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Chump Lady Gets a Check

A bag of narcissist ego chowA little miracle happened Friday night — and I wanted to post and say thank you to Chump Nation.

I came home from work, went through the stack of mail, and found a letter that looked rather ominously official. It was from the literary agency that represents my book — Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life.

Inside was a check.

My first royalty statement.

You could’ve knocked me over with a stick. I EARNED OUT MY ADVANCE.

For anyone unfamiliar with the crazy world of publishing, most authors never see anything from their books beyond the advance. (That’s the upfront money the publisher pays to the author, of which the agent takes 15 percent.)

According to that NYT story I just linked to — 7 out of 10 authors never earn out their advances. (I’ve read other articles stating the percentages are even more grim for first-time authors.)

I got a pretty nice advance for LACGAL ($45K, over three years ago) — but to pay it back, I’d have to move a LOT of books. How many? I don’t know, the accounting is completely baffling. I think I’m paying it back at a rate of about a buck a book. (It depends — ebook, print book, mass paperback…) I’d have to dust off my contract — I believe it’s 7 percent of net profits of the publisher (so half what you paid for it retail — if you bought it for $9.99 on Amazon, I get 7 percent of $4.98).

Gah! Math!

Anywho, Chump Nation, A LOT OF BOOKS SOLD. Like, more than 10,000 — which is a benchmark of success in publishing.

THANK YOU. This is entirely all your doing. LACGAL is hustled on this blog and by word of mouth. The publisher Running Press is a smaller imprint of Hachette. I did not get a PR budget and a book tour. No one was hosting tea parties and inviting me to their author soirees. (And really, why would they? Hi, I’m here to talk about sociopaths! really casts a pall over the scones.)

I’m so proud of the book, but CN, it’s a miracle it was published. Eff-bombs aside — it’s a bastard child of genres. Is it self-help? Is it humor? There are cartoons? WTF?

Thank the sweet Lord Jesus I can draw, because the agent who picked it up is a cartoonists’ agent and the cartoons sold it. Not the message. (I read the rejection notes from the publishers. “What is a ‘Chump Lady’ and how could anyone relate to this?”)

I was not able to sell the book to an agent or traditional publisher AT ALL until I did two things:

  1. I built a huge-ass platform of chumps. This website. And
  2. I self-published a book to prove there was a market for this message.

What? There’s a market for self-respect and spitting out shit sandwiches? Why yes there is.

That self-published book went #1 on Amazon in divorce the first day it was for sale.

Coincidentally, I also happened to be in Austin at a writer’s conference that day. (I met my agent there.) Mr. CL sent me a screen shot with the news. I was later signed.

It’s all a series of flaming hoops and improbabilities, really. It’s not enough to write a book, you have to find readers and a publisher. (I did it backasswards — FIRST I found my readers — CN — and then I found a publisher.) It’s not enough to get an agent, the agent has a to make a book deal. It’s not enough that your book gets published, your book has to sell.

Any one of these things could result in failure.

Fortunately, I’m a chump, because rejection is my superpower.

The royalty check was a happy, validating surprise. What’s better is knowing that the message is out there, and the book helps people. That there’s an alternative message to the Reconciliation Industrial Complex. (aka: Look pretty and try harder to win back an abuser.)

Every day chumps write to me about their flaming hoops and improbable triumphs. I once flew to the other side of the world and met a dentist from Brisbane who whispered in my ear: “Your book saved my life.”

THAT is a dividend.

Thank you so much.

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 check was for $637.89. I don’t know exactly how many books I’ve sold. And I still find the accounting baffling.

    (In case anyone is wondering the answers to these questions.)

      • That’s still fucking rad!!! Your book saved my life too! And not only in dealing with the “wasband”(almost 6 years to get that divorce, but it’s done.) Reading your book and here gave me the strength to keep fighting shit sandwiches from any direction. Thanks for being so awesome!!!

        • Even learning the term ‘shit sandwich ‘ helped me. it said exactly what the constant humiliation, neglect, abuse feels like. now when I say that people cringe, but that accurately says the entire experience.

          • I first heard the term from my divorce lawyer — an ex-Marine who went to the University of Alabama. Peacock of a man… very Southern. About the first fuckwit, he said, “You could give that man a steak sandwich and he’d complain it was a shit sandwich.”

            “Shit sandwich” stuck with me.

      • I love your honesty and I wish that check was bigger . I’m 16 months out from dday- not quite sure when I found your site but I think it was within the first two months. And I bought your book once the hopium officially started wearing off. I have thought many times that you offer a profound blend of wit, realism, compassion, empowerment, grounded feistiness, mightiness, encouragement, and goodness not just to those of us reeling from betrayal, but to the broader conversation we need to be having around infidelity and it’s far reaching and horribly shitty impact on people/families/society. Thank you for not being silent.

    • Thank you for writing these books!!! I bought the one you posted on
      amazon and it saved me from the worst (suicidal thoughts) and how to move forward. I am so glad the message is getting out there because so many other views on divorce or surviving infidelity suck !!!

    • The book saved me from years more of being in denial. This blog, CN and the book were fuel for me to regain my respect. Much appreciated and to all men and women spitting out shit sandwiches, I salute you all!

      • Yes to that! The term, “Poop Sandwich”, has changed my life!! Tired of eating them. As soon as I detect something is “off” (like a home repair guy postponing his appointment at my house four days in a row), I drop them like a hot potato. Thank you, Chump Lady!!

    • Looks like maybe .30 cents for each book sold, about 1500+ books. After your advance’s book sales. I think. Way to go, gorgeous! May your blessings continue!

      • At $.30 x 1500 that would be 450. Add three more zeroes would be 150K books. That can’t be right.

        A fancy NY agent once told me anything north of 10K books sold is great. If it’s a buck a book, 45K books?

        Whatever it is, I’m thrilled.

    • Massive congratulations, and even more massive thank yous. You deserve to quit your day job. What you’re doing here is amazing. You’ve helped – saved!- so many people. I’m so glad I found you! THANK YOU and I share your site with almost everyone I know, chump or not. Your messages on boundaries, on what do you want/deserve, and general empowerment are ones that so many people need, regardless of their relationship status.

