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“Our Marriage Was Already Over”

gibberishHere’s some one-size-fits-all cheater bullshit for you — “Our marriage was already over.” Cheaters say it to affair partners, “We’re all but divorced!” “We’re separated!” “Just roommates!” And cheaters say it to their spouses when they’ve been discovered cheating. Our marriage was already over.

Well, yes, it is now. But did chumpy you get that memo?

Hey, they gave themselves a mental divorce! Had a few concentrated thoughts about it, and shazzam! Legal and ethical responsibility ended!

Why do cheaters say this?

a) To duck responsibility. It’s blameshifting — weren’t you aware the rules had changed? You’re not very observant, are you?

b) To goad you into the pick me dance. They didn’t tell you it was over because they wanted to perpetuate cake. It’s too bad you know, but perhaps this crisis will provoke you to try harder to win them back. Kibbles, kibbles, kibbles.

c) Actual divorce is hard work. Hard work sucks. They’re going to boldly strike off after that new life. You can clean up the mess. You’re welcome!

Which brings us to the question of how do you properly END a relationship? Nobody likes to be dumped. And that’s the mindfuck — after you’ve been devalued (“our marriage was already over”), you’re insulted with the accusations that you’re just jealous and covetous of their newfound happiness. Tut, tut. You should take it better. Can’t you see you’re yesterday’s news? Okay, so maybe they went about it in the wrong way, but It’s All for the Best! Their happiness is what Really Matters!

This is how you properly end a relationship:

a) You communicate. “Hey, X, Y, and Z are deal breakers for me. I’m very sorry. We need to go our separate ways if we can’t resolve X, Y, and Z.”

b) You communicate and communicate some more. You get therapy to address X, Y, and Z. You work hard to see if there is some alternative to divorce. You pay attention to how invested your spouse is or is not in addressing X, Y, or Z. If the deal breakers persist, or you can’t reconcile yourself to X, Y, or Z — then you end it with “We need to go our separate ways.”

c) You don’t eat cake. With the statement that it is over, you ACT like it’s over. You don’t continue to fuck your spouse. You don’t send mixed messages to your family or your spouse. You publicly own your decision to end it. You quit extracting value from your married status and you go it alone.

d) You take LEGAL steps to end it. You see a lawyer. You draft a separation agreement. If you’re in one of those crazy states with a one-year waiting period, you start that clock ticking with physical separation. If you can’t get your ex out of the house, you do everything in your power to leave or compel them to leave.

e) You end things fairly. If leaving was your idea, you recognize there will be hard feelings and you put your Adult Pants on and divide things evenly, according to the law. Not based on your feelings of entitlement. If you can’t figure out what “fair” looks like, ask a mediator.

Ending a relationship ethically is what grown-ups do. Whoring about, stuffing your gob with cake, and getting caught is what cheaters do.

Response to “Our marriage was already over”?

It is now. Sayonara.

Another crazy day… rerun… 

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  • I got this, but only indirectly.

    My now-ex-wife told our mediator, my parents and our friends that our marriage had been over for at least 10 years. This was news to me and clearly nothing to do with the fact that she had just been busted for cheating (the old “iPhone synched to the iPad the kids use” routine) with an ex-boyfriend of hers.

    Thankfully she never tried this line with me; but she did throw in a bonus “we have to get divorced because you lack the emotional maturity to have an open marriage” to add insult to injury.

    She left the kids and I just short of 5 years ago, and the divorce was finalised just over 3 years ago.

    None of us miss her.

    • My ex erased 15 years of our life together. I guess he had to go that far to justify what he did in his mental gymnastics of not being a bad guy.

      When cheaters leave, they really leave, don’t they? Mine barely sees or interacts with the kids, which I’ll never understand.

      Such bad cliches.

      • Same. Apparently we were unhappy for 2, 5 no 10! 10 years! Then in therapy he went back 26 years to when were were dating. And kids are NC (they’re adults and made that choice), which honestly is a blessing. It is sickening how common this has become.

        • Mine was 3, 10, no our entire marriage.

          I asked why he married me then. He just hung his head and shook it. Because it couldn’t have been because he declared his love for me and asked me to marry him, after spending every Army leave for six months desperately trying to get sex from me. (We were 18, and it was a different era).

          I would have been so much better off to get the sex done, and leave him behind. Hindsight.

          • Yep. Mine went all the way back to we should have never gotten married. And I only married him because of family pressure to get married. He didn’t have a reason why he married me. And he’s the one who proposed and everything.

            Now, of course, looking back, there were certainly signs that he was a narcissist, but I didn’t see it in the moment. So, no, we shouldn’t have ever gotten married, but not for the reasons he says.

            • Right. And I know this will sound weird, but the assholes have lied their entire lives, couldn’t they have just let us have the past. No they had to take a wrecking ball to the whole marriage.

              But the important thing is that they were able to convince themselves they were no the bad guy, to hell with us or any children.

              • It doesn’t sound weird. Mine took it all away too. I get it, whatever makes it easier on them – and it’s easier to blow everything up when you’ve convinced yourself that it was all a mistake. I actually forgot that I got the same ‘we shouldn’t have gotten married’ comment. Every time I heard a ‘we shouldn’t have’ I said ‘you shouldn’t have had an affair, that’s what you shouldn’t have’.
                It was so ridiculous, that marriage comment didn’t even stick. It was a well thought out decision in our case, and we were both so happy – nobody twisted anybody’s arm.
                They literally rewrite our lives together and if it wasn’t 110% fairytale every day of the year, all of the sudden it shouldn’t have happened. So immature. Emotional IQ of a nine-year-old.

            • My XW told me she thought the marriage was going to change me. After 10y together we married all was good, 3kids and after 12y DD arrived and entire history changed…

    • Oh my gosh! I actually laughed out loud to “we have to get divorced because you lack the emotional maturity to have an open marriage”. How dare you be so emotionally immature! I must admit that my dick-ex never said that, but I’m sure he would have had he thought about it. I can’t believe someone would actually say that! What a jerk she is!

      • My ex said that exact statement! Narc use every line they can to justify their behavior. I have heard them all ! 3 years later the kids are still pawns in his sick twisted games. He still tries the line “we can’t communicate or co-parent” as part of his blame shifting. I am gray rock very generic responses with as little detail as possible. Because his communication style is “cussing and blaming.”

      • Amazon Chump,

        “Jerk” does not come close to describing her. She is a disgusting excuse for a human being; she will always put her needs first, makes unilateral decisions that impact others, will always avoid taking responsibility for her actions, will try to manipulate the kids to get what she wants and plays the victim card at the slightest provocation.

        She has seen our eldest daughter (24) once in the last 8 months, our son (21) about twice and our youngest daughter (16) refuses to visit the house that she has lived in with her AP for the last 2 and a bit years. And yet she is adamant that she has done nothing wrong, has an absolute right to be happy and is not to blame for her (terrible) relationship with our children. That’s all down to me ….. apparently.

        And I got the history erasure that DoneDoneDone mentioned too.

        F**k her and the horse she rode in on.

        • I know exactly my ex lying, cheating Narc husband is the same just a douche bag. He even brought his affair partners through our marital bed!????

        • @LFTT….same here! When kids caught dad red handed on Christmas the mask slipped and he told all of us he “hated every minute of the last 10 years!” Youngest was 10 and cried “but daddy that’s my whole life!” Monster replied, “well I hated it!” Mayhem and devastation. Hard to text this… it’s been 5.5 years.

          XH moved into studio apt downtown – no furniture – mattress on floor — and he moved young goldigger from her father’s home into that mess. He earns 7 figures. Wouldn’t tell 4 kids where he was living.

          Years later it’s “mom’s fault kids are alienated.”

          Evil, pure evil.

          • Same here, too.

            It’s all my fault that the (now adult) kids don’t like their dad. I’m sure it has nothing to do with the fact that he is a lying, verbally abusive cheater who stopped seeing them while the divorce was going on, and has done nothing to repair the relationship. Sure.

          • Oh wait, I thought I was reading my memoirs! I could probably hire you to write them, There wouldn’t be a lot of edits lol!

          • @motherchumper99 – That f*kng asshole!! WHO DOES THAT??? How awful, I’m sorry your baby had to hear that.

      • My ex’s version of that would be, you lack the maturity to let me have an open marriage, while you stay true and worship me.

        • This was all about her wanting what she wanted, avoiding the shame of people knowing that she’d been found out, but keeping me on the hook for providing the lifestyle that her AP could not afford.

          I am sure that, in her mind, the “open marriage” rule wasn’t applicable to me; not that I was tempted in the slightest – I’m a one girl kind of guy.

          • Yep, no open marriage for me.

            Also his replacement is amazing, and has been for almost 24 years. Together for 28. We are both pretty picky about those wedding vows, and we could both look at each other with a clear conscience while taking them.

            My ex had the darting eyes of a police officer (or rat) I am betting there was a lot of eye darting and avoidance when they said their “I do’s” in Vegas of course. They got married quick. Or maybe not, likely not much conscience between them.

            I waited a long time. I was loving being the girlfriend for two years then engaged for two, but it was the right time. Both in our heart and because of logistics. I never got treated that well when I was the girlfriend to my ex. To be fair though, we were 18 and neither of us had any money.

            I don’t regret my son, but dang I regret the time and love I expended on that turd.

    • I was accused of standing on my “moral high ground” because I wouldn’t go along with his open marriage/polyamory BS. This after 28 years of what I thought was a MONOGAMOUS marriage, vows and all that stuff about forsaking all others. Until he found his new “soul mate” and apparently that’s her lifestyle. But not mine. Never. Apparently we never should have gotten married, he said. So I wasted 28 years and he erased 28 years.

      • “Not everyone has such high morals as youuu!”
        hahahaha Yes, that’s been made clear over the course of three decades.

      • Yeah, this is one that my STBXw uses all the time

        “You just like reminding me that you have the moral high ground!’

        And I always have the same general response:

        “Yes, yes I do. The air is clear and crisp, and being up here on the Moral High Ground allows me to hammer your confused & incompetent forces in Skank Valley below. WiFi isn’t great, but you can’t have everything…”

        stay mighty, everyone!

    • Even if that were true, the asshat could have left without cheating. You didn’t force the cheater to deceive, sneak, or endanger you. That glory belongs to the cheater alone.

    • Mine walked out on me and our 18-year old high school grads. My kids helped me discover the affairs, they found fake FB accounts, dating profiles, etc. They help me track her phone. They witnessed me being divorce raped in the courts. But now that my kids know the ugly truth about their mom, ITS MY FAULT for “turning her kids against her”. I can’t even make this stuff up!

    • Jeeez the old iPhone synced to the iPad routine. Priceless. Thats how I caught my cheater and my sisters cheater too. Priceless. I think I want to have an iPad around in every relationship now for security.

      Yep I got the old “we were just living under one roof”, our relationship was over a long time ago. Sorry I never got that memo! hahaha. As he was fucking his office buddy. (Super dumb because he works for the city and they both are at-will employees).

      As he was stuffing his face with cake, I-being on dialysis waiting 7 years desperately for a transplant, was being the dutiful wifey. Cooking and cleaning, taking care of everything for us. His life was more important, so he got to go out to play, while I was exhausted.

      Fuck him. Its 9 month post D-day. He got caught. I had no idea that “he was unhappy since last year”. Way to handle it like a man! You go enjoy your big cheese celebrity sailboat status and take chicks out and party. Your going to die an empty old man. Unless you con someone else, of which your great at.

      Bye Felicia! Im out!

      • I did everything too Chumparoo. I cooked, cleaned, washed & ironed & sewed & put clothes away, ran the errands, kept up with our dogs reg. check-ups and vaccines, organized all our important paperwork, took care of the yard, the list goes on.

        I did all this while working a full-time career & staying in shape. I was always so tired.

        XH would run off to golf every weekend, and complain if I asked to go out to dinner. He wasn’t golfing though, he was dating. Killed me.

        • Oh Alice! That’s awful.

          I can relate to so much of what you’ve written here.

          My ex’s passion was fly fishing. (The golfing was an earlier obsession.) Because of his stressful and oh-so-important job SAVING LIVES, I didn’t complain when he needed the solitude of the river to gather his thoughts. Silly me! He wasn’t gathering his damn thoughts, unless that’s a euphemism for fucking his mistress.

          Btw, I fly fished with him a fair amount. I actually got good at it (wasted skill). But it was his hobby. I never liked it. And in the end he complained that I never went fishing with him, which is total gaslighting BS. Two weeks before D-Day, I fished–get this–8 hours a day for 5 days in another country with that man. Afterwards he said, “What do you want? A medal?” He followed up with, “Does this mean I have to go on a yoga retreat with you?” Asshole.

          • “What do you want? A medal?” this statement makes me so mad for you! How about some appreciation for having a wife who is willing to participate in your activities you jacka$$!

            We devote all this time and effort to take care of the men we love and all we get is mistreated, and cheated on. I spent many hours taking care of my XH, and he’d just sit on the couch and play on his phone or watch survival shows once he came home from work.

