

        Survivor, there is no worry if Tempest’s ex ever thinks there is room in her heart and in her home ever for him.
        The deadbolts to both her home and to her heart are forever secure. He has secured them himself by who he has proven himself to be – a turd!
        Sometimes it just comes down to that. Cheaters are turds and we have to step over them to keep the shit out of our shoe tracks!
        So sad, his sorry loss. What was his name anyway!!

  • Pret…You matter! There is honestly something so messed up that damages their brain when they walk out. You are a good mom and parent! You will be there for her! I’m so sorry!

    • Thank you SH. I matter more than anything now…as CL says…I am the sane parent who stayed. What does the OW win? A guy who cheated on his wife and child for a year and a half? A guy who cheated on me two more times after I tried to make the marriage work? A guy who- if I didn’t take it upon myself to go catch him cheating would probably still be cheating on me? But more importantly- she won a guy who thinks nothing of abandoning his own child- you don’t get more messed up than that. The OW can have her prize…I will walk my daughter down the aisle…hope you have a beer festival to go to that day asshole.

      • I promise you that, as the years go by, you are going to begin to recognize just how unhappy the two of them are. Now, I know some people are going to say but they have the nice cars, the nice vacations, they nice stuff, they “look” so happy together. It’s a a lie.

        They are still stuck with being the narcissistic, self-absorbed assholes they have always been. What they pretend to be is irrelevant, it’s all for show. Disordered people live disordered lives. Period. Eventually, the consequences of their decisions catch up to them. Call it karma, call it life, but what you do comes back to you. Always.

        Now, bad things happen to good people, as the good rabbi likes to say. That, too, is part of the human experience. It is how we deal with those bad things that is the true measure of who we are as decent human beings. Good people recognize this fact of life, and use those experiences to become better people themselves. Narcissists have no ability to engage in self-reflection.

        OW has “won” exactly nothing, except a lying cheater. The old adage,”If he’ll cheat with you, he’ll cheat on you,” was coined for a reason. She’s just be given the exploding Pinto. It may take awhile for the flames to begin shooting out of the back, but they eventually will. And no, you may never see them implode.They may always put on a show about how wonderful everything is in their life. It is part of the great deception; they are always “winning”, even as the Titanic sinks below the waves. Do not be fooled.

        You got the real price, because you are getting your precious daughter away from those two. Many people never have that opportunity. At some point in the future, you are going to look in that proverbial rear view mirror and realize that the only person who should be jealous is the OW-of you and your new, wonderful, badass life. I wish you the best of everything-peace, love, and joy, in your journey to meh and beyond.

        • Thanks Violet! How ironic you should use the term “rearview” His sister’s advice to me was ” I suggest you put my little brother behind you. You and and my niece get in your car to Florida and don’t look in the rearview mirror, just keep going!”. I’m taking her up on her advice.

          • You’ll be amazed at how healing regular views of palm trees and hibiscus flowers can be!

          • You know, we can use the word turd, or piece of shit, or asshole, or idiot but the one word that describes people who abandon their children is useless. They are useless human beings taking up oxygen. If I could I would make every single one of them disappear off the planet. How dare they do this! Useless protoplasm. Useless waste of space!

            • Bravo Violet – very well said!

              ‘The only person who should be jealous is the OW’.

      • Pret – hang in there! You are mighty and are an amazing Mom!!! You guys will be much better off w/o this asshole!!! Sending lots of hugs

  • Wow I could have written this. I’m sure thousand of us here chump-nationers have felt all those same thoughts, and had those same feelings. But thousands of us all, with the help of CN reframed our shit sandwiches to some turd-free meals and a skid free life.

    At the time when someone else injected her nasty self into my life with my husband, I felt like I lost and she won. THAT SUCKED. But hey, who wants to be her. Luckily I got DH to agree to not introduce new partners with the kids for a year, and by the time that year was up she had moved on to her next victim, broke up an 18 month old marriage, and who knows what damage that whore shaped tornado has done since. Probably provided more members for this site.

    But, out of the millions of pieces that was left of me, my broke confidence, dented self worth, and smashed life, a new me emerged. Not without a thousand tears (mine and my kids) and some steep and rocky roads. The road to meh is a tough one, but you’ll get there, a stronger you will build a new life.

    Be kick ass and mighty.

    • “That does NOT mean you do not matter. It means he is not the benchmark of your worthiness — he’s someone more at home with fellow turds.”

      Detaching required grieving and facing the pain. It took time to detach and regain my identity. One of the biggest stumbling blocks was getting my power back. It was tortureous.

      Rebuilding self worth required taking a long hard look at what I escaped. Hell, summarized it nicely. A fucking living hell with a lying cheating asshole scumbag turd. He doesn’t get to define my worth; I do.

      Comparing ourselves to the OW is normal when the disbelief is all consuming. Denial is powerful. And the cheater/coward is all too willing to let her take the rap for HIS actions.

      Letting that shit go is a relief. Freedom rocks. Meh gave me a future.

    • You are mighty! I am a new chump and I am praying my STBX breaks up with his awful AP before my son meets her!!!! She is a supposedly reformed drug addicted prostitute who is dumb and illiterate. She still has a current escort ad up with half naked pictures of her. She is 12 years younger than us and dresses like a 16 yo whore. Great role model for our 8 yo son! Ugh!!!! Way to affair way down!!!!!

      • Can you get a copy of the ad? You can have your lawyer use it to deny custody or insist on supervised visitation. Prostitution is generally illegal (not sure where you are) that is not an environment the courts will want a child to be in.

        • Hi!!! Yes I printed the ad and used it with my lawyer in mediation. It helped me keep her away for a bit but not sure how long it will work especially if he marries her.

  • I can’t tell you how much hearing, “don’t fight over a turd” has meant to me the last couple of years. Once it sunk in, it made perfect sense. I can’t believe how many hours I spent crying over that ridiculous piece of shit. Being able to stand back and see my ex for who he really is is all I need to move forward.

  • I needed this one today. I am feeling exactly the same way. Four years later they are still together and I am still alone. I don’t even feel like I know how to have a relationship anymore. The thought scares the shit out of me. I feel like I am ruined and destined to be alone.

    • I didn’t want to jump back in either. I have teenagers that have been through enough mayhem in their life. My life is enough right now. You are not a narc so you don’t have to find any ole pulse to fill that void. I bet under the facade is a whole bunch of nothing for them. The sparkly has worn off and it’s a matter of time. But don’t think about the sugar coated turds. Leave them out in the yard where they belong.

    • Stacy…you are not ruined…you are strong. They may be together four years later but you don’t know what shit goes on in their lives. He’s probably cheating on her! Think back to how crappy you felt when you found out he cheated on you…think back to all the snooping you had to do…do you still want to live like that? Do you still want to be with someone who thought so little of you that he shit all over you? Please know that that is no way to live…being alone sucks…I’ll be there in my new life soon.. but I don’t want to be with someone who doesn’t want me. I don’t want to be driving home from work with my child in the back seat and tears streaming down my face so much I could barely see where I was driving because I was wondering if he was with her right then and there…my heart ready to rip out if my chest because the pain was so intense…no Stacy….that’s no way to live…push him out of your mind and do YOU.

      • Stacy, its true what Pret wrote.

        During my sleuthing phase immediately post DDay, I discovered the MOW had been cheating on her true love pretty much the entire decade of their romance, the asshat who is the father of my kids.

        With the Schadenfreude I gleefully felt at the time, I vomited this nugget of info at my turd. His reaction was priceless. Very petty of me, yet also very delightful.

        Trust what they do to you, they most certainly will do to each other. Pay no attention to the sparkles they attempt to coat on surface. You already know it’s BS because it IS BS.

      • Stacy –

        Thank you for your story. I am right there with you. The POSH officially left me when our daughter was 2 weeks old. I am very jealous because I did not sign up to be a single mom. Let alone from the beginning! I am a successful educated woman, I graduated college, I got a job, I got married, bought a house then had a baby. This sounds bad but where I come from I’m one of the few girls that went to school and didn’t get pregnant in highschool. And now I’m in the same boat my friends were in highschool. Raising a baby alone asking my parents for help. Yet he get to run off into the sunset with a girl 10 years younger than him and gets to start all over. I feel like who will ever want me again?

        Pret –
        Thank you for comments. I try to remember all the horrible things he has done and said to both me and my daughter, like “if yall died tonight it would make things so much easier” or “sorry honey your mom is a C**T” or “I’m leaving because you pee too much at night. once the baby is here i’ll come back and maybe you can control your bladder” or “i never wanted a baby with you because you don’t know how to be a good wife so how could you ever be a good mom”. He was never verbally abusive until the OW came around. However, there were signs that he was emotionally abusive that I always spackled. Now looking back, I have definately been verbally abused which is why I question “who could ever want me?”. I have made the choice to be alone than to have my daughter around that type of man. I would rather cry and be sad after she goes to bed when I am in the house alone, than cry and be sad in front of her because of him.

        I also try to tell myself is this jackass did not become a white horse for the OW. A jackass is a jackass. I can only imagine some of the nasty things he has said to her. Yes she won. ONE HELL OF A TURD.

        • I remember getting my hair cut at the salon in the midst of my divorce, trying not to sob and saying to the guy who’d cut my hair (and RonBurgundy’s) for 5 years, “But who would want to be with someone who has 3 little kids?” He said, ” Someone special. And why would you want ANYONE who wasn’t special? ” And he was right.

        • IIWII- he sounds like the biggest asshole in the world!!! I am so sorry!!! You and your daughter deserve so much better and you are much better off w/o him!!!! Some days are going to be sad and hard but keep reminding yourself how much he sucks and how mighty you are!!! Sending hugs

        • Thank you, IIWII. I have a similar story – did all of the things you’re supposed to do: college educated, great career, got married, bought a house, and had a baby. Three weeks postpartum he tells me he’s not in love with me anymore after I found pictures of him with the OW. Of course the gas lighting and the rewriting of history started and lasted for another 3 months after DDay. Like you I did not sign up to be a single mom. I’m just so angry. I just found out 2 weeks ago that my STBX got the OW pregnant right before I gave birth to our daughter. So there he goes with the OW getting to have the family that I wanted. Fucking assholes. I can’t wait until my Tuesday.

          • YouCantMakeThisShitUp – I don’t know how our picker got so screwed up. Its crazy how similar our stories probably are. He came home when we brought the baby home. But all he did was yell at me. Finally on Valentines day he decided that he should leave because it wasn’t good for the baby. Yea, i’m sure it was for the baby not the OW who wanted her Turd on Valentines day. He came back 3 days later and immediately cussed me out for breastfeeding because I was probably feeding her too much and that is why she threw up on him. I told him “maybe 3 days wasn’t long enough for you to be gone” he gave the baby back to me and walked out. That was probably one of the best feelings I have ever had. A sense of peace came over me at that moment and I realized it was just me and her.

            We are better off without them. We get to raise our daughters how WE want. We are mighty. I thank the fucktard for two things: for giving me my daughter and for leaving.

            • It has to be so painful to be discarded on what should be such a joyous occasion. I am really sorry. Your sweet baby and you deserve so much more. What a complete loser he is. What a complete loser OW is. After you are away from this crap for a while, you really do start to see how horrendous both of their behaviors are. Not that you don’t initially, but the pain makes the lunacy of it all hard to really see. I could never get myself involved with a married man, let alone one who has a newborn. Once you step back and think about the lack of character on both their parts, you hope they implode into a million pieces while you move on to a better life.

              I took my ex back when the kids were 2 & 4 y.o. because I wanted to keep my family intact. They don’t change. What ever has made them this way doesn’t change. Get out and away. Never look back.

    • Stacy, I am divorced almost 6 years and ex moved back to the States with latest Schmoopie. He can’t be on his own and I would rather be alone than in bad company. She is his age, so a couple of years younger than me. I have gone through the menopause and put on 40 lb. She is pretty and hasn’t gained weight (so far). My son got married here in France last week and I felt like a sweaty, over-stuffed sausage in my suit – she looked pretty but I instantly felt like she had – how do I saw this politely – behaved like she had a poker up her arse! I was polite and gave her the benefit of the doubt, and also spoke politely to my ex, as did my family.

      But get this, on Sunday my other son came over to my house to do some paperwork for his next school year. I don’t ask any questions but he started telling me how daddy was with a real nag, she is really weird, poor daddy and so on (all the while I’m stifling the biggest grin). He met her 2 years ago when my ex was still in France and son thought she was ok, but now he says she never let up nagging. She left the wedding at 10.30 and my ex was furious with her for being so rude. She drove the bride-to-be nuts for 6 months asking what she should wear, what is Attie going to wear (“anything I can get both tits into at the same time frankly”). The bride’s mom is of Korean origin and the bride wanted her to wear traditional Korean dress, so new Schmoopie decided that she would also wear traditional Korean dress!!! Say what!!!! It’s like wearing a kilt to your wedding when you’re not Scottish!!!

      My ex’ family in the States have an annual pig roast and hay ride on one of their farms. Turns out Schmoopie didn’t get along with most of the women there – I got on with all of them. Then she finally figured it out – turns out she was too pretty and obviously intimidated them! I nearly peed myself laughing. I am alone but not lonely and nor should you be. When/if the right person comes along it will be a blessing, not a necessity. Don’t envy what “they have” – look what my ex got – hen-pecked and half to death and has his balls locked up in a mason jar every night. Chin up my dear!

      • Attie,
        I love your post.

        YOU, Attie are a vibrant, REAL woman.
        I am in awe of you!

        Piss on their turd castle!
        ( sounds like they are doing a pretty good job of doing that themselves)

      • Attie–I’m so glad to hear the wedding and subsidiary events went well for you (and did not go well for OW. ha!)!!

    • Stacy you’re not alone, I’m 4 years post-separation, ex is still married to OW, and I’m not in a relationship nor likely to be. In between work and teens who are with me all the time, I have no time to date anyway and my love of exercise gear, ponytails and no makeup wouldn’t serve me well. 🙂 . But I can relate to that secret fear of being ruined, it’s very hard to contemplate trusting ever again.

      • Here is a belief I have that gives me doubt…(so maybe it’s not a “belief” yet).

        Dating again has obvious appeal, as I enjoyed parts of being married, a lot. But getting through the “Wait, Who are you?” part is intimidating as is sex with someone other than my h of 35 years. I like sex, but hey, there are stretch marks that h made me painfully self conscious about. God, I’m smh.

        OTOH, I’m not all that afraid of being hurt again. Dare I say this?? I just cannot imagine being this heartbroken again. I feel an armor is growing and it’s not cold so much as protective and aware. Like there could not be another man who could hurt me like the DOCTOR has…

        I don’t think I can be an eternal chump, and there is safety in that. Am I missing something?

    • Stacy, I know how you feel. I am 3 years out of a divorce and I wonder how I could have picked out so poorly. When we met and 21/2 years married everyone thought I was the luckiest girl in the world. he was a really good guy and everyone loved him. so sweet, kind and smart.
      When I see all he’s done, I think it is mental illness. His sweet good guy looks are gone and I think he is close to being an alcoholic.
      The problem I have is I feel I’m part of his mess and I wasn’t. strange how being in a marriage with someone and its two marriages. the surface and the hidden. I feel dirty to have been with him now and I too wonder if I will be alone forever. I haven t dated, didn’t want to. wondering if I did would he be worse than husband. They really rob you of life and good people. He made me feel ugly. worthless. and I was embarrassed about the whole divorce. he told my children and anyone who would listen, his new g/f’s that I left a perfectly good marriage and that I had had many affairs. None that is true.
      I know what is wrong with me is I felt so dirty after learning what all he had done. It’s them, not us who are worthless.

      • beetie, you must forget the noisy trash talk. You married a man who seemed just right, but lied about who he was. Everyone here made that mistake, so be sure he is the issue. You need not feel dirty; you did nothing wrong. You are not ugly or worthless. Take care of yourself, and pledge never to settle again. The stronger you become in recovery from that, the more attractive you will be, so be sure to prepare yourself to demand higher standards in the future. Good luck to you.

    • Stacy

      I felt the same way and shifted my focus to myself this summer.

      I joined a small group of women at an Adult Children of Alcoholics (Dysfuctional family) weekly meeting. It’s amazing and has given me strength. In a few short weeks I’ve attended a ‘pot luck’ dinner and joined them for lunch. I look forward to attending. They hug me.

      The other thing that gave me a push is listening to Brene Brown Ted talks on vulnerability. She’s so uplifting and my therapist recommended her book, Rising Strong.

