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Dear Chump Lady, He shoveled my snow, so he cares?

The Pantheon of Suck
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Dear Chump Lady,

Situation:  I had a feeling that my husband of 8 years messed around with my best friend on New Year’s.  I was smart and didn’t confront him. Instead, I gathered info, texts, found a timeline of events that didn’t make sense, and last found “remnants” of her “juices” on the front of my husband’s pants that he wore on New Year’s Eve (fucking classy!).  I made a joke about his pants and two days later… they disappeared.  I called him out as if he thought that my best friend confessed (damn, I’m good).  Low and behold, it wasn’t a one time thing.  It had been going on since Halloween.  94 pages of chat history, 37 pages of talk history, 40 pages of video/image exchange via Snapchat.  Yeah, people think that Snapchat communication immediately disappears, but not if you were a prior marine like me and have computer contacts in Quantico!

Anywho, I have them both by the balls because I have enough evidence to get them both fired.  She’s trying to mend things with her family, I give her credit.  My husband is living with his parents about 8 miles away.

But, my man has confessed that he did it because he could, and because he liked the attention. He hasn’t even asked to seek counseling together or to give him a chance. Maybe, I should be happy that he’s being honest. However, two years ago, he messed around via social media and I caught him. THAT TIME he was super sorry, scared, and begged me to give him the “rest of his life to make it up to me.”  So, I guess he just is admitting that he’s an asshole and he’ll never stop.

Last night, I picked up your book (Leave a Cheater, Gain A LIFE) and omg…. so much is making sense.  Although he’s not trying to woo me back in, he’s doing other things:

~ we got a ton of snow on Saturday and he came over and shoveled driveway
~ my daughter’s truck was stuck and he went and pulled her out (I have two children from a former marriage, but they are still devastated by his bullshit)
~ he dropped off food yesterday for all of us
~ Saturday he came by to fix the blinds in two rooms
~ he’s sending texts like, “Heading to bed.  Hope you finally get some sleep tonight.  Hope it was a better day.  I will check on you tomorrow. Good night.”

I haven’t responded to any of his texts since reading the first 8 chapters of your book (so f*cking helpful!!!).  But, my question is:  what is he doing?  He’s been gone 7.5 days and now he’s being super-husband and super-dad.  You mentioned that when they do that it’s because they want something.  It could be that he only has work clothes and I still have all of his shit and/or he’s still worried I’m going to get him fired.

Dazed & Confused

Dear Dazed & Confused,

What’s he doing? Normal Husband Things. Which, I imagine, in your kibble-deprived, post-D-Day chump state, you’re interpreting as Significant.

Snow shoveling? Food? Roadside assistance? These are the things ordinary people in caring relationships do.

Two problems — he’s pretending to be ordinary. And he’s pretending to care.

Problem #1. He just told you he’s okay fucking your best friend “for attention.” Whiplashing into Ordinary Partner mode after that bomb drop is just a mindfuck. Pay no attention to my devastating betrayal! These blinds need adjusting…

The healthy mind thinks: WHO THE FUCK DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?! Touch my window treatments and you’ll pull away with a bloody stump! THERE’S A REASON YOU DON’T LIVE HERE.

The chump mind spackles. God, I JUST WANT AN ORDINARY HUSBAND WHO CARES. He sort of looks like one, there in your kitchen dropping off a casserole. Perhaps he’ll do. Just spackle over the unsightly abuse. Return to “normal.”

He’s testing to see which one you are. Someone who will rug sweep and spackle after some Basic Husband Gestures, or a fiercer opponent with boundaries.

You chumped before after a little kabuki sorry. Why not again?

Problem #2. He’s pretending to care. Except that people who fuck your best friend don’t care. And… he explicitly told you he doesn’t care.

But, but! Snow removal!

$200 bucks buys you a snow blower with zero bullshit.

But, my man has confessed that he did it because he could, and because he liked the attention.

Wonderful. He can take his radial all-wheels, snow chains, and flaming hot dish to someone who gives a fuck.

He hasn’t even asked to seek counseling together or to give him a chance.

Why would he when you chump so well? See Problem #1, he’ll just pretend everything’s normal and you’ll get over it. Saves the co-pay.

Maybe, I should be happy that he’s being honest.

Maybe he should be happy you haven’t gone full Marine on him and Semper fi-ed his ass.

However, two years ago, he messed around via social media and I caught him. THAT TIME he was super sorry, scared, and begged me to give him the “rest of his life to make it up to me.”  So, I guess he just is admitting that he’s an asshole and he’ll never stop.

He won’t admit that, but that’s what his ACTIONS say. You gave him a chance and he just took the cheating further, by fucking your best friend. Nothing to work with here.

what is he doing?  He’s been gone 7.5 days and now he’s being super-husband and super-dad.  

He’s hoovering. A little impression management and voila! You’re back. He’s back. Cake is restored.

He isn’t “super” anything. Unless SuperFuckwit is a new Marvel comic.

You mentioned that when they do that it’s because they want something.  It could be that he only has work clothes and I still have all of his shit and/or he’s still worried I’m going to get him fired.

Enjoy the power of his fear, and pass the leverage on to your attorney to play with.

Dazed & Confused, don’t wonder about him. That’s untangling the skein. Protect yourself and go no contact. He wants “attention”? Don’t give him any.

P.S. It’s also time for a new “best friend.” Be sure to tell her chump husband what’s going on.

P.S.S. You’re a Marine. You can do this. Adapt and overcome!

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at [email protected]. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • “The chump mind spackles. God, I JUST WANT AN ORDINARY HUSBAND WHO CARES.”

    This was me. And even though, in the bottom of my heart I knew, whenever he suddenly became super helpful and generous around the house, I would think “oh finally he is wonderful / oh he only does this when he is hiding bad news / NO NO I am hallucinating negative intent – he is wonderful at last!

    Trust that he sucks.

    • Signing up my name here as well. I didn’t even think those household chores were ordinary husband things because they never were in our 12 years together. He did such a great demo-version of a husband (helping out with chores, son’s activities, renewed attention, sex, travel together, making plans together) during wreckonciliation that I started “seeing the good part in that devastation” thinking we’d become a stronger and better couple now because he gets it and he has changed! Ha!

      Three months of heavy lifting were too much for his fragile soul. He got caught again. And I found the CL and the bullshit was gone!

      • Longtime…
        Mine lasted about a month…. lots of talking about “ his hard work” but not many actions… yes, the ordinary stuff were happening ( like doing stuff around the house, even master DIY for an impression management) but nothing I asked for
        Somehow, “ I was getting everything I asked ” … except I was not able to see it????
        Plus- the constant reminder “ I stopped seeing hookers and doing all the porn etc which I promised to do” – and expectations that those actions will somehow wow me ????

        Reality: I expected monogamous marriage, I expected life based on values- with honesty, trust, communication etc.
        being nice to me was not an accomplishment in my dictionary
        Staying away from hookers was not a big achievement in my book

      • This is all image management. My STBX has gone all image management on me as well. She shares here day with smiles like there’s no elephant in the room of her infidelity and our pending divorce. She will do a teeny bit of housework for all to see. Then she can tell herself “See! I’m an excellent wife, and he should never have driven me to spreading my legs for my boss by his (insert made-up inadequacy here). I believe chumps aren’t the only ones spackling. In his mind, he’s awesome because he shoveled the snow, and brought a meal, and pulled out daughter’s truck. Then he can spackle over the fact that he betrayed you, broke up the family, ruined your friendship, exposed you to disease, etc. In fact, I would bet that there is also some financial infidelity out there as well. Are the secret credit cards sitting out there that he has maxed out with nothing to show for it? Odds are he has done that as well. While he’s putting on a show of Mr. Amazing, ask him for his permission to run his credit report. What’s his reaction? Did you get permission? If so, are there some surprises?

        • DC, this sucks. You already know what to do and are doing the right things so far, with the exception of trying to understand why he is doing this.

          I will tell you why from the perspective of the New Girlfriend of the Divorcing Guy.
          **NOT ANYMORE, this was 10 years ago. But NEVER get involved with a person who is actively getting divorced or is “separated”. You will see why.

          DG was pretty great, at first. His wife had cheated with a co worker and was living with him, had not seen or spoken to her 4 kids in 8 months, even though they lived in the same small town.

          I could never understand how he came to have the kids, since there was no agreement. He always glossed over that part, as well as the part where nobody has a lawyer, and there is no tough talk on the hard decisions.

