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You Might Be a Recovered Chump If…

How_to_leave_a_cheaterBoundaries, boundaries…

Okay, so you were chumped. But how did you get mighty? When did you start enforcing boundaries that  were previously trampled?

Today’s Fun Friday Challenge is — You Might Be a Recovered Chump (YMBARC) if… when he tells you he was sleeping in his car, you tell him he’s a liar. (You don’t tell him you found the hotel receipt. A recovered chump never reveals their sources.)

YMBARC if she says “I love you but I’m not in love with you” and… you shrug instead of performing the pick me dance.

YMBARC if your cheater is cake eating and you lawyer up on the sly. Let them think they’ve got you fooled, and then BAM. HellOoo divorce summons.

YMBARC if you speak your truth and resign as cheater PR director.

YMBARC if you bought all new bedding and decorate things just as YOU like them now.

YMBARC if it’s Tuesday and it’s meh.

So tell me your recovered chump moments!

TGIF!

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at info@chumplady.com. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • YMBARC if when she calls you a “bad Christian” for not doing what she wants, you consider the source and go on with your life (instead of trying to convince the adulteress otherwise).

      • My cheater’s 7-year AP internet stalked me and replied to a post I made, saying that I had “ruined” him and that I was going to hell. She sleeps with a married man and keeps him from his wife and child, and I’m going to hell? Mmm-Kay. #unclearontheconcept

    • My XW called me that in front of the kids when I separated from her after pick me dancing for two months… Like she wasn’t a bad Christian for having multiple affairs…

    • Me and the children were “Judgmental Christians”, because we were disgusted by his affair. Like Wondernomore says…. They just do not get it at all.

              • And signed us up for a marriage class at the church. Met up with her 26 year old boy toy at hotel weekend after our first class! All for show. She was trying to fix it!!!!

              • Mine preached those sermons. He WAS the preacher.

                (I hate that phrase ‘Jesus Cheaters.’ Jesus did not cheat and does not deserve to have his name linked with them.)

              • Renay, you’re absolutely right. Religious cheaters is a more accurate description. I believe they will be in more trouble come judgment day because they used Jesus to use others.

    • My first husband was a beater, the second was a cheater. 1st hubs physically abused me throughout our 18 year marriage and the last time he beat the living crap out of me in front of our 5 kids and threatened to kill me. I decided to believe him and 2 1/2 years after that happened, my divorce was final.

      Anyway, he was the “Christain” who constantly accused me of NOT being a Christian because I “just up and left” him. “If you were really a Christian, you wouldn’t just up and leave your husband!!! Everybody KNOWS you’re a liar, KINT-SU-GI!! Everybody KNOWS IT!!!”

      “I should have known that your being Catholic that there was no way you could be a CHRISTIAN!! You LIED to me!!”

      “God hates DIVORCE, KINT-SU-GI! (Always weird emphasis on when he was mad and he said my name) You’re in REBELLION against God!!!”

      Me: “You threatened to kill me and were charged with 2 felonies and a misdemeanor because of it. I choose life.”

      Him: “Oh that’s RIDICULOUS!!! You know I didn’t MEAN it!!! WHY are you LYING???” (Rage channel)

      “Please, can we go to marriage counseling again. Whever we go and ‘work on our marriage’ things get better. I won’t go to an actual psychologist though, just a “Christian counselor.” Psychologists are tools of Satan.” (sad-ish sausage channel)

      There wasn’t a charm channel.

      The whole what a Chrisitan is and isn’t, seriously screwed with my head many times. I was 19 when we married and when I was about 30 was when I started to get some backbone.

      Anyway….off topic, but I’m all too familiar with the mental gymnastics narcs do with their brand of Christianity.

      • Ugh, my cheater pulled the whole “God hates divorce” line on me when I filed. It was the 2nd affair with a different woman, that I knew of.
        Glad you finally found strength to get away from your abusive ex. You and your children are better for it. What a creep, threatening to kill you.
        Sometimes being young makes it difficult to assess someone’s true character.

      • Mine was a beater too but god dammit he went to church (when his mother was around at least). Oddly enough, I’m not religious and made no pretense of ever going to church, nor did my family, but ask me which was the violent family and which side were cheaters!!! F**k all the lying, hypocritical Jesus cheaters!

      • DearLimboChump,
        Just do your best every day, that’s all you can do.
        I understand about not feeling worthy to post here, both hands raised.
        But, I have found CN to be compassionate and understanding.

        Still, I love it when a new Chump leaves after the first DD, such strength for sure, and I also believe, it is for the best ( in the long run), when a cheater walks out never to return.
        We cannot walk in another’s shoes, but we can understand another Chump’s deep pain and devastation on being betrayed.
        Everyone’s story and journey is different.
        The fact that a beautiful, heartfelt, soul reaches out to me with understanding makes it feel right, makes it feel good, to come here to CN.
        The best we can do is hold each other up.
        My heart goes out to everyone one who has need to be here.
        Many many hugs to you on your journey.

    • ANY TIME an adulterer calls you a bad Christian and says that God hates divorce, then you look them straight in the eye and say “Yeah, but He hates adultery more.” What punishment does the Bible prescribe adultery? The adulterers are to be dragged out to the city gates and stoned to death. What punishment for divorce? Not death, I can tell you that.

      All forms of Christianity allow for divorce, especially when there is abuse, neglect, and/or adultery involved. Do not let anyone tell you otherwise. If a minister, preacher, priest or Christian counselor tries to convince you to stay in a bad marriage because “faith”, then run, run for the hills as fast as you can.

    • As I was sitting here enjoying reading these comments with a morning coffee, an email popped up from the stbxh. I laughed out loud when I read his final paragraph;

      You said ‘in sickness and in health’ . Eliza I fucked up because I am sick. Not because I don’t love you!! Please believe that. Please. I can get better. As a Catholic can you find it in yourself to give me another chance. It breaks all your personal rules but please?

      • No Eliza
        No more chances. It’s just gets worse. He comments he knows it breaks all your personal rules to give him another chance? . He’s no exception and wants to be. Stand your ground, maintain your self respect and dignity along with your sanity. Don’t allow him to guilt you into anything.
        No is complete sentence or better yet, do not reply at all.

      • Did u spill your coffee while reading? 😂😂😂

        After years of being mind fuck… followed by 1dday filled with lies
        And 2nd dday ( bizzare- I was in state of shock – completely frozen, listening to my h BRAGGING about fucking me over since day 1) filled with most of the truth…

        And ( yes yes) two years of roller coaster like ups and downs and pick me dancing…..

        I realized- it does not matter.
        The last few % of hope were gone, my heart was sealed and I started breathing again.

        Focusing on career and children.
        No more drama.
        No more hope.
        No more lies.

        I felt free.

        “ I was working late again”
        Sure, pass the salt please.

        “ I’m changing my ways, I’m honest now”
        Sure, I have to pick up the kids.

        “ why Do u ask about 401k, don’t u trust me?
        Yes I do, I scheduled an appointment with our financial advisor on Thursday.

        Etc.

      • Reminds me of an email my ex sent my daughters years after they had cut him out of their lives, telling that they should think about what a true Christian would do. My youngest (all of 20 at the time) replied “I don’t believe a true Christian uses someone’s faith to blackmail them”.

        • RachelK,

          A couple of weeks ago, when my daughter was here for a visit, we had somehow begun talking about the x when she said most emphatically, “I don’t want to waste my time talking about him.”

          Needless to say our conversation changed immediately.

          This younger generation doesn’t miss a beat and isn’t at all afraid to call a cheater a cheater.
          Gives me hope.

          • Elderly Chump, my youngest son calls his Dad a bad emotional investment. He blocked him, removed his number from his contacts. How does a twenty two year old man see that? I didn’t for years and years. I’m so proud of him. Both of my sons have offered me a home. I thanked them both and said I would keep that in mind if I was unable to provide for myself. I feel like I managed to raise good men. Military cheater wasn’t home much.

            • 33yearsachump

              My sons haven’t ‘gotten it’ yet although they too have offered to care for me, and like you I responded in a similar fashion.

              I have a brother who still thinks our father was God and he is over 70 years old and our father has been dead and gone for almost 50 years!!!!!

    • Yep. Cheater Ex was furious with DD12 because TWO DAYS after she found out about her dad’s cheating, she was still upset about it. He told her if she was a good Christian, she would forgive. She said if he was a good Christian, he wouldn’t have cheated on her mom. She’s a smart kid.

  • I guess my “recovered chump” moment had to be when he was crapping himself about possibly going to prison after his 4th (?) DUI AND a domestic abuse conviction and was asking me over and over again what I thought they would do to him. I just said I had no idea as Id never been in that situation, nor would I ever be, and “shame about that”.

  • YMBARC……when you notice all the cheating in movies, song lyrics, and movies that you never, ever noticed before D-Day. Kenny Rogers can kiss my Texas ass.

        • “Locke” showcased Tom Hardy’s greatest acting talent. Sadly, it’s about cheating. To hear his son describing the mother vomiting in the bathroom…..horrible.

          • SuperDuperChump, “Locke” is a fabulous film. I think about it all the time now and how spot-on both the big picture and tiniest nuances are. Yes, horrible.

            • Thanks to your comments, I just rented the movie. I can see why it sits with you. I never really saw the guys face much as it was such a dark film and little scenery, adding to the suspense. In one moment, the guy lost everything and all of his family. Very worth watching.

              • The symbolism at the traffic light. He changed his mind, changed turn signal, then turned the opposite direction. Choices, choices, choices…..No going back.

      • “I’m aware that you’ve been cheatin’ but nobody makes me feel the way that you do -upside down, boy you turn me—” Blaghhhh!!! I heard this over the speakers at the grocery shopping. I never liked the song but never really noticed how disturbed it was.

      • “Home Ain’t Home Anymore” “I Honestly Love You.” by Olivia Newton John
        (Kinda says it all).
        ……sigh……

        • Adele’s Hello has always bothered me!

          Hello from the other side
          I must’ve called a thousand times
          To tell you I’m sorry
          For everything that I’ve done
          But when I call you never
          Seem to be home

          Hello from the outside
          At least I can say that I’ve tried
          To tell you I’m sorry
          For breaking your heart
          But it don’t matter, it clearly
          Doesn’t tear you apart anymore

          She sounds like a cheater that doesn’t get it. Take a fucking hint Adele. He isn’t answering your calls cuz he set some boundaries. After “everything that you’ve done” he doesn’t want to hear “I’m sorry”.

          And the part that REALLY resonates with me is the line: “At least I can say I tried”…. I got that one when I finally stopped taking him back after the 6th time he went back and forth between me and OW. (I know…. six times…. this was before I found CL). Poor sad sausage could now finally tell everyone that it was my fault that we weren’t back together.

          But that last line in the song is true: it clearly does NOT tear me apart anymore.

    • And……you laugh out loud and no longer burst into tears!

      My Ex and is now Schmoopie wife, sat two rows behind me at a movie where in one of the scenes, the girlfriend & boyfriend talk about the effects of their parents divorce. The boyfriend went into detail about the effects of one of his parents cheating. It was a comedy so I just laughed & laughed & laughed, knowing they had to see the back of my head to see the movie.

      Still struggling, but that was better than Meh–priceless..

