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The Promise Land of Meh

MEH

Hello from my parents’ house, where Mr. CL is prowling for “Real Coffee” and I’m hiding under a duvet looking for rerun fodder. Found this gem on Meh and what it looks like. 

Once upon a time, long, long ago, and not really that long ago, I spent Christmas Eve in this exact home under very different circumstances. I’d just had my first D-Day. Cheater was very, very busy for the holidays and I was in the beginning stages of being lawyered up and very, very confused. 

It must’ve been a very painful time, but I can’t really remember that. What stands out now is how familiar everything is, and was. My mother’s decor. What we eat for breakfast (Florida grapefruit and stollen — A German bread with candied citrus. DON’T JUDGE OUR WEIRD HOLIDAY FOODS.) The Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer that once came in my son’s Happy Meal whose nose still miraculously lights 18 years later. 

This is still my family at the holidays, Mr. CL is family and he blends right in. No drama (unless you count the search for Starbucks French Roast coffee podules — pro tip: CVS, night-time stocking stuffer run.) All that Pain was finite. Meh is possible. Whatever is convulsing you now will just be background blur in your life. And what really matters stays firm. Until it doesn’t because of time, nothing nefarious. 

This is the last year in my parent’s house. They’re excited about senior living. I am having many heirlooms pressed on me (I ducked the ceramic choirboys). Point is life changes, and it can change for the better, and it’s all survivable.  Enjoy a rerun on the Promise Land of Meh.

 

So the other day a little commentary broke out on a thread when Luziana pronounced herself the future “Mayor of Meh Town.”

In the Kingdom of Meh, there are no sad sausages. Says Luz:

I suggest a genderfree Chump shelter complete with blinking cats and loyal dogs, a Locking out the Loser Locksmith, a Here’s Your Worthless Shit, You Worthless Shit Hauler, maybe a Bulldog Lawyer or two.

And little diner with comfort food various tiny pies and tarts the size of muffin tins, just because I’m experimenting with those. It’s called simply, “Pie, Bitches.”

So, let’s imagine Meh Town — what’s it look like? What’s your immigration policy? Are there block parties?

In my Meh Town, the Marriage Police were disbanded. There’s just the Boundary Enforcement squad now. There are beautiful dog parks for all the faithful pups, and peace and prosperity reign.

And every morning I have my coffee and carbohydrates at the successful chain “Pie, Bitches.”

At Christmas, all the homes in Meh Town are decorated with pinecone elves and blue lights (I love blue Christmas lights! Damn tradition!)

So — tell me, what’s your peaceful kingdom look like? And when are you moving there?

 

Ask Chump Lady

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  • Merry Christmas Chump Lady and Chump Nation! You have honestly saved my life….no joke. I am so grateful for this blog. I’ve clung to it for dear life. My Meh town has a peaceful lake, happy people all around, lots of Macaroni and cheese for comfort, and a narcissist-free zone. If a stray narcissist tries to enter, they will be shocked by an electric gate 🙂 I am not all the way to Meh, I still have a lot of work ahead of me. But at least I’m not the nauseous puddle of tears I was just a couple months ago….I have my days but they are less and less. Thank you CL for saving me. Merry Christmas xo

  • We will be carrying Narc and Cheater detectors. It they detect one they are immediately ejected from the town. Only safe and faithful people would be allowed. Everyone will have arrived at Meh. No more nightmares (like tonight), abuse, and lies. Everyone will understand what you went thru and have empathy. Our kids will have peace and stability. Would love to be there. Still working on LC and Meh.

      • ^^^honesty^^^ Integrity- cheater constantly told me he was “a man of integrity” I should have known a person of integrity aren’t lecturing about how honest they are. Honest people live by example. Actions speak louder than words.

        He comes across as being Mr. Perfect, charming, a gentleman, empathetic, funny, knows just the right words in any given situation…, with time and distance you see things from a different perspective. Now as an outsider looking in, I know his act was to make himself fell superior , implying that everyone else is inferior and could never live up to his standard.
        Behind closed doors cheater wasn’t perfect, nor was he charming, far from a gentleman certainly not “a man of integrity.”

        • That is my STBxH @brit! Fortunately his “nice guy” reputation is eroding quickly. I don’t have to say a word; my friends know him and don’t hold back. As I head to Meh-town, he gets smaller and smaller in my rear view mirror.

          • I like that image! Smaller and smaller in my rear view mirror.

            Mine also said how honest…”brutally honest” he is. That was a lie and justifications to be cruel to others.

            I’m still not at meh…..closer everyday! Some days I’m appalled at what I put up with and others I miss him.

            Smh

      • I found Chump lady in 2016 too. On my way to meh town. My own house just the way I want it, modeling my own values for my kids and not wasting any time or energy on people who don’t give a crap about me. Kids say cheater ex was “quiet” this weekend. I hope he’s reflecting on what a tool he was but it’s the new girlfriend’s problem now. Merry Christmas Chump lady xx

        • “Some talk to you in their free time and some free their time to talk to you. Learn the difference.”

  • I am blessed to inhabit my kingdom already, and I built it in the dark days after one too many cheaters made me take serious stock of my life. My picker was smashed to pieces, so I opted out of the dating game.

    I discovered myself. It was terrible at first, but I was now old enough to stop caring about what other people think. I discovered I liked volunteering – that was the first thing that had always been teased and bullied out of me. Not any more.

    I also discovered relationship psychology, and started to read obsessively about dysfunctional relationships. The dots were joined very quickly.

    I like all kinds of stuff that I wasn’t allowed to like before. Small animals. Recycling. Cheesy music. Getting fat. Not going out unless I felt like it. Power tools. Going to church. Turns out I’m good at this stuff, and other stuff too.

    I never thought I could be this happy. I am busy all day, every day, with so much fulfilling work. I have more friends than I have ever had before, married and single. Instead of trying to pour my whole existence and relationships into one very flawed person, it turns out that I have a real capacity for building and sustaining real friendships with a whole range of people. I used to be a crappy friend, because after all, dicks before chicks, but I have learnt better now.

    I stopped comparing myself to couples, and torturing myself that they had the key to paradise, when I had paradise in my own back yard all along.

    I almost never think of my exes, except as funny or cautionary tales. I have zero regrets about being single. I am not dating. I am not looking. I have no plans to do so in future.

