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Worst Infidelity Advice Ever?

Narcissist GoldfishSometimes you need a good example of a bad example. After you’ve been cheated on, a lot of the advice out there is atrocious, like don’t decide anything for six months to a year.

If I could wave my magic chump wand and eradicate one bit of post-infidelity stupid that would be it. Do you need 6 months to find your deal breakers? Cancel your credit cards? Consult a lawyer?

Are we to assume that people who’ve harmed us will remain in stasis, just utterly benign? Never move money or lie about their motives?

This blog began as trial-tested results of what NOT to do. A chump compendiary of collective wisdom, flubbed by millions. (Yes! Millions!)

Your Friday Challenge is to tell CN the WORST advice you got, why it was lousy, and who gave it to you. Save the newbies some grief.

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.
  • That you have to be friends for your child’s sake. God knows how I thought I would do it but I thought I would have to. That wasn’t in his vocabulary either thankfully. Then I found out about No Contact. No one understands why it’s got so bad between us and we can’t be civil but no one understands until they have been there.

    • Stay with him and let him continue to live his life and you live yours but make public appearances when necessary. This was from a therapist.

      If you believe he is cheating – find yourself someone on the side too – from a religious leader!

      • My therapist told me I needed to use my power, not my anger to communicate my feelings or he’d BOLT. I’m still here untangling. I wish I’d shown more anger!

    • So true. My ex had this notion that we can be friendly. And I can tell that somehow that will help his guilt to the point where he will believe “this just didn’t work out between us”
      And he has hinted that this is what I should tell the kids too so as to not damage them regarding him. Bull. I speak the truth when they ask, and I’m just business with him. Sometimes I even scold him with the truth because he behaves like he shouldn’t be inconvenienced with all the details of child rearing.

      • Strictly business here too, because of our child. Still doesn’t stop my ex-wife from trying to be super friendly. She sends memes and various funny texts, but I don’t reply to them. Then she questions if I’m mad at her because I don’t reply. I have to remind her, yet again, that I want to keep conversation to business and logistics only.

        Here recently, she got upset about this. She called me crying and said “I really want us to be friends and I’m not the type who could ever stop caring about you”.

        It made me sick. It was more of her mindfuckery. I told her again that I didn’t want to be friends but I will always be civil. However, conversations will be limited to what’s needed for us to take care of our child.

        Everytime this outburst happens I imagine she’s just hooked up with a former AP and the kibble isn’t as tasty without trying to mindfuck me too. It’s weird; she can act like she’s angry with me and I honestly don’t care. However, this occasional outburst of “careing” gives me the creeps.

        • guess she is insatiable when it comes to attention seeking.
          Whenever my ex acts super nice, I Know that the next time I speak to her, she will ask for a favor. If I don’t comply, I get the “It’s for the kids!”

        • Just tell her that she’s not the kind of person you want to be friends with and that you did stop caring. I’ve got no friends who’ve stabbed me in the back, shred my heart to bits, betrayed my trust and confidence and endanger my health.

          • After D-Day I wasn’t the least bit afraid to let loose and tell her exactly what I thought of her. It was inevitably used against me because of how much it “hurt” her. During our separation and “reconciliation” I was repeatedly reminded of all of the horrible things I said to her and how she’ll never be able to forget them.

            After I told her I wanted a divorce, there was one time I got angry. It was about 3 days after I told her and I never said anything rude. I just got frustrated with the circular conversation. After that I switched into robot mode around her and have stayed that way ever sense. There have been a few times, where I’ve had to be around her for an extended time, where I started to show visible stress from enduring her presence. Otherwise, I’ve done a fantastic (in my humble opinion) job of being a polite info-bot.

            I’ve realized that this hurts her more than anything. It’s the fact that I could be the perfect source of kibble for her, yet I treat her like the lady at the post office. Plus I give her zero material that she can use to look like a victim. What is she going to say? “He’s nice and polite, but won’t talk to me about anything that doesn’t have to do with the child we have together. He says he doesn’t want to be my friend”! That’s not going to garner much sympathy from anyone who has to co-parent with a fuckwit. Most people would probably tell her to count her blessings! LOL

        • Chump lady should start a dating service. All the men here who talk this talk are the kind I hope to meet someday. After this has all blown over.

        • Stop replying at all to anything that doesn’t involve practical issues about kids/finances/whatever, and even then only reply to something big enough to actually require a reply.

          Even telling them again that we will only participate in a business-like relationship or explaining why we won’t be buds is kibbles to them. Just getting us to listen to their bullshit or reply at all is kibbles to them. Certainly any upset they can cause us or imagine they are causing us is super-duper kibbles.

          Don’t respond to these kind of messages. If there is both practical info and these manipulations, respond only, dryly, to the practical stuff. If it’s on the phone or in person, let them say whatever crap they want to say, then leave an awkward pause, then say calmly ‘so will you be dropping Kid off early of Friday?’ or just ‘bye now’, hang up.

          They query why you’re not responding to their well-wishes and pain? ‘I have responded, repeatedly, and will not do so again.’ Then never again. They persist? Well, you could always reply with ‘I’m concerned about your memory problems. I have clearly expressed everything I have to say on this topic, yet you seem to keep forgetting and repeating yourself. Have you asked your doctor about possible early-onset dementia?’

          I bet that’ll stop ‘em.

          But really, narcs love creating drama, and hate to be ignored more than anything. So ignoring them is really the only way to get them to stop. They take advantage that we are kind and polite people to keep creating drama. But we owe them only civility, now. And even that only until we can go No Contact.

          • Omg – I love the early onset dementia!!

            With my first narc, who I have a child with, my rules were: wait 24 hours before responding to correspondence, only respond if it pertained to logistics for my child, never type even an extra comma – the smallest amount of words possible and never take the bait.

            It took me awhile to get there but what a difference it made!

        • It’s calmed down for me; 2+ yrs out. Every quarter or so XW sends a similar em asking for better communication for the kids.

          I email back, “what are we not communicating on?” And get little reply.

          So, it’ll likely get way easier.

          Big Whoop-Whoop for the dads here!

      • Egads, I am in this boat too. Fuckwit has my 8yo DD coming home from a visit, “do you still love Dad? He still loves you”, then a follow up from her about being friends with her Dad. I tell her No about loving him and friends. But I will be cordial. No more explanations.

        • You tell DD8 that it’s not right for her dad to have you carry his questions back to you. Teach her not to be a “3rd party” in other peoples’ relationships. And that it’s not appropriate for adults to put her in the middle. Make sure you live by these words, too!

      • My (very recent) ex has the idea that we can be friendly too. He just can’t understand why I’m being so difficult about the whole thing and why I insisted on telling people. He actually said, “well I didn’t technically cheat on you because I left you first.” He told me out of the blue that he didn’t love me after 9 years of marriage, two kids, and I had just quit my job and moved across the state for his medical training. Two weeks later I found pics of Shmoopie in her bra on my 4 year old’s iPad. He just can’t understand why I don’t want to be friends with the two of them and have my kids get to know her!

      • Does the truth ever work or get through? I do the same sometimes, but it appears to be just kibbles. Nothing seems to get through.

        • I don’t think anything you say gets anywhere. I think they are operating on animal instincts and have lost all reasoning and cognitive ability.

        • You can’t “get through” to someone who is already lying to you–to somone who can allow you to leave your job and move across the state for (supposedly) his work or education. The point of lying is manipulating you and others.

      • STBXH wants it to be “amicable”.

        Or in other words, as long as I do all the work and put up with his shit and don’t ruffle any feathers. He wants me to be amicable while he continues to act like the disordered asshole he is.

    • Dudders get chumped, I totally agree with you. I was told that I need to be the bigger person and be friends with him and the other woman. For the sake of the children. I had to be really firm in the beginning, and it was so hard to do that, but I made it clear that no we do not have to share birthday parties. we do not have to be together unless it’s a school event. Even at a school, event I do not need to sit right next to them! I was forced to do that once and will never ever do it again.

      • Bad advice: that you should do whatever it takes to make sure your kids have a good relationship with the fuckwit parent. That you should act against your own interest to avoid tainting the image the kids have of the parent who decided to abandon the family. Because kids need two parents, right?

        Wrong. You do NOT need to encourage your kids to maintain a good relationship with the parent who is a shitty role model, just because that person contributed some DNA.

        • There’s a difference between taking responsibility for the relationship with the other parent (“making sure they have a good relationship”) and being an agent of parental alienation. You stay on the right side of the line for your kids, because they have a right to a relationship with both parents. That doesn’t mean to lie or withhold the truth from the kids. But you present that truth in light of your own values: “Dad and I are getting a divorce because he has a girlfriend. Married people promise not have girlfriends. He broke that promise. I’m not friends with people I can’t trust. But that’s about adult business. It doesn’t mean you can’t still love him as your dad.”

    • I’ve been hearing that, too! The child, by the way, is 20. And people have been like, “What if she wants to take a family photo at her graduation?” We’re not a family. And taking a photo with my cheater would be a big, fat lie. Just like the ones he’s told me for the last 25 years. No photos, no family dinners, no nothing. We’re not friends and never will be. I would never be friends with someone who treated me as badly as he did. People are horrified. People are dumb.

      • Exactly! At grad DX messaged suggesting we sit together. No response means Just no. No to photos together. Friends do not behave like he did.

    • Yep…got this advice from almost everyone EXCEPT my kids! ” you’ll have to figure out a way to be friendly for the kids’ sake”…..the only person this would benefit is the dick. What a horrible example of boundaries.

      • Civility is not “friendly.” Customer service gray rock is not “friendly.” It’s civil. It’s respectful to the kids.

    • Last Christmas my now adult kids were talking about how much they really didn’t like their dad; one is distant and my eldest has gone completely NC, he asked ‘what took you so long to dump his liser a $$’. I explained that I stuck it out with his cheating because i didnt wanted them to grow up without a dad. They told me they put with him because they thought wanted him.

      What a waste!

      • Oh Gracie, I did the same thing. Staying really hurt my sons. When I told them I was divorcing their Father I didn’t expect their responses. The oldest said “I thought it would come to this.”, the youngest said “What took you so long?”

        My relationship with my sons is closer than ever. They are loving and supportive of me. They text and call me daily. They are both self sufficient adults. The youngest has blocked his Father and gone No Contact. The oldest still lives in the family home. He said it was ok because “Dad is never home.” I’m so glad my sons see their Father clearly.

        My deepest shame and regret is staying for decades of abuse. We are out now. That is what counts.

    • I particularly hate pieces of advice that hold the connotation that if you cannot do this then you are somehow a small, hateful soul devoid of all generosity and why can’t you be a bigger person. It not only makes you feel like your head will explode, and that you must somehow be a bad person, but the cheater/abuser actively buys into that to make you the bad guy: “Oh, I really wanted this to work out in a friendly way, for everyone’s sake, but Cheryl couldn’t bring herself to be the bigger person. She’s so bitter and angry”. That just amplifies the mindfuck by a million, and is a serious injustice to those who have had to live through it, misunderstood by those who have no idea.