      • I just put a hold on that book at the library based on your advice. I am a new chump filing for divorce and have been reading a ton. Thank you!

      • Yes!!! I LOVE Brene Brown, she gave me so many insights. her TED talk on vulnerability and shame was such a huge help to me! Lots of lightbulbs went on as I watched it…

  • Thank you! I needed this article. It came around a perfect time. My ex told me last weekend, that he and his new fiancé (we are not even divorced yet, we are finishing up our required 1 year separation) are moving in together this weekend. I needed this article to remind me that he is a turd and she won a turd. Simple as that!
    Again thank you!

  • I know I felt this way at first, jealous of what I learned was love bombing. I remember it well, but then someone here taught me to remember what followed the love bombing and I accepted that is what The Flying Whore is in for.

    Hopefully we all move on and get over that feeling of loss and any feelings of jealousy. Personally I have moved on to being disappointed that The Flying Whore did not leave her rich husband for Narkles the Clown. To me, the two of them together, that’s justice and karma rolled into one, not to mention a good show worthy of a glass of wine and some popcorn.

  • We wanted them to be someone they couldn’t be. I think, at least for me, this is partly why it’s hard to let go. And in our minds, we make belief that all we aspired them to be, they are doing with the other.

    I think that’s just a way I continue to beat myself up. It’s the voice inside me that says “their leaving was my fault; I must have done something wrong…why couldn’t I accept his flaws even though his flaws were destroying me”.

  • “….he’s someone more at home with fellow turds.”

    And this takes me back to the quote, “When someone shows you who they are the first time, believe them!”

    My ex-husbands mask dropped the first time less than one year after I moved 650 miles away from my family to be with him — I was his “soulmate, woman of his dreams, perfect woman for him, etc” (we didn’t live together until we got married). He went from attentive and nice guy boyfriend into a total cold, mean jerk overnight when he started his first big job out of college. He went for out-of-town training for two weeks with his newly hired work colleagues. This is when he turned into a jerk. I remember him saying to me, “I have finally found my people!” Or I’ll reword it. “I have finally found turds like me!” I would not be the least bit surprised that he cheated on me during that time, because he acted mean and cold and that’s how he acts when he’s cheating! It was so bad, I was ready to move back to my home state, but his mommy talked me out of it! I was a great girlfriend and she could see my worth (and future kibbles for her if we got married, because I was already showing chumpy behavior).

    So I stayed and it got better (forgive, spackle!). Fast forward over lots of other narc behavior and first child, a son (competition for the narc! — he was jealous of our son!) was born. Not sure exactly when it started, but I was pregnant with second child and realized Mr. Cold and Mean was back. Husband started bowling, smoking and drinking a lot. Also gone a lot! I was close to 100% convinced he was having an affair (he still denies it to this day). He also went so far to say to me unemotionally, “You and the kids will be fine financially without me.” I cried every single day of that pregnancy and months afterwards. Husband found his turd people again!

    I’m sure there have been lotsa turds all over the place throughout our marriage. He went so far to tell me post-discard, “I gave up Mary for you. I gave up Anne for you. I gave up Sally for you.” Turd, turd, turd. Yeah, he “gave up” all these turds for me while we were married. How kind of him.

    And now he is the ultimate “nice guy” turd! He’s a Jesus Cheater Turd. He’s been dating and sleeping with the whore I caught him out on a date with ever since I moved out with the kids. He kept her in the closet for over a year and then one day he said to our kids, “This is my girlfriend, Tim Horton’s Coffee Snatch.” Pretending that they’ve only been together a short time even though it was closer to two years. And the Jesus Cheater Turd and his whore girlfriend are couple friends with two other turds. A couple that cheated on their spouses with each other. The Jesus Cheater Turd goes to church each Sunday and holds up his hands and “worships the Lord” (never did that once the entire time we went to church together — it’s all for show!), but then goes home and commits adulterery and is bff’s with his whore and two other adulterers. He’s finally with his turds!

    I’m sure Tim Horton’s Coffee Snatch thinks she won some great prize with my ex. She has NO CLUE who he is and what’s he done to me. No self-respecting woman would want a man who cheated on his wife when she was pregnant. But she doesn’t know that. And if I would try to tell her, she wouldn’t believe me because I’m the “bitter, angry, crazy ex-wife.” I figure they both deserve each other. They are each others karma. My ex had a great wife who would have done anything to make him happy. He now has a woman who had no problem going out on secret coffee dates while she was married with a my ex-husband. And the ink was barely dry on her divorce papers and she happily accepted his offer to take their morning coffee dates to the next level — late night drinks date and probably some fun in the car as they got kicked out of the bar at midnight and he didn’t get home until 1:30. And she has a pathological lying, predator of women and serial cheater. They deserve each other. Two turds in twu luv. The perfect match. There’s nothing to be jealous of. She’s a woman who dated and slept with a married man. I’m way better than her. Even if she didn’t do any of that stuff, she still doesn’t have a prize boyfriend. I know who is truly is and I would not touch him again if my life depended on it.

    • I too was jealous at 1st of the 19 year old OW/girl. Now I see them both for what they are. I agree no self respecting women would want a man who cheated on his wife when she was pregnant. Neither my cheater or the other women have any self respect or any respect for me or my children. They are welcome to each other. I would rather be a single women/ mother for the rest of my life than be either of them.

      • The men who cheat when their wives are pregnant (or wives who cheat while pregnant) are bottom-of-the-barrel, and their APs are right next to them. Good riddance.

        • Absolutely! My ex-husband was having some type of an affair with a co-worker from a former employer. Everyone at his job knew I was pregnant (people in his office area and management), so his ho-worker knew I was pregnant too. What should have been the happiest time of my life, was one of the worst years of my life. We had a beautiful one-year old son and another baby on the way. I really was trying hard to make a happy home environment for our family. House clean, son well taken care of, husband taken care of, tried to make everything nice for our family, but our little family was no competition for something new and sparkly at work. One month after our daughter was born, he got fired from his job. He was emotionless to me about it. All he said was that they were “restructuring the department.” The next day I caught him on the phone CRYING to a female co-worker about getting fired. I’m sure it was his AP. I questioned him about why he was crying to her and not talking to me about it. He said he was “trying to be strong for me.” BS! He lost his work AP and now I realize he probably got fired from his job, because he was the top person in the finance department and I bet someone caught on that he was having an affair with someone at work. Things never seemed right about that whole firing and it took me 14 years to connect the dots. Yep! Good riddance to my ex-cheater and good riddance to all his AP’s!

        • I wish that was the consensus of other people. I met with a friend today who was talking about everyone making mistakes. I said it wasn’t a mistake it was a choice or choices he made. Then she said we all have make bad choices and then proceeded to talk about forgiving but not forgetting. This friend is a Christian as am I that is why she is talking about forgiveness. She has herself been divorce 3 times but none of them where for cheating. She has also been taking to STBX on Facebook and asking him how his new relationship is and saying congratulations to him about the birth of our child. She said she meant it as tounge in cheek but to me it’s justifying his actions. Am I wrong to be a bit pissed off about this?

          • My first husband was an abusive asshole who threatened to kill me in front of our 5 kids and split my head open. (cheater was the 2nd husband)

            My pastor’s wife was “counseling” me about a week after telling me that marriage was so hard, but that God wanted me to trust Him to heal my marriage….or some shit….I can’t remember much and was pretty much hearing “blah blah blah” and to the voice in my head screaming, FUCK THAT SHIT….

            She was doing this in the sanctuary and I swear that Jesus saved me from telling her to fuck off right there in front of the cross, because all the kids burst through the doors from youth group, having been dismissed from their classes. I was suddenly less captive and got away from her.

            I left that church not long after, when they refused to tell my husband that he wasn’t welcome there when I was going there.

            • Wow I think you were definitely right to leave the church. It is truely awful when they stick up for cheaters and abusers. My church have been good to me overall, STBX hasn’t been back but I hope they would have something to say to him if he tried to. The vicar did say something along the lines of “Can’t you see how easy it would be to fall for and give into the intentions of a young coworker.” He was saying that anyone could cheat and you could see how it could happen. I just said I would never do that as I my dad did it to my mum and so I know how I affects people. He said all this before I found CL. If we had the same conversation now I would be saying a lot more than that.

          • No you’re not wrong. That is NOT a friend. That person for all her “Christian” values is a moral-less waste of your energy. I would be politely detaching from that. Fence sitters disgust me and they should grow a backbone.
            Finally, what the hell kind of relationship advice can you ever take seriously from someone three times divorced? Seriously?
            Sorry mate, but this is a time in your life where you can afford to rid yourself of any and all dead weight and we chumps can spackle like shit over ANY person’s shortcomings, not just our intimate partners.
            That person is not a safe bet for you. Be mighty and kick her to the kerb too.

            • I completely agree with ZHUCHI–the woman is not your friend, and she is hardly one to be taking relationship advice from. And fuck forgiveness.

            • She has always been someone I could talk to so I was a bit shocked when she said all this. I guess it is because she just doesn’t understand the pain of infidelity. I also think she still sees him as the person he was before, except for the mistake making. I don’t think she condones what he did, she said that he popped up on Facebook and she couldn’t help but ask him about his new relationship. She did mock his “I didn’t mean to fall in love with my best friend” comment. I just think she doesn’t understand the impact of all the lies, blame shifting and all the other stuff that comes from this horrible experience.

          • She is not a friend! Some people have a harder time understanding the pain that we go through with affairs but she is taking it to a whole other level! I would not be friends with her! Surround yourself with your true support network and cut her off!

          • My best friend repeated what one of RonBurgundy’s coworker’s spouses said about the InternWhore, “It’s impossible not to like InternWhore.” I said, ” Gee, I find it hard to like someone who sleeps with a married man who has three small children. But that’s just me. ” Sometimes it’s true that the suckiness of the ex seems to infect everyone they come in contact with. But it does get better.

          • Not at all, I would be upset and want to distance myself from someone who congratulated my cheating ex on their new life

          • Pregnant Chump,
            I don’t know if it is all about the words “forgetting”, “forgiving”, they are only words, 2 words that don’t mean diddle.
            It is what a person is that matters.
            YOU are a loving, sane, present parent to your two precious children.
            Your cheater was the other half of “we”, “us” the other half of the word “parents.” He made the choice to exit his part of the parenting vows to pursue his younger OW.
            Sure he has visitation rights because he pays support.
            But is he the present, sane loving parent. Hell, NO.
            Forgive him? If you want, whatever. It is only a word.
            Forget? Hopefully in time, YES.
            He never deserved such a loving person as you. He does not deserve his son and his daughter.
            I hope that he still loves them the best that he can because he will always be their father. How he sees to fulfill that role while playing the fun guy to a sparkling turd, when that alone will continue to be a full time job.
            Take the best of care of yourself PC. I see more strength in your posts as the days pass by. Leave them to their turd castle.
            As for your so called three times divorced expert friend will that is what she is, a three times divorced expert. Not much to listen and learn from her I would bet!
            Stay mighty sweet little Momma.
            You got this and CN is rooting for YOU and your 2 little Sunshines!
            Squeeze them gently for me.


            • Thank you peace keeper I am still taking it one day at a time. Every day has different feelings and if I keep myself busy I can forget about it for a few hours. I was more upset about her saying it was a mistake and then asking him about his new relationship. I don’t think I’m ready for forgiving or forgetting yet. I just want to get through the next few months and the mediation that we have coming up. I want to get us much time with my children as I can and hope that I can limit the time STBX has with them. I will continue to be the sane parent and hope that the children will see it as they grow up.

          • Pregnant Chump, she is not a GOOD FRIEND TO YOU, if she is contacting your ex! She sounds like a Switzerland friend in a way. I don’t buy into the “forgive and forget” line. I’m a Christian too. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to forget! My ex wanted me to forget all 20+ years of what he did and I would have if he would have stopped doing the same things over and over again, but in a different way — the cheating and lying patterns were there the whole time! The forgetting they are looking for is what I think is us spackling in a way. Anyway, you will forgive in your own way in your own time. My forgiveness right now to my ex is to not seek justice against him. I’m trying my best to leave justice up to God in His own time. Forgiveness is from the heart and it’s a process. I’d be lying to myself, others and God if I said I forgave him, because I do not at all. But I’m not doing anything to hurt him and that’s all I can do right now.

  • The sparkly turd abandoned the marriage & kids for schmoopie. 3 years later they are done. Guess what? He was screwing around on her too. Good riddance you sociopathic parasite ?? Life on the other side is wonderful!

    • Same,same.Arseface was with exit affair Schmoopie for eight years.Projected an image of smug, triumphant happy ever after.Then poof! He was gone.Moved on to his next utterly dispensible,interchangeable,overlapping amour du jour.Yep.He was cheating on her too.
      These turds never change.I used to be so jealous of her,but my past was her future.
      Thankfully,I now have zero interest in what he’s doing,or who he’s doing.He is only as faithful as his options.Leopards.Spots.

  • Hey Allyson! Chump Nation is here for you.

    My ex’s Dream Princess is beautiful, great figure, half my age, a worthy vegan and speaks out against racism and misogyny, is spiritual and nature-worshipping and has a highly romantic life living alone in a caravan with her wolf-dog and her three horses, and goes on long treks with the horses to raise money for worthy causes. She’s physically brave and resilient. She speaks several languages and has tons of friends who all love her to bits all the time. She’s vibrant, friendly and, apparently, funny.

    But I’m no longer jealous of her!

    Because she’s a woman who offers comfort without boundaries and who loves to sort out other people’s lives – the last time she tried to sort out a guy’s failing relationship, she had to move because of the fallout. She claims to be an empath but she hasn’t got the sense God gave a goose. She makes huge assumptions about the most private things – she told me ‘This never would have happened if I’d known you better’ – and then didn’t leave us alone. She is vastly unwise, immature and not self-reflective. She has compassion but doesn’t know what to do with it, and at heart I think she’s a lonely person looking for friendship and love.

    I pity her. When I was jealous of her, it was because I saw her through the lens of my husband’s infatuation, and saw how ‘not enough’ he thought I was. It was a some time before I stopped comparing my attractions to hers, and started comparing ME to her. The measure of a true person is how you treat others, and I – and you, my fellow Chumps – are so much more mighty than any OW.

    In fact – that’s a clue. She’s just the ‘other’ woman. You are THE woman. Love to all you sweet Chumps out there! xxx

    • At first I thought you said “the sense God gave a moose”, and I was stumped as to why a moose would need to have sense anyway.

    • Artistformerly… (love the name!), you are so right. The perfect and fascinating OW is such a mirage. They are really good at projecting images. There’s nothing there. I wish I had back the time and energy I spent trying to understand her (and how she enthralled my X).
      The Cheater wants to jump in a different world, and along walks other woman. Now I know- it could be anybody, it’s not because they’re so great!
      I’m glad I’m a person with boundaries and deep beliefs, and not her!

      • Good insight, FreeWoman. I think that escapism plays a big part (“jump into a different world”) but they are cowards and don’t have the balls to actually leave.

  • Ugh!! I’m sorry for all you go through.
    The thought of my ex and his affair partner together and “happy” used to be more than my mind could handle. While I would never show him, I felt like a colossal failure. What did she have that I didn’t??
    He moved in with a woman with two school age kids…..when he has grown kids that don’t speak to him, mostly because he lied to them repeatedly throughout the divorce and because he was uninvolved and uninterested in them during their childhood……but he’s all giddy about raising kids with her????
    I could do this all day…..list the things about this that we’re sure to cause my psychotic break if I let them.
    I instead choose to force those thoughts out and if I have to have a thought, think about how much I love not feeling like I felt when I was with him, all unworthy and unsure of myself. I like to think of how looks can be deceiving and how by now I know in my heart the other woman is feeling those things I used to feel. Does he love her? I’m sure she thinks so, I know he’s incapable, and I’m 100% certain I don’t care.Why is he with her still?? Probably for the same reason he stayed with me for 20 years. She’s still got some use, she’s probably tap dancing her ass off trying to keep it on the tracks, and he hasn’t secured the next one yet. When he does, the painful discard will begin and she will be the new me…..exhausted, and wondering wtf happened.
    He made me so dependent on him, now every time I accomplish something on my own I know I’ve got this!
    I don’t get overwhelmed with all that I have to accomplish, I take it one thing at a time.
    He moved money out of the 401k that was awarded to me thinking I’d never have the money to go to court….guess who’s going to court??
    Signed over the house thinking id never qualify for the mortgage and I’d have to sell? Guess who’s qualifying?
    Baby steps….
    When I see him so happy and so great to her, all I can think is that he was that way to me too….till he wasn’t.
    Please focus your energy on making your life awesome without him. It’s the ultimate fuck you.