    My bed has linen sheets. I sleep very soundly and with gratitude.

    Happy Christmas.

    • I’m printing this out and putting it on my refrigerator, and I’m going to read it to myself on New Year’s Day…and ever day that I need affirmation and motivation.

    • Lola – I think we must be twins! I love doing what I want instead of being told how stupid I am (by a guy who barely graduated high school). I love making my own choices, having money in the bank because asshole isn’t spending for 15, but most of all I love being single. I am not in the slightest bit interested in looking for a partner, but if one did fall down the chimney tonight that would be fine too – at least I know that would be only a once-a-year date. Merry Christmas!

    • This is Amazing.
      Really resonates with me.
      Almost at MEH.
      Think Santa ( me) might give me MEH for Christmas.
      It is a Tuesday after all. 😜
      Love to all at CN and to Mr & MrsCL.

    • This is what I need to aim for. I just dumped my bf of 2 years because—lack of empathy and selfishness that extends to a weird relationship with his grown daughter.. I hadn’t some boundaries yet when we met. I have to work on me…

      • Yes, Newlady15….run far and fast if you meet a man who has a weird relationship with a grown daughter. Ask me how I know this.
        *smiles* and Merry Christmas!!

          • Attie…that made me laugh out loud. Thank you. No this particular weirdo I had does not live in the WH. I think that there might be more than one weird guy who has very strange relationships with their adult daughters. The one I had…well let’s just say that the adult daughter was the OW. She was the real wife in our relationship. He allowed all of his relationship to tank because of her. Last I heard he’s now supporting her.

          • Violence Against Women Act expires amid partial government shutdown. That was a headline I just read!. I checked it out and it is not fake news. It is being reported by the Boston Globe the Washington Post and the NewYork Times and NPR. this sickens me and is the one thing that triggers that PTSD just when I think Meh is coming this….!

    • Your post is one of my Christmas presents, Lola. I feel the same as you do, and you outlined my life action plan. I have no plans to fill the dead space he left with anyone but me, my little girl, our animals, and friends.

      The bedrooms of Meh Town would all have Mcroskey mattresses and luxury bedding, one of the keys to my success in Feeling Better. The best of everything beautiful and comforting and wonderful, starting with the residents, who, having been chumped, are burnished gold after being forged in the fires of hell. There is a force field around the town which repels villains and losers and evildoers. There is a welcoming ceremony every night for new arrivals…after being greeted they are whisked away to spend some time in the most awesomely equipped emotional ICU in the universe.

      Does anyone remember Welcome Wagon? What would Meh Town’s Welcome Wagon be like?
      😊

      • Love this. In My Meh town, the town meeters and greeters first give the new arrivals a big hug, and then show them around and introduce them to everyone. Then they give them a huge goodie basket with delicious samples and coupons for tons of free stuff, ranging from massages to baked goods. There are coupons for free childcare, house cleaning, pet sitting, and most of all, coupons for the gift of time—an hour of listening, an hour of wise counsel, or an hour of just understanding and empathy. There are also invitations to pool parties, book clubs, dinner parties, drinks, and coffee dates with truly caring fellow Chumps.

        No cheaters ever come to Meh—they are truly cowards at the core, and they can sense the mightiness radiating out of the whole place. It totally freaks them out, and they go scurrying back into dark corners in the far outer countries.

    • Lola thank you for this inspiring message. I am almost 2 years from D day and while still on the road to meh I have also found my friendships are deeper and I also enjoy my own company and space. Also not looking for a relationship. I thank CL and CN for helping to keep me on the road to Meh. May we all get there. Love to all.

  • Meh to me is a land of boundaries and respect. Where I really matter and actually determining that I can have wants and needs. Meh is my adult sons gaining empathy and understanding. Yes, a land where “Everyone will understand what you went thru and have empathy.” Not there yet, but each day a bit closer. Merry Christmas to everyone in Chump Nation!

  • I’m so glad I found you, I’ve read your book too and its been spot on so far! Its been like oxygen when I’ve been holding my breath for the next bag of shit to arrive.

    I’m not yet in the land of Meh, but I can see it from where I’m standing. Its got my friends and family who don’t minimise my hurt and my little son. Its got our rabbit and hamster, ulster radio (which I was never allowed to listen to). Its got books and films and lots of scatter cushions (he hated those) and soft throws.
    There’s a roast in the oven and I’ve been allowed to cook nice dinners.
    The boundaries are very clear and set in stone, no compromising or rescheduling here.
    I’m parenting how I want without constant criticism and put downs. I know how much money I have in the bank and I run the household finances without surprises.

    And if I feel like staying in or going out with friends I can do either without recriminations.
    Merry Christmas to everyone of us!! Next year is going to be OUR year! XXXXX

  • My Meh – it’s been so long that I thought about what I wanted that it’s hard to picture. The Dickhead sucked out joy and happiness. But, I’m seeing glimmers of hope on the horizon.

    A home that I will purchase this coming spring. My own little place that I can decorate for just me. A place to plant flowers and sit outside listening to people and nature. Meh is traveling, visiting the national parks, going to bucket list places like the Galápagos Islands in August 2019. Meh is establishing boundaries and learning not to feel guilty.

    Meh would be idyllic place where I wouldn’t have to second-guess someone’s true intentions. It’s a place where people are kind, fun and honest. It’s a place filled with people who care about others.

    I know Meh is there. It’s a little too far away to see clearly but I’m walking toward it with each new day.

  • Merry Christmas CL aka Tracy lol and your family. Keep up the good work. Merry Christmas everyone! Keep your heads up and focus on the reason for the season and make your own new memories and traditions. My little tradition is to watch A Christmas Story.
    Make it your own.

  • Still working on my Mehville, but I get glimpses of it. It smells like fresh laundry in spite of the giant dog and two cats (which are never called names now). The adult kids come over, put their phones away, and we have glasses of wine and play board games. There are no awkward comments about his sad sausage, and no questions about anybody’s sex life. No talk from STBX of “since my daughter had a surgery to correct a problem with her uterus and is on pelvic rest for 3 weeks, you’re gonna need some magazines and bathroom time” to the son in law…. ewww. My Mehville is relaxed, comfortable, and joyful!

