Dear Chump Lady,
I’m a chump guy here. Trying to make sense of how drastically my life and marriage has changed over the last several years. Its been a year and a half since I finally had enough evidence and confidence to confront my cheating wife. She had been having an affair for over 3 years with a guy she works with. Since the confrontation she has continuously stated that she loves me and wants to make this work (yes, like all cheaters do).
I set down rules immediately. No contact what so ever. No going to the bars and parking lots they used to hang out at. She insists she’s held to this. The problem is, I just don’t believer her, and I don’t believe he was the only time she cheated in our marriage. Although I have no proof of this and it may be my insecurities. I do on occasion monitor her whereabouts. She has visited the parking lot they used to hang out at during lunch. It’s close to their work and is a smoking spot they shared. Why would she still go there, even if innocent, its still disrespectful to me in my view.
I just can’t bring myself to believe her. So many insecurities are in me now, is she still friends with him? Are they still having an affair? Why has she gone to smoking parking lot several times over the last 6 months? Is she just sneakier now, but continuing the affair? And the most important question I face is… If she truly wants to make this work, and truly loves me, and saw firsthand how much damage she did to me, why would she not just leave me?
I know there’s no sure answer to any of this. But with her saying that she loves me and wants to work it out. I’m left being the “bad guy” in my kids eyes if I choose to end this marriage. In their eyes, she’s the one who is being left behind. I’m the one who now has to choose to walk out and not see my kids every night, not tuck them into bed, not wake them for school. I’m the one who loses everything while she sits back and can play the victim in my kids eyes because daddy left them all.
Thanks for the ear.
We’re really nailing down that Why Being the Marriage Police Sucks public service announcement this week…
Although I have no proof of this and it may be my insecurities. I do on occasion monitor her whereabouts.
Why has she gone to smoking parking lot several times over the last 6 months?
Dude, THIS IS NO WAY TO LIVE! Six months you’ve been staking out a parking lot! She’s still there! Are you doing drive by’s? GPSing her phone? Ankle monitor?
I’m not guilting you for monitoring, a chump’s gotta do what a chump’s gotta do, I’m merely pointing out that:
1.) This entire exercise of “trust but verify” sucks.
2.) You set a boundary. She violated it.
4.) Instead of accepting that she’s NOT sincere about fixing this, or being sorry, or will stop seeing Fucky McCoworker — you go back to that parking lot for more evidence that she sucks.
SHE SUCKS. Trust it.
THREE YEARS she had an affair with that guy. THREE YEARS equals tens of thousands of lies large and small. THREE YEARS of lying straight to your face and crawling in bed with you, and letting you think your world was safe, when it wasn’t. THREE YEARS of risking your health.
It takes a staggering amount of deceit to conduct a double life for years. And apparently, she’s really good at it. Doesn’t twinge her guilt in the slightest to go to that parking lot or continuing working with Fucky McCoworker.
But, but! Your children’s sleeping faces!
But, but! Who are you to shatter their world?
Every single chump who ever bred with a fuckwit has lived this nightmare. I liken it to a civil war. One of those horrific scenes where the rebels force you to shoot your own family members. The cheater brought this destruction and madness into your life, now she’s forcing YOU to put a bullet in your marriage and your children’s family life, and kill it. It’s grotesque.
But SHE is the Bad Guy here not YOU. You didn’t start this war. You’ve tried to negotiate peace. She’s not an honest broker. She’s perfectly okay hurting you over and over and over and over and over (smoking break…. puff puff….) over and over and over and over… to get CAKE.
If she truly wants to make this work, and truly loves me, and saw firsthand how much damage she did to me, why would she not just leave me?
CAKE. Having the respectable face of you, father to her children, paycheck to her lifestyle AND extra kibble portions of Fucky. You don’t understand it, because you’re not disordered.
She knows your sunk costs. She knows puling the trigger would hurt your kids. She knows this stops you dead in your tracks. Now where’s that fork?
Are you going to spend the rest of your life letting her play that game? NO.
But with her saying that she loves me and wants to work it out. I’m left being the “bad guy” in my kids eyes if I choose to end this marriage.
No. You’re the strong man with integrity who refused to live a sham marriage with a cheater. You’re the brave man who builds a NEW LIFE with them and models sanity. Later you find a good partner who cherishes you and you model a TRUE relationship to your children, based on reciprocity, kindness, and respect.
You refuse to let them grown up in dysfunction, modeling the cheater/chump dynamic.
You are the GOOD GUY. You LIVE that. She can call you whatever she wants, it doesn’t change how you LIVE.
In their eyes, she’s the one who is being left behind.
No. You own the narrative. You tell the truth — age appropriately and without editorializing. “Mommy and Daddy are divorcing because Mommy cheated and wouldn’t stop.” Talk to other chumps about what script they used.
Yes, it hurts like a motherfucker. And IT IS FINITE. Then you build that new life.
I’m the one who now has to choose to walk out and not see my kids every night, not tuck them into bed, not wake them for school.
This absolutely sucks. No getting around the injustice that is half time with your children because your ex is a cheating fuckwit.
But would you rather they grow up with half time sanity, or full-time insanity? You control YOU. You can parent your way with your values. Or model hypervigilance, grief, and parking lot stalking.
I’m the one who loses everything while she sits back and can play the victim in my kids eyes because daddy left them all.
She can play victim all she wants. (It’s one of the Three Channels of Mindfuck — self-pity). You don’t control that. You just control YOU.
You are stronger than her lies. You are stronger than her betrayal. You deserve a real life partner, not a freak. Go out and GET IT. Jump the fence and call a lawyer today. We’re here for you.