    • I thank God you did write LEAVE A CHEATER, GAIN A LIFE!!! You literally saved my life!!! And I’m sure many more!!! Your attitude and honesty are spot on!!! I couldn’t be more excited for you!!!! I’m always telling my friends about you, your book and how you’ve helped so many!!! The articles/posts are so funny too, but so very true!!! You have shown me that I deserve so much better than my lying, cheating Scoundrel!!! I’m two years out and yes, recovery of the shock and heartbreak of being blindsided does take time!! But, then you reach MEH, and realize you’re worth it!!! The Scoundrel and his Skanky Lumberjack can go fuck themselves!!! Hahahahaha. Love ❤️ you Chump Lady!!!!!

    • May you receive many more $600 dollar checks. You save lives – and should be paid accordingly!

    • Chump Lady- your book helped me in one of my darkest hours. It brought clarity to what I was going through.
      I’m a CPA and while you may find the accounting “baffling” I will tell you that they are probably making it “baffling” on purpose. At a former company I used to audit royalty payments we received and it was almost guaranteed that if they sent you a check for $900, it should have been for $1,000. I would send letters asking for detail on the payment calculations and the next thing you know, we would get another check with a “corrected” amount. (Not trying to disparage your friends in the publishing industry, I’m sure they are not anything like the disreputable people I was dealing with).
      Remember the movie Hidden Figures- those women were dealing with complicated and baffling math. These are royalty calculations, if they are baffling, then someone is doing it on purpose -it’s kind of like gas lighting. Ask Mr. Chump Lady and see what he thinks.
      A few last comments. If you need help in calculating them, I would be happy to help you to return the favor -and make sure you are getting what you deserve. Finally, you are Chump Lady and this is Chump Nation! You are mighty -you learned to weld and do other things. Others on this site have done many, many, mighty things! Are you going to let some bean counter with “baffling” accounting mumbo jumbo get the best of you? HELL NO!

    • Its my fault…..I just bought my first book of yours last week. Put you over the top!!! LOLOLOLOL

      Thank you for being you!

  • Your book basically saved my life….”heart”
    Please a French version for my fellow chumps ?

    • Alas, I’m not in charge of the translation rights — it’s something the agent sells to the publisher.

      I can translate things on this blog, however. And I was geared up to do that, when the whole forum debacle happened (Essentially, it was dragging down the site, and I couldn’t add another thing. I’m in the process of a site redo now.)

      All to say, I hope to have some perennial posts translated into other languages in the near future.

      Also, a big shout out to the Patreon supporters! THANK YOU. I got paid in 2015/16 for the book, and everything I earn now to keep the site and my chump writing going is thanks to readers and the annoying-as-fuck ads.

      • Thank you for writing these books!!! I bought the one you posted on
        amazon and it saved me from the worst (suicidal thoughts) and how to move forward. I am so glad the message is getting out there because so many other views on divorce or surviving infidelity suck !!!

      • You’ll never cost me as much as Voldemort did. I will support you on Patreon until I die. #TeamChumpLady4Life

  • Congratulations chump lady!! I know I still have an extra 2 here for any chumps I run into. I just thought of one—she didn’t cheat but he lost a lot of money to the gold digger from what i understand. Financial cheating.. anyhoo, I hope I don’t have to gift them but this world keeps churning out new chumps so I’m bound to sooner or later. I’ll be glad to help in this small way..

  • I tell everyone and anyone who asks- what should I do… read leave a cheater gain a life. I wish I had read it from the get go!!! It is a life saver!

  • Congratulations!!! By the way, for those of us who would like to make a contribution but not join that ‘patron’ thing, is there a Paypal account that works? Or Venmo?

    I sure wish that there weren’t so many people who’ve been chumped, but it helps to have company. I’ve been reading the posts daily since I found this site a few months ago.

    Thanks for all you do, Chump Lady!

    • You can buy the book? 🙂 (Now I’ll actually see some profit. And you get a book!)

      Alas, Patreon is the go-to donation method. (It’s complicated, but with PayPal and one-off donations the accounting is onerous at this end. Patreon simplifies and takes it cut.) Thanks for understanding.

  • I told my librarian friends too. They are good about spreading the word! Congrats on this achievement. Next, the movie.

  • Hey CL I am happy for you! Today is my birthday so that is great birthday news! Your book is the first thing I bought for a girlfriend of mine when she found out her husband was cheating. I wish you continued success!

      • Yes, Happy Birthday as well and congrats on your writing achievements, Chump Lady! This blog has been a life-saver for sure. I still read it and it’s been 6 years since D-Day. Also, I remember how surprised I was to find out last year that Chump Lady and I share the same September 25th birthday, after years of reading this blog. Hell yeah!
        Happy early birthday to you Chump Lady! Hoping you and your loved ones have something really special planned for your special day!

  • Thank you. Chump, champ nation and your book saved my life. I would tell my councilor I was a chump and he would start telling me I was not a chump. He was sweet and very validating to my pain but he never understood how proud I was to be a chump. Chump means integrity strength, honesty and loving something I’m very proud to be. Congratulations on your success Tracy thank you.

  • As soon as I hear of another woman (I haven’t been alerted to any men yet, not discriminating) getting dumped for a Schmoopie – I immediately recommend this book! My heart breaks for them as I know what is in store. Patterns are basically all the same, there is a complete lack of creativity with these cheaters. I’ve read and reread the book when I need a pick me up. It’s not me, it’s them. I’m the sane parent, the faithful wife, the chump! Congratulations Tracy!!!

    • Unfortunately the chump patterns are often the same as well. CL book helps people to break those patterns which is why it is so powerful.

  • Congratulations!!! I’m so pleased for you. Your site COMPLETELY changed my outlook and has been my Bible, helping me get through one of the worst periods of my life! I’m going to have a glass of champers and toast you this evening!

  • First: CONGRATULATIONS!!! It may not pay the heating bill this winter BUT you’re more likely to get your next book published sooner and with less grief.

    We here at CN know what a diamond you are and you deserve that check and so much more. Money and knowing you save lives. How many people know they’ve literally saved lives.

