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Yeah, That’s Not an Apology

assholesorryGiven the recent news cycle, I thought it would be appropriate to have a little primer on Genuine Imitation Naugahyde Remorse. GINR is full of those weak-ass apologies that upon closer inspection don’t really convey “sorry” at all. If you’re a chump, you’ve probably put a lot of stock in weak-ass apologies. Maybe you even begged for a weak-ass apology, got one, and inferred great depths of humanity from it.

Today I’m going to give you a primer for decoding bullshit apologies, courtesy of the Universal Bullshit Translator. If you see any of these mindfucks in play, you don’t have a real apology — you have bullshit.

1.) This Isn’t The Real Me. Don’t be fooled. Uh yeah. Yes it is. Con artists love to disavow their true shitty selves. They know you love the hologram, so they’re going to insist that the hologram is really them. Did I cheat on you? Well kinda sorta, but that wasn’t the REAL me! The real me loved you all along! In fact, I only cheated because I have such a deep fear of intimacy that I can’t really face how very deeply I love you. And I have toxic shame about that, so you’re going to need to do some bolstering here. Because the Real Me is someone who could never hurt you! Lying to you was a kindness, because I respect you so much! And who would you rather believe in? Some hurtful, lying asshole, or a person who LOVES you?

Shitty people do shitty things. That is who they ARE. It’s not a midlife crisis/affair fog/optical illusion — it’s a choice made with agency. Pickled in deep entitlement. You want to convince me that’s not the real you? Don’t be sorry — be different.

2.) It’s All About Me. The biggest giveaway with bullshit apologies is that the “sorry” is about them — how they suffer. How this hurts them too. Hurts them more, really. How no one really understands their intrinsic self and how tragic that is. What a journey that selfhood has been, and really this Terrible, Unmentionable Thing they may have done was really all for the best! Because it has led to such personal growth!

Unmentioned? The people who were hurt. You’re just bit players in the narcissist’s epic narrative of selfhood.

3.) You have faults too! Crap apologies are full of false equivalencies and straw man arguments. Well, I never said I was perfect. Uh, perfect wasn’t the standard here — basic decency was. Well, you’re not perfect either. In fact, the way you make coffee is positively criminal. That’s your cue to defend your position on flavored coffees. PUMPKIN SPICE IS A  VALID COFFEE FLAVOR AND IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT YOU CAN MAKE YOUR OWN DAMN COFFEE! Pumpkin spice is not a crime equivalent to betrayal. Getting you to go there and defend yourself and admit you have faults and aren’t perfect positions you nicely into the corner of We Both Brought Issues to the Marriage That Made Me Cheat.

4.) Pay no attention to me — SQUIRREL! Wackadoodles like to create drama that diverts attention from discovery of their malfeasance. Caught them cheating? Look for the Hail Mary play of suspected pregnancy, threatened job loss, or I’m Going to Flunk This Important Exam And It’s All Your Fault For Bringing Your Pain To My Attention.

The con is trying to ratchet your anxiety and concern and direct it elsewhere.

5.) Minimization. Bullshit apologies are full of euphemisms and Orwellian spin. It wasn’t a decade of seeing hookers, it was an “indiscretion” (singular). It wasn’t a sustained, active double life, it was a “mistake” (singular). What’s not minimized, however, is your reaction. Too bad you can’t be the bigger person and forgive me for this trifle. God, you’re really overreacting. If you took offense (at this singular, trifling, irrelevant mistake), then I’m sorry (that you’re so unperceptive). 

Got a bullshit apology? Go no contact and trust that they suck. You’ve got better things to do than stick your head in the mindfuck blender.

This column ran previously. 

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at [email protected]. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • After finding out my cheater had a child by a violent, unmedicated bipolar, unemployed OW with a long criminal history and that she was currently pregnant again by him (we have six living children, at that time ages 2-14), the grand apology I received was………….”I didn’t try to.” WTF!

    • These are all red flags, but regardless of the words, it’s the actions that matter. Mine refused a post nup (thank you timely GNR post…), saying she wouldn’t invest in a one sided relationship (Which is hilarious when you consider the one sided nature of an affair). Her apologies we’re worth shit and she proved it without a doubt with her aggressive, entitled approach to a heavily contested divorce.

      They’re great liars, so actions show who they are.

  • The deepest I got with a hint of emotion was ‘I’m sorry for hurting you, I was going to take it to my grave, I didn’t mean to hurt you’
    Then many ‘Im hurt also’ and the Clanger ‘one day you will realise the part you played and why I went there’
    Yeah ok????
    He’s still trying to Hoover while dating other women because ‘ I have the kids and yoga and he needs something’ this pretty much sums up his rationalising and general shit attitude towards me.
    Contact as of a month ago is only brief landline convo about kids, no answering machine, No v mail, text or email as he just sends endless bullshit.
    As they say in Aus ‘How’s the Serenity’ lovin it.

    • I didn’t mean to hurt you, but I did mean to have sex with that Schmoopie and lie to you about it and spend family money on buying her stuff.

      • I didn’t mean to hurt you because you were out of my field of vision, therefore, you didn’t exist.

        My ex seemed genuinely shocked when he realized how his decisions were going to affect other relationships in our family. Like he existed in a vacuum and 36 years of history didn’t mean anything.

        • My ex also couldn’t believe the knock-on effects of his cheating, to our families, friends, his work collegues etc.

          When I brought it to his attention he went into denial and said “No-one else is involved, we only involved ourselves” WTF ??!

        • They are so selfish and clueless. I am friends on Facebook with someone my ex knows. My ex posted, “You don’t know who you married until you divorce.”
          What? So stupid. He ran around for months then moved in with a 22 y.o. while being horribly cruel and vindictive. So I divorce him and I’M the bad one. You can’t make this crap up. They are so about themselves and entitled. They have brain damage.

          • Blaming the Chump feels a lot better than accepting responsibility. I am sure that is a core strategy of the narcissistic.

            • Mine sent me this zinger, “I’m sorry for what you’ve become and the part I played in it”. He was telling everyone I was crazy and that was why I was divorcing him, forgetting to mention his serial infidelity over a decade. The lack of ownership for their actions is truly mind boggling!

    • Ah is that an Aus saying that they used in the film The Castle or did the film create the popular saying? Loved that movie!

      Also latest narrative I got was this gem emailed to me while giving me condolences on a death in my family: The reason that this happened is because we grew apart and never talked about why or how to fix it. We both saw it happening, too. My actions are mine alone and inexcusable, but the breakdown in the relationship was a joint effort.

      I did not see this happening. How is he still trying to gaslight me and make me doubt my experience? Oh right – no contact.

      • Yes that saying is from The Castle, a damn fine movie.
        I got the same line about growing apart and that he felt he just couldnt talk to me.
        This from someone who was only home two nights a week while I ran a house, looked after two small kids and worked. He has some nerve.
        If it doesnt look like rainbows and lollipops they think its substandard as they live in an entitled fantasy world.
        He rang last night to talk about Christmas presents, then swiftly said. ‘I need to ask if this is final’
        I wrapped it up quick with ‘I dont need to have this conversation, bye’
        I know he would threaten me afterwards by making a comment about the mortgage or saying something hurtful about being with someone else and he just needs to know its over.
        I think he thought I would stick sround for his endless drama and bullshit which I have put up with plenty of. First six years he was a binge drinker who would disappear regularly for days and spend all our money. Sorry when I was born I didnt come with a memo from god saying I was to be your caretaker!!!

        • I got that he could not talk to me: “you did not give me space to talk in our relationship”. One of the small signs he was such a coward. I did not interrupted him when he talked. I was always so mindful of being respectful. I did not break into tears (not even the couple of times he talked to me after DDay) or got angry or anything like that. First the coward asshole wanted me to read his mind, and second he wanted me not to have any emotional reaction to anything he said and just agreed.

        • I think we were married to the same person. No contact if possible, or grey rock……

    • Nowdeadserialcheaterwife took [most of] her affairs to the grave. But secrets have a way of swimming to the surface once the cheater isn’t there to keep piling more dirt on them.

  • When I caught him I heard, “I’m sorry , I’ll fix it.”

    When the “fix it” didn’t happen, his tune changed: “I can’t change the past. You need to get over it already.”

    The mere promise to repair the damage he caused became the fulfillment of the promise. He’d already forgiven himself and forgotten about it. Therefore there was nothing he needed to do to make amends.

    • The depressing realisation for me in the last few months is how truly selfish and ungiving they are. No one else’s needs will come before his, never have never will, only in the love bombing faze will anyone get anything from him, them crumbs, intermittently.

      • This is the #truth. She’s found an excuse to blame everyone (me, the children, her family, friends, etc.) except herself for what she’s done. Doesn’t even realize, or want to acknowledge, that she’s the source of the problem.

    • After that I got the Small Stuff spin. I asked for some common decency. He told me I was being unreasonable. “Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff” and “It’s All Small Stuff.” Because it’s Small Stuff he can ignore it and me both.

      He even bought the books for himself – to make himself feel better and find new ways to needle me.

    • I also got ” this all has to be put in the past, you cannot dewl on it and keep bringing it up” and ” I’m sorry for what I did but not for why I did it” and to this day that comment still baffles me, wtf does that even mean?

      My stbx is too entitled to apologise, he prefers to focus on my forgiveness. How can you forgive someone who hasn’t apologised?

      I also got ” this marraige was over 4 years ago” mind you l was 20 weeks pregnant at the time…thanks for the memo fuckwit.

      • Mine said similar. He wanted to break up with me 3 years prior.

        So why didnt you – user fuckwit cheater? Oh that’s right. Too busy sucking the very soul out of my body.

  • I agree here is an example of s bad apology i received via text from the cheater on d-day 4. I have since divorced …????
    “I’m disgusted with myself.
    I don’t know what to do either. I’ve been freaking out. I’ve ruined everything for me.”

    • Sweet goodness! The number of I’s and me’s in that bull crap apology. The only person he’s sorry for is himself ????

    • >>”I’ve ruined everything for me …”

      Unmitigated gall. It runs deep with these assholes (of either gender).

      • Cue the pity party.

        My ex kept telling me how hard it was for him too. Sometimes I actually felt sorry for him because he was sobbing so much. I thought he was going through some kind of midlife depression. His behavior was so out of character for the strong, silent type he’d been through most of our marriage.

    • “I’ve ruined everything for ME.”

      When the mask slips, it slips for good.

      • In all my posts, I don’t think I ever mentioned this gem…

        when it was revealed that he had gotten “too close to a coworker” (fucking but still lying about it) he said:

        “The worst part about this is that I will never again be able to have female friends at work”

        Really? you ripped my heart out, lied to me, abused me, destroyed our family and the “worst” part is your work friendships? I don’t know that Ive ever told that story…seemed to fit right in with “I ruined everything for me”.

        • My then-7 year-old said to RonBurgundy, “Why did you leave us, Daddy?” Ron Burgundy said, “I was unhappy. You wouldn’t want Daddy to be unhappy, would you?” All. About. Him.

  • Yes, 26 year marriage riddled with serial cheating (he coped with his aggrieved conscience by treating me as if I were the sort of person who DESERVED this sort of treatment) and he said

    “I had a bad moment”

    moment, MOMENT !!!!

    Another amazing day …when we started in wreconciliation hid grand overture to returning to what was supposed to look like a normal marriage was “When we hang up from a call, I may say that I love you because on some level I probably do”. <—- newbies, that there is what you get if you "win" this contest with an AP…a fucking mess that is never cleaned up and never good.

    • I got the word ‘glitch’ thrown around a few times. I shut that shit down quick.
      Go to hell

      • “Glitch”….fuck, like the whole secret life program had a bug. Im embarrassed to admit that the “moment” comment came at a time when I was so overwhelmed, I didn’t have the wisdom or energy to shut that down as I now wish I had.

        The other word I will never forget is “connection”…is came out of his mouth repeatedly as he explained why he was involved with OW…at one point, he said the “connection” was partially over really similar “funny fart stories” from their childhoods…yea, THAT is a good idea, try to create a new life with THAT as a basis.

        • I heard “we just clicked the moment we met” yeah online! Please cue rainbow puking troll.

          • “I didn’t think you’d care.” Then why go thru such lengths to lie and cover up? Because my only response to the truth would have been “oh really? I don’t care.” When i asked question after question about inconsistencies, did I not appear to care? He didn’t stick to any of the original “apologies/reasons/oops” (he actually took full responsibility) that he blurted out in the beginning, but those initial knee-jerk answers were so fucking painful.

