Stay in Touch

Check out CL's Book

Dear Chump Lady, Do cheaters blameshift?

Dear Chump Lady,

I was wondering if this is a common saying that chumps hear on D-day.

Upon discovering my husband’ s texts to another person, he quickly said, “I’m done!” I answered with, “You’re done? I’m the one that’s done!” Here’s the kicker — he then says, “You’re doing exactly what she wants you to do”, about my leaving. (This person wasn’t the main event, just a person he talked to, who would listen to him complain about our marriage and stroke his ego.)

A couple weeks later, when I found out about the “main event,” (the woman he met at work a month prior), I busted him, and he responded with “You don’t know shit”, followed by “You hate women who make their man cheat, but you did just that!”, followed by, “Nobody wants to be with your ass anyway.”

Does this sound like projection or blameshifting? Is this a common tactic for cheaters?

Btw, I never, ever told him that I “hate women who make their men cheat.” Like, what???



Dear Allmyfault,

Boy, what a charmer. I thought you were going to ask me for a good lawyer recommendation. Instead you want to know if cheaters blameshift?

Do bears poop in the woods? Is a frog’s ass water-tight? Does a one-legged duck swim in circles? Does Dolly Parton sleep on her back? Is the British cricket team South African? Does Rose Kennedy own a black dress?


Blameshifting is to cheating as biscuits are to gravy. It is the rare cheater who reacts to D-day with unvarnished honesty and remorse. (We call these mythical creatures “unicorns.”) You cannot cheat on someone without manipulating them. “It’s not what you think!” “That person is JUST A FRIEND!” “You’re crazy/insecure/paranoid/jealous/hormonal/irrational/controlling/hysterical/overly emotional….” Discovery just ratchets up their manipulation game a few notches. I’M NOT A PUPPET! YOU’RE THE PUPPET!

So of course he’s going to say stupid shit. He’s been in the power position and now he’s losing power. Can’t have you knowing things, so he goes on the offensive. He’s trying to put you back in the chump seat with mindfuckery.

It’s all very disorienting, I know. So I’ve created some Stupid Shit responses for you.

“I’m done!”

Don’t tell him you’re done, ACT done. Go see a lawyer, (don’t tip him off, just DO IT). Draw up papers. Make a plan. It’s no good flouncing about, announcing your intentions. He’ll just mindfuck you further. BE DONE.

“You’re doing exactly what she wants you to do.”

Then she’ll have him all to herself! Is that what you want? This is a none-too-subtle invitation to pick me dance. Oh that wily OW, you’re falling into her trap! Leaving him! You know what would show her? You standing your ground, trying harder to win your man… and maybe making him a sandwich. Boy, that would really fix her wagon.

The proper response to this nonsense is silence, followed by doing whatever the hell you want to do.

“You don’t know shit.”

Response: “Actually, I married him.”

“Me and Shit are intimately acquainted — he’s texting other women and fucking co-workers. So I left this Shit and now I know Peace.”

“You hate women who make their man cheat, but you did just that!”

Ye-ah. You’re the real misogynist here. (See projection above.)

I’m confused at how you’re so all-powerful, making men cheat, yet also such a passive titty baby, doing exactly what the OW wants. It’s baffling, but I’m sure it’s just all part of your evil plan.

Response: None required. If pressed, try: “You hate women. You cheat. You did this.”

Don’t expect to land any truth blows. I expect he’ll just bleat on about how you drove him to boink Betsy in accounting.

“Nobody wants to be with your ass anyway.”

Leave his ass.

Again, he’s ramping up the pick me dance threats. YOU’LL DIE ALONE! NO ONE WANTS YOU! DANCE, MOTHERFUCKER! DANCE!

You’re not the person who needs constant validation. You’re not fucking co-workers. Sounds to me like he’s terrified that no one wants his ass, so he’s forever testing that theory with his sad sausage pleas for attention and dick stroking. Is he projecting that on you? Of course he is.

There’s nothing to work with here, Allmyfault. And NONE of it is your fault. Quit with your field study of Stupid Shit Cheaters Say and leave him. If he wonders why, shrug, “Oh, I don’t know shit.” Or “Well, I’m doing exactly as the OW instructed.” Or “I thought I’d go make some other men cheat.”

But really, it’s best to just say nothing. Let your actions do the talking for you. Call a lawyer today.


Every time you support Chump Nation on Patreon, Ashley Madison dies a little inside.

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.
  • Tracy that was awesome!!! On behalf of mind fucked spouses everywhere Thank You.

    • Yes, and now that you know your cheater mindfucks you to keep you controlled, you should know it’s time to stop communicating with them. It’s time to embrace No Contact, the path to the truth and the light. The sooner up cease all unnecessary communication, the sooner you will see things clearly.

      • If you don’t talk to him or try to reason with him or beg him, he can’t blame shift his bad behavior onto you. If you don’t take his phone calls or allow him text access, you can clear your mind of these lies and the gaslighting that marks cheater behavior.

        You need time away from this to start seeing clearly.

        And look up DARVO–the tactic of DENY, ACCUSE, and REVERSE Victim and Offender. Someone here posted about that years ago and it cleared up a lot of the BS I hear from disordered types, not only in relationships but in regular life. When someone wrongs you and blames you–that’s a mindfuck. That’s DARVO. Don’t pick up that toxic material.

        • I’ve heard it as crazy making. How can they possibly think we’re responsible for their cheating. I’ve learned a lot in the past couple of years, which has made me a stronger person.

      • Yes, I’m pregnant with our child so I habe to communicate when the child is born, however I’ve been no contact for 2 months and he is in a relationship with OW, her baby is sleeping in my unborn sons nursery. It’s fabulous..

  • It’s part of the mindfuck.

    My ex pulled that trick. One day after he’d convinced me to give him another chance, I started verbally ripping him a new one without holding back. He huffed and tossed his hair and said “you know, maybe this isn’t even worth it”. I replied “yeah, that’s something I’ve been going back and forth over”.

    He got a really shocked look on his face, backpedaled really fast, and flipped the script back to oh, please please don’t leave me, I’ll do anything at all to make things right again.

    I should have said “you’re right, this isn’t worth it, GTFO of my house and never contact me again”. I eventually did, but only after wasting time, money, and energy on trying to reconcile.

    It happened more than once. I’d enact consequences, he’d get huffy and mouth off, I’d say maybe you’re right, and he’d throw it into reverse and backpedal like crazy until the situation was defused.

    looking back, when they tell you something like that, it’s your out. Take it, don’t hesitate, and don’t look back. Just say “you’re right” and end the relationship.

    • My Martial Arts Instructor used to say “Give the customer what they want”

      You want out ?
      There’s the door – don’t let it smack you on the ass on the way out.

      • Yes! Whenever I agreed with him on some stupid shit he’d panic and seem shocked. They live for the drama and the opportunity to vilify us.

    • After I found some records of 2 hour late night phone calls to the OW during our “trial separation” (sleeping in separate bedrooms), I called him at work and he denied that he was even talking to her. He said he was calling her husband to talk (eye roll city), even naming him by name. (BTW the other chump didn’t know his wife was cheating on him yet)… He started yelling at me that this is why he wanted a divorce, because of my snooping, and he wanted out! So I told him fine, you can move out. I told him he could go stay with all those friends he said would help him out if I got uncomfortable with him living in the house while separated. Then I went to Home Depot and bought a bunch of boxes, threw his shit in them and put them on the driveway. Well when he came home I guess he hadn’t expected me to follow through, cause suddenly he was at the door crying. Tears. “Can’t we do this another way?” Uh, no. No asshole, we cannot. I told him that if he didn’t want to be married to me and didn’t want to be part of our family then he could no longer stay in our family home – go stay with your “friends”. #sorrynotsorry

      • I wouldn’t have bought boxes; trashbags are in your house already.

      • 12 years wasted- I swear I wrote this. Suddenly he is a little child with no big boy pants.

        • I was literally just thinking this when I logged on after I saw my STBX at the community centre – going to the kid’s game on his motorcycle (because yay he’s 15 again) and giggling to himself as he texted his girlfriend. He’s a child indeed.

  • My Cheater didnt wait until cheating time to blameshift, he dove full-on into it as a singular mode of coping about 3 weeks into our marriage. I was SO accustomed to it that DDday blameshifting was simply same-shit-different-day and I was so numb to it that I came up with zero good CL responses and reacted like a predictable chump, dammit.

