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Chump Nation Gives Thanks

For chumps outside the States, today is the Friday before Thanksgiving, (this coming Thursday) — a holiday commemorating the Pilgrim’s first harvest in the new world.

The Pilgrim settlers survived the winter thanks to Native Americans, who showed them how to farm crops. And then the settlers repaid the Native Americans by decimating their race and herding everyone on to reservations for the next few hundred years.

But let’s not quibble. I’m sure after that first harvest the settlers said to the Native Americans, “Look, I love you, but I’m not in love with you. Succatash is great and all, but I don’t see wigwams in my future. I will always remember how you saved me from starvation by giving me your last bushel of corn… but you’re not the superior race. It’s nothing personal. I hope we can still be friends. You know, the kind of friendship where I trade you some shiny beads for Long Island.”

(I can turn anything into an infidelity metaphor. This could be a party trick. At a really sucky party.)

Thanksgiving is usually celebrated by saying what we’re thankful for, so I’ll begin. I’m thankful for such a wonderful community of kick ass survivors. Every day I marvel at the wisdom, compassion, and humor of chumps on this site. Thanks for being here. And thanks for helping other folks who are further behind on the road to Meh. You guys rock.

So, what are you thankful for?


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  • Having the realization that you can’t make other people act decency. Learning from your past not to repeat in the future. Watching your ex make a fool of themselves.

  • I guess survival and thriving have always been in my blood. What most Americans don’t know is that we celebrate Thanksgiving because the Pilgrims were celebrating the slaughter of about 700 Pequots. Those who survived the slaughter were transported by the British to St David’s Island in Bermuda. This 500-acre island was the most remote island in Bermuda only accessible by boat. They arrived in 1637 and the island didn’t get a bridge until about 1947. We spoke a different sort of language. That was my founding father. My founding mother was a slave woman who was also banished from one of the French Islands in the Caribbean and transported to St. Davids. I come from troublesome survivors. So when I celebrate Thanksgiving, I give thanks to the incredibly strong people who survived this life and this banishment, fishing, farming, whaling, and salt raking. So Dr. Demento, you got nothing on me.

    • ringing bell. You have a fascinating family history – In all due respect, the Europeans killed a lot more than just 700 natives during that time. But 1637 was before America was ‘born’ in 1789. And, not until Lincoln made it a federal holiday in 1863, was the First Thanksgiving…celebrating the harvest. The name turkey (as in bird) actually comes from the actual country of Turkey where they grew a similar grouse-type bird. Happy T Day!

    • Wow, ringinonmyownbell. You come from kickass ancestry (kickasstry?). I never knew that part of Thanksgiving history — they sure didn’t cover it in any of my teachers’ lesson plans. Damn. Thank you.

    • “Troublesome survivors”—Love that! As good a description of CN I’ve ever heard.

    • The genocide of the native population is unforgiveable, but the feast – or meal involving Massasoit that is typically referred to as the incident establishing Thanksgiving took place nearly 16 years before the heinous massacre. No one was celebrating mass murder. The facts presented on their own are disturbing enough and don’t need to be sensationalized or the context twisted to make the story more shameful. This native author does a fine job of putting context around the exist holiday for those lacking the entire story.

      • Thank you for the article and the correction, OM. My family didn’t really know about the details of this history until recently. St. David’s Islanders were always called St David’s Mohawks by the rest of Bermuda. And we looked different, a mix of Black and Native. People were always looking at cheekbones and noses to see their ‘Mohawk’ ancestry. There was also a secret society on Bermuda/St David’s called Gombeys, which show a mix of African and Native American motifs in their regalia. Although my family looks and was determined to be White (lots of racism in that story) we always ‘threw back’ meaning there was always a person of color in the family. My mother is that person in her generation, although I am pinky white. But the stories and the small number of cultural attributes remain but it is the genetics that tells the story fulsomely. So I do give thanks, I give thanks that we survived. I give thanks that the women in my family, who were the strong ones who stood and delivered under every kind of misery, survived. Our hands, our culture, and our blood reach back to these unspeakable times and acts.

  • I am theankful for the new life I’ve created after kicking and screaming all the way here.
    I had to move, against my will, and felt helpless that everything coming my way was out of my control regarding my future – alone, for the first time in 36 yrs. It has taken me 5 years and I have arrived. I couldn’t have arrived in this new, rewarding and peaceful place called meh without C/L and C/N. So, you all are who I am most thankful for.

    • SheChump,

      I too was married decades (35 years). I loved my ex all of my adult life. Now he’s remarried to his AP and has not seen or spoken to me in over 2 years, and has not seen any of our 3 children in 2 years.

      I am still trying to accept this new life. In so doing, I have moved to central Europe and am teaching English, which is a career change for me. But I always wanted to live abroad and thought the DOCTOR wanted that too. You know, “the plan”… So I am doing my own plan now and taking charge for the first time.

      But the truth is that I still find myself waking up and wondering what the hell happened. I get that “he sucks” and all, in theory. But in my heart, which he broke, I find myself still unconvinced that he could or would do this.

      How can he not miss me and our children? How could he leave the family we created and – get off the path I thought we were on?

      So I remind myself that there are no “good” answers to these questions and I work on the Serenity prayer –

      asking for serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

      That’s a big part of why I come to CL and CN. To know that we can recover and be happy again. I would like to be part of a couple someday but my age makes it harder, and frankly, I am not sure I could ever go “all in” again. I doubt it.

      I am thankful for being able to change careers and pursuing a dream “we” had, that indeed I myself had. And my 3 children are Godsends and ex is a fool for losing them too.

      I am thankful that I am a mother with children who know they are loved. I am thankful for my siblings who saw me through a dark time, and I am thankful for my health, which was in jeopardy when THE DOCTOR left. I have recovered fully (despite his abandonment).

      I am thankful that I am not in as much emotional pain as I was a year ago, and that a life plan of my own seems to be taking shape.

      And again, I am thankful for THIS place, as I wasted a decade in the RIC and resent the hell out of them now.

      Oh, the irony.

      • I learned that the disordered look and act like a real human being with morals and compassion but that they are only acting and they are frauds.

        I am thankful to have the ones who caused a lot of pain and chaos and waste out of my environment.
        I am healing.

        • Exactly what Langele said.

          I was shocked to my core when my ex stopped seeing our kids a few months after the divorce was filed. We had been married for 25 years and have 5 children together. The two youngest were teenage boys at that point. I finally(!) figured out that I never really knew the man. His “upstanding Christmas businessman” shtick was just an act. He looked like a normal human and his public persona is that of a really nice guy. But that’s not who he is underneath. Heck, our marriage counselor eventually told me that he suspects ex has a personality disorder. But he just can’t help liking the guy. (Don’t get me started on marriage counselors!)

          • I agree with DOCTOR’S1stWife&Kids and Elizabeth Lee.

            I also have kids whom were abandoned by their fake piece of sh** father (sorry I am still very much in the anger phase of grieving). I have 5 children, the oldest are twins who are 12, and the youngest is 4. Of course their dad was never very active in their lives (unless you count telling them they would go do things that he never actually did as activities) but I still am mind blown how anyone can walk away from their own children. I understand there is no mental capacity there to truly care about another but still the bond I feel when I look or think about my children is so strong I have a hard time comprehending any ability to push that away or put ones self above it.

            That being said, this was what made me realize there is a true psychological issue going on with this person I spent 15 years with, and I previously thought his drug addictions were the reason for the major dishonesty and disconnects, but now I know it is a dangerous combo with that and sociopathy which makes him the most evil uncaring selfish person in the world. Not only did mine abandon his kids but he also has continued to slander my name and lie about me in horrible ways for years now. It is sad how many people have experienced this type of partner and how many children will be affected by their lack of empathy.

            I do think they should be held accountable for damaging their children in this way, I mean nobody has kids with someone who promises to scar those children emotionally for life and leave them with that burden on their own, but then I remember they wouldn’t care even if they were penalized unless they couldn’t lie about it of course.

      • The Hippocratic oath says FIRST DO NO HARM.

        He’s not a doctor, he’s an oath-breaker.

        My heart breaks reading your story. ????