            My all time fave apology of course, from anyone, is “i’m So sorry you misunderstood what I meant. That must be so hard for you.” Grrrrrr.

            • Mine tried to float “She’s like a sister to me.”
              REALLY? Buy your sisters vibrators, much? Thongs? Bras? UGH! PUKE!
              Told him I didn’t think he was a safe parent for a 15 year old daughter given his f*ed up morals and “logic.” He said, “DD is safe.” I replied, “I’m a grown adult and I wasn’t safe with you. How the hell can she be?”
              It’s ALL. about. Them.

            • Sad to say, those knee-jerk reactions may be as close as we ever get to actual truth from these asswipes. ???????? #nocontactissanity

          • I got, “I didn’t mean for this to happen. We have a mental connection.”
            Kar Marie – they met online rainbows everywhere!

            • No “connection” other than the magic that occurred when his dick connected with her mouth. Because what boss can say no to the offer of blow jobs? Because classy.

          • I got “we had a CONNECTION, we didn’t talk, but we COMMUNICATED”

            I said “Whaaaat? You’re trying to tell me that you read minds now? A pity you didn’t put your skills to work when my car broke down and I couldn’t reach you because your phone was switched off in the hotel where you were f***ing Susie Slutpants”

            He said “It’s not like that, she’s a nice girl ” Puke, vomit, barf etc etc

            • Wow your ex is a mind reader!!
              As part of the special mental connection Cheater pants exchanged naked photos with the OW and went to her work once a week to eat. She was a waitress I saw all the receipts on our bank statements. When I confronted he claimed he never met her and didn’t know the place he ate at on a weekly basis was her work!! Maybe he didn’t’ recognize her with her clothes on??

              • Mine took all kinds of naked pictures with OW to show all of his friends. I guess he forgot that he gave our daughter his ipad. I picked it up one day and for some reason clicked on photos and got an eyeful. Hopefully our daughter didn’t see them. She had been using another device, so I don’t think she did. Talk about stupid.

            • I hate it when cheaters take offense to the suggestion that their AP is anything other than a good person. Excuse me, but good people don’t go around fucking other people’s spouses and then encouraging them to break up their families. That’s not an opinion, that’s a fact. There are no circumstances that make that kind of behavior ok.

              • He had a hard time seeing any good when the lying cheating really dumb yin to his yang turned out to be really bad. Everyone knew he was just the latest to say yes to the m/cow, not “special”. He suffered a public professional humiliation that he was not able to spin on anyone. Major walk of shame.

    • My soon to be ex called it an incident and it never meant anything ???? so that’s why it went on for over four years!!!!!!!

  • My ex told our daughter it was her fault that he and his gf were breaking up. They didn’t break up. Instead they brought our daughter home from Thanksgiving camping trip at 2 a.m. – without her things. I had to go pick them up 2 weeks later as he refused to bring her her clothes and retainer. He refused to bring her her things to punish her. She hasn’t wanted to see him as she sees how selfish and mean he is. He thinks he is awesome.

    Last week she didn’t want to see him. He texted that she has to – the court says so. He texted her he was sorry – what’s the problem?

    Just the usual threats and bullying might be the problem.

    He texted me he was bringing the police with the court order to get her.

    I texted – good – I’ll tell them you dumped her off at 2 in the morning without her clothes and refuse to give them to her. I’ll have the police make you give your daughter her things.

    He said he was blocking me

    Oh Yeah, ex and gf left their baby’s diaper in my gutter, too. So classy.

    He texted me ‘sorry’ 2 years ago when he moved in with girl from work. Hilarious – texting ‘sorry’

    • I like how you didn’t give in to his threats. Document what he did to your daughter. If you have names from the campground office, send an email thanking them. Might be a good idea to take DD to a good child psychologist to get an expert on record with this story.

      • Thank you. I checked with my lawyer. Our daughter is ok enough to refuse visits – I just need to document. And she is seeing a psychologist
        . It’s hard – painful – to see her waking up to who he really is. She is so hurt at his callousness. She said he doesn’t care about anyone but himself…

        Yeah. 🙁

        All he knows is threats – no reasoning or negotiation – just bullying to get his way.

        • Oh, and he did what he did because he was “unhappy.” While telling me everything was fine – I was being insecure and silly with my suspicions.

          Well, I wasn’t ‘happy’ all of the time either, but the thought of blowing up my family and crushing a teenage girl never crossed my mind. For 2 years he was threatening to sell the house because I wanted too much support – he would be living under a bridge! I was so unreasonable with request for support. Kicking his wife, daughter and dogs out their house? No big deal.

          As noted above – it’s all about them. They do not have the capacity to care about anyone else. My ex had a journal from rehab 16 years ago. He writes that he is unable to love. He can only use people as they are objects to him – objects to use as a means to an end – his.

          Well, the court ordered the exact amount I asked him for in the beginning, and not only is he not living under a bridge penniless, he is renting house in expensive neighborhood, bought new huge toy hauler to fit new desert vehilce (Rzr), in addition to all of his other toys – drones, cameras, lenses, tools, etc. etc.

          The OW – oh yeah, look at the prize she got. He’s not a better person for for her or their son. They can only fake it for so long.

  • I didn’t intend for this to happen, she was there for me when you weren’t. We need to just forgive and forget…. that’s what marriage is about. I’m doing this out of hurt and pain.

    I didn’t intend for my penis to enter my ho-worker while you were home with our son even though I took my pillow and toothbrush over there.

    You just need to forgive me for fucking you over, watching you beg for our marriage ( while he stood gloating) and seeing texts/emails bashing you (the wife) to ho-worker. I can’t help it, you made me this way. I’m the real victim for the way you treated me.

    • You must have posted while I was righting the same thing. Just goes to show how unoriginal cheaters really are. I swear they have some secret cheater society bible that they all get their play by play from.

    • I’ve been hibernating for a while now, but “..I took my pillow—” okay, you got me. Did he take his binky and his bear, too? I’m sorry, but sometimes the absurdity just stops you cold.

      • They need to make sure they sleep comfortably after a night of deviant sex.
        When he was in my face cheating, he’d come home in the morning, after staying with her, to shower and get ready for work. If he didn’t bring his pillow back, I knew he’d be staying the night again with her.
        The absurdity that I begged for him back still baffles me.

  • Cheaters live off of the plausible deniability created by their claims of innocent intent. “I didn’t MEAN to hurt you.” As if intent were some magic salve, that when spread over enough surface area, provides some magical healing power. “Hey, I didn’t intend to stab you in the back, so let’s just call this gaping wound an unfortunate accident. Here I have some magic “intent salve”… when applied liberally reverses the effect of my shitty behavior (oh and the bonus … puts some of the responsibility on you too!) I didn’t intend to hurt you, why can’t you just get over it and stop being so shitty. You know forgiveness is a choice right? Not like the innocence of an affair, it just kind of happened, but you are choosing to be angry!”

    That intent salve has some mystical properties!

      • Week of DD when X picking up stuff to move in with 20 year younger, paid @ $300./session massage parlor whore…

        Serial cheating X: I suppose you think it’s my fault you have cancer too.

        Me: silence.

        SCX: Well, it’s not. There’s never a good time to leave is there? I’ve never been a selfish person but I deserve to be happy. Some day you’ll understand.

        Me: Wow! Bye bye then. Go be happy.

        Hence my CN name FreeNow. Cheater free and cancer free now. Amazing how a disease goes away when you get to the root cause. 34 years of him gaslighting, blame-shifting, manipulating, academy-award-winning level lying/acting and wasting marital funds.

        Cheers to my first holiday season without cancer, cheater or pending mediation/divorce.

        Side note: Just two weeks after he said the above, he showed up (uninvited) to my cancer surgery at hospital with huge expensive floral arrangement (image management). My adult son told him he wasn’t welcome.

        He chose his whore and new, happy life. He wasn’t a part of my life anymore.

        Sad sausage act after that…actions = consequences. He had the sadz. We should all feel sorry for his image rather than worry about my cancerous tumor about to be removed. So disordered!

        Time (really good counseling and my “tribe” supporting me) has helped to see him for the selfish, self-centered asshole he was and remains to be.

        Sorry, fake apologies not accepted or in other words fuck off.

  • Slight digression from the discussion of the nature of apologies themselves:

    In the thousands of stories I’ve read here and on other infidelity sites, I cannot recall one—ONE—apology that was issued proactively. That is, has any cheater in the history of cheaterdom apologized without first being caught? Instead, they were so overcome with remorse that they proactively fessed up?

    Did anyone here have such a cheater? Or heard of one?

    • Well David, Doughboy did tell me he wanted a divorce and that he hadn’t had sex with her just “I’m in love with her and she’s told me she’s in love with me” no sex just a “special bond”. To which I replied “get the fuck out now”.
      Whether he was telling the truth about the sex is anyone’s guess but the fact he ” supposedly had feelings for her for 2 years” makes it a betrayal in my book, sex or not. Of course, in his warped pea brain this meant he’d been faithful! How sick is that? He couldn’t grasp the concept that if you are emotionally involved and persuing a relationship with someone other than your spouse for 2 years it’s betrayal. But since Doughboy claims they didn’t actually have sex then technically he hadn’t committed adultery. He couldn’t quite equate betrayal:adultery.
      So to answer your question re a pro active apology …….I guess you could argue that he gave me a heads up he was about to have sex with his whore. Not quite an apology for betraying my trust and love for the past 39 years but hey ‘nobodies perfect’. I’m sure he felt it exhonerated him as he could claim he didn’t commit adultry, which of course, he did as our divorce is not final yet. But in his wee mind he did nothing wrong as he was upfront about things! WTF

        • Thanks David, but you know I’m not sorry, I’m having the time of my life right now. Who knew life could be so much fun without a Cheater!

      • You’re not alone . Daddy one was at 30 years. Dday 2 at 34 years. Divorce final 36 years…

      • Yep, I get it Lyndaloo. 36 years for me too. 36 years of watching him flirt and develop “emotional attachments” to female coworkers while I did the adult stuff like raise kids and stay on top of paying our bills.

        • Lyn do you feel a sense of relief that the crap is finally over? Maybe it’s my age but now I’ve come to terms with his character I’m very much at peace most days. The thought of him now makes me wince! He just seems so ridiculous and embarrassing. Life is good now.

        • Me too, 38 years. Nearly four decades of doing just about everything regarding home, work, bills, kids, holidays. . . and * poof * abandoned – he’s been soooo unhappy! Traded in for an OLDER woman with no kids or living family (but with a little money) to distract her from his wonderfulness. Why am I the only one who sees through the “unhappy” line bullshit and knows how shallow he is?

        • Lyn, what the hell is wrong with you doing adult stuff like raising kids and paying the bills on time? That’s no fun.

      • Sounds so much like my situation. Blindsided 2 months before our 39 anniversary, with he wanted to be single. No explanation and we had been going out to dinner 2 times a week but only on weekdays. He had his band and roller skating on the weekends while I helped raise our very young granddaughter. He said to me in such a nasty tone, “I’m going to do what I want, when I want, and no one will tell me what to do!!”He denied there was another woman until I found the proof on d day, 9 months later. Long story short, he had met the whore roller skating (a year ago) but “hadn’t fucked her until after he asked for the divorce.” Like he really thought I believed that bullshit!!!! Took 3 long years to divorce his sorry ass, because we had a business together for 32 years. The closest thing I ever got to an apology was, he didn’t mean to hurt me. He has never once in 4 years now, discussed this with our 4 grown children. Just acts like they should accept the whore, who only one of the kids has met. He’s knee deep in “rollertits”…aka, OW, family problems now. Seems I’m the one doing what I want, when I want and I have no one to answer to. Karma baby !!!! Hang in there gals and guys!!

        • 42, well it would have been 39 years on Dec 15. I’m 8 months out and I’m feeling pretty damn awesome. After Doughboy’s confession I threw him out straight away, sold our family home, bought a new house in another town, got a seperation agreement and half of everything and all the furnishings. Will be divorced in April. Just loving my new home and the best of all, my 2 daughters and I are going to New York City for Christmas! Have no idea what Doughboy and Dumbell are doing nor could I care but have heard through grape vine there’s trouble in paradise, Yikes! Happy Christmas to you and all CN. ????????????

