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Dear Chump Lady, She won’t move out

Dear Chump Lady,

I came home from a doctor’s appointment early to catch my wife of 20 years cheating on me with an old friend of hers. When I opened the back door I heard someone running upstairs and my wife standing in the living room looking at me. His clothes were on the sofa so I knew he was upstairs naked. She said they had just got done having sex.

I had suspected it for a few months because we were having a lot of issues. She blames me for it and says she’s in love with him, and wants to live as roommates.

I am heartbroken. Even having marital issues, I have never been unfaithful to my wife. It’s like she’s a different person. She blames my lack of romance for it.

I don’t know what to do. We have a house and kids, luckily the kids are grown and no longer live with us. But I can’t live with her after this. I don’t know what I did that she had to do this to me.

My question is — My wife won’t move out of the house. I said to her: “If you’re in love with him then why don’t you go live with him?” Her response: “Maybe I don’t want to.”

I don’t get it. It has been miserable living with her, I fucking cringe now when I come home because I don’t know what I’m gonna see when I walk in the house since D-day. I want to move out since she won’t. But I heard it would be considered abandonment if I did that. Do you have any insight or similar stories on this matter?

Sincerely,

Heart Ripped Out

Dear Heart Ripped Out,

You just have to admire the audacity of fuckwits. This cake situation — you and Mr. Naked Coward — works for her. She’s got all the tawdry thrills of mid-day fucks on the sofa plus all the stability of her “roommate” marriage.

Cease kibble production? End this? Never. She’s waving off the consequences of her horrible behavior as if you were an annoying gnat.

Of COURSE you don’t want to live in the same space where she is. OF COURSE this is traumatic and enraging.

Her non-response response is a mindfuck. “Maybe I don’t want to” is a power play. You and whose army?  As if the only thing here that matters is what SHE wants. As if it’s completely natural to be caught in flagrante delicto with her Schmoopie. So, what’s for dinner?

She is solidifying her entitlement and seeing if you’ll take it. Because that’s what fuckwits do.

My advice to you is — Don’t take it. Impose consequences immediately.

First, see a lawyer. Don’t assume you can’t move out. If you can, get OUT. Or go stay with friends or family for awhile.

Do, organize all your financial papers and put them somewhere safe.

Don’t leave any personal valuables behind. Now would be a good time to rent a storage locker and start moving things. Or find a friend’s basement.

In other words, live in reality — whether she likes it or not — whether she wants to live in reality or not — you are ENDING this marriage. So everything you do from this point forward is with that goal in mind.

It may be that you have to spend some long months living together while separated (it’s agony, if you can avoid this I strongly suggest you do), but if you must, keep yourself busy doing all the organizational tasks of divorce. DO NOT ENGAGE with her about any of this. Your lawyer is your firewall.

Fully expect her response to be more mindfuckery and entitlement. Remember the three channels — rage, self-pity, and charm.

This is how you’re going to deflect each one in this temporarily-living-with-a-fuckwit situation.

Rage: “WHERE ARE YOU MOVING YOUR FISHING RODS?! How dare you move anything out of this house!”

Response: (Crickets)

First rule of Fight Club is not everything merits a response. Just keep packing your stuff. It helps to itemize everything (I did Excel spreadsheets) and take photographs of everything, so she can’t bitch later that you took her gold-plated soup ladle or something.

Rage: I LOVE MY BOYFRIEND AND HE’S A BETTER LAY THAN YOU!

Response: (Move toward a friend’s sofa for a period of couch surfing.)

Again, no response to emotional baiting. Which could be a pretext for getting a protection from abuse order on YOU, to force you to move out. (It’s been known to happen.) Avoid ALL confrontations with your ex.

Getting out of this is like diffusing a bomb. Be very, very stealth and focused.

Self-Pity: “But, but (quivering lip), maybe it won’t work out with Bruno! Wherever shall I go? Whatever shall I do?”

Response: (HRO starts up the power saw. The hedges need trimming.)

Yep, that’s right — the proper response again to mindfuckery is NO RESPONSE. Just ACTION. Tidy hedges help sell a house. Get on that.

Her Schmoopie problems aren’t your problems.

Charm: “But I would never leave you!”

Response: “Well, I am leaving you.”

Fuckwits erroneously think “I would never leave you” is some sort of compliment. It’s not. They’re saying you’re a chump, and they’ll never stop their bloodsucking because you’re pretty good kibbles.

And yes, they really do think they’re that awesome that you should put up with their bullshit just because they’re fabulous and you aren’t.

“I would never leave you” is also code for “I don’t like consequences.”

HRO, again, NOT. YOUR. PROBLEM.

“We” weren’t having marital problems. SHE is the marital problem. There are many ways to respond to marital issues. Fucking Mr. Naked Coward on your living room sofa is not one of them.

She’s going to have to solve her “don’t wanna” problem on her own. I predict a lot of “don’t wanna” discomfort in her near future.

Full speed ahead on those consequences, HRO. There’s a good life waiting for you here on the other side.

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.
  • I have a hard time thinking you can’t do something to prevent Mr. Fucking Naked coming to your home to fuck your wife to be honest!!! Definitely see a lawyer about that one, and as CL says, be VERY careful that she doesn’t try to pull some bullshit “abuse” story on you. Don’t rise to her bait!

    • My cheater refused to leave so I moved all his things to the basement. My lawyer said to go through the house and remove anything that was of value to me and put it in storage. Prepare the house like you were going to rent it to strangers. So my grandmas dishes and pictures were a few things that went.
      See a lawyer and start the process. That will wake her up!!

    • i am with you on that one. i dont know what i would do if i had to live with wasband after knowing he is was fucking some demon. But to have said demon continue to come to my house would kill me. he is a better man then i could be. i would have chased the naked man up the stairs and humiliate him, taking pictures and threatening to kick his ass. i would have forced naked man to leave without his clothes and pushed the wife out too. you want her you got her thing.. .. ..seriously how did that end. did naked man come down for his clothes? did wife take his clothes to him? did he jump out a window? did the op just stand there while naked man was getting dressed? if Naked man was still coming to the house, i would make naked mans life miserable. it would not be pretty. then again, i would also not be a nice person to my spouse either. i packed all wasbands clothes and had them in boxes. i texted him to come get his shit and dont come back. in my opinion, that is what he should have done. after kicking naked man and fuckwife out of the house, he should have packed all her things in boxes and put them on the porch. of course, easier said then done especially if he was blindsided.

      personally i dont think the man should leave his house. that is most likely was fuckwife wants and is hoping for. in some states, it could be used against him in court and he might lose his rights to the house. i completely agree on moving the important and sentimental things to a storage. he should also separate his finances. if they had a joint account, he might not be able to close it without her signature. but he could start a new checking account and start his direct deposit to that account. i am not sure how it works with credit cards because i did not have any but if he does he might need to close those or contact the cards to put a hold or something. he should also gather his vehicle titles, birth certificate and social security card and any other important documents and get them out of the house. same with pictures and/or family videos.

      PS she is enjoying your pain. she is staying to watch your hurting and broken hearted. some people love to know they caused you pain. the faster you go to a lawyer, the faster you get her out. I am so sorry you are going thru this. Good luck

    • Sell the couch, tell her you need money and will be inviting young girls to the house to party, but she is welcome to join

  • If you live in the UK, consider a Matrimonial Home Rights Notice which means the other half cannot take out money from the house without your permission. It stopped Mr stripping all the assets in similar circumstance.
    Sorry for your troubles.
    Lawyer up.

  • I went through this. My ex wanted to live in the house indefinitely while I cared for the kids, paid the bills and he slept around.
    When I got my own place so did he. The house went up for sale and it was done. He stuck me with everything while he did nothing (ok he painted and did some flooring before the for sale went up) but everything else, bills included were on me. The clean up of the house? On me. Because he was “done with this shit hole”. Really it just impeded on his time with the AP.
    All of it worth it for my freedom and peace of mind.
    Start moving forward. You’ll thank yourself later.