    As far as “no one was hosting tea parties and inviting me to their author soirees”… I’ve got local rose, alcohol and a caterer ready for your next book launch(screw tea – chumps need the stronger stuff)! One soirée in NYC and another in the Hamptons. Just write that book and say when!

          • Me too! I was planning on going, but life (my daughter) had to come first. I will definitely go again if there’s ever a “next time”! 🙂

      • I wanna go! I’m already in DC

        Congrats, Tracy! You are badass and our fearless leader. You are fucking amazing and have made a difference to me and so many!

  • I’ve bought 3 copies for friends after my own copy! Really don’t know where I’d be if I hadn’t found you CL and CN! Thank you ????

  • You deserve every penny, and lots more! I recommend the book to everyone. I have two copies.

    Thank YOU! Congratulations!!

  • My fellow chump who turned me onto CL keeps copies to give away. He gave me mine. I just paid him for one of his extras so I can give it to a another chump. I predict with time there will be a million sold. Just remember CN gets first offering purchase of shares before CL goes public. No more shit sandwiches without the bread. Lol.

  • I bought 3, one was Audible and I listen all the time! Saved my life and I hope to spread your/the message and determination to save others as well. One day good character will be back in style, I’m patient so I will wait and share CN. It’s so much more than infidelity, chumps are chumps for a reason but we can overcome and prevail. I’m glad CL is experiencing some of the tangible rewards of spreading all that Mighty!

  • Tracy, you deserve this and so much more. You created a movement that’s time has come with LACGAL. Heres to more, ever-increasing royalty checks!!

  • CN and your book still save me when I get shaky and start to think I was the problem. Thank you so very much.
    I recently had a book published but am probably yeats from seeing any royalties. And I had no advance!

    • Congrats! That’s no small feat to get published. I’ve read the no advance thing is a trend. 🙁

  • I have bought and recommended your book so many times to those I have found also walking this path! I am so happy for you! I know you are absolutely elated with joy!

    I look forward to your next book, Chump Lady! I wish you as much or more success with the next!

  • ❤️❤️❤️. Your book has saved a nation of chumps! Thank you CL!!!! So happy for you.

  • CL,

    1.) You deserve a million dollars for the books you have written and will write in the future and the blog that you run. Hopefully this is the beginning for lots more profits coming your way. Then you really can quit your day job 🙂

    2.) You also saved my life. And my children’s life as they know it.

    3.) I also have jumped through flaming hoops and improbable triumphs. One of which was just last week in which I was able to purchase a 5 unit investment property which is going to replace a quarter of my yearly income in profit from the rentals. Most people are financially devastated after a divorce and I said “fuck that noise”. I went to work 90+ hours a week (to keep my mind off of wanting to kill cheater exhole and to pay the bills that he skipped out on) and a year later make that purchase. It’s the beginning of a very good looking future. So while exhole was informing me of his new home (moving in with newest girl toy) I’m also upgrading my home(s), in a much more profitable way. Woop Woop for me!

    Chumplady, you are truly world class- sweary, cartoony, snarky and absolutely brilliant. Thank you from the bottom of my chumpy heart!

  • Congratulations!! Cheers to the Chump Lady’s voice of sanity in a world of RIC insanity ????????

  • I have bought it, listened to it, shared it, and preached it. I even took page from your playbook for one of my high school students!! She was telling me about an ex-boyfriend that was doing things just to get her stirred up and get her to talk to him. He would say hateful things just to see what she would do. I told her to go “grey rock”. When I explained what that was, she shook her head “yes”, and decided not to give any more kibbles. Chump Lady for the win!

  • I’m so proud of you!!!! While you didn’t come around until long after I had already gained a life (I remarried I. 2008) you validated much of my experience and helped me further heal. I have been raising my children to “Take shit from no one” and it has paid off well with my 17-year-old daughter’s calm and mature handling of her teen dating life. I have bought several of your books as gifts for friends who found themselves chumps. I have my own copy in my personal library plus I always keep an extra on hand to pass along to anyone who may need it (most recently the daughter of my hubby’s coworker). So much good advice and support with the book and the website — I know I’m putting the person in good hands even if it’s someone I won’t see often or ever again.
    Thank you for your insight and perseverance in keeping the community going for those who need it.

  • Not much to add to all these wonderful comments except “Yippee! We knew you could do it!!!”.

    • PS: Your message is so much more than Leave A Cheater Gain A Life. Becauses of this site and because of all the tales of empowerment here, I am currently in the middle of another home repair project that I never, ever, thought I could accomplish. CL, you have set a stellar example and have changed so many of us in so many ways that you’ll probably never know. Thanks from the bottom of my heart.

  • Yea! Thanks for saving so many of us from a the equivalent of Pennywise on steroids. I may send you a red balloon!

  • Your book gave me some humor in the face of a horrible situation and finally someone that told it like it really is! I would love another book on how to deal with all the shit sandwiches that follow. It’s been 2 years and my adult daughter was married yesterday. First time I got to see him and mistress together live and in person. She is our age(55) and is not attractive nor intelligent. I was prepared to be cordial but was not prepared for the look of hatred on his face when he saw me and then treated me like I was invisible. Like wtf? He literally walked out and never looked back. I did not fight the divorce and never contacted him so why the hatred. It shook me to my core. And to top it off he gets to walk her down the aisle and have the first dance. Meanwhile he did nothing to help while I was involved with helping plan and prepare everything including the setup at the wedding. I was exhausted and emotionally drained. Of course seeing my daughter get married was special and people close to me said I looked beautiful. I was just unprepared for the emotional roller coaster and with him treated like an honored guest by my daughter and his family (who ghosted me and his stepdaughter after he left me). ????

    • the hatred was because you didnt pick me dance, fight for him, and allow him to triangulate. he wasnt special enough.

    • Ironbutterfly,

      Trust that he sucks! This is what sucky people do. I have no doubt that he has painted himself as the victim of you. And now he has to make it look like he’s “standing up for himself” by ignoring and being hateful towards you. And of course he didn’t help with any of the wedding plans. He sucks!

