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Dear Chump Lady, Where do I go with this anger?

Dear Chump Lady,

After a year of being told lies about an affair I finally found the truth on the laptop.

So he’s 50 and she’s a 24 year old work colleague who still lives at home.

We have been together 11 years and have a little boy.

He told me he is with this woman because I didn’t want him.

He’s now sending me abusive texts about leaving his shoes in the rain and taking his clothes to the charity shop, using his toothbrush to clean the toilet, etc.

I’m angry with him treating me this way and I feel this is tame to what I should actually submit him to.

My friends and supportive sister keep saying to drop the revenge, but nothing feels better than winging his stuff over the hedge — surely I’m allowed that??

Why the hell won’t he move out, I don’t want him? He’s still living here, as we’re trying to sell the house.

Oh and he did this before in his first marriage, which he never told me about. She came home and found him in bed with another younger work colleague.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Bev

Dear Bev,

You’re essentially trying to drive out an evil spirit, and the voodoo isn’t working. Defiling toothbrushes, soggy shoes, flinging God knows what over hedges. They’re all totems — it’s him you want to fling over a hedge. And rightly so, I’m not going to shame you for your anger. I get it. And I also get the idea that you if you make it unpleasant enough for him, he’ll want to leave, instead of hanging around cake-eating, and rubbing your nose in his affair.

But it’s not a winning strategy. And what you need here is a win — at least until the fuckwit moves out and liberation can begin in earnest.

Some ideas on how you can survive this shit — which is FINITE. Remember that, when the urge to fling a boot gets the better of you. Many of us here have had to master Grey Rock — the art of minimal engagement for the sake of children. And every single chump can relate to eating the shit sandwich of righteous fury.

The first guiding principle is that — he is FUELED by your reaction. Nasty texts means he’s engaging with you. You’re engaging with him. (Boots fly over shrubbery…) None of this is good for your kid to witness (this shit is traumatic enough for your son), and none of this is energy directed at him and sane parenting. I’m not shaming you here — you’re being provoked daily by this creep cheating and living with you — I’m saying REDIRECT. You’ve only got so much energy to give. Don’t give it to a fuckwit.

When you engage with him he believes in his CENTRALITY. It’s another variation of the pick me dance. Your grief validates him. Makes him pursue his affair with new vigor. All these women CARE for HIM! Drama! One wants to rip his hair out, the other fucks him (when mom and dad aren’t home? WTF?) You need to shut that dynamic down hard, NOW.

So — grey rock. Do NOTHING for him. No cooking, no laundry, no exchanged words. You do for your son, and that’s it. You don’t respond to his nastygrams. All communication can now go through parenting software — DOCUMENT — and it’s only about money and your child. Nothing. Else.

This will infuriate him. He will miss your (I MATTER!) reactions and he will most likely goad you. Stay strong. Keep at non-reaction reactions. Nothing says “fuck off” to a narcissist like your silence. It is the singular most wounding thing you can do — deny them the kibble life force. So do it, STARVE HIM.

Next, protect yourself LEGALLY. Remember, everything you do right now could be reviewed by a judge, who will not care about your broken heart, but probably will care if you’re doing anything that looks unstable and not in keeping with Sane Parenthood. So — eyes on the prize here.

I don’t know the laws where you are, but perhaps you could get temporary orders and a ruling to make him move out. Explore that.

But, but! I WANT TO FLING HIS SHIT OVER HEDGES!

The urge will pass. I promise. We’ve walked this path before you. You won’t feel angry forever — soon you’ll feel grateful he’s torturing the 24 year old Schmoopie and not you. Her day is coming where she walks in on him shagging an intern. Arc of the moral universe and all. Stay strong.

CN — got any surviving co-habitation with a fuckwit tips for Bev?

P.S. “He told me he is with this woman because I didn’t want him” is just projection. He’s discarding you. Grabbing victimhood here is just what these freaks do.

Ask Chump Lady

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  • While you are still in the house with him , gather ALL the financial documents needed for divorce before he can lie about that too!

      • A vintage tractor? Narcs have a tendency to over value this kind of shit. That works to your advantage. The Limited valued his car at 5000 and work truck well over the value which was 500 each according to the taxable amount. I was able to keep the better vehicle and it lasted me another four.

        He got nothing for either of them within a year with expensive repairs.

        Any inheritance is also yours if it’s in a separate account.

        Take half of any liquid assets from joint accounts.

        Also place diccuments and valuables in a separate location.

        • Yep. Cheater bought a vintage landrover and spent many $$ on int’l delivery of Landrover subscription magazines and dreaming of its eventual looks after all the renovations. The car drove 5-10 times in 6 years. The rest of the time it was either at the mechanic shop or parked in the street collecting dust because it was not drivable and he had no garage. But the ownership of an antique car allowed him to dream million-dollar-dreams and imagine his sparkly self on the road trips with shmoopies!

          • Holy sheet, mine had TWO vintage landrovers and a tractor! He actually said he liked the image it gave him of being eccentric. Yes to thousands of $$$ on the extras. He would get angry every time it broke down. Which was often. He did all the work on it himself but it was always the car, not STBXH efforts and poor choices.

    • Ditto. You have my sympathy, I had to live with mine for over a year and a half of separation right until the stroke of midnight on the divorce decree. It is/was a living hell and does nothing for your sanity.
      Make sure you hide anything personal of value, mine constantly stole from me.
      Don’t do anything for him – no laundry or food (although they will steal that too).
      Eventually I just acted like he was a distant roomate. It got worse and worse as he realized that I was serious, he was out and that was that. Tried hoovering me back in which is hellish and definitely not good for the kids as they just get confused and hopeful and you end up being the bad guy.

      Stay Strong. It’s taken a year post divorce to really start to feel normal but beyond glad I took the step.
      FYI – my cheater is miserable and still whiny.

      • Every time he talks to you play dumb. Literally stand there with a blank expression on your face. As you do this, imagine a grand piano dropping on the sky on him.

        Works for me…:/

  • Bev,

    We have all been there. When I found the texts on the ex’s phone I woke him out of his peaceful slumber when his Blackberry (dday was more than 8 years ago) thunked him on his head. It wasn’t nearly satisfying as I thought it would be and I could have actually hurt him which wouldn’t have boded well for me legally. I thought about doing everything Carrie Underwood suggested in her “Before he Cheats” hit but fortunately I talked myself out of it.

    Eventually I channeled the anger to move past my fear of leaving a 25+ year marriage. That took a while, but that is where your anger is better placed. Channel it on collecting documents, signing up for parenting software and building a new cheater free life. It is so much better than the life you are living now.

    The ex eventually married the OW and somedays I am so grateful that he is someone else’s problem that I want to send OWife a thank you card. I stop myself from doing that too. No need feeding that ugly beast 5 years after divorce. You will get there too. The anger is helpful if channeled correctly. Revenge? That’s just living your best, cheater free life!

    • cheaterssuck thank you for the early morning laugh from the bottom of my heart.
      As I’m getting ready to disappear on Anthony Weiner 2.0 and have barely slept and I’m crying all the time this comment brightened a rare dreary day outside (and inside) for this Florida gal.