  • I admit that I was so jealous of the OW for a long time. But upon closer examination I realized that my Cheater wasn’t going to change his basic personality once he had the HO hooked. Most of the jealousy I had was from my own imagination! I would sit around and imagine that he and Schmoopie were always romancing, going places I never went to with Cheater, all lovey Dovey. Ladies and Gents, give your imaginations a break. I actually had the Cheater return to me after the divorce. He ran from his Schmoopie like his hair was on fire. I found out what his life was really like with her. Guess what? It was NOT the cozy little love nest I had conjured up in my mind! By letting him just babble on I found out that they fought constantly, they were broke due to my Cheater having to pay so much alimony to me AND he was unemployed. He quit his job because she wanted him to move in with her (insisted)! Her Ex was not paying his alimony. They fought constantly because he wanted to be “himself” once he settled in. My Ex could sit and read for hours, watch the same movie over and over and watch movies back to back all day, listen to every baseball game on the radio (I believe there are somewhere in the neighborhood of 260 plus a season) and she hated sports! She was extremely social and managed to sneak back into the country club that her Ex and she belonged to (she lost her membership in the divorce)! My Cheater is NOT country club material. Anyways, point is this, start imagining them as they truly were when they lived with you. You know, all the irritating shit we put up with that made you want to rip your hair out. Well, they do not change! These Cheaters only change long enough to hook the new “supply” and once they feel comfy they turn into the same old fart that we put up with! I’m pretty sure Schmoopie was glad to see my Ex leave. She sure NEVER tried to pursue him after he left the way she had during the hot affair! Believe me, just imagine him sitting on his ass, farting, snoring and drooling like they did at home with you! Schmoopie “won” nothing! Cheater did NOT get a Mr. Personality implant! Then have a good belly laugh and move on with your wonderful, mighty life!

    • Awesome story of how things play out in real life. Not quite the fairy tale we imagine it to be!

    • In my younger years I was jealous of the OW as I believed he cheated because I lacked something.

      With the finally I made her into some kind of a goddess. Then I met her and she’s by far the most disgusting classless cunt imaginable with explosive disorder. They match perfectly. And he sent her off to therapy over the winter and he cries all the time. Regardless, he’s still dating.

      Looks, money, youth, a magic vagina or wherever they land, it doesn’t matter as long as they are the fuck away.

  • I can still remember finding this site 3 years ago, reading through the archives, and stumbling across this gem.

    Here is what has happened since he abandoned me, my son and my stepchildren to chase after the OW (who had two kids and a 2000 sq. ft house).

    He lied to her. Shocking right? After they broke up (because she discovered he was cheating on her via Adult Friend Finder and looking for couples/groups/women), she sent me an apology letter.

    While I was hovered in the corner of my bedroom sobbing and thinking “she won”, he was mindfucking her. THINK ABOUT THAT. They don’t stop being who they are with the OW/OM, they just switch who is receiving the abuse. He was telling her that we took separate family vacations (we didn’t, photos were on FB… now I understand why he unfriended me immediately)… he was telling her we hadn’t had sex in years (but not because I wanted him to get blood tested after discovering an email where he was presenting himself as a BiMWM)… he was telling her that I was crazy (as were the X’s before me) and that I was taking him for everything in the divorce (um, it’s a pre-nup jackass, don’t like, don’t sign it).

    BUT – I didn’t know that then. I was jealous of the beer festivals, the music concerts, the weekend getaways. I was jealous of how he was being welcomed in to her large family with open arms. I was jealous that he was finally being the man I had wanted him to be in our marriage – the man I thought I had married. The INJUSTICE was staggering.

    It took almost two years before she caught him… and another 3 months for her to believe what she had learned was true. She broke up with him.

    A week later, he had a NEW GIRLFRIEND that he had met at the gym. YUP, his relationship was so special with the OW that he had to take a whole week to heal and process the loss of his twu wuv.

    Guess what he told the new GF… that the OW cheated on him!!!!! (Yup, let the mindfucking games begin for her!)

    So you see Allyson, and my fellow chumps, THEY DON’T CHANGE. TRUST THAT THEY SUCK. A day alone as a single mom is a hundred times better than a day in an abusive marriage with a pathological lying whore.

    Don’t let the fantasy your telling yourself about them become your reality. Seek the truth… write it down… remember it. Don’t let nostalgia and too many glasses of wine make you think you’re the loser. You’re not. And, you’re going to be ok. Give it time.

    • “Write it down.” That’s what one of the YouTubers that I follow says. Her name is Dana Morningstar and she said to make a “for when you miss him/her” list. Write down everything bad they did to you. I never needed to even though I did miss who I thought my ex was and I missed being a wife and taking care of my family and home.

      I only need to remember that he wrote love letters (which he denies them being love letters) to a female “friend” that moved to England for the Army. I read one of the letters she sent him and she said, “If you come visit me, we can spend the whole night together……and have sex.” I never told him until over 20 yrs later that I read her letters and his face turned white as a ghost and then he lied of course and said she only said that because she “was lonely.” And then I remember how cold and mean he was to me after he started his first big job and then once again when I was pregnant — no doubt cheating in some capacity at the time. When I think it’s me with the problem, I force myself to remember the beginning of our relationship and the first time he went all Jekyl and Hyde on me. But I think writing it down is a great idea for people who miss their cheaters. When you see it in black and white, it’s hard to deny the abuse.

  • Dear Allyson,

    Ah turd stories… Mine started when I found out that my then-husband was having an affair with a gradwhore half his age. I left him and started the divorce proceeding after that DDay#1. I had moved next door as an effort to “consciously uncouple” and to put our kiddo first (she is in elementary school). My X moved his mistress from out of town into his apartment three months after we separated… And there I was, out of money, while he was living with his tru wuw, and our kiddo was with them for 50% of her time. Of course, he was doing all his could to make the divorce process as long and costly as possible… But I pushed through. The turds got married two months after our divorce was final. They are still together… Charming aren’t they?

    It is not about you Allyson – Look up Madeleine Albright’s story, remember Sandra Bullock’s or Elin Nordegren story? They worked on their own growth, where are their turds now?

    One episode from Sandra Brown’s radio show that Beth shared here on CN was very helpful to me to detach from my X –

    I might still be dealing with skid marks and a buffet of shit sandwiches (thanks shared custody), but I no longer spackle for him, my kiddo is doing well, I have a great job, a growing nest egg, and I’ve been experiencing more and more moments of joy and meh… You can do this Allyson, it hurts as hell to be discarded by a cluster B, but it is better than to be married to a cheating, lying, cluster B!

    • Chumptitude,
      Awesome link.

      Question raised- what is the likely duration of relationship with OW if both are cluster B narcs?I don’t know schmoopie, but I do know she was also a cheater and they had sex right after meeting for the first time drunk at a bar. She wasn’t his first such rodeo.

      Maybe I shouldn’t care but I am not at meh yet and would like to see their relationship explode as evidence of his disorder. Her social media reads like a narc so it makes me wonder what that does to the equation.

      • P.s., the link also confirms that cluster B’s are pathologically incapable of love so why does the mental health community insist the children need a relationship with them? They would be better off with a robot that could not manipulate them

        • Because many in the mental health community are wrong, and influenced by dogma rather than research. After the Chump Revolution ramps up, the Children Need Both Parents (Even When One is Disordered) should be the next canard to go.

    • Thank you to you and Beth for sharing this link. Lots of good information in this podcast.

    • I can’t figure out if my husband might have BPD or is just having some type of complete mental breakdown. He did a horrible, unforgivable, selfish thing and I am divorcing him, but I have been trying to figure out if he’s BPD. I guess it doesn’t really matter if he is or not. I was just trying to figure it out bc it may help me understand. Is this podcast helpful to listen to if the cheater is not cluster b? Thank you!!!!

      • mil23 – I am so sorry you’ve been chumped! Being able to explain his behavior post-Dday through some form of rational explanation was a pursuit I took on very seriously post-Dday. I read books after books, unable to take in the fact that yes, he was really different from the person I was married to. A nervous breakdown, BPD, that would explain it all, that would restore my faith in the world and in my ability to trust and not be chumped again.

        I don’t know if your STBX has BPD or another mental illness mil23… What I know is that every bit of info you can get about cluster Bs might help you get closer to your own healing. Yes, the podcast link I shared above might be helpful, as will be the books listed in the resource section. I would highly recommend Bill Eddy’s website on high conflict personality disorders, as well as Lundy Bancroft’s “Why does he do that” (along with CL’s book for comic relief and learning how to forge on while coping with incredibly high levels of pain).

        The pain is finite and life is more peaceful once divorced. My advice is to watch his actions over his words, and fight for the best divorce settlement you can get. If he is a decent human being, he will be generous… If he is selfish, or has BPD, NPD, or APD, he will fight you tooth an nail, and you’ll have your answer about how right you are to detangle yourself from him financially and legally as fast as possible.

        It is a tough road mil23, but fortunately, you have CN to support you. Please keep commenting and posting, and head to the forums if you need more support!

        • Thank you so very much for your reply!!!! We signed our papers and he was very generous/did not fight anything, luckily. I am so happy I found CN! Going to look into the resources you listed. Thank you again!!!

          • Mil23 glad to hear it all went well and welcome to you to Chump Nation! I’m a rookie chump rather than a newbie now, promotion!

            Hmm… generous? NOT generous lovely Mil, he’s just actually fulfilling his obligations, I imagine, out of guilt or fear of having to pay more.

            • Thank you!!!! I agree w you – I didn’t mean generous just that I did well in the settlement. We used one mediator, and he agreed to everything/did not fight anything. At least that part went ok. Now I have to figure out how to deal with his psychotic AP if/when she comes into my son’s life. Fun times!!!

              • Aww I can see you still have your sense of humour, lovely Mil – you’re mighty and Meh will be yours! Best to you today xxx

            • Thank you!!! There is no reply button on your last response. I really appreciate your support!!!!

          • Mil23 – Good to hear that he’s signed the papers and that you’re done and with a reasonable settlement congratulations!

            As long as you share custody, things can change… Fortunately, CN is here for you, looking forward to updates on your post-cheater life.

  • To all newbies: don’t buy into the lie that the OW somehow has it better. They don’t! Final Dday for me incolved an OW that should have ticked all of cheaterturds boxes: she was 15 years younger than me, beauty queen gorgeous, dumb and pliable. Once I kicked him out I had visions of how she must have fulfilled all his needs that I couldn’t. Well come to find out not months into their twu luv journey he was on Tinder and other various sex hook up sites and cheating on her, he had posted a video of her servicing him on one of these disgusting sites and he was no more happy and faithful with her than me. Actually he treated her worse. He had zero respect for her. You should have seen her face when I shared this info with her, she was actually shocked that this turd that she knew was a cheating liar was cheating and lying to her! Priceless how dumb these OW are.

    So no matter what it looks like these guys don’t change. It isn’t you, it’s them. They don’t change. The empty bottomless pit they have can never be filled! Don’t buy into that lie.

  • Seriously what did she win? Someone who can’t be loyal. Someone who doesn’t have good character. Someone who can’t be trusted. Someone who may also cheat on her. In the end, he won’t change, so she has actually welcomed an undesirable person in her life. Would you introduce your daughter to a low life like this. Likely not, so let her have him. They deserve each other.

  • I felt similar at the time – that she won. But really in only 8 short months he’s blasted through at least 2 girlfriends, neither of which were her. She remained the side piece. Ohhh she MUST feel good about herself that even though she thought she was the better woman and I’m all lame and boring and shit, she STILL lost the pickme dance! That gives me some satisfaction. But reaching Tuesday, the meh, has been the real prize. I actually feel sorry for the pos. What an awful way to live. Desperately trying to fill up holes in yourself with external sources all the time because deep down you know your a pos. It must be exhausting. Meanwhile I just came off a great weekend adventure with a new partner 🙂

  • A good reminder as always, CL. I hope Allyson is foing well. and I hope your sugery recovery is going well.

    Jedi hugs to all the chumps thinking this. We have all been in your shoes.
    In my case– my ex left me for a woman almost 12 years my junior, 10.5 years younger than him. I had once accused him of cheating– she was the same age I was at that time he first cheated. Oh, the gaslighting at the time to make me doubt myself.
    Real breakup time, I was so upset– here I was middle aged with two kids, and he just hit restart. She was young, etc.

    Oh, course, as time has gone on, I do not think that way anymore.
    What did she get? A lying, lazy, self, coward who cheated (three times that I now know of!) over a 23 year relationship– 18 years married, 2 kids. She got someone who keeps lying about employment etc to try to limit child support. She got someone who quit his job although he knows has 4 kids to support. Granted, he started his own company and is now fine, but he dragged me to court wasting almost 5 figures of my money in order to NOT support his kids “temporarily”
    She got someone ten years her senior who has had precancerous cells removed, had knee surgery and some other surgery I do not know about (sinus?)
    Their oldest child, the one conceived before we were divorced (before OWife had even filed for divorce) has recently been diagnosed on the spectrum. The brother is only 1.5 years old, so they will have to wait to see if he is as well.

    The main point here– no reason to be jealous. though it is tough.
    I was so jealous that my ex waltzed away into a world of cheaper household labor (the expat life) while I was left as a single parenting dealing with two kids and all their activities– which morphed into caring for the depressed teenager who twice planned to take her life (and once attempted it!) while he did not have to worry about a thing.
    The row is sometimes hard to hoe, but my daughter is doing better, and I truly believe that without his leaving, my daughter and I would NOT have the close relationship today– she was always a daddy’s little girl.

    Chin up. Fake it til you make it, as they say.
    No reason to be jealous. As with my ex, at the very least your ex is a lazy, lying, selfish coward– that was the prize. And in many cases here, the cheaters are even worse.

  • I needed this today! 3 years later and they are ‘happily’ married, another kid, a half a million dollar huge house, just bought another business to grow his existing business and still trying to ruin me financially by taking me to court and every other Narc game he keeps playing. He claimed on his tax returns he ONLY makes $16,000 and shouldn’t pay more but less in child support (he is using his personal expenses through his business). I’m remarried to a wonderful man but the turd and his turd games have really put a damper on our relationship. Dealing with a Narc turd about every other day really starts to effect your new life. We have to deal with ALL the shit games they play to cover our ass plus their sparkly turd show — it is tiring and difficult? We see it for what it is and deal with it the best we can but still it effects us and the kids (financially, mentally, emotionally, etc). I get so down because the legal system doesn’t give a shit. Recently, I’ve been having rejection and pick me dreams — those are the worst!? So to read this, is a good reminder. Thanks for reposting CL!

    • Southern Chump,
      You give us another great reminder. I recently got into a little argument with my new boyfriend about how I felt his ex was crossing some lines with her inappropriate texting with him. He listened, understood where I was coming from, addressed it with her, and it seems to have resolved. In that argument though he said to me “we all have to deal with ex drama…..I can’t remember the last time we went a day without your ex coming up.”
      Sure …’s all “that Dick embezzled my 401k” or “he called me a cunt when I asked him for proof he carries a life insurance policy .” But….my boyfriend was right. Although I don’t talk to or see my ex…..he’s there.
      Can’t let that shit creep into your new relationship. It can be a killer.

      • Yeah, that’s one reason why I plan to put off dating for a while. Right now any guy who tried to get close to me would have to listen to my constant rants and I can’t imagine that would be much fun for him (unless maybe he’s a chump too and there was some reciprocity there).

        For now I am fortunate to have girlfriends/sister/parents picking up that slack.

        • Same. I don’t want to date right now because I’d be constantly blathering on about the ex. My girlfriends and CN have thankfully allowed me to vent as much as I want to!

          • I have waited a long time but, I knew it was important that I got to total Meh before I ever dipped my toe in the dating pool. A couple times and I knew it was too early and too much of a mindfuck for the poor guy.

            I’m going on my first lunch date tomorrow since I’ve finally achieved the other side – MEH. It’s not fair to them otherwise. If I do say something off-color, it probably means I’m still not there. So, it’s my test.

  • The havoc this shit plays in our heads — with our self-esteem — is horrifying. It is cruel.

    My husband didn’t leave for a particular woman. Rather, I discovered that there were so many, many women over the years. Some were prettier, some were not. He had introduced me (unbeknownst to me) to most of them while he was screwing them (even when I was pregnant).