      When we breed with a fuckwit, well, we will have to deal with the fuckwits on our kids wedding days. It’s one of the shit sandwiches that we’ll have to eat. Thankfully there will only be so many wedding days, so not too much shit to eat. Congrats to your daughter! 🙂

      • Martha thank you! I needed that. The hardest thing was seeing him being honored by my daughter so much. But I know she loves me. Thank god I never have to see him or her again. One perk was the howorker looks like an old hag lol ????

        • Ironbutterfly,

          I know it’s hard to see him honored. I guess I would look at it as being thankful that she has a dad that shows up to her wedding. You know the truth about what he did and have peace that he’s at least their for your daughter on her big day. Bonus points for you that the ho-worker looks like an old hag. 🙂 (((hugs))) to you for being mighty and getting through the day!

  • Yay! Congratulations! I bought your book 2 years ago- I found it searching google for why cheaters suck–trying to find that magic set of keywords that didn’t get me the RIC BS. And I read it and then my whole outlook improved for about 6 months. I told my therapist about it and she bought it and recommended it to clients. Then I started slipping, slowly forgetting some of your wisdom, and I found this website –which I hadn’t really seen when I bought the book. So I joined CN. And then I started improving my outlook again. I hope the next book is your ticket to retirement. I will buy it, whatever it is.

  • I’m interested to know if you are training up any CL protégés as I’m already concerned about you saving lives once you retire!

    • I think gaining a life speaks for itself. It’s the best advertisement there is to combat the RIC. The more people who leave, reinvent themselves, and refuse to wear the shame and pick me dance, the more “proteges” are out there.

      Just everyone share their stories. Befriend a chump newbie.

      I’d love to make myself obsolete. That said, I love to write, I love this community, and I don’t see myself going anywhere. But I *don’t own the message.* The point is SPREAD THE MESSAGE.

      • Ah yes, I remember that dentist! Handsome devil; looked like Sting, came from north of Brisbane!
        You saved our lives, helped so many thousands! I am so grateful!
        Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

      • Yes, spread the message.

        I am relatively new here and have found that all who, in my opinion, ‘need’ the message simply aren’t ready for your message which is similar to people in 12 Step programs


        when they are ready, then the message is welcomed and very little else is needed other than to share with the person and encourage them along their way.

        What I do now is tell my ‘truth’ to people who ask when we are simply conversing and I do it as simply as possible with lines I have gotten here.

        I was afraid to share in the beginning because I was still in ‘protect him/his image’ mode and it felt like a betrayal. Those days are gone and I say what I do in order to help others who may need support because they are in similar situations and they don’t know where to turn.

        I figure that if anyone I speak to happens to know someone – they can pass on the message too. That is how I met a woman who has been a huge local support for me.

  • Your book and this website SAVED. MY. LIFE. I have read the book and listened to it countless times — if I hadn’t found it, I would undoubtedly still be pick-me dancing for my disordered serial cheating ex. I have also purchased the book for several fellow chumps.

    You deserve to receive many multiples of that royalty check for all of the lives you have saved. Thank you for saving mine.

  • I think you need to have your own TV show. Seriously. At least some guest appearances on talk shows. I’ve been a fan since first d-day 7 years ago and I know I’m not alone. Your book saved my life too and I’m sure there are millions of others who could use your wisdom. The titillating and disgusting details of most Chump experiences would interest even those who haven’t been down the dark road to hell and could serve as a cautionary tale for those who might be there and don’t know it yet. Why isn’t this a mainstream topic? There are a lot of us chumps out here. Apparently we are a type just like the cheaters who cause so much pain and destruction. Cheaters need to be outed for the disordered creeps that they are. The RIC needs to be exposed for the money making scam that it is. There is so much to be gained by bringing Chump Lady into the light.

  • Eeeeeee!! I’m so happy for you!! Keep going, CL, it’s working!

    I’d happily buy more copies just to say thank you and to get your message out there (thinking, donate them to my local library etc, I’ve also bought your book for unfortunate friend chumps).

    More importantly, when is the NEXT book coming out??

  • Yay! It does my heart good to see that things are going the right way for one of the “good guys”. You deserve every single penny. Thank you for saving my life.

  • I found you through Huffington Post in 2012. My divorce was final in 2011, but I was still trying to untangle the skein. When I found your Chump Lady blog, the light bulb went on! You explained my experience, finally. Thank you for all you do for this community that no one wants to join. Even though I am happily remarried, I still come here every day to read and sometimes comment. I keep copies of your book and give them to chumps and recommend your web site as sanity saving. Congratulations and keep up the awesome work!!!

  • Yay, the message is spreading. You deserve a check. My wish for you is you can quit your day job, off the royalties. Narcissist, sociopaths, Jesus cheaters and lazy users speak many languages. Maybe then the bucks will roll in?

  • Glad to help. The years on hopium you saved me from are priceless. You have done many of us a service that has literally given us our lives back.

  • Your book, this website, all those mighty chumps – thank you, thank you, thank you from every part of my chumpy heart. I thought I was going crazy, was a horrible wife, so lacking in how to live a married life. I’m not perfect, by any measure, but I know how to be a king person, I know that cheating and abuse, of any type, are perpetuated by truly bad people. I know that it was never me and that was one of the best lessons of all.

  • I actually bought 3. :). One for me and 2 for struggling Chumps. And yes they both said it was extremely helpful to their “recovery”. Yay you!

  • ????????????????????‼
    I do not know how these emojis will display……Just trying to say “Wowser , Awesome, Most excellent, You rock, You are mighty!!”

  • I bought the book from audible after finding your website. I was in the midst of reconciliation after Dday 1 and was trying to understand what was going on . At Dday 2, I told him to leave. Your book gave me the strength to realize what was actually going on and to get my act together.
    Thank you, your book was a gamechanger for me , I’ve listened to it many times since then to remind myself of just who he is and keep on the right path .