    • So true about thanking OW! Cheater #1 recently tried to contact me (AFTER 19 YEARS of being free from him!)! I looked him up on arrestsdotorg and saw he was arrested in 2014 for domestic violence. So glad I left his butt and never looked back! THEY DON’T CHANGE.

      • My X actually met up with his girlfriend from 4 decades ago during the pre-discard phase. Hoovering after 40 years! you are never safe from them. Bolt the door.

      • Funny, my ex tried to hook up with me again on facebook, but I DENIED the request. Found out she was single again, after many tries, and was living alone in a dump. Geez, too bad honeybunch. She had her chance with me but she blew it.

    • I poured water over his head, he’d been on nights so was sleeping. He wrote a whiny letter to my solicitor to tell her to tell me to stop being so hateful.
      Also in that letter he told me if I agreed custody he would give me money. So that will look so good in court!

    • @Cheaterssuck, you’re a better person than me – I was at Underwood level, ‘two black cadillacs’ and seriously tried to recruit the OW.

  • Everything you do in the hedge-flinging department will be used against you in a custody hearing. This is the time to practice Extreme Strategic Thinking.

    First, as CL says, make sure nothing you do harms your son–he is going through enough. Next think about how this will be presented in court: do not do anything that can make you look (or be twisted to look) batshit crazy. Rant to your friends. Scream when no one is home. Go at it with the foam bat…or better yet take kick-boxing. But do not divert one iota of energy from what you need to do (gather documents, hire lawyer, prepare case) to the worthless kibblefest of annoying your STBX. Far more effective to play the long game. Revenge is a dish best served cold.

    Be the mother you want to be. And make sure you look like the mother of the year. The single most important thing in all of this is your son’s mental well being and your ability to parent him by not losing parenting time.

    Added bonus: the saner you act, the more the fuckwit will lose it and be the batshit crazy one. Document every instance of that.

    • I had a friend whose lawyer advised her that by staying impermeable calm in court, she increased her likelihood that he would get so angry he would act out. It worked like a charm. The STBX threatened to strangle her to death right in front of a sitting judge.

      Thanks for the easy restraining order and supporting evidence for the Menacing charges, Bro.

    • Great advice! And CL is so right, the best revenge is eliminating their centrality. I went gray rock for survival and because ex no longer pulls be trusted with my emotional world, even my anger, and as a result he went a little nuts. Even know more than a year later, the fact that I just simply cut him out still really unnerves him. Of course it wasn’t simple for me—took an immense amount of will power. Well worth it. And my side of the street is clean

  • I had running internal tapes of all the revengy things I wanted to do when he had his head up Susan’s butt, however, I resisted and it was better for me in the long run. By doing the stuff chumps dream of, you give him cause to complain and it does no good getting you towards the final goal of de-chumping ones self.

    He was foolish enough to pick an AP who doesnt even have their own dwelling (bad idea) so yea, he is going to play you as long as he can…dont feed into it.

  • Boy, do I get how you feel. I wanted to hit something so bad (I’m sure you can guess what/who), that I could barely contain my anger.

    Walk through it, go on a walk with your little boy, scream and yell in your car (very therapeutic!), close your eyes breathing big deep breaths and think of something or someone that’s good, call a friend or family member – do something that distracts you enough to catch your breath and decrease the heart rate.

  • “He will miss your (I MATTER!) reactions and he will most likely goad you.”

    He will DEFINITELY goad you, for all of the reasons CL notes.

    He will call you a man-hating femi-Nazi.
    He will tell you it’s showing your son it’s OK to disrespect a family member.
    He will diagnose you with unwarranted anger and bitterness that will eat you alive until and unless you get some counseling to overcome your “issues.”
    He will insist that it’s just more evidence that you were never interested in his happiness, and indeed worked against it for years.
    He will tell you he’s reporting every shitty thing you do to his attorney and will gladly present his evidence to the court.
    If he skips rage and attempts charm and/or sad sausage, he may even feign concern about your health and psychological well-being.

    Gray Rock works, and has the side benefit of modeling for your son how to behave in the presence of manipulators.

    If you take away nothing else form CL’s daily wisdom, let it be this: “Nothing says “fuck off” to a narcissist like your silence.”

    • This is so true. I was not good at Grey Rock in the beginning, it backfired on me, hurt my children to watch me act crazy and fed his ego. 4 years post divorce of a 25 year thing and I am calm and ignoring him and his 17 year younger cocktail waitress. My shift is healthy and I also pitty her for what she doesn’t realize yet! Me and my children are calm and finally healing! Good luck!

    • Oh, he will DEFINITELY try and bait you to crazy behavior, because it supports his “story” of what a nightmare of a bitch you are. “SEE WHAT I’VE BEEN PUTTING UP WITH? I TOLD YOU, SHE’S BATSHIT CRAZY!”

      And sadly, if he is successful, he will be believed. Realize that it’s in his best interest to destroy your credibility, and do whatever you can to channel that anger into a productive and pro-active plan to get as far away from him as you can as soon as you can!

      PS: Asshat never knew it, but I totally DID use his toothbrush to scrub the toilet once. Not gonna lie, it felt good.

  • My ex’s shmoopie was a student living with her dad when they started up. I can’t say she lived with her PARENTS, because dear old dad had already left mom for a younger woman. She gets to live out the scenario from the other side now. In fact, she assured ex that it’ll all be fine for MY kids because SHE is fine after living through it. Clearly she is fine. 🙄

  • Hi Bev,
    Be prepared to grey rock all the other toxic, narcissistic people in your life. Yes, you will be hit on a few fronts. Piss them all off.
    When you start setting and maintaining boundaries, you will have hard push back from emotional manipulators. Don’t give in. The best part about staying calm in the face of attempted emotional manipulation is they eventually cut themselves out of your life. When they can no longer manipulate you they look for their next victim.

  • Anyone who remembers when i first found this site knows how angry i was lord knows i vented and vented. I was a total basket case for a about a year and i became indifferent to him totally and got mad good and mad. But i refused to let him see it. The pod and i had to deal with one another almost daily as his business was on the marital property and it drove the ho nuts she couldnt come to his business. After the divorce she through him out and he come begging to sleep on the couch being a vindictive bastard i let him just so he wouldnt let my house fail the house was mine in the divorce. I mustered every ounce i had to remain calm. I assisted with his business as i wasnt working and i was keeping the calm throughout. I did not lift a finger for him otherwise. No food sex talk laundry nothing. Barely spoke to him. I would put his dishes to the side do mine when he questioned why i didnt do his i said you felt your wife becane your roommate. Do your own dishes. I have a temper and a inner she beast who is damn scary but with chump lady and chump nations help and the love and encouragement of a very special chump here jeep tess i retained my composure and ate a few shit sandwiches to get what i wanted. My she beast wanted to destroy everything of his him included but it would accomplish nothing. I rebarred my spine held my head high and pushed forward this went on for about a year. Being the procrasitnator he is he dragged his feet. Fall of that year i gave him an ultimadum buy this house by new year or it going up for sale. The ho now back in the picture gave him one as well. He purhased the house and in three weeks i was in my own little home five hours away i moved and did everything myself left a complete kitchen and functioning house behind for him and here i am two years later with a little mortgage full time job happy in my own skin doing great. Channel that anger elsewhere not at him kick the grass tear up bushes whatever. I burned the wedding album worst i did. You can do this. I kept that anger but its locked away safe just in case he ever comes near me again. You wilk be fine. Become indifferent to the pod and your whole being becomes better and when he sees nothing he does or says bothers you it will drive him up the wall! Big hugs to you girl i been where you are and does get better.