      • Asshole had Clintonesque ideas of what Sex With That Woman was all about. The idiot tried to convince me and a therapist that oral sex and finger banging and hand jobs were NOT sex.????

        • Point is, you don’t need proof. If they lie and steal to have secret relationships, they are cheating.

          • I remember the first day somebody on the internet told me to go take copies of our finances. (It was handy – we had a home office) . I thought it was crazy to be thinking of these things and, what the H did the internet folks know? Well. They saved my entire future, getting my ducks in order, that’s what. C/N sealed the deal immediately. It was such a slow, agonizing series of investigations. And, beneath me…but, it deff paid off. Thank you to all who got me through it in 9 months. After 36 yrs.

            • SheChump
              You could be writing my thank you note to the tribe, too. I’m right there with you. I had a chance to line up so many ducks – to prove he paid all his personal bills from company checking, etc. Judge saw right through him. It was worth the brain-wracking work & it gave me somewhere to put my energies since I couldn’t sleep.

              This would have been our 30th year married if I hadn’t booted his sorry ass out months ago. Not bemoaning the lost years, because…awesome kids! And I am truly seeing that my life really is just about to start…without that mopey albatross!

    • Exh1 actually confessed to me about cheating on me with a ho-worker. I was totally clueless. I honestly had no clue. He was a second-shift supervisor at the time, so I never waited up for him or anything, totally naive and gullible. He cried and justified
      I reacted with pure rage, burning our bed sheets (they’d been in our bed while I was out of town)…was in total bitch mode until he told me to either take our son and leave or get over it and stay. I had no where else to go, no job, young child, young mom, so I stayed. The marriage went on for another 6 years but sucked.
      Next time he cheated, he left me for OW

    • Mine confessed to having a ‘friend’ ( nothing sexual though lol) after a dramatic ‘limp’ morning performance in the bedroom (first time in 18 years). Silent car ride to work then I get a frantic text to meet 5 hrs later and on a hunch I asked was he having an affair – my world unravelled – then he morphed into all the stories here – I had no idea. I was completedly blindsided as we were together (aside from work) 24/7 – he was my best buddy and so anti cheating I never thought it would happen to me – no signs (well not obvious at the time). I got I love yous and blowing kisses every day.
      So maybe he was apologising in advance -but perhaps it was for his poorly performing dick.

  • We never meant to hurt you. You weren’t intended to know about it. That’s what lies are for.

      • Wow! That must be the standard go to line..we didn’t want to hurt you..(but we did it anyway..)and absolutely no insight into just how fxxked up that is. Just so disgusting..

        • Yeah, I got the didn’t mean to hurt you line is well. I guess f&cking one of my friends in our house for 4 years while bringing her in as babysitter to our two kids and making her godmother of one wasn’t supposed to hurt me. As long as I didn’t know about it…..

          • As CL says, they’re actually saying, “We didn’t mean to hurt you. In fact, we weren’t thinking about you at all!”

            It’s the only logical extension of “We didn’t mean to hurt you.”

      • That’s what makes it so hurtful. It wasn’t personal. They weren’t thinking of us at all. Our thoughts and feelings and best interests weren’t even on their radars. We were less than nothing to them.

        That’s why they are always so puzzled later. Huh!? what!? you have feelings too!? Who knew!?

        • Yep – wasn’t thinking of me at all…on my birthday…when my own “I miss you” text went ignored. I found out the next day – Dday#3 – that he was having an affair with his skanky married housepainter & texting back & forth with her ALL day long…and meeting her at our house while I was at work. Nope. Wasn’t thinking of me at all.
          I am happily returning the favor while he cries & mopes as the divorce is going through. Who? What wasband? I don’t recall him.

          • My fuckwit ex said she was “relieved” when I was upset at finding out she had an affair. WTFFFFFFFFFFFFFF!!!!!!!!

            Oh, and she also didn’t mean to hurt me…..

            • Mine said the same thing about his 21 year younger ow after I found nudie shots on our shared iPad. Which she took with his phone. ” I am relived because I have never lied to you before and it’s been killing me.” I then proceed to go throw up and off to work I went in a daze.

    • I got that, too. Then when I said that wasn’t real, several months later she moved to “I’m sorry you got hurt,” which translates to “I’m sorry I got caught.” Eventually she advanced to “I’m sorry I hurt you,” with no details about what she did that was hurtful. That translates to “I really wish you’d stop pestering me to be accountable.

  • Here’s another one I got;

    “I take full responsibility for what happened, I was the more mature partner and I should have known better…….” now here comes the good bit ….. “but I wouldn’t have done it if you hadn’t been so independent. You were too independent, I couldn’t do anything for you……” Whaaaat ? So how about keeping your d**k in your pants, that would have been a good start….

    • Curious what his definition of maturity is given he can’t control his penis and has issues with independent women. (My asshole has the same problem with definitions … it’s the “I’m really the opposite of what I’m claiming” problem.)

    • Ah, yes! The superiority insult with the accompanying contradictory statement. I’m guessing it’s intent is to confuse the shit out of the receiver??? Maybe it’s more like a catch 22, they put you in a no win scenario!

      “I was more mature than you, but you are too independent”

      I lived with years of this crap! I don’t even know what to call it… bipolar ranting? Double speak ?

      I work hard on my lawn, but you make it too green!

      I’m the tidy one of this couple, but you’re a clean freak.

      I’m the smart one, but when you take initiative to learn something, that’s insulting to me!

      Really, like WTF! Thanks for reminding me I don’t have to live with this no win scenario anymore!

    • Was he significantly older than you and thus, ‘more mature’?

      Me thinks just an idiot.

      I got the Too Independent bullshiy too.

      • ANC,
        He was 2 years older, so where this “maturity” horseshit came from I’ll never know….

  • I got lots of #3 and #5.
    There was this:
    Me: “I could never have done to you what you did to me.”
    Cheater: “Oh Yeah??!! Well I could never have done to YOU what YOU did to ME!”
    Me: What did I do?
    Cheater: “Not paying enough attention to me over the years!”

    And loved this one:
    “I couldn’t tell you how unhappy I was all those years because I was afraid of your reaction! I’m afraid of you!”
    Said the man with the hair trigger temper who checks off every box in the abuser handbook.
    But it worked for him because when for the first time in sixteen years I did get angry at him, he was able to spin this as me being a crazy, angry witch which is why he “had to” cheat because the sad sausage-flake was so skeered.

    • Oh yes! I am also terrifying. So very scary that he had to cheat because… something about me is so damn scary.

      This was probably one of the funnier attempts at pushing the blame to me.

      • Ex told me also feared me. The OW gave him the courage to leave. Wtf? I was at home raising our son, he controlled finances, yet he couldn’t leave because he was trapped and feared what I’d do. When I got angry threw his crap out the door and told him to leave he said see this is what I was afraid of, your anger scares me!
        He then proceeded to act like I was crazy and couldn’t control my emotions.

        • X was also “scared” of my overbearing nature! Yet, he bragged for 27 that he was attracted to me the first day of law school because of my strength and my ability to make legal arguments and debate! And, X is a very successful Mergers & Acquisitions partner at a major firm and has successfully negotiated (eg debated!) multi-million dollar deals for 25 years!

          Oh, but when he got caught on Christmas by our kids fucking whore he met in the elevator three weeks before hand, suddenly his narrative is that he is a timid little forest creature that was too scared to divorce me honorably and I “made” him turn to the immature copy delivery girl! This bullshit argument falls on its face in so many different ways the least of which is that two years later I find out that he was also fucking a CEO client! She has multiple patents to her name and built an amazing company!

          They are all LIARS and SUCK donkey ass!

          • You can’t even follow the argument, it is so fucked up!

            Reminds me of cheater saying he couldn’t ask 15 year old dd to go out with him to celebrate her birthday because he was afraid of rejection.

            Seriously, were you ever afraid of rejection when you were picking up women at bars for sex. Or were they all just forcing their vaginas in the poor time d forest creature.

    • Raising hand ????‍♀️! At 5.5 120 lbs I’m terrifying to a 290 lbs. man!

      After my second d-day, when he was trying to get me to rethink the divorce, I was super pissed during an argument, and he said something about how I was like his overbearing mother. I looked at him and said, “I’m not your fuc*king mother! I’m your wife, and I’ve been telling you that for 15 years! Stop relating to me like I’m your freaking mom! I’m not trying to control you, I’m trying to have a equal relationship with you!”

      It was in that moment I realized I was the stand in character for the overbearing woman in his life! … and I didn’t even audition for the part!

      I’d be interested to know if all these spouses who are “scared of their spouse” had a tyrannical opposite sex parent. Not that it matters, not my monkey not my circus!

      • Doughboy, had a love /hate reality ship with his “mommy” she was overbearing and controlling. He projected that on me as well, often acted very childisish he a hard time with disappointment. I remember when we were first married many years ago when he was upset about something and actually stamped his foot. I laughed as I thought he was joking…..a red flag right from day 1. Ugh!

          • My XH, during wreckonciliation, mentioned several times that he didn’t feel “safe” with me. I never had any idea what he was talking about as there was no basis for this. I think he just heard it from one of the AP’s. They used to help him analyze what was wrong with me, helping him to justify his cheating. Meanwhile, he was the one spreading STD’s!

          • Ha! The fucktard used to stamp his foot too when he didn’t get his way. Towards the end he started calling me “mama” even though every. single. time. I told him I wasn’t his mother and to please use my proper name. He did it to piss me off I guess. Disgusting in so many ways.

    • I think my ex rebelled against me as a mother figure too. I remember when I tried to get control of our finances because he wasn’t paying our bills on time. I told him, “I’m on your team, I’m not your adversary. I want us BOTH to have a better credit rating.” The only way I could get through to him was to put things in sports terms. LOL.

      It was so weird to me that he refused to pay bills on time because he was “too busy,” but fought against me paying them instead. I finally had to appeal to his sense of importance by telling him he was much better at “big picture finances.” I told him he was too busy and important to deal with the day-to-day tracking. That’s when he finally let me start paying bills. But just to make my life miserable, he would hold up to $1,000 worth of receipts that he’d “forget” to give me. This was before online banking, so I’d think we had $1,000 more than we actually did.

      God, I’m so glad to have control of my own finances now.

    • I did not appreciate him enough. I didn’t keep the house clean enough. It was cluttered. But when he left, he left me with the most dirty disgusting garage. He took his good stuff and left tons of dirty old junk.

      And he told our daughter how mean and horrible I was. I asked her – “When did you see me be to mean and awful?” She said she didn’t, because he said it was done behind closed doors.

      I asked our friends – if I was so horrible why didn’t he take his daughter when he left? You mean he had to leave me because I was such a monster, but he left our daughter in my care? Oh, yeah, can’t take your kid to the hotel room with OW.

      What I hate is how cowardly they are. They dish out cruelty and bullying – pure hatred…. but when you stand up for yourself they act like they are this pathetic injured victim. It’s so disgusting.
      Our daughter stood up to him and he was such a jerk. She said she never wants to see him again.
      But he had turned her against me pretty good with all of his lies a while back. When I spoke the truth, he freaked out about how I was trying to destroy him. Oh brother. Drama. Their drama.

      • I got the garage full of [email protected] and cheap tools (used motor oil anyone?) too! But I was the slob. He used to step over mounds of his stuff and point to a sock left on the floor by a kid, complaining that the house was a wreck because of it . Do not miss it at all!!!

        • “Face it. We have a dusty/cluttered house.” No, we have a house full of cigarette ash because you won’t take it outside. Plus the clean laundry heap you refuse to notice is 6 months old and now full of what the cat barfed up.

          “I didn’t leave those dishes in the sink.” Yes, you did, after you cooked the (dish inedible by me) last week, and I just saw a roach climb out of it!

          “You make as much mess around here as I do.” Said to me after I stepped on broken glass in the kitchen, while stepping around the sticky and greasy residue he left on the floor. Mops and brooms are a skill he never mastered.

          Then there was the toilet nook in the master bath. No, I didn’t blame him for having prostate problems or the runs. But when I told him he should have the decency to clean up the mess, he told me I should hire a maid.

          He never noticed anything soiled that was below knee level. Raking the cat litter box was beyond his ability, but he had an amazing ability to sleep through the stink when the cat didn’t completely bury something.

