The past several months have been some of the worst of my life. Three months after having a baby, I discovered that my husband had some sort of relationship with the 46-year-old neighbor across the street. We had just moved in and got married when I was pregnant, so he immediately started the affair soon after. I don’t have anything against being 46, I will be too someday but he’s 34 and I’m 36 and I never thought this would be someone he would cheat with. He had a history of porn addiction that led to erectile dysfunction, which should have been my red flag, but he assured me he was fully recovered and obviously I got pregnant so everything was working fine. How naive of me.
I tried to go to counseling with him and he went one time. He never admitted to cheating, but instead turned things around on me and said I’ve been horrible the whole marriage. I was pregnant during most of our short marriage and we only fought a couple of times so this was news to me. Within a week, he had filed for divorce. When I asked why he’s divorcing me he told me “I have my reasons”. I also have an older son who he was what I thought an amazing stepfather to. In fact, everything about him was so loving, sweet, affectionate, etc. that I was completely blindsided.
Over the past several months he refused to move out so we had to live together in hell, but I was happy to not hand over the baby overnight. During this time he immediately hit up all of the dating and hookup apps and hired a transgendered escort (found this in his financial records). Shamefully I made a fake profile pretending to be 19 and he of course went for it. He’s like a different person than I used to know.
We recently had to go to mediation for timesharing of the baby and I felt bullied by everyone there to agree to 50/50 custody, which I am not comfortable with. He charmed everyone by showing up in a suit and acting like father of the year. He was so convincing that my own lawyer told me “Wow, he’s really good looking. Now I see why you married him.” Needless to say, I stuck to my guns and did not agree to 50/50. I also found a new lawyer.
I’m still struggling with how I let this person fool me. I’m struggling with him dating other people (why on earth do I care??), I’m struggling with what I thought was our happy life together being nothing but a farce. I play everything over and over in my head. We seemed like such a good match and I was so grateful for him and our life together. My question is this, how do I stop torturing myself mentally? How do I become okay with all of the unfairness and feeling that I have no answers or closure?
He’s not a different person. You just finally saw the rat bastard he actually is — the cheat-on-a-pregnant-woman, lying, porn-addled limp dick loser. Of course he divorced you first — jig was up.
You saw behind the mask, so he had to do some quick calculations — expend a lot of kibble energy to reel you back, with your unreasonable therapy demands and accountability — or discard. He took the simple option. With a flourish of blameshifting, because “he has his reasons” — he can’t accept responsibility for his appalling actions.
I’m still struggling with how I let this person fool me.
You’re a loving person and you invested. Please don’t blame yourself. It’s very hard to lose the dream of what you thought it was. Instead of beating yourself up, kudos for fighting back! It’s been only three months since D-Day, and you’ve already fired a lawyer and rejected 50/50 custody. Way to be MIGHTY!
I hope you’re documenting all his adventures in dating for your new attorney. I’m so skeptical of cheaters who want 50/50. It generally means they don’t want to pay child support. Co-parenting with a fuckwit is a long shit sandwich buffet. Pace yourself. CN can weigh in with how they cope (get parenting software! Devote yourself to the Zen practice of grey rock.)
I’m struggling with him dating other people (why on earth do I care??),
Because D-Day was a few mere months ago and you’re reeling. It’s emotional whiplash. You were in love and invested. His utter disinvestment is shocking. If it didn’t shock you, I’d wonder what’s wrong with you — it would mean YOU were pretty shallow! Of course it hurts!
Rationally, you know this man is a toss of a soggy Kleenex of a human being, but it takes time for the heart to catch up. I swear in time you won’t care who he’s dating, you’ll feel profoundly sorry for them, (except for the neighbor lady, she can rot).
I’m struggling with what I thought was our happy life together being nothing but a farce.
You were real. That’s all you control. What kind of monster pretends to invest a child, create another, and then cheat on their mother? I’d be struggling not to thug-kick him into next week.
I play everything over and over in my head.
That’s Untangling the Skein of Fuckupedness. It’s a coping mechanism. Being chumped is traumatic and it takes quite a bit of time to accept it. As I say here a lot — the pain is finite. But it’s totally normal to replay what happened over and over again to process it, especially in the beginning.
You can’t understand him because you aren’t a callous motherfucker. There isn’t a lot of subtle shading or nuance in what he did — it’s BAD. Like, eject him from your life forever and fuck his reasons BAD.
My question is this, how do I stop torturing myself mentally?
By getting busy. Your job right now is to navigate yourself out of this nightmare with a good attorney. Focus on ACTIONS to build that new life, and iron-clad boundaries as you go forward. Like, more movies with friends, less rumination and stalking his dating profiles. Like, more time at the gym punching things (find one with childcare), less time dwelling on fuckwit rejection. Like, more time with career, schooling, or online certificate to become the most kick-ass single mom you can be, less time wondering if your neighbor has rug-burn on her knees. See how that works?
Stop torturing yourself, because he’s done quite enough damage. You REBUILD. No torture!
How do I become okay with all of the unfairness
Take a number in a great big world of Hideous Injustice.
I’m not being flippant. There is a lot of fuckwit-inflicted suffering in this world. After being chumped, this experience should make you more empathetic to others, and more intolerant of fuckwits. Ultimately, that’s a GOOD thing. We need more angels. In the future, you can be an angel and pay it forward to someone who is suffering unjustly.
and feeling that I have no answers or closure?
You have an answer — he’s a fuckwit. What he did was UNACCEPTABLE and that’s why you’re divorcing. Zero to work with. No such thing as closure, so please avoid him and the Relationship Autopsy.
It’s dead. Don’t poke it.
Jo, you will survive this, I promise. I know you will because I did, and a few bazillion people who appear on these pages did too. And right out of the starting gate you are far mightier than many of us were. So I know you’re going to be okay. Big (((hugs))). It gets better.