  • Bev,
    I’ve been through this with both ex-husbands. I get it. The things I coulda shoulda didn’t those days … Shudder…

    Exh1 was trying desperately to run me out of the house— divorce petition had already been signed and submitted, I was already going to move into a new place for me and our sons, but he had his OW dangling her golden panooch over his head with the taunt, “Not until MollyX moves out…”
    He would corner me into a wall and dare me to hit him so I could go to jail, he threw things at me, screamed in my face that he hated me and wished I was dead, on and on it went for three months until the divorce was final and I had what I needed to move out. I slept on the couch, I didn’t talk to him, I only took care of myself (as best I could) and my sons. This was all 16.5 years ago and it seems like a lifetime ago.
    Now, exh2/The Evil One was much easier, he only hung around about a month after D-Day and he work at night and slept all day, so we barely spoke during that time. However, the rage I felt was so much stronger, I thought I was going to come out of my skin some nights. The best way I could release it is what Velvet Hammer mentioned. My old softball bat, and a pile of leaves. By the time I was done beating down that pile, you could’ve buried a car in the hole. The whole time I was slugging, I was cursing and telling TEO off. It felt so good to release it all.
    This is a process, it takes time to go through it but it’s finite.
    After TEO moved out, the stuff he left behind became a glorious bonfire in my backyard. Start stockpiling his crap for that after everything’s done.
    You can and will do this as the sane parent, you have to. ((((Hugs))))

  • I did short term counseling for coping techniques while i lined up my ducks, exercise, support from loved ones, reading about disordered fuck heads and CN. Cheater and i talked recently. Hes moving out soon. Working on temporary arrangements and on to divorce.

    His slut can have the man boy. I focus on looking forward one day at a time. He is his own karma, he just doesnt realize it.

    Big hugs to you. Hang in there…

    • You should be very proud of how you handled it. I thought you should just go but you worked your plan and you were right.

  • Sardonic humor helps keep the anger under control, and so does just a wee bit of revenge fantasy that never rises above the daydreaming level.

    Alas, we really can’t give the headlights of his cherished, sparkly vehicle the Louisville Slugger treatment, but we sure can think about how satisfying that would be. My running joke in my angriest moments has been that I could really use a Cousin Guido the Mafia Enforcer, but in the end my attorney in bulldog mode was the better option.

    Music also helps. I belted out a lot of Rihanna, Beyoncé, The Band Perry, Taylor Swift (don’t judge, Tay-Tay rocks the righteously angry breakup song genre) etc. during frustrated moments. Create playlists that will help you vent, and then some that can bring you back to peace and calm.

    Favorite method of burning off emotion of every stripe–anger, pain, anxiety–is movement. Walking is my fave (have logged many more miles than usual during this), and can highly recommend reaching for the physical outlet that suits you best as way to manage through the worst moments.

    Clinging to truth is another thing. Never lose sight of what he actually did here. Cheating old guy with stupidly young and ethics free chick will be its own punishment eventually. Yes, they blow up our families, but they strap a timebomb to themselves, as well. Stay clear and let him continue being his own worst enemy.

    Lawyer was the best thing, though. There’s much to be said for being free and decently secure so you can keep leaving his awfulness behind. Though the legal process stinks more than usual when coping with a cheater, that’s your the most effective outlet by far, I’d say.

    • Hey, I’M not judging—my daughter (26) invited me to go see Taylor Swift in concert last summer. T. Swift really gets a bad breakup. She’s a force of nature!

      • I was pretty calm throughout the process, but somehow XW is convinced that I attacked her car. In fact, she told our daughter that she couldn’t borrow the car and park it at my house because “daddy would attack it”. I figure someone must have dinged XW’s car in the parking lot and she assumes I’m the one who did it. I’m 99% sure that she (or AP, who was visiting that day) put a nail through my bike tire as revenge. So: you can stay above the fray, but that’s no guarantee they won’t project their anger onto you anyway!

  • Bev… we get you… we understand the burning anger pulsing through your veins, when you’re not crying in the shower. If you don’t know how to compartmentalize your emotions, now is a good time to learn. Straightforward “yes” and “no” answers are what you provide. Create a clear delineation of “who lives where” in the house. I put Mr. Sparkles on the couch for the 3 weeks before he moved out… and then guess what… I helped him move the furniture to GET HIM OUT 🙂 All the while I was gaining the intelligence I would need for court (when the relationship started; where she lived – so I could send her the court papers for adultery; and I made him meet me at the bank to sign a temporary agreement regarding child support and financial contribution toward our joint bills… he thought this would make me more agreeable when it came time for the divorce settlement – it didn’t, I played him.)

    For me – it also helped me to visualize females that I perceive as strong… I used Sandra Bullock, an American actress. Her husband was flagrantly cheating on her… he took to the tabloids with his story… she kept her focus on getting the divorce expedited and beginning her life with her son… she was mighty… and I’m sure she had anger and cried in the shower… but it never showed to the world.

    You can do this… let him move on/in with the OW and her parents (I’m sure they’ll love knowing they raised a daughter with such low character and one who’ll settle for a twice divorced 50yo man). You start dreaming about the amazing life you are going to build for your son. Let him feel your LOVE, not witness your anger toward his Dad… cause the real shit sandwich is that he loves his Dad.

    You’ll feel with every step toward a good divorce settlement and reasonable custody, the anger subsides and is replaced by peace and gratitude… it just takes time (for me it was about 3 years).

  • I agree with others, skip the revenge and play the long game. Start collecting paperwork, finding a lawyer. My ex cheater was a thief so start keeping track of everything. Mine stole jewelry, among other things,including money. Lock up your valuables. I never thought it would be this bad but these cheaters are capable of a lot of dirty deeds.

    My ex cheater also asked for me to do things and that was met with silence. Because I had done the pick me dance before as this was not the first time he got caught, he thought it was the same, he eventually clued in that this was the end. CL is right, cheaters love any attention, good or bad.

    Wishing you joy in the future.

      • That’s mighty, Newlady15. Sometimes a thing or two needs to be chucked. For me it was the OW shoes. She drove home barefooted. I enjoyed that.

    • If you are the one moving out and he keeps the house, sewing a few shrimp into the hem of the curtains is very effective. No actual destruction and he will NEVER find it. Just sayin……

          • This made me remember how cheating ex-BF told me he “accidentally” left raw chicken from the grocery in the back of his BMW. This is a man who was methodical about EVERYTHING regarding his car.

            Now I’m wondering if his ex-wife or maybe someone he was probably seeing behind my back actually did that to him. Hahaha. If so, I commend her. He never did get the smell out.