      • I got the garage full of crap, plus a basement full of crap…actually he left all his crap until I made him take some of it 9 months after he left! And he also left our daughter with me despite me being a horrible person and he feared I would take my anger out on our daughter now that he was no longer here to be the metaphorical punching bag.

    • yep 6 ‘ Kaa had turned into a timid woodland creature to my angry , jealous , controlling possessive 5’ 2” wifeness . I was so scary he had to sign up to at least 3 dating sites and secretly meet women in hotel rooms to escape. OW found him on a dating site and rescued him and took him in even though he lied to her about being separated. I wonder if she knows the song about the woman who finds and rescues the injured snake? I have had several apologies but they are empty when he has destroyed a 23 year marriage and the lives of his 3 children. If I hadn’t found out about the infidelity on DD I would have gone into our divorce believing that no one else was involved. Even so he is still trying to get me to “be friends”. No contact and Greyrock really do minimise the pain.

  • Newbie Chumps that struggle with #1, let me tell you something I learned in 6 months and countless books about my FOO issues: they can have another Real Me, in all the flavors there are (I am NOT making them equal, just naming a few circumstances that could make lives and relationships difficult), ADD/ADHD, NPD, BPD, all other clusters from A to Z, depression, commitment issues, emotional neglect/abuse, etc etc etc. None of these made them cheat. They cheated because they are abusive assholes. That is why you must leave, because assholery not only is not a curable “illness”: it is a deadly one for us chumps.

    • So true BVC. For a long time I blamed it on his PTSD….. should have recognized it is just shitty character and nothing else.
      Stop making excuses and minimizing your value as a person.

    • Best reminder ever BVC!

      Going into marriage I had the mindset of if anyone ever cheated on me, that person was history because I was worth more than that.

      Whenever I would see someone who was publicly cheated on stay, I couldn’t understand why she would stay.

      Then after 26 years, I found out I was married to a cheater and I wanted to work it out. I had all sorts of excuses: the children, I wasn’t a good enough wife, everyone makes mistakes…

      Now I think, these manipulators (who you never thought would cheat in the first place) have systematically brainwashed victims for years, so just say “no”is not as easy as it sounds. It takes some of us banging our heads against a wall for months or more and then a chump lady intervention. Amen to only assholes cheat and apology or no, you are worth more.

      • FeelingIt. They do spend years gaslighting and manipulating us. I spent YEARS making things better, fixing things, and sugar coating his behavior and choices with the kids so that they wouldn’t think ill of their dad. I guess that means that I gaslighted the kids, too. Their excuses start to become our reality. No more…ever.

        • Me too – I realized that all my “smoothing things over” with my kids and ex was another form of gaslighting them. Been feeling sick about it, but now that I know better, I’m doing better (thanks Maya Angelou for that). I just keep reminding myself and kids to watch for actions, not listen to words. And that’s for each other too – we all have some disordered fleas to get rid of!

          • In addition to paying attention to actions, I tell my kids to communicate. And that includes between us. If I do something that makes them uncomfortable or angers them, they are to talk to me about it. We all have things to work on. And I am going to do everything I can to help them develop better relationship skills than what was modeled previously and what may pass down through genetics by their dad.

        • Adding my name to the list of me too’s. I also had a tendency to keep finding myself in the middle between ex and daughter trying to help them get along better. The result was that they both resented me for not being unequivocally on their sides. The sad thing is that old habits die hard and every now and again I still find myself doing that but I am getting better at stepping back and letting them sort it all out for themselves. Of course that doesn’t stop them from blaming me for doing nothing to fix the other.

      • Feelingit – I thought the same exact thoughts. I would NEVER stay with someone who cheated on me. Until I did. For 3 years. And it never got better. It just got worse and worse and worse. I was stuck in that, “But I still love him” limbo. We’ve been socialized to believe that love can overcome anything. I missed that memo on how you should really pick someone based on their actions and how they treat you over a period of time like a year. Watch what they do and listen to what they say and make sure that the two line up. No, instead, I was sure that I could work with this “raw” material. You can love anyone! You can make it work with anyone! Well, sure you can, but your quality of life goes plumb out the window with that attitude.

        • Yes, me too. I would never stay with anyone who cheated. Until I did. Three more years. And yes, it got worse. He may have not seen the woman he had the three year affair with anymore, he was quite angry at her for calling me, but not two months later I found sexts to another woman, the dating sites, the adult dating sites, the porn, the lies, the not answering his phone, never being home (and I was taking care of his kids, not mine), the staring and flirting with other women, etc. I wanted to catch him. I felt like that would be the last straw. Being a truck driver, it was easy for him to lie about being on layovers. Didn’t catch him red handed again, but it didn’t matter anymore. I wasn’t willing to be used, lied to, yelled at, gaslighted anymore. When the other woman called me, he told me “I said I would never hurt you, and I didn’t. She hurt you because she told you”. And he said “I have lost everything”.

      • They spend years convincing us we are worth less so we think that maybe their cheating really was our fault for not being good enough and we do deserve all of this. It takes a long time to pull out of that mind fuck. I had a lot of support and it was still hard.

    • I agree that ADHD, depression or PTSD don’t cause cheating, but Narcissism and sociopathy certainly can, and do, often. And FOO issues, too, especially ‘I’m a cheating narc just like my dad/mom!’

      I think we get stuck on the diagnoses, because we want to believe it was some kind of illness, not their true character. And of course, we want to believe they can be cured!

      In the end, what caused them to cheat is unimportant. ALL that matters is whether the relationship is ok for you. And the recognition that lying cheaters and cheating liars don’t change. Because they don’t care.

      • Here’s a clue that the marriage is over : you pray that your husband has a brain tumor????????????????????. (Because that would be better than him purposefully doing this to you and your family).

        Part of me still hopes that is what is happening and I’ve been divorced nearly a year. Hopeium is a very powerful drug. Nevertheless, I’m completely NC and working hard at building Life 2.0.

        • I prayed he would have a stroke. I needed him alive to collect my half of his pension. But, I wanted to watch to see how long his true love would leave after she had to wipe his ass and feed him!!

          • I love this Newme! I need him alive until I die to collect his pension, but that doesn’t mean he has to be healthy or mobile. I think it would be more problematic for him, though, if he had to take care of her. He hates taking care of people. He rarely, if ever, took care of the kids if they were sick, never really took care of me. It would become extremely problematic in that relationship if anything serious happens to her and she has to rely on him, privately, for her care.

            • I would be happy for it to go either way because I don’t think either one could handle taking care of the other. The only thing that might make it better for him to be the one needing care is that he would hate needing to be cared for as much as having to care for somebody else and he would make her life hell even if she wasn’t adverse to caring for him otherwise. This was truly the only reason I ever had concerns about the possibility of having to care for him someday.

      • There is ALWAYS a component of choice and free will, no matter what a person’s diagnosis. People who are physically addicted to a substance can make a choice every day to take that substance or abstain.

        Yes, most narcissists cheat, but not all. Before I married Hannibal Lecher, I dated another narcissist for a year. Egotistical, arrogant, social jackass, but he had never cheated on any of his many serially monogamous relationships. Yes, he had lots of adult relationships, but always broke up with one before moving on to the next GF.

        Cheating is a choice, despite their personality disorders.

        • In his case maybe he thought so highly of himself he didn’t feel the need to go find the next one before ditching the current one just to be sure he would find a replacement. “Of course I’ll find another, I’m that fabulous.” Maybe their are some advantages to dating a truly extreme narcissist. You might still get dumped, but at least you aren’t being betrayed and gas lighted.

          • I’m imagining a monkey swinging from one tree branch to another,grabbing the next before letting go of the previous

    • The worst part is that assholery causes permanent damage, not just to us chumps, but to our kids. Kids model the behavior they see.

      If Dad says it’s OK to treat Mom badly and get stress relief by cheating, it’s very hard to convince a rebellious teenaged son differently.

      That’s why you HAVE to leave a cheater.

    • The worst part is that assholery causes permanent damage, not just to us chumps, but to our kids. Kids model the behavior they see.

      If Dad says it’s OK to treat Mom badly and get stress relief by cheating, it’s very hard to convince a rebellious teenaged son differently.

      That’s why you HAVE to leave a cheater.

    • BVC, I could not agree more if I tried. You CANNOT cure someone of assholery. They are an asshole. They always will be. They don’t change. That was what I finally figured out as well. It took a lot of intervention, a lot tears and heartbreak to come to that conclusion, but it is the truth. The only thing you can really do is get as far away from them as possible. That gain a life thing and trusting that they suck.

  • STBX hit every single point. One of the more memorable apologies was when he got down on his knees, crying crocodile tears — “owning” how much damage he’d done with his lies (he refused to admit anything else at this point). He swore, through the sobs, that he would never lie again. (Cue drum roll ….) Not at all surprising, within a week I busted him in a new lie.

    Newbies: please re-read CL’s points in Genuine Imitation Naugahyde Remorse. It is so damn easy to fall for the fake apologies–especially if your cheater is a covert narc. They are excellent at mirroring your values — knowing the right words to say to make themselves sound believable. I did this shit for more than two decades–falling for it every fucking time. It nearly destroyed me (and my kids). Don’t be me. Please.

    • Ugh! M8ne is a covert narc, too…mirroring for sure! Like cockroaches in an atomic detonation, they have survival skillz. F*wits!

  • Oh, and I forgot. I never got an apology. Only a coward and lame “I hope one day you can forgive me”. Western hell will freeze over before I forgive. And pigs will fly, toads will wear bishop robes, and all other impossible things will happen before I forgive such a coward abuser. I already used all my forgiveness with my cheater dad, and I’m thinking I wasted some.

    • Fuck. I just realised my dad NEVER mentioned let alone apologised for abandoning us when I was ten. I must have just grown up accepting that’s what happened. It was just a random event not one he chose and could apologise for. The next 20 years I was more focused on getting him to notice I existed at all.
      My cheater was of the ‘I love you, I never meant to hurt you, I thought what you didn’t know wouldn’t hurt you, they meant nothing’ variety.
      And in that last bit I think he was right. He didn’t care about them. He also didn’t care about us though really either. We all just thought he did.
      Pretty much NC with both now thank CL.
      When I do have contact with ex now he seems bewildered by the repeated rebuffs to triangulate via the kids. Then it’s on to sad sausage. I’m so immune to that act now I probably could club a baby seal…..
      (Only kidding).

      Thank heavens for this site.

      • My dad has never apologized or even talked about what he did. Ever. Not even after I could be in money trouble because his stupidity. Until he came to my rescue on last May to help me pack, he hadn’t even mentioned his 3 other children to me. It was then I realized I didn’t want to hear more from any cheater: the only time my dad talked about his other daughter, was to tell me she wrote poetry like I do. What part of his bean sized brain made him think that was going to be good to hear for me? I answer myself: the part that thinks we are interchangeable. Fucking cheaters.

  • Wise duo, yep! These abusers suddenly become helpless marshmallows and are afraid of us! BS! Mine said I went “bat shit crazy” and he was afraid I would hurt him! Really? He was ridiculous!

    • Same!

      The last texting conversation I had with fuckwit was the night He learned I had filed for divorce. We were going back and forth and I said “remember your actions are what lead to this.” His response was : “lead to what? Divorce or your need for soulful revenge?” I stopped responding while he sent a few more pleadings that night and the next morning. I mark that as my official beginning of no contact.

      Fuckwit has never apologized to me for anything. He told the kids on 2 occasions he was sorry for their pain but he takes no responsibility for it. His mantra: it is always someone else’s fault.

    • Mine was afraid of me too because I was so mean. Being mean meant not agreeing with everything he wanted. LOL. Here’s an example of me being mean:

      Ex is trying to learn how to smoke meat. He gets a smoker, then uses old painted lumber from our torn down deck to cook with. I’ve just recovered from cancer, and I’m pretty sure there are all kinds of chemicals and bad shit in that painted lumber. I mention this several times and ask him to please use regular fire wood. Of course he doesn’t.

      He invites schmoopie coworker and her husband over to dinner and feeds us all his first try at smoking meat. It’s tough, it’s got a weird smell, I don’t eat it. Once again, I make a comment about being afraid to eat it because of it being smoked with old, painted lumber as firewood. Schmoopie coworker looks over, bats her eyes at him and says it tastes great. She then gives him a sympathetic look because he’s obviously explained to her that I’m so mean and critical.