    • Your Meh sounds beautiful and homey! I love it. (Bye bye to the sleazy talk) 😝
      Only family happiness and peace here! 🎄🎄

    • FFS, who makes those kind of mean-spirited comments about his own daughter’s surgery? What a disgusting misogynist. He clearly thinks women exist to do nothing but pleasure men sexually. Damn, I thought my jerk was a sex-obsessed creep, but even he wouldn’t do anything like that. I’m glad you’re rid of that pig.

      • Yep. There was always a creepy comment about sex in one form or another. I’m so glad to not have that in my meh town! He thinks he’s being cool and funny, but it’s just gross and awkward. …

  • My peaceful kingdom of Meh Town would of course have some type of detector to keep out cheaters and narc’s. Only honest, kind, compassionate, and empathetic people would be allowed to live there.

    There would be a place that the newly chumped could go to get free healthcare until they were able to afford health insurance or get it through their new job. Meh Town would have the most up-to-date trauma and counseling services for those suffering from PTSD. All of these services would be very affordable, based on your finances.

    There would be free career guidance and help for those chumps that were stay-at-home parents and have no clue how they are going to support themselves for the rest of their lives. The citizens of Meh Town would never forget how scary it was to have their lives flipped upside down by a cheater, so they would happily help out the newly chumped in any way though could until were back on their feet again.

    Meh Town would have a plethora of fun and interesting activities to do for all the chumps who lost themselves in their relationship and no longer know who they are after giving their lives and all their time over to entitled cheater. The citizens of Meh Town would have their own hobbies, passions, careers and things to do that made them happy. They would be so content and fulfilled, that anyone who came into their lives looking to take their power away from them again, would get the cold shoulder and wouldn’t be allowed any space in their life.

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, Chump Nation! I’ll probably never meet any of you, but you have all been great friends to me and I’d for sure not be alive today if it wasn’t for Chump Lady and Chump Nation!

  • It looks like my living room. In MY OWN cheater-free little home. It’s populated with my kids and their partners, my granddaughter, and many true and warm friends. It’s small, yet growing with new experiences and skills, and new friends move in regularly.

    Its archive describes how it was founded in pain and adversity, but that volume of history hasn’t been opened in a while; it’s under a thick layer of dust.

    It’s so comfortable and peaceful. And the walls sing.

  • CHUMP LADY!!
    Please edit my name out of this comment. It said that my name wouldn’t be listed and yet there it is. HELP!!

    Pro tip…always use your log in

  • Meh land is about embracing the change and taking down the wall. It becomes unnecessary once boundaries become the norm.

    Caught in a riptide, swim to the side and out of harms way. Feeling panic reminiscent of the burning house; there’s always an exit.

    Meh land has integrity and a healing class of people who live with the awareness of what it was like giving to a taker, having needs minimized and being harmed by the very person who should have provided love and support. Change is the step to meh and the blue lights shine bright around each step into its open arms.

    • @Doingme , your comment about the wall becoming unnecessary once boundaries become the norm really resonated with me. I wrote the ex a heartfelt note about how I felt my love for him was like a pearl locked behind a thick, hard shell. I know now that I let far too many boundaries go over our 23 years. I think the shell was the wall you mention – once I took it down he didn’t want the pearl anymore! Divorce will be finalised in the next couple of weeks, I put my pearl back in my crown long before. Thanks for posting this.

  • For me, my Meh will include all others have noted (boundaries, lots of pie and no more fear, hobbies and friends…) but I would like mine to include a new husband. I say this because I really enjoyed being married before I found out about my STBX’s life of lies. I found out when I was 25. Now I’m 26 and I still think someday I’ll want children and a homestead and to quit my job to be a mom. I’d like to have a husband who loves and accepts me for who I am but also challenges me to be better. I’d like a partner who wants to be a father and husband instead of someone who flip flops on that decision.
    Now I know these are not things I can necessarily control and therefore I need to reach personal Meh before I get involved with anyone else, but I suppose a future with someone is my motivation for giving myself time to heal now. Is this all very un-meh? Seems so but I just want to be 5 years in the future.

    • If you achieve this dream please please please insist that your budget makes a provision for a retirement fund for you.
      In fact, this is a necessity for all women who drop out of the workforce, whether for a period of time when your children are small or permanently.
      This can’t be stressed enough.

    • Fix your picker, work on those boundaries, find someone with similar values and interests. Find someone who wants to share in your life experiences, someone who wants to make you happy and wants you to be happy. Find someone that you want to let into your inner cherished circle, someone who won’t abuse that trust.

      And make sure that you work on you!

    • I wish you success, there are sweet and kind guys out there. Some of them get overlooked for the ‘bad boys’, and are longing for a partner and family, just like you are!
      Keep visualizing your dream!

  • I retired on Friday (well technically on 31 December but Friday was my last day of work). So no more 3-4 hour daily commute. Now I’m home with everything ready for Christmas. Having both kids and their partners and one (possibly 2 – open invitation) friends over for Christmas. The relief I feel from no longer having that commute in front of me is incredible. Add on top of that that the Twat is how many miles away (what’s the distance between Geneva Switzerland and Pittsburgh – yeah that’ll do) and there is no danger of him showing up “because we’re all friends right”! This year I actually did get a rather expensive side-gate installed at my home because last time he was over here he bought his cousins up to MY house while I was out to show them round – met my neighbours in my back garden – that’s how I knew he had been here. So I have the distance, I have the gate (I now longer need the anti-tank mines), I no longer have a boss but I have the kids and my friends around. Doesn’t get any better than that as far as I’m concerned. Merry Christmas CN!

  • I wish I knew what meh looks like to me. Really, I should be there by now. DDay was 2.5 years ago, the divorce has been final for 1.25 years. Those looking in on the outside would certainly think I am over it. I‘m not weepy anymore, I go to work, I look after my kids, I volunteer with the boy scouts, baseball concessions, rocket club events. I socialize, I go hiking with the outdoor meetup, I throw the occasional party, I even have a boyfriend. I still feel damaged, however. I feel like I have lost a piece of my soul. I like my boyfriend and I enjoy spending time with him, but I can’t say that I love him. I don’t feel like I could really depend on him. I don’t think I would ever be able to feel that way about anybody agian. I don’t feel that I could ever allow myself to love anyone or allow myself to rely on them. I look around at other single men who are attractive on the surface (good looking, successful) but I don’t think I could ever feel comfortable with them either. To some extent I am comfortable with my boyfriend because I don’t feel tempted to rely on him for anything but companionship 2-3 times a week. I like having a boyfriend who goes home most nights. I am more comfortable just relying on myself because I know I can trust me. I also like not having to worry about whether my annoying habits/faults are bothering someone else because we aren’t together enough for them to be apparent. One of the things I loved about being married is that I didn’t have to be perfect all of the time. I turns out I was wrong about that and I will never feel comfortable letting anyone else see me at my worst again (which did not involve abusing my ex or anyone else). I have forever lost that feeling of security of being loved warts and all.