  • I’m with others who say harness that anger and channel it into the settlement of custody and the division of marital assets. Work to assure that once the divorce is final you are tied to him by as little as possible–get the best custody arrangement you can, ask your lawyer about property over alimony/maintenance (so he can’t reduce it by deliberately becoming un- or underemployed). Look for any leverage you can: his reputation, his desire to be free as soon as possible so he can satisfy schmoopie.
    As for winging stuff over the hedge, find a symbolic replacement–a voodoo doll, burn a photograph, etc.–or a physical release for yourself that actually ends up benefitting your cardio and physical health and strength: long walks, dancing, a kick-box or speed bag class, weight training. Or find something to challenge yourself–learn to climb big trees (or a climbing wall) or a do a parachute jump–that builds your self confidence in your competence.
    Whatever he was crap in, make it your mission to do it well; it’s an ideal revenge. (For me this is money management and investment.)

  • It has been about a year and a half for me and I’m still angry as hell. But not all the time. I also still cry,but not everyday.
    This shit is hell. Don’t underestimate what you are going thru. It is pure hell.
    People think of hell as inescapable but slowly you do get out.

        • Not only do the parents of (on DDay) a almost 22 yr old daughter hooking up with a 51 yr old: but now grandmother to a new baby.
          Yep: hope you didnt throw up in your mouth, but true..
          Peterpan and scumbalina are parents..
          Yikes almighty..
          Can you spell Retirement..😂

  • Cleaning the toilet with cheater’s toothbrush? I wish I’d thought of that!
    I mean, no, that’s bad, bad…(*cough*).

    I had a similar situation with someone who made a dramatic exit, then found a legal way to come back for a short period. (I found out later I could have easily invalidated this, but I digress). I got stuck with someone continuing to live at my house with our 2 kids for over a month while still seeing Shmoopie. She spent each and every night night talking to him on the phone LOUDLY in the spare bedroom so I could hear them.
    She got great glee in watching me get upset about it, and made a point of making fun of me on the phone (which of course I could hear).
    I actually told her that it was unacceptable for her to carry on with him while living at my house, and she said “Fine! I can go right now if that’s what you want!” I said yes, please do, but then she still didn’t leave!

    I have a couple of suggestions for getting him out:
    First, is there something wrong with changing the locks, and leaving his most essential stuff in a box on the front door? I was going to do that, but the MC talked me out of it as it would have given her exactly what she wanted (and the MC was right). In my case, though, the ex had to be out in about three weeks anyway.
    Second…why don’t YOU move out (with your kid)? It will probably be easier to sell the house if there are less people and less clutter anyway. That said…be careful legally about what happens. Where I live, you lose the legal right to enter the house again once you move out, though you still have ownership of the place. It might not be the same in another jurisdiction. And, yes, the 24 year-old OW might move right in once you’re out.

    If, however, you get stuck living with someone running off to Shmoopie for a while, here is what I did (or tried to 🙂 )…
    As CL said, don’t do anything nice for him. He can make his own dadgum meals. Also, no “quality time.” No watching TV together, no meals together, etc. In fact, no speaking to him at all. Take your son out to eat by yourselves, and DON’T tell him.
    He is enjoying the attention of you going off your rocker…it sounds demented and cruel, and it is, but that’s what he’s doing. “Wow, I’m so thrilled; this person loves me so much she’s actually losing her marbles!” is a sentiment decent people would find ghastly, but, he’s not a decent person. So, shut down the attention.
    Hang in there.

    • There are probably legal ownership variations to the property issues around changing locks and disposing of stuff that has any measurable value. Helps to have a legal advisor if possible.

      As a side note, don’t remove your name from any titles or deeds until you have been absolved of any related debt (or you have some other good reason). You don’t want to have to pay for things you don’t own if you can avoid it.

  • We need a t-shirt that says; MILITANT GREY ROCK with a fist-in-the-air graphic.
    Grey ink on gray tee.
    $20 bucks
    Where’s the merch page?

  • Bev-

    I was in the best shape of my LIFE going though my divorce because I took up kick boxing. At first just a you tube follow along video but eventually at a gym for the satisfaction of actually connecting all those kicks and punches with something physical. Imagining every blow landing on cheaterpants not only kept me out of jail nut provided other benefits. First of all it let me release just enough of the emotional turmoil that I could think strategically and prepare for court as well as manage an approximation of grey rock. CL and CN are 100% right, being ignored bothers these folks so much more than anything we could ever say or do to them. Second, While your emotions are being run through a cross cut shredder it’s important you take care of yourself physically. It’s going to help you manage stress, sleep, eat, All those essential to life things that emotional evisceration tends to fuck with. The third was an unexpected bonus – I started looking pretty damn good – and it drove cheaterpants absolutely insane wondering who for (answer – me no one else just me). What with the ignoring him (mostly) he assumed there was another guy in the picture and it really tweaked his ego. Best of luck sweet lady – all of being involved with a cheater sucks but you are in the part that sucks the worst. It does get better.

    • TooSmartforthisShit. Funny how they interpret you taking care of yourself as still being all about them and how it impacts on them.

      I lost 35 pounds (and have kept it off this year) and came to weigh even less than when I got married. Got some new clothes and ensured that I was looking the best I ever had in years.

      He recently said to me that he knows that I am still under a lot of anxiety because of all the weight that I lost. He really had the nerve to comment on my weight.

      He went on to tell me that he understands what that’s like because he lost weight when he was with me because he didn’t love me anymore and felt nothing but anxiety with me. But, now that he’s been gone, he’s feeling better and has gained back the weight (and then some I would say). Told me that I will gain back the weight too.

      Oh, really asshole? My response to him was that I now understand that stress and anxiety causes me to actually gain weight and now I understand why I kept gaining weight during the last years of our marriage. But, now that life is without his stress, the weight has come off and I’m my regular self again.

      Eat your heart out.

      • You should have told him “I look great, you look terrible. I am sorry you are obviously having such a hard time with the divorce but I am glad it isn’t my problem”.

  • Dear Bev,

    Listen to Chump Lady. You need to really take in the fact that he ENJOYS getting a reaction from you. Throwing his shit over the hedge makes him happy in his creepy twisted little mind. I was married to a creep like that for 25 years. I turned a major corner when I realized that my negative emotions made him feel more alive. As much as possible, you need to ghost him. It will make him furious. Which is delicious.

      • Yes. He’s doing it on purpose to provoke you into the Crazy Lady role. This helps him in his divorce settlement.

        Revenge is a dish best served cold. Go Gray Rock as much as possible. Get yourself into therapy so you can talk some of this out. Get your child into therapy because things have to be confusing for the kiddo, and start looking at how you can screw him over financially while making your settlement look oh so reasonable.

        That’s what I did, and since he dragged his feet during the divorce proceedings, it took 18 months after I filed for the divorce to be finalized. I noticed that I could tell when he and Schmoopie had a fight (he’d go to bed “sick” and leave his cell in the car, where I could go see all the angry texts fly by. Schmoopie would keep texting the same thing over and over and over. I also started to see that he’d use the excuse of being sick as a way to get attention.