    • Yes, I had to do everything even though he no longer wanted to be married. My x tried to break me – he pretended I didn’t exist while I started the divorce process, took care of kid stuff, got the house in order, and paid the bills. He didn’t break me and while life is not perfect- it is so much sweeter now.

      • Omg Deee and Freeandhappy, this must be straight out of the cheater playbook! Pre-CL, thanks to the RIC hell, I did the “180” 🤬🤬🤬🤢🤢🤢🤯🤯🤯 and agreed to sell our family home, which I built to spec and loved (including Show stopping gardens I had lovingly and solely tended for ten years), so XH wouldn’t have the stress of a mortgage that “made” him cheat and abandon! He said he’d choose me and kids and leave the young golddigging whore if I did so. Then XH didn’t even show up for the move – he never even came back to get his own things. It was all a con job to get me to sell it. Our kids became suicidal over this whole thing —- the two youngest were sobbing as they helped me move everything out of our home, including all XH’s shit. I should have gone completely NC on DDay 1, gotten the best lawyer there is, and filed and stayed put. To add extreme insult to injury, I had to watch my home appreciate $800K in the two years after that stupid pick me move on my part — a lifetime fortune! But I had sold it to try to “get him back.” It still enrages me!

        • I am so sorry to read this because I have had all my homes built and have had very strong connections with them. My ex and I built a cute (small) granny flat on a large property to live in while we were to build the main house. For two years he kept stalling on the main house, saying he was tired of work and wanted to quit, sell our property and live off our savings. I didn’t understand, he was his own boss, only 45 years old and we had two teenagers in school! Then I find out that he had been having an affair with a 20 year old (an employee) for those two years and wanted to leave his whole life behind to be with her. Selling up before coming clean would have made it easier for him to skip off into the sunset with her. Now I have found out and we are divorcing, there is no choice but to sell the property anyway. Sadly, there is a real estate glut at the moment and the valuation came in $550,000 below what we have spent on it. It is so hard to accept the fact that you have to lose so much to be free of them. I hope you have found a nice home now. I keep dreaming of the future when this is all over and I can build my own little place and live in peace with my beautiful kids, fuckwit free.

      • Their entitlement knows no bounds. I bought the Twat out of our house although had we done it “properly” he would have got nothing since I put 95% of the money into it. Whatevs (at this point)! But when he buggered off back to the States chasing the latest piece of ass he didn’t even empty his 3-bedroomed rented farmhouse (plus 2 garages + dog) and I ended up doing that too! And we were divorced already! Now technically I didn’t have to do this but (a) I knew it would fall to my kids to do and (b) I knew they would leave it till the last weekend, so I went up there every weekend for 2 months and emptied the place – I mean, there was still washing in the washing machine and stale coffee grounds in the coffee pot – not to mention taking the dog he got 5 months earlier back to the pound (he was re-adopted). But seriously!!!! “Entitlement” doesn’t even cover it!

  • My ex was like this, wouldn’t move out. But didn’t want to be faithful. Asked me to share him, unfortunately found out he had a sti, paper evidence. Still denied it. Ow hates me, still after 6 years, we haven’t lived together. She dumped her kids, for him. But he didn’t move in with her. She called me “a human splinter”. I actually told my ex her behaviour is not acceptable he said “it not my problem”. I would be interesting to know why she hates me. Maybe one day I should ask her.

    • she hates you because he told her some kind of bullshit story that you were a mean hateful wife who did not have sex with him. he made you look like the crazy wife who wouldnt let him go but makes his life miserable.. .. . he had to make you look bad so she would not think he was bad for cheating on you.

      but whatever he told her, she also knows subconsciously that it is bullshit since he was still living with you and she feels threatened by you because you are the wife. you are the one he married. you are the one he was living with.. .. she still feels threatened because you might want him back. and he obvious loved you enough once to marry you.

    • OW hates you because he spun tall tales to her about how you are awful and have him shackled to you and you are the only reason he can’t be with her, his twu luv. He told her that you are standing in their way. She was stupid enough to buy into that bs. In her deluded mind, he isn’t with her because of you and so she hates you.

      Plus, reality is biting her in the rear. He married you, but even now, after getting divorced, he won’t marry her and won’t even move in with her even though she destroyed her own family for the sake of her delusional love story with a cheater. In her mind, you still have what she wants. There is also a really good possibility that he continues to spin some tales and use you as an excuse to avoid moving forward with her. So she hates you while trying to ignore the fact that she got involved with a cheating, lying turd. Deed down she might know it’s a problem, but it’s easier to make you the bad guy than to face her own stupidity.

      Do not speak or deal with her. One thing I learned involuntarily about Owhores is that they are completely psycho, delusional, and insane. They actually make the narc fuckwit look like the sane one. Do not step into that pile. I guarantee you that it’s not worth it.

    • Who cares why a woman who abandoned her kids hates you? My guess is she hates herself and gets angry at anyone who is obviously better than her. An OW calling the betrayed spouse a “human splinter” is such obvious projection I can’t even.
      Besides, ex not wanting to move out away from you was a nasty power move on her. I don’t usually feel sorry for OWs but this one is particularly pitiful… she’s all kinds of messed up.

  • Mine moved into the spare bedroom on D-Day & I had to tell him to get out. They really are the most arrogant, self-entitled wankers on planet Earth. I got all the goods on him misusing joint funds those six weeks he was in the house. Use this time wisely to get all the evidence you need.

  • Not only could I not stop OM coming round, I couldn’t stop him moving in once I went (abuse order threats of not seeing kids for 6 months if I didn’t volunteer – all huff and puff I realise now).
    And I can’t stop paying the mortgage for him being there or future credit screwed.

    • my heart hurts to hear this. I hope it is just a temporary situation and soon a lawyer can sort it out.

    • It’s terrible what these OM/OW do to chumps like us.
      My ex had made so many threats to me, the police advised me to leave- I took my kids. While I am hiding because of threats his attorney got a restraining order against me. Kinda blew up once Judge saw all his threats; he posted online. He still got to live in house and already moved OW in- so they told me I had to rent something ( Stay at home mom). Got new attorney!
      He had to buy me out of the house. (Best thing that happened to me.) New House; New Town; New Job = Fresh Start!
      Unless I had a sizeable amount of money I was getting out of the sell of the house or was ordered by court to pay payments I wouldn’t. You could end up paying indefinitely life of mortgage (10-30 years)your better off to scrap your credit and start over (7years max).
      Seriously talk to your lawyer and a financial planner.
      I hope it works out!

  • Lawyer, lawyer, lawyer, accountant!

    Get both – but lawyer first.

    The proper response to anything she says or writes is nothing (except to possibly write it down and inform your lawyer).

    Gather and photocopy every single piece of paper that is about money. Grocery bills. Insurance policies (ask your lawyer if you can change the beneficiary of your life insurance policies NOW). 401K/IRA/brokerage accounts [yours (s), hers and yours (pl)]. The tax forms you’ve filed for AT LEAST the past 7 years. CREDIT CARD STATEMENTS. The works!

    I’m sorry she chose to cheat rather than be an adult and discuss the problems to fix or end them through a divorce.
    ————————————————————–
    Fuckwits erroneously think “I would never leave you” is some sort of compliment. It’s not. They’re saying you’re a chump, and they’ll never stop their bloodsucking because you’re pretty good kibbles.

    And yes, they really do think they’re that awesome that you should put up with their bullshit just because they’re fabulous and you aren’t.