  • The saddest part is – that means that there is no shortage of Chumps and their sociopathic, narcissistic assholes! Shortly after D day I found this book on Amazon – back when it was the Survival Guide. I swear – if I didn’t know that I never put pen to paper – I’d have thought I wrote it! Every word was as if it came right from my heart and from my mouth. It helped me to realize that I wasn’t alone in my feelings and my pain. Even though the people around me weren’t very supportive (“You didn’t get along anyway so I don’t see what’s the big deal! from my SISTER), this book helped me through the most difficult time of my life. Thank you just isn’t enough. I would suspect there will be a series of royalty checks because there is a never ending fund of Chumps and the assholes they loved!

  • Tracy, we are all SO proud of you and eternally grateful for this book and blog of yours! If you spent your future royalties buying a large in the Maldives it would quickly become overpopulated by all the lives you’ve literally saved with your book, including mine. (I can never understand why it’s not on the NYT Best Sellers List ????????‍♀️) Thank you for teaching us snark, truth, resilience and life. And CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!! May this be the first of many more royalty checks as you continue to save Chumps from Asswipes everywhere xxx

  • Tracy, the love of the people here shines and that’s because of you. I’ve read your book twice and have recommended it as well. It is so helpful as it comes from someone who has been there. I can’t tell you how many times I said to myself, “wait, that’s exactly what he said, or he did”. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am also looking forward to your next one!

  • This is so awesome!! Congratulations! I wrote a Dummies book and never earned more than my advance, which was not anywhere near yours. I guess that’s what happens when you write a Dummies book on SQL Server. ????

    Your book has saved my life, too. From labeling my stbx as abusive to identifying gaslighting, I would not be doing nearly as well as I am without your book. I look forward to your daily posts. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  • Dear ChumpLady,
    You deserve every check and more! You have helped so many people, including me, to put down the hopium pipe and face the reality of their Chump existence.
    I am just a bit shy of 4 months from D-day and would have danced the pick-me dance for months if I hadn’t found your book in The Strand bookstore when I was in NYC for Pride Day with my daughter. It was just the slap in the face I needed to see the truth of my narcissist husband’s BS.
    I have already recommended your site and book to a couple of other Chumps including gifting it to someone last week.
    This week will be the start of my, hopefully, collaborative divorce with our first group meeting of lawyers, mediator and the two of us on Monday. I can hardly wait for the negotiations to be over and me to live my new Cheater free life. I know it will take time but your book, ChumpNation and the support of my three daughters plus non-Switzerland friends, I know I can survive and thrive.
    Thank You!

  • Tracy you really do save lives. In the devastation of D day you are the strong sane kickass voice that gives us strength and a path that shows us cheaters for what they are and keeps us determined to gain a life.
    Thank you from the bottom of my Chumpy heart!

  • Good for you.

    Your’s was the site I should have been reading instead of tolerating the drama, stalking, lies, confusion and abuse that I went through due to foolishly thinking it was a mid life crisis.

    First time he divorced me when the affair was uncovered.
    I went back after that was over …poooor him he was having a mid life crisis.

    Then turned around and put myself through it for a second time.This was even worse.

    Only this time he didn’t cheat. When I was leaving him I ended up at the hospital for exrays.

    I got out alive from a two decade long abusive marriage. Twenty eight years total. I am grateful I’m breathing. Made a massive mistake and went back post divorce. Just hadn’t focused on my own issues due to being raised with domestic violence. Almost cost me my life.

    When you are raised with things that are abnormal, how do you know it’s not normal?

    I have been completely NC for 6 years ( Divorced 9 years this month) and moved three states away.

    If I had read you instead of the other site I might not have gone back. Keep telling people the truth about these people Tracy, stay with reality and the truth. It’s a very hard thing to accept for some people. Hurts like a MF but it’s better they begin their healing early on and do not allow any setbacks. Just keep telling people the truth.

    I haven’t read your book yet so I don’t know if you focused anywhere in there about domestic violence but I’ll bet you could shine a light on that too..

    Fuckwits do not change (neither do abusers) , they will continue to cheat. If you get out ,don’t go back – ever.
    Keep up the most excellent work.

  • Congratulations, and THANK YOU!! Your book truly helped me understand what was happening. I’ve been ripping apart the “How to take responsibility for making your partner cheat” type books in the reviews (yes, I bought a few before I found LACGAL) on Amazon, and recommending your book instead.

    And I am dearly hoping you will come out with another volume, perhaps “The Best of the UBT”?

  • Congrats Tracy. Or do you prefer CL or Chumplady ????

    It’s like Oprah would say “You get dividends! You get dividends! You get dividends!”

    We all win

  • Congratulations CL! We are so proud of your mightiness!

    If anyone on this forum deserves this, it is you. Thanks so much for being a “spokes lady” for chumps.

  • First off, I thank you so so much Tracy for being mighty enough to promote this message. I devoured the archives after Dday, bought the e-book and after a mind blending 5 month wreckonciliation finally stopped eating the shit sandwiches! I joined the forums and am now on the Reddit community. All of this has been saving grace against the real world of working on the marriage, a therapist who recommended “to keep the past in the past” as our first session, and cultural norms where being cheated on isn’t reason enough to divorce.

    PS I had no idea you had another book, and it’s currently on sale for anywhere between $69-$101. That is crazy awesome just like you! If it is ever available to come out as an ebook, I’m down to get a copy. Thank you for being a voice of reason for us “unreasonable” AKA MIGHTY folks

    • It’s out of print. I essentially rewrote the first book, improved and added to it, to make LACGAL. I guess it shows up used resale for stupid prices. I’m not allowed to sell the first one (as terms of my Hachette book deal).

      • Sure do —

        CL, just to let you know — every time I go into a Barnes & Noble I head over to Personal Development, find the one copy that’s always on display, make sure it’s properly positioned (instead of being grouped in with RIC titles, which happens often), and if I can, I make sure the cover is facing out instead of the spine.

  • I found Chump nation 4 days after a catastrophic D-day while I was trying to find ways to improve myself I stayed on the site 24/7 reading everything I could , got my ducks in a row . Ordered book as soon as I kicked him out . After getting him to sign a hefty post nup . It has been hard not gonna lie …. but no regrets I have never looked back ! thank you from another chump who’s life you’ve saved can’t wait for the next book for my next chapter because reading Leave a Cheater Gain A Life saved me . left the cheater and gaining a new life ????