        If he brought a treat home to share, it was invariably because he’d bought some cheap grocery store baked good to take as an offering to Schmoopie, but since they were having a fight, he’d bring it home and pretend that he was being nice. If he brought home leftovers from when Schmoopie made him dinner, he’d lie about some office function at which there were leftovers. Nope. CheaterX didn’t eat dark meat, and he never ate meat that was on the bone because he didn’t know how to cut it off. I used to laugh at the fact that Schmoopie was packing him all these nice leftovers, thinking that he was going to have a couple of nice meals from them, but he’d end up tossing them in the garbage because he simply didn’t eat that kind of food.

        Looking at the absurdity of their relationship helped me insert some sardonic humor into my observations. That helped a lot, especially with the Gray Rock.

        Of course I wanted to bash his knees in, and I did hope that he’d have a 1-car crash, but I kept my temper around the house.

        And yes, revenge does taste quite good when it’s cold. 🙂

  • Desta Flinging Bev,

    I know EXACTLY How you feel. Why, just last night, 30 months after D-Day and 18 months after divorcie, I was cutting fuckwit out of dozens of photographs. How I wish he could see them and the bits with his asshole face on them in the trash bag. How I was tempted to mail him the trash bag. But, indeed, the key of the gate to Meh is: DO NOT give a cheater ANY centrality.

    My son’s wedding party was at a farm with all kinds of animals, including a noisy peacock. Lord sparkledick von glitterballs struts in and greets me as a dearly missed kibble supplier. I slipped into your flinging mode and told him there was already one too many peacocks, for him to leave me alone. Wellington EXACTLY what Chump Lady would predict happened. The self pity Channel was set at sanctimonious level and he loved the attention. Bastard.

    Wait till the judge determines the split (I was smart enough for that) and then the cat can accidentally pee on his clothes.

    Please do not feed the animals ego kibbles. Take Care.

  • “Nothing says “fuck off” to a narcissist like your silence.”

    Tracy has said this before. As a matter of fact, it was one of her pearls of wisdom that got me though the worst of it after I kicked his whore-fucking ass to the curb and was living alone.

    I wrote “Nothing says “fuck off” to a narcissist like your silence.” and stuck it on my fridge to remind myself that my late night drunken “you fuck whores. I hate you” texts were only feeding him. I also drew little pieces of shit all over the paper I used to write these words on, but that was just my own artistic embellishment. That part is optional.

    NO CONTACT is the way!

  • Shoes, what shoes? Out there in the rain? Goodness, how did they get there? You need to keep better track of your things. If they can gaslight we can too.

    I recall telling the counselor in MC that the best revenge I could get on both of them would be to let them have each other. That is easy to accept on an intellectual level but it has taken much longer to get there emotionally. I am still working on that but much closer than I was at the time that I said it.

    • I actually think that, both of them are clearly defective in some way. I’m too good for him, he could never match up so he had to downgrade to someone he is more in line with.
      I tell myself this but inside feel gutted that he felt so little of me he just dumped me.

      • He thought so little of you because you flew above his radar. He isn’t able to appreciate that you did all those things in the marriage because you are capable of love. He looked at you as Wife Appliance, taking those things for granted while he hooked up with his Schmoopie.

        Water seeks its own level. With her, he’s hit the appropriate low tide mark.

      • Bev, two cheaters are indeed defective. He’s pulled it previously and it has a shelf life. There’s nothing quite as pathetic as a young girl with an aging man child.

        Go for ASSETS. Hit him where it hurts. Include childcare, health insurance, alimomey, child support and pensions.

      • Bev. I hear you about feeling gutted that they cared so little. But, a year later after he left me for the OW, I’m coming to terms that something just isn’t right about him and I am better off. I am surrounded by people who think I am amazing and that he was a fool. I’m better off without him.

        He’s only really got her. No one has supported what he’s done. In a year, he’s kept her away from the kids, his family, and his oldest good friends (whose wives are my friends).

        The OW just recently was awarded 50% access to her kids after 2.5 years without custody (and 2 years prior she derailed in her marriage and barely parented). She now had to rebuild a mothering relationship with a 14 and 11 year old who don’t want to be with her and a 6 year old who has no memory of his mother being a real mom.

        Where does my STBX fit into all this? The kids met him over a year ago when the affair was in full swing. Shr allowed a married man to join her with hr kids for a weekend at her parent’s cottage with her parents present. The kids hated him. The kids had their own court- appointed lawyer to represent their interests during this high conflict divorce. The lawyer sent her a letter stating that she is no longer to have men in their presence during the limited time she has them. I heard the kids still haven’t seen my ex and still don’t like him.

        Then, there will be my two kids – that makes five total. My son has autism. How will my STBXand OW manage all this? Where will their fun now be? Yeah, life will be a real treat then.

        My life is sane. My home peaceful. My children healthy and secure. The are aware of “that lady” because my fuckwit allowed her to spend a day with them back when he was still with me. The kids understand that it was wrong to do that. My son recently told me that if he ever does what daddy did when he grows up, I can punch him in the face 50 times.

        My life is better now without him. It’s sad, but true. I am a good person. People know it. And. My conscience is clear.

        Bev, it will happen for you too.

      • This is about him…not you. Thats why it looks like he didn’t care…he was thinking only about himself.
        You were more than enough
        It takes time to believe what you wrote….but it is dead right….they are defective….

  • Don’t know how old your child is and if he can be left alone, but one thing to consider is a parental access arrangement within the home. Certain evenings the father is expected to be home to care for the child and the days your are. On the days that it’s his turn, as soon as he gets home for work, leave the house and leave him to tend to his child – get dinner on the table, bath time, homework, pack lunch, etc. Let him know that this is training for his single parenthood, and it is a step in getting your child accustomed to the separation. Don’t forget to leave him a list of the things that need to get done around the house that evening as this man will need to get used to keeping a household himself.

    Then, you go out yourself during your time off and get a life. Go to the gym, run your own errands, meet friends for company, visit family, go to a coffee shop and read a book, take a class at the community centre, go for a hike, whatever,

    Then, document what he did or didn’t get done when you get home.

    Designate areas of the home that are yours and his. He likely won’t always respect the “public” areas that you deem your own, such as the living room is your area to relax and the tv room is his area. But, you designate your own bedroom, put in there what you need to relax, and put a lock on the door to maintain your privacy.

    No longer have dinner together. No longer attend any family functions together. No longer do him any favours. Clean only the areas of the home that you have designated as your own. Get a lawyer to officially start the legal separation process and get STBX out of the house – or put the house of for sale as part of the splitting of marital assets so that you can go off to get your own place with your child. Separate the finances and start splitting the household expenses. Separate credit cards. Ensure he can’t take out a loan with your name attached. Copy all documents.

    Start telling people you are separated and working out the details – this will inform him that you mean this to be the real deal. Tell people that he has moved on to someone else but is refusing to move out of the house – this will embarrass him. Get yourself and your child into some family counselling so that you can strengthen your bond and work on the healing process. It will also allow the family counsellor to determine the impact of your STBXH refusing to leave the house and the confusion that it’s causing – you can use this information.