    “I would never leave you” is also code for “I don’t like consequences.”
    —————————————————————

    Have this printed out and keep a copy in your car (that is in your name alone?), pocket, a drawer at work, etc. Do NOT let down your guard and do NOT stick your wick in her again. No matter how sentimental or what she says. It’s a ploy. In my home state, having sex with your cheating spouse after you’ve discovered their infidelity is an act of forgiveness and no longer grounds for a divorce.

    Is adultery necessary to divorce? No. But some people have enough sense of shame or their public image is SO important that they don’t want it as the reason. Use that, if possible.

    Good luck to you HeRO!

  • I lived this for 10 months after catching KK trying to host a 3rd midday fuckfest with the Carrot Singer, and our daughters were 13 and 12 at the time.

    This key point is most important: No response to emotional baiting. “Maybe I don’t want to” is the first salvo in what (trust me) will be an ongoing onslaught as long as you’re co-habitating.

    Do your best to act as if the eyes of the court system are on you at all times. That does not mean “smile and play nice as we figure things out” — it DOES mean not doing anything that any reasonable, objective person would interpret as abusive or destructive.

    And if you happen to slip, if you can’t take it any longer and end up taking the bait, don’t beat yourself up over it. Reset the “days without accident” counter and start again. Never fault yourself for having a human response to being treated so disrepectfully.

    • Great advice as always from UXWorld. <3

      My ex stayed in the house for another 2.5 months after D-Day, saying he was afraid he would lose rights over it (financial) if he left. Which I'm fairly certain was total bullshit…I think what he was REALLY afraid of was having to go and ask friends to stay at their place, thereby making them aware of his situation and what he had done. I cried a lot but mostly tried to ignore him during those couple of months, and the day he moved out was my REAL beginning. It is so, so important to have your own space to come home to where you're safe and secure and can start to heal.

      • My XW also initially refused to move out, claiming she was worried about the legal consequences. In the end I agreed to sign a piece of paper stating that she was not abandoning the family, and she left. The paper itself had zero legal force, but it allowed her to say to herself (and her friends, and her AP) “See? I didn’t abandon anyone. IG signed this piece of paper that says so.” It was 100% worth it to get her out of the house.

        They often aren’t thinking rationally, so a symbolic concession on your part can sometimes make a big difference in day-to-day reality.

        • I asked the Dickhead why he didn’t move out. He said that he was fine living in the basement. I was the one who had a problem with it. Like ‘it’ was a minor infraction or a temporary spat and not the full-fledged he’s cheated, lied and betrayed me. Thank goodness it was only a little over 2 months before I moved out and our house was sold shortly after.

    • Ux knows.
      Listen, think about how to apply that info and make the most of it.
      I had to put up with Narkles the Clown refusing to leave the house as well.
      Yes. It is a shit show from hell. I followed all the advice from CL & CN, he got no reaction no matter what he said, nothing when he flipped the channels, nothing when he tried so hard to bait me. It laid the ground work for going No contact, the path to the truth and the light when he did have to leave.
      While he was here with me I learned to use the hate to propel me. At the end of every day when I could not sleep I took the time and energy and put it into organizing my documents, making spread sheets about spending, organizing my finances, and figuring out what I wanted to keep and what I wanted to ditch in the house once he was gone. Once a week I called my attorney or my paralegal and asked “what do you need from me to move this along?” Then I did whatever it was they asked. I was D-day to divorced in under 5 months.

  • “Maybe I don’t want to”

    My hopium altered brain took this to mean “There is a chance for our marriage”…it was the morning after DDay and I told him to get the papers filled out so I could sign them (since his cheating clearly signed a wish to end the marriage, no?) and he came up with that gem. I wish that I had known then what he really meant, I would have been out and done years earlier.

    “But I would never leave you!”

    My cheater said this AFTER moving 3000 miles away for 18 months where he signed a lease and bought new furniture. When asked how he could forget aforementioned move, he said that he didnt LIVE there, he just WORKED there. OK, now that we cleared that up.

    His “I never moved away” delusion was right up there with “Susan and I never had sex” and “You and I never got married” (grandma wore chiffon, 180 guests, arch of swords – ringing any bells?).

  • Chumplady is right, in house separation is horrible. If you can avoid it, avoid it. I did it for 9 months, until he found a job and our divorce coach told him he needed to move.

    HRO, it gets better. Once you have physical distance and you’re not sleeping under the same roof, you will get a lot of peace from that. Good luck to you

      • Apparently they pretty much do three things:

        1. Pre-legal advice
        2. Hand-holding
        3. Organizing

        All of which is available free here and is 24/7/365 without pretending that everyone are still friends after a betrayal and blaming the person who didn’t cheat.

  • “And yes, they really do think they’re that awesome that you should put up with their bullshit just because they’re fabulous and you aren’t.”

    I’d always wondered why my X told me here was worried about me when I left him. He really thought I couldn’t survive without him. Hard to comprehend how awesome he thinks he is.

    The X had bought another house and still refused to move out. Finally, his brother and sister came from Germany and packed him up and moved him to his new place. It was one of the best presents I ever received from them.

    • My husband thought I couldn’t survive without him either.

      It was bizarre. I had before I met him, I did after he left.

      Ironically he ended up homeless in his car for months while leaving me voicemails telling me how “irresponsible & unstable” I was.

      Finally one day I said “you realize I’m doing fine, right? I’m living in the same place with the same job taking care of our daughter day-to-day.

      I’m also the most stable woman you’ve ever had in your life period and this is the longest relationship of any kind you’ve ever had with a woman – of any kind.”

      He was raised in and out of foster care and his main mother was – ahem – very emotionally and mentally unstable. I honestly think he was fighting with her every time he was trying to pick fights with me. Quite the skein. I won’t untangle it further.

      My only point is, they project their crap on us, it is definitely THEIR crap. Crazy crap? Irresponsible crap? Abusive crap? All of it. So many flavors of shit sandwich to deal with.

      The women in the original letter sounds like she has some serious toddler “you-can’t-make-me!” issues.

      It reminds me of when I ask my 3 year old son to pick up his toys and his says “I don’t wants to! Sister can clean it up!”

  • She is sticking around because she hasn’t lined up her ducks yet. Be careful. She’s setting herself up at your expense.

    Get all joint accounts separated or locked down immediately.

    Take a day off of work and collect all your paperwork, make phone calls and get an appointment with a lawyer to learn your rights. Change all your passwords to everything now.

    And, while you’re at it, collect evidence. Go through the computer and find emails. Go through receipts or bank statements and start noting odd purchases.

    My ex pretended to work things out with me the last few months before he left for good – even signed us up for a couple’s therapy weekend and started with a new MC. He swore he broke things off with the OW and was committed to doing whatever it took to save the marriage. Within two weeks of this claim, he created a secret email account and got back in touch with her. For those final months, he sent her long love-bomb emails about how much he loved her, how he was working things out in his life to be with her, and detailing every move to her about how he was shutting down his life with me to be reunited with her.

    Now he claims that he had nothing to do with her in those months and left completely on his own because the marriage was over. It was all his impression management to make it look like he didn’t leave me for another woman. It didn’t work because I found the emails and shared it with his family to know the truth.

    Absolutely no doubt your wife is doing something similar. She’s biding her time to get herself set up and leave while saving face in some way. In the meantime, she’s getting you to try to do the pick-me dance to either distract you from what she’s really doing or to just gain the ego kibbles in seeing how much value you are willing to give up of yourself for her. It’s sickening.

    Lawyer up ASAP and get smart about this. It’s YOU or HER. Pick YOU.

    • Go to Best Buy or online and get yourself a voice activated recorder and keep it on you at all times. Or keep your phone recording. These women will do false domestic abuse claims many times and you don’t want to have a police record around your neck in addition to the divorce.

      • Video only if you live in a state where audio recording requires the consent of both parties — many US states (CA, WA, etc) do and recording audio without consent is a crime. Video isn’t, however.