    I wish I could have CL’s experience of finally finding that perfect companion. I wish I could have that confidence and feeling of security in a relationship. Even if it was right in front of my face, however, I doubt I would recognize it for what it was or be able to feel those feelings. The problem is that I already felt all of that with my ex. He was my hero. He is the one who rescued me from all of the jerks out there. He rescued me from a dating scene that had never been positive for me before he came along. I used to call him my prince. I was so in love with him. I trusted him completely and believed 100% in his love for me. Everything CL feels about her relationship with Mr. CL is what I felt about my marriage to ex. I had 100% confidence in my marriage until ex had the emotional affair 13 years in. That’s when my confidence slipped. I still thought he was a good man, however, and I had just been taking his love for granted and I needed to step my game. Well, we all know how that turned out. I picked me danced for another 7-8 years and then he had two affairs and left me for Schmoopie 2.0. Now I know that part of being in a solid marriage is that to some extent, you can take each other for granted. That’s part of the security. I have lost, that, however. I don’t think I can ever get back to that place. It would be too familiar and the last time I felt that way it turned out badly.

    I think for me meh means knowing that I can depend on myself and never completely giving myself over completely to another person ever again. I will just remain single for the rest of my life, relying on myself alone and maybe having boyfriends on the side (one at a time) for as long as they want to hang around until they move on. If they don’t commit to me, they can’t betray me and I find comfort in that. I can’t help but feel that it is a bit sad, however to be so damaged. I also don’t want to feel that I am wasting my boyfriend’s time if perhaps he would want to find a woman who can fully commit her heart to him. The up side is that if he does decide to move on because that is what he wants, I won’t feel betrayed. I will think he is making the right decision for him.

    The good news is that I know I am capable of being independent. I do have a career and my income is enough for my needs. I can look after my house and my kids to my standards even if they don’t meet ex’s. I may even be able to retire someday and live in a place where people are paid to look after me in my old age so I don’t have to depend on someone else’s kindness. I know I will be fine on my own and I take comfort in that. I also know there are people who have and do love me. My parents love me and I have always been able to depend on them. They are in their 80’s, however, and they aren’t going to live forever. My kids love me too and I know they appreciate all I have done for them but they need to be allowed to live their own lives. I do feel loved by plenty of non romantic partners and I take comfort in that, but again, I don’t want to have to rely on those people for various reasons. I think I will be able to get to some form of meh eventually, but I will never really be the same.

    • Chumpinrecovery, your post resonates on so many levels. I think the biggest resentment (after my wasted youth – on him) was the thought that I will never “let anybody in” again because I just won’t allow myself to trust someone that much. But who knows, maybe it will happen one day for both of us. It’s just that I certainly ain’t looking. But peaceful independence is great – so much better than the chaotic life you get to live with a disordered narc! Hugs to you.

    • Big hugs. I’m there with you. I honestly thought I had found someone who got me, who was my protector, my someone. I’m 51 and I still want to have that stupid love where two people make a commitment to love and cherish. But, right now I’m no where near wanting another man. I still can’t imagine kissing another man or lettting him touch me.

      I’m still pissed that I gave him 19 of my life. Dickhead had an emotional affair back in 2007. It sublty changed our dynamic. We had a hit a bad spot and I honestly think he used it as a way to make himself feel better and as a way to covertly hurt me. Because you see, he only did it in response to my hurting him. My punishment- I got cheated on. I hate who he is and I’m not sure I will ever get past the pain of knowing that he cared so little about me while using me as a wife and a stepparent.

      • Well 2007 must have been the year for emotional affairs as that is when ex had his too. And yes, it completely changed the dynamic of our relationship. The emotional affairs were the beginning of the end but we just didn’t see it (or didn’t want to).

      • Miss Bailey
        I understand completely with what your stating. Myself being married for 34 years then finding out his emotional affair was sexual from day one. But reading posts here from others is inspiring to me.
        No matter how terrible their experiences were they still strength & courage to move ahead to a better life. It goes to show us that even though we’ve been through probably the worst time of our life’s.,
        resilience & knowledge is in us to live a cheater free existence. God bless CN 👍🏻

    • Chumpinrecovery I feel the same way. My bf future faked me big time talking marriage and commitment but really was only committed to his weird codependent relationship with his daughter and his long dead wife and used me and showed little empathy or loyalty to me. I let him go at the beginning of the month and he doesn’t have much to say—pretty much ghosted me. I don’t think I’ll ever let anyone else in the way I let my ex and I loved him completely and fully despite his personality disorder( which I now understand). I do want to partner up but I have to hold firm to my boundaries, something my ex bf seemed to think meant I didn’t accept him for who he is and I said I guess not if that means I have to accept unacceptable behavior and betrayal and disrespect. I’m sad but I will keep on living my cheater free life. My finances are tight but I manage. I hope things change but will no longer count on that happening.

    • So many hugs to you! This so very strongly resonates with me. I’m in the very early days (only a little over 5 months), but the last few weeks I keep thinking…what if my future doesn’t include a new love and all the shiny things I tried to imagine as I pictured a life without my ex? People keep telling me it will get better and I’m going to have this great life and I’m better off without him, but what if I don’t have a great life? It took me 1.5 years after finishing my PhD before I got a decent job offer, which I had to turn down because I was in the process of moving out of my apartment in the immediate aftermath of discovering the affair and getting “I love you but I’m not in love with you.” I’ve applied to dozens and dozens of jobs in this new area so far, done the networking, and Put Myself Out There, but no luck. I’m destitute at this point, and only the generosity of friends and family is keeping me from being on the streets.

