There’s nothing sadder than watching a chump pick up the hopium habit again. I can sit here on the sidelines and frantically wave my arms and shout “NO! DON’T DO IT!” But if you’re determined to chase unicorns, there’s not a damn thing I can do about it.
I promise you, 99.9 percent of the time you’re going to regret it. Oh sure, the initial high will feel great. (HE LOVES ME! HE CARES! WE’RE GONNA BE A FAMILY AGAIN!) But the crash is coming — the inevitable devalue, the entitlement, the resumption of cake…
And all of it could’ve been avoided if you hadn’t fallen off the No Contact wagon. No contact is the path to truth and light. It is the fastest, the surest way to end the mindfuck and get your life back. But where no contact fails, unicorns rush in.
I know slip-ups are to be expected and I know from personal, painful experience how hard it is to kill hope — hope that this person is going to stop hurting you, hope that your investment isn’t lost, hope in the transformative powers of pain. OMG he’s realized what he’s done and he’s SORRY, so, so sorry!
Been there, done that, wear the chump crown. Ergo this blog.
And it’s not just me. When a blog odometer flips 19 million, you know some other people on the planet have shared this suckfest.
Which brings me to pregnantchump. I answered her letter when she had a D-Day while 8-weeks pregnant and her husband left for the OW. She’s now 6 months pregnant and writes:
Hello Chump Lady,
It has been almost 5 months since I have reached out to you but have been following your site almost everyday. I am officially so lost and confused that I thought maybe you could offer me some words of wisdom again.
You first ran my story when I was 8 weeks pregnant, I found out that my husband had been having an affair after we went through fertility treatments. I kicked him out the weekend I found out and he immediately moved in with his girlfriend. For the last 4 months, he was incredibly rude to me, treated me like I didn’t exist and really hurt me along the way. I filed for divorce the week after Christmas and have been fighting with him in courts to figure out our financial situation, all of that finally got figured out and he took responsibility for helping me pay for everything. Fast forward to two weeks ago (currently 6 months pregnant).
He called me and was very genuine on the phone. He apologized and told me that I was the strongest women alive and that our baby was lucky to have such a strong and wonderful mom. After that, he has been very supportive of me and our son. He said he wants to be a big part of his life and wants to help me anyway that he can. He comes from a strong family background that has been incredibly supportive.
Last weekend we met up so he could see our dogs and we had a very deep conversation about what it would look like to co-parent with our son. He told me that he moved out of his girlfriends house, and is living alone. He wants me to give him one chance (he said if he messes it up in anyway that he will leave me alone for good). That our 8 years together and family is worth it. He deeply regrets hurting me and our son. He is seeing a therapist and asked me to go to therapy with him. He said that the fertility issues that we had (which were on his side) really hurt his self-esteem. That his HR rep at work was giving him attention and I was going through fertility treatments, he lost sight of what was right in front of him. He says that he plans on making it up to me for the rest of his life and that we are an amazing couple. I am so sad that I lost the family that I thought I was creating with my fertility treatments, but I have to tell you, it felt good to show him the nursery and go through our sons clothes with him on Saturday and to be excited. I feel like it is the first time since my pregnancy that I just felt like a “normal pregnant women”.
I know that it sounds horrible, but I just want to do the right thing for my son. I want him to have a father and a mother that will love him no matter what. Do some people make mistakes and realize it? Do they ever heal and does their character ever change? Before this, my husband was an incredible husband and we did have a great relationship, is this something that people can get back, or am I being a chump? I would love to not be alone while I have this baby and would love to raise this child with his father. But am I being a chump to believe that this is possible?
Thank you for your help!