      • I heard that again recently. I have zero sympathy for the “chump”. He only wants her back to feed the kids and take care of shit. No mention of loving her or anything about her beyond how she’s a wife appliance. Even less sympathy for the “narrator” in the song. He doesn’t want her after he sees she’s independent and could make him feel “small”. Both those men are petty losers and I wish Lucille nothing but the best.

        • I see it differently, probably because I’m a farm kid and I’m considering the generation the song was written in. I can totally see a man from my dad’s generation being the one who was left. He’s tired, befuddled, just trying to do his best, clumsy with things in the peripheal…it’s during harvest, he’s been putting in long, long hours trying to get a crop in, and he needs the support of his spouse so he can get the crop into the bin (because when it’s out in the field, it’s at risk) and provide for his family. He’s out there, working his ass off, and instead of her pushing through until everything is in the bin, and address her lonliness when her husband is actually, physicall able to address it, she acts up at his most vulnerable time. The context is important here.

          Quite frankly, Lucille is a selfish and inconsiderate bitch. If she isn’t then she’d have packed up the kids and gone to her mother’s instead of bellying up to the bar and not feeding the kids dinner before she left.

        • And, you also have to see this from the persective of what the other guy whose poised to have an affair with Lucille, sees from his vantage point. He’s the observer and the author of the song. He recognizes the angst in the words of her husband, and he feels guilt and probably stops Lucille from making the biggest mistake of her life.

          Maybe she’s not a bitch…but just tired and lost and at her wit’s end in trying to get through to her husband.

          Anyway….I seem to be much more emotionally invested than I intended, LOL.

          I’ve always loved the song and it symbolizes so much of what I observed with my parents’ generation growing up ( I was a kid in the 70’s) not that my mom was ever a bar fly, but she’d agree with me about Lucille! Incidently, that’s my middle name….(no lie) I was named after my grandma….who would also never be found on a bar stool.

          And, my folks have been married for 54 years. Did you know only 6% of married couples make it to 50 years? That makes me very sad.

    • Cheers peacekeeper, that means a lot coming from you. A friend at work called me ballsy the other day so … 🙂😁😆😂🤣

    • Yes, absolutely this. And abusive scenarios presented as ‘romantic’. My reading has become much more selective. But that’s a good thing, truth is always better.

  • YMBARC if…..cheater tells you, “I can’t believe you are so calm about all this” and you shrug and move out.

  • YMBARC……when you find yourself counseling another chump, see the look of awe and admiration in his/her eyes, and realize how far you’ve come yourself.

        • I got – “I can’t believe you are holding so much anger inside about this. (after 2 wks) I worry for you. Meanwhile, I’m doing fine and like everybody.”

          Not soon after, the consequences rolled right over top of him and crushed him flat.

          • She Chump,

            Yeah, I got a variation of this too in the form of why have you changed….My explanation was immediate – “You knew what you were doing. I had no clue so I am in shock because my entire past has suddenly changed.”

            They have NO clue at all and do want to skim right over it all as though nothing at all has happened.

            The OW dumped the x within a very short time and I think he may be struggling but that ain’t my problem so I don’t worry about it. 🙂 I figure the rest of his life will be spent regretting what he did. He dug a deep, deep hole for himself and has hurt a whole lot of people and he knows it.

    • Yeah! I did that to my taxi driver the other day. I know because she told another customer of hers that is my friend, that I changed her life. Too bad she doesn’t speak English or I would have sent her to CL and CN.

    • Agreed, yet I still find myself disturbed by how often I have found myself pressed into service concerning this topic in the past four years.

      Everything I learned here I make part of a good chump recovery.

  • YMBARC when I stayed strong and I told him I wanted a divorce, through the his tears, his rage, his threats and intimidation, his normal course of action, I felt strong and mighty not giving in and just kept calmly repeating, “No, I want a divorce.” I didn’t take the bait, fight with him or feel bad. It was like I was a different person, and he was just a spoiled baby trying to get his way. I wasn’t afraid of him anymore. It made him so small. Best day of my life.

    • They really are like children! Juvenile, manipulative behaviors…it’s so good to get clarity and see it for what it is, take control back, and move on with LIFE. 💜

      • Yes, just the other day I had the opportunity to see that I do have clarity now where I didn’t before and it was amazing/shocking.

        Amazing = me not taking the ‘bait’ and going grey rock without being conscious that that was my ‘natural’ response to him while he was trying to reel me in.

        Shocking = seeing what a masterful manipulator he is; how easily he lied and then gaslighted/blameshifted without batting an eye. Giddy because I saw it for what it was and him for who he is and was for so many years when I didn’t see it. He is a TFC so I always believed HIM and second-guessed myself but NOT THIS TIME!

        Not at meh yet but now I feel like there really, truly is hope 🙂

        After any kind of contact it takes me several days to shake it off. Luckily we do not have contact often because children are grown so it only happens when he crashes through my boundary of NC and I have to re-establish it. I am still at ‘3 steps over and then you are out’. Working to the day that when he does it the first time I come down instantly but he is sly in how he crosses over so I usually don’t recognize it until he has stepped over a second time. Third time I know I have ‘got it’ and I do take action.

        • Elderly Chump, you will soon get it first time! I became much more alert to his sneaky habitual boundary violating after this: when dropping off our son after visits he parked first on the street, then on the drive, then up near the front door, then got out of the car, then was on the other side of the car near my front door … I was wondering why I was feeling so hemmed in and uncomfortable in my own home – until I realised he was working his way in typical boundary-busting fashion up to the door and would one day manipulate my son into letting him in when I wasn’t there sometime. So I stopped that sh*t, now I do all pick ups and drop offs from kerbside at his house. I also told him if he came past the property line of my house again I would call the cops. Now totally NC, no email no phone, just a shared calendar for son’s arrangements. Sooooo liberating. and when my son is 18 in a year, that’s it, nil, nada, nothing.

  • No matter what cheaterpants is doing, you see him as the inmaturity of a two year old having a temper tantrum (and that’s being unkind to two year olds). You don’t see cheaterpants as a potential mate or even friend. Not a peer.

  • YMBARC when you often have random moments where it pops in your head “thank God I am not married to him anymore, this is awesome!”

    • I keep having those moments! I often say, “Thank God he dumped me!” Stupidly I would probably have stayed still trying to save my marriage had he not deserted me. Maybe not. But Thank God he dumped me!!

      • Oh hell yes! This! It is the best gift he could have ever given me. I would have stayed, and stayed, and stayed. I would have stayed because I took my vows seriously. I am so glad he said he wanted out! (with his sad sausage tears). I didn’t even know everything that was going on until after he moved out. I’m so thankful he’s gone, gone, gone.

          • Same, he wanted something different, failing to mention he had already found his “something different.”
            I would have stayed, stayed, stayed, like a good Chump.
            Making excuses, lowering the bar, disregarding my boundaries, shrugging things off to avoid a confrontation.
            While he became more and more of a pompous ass.

    • Yes, I am experiencing that now too! Amazing compared to where I was a year ago. I also am one who would have stayed forever but luckily he moved out on his own and wanted to divorce ASAP. Tore me up at the time now I am soooo grateful it all turned out the way it did.

      Free at last and I didn’t even know I wasn’t free. Silly me, I thought I was happily married. (He is a master manipulator/liar.)

  • YAMBARC when…you realize you haven’t thought about the lies, the humiliation, the ‘lost’ possibilities, the OW, the credit card debt (in his name), and all the related entrails, in an hour. Then a day. Then a week. Sadly, the hurt remains in my kid’s eyes – so that’s always a reminder. Finding ways forward for her is the biggest part of the recovery process for me. I’m not fully there yet, but I’m my mission is clear. Thank you, CN!

  • Giving him 1/2 hour to pack his things and gtfo after a friend told me she saw him making out with someone at a dinner party at our place one time.
    He’s now homeless and jobless and I’m lawyering up.

      • Thanks. After 10 months sucking on that Hopiun pipe & bring in the marriage police I’ve finally realised that he’s a narcissist. Just much better at covering up his shitty personality than most of them. He left a clone phone behind that I was monitoring while in the marriage police & I saw he was already trying to hook up with former lovers. It hurt to see I could so easily be replaced after 14 years of love bombing. That in itself made me see that he truly sucks.

  • YMBARC when he texts “can I come home now?” And you respond “not while I’m living here. It’s time we divorce” and then not respond when he says “I will cry every day forever “ But you giggle to yourself because he sounded like he tried to quote Chief Joseph . . . no, dude. I will fight no more forever. Reached Meh.

  • YMBARC if you run into an old mutual friend who tells you they saw Mr. Sparkles and other former mutual friends at a social event that he was invited to but you weren’t, and it doesn’t bother you..

    I’m not a recovered chump. 🙁

  • YMBARC if you set boundaries with fucking everybody. I will not tolerate disrespect. That is right. Not even from you, Mom. Not from you, dear sisters. Not at all from you, BFF of twenty years.

    I will be treated with the same kindness and respect I offer to others. Don’t like that? Ask me if I care? This process is truly liberating. I’ve discovered who loves me.

    • THIS a billion times. We were conditioned to accept this type of treatment from those that were supposed to actually love and protect us from the start.

      My mother and her “boyfriend” were here helping me move this past weekend. He is and always has been the biggest asshole I have ever met, and that includes XH. He is on the max dosage of several antipsychotics (manic depressive), with a serious Borderline disorder, on top of a serious hearing (and listening) problem.

      My mother has always chosen her MEN before her kids. Always. Her coworkers once commented that it was years before they knew she even had any, with 2 Grandkids to boot. But they sure as shit knew everything about the boyfriend(s). She us a top rate Cheater as well.

      I needed help moving across country and she offered. I keep them at arm’s length and have lived 3200 miles from them for years as a result. I wanted to come back to the east coast and she offered help.

      Lasted 15 minutes. He arrived with case in hand and demanded that she take us out to dinner. She pays for everything. He hates dogs so she tells me that my dog cannot approach him in his own house. he proceeds to sit on my couch literally with his hands hooked behind his head, legs splayed and watches us bust our asses unpacking boxes, putting up blinds and curtains, and painting.

      Every 15 minutes he tells us that he is hungry…no STARVING….and we have to
      stop and make him dinner. Then he starts the comments about how he would never live “in a place ike this” (an upscale townhouse community of mostly professional retirees). Then he starts with telling me that I “have to” figure out the one dead switch on the wall and I “have to” tell the landlord to fix this and that and something else minor. He obsesses about the one car that passed overnight and he woke up (i moved from busy west coast city of 5 million to small upstate NY village).

      All the while my mother listening to him demean and make degrading remarks plus sitting and not doing one thing to help.

      I said to her, “I don’t like how disrespectful he is and I want him to either help out or you guys really need to consider letting me do the rest of this alone”. My diplomatic self in action. How she trained me to react. Never hold her feet to the fire…STAND UP FOR ME.

      Two days of it and I flipped out when we were driving to Lowes for blinds. He leans over the backseat and says to her….”I want to eat. When are we eating. I am STARVING” (after shoveling 4 plates full of food in every night at my expense—expensive shrimp and steak dinners where we got one small portion and he literally ate the entire dinner for 4 himself)

      I slammed on the brakes after she turned to me calmly and said we had to make the detour RIGHT NOW to make sure he was properly fed at Panera. …and told her that we were turning around RIGHT NOW and they were packing their shit and leaving.

      RIGHT NOW.