      • “But the truth is that I still find myself waking up and wondering what the hell happened. I get that “he sucks” and all, in theory. But in my heart, which he broke, I find myself still unconvinced that he could or would do this.”

        This. The betrayal so deep, the abuse so covert… I worry about how long it’ll take to fix me.

        • You will eventually it took me a long time to accept that I was married to an imposter.
          He was never a man of integrity, or the person he had me believe he was.
          I learned that he isn’t capable of truly loving anyone but himself.
          Chump Lady and Chump Nation opened my eyes to he truth of who he is.
          I was a huge Chump for a very long time.

        • I know exactly what you mean. I’m almost 7 months from when the whole shitstorm started and I’m still in the process of healing. I think one thing that will helps us all is finding our worth. You and I are worth more than that betrayal, we are worth being #1 in somene’s life, we are worth being loved completely and not fraudulently. It will take time. Be patient with yourself and take one day, one step at a time. Big hugs to you.

  • I’m thankful for chump lady. Months after dday, living with Cheater, reading all the crap about how to “affair proof ” your marriage….I was a mess. A shell of myself, depressed, angry, sad. I’ll never forget the day I found this site. I was sitting in my living room, googling things about infidelity….and I came across this site. I started reading…..and I didn’t stop. I immediately purchased the book and read it in a day. Everything shifted after I found this site. I was stronger, and finally felt like someone had my back. Finally!!! So, aside from my two beautiful children (a boy and a girl) who I am very thankful for. I will FOREVER be grateful for this site, chump lady, and all of you at chump nation!!

    • I also was googling how to regain trust and rebuild months after DDay when I was processing my feelings with anger and grief and pickmedancing while stbx continued his usual blameshifting, gaslighting and entitled attitude. I was about to buy yet another RIC book on Amazon and started reading reviews of that book (don’t even recall the title) and came across some reviewer mentioning Chump Lady as the only sound voice in this situation. There were other reviews attacking that reviewer and saying that CL was full of bitterness and profanity and was not bringing the right perspective to grief stricken spouses. Curiosity sparked. I googled Chump Lady.

      And now I am THANKFUL for Tracy, for this powerful and wise and kind and snarky and full of humor kick-ass Nation, for the alignment of stars to find that reviewer on Amazon who directed me here (prob a chump), for the instant fog-lifting and clarity. And for bitterness and profanity and all that comes with it!

      Thankful for having my DS 10, the light of my life who made me feel so proud during teacher parent interview. Both teachers said he was such a pleasure to have in class, he is kind hearted, responsible, friends with everybody, can make peace with any aggravated situation and a great student. I thought…totally my work! Nothing that his idiot dad contributed to his upbringing after he moved us to Canada and we lived long distance mostly because of his “work” and saw his son twice a year for a few weeks only in the past 7 yrs.

      So I am thankful for everything. I have grown and learned from this. I am the person I want to be.

      Thank you, CL!

      • Beautiful post Longtimechump,
        Yes, your son is just like YOU.
        You have every right to be proud.
        YOU are Mighty!

    • Me too!!! I read the book 3 times in the first couple of weeks as I cut myself free from my 25 year marriage. In addition I met up with some local chumps – THE MOST SUPPORTIVE GROUP EVER! Reading this site everyday.

      I will forever be grateful to CL & CN for giving me direction, courage and support.

      THANK YOU!

  • I’m thankful for you, Tracy. No, seriously.

    I’m thankful, also, for my wonderful kids. I’m so proud of them. I’m thankful for my good insurance. I got my kids and insurance from their father. I’m thankful that he found someone he likes better, because that let me find someone I like better. That in-between part was really hard, and so I’m thankful for Chump Lady and Chump Nation. I think I would have been really messed up if it weren’t for you all.

    Of course I’m thankful for my health, for living in a mostly free and wealthy country. I just bought vegan milk today, and I had a LOT of inexpensive options at any one of half a dozen stores within a mile of my modest home. (I went with unsweetened coconut almond…yum…) I am thankful for my parents, and their upbringing. I am thankful that my dad and mom modeled good morals, hard work, and a good sense of humor. I’m thankful for my education, that as a woman I was encouraged to do whatever I wanted to do, as long as I wasn’t an asshole. I’m still learning. I’m thankful for that, too.

    I’m thankful for my dog. Every day I so appreciate my warm, dry, safe bed, that has an indoor toilet within steps, and a refrigerator full of food a couple rooms over. I am thankful for my 7-year-old car, and my other 11-year-old car that my son drives. I’m thankful for this laptop, and all the information that people generously share from all around the world. I just read the best article about an immigrant’s point of view on what it means to be an American. I am so lucky to have been BORN here.

    For now, life is very, very good. When I catch myself complaining, I remember holding my mom’s hand last year as she took her last breaths, taken way too early from a life she loved dearly by a horrible disease, and I remember that every day is a gift. Today after work, as I walked through a dark parking lot, shivering in the cold, I remembered that I CAN walk to my car through a safe parking lot at night, because I have a good job. I’m really lucky. And thankful.

    • Oh! I am thankful for my friends, and especially for that guy I like better. WOW. He is a dream come true.

    • I’m sorry that you lost your mother a year ago. The holidays must be so hard. You are mighty and your resiliency and gratitude is a beautiful tribute to your mother.

      • Thank you, beautiful Cat. Yes, I miss my mom, and especially during the holidays, where we would cook and clean in the kitchen together, and laugh and dish about the ex, and go for walks and have coffee. I do miss her.

    • ((((Stephanie)))
      To have come through so many difficult times and to end up with such a positive attitude ,and with so many blessings, is indeed a miracle, all in itself!
      You make my heart sing!

      • Thank you, peacekeeper!

        Hugs back! One day (if you’re not there yet) you will realize that losing a cheater is a blessing. It can take a long, lonely time to come to that realization, but you will get there, one minute, hour, day, week, month, year at a time. You really will.

    • Well done!

      Not a religious person myself; however I can see from the 2nd Amazon review that you’ve taken the CN approach, which is great to see. I guess this is what is needed for the CN truth to spread, a zero-tolerance attitude to infidelity. I wish you much success with your book and new family

      • Thanks! Yes, I am following a path Chump Lady has blazed for (me) us. This is how we change the narrative…we start using our voice!

    • Congrats! How exciting!

      Writing a book is on my post-divorce bucket list! now if I can just accomplish actually getting a divorce (3 years 6 months and counting). I’ll be darned if he’d get any intellectual property rights!

      • Great job, DM. You’ve a long-timer here, and your presence has been a gift to each of us. You were one of the first men here–thank you.

        I’m not religious, either, but there seems to be such a need for a mighty chump perspective in the religious authors/perspective category. So you’ll be helping a lot of people who need it, in a way that you’re uniquely able to do.

        Kudos to you.

    • Congratulations Divorce Minister! It is so essential that voices like yours enter the Christian divorce advice circles! I was lucky as I had a fantastic priest who I can honestly say saved my life. He told me wonderful things like “God never intended for you to suffer abuse in marriage” and ” You cannot be responsible for forgiving someone who is not sorry.” he made me see that the onus is on the cheater to be remorseful and repentant. He made clear that absolution for those sins was impossible without repentance, remorse, and where possible restitution–as well as the sincere intent to never repeat those sins. He freed me from staying tied to that demon. But I know many Christian betrayed spouses meet with a very different message and your book is so important for changing that. Thank you.

  • Ringmybell – not to pull your chain, but the European invaders killed a lot more than 700 Piquot natives in 1637. That was prior to American declaring themselves in 1789. And, in 1863, Lincoln was the first President to declare Thanksgiving to be a Federal holiday. It was to be thankful for the bounties the land produced (yes, at the cost of too many lives). An aside…the turkey was actually named for a Turkish grouse that the settlers thought tasted a lot the same.

    Happy T Day! 🙂

  • I’m thankful that I’m at heart, deep deep down, a merry, optimistic soul. I credit my faith for some of that and I’m thankful for my faith. I’m thankful that my kids are getting the help with mental and physical health they need (lucky UK Chump), I’m thankful we have a big, warm house with no-one trying to batter down the door to kill us (rented but I’m thankful for friends and State money and my job to pay for it), thankful for the children at work who I have to be positive for (it gets to be a habit), thankful for friends who have put my situation in perspective, thankful for my (soon to be ex but still my heart family) in-laws who have supported me in so many ways.