          Turns out….(***this in NO WAY excuses her cheating)….he was a philanderer from the time of their firstborn. In fact, he refused to acknowledge paternity until the second pregnancy when he was fucking her as well as several other women secretly.

          She forced child support…so he sweet talked her into marriage. Two additional kids (4 total)…she worked her ass off to support the family while he smoked pot every day ($300/wk worth), did “side jobs fixing computers” for which he had no training and never billed these people (he said) and did sports from the time she got off work until the wee hours of the morning “connecting” with his paddling mates on the beach.

          Yes. She cheated with co worker. These two should never have been married. Period. He sucked me in with the sad single dad routine. I thoughtl…wow!!…taking care of and paying for 4 kids when mom abandoned them!! Super Dad!

          Nope. He was looking for a replacement so he could keep on keeping things exactly the way his wife had allowed them.

          She had a large govt pension from working at the VA all those years….and he wanted a part of that. So when she cheated…she originally kept the kids and house. He moved out. He told me that once he was out, she sued for child support again. He wasnt having that… he moved back in.

          NOT to protect his kids or be with them….but because he had no intention of paying for them. She couldnt stand it in the house with him….so she left. He forgot all that and he forgot to tell me that he was months behind on every single bill, because he didnt make any money, couldnt pass a drug screen even if he got off his ass to do a real job, and already had a plan to “get money” by being nice to STBXW and schmoozing her to sign over half her pension.

          This is what they do. They calculate the losses and then adjust their strategy accordingly. He cheated on her for 22 years. No, she had no right to have an affair, she had shitty coping skills….and they never should have been married…but i can actually see why she felt trapped and abused, vulnerable to the wiles of another man. I would never do it, but she had a history of poor choices, see the description of Great Dad.

          He wanted that pension…and he allowed her to believe that he would not touch it. I heard him promise her he would not. He sweet talked her in front of me constantly. He allowed her to call him and make demands at all hours. I thought….this is bullshit. So i tried to put a stop to her “interference”…so many things he sllowed her to do to make he kids miserable and make me miserable.

          Turns out….he was having sweet, loving, nostalgic conversations with her (while she is living with OM), doing her favors, giving advice, meeting for secret lunches so she could cry on his shoulder about OM.

          Why? He had a plan. He had contacted a lawyer friend, while telling her they could divorce without any. Once he was sure he could pass a hair drug screen, so when she might accuse him of drug use….he jumped into action.

          Had the papers drawn up to take half her pension, get child support (remember, he never worked while this was going on. Deliberately. Neighbors were sending food, the kids had no activities, he spent his days working on friends’ computers and paddling/beachtime from 5p-2a. The kids were left ALONE or once i was involved….with me. Oldest was 14) and take the house.

          This is the depth of how they operate in order to avoid consequences to themselves. They harm anyone around them, including and especially kids.

          He never meant a word he said to her. I watched how he treated her…and i thought…well, she deserved it for cheating. Until i found out about his own drug and cheating record.

          I am not condoning ANYTHING she did….i am making a point about how deceptive and treacherous a person can be when they feel entitled. He was a drug addict and a lying cheating asshole, who lied about all of that until i was firmly involved in the protection of his kids. I cared deeply for them and recognized that both of those idiots needed to have those kids taken away. I tried to help them by helping him.

          Like all addicts…he felt he was entitled to have everything, because he wanted it. He needed a surrogate for his chumpy then chumper wife? Tell the New Girlfriend anything she wants to hear. Want a $350k house and all the money to pay for it without working a day in your life? Lie. Tell anyone anything they need to hear in order to give you what you want. Your kids need fed? Dont go to child support agency and maybe tip your hand at how you plan to financially devastate your kids’ mother…no….let the neighbors bring food while you are out eating on the beach with your friends.

          This is normal for malignant narcissists. Your STBXH is exhibiting this same dynamic. He will continue to completely ignore reality because he wants something. Your house? Your credit? Your good will as far as child support? Maybe he just wants you to fall back in line. I dont know. What i do know is that anybody who can act like NOTHING HAPPENED….had an agenda.

          Grey Rock this asshole. I ran far away from my xbf after a year. Yours wont show you his hand until you are so far into the trap, you will have no choices. The long game freaks are the worst. Act fast. Move fast. This is the only way to thwart his plans.

          Good luck.

    • My situation was a little different in that he typically was good about doing husband chores throughout our marriage with the exception of the last 9 months or so before DDay when he appeared to go on strike and now I know why because he had more important things to do and people to bang.

      What I did have to deal with was his constant complaints about my inadequacies which often pertained to the fact that I didn’t spend enough money on my looks (fancy clothes, expensive haircuts and manicures, etc. – at least I did keep in shape). One day during the recession, he came to me and said “Chumpinrecovery I know that in the past I often complained that you don’t spend enough money on clothes and hair products and what not but forget all of that. You are low maintenance and that is a good thing. Don’t ever change.”. I was so happy that day. I thought he had finally learned to appreciate my good points and that it would bring us closer. I felt so loved. Nope. It was just a temporary lapse into lucidity. Within a year he was buying me an expensive Gucci purse that we couldn’t afford as a subtle hint that I needed to appear more high maintenance so that he could look like he married a quality(?) woman. He wanted to look impressive to other men, or maybe it was other women he was trying to impress with what a great partner he was.

      • My STBX was always good with chores when he was home.
        He traveled 25% of the time and worked late / business dinners very frequently. He hardly ever was home before 7pm.

        What got to me was the constant criticism:
        – My hair looked only good during pregnancy (he made this up, I know some women experience great hair, mine did not change much… but he stole this narrative from a friend of ours who insisted her hair looked great when she was pregnant)
        – he made stupid comments on the clothes and shoes I wore (and I actually pay attention to what I wear)
        – he hated if I read a book, went running, went out
        – when I went out, he texted me, asked me to buy stuff on my way home, etc.
        – the food I made was better last time
        – the picture I painted was not as good as the first one I made
        – what did you do to the dish?
        – “I do not understand why you are not skinnier with all the running you do?”

        • So familiar. And I don’t go around in torn jeans and sweats but I just don’t wear expensive designer clothes either. I will also admit that I have never really gotten the layers/accessories thing figured out. I think those things look silly on me but women are supposed to accessorize.

          • My thoughts….Be thankful you didn’t spend your money on expensive clothes/accessories. It doesn’t matter unless you feel it matters. It would be in authentic to wear that stuff if you don’t really enjoy it. Personally, I’m practical. I don’t like owning a bunch of trendy things that I will wear just a few times — what a waste of money! Retail Analysts on Wall Street will tell you 80% of women’s clothes get worn once and stay on hangers in the closet. I find that I wear the same things ALL THE TIME. In the end, once that money is spent, it is gone until you replace it. I know many women who spend money and look great, but you know what, they don’t have any savings. Many charge it and have high credit card debt. It’s a facade. I’d rather have savings especially now that I’m single again, I’m glad I didn’t indulge in short-term highs of fashion just for appearances for HIM. I could have, but I always thought longer term that if I’m carelessly spending my money and something happens to him/us, I’m going to regret it. Also, even if you can afford to indulge, doesn’t mean you should.

            • Oh believe me, I always recognized being low maintenance as a good quality that he simply failed to appreciate. Not only did he not appreciate it, he hated it. I would hear other men complain all the time about their wives’ spending habits but I got the opposite. It’s all about image with him and having a high maintenance woman would make him look like a higher status (i.e. richer) man. Honestly I don’t know why he married me if that is the way he felt except that he wasn’t in investment banking yet back then and maybe it didn’t mater to him so much. Sometimes I think working in narc central influenced him in some very dark ways and by the time he left the business it was already too late.

          • Don’t worry. I’ve put care into that layering/accessorizing BS and he still never gave me a single compliment in 7 years. Took me a while to realize he didn’t care what I looked like, as he was just using me as a mirror to look at himself. Your style or lack thereof has nothing to do with it!

      • The day my (now ex) husband came home and said, ‘thank you for being you, you’re so mature and responsible’ it was actually because the young mistress in her 20s (that I knew nothing about at that time) was getting on his last nerve for being immature and irresponsible – and I guess not me. Gee thanks.

    • Yep, I just wanted a husband who cares. Fifteen years of my life, and I felt that it should have been possible. Not so. That’s a hard pill to swallow.

      • OptionNoMore, I made the mistake of thinking that with each year of marriage and maturity the more you value your spouse. Yes, it’s a bitter pill, when you realize your spouse is a fraud, who will stop at nothing to destroy you. I wanted to be loved, valued and share my life with my best friend, the person I married, a bitter pill finding out the person I married never existed.