    • Hi Edward, I really feel for you and I have thought about writing this kind of things etc. I’d be very very cautious about the part about you coming face to face to her and it not being pretty. I’m not a lawyer so there’s that. But I think this kind of things should NEVER been written, you don’t know how it will be used. Don’t write that. Hang in there.

      • Hi Edward. It’s well bad. I’ve written similar and worse. Only reason it never backfired is because of the reversed genders in my case and I’m a dainty person with an angelic baby-face if I want to.

        Stick to the advice above but as a female I take that this is a text from someone who was truly invested and believed in decency and loyality within family, if that’s crazy to them, then so be it.

      • Yes, I agree with LAJ.
        Do not send messages at all. Anything in writing could be used against you later.
        Silence is best.

      • Edward, I’d just take out the “sorry”.
        Is this her brother or her sister’s husband?
        Probably doesn’t matter- he’s acting either like a flying monkey or a Switzerland friend. Either way you’re better off not interacting with him and moving on to real people who understand loyalty and are not just users.

  • I didn’t get any well-intentioned bad advice. But I got a lot of reinforcement from two of my friends for the self-blame when Jackass started the discard. Our assumption was that I had somehow crushed his dreams by suggesting we needed more time before living together and that I needed to be patient with him. All of this was in our heads, not Jackass’s. He was discarding me but based on his love-bombing and “you’re the best thing that ever happened to me,” yada yada yada, we read his distance as “hurt.” But when I finally found the evidence of MOW, these friends were solidly in my corner.

    The person who should have known his behavior didn’t make sense was me.

  • Not advice, but about 8 months after D-Day sitting round talking about my exes predatory behaviour towards some of the women I was having a catch up with, my BFF said, almost disappointed like, “why did he never hit on me?”

    We were literally talking about attempted rapes, my friends passed out in their own beds or my kids bedroom, and he’d jump them, and they’d think either a) it was their husband for a few minutes and go along with it or b) push him away and cancel the couple friendship! And she asked why she didn’t get the honour????

    I’ve struggled to hang with her since tbh, still message, my resentment is fading thankfully, and we’ll be fine, but WTF?

    • Looks like she wasn’t all that dismissive about his behaviors and maybe even thought to herself “I would have reciprocated”.
      I think your instinct was right and maybe you should seriously reconsider her status as BFF? Maybe you have seen or experienced earlier ego-centric behavior or invested more in the BFF relationship than her?
      Just a thought.

    • Some friend.

      You know what I require from my true friends, not acquaintances or coworkers ? That we share the same values.

    • You are missing the flag with this “friend”. .. .. you were literally talking about the way your ex mistreated and abused you (and some of your friends) and her thoughts are “what about me”.. .. sounds to me she is kind of self centered, insecure and unsupportive. Maybe even jealous. Not the kind of person you need as a friend

  • To be grateful that my ex’s wife appliance is “nice” to my kids.

    That’s precisely the problem. Don’t get me wrong,I don’t want her beating or ridiculing my kids, but isn’t that whole “being glad” just another bitch cookie? I expect her to not abuse my kids…. except she already has by fucking my husband in the first place.

    And the thing is that my kids think she’s nice because she smiles and does stuff and just wants everyone to be one big happy family where all the adults get along for the sake of the children…..And overlook the fact that she’s not to be trusted with my children at all.

    No one understands what a giant mind fuck TO MY CHILDREN it is and that there’s something wrong with me by not accepting this bullshit….”but she’s nice to the kids.”

    Have you ever looked up the legion of “inspirational step-mom” quotes plastered on the Internet? “Stepmoms deserve the same respect a mother would receive. They pour all of their time energy and love into a child they didn’t even create. Stepmoms don’t do it because they HAVE to, they do it because they WANT to.” #stepmomwarrior #stepmomlife #stepmomsaresuperduper

    No offense to the stepmoms and stepdads here who have stepped up to that plate… I’m seriously not criticizing you….and I know where you are coming from….so disclaimer…

    But my ex’s wife appliance thinks she is soooo long suffering and sooooo under appreciated and soooo virtuous by ‘rising above’ the fact that I refuse to give her the time of day. There’s a whole myriad of drama that I’ll skip, but I’ve about had it with the fact that my girls still haven’t clued in to the crock of shit she is.

    Sorry… needed a vent….

        • Kintsugi thanks you for throwing your disclaimer out there. I’m a stepmom who does go above and beyond and I receive little to no credit at times. And when I started reading what you wrote I was like hold up, but I 100% get what you are saying and if the AP was the stepmom I’d have an extremely had time with that as well. That’s just a crappy situation.

        • I too appreciate your disclaimer. Being a stepmom is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Being a stepmom to kids whose father (my ex) is a fuckwit was an impossible task I had signed up for. I’m no contact with him. The kid who lives with him and his AP no longer talks to me (this is hard for me as we had been close), but the one who doesn’t live with him stays in touch.

    • Would love to read more of your story in one place. Isn’t she the one with the disabled child or something?

      • Their child together has cerebal palsy. She’s 20 months old and cannot walk, sit up by herself, or feed herself well enough to get enough calories. This poor kid is expected to be the glue that holds the whole #yoursmineandours fantasy together. My girls do dote on the child and I can’t really begrudge them that, but there is a whole lot of expectation and image management that that kid is the center of and it’s a pretty sick thing to dump on a little kid.

    • Vent away!! I’m spiteful and will never adhere to this crap should it happen. Even if my kids like the new B.
      I will voice my thoughts at times. Our society has become too complacent with this crap.

    • Your kids are well aware that step mom contributed to the demise of their family. They are also aware of the hurt inflicted on their own mother. Right now they are getting along and making nice to please Dad. I know of one OW that became the step mom and knocked herself out for the kids. Didn’t matter when dear ole Dad dumped step mom for another OW. Didn’t matter that dear ole Dad had set step mom up to be arrested so he could live in the marital home due to restraining order. Step mom had to move to her mother’s crappy two by four house in another state. The kids dropped her like a hot potato and want nothing to do with step mom. Step mom was in their life for 15 years from the time they were very young. It is like she never existed. So please do not worry that your kids won’t get it or will get attached to OWife. They’re just playing along right now.

      • Wow, this is my story too as stepmom. Busted my ass because both their parents were fuckwits. Mom introduced them to sexual predator boyfriend because she refuses to work. Custody went to my fuckwit and basically I raised them for almost 15 yrs. The oldest is 21 and my SS is 16. He moved in with Dad and the daughter moved out. They don’t talk to me as if I didn’t exist. They even think I became a lesbian because why else would I leave Mr. Wonderdick. I did breed with a fuckwit so I have the youngest with me. She is very distraught everyone up and left. She is taking it personal no matter what I say.

        • That’s really sad. Especially for your youngest.
          The problem is both the fuckwit parents probably already severely damaged the eldest two in their first years and they stay loyal to their parents and go along with lies that are told.
          Just try to remember that you were a decent rolemodel who hopefully prevented worse.
          Maybe when getting older they will realise what you’ve done for them al those years

        • I know this may sound cold but thank goodness your child is not around this dysfunction. Your step kids didn’t stand a chance with their parents. Hopefully you being the functioning adult helped them a bit but chances of the step kids living a normal life are slim.

    • Kintsugi,
      I read your posts, and I too, am thankful that ow is kind to the kids, BUT, ( a big but here), her reason is not that she carried them for nine months, gave birth to them, loved ( and loves ) them with every fibre of her being – like you do. I think her reasons are on the surface mostly. In time your daughters will come to see this, to feel it, and to know it, in their heart.
      You are a pretty good judge of character. You say it like it is girl! I believe you have the ow pegged right on!
      Just keep loving them to pieces, being there for them.
      “Fake” mom, she’s just NOT the same. She never will be!

      At Dday cheater told me that ow felt bad about taking him away from our tiny child, ( just turned 3 years old). Remember my story of my great pick me dancing, cheater stayed. Years later I figured the reason he decided to stay was because he couldn’t bring himself to tell ow that pesky wife appliance was in first trimester pregnancy. Just imagine how “extra” bad she would have felt.
      I have absolutely no idea how ow would have been with my precious daughters. I never ever saw her, I never even knew her name.

      Stay strong, Kintsugi, you got this!

      Xxxxxxxx
      peacekeeper

    • Glad you vented!
      The AP was a good friend of mine (25+ years) who during the affair showered my children and in-laws with presents and special vacations. Since DD she has had no contact with the kids bc my ex FINALLY understood how his complacency to her being proactively « nice » to the kids hurt them. I told him I could forgive sex, but not his allowing this behavior bc it hurt children. In the beginning he tried to get me to see how she did all these things bc she loves the children, but he saw their hurt and did not force any interaction. However, this is about to change and I am devastated. And I don’t know how I am going to handle it. And I simply do not want to put my children in a bad place, so I have told them that they don’t have to protect me and I am always there for them if they need support. My ex also took my advice and is using my daughter’s therapist to facilitate some discussions. The therapist is awesome and previously when ex asked if his infidelity caused our daughter’s anxiety she did not hold back. Later he told me that even though the therapist said everything that I had told him previously it was excruciating to hear it from an outside source. (Uh…duh!) I am grateful that unlike so many stories I hear in this forum, my ex does not mess with me financially or emotionally and demonstrates how much he loves the kids (now). But I will NEVER be grateful for what will soon be an EPIC attempt by AP to buy their love and kill them with kindness. My kids after DD without saying a thing threw out EVERYTHING she gave to them. When they did that I was struck by how stupid I was bc the amount of stuff was overwhelming. How could I not have noticed?

      Thanks for letting me vent and any advice on getting through the next stage of ex and AP cohabitating and interacting with the kids will be greatly appreciated.

      • I have a different problem, lol. OW and STBXH are still seeing each other; the divorce is underway. I’ll be away for a few months of military training, and I really hope the OW sticks around. I think she’ll be a better parent/guardian to my DD than my STBXH. I know her quite well and my DD does too. She was a close family friend the year before d-day.

      • Must be nice to see that your kids reacted that way. My kids are young and absolutely adore the homewrecker. I kept my mouth shut in the beginning and only recently expressed why I am not friends with douchebag. They don’t really get it (our daughter is 7 and autistic, our son is 4)
        I got really angry recently when I found out that he calls himself BONUSDAD, even though my ex and I stated in the court papers that they only have 1 mom and dad.
        My Ex thought I overreacted of course, probably happy being the BONUS Mom to his kids.
        Tuesday where are you!?

        • The OW called MY kids her “Bonus daughters” on the stand when she was testifying for her new twu wuv as he was trying to get sole custody last fall. I wanted to throat punch her.

          She craves a life where their “blended family” launches a hundred inspirational stem-mom quotes and Pinterest moments where life is so so incredibily beautiful with God’s blessing now, since she has confessed her sins in front of her whole church.

          **dry heaves**

          • She’s disturbed. Nanthony announced she was a grandmother to my granddaughter. Never happened. I sent copies of her arrest records to to my son in law and her other real grandmother.

            Granddaughter wanted nothing to do with her and she wasn’t invited to her graduation or party. Pathetic aren’t they?