    Do not engage in any conversation outside of issues regarding your child. Even then keep communication to written form and print everything to keep. If he attempts to engage you in conversation, promptly let him know that you would appreciate if he emails you his concerns and you will reply. He’ll think you are being ridiculous – grab your book, go to your room and lock the door. He will rail and spew. If he becomes intimidating, bangs on doors – inform him that if he does not stop immediately you will call the police. Be prepared to follow through on that.

    Track each time he is not respecting your boundaries and your designated space in the home. Document each time you calmly request that he email you his concerns but he pushes you to talk to him. Track each time he follows you around the house. Knocks on your door. Takes something from you. Invades on your time and space during your designated time with your child. Record each time he yells at you, vaguely threatens you if you don’t talk to him. Buy your own food and keep it in cabinets you label as yours and labelled in the fridge. Document when he takes from you.

    Take pictures of every room in the house from every angle so that you can reference if you notice that something suddenly seems to be missing.

    Build your case for harassment and then you can make your move to get him out of the house.

    He had an affair. He wanted a separation. Give it to him on your terms.

  • I think the best way to get any kids still at home to understand is when you cook a meal, take it to their room, shut the door and shove a chair under it. When your kids ask you why you’re doing that you just tell them it’s to keep their dad out. If they ask you why you say I don’t like him. And if they say why don’t you like him you say, “Because he’s got a girlfriend young enough to be his daughter that’s why I don’t like him”. You’re not putting any crying or screaming or anything else in your voice you’re just stating a fact.
    I agree with CL. No cooking for him, no doing the laundry, nothing. If he comes where are you are you leave immediately. If you’re used to humming around the house continue humming. If you like to play games on the computer, play games on the computer. Do you whatever you did before this crap ever came in your life. Get yourself in the mind set that he really is not in the house. Gray rocking is such a good way of showing contempt without showing contempt. If you just go about your business at some point he’s going to get tired of it and maybe, possibly, he will move out. I wonder how many blue pills he’s now having to order.
    I am a broken record about these May December marriages. My neighbor has admitted she spent one third of her marriage as her elderly husband’s nurse. She was on call 24 hours a day and admitted to inescapable depression. He died after a loooong decline and she has illnesses from years of stress….. and she wasn’t the OW. The reality is we need to be close enough in age with out mates to understand what their issues are. There are exceptions but I don’t know any personally.

  • So many will say let go of the anger but I say anger has power and energy. I used it for me! New job, new lawyer, new home, new life…..I used all that energy and I’m completely fine Not forgiving and not releasing the anger. I don’t have unlimited energy (51 now) so I tap into it when needed. This is your time now, use what you’ve got when you have it to make your circumstances better for you. Dinner for you, laundry for you, future plans for you …..

    • Yes!! I like that. I’m by nature a doer, and spent a lot of time making up for his lazy attitude. I’m just finishing my first year masters and channelling my energy into that got me a distinction even through all this crap I’m dealing with. I just wish he wasn’t here , his face is such a trigger for me!!

      • Too bad you can’t get toilet paper with his face on it LOL. That would be so funny! Stay strong, you are doing the best you can! Xoxo sweet

  • We really do understand the anger, I remember days when I barely knew what to do with it, and I suffered a year in the same house before he moved out. Since then his abusive emails have been so bad over divorce matters, I refused to communicate with him any more. It’s in the hands of the solicitors. I feel as light as a feather. I will never again have to wake up to read the bullying tactics he has been dreaming up. I promise you it gets better, much much better xx

  • Be very careful during this stage. It infuriates them and they will rev up the game to goad you. Mine also refused to move out of my home owned prior to our marriage. He was sleeping in family room in the basement. He started openly speaking to women on phone in my presents and going on dating sites just to upset me. However, I knew he had been doing this all along behind my back. I kept a journal at work so he had no access to it. I documented all the things he was doing. Then he started to love bomb and when that didn’t work he started going out all night drinking and coming and going as he pleased. When none of this seemed to upset me he started coming home drunk every night and being very loud. Playing fetch with the dog at 3am. Making food and blasting the tv. Not caring that outback son and myself needed to get up for school. He woke me up starting several fights while intoxicated. I almost wreaked my car driving to work cause I was up fighting with a drunk. My son’s grades got worse and he actually fell asleep in class. I explained to the principle and they helped by documentation by his teachers. I got a lawyer and we filed to have him removed from the home. I had called the police several times but they said if he wasn’t threatening me they couldn’t arrest him. However it help me have documentation of his behavior and frequently coming home drunk and waking us up and having verbal arguments. I was able to force him to move out of the home. He never had a problem threatening or physically abusing me in the past but he wouldn’t do it because then I could have got a PFA.

  • “But, but! I WANT TO FLING HIS SHIT OVER HEDGES!
    The urge will pass. I promise. We’ve walked this path before you. You won’t feel angry forever”

    OK, I used the anger to mount one hell of a divorce. I dug, found and let the lawyers pounce.
    Divorced for 5 years.

    Total No Contact. Got a life. Therapy, EMDR, DBT. Doing everything right and I look amazing to the outside world.

    But…I am still SO ANGRY.

    Maybe it’s becuase it was a long marriage, maybe it’s because I’m over 60 or maybe it’s because I knew the OW for the 12 year affair (that I know of)? I don’t think this anger will ever go away.

    • “But…I am still SO ANGRY.

      Maybe it’s because it was a long marriage, maybe it’s because I’m over 60 or maybe it’s because I knew the OW for the 12 year affair (that I know of)? I don’t think this anger will ever go away.”

      I pray for you and myself that the anger will go away (36 year marriage/ 42 years together and over 60, also). I also knew the OW. But, how can we NOT be angry as we remember just what they did and how they did it?

        • I am five years out from my last go round and I am still angry. I admire the people who get to Meh, but I don’t know if I ever will totally. I have a great life now–but sometimes the anger just bubbles up unbidden.

          • 40 year marriage and 45 years together for me. And at 62 I wonder sometimes if I’ll ever get over it. But it’s getting better every day and he will be stuck in the Philippines with his 40 year old domestic worker and her 14 year old twins (oh and she’s married and they can’t divorce there). I think that’s karma for a 65 year old right there.

            I’m getting on with my life and so far he’s been unable to see his schmoopie for months since he can’t travel to where she is anymore (he met her while working and has been forced to retire).

            The best revenge is living your best cheater free life. They really hate it when it looks like you’ve moved on (even if you really haven’t).

  • Bev, Trust that he sucks. Glad you have supporters you can vent to. Walks, Think stuff silently complete with bad language and gray rock – imagine him as a pile of dog dirt. (ie something you move away from silently with a slight ewww expression). his words just as small paper balls that bounce off your invisible force field and disappear.

    Hoping you can channel this righteous anger into getting excellent best legal support, keeping all your impt docs/ info very safely and maybe scheduling or planning some fun time out or activities for you and your son. Like CL says this is finite.

  • Bev –

    Gather up every scrap of paper regarding financials that you can find. Bank statements, 401K’s, HELOC, groceries, tax filings, etc.

    Take photos of the house and its contents. See if you can sort out what came into the marriage with you (and therefore isn’t his – can it go somewhere else?).

    Anger is energy. Put it to use for you.

