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Chumped and Questioning Feminism

Dear Chump Lady,

I am 8 months post divorce from fuckwit, we were married for 21 years. It was such a long road though, years of lying, gaslighting, blame shifting, and slow movements away from me and towards schmoopie (The coworker and family friend fo 10plus years) that were disguised as “working on us.” From her calling to wake him up in the morning while he slept next to me, to him following her on find my friends, them renting cars together on business trips while all other coworkers took a bus, to them rooming next door to each other on those business trips, etc…all of which I questioned and was told “she is just a professional woman.” I am still attempting to heal from all of that. But one of the saddest losses for me has to do with my fierce feminist passion….which I used to have and which was used against me.

I am a veteran, and advocate for survivors of sexual assault, writer, member of RAINNs Speaker’s Bureau, etc… I have always been a strong, proud, and loud defender of women and children. However slowly over the years of sensing boundary crossings, by both fuckit and schmoopie, my feminism was used against me, thrown in my face, and flat out questioned, angrily. And I bought it. Because of that feminism, I gave her the benefit of the doubt. Fuckwit would outright yell at me, “I guess you don’t want me working with ANY women then!” I would think, “no…just her…something is off with her.” Even when she began posting what looked to me, and every other woman I have asked, like pictures that were slightly intimate of him during their business trips (fuckwit, her boss, walking from behind with beautiful landscapes in the background, or fuckwit looking off into the distance in front of a waterfall) even when I saw those and my entire body screamed “she’s in love with him,” I silenced that voice, called myself a bad feminist, gave her the benefit of the doubt.

Now they live together and are getting married. And even now, they both deny anything “started until after we were over,” which I know to be a lie because of an accidentally shared google doc of their “family plan” (6 pages single spaced) that was created the day after he told me our marriage was over. It speaks of them getting married as soon as possible, and that she would be my child’s mother. (Fuckit claims it was a “thought experiment” and nothing more and I misunderstood what I was reading. He also would say, “that’s between you and her” when I would mention HER betrayal of me in additional to his betrayal.)

Now, I am mad at women as well as at men. Now my trust of both sexes is shaken. She used to post all over her social media that she was a “supporter of strong women and girls” etc…and that hypocrisy makes me so mad I go numb and silent. (I have blocked them both since then.) I find myself wondering how many women out there who profess to be feminists have participated in the slow break up of marriages. Every “Woman’s Day” and even today the anniversary of women’s right to vote, I feel a twinge of anger and sadness and cynicism. That fierce protector of women that used to reside in me has gone and been replaced with someone who sees the hypocrisy, who has lost trust in my gender, who feels silenced to even speak about these things because I will be called “bitter,” or worse yet my feminism would be questioned once again because “she’s not to blame, he is.” It feels like a feminism catch 22.

There was never an outright DDay, it was years worth of drips and drops of questionable behavior. I know the years of lying and gaslighting and blame-shifting are the cause of this identity crisis…but I just don’t know how to heal from it. I don’t know how to be who I was. It is like I have seen behind the curtain and what’s back there is all rotten. Please help….how do I heal that part of me, how do I even find her again. It feels like my fierce identity and savage soul were shattered along with my heart.

Sorry so long, but your wouldn’t believe the shit I left out,

An Angry Woman

Dear Angry Woman,

Look, fuckwits gotta mindfuck. It doesn’t matter what set of beliefs you hold sacred — feminism, federalism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism — they’re going to use it against you.

Can’t forgive them? You’re a BAD Christian.

Your originalist interpretation of the Constitution made you unlovable.

Unnerved by your husband’s affair partner? A true feminist would roll with that!

Mindfuckery. They’re just weaponizing your values to keep you in line. Which is all part and parcel of the chump experience. Are you trusting? Generous? Hard-working? Every good and decent thing about you will be weaponized.

Cheating is a power play. People think it’s all sexy time and the Heart Wants What the Heart Wants bullshit. No, it’s a power grab. It’s a toxic dynamic of getting over on someone. It’s an unequal playing field. You invest all your kibbles in a fuckwit, and they’ll just pretend to return the investment.

Feminism is all about saying no to unequal playing fields.

Nothing is more repulsive than Other Women wrapping themselves up in a narrative of feminist empowerment. As if cheating and colluding in the abuse of others was some sort of journey of self-actualization.

Other Women suck the dick of the patriarchy.

What could be more pathetically retrograde than pick-me dancing to win a cheater? You think Alice Paul was force fed so little girls could grow up to have Sugar Daddies?

Other Women are Vichy women. Collaborators. They’re denying another woman consent about her own body. When they fuck a partnered man, they’re agreeing to that health risk for themselves, but together with the cheater, they’re denying that choice to the chump.

Now, I am mad at women as well as at men. Now my trust of both sexes is shaken. She used to post all over her social media that she was a “supporter of strong women and girls” etc…and that hypocrisy makes me so mad I go numb and silent.