      He never said a word the whole ride home. Not one. No apology, no recognition that he had fucked up…nothing. And she sat there griping that I was “making her pay” for doing nothing but trying to help me. How UNGRATEFUL.

      We got home and they packed their shit. SHE loaded everything in HER car. He sat in the front seat and the car and said nothing but I could see the smirk.

      He was HAPPY. He has done this for 28 years. But SHE has allowed and encouraged it. She talkes smack about us kids to him and then plays one against the other….who loves her the best???? DANCE PRETTY FOR ME!!! He competes because he has a mental illness and inaccurate information. We compete because she is our fucking MOTHER and we should have her full support.

      She tried one last time to guilt me into saying I was sorry for telling him he is a lazy fucking leech and to get the fuck out of my house (yes. I finally unloaded after 28 years of this shit)

      I didn’t.

      I am a recovering Chump. And I think my Tuesday was really actually on a Tuesday. I set boundaries and I feel absolutely nothing but peace after doing so.

      It may not have been with cheater XH…but it was with cheater liar parent.

      • Karenb6972, I imagine you are a lot like me. I’ve read your posts and have just cried for your confusion and heartbreak. You have come so far in so little time. I cried myself sick for months, I’ve lost three pant sizes in the four months since I took the dog and walked out of my beautiful house. I played pick- me for years, tolerated abuse for years, until I found Chump Lady and Chump Nation. I tried so hard to stay married until my kick-ass therapist helped me see past the anxiety and depression to the cause of those emotions. The truth is he had left me years ago, he just didn’t tell me.

        I left and he has only texted me to demand that I sign away my rights to his pensions and any spousal support. He has his ho worker and much younger side chick. It has nearly ended me that he didn’t love me. I thought about ending my life. I was in agony. He didn’t care.

        I think we are probably very much alike. I was a good wife. I was devoted and concerned for him. I pampered him like a big, fat baby. I willingly bathed him, powdered his toes. I made sure he took his medications.. I’m sure you were a good wife. I loved that man. He didn’t love me.

        I didn’t do anything to deserve what he did to me. I think we are alike in that too. There is nothing you did to deserve his betrayal.

        Karenb6972, you got this girl. You really do.

    • High five!

      Its hard to realize how the people who claimed to love you treated you and how it set you up to find all the cheater’s manipulations normal. Draw those boundaries and revel in the sanity that is not putting up with disrespect! Keep moving forward!

    • THIS! I was gaslighted not just by the cheater, but by family who tried to convince me that I was the problem, not the emotionally abusive FW. Nobody will ever get the chance to do that to me again.
      I’m far from recovered from the pain of being chumped, but I’m certainly recovered from the chumpiness of allowing disrespectful treatment. If people don’t respect me or my boundaries, they are not my people and they can piss off.

  • Yes – “respectfully I say to thee I’m aware that you’re cheating’ I can’t listen to that anymore! Or ‘Run to you’. Ugh.

  • YMBARC – If your x emails you with some nonsense, instead of reading it, you forward his current email address to “Your car’s extended warranty” service inquiry center.

    • Ha! I throw all credit offers and garbage like that with his name on it, unshredded, out into the world hoping karma whacks him and someone steals his identity. He has never lived in this house and I deeply resent getting crap like that with his name on it.

  • YMBARC when the mediator after 10 minutes comes in the room and says your husband is a pathological liar! My reply- Ya think????? So nice to be validated and know you are not crazy! and when you use the app on your phone Our Family Wizard and your ex is behaving like an angel because your Lawyer has access to your account- then you say to yourself YOU DANCE MOTHER FUCKER – HOW DOES IT FEEL??????
    Not recovered yet but feel sane again!

  • I packed up to leave Chumpdom when, acting out of self-respect and in stealth mode, I saw a lawyer and looked at apartments.

    I fully left Chumpdom when I realized I’d been selling myself short not just in my marriage, but in almost all areas of my life, undervaluing myself, cutting myself off at the knees, and calling it generosity or helpfulness or turn-the- other cheek-ness.

    I’ve become a fierce advocate of reciprocity and setting and enforcing boundaries. This didn’t come easy. With my now ex, I needed the weight of the law in my state behind me to help me in order to demand more in the settlement. I was petrified before going into that meeting, but although he petulantly stuck out his bottom lip, and then raged–he gave in!

    Now setting and enforcing boundaries has become my main effort in un-chumping myself, building self-respect and self-confidence.

    Because I recently retired, I have recently become the sibling on call to help my 93-year-old mother, the person who trained me for chumpdom, when my sister, who had been living with her for a year, moved back home. This required a temporary move to her state. I do feel an obligation to help my mother, and I am in a position to be able to help out.

    However, I made clear the conditions under which I would help her. I told her that I hadn’t just spent the last year and a half getting out of a 35-year marriage to a serial-cheating, fetish cross-dresser and then retiring only to move into her back bedroom (and was incredibly fortunate to find a house-sitting gig very near my mother). I made it clear I have to have a life of my own. I set boundaries around the length of time I would help, the amount of time I would be available each day to help her, the tasks I will be available to help with. I also stipulated I needed some financial reciprocity, as although I was fortunate to find a house-sitting gig near my mother, I continue to pay rent on my apartment back home. This was hard for me to do, but I knew it was the best way to avoid resentment on my part.

    I’m a work in progress, but each time I’ve spoken up for myself, I feel stronger and more confident–and less likely to beat myself up afterwards as a selfish person.

      • Elderly Chump, he dug that hole all by his little lonesome self. I’m glad you see it isn’t your problem.

        Figuring out how to “stay in my lane” has been liberating to me. I continue to evaluate is this my problem. It is amazing how many things are not my problem.

    • That sounds appropriate, Adelante. Keep your eye on her, they always try to creep back to using and dominating! I hope this works for you, and boundaries stay in place. I cared for my father, and there was that constant creep, creep. He was shocked I didn’t do whatever he told me!

      • I remember a number of years ago Ex’s grandfather came to stay with us for a few days. He expected our nanny, hired to look after our children, to play nursemaid to him. I discovered this when I got home and she was helping him in the bathroom. I took over for her and apologized later. She also got a bonus that week. Good nannies are hard to find and I didn’t want to lose mine.

    • This is mighty indeed. I also live close to and help my elderly and difficult mother, so I know how draining and stressful it can be.

    • Adelante, you are not selfish. You are taking care of Little Adelante. It helps me to pretend I am caring for the vulnerable little Thirtythreeyearsachump. I can fiercely advocate for any child, even if that child is me.

      • Thank you all for your support here, and, 33 Years a Chump, I like that way of looking at things–advocating for myself as if mothering myself.

        The woman who lives next door to me said she wouldn’t have put her life on hold to move away and care for her mother, and I told her my own mother hadn’t done it for her mother, either.

        I’m so glad that I stipulated going in how long I would be willing to fill this role, and Chump Lady and Chump Nation gets the credit for my learning to set healthier boundaries.

        • Adelante, I am caring for my mother too. She is so mean and hateful. So I work extra hard making sure Little Thirtythreeyearsachump is protected.

          I know I will never have her approval. I know she will continue to criticize and attempt to demean me. I don’t need her validation. She has lost her power over me.

          Thank You Adelante, Chump Nation and Chump Nation. I’m becoming the Thirtythreeyearsachump I was meant to be.

  • When I finally realized that I can’t or won’t stay with a cheater because I am afraid of losing everything. That I can’t be afraid of disappointing people. I thought that I would disappoint my children. Was afraid my animals would be homeless. I got mighty and bought out his share. My horses still have their home. And my children and grandchildren can still come home. I was not the one who disappointed anyone. My ex chose to cheat with my cousin. He truly disappointed his family.

  • YMBARC when he threatens repeatedly to not pay his half for your daughter’s college anymore and you reply, “that’s your choice…and one final thing we don’t have to talk about since we’re not married anymore.” (What!?! No contact eminent?? Losing control… must shift from rage to charm or pity, stat!) He paid on time 🙂 Back to the drawing board, asshat.

    • YMBARC if your stbx wants to get back together yet again and you finally have the mightiness to ask him “what’s in it for ME?”
      And in disbelief he responds like a child throwing a temper tantrum. And he cannot hide that he was planning all for himself and for you to get absolutely nothing.

  • YMBARC if he looks at you with sad sausage eyes and asks you what he should do to make this better and instead of telling him what you need to help you recover and heal, you simply say “You can leave. You have no value here any more.”

  • I have received a ton of counseling and support from church which set me on a path to healing and cleaning out my head of all the crap he had dumped in there. It seems a lot of you have had bad interactions with Christians over divorce, and I’m sorry to hear that. Coming from a youth pastor’s wife whose husband cheated and kicked her out, I can attest that we are not all the same. There are hypocrites and phonies everywhere you go. The church is no exception. But I keep the blame where it lies, with the cheating hypocrite, not on God or church or Christians, for I would not be where I am today without the support from these 3.

    I began to recover from being a chump though when I cut all communication to email, then after divorced, no contact but for kids’ necessary discussion. He was mad because he wanted to discuss our terms over the phone. At the time I had not heard the term “no contact” but I knew I would not preserve my sanity through the divorce by talking to him. I knew he would lie, change his mind, forget, try to get things in his favor. He still did this in email anyway, so when we went to mediation, I had a record of him constantly changing what he agreed to and got 95% of my initial demands.

    Another way I recovered was when I realized that by making sure his needs were met, the kids and I went without.
    I was in charge financially of our accounts but he had a separate account with direct deposit for his needs. This was while we were working on splitting our finances up prior to filing. He said his bonuses weren’t much and he was struggling that he couldn’t afford so much in support. He tried to hide his pay stubs- said I didn’t need them to figure out child support. (In my state there’s an online calculator that you can get into to figure it out if you have stubs).
    It took a few months and informing him of the information to be subpoenaed before I got the stubs and realized how much money he was hiding.
    He did not like that his child support and alimony numbers went up. He did not like that I filed taxes separate and claimed the kids.
    He accused me of not caring about him and whined and cried about his “suffering” to all his family, girlfriends and even our kids.
    Honestly, it’s not that I don’t care about him. As my kids’ father, what happens to him affects them, so in some wAys, I do care about him.
    But where my recovery took flight was in realizing that his needs were IRRELEVANT in light of our kids’ needs.

    That is, I think, the biggest word for me.
    Whether good or bad happens to him, whether he understands or doesn’t, however consequences affect him… does not matter to me because
    He is now IRRELEVANT to my life.

    Send me the check so I can provide for the kids…
    Other than that, stay out of my life.

    His anger is not my anger. His circus is not my circus.

    • Thank you for sharing. ‘Irrelevant’ is an excellent word and I hadn’t thought of it until you nailed it above.

      I did the same in taking care of his needs first. Took me awhile to put me first too and, in the beginning, it felt like I was betraying him. Took me awhile to wrap my head around the fact that he did discard all of us with his decision to walk out chasing schmoopie….That we were Plan B. Sadly I didn’t bat an eye at being Plan B myself but when I realized kids were Plan B I hit a wall – eyes popped open and I saw the light and learned what Plan B was/is – NO MORE for any of us. He is irrelevant and not even on a plan in my world 🙂

  • When I asked her a question from convo I overheard with AP whilst hiding in back of her car. “Would you rather have a glass of wine in front of log burner, or have one in bed watching TV.”
    She took the vehicle and phone into the police station to check if it was bugged!