    • Wow. My ex did the exact same thing. He was so cruel when he shouted “stop crying! Didn’t you know our marriage was over? It’s been over for a decade!” And then it was, “you’ve always known I wanted an open marriage. Most people do this, you’re just too insecure to handle it.” It’s like there’s a mold of these cheaters and someone just keeps making them in the factory and sending them out to be assholes. They’re so eerily similar in their bullshit.

      • Oh wow, my XH said similar things about my crying (I cried many times). Even at the time I thought it was very cruel he could see me cry and respond with anger.

        I actually tried a few times to stop crying, because I knew it upset him so much (more like enraged him) but I couldn’t control it. My crying was never extreme, when I cry my tears just drip down my face and my eyes just don’t stop filling up. I’m actually a quiet crier if there is such a thing.

        He would say, “Oh God, Alice crying. BIG SURPRISE! STOP CRYING!”

        One time I was doing the dishes while crying and he came into the room and said “you’re STILL crying!?!” and then left.

        I also cried through a breakfast as well while out to eat. He got so mad he asked the waiter for our check to leave immediately and said “you RUIN everything!!”

        Talk about emotional and verbal abuse.

        • I learned via those experiences than I do not have to, nor will I, accept that kind of treatment ever again.

        • Yeah, STBXH said similar stuff. *I find you unattractive when you cry. It turns me off. I know I caused this but yeah, I feel zero to negative attraction towards you.
          *I can’t handle your panic attacks.

    • It may be a rerun but it’s also useful to see this columns at different points in your journey.

      Reading this now, I tick off the first a), b), and c):

      a) My ex, when I confronted him, did use the “our marriage was over” line;

      b) Before I knew what he’d been up to, and thought we had agreed to “work on our marriage,” kept goading me with the imprecise threat “Some things need to change around here” (although he would never specify what);

      c) When the divorce did come, I was the one who handled everything (which turned out to be a good thing for me).

      As for that second list, of course my ex did none of those things. But he did at one point during a settlement meeting say, “Our problem was communication,” then immediately shift the blame to me, by adding, “And I didn’t feel I could talk to you.”

      The fact is, I had asked and asked for better communication, and he had said, several times “I know I need to communicate better.” Over time, thanks to this site, I learned to pay attention to his follow-up action after he said this, rather than being satisfied with his verbal contrition, and once I did that, I wised up and could see he said what he said to get me off his back for a while so he could continue to benefit from all I, his wife appliance, did for him and the household, while he continued to do what he was doing, including goading me into the pick-me dance with his ominous amorphous threat of “Things have to change around here.”

      Well, things did change. I saw a lawyer and initiated divorce proceedings. I’m just over two years from moving out and just under two years from the divorce, and I am happier, despite the restrictions of a Covid life, than I had been in many, many years in my marriage.

      • Congratulations, Adelante. I’m happier (now — after the grieving process) just knowing that I wake up daily not dealing with the mindfuckery. My gosh! Nobody is making me doubt myself anymore. Peace, peace, peace. I’d much rather be single the rest of my life than ever be married to that fuckwit again.

      • Yes, the communication issues. I remember a few what I thought were heart 2 heart convos about let’s work on our communication skills, let’s see a counselor. So I was the one who arranged to see a counselor. I started individually going because our insurance didn’t cover marriage counseling but my now ex would be able to join us for some sessions. Well that never happened. My last appointment before D-day, my therapist warned me that it sounds like your H is headed for a breakdown based on his lying about drunk driving, going on antidepressants, and risking his job by smoking weed. That weekend he informed me of his year long affair with married howorker while he raged at me and blamed me for every marital issue. I think he liked that I was in therapy so he could say see she has issues. Yep I’ve got issues with lying, cheating, endangering my health, risking the family’s finances, and robbing your kids of your time while you are wining & dining your married howorker.

      • Adelante, you are describing my ex husband! When things were not going well in our marriage he would always say “things have to change around here” although he did say what needed to change, that was for me dress sexier and let him go out his days off instead of spending time with the family.

        I was fed up with his BS and told him he needed to make a decision to either shape up or to separate. He didn’t hesitate and said “I want a divorce, you and I know, our marriage was over 10 years ago” what? I was shocked since just a week prior this shocking revelation he had texted me how much he loved me and that he was the happiest and luckiest man alive.

        Well, I started to dig a little and found out our marriage was indeed over not 10 years ago, but from the beginning of our marriage. He had been cheating with both sexes since day one. When I confronted him, he confessed to been gay, but still in the closet.

  • I think one of the most hurtful things some cheaters do is when they pretend to still be invested in the marriage. They want to keep a toehold in case things don’t work out with their paramour.

    I knew something was very wrong, and I actually said to my ex “let’s part ways if you are so unhappy with me, then we can both move on.” He said I was delusional. Later I found emails in which he proposed to her, declared his undying love to her, and was planning honeymoon sites for them.

    • My ex also pretended to “still be invested.” We had come to the brink of divorce, and then backed away, and in an email to me he said, “If we can make this good, I’m all in.” Of course, he continued to keep his secrets from me for two more years.

    • I’m sorry you went through that too! Two weeks before the final D-Day, I said to the Entitled One, “If you’re that unhappy, you should leave.” And he said no, no, you’re my best friend, my soul mate, we can work this out. Two weeks later, it was “we’ve been nothing but roommates for years.”

    • This hurts to read. My ex said the same but his behavior was being very shifty.
      He knew that if he ended it, I would never take him back. so he was playing two pianos, bidding his time to decide between me and OW.
      “she makes me feel attractive. she’s human, with flaws like me. You are too perfect and too moral, I always feel like I am not a good person, when I compare myself to you.”
      Good riddance. I am increasingly at meh.

      • I think he may have been telling you the truth. My ex said something like that, only more along the lines of: This is just who I am, I got tired of pretending to be someone I am not. And she was definitely different than me in terms of morals and behavior. When I say behavior, I mean things like she would get is loud fights in public, she had a history of “dating” married men. I guess she hit the jackpot with my ex? Found one she could get to marry her.

        But, my point is the bottom line may very well be that she was indeed his true level, and he sunk to it. That is no reflection on your value, but his.

        • thank you Susie Lee for your kind reply. Some days, I relapse but I always remind myself to “trust that they suck”.

          • “But my point is the bottom line may very well be that she was indeed his true level and he sunk to it. That is no reflection on your value, but his.”

            Susie Lee, I just *love* that, it’s so true, for *all* of us. No matter what the schmoopies look like, or what they have materially, they are just basically shitty people, a spot on match for the shitty cheaters. Thank you. ????❤️

  • He referred to me as “the roommate” in his messages to her. Yet I was plugging away at our marriage supporting him and his dreams, covering the kids at night so he could go do his various sports and extracurriculars, which pranced her around with him in the final months. Yet I’m such a troll to be angry about that and he tells everyone a reversed timeline of “he was unhappy, we’re getting a divorce, he met someone, and now I’m a mean angry person.”

    Oh, but he was happy to come home to me every night and get his handouts and smooches and love and attention while pretending like we were married.

    Will he ever see it or own up to it?

    • It doesn’t matter. What’s important is that YOU see it. Don’t continue to rent him space in your head, he’s never going to pay the rent anyway. Worrying about what he thinks is a waste of your precious time – hasn’t he wasted enough of that already?

      • I agree. You need to “see” it because he will NEVER ‘see’ it. I finally realized this as well. He (and the skank) feel entitled to do what they did (and still do) and they will never, ever ‘see’ it. They will ALWAYS believe that it is totally their right to do whatever they want to do. I think the only reason they ‘concealed’ their behavior is because they didn’t want to deal with the discomfort of having it all in the open. I mean, there are just too many emotions, and crying, and financial decisions, etc., if it all comes out in the open. That’s why the chump has to initiate everything. It’s just too inconvenient when they have to deal with all that divorce stuff. But when the chump finally goes through with a divorce, then “our marriage was over a long time ago” (or “your mother and I just grew apart”) is certainly a very good saving-face response. Too bad it took revealing the cheating before the chump knew that the ‘marriage was over a long time ago’. If I had known my marriage was over years ago, I would have ended it years ago.

        • “They will ALWAYS believe that it is totally their right to do whatever they want to do.”
          Which is how we can “Trust that they suck.”

    • X creates the false narrative, factual history be damned. That’s the story and he’s sticking to it. He’s an asshat that I spackled for 35 + years. Selfish, entitled liar, user, fraud. He’s sucking the life blood out of a new willing victim now. Sorry not sorry.

  • “Okay, so maybe they went about it in the wrong way, but It’s All for the Best! Their happiness is what Really Matters!”

    I got a version of this. He even added, “I think I probably did you a favor.”

    • Ugh, the happiness trope. They prance that around while they’ve eviscerated you and the kids with such pain and trauma.

      • I am soooooooo sick of hearing ‘he was unhappy.’ They all say that. Then do something about it – beyond cheating and dumping and screwing your family up. Where do these people get the idea that you’re relationship ‘makes’ you happy 24 /7 ?

        Obama advised. “It taught me that I was responsible for my own happiness. I didn’t marry Barack for him to make me happy. No one can make me happy.”

    • Oh, god! I got that, too! I don’t know about him doing me any favors, but I sure am better off without him. Maybe I can fix my picker after this…

      • Oh, he did you a big favor! That’s how I finally came to see it. Else I’d be dealing with the mindfuckery the rest of my life. I got divorced at age 55. I thought it was the end of my world. I’m 60 now and my world is so wonderful. Why? Because I’m not having someone mindfuck me. I don’t look at someone daily and wonder if he’s telling me the truth or playing mind games anymore. I don’t have anybody making me doubt myself anymore. I wake up in my quiet house, feed the cat, drink my coffee, read my paper, and enjoy the peace and quiet all day everyday. No more mindfuck. He did me a humongous favor!

          • karenb6702,
            You’re not alone! I’m mired as well, and this pandemic certainly doesn’t help matters. It just leads to more isolation. I’m alone, while my ex is happily playing house with his schmoopie.

            Screech! Wait! That’s all in my head. First, the assumption that they are happy is flawed. He’s a sick man. As for her, all I know is that she had no problem fucking a married man and sleeping in our bed. And he had no problem fucking a married woman in HER marital bed. That’s all I need to know. Oh, and she made this mock suicide attempt when he went out for a drink with me post divorc (crazy lapse on my part, but our dog had just died). So she’s unstable as fuck, too. They truly are meant for each other.

            Still, even though my mind knows I’m better off without him (and just when I think I’m over the hump), I become overcome with grief, flashbacks…the entire nine yards. “Trauma response, ” says my therapist. At those moments, I worry that I’ve slipped back to square one. But then I realize that overall (I mean, if I were to graph it), I’m getting to meh. Two steps forward, one step back.

            I hope you find yourself moving up that graph, too, however unevenly and slowly. I trust that it takes time, and we won’t always feel this bad.

            Amazon’s situation, as well as those of others on this site, give me hope!

            • Correction (and not that it matters): the drink to mourn the loss of our dog that resulted in the AP’s mock suicide attempt was not post divorce; it was a few weeks post D-Day.

            • ‘Screech! Wait! That’s all in my head.’
              That’s great.
              I saw my ex, he actually didn’t look good. I thought he’d be living the life span dangled- but he clearly has not found “happiness.”
              I think many move on eventually – once the dust settles- to a different type of unhappiness.

          • you’ll get there, KarenB!

            and we’ll all be right here whenEVER you need us

            i say this as someone who’s not even CLOSE to “there” yet

            but has travelled light years from where i was

            which was (likely) where you are now


          • Attie, that made me laugh out loud. My STBXH just had hemorrhoid surgery and I am BEYOND thankful that I did not get the job of wiping his ass. He will not shut up about how I should have kept the status-quo. No, thanks, I will pass. I have self respect and no desire to put up with your cheating crap. He acts like I still need to care about him, when he hasn’t cared about the kids and I in years.

        • I got a lot of BS but she kept saying, “I want to be free to choose you.” I thought she chose me when we got married? Silly me.

    • Ugh “happiness.” Yes sure. I got this shit from one of my exes, thankfully it was a short relationship (his crap about his “happiness” is one of the reasons it was so short and I’m GLAD he’s gone.)

      Every time he did something shitty and selfish I got a lecture about how I’m resentful and “everyone is entitled to the pursuit of their own happiness.” But that rule only ever seemed to apply to him. His way of ending the relationship was basically just not answering messages or phone calls for about two weeks. In the span of about 14/15 days he responded to maybe two texts and one phone call. Which of course made me wonder what the hell was going on.

      When he finally told me that basically he was dumping me, he had lied when he said he loved me, and called me crazy for thinking he was serious at all (not kidding, verbatim. He said he was not serious and told me I’m being crazy and irrational for thinking the words “I love you” meant he loved me.) He said “Why couldn’t you just get the hint? I’m entitled to the pursuit of my happiness, and you should be reasonable and let me have my happiness! You’re being so controlling.”

      Five months later this prick tries to come back along into my life. Turns out his “happiness” was a 20 year old who disappeared on HIM and got pregnant, then came back into his life asking him to raise someone else’s kid because she screwed up and didn’t like the dad. Which I’m not entirely sure I believe the “someone else’s” kid part.