    • Yes! I had to get a restraining order against STBX (police and mental health recommended it) — yet, he tried to claim he was walking on eggshells with ME. When I called him on it, he explained that he was “walking on eggshells” because I kept asking questions — sometimes out of the blue! Asshole.

      • The Fucktard claimed in MC that he was “walking on eggshells” with me too. At the time, it made no sense at all as he was a tempramental entitled bastard and I was doing backflips to accommodate his endless demands and criticism.

        I think it was more like “waiting for the shoe to drop” because I was starting to put the pieces together and when the puzzle became complete he expected all hell to break loose.

        • YES to this > “I think it was more like “waiting for the shoe to drop”

          Mine also said he was walking on eggshells like I would get upset randomly. I could never figure it out because I always had a legitimate reason for being angry or frustrated with him. Your explanation makes more sense.

          • For several years after I kicked him out due to Affair #2, cheater narc would do entitled, selfish stuff involving me, the kids, money, whatever. I’d get mad, usually managed to express that clearly and reasonably politely.

            Every. Single. Time, he’d say something like ‘I know you are angry about the separation, but blah blah’. No, asshole, I’m angry about what you JUST DID, right now! Never, ever acknowledged his on-going fuck-ups and assholery.

      • Gaslighting at its best. Amazing. My Cheater used to scream at me for 2-3 hours when he was mad. I would bite my lip and try to tough it out because talking to him to explain why I did something like forget to buy lightbulbs would just enrage him even more. Eventually I would end up crying, and BOOM he flipped a switch and burst into tears. I would end up consoling him and apologizing. This worked well for him after I busted him for cheating because he could refer to “all the times you made me cry”. Technically I guess it was true.

    • They love to claim abuse. During the wreckonciliation, mine was telling some woman online that I was controlling him and mentally abusing him. And even though we didn’t even live together or have any kids together, he was trapped and couldn’t leave the relationship. Because someone as abusive and crazy as me might come after him physically. He was scared for his safety and imprisoned in a nightmare.

  • This is the most apologetic apology I got from the Worm…”I do apologize as well for my conduct. You deserved better. I got lost and damaged by events and made decisions that hurt you and others. It was unfair and wrong. I will continue to do my best to support the family and address my obligations.”
    It wasn’t his fault, he got lost and damaged by events…..Events made him cheat!

    • As I previously shared here in response to another post, the only “apology” I got from my cheating husband was a one liner in an email message stating, “I’m sorry you have hard feelings.” (This was how he summed up my reaction to his decision to evict me from my own life and instantaneously replace me with a literal squatter after our quarter century together). Looking back, I realize he’s never accepted responsibility for even a minor transgression or any actual mistake. For example, if he stepped on my foot, he wouldn’t apologize. I’d say, “You should say that you’re sorry for stepping on my foot, or at the very least ask if I’m ok after doing so.” He’d respond with, “It was an accident. I don’t have to apologize for it!” I’d tell him that apologizing things like that are common courtesy/manners even if you didn’t do whatever it was on purpose. (He seemed baffled by this notion). Conversely however, he frequently over-apologizes (in a sweet and almost whining voice) to business clients or strangers for things such as the weather, etc. for which he has no real fault or ability to control. Bizarre!

      • Mine never apologized for anything ever. I certainly can relate to your comment. They just suck.

      • Omg I never heard anyone say this before. If he stepped on my foot or elbowed me… i would say ouch. He would say well you shouldn’t have been standing there. Sorry you were where you shouldn’t have been.

    • “…I will continue to do my best to support the family and address my obligations.”

      He was hardly doing his best if he was cheating?

      But that aside, did he come through, and support the family and meet his obligations? Was he true to his word?

      • I guess in his own warped way.You have to understand that he thinks paying for things absolves him of any kind of bad behavior.
        In his mind he cheated, but he paid for my health care. So that absolves him of his sins.
        He was/is a workoholic and he thinks that buying things and paying bills makes everything all better.
        No emotional support at all and. I walked on eggshells most of the time.

        • Bingo!

          Cheater sees everything as employer/employee relationship and if you don’t do it his way, you don’t get paid and you are fired. Activities with the kids. That was payment for their services. They are no longer serving him so no more invitations.

          • Yes, exactly!
            Sorry I hit you, but here’s a new purse. Now it’s all better!
            It’s not? You’re still mad? But I bought you that purse! You have no right to still be mad…..
            Everything is currency….
            I had to explain to him that it didn’t matter how many gift cards he bought me, or how much he spent. It doesn’t erase his cheating and abuse.
            He didn’t get it and he never will.

  • I’m sorry I did this to you. I went to the dark side. You don’t seem interested in doing anything. Yeah… I guess giving you blow jobs at work are big weekend plans! Why didnt i think of that?

    • I put “the dark side” in my gps…
      seems there’s no way to get there unless you’re a gigantic piece of shit son of a bitch lying motherf@%king dickhole.

      • OMG – out of the blue one night…sitting outside at a campfire and him staring into the fire….he murmurs….I have a DARK side. I thought he was drunk or stoned. And, I guess I was too scared to ask him what the fuck that meant.

      • WhatRing-
        That’s right honey, let that anger out!!! I remember that rage!!!!!!

  • Did any of you get the “I have already BEEN forgiven! I have confessed to GOD and have already been forgiven!” Implied; I have God’s forgiveness, I certainly don’t need yours. Rather smugly I might add.

    Notably, my cheater wasband at the time was a holy roller Catholic convert. HE LOVED confession.

    Cheater felt absolutely NO responsibility to tell me what he needed forgiveness for. It was none of my business and he was actually quite smug about it all.

    • Not exactly, but cheater did tell daughter Jesus forgives us all. My thought: first, you have to be sorry!

    • Sounds like the bull I got from my Cheater, He even went out and got baptised again so that we was washed clean of what he did to me and our kids. God forgives him so my forgiveness is not needed.

      Oh and me and my Sons were the judgemental christians that thought he did something wrong and were not happy for him in his new life. Guess we are the ones who were the sinners.

      He also said he is sorry he left me in a horrible situation (broken ribs from him, cancer, two angry teenage sons, sick dog, and all the withholding of funds and I was a stay at home Mom, so no job) but it was my fault that I was unable to see my part in the marriage breaking up.

      I was also abusive and controlling the whole marriage so he had “wondered off the path a few times but always got back on the path” He was not a cheater, just unhappy.

      • Fuckwit also told daughter she needed to read the 10 commandments referring to the honor thy mother and father. She shot back with what about number 5? Which was ignored of course.

        Somehow he has justified the adultery in his mind or blocked it out. He is pleading the fifth on adultery despite the fact that we have proved it. He is incapable of empathizing with the pain of betrayal as are his parents.

    • Omg yes. God forgave him. I said I never would. I explained that he is nothing but a low life and a pathetic man . Also I got I’m so sorry crying we can’t destroy the kids. I think we should tell the kids we are not getting along. Nope. Told the 18 and 20 year old my self and the truth. I explained to them that there is no way you can love someone and touch another person. Told the cheater that in the 23 years we were married I never held another mans hand or called them or had sex. So please save the I love you. You just don’t want to pay me. He actually said you are taking half my money and pension getting an apartment and your going to be fucking another man Do you think that’s fair ? I said do you think it’s fair that you were doing that behind my back for years . THe difference is I’m divorcing you sorry Catholic ass. God forgave him because he is special. Also when we communicate he says to me don’t threaten me. I laugh and say I’m just telling you the truth do you want your sick little secrets getting bj’s from he/she out. Wonder did you confess that. Sick bastard. I would not touch you with a ten foot pole. Yes I’m taking half your pension and that is my reward for putting up with your sissy ass for all these years. Now I’m off to find a real man when I heal . Peace jackass

  • Cheater Wife gave a lot of them, here are some select few:

    Best Minimization: Dday 2011- “It was just emotional it wasn’t physical.”
    Dday 2017- “It was just physical it wasn’t emotional.”

    Best spiritual: “I’m sorry, but our souls just weren’t connected anymore.”

    • Ugh! Wasband’s attorney likes saying “it was just an emotional affair.” I want to ask her about the emotional vibrator he gave her for Christmas last year, or that emotional thong selfie she sent him, or… like emotional devastation is better. Sure!

    • Ah yes. Minimization. That, and classic blame shifting, but never an apology.

      After the sickening process of playing amateur detective and uncovering multiple affairs and the secret life she was leading, I confronted her and instead of the usual flat-out denials and gaslighting I finally got the smallest amount of acknowledgement of her shitty behavior in the form of these nuggets:

      “Okay, I had an affair. Get over it!”

      “Everybody has affairs. You’re so puritanical!”

      “I had a fling.”*
      *I was the town bike.

      “You drove me to it!”**
      **Technically correct. On a few occasions she asked me to drop her off at a “conference” that was really one of her hookups. And I dropped her off at the airport for business trips that included hookups.

      Serenity now. I’m several months into my new, skank-free life. There is no substitute for the peace that comes with going ‘no contact’.

      I’m so not looking forward to the school holiday assembly because she’ll be there. But I wouldn’t miss it for the world because of that magic moment when my kid smiles and waves to me in the crowd.

    • “It was just emotional it wasn’t physical.”

      Ah, that old chestnut. I got that too. I’ve always wanted to ask her if she would be comfortable with The Virus(OM) doing what they were doing behind my back in the summer of 2014 with another woman. Coz ya know that’s not an affair.

  • Magneto, I got the “we asked for God’s forgiveness each and every time we did the deed” from the OW! Jesus cheaters really set me off. They profess that what they did was wrong, but God is cool with it so why should I have an issue with their shitty behavior? Apparently it is their belief that they can do the deed, ask Gods forgiveness then repeat the deed! As long as they take a knee afterwards they are in Gods good graces! Jeesh, never seems to amaze me.

    • Hilarious! They had God’s blessing.

      My ex emailed me scriptures the morning after D-day. He ruined,”This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it” for me.

      This from a man who hated going to church.

    • Roberta, this is actually beyond the pale, imagine them fucking then praying then fucking then praying and on and on and on. They truly are Morons. You are well rid of this idiot. Christian Fuckers ! Ha!

      • Even better Lyndaloo, her mother is supposedly a “pastor” and the lovely couple would attend her prayer meetings in her condo. She apparently was NOT affiliated with any church, just a street corner pastor! I asked my then husband if her “church” included a tent and a tambourine. Come to find out that it did include a tambourine and a drum that they would pound on when they had a Praise the Lord breakthrough. I guess her religion did not include the Ten Commandments! Pesky rules!!!

    • My cheater wife has become super religious since Dday- goes to church every Sunday now. She likes to say of her affair: “The Devil made me do it!”

      Its actually her way of yet again not taking responsibility. When I forsee into the future I bet that she will find herself a religious man- will help her to counterbalance her history. Image management.

  • I HAD to lie to you because you would get mad( about f#cking other people and stealing our life savings). Wow. Just wow.

  • #2 all the way.
    Me during the 1-week wreckonciliation, when he admitted the affair: “do you understand how hard this is for me to hear?”
    Him: “yeah but it’s been really hard for me too, can you understand that?”
    Me thinking: WTF.

  • “It was hard to think about the affair as ‘doing something to you’ when you didn’t even know about it. “

    • Oh good lord, this one… How do you even respond to that? This is the kind of mind games that turns my brain into jelly.

      Susan, you have my every empathy.

      Someone smart and snarky – how do you respond to THAT?

  • I’m sorry I hurt you and the kids. I am really hurting, too. I can’t sleep. I can’t eat. I have never been this miserable in my life.

    There were other women. I didn’t tell you because I did not want to add insult to injury.

    I should have left before I cheated but I was not strong enough.

    I’m sorry for hurting you, but I was unhappy. Don’t you WANT me to be happy?

    I’m sorry, but I had to cheat again because the trust was broken and you could not stop questioning me every time I went out drinking.

    How I spent 20 years listening to these type of excuses and believing it was on me to fix, I will never truly understand. Life gets so much better once you go no contact (or grey rock in my case). It is too hard to recognize the bullshit when it surrounds you on a regular basis.

    • “I should have left before I cheated but I was not strong enough.”

      My fuckwit; “I just did it in the wrong order.” And “I thought I was strong and could just wait you out, but you were stronger.”