      • Disclaimer this was not me I just remember reading the story. —-I think this is the one where he pretended to go on a walk ( or karate class?) but instead got in the back of her car way back there, and rode along with her to meet her schmoopie. Cheater and OM were in the car together with chump in the back. Brilliant detective work, and what a mighty chump he was!! But myself I would be afraid my cries and snickers and raging breathing would have given me away.

        I’m sure we’d all like to hear this story told again!!!

        • The best bit, when she unknowingly drove me back home, she locked her handbag in the minibus (with me) so I wouldn’t have access to it in the house! Perfect opportunity to discover some paperwork and spare skimpy knickers.
          I gave it 5 mins then got out of the minibus which set off the alarm. d’oh!. Ran down the street to my own car and drove back ‘from class’ to find her in the driveway in pyjamas with a glass of wine as though she’d been home all along.

  • When I blocked him from calling or texting me while at work or right before I went to bed. And then again when I blocked him from calling or texting me entirely. And then again when he sent me a list of four options for giving him what he wanted but numbered them 1, 2, 3 and 3. I told him the next time he makes a list he may want to get help from a Kindergartener because they can usually count to four correctly and he obviously cannot.

  • YMBARC IF you find out about his hidden girlfriend, he says it “just didn’t come up in conversation” and you tell him it’s probably because he didn’t bring it up, you tell him to leave you alone forever, and block him on all forms of social media immediately.

    YMBRC IF it’s Tuesday, and you go to block your ex on Instagram, but you get so distracted by cool nail polish swatches you follow three new nail pages, sign off Insta, and forget why you were on it in the first place.

    YMRBC IF you have saved enough money to pay for EMT school, in full, and you’re going to register and pick up your student packet this Saturday and you remember how your ex said you don’t know what hard work means and you are a horrible, selfish freeloader, but you’re about to start a new career on the path toward becoming a firefighter and you happen to know for a fact his career (which he said was going nowhere because of you) utterly failed and he works at an Apple store now. XD

    • YMBARC when you can speak his name and talk about the divorce without dissolving into a snotty blubbering mess.

      YMBARC when he’s the not the first thing you think in the morning and he’s not the last.

      YMBARC when you realize you are really and truly moving forward.

      • This! Absolutely.

        When you start dating again because you realize there are still good men out there! And you can’t wait to find a person who sees the treasure that is you.

      • MissBailey, I cried myself sick before, during and after I left him. I was the one who moved out and filed. But I sobbed myself sick on a daily basis. I’ve lost three pant sizes in the four months since I left.

        I can talk about him without sobbing most of the time now. I can wear mascara again. I cried off the waterproof. I don’t want to think about him at all. I just want my divorce and spousal maintenance. I am slowly reclaiming my life.

        I read your posts and think you must be a dear and gentle soul. Thank you for sharing your YMBRC.

        I’m on the Road to Meh, paved by fellow chumps.

      • Thanks. That one really does make me feel mighty. When he left me, I was stuck in an apartment I couldn’t afford, with a job I took for the sake of survival (in an industry I had never even heard of as a thing) in an isolated area literally 90 minutes away from anyone I knew. I didn’t even have furniture. I had a bed, a table, and a dresser. That place almost ate me alive. When I got out, I had $35 to my name. October 8th will actually be the 3rd anniversary of when I stood on a bridge over the Chicago river and decided not to jump.

        Now I have $2k saved to pay for my EMT program all at once, I’m about to pay off my credit card completely, and enough money to buy a PS4 new.

        PS4 isn’t really on the “need” list, but I want it. It’s one of those I’m Doing This For Me things.

          • I second it. I’m so glad you never jumped. I also thought about suicide. Now I’m flabbergasted that I ever considered dying because of a DICK!!!

          • Kara, I am glad you stayed. I considered ending my life. He would have liked that. So I found a therapist who didn’t want to blame me for his choices. Now I tell my friends and family if I turn up a suicide he did it. I won’t give him the satisfaction.

            I love knowing you have reclaimed your life.

            • I therapist asked me what made me not do it, and I didn’t really have an answer back then when she first posed the question.

              Now, I can say it was I wanted to see what the other side looked like. What would I, my life, and the rest of the world look like when the pain stopped.

              Even if the thing keeping you alive is just sheer curiosity of what next year looks like, then keep going.

  • YMBARC when you can speak his name and talk about the divorce without dissolving into a snotty blubbering mess.

    YMBARC when he’s the not the first thing you think in the morning and he’s not the last.

    YMBARC when you realize you are really and truly moving forward.

    • The biggest step I have made is the first day I realized I didn’t think about him first thing in the morning. It was about a week ago. I woke up thinking about work and the things I needed to do that day. Some of the patients came to mind.

      It’s a huge step forward for all chumps, just to get a moments peace from the hamster wheel. He popped into my head about 2 minutes later, and I cried with the realization he was not the first thing on my mind that day. I knew I had crossed a threshold.

      Check this out——. I found the schmoopie’s Instagram page and it’s filled with posts about MY HUSBAND. Lol and she calls him with a hashtag #mycheater. (Full in FW name substituted for cheater). My cheater!!! Ha lol he’s actually my husband, but I digress. He’s my soon to be x husband but at the time he was my husband until you posted all over Instagram that he was YOUR xxxxx. Anyway. She actually posted a screenshot of a text to her and I quote. “Just know That i love you. I want the best for you. I want you to be safe and happy. You help me wake up in the morning and go to sleep at night. A kiss on the neck from me to you”. Fucking barf. What I’m saying is that she is the first thing on his mind when he wakes up in the morning. Knowing this has propelled me to meh faster than any counseling, soul searching and desire could ever accomplish. I trust this asshole sucks big time. And I think it is what helped my subconscious not think of him first thing in the morning. He does not deserve my headspace in the bright morning

  • In legal arbitration STBXW noted that “because the house purchase etc was so long ago and this was arranged in short notice, no evidence can be produced. We will have to go on trust…”

    STBXW initiated the arbitration unexpectedly within a two week period.

    Immediately after she said that, I pulled out a decade’s worth of bank statements all with useful highlights and notes. I had simply asked our old bank for them and got them the next day.

    They proved that her whole premise for the division of house equity and finances was utter BS, and she floundered like crazy.

  • Last Monday, Labor Day felt like almost Tuesday out at the lake with my kids. I had been preping my autistic son to go play on floating water playground with three previous trips to the lake. The first trip I had to chase him down the beach and calm him down from hitting himself and yelling.

    Monday when we went to swim out to the floating play ground. I said “It’s going to be an adventure” He replied forcefully, “No it’s not.” All went well. He had fun and even his sister, who has difficulty dealing with his autism, played well with him. On the way back “I said was that an adventure?” He replied with enthusiasm, “That was a great adventure.”

    Previously doing things with the kids has been emotionally difficult not being a complete family. This time I did not feel any of that. I was glad she wasn’t there. She has always destroyed the moments with her contolling since day 1. I felt good even a little schadenfreude. She missed an incredible moment. Not that a narcissist like her can really appreciate it anyway.

    • Attaway Jeff!
      From one dad to another.. You’ve got this.

      BTW –> my therapist is named Jeff and my awesome dog is also a Jeff. Both are amazing. Sometimes dog Jeff is also the therapist.

      YMBA(working-on)RC when you are really thinking hard about how the backyard deck is gonna get built; what kind of cement to use and where to put the stairs and maybe you’ll paint it, maybe you’ll stain it, but what color, then would you make a bench? And should that be incorporated into the design and you dont even think about xw but if you do it feels more and more like an old memory. But anyways, you haven’t ever built a deck before so, its really fun to think about.

      I’m learning “Tuesday’ isn’t a on/off switch like I did newly chumped, but instead a dimmer that brightens slowly over time.

  • I have two (and more!) —

    YMBARC if you kick him out of the house, change the locks, and stand by unmoved as he cycles through six months of suicide threats, breakdowns, spirals of sadness, and rage. Your mental health and well-being, Cheater, are not my job. You made your bed, now lay in it.

    Then, after the discard, YMBARC if you go out to dinner, and later find out Cheater had eaten in the same restaurant, at the same time, nearby where you were seated… and you never noticed.

  • The first time I got mighty was when I didn’t call him out on an egregiously shitty thing he did. I’m sure he was expecting me to chew him out for his deliberate act of assholery, but I didn’t. Didn’t say a word because the coin finally dropped that my protests were a total waste of time.

    It was the first time I realized that getting angry at him for being an inconsiderate ass — and thereby giving him ammunition for his confirmation bias that I am a shrill, judgmental, critical bitch — was merely keeping me engaged with him and maintaining his centrality. From that moment on, I went pretty much Grey Rock and didn’t react to his lies, gaslighting, and narcissistic bullshit. And when conditions were such that I was finally able to walk out of his life, going full-on No Contact was a breeze.

    Recognizing that there was nothing to work with was the first step to taking back my power and rebuilding my mightiness. I’ve been NC for 3 and a half years now, and to be honest, I’m still not sure he ever noticed I’m gone. LOL.

    • DeeDee – this is so good. I have kept my mouth shut for so long and reminded myself that it was just him being him. But sometimes the disrespect is tough to ignore. Thanks for the reminder to just move on and don’t react to his behavior. Can’t wait til he shows this same self to schmoopie. I know – not quite at meh yet, lol.

    • Exactly this. Truth be told, I didn’t really grasp how necessary it is to adopt this approach until I was in family court yesterday with XH for a show cause hearing (he owes me $1K+ in back child support, because of course he does). Instead of taking my usual approach of reminding him of what a deadbeat he is prior to the hearing, I just let the referee do it for me, in front of a room packed with other deadbeats, one of whom was hauled off to jail in handcuffs while we were sitting there (I believe that’s when all color drained from XH’s face and he started wiping his sweaty palms on his pants). As the referee calmly told my ex that he’d be recommending incarceration if ex doesn’t pay me what he owes within 30 days, I said nothing other than affirming that in addition to ignoring his support obligation he’s also failed to contribute to any other spending associated with his children. And then got to watch the referee shut him down as soon as he started whining that he doesn’t make enough money to pay support. I stayed silent as we left the hearing room, and when I walked out of court he was standing in line for the cashier.

      Honestly, I felt like I won a battle, even though I didn’t do anything other than show up. I’ve spent so long internalizing XH’s version of me (controlling, nagging harpy shrew) that it was incredibly liberating to see an outside party berate him for exactly the same stuff I would confront him with on the regular (and that he would dismiss as more annoying harpy-shrew bullshit). And then to watch him express contrition and look ashamed (all false, I’m sure, but false contrition is still more than I’ve gotten from him since we’ve been divorced). I’m not the crazy one! Hooray!

    • deedee- Your comments put into words what I had begun to do. It’s not worth it to engage with someone who’s not trustworthy. Each time I don’t engage, I do feel more powerful. I’m hoping to get out soon, because now I’m seeing that he is ok with less interaction also, & then he actually gets more cake: a marriage with no hassle. I have no proof at this point of him continuing with online sex & he’s not traveling for business anymore. I don’t know of any AP or OW. My hesitation is still with taking a HUGE hit financially so close to retirement. I am so afraid of making a mistake & then having to beg for money from someone. There are days I feel mightier, like I am a baby crawling, & other days I don’t feel worthy of even posting on this blog! I’m still in limbo but still reading here every day.