    The discovery of all of this shot my self-esteem to hell for a while. Over time, though I started to really see the cruel monster he was; started to see how very horrible these women were — regardless of their looks. That has helped immeasurably. So, I do recommend listening to the each and every “turd” reference in CL’s response. She is spot-on.

    I would also add that I’ve seen this from a daughter’s perspective. My dad cheated on every wife — and always married an OW when one marriage fell apart due to his cheating. On this last round, he had stayed married to the last OW for more than two decades, because he had gotten her pregnant with my half-sister — and he didn’t want to pay child support. He dropped her pretty suddenly (when my sister finished college) for a girl I went to high school with — so, she was 20 years younger than he and his wife at the time.

    My point about my dad is that they NEVER change. And these marriages that start off from affairs — they are not good relationships. The lack of character they show during the affair is WHO they are. And that character expresses itself in a myriad of ways.

    My dad was always a temperamental, controlling jerk with each of his wives (once he married them). And he cheated on all of them. Each of the wives had come in thinking they were “better than” the previous wife … only to discover that they were equally value-less to him. So, having witnessed this first-hand, I can assure you that these OW get a ton of karma for their participation in the destruction of his previous “family.”

    My dad — he was never happy for more than a small time with each of these women. Once the “shiny” and “new” wore off, the discontent and irritation returned. Every. Time. With this last one, he ended up “stuck” with little kids in the house (he doesn’t like having kids around); he lost most of his money in the last divorce; and he got very sick (life-threatening) soon after marrying this last OW. And, he has almost no contact with any of his own kids. He’s miserable — more miserable than I’ve ever seen him, honestly. But … in the end … people’s character catches up to them.

    You are a good person — and you love your daughter. This means, you are have more worth in your pinky finger than either your STBX and his jackass OW have altogether. Write this down somewhere. Remind yourself daily (even by the hour, if necessary at first) that he sucks; the OW sucks. You, on the other hand, do NOT suck. And, you have a beautiful future to create for you and your little one.

    I wish you all the best.

    Take Care,
    Jess’s Mom

  • “Then I realized that it did not matter what I did – the one thing that I could not do was be her.”

    But here’s the thing – not even the OW can “be her.” At least not the version cheater expects her to be. Cheaters glom on to the idea of someone, but never accept 100% of them. She’ll disappoint him eventually for being a person, and he’ll find another “her” to obsess over and adore, and the OW will just be another empty bag of kibbles.

    • True.

      In my case, the OW is a co-worker of my XH. He talked about her for many years before I learned about the affair. (I’m not sure when the affair started.) The things he said were usually friendly, but he also complained about how talkative she is, how boring she is with food, and how self-centered and annoying she can be.

      I’m 100% certain that those qualities haven’t disappeared. And I’m 100% certain that his constantly wandering eyes haven’t stopped.

      Cheaters gotta cheat.

      • Same! Mine ran off with his empathetic, sweeter, softer, kinder, gentler coworker! They are coming up on one year married. Mine was not a serial cheater, but definitely entitled, selfish, etc. She is a LOT like me — similar ages, got married around the same time, 2 kids, full-time job… That’s what hurt the most — being replaced by someone just like me! Except that she got into a relationship w/ a married man. That’s where we differ. But their life together looks a LOT like ours did — same kinds of trips, same club membership, same dinner parties, etc. The guest lists might have changed a bit to include her family, but otherwise pretty similar. Ugh!

  • Unfortunately this kind of thinking is the super glue that keeps new chumps stuck. You want to prevent the OW/OM from slipping into the life you worked so hard to build because then they will “win.”

    At the end of the day if they take the sparkly turd off your hands you are the winner! That’s when you step back slowly from the turd, gather up your winnings and beat feet to get the hell out of there! Even better if the two sparkly turds make their union all proper and legal. You may be lucky enough to never hear from them again. Ask me how I know!

    • Yes, the telling point here is the idea that the OW got her “family.” Her “life.”

      Oh hell no. Hell no. The OW got her disordered and cruel ExTurd. That’s it.

      Allyson’s family starts with Allyson and the kiddo. That Allyson’s family. She can add to that as she wishes, from extended family to “friends as family” to someday a new and better husband. She is conflating “marriage” with “family.” These words are not synonyms. These are not the same thing. It’s even more dangerous to conflate the marriage with her life. Obviously our lives change after D-Day, when we get discarded, when we divorce. The way we live changes, in some ways much for the better, in some way that are more challenging (money, court proceedings, need to parent with a disordered person).

      But our life is a sacred thing. We get to wake up to a new day, no matter how challenging, and move forward. An AP can’t take that life from us. It’s ours, like our fingers, our arms, our eyes, and even our somewhat broken hearts. We still have our capacity for work, our education (formal and otherwise), and our ability to think and act. Lots of those things get eroded by living with a disordered person, but recovery from betrayal is a process of rebuilding our birthright and rebuilding our “one wild and precious life.”

      No, the OW didn’t get Alysson’s life. She let her out of prison and gave her the opportunity to get herself back. It hurts like a bitch to be betrayed and to see the home we made get ripped apart and our goals and dreams for marriage blown up. And it is perfectly normal to feel jealous when the AP end up married to your now-former spouse. But holding onto that emotion just keeps the AP central to your new life and poisons that, too.

      • That’s what I have been struggling with. The idea that they have the family life that i wanted to have with him. They take DS out together to zoos and parks like a normal family do. I should be enjoying those days out with my kids and my husband. I look at intact families together and I’m sad for me and my children that they will never have that.

        • It’s tough. Just saying in case it helps those other families aren’t always all they are cracked up to be, they may be spackling. Ask me how I know. Making your own fun games, jokes, silly fun word play, ( loved it when my kids would share three good things today (appreciation ‘game’) in your harmonious home is special too. (Hugs)

          • DS is only 3 so he thinks Daddy is fantastic and OW is his “best friend” so she is great too. I used to say that me, Daddy and DS were best friends and a family. It really upsets me that he let me say that when he didn’t believe it for a second, it was all based on lies. I really hope that someday he sees STBX for what he is. I am also dreading the day DS will have to join in with the exciting days out.

        • You can have a family life with someone better. Someone who won’t lie, cheat or abuse you. Someone worthy of you.

          • I know I don’t want him now I know who he really is. It’s just the life I thought I would have I am mourning. It’s not that he doesn’t care that hurts the most it’s that he pretended for so long that he did.

            • PregnantChump I so admire you for your courage. Wish I hadn’t stayed when I caught him cheating while I was pregnant.

              It’s overwhelming right now, I know. You will get through the pain and one day be forever grateful living the authentic life you deserve.

  • I was never jealous of the ow. She was a family friend and I knew she was lazy and dumb as a box of rocks. x is high maintenance and he never changed. She is high maintenance and never changed. Two self centered people with no chump to hold them up were doomed for failure. He was looking for internet hookups while living with her. She got pregnant; he had a vasectomy 30 years ago. Their great love affair blew up 2 months after our divorce was final. They are all so pathetic.

    • “She got pregnant; he had a vasectomy 30 years ago.” Hahahahahahahaahaha!

    • In the fIrst posting of this, CL explained f**ktard is f**ker + bastard

  • Please Chump Lady, don’t used “tard” as a pejorative. It’s insulting to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.

      • Uh doesn’t it read ‘turd’?

        That means a shit, where I come from!

        • That what I was thinking. I was combing over to see where she used ‘tard….she didn’t

          Nothing disparaging to the developmentally and intellectually disabled.

          It’s all about the poop.

        • She used it in the first paragraph in her response (fucktard). I am all about calling a turd a turd, but “fucktard” is offensive.

          • Oh jeez. I use that term too. Not at all to be disrespectful of anyone with disabilities.

          • **shrug**

            when I hear/say fucktard, I am definitely not thinking of the developmentally disabled.

            Pretty sure most sane other people arent’t either.

            • One of my favorite things about this site is we can vent, scream, curse and say anything we need to, to get it out. I don’t think this is a place for the sensitive and easily offended. It is real and honest… sometimes with some ugly brutal truth thrown in.

              I have a mentally disabled sister and I’m pretty sure she would enjoy saying the word “Fucktard” if she could speak. She has a crazy sense of humor and cracks up at anything that may be considered politically incorrect 🙂

              • CH – I definitely agree with you. I know the term ‘tard’ is one letter off of ‘turd’ but is a very important word. I normally don’t say anything about use of language and have been on this site since 2014 and I don’t have any experience with any handicapped people. But, when I grew up, ‘Tard’ was always associated with Re-tard. I didn’t know what that meant. But it stuck with me. I would like to see it thrown out just for the awful memories of all the bullying in the past in school if you put ‘tard’ after a noun. Time to get past that word. How about Fuckbully instead. Fucktit, FuckFuck, Fuckcheater, Turdfuck, TurdCheat TurdTart. Thanks but it is quite sensitive to me. I do not even have children or know of anybody handicapped with developmental disorders. But, I know where I’m coming from.

    • Fucktard is shorthand for Fucking Bastard like fuckwit for fucking nitwit.

  • I remember cheater saying that with her it’s “effortless” wait until the day comes when he actually has to put “effort” into the “relationship”. A man who can so easily cheat on his wife and abandon his own kid….is beyond a weasel…the OW has a daughter his child’s age and a teenage son. Oh…she also has a “husband” who lives in the basement. But according to cheater “He’s encouraging her to get a divorce too because he’s not gonna be a sucker”. I’m thrilled…when the shit hits the fan, I’ll be in 937 miles away from him. When the sparkles wear off and she’s another woman he’s in a relationship with that he has to put “effort” into…I’ll well be on my way to meh…if not they’re already. Also…he told me to hold onto the wedding ring because “he sees himself coming back to me”. I sold it months ago!

    • ‘Also…he told me to hold onto the wedding ring because “he sees himself coming back to me”’

      Seriously? “Hey, I’m leaving you for the whore I was fucking behind your back, but if you wouldn’t mind staying on hold for me, that’d be great.” Yeah… hard pass.

      • What he really meant, “Keep the ring, you’ll owe me kibbles ”

        Please do not keep the ring.

      • We had just finished the mediation process and we were walking to our cars and I was crying. He asked why I was crying (hmm, lets see my marriage that I had cherished for 32 years had been blown apart by him and his slunt’s selfishness). He gave me a hug and told me HE didn’t think OUR story was over. What a fucking ego!
        Our story was most certainly over. And I lived happily ever after.
        THE END.

    • Are you kidding me??? Keep my ring, because I may be coming back to you. Wtf???? He betrayed your trust, he porked another woman, and he thinks you’ll take him back after all that?! Talk about being delusional. He thinks you’re a doormat and he’s so irresistible. I’m so glad you sold your ring. What a selfish asshole.

      • That’s not unusual. Cheaters get so accustomed to having their chump clean up after them, they fully expect that chump to “be there for them” if and when the new shiny thing loses its luster.

        The idea that they’ve lost that privilege through deceit and divorce never occurs to them.

        • Well, they are FABULOUS. Why wouldn’t we want them back under any circumstance? Delusional, the lot of them.

          • Mine gave it a go. I didn’t respond. And the fool was reportedly asking for me on his deathbed, after stealing so much from me that he was already dead to me. Bummer.

    • I sold mine a few months ago, too! When I told him, I could see it really hit him hard. And he said, “Why?” “Because I need money, you fuckwit!” (well, I didn’t call him a fuckwit – just said that in my head!). And of course, he came back with, “Sorry.” Always with the damn sorry.

  • I sometimes feel jealous of Schmoopie because she is getting the love bombing and I miss it (even though that was years ago). I have other good things in my life, however, and can still live well. I have also been learning just how capable I am (with a little help from the kids) and although I still sometimes miss him, I really don’t need him.

    I was feeling mighty a week ago as I had just gotten back from a one week vacation at the family (my side) property in Maine. When we set out, DD was lamenting that it was going to be tough without STBX as he and I used to be a team and he ruined everything by leaving. I told her that he had chosen to join a different team, but that together we would manage and that Maine would still be the same and it would still be a fun vacation. It was just me, three kids and a dog driving cross country (21 hrs each way). Daughter helped with the driving. When we got there everybody pitched in. We did all of the cooking, cleaning, laundry and lawn mowing. We got the boats on and off the car and into the water and back again safely in the garage. We got up every mountain we wanted to climb and did all of the other usual activities. I figured out how to grill the swordfish for the boys (despite being a non fish eating vegetarian myself) and they said it turned out great. We did all of my usual chores that I usually did and the ones STBX used to take care of. There were a few hiccups here and there, we didn’t always get everything perfect on the first try, but together we worked it out and we had a great time and it didn’t matter if everything wasn’t perfect because STBX wasn’t there to complain about it. I made sure to send STBX the photos of his smiling happy kids (and sometimes the dog too) every day. I even snuck in one of two of smiling happy me (no I am not at meh yet or I wouldn’t bother).

    I will always have Maine. I will always have my kids. I will always have my own competence and determination and ability to count my blessings. I will always have my integrity and internal sense of self worth. I don’t need STBX or any other man to lead a fulfilling life. I doubt Schmoopie can say the same. She and STBX are losers who both won the sparkly turd prize. They may be stuck with each other for a long time because neither has any sense of self worth and neither can handle being alone.

    • Good for you!!! You are indeed mighty! How awesome that you and your kids got to enjoy your vacation in Maine. You CAN do this. You ARE doing this!

      I have a feeling my ex and his whore are going to be stuck with each other, too, because neither one likes to be alone. Self worth? They have zero. Integrity? None. Character? Zip.

      But I have all of that in spades and I’m not afraid of being alone. I’m actually loving it right now!

    • Please don’t miss the love bombing. It’s a manipulative narcissistic trick, as you know; it’s not real. You can miss getting affection, having sex, feeling loved and cared about. That’s a whole ‘nother level of operation. Sadly, that (and the kids and dog) were all he had to give you. Your vacation sounds wonderful. So glad you enjoyed it.

    • You are MIGHTY Chumpinrecovery!! Nice job in Maine. 🙂 I like what you said, “I don’t need STBX or any other man to lead a fulfilling life. I doubt Schmoopie can say the same. She and STBX are losers who both won the sparkly turd prize. They may be stuck with each other for a long time because neither has any sense of self worth and neither can handle being alone.”

      I can’t say my life is totally fulfilling yet. I’m concentrating on getting my education so I can have a career so I can take care of myself. I for one don’t need a man at all to be happy. I’ve taken care of myself since I was 19 years old and for the most part I felt like a single mom most of our 20 year marriage. But my ex and his whore girlfriend — the ink was barely dry on her divorce papers and she was hooking up with my husband on a date. My ex started dating her for sure just after I moved out with the kids (we were still married). It’s quite possible they were seeing each other before I moved out; I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised. For the last 30 years, my now ex-husband has not been single one day of his life. ALL his relationships overlapped (yes, this was going back over 25 years ago, but we were writing long distance letters to each other while he was dating someone in his hometown.) I fell for all his lines about me being his “soulmate, etc”. I had no idea that men like this existed. The one’s that seem so nice and “Christian”, but are total players. So my ex hasn’t been alone or unattached one day in 30 years. He’s incapable and it looks like his whore is the same as she was so quick to move into another relationship after a 20+ year marriage. I personally don’t think that’s very emotionally healthy after a divorce, but I’m sure they both think they are perfect and their spouses are all to blame for the destruction of their marriages, so they are PERFECT for each other!

    • I know you’re jealous of the OW, but I don’t even call it love bombing, because it’s not love AT ALL. I rather call it “Blowtorching”, because that’s what it is. I dislike inserting the word “love” when there is no love involved in the process, not even an ounce of it. It’s all a show, a manipulation tactic so the OW could like him. It’s high intensity and often times very superficial, which is wrongfully mistaken as intimacy. And as someone here said, what follows the Blowtorching are the cheaters real colors coming out and things aren’t so rosy after all. The fangs and claws of the Narcissist comes out and you’re left with a dysfunction person who can’t relate on any level or function like a normal person. Please don’t even be envious for a second. What he did to you, he’ll do to her. It’s just a matter of time after the Blowtorching is over with.

      • Kellia, I really like calling it “blowtorching” instead of “lovebombing.” I don’t think my ex really knows what love is.

    • I love this!!!! You are so mighty!!!! I am a new chump getting a divorce and your story is so inspiring to me!!!

  • I think we all go through the jealousy phase-I know I did. But then I was like, “What the Hell for??” He is a cheating, lying, self-centered, smug piece of shit. Every single one of his AP’s were some kind of shady or shitty.