            • Oh, she did that too. My ex has three older sons he adopted when he married his first wife. The oldest visited my ex and the OW last month between overseas assignments with the Army. She went on about “her” daughter-in-law and granddaughter and how her kids were their new family…. she’s 40 and my ex’s oldest son is 36.

              Seriously, step off…

              • OW’s social media post included a pic of MY in-laws’ snow-covered neighborhood in my and my husband’s hometown with the caption, “Family Christmas”. (Norman Rockwell/Hallmark Christmas movie moment for sure—spending the holidays with your still married AP!)

  • “Have you tried everything? Have you *apologized* for being a ‘quarrelsome wife?’”
    After I finally kicked him out 6 months after Dday, when our fifth child was a few weeks old.

    Separation from your spouse is such a huge “No” for religious freaks..

    • That’s scripture taken well out of context right there. Solomon had 750 wives and 250 concubines. If quarreling made Solomon want to sleep with another woman, he had 999 other choices he was already married to. Instead, he wanted to take a trip to the desert. This is what happens when you marry 1000 women! And why was he dealing with a “quarrelsome” woman anyway. Is it maybe because he wasn’t taking care of her “needs” since he couldn’t keep up with 1,000 women? Or perhaps because she was sick of living with so many other women? Or maybe Solomon is the real quarrelsome person and she just stood up for herself?

  • He can cheat on you (continuously. over many years.) and still love you.

    That pesky compartmentalization thingamabob! *eyeroll*

      • And nothing says love like having a fake “marriage” ceremony with your AP, with vows, exchanging rings and celebrating your anniversary for years with that whore, all behind the back of your legal wife.
        Yeah cheater, I feel the love.

            • I would have loved to know what those two dimwits said to each other, because they apparently wrote their own vows.
              Based on the ugly and nearly illiterate texts she sent me after he dumped (divorced?🤣) her, hers were probably some pretty stupid and insipid vows she found on Facebook or Pinterest.
              As for cheater, yeah what vows do you make to an affair partner that are anything close to believable? Forsake all others? Yeah, sure why not? He said it to me, but maybe he meant it that time? Nope, cheated on her too.
              I am truly sorry those two didn’t stay together. It would have been a real sit-back-and-pass-the-popcorn shit storm.
              She is a mean, lazy and greedy back-stabbing POS (neighborhood whore) who never worked a day in her life and lived off public assistance and what little she could get from his cheap ass.
              He was an angry drunk with a wandering dick who never met someone he wouldn’t fuck, male or female.
              Too bad they didn’t invite me to the “wedding”.
              Although what do you buy for such a lovely couple? I don’t think the etiquette books cover that situation…

      • So true! My ex is a serial cheater, and actually has been one his entire adult life. I did not know this until D day, but his entire family knew it and never said one word to me about it. I kicked him out on D Day and the phone calls from his elderly parents and adult children soon started in which they told me that he loved me so much and they begged me to give him another chance.

        Guess they were hoping I would take him back so he wouldn’t be their problem. That never happened.

  • Boiled right down to it, a counsellor told me my response to his abuse was postpartum depression. He was right there beside me playing the loving and concerned husband to his inexplicably upset wife.

    • I thought I had postpartum anxiety but it wasn’t it was my instincts and my guts telling me this while thing /life/relationship was dodgy. I even wrote on my ‘how I’m feeling today’ check sheet my health visitor gave me to keep a note of my symptoms that “I think he is having an affair”.

      But he was always with the plausible excuses yet deep down I knew he didn’t give a shit. He had 2 side pieces on the go, then I find out he had been on holiday with one of them when baby was 6 month old! What a prick! Told us he was working away. (I also found out he went to the same place a year later with the other slut whilst still having the 3 of us in relationships with him)
      Together 21 years and you think you know someone…!
      Worst advice his mother said to me was “let’s keep this (meaning his conman job and exploits) between ourselves”. I blasted it over Facebook and then deleted all his friends and family.

      • It’s like stolen valor in the military. At a wedding I went to recently the groom’s mother asked all from the neighborhood he grew up in to gather for a photo…. doncha know JustANumber couldn’t get there fast enough…..excuse me she never lived there. And it pisses me the hell off that she’s wears the dick’s veteran status on her sleeve. He was retired for years before she slithered in. She spent not one minute worried, with horrible news stories going through her head.(she was still in elementary school!)She was never the exhausted mom with her husband gone for months on end. We are never going to fix thing if we keep glossing over what is happening right under our noses.

  • “after thirty years, why do you even care”
    “the right to happiness is in the American constitution, so by trying to stop him you are abusing his human rights” (we’re in Europe, by the way)
    “find someone else yourself”

    all said by the marriage counselor

  • “You should mediate”

    I’m not saying mediation doesn’t work in some circumstances.

    In my case, a very long marriage, stay at home mom (a mutual choice), kids, home and very comfortable lifestyle, meditation would have left me in a difficult situation. The ex was and still is a cheater and a liar and finding the toughest lawyer in the whole city was my salvation.

    If you have a lot to lose, mediating with a narcissist/liar/manipulator may be a losing battle.

    • Unless you show the Mediator a 3″ 3 ring Spiral Binder with tabbed labels of all his shenanigans and nonsense and tell them you’re getting 1/2 of everything or you will change the plea to adultery (which I could prove) and ask for a jury trial. I prepared for the game. State required mediation 1st, pretty sure his attorney didn’t want to step foot in a court room with him.

    • Mediators are not always neutral.
      We were required to to do mediation for child custody.
      We each told the mediator a little bit about the circumstances. She asked what we each wanted for custody. The ex wanted 50/50 with me having every weekend. (She wanted to play) I said every other weekend and a 60/40 split oriented towards the family home that she had left. The ex started crying, “I don’t know why you won’t do 50/50!”
      At which point the ‘mediator’ blurts out, “Because he wants you to pay child support!”
      I stared at her.
      “What did you just say? You can read my mind? I am done here.”
      I walked out and called her boss. Got a different mediator. Got just what I suggested, including 50/50 split on child support.

      • I agree they have picked a side before you ever enter. The mediator I had came in to me (we were in separate rooms) like he was going to bully me into doing what ex wanted. After 18 months of stalking, harassment, threats, living with friends, damaged car. I was a stay at home mom and left on advice from the police (with kids). When the mediator started on me I looked him in eye and said I’ve been bullied and abused by men long enough. I will take this to the Judge. (small town only Judge was female) I dropped my 3 ring binder on the table. The whole session shifted and the mediator was definitely not neutral after that.

        • I tried a “cooperative divorce” and hired the (supposedly) best cooperative divorce lawyer in the county ( HUUUUGE mistake, she did not have any backbone ). I had all the documentation of what Mr. DownLow was up to, pictures, emails, etc. The stupid “cooperative” divorce took 3 years. In the end, everything was split down the middle. His attorney came after ME for alimony. The only person who benefitted was my attorney. I could have drafted the same divorce agreement in about 20 minutes. I should have screwed my ex husband into the ground when I had the chance. He also wanted to remain friends, spend holiday’s together, spend vacations together. For the first year he called and texted all the time. I get it, I miss having someone to bounce things off of, but sorry, that privilege is reserved for people who are NOT dissociated monsters. Now, 4 years later, we only communicate about what our 3 children might be doing for the holidays, and occasionally about a relative that is sick or has died.

  • “Maybe he’s telling the truth. Plus, whats the point leaving when you’ll get someone else, and who’s to say they are going to be faithful. So instead, better to stick With the known and put up with him.” From a friend. Who’s no longer such a close friend lol.

  • Anything and everything written by Michelle Weiner-Davis. I read her books, and I think she’s bloody insane. She encourages pick-me dancing and not standing up for yourself in order to win back your entitled jackass of a cheating spouse.

    She’s a hopium dealer extraordinaire. She offers live couple’s counseling, and she’s located not far from where I live. I called to find out the price of her magical two-day session: $10,000, baby.

    • Holy shit – that is a metric fuckton of money to spend on “how to lie and lie and lie and abuse your spouse for the rest of your lives while you STILL justify cheating (abusing) said spouse!”.

      Talk about being at the top of the Wreckonciliation Dung Heap – she’s the purveyor of Divorcebusting.

      • She encourages the victims of cheating to behave in a completely dishonest and unnatural way to win back a completely dishonest, undeserving and abusive spouse. She’s asking abusers to ask for more abuse, and not speak up about it with their network of family or friends, or their cheating spouse. I cannot imagine unhealthier advice.

        I would love to publish a takedown of the main tenets of her twisted “Divorce Busting” philosophy. Often, divorce is the only honest answer.

        • (I dig your username.)

          Is that the woman who writes the book about how women need to lower their standards and settle for guys who are “just good enough” or they might end up single past the age of 30 or some shit like that?

        • Start a blog, send us the link!

          Maybe Tracy wants a guest writer one day and if you have the raw data and statistics to write up an interesting paper to submit…

          Gah. I am such a wonk.

    • My problem is I followed some of the advice on that site , 180, ect and she came back! Well kinda…it wasn’t until I had moved on and requested papers she came crawling back. I let her mostly because that’s what I thought I wanted for so long. No I have a half hearted wife, showing little remorse partially going through the motions. It was honestly this site that helped me move on and now I’m caught in the middle!! Thanks a lot divorce buster lol

      • Guess what, you can decide you want to divorce, even if you worked hard to get her back and she came back.

        You’re not happy, you don’t trust her, you don’t feel at ease in your home with her there. She was unable to work towards your forgiving her, so you were unable to forgive her.

        They’re called ‘irreconcilable differences’ for a reason. You have values, she doesn’t.

        Besides, stay now and you can pretty much guarantee how that will work out, long term; once she finds somebody new, she’ll be gone – having figured out exactly how to make that work for HER.

        Talk to a lawyer THIS WEEK. See what your options are, set YOURSELF up for a better life. Divorce isn’t easy, but that’s a temporary difficulty. Staying married to someone you don’t trust, who you know doesn’t love you (at least not in any way YOU recognize as love) is a miserable experience.

        And if you have kids, you OWE them a better model of what a healthy adult life looks like, and if possible, of what a healthy adult relationship looks like.

    • I did a program similar to Divorce Busters. The advice was “be the better option” , to make your needs small and “they will slowly come back”. And he did come back – and i smugly thought i was a “success” – until he did it again.
      How i wish i had just stuck to the book “he’s just not into you” instead.

  • “God wants you to forgive him.”
    “No. He doesn’t.”
    “You will never fully heal until you find forgiveness in your heart.”
    “Yeah, we’re just going to have to agree to disagree on that one. Check please!”

    • I remember coming across some piece of forgiveness wisdom that said it’s really not necessary to forgive. What a load off! The idea of ‘meh’ resonated with me. The point where you just don’t think about or care about the ex any longer—that’s what I’ll call forgiveness. I had a hard time, and still do, letting go of the awful things he did AND not getting fooled by him when I hear his ramblings. For some reason, my brain gets confused when I see or talk to him. He moved out of state with his newest victim, so it’s not often. The less contact, the better. I’m focusing on where my weak link is when it comes to him. I need to take care of so as to recognize the danger in the future. Plus, it takes the power away from him once I strengthen my discernment and power.