    And thankful for the goodwill and support from all of us at Chump Nation, given to all of us at Chump Nation. Love to all x

  • I am thankful for my dear friends and family who have been with me all the way, navigating this nightmare.

  • My condolences to Mr CL and you all.

    FWIW you can all know that he passed away knowing that his son had found a good woman.

    …and a great article as ever — my oldest D is about to enter the tween era so “Cool Bummer Wow” will have to be imprinted into my mind for that period

    …and timely advice too — “Here is my boundary. Do Not Do The Upsetting Thing” rather than just trying to share the pain

    • Sorry, posted this by mistake as it should have been in yesterday’s article…

      Thanksgiving? I have to be thankful for my 2 daughters (at least something good came out of the past 20 years), the support of my family now that they know and above all else CL & CN for showing me and continuing to show me truth and reality

  • Thanks to the fellow chump who told me about the affair
    Thanks to my parents, sister, and friends who are there with support and advice and continue to be as I go through the grieving and divorce process
    Thanks to my lawyer, divorce financial advisor , my counselor, sons counselor, sons teachers, my Zumba instructor and my trainer who are there for us in their professiona capacity to help us through this shit storm and come out safe and secure
    Thanks to chump lady who suggested leave a cheater gain a life it truly has helped me put things in perspective and his helping with the grieving and divorce process
    Thanks to moving out on my own and getting perspective on my insecurities freedom and meh (some Tuesday)
    Thanks to god for putting these people in my path to help me remember my worth and to get my power back

    Never thought I would be here concerning my personal life but shit happens and it was time for me to wake up and continue my life’s journey on my own for now. Till Tuesday.

    Enjoy thanksgiving chump nation

  • I am thankful I FINALLY got that asshole out of my life (and I didn’t even have to go to prison to get there)! I finally got my optimism and energy back, my smile (who knew where that had been hiding all this time!!) and my finances in order. I am so eternally grateful to have had my family have my back, but also to have great support from my employer, our staff counsellor and my doctor! I don’t know how chumps manage without all those people watching your back.

    I’m thankful for the job that I have and the wonderful area in which I live. And I’m thankful I found CL who finally helped me to realize that it wasn’t ME that was mad – it was always him!

  • I’d like to think I was at ‘meh’ but I really dont thnk I’m there just yet… BUT I now know I will be one day and I give thanks for that

    I also give thanks for my new life. Hey its not a picnic/fairy tail. Its hard and feel like Im battling a lot of the time… BUT I thank the universe everday that cheater is not part of the framework of my day. Yeehaa what a release

  • I’m thankful to have a future at 61. Survival for my mother was staying with her abuser, tolerating rage, gaslighting and never having the courage to leave.

    I’m thankful for having the courage to file despite loving my abuser four years ago thanks to my therapist and the support I recieved here.

    I’m thankful my daughter followed my example of strength and courage to divorce her cheater who was a carbon copy of her father.

    I’m thankful for getting my identity back and thriving; for using my resiliency not to tolerate, but to detach from a malignant covert narcissist.

    I’m thankful for my education and the knowledge it would carry me into the future I deserve free from toxic abuse.

    Most of all I’m thankful for my granddaughter and son for their love and support.

    Freedom was a hard road well worth the journey.

  • CL, sorry to hear about Mr. CL’s father. But he left some great people in this world. So first of all I am thankful to CL’s father.

    Then I am thankful for CL and CN. I learn so much here about life! LIFE!

    I am thankful for my sons, for my job, for my health and that I live in a relatively peaceful country (so far). I am thankful that 2 of my 3 sons have jobs, that my sons were men when D-Day arrived.

    And last, but not least, I am thankful for my good, pitbull lawyers that even got sparkledick to pay for 65% of MY fees ….

      • I’m thankful that it’s only 3.5 years until my youngest is 18 and the legal nonsense since 2011 will permanently end.

        I’m thankful I learned about disordered people and my propensity to choose them. I’m working hard to stop doing that.

        I’m thankful my children are young and old enough I can teach them about spotting and avoiding disordered people.

        I’m thankful for the wise words of Chumplady and the support of Chump Nation I’m going gray rock/no cintact eith my ex. The children now see how he bullies me and tries the narcissistic mind f- on them.

        I’m thankful for the friends and family who’ve always supported and loved us.

        Finally, I’m thankful I am not mentally disordered. I am damaged but not defective. I am capable of truly feeling love. I can learn and grow and change.

  • I am thankful for my cousin who has been here for me, during the divorce and my mother’s passing. I honestly don’t know how I would have survived.

    I am thankful for my mother who was generous with her love and who always had a way of talking me off a ledge. I miss her.

    I am thankful for my job that allows me to live on own with 1 dog and two cats. I can take care of myself and still have extra for the fun stuff.

    I am thankful for CL ad CN. You saved my sanity.

    • I forgot to mention how thankful I am for my little birding community. Time spent birding has gotten out of the house, back into the company of people who delight in little animals with feathers and it’s started me on the path to finding my joy. The Dickhead was like a death vacuum of joy and happiness. I’m still having a hard time finding that light within myself and sometimes I’m afraid it will never come back.

  • I am so thankful for CN and CL for giving me strength during the darkest time. I am thankful for the humor and insight that you all have provided as I navigated this shitshow of a year. I’m thankful for my supportive family and my kids, I love those little guys!

    I’m also thankful for “meh”, I’m excited for that to be in my life on an upcoming Tuesday.

    And I’m thankful to myself for being tough and badass and starting to create my best life which includes buying properties, raising my income, and doing more traveling. Yes, it’s a substitute to block some of the pain and skein unraveling, but I’m thankful that I’ve chosen that route instead of medicating with drugs, alcohol or other people.

    And lastly, I’m thankful that we’re going out for Thanksgiving this year and I don’t have to cook and clean for the next five days.

  • I am thankful that I got out of my 35 year marriage even though I loved him dearly. I am thankful I try every single day to become a better person. I got a big punch in the gut this week, my daughter, son in law and grandson are moving since the job working for my ex husband did not work out for my son in law. My heart is a little broken(ok ALOT), but I can visit and its the best choice for them. When I get sad, I think of my blessings and my four daughters and two grandchildren are at the top of the list. I am so very lucky to have them. I am grateful for my sisters who always have my back, for my true friends that have helped me along the way. I am thankful for random strangers that seemed to come out of the woodwork in those early dark days when I was navigating being by myself after so many years. I am thankful that I can come to Chump Lady website everyday and get inspiration from all of you. Yes, I have a lot to be thankful for. Happy Friday to everyone!

  • I’m thankful for getting out of my marriage with my dignity still somewhat attached, a minimal amount of debt, and no STDs! Yay me!

  • I’m thankful to all the people who helped me on my path to Meh. That’s why I keep coming here – I hope to pay it forward in gratitude for and in honor of all of those who were there for me at my lowest point. You truly do gain a life when you leave a cheater. It’s a different life than the one I thought I’d have at this age but absolutely a better life than I would have believed possible a decade ago when I was deep in the maw of chumpdom or “chumpdumb,” trying to make myself worthy of a cheater’s “love”.

    • Well said, Beth. I’m thankful for the peace I’ve made with my life as it is.

      And so grateful for the support of family and friends.

      My daily dose of wisdom and wit from everyone here at CL keeps me going.

    • Hi Beth, I always love your thoughtful posts! When I started reading this blog about two years ago you were a frequent contributor, always great comments. I´m glad you´re at “meh”, I´m almost there myself!

      I´m so truly grateful for Chump Lady and Chump Nation. Tracy and all of you really have saved my life, and given voice to what it means to be betrayed in every way possible.

      Anybody grateful for the OW? I am! She took a big load of sh&* off my shoulders and liberated me from a lifetime of feeling obligated to care for a real asshole. As the saying goes, sometimes our worst enemies are our best teachers.