    • Dazed, I suspect your husband is shoveling snow in more ways than one.

      Stay aware!

  • Dear Chump Lady,

    You are so right! But, you already know that. I appreciate you responding ~ and so specifically. And even now, on top of him trying to be Super-Husband, I found out that he’s in the initial stages of trying to buy a house (yes, all behind my back)!!! We all know he can’t while he’s still married… but again, something he wants so he wants me to sign my rights away OR rush a divorce. It’s been 11 fucking days since he left… and so easy to move on which still irritates the fuck out of me.

    I can’t thank you enough for this ~ and your book which has been extremely helpful. I’m already thru the book 1.5 times now… I keep going back to re-read the things I need. I’ve only been no contact for 3 days and I know it will get harder before it gets better.

    I’m still feeling like a damn punching bag.

    I need to go back to my marine days because Sgt Dazed & Confused would have castrated him mentally and physically!

    THANK YOU!!!

    Dazed & Confused

    • It’s early days and you’re doing great. Give it all to your lawyer and sign away nothing. I’m sorry you’re going through this, but I’m glad you found CN.

    • Keep reading and coming back to CL.

      Super-husband? Nah. You said that the OW is trying to fix her own problems. His Plan Fuckaround is gone so he’s back to chumpy wife aka Plan B. He’s gotta have somebody and there you are.

      They move on because they’re shallow. He’s a fuckwit who would rather screw around with your best friend (hope to hell you are NC with her too) than to sincerely, truly, respectfully make his marriage work with you. He’s not going to change…never. It’s best to cut your loss now and look for a cheater-free life.

      You can do this, Mighty Marine!!

    • Hi Dazed and Confused —

      I found that No Contact was such good medicine that every day got a little bit better, until I broke No Contact, then all hell broke loose. All of his evil pig demons rushed into my heart and soul (sorry, I have no other way to describe it), and I lost my health, my job, my friends and family. I went back to No Contact soon after that, and I am rebuilding and making a sweet life, full of joy and gratitude. I see progress and my health, job and people have and are returning.

      No Contact — the end of dread, the beginning of life.

      • Yes exactly. I broke NC so many times, I remember even counting the days I was NC..and would make some lame ass excuse to text her or email her etc…it’s very difficult at first. But now it’s been years, our kids are adults so I don’t have to communicate at all with her. It’s a choice I’ve made to keep my sanity. Our son and daughter in law had mentioned is being at some social event together for our grandson and I politely told them no. I have no desire to see her or speak to her ever again. I told them I’ll see my grandson later that day or earlier or whatever but I refuse to have anything to do with her. Period. I get to say no for my own peace of mind.

    • This sounds like my ex. We were in the process of divorcing and he started trying to house hunt. It was futile because no bank was going to give him a second mortgage when he was still on the mortgage for our house. It’s probably just image management. Look, he has a wonderful home, she what a great guy he is?

      He’s just screwing around with you, hoping if he keeps things friendly he will get a better divorce settlement. Lawyer up, get everything you are legally entitled to.

      I’m so sorry you and your kids are going through this. Keep up with the no contact and be aware that when he realizes his charm channel isn’t working he will likely switch to self pity or rage. Once I had read CL’s book, it was almost amusing to watch him flip through the channels in turbo mode.

      You will be ok. You’re a marine, you’re tougher than I am. I’m getting more mighty by the day, you will to. Welcome to CN, sorry you have to be here but I’m glad we can support you.

    • Welcome to the club no one ever expected to join (but it really is a great, supportive club)!
      Next on the list is DONT LET HIM IN THE HOUSE!
      Damn, girl, you’re a marine! You can fix your own blinds.
      Best gift I bought myself was an electric start, gas’s snowblower. At 62, I needed the electric starter. The people at Home Depot were seriously helpful in pointing me to the right snowblower and teaching me how to use it, including storing it for the summer. And they were more patient and funnier than my ex ever would have been. Now I take care of my own snow and love every minute of it! I even do some of my neighbors because it’s fun.
      He lost the right to be in your house and I. Your life when he cheated, much less when he “soiled” his pants and left you to clean up the mess. Probably a lot more mess where that came from.
      Keep reading the book and show your kids what a strong, self-sufficient WOMAN looks like. Someone who will NOT be someone’s else’s doormat.

    • You may want to freeze your credit, or at least put some sort of hold on it. So he can’t point to the joint income and pretend it’s his alone.

    • He’s playing both sides.
      He’s playing nice guy because maybe you’ll take him back again and he’s also looking for a house in case you don’t. Get a lawyer on retainer ASAP before he starts spending all your “shared” money or not only will you get less in the divorce but you’ll have to pay off half his debt.

      He’s a loser. We’ve all been there. It gets better. I’m much happier not playing police anymore and even though my place is smaller, I really like coming home to a place of peace and no walking on eggshells.

    • Dear Dazed,

      Thank you for your service….and please pass it on to your comrades.

      In my own world I have a decorated retired SEAL in my pit (bull) crew and so grateful to have his presence to remind me what the mission is and who the target is.

    • Dazed and Confused, you are rocking the no-contact. Your danger time will come atojnd month 3-4 as the need for a “fix” creeps in. Toxic relationships are like a drug and the brain starts to crave the drug again. Your anger will peak and wane; when it’s not strong will be another weak point.

      Keep a list of all the awful things cheater has done, add to it, and read every day to keep your resolve (even in the face of husbandly duties). You’ve got this!

      • This, so very much this.

        It’s very easy to be hoovered back into the Cheater’s orbit once you have a bit of time and distance from the immediate betrayal. In my case, I knew I had to divorce CheaterX but needed time to line up my ducks so I kept quiet. However, I kept screenshots of the texts he’d sent to Schmoopie, and even copies of his emails!

        When he started to be nice, aka act as a normal husband might act, I’d look again at the stuff I’d collected and see that his so-called niceness was another lie. Most times, his improved behavior coincided with a fight he’d had with Schmoopie. He was basically grooming me to be his Plan B.

        See a few lawyers ASAP. Retain one that will fight for the best settlement (but not fight for the sake of fighting–you need someone who knows when the money you want is too expensive to win and who will tell you as much) and see about putting a hold on the credit. You don’t want him running up bills or cleaning your accounts out.

        You have this!

      • Yes! The List is vital. It is easy to let the bad stuff slip away because we want it to all be OK. The list will bring you back to reality every time.

    • Dazed, so there you have it! He is finessing you! With snow shoveling! In exchange for buying a house behind your back. Snow shoveling should keep your mind off more important things.

      Sparkledick tried this trick on me and as soon as he realized I wasn’t falling for his B.S. he immediately switched the charm button to off-the-scale rage.

    • I am so sorry you’re dealing with this. Your husband’s such a selfish asshole. He’s lying to you and going behind your back (again) with buying a house. Just further proof you can’t save this marriage and shouldn’t even try.

      Good news is, it sounds like he’s in a hurry to start his new life. Use that to your advantage when it comes to the division of assets, you can play hard ball. Give everything to your lawyer, do NOT try to DIY this divorce. You cannot negotiate with an enemy, he’ll take advantage of you.

    • Dazed,

      My cheating abandoning spouse is a Major in the Marine Corps. He’s a fucking dick but that’s besides the point.

      Your cheater doesn’t care about you, he cares about cake which is why he’s hoovering and trying to save his sweet-ass wife appliance. He is trying to salvage his life as he knows it and as he likes it, you know, a great wife and great girlfriend on the side too.

      You were his wife appliance that takes getting cheated on and emotionally abused like a champion. He already knows that because he did it a few years back and….see? it’s still all ok. She’ll get over it with my delivery of a casserole. FUCK HIM. As soon as you go no contact long enough and he realizes that his cake-eating days are over and sees how fucking tough you really are be prepared to see the sad sausage channel and then (mostly) the rage channel.

      HEAR THESE WORDS: He is not a nice husband. HE IS A SELFISH CAKE-EATING HUSBAND THAT IS TRYING TO SAVE THE CAKE. As soon as that cake it gone and he knows it, he’ll be mean as shit. Get yourself and your finances together while you can.

      These things you see as nice—casserole, show shoveling etc, they’re just like the guy who knows he is about to loose his kushy job–welp, gotta start working hard before I get fired. Well, cheater gotta start paying attention and pretend like he cares before he gets kicked to to curb. TOO LATE. Shoulda paid attention to me instead of my best friend.