    You could write a primer on now not to react to DDay using me as examples A, B, C, D…etc. Thus it was YEARS before I was extricated from it all. Yea, dont do this.

    • UNM, this so true! How often we well-meaning human beings adapt to blameshifting of all kinds. I think it’s called “adaptation blindness”. Except that I can’t see the adaptive value in this behavior on chumps’ part…

      If only I had recognized this mechanism of control years ago. I look back and recognize dozens of examples.

      Funny how we learn that blameshifting is dishonest, but do not learn to recognize it towards us by significant others.

      • I think the adaptive value was likely developed earlier in life. I’m still working through some behaviors and thoughts that kept me safe as a child but aren’t so great in an adult.

        • That for me has been the curriculum of years of therapy–figuring out the behaviors that kept me relatively safe as a kid, that allowed me to survive, but that utterly fail when trying to build a healthy adult life. Once you “get” that, healing and change fall into place.

          • Lol, I can add my experience to support that theory, too. Ex and OW were just friends…even after I found their sex pictures! Even during our divorce, when she was staying with him in our house! I never wanted sex, don’t you know. Also, I don’t like swimming in deep ocean water. So I was pretty much asking for it.

            Once during the several month mindfuck that was him reiterating ILYBINILWY and zoning out during marriage counseling, I drank too much and ended up yelling, “You’re a SHIT!” at him. This is out of the ordinary–I don’t curse, I don’t yell…I don’t even get mad very often. He was self righteous enough to get mad and yell back that that was ENOUGH! and I was crazy. It’s really too bad that I reacted to being mindfucked in such a human, logical way. I mean, he really was a saint to put up with me (insert eyeroll here).

            The only reason I had any leverage in that divorce was threatening to send those sex pics to his commander, though. At least that was a silver lining. Yay UCMJ!

            • I asked my STBXH one thing. Please do not have women in the house. I just moved out a couple weeks ago and house is going on the market any day. He told my best friend he would never do that, he would never hurt me in that way again. I went by the house a few days ago to get some things and saw signs that a woman had been there. I was absolutely livid. He wouldn’t talk to me about it. I called her at work and she just hung up on me. I left her a message and said don’t ever come into my house again. I dropped by on Saturday to get some more things. Strange car in driveway and his new Jag convertible in the garage. Nobody inside. Looked out at the canal and realized they were out on our boat. Poured myself a large gin and tonic while I talked to our neighbor and guess who comes pulling up to our house in the boat. STBXH, girlfriend and another couple. I yelled some ugly things at them including the words cheater and liar and then left. He is now telling people I am mentally disturbed, need rehab and said if I ever do anything like that to embarrass him again he will call the police and have me Baker acted.
              TOTAL BLAMESHIFTING. He has done horrible things to me. I now know that NO CONTACT is the only way to survive.

              • Just like I told my Ex at the time, I am still your wife, and having that woman in my home is possibly the most disrespectful thing you could be doing. (The only reason I was still his wife was because he wouldn’t split assets evenly…even though he wanted the divorce, he had the affair, and we had been married for 11 years).

                Knowing he brought OW into my house to stay with him helped spur me to action. It was that point that I told him I didn’t give a shit if we both walked away with nothing–I was ready to go to court, and spend all the joint savings on my lawyer, if needed. If the lawyer got it all, at least HE wouldn’t have any.
                …I also told him his sex pics with OW would go straight to his Army commander by the following Monday. Low and behold, he signed the next day.

          • Same! Whitewash it, never discuss, take on the parent role, tell nobody, act like it never happened, try to be perfect but try to fly under the radar, too–all of that was survival, but also maladaptive.

          • Exactly, LAJ–our survival tactics that allowed growing up in a dysfunctional household should be shed as soon as we are out in the real world, to permit real connections and healthy relationships with other people. But it takes awhile, and a whole lotta effort, to do so.

        • Yes, my parents are a alcoholic / borderline and a narc…I developed coping skills which were so ingrained, I didnt know they were there. Married nowdeadcheater and I fell right into an overcompensation for his horrible partner skills…lasted to his last breath.

          My narc dad is trying to have a relationship now in the 11th hour of his life. Mom drank herself into dementia (her liver is fine, brain is pickled) and is so much nicer than she ever was before. I dont like them though and generally avoid them when possible.

          • Same here. I broke free from my parents when I left for college.
            My dad died at 56— liver cancer- but I think it was more drinking, but anyway.
            Mom is still here, but I have no contact with her.
            It has made me so much better in life cutting her out.

      • I think blame-shifting becomes a way of life in ALL aspects of their lives. Mine got mad when he missed the entrance to a restaurant drive, not because he wasn’t paying attention, but because “ALL restaurants have their drives directly in front (not towards the side)!!” Poor guy had to turn around because of the big bad restaurant.

    • Curious, i remember your husband was military, was his father also military? I’ve always suspected the military culture encouraged the “ it must be someone’s fault” idea. I got blamed for so much crap. For example, little known fact, the Persian Gulf war was actually my fault!

    • Yep. Mine started as soon as our child was born. I was blamed for everything wrong. I was critical, not nice enough to him, etc. In true chump form I tried everything I could to please him for 5-6 years and sunk further and further into despair until I couldn’t give anymore (without receiving anything in return) and THAT is when things got even worse. Rage, belittling, the most evil stares…thank god I got cancer so he discarded me or I fear it would have gotten really really bad.

      • @Cancer Chump – I found that my value was lost once I had my first child as well. After having another child, and postpartum depression, I went through the first round of “separation” (read: I will enjoy all the pick-me dancing of my wife while she raises two children, works and I still sleep with her while at the same time I will date other women since my wife is too controlling and I don’t geed connected to here). While separated, I got pregnant twice (one miscarriage) and after exposing his OW (married herself), he came back to me and I thought that I had “won”. Little did I know, I was just the easy consolation prize so he could continue to enjoy his children with no consequences for his behaviour. Second round, and now he’s out. My children are devoted to me and tolerate him. But as I sit here, I am convinced he wanted me as the mother of his children (to essentially give them the values that he couldn’t) and once that was done, I was of no further value.

  • I picked up a note on my husbands desk asking, “who gives better head the wife or the girlfriend”? Talk about an invitation to Dance. Ahh no! I never put my mouth around his dick again! She wins the suck you dance!

    • You should have left your own note on the desk titled:

      “Who’s got a bigger dick ?
      J (?) from ***** or S (?) from ******** ?”

      Cheater: You can’t do that !
      A little return of mindfuckery serve 🙂

      • Blee, hahahaha….may I add, “who’s got a bigger dick and knows how to USE it better!”

    • ????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
      Another amazing unicorn with a dick made out of pure gold… ????‍♀️

    • Right? So many horrible stories about Vanessa now that the divorce is on. Obviously leaked from her STBX Don Jr. Such crap.

      • The horse apple doesn’t fall far from the Cheater Tree, does it?

  • So absolutely egotistical. Narcissism. Image management, gotta blameshift to maintain. Mistakes were made but not by me! Fuck off dickwad!

    • Omg I love it Kiminator my ex husband is a Narcissist also and and egotistical pig!

  • Dear AMF NOT!

    Cheaters are tarred with the same brush or read straight from the Cheater’s Handbook 101 or whatever other bs they’re full of.

    Don’t listen to another word, it’s all crap like them.

    Recently I became aware that, years after separation, apparently it’s ALSO my fault that cheater idiot is an alcoholic AND a drug addict…. that must be “CHUMP POWER”! Wtf? ????????????????

    I’m very much responsible for raising all our children single handedly. Paying all the debts idiot left behind. Keeping a job. Just generally being magnificent lol.

    But never will I take ANY responsibility for where the ex’s STD ridden **** entered during a one sided effed up ‘marraige’.

    No way.
    All that goes on cheaters colorful CV. ????

    Love your work CL.
    Stay strong CN!

    • Isn’t amazing how we have the magic power to get the cheaters to do all sorts of BAD things, but we never, no matter how hard we try and how much we want it, manage to get them to do the GOOD stuff? You know, not cheat, not use drugs or drink to excess, be a decent parent, keep a job, take responsibilities ….

      That is some kind of wonky power we have there!

      • Here, here @KarenE – exactly. Why can’t we chumps use our power for good and not evil?

  • Dear Allmyfault,
    Let me reiterate what ChumpLady said first, “This is not your fault!”