      • ((((LimboChump)))
        Somehow the reply post I wrote to you entered up above ( a dozen or so post from the beginning of this archive)
        Not sure how I did that. I hope this makes some sense, not very techy, sorry.

  • On my way to recovery:

    Ex: could I live in your basement (I got the house in D) and I will pay you rent.

    Me: won’t that make you feel awkward?

    Ex: not at all. I will be here during the week to help around the house, and with OW on the weekend.

    Me: no, I meant when I finally get a REAL man in my bed, you might hear “things”

    Ex: 🦗

  • YMBARC …. when sparkledick writes you asking to reconcile “because I never thought I would have to divide our assets and never play with our grandchildren together” and you DID NOT EVEN ANSWER…. Or even miss a heartbeat.

  • My ex’s aunt was spending the night at my house last night (she would rather stay with me than him). I walked in on a conversation between her and my daughter. My daughter said “we’re having a conversation about relationships and people who have hurt us.” I responded “I don’t think I need to join that conversation. I am going to go walk the dog. Carry on.” They were both smiling as I walked out the door.

  • YMBARC if, after 2.5 years of lining up your ducks on the sly, you tell your Cheater that you know that he’s having an affair with Workplace Schmoopie and that you are filing for divorce, only to hear him ask if you are sure about this, you reply that yes, you’ve thought very deeply about it.

    • kb, that is awesome. I saved for years. In the back of my mind I thought “This is escape money.” I can escape on vacation or escape this hopeless lopsided marriage. Damned if I didn’t decide to do both!

  • I’m still working on it. I feel so pathetic. The guy I’m seeing who I now see love bombed me for the first three months to get into my house( he lives in room in his friend’s condo), is about to be confronted. He was caught sexting with another woman while cuddling with me in my house in June, I then cancelled a planned trip to visit his son ( unchumpy). Then he asked for another chance which I gave him( chumpy). He spent the entire summer treating me like his personal housewife–arriving Friday and being served all weekend, not actually taking me on dates–other than a family BBQ and a couple of rides with our motorcycle club. Very chumpy. Then when questioned, told me he “pulled back” from the relationship ( huh, how would staying with me every weekend and sleeping in my bed and eating my food qualify as “pulling back”?). He even took a single female “friend” to the Foreigner concert that he had purchased ticket for us to go to despite the fact that I told him I consider it a date ( hey two single people, its a date in my opinion). I am unchumping myself, better late than never. At least this time I’m dumping the user within 7months instead of the 2 years it took last time. Please help me improve even more. I am trying, really I am. I will allow myself time to grieve as i must, I am just so hurt and feel so stupid. This guy said he loved me, many times. ughhhh!

    • He loves all the stuff you do for him, the users love us chumps.

      Want a well-meaning 2×4?

      Today is Friday. What about today being the day that it is OVER? That you do not let him plant his ass at your house and in your bed? Let TODAY be your no contact beginning! Be mighty! No explanations needed, not drawn out sad sausage requests for third chances, just be D.O.N.E. You own him nothing.

      We are here for you- pipe in on the reddit forum for moment by moment support if needed!

      Be your name, NEW LADY! Today.

      (hugs)

        • Thanks CN. I am going to talk to him later. I already withdrew the standing invite to stay here, he hasn’t asked about it nor has he made any plans other than the family BBQ and the Club BBQ this saturday. I will be asking what he specifically meant by “pulling back” though I really know the answer. I will instruct him that his stuff that he left in my garage will be outside, he best come and get it before it rains. Keep fingers crossed, I need to be firm and strong with my boundaries. I am an easy target still.

          • I suggest that you do not ask ‘specifically what he meant by “pulling back”‘. That’s his invitation to you to ‘pick-me-dance’. Your absolute best response is no response. Do not go with him to any family BBQ or Club BBQ. Put his stuff outside, tell him it’s outside (and don’t warn him against the chance of rain), and stop all contact with the dick. He’s a dick. Put a note on your mirror that says, “I will have no more dicks in my life.” Put several notes of affirmation on your mirror and around your house until you believe them. Make sure you delete his phone number from your contacts. You sound like you don’t yet realize that you have value and are seeking validation from other people. You need to recognize that you’re a valuable person in your own right and someone would be exceptionally lucky to have you in his life. Until that day comes, the day you love yourself, you’ll be struggling with boundaries. Hugs to you!

            • NewLady15, when you follow the guidance offered by Amazon Chump your life will get better quickly. No contact is so hard at first. Then you start to heal.

              NewLady15, read everything you can on this site. Read the archives. Get the book, “Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life”. Read that with a highlighter in hand. Get these new ways of thinking and behaving firmly lodged in your betrayed mind. Then start protecting yourself from him and his flying monkeys.

              Amazon Chump, I needed this too. Switzerland friends are encouraging me to “be friends” because they love him too. I now have former Switzerland friends. I don’t even feel the need to discuss this with them. I’ll be too busy living my life, cheater and cheater apologist free.

              I deserve so much better than I lived with for far too long. NewLady15, you do too. You deserve a wholehearted, Chumpy love, faithful, loving and kind.

          • I suggest you pull back and go No Contact, the path to the truth and the light.
            What do you think you will gain from asking him these questions?
            He has already proven with actions that he does not respect or love you.
            Stop paying attention to his words and start paying attention to his actions. That’s where it counts. He is a known liar and manipulator. Do you think he will start telling the truth and have actual concerns about you just because you ask a few questions? I think you need to go back to step one of Chump Nation – Trust that he sucks.
            Pack his things and text or email him that they will be left outside at a certain time and a certain date and let it go. Do not talk to him to let him manipulate you. It’s harder for them to do that in email or text because you can read it, think about what it says and then read it again to question it. Keep moving forward (away from this cheating loser)

    • Newlady15, you are not stupid. You are a chump who is unchumping yourself. I hope you are seeing what I’m seeing. He’s eating cake with you. He’s using you — housing, food, maid service, free sex. That’s not love. It’s the opposite of love. And men (and women) will tell you “I love you” to get what they want. Drop this user and no more chances! And if he says to you, “I love you” . Replace the word “love” with “use”. I know it hurts, but it’s good your realized a lot earlier than last time. That’s progress! Work on fixing your picker and most importantly work on yourself! Chump Lady has lots of great posts about fixing your picker and “getting a life”. (((HUGS)))

    • Oooh. Yeah New Lady 15, please dump his ass, like yesterday. The guy is a jerk. Sexting some other woman is really bad but taking someone else to a concert you were originally going to is such a lack of respect. He will try to talk or guilt you out of it, please stand your ground. Take some time for yourself and savor your independence for awhile.

      • Unchumping myself has been a learning curve and it’s get better and better every day.

        Decades ago I was dating a hometown boy (yes boy even though he was in his late twenties at the time) after going away to college and living abroad during my twenties. I was struggling since my divorced mother was dying of cancer and I had no help or support from my older narc brother. One of my mother’s friends (theater and dance geek) gave me the heads up on a little show that was opening at the Nederlander after previewing at Dance Theater Workshop in NYC, “Rent”. I told Boy about this and he said “Oh let’s go, I’ll get the tickets !” “Great”.

        The date approaches and we talk about getting to the theater from NJ. He asks me who I’m going to bring, who my date is going to be. “What are you talking about ?!” I asked. “Oh I bought four tickets and I have my date” he said .This boy had already done some asinine things,mistreated me and appeared to have a drinking problem so I called him back. “Enjoy the play. I’m not going. What’s wrong with you ?” He balked “What am I supposed to do with the two extra tickets ?!” I responded “That’s not my problem”.

        I got tickets for me and my mother who turned out to be a much better date. I feel sorry for this boy’s wife and daughter.

        My bullsh*t is finely tuned these days and I walk away very easily when I know I’m being played.

      • Thank you everyone. I came back to comment and see all of your comments. I working on unchumping myself. I broke up with him last night( by text as we were supposed to go to this bbq together today) he immediately called( he rarely calls) basically I found out everything I told him I neede was turned around and used as punishment. I’m guessing for not going to Calgary but it doesn’t matter. Done and done. His stuff is outside today for him to pick up. Thank you everyone for the 2×4’s I wish I still didn’t need them 4 years after my narc ex left but I’m not quite there.

        • Excellent. A solid step to claiming your righteous dignity and not taking crap from anyone. This is how you will get where you want to be.

    • Wow, New Lady! This guys sounds exactly like my ex! (Motorcycle club and all!) He lovebombed the girl he cheated on me with and moved in with her soon after I gave birth to our son! it’s so creepy sometimes how similar these guys are.

  • Mine was yesterday, we were supposed meet to talk about the division of our assets. He texted me to ask if we were still meeting.

    Me: “Do you have copies of all financial statements ready?”

    Him:”No, actually I don’t, but can we not talk about financial stuff yet, I want to meet talk about the girls”

    Me: “There’s really not much to say, they are doing counseling and enjoying school.”

    Him: “Can we still meet?”

    Me: “I rather meet when you have all statements ready”

    Him: “I understand…just know that I hate my life.”

    Normally, I would’ve run to see him, but thanks to CL and CN I really didn’t even feel sorry or anything for him. Thank you all!

    • Congratulations for avoiding the temptation to reply with, “Good.” Mighty!

      I would to have shown such restraint I am afraid, even 2+ years out.

      • Or even, “What a coincidence. I hate your life, too.”

        So many responses, that could be a fun Friday challenge on its own.

        • Now I.C.
          If I get the urge to reply to his pity stuff like “take me back” and blah blah blah, I just tell myself that it was all fake. No need to reply because I don’t know him and don’t want to get to know this stranger.

          • I don’t know about you guys and gals, but a guy crying and claiming misery and begging to be taken back just isn’t sexy and attractive and I don’t do unsexy and unattractive. Ditto for immature behaviour. Once I realise a guy is basically tantrum prone under 10 year old or a sulky teenager I can’t be with him because I’m not a pedophile.

          • Neverknew19,

            Yes, I have no desire anymore to get to know the stranger the x is now either.

            It still is weird for me when I have had to see him and the person in front of me looks like the man I married but is truly a stranger. Like someone else has invaded his body and the man I knew doesn’t exist at all.

            Weirder still is that the man I knew really doesn’t exist because he was/is a serial cheater so our entire relationship was one huge lie and the person I thought he was is all a big fantasy. Invasion of the body-snatchers.

            If it hadn’t happened to me I wouldn’t believe it possible.

            This shift in my perception does make it easier for me to move on.

            Nothing for me to hold onto anymore now that the truth is out in the open and he made the choice to go after the OW vs hanging in and working on repairing the damage he did to me and our children.

            A real low-life-chicken-shit-wimp…..holds no attraction for me either, in fact I find him to be repulsive and feel I embarassed/ashamed that I was ever attracted to him in the first place.

            • Elderly chump – that’s exactly how I feel! It’s like looking at an alien being- looks like the man I was with for 30 yrs but the being inside is a total stranger. I had real difficulty with that until recently – it’s quite traumatising isn’t it? I recently had to spend a day in the company of him and his new partner for my son’s graduation and it was such a strange experience. He is nothing like the man I thought I knew inside out, he’s totally morphed into what she wants for a partner. So weird. My personal highlight memory of the day was hearing his ‘baby talk’ to her at the dinner table. I kid you not – baby talk complete with baby voice at a restaurant dinner table in the company of his adult kids and his ex wife. He’s nearly 60, she’s a lot younger. Absolute comedy gold, particulary as I’d never seen him behave like that in 30 yrs! It’s the only time in my whole life that my mouth has literally dropped open mid conversation as I was rendered speechless! I’d been dreading the day as I wasn’t at meh before then – I was by the end of that dinner!! Catapulted straight to Tuesday, so far into meh that the memory of his baby conversation has not stopped making me laugh!!