      A big hug to all

  • I had to deal with my husband leaving me for another woman but that’s the only truly difficult situation I have had to deal with so far in my life so I am really quite fortunate. I am especially grateful for my children. My kids were 16, 14, and 11 when everything blew up 2.5 years ago. Divorce is always hard on kids and those are difficult ages to navigate in the best of times. Some don’t deal well with it at all. Our kids do still love us both even if they are now more aware of our faults. Our kids have dealt with their grief in positive and productive ways. I hate to put it this way, but I think they have come to recognize that their parents aren’t superheroes and they can’t rely on us to get them through life so they have to take care of themselves. Sad as it is that they have to come to that conclusion, they have matured as a result of it. They are learning how to navigate life as young adults and are all learning to be more independent. My daughter does suffer from anxiety and depression, but instead of turning to drugs, alcohol or sketchy relationships for comfort she sought professional help. She has since figured out how to go to college abroad mostly on her own (except for the funding) and is studying full time and just got a part time job as well, in a foreign country and all legit. She is also traveling by herself, seeing new things, and meeting interesting people. My middle son, who always seemed a bit immature for his age, has suddenly turned into a man, fully active in his interests (rocket club), always showing up and being engaged and reliable. He also got a part time job at 15 (completely his idea) and just got his driver’s license. He is also keeping up with a challenging high school course curriculum. The youngest, well, he has always possessed a positive sense of self confidence that is unusual in anybody let alone one so young and he benefits from that (I am still not sure where it came from). He knows he doesn’t really need us so he is free to just love us both while working on charming the rest of the world so he will do fine (so far no signs of using his skills to manipulate others so it’s all good). He has always been smart, sporty and popular without judging others and that hasn’t changed. He’ll make friends with anybody but he does set boundaries and will stop hanging out with kids who cross those boundaries. When I think of all of the destructive ways kids often find to deal with their grief I am so proud of mine for having found constructive ways to improve their lives and protect their futures instead. Ex and I can’t really take credit for any of that other than perhaps some genetics and the fact that we haven’t turned this into “War of the Roses”. We have just been blessed with amazing children and I am so grateful. Anyway, with Thanksgiving coming up and all it seems like a good time to be thankful for what I have.

    P.S. I am also thankful for my health, my job, and my independence. I am thankful that when ex left I knew I could make it on my own as painful as it was. I loved him, I was devastated, but I didn’t need him. The kids do need their dad in their lives, however, so as tough as it is to be grateful to him for anything, I am grateful to him for not abandoning them, turning them against me, or screwing us financially. I am not yet at the point where I can be grateful to Schmoopie for her role in tearing our family apart, however.

  • I’m thankful for the therapy counselor, Divorce Care organization and CL book. I read a few others that I just couldn’t identify with. Kept looking and Tracy’s book was a suggestion. I cried but mostly laughed because yes that was me. Went no contact and started healing. It’s been a great time now as I have my kids, grand kids, lucky to have my Dad still with me and the rest of my family. I’m making new friends and enjoying my new life. Yes it takes time but so well worth it!!!!.

  • I came from a somewhat “Norman Rockwell” family when it came to holiday family traditions. Some I loved, some I avoided. But, when I married Mr. Sparkles, I was slowly and methodically made to believe that my family and its traditions were elitist and alienating to Mr. Sparkles and my step children… no one felt like they “fit in” (gaslighting) so overtime, I missed them or only went over for dessert with my son.

    With the abandonment for the OW came the FREEDOM to once again celebrate and spend holidays in a way that I value and want my son to experience. Hanging out with his cousins, grown-ups enjoying some football and turkey and wine, laughter, and joy (mostly – afterall it is family – ha!).

    I’m grateful that for the first time in 15 years, I only have me and my son and my family to spend Thanksgiving with… no guilt, no feelings of internal conflict, no excuses, no gaslighting.

  • I am grateful for the lessons I’ve learned. To chase the love I DO have, not chasing love I should have had. That there is no knight in shining armor is coming to rescue me. I don’t need rescuing, I can simply handle my life. That I determine my happiness, despite finances, health, or others actions. I’m greatful that when a lifetime movie starts to make me feel sad, I have the tools to get back to sanity. Thanks CL and CN.

  • I’m thankful The Cheatress did what she did, how she did it. Finding out youre married to a horrible person who cheats and abandons you at your lowest point forces you into survival mode. I was able to turn my whole life around in just under 3 months. I am better off now, without her and having gone through the most painful weeks of my life, than I ever was with her. She was rarely a supportive or nurturing entity in my life, and now that I can only rely on myself, I am even stronger. Plus, I now know who in my life truly cares about me and who couldnt give less of a flying fuck about me. My life will forever be better. Thanks, sweetie.

    • I came to the same realization. I did not know how unsupportive and self serving she was. Never realized how much I gave and gave up. She gets to live off me for just 6 more months and she will finally have to rely on her self. I’ve got wind of how KARMA has come along and bitten her. Some due and some I wouldn’t wish on anyone. Yet still no empathy from me. Been almost 5 years now. I’ve been stuck, mostly financially, but have really started to live my new life for about 18 months. I socialize again. I date. Take pretty good care of myself. Even realized how much better I am with finances than I was leaving it mostly to her while married. Alcohol, benzos and other peoples opioids are a very expensive habit and obviously attracts the wrong people. LOL. Basically ghosted upon discovery of AP. So I am thankful I never got the chance to stick around and WRECKONCILE. By the way, I also looked at books and internet searching for answers about infidelity. OMG!!!! What a total crock of shit that is out there. I’m talking WEAPONS GRADE stupidity backed up with MEDICAL GRADE bullshit!!!

  • I had Gratitude for my family. And our health this Thanksgiving. Two days ago my daughter was hit from behind by s semi truck who couldn’t stop. She was unharmed besides the normal aches and pains. When going to pick her up, a deer jumped in front of my car on a dark country road. I was on my way back from spending a week caring from my mother(Alzheimer’s) to give my father a break. Airbags deployed, van was totaled. 2 cars totaled, BUT Dogs ok, I was fine, daughter was fine. What are the odds, right?! I sat in the ground and shook when I saw how crushed her car was.
    The other thing I fondly remember was 3 years ago at the onset of symptoms of my mother’s Disease, she was still able to organize my father and brother and sister to send me pick me up video. She has always been a Mamma Mia fan, so they went to goodwill and found some costumes and sang karaoke to me to the song
    chiquitita. It was the goofiest sweetest video. I watch it whenever I am down. BKESSINGS!❤️????????

    • Sorry for typos. Typing on phone. I should mention that the video was sent right after D-Day and before the holidays. As the kids and I were processing shock and contemplating our first holidays as a father-less unit in decades. He was going to his girl friend’s to meet her family. Thank goodness for my family.

    • Wow! I am glad you and your daughter (and your dogs) were unharmed. That is definitely something for which to be grateful. That kind of experience will have you being thankful just for you and your daughter being alive for years to come.

      • Yes yes yes. And I’m grateful to the Uber driverthat got my daughter off the highway within minutes, and to mine that piled dogs coolers and suitcases in every nook and cranny of her car. And then gave me a recommendation on where to go change my karma LOL but I think my karma is holding up just fine. As we are all safe for this holiday !

    • @Cat so glad you and your daughter (and dogs!) are ok! Enjoy your holidays!

      • Artist
        Many thanks for the wishes and support. Hope you enjoy many blessings too! Reality will hit when insurance settlements arrive and we look for a lesser car. But they will be safe ones! I am also grateful for the Subaru that served me well for ten years and then sheltered her in her accident. Lol

  • I’m almost 6 years out from infidelity and there are days when it still feels tender, but I know one thing, and that is this community and this blog saved my life. Thank you. I’ll always be grateful.

  • I am thankful for finding CL. I am a little over a month from DD#2 and the divorce is in the process. Have to get my petition notarized tomorrow. I am thankful for my family, who have been very supportive of my decision and have told me I deserve better. I am thankful for the hope and excitement that I have for the future and it being “just me” again. I am at peace this Thanksgiving.

  • Mine is short and sweet. I am thankful I no longer have to spend a holiday EVER with my former evil monster in law and her personality disordered wing nut family, my ex included.

    I am a chill person usually (I am a medical professional in a ER) and I would be in tears before Thanksgiving or Christmas ended due to all the stress.