      Yeah no, buddy, you go lay in that fucked up bed you made.

    • Spinach, I am convinced we were married to twins separated at birth, mine also “went about it the wrong way” – he would say that he should have done things differently (he never did explain exactly what he would have done differently, I am thinking it was telling me in a scene that echoed Buddy the elf declaring that he was in love…. (As shocked as I was on dday the similarity to that scene in the movie ELF was all I could think about. I couldn’t believe my husband of 20 years was in my kitchen declaring his love for Schmoopie like the Elf from a children’s movie). Similarly to your ex, “it was the best thing for both of us”.

      • It took me months to even comprehend the reality of the situation. H declaring his devotion and soulmatefuckupness with surprise OW was surreal. I still feel like I’m in the twilight zone, and it still feels like he’s my husband – even though we are totally separated.

  • I got the “our marriage was already over” cocktail from my ex the ingredients included:
    *Our marriage was bad from day one*
    *If only you got out of your denial and faced reality you would have realized it was over*
    *Its been so bad for years, how could you not know it was over*
    and my personal favorite: * I divorced you in my head months ago so the affair did not even count* (he actually told other people this one as well).

    I was supposed to feel bad because while I thought we were in a normal marriage, raising 3 wonderful kids and building a strong family with all the associated ups and downs, he was suffering in hell for 20 years.

    • “I divorced you in my head months ago so the affair did not even count* (he actually told other people this one as well).”

      It’s laughable but so sad as well. I’m sorry. Truly they suck.

    • My XW said “I knew I shouldn’t have married you on our honeymoon.” News to me after 24 years???

      • haha. They lie to justify!

        Mine tried to sell me (and the mediator) on the lie that he wanted to leave me 10 years ago. Intersting that he got a tattoo of my initials 10 years ago. It’s where only his whore and urologist can see it. hehe.

        At the time, getting a tattoo seemed SO out of character for him.

        Then, last year (pre D-Day), he got *another* tattoo, this time of a fish. Again, upper thigh. He showed me what it would look like. I was kind of indifferent at the time. I might have said that it doess nothing for me but “you do you.” Turns out that he was scheming with the whore to get the fish tattoo togeher, symbolizing their true love! Like a couple of teenagers. He’s 62.

        I might have bought him some soothing balm for the damn thing. Geez! Talk about being in the dark. Ugh.

      • After 36 years (with a serial cheater)he told me our marriage was over after the 6th year. It’s laughable NOW. I filed for the divorce. No surprise. Whenever asked why we divorced I always reply:
        “I was in a marriage for 36 years but “John” was only in it for 6.”

        • Yeah, funny that. Mine after 25 years together said he’s been unhappy because he wanted kinky sex. I asked him why he didn’t just leave and he then said, “I should have.” I said well now you can and you can stop blaming me. I’m setting you free so you can go live the life you’ve always wanted. Still, he said it was all my fault that we broke up and he’s angry and hateful.

          I saw emails from him and schmoopie right after he left. They were always from her saying things like, “I’m sorry we had that fight last night. But we’ve been through so much together and our love for each other will keep us safe we can fight her together and we’ll always win, me and you…”

          I was so shocked since they’d only been together a few months. I was so glad I removed myself from that drama. It was amazing how they both made me the enemy and they had something to fight together- me! I was the enemy. Trouble is, I didn’t fight. I threw him out so where is all the drama going to come from now? He can have the home wrecker and their kinky sex. Good riddance.

          • Good riddance is right! These are deranged people. I bet he’s upset you deprived him of drama/kibbles. Now he can’t triangulate. Good for you! He’s no prize!

            As for the kinky sex, whatever floats your boat, I guess, but that he chose to cheat and not just leave is wrong, wrong, wrong.

            Oh and judging by her email, that relationship won’t last. Still, I’m sure it was incredibly painful to read those words. I’m sorry.

            Glad you got away!

          • Fighting you was the common denominator for them. Now that you are out of the equation, they will start looking sideways at each other instead.They will realize fighting you and sneaking around was all that they had together. Now reality will set in.
            I also got the “I didn’t think you cared” and ‘the marriage has been over for years”. News to me…Now he keeps saying we should be friends.Really? You had 25 years to be my friend. Have at it asshole.

      • I had to think about that one for a minute, she had ‘buyer’s remorse’ on your honeymoon?!?


        First I was reading it as “you got married on your honeymoon” which seemed a little backwards, silly me I was thinking “who honeymoons first then marries”?

        Probably cheaters & schmoopies ‘honeymoon’ then marry. Of course it’s all fake to them.

        Glad you’re rid of them.

        • I got the same bs, after Dday she said that 4days into our honeymoon she realised she could’t be with me. Before marrying we were 10y together, 3kids…

    • “Its been so bad for years, how could you not know it was over?”

      Oooh. I got this one too Chumperella!

      I only wish I’d have had the presence of mind to reply, “Because you moronic shit stain, I can’t read your tiny mind.”

    • ‘I divorced you in my head months ago so the affair did not even count*
      Makes me laugh and cry at the same time. I think a lot of cheaters/ leavers think like this.

  • One aspect of the blame shifting here is an intent to use the “our marriage was already over” line as a pivot to discuss of WHY it was over. And 100% of the time, the cheater will claim that the marriage was over (in a figurative/fictional sense) was ***because the chump SUCKED SO BAD.*** Get ready for a laundry list of your real and (mostly) imagined faults over the years (or decades), because that’s coming next.

    • He actually used the term “laundry list”.

      A list he never mentioned, and “didn’t want to get into” when I discovered he was a cheater and a liar.

      What a guy. He lied, cheated, and is going to end a 27 year marriage and keep his Laundry List of grievances secret.

      But NOW he tries to bring up grievances. WTF?!

      I interrupt him with, “I don’t want to get into it. You had your chance while we were married. Tell it to your therapist.”

      • I was also told about my faults that occurred years prior. I just shut him down immediately saying, “If it bothered you so much, then why didn’t you bring it up years ago?” By that time (after 4 years of wreckconciliation), my attitude showed that I was not going to brook any stupid response, so he just didn’t reply. I was DONE.

        • OMG, so weird. STBXH said the same. Apparently he divorced me the day I caught him. He was unhappy since day 1, I had no clue till Dday. And I had flaws that he cannot tell me about because he wants to preserve my dignity. Behind my back, sent a 5 page document of my ‘flaws’ to his family. Which his father happily sent to my Dad to prove a point? So weird the same script book. Some of them so laughable, that I need to submit a few to CL. How did I marry a moron?

          • Five pages?! To your father?! Ahahaha! Yes, please submit so we can all have a good laugh at what goes on in their idiotic minds.

          • ‘And I had flaws that he cannot tell me about because he wants to preserve my dignity’
            ????- I wish I had not asked… He did have a pained look on his face when telling me about my supposed flaws ….like it hurt him to tell me how not worth it I was

    • After DDay my XW gave me a list of 30 (!!!) things I had to change for her to reconcile with me. But I asked her what she had to change, “I don’t have to make any changes for you, only for God”. You are 100% right, they turn it on you.

      • The ego and entitlement is out of control isn’t it? She said “maybe a therapist can help you change, then maybe I could find my way back to you someday”. Ahh, I who said I want you back? I don’t want a second-hand wife. She also hoped therapist would make me divorce “friendly and fairly”. I never got a list so I’ll never know why she was so unhappy. The divorce was anything but cordial.

        • Quantum, I didn’t get a list either. XH never really articulated why he cheated (multiple times). He’d only say things in the heat of the moment, so a lot of it was me trying to piece together what went wrong. He even said once, “I don’t know what’s wrong with me”.

          Before I moved out of our home, he said, “Will you still come by and clean my place for me every few weeks? I’ll pay you.” I think he just wanted to keep tabs on me.

          • Same here Alice. I never loved you, oh I just said that to make you hate me. I want to marry schmoopie, I just need time to get my head on straight. And he even came by while I was working in my flower garden and ask me if I wanted to go see his apartment. I must have looked at him like he had two heads. Yeah, no thanks. No way do I want to be behind closed doors with you.

            “If you love something let it go, it will come back” Well it tried to come back, but no thanks. It took about three weeks after the legal separation for me to see the evil I had been shackled to. Lordy he had a high opinion of himself.

            • They all have high opinions of themselves.

              My XH told me I was lazy because my career didn’t pay six figures like his did. He always measured me by my paycheck. At the time, it really hurt. He’d say I was too dumb to ever make any real money. I have a masters degree, that’s paid off! Ugh!

          • “Before I moved out of our home, he said, “Will you still come by and clean my place for me every few weeks? I’ll pay you”


            Dear God, that is *beyond* insulting and contemptuous!!

            I’m so glad you’re away from that disgusting, evil freak. ????????

          • That’s just pathetic. He was trying to push buttons to get an emotional reaction out of you. Last min kibbles. Mine said he would want to come back but just for cooking. Assholes.

            • Total assholes.

              They definitely want kibbles. My XH is of the White.. I’m ethnic, so he loved reminding me of my place in this world throughout our marriage. That should have been my first clue.

              • **Sorry, I meant that my XH is white, not sure what I was typing there.

                @Nita, yea it upsets me too. I can remember a lot of things he used to do and say because he is white and I am not. Just awful

  • I wasn’t a wife.

    I was being held hostage.

    I wasn’t in a marriage.

    I was in a MIRAGE.

    Time to wake up, get showered and dressed, and go get my life back.

    Have a great day.

    • My list:

      I never loved him.

      I was never happy. (news to me)

      He no longer felt butterflies in his stomach when I entered the room.

      We weren’t getting along. (News to me).

      I didn’t compliment him on his biceps when he came home from the gym.

      I never ran up to meet him at the door when he came home . (No, I was usually making dinner or doing other domestic chores).

      He could never make me happy. (try me)

      I came home from Bunko tipsy on my Birthday in front of our son. (His mother would never do that).
      Ex said “I’m no June Cleaver.” wtf? I take that as a compliment.

      Spring of 2004 we had made vacation plans for Hawaii at the last minute he wanted to cancel our reservations for Hawaii and spend Spring break in New Jersey with his Mother. I suggested going to visit his Mother the following month. Ex refused, being a chump I cancelled our plans and found short notice flights to spend Spring Break in a trailer with his Mother in New Jersey. We spent every summer vacation, and Spring break, except for two with his parents. He informed me that I didn’t deserve to go to Hawaii. We spent every “vacation” and Spring break but two with his parents since we were married.
      Apparently it was one of many resentments that could never be forgiven.
      Evidently AP deserved to go to Hawaii three months after D day.

      • Brit, just reading about the Hawaii trip with AP made my heart ache for you – sorry you were subjected to that obvious act of hostility.

        • Dday for me was three weeks before our dream two-week trip to Italy in 2015 as we’ll have been married 36 years. (All planned and booked by HIM for over a year,) He suddenly moves out. No who, what, when, where or why. He does not tell me he’s not going to Italy. I go alone.
          Eleven months later he takes the whore on the same trip (we’re still married)!
          And no, I never got the line that the “marriage was over”. I have never gotten any line at all.

      • If you haven’t listened to this song “She let herself go” (George Strait), please do. You’ll like it.

      • Brit – mine did many of the same things. Made a big deal that I didn’t stop whatever I was doing or standup and come to the door when he came home. What? I found it interesting when my daughter came home the other night and he called for her to come upstairs to the 3rd floor. (He won’t move out yet)

        Their rules only apply to everyone else.

        • Damn, that brings back memories. Mine used to yell “Attie” and I was supposed to stop what I was doing and go to wherever he was. Eventually I just used to continue doing what I was doing and yell back “yes” and he would get so pissed off that I didn’t go to him. But I would be making dinner or putting groceries away and whatever he was doing was never more important than what I was doing. But man he hated it when he yelled “jump” and I didn’t yell back “how high”?

          • Attie, I didn’t even get my name called. I got whistled at, like a DOG gets whistled at!!!!

            I’d constantly have to tell him, “I’m not a dog” which he would just laugh at.

            Clearly I was so much a chump, I actually did go to him every time he whistled, ugh!

            I’ll forever hate whistling.

            • My god, Alice, that’s such passive-aggressive bullshit. I wish I could slap him for whistling for you!
              Glad you’re done with that disrespect (and boy, can I relate!)

              • @Freewoman, it’s very passive-aggressive. So glad I’m outta there as well. I don’t miss the whistling or the arguments over it.

                Just to know there are men living in this world who think they can do crap like that, goes to show we still live in a man’s world. It’s very sad.

            • Mine whistles too. He’s a hunting guide sometimes and a good one and he whistles to be more in tune with nature. Before I had a breakdown even, when I was unaware of what is wrong In our relationship, I remember not liking it for the exact same reason as yours. I definitely vary my responses and I stopped coming running. Has chump lady done any sort of feature about odd nonverbal communications on the part of abusers?

              • @Nita, I haven’t seen a feature on this yet.

                It’s so degrading to be whistled at.

        • I did always greet him at the door. It didn’t make a difference – he found other reasons when justifying leaving me for the OW .