    Don’t know how far you are into Discovery, it sounds like this is all pretty new, so let me prepare you for what is just the beginning of blame-shifting. Let me outline some of the lovely blameshifting conversations that he’s likely to still throw your way. No, I’m not psychic, it’s just that the script is pretty standard for cheaters, and maybe others can briefly outline their version of the script, but here’s my experience of what’s coming for you.

    1) You have done nothing but make me feel worthless this entire marriage. You are too strong.
    2) You have always been in control of everything. I lost my identity. I never could have a say. You don’t know how to listen, and I can never say what I am truly thinking and feeling.
    3) I don’t think I ever loved you. I married you because you checked all the boxes on paper of what any man would want in a wife and mother of his children.
    4) I just need to be happy. I need to do something for myself for once.
    5) I realized shortly after we were married that I really didn’t even like you, but I had made the commitment and figured that I could be satisfied with the choice I made for the rest of my life.
    6) You do nothing but complain or criticize. You don’t know how to be happy. I realized that there was no point in trying.
    7) I haven’t found you attractive in years. In fact, your physical presence makes me as uncomfortable as a stranger in my personal space. I’ve had to force myself to have sex with you the last couple of years now.
    8) I love you as the mother of my children. I couldn’t ask for a better role model. But, I’m not in love with you, and I’m not sure I ever was.
    9) We just have never had anything in common. This woman gets me. I can talk to her in a way that I could never talk to you. For the first time in my life, I can be my real self. I’ve always had to hide who I really am from you (and everyone else, including family).
    10) Come on. You know that you want out of this marriage too. If you really wanted to be married to me, you would have been nicer over the years. The only reason why you are fighting for this marriage is that you can’t stand the thought of failing at something. You don’t really love me.

    You can try to engage in the Pick Me Dance, if you so desire. But let me tell you how absolutely soul-destroying it is to dope yourself up on “hopium” time and time again and have your efforts and dreams crushed repeatedly. After a year of engaging in the fight of my life to try to save my marriage, believing all the literature that one person can save a marriage, exercising Herculean effort to be understanding and patient (with the aid of a counsellor and my priest) in the face of my husband’s craziness, and investing 1000s of dollars in marriage counselling, on-line programs and books, my husband ended up leaving just after Christmas to be with the other woman. I am now being treated for symptoms of trauma as I suffer anxiety for the first time in my life.

    My husband lies to everyone about this woman. At first, stating that they weren’t dating as he can’t afford it. Then upgrading recently to “they hang out sometimes” (In fact, he pretty much cohabitates with her every day that he doesn’t have the kids.). Now he’s doing image management by telling his family that they were only ever friends. That he only went over there to talk and that he only stayed overnight when their talking sessions went late and it was easier to just crash. Nothing ever happened physically. It’s all lied and I’ve got the emails to prove it from a secret email account that he doesn’t know I figured out. His family knows the truth and are disgusted.

    You’re in the early stages. Keep quiet. Do some quiet research to find out what you can. Collect whatever evidence that you can. Take care of yourself and protect your children. Get a lawyer. Do not agree to any terms of separation without first consulting. Then, get him out of your house and out of your head.

    You will continue to dream about reconciliation. Who knows. It may occur, but not today or next week or next month. Not when he’s reacting in these ways. There is NO CONVINCING him of any authentic reconciliation at this time so don’t waste your energy trying. It will only hurt you in the long-run.

    Best wishes. Be smarter than me.

    • I heard variations of #1-10 and more. My freedom day was 19th January 2015 ( day he left!) and on saturday he messages :” can we reconcile?”

      mind you he’s been seeing other people from the time he left and still is.

      these people are just so messed up.

      • Oh Mandie, I love how he thinks so much of himself (and so little of you) that he thinks that you’ve just been sitting by the phone these last 3 years, pining away next to a photo of him, just waiting for his text. Bwahaha. Did you even answer?

        They say that dogs and cats have no sense of how long their owners are away. So it must be with cheaters.

        • my thoughts exactly! He seems to think that my life has been on hold. Now if that doesn’t say crazy!

          I didn’t reply. I never do. I run a couple pithy responses in my head, laugh to myself and carry on.

          My last scenario involved me running down the street, hair on fire trying to save myself. I also wanted to reply that I’m still crazy and mean just like he left me.

          BUTTT I didn’t reply and that is infinitely more enjoyable and satisfying.

    • All. Of. This.

      I don’t know why it still shocks me to learn that other chumps were given the same lines verbatim.

      Except for #8. My ex will never, ever give me credit or acknowledgment of being the mother of his first daughter. I’m pretty sure he thinks his new baby mama would be a better role model, as he now consults her for all of his parenting decisions.

      But damn, other than that, every last one of those was said to me. The fact that they are so unoriginal says a lot about them.

    • That’s impressive @OptionNoMore. I heard each and every one of those ten at various points post DDay. The physical attractiveness one was particularly telling, as KK was always hypersensitive about appearances, body shaming, etc. and of course, it totally conflicted with all of the flattery and praise that waa employed to keep the cheating secret and keep me off-guard.

      The day after she looked me straight in the eye and slowly, purposely told me that “sex with you is disgusting” and “I only did it out of a sense of wifely duty,” I sent her a “This is to confirm..,” message via Our Family Wizard recounting everything she’d said. I wanted some official record of it that would be recognized by the courts. In her response, she never denied saying it, but tossed it off as a natural and understandable result of being angry (at what, she never specified) and used it as an example of how “WE have to do better, for the sake of the girls.”

      • Wow, UX, I”m sorry you had to hear that. I’m sure Hannibal Lecher would have said it to me if he hadn’t been acutely aware of impression management (as we had the same set of friends at the time).

        And, of course, you know what KK meant was “YOU have to do better, for the sake of the girls.”

    • Here’s another one:

      “I thought you were having an affair, so it was ok for me too”

      She seriously told me this just after D-Day. Claimed I was in an affair with one of the mums from our daughters’ school (and no I wasn’t before anyone asks!).

      • Oh, I got that. When he told me he was fucking someone else, he said, “Because I thought you were too.”

        I must have had the most shocked look on my face because I got pissed and said, “You should have fucking ASKED me!”

        Then it was I was on the Internet too much.

        Then it was because I liked the cats more than the dog.

        Then it was because he had to do “everything”

        Blah blah blah

        • I just read too much
          I had too much energy
          Silly me
          What a fucking joke
          How about FO

        • Sunflower 36 — “Then it was because I liked the cats more than the dog”

          lol I’m sorry but that’s just pricelessly funny — one for the cheater’s Hall of Shame — you really can’t make this stuff up

    • Nice!

      I heard all 10 of those too from my XW. She at least got a little creative with No. 7, saying that while I wasn’t attractive enough for her, I at least had some “empirical” physical traits that somebody else might find attractive. So at least she tried to let me down easy…….but of course I still had to remember that the whole situation was all my fault.

      • Blindside, I also got the “I find you unattractive, but I’m sure someone out there will find you attractive.” It’s such a shit sandwich while you’re doing everything you can to try to save the marriage and fix your “faults” so they will love you again, they do and say everything to make you feel worthless. As if their betrayal wasn’t bad enough.

        I also got most of these 10 said to me verbatim both before and after D-Day. Coming to this site and seeing that my experience is not unique has given me so much strength to power through the bullshit of blameshifting and devalue. AMF, just remember that as CL says, it doesn’t matter if you were a terrible sexless wife, you don’t deserve to be cheated on. There are mature and moral ways to end relationships and your husband chose to be immoral and immature. That shows who HE is, not you.

        • The total discard line is:you are such a catch
          Turns out I am

    • Thank you for this list. I heard most of these and just assumed they were all true: clearly I suck as a woman, wife and human being. Seeing them all written out as common things said by cheaters greatly depersonalizes them for me.

      • “Depersonalises” …so important for moving on. I got a variation of the sex being a chore line “sex was just a biological release ” …yes all 20 years of it …including creating our children. How charming. It is literally unbelievable which is why it is so good reading the bullshit variations here.

    • And you will be left scratching your head wondering how you could have missed that he was so not in love with you and that you are evidently so unlovable. Are you really that dim? Then you will run across your stash of Christmas/Valentines Day/Birthday/Mother’s Day/Anniversary etc. cards all telling you what wonderful wife you are, how lucky he is to be your husband, being with you is like heaven on earth, etc. and you will realize that no, you were not crazy for thinking you had a solid marriage. He is the crazy one who was either lying all along for who knows why, or he snapped and became another person. Either way, he is the one who is messed up, not you.