I know I’m being a chump. I know that in my head, I just didn’t know if it could ever change. The OW is a huge drinker and they went out and partied all of the time. He told me he looked around last month and realized that he lost the life that he really wanted, a wife, home, dogs and family. He said he thought that he loved her and thought that our relationship was over but he didn’t realize that he was lying to himself to make himself feel better for cheating. She still wants to be with him, he showed me his text messages and she calls him ALL the time, but he said it’s over and it’s truly not what he wants. I know none of this matters to you, but I am just trying to really understand the gravity of the situation. I feel like if I make the wrong decision, it’s going to affect my son for the rest of his life. It’s the first decision I have to make as a mother. I just hate that I am in this situation and really wish this wasn’t my story. I feel so horrible for my son, I just want him to have everything I promised him he would when I decided to get pregnant.
I’m sorry, you’re being a chump.
The person who walked out on you when you were 8 weeks pregnant and treated you cruelly and forced you to file is the REAL HIM. He did not “lose sight” of who he is. “Who he is” is about as apparent as a giant billboard along the highway reading “I AM A FLAMING ASSHOLE WHO CHEATS ON PREGNANT WOMEN.” Losing sight… please. That’s some minimizing bullshit.
Oh and fuck his “self esteem” jizz issues. He should try being abandoned while pregnant. You were dealt that crushing rejection so which co-worker did you fuck? Oh that’s right, no one.
Something went wrong in OW land and you’re plan B. I’m sorry. I know you don’t want to read that, and I know you long for him to be sorry with every fiber of your being, because you invested a lot in this person and loved him for 8 years.
But the guy is still a TOTAL BASTARD. Not one damn thing has changed about his character. Showing you the OW’s text messages? He is goading you into the pick me dance! He’s trying to demonstrate what an amazing prize he is. (NOT) Look! She really wants me and yet I choose you! The guy is presenting you with a turd and acting like it’s a gold-plated unicorn. In reality, he and the OW are two boozy, grifters who’d rather party than adult. He’s been on a FOUR MONTH SPREE with her while you’ve CARRIED HIS CHILD.
Who is the adult here? Who is the turd?
Listen, character change is SLOW and PAINFUL and takes a LOT longer than the gestation of a pregnancy.
Here’s a clue he isn’t changed — he is acting ENTITLED to reconciliation. He has no right to ask ANYTHING of you, and being a stable co-parent is the BARE MINIMUM. You should be able to EXPECT that without taking him back as part of the quid pro quo. You’re vulnerable and he is fucking with your heart.
Please don’t dress this shit up as wanting to do right by your son. That’s YOU spackling YOUR grief with the veneer of Intact Family. Mama bears protect their cubs. This fuckwit you bred with is a menace. If he hurt you, let me tell you, he’ll hurt your child too. If he can casually betray the mother of his child — a woman who went through fertility treatments for him — he can betray a child. Hell, he’s ALREADY betrayed that child. This is a man who cuts and runs when called upon to adult. Do NOT subject your child to that dynamic.
Your baby needs one strong, sane parent — and that’s YOU. How strong and sane are you going to be while performing the pick me dance with a loser? How much parenting bandwidth are you going to have while playing marriage police? Any fool can look at baby clothes. Real fathers respect the women they impregnate. Real men SHOW UP and ADULT.
Oh, but he’s going to do that now! If I just give him that chance!
You gave him that chance, four months ago, and he ran to the OW. There’s your answer. It hasn’t changed. He just misses cake.
Now let me end on a positive note — you and your baby ARE a family. You don’t need this loser to be a family. I know you dreamed another dream, and this all seems like a terrible bait and switch — but I’m telling you 20 years down the road, as a mom who raised a son largely as a single parent — it CAN BE DONE. Even with a fuckwit orbiting about. You can raise a beautiful child with your values. You can model strength and resiliency — and most of all sanity. Other than my son’s flirtation with libertarianism, he’s a solid kid. The kind of kid who walks the widowed neighbor’s dog. The kind of kid you’d trust to babysit your children. A kid with a firm handshake who looks you in the eye. A person who writes sweet holiday cards and remembers birthdays. A mensch. A kid who grew up to be a fine young man despite having a simply AWFUL bio-father.
A hundred chumps are going to tell you today that you can DO IT TOO! And the rewards are so much greater than “winning” a fuckwit. Stay strong pregnantchump — you’ve got this.