    No more tears on the holidays!

    • Yes this! I gave all of my holidays to my in-laws and skimped on my family since they had lost a daughter on thanksgiving weekend 30 years ago. When I tried to ask my mother-in-law why they had turned against me she replied that I never really took part in their family. And had missed some holidays with them. Talk about gas lighting. I was to blame for their son’s affair, and lack of family participation. I think they are learning now that the only reason we were there was ME. So yes, I am grateful to be a part of my side’s celebrations. I regret that my mother is mostly vacant due to Alzheimer’s, and that I didn’t spend more holidays with her. Instead I dutifully went to a cold remote family that never really knew me or liked me.

  • I am also Thankful for this site. I had skimmed across one response that Tracy had made on another site. Initially, I thought “What the hell”? But you are really a Godsend. At my lowest, I wanted to self harm. Not a place anyone belongs or deserves. I am now 2 1/2 years out from throwing him out. I am 10 months from D-Day. My divorce was finalized two days ago.
    Parts of me are still sad at times. I was married for 32 years. Like above, I still have trouble reconciling the person he IS with the person I thought I married. I got more than enough to go forward in the divorce.
    This site, and you wonderful people have helped me understand it wasn’t ME. That I am a good person and deserved better. She can have him. He will treat her as badly, and cheat on her too. But I am free to read as much as I want..he always complained that I read too much. Asshole..good riddance. I am well on my way to Meh. I can honestly say I feel a 1000 times “lighter” I can finally smile and mean it. God bless all of you. Newbies, hang in there !! You will get to Meh. When you do. You will look back and think “What the hell?”

    • You READ too much???????? Talk about scraping the bottom of the barrel for the cheater to complain about!!!! LMAO!!!

      • Whatever you do that doesn’t involve having your life revolve around them is something you do too much.

        • Yup. Care for their children or aging parents, clean their house, help run their business, do the yardwork? If it isn’t making them feel adored then you are a bitch for doing it who doesn’t really love them.

        • I got this complaint also. He hates it when I start reading, even if I’m sitting next to him on the couch. He wants me mindlessly watching TV next to him. Anything that you do that doesn’t revolve around him he resents you for. If I’m cleaning the house and he’s doing whatever in the garage or the yard he always needs me to help him. Whatever he is doing is ALWAYS more important that what I’m doing. My errands/housework can always wait for later his are ALWAYS more pressing. (I NEVER get any help with my errands/tasks. He needs me to hold the bulb while he gets on the step ladder. He needs me to hold the screws to change the lamp, etc.)
          NO respect for my time AT ALL, EVER.

          • Wow, you must have been married to my ex’s twin! Yep everything he was doing was always more important than whatever I was doing and I always had to be available to help him. The other thing that used to REALLY get my goat would be, say, if he was upstairs and I was downstairs and he would call my name EXPECTING that I would drop whatever I was doing to walk upstairs and find out what he wanted. I got into the habit of just yelling back, say from the kitchen, and it would always be “can you come up here”! Never a question of him moving his ass!

        • Ha, ha. Mine was “I worked too much”, “cooked too much” and “go to bed too early”. Yes, these things caused him to cheat. Grateful that I am learning (slowly) that I deserve so much more. Forever grateful to Chump Lady and Chump Nation.

      • Oh wow! That could be another article to post. LOL. What petty compliant did your CHEATER have about you? My ex wife, in actual divorce documents, stated I played golf too much. Saturday morning out of the house by 630 am before anyone else was out of bed. Back by 12pm or 1pm. Routine but not unbreakable. Id of course change or cancel for any family affair. Its good clean exercise and relatively inexpensive. That was her number one complaint. Stupid, I know.

  • I’m grateful, as my name implies, for having survived a gradually, increasingly tortuous 15-year marriage with a fully disordered, manipulative, mask-wearing sociopath whose own needs, goals and desires always prevailed.

    After D-day, and multiple devastating discoveries soon thereafter, I became a shell of my former self – a zombie just trying to make it through each day. Not sleeping, not eating. Just hanging on as if I was trying to ride out a seemingly endless hurricane.

    Finding CL & CN was a precious gift. It was the only place that helped me make sense of what was happening. I discovered I wasn’t alone! In fact I came to realize my experiences and emotional devastation were actually, sadly, all too common.

    I learned about NPDs and sociopaths and armed myself with practical ways to deal with my situation. ‘Gray rock’ and ‘no contact’ became my new disciplines and they worked! Once I began applying the knowledge and strategies I learned here, I gradually became more empowered and began following my own roadmap to meh.

    While I still have challenging days and moments, I’m doing so much better and I’m beginning to see the future not as the bleak post-apocalyptic landscape I initially imagined, but as a new, blank page with many good possibilities.

    Thank you CL & CN! I’m also a grateful Patreon! Pay it forward for future chumps!

  • GDD
    So glad you are finding yourself again. Here’s wishing you a peaceful and blessed holiday. Welcome to meh!

  • I’m thankful for YOU Tracy & for Chump Nation. It is you all that saved me when all the other crap resonated as just that.. crap. You have given me the true insight which is the only insight that spoke to my truth. Godspeed to the good people & let karma reign.

  • I’m thankful the puppy didn’t pee on the bed this morning.
    I’m thankful I didn’t keel over trying to shovel snow for the 1st time this morning.
    I’m thankful I have plenty of food in the house–let it snow
    I’m thankful the sadness is mostly on the fringe now
    I’m thankful for the friends who still check in on me
    I’m thankful that the first 1st is only a week away–less time to feel anxious
    And most of all, I’m thankful to wake each day with a thought about me instead of him.

  • I am thankful the sun is shining today and the sky is clear and blue. I am thankful my legs can still carry me around out in the yard to pick up the limbs the ice brought down. I am thankful for the way the air smells when the ice is melting. I am thankful for my kids that I was truly blessed with. I am thankful for another day above ground and another day to get a little better than I was yesterday.

  • 4.5 years past Dday
    3.5 years past separation
    3 years past final divorce…

    I’m grateful that…
    My kids are thriving, and so am I, after a very rough first couple years. (The pain is finite! And worth going through!)
    My divorce agreement and parenting plan provided firm grounds on which to stake out and defend boundaries.
    The X, although a massively self-centered prick, is only a benignly annoying X (thanks to the defensible boundaries), not a clinically disordered nightmare.
    I fixed my picker… then found love, reciprocity, in a fun-loving new life partner. We just bought a house together.

  • I think being betrayed at such a deep level was such a wake up call for me about being thankful for my family and friends. Discovering my wife’s long-term affair coincided with one of my children’s (successful) cancer treatment and health issues of my own. Things went off the rails for awhile and it was quite lesson in who mattered because they showed up.

    So thankful for…
    – My children
    – Three other chump acquaintances who came out of the woodwork when it happened and made me realize I was not crazy.
    – My siblings and immediate family
    – My friends
    – A group of paid professionals, ranging from medical, mental health to financial.
    – A reminder that motherfucking medical science kicks ass and saved my daughter’s life.

    Also, it was a lesson in getting a *small* taste of what abuse victims who get gas-lighted by powerful assholes go through. I am someone who often does not need to worry about such things. I am incredibly humbled by the bravery of abuse victims who speak their truth.

  • I’m thankful for this site and Chump Lady, who saved me from a long, deep soul-crushing and self-esteem-killing dive into the RIC. I am thankful for my fellow chumps who share their wisdom, courage, and struggles. I am thankful for my family and friends who supported me in the immediate aftermath of my spouse cheating on me and abandoning me in the state we had JUST moved to for his job. I am thankful that my family and friends continue to support me (well…most of them, I discovered one who was of the “Switzerland” variety). I am thankful that I have a kick-ass education and that my lovely parents will be bringing my sweet, goofy dogs up to me next week.

    I am also thankful that I did not destroy my integrity or break my marriage vows. I feel like an asshole saying that (partly because Mr. Not-so-Mighty liked to imply I was stuck up and “Little Miss Perfect” since you know…I didn’t lie to him repeatedly or go to hook-up websites). But some days, I think to myself, “Well, with all the financial and practical shit I’m dealing with as our marriage ends, I’m really glad I don’t have to look in the mirror and know I’m the kind of person who would cheat on and abandon their spouse and leave them vulnerable, confused, and scared.”