      • And here I thought I was the only one to occasionally look at those old cards and scratch my head! I always think to myself: “Lying to me then or lying to me now?” And then I remind myself that there’s no answer to that that I would find acceptable, so I put the card back in the back of the drawer and poke my lawyer about filling those papers/make dinner plans/hug my kids or whatever I need to get on with that Life thing 🙂

        • “Lying to me then or lying to me now?” I asked him that, and then said “Never mind, you’re just a liar.” Made it a bit easier to shut the door on him.

      • Yup
        I packed all those neat cards and notes, neat and tidy into one of his moving boxes
        Enjoy those later fuckwit

      • Exactly! I had hundreds of such cards and notes and sentiments expressed by X during his devalue and discard of me and the kids. Wtf?! Proof it was all a long quarter-century con.

    • “You’re in the early stages. Keep quiet. Do some quiet research to find out what you can. Collect whatever evidence that you can. Take care of yourself and protect your children. Get a lawyer. Do not agree to any terms of separation without first consulting. Then, get him out of your house and out of your head.”

      @ Optionnomore – Yes, This!! I was so fortunate to have my family and close friends tell me that when he told me he loved me like a sister now after 20 years together, 13 married, that it made absolutely no sense. He denied there being anyone else until I was able to confront him months later that I knew about his disgusting escort habit and escort turned girlfriend. So beat him at his own game!! I did all of this and have myself in the mightiest position possible going into settlement phase! He will never again screw me or our two children over!

      • BTW :How do you all quote someone else in the little gray box? or highlight the person you are replying about…

        • I just do a copy/paste if I want to quote a statement. For addressing a certain person, I reply to their statement, or use the “@ and then their avatar name”.

    • OMG, this really IS the script OptionNoMore. Word for word. I got loads of EVERY. SINGLE. ITEM. on your list.

      And the list needs to go through the UBT.

      As far as sparkledick is concerned this would be the UBT’s output:
      1) You have done nothing but make me feel worthless this entire marriage. You are too strong. (actually, sparkledick never said that I was strong, too much for a narcissist to admit since it would make me look good).
      “I feel worthless because I still have the bare minimum threshold of functioning moral synapses to know that I am just a bastard jerk fuckwit and you are innocent prey.”

      2) You have always been in control of everything. I lost my identity. I never could have a say. You don’t know how to listen, and I can never say what I am truly thinking and feeling.
      “I can never say what I am truly thinking because, actually, I never reflect about ANYTHING useful and important. I am just a flabby-assed, shallow man with no true culture or morals. In fact, that is why I constantly burp and fart when in your presence, it fills up the vacuum of ideas in my head. But you selfishly refuse to understand and accept my gastro-intestinal needs.”

      3) I don’t think I ever loved you. I married you because you checked all the boxes on paper of what any man would want in a wife and mother of his children.
      “I married you because you checked all the boxes of things that would make ME look good. And helped my power struggle in the competition between eight brothers of whom has the most desirable wife. And with young, supple schmoopie now I am the winner! Nah nah naaaah!”

      4) I just need to be happy. I need to do something for myself for once.
      “And I need to keep you helping me to do things for myself ALL the time.”

      5) I realized shortly after we were married that I really didn’t even like you, but I had made the commitment and figured that I could be satisfied with the choice I made for the rest of my life.
      “For the rest of my life = for as long as I can get chump to prop me and take care of me and my family of mediocre moochers.”

      6) You do nothing but complain or criticize. You don’t know how to be happy. I realized that there was no point in trying.
      “It’s not my shit that’s the problem. The problem is chump’s reaction to my shit.”
      This translation is actually a shortcut key on the UBT

      7) I haven’t found you attractive in years. In fact, your physical presence makes me as uncomfortable as a stranger in my personal space. I’ve had to force myself to have sex with you the last couple of years now.
      “You have committed the unpardonable mortal sin of growing old and have thus selfishly cast a dark shadow on the glory of my sparkledick and my glitterballs. And I can’t stand your voice because it keeps pricking my conscience.”

      8) I love you as the mother of my children. I couldn’t ask for a better role model. But, I’m not in love with you, and I’m not sure I ever was.
      “And I reached this brilliant conclusion as soon as I figured out that cake-eating is actually a lot of work, especially because you have started to unchump….”

      9) We just have never had anything in common. This woman gets me. I can talk to her in a way that I could never talk to you.
      “We never had anything in common except your salary, your hard work, your attention, your thoughts and prayers, your contentment.”

      For the first time in my life, I can be my real self. I’ve always had to hide who I really am from you (and everyone else, including family).
      “It was just too much work to be a decent spouse so I gave up. And I’m having so much fun.”

      10) Come on. You know that you want out of this marriage too. If you really wanted to be married to me, you would have been nicer over the years. The only reason why you are fighting for this marriage is that you can’t stand the thought of failing at something. You don’t really love me.
      “To keep this marriage you must stand in awe at the shine and glory of my sparkledick and my glitterballs.”

    • I heard these too, but some of mine had a different twist, sometimes the opposite. #8 for example, we didn’t have children, but about a year before the final divorce (we were married for 10 years) he said that I would make a terrible mother because I wasn’t up on current events. I’m not a big news watcher and that made me a bad person to X. I’ve surmised that the reason we didn’t have kids was that he really didn’t want kids and I managed down my expectations and made my needs smaller and talked myself into not having kids and being fine with it.

      These kind of people even blameshift their lifestyle choices onto others. X couldn’t just say he didn’t want kids, he had to mindfuck me into thinking that I would have been a bad parent because I don’t watch the news. #cantmakethisshitup

    • Wow @OptionNoMore. I got all ten – and in the very same order even. Wow. What a day to catch up on CL – lots of “aha moments” in seeing myself in other’s shoes.

    • ^^^ this.
      19 years and four DDays later, I finally left.
      I go to counseling twice a month with this guy and just check off all the boxes during our appointments. I keep wondering when our counselor is going to even call him on his crap.
      We aren’t reconciling, we’re “transitioning”.

    • Some of those did really make sense, he used the “you complain and don’t know how to be happy” one. Oh, I didn’t even get a chance to do the pick me dance. As soon as he was discovered, he no longer wanted me. He started dating her. Right away. He couldn’t been wait until our baby was born. I was 25 weeks pregnant, I’m 38 weeks now I’m too “emotionally unstable” was his reasons for wanting to leave. (Because I’m not hormonal or anything??). He is dating another woman while I’m pregnant. Yea…he didn’t try to save us at all. I think he was relieved to be found out. He got what he wanted after that. So after planning our first baby together, im all of a sudden going to be a single mom….hooray cheaters…

      • Aly I am so sorry. How difficult for you to not only be pregnant but to be in this shit storm with a fuckwit who is creates his own form of craziness.
        Take care.

  • Wow CL your insight is amazing and I am so grateful.

    Recently while I was on a tear berating him, which was looooong overdue, I told him I hate him, he is a coward, his girlfriend is fat and ugly, she can have him because nobody wants a cheater, he should crawl in a hole and die, etc. I got no response from him at all. Nothing. The only objection I got from him was when I told him he is a meal ticket to her. He said, no I’m not, no I’m not. Me thinks he has had those same thoughts that he is being used. Haha. Asshole.

    • Same^^^

      In the early discovery stage, when I was still “speaking” to xhole, the only time I actually saw any reaction in that stone cold cheater face was when I called the howorker a whore and a gold digger. Those words hit a little too close.

  • Wow , reading this post I kept saying yup. When I found out about my stbx cheating with my cousin. His response was you told me to find another women. No one likes you anyway. Even your daughter hates you. It is not my fault that you didn’t want to go out every weekend. Yup, I put a gun to his head and forced him to screw my cousin. It seems that all cheaters must have read the same how to book.

  • When caught it’s unexpected. Cheaters are cowards who despise consequences and will not only blame you they’ll expect you to blame the OW. The ‘she said’ crap is to further shift responsibility.

    In my opinion the ones who just up and disappear have been in the game a long time with multiple or long term relationships with the OW.

    I heard things like, she wouldn’t like it if I talked to you. You physically abused me; no, no I mean emotionally abused me. No one will ever want you the way you are. The cheater has a false narrative and the OW are typically rescuers. The beginnings of that relationship focused on sad sausage victim speak.

    And I so agree with the ‘You’ll die alone” which came unsolicited from the OW. It’s their fear.