      • It’s so weird re the family vacation that never happened. We always went to visit family but we had never been truly anywhere fun and exciting. I kept saying let’s go to Hawaii bc we can get cheap airfare and we can stay at Disney resort there. Ex future faked and I bought us all tickets. Then D-day happened. 5 months later, the kids and I had a great time in Hawaii and he had to reimburse me for his plane ticket. Since I’ve heard of 2 other cheater stories involving Hawaii. My friend said her dad told her mom of his cheating right before a scheduled Hawaii vacation, kids and mom still went and mom was an emotional mess the whole trip. Another one, family friend’s sister always wanted to visit Hawaii and was saving up for years. She finally had enough money saved but her husband refused to go. But then he took his affair partner turned wife to Hawaii for their honeymoon. I sure hope wife #1 finally got to Hawaii.

  • I got “we were just roommates” and “it was over about a year ago” from the XSO. After I forced him to tell me, he vomited all over me about her. “I just needed a really good friend” and “It just happened, we didn’t mean for it to happen” and “You don’t understand, we are TWIN FLAMES! I can’t explain.”
    I could not BELIEVE he was so vested in another relationship, while having a relationship with me. It also came out that he is using methamphetamine regularly. No wonder he was always broke, exhausted, and stressed out! It is so very sick. I absolutely knew I was leaving after that. He did play games for the three months I had to remain, but I INVENT GAMES. He was completely blindsided when I left and SO ANGRY with me! He said to me: “No notice?” and “You are being vindictive!” Oh boy, good riddance psychopath. I have peace now and my bank account is not overdrawn once since I left – imagine that! I trust I will stop replaying the nasty things he said and my ego and spirit will heal in time. I am coming to terms with, I loved and trusted a person not deserving of my love and trust.

      • I agree wtih KB22. Glad you’re free, Peregrine!

        FWIW, I also got the “you’re so vindictive” line. You see, it was all my fault because I’m unforgiving and vindictive.

        Heck, by now he’s probably convinced himself that I made their hotel reservations and arranged to be out of the house just so they could fuck in the marital bed. My bad!

      • Yes, I am so happy! Oh, he is a porn addict, too. How didn’t I see it before??? oh, yeah I trusted him – but after he told me “I am no longer sexually attracted to you” I started to snoop. What a sicko. Wow, my picker really needs fixing!
        I’ll get there… This site helped me really see past the bullshit -the blame-shifting, stonewalling, gas-lighting, and how I was a “wife appliance” doing EVERYTHING to make that home a home.
        I am truly GRATEFUL for CL and CN – thank you, thank you, thank you!

        • Mine was (is?) a porn addict, too. When he was trying to justify his affair, he cruelly said to me that he was tired of needing porn.

          I would bet money that he’s looking at it again now that he’s living with the whore and the thrill of meeting on the sly is behind them.

          Whatever. I don’t care.

            • I’ve reread this post three times today. I guess I needed it. Today. I’m getting the major Olympian love bomb now because I said we needed to separate. After his confessing to decades of cheating. His admissions were to help him come clean and help me heal and trust again—because after all, he’s honest now, eh?

              I truly think that the big confession after DDay #3 is THE most vindictive vengeful act yet!!! He’s pissed I got pissed so he’s retaliating by being brutally honest now to “help” me believe in him. He’s sorry after all. Hey that’s good and honorable enough now, right?

              The whole marriage was one long long con act of revenge against me. My crime? That I couldn’t bare my child being abandoned by a second cheater deadbeat dad. So he held that threat over me proudly every gd day of our marriage. All a threat. God I was weak and vulnerable and just so worried about my child who begged me not to make daddy2 a homeless man. So I lumped it. Against all hope. All to the detriment of both my health and my innocent child’s who could not understand leaving is sometimes just surviving. I should have left.

              He got better at cheating but more ruthless with abuse. I am now terrified because he follows my every move somehow through my phone (& my kid’s) and shut me out of the phone website so I can’t see his calls now! I pay the phones!

              He left to a hotel but managed to put all hotels on my credit cards I didn’t know he had!!! Revenge and more revenge. Had to shut down all my cards, afraid to leave my house, and the nightmares are terrifying. But he’s getting therapy now so he gets it. He just won’t admit indeed it was abuse and cheating is an act of aggression. It’s just his “anxiety that makes him cheat.” I guess he’s the real martyr here, I’m the mean one with a boundary now. And boundaries ain’t cool for these hellcats!


              • Pack a go back and keep it in your car. The go bag should have cash, underwear for you and your child, clothing, maybe some canned fruit or snacks that last a long time like dried nuts. Make a copy of your keys and keep them off site, maybe in a bush or under a shed or somewhere you can access them if he takes your keys. Close your phone account and get new phones and phone numbers. if you have to get a family plan with multiple numbers, that will work for yo. Let him have the number to one phone. Nothing else goes on that phone, no other contacts etc. That way if you want to leave your house, you leave that phone home. Take your car to the shop and ask them to look for a GPS tracker because your stalker ex is harassingyou and knows where you are even when you don’t tell him. Find out about getting a restaining order and an eviction notice served on him where you get sole occupancy of the house, get a child support agreement into court where he still has to pay for child support, even if yoiu aren’t divorced yet. Call shelters and find out where they are if you have to run in a hurry, you will have a place to land. Find out if you can sue him or charge back the hotel rooms as unauthorized charges on your credit cards. Don’t tell him anything about your life. Don’t tell his freinds anything about your life. Don’t tell his family anything about what you are doing with your life. Take him seriously. He is bad news and is escalating abusive behaviour.

              • Its over thank god. Sequester yourself from that asshole and make your best plans forward. And keep those plans to yourself.
                Let him think that you’re waffling.
                No contact is the way to recovery. Stay away from the asshole with the poisoned voice.
                I gave up many good years to the same kind of user abuser fraud.

        • If you want to understand the porn addiction thing look up Eddie Capparucci, he has a new book out called ‘Going Deeper’ which explains to [mostly male but applicable to female] porn & sex addicts what’s really going on with their addiction (essentially an Inner Child run amok, the porn & sex are used to avoid facing real emotional & psychological issues that likely long pre-date when the addict started dating, mating & relating as a [theoretical] adult to potential partners.

          Porn is apparently the gateway drug in the progression (it gives a dopamine rush, it becomes habitual, they acclimate then they need more to get the rush so), then it’s prostitutes, then schmoopies/girlfriends (the last are cheaper & more controllable / abuse-able)

          I expect Eddie Capparucci being Christian, a 12 stepper & working with the Reconciliation Industrial Complex of service providers, you might not want to go into therapy with him, especially if you’ve decided RIC would be ‘wreckonciliation’, but I found his writings & videos informative (I suspect Broken Toy is addicted in this fashion, I am not interested in fixing him myself, but someday if I’m of a mind to date again I want to be better able to spot this red flag way sooner)

  • I never got this as he knew I knew I would have noticed if our marriage was over !!

    But I’m sure he must have told his OWife this .

    I’m so lucky to have found CL within weeks of discard . I take screen shots of all the powerful messages so I can go back over them .

    In I think April 2016 Tempest wrote for the chump to file for divorce as it gives the chump agency – cheater has already ended the marriage anyway .
    I went over that all the time crying a lot but it gave me strength .

    Yeah the marriage is over so here is me serving you with divorce it’s well and truly over now !

  • This entry should be rerun on a schedule — hammer this over and over again. We all got this sort of mindfuck, all of the general blameshifting umbrella of “It’s not my fault; it couldn’t be helped; it’s unfortunate (for YOU) but I was powerless.”

  • Oh I got this. He never ever ever told me there was a problem, that he was unhappy, that he was cheating, that he was leaving, nothing. So much gaslighting. I just had to gradually and accidentally figure it all out by myself. Such a terrible way to end a 30 year relationship.

      Mustard, I just watched this YouTube video by Brené Brown, and it reminded me that my former H was never truly in the arena with me (never vulnerable, always perfect pants) – then the sudden criticism of me and discard for OW.
      If our partner is never real with us, we don’t stand a chance – but we showed up.
      I love her message- if they are not also in the arena being vulnerable don’t accept their criticism. I’m realizing painfully that he was not my person, he wasn’t rooting for me. I think I was a cover for his emptiness and dysfunction. So sad.
      I wish my therapists had told me that!

  • It may be a rerun however it continues to describe the cheater’s narrative. It’s used to play the victim and secure what they deem important. The narrative is tweaked and at this point they absolutely display intentional harm by using your reaction and emotions to both secure the OP and prove you’re crazy. This is why it’s important to work solely through an attorney and file for a divorce.

  • My cheater is a non confronting type but passive aggressive. He asked our DS, if you made someone sad in a relationship what would you do. Our DS said, I would end it and go on to another relationship. Cheater said, I like how you think. Then he would tell him that he hadn’t loved me for a long time. Which means he created our DS without love. He would tell my son he was looking for a place to live but he would talk to me before he moves in. How nice huh. He would tell DS to keep it a secret.

    Then cheater came outside and asked if I had time to talk to him. I forgot what he started to say. I took over the conversation. He said he found a place and he would pay me child support. I told him I would get an agreement written up but I was not going to be left paying the marital Bill’s alone. He asked when the kids would be home so he could tell them. I said we will tell them. I was not going to let him play the pity channel. He said the kids were his life. Funny they did not exist when he was in the affair fog. He told our DS later that I was too prepared and asked if DS said anything to me.

    He is a coward man boy…

    • Yes. Funny that now the kids are important to him, but he left for”work” for weeks at a time and didn’t even ask to speak to them on the phone. 15 years of lying and choosing to be away from them. Keeping them waiting all morning while he was out in the garage stroking his souvenirs and exposing us to STIs. Then when he finally left, leaving the disgusting evidence of his secret life there for his kids to find.

  • My exes mom carries out the campaign of making him seem innocent and blameless. Before divorce was final and my kids still had visitation with him(they stayed with his parents while he was off with AP) , my MIL explained to my kids that their father had found someone who would love him and she hoped that I would be able to find someone to love me too. And by the way, they claim to be devout Christians. I was so proud of my then 16 year old son who wasn’t falling for it and told her his dad was committing adultery and that if she believed in the Ten Commandments then he wasn’t buying her bull shit. It shut her up. Somehow even though I had been doing all the parenting of 5 children, worked and put him through school and did ALL the adulting, I didn’t love her precious narcopath son of hers! Hope they are all happy living in the same house now and dealing with his drama!! I did find someone to love me and that is ME!!

    • Bravo to you and your smart son! These devout Christians that makes excuses for their “f.wit” children just slay me. Good to hear you are doing well. Hugs

  • Amazing how many cheaters say “our marriage was already over” while it’s usually the chumps who have to do the divorce filing.

    • Exactly BetterDays

      Which then leads to if they were so unhappy and the marriage was over why didn’t they leave and file for divorce before being in another relationship ?

      I mean if I was unhappy for decades I would do something about it . Get a new hobby , get therapy etc but I wouldn’t be looking to get laid by co workers . It’s funny how that happens if you are a cheater

      • Cheaters can’t be by themselves, they have to have loads of people around so the don’t have to think what jerks they are. When they finally get the courage to leave they have to have a “soft place to land” they couldn’t make it on their own. At least that’s my observation.

        • @Linda, EXACTLY!! Cheater’s can’t be by themselves, can’t be alone to think about what jerks they are, a**holes. I thought we were happily married for 31 years, apparently during the entire marriage he found alot of “opportunity” as he called it to F**k around. Wow just wow and he ran off like a coward when I filed. But them fought me for money that he had already been stashing. At the end I was fed up, didn’t care and also didnt have the energy to rack up lawyer fees and get PTSD more than I already had it! Just a real piece of work. Im in the land of meh now, divorced for almost 5 yrs and he is still woman hopping. Our kids finally see who he really is now!! LET them GO …. they arent worth keeping. Save yourself

  • I swear cheaters have a handbook. They all trot out the same ridiculously cliche lines to justify their betrayal. He told me, “This marriage has been over for a long time.” That statement was nearly simultaneous with “I haven’t been happy for a long time.” When I asked why he didn’t tell me a long time ago he just looked at me with his dead black eyes.

    It was all bullshit excuses. It can be the worst day, and at the very least I don’t have to listen to his chortling glee as he talks about his HoWorker. I don’t have to be subjected to his disdain and discard. I left him and it has made all the difference.

    Now like Velvet Hammer, I’m showering, putting on street clothes and reclaiming my life.

    • I got “You and I aren’t happy, and I don’t know if divorce is the answer.” I didn’t realize I wasn’t happy, but it was just his way to make me play the pick-me dance. And it worked. I said, “What can I do to make you happy?” Of course the answer was always ambiguous making me doubt myself. He didn’t look at me with dead black eyes. He looked at me with such pity in his eyes to make me feel even worse, that no matter what I did was just not enough. That’s how he was able to mindfuck me for so long.

  • I got….”In MY mind I was done!”.
    Then came ” I think we didn’t date long enough I never had any other experiences with anyone else I was too young” “Maybe we should see other people and I can decide if we should be together” No thanks see you later!