      Divorce his selfish self and find a new best friend. Sadly…the lies will get deeper and more unbelievable. But, as you look back in a year or two you will be so thankful that you aren’t being taken advantage of and abused anymore.

      You’re so much stronger than you realize. Semper-fi his ass. (Thanks Chump Lady)

    • Dazed & Confused,

      Thank you for your service to our country! I’m so sorry this happened to you and all you are going through. CL is right on the mark. And I believe he’s being nice to you, because he wants you to drop your guard so he can screw you over behind your back. My ex DID buy a house when we were still married. At the time it was so upsetting having my ex take our kids to some of the houses he was looking at to see what they thought of them Ex laughed and smirked at me when he told me that the owners accepted his offer. I found out later that the owner of the company he works for gave him a loan for the down payment. So I’m here to tell you that it is possible to buy another home if you are still married.

      I also got the line “I’m going to spend the rest of my life making it up to you.” This was way back in 1995 when he confessed to going up to strip clubs in Canada over ten times and getting 100% naked lap dances (plus I’m sure more!). He never did anything to make it up to me. He just took his second life down deeper and got even better at hiding what a scum bag he is.

      Keep up the no contact and get yourself to a lawyer ASAP! Big (((HUGS))) to you, Mighty Marine!

    • Definitely go full Marine on him and Semper fi his ass! You will not regret it. And stay No Contact. That’s the only way you’ll heal. We know how much it hurts right now, but someday you will know without a doubt that he did you the biggest favor by showing you his true colors.

    • Hi, it would be good to freeze assets and your credit ASAP. You can do that online at each Of the reporting agencies. He actually can buy something while married but you May still be responsible for half the debt. Get help ASAP. The next few months are going to suck but forge forward with divorce preparations. This is when fuckwits clean out 401ks and savings accounts, take out credit cards. I’m very jaded but until you are divorced it is about money. Load up with your posse of lawyer, accountant, new best friend for support.Hugs!

    • Mine tried to buy a house 2 blocks away for OW and her kids. I took the paperwork to my lawyer, who had a field day with it. OW wrote the earnest money check and a copy was included in the paperwork.

      I wasn’t about to be held responsible for any more of his fuckery.

    • Congrats on kicking ass! I can’t believe you’re doing so well. I was a mess at that point and certainly not able to construct full sentences.

  • Sweet goodness I spackled through this kind of behavior for 20 years with Dr. Cheaterpants. Two known schmoopies, two suspicious secretaries with lunches out and expensive gift exchanges to ‘show appreciation’ which was really grooming. But he would play house with me and pretend to be a good husband. He would do ‘normal’ spouse/dad things and I would apply my morals and values to that behavior. It’s super confusing when you look at a cheaters behavior through your chumpy lens of life.

    He has shown you who he is by his actions. He sucks, he sucks real bad. There is absolutely nothing to work with there. Do not let him back in the house under any circumstances and get those ducks lined up. Don’t fall for the ‘he’s a good guy who made a mistake’ routine. This is no way to live.

    • THIS:

      “He would do ‘normal’ spouse/dad things and I would apply my morals and values to that behavior. It’s super confusing when you look at a cheaters behavior through your chumpy lens of life.”

      Well said Twiceachump… we ascribe our morals and values ON TO THEM… when their actions (cheating, lying, gaslighting, mindfucking) SHOW US they do not actually share them with us.

  • I totally agree that as chumps we see some positive change and this it’s Everest when it’s really just a landfill hump. Shoveling snow, doing the dishes, getting you a bday present, are all NORMAL things a NORMAL person would do and not expect to be praised for. However as chumps we like to roll out the red carpet for “growth.” The thing is, maybe we should all be kindergarten teachers or something because it’s great to reward a child for going potty on the potty but that’s about what we are doing for grown men. Expectations grow with age…so why do we not see that?

    • The only time X did anything a normal helpful husand would do was when you wanted something. Soon after Dday I decided to leave town rather than stay in the same community. My decision was made when he asked if he could still come over and mow. HE didn’t mow the yard….I did!!! Ive learned that there Is always a self-serving motive behind anything they do that could. be considered a thoughtful gesture if somebody else did it.

    • As Chumps we learn to expect less and less over the years. I put up with so much and by the end of days I was willing to settle for nothing at all if he would just stay- I was negotiating in my head about staying silent when I was with him, about trying to be his porno whore, about never asking for anything from him, ever. Anything if he would just stay.

      Thank God he didn’t. And as he left he made sure to tell me how awful I was and that I was the root of all evil in his life.

      With time and distance I can see clearly that he walked all over me for 3 decades and I allowed it. Any attention from him was like basking in a warm spring sun after a long cold winter, for very brief moments, then back to cold darkness. I had completely adapted to being ignored and devalued.

      Isn’t that horrifying? That not only did I allow him to abuse me and ignore me I also had to listen to him scream at me in the end how terrible I was at being his appliance. How all our friends agreed. How our daughters hated me. My very existence was just awful for him. Because he had gone from future-faking and silence to complete nuclear meltdown it was very traumatic and I thought my life was over. Clearly I had screwed up everything in my life that matters to me and obviously had zero clue how to live. I contemplated suicide- obviously I didn’t deserve to exist when I was causing everyone around me so much pain. How did I come to that?

      I am still going through the mental recovery from living like that for well more than half my life. BTW, my daughters don’t speak to him. His Schmoopie (who he lives with in Europe) has been popping into my Linked In account a lot recently– I guess all is not paradise for her. He probably speaks of non-commitment and regrets. Keeps her guessing. He sucks.

    • Last weekend, I went from room to room to create a list of what needs to get done. I’ve kept the marital home and it was a fixer upper. A lot of work was done on it over the years, but there are a lot of unfinished projects.

      The exercise really brought to light how much/little my ex invested in our home. A four bedroom home and he only ever painted two rooms. I painted the rest. Every contractor that came in to do any work was arranged by me. All the finishings were sought our by me in ordet to find the best deals possible. I would report to him everything I would find to get his feedback as if I was his secretary.

      Then, this got twisted by him as an example of how controlling I am. When I think of the years of frustration and the arguments when I was begging him to do more around the house, to be my partner in renovating our home…

      Well, he helped my father gut the basement, painted two rooms, hung some light fixtures and put together a shed and play yard for the kids. That’s it in 11.5 years in this house.

      But, I didn’t appreciate all he did. I just emasculated him. Yeah, okay.

  • Total Impression Managenent. Like my cheater – he probably wants everyone to think he’s still a swell guy!

    He will show one face to the world ( his mask ) and he will show you who he really is u see the mask once you go as no contact as possible.

    Mine is a Minister. In the church he was the million dollar husband and father.

    5 minutes before the service, at the rectory he was screaming and threatening and raging.

    It’s all an act. It means nothing. What does mean something is that you get yourself to a fantastic lawyer ASAP

  • Symbol: shoveling snow.
    Substance: betraying/destroying family.

    People often confuse symbols with substance, especially when they’re emotionally wobbly and desperately want the thing the symbol represents.

    Focus on substance. The unambiguous fact is that your H does not respect you or love you in any healthy way. Your family’s survival depends on NC and building a life free of the destruction he inflicts.

    Pop smoke and never look back. (((Dazed)))

    • Nomar, I am copying and pasting this succinct gold nugget of truth. My husband’s new nickname is “Madoff” and he has always been and continues to be Mr. Helpful. My new response is, “Thanks, I can do it.” Sometimes I accept his help. The nicer I am and the more I keep my mouth shut the more room there is to enjoy his feelings of guilt and regret.

      We are getting divorced, no question. The only motive I can see (and he’s ultimately the only one who knows so I don’t spend time trying to ascertain) is that he plans to reveal the abuse accomplice (AKA OW) at some point down the road, whom he has been saying he is done with, and he is attempting to build extra credit with all his helpfulness so I won’t have a right to be upset.
      (I told him I want out of our business if he is with her). Or guilt….or wanting the world to see how nice he is. In any event, bottom line is what you said….truly nice people don’t lie and cheat and mindfuck and soul murder and abuse and destroy and backstab their FAMILIES.

      On the other hand, he is obviously cutting his own hair to save money….the abuse accomplice
      is a stylist and probably would be cutting his hair.

      So glad you are a Sox fan too. (Boston native here).

    • Well said. And the problem with symbols is that people can interpret them in ways that are not in their best interest and untethered from reality.

