Dear Chump Lady,
I’m on my third(ish) D-Day and I need a pep talk (or a BS translation) to wake up from this nightmare. My boyfriend and I have two children together and have been waiting to get married for financial reasons, but really because I don’t trust him after finding his texts and emails to other women right after the birth of our first child.
I stupidly got pregnant again 5 months later and sucked it up until I gave birth to our daughter. Two weeks later, I found more messages and calls to prostitutes. I ordered your book, got myself a good a job, and even have tried and failed to maintain boundaries. You would think, by my story, that I’m young and inexperienced, but I’m a 34-year-old professional who has been married before.
I really loved him and thought he loved me… ignored the red flags… blah, blah. Yesterday, I told him he seemed distracted so, of course, he blew up and left the house. When he crawled in bed drunk at 4 a.m., I checked his phone and found messages to his biological aunt. In the past, he has confided in me that he always had a crush on her.
Here are the messages in all their glory:
(smiley face with hearts for eyes emoji)
“I’m sorry if it’s inappropriate but I want to take you to lunch or something… you don’t need to tell anyone just tell me if you want me to stop.. I’m a grown man 31 years old I don’t need to explain myself to anyone.
Don’t need to tell my mom or anybody at all. I don’t want to be disrespectful.. I have a crush on you… it sucks and I’m sorry.
Please don’t tell my mom or anybody. I can’t help it. Give me a chance to take you out?
For fun. Nothing more
Maybe we could have fun together. There’s no harm in that. I know you’re happy and I’m happy too but that doesn’t mean we can’t have fun. PLEASE don’t tell anyone. Just tell me if you want me to stop and I will. Between me and you.”
I didn’t wake him up this morning before I left for work. I haven’t cried yet. I’m trying to keep my shit together. I need to get him to agree to pay me back for the business I 100% funded and child support. I also need him to agree to get out of my fucking house. How do I accomplish all of this without my life completely falling apart?
I’ve been reading your blog for years, but haven’t written because I wasn’t ready to accept that my family wasn’t going to make it. I’m sure you get that a lot…
So, per your request, I tried to feed those texts to the Universal Bullshit Translator, but all I got was
and a burning electrical smell.
I think you broke the UBT. His AUNT?!
Where do I begin? Bad jokes? (Incest! A game the family can play!) Disgust? Eeew! Oh, Megan, you’re among fellow freaks here. We’ve been chumped by cousin-fuckers, Jesus cheaters, sister shaggers… but I gotta say, sexts to an aunt is a new one. Just wow. That. Is. Really. Transgressive. (Or as Esther Perel would put it, an exuberant act of aliveness.)
You need to run, not walk, to the nearest attorney and get this mother(aunt)fucker out of your life. Thank God you’re not married to him. (I’m sure it occurred to you, if he can afford prostitutes, he can afford marriage. Anyway, bullet dodged.) You’re going to have to work out the custody and support. Take those texts with you to the lawyer’s office. If he’s this comfortable with incest, I wouldn’t trust him around your children. There’s overlooking red flags, but there is no getting past propositioning one’s aunt for Pervy Fun Lunch. #donttellmom
I need to get him to agree to pay me back for the business I 100% funded
No you don’t. Let that go. Some money is too expensive. You just need to get him the fuck out of your life. Cut your losses — begin NO CONTACT at once.
and child support.
Get it docked by the state. A nice faraway, neutral agency in a county far, far away, among a sea of anonymous bureaucracy. Do NOT deal directly with him on this. GET A LAWYER. And state child support enforcement. Asking him for money is asking him to mindfuck you and remain in your life. NO. You get third parties to play the heavy. You can’t jail him, but the State is really nice that way.
I also need him to agree to get out of my fucking house.
He’s not going to “agree.” This isn’t about consensus, it’s about consequences. He will not enjoy consequences, but hey, you don’t enjoy drunk, pervy cheaters. YOU MATTER, Megan. Protect yourself! Is it your house? Is he on the lease or deed? Again, talk to a lawyer first, but if this is your legal home, change those locks NOW. His crap in Hefty bags on the lawn is optional.
How do I accomplish all of this without my life completely falling apart?
The important thing is accomplishing it. Your life will fall apart, but you throw the creep out anyway. But think about this, Megan. You WANT this shit to fall apart — he’s a sicko. This is NOT a life you want to continue for yourself or your children. He isn’t “family,” he’s a parasite and a predator. You don’t build lives with those people. (Ask a thousand of us today how that all worked out for us.) You flee those freaks like your hair was on fire.
Is it going to be hard? Yes. But not as hard as the life you’ve been living.
Scary? Yes. But not nearly as scary as staying with a man so fucked up, he’d fuck his aunt. What other third rail would he like to touch next? THAT thought should scare you shitless.
Will you lose stuff? Yes. You’ll probably lose money paid to lawyers and lost to him. You’ll lose domestic shit like sofas and lawn mowers. But you will GAIN sanity and self-respect. You’ll raise your children in PEACE. Money can be recouped.
Here’s that pep talk — YOU CAN DO IT. The sense of relief when you leave will flood your senses. Hold on to that feeling — maintain no contact. You say you weren’t so good at boundaries before? Well, you get a crash course on them now. Stay here at CN for encouragement. He will try very hard to break your resolve. DO NOT LET HIM. The longer you stay no contact, the faster the nightmare ends. Let your professional firewall deal with him — your lawyer, and the State. Surround yourself with Team Megan, and steer clear of any of his “friends.” (Or aunts… obviously.)
When you’re on the other side of this (breathing the sweet, clean air of sanity) — get some therapy about those boundaries. Why the red flags were ignored, why you thought you could work with this. Chumpdom is fixable — freaks, not so much. (And it was never your job to fix him, just you.) The good news is you’re YOUNG, and you’ve got many happy fuckwit-free years ahead of you.
Now, throw him out and call a lawyer TODAY.
Hey, just a note to say THANK YOU to al the Patreon supporters who are paying it forward for everyone here and keeping this blog afloat. You rock! Every time someone pledges, cheaters’ balls shrivel, unicorns flee, and angel get wings. Pledge today! Thanks!