    Keep going, Chump Nation! You’re doing amazing!

    • Whenever anyone is trying to shame you for your best most virtuous qualities you know you are dealing with a real morality free asshole. May you never have to speak to him again.

  • I am thankful to the folks of the ChumpLady community for truly understanding that the process of extricating yourself from an abuser is not a straight line. No one else in my life really “gets it” in the same way.

  • I am thankful for many people in my life. I am especially thankful to Chump Lady and Chump Nation because all of you have helped me get to meh. Your advice and support is the best that I have encountered. You were there in the beginning when I never thought I’d survive and pushed me along to the point where I can stand on my own and look towards the future.

    I am thankful for my therapist who spotted what a horrible relationship I was in. I thought I was only dealing with infidelity. She saw that I was dealing with emotional, mental and verbal abuse. I was being totally controlled by a sociopathic narcissist. I had lost any sense of my self and my poor kids were following me right down that rabbit hole. She was there to force me to deal with the issues and turn things around for me and my kids and leave the dickhead. It wasn’t easy, but boy was it worth it.

    I’m thankful for my lawyer. It took seven years to get that dickhead to sign the papers (total control freak) but because he dragged it out I was rewarded with more than he expected to give up. My lawyer was kind but demanded that I learn to stand up for myself. He let me pay him monthly which really helped!

    I’m grateful to the group of friends that were always there when I needed them. Day or night. Therapy sessions that sometimes included cocktails, making fun of the ex, screaming or crying. They have supported me and my kids in “loud, lets do this ways” or in quiet, subtle ways, but they have always had my back. And these friends include people who used to be his friends. Amazing!

    I am thankful for my family. However they sometimes just don’t get it. The divorce, the anger, hurt, etc. It took my older brother to get divorced last year to realize all that I went through wasn’t just a bunch of BS which he sometimes thought. I was a real asset to him these past years as he struggled to divorce and co-parent. And I’m happy I was able to help. Because we all need support and understanding.

    I truly hope that everyone here at CN finds the happiness and plot twist that they are waiting for in the coming months and the new year. Hang in there and work towards Meh! Happy Friday!

  • Almost a year ago, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving I woke up in the middle of the night and all of a sudden, my heart was racing and pounding really hard and it terrified me. I thought I was having a major heart problem, it was so scary. I told my XH (then husband) about what was going on and he didn’t seem too concerned and went back to sleep. By Thanksgiving Day my heart was still racing and I had stopped drinking coffee because I thought caffeine would make it worse it gave me a killer headache and was crying because I didn’t think I could make the Thanksgiving family gathering. He did not care that I was not feeling well, he made me drive the 3 hour drive to the family Thanksgiving and it was a horrible day for me. The Monday after, heart still racing I asked him to take me to the hospital and he refused because it would cost too much money. I ended up getting an appointment at a Medical Clinic and taking myself, my heart rate was a steady 125, they had me do blood tests and an EKG which did not show anything except for the Tachycardia that was happening, and gave me a beta blocker to calm my heart rate down. It took a couple months to figure out that this was pure anxiety and he was causing me to have it. Once I figured this out I knew I needed to get out of this marriage, that my life depended on it. I am thankful that it was only anxiety and not an actual heart problem, thankful that my body woke me up to get me moving in the right direction and extremely thankful that since XH moved out I have not had this happen again. I am still on the beta blocker but only a small amount and am working on getting off gradually. I am SO THANKFUL for CL and CN. I found it by looking up co-parenting with a narcissist, which I now know is impossible. I am thankful for my job and my boss who has been behind me every step of the way and for my amazing, wonderful daughter who when she asked me if we were getting divorced and I said “Yes.” She replied, “So you won’t have to be a doormat anymore?” She saw it coming, sees her dad for what he is and calls is like she sees it. I am forever thankful that she is with me every day. I’m thankful that we will have a peaceful, fun Thanksgiving this year!

  • I am thankful that my ex left me during cancer. His negativity, bullying and belittling would have surely made my treatments unbearable and with him gone I was able to realize how many people valued me.

    I am thankful to be cancer free.

    I am thankful that I have the freedom to make healthy changes to my life.

    I am thankful to be able to make whatever I want for dinner.

    I am thankful to be able to parent my daughter without Ex sabotaging all my efforts.

    I am thankful to have a weight lifted off of me, allowing the space and metal capacity to respond to things the way I want to.

    I’m so thankful to this site for teaching me that I am not alone in my experience and giving me the wisdom and strength to persevere through it all.

  • I am thankful to my sister, who always took my calls and who made me laugh when I was going through the worst of both my divorce after 18 years of marriage and later, the cheating crap by the ex-boyfriend. (Whom she never apparently liked, later telling me that I acted “weird” and “deferential” around him.)

    I am thankful for my 12-year-old daughter, who told me last Christmas Eve that I was living life like a “hermit crab,” “staying in the darkness and sadness” instead of coming out onto the beach where all the joy is. She told me I needed to be a dolphin. She made me a sign that said, “Don’t forget to be a dolphin today, Mom.” 2018 has been an incredible year of highs and lows. But I certainly didn’t hide.

    And I’m grateful to all of you for your wisdom, understanding and brilliant humor. Instead of wringing my hands over the ex-boyfriend’s double-standard B.S., I can now laugh at his absurdity. And I stayed 100 percent no contact. Thank you.

  • My birthday is Monday and I’m thankful I don’t have to have anxiety about the impending disappointment. I don’t have to listen to him say “fuck” when someone mentions that my birthday is coming; that would mean he has to think about someone besides himself. I’m thankful that I won’t have to get trite, unwrapped thing that was a last minute buy at the corner grocery store. I don’t have to go out to dinner with him and listen to him made jr. high remarks about poo or dicks or whatever.

    I’m thankful that I get to hang out with my kids that are grown and really cool people. I get to open an meaningful gift from my sister who will have thought about it, planning it, wrapped it, and mailed it early so I will have something to unwrap.

    I’m thankful for chump nation. All of you helped me to realize that his being a narcissistic asshole was not my doing. thank you. : )

    • Happy Birthday, littlesigns. I hope your day is awesome. I’m so glad you don’t have to endure that disordered POS any more.

    • Littlesigns
      I hope you have a wonderful birthday. The past ones sound eerily familiar to me. The fact that someone resented and begrudged mine versus celebrating that I was born (and it wouldn’t have taken much) set the prescedent for a lonely day. I hope you treat yourself in little (or big) ways. And revel in the fact that some people do care and are with you.

      • Cat, your description of birthdays being begrudgingly celebrated sound familiar. As a Chump me, I would feel sorry for him thinking he didn’t come from a family that celebrated birthdays.
        I remember ordering my own birthday cake from the bakery, one year the girl behind the counter asked what I wanted written on the cake, I told her “happy birthday Brit,” she paused, looked at me and said, isn’t that your name??

        • ???? mine came from a family that only bought gifts for Christmas when everything was on sale afterwards. Holidays were not a sentimental time. Meals were never lingered over. Lots of “work” but not much enjoyment. I would make everyone’s Christmas happy but have precious little done for me (besides my daughter)The opposite of my family. Time for new traditions. And treating ourselves to little things (and big) that make us happy. Pedis, massage, tea and scone etc. i hope you have much more serene birthdays with Yummy cakes that you don’t have to order. We deserve better than that.

        • Yes! Every event that should have been a celebration was a nuisance. (even his own birthday). There were no meals lingered over (the kids might spill something or making a sound while eating), no presents wrapped. He even bought a big lens for me for my camera one year (which I was thrilled over) but when it wasn’t for the purpose for which HE had intended it, he had me send it back. Whew. Thankful there will be no more of that nonsense….

          • Yes life is to short and there is so much quiet joyful moments to appreciated. Hope this holiday holds many for you. ???????????? two of my kids will be here. We have started our own tradition of what makes us happy in thanksgiving. One wants steak, one home made fries (lol), and I’m a vegetarian now so I can have my vege roast without major complaint. Simple and uncomplicated. A fire, spiked nog, picking out a small tree and Christmas movies. NO stress, and true appreciation for all of our gifts.