            • Elderly Chump, DITTO. I plan never to speak to him again. He is a liar and everything he says is tainted by that. He is old, fat and sick. His women are welcome to him and his dirty underwear. I am ashamed I tolerated so much abuse for so many years. Never again. I’m taking care of Little Thirtythreeyearsachump. He can sex that thirty-two year old side chick until he strokes out. Not my problem anymore.

    • Fuck’n narc. Sad sausage. Mine wanted to do the same thing. Sit and talk about the divorce over coffee and said the lawyer would only put us against each other and take out money. Well that’s what u just did with ur cheating. My reply ur probably right but the difference between her and u is at this point in time she hasn’t screwed me over. Why would I jeopardize my future and my sons to a known lier and manipulator. Go cry to ur affair partner! Piece o shit! Click to the rage channel. Felt good to feel the tension through the phone. Felt me getting my power back!

  • Attending my daughter’s middle school open house with daughter and her ( she didn’t tell me she was attending) and truly parallel parenting. I had no conversation with her – only teachers and my daughter. And ironically I don’t think anyone noticed not even my daughter.

    • Eventually it gets to be normal and even you won’t notice it any more. I have nothing to say to my XW – I don’t want to know anything about her and I don’t want her to know anything about me – so unless there’s a need for an exchange of information about the kids, I don’t talk to her even when we’re in the same place. It’s not that I’m not on speaking terms with her out of principle or anything – I just have nothing to say. At the last parent-teacher conference we each spoke to the teacher about our kid, politely trading turns and elaborating on each others’ points, but I’m pretty sure I didn’t directly address her. I would have if I’d needed to, but there are very few things that aren’t better addressed by email – so that each of us can refer back to the written record if necessary.

      It was uncomfortable for the first few months, just because I’d been taught that the polite thing to do is to engage in conversation with another person who’s in the same space as you. Once I unlearned that lesson – really convinced myself that silence is OK – it became a lot easier.

  • YMBARC if on the day of your retirement you leave a note for a person at work – a fellow chump – asking if he would like to have coffee or a beer sometime.

    It is the first romantic move I have made toward any guy since 1986.

    The short message includes the comment that “I believe you are worth it, knowing that I may have embarrassed myself with this note.” Simple, to the point, no apologies for putting myself out there. Boom.

    I am totally at peace with the idea he may be seeing someone or I may not be his type or whatever. I am really happy that I am overcoming the sense of failure and worthlessness that my X Asshat firmly implanted on me with his brutal and sudden discard after 28 years married. He made sure I knew I was a piece of shit as he departed to fuck around with a chick half his age (because of course the wife has to be evil to justify such a horrifying dick move). He threw me away like used tissue, future-faking me right up to the moment he sent me an e-mail as my only indication my life was over.

    So even if this guy is taken I hope he also gets a small boost knowing that someone finds he is valuable. And at least now he has my number if things change and wants to give it a shot.

    • Congratulations for putting yourself out there, AND being content even if there is no reciprocation. I hope you take yourself out regularly. Go to movies, go out and get a cup of coffee, go for walks… I decided that I would buy myself a little pop-up trailer and go camping all by myself. I never actually did go by myself. I went with girlfriends, siblings, cousins, and children. And I also stayed at KOAs and other campgrounds with plenty of RVs around in order to feel safe, but I DID IT! I’m rather proud of myself for doing so. And I’ll continue to enjoy it. I hope you find something (if you haven’t already done so) that gets you out there and enjoying life and are being grateful for just being alive.

  • YMBARC if you carefully move all her clothes and furniture into the garage and change the lock on the bedroom door.
    YMBARC if you photograph all the evidence of a broken door and furniture when she flew into a rage in front of the kids when she came home from a weekend with schmoopie to discover her husband was an ex-chump.
    YMBARC when your attorney handed the photos to the judge that issued a restraining order, temporary child support, wage garnishment and psych evalustion.

  • YMBARC if…..your friends commend you on your rock solid boundaries and no bs policy.

    YMBARC if…..you now repel narcs instead of attract them

    YMBARC if…..you are now able to say “That’s a personal problem” instead of jumping in to fix.

      • Yes to this Attie ! No more fixing others problems. It’s one thing to teach our kids how to manage things but even with them at a certain point they have to figure it out themselves or seek advice from experts (doctors,lawyers,etc.)

    • Love ‘thats a personal problem’! I will make note of it on my list of responses that I have accumulated since finding CL and CN

      ( I have a neighbor who uses the line, “That sounds like a you problem, not a me problem.” Yours fits right in with that one. LOVE IT.)

      Thank YOU!

  • “YMBARC if you”…laugh at her stupid logic re: the breakup and divorce. The other day, XW got into an arguement w/the teen girls. Instead of staying w/her to argue, the girls decided to step away and difffuse the situation. She then responds to the girls, “go ahead, leave like your dad did.” My girls were just incredulous to the statement, and responded back, “what are you talking about? You decided to have this relationship w/this guy and leave dad. Your logic makes no sense.”

    To this day, I still believe the XW had a mid-life crisis, and continues to deflect blame towards others while playing the victim. Continue to be proud of the girls for standing up to her, and having my back.

  • When you educate yourself on the disordered, learn what red flags could be, decide what is not acceptable to yourself, begin to set boundaries AND enforce them…and more easily and gracefully walk away from anything that does not serve your greater good.

  • YMBARC (thanks in large part to CL and CN) if your ex Douche marries the OW 5 months after divorce is final and then for some reason decides to have a big fancy party to celebrate the nuptials in your town even though he lives halfway across the country now, and you help your daughter pick out a dress and you iron it and you take pictures of her and her boyfriend before they go off to the party, and then after they leave you have friends over and sit outside in the beautiful weather and open champagne and make up funny but perhaps a little vulgar toasts to the newlyweds.

    • I never did that as I wasn’t yet mighty and had not yet reached meh when the dick married the skank. But in a heartbeat I’m ready now. Maybe I’ll just pop open that bottle of champagne tonight. Why wait for the perfect occasion. The occasion is NOW!

      • Sounds like a plan AC! I wasn’t at meh either since the dick married his latest ho 3 weeks after divorce was final. When she realizes how fast her money is dwindling and that he has a cialis habit , it’s anyone’s guess who ends it (or cheats first), since the power is out here, I better drink that champagne while it’s still cold. Cheers!

    • OMG . So the ex is still attempting to triangulate and make you feel shitty by having a wedding bash in the town where he no longer resides but you do? I think we all know people that are happy in their relationships or life do not feel the need to get someone’s goat. What a joke your ex is and his OWife, to go along with his program, complete dumb ass. They deserve one another.

      • How about it, KB22. My friends and I talked (after a couple glasses of champagne) about going by the restaurant where the party was and looking creepily in the window, which probably would have been hysterical but does not signal the appropriate level of meh, so I nixed the idea and the conversation turned to other more interesting subjects.

  • YMBARC if you take down all the mirrors he used to stare at himself in and replace them with beautiful art that makes me smile.
    YMBARC if your “little” business (has he called it) makes more money this past year than his architecture/design build did. Seems stooping the wife on the kitchen remodel didn’t do much for his reputation.

  • YMBARC, when you realize you no longer fall for the same lines as you did before. A male coworker seeing what I’ll fall for. He makes more money than me, but has repeatedly said that I should take him and another male coworker out for dinner or drinks. Or I should bring in food or treats for them. I can assure you that the old chumpy me would have for sure brought in homemade treats in for them, because I would have wanted my coworkers to like me. The question is now, do I like him/them and want them in my inner circle? I do not, but will remain friendly, fun and as hardworking as I always have been.

    YMBARC when you no longer let people push you around. You stick-up for yourself when being bullied and yelled at.

    YMBARC when you no longer over give or over help. You stop yourself when you are about to do a chumpy thing you used to do in the past. You have insight into your old behaviors and you can actually “see” that you are about to do the same old crap again.

    YMBARC, when you don’t internalize other people’s shitty behavior towards you as there is something wrong with yourself. Which in turn makes you “try harder” to win them over, so they will be decent and nice towards you. You no longer take on people’s bad emotions as if you caused them and did something wrong to make them act this way.

    YMBARC, when you realize you are perfectly fine on your own and would rather be alone then coupled with a pathological lying, serial cheating, porn and stripper addict. You value the peace and drama free life that you have, and are thankful that the anxiety and mindfucking are all in the past. And you value this so much, that strong boundaries are in place to keep the disordered out of your life!

    YAreARC, when you no longer care what your ex-cheater and his whore are up to. You know deep down in your heart that he wasn’t and isn’t who you thought he was when you married him. He’s a sparkly turd that has the “gift” of conning people in order to convince them that he’s 100% a “Nice Christian Man”. You have a long, long list of all the horrible things he did and said to you over the course of 23 years. This long list wipes out all the sparkly times you had with him. You now have the gift of wisdom to never fall for a sparkly turd again.

  • YMBARC when he texts you 15 months after your divorce is final and tells you that ‘He’s struggling, thinking about our life together… wants to meet to talk’. You ignore the text. Then he texts you to say that he ‘wanted to confess all of his infidelities…’.

    You finally respond and text him that ‘you can’t help him because you are not a mental health professional and you don’t want to hear more of his lies either’.

    I felt mighty. In the past I would have rushed to help him if he was in distress – and he knew that. Now I don’t see it as my problem to solve anymore.

    He mostly denied cheating and I know that he was cheating on me for most of our 24 year marriage. Previously I really wanted to know – to get ‘closure’ so his offer of a confession would have been reason enough to meet with him. Now I know he won’t ever change and any confession would be just more word salad excuses and lies. I’ll never know the truth – and I’m OK with that now. It really doesn’t matter because what he did to me was not acceptable – end of story.

    I am building the new life now – and it is awesome. Thank you CL & CN!

      • And the anbulanfe threatens to take him into mandatory mental evaluation. And you look at is as a few days of rest and relaxation.

    • New Beginnings, you are so brave and smart to not “put your head in the mindfuck blender”. I’ll keep this is mind if STBX contacts me again.

      He has only contacted me to demand I sign over my rights to his pensions and any spousal maintenance. I didn’t respond to that madness. I was amazed that he thought I should do that. Just forwarded that to my lawyer who immediately responded to not sign any documents without consulting him. Both of these men amused me. I would never do that. I must look stupid because they treat me as if I am stupid.

      Sometimes I feel awful that he hasn’t put any effort into redeeming our marriage. I’ve reframed that now. After thirty five years together and thirty three years married he knows me. He knows I keep my word. I told him that if I found out he was cheating he would be dead to me. I found out. He is dead to me. Dead men can’t fix a marriage.

      I really am better off now. I feel like I am reclaiming Thirtythreeyearsachump. I’m my own reclamation project!!!!