  • Do not trust a man who cheats with your best friend. Cheating is a horrible thing to do to your spouse. But, cheating with a friend or relative is the lowest. Do not fall for his nice guy routine. He is still the same guy who lied and cheated on you. Do not make the same mistake I did. After I found out about my STBX and my cousin. I agreed to make things work. He promised me that he would never cheat again. However, he continued to deny that they had sex. Then to only find out that he was texting his ex girl friend from high school. Messaging the female bartender on Facebook. He had excuses for everything.
    I man that lies and cheats on you doesn’t love you. It took me awhile to realize that. At least your husband admitted that he cheated because he could. Tell your POS friend’s husband about the affair. You owe her nothing. Her husband deserves the truth. He too is a fellow chump.

    • Mine came back to me swearing that I was amazing and he would do whatever it takes to save our marriage (and I think he really did mean it at that moment). He even started making apologies to my family members for the way he had treated me.

      In the end I learned of a secret email account that he created to maintain contact with the OW just a mere two weeks after returning. She stupidly fell for his love-bombing again. As he was attending a couple’s therapy weekend with me, he was emailing her how he just needs to take some time to leave on his own terms and not have her be the reason for it.

      While I was trying to apply the principles of what we learned from our couple’s therapy weekend. He was sending her lengthy emails about how he thinks their relationship will survive the odds of affair relationships working out, and then he outlines the very principles we obtained from our marriage sessions.

      I haven’t informed him, even though a year has passed since he left me, that I have these emails, so he’s confused by my grey rock. He’s wounded.

      As soon as the papers are signed, I will inform him of why I will never ever trust him again and return to my much blissful place of grey rock.

      He knows that an apology will now mean nothing because he tried that before, so he’s trying something new to get back into your good graces.

      Shut it down. Whatever he does for you is simply not worth that much.

  • Dear Dazed and Confused,
    Thank you so much for your service. You are pretty badass. Don’t forget it.

  • Hey dazed….

    Hang in there, better days ahead. Reading your letter reminds me of me three years ago. Any nice thing he did, I would analyze the crap out of it. “He’s thinking of me, not her!” “He’s conflicted, he doesn’t know what he wants, he’ll come to his senses!” “Look at this caring thing he’s doing! Surely that means he cares!” Nope Nope and Nope. I was such a fool to take any of it as a good sign. My ex did those things to make HIMSELF feel better about what an asshole he really is. Does that make sense? Do you see how it’s really about his OWN feelings? Do you see how he doesn’t stop to consider that sending mixed messages in that way hurts the chump more?

    You’re reading the book, good. I read through my copy several times, and highlighted things that were particularly pertinent to me. Then I could go back and read the highlighted sections. This helped me stay focued on reality A LOT in those early days, when it was very easy to get lulled back into this false idea of being married to a decent person.

    Dazed, you sound like a strong person. Use that strength to get through the difficult times ahead. Sign NOTHING yet, get a lawyer ASAP, and go NO CONTACT. Good luck!

    • Your explanation of why they do nice things is spot on. I am sure that is why my ex was doing it. He wanted to alleviate his own guilt and didn’t consider how it might be playing with my emotions, even post divorce. Luckily by then, I kind of had it figured out so didn’t read too much into it.

    • Wow this is so helpful even this far out for me. I always thought it was to keep me as Plan B but you’re right, to make himself feel better about his horrible actions and blowing up the family not once but twice.

      • I think this is part of it. As I mentioned above, CheaterX’s behavior towards me always improved when he was having a fight with Schmoopie.

        But he was also very transactional in his relationships. If he’d take Schmoopie out to breakfast at a local bakery (under the pretense of having to get his hair cut), he’d come back with–get this–sausages for me from a local butcher. Okay, the sausages were decent, but frankly, I don’t want sausages every week.

        Before Dday, I used to think he was trying to do something nice for me. After Dday, I realized that in his mind, if he did X for Schmoopie, he’d do Y for me. In his head, these were equivalent and therefore he was A Good Person.

  • When a spouse cheats it hurts terribly. It doesn’t matter how long you were married but when you spend 30+ years with someone & find out they’ve been cheating
    most of the marriage.. it’s a special kind of hell. ????

    Divorce your low life cheating husband before you waste more precious time. Good luck to you. ????????

  • Things he suddenly said: I will work on things, become an honest and genuine guy, get therapy, make divorce the fastest and most generous thing ever, be able to allow children, grandmas, clergy, and all manner of innocent fluffy bunnies to peruse my phone at any moment.

    Things he suddenly did: texted his every movement, FaceTimed me, doubled my “allowance.”

    What actually happened: no therapy, kept cheating, fought against a fair divorce, tried to bully me into settling for a pittance, had me deposed (because my ordinary days as a stay-ar-home mom must surely have been a ruse), spent even more money on the affair partner, spread lies about me, ditched the kids.

    Sucks, but they are lies wrapped in deceptions tied up in duplicitous bows.

    Get yourself free.

  • In the early days mine would offer to do things. I would decline. One day he came by and came inside (this was before he allowed me to know that he would love to kill me). He offered to wash some dishes and I declined. He waited till I was in the shower then washed them. When I came out I realised what he had done and I told him that I was grateful for his help . He replied ‘of course you are’. (read between the lines there). I went to rest and he came sat next to me an held my hand stroking it. I pulled it back.
    Two days later he came to get the children and made some unreasonable request which I refused. His response while smirking was to say to me that he should take pictures to show people how I keep my home. Needless yo say he has never set foot in my home since.
    He has however declared that I am mean and unforgiving for not allowing him to come into my house and he wants to know if I want him dead. I told him that for a man he is far too fond of drama and for my part I have no time nor interest.
    To the writer, his overtures don’t mean what you think they mean. Frankly I’d be wary allowing him in.
    If your rapist were to be seen mowing your lawn and having dinner with you, we could only conclude one thing :that you were okay with everything that transpired.
    That is what your cheater wants to convey. And rest assured… It will be thrown in your face.

    • I needed to hear this thank u. My cheater was all charm last week, asking to come in my house because our daughter wanted his help with her math homework. He stayed for 2 hours. I made the kids dinner and he joked asking for some, too. I just said, “How about some water?”
      My daughter then proceeded to tell him the bathtub drain was broken. He would not take no for an answer when he asked me if he could fix it.
      It just made me sad seeing him back in our home and acting all “normal” and like he didn’t want to leave.
      I know though, it is not regret for leaving me for Schmoopie, but rather image management and that I must be ok with it if I let him in my house.
      I realize now I should not have done that. It was just hard as I didn’t want my daughter to be mad at me for not allowing him to help her with her homework. Such a tough spot to be in.

      A few days later, he was back to rage. I surprised him by having my parents bring the kids to the “weekly exchange.” Back to no contact to protect myself.

      • Good for you.

        Don’t beat yourself up for temporarily letting him back in. Abusers are very persuasive and use unfair tools like bullying, charm, lies, and violence. That would fool anybody. There’s a reason the statistics say it takes 7 to 10 attempts on average before a victim leaves for good. Give yourself credit for seeing through him, some people never do and never leave at all.

        BTW, your ex sounds a fucking douchebag. Fuck him. Glad you got rid of him.

      • Yep. They weasle themselvs back in every time. Usually with kid excuses. When you feel like you cannot say no, because the kids are in the room.
        We have to learn to say no respectfully even with the kids present.

        For example, you could have said: oh, this does not work right now, but DD can give you a call later to resolve the homework issue.

        • I have allowed my children to know that while I will not prevent them from having a relationship with their father that for my part he has not treated me well and has shown me that I cannot trust or believe him, as such I cannot have the level of interaction with that they have. I have also told them that I will not jeopardise my safety by allowing him in our house. If he wants to see them he must take them with him. That works to allow him to actually have to parent in that time (if he can).
          Four years later and he’s still upset that I wont let him inside the same house he was in a hurry to leave. Make up your mind buddy!

        • Mine does this constantly. My daughter and I call him “Blendy” behind his back because he often acts like he is just trying to blend back into the family as if we had no memory of what he did to us. I’ve learned over the past 3 1/2 years to take what I can/need from him and to not depend on him for anything. I’m no longer someone to be crossed.

  • My ex did all this, too. Installed a ceiling fan, picked up the dog food, mowed the grass, etc. It is just another con job in the works to manipulate you.

    Stay strong and don’t let him in. But be prepared because once he finally realizes that the game is over and you are not playing anymore, you are going to get hit with massive rage. And it is ugly and hurtful.