      Again, I know it’s early for me, but like…part of what’s kept me going for the last couple of months is believing in the “better.” Believing that I would find a great job and make new friends and meet someone who would actually respect me. It just occurred to me recently that none of that may happen. I’m not special, and I’m not destined for anything great or amazing. It’s been a serious blow, and the anxiety and panic attacks have begun, which had mercifully been largely absent for the last several months. All that stuff very well may happen! I don’t know! But I do know it’s not guaranteed, and like…I had a life I liked before I moved across the country, only to be abandoned 3 months in.

      Anyway, your words resonated with me. Sending you Christmas hugs.

      • You will be ok in the long run because you can depend on you. You have a phd so you know how to work hard and achieve goals. There may or may not be another man involved but you can look after yourself..

    • ChumpinRecovery, I hope that one day you will really believe that your ‘imperfections’ had nothing to do with the end of what you believed was a love story. You say;

      ‘I also like not having to worry about whether my annoying habits/faults are bothering someone else because we aren’t together enough for them to be apparent. One of the things I loved about being married is that I didn’t have to be perfect all of the time. I turns out I was wrong about that and I will never feel comfortable letting anyone else see me at my worst again.’

      You were wrong about THIS man, and THIS marriage. But that is 100% on him.

      I understand the fear of trusting again, I understand the wish to keep your life simple by not putting anyone else that close to the centre of it again. But please, be kind to yourself and remember that you DO NOT have to be perfect all the time, to be honestly loved and accepted, just as you are. And you do not have to hide your imperfections from people who honestly care about you.

    • I know how you feel, kiddo. You will recover more as time passes, but it will be on your timetable, and no one else’s.

      Friendship – good friendships with both men and women – have helped me to re-learn trust. My friends are no longer sparkly, high achievers, or the in crowd. They are plain, good, solid people who I have gotten to know slowly, and who have shown their worth.

      For my part, I have learnt how to make the effort to nurture these friendships and tend them like a garden. I am also learning to be emotionally available once more.

      Friendships are worth their weight in gold, and you don’t need a lot – just good ones.

      Take your time. You are wise beyond your years in recognizing your woundedness.

  • Christmas eve 2016 was Dday. And my divorce was final Jan 2017. For the longest time my Meh has just consisted of peace, quiet (well as much quiet as you can have with an autistic 12 year old) routine and predictability. To a lot of folks that sounds pretty dang MEH. For me it has been heaven. Lately though I’ve felt a little restless. So for 2019 i think I’m going to expand Meh’ville to include a new adventure land park. There will not be any romantic adventure rides planned in this village expansion (although I suppose the rezoning committee could consider it) What I needed most at first was peace, but now I feel like I need some Joy. Friends tell me I need to stop living for others and live for myself. But at this point in my life I’m not sure I know what that even means. So – small adventures – trying out some new things – looking to find what it is that brings me joy. (aside from the aforementioned son) Suggestions welcome.

  • My definition of Meh is what I experienced Christmas 2016.

    Christmas 2016 was the 1st Christmas I spent alone in 25+ years. I was in the middle of my divorce and woke up alone. For some reason, I walked into an assisted living center a block away and played dominoes with 3 widows who had no family.

    No sadness, pain, nor holiday blues. Just stories and memories of wonderful deceased husbands. How their eyes lit up while recalling how “handsome he looked in that uniform when he asked me to dance.”

    I hope to leave such an impression when I am gone. That was a wonderful Christmas .

    • SuperDuper, I love this! You helped others have a much nicer time for their Xmas. What a great example of how, when we are able, helping others and being w/others can give us a break from thinking of our own difficulties. I bet you WILL leave an impression like that, when you’re gone.

      • I encourage others that…whatever reason…are alone on Christmas to visit a retirement center, help serve a holiday meal at a shelter, etc……instead of curling up in front of Netflix and feeling miserable.

        Your mindset changes when an elderly man tells about a Christmas in Vietnam and shows you his 5 Purple Hearts.

  • In my Mehtown, there is no Christmas as we know it. Instead of buying hundreds of dollars worth of disposable crap for their spoiled kids and greedy relatives, people actually give some of the money they would have wasted to the needy. Some gifts are given, but within reason, and the holiday shopping season doesn’t last for months, with carols droning away in every store and cheesy decorations in your face everywhere you go.
    Instead of a round of boozy, schmoozy office parties filled with fake good cheer for people you don’t really give a rat’s ass about, you have a time of quiet relection on your year. What have I done with my life this year? What do I need to change to be a better person? Instead of stuffing your face at an endless round of overindulgent celebrations, you volunteer at a soup kitchen if you are able. Or you hand out blankets and warm clothes to the homeless. Or whatever. If you are not able to do those things, at least don’t thoughtlessly indulge yourself multiple times while other people go hungry. Donate the cost of your meal, for goodness sake. In Mehtown, there would be no room for selfish people and self-indulgent traditions. That’s why we left THOSE people in the dust, isn’t it, because they selfishly indulged themselves while you suffered? So why would in the hell would you celebrate your own self-indulgence while others suffer?
    Bye bye, holiday bullshit. Hello social conscience. That is my Mehtown. There is pie, but it is not just for you and your tribe. In Mehtown, all of humanity are members of the tribe. Except for the assholes. They have been sent to Mars with Elon Musk in his jerkrocket.

  • Stollen has been a long time tradition for me, also. Just had mine with a cup of tea.
    And I have discovered the joy of blue Christmas lights myself–just this year.
    As for Meh, I commented here last week that I felt I was finally there.

    Just two days ago, I had a bit of a backtrack on that sentiment. I came across a picture of POP online (I wasn’t intentionally pain shopping but I realize it could be called ‘marginal pain shopping)—he was with a woman, her hand stating her ‘possessiveness’ of him by resting on his flat and muscular belly. I know the condition of his belly at the time of the picture because it was during the time he was living with ME, cheating on me with a harem of women. I know it was taken at the time he was with me because I gave him the shirt he is wearing. He only had it for a short time….that is because shortly after my having him evicted, that shirt and all of his possessions were sold for pennies on the dollar due to his not paying the rental on the storage unit it had all be put in. My point is, there was a very short period of time that shirt would have been on his body–only the time he was with me, not one second after.

    Of course I stewed for a few hours. But then I got realistic. Knowledge of his having cheated is nothing new, he’s not doing it to me now. I am thriving, there’s no stress in my life. As for his life…well, it’s in the crapper. He’s got a record of 2 DUI’s, currently has an interlocking device on his vehicle, is on probation–again. Any woman who does a simple google search of his name will immediately be confronted with pages of sites informing he has arrest records (for DUI’s, disorderly conduct and assaulting ME) and his mugshots are easily viewable if they are willing to pay for the priviledge.