Her hypocrisy is not your problem. Who cares what fuckwits think or post on their Instagram feeds. What you’re really asking is — how could she? As a fellow woman, how could she backstab one of her own?

There is no universal sisterhood.

If we are to be fully human (and this goes for ALL humans, wherever you are on the color, gender and orientation rainbow), you must accept that some of us are going to be assholes. Women aren’t saintly or better. Oppressed, condescended to, disenfranchised for centuries? Sure. But we are not monolithically ethical. Some of us are back-biting, vicious, narcissistic, entitled Karens. Exhibit A — Phyllis Schlafly.

Not everyone is going to feel oppressed by sexism. Some women are going to use that shit to their advantage and suck up to the power players. That’s true of people, that’s true of unjust power systems. Me over You.

Feminism is refusing to do the pick me dance. Feminism is building your OWN life independent of fuckwits. Feminism is supporting other women and having compassion for shared experiences.

Angry, YOU are the true feminist here. Don’t question yourself and your belief systems.

Now my trust of both sexes is shaken.

Your ex and his Family Plan Special are the fuckwits. They aren’t everyone. They’re just a couple of common, garden variety cheaters. It’s normal to feel flinchy in the aftermath, but don’t let them get you down, or sour you on social justice.

The work you’re doing for veterans, for sexual assault victims, for kids MATTERS. And you WORK at it. That makes you authentic — your words align with your deeds.

I can call myself a jelly donut. It does not make me a jelly donut.

The Other Woman isn’t a feminist. She’s just dimwitted and thinks she’s special.

You’re still a fierce woman with a savage soul. She’s still there. Rise up.

***

Happy 19th Amendment centenary to everyone! Please vote in 2020. 

Also, today’s cartoon I drew awhile back is my homage to feminist writer Andrea Dworkin

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at info@chumplady.com. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • My ex had an affair with a physicians assistant that is now a Life Coach specializing in a abused women. Talk about shameless!

    • Yup, they dob’t see it as abuse.
      A few years ago one of my best friends, the strongest, most mighty, loving, happily married feminist I know, was very close friends with an OW. The lightbulb moment wasn’t made. The OW told her friends cheating partner was in a sexless marriage blah blah blah and my best friend believed her and didn’t get involved.
      The OW friend ended up screwing over my feminist friend for something non-related. That friendship broke, then a few years later I was chumped. My friend who is the strong feminist gets it now.

      • That crap about them being in a sexless marriage is so stupid. Who believes this shit?

        My ex by his own words cheated on me from the beginning, I never knew it. We were having sex a lot. Even the three years he was screwing schmoopie, we were having sex. (it only slowed down in the last three to four months before Dday. Would we have been had I known, of course not. Likely I would have done the same thing if I had found out about schmoopie three years earlier that I did when I actually found out.

        I would have cried and suffered for a few weeks, while desperately pick me dancing. Then I would have asked him to file, since the divorce was his idea. Then I would have let him come back when he asked. It would have lasted a week, then when I gave him an ultimatum, with a week to decide, then when the week was up, he said I can’t decide, I would have said you don’t get to decide anymore. We are done. Then he would have tried several more times to “talk” to me about trying again. I would have said, thanks but no thanks. (guess what fuckwit, when I told you no more chances, I meant it)

        The above is how it went down. I would have done the same thing three years earlier, the only difference is, I would have been rid of the fuckwit three years earlier. I wish it had happened three years earlier, that is my only regret.

        • We had an excellent, active sex life for all of the 28 years while my Cheater banged 30 different whores multiple times each…..he selected them like he was choosing ice cream, blond, brunettes, etc — And he was a !@#$ doctor…..a surgeon….kissing these woman on the mouth…..no protection with blow jobs……he risked my health!!!!! When I asked him how, how, how could he lay with so many women who in turn lay with so many fuckwits, HOW could he risk my health. In his oh so arrogant way….he said “I always took a Cipro before and after……” Then he hit me with the “It’s a Monday night – I have surgery in the morning… tonight belongs to the patient – I don’t want to talk about anything controversial…” And THEN……before I moved out he said; “Dr. Neborsky (sweater man) his psychiatrist in San Diego says for us to reconcile we need to be having sex” I said REALLY???? Well, tell Dr. Neborsky that if he thinks I’m putting a dick in my mouth that’s been in the ass of a whore – he can take his medical license right off the wall and stick it where the sun don’t shine….” Pigs…..piggy men…..piggy doctors. I’m so very, very close to going public – “Extra” and “Access Hollywood” will be at his medical office in Beverly Hills like flies on prostitute poop. I have to have my ducks in a row first – have to get my finances separate from him. I’m a lawyer…I have a BA in Communications and a master’s in Clinical Psyh…..and I know first hand most therapists (and life coaches) are not worth a damn dime. I’ve never been to therapy because I studied along side so many that I knew where frauds/infidels/ and going out there to promote conversion therapy under the veil of being liberal. So many fraudulent people in this world.