      • Sociopathic, narcissistic law-breaking men will also falsely accuse their spouses (wives) of domestic abuse. I agree with Mother Chumper. Although I am in state in which it is illegal to record someone without the person’s consent, my husband (now ex-husband) over years secretly recorded me as well as read my email–The ironic thing was I was the one who was faithful and had a ‘mundane’ life–you know, working, studying for doctorate, raising young kids…Paranoid person that my ex is, he still routinely accuses (male) employers and co-workers, some of whom were his affair partners, of sexually harassing him–five jobs in five years, some lasting only a few weeks…While we were engaged, he lied about being bi. He’s closeted now.

    • Yes, what OptionNoMore said is what I was thinking!! The two months post D-day, when we were in MC with the pastor, the Cheater was up to no good behind my back. One day he sprung The Divorce Letter on me and totally blindsided me. Thankfully God brought three wise women who were cheated on by their husbands at this crucial time in my life and they all got me going on lawyering up and all the other important things to do that are always noted here at CL.

      The Cheater wouldn’t move out either. “He had his rights!” Well, what about my rights and my children’s rights? They asked their dad to move out too, but he didn’t care one bit that he was destroying me and hurting our children. As they say, narcs/sociopaths/psychopaths have no empathy at all. Well, he most certainly did have it for himself. The Cheater felt so sorry for HIMSELF and would cry for himself like the baby he is.

      The Cheater bought another house and he wouldn’t move into it. He continued to stay in our house and broke me down day after day. I asked my lawyer if I could move out and he said yes. So I packed up everything I wanted and moved out with our kids. I left him to deal with cleaning and selling the house. For a man who never ever did ANY housework or ANY yard work except for cutting the grass in 20 years; it felt good to leave him with the mess he made. But of course his Mommy came to his rescue and took care of everything for her “perfect and special” 45 year old bouncing baby boy.

      Heart Ripped Out, you wife is no longer your friend. She’s your enemy and you need to treat her as you would an enemy. You are at war and you need to defend yourself by going to a lawyer ASAP and filing for divorce. Interview lots of lawyers as every single lawyer you see, she can no longer use. Make copies of every financial paper and get them out of the house and store them someplace safe. Get your cherished items out of the house. Cancel credit cards. Do not engage with her. Take your power back and show her what a Mighty Man looks like! That lawyer that you hire will be able to tell you if you can move ASAP. Good luck and we are all here for you at CN!

  • The Twat had moved in with the Skank but roughly every 2-3 weeks those little ol’ kiddies had a spat and he would move back in “because it’s my house too” (he once even tried to have sex with me because “he had rights” – which I immediately informed him stopped exactly where mine started)! But those months were the hardest months of my life because he got to have the life he wanted with the Skank, kiddy spats and all, but I couldn’t move ahead with my life one way or another. And then when the divorce had gone through and a few months later I had FINALLY paid him out on his share of the house he was stunned that I took his house key off him, just STUNNED! But seriously, I can’t believe HRO can’t get a restraining order against the wife-fucker, if for no other reason than surely to God that must constitute provocation! Good luck!

    • Yep, mine was astonished when I changed the locks immediately after the divorce was finalized. “How am I supposed to get my stuff?” Make arrangements when someone is here.

  • HRO, you are actually lucky because hardly any of these cheaters ever get caught in the act of banging the ap. They claim Emotional Affair, and act like you are just a jealous shrew who doesn’t like their friends. Mine said I couldn’t prove he did “anything”. I told him he couldn’t prove he didn’t and threw his ass out anyway.

    • Right? It’s a relationship, not a court case. You don’t need a formal order to kick a douche out of your heart.

  • I lived with house separation (because he “couldn’t afford” to move out) for several months. Nothing would entice him to leave. He lived in the guest room and did absolutely nothing to contribute to the household – later he told me that he was tired of doing everything by himself. Kids were in college but living at home so I ate the shit sandwich of preparing an evening meal for everyone. The only reason he finally moved out was because the judge told him that he (the judge) would not grant the divorce if we were still living under the same roof. He was out within two weeks. I think the OW paid his deposits on the apartment. Nothing much changed after he left other than the amount of junk food in the house decreased.

    • Ha. Been there.

      The house stopped smelling like the alcohol he claimed he wasn’t drinking. (I don’t drink so it wasn’t much of a mystery).

  • “Maybe I don’t want to” Translation: OM hasn’t committed and has no plans to move in with your wife. Your wife may be waiting for him to change his mind. Or maybe OM has no place of his own and is waiting for you to move out so he can park his ass at your house. Of course typical cheater, she blames you for the affair. They are pieces of work. Get a lawyer and file.

    • I was never smart enough to see that “Maybe I dont want to” meant that Susan was not yet ready to give up the fiance who put the $39,000 ring on her finger.

      Perhaps my Cheater Husband was on the begging end of their relationship.

      I kept wondering when/is she would do the math and realize she would end up working class if she married my Cheater …I would have gotten half his retirement, alimony, child support x3. They eventually did break up, so I guess it happened eventually. She and her husband later divorced

      • Unicornomore, it would appear from your posts that your husband was absolutely miserable even during his affair. Correct me if I’m wrong. The OW married someone she obviously didn’t care for and is now divorced. OW didn’t care enough for your husband either. So she had two men she could give two shits about and so she could not have been happy. Your husband dropped dead, everything went to you and now you are married to a great guy. You’re alive, happy and financially solvent (again I’m assuming) so you are the true winner in the end.

  • Bet $1 that her “boyfriend” is either a bum or sees her as an easy lay otherwise she would be gung ho to play house with him.
    The poor chump needs to listen to CL and lawyer up and bail out of that situation. Nothing good and much bad can come from a situation like that.

      • I was going to say the same thing. -OR- OM is living in his mommy’s basement. Similar situation to HRO happened to someone I know. The cheaters couldn’t do it at OM’s place because mommy was always home.

  • This is perfect, CL. I had similar issues. I moved across the world to marry DoDoBrain. When I finally wanted to divorce his scamming ass he tried it all to avoid consequences. I also live in a country where leaving the marital home is considered a crime. My residence permit was based on the sham married. I lawyered up immediately.

    DoDoBrain had already abandoned the house twice by the time I moved out. I was able to make him agree to a no-fault, no lawyers divorce, the fastest divorce possible. Hah!

    I have already moved out even though we are not yet legally separated–thus legally allowed to leave. The bureaucracy is so slow here that it will take at least 6-8 months to have the court appointment for legal separation. Then it is 6 months of wait before the legal divorce court appointment. It may take over 1 yr to get divorced, but I have already started the process. I moved out. Changed my number, and neither DoDoBrain nor his toxic family and friends know where I live. He has to face the consequences. He tried self-pity, rage, revenge, and pathetic faux charn channels. I did not budge. It was glorious to see him throw tantrums as consequences arrived. He even faked a heart attack. Pathetic!! I don’t know where he is, and I don’t give a damn. I am waiting for Tuesday.

  • See a lawyer NOW. Do exactly what they say. Move anything of value that is unquestionably yours to another location. Gather all documentation of your finances TODAY — pay stubs, mortgage, bank accts, retirement, insurance, everything — and make copies for yourself and the lawyer. Today! Really. And then follow all of the above advice about not engaging. Cheaters like big emotional reaction, so vent elsewhere and give them “gray rock.” This all sucks, but you are on your way out to a better place.

  • Sorry this happened but I’ll assume your rental agreement as a roommate is month to month at this point. Thank God. Lawyer up and protect u and ur family. Get out of that house somehow for ur own sanity. Ur stbxw has shown her true narcissist colors and it’s only going to get worse for u and the kids. That person u fell in love with was a fake and she’s dead. Time to walk over ur roommate and gain a life. Sucks. Good luck.