    The 1st /3rd AP–his ex HSGF–according to him (yeah, more than likely he lied about this too, but humor me) she used to cheat on him when they were together & then got pregnant, told him it was his & then aborted it. When he cheated on me with her the first time 20 years ago, it was because they “needed to resolve his unforgiveness issues about the abortion”. Helloooo-I’m your wife now & pregnant with our first child, whom I already love very much & KNOW THAT HE’S YOURS! You don’t need to fuck her to forgive her. They hooked up again 20 years later…guess he forgave & forgot…whatever. She’s trash.

    The second AP? Well, she was just a crack whore who liked fucking married men. He denied, denied, denied, but I’ve been enlightened on their relationship quite a bit since our divorce. She’s trash, too.

    His latest & greatest? A ho-worker of his, whom he is living with & is trying to help her get back custody of her daughter by being some great, wonderful, happy family. She lost custody when she went to prison for embezzlement. He moved in with her before our divorce was final & sees his own daughter for about an hour once a week. Most generally, when our daughter comes home from being with him, they’ve had an argument & she’s crying & I get to play comforter. Yeah, he’s the epitome of Father of the Year…LMFAO! I’d love to give my 2 cents to that judge who decides whether her daughter would be going to a stable home or not, BUT, that’s definitely not my circus, not my monkeys. Again, he went dumpster diving & found trash.

    The point is, I have NOTHING to be jealous of. Trash attracts trash & I took the trash out. It took some time, CL/CN, & some therapy to figure it out, but I am cheater-free & happier than I have been in YEARS. I have won the lottery 🙂

  • About a month ago, I went through a horrible period of being extremely jealous of the OW. So I actually broke my own rule and dug a little deeper into who she is – via FB and a few other sites. Oh boy. What I found out actually made me feel a lot better. She’s got judgments against her for failure to pay bills (something she shares with the ex!), moves her kids around constantly, introduces her kids (5 yr old, 6 yr old, and a teen) to the latest Flavor of the Moment, and is never alone for very long. Plus, her kids have behavioral problems. Through the grapevine, I head that she “is not a nice person.” She had no problem going after a married man and indeed, pursued him so much that she sent nude pictures of herself to him (which my daughter unfortunately found on her iPad as it was still synced to her dad’s iPhone). And this is snarky, but one of my friends looked at her photo and said, “Your ex is dating a truck stop waitress???” (no offense to truck stop waitresses!). She slathers on the make-up and looks like a whore. Well, that’s what she is.

    Jealous of THAT? No way. But I think my ex actually LIKES that about her – that she’s white trash. Why? Because he can be white trash right along with her. He can drink and smoke weed and be irresponsible and yell at the kids (seriously – he’s going to marry a woman with three kids and all his kids are grown!) and live in a dumpy rental house in a crappy little town. He can cuss and throw temper tantrums and be bigoted and racist all the live long day. He is LIVING the white trash life.

    I still get pangs of jealousy now and then when I think of how they’re all lovey dovey and he’s doing the love bombing with her and telling her everything he used to tell me. But now that I know that’s what he’s doing and what it’s called, well, it makes it easier to handle. He’s following his pattern. And he’ll have a side piece lined up or have a one night stand or start staying out in the garage instead of helping with the kids, and he’ll refuse to pay bills and maybe they’ll get kicked out of their house…and on and on. What kind of life is that? Not one I want to live. That’s the disordered living with the disordered.

    As far as I’m concerned, they’re both trash. I am worth so much more.

    • Keepin Calm,
      My story is the UK version of yours in some respects. Cheater and Schmoopie are now four years together having produced three babies, and I heard recently that one of his ex-GFs (before me) has come out of the woodwork with a paternity suit. She won’t get much out of him – he is basically broke, a benefits cheat, and living hand to mouth with Schmoopie who blogs about motherhood as if shes another Kardashian. It will, however, throw a nice wedge into their “happy family” myth if he gets done for child support.

      I get a good laugh out of their v-logging about the utterly trashy life they live. Their life is literally a series of scams that they pull to get everything and anything they can…free nights in hotels for a good review, free toys for the kids if they feature the products on their website…but at what price? A (subsidised rental) house full of crap and three screaming kids. Great! Think I’ll celebrate.

      • That is the one thing I don’t have to worry about – them procreating. He had a vasectomy done 17 years ago. And he has already missed his first month of child support payments. I already applied for child support enforcement because I am NOT messing around this time.

        Yep, sounds like your ex’s life with his Schmoopie is nothing to envy. And I’m betting that is NOT a happy family right there!

        • Child Support Enforcement is a great idea. I did that when doing the divorce settlement, and never missed a payment. There’s something about having the District Attorney taking care of a problem to bring the fools to attention.

          • I’m so glad I don’t have to take care of it and get more empty promises of, “I’ll make sure I pay you, even if I have to sell XYZ.” Yeah. SURE you will. I’m very happy to let the State take care of it.

            We’re pretty strict in our state: you can get arrested, have you wages garnished, and even have your driver’s license taken away for failure to pay.

    • Keeping Calm, the trash OW and your ex actually wanting to live that whole “trash” lifestyle describes my XH so well. Like Tempest always says, “Water seeks it’s own level.”

      • It’s disgusting, isn’t it? And Tempest is right. I can think of no better word to describe them than trash: rotten, stinky, foul trash.

  • I was jealous of the MOW because I wanted Jackass back and I hate to lose. Plus he left me up a financial crack without either boat or paddle, so I thought.

    He dropped her like a hot rock, too, but too late to save her marriage. She’s had 4 years of struggle (family deaths, health problems, kid problems, money problems) that I don’t envy at all. And because she’s not in therapy, not here learning about narcissism and ClusterB types, she’s probably still carrying that 30-year torch for Jackass, even in her new relationship. And someday he may hoover back to blow up her life again. I keep an academic-type eye on all of it because I’m sure there’s more to learn, but there’s not a drop of emotion in me for Jackass, for her, or for that relationship.

  • I could have written this post almost word for word. I played the pick me dance hard, but always thought it was an unfair advantage because I was bald from chemo. She had everything I didn’t — her health, her hair, her eyelashes…but none of that was what my STBX wanted. She had freedom. She was 14 years younger with no kids, no responsibility. I saw the emails, she sold him on that. Told him she understood his need to be free — work hard, play hard was her motto.

    I couldn’t compete with that and at first it was devastating. But then I put things into perspective. What kind of woman cheats with a married man? She knew he had a kid AND a wife with cancer. What a disgusting piece of trash. Neither one of them were any sort of person to envy. And I suspected the relationship would be short lived and it was.

    I also reminded myself (and continue to have to do so) that my STBX is a pathological liar. Every time I get caught up in something he says, I take a step back and remind myself that I should not take the word of a pathological liar at face value.

    The smartest thing I ever did during my relationship was occassionaly write down things that happened. I stumbled across an entry about the first time I tried to get him to marriage counseling, well before any cheating. That was 6 years ago and all the reasons he gave for not going then were the same as not wanting to go now. He blameshifted everything on me, except I didn’t know what it was at the time.
    Two years ago I wrote an entry about not knowing how much longer I was going to be able to stay in the relationship. His weekly drunk night was becoming unbearable. He would come home and leer over me. I tried my best to ignore to not engage, but eventually he would progress into telling me something I did wrong or wasn’t doing well enough, which would get a response out of me and then he would tell me what a horrible person I was. On those nights, I would go to bed drained. The next day I would be drained as well, but he would just go on like nothing happened.

    I am so grateful I wrote some of those events down. It’s so easy for us chumps to blame ourselves–to look for ways to spackle. These journal entries are essential to remind ourselves of the reality of our situation. They are never going to get better. They are more than likely acting like that in their new relationships or if they aren’t yet, they eventually will. The OW is not winning any prize. She is “winning” someone who tortured us and put us through hell. We are the real winners for getting out and finding CL so we can get our sanity back.

    • Cancer Chump – The OW is a despicable whore for engaging in a relationship with your husband while you were fighting cancer. She’s trash. Don’t spend any more energy thinking about her!

      I’ve kept journals for years – all the way back to when we got married. I can’t find a few of the early journals (1999-2000), but I do have them from 2001 to now. I went through them a few months ago and it really opened my eyes. I had forgotten SO MUCH. All the signs were there of him being a narcissist – only I didn’t know that’s what it was called. The lying. The manipulation. The broken promises. The drinking. The temper tantrums. The anger.

      After I read those journals, I realized that our marriage was not a good one, that I was in a constant cycle of abuse. It was eye-opening.

      You’re right. They’re not going to change. I have a feeling my ex is still wearing the mask. But it will slip off and the whore will see just what she “won.” What did I win? My freedom. My sanity. My health. I’m so glad he’s gone.

    • I don’t know if it is obvious to you how many other people likely see him for the asshole he is for what he did to you, but it is probably more than you think.

      I used to have a coworker who would complain to me about his wife who was dying from a brain tumor. He was so hard on her “she is so grumpy all of the time”, “she doesn’t spend time with our daughter”, “all she wants to do is hang with her girlfriends” and “I don’t understand why she opted for the expensive treatment that will only keep her alive for another year or two, why doesn’t she just die and get it over with if she isn’t happy anyway”. I didn’t say anything but in my mind I was thinking “what an asshole, of course his wife isn’t happy, she’s dying and her jerk of a husband doesn’t care and just wants her to get on with it”. She probably wanted to spend time with her daughter, but she didn’t have the energy or he kept her away. She spent time with her girlfriends because they cared. I have no doubt this jerk would have been cheating on her if he weren’t too big a loser to find even another loser to oblige.

      Anyway, people like that are assholes and most people know it.

    • It is horrific that your ex would do this while you were fighting cancer!!!! What a complete asshole!!!! You deserve so much better than that worthless trash!!! And this girl is trash like him!!!! Hugs

  • d-day #1 was with a 21 year old stripper. Looking back now, I can not even believe I was jealous of her, and so down on myself. Turd didn’t help the situation by throwing his narrative of her in my face….
    He respected her (barf), She’s beautiful, speaks 5 languages (not at all special… as most people from Europe do), travels all over the country (apparently there is such a thing as traveling strippers … who knew?) and “has a zest for life”; unlike my boring, stable, SAHM self, who was modeling morals and how to be good people to our kids. Apparently creating a home, raising good people, managing properties, and cleaning up his shit wasn’t worthy of respect… I was simply boring!
    I let his twisted idea of his ideal woman (young, slutty, beautiful, irresponsible, lacking family morals … aka “fun”) dictate my self-worth. It killed me that he didn’t value my values. Who I was wasn’t enough for him, and you know what (took me day day #2 to figure this out) who gives a fuck what he thinks! I think he’s a piece of narcissistic shit. I was simply part of the “normal” façade presented to the world to maintain his image of the upstanding Christian guy with a great family. Why would I envy anyone who ended up with that turd!

    I struggled for a long time with the unfairness of it all. I was a good person, and good things are supposed to happen to good people right? Once I let go of trying to control his narrative about who I was, and realized my narrative (the truthful one based on facts and not feelings) is the only one that mattered. Let him live in his delusional world of being the “great guy” who was stuck in a “boring marriage” (aka… poor turd couldn’t get his wife to participate in group sex, but of course his generalized narrative doesn’t reveal that part) …. and fuck those who sheepishly follow his narrative. I know the truth (facts) and he subscribes to lies. As CN says, all his new supply won was a turd!

    Turds peddle delusions, and unfortunately even the smartest among us fall for their narrative. Happy people don’t live double lives pretending to be someone they are not. His narrative of our marriage and his own behavior couldn’t be further from the truth. He is freaking delusional! He tries to tell the kids that I was a bad mom and not involved in their lives, that he did everything. Hmmm I guess being the room mom for all my kids classrooms k-2, taking iceskating lessons with them, driving to and from swim practice, football practice, basketball practice, cheer practice, doctors appointments, which he didn’t participate in, makes me the bad parent right! It’s all freaking projection! His narrative is delusional and that’s what he peddles to anyone who will listen. So when you see them peddling “happiness” with OW, just know it is part of the delusional world they live in, where they are the hero and you are the chump. Sure, it’s easy to feel jealous when you subscribe to their delusions! Delusions are just the sparkles, but underneath you’ve still got a turd!

    • Got-a-brain, I totally could have written what you wrote, pretty much word for word. One of the hardest parts for me to deal with all this is my ex-husband rewriting the history of our marriage. Making up lies about me and smearing me behind my back before I even knew the discard was coming. Everyone he works with fell for his lies. Why wouldn’t they? He’s such a “nice guy”! A lot of people fell for his lies and it’s so hurtful. I lost so much in all this and he was just able to throw me away like garbage and rewrite history and say that I was a horrible wife, which I wasn’t at all. I was a great wife and mom. So I now know he will do the same with his whore girlfriend. Make it look all sparkly and perfect, all the while he’ll be seeing women behind her back just like he did with me for over 20 years. It’s all an illusion. My marriage was real to me, but he was the one either acting the whole entire time or one day he finally got caught leading the double life he lead for over 20 years and the gig was up. Time to turn on the spouse and say you hadn’t been happy in “over ten years” due to my so-called “trust issues.” Hogwash!

      • Yes! Dealing with the smear campaign is horrible! In my small town where turd is a well known “good guy”, I’m treated like the local leper. I wish I could describe how he operates, but I’m not quite sure if it myself.

        With whoever he is targeting he’ll pick an emotionally charged issue that is important to them, (he has an amazing way of picking up on this), then slowly weave a falsehood about me into the conversation that is in opposition to their belief. “See we have something in common, you know exactly how I feel!” Wah-la, he hooks them and has a sympathetic ear to freely peddle his delusional narrative to. They feel sorry for him, he comes away looking like the victim and I’m left looking like the asshole. He counts on societal norms to “speak no evil” in hopes that no one will ask or tell me about it. Of the few people whom have spoken-up… the story is always the same, I’ve done this bad thing they are in opposition with (divorce, abortion, cheating, whatever it is they despise) and then the clincher is… I’ve always talked bad about them to him. Not many people who think you talk bad about them are going to confront you. They just decide they don’t like you.

        Everything I’ve read says “just stay silent, trying to defend yourself makes you look like the crazy person”. It’s maddening!

        • Telling them you’ve spoken badly about them is just evil. That on top of convincing them you are on the opposite side of some issue or other. The clever assholes are the worst. Karma will surely catch up to him someday when he tries to take it too far or with somebody who knows the truth and isn’t fooled.

          • Also, there are all kinds of things I could tell people about what STBX has said about them or about issues where he has a different view, but I don’t do it. Mostly because I don’t want those other people to feel bad, and I don’t want to look like I am just trashing STBX. How come your asshole can get away with saying those things about you and not have people view him as the asshole for badmouthing you? That kind of thing is always a red flag for me, but maybe some people just aren’t that bright and believe everything they are told.

            • Exactly… why would you want to hurt someone else’s feeling? Turds count on people’s goodness/ empathy to get away with their delusional narrative!

        • Yes, Got-a-brain. That’s so true. It IS maddening! We so want to defend ourselves, but in my case when I have, I just come off sounding crazy because he’s told so many lies about me. I feel like if my good character for all these years hasn’t told people who I truly am, to then it’s useless. I cannot go up against the lies he told to his co-workers, friends and family. A part of me feels like he’s been talking bad about me to at least the FEMALE “friends” all these years. I don’t know. I have read the same things you have — stay silent, don’t defend yourself, be the best person you can be and the truth will hopefully come out in the end. I have found that people who have a vested interest in my ex (his family and co-workers and current whore) all have fallen for his lies. Even his family who believed the truth I told them (I was 100% silent to EVERYONE for 20 years about him and never told anyone anything!), they still turned on me when I started unchumping myself and standing up for myself. They didn’t like unchumped Martha! She needed to go and she got the boot! Good riddance to his family that used and manipulated me for over 20 years. NEVER AGAIN will anyone treat me like that again.

  • I struggle with this but even I have gotten better. My cheating wife and wunderbread can go off and have their perfect life. It is a life built on lies and with a high and heavy price. Yes, I miss what I thought she was, but that isn’t who she is. I am trying to spend less and less time on the comparisons, wunderbread has a ton of his own issues(his own failed marriage and almost marriage, f*ucking loser) and she can have him. I am living and will be able to love and trust again when I fix my picker and spend time getting me right and ready. The loneliness part sucks, weekends are hard, but as the train car said (yes, this is real and I have seen it spray painted on a train car) This too shall pass.