          • Jo

            I’m so sorry that you have to go through all that. Unfortunately CN shows that no matter how smart they are, what degree they have ( my h has a PhD and two Masters in different fields) – our spouses, ex spouses are just despicable Narcs.

            The only person who knows wtf us going on and how to help- is a therapist with a strong values and a life experience with a narc ( chumps are the best- they get it)

            My h was fucking hookers right and left, yet, they were his “ special friends” not prostitutes; he was helping them- not using them
            He was there to listen to their problems- not to use them
            He wasn’t using protection- they were safe/ clean ( he just knew🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️)

            Etc.

            J- hugs and don’t event try to understand his twisted mind; I wasted too much time, not worth it

            • Unbelievable, do highly educated people cheat more?
              I have read that men who make 300 000$ or more do. Sorry you have had to go through all that.

              • Thanks Zip. No, I don’t think the highly compensated fuckwits cheat more, I think they are just better at covering it up because they have more resources/tools in their infidelity toolbox. My best to you Zip. Go forward and carry a big stick.

            • Thank you for reaching out Lou. So many good people have been so hurt by these self-entitled Narcs. Therapy certainly works for some – but as you know there are so many Chumps just trying to feed their kids – spending money on therapy is a luxury. I wish I had the answers – I don’t. I just know that I will not let him turn me into a broken bitter woman. Ive been No Contact with him since Dday – however he keeps sending messages that he will prove he’s a Unicorn – he read LACGAL when he saw me leaving with it – he bought a copy. I had one reply – I told him I’d write a post-nup that said if he ever banged a whore again he would agree to have his nuts cut off. No reply yet. Thank you for your kind reply and all my very best wishes to you and everyone in CH.

              • Tell him he has a year on his own to do the hard work of change. He can talk to you when he can show zero money spent on hookers, Schmoopies or other seedy specimens.

          • Jo, that is what gets me. I had no choice. I didn’t know. And yes we had oral sex, I mean that is what many married people do. I drew the line at anal. But, likely he didn’t draw the line with others.

            I shudder to think…

            But, they don’t care. I will never understand it.

            It is absolutely about consent. I wasn’t given the option to consent/say no. Obviously I would have said no.

          • Jo– I’m really pulling for you to get ducks in a row. I’ll pre-order that book when you get around to writing it. I’ll keep an eye out for news reports. And I’d like to see the film version, hint, hint (sorry, no pressure… but HINT). There’s a real dearth in satisfying “infidelity” films out there. Too many could have been written by Esther Perel. Yuck.

          • Jo,
            I had to respond to your post because there are so many similarities. Mine was also a physician in So Cal and did the exact same things!! He told me, “you can’t get STDs from oral sex”. I am one year four months past D day and six months past filing for divorce. I’m hoping for the best for you!

          • ” I always took a Cipro before and after.”

            Jo, I am so sorry for all you have been through, and all you are going through.
            YOU are a very strong person! Your posts are so powerful!
            I am rooting for you, as is all of CN!
            YOU dear Lady are MIGHTY!!

            On a lighter note, your cheater’s CIPRO statement, just might be a runner up, if not the winner, in the ” Stupid Shit Cheater’s Say category.

            • Prescribing your own medication is a no no.

              Hopefully with that weak moral compass, no patients have been affected.

        • People believe it. My ex told me himself that we weren’t having
          sex as one of his excuses for cheating. I was shocked and responded that I had never turned him down!!!!!! I initiated more.
          He admitted that was true.
          If we weren’t having enough sex it’s because he wasn’t asking for it
          He absolutely believed his own lie.

        • If there’s a sexless marriage going on, it’s typically at the suffering of the chump who has no idea.

          That was me. Though we still had sex here and there, I remember crying and begging him to see a doctor as I thought the lack of libido was medically induced I even bought him over the counter herbals when he wouldn’t see the doctor. They didn’t help.

          You see, I never would have guessed my “conservative, Christian, family man” would be getting his needs met with prostitutes and coworkers. And hence wasn’t in the mood too often around his wife.

          He let this go on for years – my suffering and lack of fulfillment.

          Once I made the discover, after I screwed my brain back in, (The initial shock of discovering your long time partner is a monster is mind blowing.), it all made perfect sense.

          • Absolutely.

            Oh do’t get me wrong, I knew something was up the last 1.5 year of our marriage. I in fact questioned him. He assured me it was work stress from his new promotion.

            Our sex life didn’t slow down until the last three or so months. It was still there, but not the same. I just kept trying an praying and telling myself that soon it would go back to normal.

            He manipulated me so that I backed off and left them alone, though I didn’t even know she existed. I was fighting a war that didn’t exist. The war was on a different battle ground that I was un-aware of.