  • Hearty congratulations, and deeply sincere thanks for the vital service you’ve given for so many.

  • Count me as one of your book buyers. So glad I found you Tracy Schorn! LACGAL is the only way to go. Good for you! So happy for you!

  • Would like to add my name to those that you have saved. Your book and Chump Nation have been a voice of reason when nothing else made sense to me. And I still have to regularly re-read your book after most 5yrs from my Dday. I truly believe that you will continue to change how the world views “cheaters” and I’m committed to supporting your cause through Patreon. … it’s the least I can do for what you’ve done for me ????
    Hopefully it will not be long before you can quit your day job !!

  • I wanted to join in the cheers and celebration in honor of you Tracy ???????????? I wish you all of the good things in life and many more royalty checks!
    Thank you for being a beacon of light for me and so much more! You showed me direction, simple truth and reality when this pain was so overwhelming I couldn’t breathe. Living was incredibly agonizing every moment. I couldn’t get away from the thoughts in my head.
    Your words cut through the pain with truth and reality. A safe haven, giving me thoughts and a connectedness to fight back against the pain and chaos. Gave me hope for myself and for my life.
    CN held me up until I could breathe again, walk again on my own. I come back for tuneups and redirection all of the time.
    My d-day was 2011. I recently saw my ex and his wife at my daughters wedding. Ex had married co-worker immediately after our divorce (married 34 years).
    He looked old. His jokes and mannerisms were the same tired old stuff- he’d changed and yet he was the same. She fussed over him like she was his “mommy” and he ignored her.
    My daughter told me I looked beautiful. She made me cry. He told me I looked beautiful…I felt…not good…not bad…just meh…and then suddenly I was so happy because TUESDAY!!!
    Thank you for this amazing site, the people in it and Tracy for your special charm and grace, creating hope and connectedness for worthy people.

  • I’m late to the party, but congratulations!
    May the warm glow of receiving that check last at least until the next one appears!

  • As an old Chump after several decades of a sham marriage with a holo(w)gram, I found your book a month after d-day when I was still compiling the list of my faults. It totally turned my thoughts (and actions) around. I wrote snippets down on bits of paper and put them in my pockets to read at particularly difficult parts of each agonising day in the awful beginning. They saved me in so many ways and made me laugh through my tears at times. You are a wonderful person Tracy. Like so many others, I just can’t thank you enough. My Patreon contribution is the very least I can do for the difference it has made to my life. Congratulations.

  • It will be wonderful if you write a sequence or a series, you have so much information and inside. I absolutely love your style.You have help a lot of us by getting us out from the fucking hole.I am so grateful for your book, the blog and all you do to help us chumps giving us hope, sorry I’m not a writer like you, but u get the message, I am so happy for you, hugs????u where in Austin? Dang ! I miss it! I would love to meet you!

  • Tracy,

    Your book is to chumps and cheating what vaccines are to smallpox, diphtheria, tetanus and polio and what penicillin is to sepsis.

    Penicillin saved my life when I was 6. LACGAL saved my life when I was 64.

    I was amazon-surfing the RIC books at 2 AM (just the address changes) when a reader’s review directed me to LACGAL. This review was really convincing, by the way. I got it on Kindle and have never been the same, including in many other aspects in my dealings with people.

    I just know sparkledick is still wondering what made me stop pick-me dancing and putting up with blameshifting, gaslighting, manipulaton and abuse in general.

    Your analyses are brilliant, honest and compassionate for chumps. If everyone read your book and followed your blog, the world would be a much better place. I dare say it would be more prosperous and healthy.

    Change is painful, but you have a way of showing how it can be done and how we gain from change.

    As Annie above says, my Patreon contribution is the very least I can do for the difference it has made to my life. Congratulations.

  • Congratulations Chumplady, from another Brisbane resident you also saved. In fact, I suspect there is a whole network of Brisbane health professional chumps here. Every time I hear of another one, I send them a link to CL and LACGAL. We’re on the far side of the world but close in spirit to you Chump Lady and all our fellow chumps!

  • Thank you so much for your support for people dealing with a narcissist! I hope your new book is coming out soon. I have heard it it about helping those who have children with these stupid people? I hope this is true! That is truly the worst, not because of the children but because the mind games played on the children are heartbreaking. It is also hard to endure how the narcissist parent uses their “rights as a parent” to control the sane parent. Either way congrats, and look forward to your next book.

  • Hi Tracy, sorry I’m late to the good-news party —I’ve built a kick ass life because of you and gasp! …. sometimes I get behind on reading this site????.

    Congratulations and I am so thrilled that you received some monetary rewards for this Herculean effort. I bought several copies and wrote a great review on Amazon. I am a Patreon and happy to be one. I am also a member of a 12,000 member “secret” lawyer-mother FB group and every single time someone mentions cheating I link to your book and this site…. it’s nearly daily! A lot of other law mamas chime in that they love your material as well.

    You are an international treasure!

    Thank you doesn’t begin to express my gratitude for what you gave me: my LIFE!!!!!!

  • Adding my name to the long list of people who have a better life after finding you Tracy!
    Thank you so much!❤️

  • Congrats, Tracy!!! You so deserve that royalty check and so much more! I purchased the audio version and have slept with LACGAL many times. Thankfully in the last five years I’ve only had to share your blog and book with just one person. But I’m ready to hand out a copy if I ever run into another chump.

    Like everyone above^^^, you saved my life too. Last year on a flight to NYC with my daughter; she saw I was reading the blog on my iPad. She said to me, “I don’t like that CL. She swears a lot.” I said back to her, “If it wasn’t for CL, I wouldn’t be here right now.” She knew exactly what I meant, because unfortunately she was there during the very dark days post D-day. She nodded her head up and down in agreement. So, thank you for saving my life! Thank you for saving kids mom! I kept telling myself, “I’m not going to pass the pain of what my XH did to me onto my kids. This pain is finite! It will go away!.” And it did and I’m here reading your blog yet another day. 🙂 (((HUGS)))

  • Tracy,
    Well done, well deserved success. Your subject matter is just so much more relevant to real life than that of most published non fiction.