      • This exactly, Shelly. I don’t feel any need to forgive. Just setting it down, walking away, and not looking back (i.e., meh) is enough effort for me. Hoping for Tuesday, sooner rather than later, for all of us.

      • Shelly, I still get mesmerized sometimes when I have to talk to him – also moved away with Schmoopie. I think it’s literally just a habit to listen with full attention and respectfulness. Cake for short 😂

        When I catch myself I just end the call, and make a mental list of all the self-centered things he said. I’m getting faster on the draw!

    • I believe God DOES want you to forgive, BUT forgiveness does not mean continuing the marriage. Forgiveness (after leaving) was a big step in my healing, and I think it’s essential in getting to “meh.”

      • God forgives the repentant ones. Most cheaters feel justified. Hence they aren’t sorry- so god hasn’t forgiven them why should we?

      • I do believe I am called to forgive those who offend me…. WHEN THERE IS REPENTANCE… which is a REQUIREMENT in this equation.

        I cannot grant forgiveness as a matter of my will. I can pardon, I can no longer hold it against someone (meh) but that’s not fogiveness. That’s leaving them to God to deal with… and even that right now is a lot of work. Don’t even talk to me about the work of forgiveness when the required componenet is missing.

        Supposedly, the OW stood in front of her church and confessed her sins about “breaking God’s commandments” How nice. She stood in front of a bunch of people who have affection for her and bared her soul. whoop dee doo. I’m sure in her prayers, she’s asked God for forgiveness too.
        Has she actually repented and asked forgiveness from me or my daughters? That would be a hard no. Which makes it abundantly clear to me that all this public soul barring….is nothing but image management.

        I’m reasonably certain that I am not walking around in unforgiveness because of this. Even Jesus couldnt forgive the crowd who ridiculed and cursed at him while he was hanging on the cross…”Father forgive them…..” because they weren’t repentant and Jesus couldn’t do it himself. I’m also reasonably certain that I will never be called to the hard work of forgiveness because repentance is truly beyond these two.

        And as to their forgiveness of me? The times I apologized to my ex during the pick me dance? Or the times I apologized for pushing her away from me and calling her a ‘big fat ugly whore” when I knew I was wrong and crossed the line? Answered not with forgiveness, but with a court summons that was FINALLY resolved just last month….after 20 months of bullshit and a final court dissmal in my favor.

        There is no forgiveness for me and my very small in comparrison offenses. But cheat with my husband, break up my kids’ family, set them up to lie to me, file bogus assault and trespass charges and then attempt to take my children from me, drag me through court for custody and criminal courts, only to lose on both fronts…..and THEN bare your soul to your faith community about your “sins” and “breaking God’s commandments?”

        Yeah, you’re full of bullshit, honey. And God can deal with you Himself.

    • Found a really good, if not antagonistic, phrase for people who bring up what “God” wants you to do.

      “God wants you to forgive him.”
      “Which god?”

    • I got this one too after the X went down front at church to ask for forgiveness. Another male at church gave me a hug as I was trying to leave (becasue I was totally embarrassed) and told me God wanted me to stay with the jerk. I wanted to ask, “Really? that’s not what God told me!”

      • ….I can’t even…..

        How fucking DARE he even put his hands on you…..

        the sheer audacity of these people is absolutely…I can’t even pull up an appropriate word that conveys my disgust.

    • How do you guys get over your kids meeting the other woman? My twins are 3 years old and have supervised visits at the Chuck E. Cheese with their dad but they’re getting to the stage in the court order where they don’t need to be supervised by me anymore. The OW has since started coming to the visits and sits down and does her homework,( college student) she only comes to the visits now that she found out my kids dad was cheating on her lol so he is not to be trusted alone with me. The next visit is coming up and there Twins are going by themselves this time and I’m very nervous for her to be around my kids, I don’t know her and my ex is not in my side regarding getting to know her, he is as selfish as they come and our communication is kept to zero. I love my kids and I’m so scared of them loving someone else who is not me. What advice can anyone give me?

      • Another thing is she talks bad about me on her twitter and insists that I am an “ unfit mother” she was also his best friend so she blindly believes anything he says

    • Let’s dissolve the entire law enforcement and justice systems in this country and practice forgiveness instead.

  • Two more:

    “”Have you considered a polyamorous relationship?” -A therapist I fired

    “The only answer is to have an open marriage.” -My cheating (soon to be ex) wife’s father

    • What?! SO glad you didn’t buy any of that.

      I just checked out a MWD blurb and she wrote this, “Betrayed spouses experience PTSD–like symptoms; They can’t eat, sleep, think or function.” But STILL insists that the betrayed spouse eats the shit sandwich instead of telling the cheater to go fuck off.

          • I’m listening. I’ve written dozens of blog posts for a blog I’m gong to launch…after my divorce is final. Stay tuned.

            My situation was even weirder because my wife had an affair with the mother of one of our daughter’s (now former) best friends. I’ve got some incredible material for the blog.

  • I was not given much advice. I found out in January 2017. My ex downplayed it and said they were just friends. And I thought he stopped contact with her. I was in denial and went on with my daily routine. This gave him time to stash cash in his parents safe. Buy a burner phone. Secretly hire a lawyer. While I did nothing. He continued to keep most of his paycheck to himself. While I paid all the bills. Fast forward to July 2017. I was contacted by Skankella’s daughter. She asked me if I was getting a divorce. She also informed me that her Mom and my husband were dating for 4 years. She told me that my husband filed for divorce. She knew the date he went to the lawyer to file. I was served with divorce papers in August(2 days after my birthday). And while I was with my granddaughter.

    I gave him time to screw me over. While I kept paying all the bills. I was left with $500.00 to my name. while he had at least $20,000 stashed in his parents safe. He even sold the 1970 Dodge Dart and stashed that cash. My ex stopped the divorce and we decided to work on the marriage. It took me about 1 year and I decided I could not stayed married to a man who not only cheated on me with my cousin. But, a man that wanted to financially ruined me. I suspect he stopped the divorce because the cat was out of the bag. And he could not legally keep all the cash. Even though Skankella’s daughters intentions may not have been genuine. She did me a huge favor by throwing my ex under the bus.

    • Hey Kath, I wish that they cared enough about you to suggest you don’t sleep with any devils. That was truly horrible advice.

      • I still love Carmen Diaz’s advice in There’s Something About Mary: “Oh well, who needs a man? I’ve got a vibrator.” And that vibrator is not a devil unless you find a novelty one out there somewhere. Apparently, there are some available on Amazon…

  • “You need to go back and fix your marriage.” “It takes two to tango.” “You have responsibility for your part in his affair. Why did he need to cheat? What did you do?” All said by my narcissistic mother to a devastated thirty three younger me.

    This was lousy advice. I couldn’t fix my marriage because it served his need to fuck other women. I had no responsibility for his behavior. I didn’t do a single thing to make him cheat. She blamed me and offered me no support. My deepest regret and shame is returning and then staying for decades of abuse.

    Now I am my own Mama Bear. Try it now. I will eat you alive. I figuratively walk my emotional boundaries daily to make sure there are no intruders on my territory. I protect little Thirtythreeyearsachump.

    I will not back down. I will not concede. I channel all the badass chumps in Chump Nation as I think WWCLD?

    • This. ^^^

      My STBX-in-laws told me the tango bit AFTER I showed them pictures and video from the P.I. of their son getting after it with Skank.

      I wasn’t sure I heard correctly so I sat there stunned while the witness (a Christian principle for confronting others) jumped to his feet and took extreme exception on my behalf.

      Even after showing pictures and emails of their son doing/saying things with a plethora of other women, they don’t believe it and think I’m being mean to file for divorce. So MIL still calls and leaves msgs of how STBX loooooves me blah blah – while STBX is honing his profile on dating sites and going to ladies’ night bar events – target rich environments. FIL says I need to forgive and when I do, STBX will forgive me my part (catching him? being faithful? being principled enough not to endure anymore abuse?) and we can get back to normal.

      There isn’t anything “normal” about being in an abusive marriage except getting out. That’s normal.

  • Me – “I just don’t know why he continues to lie…”

    MIL – “I don’t know either. But I asked him point-blank if he had been physically unfaithful and he said no. I know you’ll say ‘why believe him?’ But I do. You both just need to go counseling to figure out where this all went wrong.”

  • “You need to start seeing someone as soon as possible.”

    I like to think it was a simple revenge-reflex suggestion, given with genuine good intentions (e.g. “Let her see that you don’t need her, are better off without her, and can do WAY better than her”).

    But it ignores the need for grief to play out according to ones own timetable.

    And it didn’t take my daughters into account — how utterly confusing (and potentially dangerous) would it have been to see BOTH parents suddenly abandoning the foundations of their lives in favor of taking up with others, while they were still trying to process what was happening? I could never do that to them.

    • UXWorld, my former best friend told me the same thing. That I needed to date. I was shocked. I told her “I am a married woman. I have morals. That would make me just like him.”

      I don’t need to date. I need to take care of Little Thirtythreeyearsachump. I need to fix my picker.

      • Maybe this makes me sound insane, but hear me out. I see a marriage as a religious and spiritual relationship that the church blesses, and a legal-business relationship that the state blesses. I am far more concerned with the spiritual relationship (which died on D-day) than the legal relationship (for which I am currently waiting for a death certificate from the state). In a contentious divorce and in some states like Virginia where you are required to live apart for A YEAR before filing for divorce, I have no issue with people dating during the pendency of their divorce process if they are ready for it. In my view, “cheating” is abusing the fact that someone is 100% invested in and trusts you. If neither of the people in the marriage are invested in that way and are waiting for that death certificate from the state, I don’t think they are cheating.

  • I’d say close to 100% of the bad advice came from my former pastor. He’s now known as Lying Pastor XYZ. When a pastor feels very comfortable lying again and again to a suicidal and traumatized women. What else is he comfortable lying about?

    “Cheater was mostly brought up by women. He feels more comfortable with women. You need to understand having close female relationships makes him feel more comfortable.”

    Not a direct quote, “You need to be a better wife. You need to do more for him. Write a list of all the things you can do to be a better wife.” To be fair, the cheater had to do the same thing.

    The pastor even said that I should put toothpaste on my cheaters toothbrush every night so that he knew I was thinking of him while I brushed my teeth. It would be an “act of service” to show the cheater I was thinking about him while I got ready for bed.

    “You just need to forgive. You don’t want to turn into a bitter woman.” Said within about five minutes after the pastor read The Divorce Letter. The same divorce letter that was just read to me by the cheater about a half hour before the pastor said this to me.

    Lying Pastor XYZ is a great reminder to me to trust my gut and instincts. First counseling session with him I was already feeling confused and attacked. Even before MC, his FIRST question out of mouth to me after I told him about D-day, he said to me, “How often do you have sex?”

    And Lying Pastor XYZ’s Stepford wife advice about, “Just trust the men of the church.” as all the men coddled up and loved on the cheater, trying to “understand” him. Gag.