  • Dazed and Confused,

    You have CL’s book 7.5 days after being chumped. I waited 3 years before I found CL and was on my 3rd year of RIC suggested wreckconciliation. I was chumped in 2010 and there was no chump lady until 2012 but I remember how clear everything looked after I read her first post. I went back to the archives and devoured all that I could; grew a spine and left the loser. You have the best knowledge immediately after finding out your married to a cheater and that is golden!

    You have come such a long way in such a short time so please don’t let him work his cheater crap on you. I don’t know why he’s being “super husband” (he’s not) but I don’t care and neither should you. Also please don’t do what the writer from two days ago did and get hung up on the divorce being something his cheating wife wanted so he didn’t want it. In a reply you made, you eluded to the idea of him”rushing the divorce” so he could buy a house.

    Get a great attorney, get your financials together, get a forensic accountant if you think he’s hiding money but don’t stall the divorce. Follow your lawyers advice because that’s why they get paid the big bucks. You certainly don’t want to sign anything over without an attorney present but if your Stbx wants to
    “rush” to divorce it’s likely because he’s high on schmoopie love. This is such a narrow opportunity that must be exploited by chumps if possible. If he isn’t hiding anything move at the speed your attorney wants and if stbx doesn’t dig in his heels then more power to you!

    I am in awe of your mightiness. You are the absolute boss and you have got this!

    • I am so happy for you that you discovered CL so early on. Tracy’s work did not exist when my cheater ghosted me in 2011 after 36 years of marriage. Then when I needed it most, she appeared with her fresh, honest. peel back the layers of what this brand of abuse means. I’ve been a devotee ever since. Truth is truth. Save yourself time and trouble, follow her advice, make it your mantra and sooner rather than later, all will be well for you.

    • Cheaterssuck is so spot on. Let him rush the divorce all he wants, just make huge demands and if he’s in that big of a hurry you can get him to agree to everything you want. You have a narrow window and you found CL early on your journey. Yay for you.

      And, go back and read and reread the archives and all the comments too. THERE IS SO MUCH GOOD ADVICE. Come here every day. Read CL every day and you will continue to stay so mighty!

  • After a co-ed boys weekend, my STBX offered to boil the water for my morning tea (at this point, I didn’t know it had been co-ed but my gut instinct was screaming that something was off). He’d never offered to do that before then which made me more suspicious.

    I read on some forum a few days ago that they’re not doing it to be nice but to gain niceness points. It’s all about impression management.

    I boil my own water these days in my STBX-free townhome. There’s no drunk narc stumbling around trying to start pissing contests with me. My son doesn’t have to report that his dad is passed out on the floor again. The floor is free of eggshells.

    I’m in Mehtopia.

    • “I read on some forum a few days ago that they’re not doing it to be nice but to gain niceness points.”

      Yup. When Ex gave the ILYBINILWY speech, I packed a bag and left for my sister’s. I was in shock and sobbing. It was a six hour drive. On hour 5 he called and said, “Please come home.” I said no, but said I would be back after the weekend. I came home to a bouquet of flowers on my pillow, my favorite pastry from Publix on the counter.

      He didn’t want to reconcile. He didn’t want to give up OW. He wanted to not be a “bad guy.” He asked, at one point, that I not tell anyone (including my own mother) that he wanted a divorce. How exactly would that work?

      I am glad to say that I told everyone I possibly could about OW, after I discovered the affair. Complete with the info that I had found sex pictures of them. Ugh.

  • Your posts are necessary daily encouragement to stay strong, stay real, stop deluding yourself. I so appreciate the morning wake up call to keep this stuff real. Thank you!!!

  • I used to think that there was such a thing as a “one-off”…a faithful person who gets lost or confused or swept away and I thought my nowdeadcheater was one of them.

    At the time I told myself “if he can do this to me and see this pain and at any point in the future take steps to again put himself back on the same path that hurt me so much then we dont even have the same definition for what ‘marriage’ even is” and (even though I was the chumpiest, hopium addicted pseudo-unicorn who ever lived) I PROMISED myself that I would dump his ass.

    CL said that she used to believe in the one-off but the more she learned, she now believes that “cheaters cheat” as the old saying goes. My cheater died under my roof, in wreckonciliation, but his words and actions indicated that he still held little value for our “marriage” (or whatever that thing was). I learned that his other cheating was all a prequel to the big affair I learned was bigger than I had been led to believe.

    So for me reading your story, the cheating followed but “I will make it up to you” followed by boinking your best friend is relationship-severing…there is no recovery from behavior THIS bad.

  • Dazed –

    “It’s also time for a new “best friend.” Be sure to tell her chump husband what’s going on.”

    Please do this immediately after you have interviewed several scary divorce lawyers and selected one.

    Get tested for venereal diseases and be prepared to do it again in 6 months. No sex between now and then. Also, depending on your state, if you CAN sue for adultery it’s not available to you if you have sex with him after the discovery.

    Not that you want to have sex with him at all, I hope.

    The only reason not to get one or both of them fired is that one of them should be paying child support (?). If you have no children together and you don’t have a hope in hell of alimony – get them fired. (Consult with your attorney first.)

    Do you have copies of your taxes? Utility bills? Insurance? Etc.? Do so. One set at home, one set with your parents or in a safe at work, one set with your attorney. If you have an accountant, give a set to your accountant that you pay for with your own money and make it clear that this is for you alone. Not Entitled Bastard. Check your credit report. Take your half of the joint checking account to a NEW BANK (not a different branch) and open up an account in your name only!

    Not your monkey, not your circus and no longer your problem.

    You don’t need luck. You need a plan. Then you will make your luck.

    Also – you may not be legally able to change the locks on the marital home – but you can use a cop-stop type deal and prevent him from entering it. Make it clear to the kids that the door is NOT to be opened to him or anyone they don’t know.

  • Ex was still doing stuff like this a few months post divorce. I came home from a day of helping my son at a school club fundraiser to find my ex raking leaves with my youngest (at least he elicited help from one of the kids). The hard part was that it really was helpful as I was having a hard time fitting it in around everything else, but it still bothered me because I knew by then it didn’t mean he cared about me. He would also put out or put away my trash bins now and again or fix something in the house that needed fixing. These things actually bothered me because it made me feel like he didn’t think I was doing an adequate job of looking after things on my own. Eventually, however, all of that died down and now it is pretty much just business and kid hand offs when we interact.

    One thing he didn’t do after he left was snow removal. Every time it snows I resent him because it was his stupid idea to move from a state where it only snowed 1-2 times a year and melted within days to a state where it snows frequently and if you don’t get it up as soon as it comes down it gets trampled so you can’t get it up and it’s there until April. Then he left me to deal with our corner lot on my own.

  • I just remembered this and it’s too funny to not share.

    So – Mme YogaPants decided to have a romantic weekend with Senor MoneyBags while we were still in the hell of in-house separation. And she asked me to look after her incontinent Pomeranian although she did offer to take him along. That poor dog was suffering quite badly through all of this with separation anxiety and the stress in the house I’m sure.

    Chumpy me agreed to look after the dog and actually had hopes that after a full weekend with Mme that Senor would realize what a bad bargain she was and dump her. I made the MASSIVE mistake of watching DeadPool that night and now that whole series is still a very nasty trigger for me – so yeah – I was a complete mess.

    I eventually texted her on the Sunday afternoon asking “if” she was coming home – yeah – bad white guy pick me dancing – and after some time she said that yes she was and suggested that I BBQ sausages (one of my favourite things) for dinner.

    She got home – it was tense and distant and then I noticed her frying onions. I questioned this as I recalled she didn’t like fried onions. She said that she was doing it for me. She also attempted to clear some of her clutter off of the dining room table so we could have a corner in there to eat off of. Something we hadn’t been able to do for about a year.

    So – Senor got sexy time and I got fried onions.

    I think that most would consider that I got the better outcome 😀

    Still hurts like hell though.


  • This cheater fuck over here once asked during a blowup “does the good not outweigh the bad?”
    They think that if they do some tidbit helping out that somehow the chores will be chalked up and push Justitia’s scale in their favor.
    Which is interesting if you think to yourself: to them fucking someone is the same as doing a load of laundry, so it should be the same in your eyes.
    Fucked a howorker? Do 2 loads of laundry.
    Had a sexting session with some random online whore? Gas the car up.
    You get the picture…

    My thinking changed the moment i realized that i deserve a husband who wants me more than he wants internet porn (his “addiction”) ????????
    He spent the last year (march-november) “in love” with his female trucker coworker and expected everything to be fine and dandy cause he cleaned the toilet.