            This is why it is so enraging when people say “It is the wife’s fault” The lies, the gas lighting, the deceit, the stealing of marital assets, all possible because the wife/husband trusts the cheater. And it my case the cheater bragged about how much I trusted him.

          • Sometimes your suffering and lack of fulfillment *is* what they get off on from you- at least that was my experience. Sociopaths have a whole different experience with/approach to sexuality. But I’m sure each flavor of personality disorder has its own weird preferences. The key is to getting to the understanding that the rejection was part of their sick game and no reflection on you.

    • My ex lies about a ton of bullshit, too.

      He calls himself a cybersecurity analyst on LinkedIn. (Nope. He has a part-time job doing routine IT work for a real cybersecurity expert.)

      He says he invented a new cryptocurrency. (Uh, no. A bartering system for underemployed Peter Pans in your neighborhood is not crypto.)

      He offers workshops on “how to overcome self-sabotaging habits”. Basically, he’s offering therapy to anyone foolish enough to take it from an unlicensed practitioner with an undergrad degree in psychology.

      He finally graduated college two years ago at 50, but still refuses to get a job to support his new family and lets his wife do all the work.

      These people lie about everything. Their very lives are a long, ongoing lie. I found a lot of peace once I realized the deceit wasn’t personal, because every single thing they do is deceitful.

  • Being female is an accident of birth.

    Being a feminist is an act of raising your own consciousness, which requires introspection and inner work. Too much work for cheaters.

    There will always be humans who hurt others intentionally. My goal is to stay away from them and not be one of them.

    • You may enjoy this. It is taped on the wall next to the traitor’s desk at our business. He gets mad when I ask him why it’s taped on the wall if he doesn’t act that way. He said, “Well, I don’t read it every day.”

      They are sick sick people.

      Promise Yourself

      To be so strong that nothing
      can disturb your peace of mind.
      To talk health, happiness, and prosperity
      to every person you meet.

      To make all your friends feel
      that there is something in them
      To look at the sunny side of everything
      and make your optimism come true.

      To think only the best, to work only for the best,
      and to expect only the best.
      To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others
      as you are about your own.

      To forget the mistakes of the past
      and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
      To wear a cheerful countenance at all times
      and give every living creature you meet a smile.

      To give so much time to the improvement of yourself
      that you have no time to criticize others.
      To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear,
      and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

      To think well of yourself and to proclaim this fact to the world,
      not in loud words but great deeds.
      To live in faith that the whole world is on your side
      so long as you are true to the best that is in you.

    • Perfect as usual VH.
      Also, feminists (and mature people in general) have some sense of the importance of “the common good”. Like: the vote, equal pay/opportunities etc for all women.
      Cheaters and their concubines – and fuckwits in general, (while common in both senses of the word) – not so much. They can’t see past what is good only for themselves.

      • ‘They can’t see past what is good only for themselves.’
        So true, they are stuck in a fantasy land bubble of only themselves and they don’t care about anyone else anyway

        • Yup! The cheater mindset is very much is in conflict with what it takes to make a marriage work. They can’t see beyond themselves. They’re not partners in the marriage at all and your well being is disposable if they decide they want something that sparkles louder than a solid, steady, faithful spouse. Painful realization to have to come to. We invested in the marriage. They didn’t.

          • Ex claims to be a man of integrity, he will give long lectures to who ever will listen on how virtuous he is. I’d usually hear these lectures on long road trips so I was forced to listen. In his eyes he’s perfect, more honest, more giving, more respectful, more compassionate, does the “right” thing in all circumstances.
            I was brainwashed for years. Ignored my gut feelings. Spackled over questionable behavior. My man of integrity would never lie or be dishonest, or be intentionally cruel.

            In reality he’s the most dishonest, cruel, vindictive person I’ve ever known.
            He hides his evil behind his public self righteous image.

            • Men that brag on dating apps how virtuous they are, always help others etc., I just hit the Skip button——

            • I experienced the exact same with STBX. Lectures about his integrity. The carefully curated public image. This must be from the cheater handbook. What I’ve found is that these douches talk a lot about integrity, but their actions just don’t line up with that. Public persona definitely doesn’t match up with the private hell we’ve seen. A decent person with integrity couldn’t commit adultery. Actions speak louder than words. Lesson learned.

            • Mr. Sparkly Pants claimed to be a man of honor and integrity — he was the most honorable of men. Just ask him — he’d tell you. Meanwhile he was lying, cheating and fucking me over financially. Wish I’d been paying more attention to what he DID than what he SAID!

        • VH

          Great motivational stuff in your EX’s office, except coming from him it’s just drivel with a fat side dish of hypocrisy.

          But I share the dismay of the letter’s author.

          I TOO find myself asking how another woman could do this to me AND our children.

          She’s never spoken to or met our children and she’s been married to the DOCTOR for 2 years.