  • After 35 years married I got..”If you didn’t nag I would’ve fallen out of love with you “ and “Our marriage ran its course”. Funny tough we had sex almost every day until I caught the lying narc with his Owhore sitting outside her house at 1:00 am as they laughed and verbally tormented me. He didn’t expect my surprise arrival but a week later received the divorce papers again at her door!
    Years later I am free and glad he’s gone. Monsters do exist ????

  • Ugh I got this too. I’m so glad to hear (but also so sorry to hear) that it happens to other people. My cheating ex said he had been unhappy for a long time, that the marriage was over in his mind for months, and even went so far as to say we never should have gotten married… after 15 years! And I never knew about any of it because he never told me! He’s made me question the last 15 years of my life, our life together, that I thought was a happy one. How can they say such hurtful things?!

  • XH’s words…

    “I don’t care what it costs, my happiness is worth it”

    “We probably will end up together, you never know what the future holds Alice”

    “There’s a lot of beautiful woman who make more money than you Alice”

    “I’m going to miss fu*king you”

    “Can’t I just have six months to myself?”

    “I think about what I’ve done everyday”

    “We will NEVER get a divorce Alice!”

    “Stop doing my laundry! You’re not my mother!”

    “You act like a Cu*t, I’ll treat you like one!”

    “How did it come to this? You’re my best-friend”

    The back and forth of his emotions was exhausting. It was the best drive of my life when I finally was able to move out of our home. I rolled my windows down, drove 80mph and didn’t look back!

    • At least one of those comments is definitely true: “I’m going to miss fu*king you”. He’s going to miss mindfucking you. You were such a good sport…, until you decided you didn’t want to play the game anymore. Congratulations, Alice!

    • That’s disgusting Alice what piece of human excrement he is! He can thank his lucky stars you never did a Lorena Bobbitt on him. All of these shitty men deserve it…and the the cheating women I wish for them eternal vaginal pustular discharge !

    • Mine kept insisting she didn’t want a divorce, she just wanted “time & space”. Then we might find our way back to each other. Puke. Translation: I hope you keep paying all the bills, while I fuck any guy who hasn’t passed out by last call”.

      • Exactly! Glad you got away, Quantum!

        I got the “time and space” excuse, too.

        Come to think of it, I ‘m not sure mine really wanted a divorce. He first asked for a separation saying he “needed some time and space.” I (pathetically) begged him to stay to work on our relationship, which I didn’t really know was flawed until that moment (my own disturbing denial, I guess). He left anyway.

        Before he left, I said, “Men only ask for separations when there’s another woman.” He replied, “Oh, you always think you’re so smart. I’m not having an affair.” He looked me straight in the forehead when he said this.

        Three days later, he returned home and told me about the affair, knowing full well I would say what I said, which was,”You are dead to me.” I immediately left.

        He seemed angry that I had him served with divorce papers shortly thereafter.

        He said that I must have delighted in having him served, as if my hiring a lawyer and serving him was just as bad as a 2 1/2 year affair. “I may have had an affair, but YOU SERVED ME WITH DIVORCE PAPERS! You are SO vindictive!”

        • Spinach, my XH was the same way. He couldn’t understand why I wanted a divorce after finding out about his 3rd affair. I had already forgiven for his first two, did all the counseling, etc and the 3rd affair was my breaking point.

          He told me at one point he didn’t want to live without me. It was so confusing for me at the time. I’m glad I stuck to my guns the 3rd time around and made all the appointments to meet with lawyers and start the divorce. I remember shaking the first time I spoke with a lawyer about divorcing him, I was so scared.

          Guess my hurt and anger won though over my fear. He screamed at me at the top of his lungs after our first meeting with the lawyers. He was livid with what he was facing in the divorce and how much I was going to make him lose in his wealth.

        • I’m guessing he missed the day where the life lesson ‘Actions have consequences’ was taught.

          This is so very Newtonian, maybe it was a physics class he slept through (‘for every action, there’s an equal & opposite reaction’)?


      • Quantum, that’s exactly what she wanted! You to fund her bills, while she whored around. What a witch!

      • They all want a never ending all they can eat 24/7/365 cake buffet & in her case she was making it harder on us legitimately single cis hetero women looking for ***SINGLE*** cis hetero men.

        Let her divorce then play around. No special favors for cheaters of any gender or orientation.

        Glad you’re rid of her Quantum.

  • I laughed aloud! My STBX husband announced me that he was already divorced with me in his head for a long time…Well, news to me. It didn’t stop him from having sex with me all that “mentally divorced” time, go on holidays together, spend time with wine and netflix together. That is soooo stupid line.

  • I got ” it takes two to make a bad marriage “. After D Day 1, we went to therapy where I was pick me dancing. Then I found his emails with OW discussing things I said in therapy.

    • dm: That’s awful! Just adds to the betrayal. I’m sorry.

      I think a lot of us got a version of “it take two to make a bad marriage.” Blameshifting at its finest.

      • But the thing I’d it only takes one to make a bad marriage. It takes two to make a good one.

    • Dm…

      Gag… was he whining to shmoops about your “unfair” accusations or were they “convening” over your statements in therapy like two armchair shrinks discussing the details of a case study?

    • I’m sorry, I know how hard it sucks when they use things we trusted them with. STBXH used everything I analysed and told the marriage counselor. He practically used all of that to justify the breakdown of the marriage, which news to me, happened way before the affair. What a mindfuck.

  • Yes, I got this line too when I pointed out that he had started dating a high school girlfriend before asking for the divorce. For safety reasons I was waiting for him to ask for it – after 3 years of marriage counseling i knew it was never going to get better.

    Still stung to have him openly dating, then moving in with her while we went through the divorce. Which only took 4 months BTW, and all happened in front of the kids. He said all this was OK because he decided it was over. 3+ years out my chumpiness astounds and saddens me. Though much of it was driven by fear.

  • I am convinced that there is a secret script all cheaters share. My ex told me that he thought that I did not love him. That I would not care if he cheated. We were basically roommates anyway. I gave him permission to cheat. Hmm, I was not aware of that. And if I gave him permission than why did he keep her a secret??? And the line that I was boring snf did not want to have fun. She was fun all the time and happy all the time. And he thought I would not care if he divorced me because I already checked out of the marriage years ago. Well that was news to me.

  • Before I knew about the cheating, ex gave me the “you killed our love over 10 years ago so I didn’t feel married anymore”. I didn’t get the memo. I pleaded with him to tell me what I did so I could correct it. Funny enough he couldn’t really give me any examples. When reviewing the timeline, of course, I “killed our love” about the time his serial cheating ramped up. Coincidence? I think not. I did ask him later if he was so unhappy why he didn’t divorce me 10 years ago? He replied that the kids were little and I was a SAHM so needed him. So he duped me for another decade as I was a good wife and mother appliance. That is one of the worst parts of their selfishness, they deprive us of the information to decide our own lives. This also goes to the trendy topic of consent. If I had known my reality and his serial cheating, I certainly would not have consented. So in essence I was raped for over a decade as well.

    • It is what it is, on the upside he couldn’t give you a date. Mine taunted me with an exact date over and over and over. It was a December morning and he picked a fight with me when I was leaving for work(his favorite time to pick a fight since I have a very specific start time and have to leave). He called me a c*nt and when I didn’t take the bate he started on my mom and called her a c*nt as well, at that point I did slap him in the face. He looked at me self satisfied and declared himself an abused husband. Putting 2 and 2 together he needed this fight to justify his reconnecting with his HS sweetheart – at that point he had plans to meet her for a weekend together in a hotel after in January.

      Fast forward to dday, a year later and he announces that he is leaving and states the exact date he made that decision 12- DD-20YY. He proceeded to taunt me with the date throughout the entire divorce process. If I said anything to him that he disagreed with or made him uncomfortable or tried to get him to acknowledge that he ended our marriage unilaterally with the help of his affair partner (not the HS sweetheart) he would respond by simply saying 12- DD-20YY which was his way if letting me know that it was all my fault.

    • you’re exactly right about the consent issue

      i’ve used that angle to deal with people

      who passively enable blameshifting with

      “well, i’m sure there are two sides to the story”

      to which i reply

      “that’s true on some level, but not the preferred way to handle sexual abuse dependent on lack of consent”

      uhhh, i don’t underst–

      “is that how you usually respond to situations where one individual has stolen consent from another?”

      that’s not what I meant-

      “maybe so, but that’s what your words meant… that terrified look on your face tells me you knew what they meant, too…just remember getting humiliated like this as a lazy defender of abuse would have been avoided had you just kept your mouth shut”


      “See? You’ve got it!”

      yep, i’m a jerk..and it feels ama-aaaaazing

  • I got:

    “Oh you’re awake now”
    “We never talked about sex”
    ” We dont go anywhere”
    ” I love you more than you’ll ever know”
    ” We lost the spark”
    “Can you just proof read my work & check the grammar & spellings”
    ” I have put on too much weight I cant breath going up stairs”
    ” You buy me takeaway food”
    ” Ive made a terrible mistake”
    ” She (Other Woman) is annoyed as you changed your work shift at the hospital and spoiled her plans”
    ” Can you lend me some money for a taxi”
    ” Can we still be friends?”

    (Its really incredible shit when you read it on paper!)

    • Believe me writing out all the stuff Broken Toy said or wrote to me over the months-long course of my schmoopie audition was just wow! How stupid & ignorant was I to consider anything Broken Toy to be truthful or serious.

      At least I can now laugh at what he said & increasingly at myself for my naiveté

      Sending it off to his Missus a couple months ago while not entirely freeing (I do feel bad for her, she’s been tied to Broken Toy since some time in the 1980s when I would have been in junior high, high school or college) went a long way to be getting back to reality & being the star in my own life (still a quirky little indie film, not sure I’m so keen on morphing it into a romance, small or big, anytime soon) & not some background extra in The Toy’s creepy twisted epic tragedy (suitable for only the Lifetime Movie Network)

      • Really? ‘So not your Schmoopie ‘ his poor wife most likely had no idea or did she have an inkling? Married in the 80s thats a 30 plus year marriage isn’t it? And what a way to find out from a woman he was prowling after. Still at least you did the decent thing unlike my ex’s whore who was trying to get a married man to impregnate her!

        ‘ Unbeknown to HER she was one of hundreds she propositioned on porn sex sites the stupid cow! AND she knew he was married to me! I am SOOOO glad to be rid now she can keep him and his erectile dysfunction & all the other co morbidities! ( Viagra interferes with fertility so good luck with that and so does age have RISKS ) These midlifers are just NONCES

  • “didn’t want to get into” Classic stonewalling. I got this one so many times. I trust that he sucks

    • I got this one about 2 nights before Dday. We were debating about what to watch on TV, I started to play Big Little Lies, & he started to gripe. So I paused it and asked him what’s wrong? Word salad and then the just play it -I’m not going to get into with you! Umm what’s the problem? Just play it there’s no problem. Well 2 nights later he confesses to his year long affair with married howorker. I remember telling him, “I enjoy watching Big Little Lies, I don’t like living it!”

  • Oh but you missed the classic (possible explanation for its omission is perhaps it’s given to schmoopies more than spouse / chumps):

    “Marriage is just a piece of paper.”

    Pro Tip: Never ever say this to a possible schmoopie, a current schmoopie, or a chump/spouse who has a law degree & has passed at least 1 state bar.

    Boy oh boy did I feel better once I was able to send that piece of evidence to the (as far as I know still) Missus.

    I vividly recall the date, time, place, context & circumstances of when this trite little Cheater Truism was delivered to me, I’d happily give a hell of a deposition if asked by her (alas I fear Broken Toy has done far too much psychic & emotional damage to Missus for too many decades for her to get totally free of him, such a tragedy in the making).

    The worst Broken Toy hit me with (which was when I realized I was in an audition for the role of His Next Schmoopie, at this point the connection between myself & Broken Toy was 100% online, telephonic & long distance) was when I tentatively agreed in principle to meet him in person. His gleeful reply?:

    “Yay. Now I get to have a wife AND a girlfriend!”

    Say what?!?!?

    Oh. No. You. Didn’t.

    All internet searches I had run on Broken Toy said he was 5 years divorced (in recounting this story to a friend & neighbor a few days ago, he too checked one of the obvious & popular online professional directories for people working in the entertainment industry & said “heh, says here he was divorced in 2015” so no I was not dreaming that, it still remains ‘uncorrected’)…

    Cheaters, they lie & they cheat by definition.

    Cheaters do not care about any emotional or psychological damage they do to anyone. Ditto physical but thank my guardian angels or whomever I did not follow through on going to meet Broken Toy in person.

    His poor Missus, their 2 20-30-something kids, the angry Baby Mama, her daughter the college-aged half sister, their other-worldly protectors & luck seem to be MIA. I feel for them (Broken Toy not at all, this mess is of his own making, like the infamous Buchanans in F Scott Fitzgerald’s ‘The Great Gatsby’ he will go on making messes of everyone else’s lives & leaving other in the wake of chaos to clean it all up)

    I agonized for weeks over whether to tell Broken Toy’s Missus what was said to me verbatim (it’s got the double punch of showing how much contempt Broken Toy feels for Missus AND me/any potential/actual schmoopie(s)).