    I call it a bit of Christmas karma. Mine is good, his sucks. I don’t need a man in my life; he definitely needs a woman to live off of in his. Not an easy trick to find one these days, one would assume.

    Merry Christmas, y’all! May you find Meh eventually. For some it comes rather quickly, for others, not so fast. It took me 8 years and obviously I still waiver at times.

  • The Bitch Cookie’s online store is housed in Meh, and continues to rival Hallmark cards. They’re launching the Bitch Cookie channel that shows only happy ending stories for Chumps.

  • My Meh land has Michael Stipe stopping by my place for coffee in the mornings (God, I loved that man and REM all through college! He’s still too cool for school for me!) I hang out at Pie, Bitches to socialize and LAUGH with amazing men and women. I go home and sit outside with coffee in my hand and I look at all the beautiful flowers and the garden I planted even though I have no gardening skills. Friends and family routinely pop over and life is just good. That’s my MEH. It is just pleasant and happy and lacks drama and consists of one of my favorite rock icons from when the world was my oyster.

    Happy Holidays Tracy, CL and CN. I adore you all!

  • Chocolate cookies are in my oven right now, too! My mother’s “half butter, half shortening” recipe tweak. And mine: Ghiradelli’s dark chocolate chips. And my 300 pound ex isn’t coming into the kitchen to scarf down half of them because they’re being “baked in our kitchen with our money.”

  • It always surprises and makes me giggle a bit to know I helped build Mythical Mehtown.

    For those of you struggling, you should know you will get there. My Meh is no longer mythical.

    I still hurt. It still makes me angry at the years that were stolen from my daughter and me. It still makes me ache that in a very short time my family went from five people to two. I don’t trust many people. My boundaries are barb wired. I feel dumb that I thought I’d lost the love of my life, then God was like, ‘Oh, Ho, Ho, Dumb Bitch. Let me show you losing true love!’ I still mourn my son.

    But as favorite songwriter Nick Cave says, choosing to be happy in the face of grief is an act of defiance and revenge.

    This is my Meh. I am sitting at work training for my new promotion. Aaaaah-gain. I haven’t needed a penny nor a word from Cold Slab O’Meat or the Sluterus for two years I don’t even NEED a money from my daughter’s dad but I will take it and use it for our Daughter’s needs and wants. I made a massive platter of pink and gold Christmas Cookies to share with my coworkers. I don’t hate my job.

    Friends are on the way to meet up at my totally remodeled home and hang out tonight over Chinese takeout. My house is weird and tidy and stylish and we love it. It’s 100% paid for.

    My daughter has struggled at times but I have stepped up and been the responsible present parent. She brought some really bad school marks back up to A’s and B’s this semester. She knows she can count on me, and she is loved.

    We have vacations every year.

    I’ve been dating and learned I can say no if I don’t like someone. That was always huge for me. I haven’t met anyone I really liked, who reciprocated on the same level. It would be nice but not flooding my well earned life with someone else’s neediness is the least appealing thing to me right now. I do NOT envy the Sluterus in the least.

    Is this bragging? I dunno. I prefer to see it as a Gratitude List. Your Meh is coming, if you do the next right step and the next one, and breathe and cry and allow yourself to grieve to fight another day.

    • Luz, this is not bragging, this is giving hope to our newbies. I would like to volunteer to be part of the Welcoming Committee for Mehville! Watch your step upon entering, walking through rose petals could be hazardous.

    • Luziana, Congrats on as Barry Mainilow sang in that old song:
      “I made it through the rain
      I kept my world protected
      I made it thought the rain
      I kept my point of view
      I made it through the rain
      And found myself respected
      By the others who
      Got rained on too
      And made it through”

      It’s important I think for those of us “down the road” from the Dday and divorce (like CL) to share with those going through the Hell that if you stay strong and follow CL’s advice, that Meh is possible, Happiness can be your again as well as love with a decent person rather than someone disordered like our Exes.

  • Merry Christmas and welcome to Mehville everyone !!

    My Mehville is where I am now 7 years today from Dday !!
    I now have a wonderful drama free wife who loves me, a spoiled chihuahua lying under the blankets at my feet in my new home this year that I never thought that I would have again after the financial devastation of the divorce. My Ex and I only contact each other when we must over kid issues and I will be up in their area around New Years and my kids and I will have our Christmas then.
    I am not only at meh but I am happy.

    You can too and one thing that you can do is if you have any friends who are going through the Hell of separation and divorce, don’t let them be alone for Christmas !!
    I am having a good friend over to our house for Christmas dinner because his divorce was just final and as he said “she cheated on me, left me and I was kicked out of her family, my siblings are 1000 miles away, so I’m all alone this holiday but it’s no big deal”.
    My wife and I have been there and we are having him over to a big Christmas dinner.

    My fellow chumps, think about if you have any friends who will be alone this Christmas and if you can, invite them to dinner !!

    Happy Holidays !!

    • My cousins had me over for Thanksgiving, and I’m spending Christmas Eve with my dear cousin K and having Christmas dinner with another set of cousins.

      So nice of you to open your doors to a friend. Holidays aren’t just for family – it’s about everyone who we care about and who cares about us.

  • Meh-town is peaceful. It is a narc-free zone with firm boundaries. Chump Lady is the Patreon Saint. The best directions to get there seem to be leave Reconciliation-Industrial-Complex, and the marriage police behind, then take each day at a time, one thing after another, keep going, by the way of Grey Rock, get to No Contact, and head towards Gain-a-Life. Citizens there are free and grateful to be there.

  • This is off topic, but reading everyone’s posts today has me reflecting on Christmas past with the cheater and his family.

    This Christmas is totally different from all previous Christmases. I’m a nurse as of this year and I work at the one of the biggest hospitals in my area and our patients are mostly “the least of these”. I’m working tonight and I don’t mind one bit. I’ll be with people who truly need me and most people I come in contact with at work truly appreciate my gifting and all that I give.