          What do they tell themselves about why there’s no relationships with an ex OR 3 kids and a 35 year marriage…

          To them, I guess it’s ALL MY fault (turning the GROWN adult kids against him, etc) but, I mean, really??

          Don’t the cheater EX’s and or their APxs EVER

          have a few “dark nights of the soul” where they have moments of clarity?

          Don’t they ever realize they hurt the people who loved them the most AND FUCKED up THEIR own lives too?

          Maybe not…maybe not

          I’ve been asked out by married men (or “separated” men, as in “my wife and I are separated b/c she’s in the next room”)

          and I always say “I’m not interested in having a ‘fling’ with a married man – I could never do that to another woman.”

          THE END

          it’s not complicated

          • “She’s never spoken to or met our children and she’s been married to the DOCTOR for 2 years.

            What do they tell themselves about why there’s no relationships with an ex OR 3 kids and a 35 year marriage…”

            Wow! Mind boggling. No one really knows what they tell themselves but I’m quite sure it is all the kids and your fault. Poor guy! You and your kids are such meanies 🙂

          • Doctors1stWife&3kids,

            As I think I’ve mentioned before, our stories are quite similar:
            *Doctor ex
            *35-year marriage
            *3 adult children who have no contact with their dad (and are reaping the benefits of NC–peace!)

            Unlike you, however, I did meet the OW once at the funeral of the husband of one of his coworkers. Of course, I had no idea that she and my ex were sleeping together at the time. I remember she was in a leather jacket, huddled with a couple other nurses. I was introduced. She acted coy, smiled, and said, “So nice to meet you!” I shook her hand. Ugh. What kind of woman can knowingly fuck a married man and put on this I’m-just-a-cute-caring-nurse act when meeting the spouse (me!)? (And my ex probably met her husband, too! Who knows?)

            Also, our daughter worked in his office for a time and took this woman’s picture for the group’s website. Ugh.

            I, too, wonder if the cheaters “have a few ‘dark nights of the soul’ where they have moments of clarity.” How could they not?

            How do they explain that the ex has NO relationship with his kids?

            Oh wait. I know what he says. He says that it’s all my fault. I’ve poisoned the kids. He’s being punished beyond what’s “reasonable.” He never “expected the venom to flow like this.” His mean, mean ungrateful family will suffer God’s wrath. He intoned (via text): “God will punish me for my infidelity, but he will punish you and the kids more.” (From a non-religious man, this one took me by surprise.)

            I fall into the trap of imposing sane, rational thinking on them. But they aren’t sane or rational. They are entitled fuckwits!

            I secretely indulge in fantasies that he blames the OW. “Because of you, I’ve lost everyone.” One can only hope.

            I actually think that my ex enjoys that his family has gone NC because he gets to play sad-sausage all the time. A permanent role!! I’m sure he gets sympathy from the few people who remain in contact with him. I can hear it now (esp from the OW): “Poor you. I can’t believe your meany family has done this to you. All you did was fall in love! Yes, lies were told, but all in the interest of true love.” He laps that shit up. It’s all kibbles!

            I expect my ex will marry this nurse. She thinks she got a prize. They’re both lowlifes. Made for each other, I guess.

            I hope you’re healing. After so many years of marriage, this is especially traumatizing. For me it’s the flashbacks to bad times (the discard phase) or times he said he was doing one thing, but now I know he was doing another. I still think this is all a terrible nightmare.

            By the way, have others suggested to you that they will probably divorce soon? Our badass mediator/judge (love her) took me aside during mediation and said, “He’ll marry her, and she’ll divorce him in two years.” That mediator had been a family law judge for 40 years. I figure she’s seen it all.

            • Spinach,

              What a stroke of luck to get that experienced mediator. Don’t you just love those people who spit out the truth off the cuff? I bet just the fact that she saw fit to say that to you repaired a bit of your faith in humanity.

              I just realized that now we’re like her. We know a bit of what she knows and have the power to heal others’ faith in humanity with little asides.

            • Spinach

              I would love to figure out how to get in touch as I was awash in questions about HOW/WHY the DOCTOR could do this.

              I ask fewer questions these days, to be sure. But I really loved him and so, I don’t want my whole adult life married to him, to have all been a lie and a waste.

              I stumbled upon a short video of the 2 of us from about 5 years ago and we were both laughing hard. (BTW, I’m hilarious and made him laugh hard, often).

              Watching it was charming and yet tainted by pain BUT I also thought, “hey, that was REAL no matter what he nows claims.”

              Because the idea that the whole marriage and all of our 35 years were a mirage is both unrealistic (in my opinion) and overwhelmingly depressing.

              I see him more as a man with a personality disorder that was helped & compensated for by my social skills, for decades.

              But he deteriorated and the more I forgave, the worse he became.

              2 of our kids remain in limited contact (nothing in person where they could counter his narrative to his new fan club and schmoopie wife and HER daughter)

              but both of them say he “sounds crazy a lot”… I NEVER criticize him to them, although I no longer gaslight with “but he loves you” either.