  • Mine wanted schmoopie AND felt he was entitled to our master bedroom while he lived at our house because “it’s all your fault”. Wow just wow. I was the faithful spouse, the working spouse the one he ripped off for all of the retirement money etc etc. But it was all my fault because I “nagged” him. Entitled pos. Luckily he only stayed long enough to talk schmoopie into letting him move in ( and use her as his new mamma ). The trash truly did take itself out. I agree with everything CL says though.

  • Wow HRO! I thought this shit only happened in cartoons and soap operas.

    I never cease to marvel at how stupid people can be. In your case, even though you got home early from your appointment, it seems these two fuckwits can’t count or read time. OR they suffer from a case of super omnipotence

    Lawyer up! Sorry this is happening to you

    • ‘they suffer from a case of super omnipotence’ LOL this is hilarious! Can’t we all relate? Who would want to live on the edge like that? Having sex, wondering if the partner will come home? And duuuh, he lives there, didn’t see that happening.
      They’re omnipotent, and pretty stupid.
      These cheaters make me shake my head. I guess because I love peace. Aaah, the peaceful life, not married to an omnipotent, entitled, cheater.

  • “I don’t know what I did that she HAD to do this to me.”

    Nothing. Not a single that MADE her do this to you – she’s an entitled bitch. Maybe she has been all along, maybe it’s blossomed in the past few years but deal with who she is NOW.

  • ” I don’t know what I did that she had to do this to me.” HRO, you gotta stop thinking this way. Retrain your mind. This shit is not your fault. She did not “have” to do anything, she CHOSE to be a selfish hurful asshole. Remember, (to quote CL) you were in the same less-than-stellar marriage she was in, and you didn’t do these horrible things. You’re a good person. She’s not. Talk to a lawyer ASAP

  • Wow!

    Lots of good advice here. I want to respond to a couple of points.

    HRO: I don’t know what I did that she had to do this to me.

    HRO, you didn’t do anything that warrants cheating. I know it’s natural to blame yourself–that’s also a chumpy move, by the way–but you are NOT at fault here. In fact, she really doesn’t want to lose you.

    But she wants you around not because she loves and respects you, but because you are a Spouse Appliance. Spouse Appliances are great. In your case, they come with a house, financial security, handyman skills, etc. I am not sure if you cook meals, too, but often Spouse Appliances are good at food preparation. Who wouldn’t want a Spouse Appliance?

    So stop beating yourself up about having done something that caused her to cheat. She cheated because she’s able to cheat. Even if you’d been having marriage problems, that’s not a reason to cheat. If she felt that they were unresolvable, she’d file for divorce. She didn’t because she actually likes having you around as a Spouse Appliance.

    So, what to do now. First, ask yourself if this is acceptable to you. If it isn’t–and it sounds as if you don’t want to live with this–then you need to take action. Divorce her.

    You need to check with family law specialists in your area. Make appointments with at least 3 of the best lawyers in this area. When you talk with them, indicate that your wife is cheating on you and that you anticipate a high conflict divorce. See if the lawyer has experience with this situation. Find out the law in your area and what you can expect out of a divorce. Ask if you can get your own place. If you are the main source of income, you may need to eat the shit sandwich of paying temporary spousal support. However, given that your children are grown, that support doesn’t need to be for long. She will need a space to transition into the workforce.

    Also talk to your lawyer about financial protection. In my state, a restraining order is the term used for financial protection against one spouse liquidating assets in order to hide them.

    Then talk with your accountant. If you’ve been married long enough for your children to be grown, then you have significant assets in your home and retirement, and possibly you have investment income as well. Work with your accountant and talk with a divorce financial planner about the smartest financial moves you can make that will satisfy divorce law in your state while still allowing you room to recoup any losses.

    Then file.

    Once you file, then be prepared for the cycling among Rage, Self-Pity, and Charm. Follow CL’s advice. Get some self-care lined up (therapy is very useful, as is an exercise program).

    Good luck!

  • My fuckwit wife told me she never loved me (after 22 years!) and wanted a divorce. We shared time at the house with our teenage sons. I soon discovered I was the “baby sitter” so she could fuck around! Moved all her stuff out of our room and into garage. Put a lock on the bedroom door. Left the house as per arrangement.
    She came home from a weekend “out” and went ape shit in front of kids. Broke down bedroom door, busted up furniture, etc. When I eventually got back in the house I took photos of the damage. My attorney used them to get a restraining order to get her out of house!
    Not saying this is good idea for everyone, but fastidiously recording conditions in the shared marital house is important. It can go a long ways towards ending the marriage equitably.

  • Another thought just occurred to me. I think it would be a good idea to make sure you adult kids also know exactly what is going on so that there can be no doubt as to who the “baddie” in this situation is!!

  • These kinds of situations are what lawyers and courts are for. One of you needs to leave, and pronto. You can get into SOMEPLACE within a couple of days where you can shower and rest, even if it’s just a crappy hotel. Take everything that is solely yours, and worth something, with you. Rent a storage space for a month if you need to; these places aren’t all that expensive.

    And yes, the lawyers may prevent Mr. Coward from getting into your home, which you still have legal rights to.

  • My XW also refused to leave the house. She wanted me to move into the basement because I filed for divorce. I refused. So she moved downstairs. Of course, she used this against me with the kids. Saying I wasn’t a gentleman. I didn’t move out until my lawyer said I could, to protect my stake in the house. House was sold a couple months later. Also my XW tried the abuse angle also. In my face SCREAMING until she was red in the face. I had to lock myself in the bathroom sometimes. BE CAREFUL. She didn’t leave for the married OM because he refused to leave his wife.

  • OMG the cake-eaters!! They sure love to keep that spouse around, to take care of all the ‘chores’. And maybe you’ll cry and pine and beg for their love, too! Yum yum, kibbles.
    My X really, really wanted a harem. I could be in it! Where do these nuts come from? He was also insanely jealous if a man even talked to me. It was such a mindfuck.
    HRO, I’ll bet you’re an awesome guy. Get away from this using woman, and once you’re free and heal your heart, you will be a catch, for a woman with ethics. Some day you’ll look back on this and, maybe not laugh, but shake your head that you put up with so much! Onward!

    • FreeWoman, my XH had and probably still has a large harem of women. And like you, he would get jealous if there was any hint of me having a male friend who was truly “just a friend”. And it took me awhile to realize he was jealous, because he knew that all his “just friends” were all potential affair partners for him. So of course he would think that any male attention I was getting was because these guys were being a predator like he was.

  • Find top 3 best, most aggressive divorce lawyers in your area, schedule consultations and listen carefully to what they tell you. Hire the one you like the best and then do exactly what they tell you to do or not do. The moving out thing depends on your jurisdiction. Yes, you need to be careful with that but most importantly you need to get properly educated on your rights in your particular area and you can only get that from a good attorney who specializes in divorces.

    All other advice is spot on. Change passwords, gather up all documents before she does something that will make life difficult. Move quickly and don’t tell her anything. Let the attorney deal with her.

    As for coming home, see her in your mind like a pile of stinking trash, odious, unpleasant and just waiting on trash day. Once that comes, it will be gone and you can enjoy fresh clear air again. A matter of time really and the faster you ramp up on getting that trash day scheduled along, the better.

    As for her “maybe I don’t want to”…..hilarious. Read that as the loser she is fucking can’t or won’t put a roof over her head, so this delusional creature thinks that you’ll continue to pay her bills while she fucks around elsewhere. Time for her to learn otherwise. Just do it via a good divorce attorney and for yourself, avoid her like the plague. Do not get pulled into conversations or arguments, do not respond to anything, clamp down and bite your tongue at all costs and just document what she does and says or demands to your attorney and again, let them deal with her. More than grey rock, rolling boulder heading for divorce and booting her out of your life and nothing is getting in your way or moving you to do anything else.