    In the end, my desire to be a decent person who unlike Broken Toy has both empathy & some semblance of a sense of ethics, I spilled my guts onto paper & mailed it all off to the Missus (I also passed on to Missus, Broken Toy’s hours later Twitter direct message “PLEASE DON’T TELL MY WIFE” which at the time was a head scratcher, I had only known of her existence for a few hours, I literally had ZERO contact info on her (not even psychic or intuitive, Universe generally doesn’t work that way)

    Pro Tip #2: If you’re a Cheater, don’t stay up late, call potential schmoopies at 1:00 am, drop the Wife-Girlfriend-Entitlement-Bomb on them & then ~2 hours later try & do Unilateral Damage Control in the middle of the night via social media. Especially don’t do this while intoxicated / under the influence (though to be fair, I cannot prove or disprove that Broken Toy was drunk or high on anything but his own selfishness, but then again no sober person I know would do this, probably because I keep the indecent at a distance from me.

    Believe me I know where she lives now but I leave it to her to decide what to do about her own personal Perpetual Cheater. I wish everyone still connected to Broken Toy well & the luck & healing I’ve personally found, but it’s way above my pay grade to fix this myself.

    • The version of “Marriage is just a piece of paper” that I got was: “Marriage is nothing more than a societal construct.”

      We were in a local pub when she said it — I was still in the throes of the pick-me dance after the retroactive Open Marriage proposal.

      I stopped her right at that point with: “Who the hell ARE you? This isn’t you talking — what have you been reading?”

      Sometimes, someone you think you know intimately says something so out of character, so absolutely WRONG in both what they’re saying and how they’re saying it, that you KNOW something’s amiss. It was a few more months before I finally had enough, but in hindsight that was a pretty clear signal that I had nothing to work with.

  • Add me to the retroactive Open Marriage proposal list, after she was caught of course. She wanted me to pay for an apartment for her where she could create a love nest and fuck all the guys she wanted. She generously gave me permission to fuck other women, even hoped I might “learn some new tricks”. Nah, I spent the would- be rent money on a lawyer and served her ass. She was shocked, shocked I tell ya.
    Later I got the “marriage was over” speech. First it has been over for one year, then 3, then 10, then finally, in a rare truthful moment, she admitted she only married me for my money. Ding Ding, yes! I know the ring of truth when I hear it.

    • Cis hetero monogamous female here who doesn’t do polyamory but has younger friends who do.

      The whole thing with a poly relationship or lifestyle as it has been explained to me is that poly people have to be MORE TRUTHFUL for it to work, not less. There are a lot more consent issues & rules to follow, it requires a lot more open honest discussion PRIOR to the sex WITH ALL PARTIES to make it work.

      What the cheaters & willing/knowing schmoopies want sounds more like ‘anything goes’ which is never going to fly in real poly world. And I expect the cheating & lying & betrayal if found out would get them shunned from people in real poly relationships. The lying, the rule breaking, the back-pedaling, they also aren’t acceptable to poly oriented people either (those are frequently the reasons why poly situations blow up)

      • This is true for healthy poly relationships. The biggest reason is to protect everyone from STD’s. I was the only one in the sick triangle I was unwillingly and unknowingly admitted into – I was the ONLY one to get tested for STD’s. Seems he has magical powers and told me “I could just tell she didn’t have an STD.” When I told him the results, he said “I told you so.” Ugh. I wonder if he informed her he has herpes? Probably not. He is a liar, through and through. She is no better, cheating on a husband. I trust that they suck and I intend to fix my picker!!!!

        • I am so sorry to hear this Peregrine but had I not had younger friends who are truly poly (& it’s 100% informed consent prior to doing anything sexual or relational with them, that is their first & strongest rule), I might be sucked into some prospective cheater’s ‘I want to try poly’ & not realize that it’s often a cover for cheating.

          It’s possible up to a point to be an unknowing schmoopie, but once you definitely know someone is in a marriage or a serious committed (presumably monogamous) relationship, then you can’t plead ignorance. At that moment, you are making a conscious choice between joining Team Cheater or leaving that Dark Side Relationship ASAP.

          Character counts to me, so it was pretty easy to say no once I knew what the real agenda was (the Broken Toy’s life history came out in dribs & drabs over the weeks after whatever the equivalent of schmoopie candidate Day arrived & every new bit of info was just me feeling even more confident that I was so very right to go no contact with him because he’s a pathological liar).

          I hope your Tuesday of meh arrives as soon as it can. You never deserved this, but I believe in Karma & she’s a vengeful B (Babe In Total Control of Herself).

    • Quantum, she sounds truly awful! “Learn some new tricks?” What a cruel and depraved thing to say.

      I hope you have a great life without her!

    • One more to the list here. I got the retro open marriage shit as well too. Except in my case it was that I was so lame and uncool that I couldn’t have an open marriage and I was too insecure. Also there was the fact that he’d been cheating for 13 years which for some reason made me lose all trust and the idea of an open marriage with no trust is completely fucked (obviously). I tried explaining that and he didn’t get it at all. For him, an open marriage was me being at home cooking, cleaning and being a mom whilst sitting in the couch alone at night (and never getting attention or sex) while he was out fucking other women and having fun at night. It was so painful it’s beyond words how much he devalued me. Also, I’ve known lots of people who’ve tried open relationships and every single one of them has been hurt so I haven’t seen it done well in practice. I have no idea how people do it. My dear friend lost her husband to a “poly” marriage when the other woman got sick of sharing after a few years.

  • Recently my MIL used that excuse when talking to my oldest DS28. “It was a miserable marriage,” implying to him that the cheating was justified. News to me. She only saw us together a few times a year and she was drunk half that time. She is a serial cheater, alcoholic, and liar herself. She’s raised a couple of real assholes, and believes that this reflects poorly on her. So now her form of damage control is to rewrite history. I hate that I worry my kids will actually believe this, and possibly have it in the backs of their minds should they ever be tempted. I get the eye roll when I try to talk about it too much. I feel like….If it didn’t occur to me at the time, then they will believe this bs too.

    Again…..there’s really not much originality in Cheaterville. It’s so common, why don’t we see it at the time?

  • oh yes! I got, “I haven’t been married to you for a couple years–in my mind.” I was awfully glad to get the news :/ .

  • Oh, man, I was just thinking about this very “I divorced you in my mind” bullshit this morning, and all of the various humiliating ways I compromised and contorted myself to try and change my XH’s feelings, includng but not limited to accepting his “but I think I love both of you!” explanation when I caught him with his AP after we had allegedly wreckonciled. For me, saving the marriage was more important than anything: my sense of self-worth, my kids’ peace of mind; and now, almost 3 years after the initial discovery of my XH’s affair and more than 18 months after the divorce was final, I have a hard time understanding why I tried to fight so hard. He’s a jerk, and I became something of a jerk trying to hang on to him. In retrospect, while the “journey” (barf)–the nights I spent crying myself to sleep; begging him to try to work on the marriage; begging the AP to leave him alone; rifling through his texts and emails; seeing my kids through therapy to cope with their pain and loss–was really hideous, I had to go through it in order to really, fully accept (not quite “meh” but close, I hope) that my life is better and my mind is SO MUCH QUIETER now that I no longer have to manage the endless chaos stirred up by a man-child who prioritizes satisfying his own needs above all. I have good days and bad days, but I try and remind myself that the very worst day as a divorced person is still better than the time I nearly agreed to cash in my retirement savings, sell the house, and take the kids out of school for 2 years so that we could buy an RV and drive around the country giving them the “education of experience” and prove to my XH that I wasn’t (his words) “a bourgeoisie who’s only interested in keeping up with the joneses.” (I don’t judge those who’ve made that choice–it’s just not something I value as important, which I nearly forgot in my period of temporary insanity.)

    • “SO MUCH QUIETER” This! My son admitted to me he was actually happy Mom left. He said “our home suddenly became so peaceful”

        • My youngest actually told his hairdresser that it was great that his dad had left because now he got to sleep at night!

    • “I no longer have to manage the endless chaos stirred up by a man-child who prioritizes satisfying his own needs above all.”

      Well said.

      X (love that symbol) also wanted to spend “retirement ” travelling in an RV – no home base. He can barely change a tire.
      That was a big no from me from the get go. At least I didn’t believe that future faking.

      • Oh My. I had gone along with all my ex’s wants including he always had to have a boat. We had a site on the water we rented. He wouldn’t let me buy any new furniture (all ours was hand me downs) but, he spent gobs of money on boating and camping. I went along, and to be fair my son enjoyed it too, so it wasn’t like I hated it.

        However, about 3 years before we split up. I had gotten a full time job at DoD when my son started 12th grade (that was always the plan), he started talking about, when he retired at age 52, he wanted to sell out our house and buy a boat big enough to live on and just do that. I said no, I am not selling the house, I am not living on a boat, and I have a job I am not leaving. It was my turn to have a career (that was the plan too)

        Three years later he dumped me for schmoopie. Now they live in a fixer up trailer in Florida, but they have an RV that they spend most of their time in.

        Clearly I was only kept around for as long as I was useful to his dreams.

        So I guess schmoopie went along with the dream. Wonder why they didn’t do the boat thing.

        Maybe because they gambled themselves into two hundred thousand dollars of debt and just couldn’t stretch it. The RV is an old used one.

        If he is happy doing that, more power to him, but no way do I want to spend my time on the road waiting on his sorry azz non stop. I put in 20 years doing that. She is welcome to it.

        My husband and I live in an actual nice brick house, and when we travel, we rent rooms and eat at restaurants. That is my idea of how to travel.

  • So many tired cliches from so many unimaginative cheaters.

    I’ve been divorced from Cheater #1 for almost 17 years. The last time he saw our son (now over 6 months ago), he spouted some line about how he should’ve left the marriage after a few years when he wasn’t happy. Yeah, like the same BS he let loose about he had been unhappy for all of our 20 year marriage. So much history rewriting. If you aren’t happy then do something about it! Nope, easier to just blame and lie rather than actually take, ya know, some action.

      • My ex was always in flux, and never happy with the next new thing for very long. He had a constant desire for change.

        • YES!!! That is my STBX as well. I remember thinking a few years ago that someday he would run out of things to be unhappy about and then it would be me that he was unhappy about and then that would be it.

          My head knows this and that I’m probably better off but my heart is still in so much pain.

  • And Cheater #2 used the excuse that “what I didn’t know wouldn’t hurt me”. Which really means “I’m too narcissistic and cowardly to own my behavior and admit I’m a bald-face liar.” Again, just own up, say I want to fuck strange and leave the marriage. Oh wait, that means I’d have to wash my own laundry, take care of my own kids and be an adult. Nah, I don’t want any of that. (inserting eye roll here)

  • My STBX flunked items a) thru d). If he had a problem with me, I never knew about it. In the 4 months between ILYBINILWY and D-Day, He sheepishly told me once that he ‘didn’t like our sex life’. Hello…News to Me!!! He had a very willing partner who loved him with her whole heart, who had to remind him to have sex with her. And so it all came down to you just wanting to F something else? That’s a sucker punch to the ego. – one I’m having trouble shaking

    We are in process of divorce and e) equal division is going fine.

    DEFINITELY agree with ‘being left to clean up the mess’. I had to file, and am handling the sale and moving and selling off items in our 4 bedroom house. He feels ‘rushed’ – even though he left 6 mos ago.

    Taking charge does make me feel mighty.

    • This is where “duper’s delight”or a porn addiction makes sense. They just can’t go without it. And instead of dealing with it they make it your fault. There was nothing lacking in you…..he just needed to f strange. Once they get hooked on it they can’t get it up for normal( which they turn on you). I found out about the porn addiction after the divorce. The dick’s Howife will lose her appeal now that the kink has worn off. He dragged his feet on the divorce also, I had to do everything( which he told me I was doing wrong….news to my lawyer). Then got married less than 2 weeks after divorce was final. It was empowering to sell the house and find an apartment and go to school. I’m a little stuck right now though. Keep doing you…..sounds like you’re doing great. Who cares if he’s feeling “rushed”.

      • WiserChump and HopeSprings, I, too, was left to handle everything. Classic! But you’re right about feeling “mighty” taking charge. So there’s that.

        Good luck to you both! You’re not alone in feeling stuck, and the pandemic doesn’t help.

        HopeSprings, it’s very cool that you’re going to school.

      • Thank you Hope Springs. I really need to hear that after a long day and feeling stuck myself. ((Hug))

  • Today would have been my 14th wedding anniversary, had I not married a bisexual lying whore.

    Two months before the discard d-day, I was given a bronze sculpture of a couple holding each other as my anniversary gift and a card that where Mr. Sparkles promised to “change” and committed to “wanting us”. He left me less than 60 days later for a woman he had been grooming at the gym.

    This is NOT how a normal, mentally healthy person behaves. It took me a long time to see that moment for what it was… it was a test… could I still pretend to be all gushy in love with my husband who has cheated on me for years, or could I keep demanding that he change and stop doing it. He couldn’t change, so he just changed partners. (FWIW, the OW dumped him after two years when she found out he was cheating on her too).