  • Do not engage!! I realized that the constant back-and-forth was extremely addicting, and I NEEDED it!! I kicked him out right away, but his still contacting me meant that I WAS IMPORTANT!! He NEEDED ME!! Gave me a jolt of adrenaline that he was over there with the OW, but reaching out to harass & emotionally abuse me. Yaaaaayyyyyyyy!! So disturbing once I realized what exactly was going on, and that I was feeding into my addiction with negative & harmful crap. Walk away, do not engage in the game. You will actually go through withdrawal (which sucks hardcore, but then all of this does anyway). I still have to remind myself not to engage because the thought is so enticing.

    • I did the same thing. And I knew better from my first husband, but I engaged anyway and it was used against me to prove how ‘mean’ I am. Go no contact and they will will start to act crazy and prove to everyone who the nut really is. They love the back-and-forth – it’s a game – a sick game like everything else.

      After he left over 2 years ago and I changed the locks, he wanted to come visit to see if we could work it out. I let him come over but stayed a few feet away from him – he repulsed me. He said, “I’m not going to take his lyin down!” And I was like, huh? He’s the one lying, betraying, cheating… But that’s what they do. When he said I was messing around with the pool guy, I knew he was the one messing around.

      Ugh. They are mental. I had a mental, evil person taken out of our lives. He’s pouring his evil out on our daughter as is not cosigning his bullshit anymore – that ran out when she realized what he did. So now time to thrown her away – she if of no use anymore.

      Oh, the 22 y.o. he moved in with? They are fighting all the time. His mom told me he’s drinking too much. I’m glad our daughter has refused to go over there. I do not want her in that mess. I feel sorry for their baby being in that mess.

      They are monsters.

    • I completely agree. I broke no contact and was feeling like a crazy person all over again. But I found myself constantly checking my emails to see if he had emailed me. I went no contact again. Changed phone number and email. It been a week and already I am feeling so so much better! No contact is the way to the light!

    • So true. Months ago I made a list of things to do that are more productive than trying to reason with a cheater, including “bang head against a tree to loosen sap.” Virtually any activity will have more positive outcomes than trying to talk sense into a cheater, or get them to admit responsibility.

      My DD17 is back in touch with her serial cheater father after 3 years. His apology to her, “I’m sorry for the divorce.” That’s it. Wish I could tell him *I* am not sorry for the divorce at all, but NC….

  • I was told that I wasn’t as ‘warm and fuzzy’ as his ‘friend’. And that I was not positive and adventurous like she was. Meanwhile he had refused to fly for 20 years due to his phobia. And he would develop a severe headache from trips that involved a drive.

    And of course there was the ‘fact’ that I wanted him dead. Isn’t that horrible of me! Even tho I never said that, not even once. But apparently he ‘knew’ that is what I felt (horrible old me).

    Classic demonize ploy of the cheater of the put upon spouse.

    • OMG, the stuff they make up and convince themselves they ‘know’ about US! My ex decided (AFTER fucking Shmoops) that I didn’t love him anymore, so it was OK to screw around.

      Mitz, I would be very scared by his ‘knowing’ that you wanted him dead. I’m worrying that is projection, and he would like you dead. Please stay safe!

      • KarenE that never occurred to me, that he was the one who wanted me dead. It makes sense now. He would sneer that I want him dead and in a coffin, and ‘my family lives forever, and no one seems to able to kill us off’. I have the creeps now. thank you

        • Mine “knew” all these things going on in my mind apparently. And he would have entire arguments with me where I hadn’t even opened my mouth. “You think this” and “you feel that” and “you …..” repeat ad nauseum. Then, when he was satisfied that I had “finished arguing with him” he would yell at me for all the terrible things I had thought! Oh the mind fuck. Ah well, he’s just a sad suck now and no longer my problem!

          • My father was like this.

            I think he would have been very dangerous if my mother had left him

    • Cheater decided after 20 years of marriage we had nothing in common unlike him and schmoopie.
      He wanted something different.
      To friends and family he had a different story, Brit is mentally ill, a pathological liar and an alcoholic.
      I never loved him, (see list)
      Poor guy wanted to find someone he had more in common with.
      He forgot to mention or it slipped his mind, he already found her.

  • Oh how I will always regret not being silent from the start. To all the new chumps. SILENCE is golden. It feels way better and leads to quicker healing. Had I only stumbled upon Chump lady a little earlier in the game I would have less regrets but its all a process and eventually you learn. When you feel your going to engage jus jump on here and read the articles. Silence is your most powerful weapon. Vent but dont vent to the cheater,narcicisst ,sociopath etc…… Gets you no where. Call a lawyer!

  • O holy shit i hate these weird alien fuckers. And they mommas…and after having a great mothers day sans weird alien fucker i just realized a special hallmark section should be created for disordered mothers of disordered motherfuckers.

  • “I’m confused at how you’re so all-powerful, making men cheat, yet also such a passive titty baby, doing exactly what the OW wants. It’s baffling, but I’m sure it’s just all part of your evil plan.”


    Other examples might include

    “You’re so controlling” yet they are able to text and screw 10, 20, 30 other women /men. If you have so much control, how exactly does that work? All part of your evil plan to paint them as a cheater?

    “If you had higher self-esteem, it wouldn’t bother you that I flirt / screw / inappropriately text, etc. other people.” Yeah, because people with high self esteem let committed partners fuck around. It doesn’t bother them at all, their high self esteem protects them from needing to uphold respect / boundaries / commitments.

    “It was God’s plan that this person came in my life. He wouldn’t have opened the door if he didn’t want me to walk through it!” Uh- hu, right… and those pesky commandments, this must all be part of Gods plan to let them know they are beyond those, right?

    Turn off the mind fuck channel! It literally wasn’t until I went no contact for an extended period of time that I was able to see this bullshit for what it was; an invitation for me to question my own perspective / views / sanity, in exchange for “being good enough for his love” If chumps would just see things the cheaters way, well then they might consider staying.

    If you listen to crazy, you lose your mind too!

    • Never argue with a fool, because they will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience

  • The mindfuckery is especially damaging to my children. They witnessed it and I am now paying the price. One is estranged and the other shows a modicum of respect. Because, after hearing it from him all through the years, it must be true. All I know is that when I exposed to HIM the truth that I had uncovered about him, he was too afraid to face me to obtain all of the possessions that he had wanted. Exposing them for what they are is very gratifying!

  • I was told ‘the OW already has made me a better man’ ok, cause somehow it is my fault you have shit character.

    • Mine said she had so much to learn from her and she would improve him. She corrected his grammar (which was already better than most) and taught him to fold laundry more efficiently which was kind of a waste as he no longer lives with his kids and doesn’t have much laundry to fold. In any case, I think most of those “improvements” were pretty superficial and were really just making him more of what he already was, good at superficial image management. From a character perspective she encourages the worst in him.

      • Wtf people show their partners how they like the laundry folded! Always knew I was easy going…

  • This is all so true. Manipulation for sure and a deeply fucked up defense mechanism. Like a skunk, they spray their stink all over you and then you’re just like them! (No insult to skunks intended!)

    Take a tomato juice bath and get out.

  • They truly are unoriginal. It’s almost boring when you think about it. We give them credit in our lives for being our miracles… the LOVE of our lives… but really, they’re just “beige” covered in short-term glitter.

    My first d-day got me: “You spend too much time with the kids.” (To clarify, that would’ve been our newborn and his FOUR other biological children under the age of 12.)

    My fourth d-day got me: “I knew I was done, so it isn’t cheating.” (To clarify, we had been on our annual family vacation to the beach when he was sending 1000s of text and spending hours on the phone – while I was taking kids to the beach and the boardwalk.)

    SO no, AMF, it isn’t you. Never was, never will be.)

    Best day ever came months after the discard and I found CL and CN. And I received this text “Nice, you hired a lawyer.” BEST. DAY. EVER.

  • I’m so glad I found this site! I can’t believe how all these cheating a**holes are so much alike with what they say and do! We have been divorced awhile and he’s been running around with his pants down for quite some time but it seems to never end, he still tries to come back with his lies of “he loves me” he wants to “fix his family” he “made a mistake” and blah blah bs and more bs then lashes out with all theses lines and insults when he gets caught in a lie and exposed for what he is a cheater. Guess the grass wasn’t greener like he thought it would be and wants to have both lives. Me and the kids when. He feels like it and his littles whores also. Just like whem we were married. No thanks

  • They will blame shift, duck and doge. When chump looses it, their reaction is used against them as proof of earlier accusations.