    Meanwhile, if you must cohabitate for awhile, then lean on friends, family, hobbies to stay out of the house as much as possible. Surround yourself with people you like and do things you enjoy to get your mind off things and to relieve stress as much as possible. Just be sure that you’ve secured all documents and anything else you value away from the house or anything she can access.

  • HRO- Just put her stuff out on the driveway. Tell her to move in with her boyfriend. You didn’t do anything wrong. And I am SO tired of these cheaters claiming that it was because the love died in the marriage or they fell in love with someone else. You don’t do that. Sex doesn’t get bad unless one person decides they need something different. Some people just decide they want something new. To prove to themselves they still have it or because they are perpetual adolescents…I don’t know. But unless she demanded a divorce from you for years and you refused to let her go and locked her up in the bedroom…she has no excuse to start interviewing people naked so she can “fall in love” again. I am so sorry this happened to you.

    • You can’t always put their stuff in bags outside, or demand they move out, unfortunately. If their name is on the house title, you probably can’t. I put nutbag X’s stuff out on the lawn one night, because he was doing all kinds of outrageous cheating, and I was mad. It was fun! Until he called the police, and the officer made me bring it all back in.
      Now I can laugh about it! But then, aaaargh!

      • This is correct. If their name is on the house title, do NOT change the locks, burn or toss their stuff, or even assume you can keep them from remaining in the house. That might all feel good at the time, but will backfire on you later if they decide to use your actions as leverage against you.

  • My cheater moved out after Dday, but came back three days later claiming I legally could not prevent him from doing so (true) and he was going to live in the extra bedroom. That was our situation for the next 4.5 months, an absolutely nightmare of stress for me. As soon as I was financially able, I moved out with son to an apartment. Cheater remained in marital home for the next two YEARS without paying the mortgage. Because he had quit his job just a few weeks after Dday, he supported himself during this time by taking in boarders he found through Craigslist.

    On the day house was finally going to be foreclosed, he filed bankruptcy, which gave him another six months in the house without paying a dime. Finally, the house foreclosed and sold at auction. Cheater then proceeded to spend the next several years moving from place to place, wherever someone would let him live for free or for little rent. He did not have an actual job during any of this. All of his financial shenanigans went on my credit record as well. Fucking nightmare.

    Be aware that if you move out, judge may rule that you have given up your rights to the home, so if you want to keep it in the divorce, talk to a lawyer before making a move. I knew the house was lost as soon as cheater told me he didn’t want to be married any longer, and there was no way I could have paid the mortgage on my own, so the house I loved was just another loss added to the rest of the grief he caused me.

  • Married 35 years, I discovered my cheating ex having a 2 year affair with a whore I sent him divorce papers. He lived in the basement for 9 months until the house was in my name only. Bought him out- he wouldn’t leave until day of closing. He immediately moved into whores home until she died then moved into another woman’s house. Told my son he doesn’t want to live alone. 🤮
    But I’m free of the betrayal now.
    You have to rid yourself of the cheating wife who will only bring you down. She is a low class narcissist who should live in the street with garbage!
    Stay strong and listen to us honest chumps who better their lives by removing cheating spouses. You deserve so much better. 👍🏻

  • Side note- “Maybe I don’t want to” surely equals naked sofa surfer isn’t committing.

    Anyway, I too had in-house separation for 12 months, 2 weeks, and 2 days after the decision to divorce. (Which was after the typical pick me period.) It was pure hell. I now refer to it as “The bad year.” I made a lot of mistakes in the divorce process and this year was the pinnacle of those mistakes. I was being threatened and was in an really abusive situation (all the little stories could be a book.) My plan was waiting until he left to contact a lawyer because I was not safe. I was being threatened with everything, including my life, if I talked to a lawyer or filed through the courts. He wouldn’t leave and I couldn’t. (Now I wish I’d had the strength to get a restraining order and a lawyer of course.) There were at least three separate incidences where he would have and should have been carted off to jail. But I didn’t want my kids (14 and 17 at the time) to have that memory. I left us all in danger because I was too chicken and I will forever feel guilty about that. I thought playing nice was my best strategy. It wasn’t.

    He kept saying he’d leave. After the kids go back to school became after the holidays, became after DS’s birthday, then after a work trip… when those excuses ran out it was “actually I want the house and I’ll buy you out” (the offer for this buyout was 1/2 of 70% of the house’s worth.) Then he learned that the court requires an appraisal so all the sudden he didn’t want the house anymore. But he still would not fucking leave. I stayed on a friend’s sofa when the kids were away with friends because I thought my only safety was having them around as witnesses. Mr. Perfect Executive VP had a strong image management agenda. I begged him to leave or give me access to money so I could leave. I was too ashamed and embarrassed to tell friends what was happening at home. I suggested he move in with gold digger work skank (he was pissed at the suggestion and said “she won’t let me”) then I learned she had a tiny not-fancy enough place plus he was “cheating” on the work skank (remember we all used to work together and info gets around.) — Who the F knows what was really happening there. Perhaps he thought the house abandonment thing would hurt him, but I don’t think that’s a thing in my state.

    The last rant (which I described last Friday here) where he backed me up against a wall and punched it so hard -right next to my head- he thought he broke his hand- right next to my head and the screamed that “I” “pissed him off on purpose” and “broke his fucking hand you bitch” My 14 yo daughter was home and witnessed it from another room. I decided then that I was DONE. By that point it had been a year. I was a mess, weighed 90#s on my 5’5” frame, was having panic attacks regularly, throwing up all the time, acne, couldn’t sleep, he woke me up twice naked grinding on me wanting sex even though we stayed in separate bedrooms, (I was scared to turn him down because of his rage when ego bruised so I cried and shook and told him I quit taking birth control and would get pregnant. He damn near raped me anyway.) Another middle of the night he come into “my” bedroom with his iPorn (ipad) watching porn and masturbating and demanded “aren’t you going to respond?” I said I don’t have a response for this, and he sneered “see, that’s part of your problem prude”. (Honestly, would that turn any woman on even if you were in a loving relationship??! WTF) He was using my fear to be a monster. DD (DS at college then) and I moved out and into a crap rental in about 2 hours leaving most my belongings behind because of time and very little space. I paid the deposit and rent with our joint checking account much to his fury but that finally got the ball rolling for the divorce.

    Then we both agreed on a realtor, took the photos for listing, staged the house, I signed the paperwork and then he suddenly refused to sign it. He was super happy in the nice house, with all the nice things, fucking around w/ multiple skanks. FWD to few moths later – Divorce finally finished (only because I signed away my right to lifetime spousal support, 50% of the child support the formula came up, and walked away from a lot of money.) Court paperwork gave a time limit to sell house and I was gaining some strength and told him that house was going on the market or I was getting an attorney involved. We took the first offer (those people get a good deal!) because I was DONE. His mother flew out and they proceed to take everything of even minute value out of the house and move it to his new, big place. Like MY personal things, tools my Dad left me when he died, he threw away/sold/donated furniture, all the holiday decorations, and the kids’ personal belongings. (And never shared the money of course.) We were divorced already, I was broke and had no recourse. It still pisses me off that I had to start over like a college kid in my mid 40’s.

    I was a SAHM for 18 years which was his choice. We worked in the same industry and he was fucking everyone and trying to keep it under cover. I also out-ranked him and made more money even though I am 7 years younger which he found emasculating. So I took one for the team and quit. I cannot get my carrier back on. I was a jr executive at 26, I have a good degree, 10 years of management experience. I am an actual receptionist now. I have to have another 30 hour/week job plus do side gigs to make ends meet. Kids see him maybe 3-4 times per year for a 1-2 hour meal and he pays for their health insurance and nothing else. If I send a Dr bill to split he is horrible and nasty to me AND the related kid so I don’t even bother anymore. Meanwhile he gets a new car every 2 to 2.5 years, lives in his big nice house (cheated on gold digger skank moved in) makes about 200k per year and is running the company in which we both used to work; me in management and him as a sales guy.