      Guess they have the same brain deficiency!

      • LOL, mine said, when I asked “were you even planning on telling me about this?”:
        “I wanted to wait until it was a sure thing with her.”

            • This is it exactly. Doughboy was waiting for the green light from Dumbell before he told me. The 2 weeks before he was dancing around couldn’t do enough for me. Breakfast on a tray, out for dinner sentimental birthday wishes, all lovey dovey! Ugh! Then when Dumbell said the words off he went, wasn’t happy for years, had loved her for two years blah blah blah. I was Plan B just in case Dumbell said no. What he doesn’t realize and neither did I at the time, is he did me a huge favour. I didn’t know I could be this happy!

  • Dday #1……..”I didn’t mean to hurt you” “I hope you can forgive me”
    Dday #2……..”Don’t hate her…..if it wasn’t her it would have been someone else” (Same OW)
    Dday #3……..”I thought I loved her” (Same OW)
    Dday #4……..”I have derailed….please don’t leave me…..I never tried to stop” (Same OW)
    Dday #5……..”I am so sick….I don’t know what is wrong with me…..I will win you back” (Same OW)

    Two weeks later………………..she was at his apartment!


      • Yeah. You like that? He said that as he flung himself to the floor in dramatic fashion!

      • “I have derailed”

        What, like a little boy’s Lionel choo choo train ?

        Good riddance Kimmy

    • Kimmy- you married to my ex? Same EXACT BS….SAME. Except he added that he wanted his wife back and he was having sex with her out of fear and pain.

    • Ugh… sickening… all the drama at the end of the sentence… were you supposed to pet him on his head, kiss and make it all better? ????

  • Cheater gaslighted apologies. Instead of actually apologizing, he would CLAIM he had apologized and I just didn’t remember.

    “I’ve apologized OVER AND OVER! I’m NOT going to apologize any more!”

    Funny… I don’t remember him apologizing even once. I guess in his mind saying it was my fault for not making him happy enough was an “apology.”

    • I went through this too in the early days.

      “I’ve already apologized enough.”
      He even got down on the ground making fun of it bowing and going “I’m not worthy, I’m not worthy.”

      That’s when I finally got fed up and asked if he could ever remember any actual time he had EVER apologized for the cheating. He couldn’t think of anything.

  • I have NEVER received any sort of apology. He has denied, denied, denied from the first D-Day.

    The only minor admissions I got were in a weak moment I asked him”Why her?”
    And his response was “She does what I tell her to”. And in the final divorce paperwork it said I would not sue her for alienation of affection ( a law in NC). My response to my attorney, “What will I get from her, an ugly horse trailer and an old used pickup truck?” No thanks. Not worth it.

    • “And in the final divorce paperwork it said I would not sue her for alienation of affection”

      Omg! If that’s not an admission of guilt I don’t know what is! I can’t imagine anything covering a third party in your divorce paperwork would be legal????? The contract would have to be agreed by the involved parties.

      I tried getting OW posting pics of my kids on social media prohibited in our parting agreement, and was told that a party not involved in the agreement can’t be forced to agree. Seems kind of like the same concept to me.

    • I’m in NC too! Alienation of affection and Criminal Conversation.
      She does what I tell her to…… because I’m 10 years old and like to be the boss of people.

    • Alienation of affection? Huh – I never knew that was a sueable matter. I get why it’s considered tough to prove, though.

  • I never received an apology. At first, I did get a lot of blame though. I had too much control, I wasn’t “positive” enough, I didn’t make her happy, I was going to turn into my dad. Then I got ridiculousness like “I just wanted one of you (me or the married OM) to pay more attention to me.” “I just want to be happy, don’t you want to be happy?” There’s never been a word about what she was doing to our family and what it would mean for our kids to grow up in a broken home. No thought was given to them – I’m sure it was expected that we would all just simply transform our lives to accommodate her quest for happiness.

    The closest thing I got to an apology was that she hoped I could forgive her someday, and hoped that someday I’d be “happy” too. And that was by text.

    They are such cowards.

    • Hahahahaha, I got the “she hoped I could forgive her someday”! I love when cheaters say the ssme stupid things. They are so insignificant they can’t even have an original thought.

  • One Wednesday night, after sharing a lovely dinner together, my XH f 40 years suddenly announced he was moving out that coming Saturday. I was completely blindsided and asked him if there was another woman in the picture. He vehemently denied that there was. If only I’d known about CL/CN at that point, I would’ve realized that was very likely a lie, and I would’ve understood exactly what his next statement really meant: “I love you, but I’m not in love with you. I need time and space to evaluate the role our marriage will play in my life”. Wow, I wonder how long he had to rehearse that line in front of a mirror for it to roll off his tongue so effortlessly?

    I asked if he’d change his mind about moving out, and he said No. I then asked if he’d go to marriage counseling with me, and he agreed. So there wouldn’t be any supposed bias on my part, I asked if he wanted to be the one to find a counselor for us and I’d agree to see whomever he selected. He said Yes.

    So several weeks later, we found ourselves in the office of a well-seasoned marriage counselor whom XH had personally selected. It only took a few sessions for the MC to extract all the sordid details about XH having had 14 affairs — including the one he’d been in for the last 6 months! — and redirecting our marital cash to fund his extramarital escapades. I was even provided with a list of 13 of the 14 names and I knew every one of these women. He refused to identify his current AP, but said he’d been looking for someone who “was more like him” and she was it; eventually, a mutual acquaintance gave me #14’s name, and that’s when I realized she was my XH’s married coworker whom I’d met on several occasions.

    To this day, the one and only “apology” I’ve received from him was “I’m sorry you feel hurt”. That smacks of today’s popular psychobabble phrase of “Sorry, not sorry”! I guess it was too much of an effort to change 1 little word in that sentence to say “I’m sorry I hurt you” — and mean it!

    Now, he and #14 are married… 2 cheaters making it official. Yep, I guess he did find someone who was “more like him“. But if the statistics discussed in this article are anywhere close to being accurate, I suppose the odds of their blessed union lasting more than a few years are pretty small. Small comfort…

  • Ex-boyfriend seemed to justify his lying as a way to protect me–a bit like telling a little kid that his pet has ‘gone to the farm,’ instead of telling him that the pet has died (intentionally been run over by the liar). Not helpful as the outcome is the same (pet or relationship is dead) and patronizing/condescending/insulting to person being told the lie.

    I learned in this pseudo-relationship (which I considered real and worth commitment but he considered just a placeholder until he could find someone he truly respected and loved) that shared history (even decades’ worth) and similarity on paper (school, education, religion, similar families of origin–both intact for decades) are not as significant determinants of relationship quality as values (especially view of commitment), goals, commitment to current partner, peiorities, and current lifestyle. Wish that I had heeded the red flags to avoid getting extremely hurt.

    Sparkling over lying and other forms of abuse from chronic liars just gives chronic abusers/jerks license to behave even more egregiously, so might as well put away the sparkle and putty knife.

  • I got this apology: I’m sorry, but I never loved you. I’m sorry. I just never loved you. I never loved you.

    K thanks. Got it.

    I think he’s too much of a coward to issue a proper apology. Or, he’s not sorry at all, because I’m a horrible person. Or he’s not sorry at all because he is a horrible person. Or she has his balls in a jar.

  • No apology, no statement, no admission, no explanation. Thirty five years and I guess that I deserved nothing!

      • Count me in as well, on the no need for apologies club.

        His rationalization? I was basically white trash and had it coming. He spun so many lies for so long, he wound up believing them himself. Sadly, a fair amount of other people did too, especially at church. They were pretty shocked after all the bad stuff went down and cheater ex stood revealed as the evil creature he really was. I refused to have any thing to do with them.

        Denied them all that juicy drama and maybe a chance to polish their image a bit.

        Guess I am just a bitch that way.

        • I also got this left in the mailbox a month after divorce filing, a Wayne Dyer quote: “All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with
          another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change
          you. The only thing blame does is to keep the focus off you when you
          are looking for external reasons to explain your unhappiness or
          frustration. You may succeed in making another feel guilty about
          something by blaming him, but you won’t succeed in changing whatever it
          is about you that is making you unhappy. ”

          I actually could not believe what I was reading but at least it confirmed he was nuts! Blame, what I had the six year affair? I became the compulsive gambler? I spent marital money on a whore? I destroyed the family? I abandoned him? (I actually think that the quote came from his Therapist…whose license should probably be revoked.) Therapy is useless with a Sociopath.

          • He felt guilty and was looking for some rationale to absolve himself from blame. He knows who’s to blame. I doubt Dyer was talking about infidelity but more likely blaming others for ones life experiences. You know like narcs do!

  • Ah, what a timely column!

    Several months ago. CheaterX tried to call me. I didn’t answer (I’d not blocked the phone in case there were issues, but he persisted and finally sent me a voice memo to my professional email address. Eventually, I managed to listen to all 20 minutes of his Sad Sausage message, which ended up with a plea that I forgive him. The problem? He never said he was sorry.

    It wasn’t the real him. –CheaterX decided that he had mental health issues, and while the psychologist he saw suggested he could have one of several conditions–including Borderline Personality Disorder–he decided that he has Disassociative Identity Disorder. In other words, the Cheater part really was NOT him; it was this other personality.

    His life is full of Sadz–Life wasn’t the same when I moved out and Schmoopie moved in. She started to act strangely. She accused him of cheating on her by seeing me (hah! Talk about a need to triangulate!). It was so hard having a mental illness. People don’t take you seriously. yadda yadda yadda. Yep, it’s still all about him, even though we’d been divorced over a year and I’d been out of the house for about 10 months.

    She treated me horribly.–I have to say that I was surprised when CheaterX said that Schmoopie treated me horribly. I was so surprised that I laughed out loud. It wasn’t the fact that CheaterX cheated; it was that Schmoopie had done mean things to me. I couldn’t remember what they were. Oh sure, she fucked my husband, but unless she forced him to do that by gun or knife point, he made the choice to cheat. But anyway, the point is that he still doesn’t take responsibility for his actions. Cheating was Schmoopie’s fault. Or the fault of his mental illness. But not really his fault because that’s not the real him.

    If I were a new Chump still clutching desperately for signs of wreckonciliation, I’d probably have taken this meandering memo as confirmation that he’d Seen the Light and realized he Truly Loved Me. Thanks to CN, I see this as a ploy for more kibbles and an attempt to squirm away from consequences, because consequences are hard.

  • When I said, “I’d never have given up tenure and a decent salary, and moved halfway across the country if I’d known you were going to have an affair,” Hannibal Lecher said, “Well, I didn’t know I was going to.” (cough, cough, bullshit–serial cheater).

    I responded, “It was under your control.”

    • I’m angry for you, Tempest. Super dirty dealing on your ex’s part. I chose my doctoral programs partly based on where my cheating husband would allow me to go, so I think that I can relate to some of your pain.

  • And as a side note . I received many many apologies—just words coming out of his pie-hole that he didn’t mean!

  • This is so true! After 36 years of marriage and discovery of a 5 year affair- I got “You and the boys didn’t deserve this”
    From an entitled, asshole, liar cheater!

  • How bout this one :_
    “I’m sorry for whatever you think I did.”

    Real apology eh..??

    • I received numerous versions of:

      I’m sorry you’re upset
      I’m sorry you feel that way
      I didn’t intend to hurt you

      Never an apology or ownership of any wrongdoing. The mind fuckery is endless. They are a bunch of slippery eels.

    • Reminds me of an old cartoon. Little boy sitting on his bed sniffling…”I get blamed for everything I do!”

  • Now this one really takes the biscuit…

    Cheaterpants told Schnoopie that she had to write a letter to his parents apologising for “all the trouble she’d caused”. And SHE DID !!!! (Capitals for emphasis, not shouting)
    If ever there were two mentally disordered thickos that deserved each other, these two are the ones.

    I celebrate every day that I am out of that mess.

    • Jane this is hilarious I can’t stop laughing that she would actually write to his parents! Wow, I know these OW are not “the
      sharpest knife in the drawer,” but this takes the cake for stupidity.

      • He told me this in all seriousness and couldn’t understand why I was laughing.

        At this point I realised that she must be a few sandwiches short of a picnic.

        I think in USA you say “as dumb as a pile of rocks” ?!