    • Ok….wtf is all that. I have to laugh. Ridiculous. I mean I believe in god and all. But that pastor is a f… idiot. Be a better wife? F…. him. He’s hooks of been a good husband and never cheated. I think this beats all the stupid idiotic things I ever heard. This one wins the first place on the stupid scale.

    • I got bad advice mostly from pastors and their wives, too. I was pregnant with child number three when my husband disclosed being a voyeur (I was 25 years old). When I called the pastor’s wife, hardly able to speak I was so upset, she sighed and said he was being “normal.” Come to find out that he peeped on her, too, and suddenly it wasnt normal anymore!

      Over the years, I was told to submit more, pray more, lose weight, wear saran wrap when came home, blah blah. Believe me when I said I tried just about everything. Nothing changed. 30 years later after my health and finances broke, Im trying to find myself. Lots of regrets. Im angry that I listened to all that crap advice.

      • Its really really hard to come to grips with all the sunk costs and time wasted with such an abusive jerk….and to know you trusted in people who gave you really bad and damaging advice. All you wanted was to do the right thing. You worked hard, sacrificed SO MUCH believing you would have a worthy return for it…just to find that everything was for nothing. Now, you have to build from nothing…and it just feels so incredibly overwhelming… and it HURTS.

        ((hugs)) the getting a life part is daunting….but you’ll get there.

    • What is it with these asshole pastors. Put a dog collar on ’em and they think they truly are God right!!! Fuck them (as you can see, I’m not religious!) My ex BIL was high up in the Mormon Church, a cheating asshole and a violent bastard. Sure, I’ll take advice from someone like you!!

      • When I started reading the Bible, I discovered a lot of relevant passages that the pastors don’t mention. Like the fact that the faithful husband is innocent of his wife’s adultery (Numbers 5) or Jesus saying that certain sins including adultery come from within, out of the heart (Mark 7) or the fact that God went well beyond meeting the Israelite’s needs and yet they were still unfaithful. If Almighty God can’t keep people happy enough to keep them faithful, He doesn’t expect mere humans to override someone else’s free will either! I also discovered the context of the passages they love to mention which makes their version of the scriptures seem very twisted. I came to the conclusion that God isn’t cool with the advice being given.

  • I got no bad advice from the people around me. No one thought I should stay. I was the one who succumbed to the RIC.

    However, I was treated to my husband’s view of our future. We would divorce nicely and remain best friends because I was his life partner and soul mate. We would continue to go on family holidays together and possibly even sleep in the same bed. In the best case, his mistress and his love child would join us and we would all play nicely together. My daughter would get a sister. What’s not to love?

    I told him the polygamy option was off the table. I think this still confuses him.

  • Hmmm, tough choice, I received many bad advices. If I have to choose, the worst is: “it’s like a competition, you have to be better than the other man”. I would later learn it was called the ‘pick me dance’.

    • Yup, put on those tap dancing shoes and get to it ! (sarcasm) What a load of crap advice. A truckload.

  • My father: stay, because you can’t find a better man

    He was terrified about me going back to live with my mother and him.

  • From a lawyer I was interviewing…..“Wait [to leave] until your son is 10 so he can remember you …” Cheater, abusive husband constantly threatened taking our son to his non-Hague abiding homeland where children are their father’s and mother’s have no rights to them… And the country doesn’t participate in Hague agreements related to child international parental kidnapping.

    • OMG….what happened??? Where are you and your son now? How are things?

      Honestly, it’s THIS kind of shit that would cause me to go on a murderous rampage….I cannot even imagine.

    • Mothers of cheaters can be the worst. My MIL tried to physically drag my now-ex out of the house to the OW. Because OW is the same race as MIL and offered to let MIL move in with them.

  • You need to get over your anger.

    Um, no. My anger is justified. I need to get out of this marriage. Thank God I found ChumpLady in the first 24 hours. It saved me from any RIC bullshit.

    • Therapist and many others: “Don’t tell your son his dad is a cheater. Just tell him Mommy and Daddy don’t want to live together anymore.”

      I remember telling my father, who was in his late 80’s at the time (been around the block, very straightforward type of man), that that was the current advice out there. He wasn’t too impressed to say the least. It wasn’t until after I found the former Infidelity Help Network site that eventually lead me to Chump Lady and was set straight and guided to tell him the basic facts. I can’t imagine lying to my son over time when he trusts me completely. It was/is actually just undoable for me the way my relationship was/is with my son. It is so sad well-meaning chumped parents do this out of love for their children thinking it’s best.

      I do have to say though that after getting my ducks in a row, the advice that I didn’t have to decide on divorce right away was comforting at the time. AFTER, the bank accounts were separated, lawyer decided on, him out of the house no contact– I remember just needing breathing time before the actual filing and being comfortable that he wasn’t going to have an epiphany and I would loose the man of my dreams (Ha, ha— oh well, we’ve all been there)

  • The worst advice I received was to willingly prolong the divorce process to attempt to get more money.

    I feel like a rapid and self-processed divorce saved me from months of torture and probably hundreds of thousands of dollars of financial loss (because that douche could really blow through money and loans.)

    Getting it done in a couple of weeks before he had time to think of more ways to exploit me and jerk me around – which was only true because he was still in self pity mode when he signed – was the smartest thing I could have done.

    I don’t need a liar’s money. I’ll find a way on my own. What I *do* need is freedom from liars and abusers and a home that is a sanctuary where I can enjoy personal sanity.

    • Also, before anyone says this wouldn’t work for them, I do know that this advice isn’t for everyone. I didn’t own a home or a business and we didn’t have kids. This is what was right for me, but it may not be right for everyone.

      I do think, though, that lots of people.try to hold out for what they feel they deserve when in reality it is not ever coming. I’ve seen so many women fight and fight for child support from men who are never going to pay it, men who will quit their jobs to avoid garnishment, etc., just as one example.

      I think it can be truly empowering to just get rid of a bad person even at a great loss if it gives you back a way better life. It’s my way of seeing things, but you get to have your own.

      • I was tempted to prolong things to get closer to half in the divorce, but when it came down to it, I just wanted to be free of the asshole. It still sometimes irks me, two years lost divorce, that I got less than 20%, but that’s more financial insecurity talking. My lawyer discouraged me from prolonging things, and I’m grateful to him for that. My son is still financially dependent on the jerk, and I see how my ex uses that to control our kid. It’s awful to watch. When we were married, my ex would never tell me how much money we had in order to keep me in the dark and control me too. It turned out he was hiding a whole lot of shenanigans, including two homes he bought with cash for two separate women.

        I agree with you that it was far more empowering to get rid of the bad person.

        • Good Lord. Getting out from under that was an absolute necessity. I am glad you are free with me! 😊 And I yearn with you for the day that your son finds the same freedom.

      • I can’t remember the figure Tracy quoted of unpaid child support in this country but it was in the BILLIONS.

  • When my spouse announced “I think I’m asexual” (after years of zero physical expression of love unless I initiated or asked, and even then it felt fake or forced) —

    From one counselor: “But you get along so well; can’t you just focus on the good?”

    Another implied that, at my age, I should just wait a few years and then sex wouldn’t be that important to me anymore.

    I swear I don’t know how these people graduate with a degree, or even how they navigate through their own relationships.

  • I’ve had several people tell me not to “feel I have to” tell people WHY we are breaking up, because it’s none of their business and saying “irreconcilable differences” should be sufficient.

    One went so far as to tell me that “no one wants to hear why.” This went directly against my own personal experience, since in any conversation I’ve had about this, people always want to know why. (I suspect in this person’s case, “no one wants to hear the reasons” simply meant that THIS person didn’t want to because it would require empathy and would also challenge their view of the spouse, causing uncomfortable cognitive dissonance.)

    • Thank you for your post. Recently my ex sill said” no matter what you say it won’t change my opinion on him”. I heard these exact words from my middle son as well. She must have said that. I never responded to her because she doesn’t matter but I did tell my middle son ” I refuse to be around people that have zero character and think it’s okay he found happiness on the pain and tears of his wife and kids”. Those are not my people! Xo sweet

  • Trusting and relying on the family in laws. Now dont get me wrong and in sure there are instances where in laws actually back the chump, but in my instance the first person I went to was my sil. Within minutes of explaining that he had suddenly walked out proclaiming he didnt love me anymore and I haven’t heard from him, she was already saying stuff like “im sure there are two sides to every story”. Being as this was only 2 days after him walking out suddenly I was still in mega chump hopium mode and immediately agreed, just concerned he had had some sort of midlife crisis. Of course 2 weeks later I found out what had been going on and that he moved in with his howorker. The hopium pipe was instantly thrown out the window

    Other advice from some people included “you need to stop being angry and just get over it” around the time that he kept winding me up with constant lies for kibbles anf refusing to see his 2 young children (youngest 6 months whem he left)

  • “Put it in a box and put it on the shelf” from my supposed BF (took her and her two children on trips all over the world).

    Ended up stabbing me in the back several times (final straw was when she celebrated Christmas 2018 with them, validating that relationship for my kids) before I discarded her this January, the day before Ex announced his engagement OW. Took me a lot of processing that her blameshifting was the worst. But her name is Susan W, just like HoWorker. I should have known……

    But karma never forgets an address (someone used that earlier this week). Two weeks ago, I went out to lunch with an old friend whose daughter was in grade school with all our kids (they are 22 now) and she told me the backstory. Backstabber (BS) used to work for her husband’s construction company and took her in when BS left her husband in 2005. As she needed money, I got her a side-hustle with A**hat’s company. BS began using the company phone to conduct business for A**hat and then left them hanging when she quit to go full-time with A**hat. So when BS was fired in summer 2018, she called to see if she could get her old job back! Turns out when you burn your bridges, there’s no going back.

    So, I’ve gladly put BS in a box and placed her on the shelf, as her expiration date is expired!

  • “What did you expect? You left him alone all Summer”, said my 92 y/o grandmother. (I took my son 4 hours away to an Autism Summer Camp). I told her that I expected him not to cheat just like I didn’t. Her response, “All men lie and cheat especially when given the opportunity.” Ugh! Thanks Abuela.

  • I was encouraged by a family member & “close” friend to try reconciliation during our in-house separation, because “he seems like he really wants to stay married.” Out of grief and pain I believed this lie and it led to months of agony even more painful and hurtful than discovering the affair, as his cruelty and devaluation reached new heights.

    The truth is he made no move to leave because he was content to keep us in limbo for months until he finally got around to getting the house ready for sale, etc., and because he was too lazy to do the paperwork for the divorce, which he didn’t care about since he was “already divorced in his mind.” Ultimately, I was the one who left the home with our teenage child, and filed for divorce, so he got what he wanted without having to do any work and while inflicting more emotional abuse.

    I’m inching closer to Meh each day, but I would still love for that karma bus to arrive.

  • Everything Mort Fertel (wreckoncilliation guru) said was bad advice. Date him again, give meaningful gifts, focus on him and his interests etc. This is all great advice for a healthy relationship but once they cheat, NO EFFING WAY! all bets are off and interviewing divorce lawyers and protecting yourself is the only sane advice. Cheating is abuse. Can’t fix that.