    • “Wunderbread?” 🙂 That’s a new one! You got that right, BSOD. We have to first fix our picker. My picker was always broken as I never ever had a healthy relationship or had someone who treated me like I deserve and should be treated. The only way you can fix your picker is to figure out why you picked them in the first place and also why you stayed with them if they were showing red flags in the beginning. And I’m talking to myself too. 🙂 This can only be done alone and not in a relationship. Good luck to you and yes, this too shall pass. 🙂

  • I’m reminded of a quote that actually applies to politics (I’d have been a poly-sci major if I’d have had it to do over again and if I actually wanted to live in Washington D.C. or in a state capital) but with a little tweaking, so applies to the Pick Me Dance and the Wreckonciliation effort put into trying to spackle the relationship with a cheater.

    “Political Correctness is a doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority, and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.”

    Switching out a few words, it applies to Chumps before we realized how chumpy we were/are.

    • Sunflower, that is a perfect analogy. Thank God we have CN and CL to help us stop being chumps!

  • Oh…and I got word last night that cheater’s and Twatwaffles are not so blissful anymore. My girls came home from a weekend camping trip where they said Twatwaffle cried over not being able to blow up an air mattress and Mr. Twatwaffles sat around and drank around the campfire while hanging with his bro.

    It is amazing what just a tidbit of news of the sparkle falling off has done for my mood. I’m freaking GIDDY.

    And, when I picked up the girls from Mr. Twatwaffles last night, I was able to completely ignore him and NOT flip him the double bird when the girls weren’t looking. I ignored him completely…and I have the next 10 days where I will not have any reason to text him about the girls. I am freaking happy about that.

  • I too was jealous of my replacement part at first. Mostly, because I was the one who had to leave, and she stepped right into my life. Literally. Moved into my house, slept in my bed, tended my roses, took vacations I had planned. Enjoyed all the things I’d worked so long and hard for.

    But she hadn’t had the years of training in putting up with a selfish narc, so it came at a high price and it didn’t last. A surprise, I’m sure, though she knew up front that she was getting a cheater. Even so, if she hadn’t been a participant in his harassment campaign, I might have thanked her for taking him off my hands.

  • Hello all – Allyson in Canada here 🙂 I thought I would update given that my letter ran again! Firstly – thank you Chumplady for answering me way back when. It was truly a life line during a dark time for me.
    Fast forward 3 plus years- still Allyson, still in Canada but enjoying my turd-free life. It took a while (like years) to recover, and there were several (false) reconciliations to get through. But I am happy to report that I stuck to my boundaries and every single time I didn’t just roll over my ex totally validated every choice I ever made – by not respecting the boundaries I put up, by trying to entice me to pick me dance for him and eventually by moving on to someone (anyone) more “like minded”. Then starting the whole cycle over again. Frankly it is exhausting but now I see it for what it is and feel very free from the drama that seems to circle him all the time. Not my circus, not my monkeys…

    My daughter and I are doing great – I have very tentatively started to date a little bit, adopted a fish, a cat and a dog (my ex has horrible allergies – nothing like an asthma attack to keep intruders at bay!) and created a life I am proud of. Not every day is all sunshine and rainbows… but it isn’t raining all the time either.

    As for my ex and the OW? Well, their update isn’t really worth the energy it will take me to type this… they stayed in their “will they or won’t they” drama for a bit- until they did and were out as an official couple. That lasted maybe 2 months until she started a “friendship” with someone else, and eventually cheated. How is that for karma? It’s not very meh – but I laughed harder than I had in years when this info made its way to me. So she took her appetite for destruction else where. And left him with nothing to show for it.

    You were right when you said I won Chumplady. I did. And that luggage set was all the reward I needed ❤

    • Hi Allyson! So awesome that you checked back in and gave us an update. Mwhahhahahaaaa at the OW dumping him for a new “friend.”

    • It’s good to have an update and know you have come out on the other side.

      And I don’t think enjoying the Karma is a departure from Meh. It’s a reward.

    • Thanks for the update, Allyson! I’m happy you are doing well. 🙂 Funny how cheaters have a lot of “friends”, eh? 🙂

    • So happy to hear how much-improved your life is sans sparkly turd, and that little bit of karmic justice is such a nice touch. It’s something for which we all hold out some hope. Celebrating for you.

    • Thanks, Allyson! It’s good to know that you ditched the cheater and got an great life.

    • Love that you came back with an update, @Allyson. Sounds like you’re better than ever and that The Cheater was flattened by a Karma Bus. Bwahahah!

    • Allyson – thank you for the update! You are mighty and give this new chump who is going through a divorce hope!!!!

  • Thanks for checking in, Allyson!

    They do not change. My X has had two more soul mates since. All the same issues. Meh. But it does confirm – I didn’t cause it. This isn’t about me.

  • Further up on these posts someone asked how long these “sparkly” affairs last. In my readings, research on cheating and real experience I would say anywhere from 24 months to 36 months. There are a few that last longer, but it usually isn’t because your cheater found his “soul mate!”
    Usually it lasts because your cheater got the OW pregnant and he can’t or won’t pay child support for another kid. Or, he has found the perfect idiot and he is cheating on her while she posts Facebook pictures of their “happy marriage!”
    Or the old cheater needs someone to change his Depends diaper because he has aged out of the game.
    But believe me, you will always be in his phone or Rolodex just in case his harem dries up. That’s when you need to be steadfast and do NOT answer his calls or the door if he shows up! It means he is out of options and he wants his good old reliable Chump back.
    These cheaters usually break up with the Twu Wuv before the ink is dry on your divorce decree! I told my cheater that I would give him and Schmoopie 6 months before it was over. He was done on four! I knew I was being generous with that time table!

    • I hope my ex and his whore are done in the next six months, but I doubt it. Neither one can be alone. He already asked her to marry him and seems to be quite proud of that fact. He’s following his pattern of rushing things along so he can lock her in. I can actually see her cheating on him first.

      My goal? Not to care one bit what they do with their lives.

      • Keeping Calm, my Ex declared his love for Schmoopie in our deposition and also stated he wanted to marry her ASAP after our divorce. Once I actually divorced him he told her he was never going to marry her! I guess that ignited an epic fight. He had future faked her to the hilt!

        • hahaha! Oh, poor Schmoopie!!! NOT. She deserves everything she gets!

          In my state, you have to wait six months after the divorce is final before you can get married. We’ll see if ex and his whore are still together by the end of the year…but I’m betting they will be. Neither of them can be alone!

    • I would never dare tell STBX how long I thought the shelf on his relationship with Schmoopie might be because he then he would be determined to last longer just to prove me wrong. I try to tell myself it doesn’t matter because there is nothing good about their relationship no matter how long it lasts. It’s just a question of how long other people who still have a relationship with him (kids, his extended family) have to put up with her.

      • Chumpinrecovery, I was lucky. My kids are all adults and his family absolutely refused to allow her to be brought to their home. He would take her to the city they lived in, but he would stash her nasty butt in a hotel while he visited. It really pissed her off because she had rammed him down her family’s throat although they were not crazy about him and he knew it! His family was loyal to me and pissed as Hell at him! His Dad told him that she was just an old whore and this wasn’t her first rodeo, but my Ex just wouldn’t listen to him! It was obvious as Hell to everyone else though!

    • This is my dad to a tee he even told my mum (his chump) this. He is in his 60’s now with health issues. The OW practically does everything for him. He isn’t going to give that up now.

      The old cheater needs someone to change his Depends diaper because he has aged out of the game.

      I am expecting my STBX to be in it for the long haul with schmoopie. He got himself a nice young one who was nice and ripe for manipulating. I remember the love bombing stage with promises of a great future and being together forever. In reality it was together until you no longer of use. That was when I had done my job of giving him two children. He couldn’t quite wait till the 2nd was born though, due to his unhappiness.

      They have moved in together and playing happy families with DS during visitation time. Our divorce is not final yet got another couple of weeks to wait to file the final paperwork.

  • I struggled terribly with this, the idea that Mr. Justification and the OW were “meant” to be together, that they would be happy and healthy together, that the dysfunction in my marriage was my fault. This was particularly difficult because I considered OW a good friend, and thought a lot of her.

    I can’t tell you when it will happen, but there will be a moment when you realize how screwed up they both are to do what they’ve done, and that they are still screwed up when together.

    Find a moment during the affair that hurts you the most, and realize how ridiculous your fuckwit was being. Mock him in your head. Make a comic out of it. Stop letting them have the power of being taken seriously instead of the ridiculous, pathetic creatures they are.

    My example is imagining Mr. Justification staring at his newborn son asleep on my chest, looking at me, asleep after giving birth to a 9+lb baby with no drugs. Instead of taking in the awe and wonder of one of the most monumental, important moments in any man’s life, he was all, “Whatevs, yo, I gots to go text my boo some smoochie emojis.”

    Why waste any more time or energy on that guy? When you can laugh (even darkly), you’re one step closer to meh.

    • Spot on! You have a perfect perspective.

      Mine comes from a confession my XH made in our last few months together (probably just the tip of the iceberg). It pops into my head whenever I soften to him, and I remember what a gross jerk he is:

      Before he cheated, he spent years hiding an obsession with cam-girl porn. He’d stay up late playing video games when the kids and I went to bed and then eventually switch to the cam-girls after we were asleep. He finally confessed this to me and told me about a time he was on the cam-girl site while we were on a family vacation in Canada.

      His point in confessing this after the “I’m unhappy” talk was to show me how far back he was holding in his “unhappiness”. But all I got out of it was how messed up of a person he is. After a beautiful day with his wife and young kids doing fun stuff like a whale watch or enjoying Canada Day, he just wasn’t fulfilled enough, so he had to talk to cam-girls after we were asleep just feet away from him. I pointed this out to him, and he said, “Maybe if we had held hands more that day, it’d be different.” No, I’m not accepting the blameshifting, sicko.

      The vision of him in that hotel room, the laptop glowing while the rest of up sleep peacefully, will always be imprinted in my mind now.

      In my case, the OW is a serial cheater. It’s not so much that they are “meant” to be together; they DESERVE each other.

      • What an empty vessel of a man, JustAnother. A beautiful day with his family and it still wasn’t enough! My ex and I had a great sex life the last ten years of our marriage — got better with time and communication. Saturday night we had sex for lets say three hours — lots of stuff. Sunday morning I get up early as usual to get the kids ready for church ALL BY MYSELF AS USUAL. The cheater was always last to get up and never ever helped out with the kids. I just happen to go in our bedroom and what is the cheater doing after having sex for three hours the night before? He’s masturbating. I have nothing against masturbating, but I do have a problem with being so selfish that that’s more important than helping your wife get the kids ready for church. Even three hours of great sex wasn’t enough, just like having a fabulous day out with the family wasn’t enough. I trust that they suck!

        • You hit the nail on the head, Martha. Selfishness.

          Chumps (even before we know we’re chumps) adjust to life’s changes and find true happiness in any circumstances. It’s not always easy, but we adapt and thrive.

          Cheaters (even before they’re technically cheaters) coast through life focused primarily on themselves. They enjoy the people around them as long as they serve their purpose (of bettering the cheater’s life) and don’t get in the way.

        • My ex could never get his ass out of bed. It drove me nuts. I couldn’t understand it. He never helped in the mornings, school nor church, but bitched if we made too much noise and woke him up. I really don’t know how he has kept his job all these years other than he has a chump boss and let’s him get away with it.

          As I look back over the 20 years with him, now that I have been away from him for over a year, I just cannot believe what I tolerated. 2 Ddays separated by over 10 years with 2 different schmoopies was what it took for me to trust that he sucked. He sucked in alot of other ways.

    • NotToday, what a loser for texting his AP after you giving birth! He’s clearly a jerk! My ex had some type of affair when I was pregnant with our second child. I can still see him sitting across from the bed from me. He was sitting on a chair under a clock. He couldn’t have been farther away from me while I was in labor. I felt so alone. Our beautiful daughters birth was darkened by him. He didn’t want her and he didn’t want our son or me. He wanted his sparkly work AP! He showed it with his actions. And then after she was born, we were in the room discussing what to call her. He YELLED at me and said, “You named son (not true), so I should be able to name her whatever I want to!” Believe it or not, but he named her after a female co-worker. Her name is not spelled the traditional way, but spelled just like the female coworker. Our daughter would not go to her father for well over her first birthday. I truly believe she somehow knew he was bad news after all he put me through during my pregnancy with her and even for months after she was born. She would always cry and pull away when he tried to hold her. Babies are smart and trust their little baby gut!

      • He actually named your daughter after his female coworker??? What an ass!

        My cheater’s AP has a name that is quite common. I like everyone else with the name. In fact, the therapist I went to after we split has the same name, and she’s wonderful. One of my first issues in therapy was to re-associate the name with good, fun people, instead of the skank. I still think of her, but I’m at meh, so it’s much better now. 🙂

        • Yes, he did. He said, “I like the name and I like the way she spells it. I still don’t like the way it’s spelled, because when you are a girl and you have your named spelled unusually, you cannot get all the premade stuff at the stores that little girls like! Every time she’d complain about the spelling of her name I always said, “Talk to your dad. He named you.” I did however not tell her that she was named after a coworker. I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised that was the name of the person he was having an affair with when I was pregnant with her. I know that sounds outrageous, but nothing surprises me anymore after what he’s done and what he has said to me! That’s good the AP name isn’t a trigger for you anymore! My daughters isn’t at all, because I love my daughter to pieces and her name is pretty even though I don’t like the spelling. 🙂

          • Martha…you are probably right. Mine wanted to name our son after his ho at the time. Thankfully, one, he was a boy, and two, I took over. He wanted this before we knew the sex. Also, he wanted a girl, and of course having a boy was all my fault.

            • Fragile Rock, having a son was your fault?! Looks like you ex isn’t that smart either as the man determines the sex of the child. lol. Looks like I’m not the only one who had the same experience of child being named (or wanted to be named after!) an AP. I can’t prove she was the work AP and it doesn’t matter anymore to me as I love my daughter and I do like her name even though I hate how it’s spelled. If she is truly named after the AP, that just is more proof what a disordered fuckwit turd he truly is. It’s ALL on him and not on me at all. I just gave into him naming her as I was scared of him and his anger towards me and I just wanted to save my marriage and make him happy, so I gave in. Man, if I could go back in time and slap Martha in the face and tell her to wake up. I was isolated all by myself with no close family or friends nearby, so I didn’t know what to do at the time. It was such a lonely time in my life. I wish I would have left him then. 🙁

          • I suspect my ex and his skank’s relationship started years before dday, and that our daughter who had the same name (and who he named) was named for his skank/Ow/gf. 🙁

        • Mine cheated with a woman with MY NAME! I cant hear my own name without hearing hers. But that has always made me think how soulless he must be to be able to do that.

  • @Allyson in Canada – I’ve been exactly where you are and I said almost the exact same thing to my therapist as you said, “I cannot stand that he is going to get a happy ending. I cannot believe that SHE WON”

    Do you want to know what my therapist said?

    “Do not assign meaning to other people’s lives.”

    These are words to live by. Trust me. Do not assign or assume they are happy or that she won. No relationship is perfect and you have no idea what goes on behind closed doors.

  • I felt the same way…utterly rejected. Jealous. Told myself it was completely ridiculous…why should I feel bad or jealous when it is from behavior of which I completely disapprove? But I couldn’t help myself. Couldn’t stop. It eventually passed. It took months, though. I’m not too tough on myself about that anymore. I think it’s normal to feel that way. He did supposedly “pick me” on our wedding day. I was never supposed to have to “dance”.

    Looking back on it now, the total infatuation with someone else (that I, of course, was blamed for because that’s what you get when “good guys” cheat) absolutely wasn’t about me. Indeed, that is largely the point. It was more about “the new”, something I could never be after years in a relationship, even if I were truly perfect in every way. He was tripping on his own neurochemistry, and that stuff is, by nature and by design, transient. It’s tragically stupid that people choose to trash a lasting relationship and a family for that, confusing and conflating it with “love”, but they do, every day. The siren song of limerance, infatuation, “dopamine fog”, whatever you want to call it, is short lived and the affair partner is just a willing vessel. In other words, the AP isn’t really all that “special”, they are just “new” and “available”. I have tried to get a sense of odds of successful relationships that results from affairs. From what I can tell, the odds are abysmally low (yay!).

    • You are right. We cannot compete with new and sparkly when we are married to a cheater. I “competed” for over 20 years with all the women he triangulated me with and then when I told him I was tired of him seeing women for lunch dates or emailing them “I miss you so much!!!” behind my back, he took EVERYTHING underground. Never mentioned a woman or a man “friend” again. Yep! Even men friends he went out for lunch with his stop mentioning, because in his disordered mind, females that he was attracted to and flirted with were just the same as male friends. He honestly said to me, “I can’t tell whether they are male or females. They are all SEXLESS to me.” Funny how his sexless female “friend” that I caught him out on a drinks date with, he was having sex with just a few months later. I wonder if she’s still sexless? hmmmm…..