              It’s my belief that he is furious with ME, and to ME, that is the hallmark symptom
              of how he behaved whenever he thought he’d harmed someone.

              The formula was “Moment of clarity on his part – became actual remorse which was untenable for him, so remorse became shame and that was 100% incompatible with his self image (like at a cellular level) so then shame became blame, and the victim of HIS choices became his villain.

              Whereas I’ve been humbled by remorse in my past and it brought me to my knees and to making amends and healing…

              I don’t think it’s in the DOCTOR, even though we both thought we were soul mates, once upon a time.

              Will I always be baffled? Will I ever be able to see him without a stab of pain?

              How can I best heal AND model that healing for my children?

              Yes I know they are adults, but they are not impervious to being hurt by their only father. I think they’ll also feel a stab of pain about him, forever…

              I have wondered (& hoped) about whether the “new” wife will ever be resented for not encouraging a relationship with his children at least. (She helped hide money from me though, so my guess is she’s GLAD he has no relationship with our kids-more for HERS. The DOCTOR is a fool to be blind to that).

              Oh and HIS parents, (my kids are his father’s only grandchildren and he is their only living grandparent) have not had contact with ANY of us since we split. 4 years and not once have they reached out.

              That’s ^^^some serious campaign smearing of me BUT also the kids??? OR they have the most shallow of familial ties I’ve seen.

              I’m one of 9 children.

              And For the record, when MY mother died at age 93, ALL 4 former spouses of my siblings (AND some former inlaws!), flew or drove in from out of state and showed up at the funeral to pay their respects.

              My mom was the grandmother of their kids and a loving part of their pasts, so of course they came and we ALL welcomed them (for that occasion, as my mom would have liked).

              In my family, we do not erase people and we do not erase history. But the former spouses left after the service, (except my former SIL, the Chump of my stupid older brother. I was so glad to see her.)

              Questions – How could any woman do that to another woman??

              I COULD NOT DO THAT TO ANOTHER WOMAN…I just try to live by my ethics.

              and it’s a freaking low bar if that makes me a hero of virtue.

              • “The formula was “Moment of clarity on his part – became actual remorse which was untenable for him, so remorse became shame and that was 100% incompatible with his self image (like at a cellular level) so then shame became blame, and the victim of HIS choices became his villain.” – thank you for this; it describes my ex to a T.

                You are lucky you are able to remember the time you were married as more that a mirage. After 20 years of marriage, one of my exes toxic parting gifts was to make sure I understood in no uncertain terms that it was never real and that it was tainted and awful from day one. He drove that one home ad nauseam throughout the last year of our marriage as well as through the entire divorce process.

                I also have adult kids, 2 are both NC and one is extremely low contact (he occasionally will answer a text out of feelings of obligation of the you only have one father variety). It is clear that they will always have that stab of pain when it comes to their father. It’s funny, ex has been able to walk away, take no responsibility, lay all of the blame on me and start a life with a new family like it is just another day that ending in y. Meanwhile the kids and I are still trying to process his legacy of pain and abuse.

              • “I ask fewer questions these days, to be sure. But I really loved him and so, I don’t want my whole adult life married to him, to have all been a lie and a waste.”

                That is where I was at. His parting shot was, “I never loved you, and I cheated on you our entire marriage” Oh later he said he just said it to make me hate him, but it was too late.

                I had to eliminate a lot of memories, as when I though back I could in hindsight pick up the red flags that I ignored. Now I just concentrate on the memories of me and my son. If he is in one, I will shadow him out.

                I hope for you that you can know that yours was real. But as you said they were real to you.

                One of my favorite memories of our first year together was when he would leave for work and I would kiss him good by and he would run down the stairs and I would run to the bedroom window to see who could get there first and throw another kiss.

                When that comes in my head now, when I look out the window, I no longer see the young image of him, I see the image of him staring at me with cold dead eyes. It is creepy.

            • “They’re both lowlifes. ”

              That word brings back memories. My ex, after we were legally separated wrote me a letter of “apology” How he doesn’t know what he acted like such a low life. I remember thinking, well because you are a lowlife. And he did apologize, but it just didn’t mean much. He had treated me so crappy by then, the letter meant nothing. Oh I kept it in my wallet, just so I could remember that I wasn’t the crazy one. But, I never answered it.

              Thing is with that letter, and the several times he tried to get me to talk to him, he never once stopped seeing schmoopie. What was his deal?

              The only thing I could think was, he just needed to destabilize my life, just in case he could use me again. Nothing else makes sense.

          • It’s hard to have a dark night of the soul when you have no soul.
            These people are mindless. They don’t self-examine. If they did they’d have to face the truth and see how vile they are, so they never dive deep. They are shallow for a purpose- avoiding facing themselves. So I highly doubt your ex or his idiot schmoopie ever consider the impact of what they’ve done. If a stray thought about it ever came to mind they would quickly push it away with the usual drivel about their “happiness”. That’s why cheaters are obsessed with “happiness” and talk incessantly about it. Gotta justify themselves and keep their demons at bay.