    • Ok, I’m not far enough down the road to MEH to contribute to today’s YMBARC thread, but I can cop to this! 🙂 Yay! A 1-2 word response, but usually no response at all. 🙂

      • Captain Chumpy Chumperton, you can get that down to one letter. Y is yes, N is No. FU is…FO is …. you get the idea. I love the thought of the disdain in a one letter response. You are simply to uninvolved to text out a whole word. Good Luck to you on the Road to Meh!

        • 😂😂😂 Yes! Love this! I think we need a whole list of acronyms for chumps to use via text. How about…
          NMP not my problem
          AYA ask your attorney
          SYIC see you in court
          SNS sorry not sorry
          Or really just throw some letters together and let them google the shit trying to figure out WTF you’re saying!!

          • These are great. I have filed them to share if others need them….My divorce is already final or I would use them.

            Thanks for sharing.

          • 2TimesaChump, hilarious! I keep a letter board by my front door for inspiration. These are going up! I’m adding TMTS, as homage to Chump Lady’s “Trust Me, They Suck!”

            I love the idea of garbled letters representing nothing, that is a perfect analogy of word salad.

            Thanks for making me LOL.

  • i’m still getting there but…

    he texted asking to have dinner tonight and i responded with “i already have plans” and he texted a sad emoji.

    progress!!!

  • YMBARC if…
    You tentatively start dating again, and find his profile on the same site, saying that he is 15 years younger than he is, and he is looking to date 20 year-olds. You then adjust your language, when referring to him, from “my ex partner” to “that con artist” You start looking at what happened to you as something similar to being scammed by a ponzi scheme.

    But then you realize that much healing has to happen, because you realize the extent to which you were taken by a complete fraud.

    • That’s a reality 2 x 4 on the highest order. What a lying, cheating, defrauding, dishonest, scamming, sick bastard. You are well rid of him.

  • I’m not a recovered chump yet. Still a lot to work through, which is more clear as I am still looking for employment after being let got from job nearly a month ago and limited in what I can apply for because I still have a pending assault charge because of the Bonus Imposter, which will stay on me until the 6th month sentence for trespass is complete. That will expire on October 17….and then it will probably be at least another month before the charges for the assault are actually dropped.

    I will get to meh when my youngest is out of high school or my kids’ bio donor dies…whichever comes first. Those two ways are the ONLY ways I will be able to be completely no contact…and when I am NC, life is much better.

  • If, after trying to come back for the umpteenth time, your ex texts you a message of sympathy and sorrow on the anniversary of your dad’s death, telling you “it just kills me you have to be alone today,” and you just ignore it…
    YMBARC

    If your soon-to-be-ex tries to tell you she just happened to run into the AP at dinner and they went into the car to “talk,” and all you say is “Bullsh*t!”… not revealing that the PI recorded all that “talking”…
    YMBARC

    If you throw out boxes and boxes of the cheater’s mementos she left in her rush to start a life with Prince Cheating…
    YMBARC

    If you eat all the mint ice cream you want now, as your ex hated even the sight of it so much she would throw it out …
    YMBARC

    If you know your ex is lying about, well, anything, from all the unfortunate experience you’ve had with that, and you just shrug and pass it on to her lawyer…
    YMBARC

    Long live chocolate mint!
    I think I’ll have some tonight.

      • Poconochump, she didn’t raise a stink about it until we were married. Before then, she just didn’t share in my dessert, like any normally tolerant person would. After that, she went on and on about how much she hated it, and started throwing it out. She claimed she couldn’t stand the smell of it… umm, how could you smell it when it was in a box in the freezer?

        One of her many attempts to come back involved sending mint cookies to me with the children. No joke. I guess she was trying to signal that she was going to be “magnanimous” and allow me to eat the ice cream flavor of my choice in my own house.

  • IMBARC – I have had many turning points along this line in the past couple of years but one of the biggies was when I read the ‘Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous’ book and he was written all over the pages.

    That freed me up from feeling like I was responsible for any of the crap he did. The guilt I was carrying instantly dropped off of my shoulders and has not returned – truly a miracle!

    His behavior was off from the very beginning of our relationship but I was naive and did not recognize it for what it was. Took me 30+ years to see the light!

  • YMBAMC when you get the grinch smile because the AP won the turd and will forever do the pick me dance against the wonderful chump who left the floor😈💪🏻😉.

    Making me smile just thinking about it.

      • Yes you will. Poconochump, it does feel good to write down here, doesn’t it? I read this site every day. I’ve had better support from Chump Nation than my own family.

        I love the visual of your “grinch smile”! Like you, I laugh thinking about my STBX, his ho worker and his side chick. I’ll be Working on my “Grinch smile”!

        • Thanks for the support. Ur making me chuckle about ur stbx, the ho worker, and side dish fuck. The triangulation! The drama! I can just picture them on “So You Think You Can Dance” and they perform the dance from Little Miss Sunshine and get the boot because their moves and backstory are so disordered. 💩💪🏻

          Are u grinch smiling?😉

            • Poconochump, YES!!!! So funny, I’m happy to be free of that cheater’s Triangle. I haven’t bothered to make sure ho worker knows about the thirty two year old side chick. That ho deserves to figure it out on her own. He will continue to cheat. He told me during marital counseling, “I am not going to change, I don’t see the need to change.”

              Good luck Ho Worker, Good Luck Side Chick, have fun!!! He isn’t my problem anymore!

  • YMBARC if you shove the old bed out a two-story window into the alley below.
    YMBARC if you take all the dishes (unwashed) in a box out to the dumpster
    YMBARC if you don’t just block but disconnect the phone
    YMBARC if you move out of your place and into one where the front door is behind a lot of human and architectural apartment security.
    YMBARC if you quit your job, pull up roots, leave town and get two new degrees, and don’t even know what X and his NXT are doing for years at a time until you hear that one of them has died.
    YMBARC if you don’t remember what day or year that was at this point because you took the fork in the road leading straight to the land of MEH and live there in warmth, success, gratitude and content.

    • Marysdoat,
      It sounds like you reached Meh, Congratulations! I’m still not there, but I have hope to be there soon.

      I was married 13 years, 2 kids with him, and just 7 months ago I discovered that he cheated since day one, with men and women.

      Recovery is taking me longer since he was a great father, never abusive, the sex was great, and for a decade he treated me like a princess. Then, 3 years ago he started to drink heavily, started to detach from family outings, but even in the last three years of our marriage no physical or verbal abuse.

      Just like you, I tossed out our mattress, removed all of our family pictures from the walls, packed his clothes and all electronics, and dishes he had purchased, and kicked him out on d-day (which was my birthday).

      Although I’m devastated for failing to see the real him, I’m proud of myself for walking away upon discovery and teaching my girls that boundaries are most important when it comes to healthy relationships.

      • Yeah…the great father bit…really?

        I used to think that he was the better parent than me. That he was more patient and kind and really loved our girls.

        Now that some time has passed ( 3 years since he told me) I’ve come to the conclusion that he is a shitty father, because a good one doesn’t make unilateral decisions that blow up the family, put the mom at risk sexually, financially, emotionally, and/or manipulate his children into thinking there’s something wrong with their mom because she can’t “get over it”

        He IS abusive. He abused your trust, he abused your girls by creating this world of insecurity for them that will affect their future in their own marriages.

        He is NOT a great father.

        • Kintsugi:
          Thank you! You are absolutely right. I thought he was a great father, but you are right, he didn’t give a shit about how his double life would affect our girls. All he care was about satisfying his needs.

          Thank you for pointing it out!

      • Oh, and my D-day was on our daughter’s 8th birthday. He told me while I was making a batch of salsa to can and cleaning up after a dinner of lasagna and birthday cake with all my other kids and my mom and dad and brothers and sisters and their kids. He told me he was leaving me 2 weeks later on my birthday. He also filed for divorce on the anniversary of the day we laid our son to rest.

        Yeah. He has an AWESOME way of twisiting emotionally gut wrenching envents on days that are significant and important. I’m still not over feeling sad on my daughter’s birthday and find myself dreading HER birthday. Im still trying to reframe it.

        Keep walking away, Neverknew. And do not give him an ounce of credit for anything. Reframe that as being bitch cookies….ie: nothing special because that’s what decent human beings actually DO and those things are not brownie point getters.

        • ((((Kintsugi))))
          Your posts always, always, tug at my heartstrings.
          YOU have such a big, kind, loving heart, and he just took your heart and ripped it into shreds.
          But, let me also say, Kintsugi, you rose far far above anything, or anyone, he could ever have even a tiny sliver of becoming.
          Still, he has put scars on your heart that are impossible to completely heal.
          I am so sorry for all you have suffered, especially the loss of your precious son.
          As MotherChumper told Tessie, her son will always live on in the hearts of CN, true, and your dear little newborn son, lives on in all our hearts.
          Our Children are so innocent, it is one thing for a cheater to hurt us, the Chump, but to hurt our Children, that is truly unforgivable.
          I will always thing of you with much love Kintsugi!

          • I am sorry if some words did not come out right, no chance to correct as having trouble posting today and hit send too early without correcting.
            I hope you know what I am trying to say.

  • When my lawyer called to break some delicate news to me. She told me my FWSTBXH had confessed to his lawyer that he’d spent more than $50,000 on prostitutes!! (Better to tell his lawyer before the forensic accountant figures it out). My reaction was, “Whaaaaaaaatt?? HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!” My lawyer said that wasn’t the reaction she was expecting. I laughed and laughed. So much for his being irresistible to women (Sure, if you PAY them!) So much for evil ol’ me being the cause of the marriage ending, as he’ll tell anyone who’ll listen. I get every dime back. Will I sign a non-disclosure agreement? Over my cold rotting corpse! It’s just too good. I can’t wait until the settlement (which seems much more in my favor now) is done, then I’m singing like a canary!

    • You might be a recovered chump if you finally gather the strength and the funds to take your ex back to court to hold him accountable for lying about where he lives in the last mediation, in order to obtain our kid on school nights. Our state orders mediation first. He was living in the same town and then said he was moving to the next closest town, about 40 minutes away. Turns out he lived an hour and a half away. I didn’t think it was good for the kiddo to be traveling that much during the school week. Plus, he lied under oath, and that was not what I agreed to.
      When he got the letter from my new lawyer, he gave me some b.s. story about how he put his house on the market and was planning to move back to my town. He asked me to hold off on taking him to court until he sold his house and moved back, except, I knew he had no plans to move back.
      I did not back down. I told him if that really was his plan, then he would have no trouble getting it in writing and having it filed with the court. Obviously ex has commitment issues and cannot be held on his word. I figure if that was the truth, he would have mentioned it sooner, since I had continually reminded him about his dishonesty in mediation. My suspicion was confirmed when I found a postmarked text to his OWife on his burner phone he sent home with our kid, telling her they were going to have to move back to my town because I was taking him to court. She told him to try to get sole custody…fuck that cunt.
      His house was on the market but he had a 2nd home further away: our original married home, which was his before the marriage; so when I found of his cheating, I moved out quickly. Like a chump, I did not sue him for my half of the house in the initial divorce and did not have a lawyer. His family legally represented him. He ended up moving back (kind of) so we could do split physical custody. He has the luxury of affording 3 homes.
      In our marriage, I generally went along with everything he wanted. The problems started when I started speaking up for myself.
      It’s wonderful to take your power back and atleast attempt to hold cheater to his word. Minimal/grey-rock contact is blissful and everything in writing so I don’t have to play mommy anymore.