        • Yep. The driveway doesn’t quite reach the road ???? the cheese slid off the cracker

        • Actually I’m a Canadian and one of the things we say is “a few bricks short of a full load”. I’m sure there are lots of similar sayings in every country.

  • Minimizing coupled with rewriting history. Ten year affair with our best friends wife ended up being “a one time piece of ass” and I should forgive that. Interesting way to refer to “the most important person in my life” I sent that to her xhusband who passed it on to her. She was not amused. x was pissed that I was talking to her xhusband because I should know how hurtful it was that I was talking to another man. Because, you know, it wasn’t hurtful that he was fucking another woman. No contact is a blessing.

    • New Day, when Doughboy told me, out of the blue, he wanted a divorce and after I threw him out, I blind copied a very nasty email I had written to OW to all their Bridge Buddies. Schmoopie was his bridge partner and all the people at the club, thought Doughboy was a wonderful husband etc. My email wasn’t very complimentary as you can imagine. As I had sent it as a blind copy neither Doughboy or Dumbbell knew who knew! So the Brian Trust trust sent out an email to everyone in the club denying everything with this comment. “I am not sleeping with Dumbell and Dumbell is not sleeping with me, we are just good friends with a special Bond” They were the laughing stock of the whole place. After that I ceased all contact, they are so stupid it is embarrassing.

  • Barf to all of this nonsense I’m reading today. I’ve heard all of the same.
    “That was the bad me get over it or you’ll be miserable. I didn’t mean to hurt you. I didn’t want you to find out but you can’t help yourself and you have to investigate me. I’m sorry you’re upset but I didn’t do anything wrong I was bored, killing time, I’m wild, I thought you didn’t care, you don’t text as fast as them, I made friends along the way, if I had a whore I wouldn’t need to chase whores, my buddies did it not me, I wanted to come home and fuck YOU after being with the strippers. Your memory is too good. It takes two It’s not all me. You have opinions. You sold me a tan young fun girl and i was duped so what am I supposed to do. You’ve always been the only one. I joined Tinder to find friends. It wasn’t me anyone can Photoshop messages. ….excuses to infinity.
    2 years later:
    “It wasn’t intentional. We have the same birthday. I needed a friend for advice so I could figure out how to keep a smile on your face and be a good husband. I wish she was a man then none of this would have happened. We’ve both done bad things to each other and made mistakes. We must forgive now like adults as other people do. All we can do is apologize to each other. (With no actual apology in 2 years. Saying the word apology in a sentence is not an apology).
    Next day… “I hope you burn in hell. I want you to disappear. Go away! Get out of my life. You’re destroying my life.”
    Next day… “why won’t you communicate with me. Why must you insist on ignoring me. Why must you refuse to let me go. Please just move on with your life, your beautiful young self, find a man and have a family. Do you have a boyfriend. Is that why you ignore me 99% of time?”
    Someone please figure out how to send these “people” to a different planet. One with no internet or cell service lol.

    • What a mindfuck— dude is a channel-flipper of epic proportion! “We have the same birthday” is a nonsensically bad one, and a fine example of disordered thinking.

  • So today I am facing a whole new level of fuckupedness. 3weeks from divorce and asshole is planning a wedding to tramp. That hurts and I don’t know why. The hits just keep happening and I so want to be over this but it keeps coming back to smack me. Any thoughts?

    • Yes. Wander off into your own life and be magnificent. Pay no heed to the disordered. They don’t deserve your energy.

      Remember what CL says. Trust they suck. They won’t be happy but reaching meh means you don’t care either way.


      • Thanks. My sons are having a tough time dealing with this. If it weren’t for them I think I would be less irritated. They feel replaced too because she has a teenage son. Oh well.

    • This pain too will pass. They both suck. Tramp is claiming her prize, which is no prize at all. Asshole has his new domestic labor signed on. Not likely to be happily ever after, but cheaters can really only think in the short term.

      • Well he did get a nice piece of change from my hard work. He hasn’t work d in 4 yrs. as soon as he got the money he stopped working again. She is poverty stricken so there it is. What an idiot my ex is. Just wish I could help my sons but they don’t want to discuss with me cus worried about me. Aargh!

        • Oh and I did get apologies and booboo face early in but not for awhile. He feels quite over the whole 30 yr marriage thing.

  • Come on, if they have no internet or cell service then how will they ever find their next soul mate?

    • ????true. How cruel of me. We all know without that cellphone they would shrivel up and die.

      • These cheaters usually have two cell phones. The one we know about and the burner for a direct line to Schmoopie. Mine had at least two Facebook accounts and many, many email accounts! I managed to find all of them. He was really crappy at being stealth!

        • Mine used his phone so when I got copies of phone records there were like 2 hundred calls between them for months. I think there were around 15 or 20 between us. Lol I went into his email and found pictures of his girlfriend, receipt for hotel, flowers and phone stuff he probably bought for her.. He didn’t try to hide it very hard. On the weekends there weren’t many calls – because they were together at the hotel.

  • I got the basic “I’m sorry, you must hate me” and then on saturday while discussing how we were going split assets in the Divorce I got “I’m sorry for wasting your time”.

  • My cheater said those exact words, “This is not the real me” followed by, “you know the real me”, “it was a midlife crisis”, “temporary insanity”, “this is a just a small bump in the road and we will get past it”. Well it has been a year and I’m having a really hard time forgiving her, I’m just not the type that can eat a shit sandwich. If she could display some sorta of understanding of the magnitude of her actions I would feel more comfortable trying to find those unicorns.

  • I never got an apology of any sort. According to the Fucktard, his cheating was all my fault. I wasn’t young enough, thin enough, or pretty enough for him anymore. I was too sweet. He needed someone 15 years younger (and presumably thinner and prettier). Someone edgier.

    Of course, when my younger, edgier replacement didn’t work out, the jerk declared that I was the only one for him and expected me to come running back to fill the void, probably while he auditioned new candidates to replace me. No thanks.

  • Minimization also occurs with the passive voice: “I’m sorry about what happened.”

    Actually, this is a good lesson overall: Does your spouse’s explanations pass Writing 101? Do they use strong, short, declarative sentences using the active voice? Do they use concrete subjects, verbs, and objects? Do they get to the point? Then they are probably faithful, or they are unicorns and are genuinely apologetic.

    Or do they speak/write in purple prose? Do they use use 25 words where 5 would do? Do they use vague language that goes in circles without saying anything? Does their explanation read like the 5-page book report of an elementary school student who clearly hasn’t read the book, so he’s just filling space and re-stating the same information 20 different ways? Large font, wide margins, double-spaced? Then they are cheaters, and they are remorseless.

  • “This isn’t me.” My ex had this trick of going by his middle name at work and his first name at home, ostensibly so that he could keep his work drama separate from his home life. Turns out he signed his emails to his Craigslist dates by his middle name, too. That level of compartmentalization is scary. It’s that old joke about always being frank and earnest- Frank in Chicago and Earnest in New York.

  • Well I’m sorry I cheated that isn’t who I am … Even though I left you for her, I wasn’t cheating because we weren’t together … you should have known how unhappy I am. Have you not counted this was literally the fifth time I left you to make sure I didn’t want you because you know, you got sick three times and denied me sex THREE TIMES in the last six months… my penis was throbbing and you made me commit spousal RAPE … Because the horn dog I am had to ram you in your sleep …

    Also for the recors you had the affair, not me, because, YES it was cheating, even though you did it while I was living with my new muse, and harassing you about how much better she is than you and telling you to screw someone else and refusing you a divorce and you didn’t have the money because I left you alone to pay bills or the kid I wanted so badly …

    Jane, I knew you were going to cheat and then claim you broke it off because your morals didn’t allow you to sleep at night… so yes YOU made me do it. I cried in Sally’s arms every freaking night and had to lick her butthole to feel better because your new guy made you forget about me and brought my kid an Easter basket and a Happy Meal, you didn’t even tell her to save me some fries… And then he had the nerve to pay for you and your friends dinner, and give you the left over money… who said Fil could do that. How dare he make you feel good… Oh yeah, what about my Happy Meal Janet? I mean Jane… Janet was a classmate I had to screw in the library like a sensible adult because you wouldn’t give me more sex … who cares you never came, I never came enough …

    Besides you were only giving me sex at least one every other week and a max of 4 times a week… Since I had to wait anywhere from ONE whole day to TWO WEEKS between ramming you (… and choking you out BDSM style even though you hated it, I don’t care Sally liked it) the times we did knock boots, weren’t knocking boots. It was my warm up for Susan… I mean Sally, Susan just gave me weed and raped me a few times when me and Sally were fighting …

    Gosh Jane you’re such a sexless douche bag for making me do such an awful thing and then rejecting my right to blame you. And call me a F*ck Boy, you and all your Jesus worshipping is supposed to make you forgive me, I’m your gift from God, even though I constantly remind you how I am actually Satan, and I already got the mark of the beast on my arm… It’s just my super cool tat that I cried like a ninny to get… What were we talking about? Oh yeah, how much I can’t stand you being a Christian you saved people are so boring with all your going to bed early, eating healthier and you quit smoking and cursing…

    You need to forgive me now Jane before I throw a super huge fit and tell my mom on you … you need to change and then I will stop cheating for good, (when you’re not feeling well doesn’t count though I can screw whomever I want).

    I’m Not A Cheater

    P.S. You made me do it Jane.

  • Disordered X only apology was a brief short lived one off non specific “so sorry for everything” at DD2 (before getting really vindictive when that did not seem to ‘work’). Previously “I’m only human” “I make mistakes ” “you’re not perfect” with examples at DD1 quickly followed by “you weren’t meeting my needs” “it meant nothing” and “I hate howorker OW1 now”. Recent hoovering alongside multiple subsequent ‘relationships’ was to tell the kids “I love your mother but she hates me now”. rather than expend energy on hate, my aim is cold indifference to DX – and to be too busy gaining a life and meh.

  • Over the past 10 months I received the following:

    “I understand that I also have problems and issues and will agree to do the work to identify and correct, but I’d like to say that I am not the person I’ve become. I do not like how I feel, or how I am acting. It’s not me…but some nightmare version of myself.

    My primary concern to all of this is I can’t help how I’ve felt for a long time…you do not trust me because of the choices and deceptions I’ve created, I do not trust you because of the potential for “pencil” situations. The problem occurs when I make bad choices and deceptions to escape from the feelings/damage inflicted from “pencil” situations. I don’t like it, I don’t like living like that…my personality is not strong enough. I might act like I’m strong, or unaffected by what’ occurred in the past 7 years and I think I’ve relied too much on Stoicism to mask how much I’ve been affected. My stoicism has led to an existential crisis and your books are basically telling me to suck it up, think of everyone but yourself…that’s it’s hard work to be unhappy. Yes it is.

    What I’m thinking about in this process is the cost/benefit analysis ofworking hard at being unhappy…”

    Note: The “Pencil” situation being referred to was me expressing frustration that all the pencils needed to complete homework were missing, again. Even though there was a cup on the counter to keep them readily accessable. They were never put back and every day we had to spend 15 minutes looking for them.

    Well, I had the intention of adding more to this, but as I looked over past emails and texts I realized this is all I got.

  • One of the things that I struggle with, almost daily, is the instinct to apologize right away. I’m sitting and someone bumps into me. Sorry! Sorry for… being here first and taking up space? I need to talk to my boss and start with “sorry to bother you”. My feelings are genuinely hurt by something and I am sorry to bring it up, apologizing for disturbing the peace. Someone imposes on me and I am genuinely sorry if I can’t accomodate them. Someone unfairly accuses me of hurting their feelings, of not being supportive enough, and I am supposed to apologize first, explain second or not at all. And I have been trained that things going right is to be expected, but if things go wrong it is always my fault.

    It’s the blow-back of growing up in the shadow of a narcissist, that I am basically apologizing to the world for existing, for taking up space, for having needs beyond being of service, for enforcing healthy boundaries.

    Be mighty, Chump Nation. No apologies for surviving.

    • Yes x1000. It got so bad before I started unraveling the deception that I apologized to STBX for existing. And I meant it. (Not a good memory …. blah)

      Growing up as a “tool” that gets in the way and is an annoyance teaches a kid how to be sorry for existing. So, yes, when someone bumps into me, I’m actually sorry I was there and in the way. I should have been paying more attention … or I should have taken up less room … I could rationalize myself into self-blame like a pro!