    Ignoring him is giving him what he wants too. Make yourself DULL. You have nothing to say. Also, no marital perks.

    Appliance Spouse was fired, so everything you did FOR him as his spouse – well – doesn’t get done by you anymore.

    Good luck. I hope his dick rots off in Schmoopie.

    • Easily. Prepare less food. Enough for yourself and your son but nothing additional. Which of course means you will have fewer leftovers for your husband to snatch later.

      He’s an adult, surely he learned how to boil water and make soup for himself. Plus laundry, etc.

    • It’s hard getting used to cooking for one less person. After cooking, put any leftovers in containers, marked with your name or your son’s name.

        • That is a great option. One of the nice things about not cooking for ex is that I can cook what the kids like instead of what he likes. You might as well get started now, especially if it is a subtle way to get the message across that he is no longer welcome in your house.

    • I had to stay in marital home after Dday for close to five months. I flat out told cheater that anything I cooked was NOT for his consumption. He was to buy his own groceries and make his own meals. I certainly wasn’t going to feed him any longer.

      • I did this today. Told him I’m buying groceries for me and my son and he’s not to touch them, nor is he entitled to eat what I cook. He looked shocked but everyday I get better at enforcing my boundaries. He looked awful. 😁I’m getting stronger and more resilient. Xxx

  • Oh yes – be prepared for the extinction burst. When you go Grey Rock (and when you do it well), he is going to double down on his efforts for you to notice him.

    Still more reason to record the condition of the home, your belongings, etc. If he starts busting things, they are likely to be yours, not his.

    All it takes is ONE incident of giving him the response he wants from you and he’s learned he can get you to dance to his tune. So you really have to be committed to 100% Grey Rock.

    Find out if parenting classes are mandated by your state. Sign up for them. Lawyers and judges love parents who step up and demonstrate that they are sane, capable and committed to minimizing the upheaval to their child(ren).

  • I can vouch for Grey Rock. Luckily I discovered this site before I filed. My narc refused to move out until about 2 weeks before our divorce was finalized. One of my proudest moments was when I was already in bed, trying to relax and get to sleep, and he decided to try to mess that up. He walked through the bedroom, looked at me, and called me a bitch with 100% hatred. I looked at him and said, “okay.” He raged at me and slammed the door (kids were already asleep–thanks Dad). But it was obvious that the strategy was working. He still can’t stand it that I don’t engage in his nonsense anymore.

    You can make it through this, Bev! I had a rough first year, with ex taking me to court within 5 months of the divorce, not paying his support, changing jobs over and over, etc., but the kids and I are getting used to our new normal, and it is definitely better without the narc in the house.

  • Bev, CL is right as usual. These disordered fuckwits feed off of it.

    Why isn’t he moving out you ask? Because as you state OW lives at home with parents. Can’t go fuck round there can they “mum, dad, meet my boyfriend, he’s your age yeah and we’re just off to my room to get freaky”. That piece of shit is hoping he drives you batshit crazy so you move out and he can move schmoopie in… I’m in the exact same boat. It’s a shit sandwich buffet.

    I’ve been strict grey rock for nearly 12 months. My fuckwitt has pulled every stunt possible to drive me out (I don’t have the money to go so I don’t know where he thinks I’d go anyway) so I know the hell I promise you.

    Please cut him off, insist all communication happens in writing, resist the urge to mess with his stuff (it feels good but then they get to play the victim “look how crazy/bitter/unstable she is amd what I’ve had to put up with. It’s why I had to leave” (sad sausage). Put some boundaries down, go cold on his ass n hold on tight. It’ll get rough. But it’s not forever. This is character building of a different kind!!

    • “(I don’t have the money to go so I don’t know where he thinks I’d go anyway)”

      I can guarantee you he has given zero thought to where you would end up. What he wants is for you to walk off into the sunset leaving all the money and possessions behind.

      You aren’t a fully formed human with needs in their minds and anyway what happens to you is not his problem. His thinking is entirely about what he wants, ie schmoopie moving in, so his actions are aligned with that end in mind. This type is not sophisticated enough to work on a negotiated win-win.

      It’s all for me, and who are you again?

      • Exactly. Mine didn’t think anything through at all, just wanted me and the kids gone. He wasn’t counting on me putting up a fight. Now he is 100k in debt and has lost half the business, is now a 20% shareholder instead of 51. Owns nothing while I have my own place, nearly debt free. And to top it off things are apparently shaky with the ow. My heart bleeds…..

    • I now think he won’t move out because the girlfriend will want to move in with him and he told our friends last night this relationship won’t last anyway!
      Nice eh? 😔

  • Bev:

    Thankfully, I didn’t have to live with my XH for very long… 3 days after D-Day, he moved out. This began a 3-year long separation; 15 months into it, I came home from our first son’s out-of-town wedding and knew I had to go as close to Zero Contact as possible if I was going to survive *The 40-Year Discard*. It drove him crazy when I said, “You want to talk about finances or our kids? Send me an email! You want to talk about anything else? Have your lawyer contact my lawyer“. I shut down every request to speak with him, meet with him, or engage with him on any level. He was not happy and acted like a wounded animal. We’re now 3 years post-divorce; I’m still 100% ZC, and he’s still not happy about it, claiming he’s “confused“ about why I want nothing to do with him. Not my job to explain it. There is, literally no need for us to have any conversation about anything. The peace it brings is magical. With that said, if I were in your shoes (minor child) and unable to go full on ZC, I’d use Grey Rock 100% of the time. Monosyllabic responses work like a charm.

  • When I should have even angry (like when he was stood next to me in the kitchen saying to our daughter it’s all right I am getting better I am on the road to recovery, the inference being now he was free of our toxic relationship and about to move conveniently into the arms of his twu wuv).

    And now I wish I was angrier at him as I only had a go at him badly once which fortunately for me was enough to finally make him leave (hooray) but I am pleased I didn’t do anything I now look back and think yeah that was bad.

    Feeling that anger is normal – just remember that this stuff is devastating. They will goad you any way they can if you are reasonable or if you are unreasonable. I too have a child and it was only reading CL/CN that I realised grey rock was an even an option. They will still find ways via the kids to make to see red but you can at least minimise them. You will still be angry but you then have their outlets for it and it will lessen the chances of him fuelling that fire. If you can get him out do and don’t worry about how to explain to the children as he is going anyway and however you look at it it’s traumatic.

    It’s so awful this bit and doesn’t get better immediately but I promise it does and I promise grey rock helps. It’s hard to be sane when you have every reason not to act sane but take heart that every time you do you know that you are mighty and if you do lose it that is also Ok in the circumstances.

    And to us all, Happy Fucking Xmas Chump Nation x

  • Beverly I totally get it. I’m nearly 2 years out from d day, but it is true what everyone says, it is finite and life is way better. If your husband is anything like mine, he is his own karma, and will stuff up his life without you throwing anything over a hedge. It’s never as satisfying as you think anyway, although I did get a laugh when my 12 year old cleaned the toilet with the ow’s toothbrush while staying there!
    I had a great lawyer, who doubled as a counselor and knew how to deal with him. Document everything, even if you don’t think its important.
    I cried for a long time, and eventually got angry when I realised all his reasons for leaving were bullshit. But CL is right, the best thing to do is grey rock. I pretty much ignore him and it drives him nuts. I now realize what a douchbag he is, and I’m so much better off now. He can see it too, which is a bonus! The only one in the dark is the OW and boy, when she realizes hes not Mr money bags, I would say hell be choking in her dust. I expect that’s when I’ll get a knock on my door….