    • Next time man bot, I agree with you on this. It’s limerence and infactuation! It wears off in about two years and sometimes faster if chumps let the cheaters get their fill of each other. Now if you have a full fledged crazy cheater on your hands limerence can last years. It’s more like an obsession with someone. But I would imagine the object of their obsession would get creeped out or just plain sick of being pursued and get away from the nut job after awhile. I still stand by the 24-36 month mark. That’s what I have actually experienced and witnessed in real life. Most of the time the chump tells the Cheater to get lost! Good strategy I think cause who the Hell wants to go through that shitstorm again??

    • NextTimeMan-Bot, I really like what you said. That “high” people get when we’re first falling in love and everything is new – I think some people are really addicted to it and keep going from relationship to relationship. But it ALWAYS fades. And you settle into something comfortable and REAL. That’s what I thought I had with my ex. Now my eyes have been opened to who he really is and I realize, no, I didn’t have that at all. I only thought I did. My ex hid so much from me – and I know I’ll never find out about it all, and that’s ok. I don’t want to know. It’s done. Over. And I am SO much better off.

  • I also read a recent study by a respected university that found people who brag about and post happy family pictures on Facebook are usually just the opposite. Like my mother used to say, “If you have to say you is, you ain’t!” I really don’t know who they are trying to dupe and convince, themselves? Other people? At this point I really don’t care and I wish they HAVE to stay together forever in misery! They both deserve it!

  • And don’t forget, fellow chumps, that one huge bullet that we are escaping is that of being the final OW/OM stuck having to be the medical caretaker of Turdster after a lifetime of musical chairs marriages. Every time I feel jealous or inadequate, I just visualize his 35 years younger sugar baby about 15 years from now, wiping his ass and pushing his wheelchair. He’s a cranky old fart now–I can only imagine how bad he’ll be then. Bwahaha!!!!

    • My ex FIL is on his 3rd or 4th wife and that is exactly what she does. She is a sweet woman and the only one of my ex’s family and friends I have not blocked on Facebook. My ex hates her and I reminded him a few years ago that she is the one taking care of his father while Mr. Twatwaffles lives 2,000 miles away. His health now is very poor and I am relatively sure he has not cheated on her because his health is too crappy to do so. But he’s a dick to her and honestly, I’d have left his ass a LONG time ago.

      Interestingly, Mr. Twatwaffles has hooked up with an RN who is 10 years younger than him…and he I would bet he has over 30K in student loans for 5 years of school that it took to get a 2 year LPN certificate in our state.

      Hahahahahahahaha….sooooo glad I don’t have to help him with those expenses. I truly think he expects Ms. Twatwaffles to “help” him pay it off.

      She is sure welcome to!!

  • 5 year relationship, 7 months of marriage and 1 month post DDay, so admittedly I still find myself jealous of them. I supported him during his lowest times — not getting into residency, editing all his letters to reapply, calming him thru his anxiety and stress, suffering through long hours and stress of residency doing long distance while I patiently waited to get married. He starts hooking up with her (a nurse–so cliche) not 6 weeks after he proposed! And one year later and a couple months post our wedding, she’s separated from her husband and living with mine! He’s now finished residency so she gets to enjoy the fruit of that labor.

    He gets to be happy and go through this breakup with someone else by his side, which he’s sooooo in love with and calling her his future wife. Social media has me convinced that me and OW are very similar so why wasn’t I good enough (is she more sexy, younger, skinnier, same religion as him–which was oh so important to him)? Granted, she is also married and that’s something I would never do. Yes, I fear they will stay together and really are soulmates. But i discovered that my stbx has a history of cheating and lying to his long term girlfriends dating back 15 years! I also highly suspect this wasn’t his first time cheating on me. So when opportunity arises and real life begins for these two, I have a feeling she will be in the same boat as me but she would have already destroyed her own marriage already. Hopefully I’m meh enough to not give a crap by then!!

    • Mr. Twatwaffles couldn’t hack a decent job after he retired from the Air Force after 20 years and decided he wanted to go to school to be a nurse. He decided right before Christmas and gave me NO time to prepare. I asked him to wait until the next fall, but he wanted to that January. The stress of it gave me shingles and he showed not one ounce of concern. He took out thousands in student loans and worked part time as a CNA, I took a night job as a cook.

      He did pretty good except he took each math class a minimum of 3 times because he just could not master them the first time around. Each failure brought down his GPA and when he finally had his associates and could apply for nursing school, he couldn’t get in for over a year.

      when he got the rejection letter, he’d already been fucking Ms. Twatwaffles, and a couple months later, he was telling me I was history.

      I worked my ass off and I will not get any joy for it…except that I don’t have to help with those student loans….when his job in our area maxes out at 18 bucks an hour. I make more working a clerk job than he did as a CNA.

  • I SO needed to see this column again today! So much of this resonates as I have watched over the past 6 months as ex moved howorker and her kids into the big, beautiful house we’d bought less than a year before d-day (less than a mile where I live in our very small, close knit community), married her in June, and now has gone full disney dad. Not only is he taking them on extravagant, adventure filled vacations (Hawaii! More Hawaii! Lake Mead with a freshly purchased new jet-ski! Mexico!) he’s also taken a new position that pays great but involves little travel, and gives him the ability to work from home/leave for school pick up on the days he had the kids. This after I spent the first 10 and 8 years of their lives keeping things running smoothly at home while he traveled 60-70% of the time, worked long hours when he was home, and had business dinners at least once a week when he was in town that made him miss the kid’s bed times. But now because he realizes “what’s important,” he’s going to arrange his life so he can be an equally present and involved father as I am a mom.
    So not only does it feel like howorker stepped into my pretty damn nice life, she also got the upgraded version of husband and father to help her raise 2 out of her 3 kids (oldest is out of the house and wants nothing to do with this bizarro version of the brady bunch), and she gets my awesome boys 50% of the time. The unfairness of it all is enough to drive me a little crazy most days.
    I really needed the reminder today that no matter how sparkly it all looks on the outside, the reality is that they are just a pair of turds that smooshed up against each other in the cess pool. And every where they go, they leave little smears of sparkle dusted shit in their wakes.
    Turd, turd, turd. I think I’ll change his name in my contacts (it’s currently BD, which stands for Big Disappointment or Big Douchebag, depending on the day).
    Tracy, I’m glad you’re on the mend and hope you feel better soon. Thanks Chump Nation for reminding me that what I and others perceive is probably not the reality.

    • Chumpintraining,

      Not probably, it is NOT better. I have seen it all. Just as you describe. Husband#1 with his new turd blossom(s). It all comes to a reality check ending. Just like your marriage to this flaming POS, this marriage also will end in a new romance with a new turd.

      If they change, it starts with YOU, not the next person.

      I promise.

      It is NEVER with the next person when cheater character miracles occur. They opt out to conitnue the sickness of who they think they are.

      All couples get to the point of introspection. You either do the work and remain in your marriage or create a new sparkly one and blame the demise of your previous relationship on the person you were with.

      Bending over backwards to keep someone with you is only delaying the inevitable. Ask me how I know.

  • I needed to read this today. I am not jealous of the other woman but I can’t believe my STBX blew up our 16 year marriage for a supposedly reformed drug addicted prostitute who is also illiterate/dumb and 12 years younger than us. She still has her escort ad up with her phone number!!! She called me to out their affair and did me a favor bc he never would have left. I threw him out and he moved straight in with her. He wanted to move our 8 yo. son right in with them when it is his time sharing time and lie to him that their friends until he tells him when he thinks the time is right – real sane and good parenting! I convinced him to get his own place for just him and my son and wait on introduction for now. Then she started sending psychotic harassing messages from his phone just bc she is jealous we communicate rarely to co-parent saying to leave them alone, lying that she’s pregnant and a lot of other psycho things. My STBX stopped her right away when I sent him the messages and said he told her she needs to respect I’m his sons Mom and we are co-parenting together. That if she ever contacts me again or can’t respect that the he’ll leave her. At first I wanted to save him for our son to make him see the poor choices he is making by bringing this awful woman into his life in the future, but I realize I can’t. She also dresses like a 16 yo whore. She is the total opposite of every good quality I have! So now I realize that I just have to step back and hopefully they will implode before he ever brings her around our child. It is beyond shocking to me that he thinks she is ok to have around our son!!!!

    • Unless there is a court order to allow your ex (STBX?) to see him, then you have no obligation to even introduce him. And certainly you have no obligation to let him be around someone you don’t trust to be safe with him. If this does come up in court, be sure you document everything that this lady has done. (you still have those messages, right?) Document everything they both have done. Keep a paper trail and a diary of things that happened. If he demands time with your son, you will have this evidence to show in court as evidence of his incompetence as a parent and her lack of safety around you and your son.

      Get an app on your phone that will take a picture of what appears on your phone. This can be of tremendous service if you get any nasty texts. Also see if you have an app that will record conversations.

      Even if you have a court order, you can take this evidence to court to challenge your current arrangement.

      • Thank you so much!!!! We signed all the mediation papers. My husband has him for 35% of the time with overnights. Per papers he cannot bring this girl around him until our son goes to at least 9 psychology appointments (some with me and STBX) and the psychologist deems our son is ready to meet her and will guide us on how he should introduce her. If either of us does not agree with her assessment we can go to court. So we will see how this all plays out. I have everything saved and am documenting everything. My STBX has always been a hands on amazing father!!!! This whole affair/breaking up our family is like the person I knew is gone/replaced by an alien! I am hoping that I got through to him on being there for our son and putting him first. I feel like I did my part with him for our son god now. Now I am taking a step back, focusing on my son and I and hoping their relationship implodes before she comes around our son. Or I’ll do as much as I can in court to keep her away if necessary.

  • Yes, you feel bad that you lost your investment in him. You came together because the relationship made you happy. Even if for a little while. He can be charming when he wants to be, but he decided to leave what he had. It is okay to feel every feeling you do. And it’s alright to reminisce about the things he did that made you feel good. Because no one is completely evil, even as no one is completely good.

    You are the stronger person because you forced him out of your life AND you demanded your fair share of the assets. Don’t let him lay the guilt trip on you: he, the turd, was the one who went after another turd. You proved you could stand by yourself, take care of your daughter, and live your life independent of him.

    There was a turd in my life, too, who did not care about my creativity and crafting, never wanted to talk to me, expected me to read his mind, and sat on the couch watching TV and movies for hours on end. We got divorced and I took what I needed, leaving him with his 4-bedroom, two-story house for his overseas family to visit him for at least a month at a time.

    I got the better part of the bargain. I am divorced once. He is divorced twice. He is good at money; I am good at living and creating. He has a big family to placate, I have a condo which is my castle with a big kitchen that is no-one’s but mine. I have a whole bunch of friends. I don’t know what he has, but I’ll bet it has a lot to do with trying to make money. I have a published book, have been on panels at comic cons, and made lots of friends in many different circles, many of them creative circles.

    What I don’t have (and thank goodness I don’t) is a lump whose legs I have to trip over every time I turn around. He never understood or cared about what I wanted to do and never participated nor supported what I did. I think it’s better to have no feet to trip over and not have support for my endeavors than to have someone who is more likely to bring me down than not.

    In the process, I made some very fast friends, including writer friends and crafting friends and even comic con friends–nerds and geeks, as I am a nerd and geek as well.

    You can believe in yourself because you have more inside you than he ever saw. You got the prize: you got freedom. Now you can bloom and enjoy your life and your daughter!

    And if you want to, every night out can be “girls’ night out!” 🙂

    • Yeah, Virginia!!! You are indeed MIGHTY! And I’m a writer, too, and I love geeky stuff – Supernatural, Marvel, DC comics! We should totally meet some day. 🙂

  • I actually met the OW face to face when my X and her were still going at it a year before he left me. It was no secret that the two of them were meeting up privately…not to me, and it turns out, not to anyone else. She is 25yrs younger than he or I, and has ALL the “body parts” that his Pornified mind craves and that I dont. He has been a cheater throughout BOTH of his marriages and is 64yrs old.

    I “should have” felt some kind of jealousy or even somewhat diminished, but I didn’t given his past history that I uncovered the first year of our marriage. I looked at her, smiled and introduced myself, and just thought what I STILL think to this day: “I KNOW WHAT SHE IS GETTING”. That settled it, and NOTHING could have changed THAT fact or altered my perception enough to have caused me the slightest pain when I caught them together in the back room of his store that fateful day. Knowing what HE IS was ALL there really was to consider.

  • i am just amazed on the timing CL has with this! i just started my divorce process and also in that stage where i still cry when I remember good times with STBX. i feel jealous of OW because he’s currently living with her and chose to abandon his wife and 2 year old kid

    but what OW doesn’t know, my STBX has been constantly checking craigslist, ashley madison, and other hook up sites right under her very nose. his dating profiles are still active and he’s messaging other women there.

    and when i realize that — yes the turd never changed. still a turd. he’s putting up a front that he’s the perfect boyfriend and her family even likes him. as soon as he’s out of her sight, he’s back to the hook up sites.

    i’ve been on no contact with him eversince i started the divorce process. looks like he needs more kibbles since his wife is not available to him anymore.

  • I really needed this, too. My still-husband of 24 years still lives in our family home with me and our three nearly-adult sons (refuses to leave), but moved to the guest room a year ago after I finally stood up against his extreme emotional and physical neglect and told me he wanted a divorce. I later learned he immediately started online dating and found the “love of his life,” whom he has been dating avidly, traveling on five vacations with so far this year (while telling us we can’t afford groceries, due to low cash flow because he was fired from his 20-year job, probably because he was spending all his time with her). I was devastated and evicerated at first, but have healed and grown exponentially in the last year. The only thing that still gets my goat is that he adamantly insists that he is not having an affair, it is not adultery, and he did not cheat since he had moved to the guest room beforehand, which “constitutes separation.” There is no legal separation in our state, but we have not finished negotiating our separation agreement. He never filed for divorce, so I finally did it. But he is so staunchly firm in asserting that I have no moral high ground because he is not cheating and has every right to date whomever he wants to since we are “separated.” His family seems to completely agree, flying in from several states to meet her (the love of his life) last month. They are so happy for him, and so glad that he got rid of the “batshit crazy harranging fishwife.” (They have never accepted or been kind to me since the very beginning.) Even my own lawyer says the Court doesn’t care who screwed who anymore or if he was “a bad boy.” So please tell me what you think — am I a genuine Chump or just a jilted first wife?

    • Your STBX’s behavior is disgusting!!! You are still married no matter what he says!!! Do what you are doing by working towards divorce and get him out of your house as soon as possible. Go no contact (except to co-parent). You deserve so much better than this!!! And you will find happiness w/o him!!!!

      • I sure tried No Contact, but it became impossible because we are in the midst of renovating the family home to sell. We’re done now, but it was a ginormous job (because he totally neglected the house for the past five years when he’d emotionally checked out and I’d had three spinal surgeries). I had to do 95% of it myself because he was too busy with his girlfriend and three (!) volunteer orchestras on top of job hunting. He refused to weigh in on decisions despite my many polite and friendly requests, but then berated me savagely for over-spending and doing too much, even though I only did what the realtor suggested. The house was just in really bad shape and if I hadn’t gotten it fixed up, it would have never sold in our high-end market. So instead of any kind of even passing acknowledgement of my hard work and gorgeous results, he bludgeons me with criticism and shaming. Im already beyond exhausted from months of incredibly hard work, so the derision and mindfucking gets to me more than I know it should.

    • MaybeChump, first, you are welcome here in Chump Nation gathering, it sounds like you need the support! You are being used and abused by this selfish man, and his relatives are lowlifes.
      I’m concerned that you can’t afford groceries, or did you mean that he just stopped contributing? This is eerily similar to what I went through, I have three sons, too, and the X just left work, carried on an open affair, and disrespected everyone in the household. I actually called a family meeting because the house was going to be foreclosed on, and begged everyone to contribute more (and for X to even try to work). Two of my sons got jobs and started paying rent, I already had a job of seven years, but pay was not great, and I was in college, too, at 50 yrs old! Anyway, bad times, and they’re over now, but I feel for you.
      How can he vacation? Does his AP pay for it?
      I hope you and your sons can stick together, and make a plan, because your ‘husband’ sounds more like your enemy.