    Life sure isn’t fair, but my fear and playing nice strategy really, really hurt me. Don’t be like me.

    • Im so sorry Beenchumped. He is a monster for sure and you are well rid of him. I get the pain of losing so much–mine took all of the retirement money( I am now 59 can’t make it up its too late). Lots happened but I was lucky in that he only stayed in our home for 6 weeks until his skank let him move in. He stole as much as he could and since I was the one working I bought him out. You have to try to cut any news of him out of your life, I know how painful it is. Skank bought him a trip to Portugal, I lost my shit. He had stolen so much but still could go away?? My kids know not to tell me anything about him, I just don’t want to know or compare. ((hugs))

      • I’m so sorry for you; it is so, so wrong!

        Living without the crazy asshole is of course wonderful (I’m sure you agree,) but when they come out on top it is so hard to really heal. I used to hold my breath for the karma, (either good for me or bad for him) but I don’t think it is coming. I wish I just didn’t care. While I do care less, I still struggle emotionally because I am struggling financially and it’s a constant reminder of the vast unjustness of it all.

        • Glad you told your story anyone thinking of playing nice with the disordered should take heed. It’s a no win and can even get far worse.
          Karma will come for your ex but from the sounds of it he sounds deranged so I am quite sure he is already a tormented man. Just keep moving forward… if you are still in your 40’s you are still young. I landed a fantastic position at 55 years of age.

            • HRO…Do NOT respond. Don’t get angry at all. Because she can and will provoke you to respond. She will file for a restraining order against you and have you evicted out of your house. You will not be allowed into your home.
              My Ex did this to me.
              My Ex moved his girlfriend into my house….while we were married because the restraining order allowed him to legally do so.

              Document, document, document….get everything in order.

              Never under estimate what someone will do

        • Been Chumped, I think that we might be in the same boat although I am a bit older than you. To hang onto a shred of sanity after seeing my exes ride off into the sunset, after much abuse by them, knowing that I need to work until I drop, I have started trying to focus on the positive aspects of working/legally hustling for money–more time with people (which is important to me now as I have not had a partner for over two years and Prince Charming isn’t coming here for me), possibly some positive distraction from the s–t sandwich of financial duress that came from being divorced by someone who commits crimes without remorse, and ideally, some positive contribution to the world before my life ends. I sometimes think of the movie The Last Emperor, about the last emperor of China who seemed to have it all for years but ended his life deposed as a gardener. I hope that your situation improves!

    • 16 years (17 years by the final divorce) and career not carrier. Ugh, sorry, I’m sure there are more type-os…

    • Oh my god that is so rough. I wish you some peace and happiness for yourself. That is a lot to go through. I fear what could come in the future over custody and the like. I now think anything is possible. I didn’t know people could be like this, wish I had never seen it. It has really changed my perceptions and so does reading your story. You would never think it possible. I hope you feel you are now safe at least this is one scary tale.

    • Wow, your story is the poster child for get a good lawyer immediately.

      On that note, for anyone who is a stay at home partner, anyone who feels stuck because the cheater controls the money – please know that you can have free consultations and more importantly, divorce attorneys can charge your spouse for their fees if you are effectively a financial dependent. Not only that, but in many jurisdictions, they can get you temporary court mandated support. You do not have to yield to abuse or give up what is yours. Please please please go seek a good attorney who knows how to do these things and get yourself proper help. You can be protected from your abuser.

  • HRO Bro,

    Hey Dude. Welcome to the club. You’re not alone. I’m 16 months divorced and I know EXACTLY how you feel. Same scenario as you with grown kids. (Tell Them) XW left me 9 Sep 2017 and moved in with her lover to a campground about 40 mins drive from our marital home. D-day (discovery) was about a month beforehand. Best Buy has digital audio recorders for 49 bucks. Get One. Now.

    Get Chump Lady’s book on audio CD and listen to it. Over and over and over again. THIS IS YOUR NEW PROGRAMMING PARADIGM. This will help you sort the forthcoming emotional garbage you’ll go through on your journey back to Finding You. That’s where you’re headed.

    You wrote, “I am heartbroken. Even having marital issues, I have never been unfaithful to my wife. It’s like she’s a different person. She blames (fill in the blank)…”

    HRO! DO YOU SEE THAT!? What you wrote? THAT’S CALLED ‘AGENCY’. Conscious mental awareness of one’s decisions. It implies fore thought. A decision Tree of OPTIONS. Once you come out of shock (and I believe you are in shock) and master this 1 concrete concept, you’ll be on your way to abandoning any Doubt that you were to blame for her actions. Your Trust has been shattered along with your vision of the person and life you thought was your reality. Somewhere downstream from all this chaos you’re experiencing now, you may find this has been going on a lot longer than you ever realized- with more men than you realized. The tip of the iceburg.

    Go through all the comments here and make an Action Item list of the things being suggested by these veterans of Infidelity (Adultery). Give her “the rope to hang herself with’, and document EVERYTHING. COVERTLY!! Leave the house for a walk around the block when she attacks. DO NOT have sex with her AGAIN. EVER! It won’t change a thing and only serves up further humiliation for you. It’s self protection. Self Care!!

    You’ll need resources for your recovery post-divorce. There are support group websites to help you get your head around this thing. I highly reccomend finding one and a sponsor (guide) you can relate to. Get some phone numbers to call when you find yourself in no man’s land and need the understanding voice of men going through the same thing.

    I’ve read that it takes 2 to 5 years to get back to a state of mental normalcy after the divorce. It’s not a process that I CAN fast track. Even if I wanted to.

    My experience has changed me, and the way I view the world around me now. You can’t walk around your new reality, you must walk THROUGH it.

    • Yes, Marcus is right: get the audiobook, or read and reread Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life.

      It will help you SO much!

      “It’s like she’s a different person.” I actually said to my STBX: “Who ARE you??”

      The shock, as well as this whole alternate reality (their now revealed double life), puts you way off balance, so advantage: HER. You’ve got to act to protect yourself! So definitely SEE A LAWYER, sooner than later. You need an attorney on your side.

      I did the separated in-house thing. UGH. What a nightmare. Learn how to under-react, even when you’re pissed. This skill is important.

      Hang in there. We promise people here all the time: it gets better. Really, it does.

      • Hopium4,
        My response when the scales fell away and I saw the real person inhabiting her skin was…” I don’t know who you Are”

    • He also needs to somehow get her out of the house long enough to have a hidden camera put in to get the goods on his wife’s activities while he’s at work. Guaranteed the naked coward will be on it and then HRO can use having absolute proof of her infidelity as leverage in the divorce.

      Definitely he should not have sex with her. In some jurisdictions, this nullifies a claim of adultery. It is assumed you sanction the extramarital sex or you would not be having sex with your spouse.

      He also needs to get tested for STDs. Since there is no male test for HPV, the legal agreement should require she be tested so he will be able to inform future sex partners of possible risk. Condoms aren’t affective against HPV, though I doubt she uses them with her boyfriend anyway.

      • Careful with hidden cameras. In some jurisdictions that can land you in jail not to mention that whatever you record cannot not be used regardless.

  • Get a lawyer and file and have her served. You can then move out without a claim of abandonment of property. Temp order should establish if you will continue to pay part of mortgage until house can be sold or one person buying out the other.

    I got lucky- eventually my cheater wife moved out (she said that our daughter preferred I stay in the house). But it worked out well because it helped to ensure the house was ready to sell. I was paranoid that if XW had control of the house she would sabotage the selling of it.