    • I bought the Mort Fertel CDs to listen to on my way to work. I was still smoking the hopium Thank God for CL and CN!!!

  • OH boy. Yes. I got a good one.

    “Men are wired to want more than one partner in their lifetime, that’s why they’re always looking. It’s nature, so you shouldn’t try to stop him. Let him go to Germany with his brother and don’t ask what he’s doing while he’s there. Remember it’s nature. As a man, he’d be cheating on himself if he didn’t cheat on you.”

    …Can’t make this shit up.

    • I’ve heard that same thing pretty much . Men are not biologically meant to be monogamous blah , blah , fucking blah …

      That’s fine . Then don’t get into a marriage or committed relationship. There . That’s fixed .

        • Right? Can’t commit, don’t go into a monogamous relationship. Don’t get married. Simple.

          During my divorce (“polyamorous” ex husband…) He kept begging me to come back, making promises, sending me increasingly sad sack text messages, threatened suicide at one point…(that pissed me off.) But I asked him why I wasn’t enough. He kept saying “You were enough.” I asked him then, why, did he “need” multiple partners, all the time, for the rest of his life.

          “That’s just the way I am I guess.”

          Okay then, on with the divorce! If that’s just the way he is then the marriage should never have happened. -_- But I guess if you actually, really fail to see why “needing” multiple partners might POSSIBLY make your wife feel inadequate then the foresight to maybe not get into a monogamous marriage just isn’t there…

  • Parish priest, “Your husband has a mental illness that causes his infidelity, and you did take the vow of in sickness and in health. So no divorce for you.”

    Ummmm. Buh bye

    • I heard that, too!! That porn addiction is a mental illness and he has FOO issues. Sickness and health, what a crock. How about MY health when I had a nervous breakdown and my own FOO issues? How come his vows suddenly become less important?!

      • I know. IF (which it’s not) a mental illness I guess he should have been institutionalized for the rest of his life because he’ll never change!

        • I’m just trying to wrap my brain around the “causes infidelity” part. Infidelity, specifically.
          Is this some new neurological disorder? “Chronic Philanderitus?” “Johnson’s Fucknuckle Disease?”

          Not “he has a mental illness that causes addictions.” (debateable)
          Not “he has a mental illness that causes him to disassociate and make bad choices” (which…there are actual mental illnesses that cause that but…he sure as hell ain’t got any of them…)
          Not “he has a mental illness that causes cognitive dysfunction.” (people with CD issues can still be faithful.)

          Nope. “He has a mental illness that causes infidelity.”

          If they’re going to go the route of using mental illness as a crutch to excuse shit behavior at least make it…I dunno, halfway intelligent. Like maybe try to sound like they’ve cracked a book once in their life.

          • Hahaha. Chronic philanderitis-maybe OR he is just your plain old, cliched a**hole.

            Not really sure where the parish priest received his psychiatric/licensed therapist degree!

            • Maybe the treatment for Chronic philanderitist should be chemical castration? You know there are always great new treatments being discovered for mental illness

              Not making fun of any true mental health issues. I myself have depression/anxiety disorder and it’s not a laughing matter.

              • Treatment for Chronic Philanderitis is two doses of Exhuberant Definantol in the morning and three pills of RIC-Completitol at night.

                Nah, not making fun of real mental illnesses. It honestly irritates me to no end when just flat out bad, hurtful, selfish behavior is blamed on “mental illness.” There’s a huge population of people who suffer from real mental illnesses who manage to not commit repeat infidelities. The only real illness I can think of that would apply here is Narcissistic Personality Disorder, in which case infidelities are the tip of the iceburg.

          • HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAA!!!

            My sides are splitting!!

            Chronic Philanderitis!!! I am using this from now on!

            😀 😀 😀 😀 😀

  • Family can be the worst even though they have the best intentions. My advice is to trust your gut and get a really good therapist who is on your side. One who will help you through the pain and teach you about boundaries!!

  • ‘Oh dear, what did you do wrong?’ was my father’s first reaction when I told him. ‘All those things you did together, were they what you wanted to do, or did he want to do them? I know you won’t go skiing with him. Maybe if you started doing what he wanted to do, he’ll come back to you?’

    That was eighteen years ago, but I still can’t forget my own father saying that to me. My stepfather, on the other hand, was talking about baseball bats and breaking my husband’s legs.

    • My stepfather has been more supportive than my father as well. I guess there’s a reason why our mothers left our fathers. Luckily for us, our mothers succeeded in fixing their pickers : )

  • “As long as he isn’t hitting you everyday , get over it “

    From my father . It’s been almost three years and I haven’t spoken to him . Never will again

    • My father told me I’d never find anyone as wonderful as him, so just suck it up and live with it.

      When I left an abusive husband, he said “You used to be able to beat your wife as long as you didn’t use a stick any bigger around than your thumb,” implying that those were the good old days.

  • “Make the home a place where he wants to be.” – worst advice ever.

    AKA…
    …become a Stepford wife.
    …don’t talk about anything unpleasant.
    …laugh at everything he says.
    …make yourself look beautiful every time he sees you.
    …listen with patience and understanding to his struggles in getting over the OW.
    …plan all fun activities to show him you can also have a good time.
    …if he goes, continue to be pleasant so he can regret leaving you and want to come back.
    …make yourself as small as you possibly can.
    …have no more opinions or thoughts in your head.
    …enslave yourself to the onslaught of emotional abuse, with a smile.
    …hopefully, don’t jump off a bridge or swallow a bottle of pills from the onslaught of despair that such an existence will inevitable bring to you psyche.

    I spent almost 13 months in this insane frame of mind…make the home a place where he wants to be.

    Nope, MY home is a place where I WANT to be…and my kids too.

    • 13 months, how strong you are. Six weeks were enough for me to lose my sanity. I mean, really.

      That’s pure violence. When I read that list of advice I’m now imagining it is told to a battered spouse .It’s worse than obscene. It’s criminal.

      • I spent about 3 years in that frame of mind. I thought that was a short time compared to other women. They must be made of steel to last decades living like that.

        • Well the last three points on the list is my sarcasm, but the rest was really what I took on. It was my own sick self-martyrdom. I don’t fully understand why I thought it was logical at the time. I think my intentions were correct – living out my vows that I married in good times and bad, sickness and health, but my efforts were so misplaced with the wrong man.

          I recognize now that I was making decisions without knowing the full truth of what was happening in my life. When, I discovered this woman existed. I believed him that she was someone he had only met about six weeks before and he was doing some accounting work for her. I told him he was playing with fire and needs to straighten himself out. Gave him my trust by not even questioning him further. He agreed to marriage counselling, something I had tried to get him to do for a couple of years. I was hopeful.

          I sought out all RIC materials. Our religious families were very pro-marriage. The marriage counsellor was pro-marriage. I kept reminding myself that marriage is a life-long commitment and that this was just a phase that would be insignificant in the long course of life. I blamed myself. Thought I had been too demanding, complaining, critical with him for a few years and that I drove him to this. Thought he was having a mid-life crisis. Believed I needed to swallow my pride for the greater good.

          When he left for good 13 months later, I learned from a discovered email account that he had maintained contact/relationship with the OW throughout most of that time. He would make attempts to stop the relationship, but then creep back to her (it seems it was mostly whenever things got hard at home with me). It was like someone with a drug addiction, really. There were all sorts of dates and trips they went on, including going to her family’s cottage with her children and her parents. I pieced together that she had been in the picture about 19-20 months for sure.

          Unfortunately, by then, I was starting to suffer panic attacks for the first time in my life. Demonstrating symptoms of trauma stress. My discovery that he was leaving to be with the OW angered him so much, as he had been trying to build a buffer of time to make it look like he wasn’t leaving to be with the OW and I ruined those plans with my discovery, he started to slander my name to others. Suddenly, I learned that I was this controlling wife who never let him have a say in anything, I was emotionally abusive, I was over-spending our family finances by thousands of dollars a month, I was confused in thinking that he had an affair. He informed people to be wary of what I was saying because I was making things up about him.

          It was then that I learned I had been made victim of some very bad psychology. I got myself caught up obsessively in thinking that I could affect positive change in my marriage by just willing it, staying “strong,” praying, sharing resources with my husband and extending my patience and understanding to him. Meanwhile, his relationship escalated, and I was too naive to know it.

          Well, I see him very clearly for what he is now. No more illusions.

  • During the horrible two year wreckonciliation, I requested a full disclosure (because it was supposedly part of the deal with the program).
    Cheater refused. I say refused like he calmly said “no”, but he full-on raged for hours every time I brought it up.
    The advice from our therapist, who was completely inept and out of his depth, was to drop it.
    His reasoning: we don’t want to create any shame for cheater.
    My take:
    1. He SHOULD be ashamed. He did very bad things for a very long time (more than 40 years). I personally don’t think shame for your actions is a bad thing if it leads you to change what you’re doing.
    2. Who gives a FUCK what that asshole wants. It’s my time to get what I want for a change.
    And ultimately I did get what I want, a peaceful home without cheater.
    Of course, now cheater’s narrative is that I was the one to end it, after he did everything he could to save the “marriage”.
    And he is the sad sausage crying in the corner with no one to comfort him. Welcome to the world I lived in for our entire marriage, you piece of shit. Hope you drown in those tears.
    Guess I am not at Meh yet.🙃

  • My now ex-best friend (who is on Team Dickhead, only because she can relate to him as she is a cheater herself) told me to let it go, move on, be civil, he deserves to be happy…he could end up as one of your best friends.

    I told her to go fuck herself.

  • My ex mother in law, when I showed her the print outs of my mobile phone bills showing one over arching phone number on his phone, 1000s of minutes per month, sometimes for hours at a time. She said, ‘that may be just a client he talks to, it may be nothing’ then I said its a 20 something that he works with…blank stair from her……and also ‘maybe stop being so predictable, showing up on time to everything’. She couldn’t believe her baby boy was a obvious cheater, and this is a women who was cheated on by her husband for years (my ex husbands father, who is an abuser and a total shit). Lady, the apple doesn’t fall from the tree.

  • “Take the high road and don’t tell anyone what really happened – it’s no one’s business anyway”

    What a perfect way to help the typical cheater narrative of “we grew apart; it takes two to destroy a marriage blah blah blah.” The cultural narrative of the “high road” by keeping your cheater’s secrets needs some updating IMHO. The real high road is the truth. The real high road is taking your power back by speaking up to anyone you please about your own life story and what happened to you personally (should you choose too). You decide who you tell your business to – the whole “it’s no one’s business anyway” is just cheater’s way of impression management and keeping you silent.

    I’m supposed to become a liar and lie to my children? I don’t think so.

  • An elderly woman (who is a kind person, but knew XW more than me) met with me and told me she too had once been cheated on in her marriage and that I would feel much better to just not tell anyone about it and keep it as a secret to myself so I wouldn’t feel any embarrassment and that would make it easier for me to stay married to cheater XW.