  • Best wishes on your birthday littlesigns.

    I’m also grateful I never have to listen to Cheaters crude, adolescent humor. Next to talking about himself and how much better he is than everyone, conversations revolved around flatulence and his BM’s.

  • I am thankful that I found a good physician and therapist who believed me and helped me take care of myself when my life fell apart. I am thankful for CL and CN for validation and encouragement and much needed laughs. I’m 2 1/2 years out and I am better, though not to Meh, esp because of the wedge my relationship dissolution drove btw me and one of my daughters. The pain, sadness, and disappointment have been dulled, but it’s still very hard to accept sometimes even though I’m thankful I’m no longer investing my life in someone who lied, manipulated, and took advantage of me.

    • Curly, it’s a huge disappointment to have invested so much of ourselves into our families with the mindset that our significant other loves and cares just as much. It’s disturbing to know the person I married 25 years ago and trusted he loved me as much as I loved him was an imposter.
      I’m also thankful that I’m no longer with someone who treats me like an annoyance, or something he needs to scrape off the bottom of his shoe.
      I’m happy not to be living with a sociopath.

  • It amazes me that in this deepest, darkest place I have ever been in in my entire life, there is so much to be grateful for. I haven’t said anything yet today because I don’t know where to start! But I will start with this, one of the not so obvious and immediate-to-mind things.

    I was at Costco yesterday and got cash back. On my way out of the store, I was “facing the bills” and counting the cash. I had been given an extra 20.00. Before even thinking, I had turned around to give it back. When I gave it back, he was so very grateful and surprised; he acted like I had given back 1000.00. I am not a saint or issue-free by any means. It just feels better to be honest. I am SO grateful I am not a cheater or an affair partner. As much as I hurt, I would take my seat in hell over a second in their skin.

  • As an Australian, we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving Day, but I really like the sentiment. Be thankful and appreciative. We have a similar culturally loaded holiday, Australia Day, which marks the landing of white settlers, an all round clusters&$k for the indigenous people who had already been living here for 60,000 years. Here goes my contribution!! I am grateful my daughter has just finished her last exam for VCE (the high school diploma). This year she has been hospitalized 4 times for mental health issues and suicide attempts. I have supported her emotionally, physically and intellectually and this feels like such a victory. My cheating ex has not contributed anything financially, nor has he supported her in any way other than telling her how much she needs to snap out of it, or she will ruin the rest of her life and be a failure. I have endured phone calls telling me to MAKE her stop all this mental health crap and how both she and I are enabling failure. He was not there to take her to the ED when she swallowed cleaning fluid or her depression meds and had her stomach pumped. He was not there when I dropped her off at the adolescent mental health facility as she stood there looking sad, alone and lost while hugging her toy duck (she is 18). But she persevered. Through med changes, mood changes, therapy and restraint. And she finished. She was strong. And so was I. I am grateful for our iron wills and a mental health system that really invests in teens. I am grateful to her school for all their support. I am grateful to my new hubby for not melting down on the couple of occasions that I did. I am grateful and relieved.

    • Ozchic I am also grateful to read your story! My 14 yr old daughter is struggling so much with self-image and confidence just now. You are a life-saver and your daughter and you are towers of strength. So glad she is ok, please let her know that, and I’m grateful to know you two are in the world x

    • Ozchic – hugs to you and your lovely daughter. May she have her mother’s strength forever!

    • I’m so sorry for what your daughter and you have been going through. My own daughter went through a mental health crisis just like that. When it was happening is when my husband decided to cheat and planned to eventually divorce me. The timing is not coincidental. Your ex sounds like an even worse prick than mine. I’m thankful you’re rid of him.

      I agree with you about the treatment of the indigenous people of Austraila, btw.

  • Mindfulness. It’s a prescription for living in the present. I’m thankful for relying on myself. Asking my guy friend out last weekend to a movie and dancing the night away was fun. Playing darts with a friend tonight letting go of the constraints of meeting someone to partner up with brings me joy.

    Single was awkward Now not so much. Reframing from partnering up to living in the moment is splendid. For this realization I’m thankful.

  • Grateful I found your website in amidst a sea of other websites who focused on a chump’s guilt, chump’s to blame, chump must be shamed, chump is the fault for the divorce and chump being bullied on how you to fix everything. Way too many crazy, unhelpful websites.

    You gave voice to what my heart needed to hear. You gave me the power to honor my truth about myself, my ex and my marriage. You gave me the courage to embrace my divorce and find the joy in coming clean of my years of spackling. You set me on a journey for Meh. You helped me to cherish my value and self worth. You showed me that I am not only in dealing with the crazy.

    Can’t thank you enough!

  • Hi Chumpies. I’ve loved reading all this gratitude. I’ve found gratitude essential in my recovery of a broken and stolen life. I live in a country where we too were saved from starvation by our indigenous people. Then we drove them to the brink of total annihilation. But fortunately they are a strong and resilient people. We celebrate Australia Day (invasion Day) which is the day the British decided the place would make a fine prison.
    We were never taught these things in school. But slowly this is changing.
    I’m thankful for CN as well. I’m not sure I would have survived without it. My mental health was shot after my 29 year marriage needed to end. I had always suspected but needed hard evidence. When it came I put on my big girl pants and asked him to leave. The pain has been unbearable, I also had breast cancer. But there it is I’m surviving. Thanks CN

  • I’m grateful I am rid of a person who always took without giving and slowly sucked the life out of me over 15+ years.

    I’m thankful she cheated because I could divorce her without feeling guilty about breaking up the family.

    I’m grateful for the love of my two wonderful daughters

    I’m grateful for the love and support of my friends

    I’m grateful I met someone who is a kind, supportive and loving partner and friend

    I’m grateful the whole horrible experience forced me to confront why I could accept a relationship with a selfish and uncaring fuckwit. That won’t happen again

    I’m grateful for the feeling of peace that surrounds me now

    I’m grateful for being the happiest I can recall in my adult life

  • Another (big) one for me. I’m grateful I no longer have to lie in bed at night listening for his key in the door. He would be roaring drunk and either horny as hell (at around 3 a.m.) but brewer’s droop put paid to that so that was obviously my fault! Or, he would stagger in screaming, looking for an argument because I was “obviously sleeping too loud” (or at least pretending to). Who the hell got to sleep in those circumstances! I don’t miss walking on eggshells, having to get yet another loan to fix his or someone else’s car from his drunken prangs. In fact I’m just grateful he’s 7,000 miles away from me and I can ignore him (mostly – except for DS2s wedding next year) until he or I drop off this mortal coil! Preferably him!

  • I am thankful that I left a cheater – more than one cheater – and gained a life.

    Along the way I battled mental and physical illness, unemployment, FOO issues out the wazoo, heartbreak, loss, grief, pain, being broke, and being alone.

    Everything has changed for me, and I will never be afraid again, I think.

  • I am thankful for my family, my CN family, my health, my job, MY home. I am sitting here in complete silence…ohhh, the lovely silence. I don’t have to hear the TV blasting so loud that the space station could hear it. I don’t have to walk on egg shells, care for his narc mother during every frickin’ winter in Florida.
    I can watch sports without worrying if the Red Sox or the Patriots lose that he will pick something small to start a large argument. What a weenie! AND I can do whatever the hell I want to do when I want to do it without his sorry lame ass dragging me down!

    • A – fucking – men to all this, NMSB! Love it! Sitting in silence without some stupid shit blasting on the TV really resonates with me. Hugs to you!

  • There are so many things to be thankful for. I’m a great believer in the gratitude journal–taking time every day to pay attention to what we are thankful for, actually writing that down in order to change the thought patterns we bring to everyday life. (And a gratitude journal has the effect of making a cheater no longer central to our thinking. It gets our attention off the past and onto the present.)

    Here’s one that hit me hard yesterday: I have a young neighbor and former student who handles a lot of my tough yard work and maintains my equipment. I pay him handsomely because he requires zero direction from me and he’s very very good. But the other day, we had a terrible winter storm that coated the trees with ice, cut off power, and brought down trees and large limbs. Of course, I had a huge limb down in the back yard (I have a big wooded lot) but no real damage was done (something to be thankful for!) and I figured we would deal with it once the snow melts.