    You have done so much to teach good people how to empower themselves. You have supported moral values that apply to all of us, no matter what our religion and ethnicity.

    If only that simple common sense could apply to much of the world’s productivity.

  • You are so awesome Tracy!! You made me realize I was not alone. It is crazy how similar the patterns are. I wish I had found you earlier but I am spreading the word about your book, your site, and the truth about infidelity. You are a very talented chump ????

  • Congratulations! What a wonderful feeling receiving that cheque must have been. You’re officially a best seller. Over 10,000 copies is amazing.

    Congratulations on your publishing accomplishment and on your making-the-world-a-better place accomplishment.

    Three cheers for Chump Lady! Hip hip hooray!

  • Rejection as a superpower. Thank you for going through those hoops because you give us such hope, love and the strength to leave a cheater and gain a life.

    There’s a better path than reconciling with a cheater; you gave us that and more. The validation as well as the knowing we’re not alone in our pain is powerful. Thank you, thank you for your heart and all the time you put into the revolution. I have no idea where I would have been if not for you and this nation of amazing chumps.

  • LOVE LOVE LOVE YOU!!!!! You should be recognized everywhere for the hundreds of thousands+++ lives you have saved, everyday. Your story, among the hundreds that I have read, have been the soul searing face slap that I needed to pull my head out of my ass. The ability to relate, realize and act on your advice and the advice of others, who are real people, has been amazing. The pain, the honesty, the reality, the raw unfiltered help has made mine and I’m sure, other lives worth living again. Without a fuckwit and with a life. LOVE YOU!!!

    Just read your post now, and I have to take the time to say, I just love it when good things happen to good people.
    THANK YOU for all that you do for Chumps.


  • Congratulations! I love your book. I’m reading it for the 3rd time. Your advice has helped me tremendously. Thank you so much!

  • Amen to that. Tracy, you are certainly loved and appreciated…by millions of chumps! You are our Mighty Celebrity Chump❤
    I predict there will be more royalty checks. The message is just too important. Best way to spread it is through your book.

  • OMG you got a $45K *advance*?!!!! On a first book? That is incredible! Did you have an agent?

    • Yes, I have an agent. The advance I think was good, slightly above average? It’s hard to get numbers on advances, people are famously reticent about it, however you can join writing groups, read agent blogs, etc.

      But you have to consider — an agent takes 15% (as they should, they work for it) — you get taxed on the income — and they pay it in installments. And it takes a lot of time to write a book.

      All to say, very few people can earn a living as an author. You find other ways to earn a living writing — journalism, teaching, blogging (making money at blogging is a big job in itself).

      Thanks for the compliment though!

  • I am so grateful to every woman who has overcome the shame and stigma and been brave enough to tell her story, to speak the truth about what women in abusive relationships endure and give women like me the strength to leave.

    You deserve to make a very comfortable living from your book and to be so proud of yourself and everything you have done.

    Thank you.

  • Congradulations , CL/CN saved my life and the kids. Seems to be an epidemic of divorce around me at the moment. 3 girlfriends going through it. On wards and upwards

  • I bought 10 copies when the book first came out. Some I gave to friends who desperately needed it. A few I donated to local libraries, gave to my MFC, and a few I wrote a note in the front (you are not alone, live well and pass this on style) and left in the ladies room at high profile restaurants. Recently gave up my own well used copy…think it’s time for another order!!

    Chump Lady, there are not enough words to describe what you have done to empower and protect good people, Both men and women who needed your voice. You are teaching people about an unknown form of abuse. You are teaching people how to survive, escape and thrive despite that abuse. I’m glad that you are seeing some tiny fraction of your contribution to humanity come back in tangible $, but really there should be at least 4 zeros on that $637.


    if you can afford it, please make any small donation you can via Patreon. For those readers who are more financially successful, consider digging deep and supporting this site and CLs efforts like you would any other serious cause that has the chance to change the world out children will inherit.

  • Fantastic to hear that your hard work is paying off! You’ve done so much for so many of us chumps, and nurtured a nation who love you dearly. Thank you for your straight forward message! I will always be grateful I found Chump Lady at a time when I really needed you. Xxx much love!

  • Congratulations! Add me to the long list of lives you’ve saved, I mean that in all reality. I buy as many of your books as I can to give to the next chump. Unfortunately that doesn’t take long. What we need next is a way of making these cheaters pay for the destruction of a family by mean of legal recompense. You can not just walk away from any other contract with 50/50 split if you are the one who choses to do so. ENOUGH ALREADY!!!!

  • I thank you too.
    Come and do a midwest speaking thingabobber
    Or dont.
    –How about SLEEP IN ONE MORNING???

    so deserved.

  • Woohoo! I have my copy and have gifted to two others. Looking forward to any new books. Have you had a chance to consider making a coffee table book of UBTs and your cartoons?

  • Congrats!!! You have saved so many of us AND created this amazing support family. Thank you for all you do!

  • Congratulations, CL!!! You have helped me and so many more who receive peer support from the Straight Spouse Network. Keep going…you truly are making a huge difference! Now where can I buy a few cartons of your Narcissist Ego Chow for my ex and my mother?

  • CL I cannot thank you enough. D Day was 21 months ago. My SIL gave me your book – she posted me it from the US, I’m in the UK. I read it and re read it and read it again. I keep it in my bedside table – it is my go-to book.
    I read your blog every day. You literally gave me the strength to stand up to what I now know was a narcissistic sociopath. We were together for 34 years, married for 24.5 and he admitted to a 13year affair when I caught him out in a lie.
    His adult children have disowned him and changed their surname to mine. My very large family have disowned him and my ex. MIL who couldn’t see what the problem was. She tried to treat it as a normal break up and thought everything should go on as before. She gave no validation or acknowledgement.
    Having lived “free” of him now for a while I realise I was gaslighted, bullied, exploited and had lost hope. I realise now his abuse was the cause of my depression 5 years ago.
    To cut a long story short, in a country where we have no-fault divorce and 50/50 assets split as the norm- I lawyered up, got a financial advisor and divorced him. It was final on July 31st. I got the house and 60% of the overall assets. I did as his oldest male cousin suggested – I took him to the cleaners.
    This strength was partly gleaned from the support I got from your book. It was an incredible feeling to know that it wasn’t my fault as he had tried to tell me. And that what he done was abuse. It helped me with the cognitive dissonance.
    You will probably never know the full extent of the way in which you have changed peoples’ lives for the better. You are a sane and persistent voice for us chumps.
    You deserve every penny and much much more. Thank you also to the other chumps who write on this blog – I appreciate your humour and guidance – it truly is a life line for so many of around the world.
    Please keep going CL and thank you, thank you, thank you.
    Btw – if you ever feel like coming to the UK?