  • YMBARC if you can saunter out to the x hubs’ truck with a towel on your head and a towel wrapped around your smokin hot body to give him my daughters overnight bag to him (he picked her up from school earlier) and your face says DILLIGAF.
    YMBARC if you do not even bat an eye as you pass the x on the road and your daughter says “was that daddy?” and your answer is “yup!”
    YMBARC if you wave and smile at the OW/New wife appliance as she sneaks looks at you thru the drawn blinds and it seriously doesn’t bother you
    YMBARC if you see your x at the store and you look at him and you think to yourself “I think I know that frickin’ guy….oh yeah…it’s the sperm donor. Huh. Now where is that Pepsi?”
    I’ve reached meh, ya’ll and its frickin amazing!!! Happy Friday!!!

    • Lasvegaschump, I would love the opportunity to smile and wave at OW turned wife. Good for you for being meh! It’s been a long journey but I believe I’m finally meh too. It’s been 6 years and she still keeps hidden from me, except for one opportuinty where I had where I ran into her picking up my kid from school early.
      I blocked her in with my car just as she was getting ready to pull out. I witnessed my kid getting into the front seat of her car, with no car seat. I had many large boxes of leftover paperwork from my ex’s business I ran, that I unloaded off onto her, instead of my ex, who I was expecting to see pick up our kid. I had my friend’s kids to pick up as well.
      It was hilarious because it had been so long since I’d seen her that she aged a great deal, and I had to ask if she was really who she was, because I couldn’t tell if she was she or her mother. Didn’t say that though, unfortunately. Wish I would have, but I was dumbfounded and almost shut down.
      I’m hoping for smiling, meh and smokin hot, next time I see her. Rock on!

  • YMBARC if on the last day you spend together you refuse to be questioned for the 1000th time over nonsense, say I can’t do this anymore, proceed to pack your and your kids clothes as he follows you around, and your response to his final empty “I love you” is a mad dog stare.
    -If you no longer answer emails (unless they are about children).
    -If he no longer has your phone number and he and his entire family are blocked from your social media.
    -If you can continue things you used to love that use to trigger you, like Zumba and working out.

  • when she says “you need to take responsibility for your actions that make me lie to you” and you just say WTF? and walk away shaking your head.

  • Mea culpa tizzypins, my post was not originally meant to be a reply to your post. I must have pressed the wrong button (damn smartphones!)
    I would be infuriated if my lawyer told me how much ex spent on hookers. I guess there does come a point where you cry until you laugh at being chumped. I hopw you get every dime back!

  • They day he received his surprise divorce serving was the day I took over total control, in a sense.
    He was behind the 8 ball and far behind me.

    The power difference was intoxicating and I enjoyed every minute and only humiliating him a couple times not allowing him in the house under certain circumstances.

  • “YMBARC if your cheater is cake eating and you lawyer up on the sly. Let them think they’ve got you fooled, and then BAM. HellOoo divorce summons.” OOOOHHHHH! This is 100% me!

    I’ve retained a Lawyer, Certified Financial Divorce chick and a Divorce Coach. My cheater thinks everything is hunky dory. I’m just counting down the days to his annual bonus and stock grant and once those are granted, I’m going to rock his world way worse than when I discovered he has been cheating on me for the past 15 years…

    Thank you CN and CL for helping me through the last four months of hell. Thank God I found you before I contemplated the pick me dance…

    • Wow, Ciao, that’s wonderful. I remember quite a few years ago a chump having her cheater served in the hotel room he shared with his whore “while he was away on business”. I thought that was brilliant. Isn’t it nice to put one over on them! You rock!

      • I had mine served at his AP house!!! Lol turns out he was out of town working on her condo on the beach while she stayed behind (first time For everything). Because he called the process server to make an appointment for the end of the week to meet him at his apartment to be served. It’s so so so funny. Because she had to have gotten the process servers note, then called my stbx to tell him. I get a kick out of it. I bet she got a kick out of it too. Schmoopie, she filed for divorce!! Now we can be together forever

  • You might be a recovered chump if you find out the skanky bar whore wants him to marry her and you pray he will even though he said he’d never marry her.

  • 20/20 has mark Gerardot making excuses about dumping his wife of 24 years for a 15 year younger woman. His wife ended up shooting the mistress and herself. He sounds like a typical cheater. His life was boring. His wife was too outspoken. Yeah. Cheater speak.

    • Yeah, I couldn’t even watch that. If he’d kept his dick in his pants there wouldn’t have BEEN two deaths.`

    • Let go – this happened just a few miles away from me. Shocking when it happened, and I had never seen pics of him, the cheater. Ugh. The best thing though was reading the responses on Twitter to 20/20’s question of who’s fault it was. Majority said he was at fault. Maybe we are turning the corner on the collective perception of these cheaters!

  • I am a recovered chump at 2 and a half years as I now enjoy being single, rarely think of ex and am getting on with everything I want to do in life. Thank you CL and CN.

  • YMBARC if you ignore the electronic communication from the X suggesting sitting together at your offspring’s graduation except to block that channel. It’s your child’s perrogative to invite that bio parent too and it’s yours to choose not to interact with an X who lied and cheated on you.

  • YMBARC when you feel an immense sense of relief at his final departure with his chosen replacement.

    YMBARC when you can get the Tale of Woe down to an elevator pitch, eg. ‘He wasn’t a good fit for me, and he liked someone else better’.

    YMBARC when you realise how happy you are now – genuine happiness that goes right through you from top to bottom.

    YMBARC when you weed your friendship list and social circle of dubious and poor quality relationships, and end up with a core group of really good and trustworthy people that’s surprisingly bigger than you thought.

    YMBARC when you encounter other untrustworthy people in your present life – yes, you might fall for their schtick at first, but you recover from the inevitable crises really, really fast, and with minimal blowback.

    YMBARC when you find that you just drop in to Chumplady for laughs and commiserations every now and then, but you always value her advice and the hive mind of wisdom.

  • When you’ve been fighting for your life to survive from illness and he says “ILYBININWY”. His business photos he sends from work trip he’s not wearing his wedding ring. He moves out with all the financial information (you trusted him with finances because you were so sick). He tells you he “he hasn’t been happy “ (you tell him that it hasn’t been exactly the happiest years of your life!-you also pleaded with him while you were sick to go out with friends etc. and reach out to others for fun and support). He continued to withhold all the financial information, he has knowledge of everything I’m up to but I don’t have critical information. I got the burner phone to reach out to a lawyer and dear friends and hatched a plan. Opened my own bank account. I served him, discovered a tremendous amount of debt since he moved out. I went NC after he moved out. Lots of evidence of AP. Sadly that money could be used for my remaining treatment.
    I’m dealing with DARVO. Everything is my fault (because I got sick). The lies, control, twisting and gaslighting are unbelievable. Discarded but I see the BS. I even heard an associate lawyer that I was working with mention offhandedly that even his own lawyer doesn’t like him. That gave me the most validation.

  • When my x received a copy of our final divorce orders he sent me a sad sausage email about how our marriage had been the single most important thing to him, and that he just couldn’t believe that we’d gone from loving one another to me hating him…. and I wasn’t even remotely tempted to respond.

    Bonus – The very last time I had to be in the same room as x to sign some paperwork, x leaned over and meekly asked me if he could talk to me for five minutes after we were done with the business at hand. I told him “no” without any hesitation. His incredulous look and surprised tone of “No?” were hilarious.

    No contact – priceless.

    • Yeah, if he’s dumb enough to think “oh the marriage was so important to me” has any validity once you know it wasn’t important enough to keep his pants on, he’s just not worth talking to.

  • Someone mentioned WAAY upthread the Tom Hardy movie, Locke. So last night I sat down and watched it (to be honest I would watch Tom Hardy opening an envelope as I find him so sexy). Well in this movie he wasn’t at all sexy, just a nerdy guy. It was hard going honestly as it is all filmed with him driving on a motorway in the pouring rain to be with his one-night fling who is in labour – and who he admits he has no feelings for – she was just a one-night fling (I’m not giving much away here, it comes out pretty early on). You get the impression he was just a fool who made a VERY BIG DRUNKEN MISTAKE! But one line in the movie jumped out at me. He told “Gareth” on the phone “a few hours ago I had a wife, a family, a house and a job, and now I have nothing”. And that about sums it up in so many of our cheaters’ lives doesn’t it!

  • YMBARC:
    … my first YMBARC moment – organising my exit for the day after he came back from a 2 month holiday abroad.
    …2nd – walking away from him in silence outside the bank 2 days later when he started badmouthing and abusing me. He had to apologise, so I would go in with him to sign the papers to close the joint account. AND my daughter drove past on her way to work and saw us and when she told me and seemed upset at what I did, I told her straight out that that behaviour was why I left him and I wasn’t standing for that crap any more.
    … you block him on email and phone and set up a shared calendar and you stand your ground against your 16 year old kid who would rather do it differently, telling him straight out that as his dad chose to keep on being abusive by email and text, those avenues of communication were now closed. And you ignore the sulks and carry on as normal. (Said kid has changed his tune after several very painful confrontations with his dad – sad but truth is often painful to learn).
    … you don’t minimise stuff to your kids, and you don’t engage and/or try and explain it away when their dad is shitty to them. You just say nothing, and sometimes shrug, then change the subject.
    … you tell your kids when you think they are behaving badly and why. You don’t be afraid to have your standards and to stick to them.
    … your loyal sister is so angry on your behalf about a particular photo at an event, so you go check it out – but you don’t recognise your ex (bright lighting to hide wrinkes and a ghastly shiny suit don’t you know bwaahahahahaha) and you have already dropped the Switzerland friend in the photo with him who swore she would never see him again whether you stayed friends with her or not. Then you block the facebook page you saw it on. And all you can think is that you are SO GLAD you are no longer responsible for anyone’s image management and you are not part of that tedious, fake, shallow, tawdry world any more. And especially that you didn’t have to go and pretend at this particular party and be known as the wife of the guy in the ghastly shiny suit. Buh-bye, with jazz hands
    … another garrulous sister calls to wish you happy birthday and asks you if you heard from him on your birthday and do you ever talk to him and you say “no, never.” The end. She is dying to gossip but she can’t get a bite. Because what the f**k do I know about some dude I haven’t seen or talked to for 2 years? Call him if you want to know how he is. Next question please.
    … you burn all the memorabilia because now you realise it was all part of the image management, and scatter the ashes. Not done yet, but scheduled.
    … you stop giving advice, but you proffer instead Chump Lady’s excellent questions – Is this acceptable to you? Is that ok with you? What do you need? How can I help?
    … you SLEEP IN without guilt, when you want to. You wear the same clothes all the time because you like them, they are clean and decent, and you don’t care what other people think. And now you are absolutely convinced that that is 100% OKAY.

  • YMBRC when he says “ you were supposed to be winning me back” and you see the funny side instead of wondering what you did wrong.

  • YMBRC If your XH calls you stranded on the side of the road (in the VW van that he took when you kicked him out despite you wanting it, but knowing he and AP screwed in it) on his way to a kid event that you are both going to in another city… and you contemplate helping him out by driving an extra hour back out of your way, yet ultimately stay strong and tell him to call his AP to figure it out.

    PS And I’ll really be healed when I don’t even feel a ping of guilt for that.

  • YMBAFC…
    If you can listen to “God Gave Me You”, and not want to cry or scream or change the station.
    That’s all I got right now.

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