            • Yes, after the discard, I reflected on my Ex’s relationships. His friendships are shallow no true deep friendships where he’s knows what’s going on with his friend’s lives just surface drink buddies. He runs hot and cold with his mom who is also likely a narc and I always kept my distance from her because I knew something wasn’t quite right – I now see how he would even triangulate his mom & me. He has a surface level relationship with his brother who’s he is friendly to during holidays. His married howorker was just more triangulation.

          • Exactly! A woman who claims to support women and girls (schmoopie) doesn’t plan a future with a married man. Period. End of story.

            FW once told me, when we still spoke of these things, that schmoopie was “scared of me.” Hmmm…1. GOOD! and 2. If she had done nothing wrong why should she be scared?

            She knew. She knew what they planned was a betrayal. No matter whether the world sees them as fated heroes saving sick kids (they do research on pediatric brain cancer)…she knows that what she did was less than heroic.

            How the world sees these types of people (as heroes) is a whole other letter.

            • Angry Woman–

              To quote Jean-Paul Sartre, “Everything is permitted the hero.”

              He knew whereof he spoke. Such a dick to women.

              • Oh I think I quoted that wrong…he told me she was scared of ME, his wife. Why be scared of me if you are doing nothing wrong?

                Sorry if that was confusing.

              • It wasn’t confusing, just insightful.

                Shmoopies, particularly the ones who play “vulnerable” and “helpless,” love to cast betrayed spouses as ogres in their fairy tale narratives.

                Yeah, well, which character in Grimm’s fairy tales would have been more likely to expose another character to HPV, herpes, syphilis, etc., without consent and dissipate family assets– the innocent protagonist or the wicked whatever?

      • Wow is Mom upside down.

        God I’m tired of rereading my divorce.
        Revenge divorce.tell god you would have ne’er married him if you knew him now.
        Turn in missingmoneyrapereport childrape.
        The judge will reverse that order.

        Who knew.
        Beetle 5 Garrison

  • There is something AS repulsive than Other Women wrapping themselves up in a narrative of feminist empowerment: female cheaters wrapping themselves up in a narrative of feminist empowerment.

    The hear KK tell it — on stage, on social media, to anyone who’ll listen — her egregious deceptions were acts of glorious defiance (verbatim quote from one of her online rants): “I stopped trying to conform to what (UXworld) and others thought I should be, and started being who I wanted to be.” Followed by every female empowerment hashtag you can think of, including #MeToo.

    Fuckwits have the capacity to subvert any and every cause for goodness and decency for their own selfish, narcissistic purposes, simply because they have so little to offer on their own. And deep down they know it, and hate the rest of us for it.

      • MamaMeh – Can you please elaborate what it is you didn’t like about that book? My therapist asked me to read it but I’ve got this pit in my stomach about it and haven’t started yet. It would help to know what I’m getting into beforehand. I did some quick research on the author and realized she’s friends with Elizabeth Gilbert, who I know from this blog is a serial cheater. And I learned that she actually divorced her husband over his cheating but kept it quiet so it wouldn’t affect sales. I told my therapist that I didn’t feel comfortable with the author’s character, but she just asked me to keep an open mind because truth can come through flawed people. I appreciate any insight you and others who are familiar with her can offer.

        • Trust your gut and do not read or expose yourself unnecessarily to further trauma triggers, Mama. Dump that fucked up so-called therapist. 😡😡😡

          • That’s the thing. Multiple DDays later, and now I can’t trust my gut. There are times when I ignore or override my gut, thinking I’m being irrational or simply not willing to tolerate the distress of working through hard feelings. Sometimes that’s true and things are perfectly benign and I was jumpy for no apparent reason. Other times my gut doesn’t warn me of a potential danger at all and I fail to put up necessary boundaries or advocate for my own safety/well-being. The calibration for my warning system is off, you know?

            So, not to be overly dramatic, but this therapist is literally the only person I trust to have my best interest at heart. Sometimes she does get it wrong. Thankfully, this community has equipped me to speak up in those instances (she now refers to EP as Esther F***ing Perel, lol). Other times she gets it right but I have to push through some pain in order to see it. That’s why I was asking about Doyle. Just trying to get a heads-up of any potential trauma triggers so I can make an informed decision.

            • I always take notes on book reviews (good or bad) on this site and went and looked up a bunch of info on Glennon Doyle. First thing I noticed is that, in interviews, her voice goes up or down about an octave depending on who she’s talking to. She mirrors heavily, morphs herself from sober adulty adult to squawky fun bopper. Hmm.