    As far as the emotional stuff. It’s not your fault. You though you knew who she was, but it was all a scam. It will take you awhile to wrap your brain around that level of craziness- I’m still working on it.

  • Once you get rid of your cheating wife, you may want to sell the house. Who wants the memory of her schtupping some rando every time you walk in the door. No amount of cleaning and smudging with sage will get rid of that toxicity.

    You got this !

  • I am new here and it is a long story but I am glad to have finally found people who I can relate to! I think my husband is having an affair but can’t prove it. He says things that make no sense to me like he needs to have other females for companionship. But I am different. Huh? Why can’t I be his female companion? And then it has been well we don’t communicate very well. Ok then tell me what you are upset about but he won’t really tell me. I think I am a chump and have been for a long time. He denies any actual affair but I’m suspicious.

    • I’ve been married to him for 28 years and together for 30. I’ve considered him my best friend and tell him everything. He decided without even talking to me he was going to retire and go back to school. His retirement is a pittance because he is so young. So now he is going to community college and wanting to make companions with young women. Because we don’t communicate well? I don’t get it. I told him I would never tell him I need to hang out with other men because he and I were not communicating. I would figure out a way to communicate then. He had no answer for that. We are supposed to talk about this again on Friday. I think he may try to baffle me with a big bunch of bullshit. I am torn between constant anger and hurt.

      • Hi there Another Chump,

        You’re having what’s known as “a gut feeling”. Pay attention to that. He’s getting ready to ditch you if he hasn’t already. I know this from experience. It’s the way the abandonment started for many of us. Do not be confused by his evasions, half truths and confusing non answers. You know what it means.

        Time to take a long cold hard look at your life together and get some real answers. I’m sorry to be the voice of doom! It may take a long time for that gut feeling to play out, but please trust your instincts! Don’t waste time doubting yourself and smoking that hopium. Walk right into your fears, because that’s where your sanity lies. A big hug and all the best to you!

        • That’s good advice. I agree he is planning, and it will go better for Another Chump if you plan, too. He seems callous, making large decisions and leaving you out of it. That’s not really a relationship! Where’s the intimacy? How can you trust him, when he’s forging ahead with his life, and ignoring your needs? Just some things to think about. I think if you consulted a lawyer, it would be a smart move. (Don’t tell him, it’s ok for you to protect yourself)
          Stay close to Chump Nation! We care.

      • Another chump: listen to your feelings on this. He’s trying to set you up for an open relationship you didn’t agree to. It sounds like he might not have found someone to take him up on his bs but he sure is trying. That’s incredibly disrespectful to you and he’s probably thinking he can have his cake and eat it too. My husband started that bs. Basically felt that he was entitled to have more than one woman now that I was old at age 33 and he was now less geeky and made six figures. He by his own admission fell down a mental health rabbit hole. I’m still with him but if he ever starts those behaviors again I’m 100% gone.

        I want you to know that you deserve so much better ((hugs))

        • I think yes he wants an “open relationship “ but really just for him. He would not like me hanging out with male friends to his exclusion or seeking out male friends.
          He can’t afford to live in his own. His small retirement is not enough. So he needs my income for living expenses and health care and he has lots of health issues. Some real some I think purely somatic!
          He also has ED issues. Maybe he wants to try and see if these younger women will fix that problem.

          • He is using you. Get out now! He chose to retire early when he didn’t have enough money in the bank? Get a good lawyer and let him go, he is a leech.

            Get clear, real fast. Once he uses up everything you have to offer, he WILL leave you. You may have to pay him alimony (have you considered that might be a reason why he went early retirement, to get alimony from you in event of divorce?), and the longer you stay married the longer you may have to pay depending on the laws in your area.

            Follow Chumplady’s advice on divorce, find out who the top 3-4 lawyers are and go talk to them. Get your ducks in a row.

            • Got a list of lawyers in my area. Looking them up and starting contact. I live in a no fault community property state so need lots of advice on financial/legal issues.

            • I could understand why he wanted to leave that job. Horrible people to work for. Very hostile environment. However his not discussing anything with me first is what really pissed me off and shows no respect for us as a couple. He did have savings that lasted about 5 months.
              I’ve gotten a list of attorneys in my area so I can start calling. I live in a community property state so have to take that into account.

      • Another Chump, please trust your intuition. Where there is confusion, there’s usually deception. My XH said that he needed to have “healthy female friends” and it was also “a part of his DNA” that he had to have “healthy female friends”. Nope! He’s a serial cheater who’s always on the prowl for a new side piece.

        “We are supposed to talk about this again on Friday. I think he may try to baffle me with a big bunch of bullshit.”

        Yep! Putting off important conversations to sometime in the future. Gives him time to think of some more bs to mind fxck you with!

        As Chump Lady says, “Is this relationship acceptable to you?” Do you want to be married to a man who ” needs to have other females for companionship”? As someone who was married to someone who said almost the same thing to me, my answer is a BIG NO! My XH had me so confused that I even tried to “understand” his need for “healthy female friends”. That’s how much control he had over me! Keep writing to let us know how things are going. (((Hugs)))

  • Another chump, he’s either already cheating or looking to cheat. Go with your gut and make your plans to act accordingly. And well done you on being so smart so quickly! Good luck to you!

    • Thank you Artie. I can relate to sooo much I’ve seen here. For months I thought I was crazy! We will see what he has to say on Friday. It is interesting that when our daughters now exboyfriend would not see her when they were supposed to be a couple and he was in town, the bf kept telling her we need to communicate but he would not spend time with her. My daughter was quite confused and her dad said he is making no sense. Maybe you should dump him. She broke up with that jackass. Good for her at 22 years old.
      Now her dad is doing that shit with me.

  • If you haven’t done so already, you should tell your kids what happened. They are adults, they deserve to know the truth. Tell them everything, because your soon to be ex (hopefully) will spin a tall tale to them, to get them on her side, and she might even go so far as to claim that you abused her. Never underestimate the lengths a cheater will go to to keep their image and reputation intact. She thought nothing of hurting and using you. She will not care about destroying your reputation and relationships.

    Be matter of fact and calm when you tell your kids. Do not let emotion take over. Stick to the facts, and tell them what is going on, and what will happen in the future. Tell them that you want them to know the truth and that you don’t want them caught in the middle. Remain calm even when your wife goes nutty and pulls all sorts of tricks to get the kids on her side. Because believe me, she will.

    Don’t worry about her relationship with the kids, that is her problem. She chose to destroy her marriage, she needs to face the consequences.

  • This is a challenging situation. I am still in it almost 1.5 years from separation. No fault states like California are very tricky and the entitled fuck can stay if he is also on the deed. I made the mistake of working out finances 1st versus temp custody where you can file for exclusive rights of the home. Cannot change locks. My StBX doesn’t understand why I don’t want him there. Or why I should care about his side business where he stores all his crap at the house.

    I did have to pack all his shit up from EVERY room in the house and store it in
    A bedroom. Until I get that order. I am stuck. He can come and go as he pleases and the fucker takes full advantage of that. Even brought schmoopie over while I was there!!! The good news is i can collect on 1/2 the mortgage for that time.

  • Been Chumped, I think that we might be in the same boat although I am a bit older than you. To hang onto a shred of sanity after seeing my exes ride off into the sunset, after much abuse by them, knowing that I need to work until I drop, I have started trying to focus on the positive aspects of working/legally hustling for money–more time with people (which is important to me now as I have not had a partner for over two years and Prince Charming isn’t coming here for me), possibly some positive distraction from the s–t sandwich of financial duress that came from being divorced by someone who commits crimes without remorse, and ideally, some positive contribution to the world before my life ends. I sometimes think of the movie The Last Emperor, about the last emperor of China who seemed to have it all for years but ended his life deposed as a gardener. I hope that your situation improves!

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