    • Well, back in the old days, it was even more taboo to divorce your spouse and she may not have had the financial means to make it on her own.

      • Divorce hasn’t been a “shame” since WWII; but the old excuses still work for the cheaters. Some things never change.

  • “you need to be softer with him”
    “he is so scared of you”
    “if you can seduce him back, then YOU get to decide whether or not you still want him”
    “Children develop as adults from age 1-10, maybe wait until the youngest is 10”
    All from a marriage counselor. I thought I was going crazy. My STBX showed ZERO remorse, and of course I was ragey, Mr. “Nice Guy” was a coward, so every day, new prostitute, new discoveries. I finished CL book right before the last session. Then I walked in there and said, “he should be scared of me, he blew up our lives. You want me to be soft with a man that has shown no contrition? well that’s not going to happen. Oh, and you’re fired.” What a waste of time and money. While I’m less angry today, I used that anger, and it propelled me to file for divorce, and fight for my kids. I needed that anger.

  • From my very own mother: “Just hang in there. He’s so angry and rageful, he’ll probably die soon anyway.” This is the piece of advice I received even though she knew about the emotional and psychological abuse I’d endured, along with the cheating that was going on for ten years, starting from the very inception of our relationship. Ugh. Thanks, Mom.

  • I was isolated so my bad advice came from within my head. Rationalizing behaviors, cleaning up his emotional and physical mess, making excuses, thinking he would change, stupidly thinking he would change for someone else (33yrs sunk cost), financial survival with older kids (college, car insurance..) which he refused to help with there and after we left which means my situation was really not different after leaving because I was doing it all anyway except we were no longer being abused.
    I think it is true that if we resist those gut feeling for too long, we numb them. The final screaming of This. Is. Not. Right. provides action. I love the quote, “I never lose. I either win or learn something.” Sometimes learning is painful but growth follows. Trust your gut.

  • I also got the “takes two to tango” and “monogamy is not natural” from a therapist. It takes one to lie and cheat.

    • Not Crazy – I’m so sorry! That’s victim blaming bullshit.
      *content note sexual assault*
      “It takes two to tango” was what my mom told me to victim blame me as a teenager when a classmate was abusing me an raping me every day at school for nearly 3 years.

  • After D-Day I insisted on counselling. He said okay, find someone and make an appointment. I did. She was recommended by my first choice and turned out to be great. She told him (after several sessions) that what he had done was Wrong – which he didn’t want to hear. So, since counselling was a deal breaker, he found a gal (an hour away, more expensive, who only saw clients until 4 pm – so he missed an afternoon of work each week) who used the Gottman Method. Yep, she told us that it was on BOTH of us. He liked that much better. Me? Not so much. I stopped going, which is probably what he was after in the first place.

  • I ran to a friend who was recently divorced from a lying cheating physically abusing man and who was a new Born Again Christian. I told her my tale of woe – a husband who had betrayed me in every way possible, and while I was figuring out what to do, how to get out, a married Christian man was hitting on me.

    Her advice? Have an affair with the married Christian man.

    And the married man? Ended up quitting his job and becoming a Pastor of Ministry at a mega church. I’m sure he’s having tons of fun “ministering” to his female flock.

    I dumped my husband and went no contact on the trifecta of fucked up behavior. Life became exponentially better.

    And people wonder why I have such disgust for many of the “Good Christians” I encounter.

    • It’s often the ones who think they’re “good”, who are the worst. I recognize that I’m not a “Good Christian”. That’s why I need Christ. But, I also have never cheated on anyone and I’ve never cheated with anyone.

  • Worst advice was from a “therapist”:

    “Whatever she does on her time is her business so long as she comes back to you later and it’s controlling for you to believe otherwise.”

  • Well one joker of a therapist said to me maybe you are imagining things and maybe the girl really does work for him and there’s nothing more. OMG! That was before I had actual real proof and the POS was saying to me that I was imagining things. Of course I told her what he said and that was her answer to me. That was the one and only time I saw her. And worse yet, she was highly recommended by a couple of my own doctors! I needed someone in my corner not agreeing with the POS!!! Its sickening!

    The only therapist I had faith in said to me when leaving his first appt ‘if this were the only appt you came to, there’s one thing I hope you take from it: trust your gut, it never lies to you’. Beautiful! Just what I needed!

    On a side note I would have to say that waiting 6mos to a year would definitely be advised after the death of a loved one or another tradegy (not betrayal); Lots of mistakes can be made that you can regret. I know this first-hand.

  • DD1 therapist – “you should talk to him – ask him about what you’ve found out” duh! presupposes goodwill, good intent and integrity. In hindsight these were sadly lacking so it did not go well for this chump – just led to more time with that lying cheater. (Addendum much later at DD2 saw a different therapist who was much more helpful – broke from listening mode at the end to advise earnestly…and get yourself to a good lawyer)

  • Damn, reading all this is heart breaking. I didn’t get any of this from my family and friends. Even my therapist said “get out”. I’m so grateful I didn’t get the double shit sandwich of people trying to tell me to feel sorry for the poor little Twat! I think it might have been due to the fact that I was always up front and told EVERYONE what was going on from the beginning – about the violence, the lot. But wow, just wow, I think I would have burst a blood vessel if anyone had told me to keep tiptoeing around the Twat!

  • Divorce Busting. My problem is I followed some of the advice on that site , 180, ect and she came back! Well kinda…it wasn’t until I had moved on and requested papers she came crawling back. I let her mostly because that’s what I thought I wanted for so long. Now I have a half hearted wife, showing little remorse and partially going through the motions. It was honestly this site that helped me move on and now I’m caught in the middle!! Thanks a lot divorce buster lol

  • Commitment is old fashion. Humans were never meant to be monogymous – it is just an old concept put on us by religion. So get over it, act your age, stop being so immature and old fashion, and grow up.

    • That’s shit advice. Was their last name Cheater? Or Narc? Don’t listen to that bullshit! Everyone here believes in commitment and we are not old fashioned. We are normal. 😉💪🏻

  • Former friend #1 “I’ve been on all three sides of the cheating triangle, and I think you’re over-reacting.” (This one is the Noble Quaker whom everyone thinks is the best person & walks on water. Barf.)

    Former friend #2 “after my mother died I was going through her papers and found photos of her with a man–I think he was her lover. She looked happier than I ever saw her before.”

    gah!

  • I was a virgin in the D-Day world and didn’t know about CN yet.

    I was on a RIC website figuring out this new nightmare.

    There were these ex-miltary guys who had all been cheated on. They believed I should wait it out and let my cheating wife get her act together and all would be better. They would say “Are you ready to die on this hill, on this day?”, meaning am I ready to give up on her.

    I replied “I’m ready to defeat this new adversary on this hill on this day”.

    I left the group and divorced the beeyotch. I win.

  • My THERAPIST said “you know one of my friends slept with her ex the night before her divorce mediation and and she got everything she wanted.

  • “I’m sure both of you contributed to this. Look how upset he is. You get to have a good job and he is just staying home with nothing to validate him. Why do you make him feel so bad about himself” from my former brother-in-law

  • The worst advice I got was from myself. I was in shock after Dday and was sure all could be ‘fixed’ so I sought out RIC propaganda to ‘help’ myself ‘get’ him back ‘where he belonged’ and embarked on a self improvement strategy on my shocked but hopeful/hopium self.

    We had been together for over 30 years so I was going on the principle of time invested in the relationship was worth fighting for over a less than one year affair with someone I was sure he would dump at some point.

    I convinced myself he was having some kind of nervous breakdown and, if I was patient, tolerant and understanding he would come to his senses and all would be well.

    I was also in love with the man so fighting for love seemed like a reasonable and noble cause.

    Trickle truth over a period of time revealed he was a serial cheater and had been unfaithful from the get go.

    I remember thinking that I needed to protect myself – friends had told me this from the beginning – but I didn’t listen to them because ‘they didn’t know what he was really like’….YES, I was the delusional one!!!

    I remember thinking that we could still be friends because I couldn’t imagine my life without him in it.

    After about a year and a finalized divorce set in motion by him I realized that I was the one who had to wake up. He had no intention on settling back down with me.

    Somehow I found a Divorce Care group with excellent leaders both of whom had been cheated on, they were males, and during that time I found LACFAL.

    The rest is history and the advice I gave my self – NO CONTACT -has been the best thing I was able to do for myself!

    Like many have written here – he still did want to maintain the friendship I had offered so was shocked when it came to a hault.

    So I was my worst enemy but I got smarter so I have forgiven myself 🙂

    • I also was my own worst advisor. I thought my marriage had a chance, after all, we had 26 years invested. But thankfully, I got smart after I found out that he was still seeing his skank at the 30 year point. Life is excellent now (4.5 years later).

      • Amazon Chump,

        It is nice to hear that your life is excellent now. I am at 2.5 years and things are getting better. I am glad I am NC. Just dealing with the magnitude of his dishonesty and that I was so blind and had him on a pedestal for so long.

        New things keep popping up in my memory that didn’t make sense at the time in terms of his behavior and now they make complete sense so the unraveling is a relief yet I want Tuesday NOW 🙂

      • Phoenixrising,

        That is what is so nice about CN. I know I am not alone which does make this stuff easier to bear especially knowing that I am not crazy and that is HIM not me.

        As CL states, “Trust that they suck.”

  • Everyone deserves a second chance-my mom. To her credit, the last week of my 6 month wreckonciliation as I was on the phone with her for the umpteenth time she said “this is as good as it will get, and it will only get worse” FML where was that advice before the second chance? The wreckonciliation did worse damage than the last years of my marriage TBH

    Ok, can you both agree to just forgetting what happened in the past and moving forward from this point on?- literally 10 minutes into the first marriage counseling session, by the counselor. Yet STBXH was the one who couldn’t hold up his end of the deal on that 🙄

    I am SO DANG GLAD I had found CL/CN during the initial separation and had all the archive, comments, etc in the back of my kind the whole time I was still on the hopium. I may still be dancing right now if it wasn’t for this place.

    • *Back of my head

      Also because if CL/CN I spotted the mindfuck the counselor was doing that day, went to one more session so I wouldn’t have to hear cheater crying that I wasn’t “trying”, and never went back to that non validating POS excuse of marriage counseling. I did NOT need more spackle in my life.

  • I’m sure someone has posted it already….

    Don’t be mad or show your spouse anger. It will only drive them into the arms of their whore (insert man or woman whore here). Make sure that you show them that you love and forgive them. The true anger should be in the whore that agreed to cheat. If they weren’t there doing that your spouse asshat wouldn’t have cheated.

    What pisses me off the most, honestly, is that I believed and acted on this fucked up shit. The fucking your whore-worker was pretty fucked up. But the fact that I was repeatedly told to suck it up, make my feelings non-existent and stroke their ego… still makes me mad to this day.

  • “Just be nice to your husband”- my priest
    “Don’t say anything bad about him, he’s divorcing you, not your kids” – therapist
    “Just talk to him, everything will be alright”. – my mother
    “ just find yourself a young hottie” – his female cousin
    Right after Dday, my former best friend sent me a copy of the book “The Happiness Project”
    Another former best friend told me to go to church
    “Just get over it” – my dad

    • My long-time time best friend sent me an email once a week. It was “have a super day!” That is all she had to spare.