    The other part of this article that resonates for me is the clean-up of the mess… he left… he took up with OW publicly immediately… yet he left shit behind in our house until divorce was final… he never filed even though he was “in love”… I had to drag him to court… literally, on the day of our divorce hearing, he didn’t show… the JUDGE called him and told him he had 30 minutes to get to court… he loved the grandstanding of it.

    Count your blessings Chumps… it is a blessing when they leave… the trash took itself out. Hang in there.

    • The trash took itself out…..Amen! Tuesday is right around the corner…..until then trying to enjoy the journey????

  • It’s also a good line for condom free sex. The day I dumped fuckwit he had condom free sex with 3 seperate women, including me, his chumpy wife! Don’t know what others would call it but I call it non consensual sex, because no way in hell would I have fucked my husband (pick me dancing) if I’d known he’d gotten his end away in not one but two other vaginas, with or without condoms.

    And you know another word for non consensual sex? Rape. Marital rape. FOr 15 years.

        • Seconded also the woman who runs the LoveFraud site ( knows a state senator who is cataloging all the laws on rape/sexual assault by fraud / deception. My home state (Virginia) has a *criminal* charge you can bring which is Sexual Assault/Battery By Ruse, your mileage may vary but you might be able to bring criminal charges (& possibly civil charges) Criminal conviction means jail time & being forced to register as a sex offender, civil case win could lead to money damages. Also chat with your divorce lawyer about this the family codes might offer some help as well.

      • I highly recommend EMDR therapy. It is for trauma victims and has a very high, very fast success rate. Both of my kids needed it after the trauma that was their father. The therapist literally says, “You will not need me once this process is complete.” He intends for his clients to heal and no longer need his services. The best part is that it can be done online during COVID.

      • Agree 1000%!! Just like a con man is criminal, how is this not criminal? FFS, we are talking about lives here. How do we get the narrative in society changed? How do we fight for the legal description of “consent” to be changed to address the “con”? This is where my deep ire sits. It’s so disgusting! Theft of autonomy not acknowledged.

        • ^^^^^

          Our right to *choose with knowledge* has been stolen.

          I was with the fucktard 24 years, 23 of them married. There was only 1 Dday, after which I dumped him and filed for divorce, but looking back, seeing so many anomalies/red flags, I firmly believe he was cheating all along.

          24 years of my life wasted on a fucktard abuser. ????????????????

  • oh for option e agree to end things fairly. After DD2 when I was distraught calling time on the decades long marriage x scrambled to avoid consequences and tried charm “I’ll do anything” – I suggested a fair settlement and to provide for our kids … crickets…Kid saw him shopping online for a replacement days later, and he was living one just over a month later.

  • Oh yes, this is from the cheaters’ playbook, along with “well I thought you had already cheated with so-and-so…” Um, NO. I have ethics.

    • I sometimes wonder about what the perspective would be from someone whose spouse *did* end the marriage *ethically*.

      It would still hurt, no question, but probably it wouldn’t be the festering wound that these cheating fucktard’s leave behind them; one might be able to have at least respect for the person who leaves with honour.

      Like the difference between a slow and ‘careful’ amputation, (because *cake*), and a swift severance that doesn’t blameshift, but just states simply, “I’m sorry, but this marriage is not what I want any more” (for whatever reasons), which would be explained, honestly.

      My arsehole ex didn’t trot out any of the ‘justifications’, so many of which CN has so heartbreakingly described, in fact, the moron actually stated he didn’t want a divorce, he told me he “was going to the Court and explain to the Judge what really happened.” (Which statement made my solicitor laugh like a drain, she did say “does he realise what a moron he sounds”).

      Getting back to the amputation analogy, a swift amputation allows the person concerned to recover without festering microbes. The slow amputation (cake) forces the person concerned, to drain the wound, and then blame themselves for the infection.

      All of which is exactly what CL said, and I’ve just really reiterated it. Sigh. ????

      • Any relationship ethically ending is probably going to hurt some [“there goes ‘The Dream'”], a marriage more so than something without the vows & the marriage license.

        But when you get into lying & cheating territory, that’s a whole new level of awful. The worst by far has to be a betrayed spouse & the children of that union.

      • I think about this too, and can actually get a little jealous of people who were able to stay “amicable” with their exes. Sometimes people really do just grow apart. Painful as that still would be, not at all like betrayal.

  • When they say “Our marriage was over” what they are really saying is “MY (Cheater’s) side of the marriage was over.” Without telling anyone, they stopped keeping their vows. They stopped investing in the marriage, unilaterally, but Hey! Shift the blame and put it on both of us. They backdate the check on when they stopped investing tn their partner. It’s interesting how it’s always multiples of 5 years ago. I feel like I’m watching Family Feud and the safest answers are these 5/10/15 year increments. Or even worse when it is some non-event no one noticed: you stopped ironing my underwear, you made hamburgers for dinner, you cut your hair shorter than I like it…etc.

    I still remember my first D-day when I found his profile in which he stated he was separated, but still a great “Mr. Mom” dad to his kids. He was separated in his own mind for many years, while chomping on cake. The kids and I know the truth.

    • Meg, I agree with you completely!

      I just want to add that I’m sorry you had to see that profile. I’m sure it was incredibly shocking and painful. He’s a jerk!

      I’m glad you’re now free!

      • Thank you, spinach@35! It was horrifically painful but I wish I hadn’t picked-me-danced for years afterwards. That D-day happened a week before our 25th anniversary! But the lies and games continued. Saying he was separated was only the first of many lies. Now I can laugh at how pitiful the profile was. How narcissistic! He opened with “My friends tell me that I’m amazing etc…” Well he never had friends and that’s a humble-brag lie. I was his best friend. He also bragged about a beachhouse in a very amazing place (actually owned by his large extensive family). Then when the golddiggers showed up he still thought they were interested in him for himself! Oh yeah and he lied about his income. He had 8 jobs in 10 years and that income was wishful thinking. Luckily he lived 1000 miles away for work at the time and none of my friends saw it, like @Alice below. That’s heartbreaking. I’m so sorry, Alice.

    • Ugh more lies told to schmoopie candidates as well as actual schmoopies:
      “I’m separated” (in my fantasies) or
      “I’m divorced” (in my dreams)

      Pro Tip: Legally separated people are still married. Until a separated person has the piece of paper known as a divorce decree, they are *not* single. If you are a single schmoopie, do not date or mate with separated people unless you want a lot of heartache & scorn & financial & other myriad messes (the emotional & psychological damage of a divorce or long term committed partnership ending is hard enough).

      If I ever find someone single & we get to a place where we are going to marry or move in together, I will be insisting on a prenuptial agreement (for marriage) or some kind of domestic partnership agreement (for the move in) & you can bet it will spell out some kind of liability if/when either party is caught cheating. After law school even though family/divorce law are not my specialty areas, there is **NO WAY** I would make either of these major life changes without enforceable ground rules.

      I said this to Broken Toy & yeah it freaked him O-U-T out. He kept testing me on this, I kept insisting, no way was I going to ever go see him in person if he had not gotten a divorce first. I suspect all I taught him was not to mess with women in the legal profession but if I spare even one other woman his awfulness, it will have been worth it.

      Now I’m looking into better background checking for anyone remotely possible as a boyfriend or more. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.

    • @Meg, my XH was found on a dating app by one of my single friends. It was very embarrassing, and heartbreaking all at once.

      • @Alice. See my comments to Spinach@35 above. I truly understand how heartbreaking that must have been and how humiliating. I can’t imagine the audacity it took for him to do that to you. I do have one friend who created a fake profile and toyed with her cheater a little. All of us chumps got a vicarious laugh out of that. But it’s still so unnecessary! Just be honest and leave. Don’t shop for new and create an exit affair. My kids, now adults, were told about it after D-day 3 and stood behind me when I finally filed. They are disgusted by their father’s behavior.

  • Yup, I was told AFTER I caught him in a 5 year relationship, that he felt that the marriage was over. WTH! That would have been nice to know since he was still calling family meetings and complaining that the kids and I weren’t being invested enough. Talk about entitled. He also complained that I wasn’t giving enough to the marriage when he knew that I was struggling with depression and on antidepressants. I told him that every day that I haul myself out of bed is a “good day.” (It was his cheating, unbeknownst to me, that was causing the chaos.)

    After the discovery, he told me that the best anyone can expect out of a marriage is 10 good years. HELLO! Our marriage vows said, “till death do us part,” NOT “for 10 good years and then I get to do whatever the hell I want.” Married 19 years… Which ones were the good years???

  • This is a favorite re-run because I got that exact same mind fuck on, you guessed it, dday. The day after I found out I sat down with him, still in shock while he told me that “Our marriage was over for years!” Then he continued to tell me that “You knew that!” Yeah well I didn’t know that because he never said those words out loud until that moment.

    In fact, just 6 weeks prior we flitted off to the Caribbean together. We were still having sex and still telling each other “I love you.” That last year was a shitty time, mostly because he treated me liked he hated me and couldn’t have been more checked out. We had some days here and there that were good but right around the time I found out about the cheating, I was practicing my “Things have to change or we need to think about getting a divorce.” I wanted to suggest therapy because I didn’t think it was right to walk away from almost a quarter of a century without trying. All that said, I did not know that our marriage was over for years. I thought we had hit a particularly rough patch that was an effect of the work stress we were both feeling.

    So heed CL’s warning new chumps. Getting that particular mind fuck made me even more confused and sad. It kept me from getting angry and goaded me into the pick me dance for three more miserable years of my life that I will never get back. If you hear those words, run! Get mad and file for divorce. It only means that the coward that you’re married too is too much of a chicken shit to have an adult conversation. And who would want to stay married to that?

  • After 15 years I got I told you I was leaving you x number of years ago, you just would not go away. Then I got your holding me hostage and keeping him back. 5 yrs later he has made no action to file, lives with OW, but she has yet to meet any of his family. He still wants to go to family functions together.

    • Why don’t you file, then go no contact? you don’t need to be in touch or staying updated on his life.

    • I hope you are watching out for your interests. He could be racking up a lot of dept, that you could be on the hook for, as well as him.

  • Was it possible that yes my marriage was over? I believe it had been for at least 4-6 years or longer. BUT he should have had the balls to end our marriage/relationship or what little was left of it before he moved on to another woman. Or is my thinking off base here?

    • Why would your thinking be off base?

      A normal decent human being with integrity and a moral compass simply does not lie, cheat and betray, in order to gain an advantage.

      You say you believe your marriage was over, but *you* didn’t cheat, your husband did. He lied because he wanted to gain an unfair advantage over you. This is not what good people do.

      I’m sure you’ve read CL’s book, it’s absolutely spot on. I. recommend another, equally spot on, “Cheating in a nutshell” by Wayne and Tamara Mitchell.

      Your reactions and feelings after being betrayed are not off base, they are the totally natural response to a betrayal. ((hugs)) ❤️

  • Omg. Please forgive me if this is an inappropriate thing to saying this forum.

    BUT, this post and the comments remind me of something I heard a long time ago….

    That in parts of the Muslim culture, a husband can “face east and utter words of divorce” and voilá, it’s done.

    I heard that in the late 90s and haven’t remembered it since, until now.

    Sounds an aweful lot like simply declaring this marriage is over.

    • Absolutely true. It’s called “the triple talaq – I divorce you, I divorce you, I divorce you.”

      Needless to say, the woman is unable to do the same.

    • I’m curious as to why you would think it might be an inappropriate thing to say on this forum?

      Is it that you think it’s inappropriate to mention a *fact* about another culture/religion would be considered non PC?

      Facts are facts. The Hindus used to condemn widows to immolate themselves on their dead husbands funeral pyre- suttee. Fact. Not all the PC trope in the world changes facts.

    • Hi Nita. Well, this sorta happened with me. I left home on DDay 3 of emotional affair and asked for a divorce. Gave him a month to think and it. He pronounced triple talak without knowing that it’s against Islamic principles. The Sheikh did not accept it and asked him when did the other two happen? My asshat STBXH said Nov 2019! News to me. Maybe he did it in his messed up head, which is obviously not a divorce.

      Anyway, here are the facts. Even if you give 3 divorces in one sitting (you need to have 2 witnesses), it is considered as 1 divorce and a waiting period of 4 months begins. You are still married islamically until the period ends for both to consider reconciliation. 2nd and 3rd divorce is not required at the end of the period. You are no longer man and wife if reconcilation does not occur at the end of 4 months. You still have to wait for a year to get civil divorce.

      The wife can also give a divorce in Islam- there are two types. One is Khula where she initiates and forgoes some financial rights. The other is delegated divorce where a man can delegate his right to divorce to his wife and she gets to pronounce talak on him. This is being increasingly included in marriage contracts and it will ensure you get all your rights, matrimonial assets, maintenance, etc.

      So it’s 1 divorce+4 months waiting time. If they reconcile, or sleep together, the divorce is nullified. If he divorced her again 2nd time after reconciliation, that’s 2 divorces used up. If they reconcile again, then he has 1 divorce left. No more playing around after this. 3 divorces is severe because that’s the last straw. You are not allowed to play around and reconcile again. The women is asked to leave the fuckhead, get married again and live her life. She is not allowed to go back to the low life after that unless her new husband dies or they get divorced for a genuine reason.