  • I will chime in with a repeat of all the kudos!

    Like many, I only wish I had found you sooner!

    I met my first irl fellow chump from this website yesterday and hope it will not be the last.

    From small acorns grow mighty oaks! Thanks for spreading your might!

  • “What is a Chump Lady, and how could anyone relate to this?”

    Hmmm, to whom that may concern, perhaps they should read all of the above in this post topic, and all of the archives.

    Question answered!

  • Thank you Tracy !! I am also one of those who probably wouldn’t be here right now. After 32 years of a horrible marriage. I finally understand it wasn’t me. Your message is a life saver. I am 3 years post throwing him out. Almost 1 year post divorce. I feel stronger every day. You deserve all the success you have.

  • Just another chime-in of this book saved my life!

    After my second d-day 3 years after the first, I found myself wandering the bookstore looking for something to help and I stumbled across your book. I remembered coming across your blog after the first d-day but i was not ready but it triggered enough of a memory to go “this may be something worth trying.

    I bought the book parked myself in my car and read the entire thing before I even left the parking lot.

    It was strength in a time i felt like i didn’t have support from anywhere else. I am now a solid year out from D-Day 2 and 4 months post-divorce.

    My life is beautiful and i can’t even imagine what all the fear was for now that i’m on the other side of it.
    Your book was seriously a string pulling me through to the other side. I’m so happy you’ve made this space for us.

    Thank you. thank you. thank you.

  • “how could anyone relate to this?”

    Way too many of us can, unfortunately. I am glad someone is finally cashing in on helping the people who can relate to this instead of cashing in on victim blaming and making people feel worse than they already do.

  • This site and your book contributed to my mental health in ways far beyond what I received in counseling. I needed you to tell me in no certain terms that reconciliation is a fraud. I will be forever grateful to you for giving me the unvarnished truth about cheaters.

    I hope many more of your books get into the hands that need them.

  • Just WOW!!! This made me smile all weekend. When I wasn’t functioning, you helped me put on my oxygen mask, so I could breathe and move forward–thanks.

    This is what you’ve given me and so many others:

    Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, she turned into a butterfly…….

    Chumps triumph in the end!

  • Congrats, CL!

    I’m just one more who is gaining a life after being strengthened by your message <3

    Many thanks to you and CN!

  • Everything just made sense after reading the book. I quote it constantly. I found Meh and Tuesday within 4 years and am blissfully happy with a very predictable life. It is true, Leave a cheater, gain a life.

  • Congratulations on your success !! Although I am not sure my wasband had an OW ( never say never ) I found so much help in the book and CN. It helps to know you aren’t alone and there is so much solid advice. One of my favourites is ” trust that he sucks ” !! What I don’t understand is why there is so little said about this situation and how common it is. It appears there is no shame in this world and wedding vows mean nothing, so sad.

  • Every bit deserved Tracy. You are a mighty goddess and some… 6 (?) years since beginning to follow you (from Huffpo!) as well as a wonderful dinner in DC for your launch, I am still in awe of your humour and tenacity.


  • ‘Fortunately, I am a chump, because rejection is my superpower.’


    Who on this beautiful Earth of ours could ever turn chumpdom into a superpower except CL?

    I am so excited for you and proud too of how you have hung in here for all of us chumps.

    I know you saved my sanity and seemingly overnight changed my vocabulary. I used to be polite and nice but now I toss around terms like ‘fuckwit’ and ‘shit sandwich’ the way I used to say ‘thank you’ and ‘what else can I do for you?’

    Thank you for all you do for us.

    A huge ray of light shines through my dark nights now and I really don’t know where I would be without everyone here.

    I hope that your parents, wherever they might be, are proud of you and how you have put your talents to work as a writer along with your life experiences – which some would call failures, (2 divorces) and have given so much of yourself to helping absolute strangers find themselves again…in your ‘spare time’.


  • Congratulations from the bottom of my heart. You rewired my brain. I’m now bulletproof.

  • Every few months, I order a couple of books. I write an encouraging message in the front and always include the chumplady blog address. Over the past 3 years, I’ve left about 20 copies in various “Little Free Libraries” ( both around my city and also in other towns while travelling (it’s become a fun game to research locations of these book boxes, then use them as my starting point of a stroll around a new-to-me neighbourhood). I’ve given them to friends, a therapist, left one in a cruise ship library, donated one to a library in Mexico that wanted to beef up its English Language Book section…The opportunities are endless. It makes me proud to support Chump Lady and also the culture of, Cheating is Abuse, No Matter What Esther Perel Says.

  • TorontoChump,

    Love this idea! I instantly came up with 3 such libraries right in my neighborhood….

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Aww, thank you for letting me know, @EC. I now always keep a spare book in my car; a few times I’ve passed a Free Little Library without expecting to and it makes me grin to drop off a book, knowing it might make it into the hands of someone who really needs the message. Please keep us posted about your donations… they’re fun to read about!

  • Well earned and here’s hoping that you get SO many more checks!
    I started your book 09/17/19 and finished it 09/18/19 and have felt better and more at peace these last two days than I have in MONTHS!! Thank you from the bottom of bruised heart right now, I mean it sincerely. You 100% changed my life and I will definitely be re-reading and have already started recommending it to all my online forum people too 🙂
    *hugs awkwardly*

  • A well-deserved and hard-earned congrats to you! Thank you for writing the book as it was the first thing that made me laugh in a year after the cheater moved out. In fact, I started laughing and couldn’t stop…so thank you for bringing laughter back into my life. You ROCK!

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