      Thank goodness for CL/CN and therapy! I was NOT consciously aware of why I felt the need to apologize all of the damn time … why I internalized blame for everything (I really thought it was always my fault).

      I am working very hard to filter through the BS that set my mind at “self-blame” mode–and I try to be intensely aware of the source of my apologies now. It’s a long road, but I’m okay with that. 🙂

      • 2nd Gen Chump,

        I am working hard on not taking the blame for things like…breathing! My exes don’t ‘do’ apologies–they often demand that I apologize to them when they commit awful offenses.

    • No, it’s the way women in our society are trained to act. We must always apologize for stating our opinion or facts about anything.

      We are trained that we are always to blame for “being in the way” of someone else.

      Stand up for yourselves, women, we must stop allowing ourselves to be devalued, and we must stop training our children that women must be this way.

  • The only “apology” I ever received:

    “I understand that I also have problems and issues and will agree to do the work to identify and correct, but I’d like to say that I am not the person I’ve become. I do not like how I feel, or how I am acting. It’s not me…but some nightmare version of myself.

    My primary concern to all of this is I can’t help how I’ve felt for a long time…you do not trust me because of the choices and deceptions I’ve created, I do not trust you because of the potential for “pencil” situations. The problem occurs when I make bad choices and deceptions to escape from the feelings/damage inflicted from “pencil” situations. I don’t like it, I don’t like living like that…my personality is not strong enough. I might act like I’m strong, or unaffected by what’ occurred in the past 7 years and I think I’ve relied too much on Stoicism to mask how much I’ve been affected. My stoicism has led to an existential crisis and your books are basically telling me to suck it up, think of everyone but yourself…that’s it’s hard work to be unhappy. Yes, it is.

    What I’m thinking about in this process is the cost/benefit analysis of working hard at being unhappy…”

    Note: The “pencil” incident referred to was me expressing my frustration at not being able to find any pencils for our daughter’s homework. There was a cup on the counter where they were supposed to be but they never got put back and every day we had to spend 15 minutes looking for them. Since he has left we have had no issues finding pencils.

  • “I’m sorry that she (OW) took it to social media and that you had to find out. You were never supposed to know because it wasn’t ever about you. But she wanted to stir up shit and run her mouth online, and now you’re hurt”.

      • And then he tried to claim that he’d been betrayed too, because the OW broke the agreement they’d made between each other to keep their relationship secret. We were both her victims. She was crazy, vindictive, and out of control.

        Well, of course she was. She’s a mentally unstable substance abuser who is constantly involved in social media drama, but he knew all of that when he got involved with her.

        He tried so hard to deflect it back onto her and to manipulate me into focusing my anger onto her instead of him. But that wasn’t gonna happen.

  • I was told that it was possible to be a perpetrator and a victim.

    The lines below are his explanation of how love fell magically into his lap:

    “This was a turn in life I did not expect, look for or plan. I found myself totally disoriented, doing things I never did before and going against my own values. I hurt and got hurt in the process. And today I am at a point where I do not know anymore what to do.”

    I can tell you what he did. He never looked back and gaslighted me to the point that I thought that I was crazy. When I confronted him, he had the nerve to ask me not to hurt her (professionally).

    I am not at the point where I can digest all of this yet. He believes that we can be friends.

    Utter devastation.

    • Stacey that sounds like yet more gaslighting. Friends do not lie, gaslight or cheat. Digesting this does indeed take time. Going no contact helped me heaps early on. Wishing you peace as you start to recover the days ahead.

      • Onward,
        I need to repeat what you wrote a thousand times. My ex-boyfriend, who I considered a friend for 30 years, lied to me, invalidated me, and disrespected me–while searching for greener grass on the other side of the fence, and after discarding me, decided not to communicate with me at all. Bad wolf, NOT friend, in sheep’s clothing. Sadly, in a way that makes me feel humiliated, he still communicates with the ex-wife (partner before me) he says abused and cheated on him.

        • RockStarWife respect for strength and resolve it takes to survive and move on from a 30 year plus time with a cheater who lied, invalidated and disrespected. That communication with his ex-who-cheater is all about his lack of character, and needs (like cheating was!). Not communicating with you might be a mark of respect and recognition that you see through the mask and won’t supply kibbles?

    • Yes to another one. That he didn’t understand how he was acting like this, against what he believed. And stupid of me, I believed that one for some time, until he rented an apartment to live with his cousin-whore to the view of his whole family.

  • Never got an apology after a 34 year marriage. Family, home, a son, beloved pets, & a wife who loved him for all that time.

    But after meeting the OWhore.. I was of no use to him anymore. He told me he loved her enormous breasts ( I lost a breast to cancer but I was still larger than average) & he loved her.

    She died few months ago & he already has a new girlfriend.. 2 years divorced now & I don’t even want an apology from him because it wouldn’t mean a damn

    Narcissistic spouses who leave for the OWhore don’t feel regret or empathy. It’s a waste of time to expect any kind of kindness or apology. It wouldn’t be real anyway.

    Evil cruel narcissistic ????

    • For the breast comment alone… May one of his testicles explode and may he burn in hell.

      • Whatringofhellisthis

        Yes…thank you for understanding the pain

        Karma or Wrath of God he’s without the whore & living in his aunts basement.

        HUGS to you! ????

        We’re ALL strong for surviving a terrible time in our lives!

  • This last Saturday my STBX told his mother to give me a message since I am NC. He wanted me to know that the affair “just happened, it wasn’t his fault” and it didn’t mean anything. And of course it’s all okay because he gave the one-night stand OW a fake name.

    What a tool.

  • My cheater said this is not me, midlife crisis, temporary insanity, small bump in the road we will get past it. Blah blah blah blah

  • I’m sorry, I’ve always loved you and…

    I never loved her, it was just sex. (3-4 times a week for 2.5 years)
    I wanted out but I was afraid. (After going back to the affair)
    I never thought I’d never get caught.
    I only met her during the week. Never on weekends. That was family time. (But I was in constant email contact)
    I hate what I’ve become.
    It will never happen again.

  • Last string of texts before NC after I changed the locks and kicked him out.

    Me: Do not contact me. If you come over for any reason to be clear, I will call the police. You have 30 days from today to get your belongings or you can find them next to the garbage can (they come on Wednesday). She managed to do in one night what I previously couldn’t do in 10 years, so thank her for me. I am out.

    Dickfuck: No, no, I have no ill will Grendel. Like I said I love you and the boys and am working on therapy and everything I said I hear you I hear your anger too. I am listening. I am interested in getting better and good:) I hear that you are out. I am turning away from anger:( I a m sorry for your hurt and your anger. I’m on an island…….By myself without children and a support network 🙂 I’m moving away from anger truly. You can contact me if you change your mind later.:)

    Me: Dude, check your emoticons. You’re retarded.

    Dickfuck: I’m so fucked up about you Grendel. You really were the one! Sad that we fucked it up. It was so beautiful. We wrecked true love. I can’t believe it. It’s so sad. I can’t believe it. It really was true love the damn thing.

    Me: See you in court.

  • I got the “We didn’t mean to hurt anyone” thing again and again and again. It’s like when a child says, “But I didn’t mean to,” after they punched their sibling in the stomach. Oh and that must mean that you don’t think it hurts when I do it to you! So just cuz you didn’t MEAN to, that removes all culpability on your part? When I finally got wise and told him that, he asked me over and over and over why him cheating hurt me. Like we’ve been socialized to think that cheating hurts but really, if we really think about it, it shouldn’t hurt. Well that’s like saying that when you cut yourself with a knife, you shouldn’t really bleed, if you think about it. You should be able to WILL yourself not to bleed.

    The whole thing was just a GIANT lesson in mindfuckery. I hate even thinking about it! Ugh. It was mind numbing and I felt so incredibly unsafe. I am so glad it’s over.

  • Maybe we want them to confess and apologize because it just makes us feel better if they actually admit to what they have done, or if they would actually be sincerely sorry for what they have done. The problem is, to do so would mean they would have to be someone entirely different from the person they really are.
    For those who have never heard even a faux apology, you really haven’t missed anything. It is a waste of time to listen to them, because they really don’t mean it, and they will always insinuate that what happened was somehow your fault, and they will only admit to things they know you have absolute proof of — with the caveat that there were extenuating reasons that those things happened, too.

    When I listen to the current news cycle and hear all of the unbelievable sidestepping, denial, gas lighting and “plausible” deniability that passes for an answer to the charges being brought forward in the “me too” movement, it makes me very sad. No one can know with any certainty what happened between two other people who were alone at the time. There is rarely a recorder, or a film of what happened. It cannot always be political or economic motivation to cause someone to come forward. It is the numbers of accusers and the similarity of the stories, and the logic of the situation that makes the story believable or not. Most of the victims who are coming forward are not doing it for any reason but to finally get their story told and be believed. It has to be a relief to lay that burden down, and to not feel so alone any more. The people who abuse others in this manner are only fooling themselves if they think the majority of people will believe them when they deny the charges. Some people will believe because they want to believe, but the truth has a way of enduring once it is released.

    What I wonder is what changes will occur as a result of this tsunami of reckoning. Hopefully some long overdue social changes will occur, and some eyes and ears will be opened. It is hard to keep rotten activity hidden for very long — the sneaking around of illicit affairs and the expense of carrying on sexual hook-ups will catch up with the participants. There are always consequences. We may not hear an apology, but we have learned the truth, and thankfully it does set us free.

    As for willing affair partners who find out later that the OW or OM has lied to them, too. So Sad, Too Bad. Welcome to the real world.

  • If I would have cheated I would own up to it! (disregard the thousands of minutes on the phone with her, she just was easy to talk to) I received the following statement many times, ‘I know this is going to hurt you but, ‘ followed by hurting me anyway. He is so convinced he didn’t cheat, but he is engaged to her 6 months after divorce was final. Also, he stated intherapy while I was desperately trying to save us and I apologized profusely for everything under the sun, didn’t give him enough attention, sex, fun, didn’t like his friends….and he never once apologized. Said maybe his work friendship was ‘inappropriate’. This all turned around on me as him telling me ‘you admitted in therapy everything you did wrong so there you go, you should have been a better wife!’ After which he told the therapist that he does not forgive, anyone, ever The other choice examples, when he would look at other women so blatantly in my presence and tell me how big their boobs were, I said that hurts me, he said well if I gave him more sex he wouldn’t have to look. When he drove too fast and it scared me with the kids in the car and asked him to slow down (I admit I would yell it sometimes) he would speed up, as he said to prove a point….no one…no one tells him what to do. And his guys has a speed ticket list a mile long, he says the cops are out to get him…not that breaking the law and following the rules is an option. So yeah, an apology will never come my way. Not one that means anything.

  • sorry to intrude, having trouble posting in the forums, seeing if I can post here

  • “I’m not going to apologize because I didn’t LIE to you. I just didn’t tell you. I’m an adult. I’m entitled to privacy.”

    • Ha ha ha! The ole “Im entitled to privacy.” Hope you booted his privacy loving ass right out the door!

  • I know–I could never convince my Ex that telling a partial truth is the same as telling a lie. How can a person make an informed family decision without the entire truth?

    • This… I was told the first time that it was one time only. Then a year later discovered it was a full on relationship. He was trying to spare my feelings so we could move forward cause he was ready to put her behind him… Eff that, keep her and put me behind you! Just too bad that we have a 3 & 5 year old that we cannot simply go no contact…

      • That is soooooooo true, my soon to be ex has lied so much he would not know the truth if hit him square in the face.

        It’s his lies and half truths that have finally made me realise what a two faced bastard he has always been.

  • I never meant to hurt you? You have got to fucking kidding cheater! Are you a 9 year old?

  • Dancing Dick (my ex pervert/husband) issued me this apology:

    There’s two of me…..the good Dancing Dick…….. and the bad Dancing Dick.

    Hmmm what to do with that? Call a divorce lawyer – naturally!

  • Cheating Ex-Wife, upon confrontation: [thru alligator tears]”I’m such a piece of shit. I fucked you over so bad. I’d say I’m sorry but I know it wouldn’t mean anything to you at this point.” :'(

    Oh spare me, you sad sack of shit!

    Never got a confirmation that it was even happening, even though I blew the whole thing wide open. When I presented my evidence, I was simply met with, “I don’t deny a thing.”

  • “She was a good friend when I hated you.”

    Cause being a good friend means you stick your dick in her…

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