      Hope this helps in understanding. Here’s the reference.

      There are 2 more types of divorce in Islam. Mutual consent, the one I got. And marriage being annulled by a Board of Imams due to adultery, etc.

      • Let me give a real life example as well. My friend’s father had an affair ages ago, divorced her mom (1 divorce) and married the AP and had kids with her. Fast forward to 2019, AP dies from cancer. He dad now spends all his time with his ex-wife who is a chump. Ex mom looks after the kids as well when they visit. Which reminds me, I need to send this link to her.

        Now, if they choose, they can still get married again. They go for fishing trips together! It’s difficult to see my friend hurt for her mom. Anyway, back to the question of 3 divorces. If he had given her 3 divorces in the lifetime of their marriage, he cannot get married to her even if he wants to. He needs to stay the fuck away. We’re trying to get her mom to learn about boundaries.

    • That is infuriating.

      In my case we had just signed to buy a river property and a trailer to put on it. Less than six months before D-day. He had been “dating” schmoopie for at least two years.

      I was reluctant to buy it because I felt we had enough property to pay for. But, he said oh this will be a great retirement property for us (we were then 40). He painted quite a lovely picture of us and our future grandchildren.

      What I didn’t know was in his head he was thinking him and schmoopie. Or maybe (less likely) he was thinking he was going to be able to ditch schmoopie as he had all the others. Doesn’t matter much now as he and schmoopie gambled themselves into bankruptcy and lost all the property he got in the settlement anyway, including the river property.

    • Lol, right!? We’d just booked a trip, and bought show tickets for a date night, and just had gone camping. But yea, “over.”

  • Well, I didn’t get told that the marriage had been over for years, like others. Nope, the FW XW just explained to the female marriage counselor all the shit she’d been holding against me for the last 10-15 years of our 24 year marriage, all over 45 minutes of our 1 hour session (this was a few months after she’d moved out of what was then OUR house). The marriage counselor looked at me and asked if I was hearing all of that.

    I said I heard it, accepted it, was willing to try and change, but that the MC knew upfront that my then wife wasn’t interested in reconciliation (hard pick me dancing on my part at that point, but I also don’t claim to have been anywhere close to being a perfect husband). The MC looked at the soon-to-be XW and said, “I’m running into this a lot w/women your age.” The then wife was 49 yo at the time.

    She said to her, “You’re strong, you’re intelligent…what I don’t hear from you is that you ever told your husband how unhappy you were.” The short version of what the MC then said was, “When you don’t communicate, you’re expecting mind-reading. And none of us are good at that.”

    Earlier, in the post D-day history timeline, and in the 13 days between D-day and her leaving me to move in w/her POS rich, 15 yo boss (literally a half mile down the street from what was at that point still our house, her POS boss and AP having exit-affaired his 40 year marriage like my then wife exit-affaired our 24+ year marriage), when we had a fairly frank discussion of things, I got told if we had had more of these type of discussions, our marriage might have been better. Blameshift, anyone?

    I was not a perfect husband. Looking back, I didn’t help out as much as I could have w/the house chores, and I needed a lot of downtime from dealing w/the stress of a high-paying job (big introvert). What I did NOT do was ever cheat on her, abuse her, or lie about loving her. I took pretty good care of our kids, at least half the time (I love kids in general and my three very much so, so it wasn’t a stretch for me, at all), so the FW XW could be her extrovert, local politician self (now I realize that was probably a perfect outlet for her brand of narcissism). Oh, the FW XW also told me upon leaving me that she’d kill me if I ever told our kids, but they were part of her deciding to leave, as they just wanted too much from her (22 and 19 yo daughters, and 11 yo son at the time). Effectively saying, they were sucking up too much of her life. Barf.

    She actually told me I was a better father than I was a husband after leaving me (and temporarily leaving the kids, as well).The least I feel I deserved was an, “I’m not happy, I want a divorce.” It would’ve killed me, but that would have been the adult thing to do.

    Instead, looking back, the FW XW did me a favor in leaving me the way she did. It took me six months after she exit-affaired me, but I started to realize maybe I was better off w/out her (only started at that point). And earlier than that, I was able to realize that this was not my fault alone in the death of our love, friendship, and marriage. If she hadn’t done what she did, I might have blamed only myself for what happened. So in a bizarre way, she set me up to thrive and survive her bullshit.

    Anyway, as always, lots of love and best wishes to all you chumps here in CN. Take care of yourselves, be safe, and we’re here if you need us. I know I’m glad you’re all here to communicate with. Thank you all.

  • Thelongrun, sorry you went through this. She sounds like a real peice of work. My STBXH said very similar things. After 12 years of marriage, he vomits out stuff I’ve never heard before at MC session and said I told her. Also said he divorced me in Nov 19, again news to me. I owned, acknowledged and apologized for everything he pointed out but did not see him taking responsibility for any of it. Their reality is indeed skewed, and narcs’ selective memory only stores information that can paint the chump/marriage in a bad light. I realised that he lacked empathy and had distorted memories when he sent a 5 pager to his family, that was later forwarded to my Dad, about various events since 2006 that paint me in a negative light. I had completely different memories of them and my POV was completely missing. For example, I asked him to sleep separately when I got upset about feeling ignored/neglected for a few months after miscarriage. He said he stopped caring after that. Little did I know that he was already in the emotional affair 2 months after my miscarriage and had I known I would have kicked him out of the house, not the bed. FML. Trust that they suck.

    • Yas,

      First of all, I’m so sorry you had to deal with such an asshole for an XH. I do trust that they suck. I feel like putting that on a t-shirt. Only chumps from CN will get it. Everybody else will probably think it’s a political statement.

      Secondly, thanks for your very kind response. It means a lot that you and others on this site get what I’ve dealt w/regarding the FW XW. It at the very least reminds me I’m not alone in this experience, and that others are out there, alive and caring.

      Your point about your ex not taking responsibility hit home, too. I told the FW XW the same thing. She blamed me for getting her pregnant w/our youngest, our son. I’ve told this all before here, but the story is I had been asking her for 6 years since our youngest daughter was born if we could try one more time to see if we could have a boy. She put me off that long in answering me. Me being so much in love w/her, I didn’t push it. Just kept hoping she’d say yes, eventually. Or at least, talk about it w/me.

      Her mother then died, we came back from the out-of-our-state funeral, and she announced she didn’t want anymore children. No discussion w/me. I’m not proud of this, but I was furious. After six years of me pleading, she decided unilaterally to shut the discussion down (I now see this foreshadowed her actions in unilaterally deciding to leave me and our family). Not a word from her until this point on this subject. I should have realized in that time that she’d already given me her answer, but I was relatively young still, dumb, and completely in love w/my wife (rose-colored glasses).

      My way of dealing w/it, as was my usual stupid way of dealing w/my anger, was to close off from her emotionally and physically. I was so angry about her decision and actions, I was afraid of hurting her physically. Never did, never would have, but my anger scared me. So my answer, which should have been counseling, was to do the above. Not proud of that, at all. But I wasn’t forcing myself on her, at least. That was my consolation to myself, at the time.

      After about two months of this, she came to me wanting sex. I was still too angry, but she insisted, and I relented. I was hurting for intimacy as well, but the anger was strong, too. She wanted me to use a condom. I refused (she couldn’t use traditional birth control pills at that point because of side-effects she had experienced previously. Not that she didn’t have a few other birth control options available to her). She decided to have sex w/me anyway. It was insane. I didn’t think I could have sex while being so angry at her, but I could. I let her do all the work, because I didn’t want her coming back and saying I forced her to do this. This happened once or twice more, but I’m pretty sure she got pregnant that first time. We were dynamite at getting pregnant.

      The upshot was, she got very upset w/me getting her pregnant, and I broke down crying and told her that though she didn’t need it, she had my blessing to get an abortion if that would make her happy, but she refused. I tried to be the best husband I could be to her, and put in even more effort after our son was born to take care of him and our girls, trying to minimize the burden of them on her. I should say she was running a bookstore we owned at that time, so the timing of the pregnancy was hard in a lot of ways (she was also 36 yo when she got pregnant, 37 yo when she gave birth).

      In the end, she held getting pregnant w/our son against me, but couldn’t tell me that. Just kept giving me cryptic passive-aggressive hints about that and our marriage, which I completely missed, because I loved her (again, rose-colored glasses). Not a perfect love at all, but I did love her fully. She totally threw me off knowing she was holding the pregnancy against me by defending me against anybody that harbored any possible ill-will about my part in getting her pregnant w/our son, family or otherwise. Most, though, saw it as a good thing, in the wake of her mother’s death. I felt awful about how it happened, but grateful and blessed that she still seemed to love me and w/our son

      I talked w/my sister-in-law after D-day, and she and my therapist very quickly came to the same conclusion that took me 11+ years to realize: my XW was unwilling to take responsibility for her actions in getting pregnant w/our son. She had many options to avoid getting pregnant, but took none. She could have divorced me then, if she was unhappy w/my actions and behavior. Instead (and I think a large part of this was because I was bringing home a very good salary that allowed her to live the life she wanted, as well as I did a large share of taking care of the kids so she could do what she wanted), she abandoned me and our family when I burned out at my high-paying, high-stress job, and fell into a deep depression. I kept working, but never made the big money again. Still did everything I could to take care of the kids and to accommodate her schedule for her to have as much free time for her local politician’s life and whatever else. Which was a lot.

      The FW XW wrote an email to my brother (the one married to the aforementioned sister-in-law) a few months after D-day listing off all the things (again) I did wrong during the marriage, how she wished he and his wife had told me that she was unhappy w/me at that point (during my depression, she told them that she was somewhat unhappy w/me, but never even close to the point that she would leave me and the family, let alone in the shitty way she did), and how happy she was to have found “the One” in her POS rich, older boss (at this point, now former boss as she had been kicked to the curb by her former workplace. But then, they planned on her to take the fall, so no problem, right?). Lastly, I was held responsible for not continuing to make enough money to allow her to finish the graduate degree she had started a few years before I burnt out at my high-paying job.

      My brother sent her a burnt-earth email in reply, essentially telling her it was not their responsibility to take care of her marriage for her (and obviously, it was mine as well). Also, that she and her shitty AP were obviously alike, and deserved each other. He said he didn’t envision speaking to her again. Thank God for my brother.

      I also feel that I have a different POV and memories than my ex, just like you, Yas. I noticed this early in our marriage, but dismissed it because I was in love w/her, and that’s all that mattered. Spackle? Yes, sir! Red flag? What red flag?

      Ok, as usual, I can’t seem to boil this down to a reasonable size (big apology to you all). Yas, may you find peace in the wake of your XH’s shitty actions against you. You didn’t deserve the shit sandwich he served you. That goes for the rest of CN, whatever sex your ex or soon-to-be ex may be. We survived them, and we will thrive. Eyes on the prize, people. Meh and Tuesday. They’re coming. Wishing the best for all of you. Stay healthy, stay safe, and reach out if you need us. We’re all here for each other. Lots of love.

      • Interesting. We’re all learned through our experience and grew. No marriage is perfect. We don’t just know howb to deal with conflict within marriages. We make mistakes, we learn, we grow. We were masters at conflict avoidance. I closed off, he had an affair. Not the same.

        The pregnancy triggered my infertility struggle. We tried for 13 years. I’m having to let go the of the last embryo in storage becoz of shitbag’s sections. My marriage was centered around giving him a child. That was his only purpose in life, he said. Fair, but we both had male and female factors, and idiot told me he can have kids and I can’t. When I started talking about adoption, asshat says wants biological child. When I talk about more IVF, he says he wants one naturally. He blames me for the miscarriage, saying his job is done after the sperm fertilised the egg. The embryo not staying in my uterus is apparently my fault. I know it’s like he never went to school.

        He doesn’t think AP is the right person to raise kids but he got a replacement uterus, so good for him. He also mentioned, who waits for 13 years to have kids? Yes, everyone cheats when you don’t have kids. Just BS excuses. Asshole.

        • I did a lot of tip toeing to avoid conflict. I didn’t really see that until it was too late.

          Would me being more assertive have made a difference. Honestly, I just think it would have broken up my marriage sooner. Which likely wouldn’t have been a bad thing.

          It is years out now, but in hind sight I wish my marriage had ended several years sooner. So many years wasted loving a selfish asshole who placed no value on me.

  • She started traveling non stop and all wanted was for us to be together as a family, us and our small kids.
    So I asked her to travel less.
    She left because I was “unsuportive”.
    Later I found out she had the habit of sleeping wth strangers while on “biz” trips. Just to be extra cruel, she said this has been hapening for years. Aren’t no fault States the best?
    She told in front of our lawyers.
    And some of the trips were actually vacations, which by the way she didn’t officially told us about.
    After saying all this, she came up with ” but our marriage was already over for a year”.
    “BUT, he didn’t support me on my “biz trips” anyways, how can a modern woman’s marriage survive like that?”
    People suck.

    • Jp, my STBXW’s 4h job extended on regular basis. I had no problem w/t, was suportive took care of the kids etc. only to find out her extended working hours were used for cheating.
      We’re also in no fault state. They suck

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