    • And the answer is no, cheating is a negative that outweighs virtually everything else (except, perhaps, the cheater throwing him/herself in front of a bus to save the chump, which I wish more cheaters would do).

  • Why is he behaving like the ordinary, decent person when he is not? “I have them both by the balls because I have enough evidence to get them both fired.”

    He got caught. You feel delight in your sleuthing but catching him isn’t the point. Leaving someone who would fuck your “best friend” is.

    If you don’t have kids with this guy, you have zero reason to speak to him. Ever. Now that you know what he is, if you go back, you are a volunteer for his abuse. You’ve caught him twice in 8 years. He won’t “change.”

  • “rest of his life to make it up to me”

    Wow that brought back a memory. I received almost the exact same line…

    “I’ll make this up to you if it takes me the rest of my life.”

    Coincidence? Apparently not. I looked it up and found it on page 109 of the Official POS Handbook; Section XVIII Throwaway Lines; Subsection b. Future Deluding.

  • Dazed & Confused— thank you for your service to the USA. I’m sorry you were abused like this but glad you are here.

    Keep no-contact and share on the forums as much as you can— this is a wonderful community— we call ourselves a Chump Nation.

    Divorce his ass. Life is great at meh— come join us as quickly as you can.


  • This idiot sucks…. Fucktard ex walked out on our mortgage and purchased a house for his new Owife four months after Dday. IMHO, all those kind gestures just mean that he is lining up his finances (and screwing yours). People like this do NOT change. Do inform your ex bestie’s husband because people who cheat rarely use protection. Get tested for STDS, and lawyer up. Address finances and his need to purchase a house because that it your bigger concern now, not all those fake acts of kindness.

  • After I left ex narcopath, and took my two kids and moved out of his house, he thought that one way to win me back was to paint and put trim in my kids bedroom. That this would prove that he could change and be the man I needed him to be.

    A few problems with this:
    1) it was his house and I had signed a cohabitation agreement when I moved in that I would contribute no money towards it since he was so worried about me taking it from him if we separated.
    We also, were not married or even common law at that point, so I would have no entitlement to his house EVER.
    So by doing this, he increased value in his own home. OKAY.

    2) He cut all of the wood trim inside the bedroom. Never took down the curtains, so the fine wood dust covered everything in the room and he never cleaned it up. Ever.

    3) I had told him I would not move back with my kids, until he had demonstrated, with actions, his better behaviour etc for 1 YEAR.

    When he invited me over to see what he had done to the room, he stood there like an expectant puppy waiting for a pat on the head. I was dismayed at the wood dust coating everything, and honestly could have cared less. His workmanship was beyond sloppy and I just remember thinking, “this is what you have been doing with your time?”

    He thought that should have won me back. Of course, it was turned around in to “Chumpedincanada ” is never happy with anything….

    Trust that they suck.

  • Throw the whole husband away….oh and the slunt of a best friend too. Seriously? Your husband? She couldn’t find any other dude to fuck?

    • On top of the moral reprehensiveness*, cheaters are just so laaaaazy.

      *Is that a word, if not I apologize.

  • Just remembered something. My eldest daughter have me a gorgeous bottle of wine for my birthday in the spring of 2017. Expensive, my favorite, rarely enjoyed due to the price tag.

    During the first blowout screaming day in April 2017, during a lull when I was still lighting up my hopium and trying to figure out how to be smaller and smaller so he would stay, my X asshat decided that was the moment to pour me a glass of wine. I was thinking how thoughtful he was to get me that and he served it up like you might when spending a romantic evening, bringing it to me as I wept softly on the couch. He so rarely performed acts of service I thought we had a turning point. Hope! He still cares!

    It was my birthday wine. That fucking asshat knew it. He ruined my present because he wanted to have some of the good stuff for himself before he abandoned the home permanently.

    I bought myself a replacement bottle and it has been 2 years that it sits on the rack and I will crack it probably on the day I retire (this summer I hope). It will take something like that event to wipe the shit stain he put on that vintage.

    Beware the acts of service!

  • D&C… you are going to rock this and your (adult?) children will watch with PRIDE!

    He is definitely hoovering you right now. When he needs a “fix” and can’t find someone else to bang, back he comes to old faithful. You need to shut that shit down for your own good. It took me almost a year to get that through my freaking head and if there is one thing I wish I could do over, it would have been to LAWYER UP immediately. Instead, I fed off his breadcrumbs and basically let him kick me in the gut on a regular basis as he dropped tales of his new adventures with his new found ‘twu wuv. However, he finally kicked me one too many times and I went RAMBO on his ass in the divorce. It was amazing he could walk when it was over – and his schmoopie was long gone because she had caught him cheating on her (thanks to me!).

    Don’t go the “get him fired” route just yet… you want him to have an income in case you live in an alimony state or you have joint assets and bills to pay. He’ll also need a job if he needs to award you a nice divorce settlement. A lawyer can go through all of this with you.

    But truly, NO CONTACT is the way to peace… and keep reading LACGAL from CL… my copy is well-worn, underlined and tear-stained. I’m so grateful to have found CL and CN.

    You can do this – but be smart and patient. Get your plan of attack clear and in place. A better day awaits you and your kids.

  • Get rid of your best friend what is with the “I give her credit for trying to fix her family?” I am not trying to be hard on you but why don’t you give her credit for hurting you deeply and her family too? She is not your concern. She is not your friend if she hurt you in that way.

    • Yeah, if she actually cared about her family she wouldn’t have cheated in the first place. She’s simply decided that it’s more convenient to stay with them then to have to be publicly known as the homewrecking slut who fucked her best friend’s husband.

  • In my experience there are several reasons for them to act nicely.
    – Image management
    – Fog bomb (they want to distract from something else they do)
    – They want to make themselves feel better

    It never is remorse and it never is to be nice to you.
    Here is what my cheater did after DDay 1 when he was acting nice:
    – Searched and rented a very expensive house (I actually thought he wanted to get back together, he just wanted to get his ducks in a row and needed me out of the way and unsuspecting)
    – Went to a lawyer even though he promised me reconciliation (basically the day after he told me he wanted to reconcile)
    – Continued fucking the OW (a friend of mine)
    – Trying to settle agreements before official mediation; I actually had to put a stop to this…

    My STBX cannot be X soon enough. I learned he only has his own interest in mind. I come dead last. He is only nice to me to distract me and to get beneficial agreements for himself.

    • So true. Hannibal Lecher sat in his bedroom for weeks (I had moved into the guest room), ostensibly reading The Gaslighting Effect to show me his goodwill, when he was looking up how much he would have to pay me in child support if we divorced.

      • Yep. I am assuming he has realized how much he needs to pay me and is therefore fighting to get more parenting time. Before this incident, I would have never believed he could argue for the sake of money, but now looking at what he has done and the unreasonableness of his proposal in the context of his very demanding job… Yeah… I think it is about the money.

        • I just did a child care calculation. You can find those calculators online… and there it was the word: overnights. My cheater never used it until… well… recently. So, I am right. It is about the money. Not the kids.

  • He may be doing super Dad tasks and journaling them for his lawyer or potential lawyer. As they say “document, document, document” and he may have heard this advice.

    Although many cheaters are likely too caught up in their affairs to document parental actions, I imagine a few are savvy enough to take actions to eventually get enough custody as to not have to pay child support.

  • It’s just so freakin hard to stop loving on a dime. And your best friend gone. It feels like that movie Inception where the dream collapses and then you gotta rebuild your dream all over. Love stinks. Yeah. Yeah.

  • Hey!!! Blow that shit up!!! Expose them!!! Image management is coming if not already with all the shoveling and Mr. Goodwrench. I’m also very happy to see you mentioned your kids from a previous marriage. I believe a cheater cheats their kids as well. They blew up their lives and home too! With kids from a previous marriage? They chose to LOVE, TRUST and ACCEPT just the same as you!!! He fucked them over too! And all the image management is for them too!!! CHUMP blow that shit up and let them deal with their consequences.

  • It only makes it worse when they play the ‘nice concerned guy’. They know that it muddies the water.

    Don’t allow him in your house. You don’t need his help. He is of POOR CHARACTER. Only people of
    poor character deceive, lie, and have sexual intercourse with other people.

    He does not feel horrible for betraying your trust again. He thinks he can schmooze you with some snow removal or household help. Cheaters think we are lame suckers who can’t get by without them. They actually believe that they can talk or act their way out of any responsibility for hurting us.