    For most of our marriage I felt like I was being used around the holidays. Somehow I got roped into having every single Thanksgiving at our home. Christmas Eve or Christmas Day party at our home. And guess who did 99.99% of all the work? Me! The cheaters big contribution was ironing the table cloth each party and even then I had to bow down and thank him for doing it and tell him how wonderful he was for pulling himself away from his “work”.

    And the last few years we’d occasionally get invited to his cousins home for Christmas. I have never been materialistic or competitive and I’m still not. We had a really nice, new home which I took pride in making it ours. But I was never a show-off. Well, the first time going to the cousins home, we walked in and it was obvious they built our same model of home, but super-sized it. It was truly beautiful and upscale. And the cousins weren’t showy either, BUT the other relatives were. They all just looked at us and stood back and waited for our reaction. No one came up to greet us, even cheaters parents. And then we got, “What do you think?” with smirks on their faces. I just couldn’t believe it. It was like they were waiting for us to be mad or jealous or I don’t know! But I’ll never forget it. And then came all the remarks about my weight, or what I was or wasn’t eating, or the weight of our daughter, or comments about my clothes, or gossiping or talking bad about others. I JUST DON’T MISS THESE PEOPLE AT ALL!

    And as for the cheater and his whore. I have no doubt in my mind that she is convinced she has found her Prince Charming. She thinks he’s a well-educated, successful businessman. He’s a “Christian” who goes to church each week. Leads young Christian boys at Royal Rangers. I bet she thinks he’s honest, wouldn’t hurt a fly and most certainly faithful. She has absolutely no clue what he did to me for 23 years and what he’s capable of. I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that he’s still harem building behind her back. I believed all the family Christmas bs he was pushing for years, but I now know what’s underneath all the charm, laughs and smiles. Tons of lies and deception. I’ll take my Christmas Eve with my patients and co-workers any day over the crazy world of lies I used to live in!

    • I used to be expected to bake dozens of cookies, cook and clean up full breakfast, appetizers and amazing dinner as well as all the decorations and gift wrap while Cold Slab O’Meat vegged on the couch for days. I fully enjoyed the illusion of having a family though and drove myself to exhaustion promoting the idea of it every holiday!

      HE DIDN’T EVEN MAKE MOST OF THE MONEY. I DID!

      Now I just do what I want and stop when I’m tired.

      • Sounds so familiar, Luziana! And I double ditto “Now I just do what I want and stop when I’m tired.” I have scaled back sooooo much and I don’t miss a thing. 🙂

  • Mehland is the best country to live in! I am looking forward to going to a party tonight at a friend’s house and tomorrow I take a ME day, just for myself, puttering around doing whatever, whenever I please. My brain chemistry must have changed in the past month or so, cause I just take life in stride and I still find joy in a myriad of little things. No matter what, I just will continue to enjoy life. Merry CHristmas to all of you, and I personally hate Stollen, also a big part of my Christmas tradition.

  • Meh for me at this time is puttering in the kitchen prepping tomorrow’s big meal–all my favorite things (which is an EXACT duplicate of my Thanksgiving meal because I like it that way) with the cheerful voice of my Indian Ringneck birdie asking me questions and combining his huge vocabulary to make up any kind of sentence that comes to his mind. Many of them are very weird but they do make sense…..
    Chicky asks with interest what I’m doing, how am I doing, says he loves me, wishes me happy birthday 365 days a year, asks for a tickle, gives me kisses, says good morning, good night, asks for kisses……who needs a man when you have that going on?
    AND when he gets annoying, I can put him in another room and close the door.

    Unlike POP did on Christmas day, just as the meal is about to be served tomrrow, Chicky won’t be unexpectedly all dressed up/smelling delicious, walking out to go ‘take a present to the guy who owns our gym’ (yeah, right) and showing back up drunk as a skunk 6 hours later–delusionally entitled, expecting me to reheat the entire meal for him.

    Chicky is the mayor of my Mehtown 🙂

  • WWTGH,

    I want to reassure you that your Meh can indeed include a husband and children in the future. I applaud the Chumps that opt out and build their solitary dreams–but some people (like me) really WANT a partner. I did. I left a terrible marriage and cheater. And found another (in some ways worse) cheater. BUT, I kept him a lot less time. THEN after a few years I found a GREAT guy who treats me like I always knew I should be. I have two great kids, 4 grandchildren, a PhD, and I stay home and write. My life is everything I always wanted. I set out to make it that way and I did. The cheaters sidetracked me for a ways, but not forever. There are great guys out there, don’t settle for less.

  • I think Meyville is where I reside now. I have a lovely home with a gorgeous backyard full of flowers and trees. I have a fantastic job where I am highly respected and I get to help people succeed in higher education.
    There are no drunken fools anywhere ruining everything with pouting and their pissin’ and moaning. Nobody’s feeding me shit sandwiches and lying their butts off to me.
    I have good neighbors in Meyville and tons of friends and family who love me.
    Merry Christmas CL and Mr. CL and all the wonderful, funny and super smart people here at Chump Nation.

  • I have endured family Christmas with the in-laws for years. I bailed on it last year as was reeling from the revelations of the BFF of my husbands OW that they had been at it for 2 years and had graduated to lines of coke and crazy sex at our house when i was at work!

    The BFF had had enough so told me. I was told, in turn, that BFF actually hated me (she had always been really great with me so i knew it was a lie). OW told me over the phone she was *flattered* (to which i said WTF has flattery got to do with it!) And that she had had a BF for 2 years so it wasn’t true (turns out that BF was my husband!).

    Anyway i waited until July for him to fall on his sword. He did. With Cattle Class (she’s an overweight flight attendant who apparently doesn’t fly anymore – too fat is my guess). And never looked back.

    So i had an early taste of not having to participate in his family Christmas and it is a very happy place. Kids came home from it on Sunday laden with gifts. Ya know it was the gifts that bothered me the most. Soooo many. From such fake people. Like their son, my ex, they beleive actions and words mean nothing so long as the gift giving is excessive and unnecessary.

    So in my Chumpland Christmas there are no gifts, no pressure. You want something? Buy it yourself (I’ve done this for years and it feels good, better than faux kindness gifted things upon things). Take your fake ass gifts and blow them up your arse.