    Lesson learned:

    If anyone can not take responsibility for their own misdeeds, errors or actions – no matter how big or small the mistakes made were — RUN AWAY.
    If they direct the cause of their actions to you, your children or onto others — RUN FASTER.
    If anyone uses your actions against you, in a negative or punitive way — RUN LIKE YOUR ARSE IS ON FIRE.

    • This is genius Magneto
      I would add, give them 30 minutes to take responsibilities and tell you the entire story
      Otherwise it’s a shitshow of months of mindfuck, emotionally devastated me
      Coming out the other side emotionally and physically strong
      He took 2+ Years of my life sorting out HIS bull shot and pathology

  • I realized how completely mindfucked my marriage left me, it came in full color this winter. I talked at length to a kitchen remodeler about upgrading. He promised to get some ideas and rough numbers to me. After 10 days he came back with, “I haven’t forgotten about you, I am just slow, and will get you something in a few days.” He never provided anything. No follow up or further comments of any kind; I never heard from him again.

    Within a few days of it all I had a dream where he was screaming at me that it was my fault that he didn’t follow through. And in that dream I believed him. As I woke up I still was trying to figure out what I had done to make him just ignore me. I quickly realized that I was reliving my marriage.

    My fuckwit constantly failed to be there, constantly ignored me and was always late, didn’t follow through. Being called on any of that led him to be an abusive and petulant child. Him abandoning me by moving out of the house while I was on a business trip was his final, selfish and childish act. And yet after that he still came back for 2 days to scream at me about how it was all my fault and I forced him to do what he had done. I was awful, I was judgmental and controlling, I was the root of all evil in his life. He was forced to flee like a prisoner escaping a pit in the basement. I was the problem.

    So even a visit with a stupid and lazy kitchen remodeler brought me right back to believing that I MUST HAVE DONE SOMETHING TO CAUSE HIM TO FAIL ME.

    What a total mindfuck. And I am still not healed. Why am I so eager to accept blame? I think it is because if it WERE really me, I could fix it. I could be a better Chump, a better customer, I must have given him unclear information or been some other way inadequate. Fuckwits are very eager to pin this shit on us Chumps.

    I need to practice my boundaries and remind myself that there are people like this all over the place, not just cheaters, but those who have zero problem blameshifting everything to the innocent.

    • Now IC – I like that your sleepy self helped you understand your waking self. Good work! One of the best days of my life was the day he came to get his clothes. He started to fly into a rage, per usual, and I looked him dead in the eye and said, “I’m going to count to three and if you are still yelling, I will walk into the house and lock the door. You can stand out here and yell by yourself, or go yell at her if you want. But the thing is — I don’t have to get yelled at by you anymore. No one yells at me anymore.” Basically I turned into Obi Wan and gave him the “I am not the Droid you are looking for” mind fuck. It works every time on all kinds of fuckery.

    • One good thing is that the lazy contractor won’t be getting any of your money! Win/Win!!

      • Yeah, better to know now than halfway through a remodel that the contractor is the type who doesn’t follow through and leaves things undone!

    • Now I.C. you might as well have been married to yourself, seeing as your husband was absent in every way in your marriage, leaving you to do everything.


    I put to you as evidence my “Meet Up” social group I attend. I have gone to for a few years.
    There are smart, stunning, thin, educated, poised, hard working, lovely people who have heard the exact. same. criticisms from their cheaters. Plenty of these women are just as lovely on the inside as outside.
    I am frequently taken aback at how even these women were labeled as “unattractive”, “bitchy”, “terrible people”, “fat”, “unattractive” or otherwise bad Americans.
    — It happens to anyone and everyone.

    Trust this.

    • It definitely helps to know that we are in such good company. Maybe only awesome people get cheated on and either discarded or tricked into sticking around to receive more abuse. Our only real fault is poor boundary control due to our compassionate and NOT controling natures.

    • Frankly, 3 years reading stories on CL has convinced me that absolutely tons of intelligent, compassionate, witty, entertaining, and kind people –men & women–are cheated on. Normal people would have been thrilled to be married to most of the people on this site, but cheaters are not normal (despite some of them having convincing masks).

      It’s a struggle not to take infidelity personally, especially when cheaters play the Blameshift game, but Magneto is right–it’s not us, it’s them.

      • If Collin Firth got cheated on, then that to me, proves that anyone can get cheated on. I would have loved to have a charming gentleman like that in my life.

      • Maybe chumplady should start dating site for chumps… loving loyal creatures:)

  • Lets see- need to make a list of everyone Cheater Wife blamed for her cheating (at one point I thought she might even blame the dog):

    1. Blamed her AP for “taking advantage of her brokeness”
    2. Her co-worker who encouraged her to cheat and wanted to look at the naked pictures AP was sending
    3. Me- faithful dutiful husband father that gives 2nd and 3rd chances for redemption
    4. Her medication
    5. Her coming off her medication and feeling “alive” again
    6. Her job
    7. Me some more

    • I haven’t heard your story in it’s entirety, Zell, but it sounds like your X was bipolar at minimum. Sorry for your ordeal. The #1 blameshift above would be a real knee-slapper if the situation weren’t so sad.

      • On Dday she kept saying “I was broken , he could tell I was broken and he took advantage of it”. Three months of reconciliation hell, counseling, and massive lies she states that “she used him”.

        It was all such a horrible circus with even more horrible details. I will be glad when I’m finally finished with it all.

        The marriage counselor identified her as Borderline Personality Disordered. But I know she is also a con-artist scammer and has zero real conscience. She’s a very troubled person. In my chumpness I have gone through multiple moments of Dday pain to be this good husband trying to save her from herself. My therapist told me to run and never look back.

        • One time she blamed me for her affair saying I “gave her too much freedom”.

          You just can’t make this crazy crap up. The way they are is so warped.

          • I let mine have female friends because I trusted him and had faith in his love for me. He thought it was because I wouldn’t care if he had an affair. Idiot.

        • I hope that counselor had the credentials to diagnose that because that is serious.

  • I was told that
    1. I always hated his mother (who was dying at the time it all happened)

    2 I was giving him an ulcer keep bringing the subject up

    3 at one point he brought up the fact that I cheated on my ex husband (not proud of this one bit ) but yes I admitted it to the ex and split up as wasn’t happy. His response was’now You know how it feels’ . He did say sorry quite quickly but was still awful to hear

  • Blameshifting/projecting go with lying/manipulation of partners like peanut butter goes with jelly. I won’t relate the details of my stories this morning as most of you have already heard many details and I need to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch to save money for kids’ braces as quarter-milllion a half year earning dad (ex-husband) thinks that I, low-income full-time worker, am asking him to help pay just to squeeze money out of him. Yeah, for my non-existent vacations, no shopping sprees ascetic life as opposed to his exotic vacation and shopping spree filled life. Not all is bad, though–still enjoy PB and J after all these years!

    • You are asking him to help pay the bills for his children. How demanding of you. Sheesh. Father of the year there. What a deadbeat.

  • Projection, Blame shift, call it what you want I got it in bucket loads.
    Not only did my Ex husband blameshift he had an army of supporters who were willing to way in on the blame shift phenomenon also…….but it was not all on me,

    So let the bullshit begin….Ex went from “I had sex with men and was looking at homosexual porn because I was curious to:

    He did it because he became lazy in his spritual walk.

    He didn’t want divorce because “we both brought issues to the marriage, if I wanted divorce that was on me”.

    He did it to get at me. (I not sure exactly for what, my guess is because I have a vigina)

    Some months after D’day he tried blaming his actions on a demonic spirit. (still makes me LOL)

    At the same time he blamed it on me abusing him for our entire marriage, became the poster boy in the church for being a man who had suffered emotion and psychological domestic violence (projection).

    And one of my all time favs that came from a church elder-
    it all happened because I was suffering from a spirit of rejection which had caused me to push away my huaband, was going to cause me to sin in divorce and would cause me to push away those who were attempting to help me, because I could not recognise their actions were only based in love (cough, bullshit) but unchecked this spirit of rejection would ultimatle cause me to reject God also, unless I took the time to work on this under to skilled supervision of the elders wife……..who was so shit scared of getting cancer she would not meet with me at the hospital while I was caring for my youngest child but instead expected that once my daughter was home I would make the effort to go to her home once a week for ministy.
    To this day my Ex has not been held to account nor has he shown any remorse, this too is my fault as I was told recently the reason he has not shown remorse is because I would not accept so there was no need for him to do so.