      She had just started to date a man and she only had time for him. At first I was hurt by her total disinterest in reaching out to me, to spend time with me and to lend me her shoulder. I’d lent mine to her for 25 years. Many times. I pulled her from the depths of despair on numerous occasions over the years. This was the first time in our long friendship that I ever needed her support.

      After a few of these “have a super day”! emails, I responded back. Told her I am divorcing, having to sell the house and find a new place to live, and it was all a living hell and if I had one super day, she would hear me screaming with joy from many miles away.

      I took her off my list and she was very upset to lose my friendship because I had always been her mentor! lol – guess I probably was, but it was always really about what I could do for her – always. Don’t need friends in my life like that!

  • I had to smile an ironic smile at this LovedaJackass, he discarded you because you had reservations and how was he supposed to get in there and fuck your life up with free reign in you weren’t trusting enough to let him do so? Not as chumpy as some of us, well done. I had a friend who is totally pro-marriage and she was very much, take the concept of leaving off the table and then you’re both committed to making it work. My partner commented that this was a very business-like approach (I think he was surprised by it) I was shell-shocked at the time and floundering for support, but yeah, business-like, if you’d signed a non-breakable contract in Satan’s workshop.

  • I’m paraphrasing here, but basically to be told to just get over it and move on. To be questioned for why dumping a cheater should make me sad. My own loved ones have either ignored me or seem put out by how long it is taking me to heal and move on.

    The advice of the cheater to me – don’t tell anyone, it’s our private business.

    • That would make anyone Crabby. So unfair. Sorry you got told that. This is part of the narrative that needs to get out there – being cheated on is really tough. Chumps are going to heal on their own schedule not to fit someone elses convenience.
      Re that bad advice Got that at DD1 wanting to control the narrative – aka secrecy too. To be supportive. Not tell other people because it makes it too difficult for cheater… It did mean that family and friends were extra outraged next DD to hear X cheated – again.

  • The worst advice was just what you refer to: wait six months. (The advice was doled out by another infidelity website.) I waited eight months. Eight months of severe, relentless emotional abuse.

    In those eight months XW moved out, moved back in, lied, sneered at my suffering, ignored our young children’s pleas for their family to stay together, depleted our bank account, opened a secret bank account—all while continuing her affair. CN knows the drill.

    Wait six months? That’s like telling someone who is being lashed with a studded whip to wait six months. Maybe she will come to her senses and stop whipping you. Don’t make any drastic decisions like walking away from the whipper! Try to understand the whipper. Go to couples counseling to penetrate the mysteries of being whipped—why she whips, what is making her whip, why she needs more time to get the whipping out of her system. Her whipping is a result of her childhood. She whips because she turned forty. She whips because you made her whip you. And whipping you hurts her just as much as being whipped hurts you.

    Just a little more time.

    I divorced her and six years later my welts are healing nicely.

    • I was also told (or I had it in my head from some reconciliation site) that I should wait six months. I told this to a good friend (who the night before had seen Dickhead’s mask slip). She told me, “you are wreck, he’s a asshole, you won’t make it to six months”. I agreed. He was gone in four weeks.

      Two months later (April 2012) I found Chumplady’s site. What a blessing.

  • My mother told me that I had put my cheating ex-boyfriend ‘on a pedestal.’ This was my first significant relationship after my divorce (following 18 years of marriage) and the betrayal was devastating.

    She had forgiven my father for an 8-year affair. We had a talk recently, where I tried to explain to her how harmful it was to my younger sister and me, where she had excused or ignored the behavior of the predatory and abusive men in our family. My sister and I said that ‘it would stop with us,’ and we give entirely different guidance to our nieces and daughters. But we do not blame my mom. She is starting to see things differently too.

  • From her mother ” oh you know you two married too young she was a virgin and didn’t have much dating experience. Maybe if you let her sow some wild oats she wouldn’t have strayed. So let have this time for her to get it out of her system. I’m sure she’ll come back to you and the kids” I told the old bat that I now have picture of home life at your house. Wow what a douche bag!

  • “You’re too worried about the money (yes! bc he’s gonna try to stiff me on it), you need to let that go.”
    “This isn’t your story to tell. Maybe he should be the one to talk about his new girlfriend” (OH, it absolutely IS my story to tell, you think I didn’t live thru the situation of him getting a girlfriend!)
    “Are you sure you can’t work it out?”

    All said by friends, one of whom is now an ex friend (the one about telling the story).

    His family has been supportive and our longtime family friends have been supportive. They aren’t ready to just magically have a replacement show up one day.

    Things will change in the future probably but right now it’s comforting to know they’re not just going along with things like nothing is any different (which is what he’s doing. He has said nothing to anyone! He’s just posting, showing up with another woman with no explanation. Very cowardly of them both.)

    • WTHH, I got ‘Don’t make it about the money’ from a counsellor during my first session after DDay.
      Said in a really shaming way.
      I found out about the affair when I discovered a direct transfer of thousands of dollars to the OW from our joint account. It was stealing. Which was a double whammy with the shock of infidelity. Back then, like a true Chump, I didn’t question the counsellor when she said “don’t make it about the money”
      Now I think, if the counsellor had been robbed would she have thought this?
      It just doesn’t make any sense at all.
      I also got the “are you sure you can’t work it out?” From a close friend. After telling them about the police being called in when XHole attacked me during rage channel. Not such a close friend now.

  • A Minister, who was doing marriage counseling with us after my now xh cheated, was very helpful in many ways. He made sure both cheater & I knew that it was not my fault whatsoever. He told him he had many other options & that he had broke comandments, etc. After counseling xh individually a few sessions, the minister met with me & told me he believed my xh was “only capable of surface love”and not deep meaningful true or unselfish love. All of this helped me see more clearly. UNTIL he then told me that God condems divorce & wants us to stay married and keep the vows we nm made before him. I stayed another 12 years until he walked out for another ow. I then discovered xh maybe stopped cheating for 4 years and then there were many, including men! He just got better at hiding it. So my worst advice ever was that even though my husband was a cheater, liar, selfish person who wasn’t capable to truly loving anyone but himself, I needed to stay because God would condem ME if I divorced him.

  • Wait 6 months, and while you are waiting do NOT tell anyone about his affair because you don’t want to spoil how people see your marriage do you? – from a therapist.
    Result: I didn’t tell a soul, became even more socially isolated and spent all my time reading and paying money to an RIC website and pick me dancing until he dumped me for OW 4 years later.
    When I finally told my family and few friends (after he dumped me) they were supportive and told me a few things about the Xhole’s behaviour that clicked. I think if I had told them when I first found out the affair I might have woken up earlier and saved myself and children those 4 years.
    It was, after all, the truth.
    The truth will set you free.

  • On D-day 2, My cheater ex asked for an open marriage so he could explore his newly revealed interest in BDSM.

    A few nights later when I had some time alone to think without the kids around, I drank a bottle of wine and searched the Internet for advice. I found this gem: Hire a professional dominatrix for him.

    For a split second I thought ‘eureka, problem solved!’ No divorce necessary.

    Then I laughed at my own hopium and started revenge fantasizing about paying a dominatrix to tie him up and beat the living shit out of him ,while I tossed his crap out on the lawn and changed the locks on our doors.

    Yeah, good times. Glad that’s all over.

  • “Don’t deal with the stress of the divorce battle. Just walk away and let him have whatever he wants.“

    That was the first and last meeting with that therapist, who could not possibly have been more of a complete idiot.

  • “You should take him back to court.”

    People have absolutely NO UNDERSTANDING what this entails; scraping up the attorney fee in the thousands, taking days off from work when you need the money, being subjected to endless, untrue character attacks, and having a judge end up giving a veiled threat that we really should just settle it in the hallway.

    I’ve taken him back to court twice for a pattern of cheap, petty refusals to help share in the cost of raising our three sons that have added up to in the tens of thousands. He gets off on the drama and centrality. The second time, the judge ruled in my favor and made him pay my attorney fees. He called my attorney the next day to have it reduced, threatening them that they would be waiting a long time for full payment. He also gets off on getting a bargain.

    I’ve decided I’d rather be poor than deal with his douchebaggery.

  • People are clumsy in conversations about abuse.
    There isn’t any definitive thing to say, other than get the fuck away from an abuser.
    And the advice from seniors- it’s just littered with voices of Patriarchy.
    He didn’t fuck someone else because my hair wasn’t cute when he “came home from work”. Can we please put that shit to rest- it’s fucking 2019.
    Advice looks like compassion and empathy. Everything else is just diarrhea of the mouth, aka oppression reinforcement.
    I love CL’s focus on gaining a life- for this reason.
    None of us deserved the abuse. Ever.

  • My dad: “Don’t divorce him, so that he can’t marry the other woman.” And this gem: “You guys can still be friends.” On some levels, I think he also said this to save him from embarrassment of having to deal with a divorced daughter in her late 30s. His response has opened up my eyes to my own parent’s dysfunctional relationship, which I couldn’t see while I was growing up.

  • From my PTSD “therapist”:

    “The fact that slickdick MUST continue to be in contact with sparkletwat can be an opportunity for growth and trust between the two of you. You just have to have the right perspective.”

    I fired him. Dumped slickdick…annnnd then I took him back. Wreckonciliation was a blast. Ask me why I’m reading CL 6 years later.

  • It’s funny, but I was just thinking about the RIC and the shitshow listening to anything these people led me into. All the “emotional affair” horseshit, all the trying to improve my self to attract a lying , cheating fucking asshole, being lied to and treated like shit and accepting it. Blah, blah, blah.

    • Anita,

      Just the other day I was thinking about all the RIC crap I bought into too before I found LACFAL and CL/CN. I was thinking about how all of those couples attend ‘recovery’ workshops all over the place in order to strengthen their relationships. It is like that becomes their life. I remember even back then asking myself, “Self, do you want to become a groupie at this stage in your life?” And a voice responded, “Hell NO.”

      And boy am I relieved that my opportunity to do that left when he walked out the door for the final time.

      Now I know that if we had gone that route he would still be in the position of centrality and my life would still be revolving around him.

      Now I get to have my life. All about me and time to reflect and care for the me that got lost so long ago when I took on the ‘it is all my fault’ mantra.

      Now I know it was all his fault.

      What a relief!

  • Is “Don’t tell the kids (who are 16 and 18) their father cheated on you, and don’t tell them who asked for the divorce (him)” bad advice?
    I’ve had multiple therapists and a psychiatrist say that the kids will suffer from knowing the truth (even just the basics – no details), and that they should be much older when they’re told the truth, since it will destroy their relationship with their father.
    My brain is screaming that this just doesn’t feel right to constantly refuse to tell them the truth about who asked for the divorce (they’ve both asked repeatedly) and that their father had an affair.
    We told the kids about the divorce in September – the more time passes, the more it just feels WRONG.

    Has anyone told their teenagers this basic information and regretted it?

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