  • Bev…I totally get the RAGE. I took care of my very sick cheater XH for two years while he was ‘dying’ of cancer until he had a miraculous recovery. He called me his Nurse Angel and insisted we renew our wedding vows on our anniversary. Five months later I catch him at the Econo Lodge fucking the skank woman. Rage doesn’t even begin to describe it.

  • Resist the urge to act out batshit crazy. Moral high ground.
    That said, I made sure “word” got out around work about exactly who the younger office whore AP was by having a quiet word with friends whose husbands work there …
    And my new bf and I got frisky on cheater’s prized expensive sofa , months later, while it was still in the marital home waiting for him to find a place to move it in to. Makes me smile every time I think of him slobbed out on it

  • Re: toothbrush

    After wandering in very drunk after being gone with my car incommunicado until late in the evening/early in the morning(?), POP refused to give any sort of answer to account for his whereabouts. He could take a very annoying tone that only came out when he was drunk.
    He wiseassly asked ME what I had been doing.

    “I kept busy”
    “Doing what? (in prissy snarktone)
    “Well, for one, I pissed on your toothbrush after you wouldn’t respond to my calls or texts”
    He soon passed out asleep.

    I came across him the following day as he was brushing his teeth.

    “You’re using **THAT** toothbrush???!!!????”
    “Yes. Why not?”
    As I turned on my heel to leave the room: “You don’t remember? I told you last night that I had pissed on it while you were out and about, refusing to acknowledge my calls”

    Did I or didn’t I? Only one person knows the answer to that….. lolololol

    • I love that, though I’m resisting my inner demon and trying to put into practice what the good ladies on here…No more revenge for me. But that is ACE 😂

  • If you think you’re angry now, just wait for how angry you get during the divorce. Seriously, mind bending bullshit is what you’ll be subjected to. It’s different though. It wont be betrayal but anger that scumbags are permitted to roam free. Trust me. 70k into divorce and mine couldnt settle (after blowing up 2 previous agreements). So now, off to trial. Have fun. Be brutal legally. They need to feel pain as a consequence or they will jslust continue to badger you with the courts.

  • Grey rock and as limited contact as possible the past 4 years or so since finding CL and it really pisses him off. He chalks it up to me being unwilling to forgive and that I hold a grudge. Whatever as the real revenge is that my kids want nothing to do with him after he cheated on third wife and devirced again. Wasn’t until then they asked questions and looked at things in a new light. But now I’m the target again – as of early Dec , when after 18 months from split from beloved step mom, kids were finally ok with seeing him a little more-he our if the blue decreed he will no longer help with cell phones, cars or college – because of things he is convinced I told the kids about him the past 7 years since we split up. Just can’t accept the kids dislike him because of him so now he’s playing victim. My new anger is that he went back on the things the kids counted on from him. Oh well – kids now know about grey rock and no contact and we will survive the crazy as always. He just keeps digging his hole deeper with them – the irony of it more than enough to diffuse my anger.

  • Make sure you store all your dry and fresh food in your own bedroom. Buy a mini fridge. Install locks on your bedroom door and maybe even install a webcam (linked to your smartphone) to keep an eye on your personal effects when you’re not home.

  • My lawyer said it was OK to install a lock on my bedroom door. I did it, and it gave me some privacy and a place to keep things. The really important papers I moved out of the house all together until I annoyed him into leaving and my lawyer established with his lawyer that I had exclusive use of the house. He gave me his keys and I changed the locks.

  • Never do or say anything that you would be afraid or ashamed to confess in front of a judge–who won’t care about the affair. It’s not against the law to be a cheater in most countries. In the U.s., in a “fault” state it may help you get a a better settlement but for every piece of evidence you have, every nutso thing you do makes his infidelity look more reasonable. So re-imagine your “revenge” as getting the best settlement possible, as much custody as you can under the most favorable conditions for you and the kids, and living the best life you can from here on.

    CL’s point about centrality was a new way for me to think about it, as a version of the pick-me dance: “When you engage with him he believes in his CENTRALITY. It’s another variation of the pick me dance.” One of the most important lessons for chumps is that what matters to these people is CENTRALITY. It doesn’t matter if attention to them is positive or negative. They want to be central to you, to your life, and that allows them to control you and the situation.

    I had a therapist who told this story in a group meeting: When she was a young girl, her mother insisted on a clean, orderly home, including the kids’ room. This young woman was in full rebellion against her mother and grew up to be something of a slob in her housekeeping. Then someone pointed out to her that she wasn’t making a choice about how to live. Reacting negatively to her mother was still allowing her mother to control her choices. Don’t react. Don’t focus on revenge. Focus on your own life. Set your own agenda.

  • 57. Very angry. I do think there is an element of ‘sacrificed my life’ feeling the older you are or the longer the marriage.

    Anger is part of grief. I read this and it made me realize it was not wise to dismiss or escape my anger and grief. I remind myself all the time to Finish Strong.

    “You have probably heard the saying, ‘time heals all wounds.’ While it is true that healing takes time, it is not time in itself that heals. How we choose to use that time -however long it is- is what matters. Your grieving timeline may be similar to mine, or it may be quite a bit longer. However long your grief may take, please see it through to the end. Don’t give up by trying to stuff down your emotions just because it hurts or because you feel like you should be over it already. Finish strong! Let yourself feel this out to the very end, because there is an end. If you will allow yourself to grieve your pain until it is completely healed, one day you will wake up and find that you haven’t felt it in a while. Your heart is your sacred treasure. It is worth every moment of hard grief work to restore its health.”

    Whole post: https://www.affairrecovery.com/newsletter/founder/grieving-betrayal-after-infidelity

    • I think you’re right about anger, Chumplanta. The question is how to express that anger so as to not to undermine your life. And how to not get stuck in that stage and not get to the underlying grief. There’s a difference between feeling the anger and feeding it.

  • sorry, but this is sociopathic behavior. It’s just as appalling and unacceptable as cheating, and not funny just because someone hurt you first. We are accountable by the same measures. It sucks to have to rise above it, but we don’t want to be AS BAD AS (or worse than) them.

  • Yeah. Mine said “but we were a mess!” Yeah, no shit asshole! So THIS is how you fix it? Fuck some white trash halfwit alcoholic wifestealer? Don’t let him project his own bullshit onto you and blame you. This was HIM and HIM alone. And I agree with Chump Lady. You’re validating his rationalization when you do crazy shit. I don’t blame you one bit, believe me! I’m STILL pissed at him 4+ yrs later! But that kind of shit comes back to bite you in the ass. She’s also right that not feeding his electric narcissism is the best way to go. It’s gonna tear you up inside but don’t let it show. Even your earned anger feeds his ego. Good luck. It’s a long ass road!

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