  • Is the pope a Catholic? Heck yes they blameshift their sorry choices and actions on you. This is why you can’t ever have a true unicorn reconciliation with a cheater. Whatever mechanism they have in them to cheat lays dormant until the next time, then the next time, then….

    Did my cheater ex believe all of his own rationalizations and justifications? I think he did. I think he really talked himself into believing his wife of 20 years, who did all the adulting while he did all the funning, was the reason he was miserable. He has a victim mentality (in all areas of his life, I didn’t realize that meant me too). And it’s funny, he would tell me nothing seemed to make me happy and I would second guess myself. I’d stand in the kitchen after feeding my birds and having the warm fuzzies, waking my kids for school and the love I felt (while I told them to keep it down as daddy is sleeping), as I hummed in the shower, and I wondered why I was so difficult to please?

    I always knew he was high maintenance and needy. He would call me a bejillion times a day at work and get pissed off if I didn’t answer immediately (I’m a nurse). Then I would talk about me going part time so I could be more available and as per him, we couldn’t afford it (he’s a doctor). There was just no winning this, ever. I didn’t recognize the narc in him, the idealize, devalue, discard in every area of life.

    This is a no win game. Once you realize it’s who they are, you should believe him. I spent 20 years of my life with a porn addict, 2 known schmoopies, 2 suspicious secretaries. I know all I need to know now. Don’t accept one snippet of their blame shifting. Their perception may be their reality, but it’s not yours!

  • I had this with d day number 2 ( there were 3 d days but god knows how many affairs. 5 that he confessed to post divorce).
    #2 was the d day where the other woman issued the ultimatum to make a choice between me or her, and if he chose me she was going to tell me so he was screwed anyway. He came home and tearfully poured out his heart about how sorry he was that he had been unfaithful. He told me I was the one that he wanted to be with ( because of words like “half” and “child support”) blah blah blah . I listened and tried to make it work and he said he cheated because he no longer felt “desired”. This guy had expectations nobody could live up to. I was working 60 hours a week in a daycare I own, raising two kids practically alone, trying to keep up a house and cook and clean… let’s add screw like a porn star to that. Btw…we were at that time we were having what I thought was great sex a few times a week.
    Spoiler alert… was all bullshit.
    I wish I had had the strength to channel my own chump lady then. I should of thrown his ass out right there and gone no contact.
    Better late than never. He may have been wrong then but he sure is right now…..I don’t desire him.

  • It seems so many in CN had a DDay and kicked the Cheater out. In my case, yes, I had my suspicions, but no proof. One day Cheatlanta told me he was done with our marriage. He absolutely refused to discuss why other than a few vague reasons like “I haven’t been happy for a long time.” By the next day he reconsidered and appeared to go through the motions of breaking up with Schmooplanta. Six months into MC and reconciliation, I found proof that they were back at it. Along the way, he threw out many bogus reasons for his cheating. All, and I mean All, of them were super-slow-mo-subtle blame shifting. “We were really more like parenting partners.” “I needed intimacy.”

    I’m sharing this for any lurkers who may read these and have a different ‘what happened.’ You may not have experienced a dramatic ‘take me back.’ I didn’t. I think it’s because I was a Chump about following up on my suspicions giving him enough time to be 100% confident that she was going to divorce her husband and merge with him in a blissful love union. Like me, you may get the “I’m leaving you” hit and run instead of the DDay firey crash. They will still try to blame the ‘accident’ on you.

    • Well described, Chimplamta,

      I got the ‘I’m leaving you. I want to run away from you! hit and run approach more than once from more than one partner. For a very long time, I felt sad and guilty about being the only one in the couple who enjoyed (or thought or stacked that she enjoyed) the relationship. As time goes on, although I would never claim to be perfect. I assume less and less responsibility for my partners’ dissatisfaction with the relationship, especially considering that I asked them explicit questions about our relationship throughout it and they either lied or refused to discuss their thoughts and emotions.

  • I heard “I became a person I didn’t like because of this relationship.” (referring to the marriage, not the affair). O-kaaaay….I would think an AFFAIR would define me as a jerk. You’re right! We are NOT soulmates! Because mine isn’t black, like hers!
    Interesting how he is concerned about what people will think of him if they learn that he had an affair, but he didn’t care how I would FEEL when he decided to have one? She did not get the “Nice Guy” I married (illusion) but is getting a liar. He told me the affair “opened his eyes to what was missing in his life”…..I agreed…it revealed he is missing a brain and a heart. OW, here is the shit sandwich you ordered! Enjoy!
    It is frightening and reassuring how similar the Cheaterspeak is! I feel my dilithium crystals getting charged when I check in on this website.
    If your spirits are low come here and read. FEELINGS ARE NOT FOREVER!! Have the courage to go THROUGH them….they pass and you heal a teeny bit every time you ride them out.
    Yesterday was up and down for me (like it has been) but I noticed it is not as bad as the beginning. Yesterday my daughter and I hiked Twin Peaks in San Francisco….I have lived here 43 years and have never been up there. It is very symbolic of new beginnings. When we let go of people who don’t ACT like they love us (love is a VERB) we make room for the people who do.
    By the way, if love is a VERB, WHICH IT IS,
    they don’t love the affair partner either. If you cheat, you’ve proven you don’t know what the word means.

  • Yes to the blame for all of the things being heaped on me from day one.

    Once, I was taken to task for buying too nice an outfit for cheater’s best friend’s newborn. Apparently, the wife felt that it was too much pressure or some such. Cute Baby Gap outfit that I thought of as standard new baby fare. I was reamed. So I never bought a gift for them again, and now I get that the last thing cheater wanted was any sort of cordial connection there.

    The blame is always a strategy.

  • On Dday, I didn’t give him the chance…..when he tried talking I hissed at him and told him “keep packing!”

  • I heard “I became a person I didn’t like because of this relationship.”

    ME TOO! I swear they all share the same brain.

  • My ridiculous cheater XH called me an ‘angry woman’ after I caught him fucking the slut puppet in a cheesy motel room. Ha! The nerve of me to be mad. What a clueless fuckwit he is …I honestly think he expected me to be happy for the two of them…I mean, after all, they finally found each other.

    I’ve had a counselor coworker ask me if I would ever take him back…..should he ‘change.’ I believe from the bottom of my heart that this man will NEVER change and that’s what I told her. She said ‘she’s seen it happen.’ Ugh, he better never come looking me up again.

    • Even if he changes and comes back, will that ever erase the damage he caused you, the capability of betraying you, lying to you, going behind your back and doing all those deceitful and mean things. Who cares if they have changed and later come back. How does that in any way erase the shitty way they treated us. And if they did it once, they sure as heck can do it again. I don’t care if they changed, they can change for someone else. I’ve seen enough, suffered enough to know I don’t want that person, ever! It’s like a crack in the glass, you can never fix it. The damage will never go away, ever!

  • This topic caused me to remember about at time at a beach club I belonged to for years before I met dickless wonder. Several of the members were at the bar and a male friend came walking up. I asked the bartender to buy him a drink on me. All of a sudden I get the look and a cold shoulder. Once we got into the car I asked “So what Ricky Rule this I break THIS time?” “I know you want to f*** him! He said how do you think I looked with you buying him a drink?’ WTH? “I have known Dr. XXXXXX for almost 2 decades, long before I met you! Put your big boy underwear on I thought very loudly. He said, “I guess I’m just old-fashioned.” “Yeah, sure you are as long as it is convenient for you!” “Yep, old fashioned is right, I get to work, cook, clean, take care of your mother, yep, old fashion all the way!” Idiot!

  • I was going to say to him, “I don’t even want to f*** you, what makes you think I want to f*** HIM?” But, I didn’t waste a good buzz.

  • AMF, it’s not your fault.

    Here are some things for you to remember:
    1. Cheaters cheat because they can. It’s who they are.
    2. Trust that they suck. Because they do.

    Cheaters are always the heroes of their own narratives. They will blameshift their cheating onto YOUR actions.

    Do not engage. All you’ll get is more of the same. You can’t get them to feel empathy for you, to suddenly see the light. Remember that at the bottom of their hearts, they believe that they are entitled to cheat.

    Make the appointment to see the lawyer. Don’t tell your cheater. Why telegraph all your plans to your enemy? Just go to the lawyer. It’ll take at least a couple of weeks before you’ll be able to see one anyway.

