An excerpt from ZHUCHI below:
- This one-day, enlightening and entertaining class is an absolute MUST for anyone who works with couples and individuals impacted by infidelity.
- It is also an absolute MUST for anyone in a relationship impacted by infidelity – yesterday, today or tomorrow.
Session 1: Intro to the Chump Experience – how Tracy came to do this and why she thinks it’s needed.
Session 2: The Reconciliation Industrial Complex – debunking the common Infidelity and Reconciliation narratives and why they are so damaging and often, nonsensical. Myth busting monogamy and evolution arguments for infidelity.
Session 3: What the mental health and counselling profession could do differently – Therapeutic models that allow for character disorder; Empower and rebuild: collated from the feedback of thousands.
Session 4: Gain a Life — book reading, Q&A, debate.
Discounts available for groups of 3+ people and not for profit organisations.
Please note, CHUMP LADY has asked that a donation to a local Domestic Violence refuge receive a donation in lieu of her being paid to present.
Infidelity is as constant as death and taxes and that is a fact. As a consequence, betrayed partners are a demographic that sadly regenerates itself day-by-day and will be with us always. When the internet and social media arrived, so did a multitude of avenues for infidelity – taking it way beyond the traditional dominion of the workplace or social circle.
According to Bloomberg Businessweek:
“It’s not easy to get a handle on the size of the fling economy. The Internet dating market is worth $1 billion to $1.5 billion in the U.S., according to industry website Online Dating Insider, and some portion of that, from 10 percent to 30 percent, depending on whom you ask, involves people who are already in relationships.”
All those millions of members (“in a relationship/it’s complicated…”) have partners. All those millions spent came from shared marital assets – household budget, inheritance, or retirement accounts. All that popularity has untold costs – legions of betrayed partners being created every day.
In addition to the technological ease with which you can have an affair (Ashley Madison alone claims 22 million members worldwide), the popularity of literature touting the unnaturalness of monogamy continues to grow and feed the illicit beast.
Finally, a growing culture of self obsession and narcissist chic e.g. edgy articles exulting the virtues of being a mistress and online forums on how to cheat and get away with it.
These form a trifecta punch that emphasises the fabulous at the expense of the betrayed.
What help is available after infidelity?
- An outdated therapy model that works from “I’m okay, you’re okay, we all brought issues to the marriage.”
- An outdated therapy model that doesn’t recognise personality or character disorders as they relate to infidelity.
- A culture or religious tradition that disapproves of divorce under any circumstance.
- A cultural or therapy bias that promotes “saving marriages” at any cost, whatever the state of that marriage.
- A predatory online community of “therapists” who will sell you tools to “affair proof” your marriage or save it single-handedly. (Mort Fertel, Michele Weiner-Davis, Andrew Marshall). Who also believe that you should court back your cheater with gifts (Fertel, Marshall, and others) and “make the marriage a good place to be” (Weiner-Davis) after discovery.
- Large online infidelity forums predicated on reconciliation (Talk About Marriage, Surviving Infidelity, Marriage Builders, Beyond Affairs Network).
- Infidelity Reconciliation Literature written mostly by therapists, that work from the assumption that reconciliation is the default and desired outcome. They divide along the lines of how much fault for the affair(s) they lay on the betrayed partner and the “unmet needs” in the marriage.
- Infidelity Reconciliation Literature, written mostly by therapists, that take a sad sausage approach to cheaters and focus on what “compelled” them to cheat, and ask if their partner is measuring up (e.g. After the Affair by Janis A. Spring; When Good People Have Affairs by Mira Kirshenbaum; I Love You, But I Don’t Trust You also by Mira Kirshenbaum; My Husband’s Affair Became the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me by Anne Bercht.
- Other popular titles lay the blame for infidelity on the unnaturalness of monogamy: The Monogamy Myth: A Personal Handbook for Recovering from Affairs, by Peggy Vaughan; Mating in Captivity by Esther Perel; The Monogamy Gap: Men, Love, and the Reality of Cheating by Eric Anderson
It truly SUCKS.
CHUMP LADY: A Fresh Voice, an Important Message
When chumps wash up on the shores of ChumpLady.com, from the U.S., UK, Pakistan, West Africa, South Africa, Australia, the Netherlands, India, Germany, Sweden, France and beyond, they are tired and thirsty for something different…
Chump Lady is a voice that speaks to them with a new message about infidelity. This new voice says: “You know what? Maybe this isn’t the relationship for you. Without trust this marriage isn’t sustainable.” Or, “It’s okay to lay this burden down and leave. The cheating isn’t your fault. You’re going to be better on the other side of this crap.”
The motto of ChumpLady.com is “Leave a cheater, gain a life.” Tracy believes losing a remorseless cheater is addition by subtraction and motivates chumps to set boundaries by getting angry, finding the absurdity, and recognizing manipulation tactics of cheaters. Leaving is the first part. Gaining a life is next. Tracy advises her community to work toward feelings of “meh” about the cheater and to take the rotten experience of infidelity and let it become a catalyst to a better life.
The experience of being chumped cuts across class, race, gender, orientation, and cultural lines. The message of Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life is a funny, smart, and practical field guide of the infidelity terrain that will appeal to all manner of chumps, in every stage of discovery – those who just found out, those who tried reconciliation for years, are divorcing, are in limbo, or were abandoned, those married to serial cheaters, the one-night stand, the emotional affairs. It’s for anyone who questions if people who disrespect you can really love you.
What makes CHUMP LADY different?
- Chump Lady’s work is the only resource available in print and online that is chump-centric, that addresses the experience of being betrayed, and asks questions that are independent of What The Cheater Wants: Is this relationship acceptable to you? How are you going to protect yourself?
- In the experience of hundreds of thousands of people who read ChumpLady.com, the site is the only infidelity resource that is not predicated on reconciliation. To date, the blog has had over 16.5 million views and no one can point to another site like it. Chump Lady is not just for women. The narrative voice is gender and orientation neutral and the ChumpLady.com has a robust LGBT readership. About a third of the commentators on the site are men.
- While Chump Lady is not anti-reconciliation, she is highly skeptical of its long-term success and does not advocate for it as the default position after discovery. She preaches “sorry is as sorry does,” provides a taxonomy of remorse, and advises people who are keen on reconciliation to only do so with demonstrable acts and with financial and legal protections in place.
- Chump Lady argues that affairs are based in entitlement and reconciliation is based in humility. It’s a tall order to expect that someone mired in entitlement (an affair) will come out of the starting gate with humility. Chump Lady is for those people who have the common experience of not having a remorseful spouse, and who don’t know where to go next.
Infidelity and Character Disorder
While Chump Lady does not make the argument that everyone who cheats has a personality disorder, she does believe that cheating is narcissistic—to pull it off you have to stifle empathy for your partner. (Lack of empathy being a hallmark of narcissism).
Chump Lady offers similar advice to that of Authors who deal with narcissistic abuse or character disorder: pay attention to actions over words, look for manipulation, and realise that how this person is behaving is the clue to their character.
Some people have a different moral framework than we have. Some people are cons. Some people are just selfish jerks. And if you believe in a one-size-fits-all view of humanity, you just may be chumped.
CL here again — Please share this on social media. We’re all about changing the narrative here at CN, so let’s build some buzz! Hope to see you there!