  • Dazed and Confused,

    I used to overly-inflate “nice” things that the Ex did when he was my husband. That was until we separated, I entered therapy and found CL and CN and rediscovered my righteous mind. I am going to give you the same speech I have given my daughters and sons because I would prefer that they be a little bit more clear-headed than I was.

    People don’t get points or credit for doing shit they are supposed to do. My Ex used to and still lists for his children all of the things he has ever done for them – I don’t care if it was driving them to school, track practice, standing in line purchasing video games, whatever. Many times I would tell him that I couldn’t even create a list like that because where I came from that was called parenting. I was real clear that we appreciated the things he did, but he wasn’t going to get a medal, a banquet and a trophy for doing basic parenting things. He wasn’t even doing much that went above and beyond. He was doing basic, fundamental, every day parenting.

    He also wanted credit for dropping me off to catch my train to go to work, picking me up from the train, or some mundane task that people do for one another in a relationship – and for the longest time he had me convinced that I “owed” him for those things.

    Your (hopefully) STBX doesn’t get brownie points for treating you with any kind of basic respect and consideration. You can say thanks if you want, or you can tell him to get lost. Doesn’t matter. He fucked your friend. There is no amount of snow shoveling, lawn mowing, toilet cleaning – nothing – to make up for that. There is no scale on which to weigh those things that make them remotely equal.

    Word to the wise: A person who loves and cares about you doesn’t keep score – and they also don’t fuck your friend. Oh, you also need to find another word for the OW. Friends don’t fuck your husband. And she doesn’t deserve any credit for trying to “fix” her family. Her family shouldn’t need “fixing” in the first place because she’s out screwing another woman’s husband.

    We need to stop giving praise and credit to people for practicing basic decency and humanity and living up to their promises and commitments. I can guarantee you that no one in my office cheers when I show up for work every day.

    I’m sorry that this has happened to you Dazed. Everyone on this site has been there and I can testify, no matter how horrible this seems now, there is so much peace and sunshine on the other side of it. Let him keep shoveling, Dazed, but I suggest you close the curtains on him and call a lawyer.

    • The Dickhead did that and he like to make “deals” I got so tired of the BS…either you want to help, you want to do it or you don’t but I’m tired of making deals with my husband. You either want to help me or you don’t (you selfish SOB).

    • “Oh, you also need to find another word for the OW. Friends don’t fuck your husband.”

      I favour the term ‘slunt’ or ‘slore’.

  • Dear Dazed & Confused,

    I’m so sorry you’re having to deal w/all this. None of us would wish this horrible experience on anyone, I’m sure (unless you count our crappy exes). But you’re tough, and you’re going to make it. I can only imagine your experience as a Marine will serve you well in helping you survive & flourish. I heartily endorse CL’s book. I only wish I had found it & CN as early in the process as you. I might have saved myself some grief. It is only now, coming up in a few months on the two year anniversary of D-day that I got the book. Why did I wait so long? I just got the final divorce decree approved in mid-December on the STBXW (in March it becomes COMPLETELY final), and I think I thought it would be good to get something to validate my decisions after going through this shit parade. It was a small Xmas present to myself as well. At least, small in price; it’s absolutely huge in supporting my actions against my cheating wife since D-Day. This book should be in every town library. It really tells it like it is. I’m not sure I would have had the heart & mind to accept all of it so early, but at least I would have had the voice of reason there if I chose to accept it. Many if not all of us have been where you’re at. I’ll give you my quick example. It was w/in the first few months after D-day & her moving a 1/2 mile literally down the street into a new, expensive apartment complex w/her soon to be ex-boss (she lost her job & therefore her tuition waiver for our college aged younger daughter because of their affair. The older just barely graduated before her mother sent Hell our way). I was still trying to facilitate a reconciliation (fool that I was), and we saw a female marriage counselor for one marriage counseling session & one co-parenting session. She still had keys to what is now MY house. I came home from work to find my kitchen cleaned to w/in an inch of its life, and her w/the kids in the living room, playing w/the cats (now MY cats. Her fuckwit partner doesn’t like cats or dogs, it seems). I was visibly angry after coming through the kitchen to the living room (she saw my face and realized I was very much not happy). I got her to follow me into the kitchen & asked her what the hell was this? She told me that I had let the house, and I guess especially the kitchen fall into such a horrible state after she left us that she had to clean it up for “the children’s sake,” or something like that. I told her that she couldn’t have her cake (I hadn’t realized how apt that was at the time. I hadn’t encountered CL yet) and eat it too. I made it clear she was NEVER to do that again, or she would REALLY hear about it from me (never was I ever abusive to her in any way. But she really got me upset w/this type of shit. I let my expressive face be the messenger, and left it at that). When we went for the co-parenting session, the counselor backed me up. She told her she couldn’t have it both ways. That was some much needed early validation of my feelings & need for boundaries. It still took me over 7 months from D-day to get deadbolts put on all the house doors to keep her from having access to her former house, now my home, right before Thanksgiving of 2017. So, though it’s not the same as what you dealt w/, there are similarities. Stay strong, go NC as much as possible, and TRUST THAT THEY SUCK. We’re all here for you. Best wishes & God bless.

  • It looks to me as if you have leverage. Don’t be fooled by the illusion. They are both maintaining an image while making plans.

    What he says is the tip of the iceberg. He wouldn’t be the first to hide assets. Hire a forensic accountant after talking to your attorney. Get a temporary order to stay in your home; change your locks and don’t allow him on your property. Be sure to tell your children.

    If he wants a quick settlement get liquid assets and payments up front. Remove him as a beneficiary on all your policies before you file.

    He’s a serial cheater. Go no contact.

  • Yeah, …. no. I kicked my Ex out just at the beginning of one summer; he agreed to move out, but then I didn’t manage to actually get him out until the fall. He was working 4 days a week in Shmoopieville, so it was (barely) tolerable, and not much yard work or house maintenance got done. Thank heavens it hardly rained, so the kids and I had to cut the grass just a couple of times! The next summer, he was living in Shmoopieville (and lying to avoid admitting he was living w/Shmoopie), so we hardly saw him, he just picked the kids up every second weekend. But the summer after that, suddenly he was around all the time. Mowing the lawn. Raking leaves. Cleaning the garage drain. Mowing the lawn again ….. Getting the kids to help, gazing longingly at the house and me …. Asking for coffee, trying to chat ….

    Then comes the first of the hoovering e-mails; did I notice he was doing a lot to take care of the house and yard, because he loved his kids and wanted their home to be nice! And wanted to make my life easier!

    So I replied; I appreciate the yard work, it does make my life easier. But if that was what the yard work meant, what did it mean that the two previous summers he’d done almost none, and even that only after my repeated requests?

    Funny how he didn’t respond to that part. (But what it actually meant, I found out later, was that Shmoopie had dumped him. For another man. So he needed Plan B pretty badly!)

    He was also one who thought the kids and I were focussing too much on the bad! It wasn’t all bad! What about all the good stuff he’d done over the years?????? Yeah, no matter WHAT good stuff he’d done (and there NEVER was enough of that, never even close to what I consider an average caring parent and spouse would have done), betraying me TWICE and abandoning his kids totally outweighed it all. And would have, even if he’d been the ideal spouse, previously.

    • I agree wholeheartedly. You fuck me over, in every way that is meaningful, and everything you have ever done No Longer Matters. Worse, x’s deception leant an entirely different “story” to my past when things in our lives together made me uneasy and my life, as good as it was, didn’t make any sense. Looking back, no wonder I felt marginalized.

  • With best friends like that, who needs enemies? With husbands like that, who needs traitors?

    I have been watching Big Mouth recently and the hormone monstress has many wise words. But she has two wise words for your situation: “Get rid!”

  • Ugh. This is a timely post. My sociopath ex is being weirdly overly nice to me. I usually don’t engage with him and God help me for cordially responding to two of his recent emails but now he is all nicey-nice. I know there has to be something up his sleeve. He would be sick enough to want to woo me back in and then go radio silent on me. Or, he is fucking someone new that I know and he wants me to portray him as a good guy. I don’t know what he is up to, but I can guarantee it’s going to come out sooner or later and he knows it will piss me off when it does. 2019 is a year of change for me. Whatever he is up to, I’m just not going to take it on.

  • “A prior marine with contacts in Quantico” ? A prior marine not only committing an illegal act, but bragging about it? Interesting to say the least.

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