    Check out the joint accounts and the credit cards. Screenshot or save .pdfs of the documents and upload them into your own cloud account. I bet you’ll see that cheating is pretty expensive. Screenshot or otherwise save the texts that you come across. When you start to feel as if he’s not so bad after all, look at what you saw. That’s your reality.

    Line up your ducks. Get as much of the financial picture as you can. Retain that lawyer.

    And file.

    The only winner here will be you. OW gets a man who sleeps around on his wife, and your cheater gets a woman who likes to sleep with other people’s husbands. The only way to win this is to step away from the crazy.

    • So we never had any joint accounts because he always used cash. So never got see any evidence of anything :/ he left me on dday and is dating her and smearing me to his family and friends that believe him. OW I know believes him also…im pregnant with our first baby we planned and he hasn’t sent any money or bought the baby anything, just calls me lazy for losing my job after I found out about the cheating. This pregnancy has been the worst time of of my entire life. He cares about OW and her 3 kids (she is 23, I’m the same age, he’s 25). And this is his only child but he cares more about her and her kids then his wife or his own child. It hurts a lot. I know she knows because I messaged her saying I was his wife and we have a baby on the way. She blocked me and is dating him anyways. I’m waiting to be able to do divorce and child support when our son is born. He doesn’t feel bad, he continues to blame me for being emotionally unstable and dependant yo justify leaving me pregnant.

  • The worst shit sandwich of all is that they never change.
    I got a call today from my girl’s school that my daughter had expressed suicidal ideation to friends. Having lost a child already to suicide, I followed the school’s and her private counselor’s advice to to a short term inpatient stabilization stay, to which my daughter agreed.

    It turns out she had tried to talk to her dad about self harm during weekend visitation and he had dismissed her concerns and yelled at her. When I confronted him over text and told him his daughter was at the hospital:

    He accused me of being melodramatic and mentally ill. He said daughter did not need impatient care and I was making it up. Said I was projecting my mental illness on her. He was not going to come to the hospital. If I contacted him again he was going to call the police.

    Maybe instead, maybe? I have lost one child already by suicide. Maybe I’m the one at all the doctor consults while Part Time Shitdad says nothing or is absent. Not that it matters, but my life is pretty stable. I’ve lived in the same house for 7 years, same employer for twenty. I’ve had the same group of friends for over 30 years.

    Yessssss, Part Time Shit Dad. You’re the expert, in your 41 year old bedsit in your mother’s rental house with your other failure to launch siblings and your two Child Support Payments, and your DUI and Domestic Violence convictions.

    Me: following the advice of medical clinicians is clearly crazy.

    Old Me: Would Have Cried.
    New Me: Maybe it’s a bad idea to fuck with a Momma Bear.

    ‘You are an abusive asshole who terrorized my son and me, destroyed our property and repeatedly physically lashed out to prevent us from leaving in front of our daughter.

    I have had the same friends for over thirty years. I’m friends with every ex that hasn’t cheated on me or been physically abusive.

    The difference now is I would never tolerate your gaslighting bullshit.

    You’re full of shit. Tell the Popo I said that.’

    • My God, Luz. You are unbelievably mighty. I think I might’ve had to kill your ex. Your daughter is so lucky to have you, and it’s unspeakable that her own father has so little concern for her health and well-being. (But then, I get it. I too bred with a fuckwit, and have the unanswered texts from emergency rooms to prove it.)

      I hope she’s feeling better soon, and thank God you got her help ASAP and she was agreeable to it. And I don’t know if this will help, but Rebecca just put me on to this, about treating depression, and I promised to share.

      Just big ((hugs)). The fact that you had to deal with that shit show after MOTHER’S DAY just goes to show what a sociopathic motherfucker he is.

    • That must have been an absolutely terrifying moment for you, and I can’t imagine the rage of finding out that he knew and yet did nothing. Responding probably would have taken too much energy, so he shrugged it off because that was less effort. And the fact that even texting you to tell you about it would have been too much effort shows just how many shits he gives: zero.

      I am so sorry you have to deal with that walking fecal smear. But since you do, fire up those mama bear rockets and scorch some earth!

      In the meantime, I’m sending you and your daughter big hugs.

      • Thank you so much. Daughter is stable and safe.

        You know what? The beauty of having a Part Time Shitdad is he can run his mouth all he wants but when things get real he will ALWAYS take the easy, absent or lazy route.

        And I don’t have to listen. I can turn the channel. If he drags his ass up here, I’ll step to the cafeteria and let the platoon of doctors explain to his simple head why daughter is not faking or being melodramatic.

        • and this is why I am not totally supportive o shared custody and unsupervised visitation. The abuse and manipulation of these people is not confined to us chumps. They have abusive personalities and do great damage to kids. It’s one of the reasons some chumps stay on hoping to act as a buffer.

  • Why oh why can’t they just tell the truth? My Cheater still believes it is someone else’s “fault” that both he and OW lost their jobs when the company learned that it was financing their affair (yes, she was his direct report!). Now to any other adult, it would be clear that these 2 lost their jobs because they broke company rules, used company assets to fund their affair, and Cheater, as a company manager, had a clear conflict of interest in steering business to OW. But to Cheater and OW, it was the other employees who turned them in who are at fault. As for our 37 year marriage, Cheater “decided” that I couldn’t give him what he needed (apparently 24/7 praise) and even though he never told me this, he felt is justified his affairs. Huh? Anyone else follow this logic? “Mindfuckery” is the only term for it. Not only do they betray you, they then have to mess with your mind so that they can “justify” their behavior in their own heads. DO NOT FALL FOR IT! Do not waste one moment of your time or one bit of your energy (trust me, you will need every bit of energy you have to build a new life!) on this game. Would you take advice from a toddler? No. This is the emotional maturity level of Cheaters. Walk away.

    • Springfield,
      Thanks for reminding me that a lot of these liars have extremely low emotional maturity, even in some cases in spite of much professional and academic success. There is no point in trying to work with my exes, who seem to, in many ways, have the emotional maturity of self-centered. manipulative, Irritable, fantrum-throwing four-year olds (Not all four-year olds are entitled, manipulative, and cranky.)

      • I saw a Youtube video once where it said that people who have the most academic or professional success are the most dysfunctional of all. Meaning neurosurgeons or scientist are the worst in relationships. Something to that effect. Meaning they have the intellectual abilities perfected, but their emotional abilities are seriously lacking.

        • Hi Kelli’s,
          Interesting. In my own dealing with people I can’t say that I’ve seen a correlation. Some of the MD’s/PhDs in my family as well as my former advisor, a Psychologist of the Century and one of my former bosses who had a doctorate were some of the kindest, most well-adjusted people I have ever met. On the flip side, some of the most educated, professionally successful people I’be known have been the cruelest, most disrespectful, most manipulative people I’ve ever met.

        • K
          I think it’s more about Narc’s picking professions that give them lots of power and control

  • I laugh all the time now when I think of how my ex douchebag tried to blameshift when we first separated. I was clueless that he was having an affair. He said he wanted to move out into his own apartment because I bought our two girls too many stuffed animals and that he didn’t want the two kittens that we got. He truly said those two things. hahahahahahahahahahaha
    What an idiot.

  • Thank you for your response, CL and CN. I’m glad to feel like it wasn’t my fault finally.

  • Do you all think he said all these things because he knew what he was doing was wrong? He actually wanted to leave me before I found out about the OW.
    We are separated and I’m pregnant with our child..

  • I would add few things:
    1. I’m not attracted to you anymore ( no need for make up etc. cause I like natural beauty. Lol right… that way no one else will look at me either)
    2. I’m not attracted to you anymore, it’s hard for me to say that, but you have changed….( no f kidding…. after having 3 kids that he insisted on having asap, and 15 years together? Well… unicorns stay the same????
    But it worked like a magic…. while my bffs were telling me how good I look, despite having 3 kids, I felt like a fat, ugly creature ( size 6-8-10 depends on how stressed I was at a time)

    3. You were embarrassing yourself in front of my colleagues ( mhm… right. Getting degree, taking care of the kids and house, taking care of the business and being loyal, decent, trustworthy honest human being – all are the reasons to be such an embarrassment)

    4. And it continues….


    I’m scared shitless of any big commitment at this point; getting married was a big deal for me, snd I was fucked up from the beginning…. week before asking me to marry him, H created multiple dating profiles and continue to dating, fucking etc.

    Chump of chumps

  • >
    %d bloggers like this: