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?
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!”
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.