      • So far, my sons and I haven’t starved, but he controls every penny — only transfers money into the joint account in small increments upon request and explanation of why we need it. So we have to beg for money for just about every purchase, which means we do all we can not to have to buy anything. Just like he wants it.

        I do have a small income of my own with which I have been filling in the gaps, but it’s not much and doesn’t go far. And it’s always infuriated him that I’ve never given him access to my business account. I recently enrolled in graduate school to become a minister, which starts later this month, but since he doesn’t have a job, it may be that I won’t be able to afford to go. He has been very hostile and derisive about my ministerial plans, so I know he’d love it if I had to defer. But that doesn’t matter to me so much as doing whatever I have to do to take care of my sons.

    • You are in the midst of the mindfuck. It’s a painful place to be. You are playing the game of ‘what came first, the chicken or the egg?’. The correct answer to that is: it doesn’t really matter!

      YOU know he sucks!!! It feels unfair that he’s trying to control the narrative and he’s not guilty. Look at me, I’m a good guy. I moved into the spare bedroom first!

      Once you are away from him and off to ‘meh’, the technicalities of just how much did he suck are irrelevant. Please don’t misunderstand “meh”. He sucks. His family sucks. You do not suck. The only opinion that matters on this whole thing is yours!!!!

      • Thank you for that! It does feel like some type of gaslighting, and I definitely know that once I get to meh I won’t care. But I’m not there yet — maybe because he’s still living with us and our sons and I still have to unavoidably share family life (like meals, chores, cars, etc) with him while he simultaneously carries on with his Great New Love. So I’ve dumped and declared “barshit crazy, someone he’s lucky to get away from,” but I’m still forced to play wife every day (believe me, I’ve tried every way to Sunday not to, including hiring movers to put his things in storage and change the locks, which is evidently illegal so I had to let him move back in). Yet if it’s true that it’s no longer adultery once he decides “we’re done,” as he put it, then I can’t take the Chump-style moral high ground stance. I don’t even have a right to call myself a Chump (even though I sure feel like one). He is so derisive about how crazy I am to say there’s anything wrong with his new relationship. I’m so used to trusting him so completely that it’s really hard to know if he’s right or not.

        • No, he is not right. Can you maybe talk to your spiritual advisor? You are being gaslit, and it becomes hard to think. You really need a sane advisor. I wish you well, the craziness is strong with this one!

  • I have to say that this post hit me exactly where I live. I’m jealous, too. Stupid, I know, but I just can’t get past it right now. Thankfully, as each day passes I realize it isn’t HIM I miss so much, it’s the life I thought I had with him. So as soon as I get it through my head that “the life” I miss was a lie, I know I will be OK. I’m working on that, just like we all are. There are days I feel mighty, and days I don’t. Pretty soon the mighty are going to outnumber the weak days. Thanks for your comments– and yours Chump Lady! They help me to see I am not alone, and there is a path out of here.

    • I grieved for the life I lost, too. But the more and more I began to see his true underhanded, selfish, deceptive nature, the more I understood what a relief it is to be free of him. I’m only beginning to realize how miserable I’ve been. I couldn’t admit it to myself before he left because it was too painful to see.

      But now I know I’m a whole lot more fortunate that his girlfriend who still thinks he’s a long-suffering Good Guy who has been saddled with the crazy, harranging wife all those years. One day she’ll realize the truth and maybe his version of events wasn’t quite accurate. Or maybe he’ll keep her deluded for 24 years like he did me, treating her worse and worse every year. I don’t wish the pain of either possibility on her, but I know that stripes don’t change and one of the two will be her future. In the meantime, I’ll be free and making a new life for myself on my terms, with sons who see their dad clearly and know the reality of the kind of man he is. Their disillusionment is the saddest fallout of all.

      • Exactly my feelings Whatnow. Its the life I miss, more than her. The home, the family, the vacations, even the frigging garage.

        Twu Wuv, CL, that’s so funny. ha ha.

  • This column was exactly what I needed this week. I’m one year post divorce and it’s been two and a half years since I left the house. D-Day was almost five years ago. Yet I bristled then wallowed this week after coming across pictures of ex-hubby and mistress at a concert with my son, and then again came across photos of the mistress standing in my place in the family photo at a summer family reunion. It’s absolutely as if he just subtracted me and put her in my place. It’s terribly hard to see someone else in the spot that you occupied. I can only hope that someday there will be some regret.

  • Perhaps the stats speak of non-longetivity for affair relationships but one has to be mentally prepared for the fact that they may and will in some case retain for decades. It certainly did so for my ex-father in law who celebrated his 30th anniversary with the affair partner made good.

    BUT how good did she have it made? Let see…Yes she married the rich guy and gained a so-called “protector ” and grand social status. True true..Consider the following however:

    30 years ago, proving an affair was a whole wallop more difficult than now, this before personal computers and cell phones. So he left ( nothing in common, don’t communicate anymore, better we should go our own way, blah blah blah) and wonder of wonder found solace a mere four months later in a perfect replica of himself. No one could prove of any existing relationship prior divorce and I as an in-law was never made aware that her status was iffy in the eye of his daughters and first wife ( the sons were oblivious) . In retrospective, I recall being amazed that such a mirror partner could be found in such short time, what are the chances?

    Soooo, this woman spent the rest of her days modelling herself after this man who went from a warm bed to another warm bed at no inconvenience to himself ( money being a non-issue due to his vast wealth). Never had to do any introspection nor personal growth. Became increasingly childish and selfish as the years went by and required more and more attention from his visitors and children. Never shown or asked any questions about anyone coming over to his house for a visit but anticipated full attention and interest in himself. Took to whining and berating his spouse in front of everyone, including his and her children. Spoke to no one except if conversation was about himself or things which interested him. It came to be that she, little family destroyer made good would cry whenever her children left after their visit, out of isolation and loneliness one would guess. Much of her energy needed to be spent on preparing big dos for his birthdays, milestones ect. For hers? Unless her children organized them, nothing was done. Oh, also, everyone would go to bed by 9:30 when visiting to escape the boredom and lack of connection with the hosts. His children never liked the woman, her children never liked the man, and the in-laws didn’t get emotionally close to any of the two.

    What to take from this? Solid gold stay in the bank vault where it cannot be stolen. If it places itself in a nickel and dime store to be scooped up by an easy pickpocket, it was never solid gold in the first place. Lots of lead in the core…

    And the first wife? What happened to her is this…Travelled all over the place, made tons of friends

  • Zmichelle – I totally understand your feelings.
    The X is finally going to introduce his soul mate to the family this week during a reunion.
    I went nuts when I heard it.
    Nobody could take my place. I had a firm spot in that family and everybody loved me.
    But, even his mom is going to probably accept this whore he had for 5 yrs while we were very married.

    It’s hurtful. It’s backhanded how so many people in his family treated me like family for the past 35 years, and suddenly – I’m gone and she’s in.
    But, I do have a really hard time thinking they will accept her.
    Besides, she doesn’t share near the amount of memories I have with his siblings.
    AND, she’s obviously the town bike – just by looking at her.

    • Same here. We’re still married and the jerk and his whorefriend (autocorrect really fought me on that one!) just flew back to his hometown to meet his family. Several family members flew in for the occasion. WTF?! Are they insane? How can they think this is okay?! But all I hear is that “they are so glad he’s happy and has found his Twu Wuv.” After all our decades of shared history and heartfelt holidays and moments, its astonishing and feels like he another betrayal.

      • And.. it is.

        In my experience, my cheater’s whole family and older friends are rooting for me. THEY are all going WTF???? It’s just the more recent, faery/new agey/ NICE friends who are being Switzerland. My cheater’s family and older friends have known him intimately for decades. The newer friends, for maybe 2 years and not so closely.

        Who has the correct perspective? 😀

    • Same here. We’re still married and the jerk and his whorefriend (autocorrect really fought me on that one!) just flew back to his hometown to meet his family. Several family members flew in for the occasion. WTF?! Are they insane? How can they think this is okay?! But all I hear is that “they are so glad he’s happy and has found his Twu Wuv.” After all our decades of shared history and heartfelt holidays and moments, its astonishing and feels like he another betrayal.

      • Same here. It was like a kick in the guts when my ex sister in law and ex mother in law, became friends with Ms. Twatwaffles on Facebook.

        I blocked each and every member of his family after that. His friends who became my friends too. Not a single one ever reached out to me to ask my side of the story or to say they’d miss me or to even ask me what happened.

        Fuck them all.

      • OMG!!! This JUST happened to me. I was doing well and healing and it has really, really set me back! He flew her to NY for a week, stayed with his mother who I thought for years was my family. She knows he sucks and used to confide her worries about his anger and drinking for many, many years… Bam Divorce happened and he was finally nice to her after 50 years of being a dick. (Because she is truly the only friend he has in the world besides whatever sidedish he happens to be fucking at the time.) Then she instantly dropped me all caught up in his fake sweet attention. She flew here and helped him steal my personal belongings from the house I had to flee due to his abuse. Now she the hosts the white trash whore and him well knowing that she was fucking him during our marriage and that it screwed HER grandchildren over!?! (He had 100s of other affairs over our 21 years married, white trash whole has no idea of that I’m sure. She is also a colleague and also a cheater. He ex-husband works with all of them at the same company. The most unprofessional place in the world! The CEO fucked the owners daughter during his divorce, then married a different employee… it’s so gross and wouldn’t even be a believable Lifetime movie.) And the outside world thinks he is this bigwig white collar executive VP. I just really need him and the POS whore to suffer a bit.

  • For the last four posters…this is the part which hurts the most ( after the children engaging with the sugar coated affair partner playing best friend). You basically lose half of your family which positively looks the other way as you get hit & run over then proceed to hitch a ride in the car. As you never existed, wash their hand of the whole situation. To wit, my father in law, a Ivyleague Philosophy graduate, dumped his two grand children as soon as he heard of the separation. They simply ceased to exist, even as of his four grand children, his grand daughter was the only one who supported and visited him while in hospital.

    BUT things do not exist in a vacuum. The reptilian brain who was married to you ladies did not spring forth of his own. He is the product of the environment as well as ( to an extent) genetic inheritance. As both Tracy and Dr Banschick state: radical acceptance is the key. He might have been charming at one point and gave you a “good life” but his action/ decision ( and those of his family) speak for themselves. Radically accept that you married a skillfully hidden Narcissist with no mental ability for empathy, an unbalanced self-compassion translating into seeing himself as the victim thus circumventing any guilt/ remorse whatsever, and such is his family. Consider this marriage ( as long standing as it was ) a bad investment, cut your loses and redirect your “finances” on yourself and your children. Who do we want to attract next? A cheater like the girl he is with now? No siree, if we want compassionate people in our life, we must take this opportunity to become EVEN MORE compassionate ourselves. Like draws like. Radical acceptance, this was a bad investment, and so what his family. It sucks but stepping out of these life is essential…

    • But how do I even start with “radical acceptance” ? What does that even mean?

      How can I lay down the 12 years I had with him…the fact that I had 3 kids with him and we went through the death of one of those children. There are things I shared with him that I will never share with anyone else…and I gave my heart in a way I will never be able to again.

      How do I leave the brokenness behind?

      • You will give your heart again, but you must accept the pain of what you are feeling for now. You will share those things, your life is not over by any means. I felt the same way but you will come out of it. You must accept the brokenness, it is real. Live with it for a bit and accept it. Feel what you need to feel, you are supposed to – I had to find this out. I had to hurt, pull away from others, be triggered, feel shame and all of these other things, but the reset button has been pressed on a portion of your existence as it was with mine. It will not change in a meaningful way, once they go down this road, they don’t come back. Focus on accepting your feelings and stay involved here. But – you must accept what this is.

        You will have to let go of the dreams and the feelings of what the relationship was and at some point reconcile it with the reality of your situation, but now feel hurt and accept your emotions. Focus on what you and your children need and move from there. Accept where you are and feel it, it is OK. Don’t think of leaving the feelings behind, go through them.

        • Bingo, BSOD chumped expressed it far better than I could have done ( english being a second language ). From what i understood from both our Tracy and Dr Banschick, humans want to bond and once this is done, the cruel unbonding from one party through betrayal, backstabbing and abandonment is more than the mind wants to accept. In other words, consciously or unconsciously we desire deep down that the betrayer, backstabber and abandoner will come back ( preferably on his knees) sees the errors of his ways and undo the destruction somehow. We can be unrealistic with this perhaps undisclosed vow, and also even silly in the like of ” ,,if only I had used the adverb deeply instead of truly hurt in my last email…” The mind refuses to cross-reference actions to intentions.
          Radical acceptance is to understand and accept the radical notion that perhaps he was never attached to you and ( even more difficult to accept) to the children. He walked out, not because of the brain drugs release, the fog, the green grass and other ufo sightings but he walked out because your misery didn’t measure to his happiness. Or very little. Otherwise he would never have caused this pain to you, his beloved lifemate or his dearly loved children. Radical acceptance once again from what I understand is accepting that you were not an person to him but a cherished object until a better one came along. Ditto with the children. I am an older woman and have observed throughout the socio-cultural spectrum how often men in affair remarriages treated their step-children better than their own. They did this of course because the quality of the kibbles were in their eyes better than their own ( long-term secured) possessions, ie their own offsprings.

          This hurts like a fucker but it must be accepted otherwise one remains mired into misery and eternal futile hope. The Ming vase cannot be glued back together once it’s been kicked to the floor. If the thrower did not understand its value, then truly his loss, another radical acceptance. Moreover, his misery in many many years down the road when getting out of the comfy recliner will become more difficult to do and oh, wouldn’t it be nice to have children to drive him to his dr appointments. Step-children don’t seem to care so much, you see…

          We accept that this is so. Btw, Tracy is correct and as is Banschick. Life goes one, better than before because living with a narcissist is very difficult. Imo, the best indicator is also how he acts regarding finances during divorce. With actions not promises. That’s is when the mask slips, always (in case of true narc). Then better for the soulmate to deal with a corrupted crook who cares not a whit how this own offsprings will fare. To let go of the Dr Jerkyll side is very very hard but it is one’s survival, imho

          • Sunflower36, I am very sorry for your broken heart and realize my descriptions are harsh and difficult to accept. You really must protect your tender heart, sweetie. It is imperative. Once again, it hurts me to type these words though… : (

          • This is all so true! Well written!!!! I am in the beginning of this process and filing for divorce. The roller coaster sucks!!! I know I can do better and do not want to reconcile but I feel everything right now so deeply. Very distressing!!!! Just want to get better and get over this!!!!

      • Sunflower, I have no answer to your questions, just want you to know that my heart broke when I read your comment. I’m sending you such a huge hug right now. I also felt like I could never give my heart again, and that’s without the loss of one of my own beautiful children. Sweetie, This too shall pass. Inhabit the pain until it’s finished with, and then move on to YOU and your needs and hopes. Never forget that however much you love your children and even your vanished ex, YOU are the only life you can save. You are beautiful and worthy of so much love and esteem.


  • I am in shock!
    Reading this letter is like reading my own words ” I cannot cope with the OW being a part of my child’s life. I cannot believe that SHE WON!… she gets MY LIFE! My family. ”

    That was last year.
    Allison, this year, I am truly free of cheater pants. And he is so so “happy” with his new woman, that he spends his time writing me looong emails, trying to annoy me. He’s not happy. And that ain’t my problem anymore!

    Wish you short road to liberation!

  • Glad I read this today. The last few days for me have been rough. I know in my head what you say is true, but my heart isn’t always in agreement. I am four months into our separation, and sometimes I just see him – and miss him and think maybe he will realize that he made a HUGE mistake for leaving me and our kids. I imagine he will beg me for forgiveness and want to be with me again. But then I remember that I deserve better than someone who left our family and home for someone he met on Ashley Madison – while he was already seeing ANOTHER person he had met on the same site. I am just ready for this emotional roller coaster to level out and move on. I need reminders often that I am stronger than I realize and I can do this. Thanks for today’s dose . . .

    • “I am just ready for this emotional roller coaster to level out and move on. I need reminders often that I am stronger than I realize and I can do this. ”

      You ARE stronger than you ever thought you’d have to be.
      This shit is hard and everybody gets a big turn on the twisty roller-coaster that flips your stomach daily and it’s out of control. It will level off eventually, usually after the divorce details are finalized. Until then, it won’t be easy on anybody.

      For me? I still loved the guy. So, it’s a matter of processing the un-bonding after many years together and trying to figure out how not to love him anymore. I’m not wanting to love anybody that doesn’t love me. that’s hard. I don’t think I’m there yet and it’s been 3 yrs divorced.