  • I think of Meh Land not as a place I am in but as a place inside me (and I hope all of us). 4.5 years since D-Day 1 with now ex-husband and 1.5 years since last boyfriend (pseudo-friend of 30 years) discarded me to move in with his work subordinate, I would love to find peace in my own mind–a ‘vacation’ of even a few minutes per day in which I am free from anger, worry (about losing my job which is not paying all the even basic bills, one of my kids (with special needs) failing school, not being able to retire, being alone impoverished from early fifties until death), shame, and depression (that feeling that one’s feet are always stuck in mud). I have felt mentally tortured non-stop for 1.5 years although I have tried many different things to change the situations or at least my feelings about them. Trying to focus on helping others until the end of my life. Ideally, I can help others, if not me, at least a little until my time runs out.
    And happy to serve any of you pie and celebrate your life in Meh Land.

    You all inspire me! Hope that you all have a well-deserved, peaceful, joyful holiday!

  • In Mehville, parents and kids would play catch outside ’til the street lights came on, TV would be a weekend treat, there’d be no garbage on the streets, and people would hold hands and go for walks.

    People would be courteous and ask first what others think of an idea, they’d leave the trees standing for the birds, they’d plant flowers for the bees. They’d know when someone needs help, and they’d offer it gladly.

    There’d be a welcoming committee for newcomers to Meh, and if they’re met with shyness, they’d leave a basket on the doorstep and a contact number. There’d be a picnic at the park on summer nights, and indoor kitchen parties in the winter.

    There’d be a concerted effort to make Mehville a model for the Western world … taking the best from areas that are trying to sustain themselves by helping those less fortunate, like Nebraska, New Haven, New Brunswick.

    Mehville wouldn’t be like living in a bubble … but the windows would be clean, open, with the breeze making the curtains billow, the air would be fresh. There would be no dump … there’d be a purpose for everything.

    And the people who live there? Well, you wouldn’t mess with the people of Mehville. They may be nice, but they don’t take shit from no one. There’s no place for anybody’s crap in Mehville.

    • Champ (and others),

      Love the clean, warm, welcoming images you beautifully described. Going to try to make them a reality in the new year by ‘being the change I want to see.’ Mighty minded not wimpy minded from here on!

  • Christmas Meh Farm is peaceful, dry and sunny in the Southern Hemisphere summer. Jobs done, sheep happy. No chaos, no stolen chocolates…Just visits with friends here and there, a few beers, a bit of volunteering to keep the tourist info open during the holidays. Hardly any tourists but some of the old cockies who now have to live in town pop in and out for a bit of company.
    This is my third Christmas sans Traitor, DDay was New Year’s Eve 2014. Chump Lady saved my life over Christmas 2015 and New Year 2016 when the scale of the deception during wreckonciliation became apparent. I couldn’t imagine things would ever get so peaceful, not even last year. But… it’s true, the pain is finite and things do get better.
    For chumps who are going through their first holiday season post DDay, it sucks, it sucks after separation/divorce having to share the kids over the holidays. Thinking of you. It will get better, you can make your own traditions when you have your kids with you.
    Thank you Chump Nation, you were there when I needed you and you were right.

  • Have a wonderful Christmas, CN.

    I vote for locking gates with a working dragon model. The kind that spouts flame when the unwelcome show up.

  • Aw, thanks! We will take that honor. I was just thinking about Tango the other day. I would LOVE to read the entire story again. I only recall a few details of that hilarious story.

  • Merry Christmas Chump Lady and Chump Nation!!!
    This is my second Christmas post DDay and I’m not quite at the Promised Land of Meh, but I feel I’ve reached little outpost encampment.
    I can see the Cheery Christmas Lights twinkling in the distance, and every now and then I hear faint sounds from Meh- and it sounds like pure Joy!! People singing Carols heartily, peels of laughter, children squealing with excitement and delight, the honks of car horns as friends and family are welcomed and farewelled, there are dogs barking and every now and then a cat singing to the moon. I eagerly anticipate my arrival at Meh some day soon.
    Meanwhile at the encampment I start to allow myself to enjoy fleeting moments of joy- a few Christmas treats and eats, a long walk with the faithful hound, then watching as the faithful hound unwraps his Christmas squeaky toy and bone 🙂 This post resonates with me now as I am now open to imagining my future and it will be wonderful.
    To those of you still struggling out of the wastelands of Narcville, my heart goes out to you as the pain is excruciating. But it is finite. Keep reading ChumpLady and grab hold of every truth you can. Make this your 2019 resolution: Go No Contact. Journal.
    Thanks for saving me Chump Lady and Chump Nation. May 2019 bring lots of experiences and things that match your total awesomeness. And Joy!
    And a Karma Bus 🙂

    • Hi Enough Already-
      This will also be my second Christmas without my stbxh. It’s been a long journey and I’m hoping I get to meh soon. It feels like he just left yesterday. But, I know I need to let go and continue moving forward.

      Thank you for your post.

  • Happy holiday CN. Hugs to all and may peace infuse your day and may you feel freedom and joy. Mehdom for me is to be surrounded by friends and family who love me and who I love. It is a cuddly blanket on a big couch with smooth jazz playing, big ole cup of herbal tea and a never ending sunset. It is great conversation, long walks on the beach, swims in cool mountain lakes, hikes in green forests. It is delicious healthy food shared with afrementioned friends. It is feeling true joy without episodes of unexplained sadness and funk. And it also being comfortable in exes presence so I can enjoy family functions without angst, anger or sadness. It is exorcising the pain and it’s memory. Yep-la di da la di da. Peace to all.

  • On This Day A Child Is Born

    “Merry Christmas” Mr. And Mrs. CL & Family.
    Bask in the warmth of your love for each other.

    Merry Christmas Chump Nation- a family blended together by love and understanding.
    We.Are.Blessed.

  • My Meydom

    A house in the country. Grassy, trees and flowers. There’s a fence but it’s so far away I can’t see it. When in this peaceful compound there are no regrets, no wishful thinking, no lingering feelings of loss. Contentment for what is.

    Working on it… yesterday felt like something was missing.

  • Reading this post and thread has been the best Christmas gift I’ve ever received. Thank you. Merry Christmas Chump Nation, CL, and Mr. CL! I love you all!

  • I married a man and he took me to live in a cave called ‘The Devils Arse’ it was dark cold damp lonely and unhealthy so I climbed out of the cave onto the roadside – saw two bus stops – One said ‘To Karma City” the second to ”Chump Nation every 10 minutes” I thought I have more chance on the C N bus so I got on it and never looked back!

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