    But I hear the driveway alarm and who is there but Yard Kid, who has…come to check on me.

    I was surprised. Moved. And grateful beyond words.

  • Yes this! The little heroic things that people do on a daily basis. I’m grateful for Yard Kid , too!

  • I’m thankful that I got to opt out of an extended family celebration of Thanksgiving and will be opting out of Christmas this year as well. I have grown to despise holidays and now have an excuse that people can’t guilt trip me about. I’m even more thankful that I never have to see my cretinous in-laws again.
    I am most thankful for my youngest daughter, who has been a rock and is my best friend in the world. Most of my family have been too self-absorbed to support my decision to dump the cheating SOB who ruined my life because of the “feelings” they say they have about my marriage. Apparently I’m supposed to give an infinite number of fucks about their fee-fees when I’m the one going through hell, not them. Well, I don’t. They can go pound sand.
    My eldest daughter doesn’t seem to care much what I’m going through (she takes after her jerk father) but my youngest is an absolute treasure and we are supporting each other through a total life transition. My dog is a love, too. She was born to be a therapy dog. Whenever I cry or make the smallest sound of distess, she comes running to lick me better. With love like that in my life, I know I will recover.
    Lots of people have nobody and nothing. It’s those people I think about on the holidays. Why should I celebrate my comparative largesse when so many people are suffering so terribly? I give my Christmas money to refugees. Why should we get gifts when they don’t even have homes?

    Okay, so I sound like a Grinch. But I’m not wrong.

  • I am thankful for Chump Lady whose site literally saved my life when I was at the lowest point, planning my suicide.
    It’s that simple.
    From that point onwards thanks to Chump Nation and the support of my friends and neighbour farmers, and the Traitor’s sisters in law, I clawed my way out of this mess.
    Without the first saviour, Tracy, who created this site to help other chumps, I wouldn’t be here.

    • For the win. Thank God you’re still here. Your story is awful; I’ve read the bits of it you’ve posted here. That sonofabitch. May your land prosper and flourish and return yields of 100-fold.

  • @Kiwichump, giving thanks for this site too, having read this. So glad you’re still here with us sweetheart. Love to you x

  • I’m thankful for Chump Lady and Chump Nation, for not living with the cheater and I’m thankful for America. I celebrate American thanksgiving even here in my country. I love this holiday. I wish one day soon I’ll have a turkey in America again.

  • Great big hugs Kiwi. I am so glad you chose CN and life. Never forget you have chump nation and we have your back.

    • Thank you Tessie, Peacekeeper and ArtistFormerlyKnownAsChump. Big hugs to you too, kind chumps!
      Great community, which wouldn’t exist if Tracy hadn’t created it and given us the freedom to express ourselves, warts, potty mouths and all, under the kind and watchful moderation of Wise Tempest.

  • I am thankful that because of my divorce, I am much closer with my family. I didn’t realize how much I cut my parents and sister out of my life when I was with the ex until he was out of the picture for good.
    I am thankful for my two wonderful sons
    I am thankful for good health
    I am thankful for old friendships and the new ones I’ve made in real life with great people from CN
    I am thankful for being able to build on my education and use that to get a couple of promotions at work.
    I am thankful for my new job in which I get to travel more
    I am thankful for the ability to have a great job and the warm, cozy home that’s comfortable and close to work

    And every year since 2013 I am thankful that I found Chump Lady and her wonderful nation because I couldn’t see that a better life would be waiting for me if I finally left the cheater!In 2010 when I was chumped, there was no CL. It is for this reason that I have been a proud member of Patreon since day 1 and I am thankful that I have the financial ability to continue to pay it forward for all the newly minted chumps in the world.

    Happy Thanksgiving Chump Nation!

  • On Saturday my beautiful daughter and only child got married to the man of her dreams in Charleston, SC. My family rented a house for the weekend (my 3 sisters, 2 of their husbands, my 2 nieces with one of their husbands and their 4 beautiful children, and my 85 year old Dad). As you can imagine there was lots of drama (who gets which room, where and what do we eat, and I actually missed the rehearsal) but I have no doubt it was a weekend we will always remember. The wedding was perfect and my baby was no doubt the most beautiful bride ever. My 2 nieces, great niece, and 3 great nephews were all in the wedding and no one in his family was.
    For months I dreaded seeing my ex and his family and seeing my baby walk down the aisle with him. Believe me there were moments when my skin crawled but I got through it. It was so strange to see someone you were married to for 37 1/2 years and have nothing to say to them other than she’s a beautiful girl and thanks for coming. I am so thankful for my family and the love we have for each other and realized what my ex lost (his Mom has been married 4 times, his Dad was married 4 times and abandoned him at 1 month old and died 3 years before he knew) and my family was the only real family he ever had. God truly blessed me with a wonderful family and my precious baby girl and her wonderful husband.

  • I’m thankful for a caring local organization that pairs soldiers who can’t be with their families for the holidays with citizens in our community. The planning, cleaning, shopping and cooking is keeping my mind off all the bad stuff of the last year and keeping me focused on the needs of others. Exactly what I needed right now.
    And of course, I am so grateful for this community of loving and caring folks who are full of such wisdom, grace and support that it absolutely blows my mind. Even those relatively new to the “club that nobody wants to be a part of” seem to be able to dig deep for compassion for others, when they themselves are in so much pain. Thank you Chump Lady and Chump Nation. I love you guys so much.


    No more leftovers for me ….. LIFE is GOOD!

    Happy Thanksgiving Chump Nation.

  • Even though my children are hurting….I am thankful for not having to tip toe around my house anymore.

  • For real? Decimated their race? They were killing each other long before the white man ever showed up.

    Never mind that we have cities, counties, and the like named after Amerind tribes, right? I think that shows respect.

  • I’m thankful for this community and all the friends and family that have supported me in my divorce so far. I’m grateful that I have a fairly good financial situation during the divorce so far. I’m grateful that I have a great career and live in a big exciting city with lots of things going on, culture, and lots of great friends I can spend time with and travel with and distract myself from the hell that is divorcing a cheating, abusive, alcoholic narcissist. I have to remind myself often that my marriage and divorce may be one of the worst in history (cheating, severe abuse, bonus hidden affair child), but everything else in my life is pretty damn good and I’m still a fairly young and a lot wiser now after 13 years of mindfuckery and abuse. I’m grateful for my incredible divorce therapist, who is super expensive but worth every penny (she’s a former divorce lawyer and divorce mediator with a lot of good insight on divorcing a sociopath). She helped me put my head back together through both times I filed and the time I foolishly tried to reconcile after he gave me a serious concussion during one of his baseless rages. I’m grateful for my legal team, who isn’t warm and fuzzy but has won where it counts so far. I’m grateful for my pup and kitty and my cozy home that I hope I get to keep. I’m grateful for the man I’m currently seeing, who makes me feel amazing and loved and realize good men do exist. I’m grateful for my sister who is always there for me and let me stay with her early in my separation. I’m grateful for chump lady, which has been here for me for 4 plus years of hell and unicorn chasing before I finally wised up and left for good. I’m grateful that while I was on the hopium hard, I did a good job of documenting and lining up ducks, putting myself in a slightly better situation for divorce. I also attended my first CL local meet up here this week and I’m grateful for the three wonderful women I met there who had a lot of advice as they are futher along the journey to Meh. I’m grateful that I did not have children with my cheater so I can have a clean break. Im thankful to finally have an authentic life, as messy as some parts may be. I’m grateful to not have to live a lie anymore and pretend that everything is fine while I’m dying inside trying to protect the image of my marriage and narc. I’m grateful that this is not my circus anymore, that I’m off the marriage police force and crisis PR team, and I no longer feel the need to babysit a 44 year old man that appears wildly successful and charming, but is really a violent, manipulative, addict and emotional wreck that cannot adult to save his life. Lastly I’m thankful for this gratefulness exercise as it makes me feel a little bit better to reflect on all that is still good in my life. Happy Thanksgiving to all!!

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