              The reviews on Goodreads were pretty funny. No surprise she’s close with Gilbert. Before Eat, Pray, Love came out, I read the expose in the New York Times on the real life guru that Gilbert based that experience in the book on. The guru covered up decades of sexual abuse of children and young women at the ashram of the sect’s late founder and even threatened victims’ families into silence.

              With some public figures and institutions, you have to follow the money to figure them out. With others you can follow the chain of ideological and social ties and influence. When either trail leads back to rapists and rape enablers, eeek.

      • MamaMeh, YES! I read ‘Untamed’ recently, and when I was reading the above post, I IMMEDIATELY thought ‘Glennon Doyle’ (the author)! So then when I read your comment, I was stunned. Great minds think alike–haha! I thought that ‘Untamed’ was the story of a user–and no one I would ever want to be like!

    • UXWorld: I hear you loud and clear. My STBX (we are both women) is an academic gender studies type, revered among LGBTQ+ students on our campus. To her, it’s all kibbles. None of her scruples kept her from abusing me: indeed, several of her friends are so “sex-positive” that they probably think infidelity is just another link. (The lying, gaslighting etc. must just be unfortunate collateral damage.) The karma bus has already hit her in a limited way, though: her colleagues unanimously voted NOT to support her becoming director of the gender studies program, even though she was the ONLY applicant. (I would have laughed, except my calculated spousal maintenance took a hit as a result. At least I have the satisfaction of knowing that others also see through her!)

      Every good position can be hijacked by shallow people. I am still a feminist, still believe that women’s rights matter. Guess what? That includes my right, as a woman, to live free of abuse at home as well as in society.

      The reason I finally blocked STBX and most of her friends on social media was that I couldn’t stand to see their hypocritical posts/comments anymore. (I’m sure you can imagine how defensive STBX got during wreckonciliation when I wanted to talk about what I felt to be her hypocrisy.) And guess what? They all LOVE Glennon Doyle/Elizabeth Gilbert/Esther Perel, etc. Now I have another litmus test for the kind of feminists I want to hang out with – and those I don’t.

      • Yep, it helps me to remember that feminism is a political movement (in the sense of creating equal access to power), not an assertion of virtue. Groups who are being denied equal access are not more virtuous: they are just wronged.
        But it can be a real kick in the gut when another woman screws you over.

        • Yep, Marianne. Same goes for any group fighting for representation: there will be some disordered characters in the ranks. Indeed, I sometimes wonder whether disordered types are drawn to social justice movements, given that they externalize their problems – it’s easier to point the finger at others, rather than at oneself. Disordered types also absorb and mirror the empathy of others involved in the movement. And, of course, any self-righteousness is going to feel valorizing to a disordered person.

          To a cheater, a movement will also be a convenient hunting ground. When STBX wanted me to pick-me-dance harder, she reminded me that she often goes to conferences full of beautiful queer people, and might be tempted to hook up with them if she wasn’t getting enough sex at home. I told her she was triangulating and shifting blame to me for her own choices.

          Hagiography is never warranted, in my opinion. Nobody’s a complete saint, and movements can probably still benefit from the participation of disordered people. (It will be sadly illuminating to see the debate about MLK Jr. after the FBI tapes are made public in 2023.) But that doesn’t mean that individuals harmed by those people, should be silenced!

          • “When STBX wanted me to pick-me-dance harder, she reminded me that she often goes to conferences full of beautiful queer people, and might be tempted to hook up with them if she wasn’t getting enough sex at home.”

            What a fucking *bitch*. I loathe her for you. xx

            • Thanks, cnm! Fortunately, STBX said that *after* I had found CL/CN, so I knew exactly what was she was doing. You’re right that she’s a piece of work – but of course she felt she was “just being honest.”

    • Oh FFS. Defiance my ass. My ex talked of his “voice of defiance.” He was honoring that voice, which I know, in his effed up way of thinking, took incredible courage. 🙄

    • UXWorld-

      Oh dear, so 1970s. The “feminist” playing princess in a tower rebelling from the ogres? I’ve known women who’ve pulled this one. It’s a humble-brag way of saying “Everybody wants me!” Usually hardly anyone does.

  • Yeah, the OW claimed to be an intersectional feminist, what a joke. Now apparently cheater is a feminist too… no, he’s just learning new language/ methodology to try and target a new group. So over it, may the treat each other how they treated me.

  • The fact that you pay homage to Andrea Dworkin has made my respect and admiration for you grow a thousand times bigger! Thank you for that, CL!

    I too have been shaken down to the roots of my feminist soul by being betrayed by 2 fellow “sisters.” It is true what you write…assholes are gonna stink no matter, and narcs are gonna be shallow and selfish in any package they come in. Fuckwittery is a character flaw, not limited to sex or gender or creed.

    • Yes – this⬆️!!

      And thanks for my new T-shirt saying:

      Mistresses suck patriarchal dick.

      🤣😂🤣😂🤣🤣😂🤣😘

  • I needed to hear that—every good thing about you will be weaponized.

    I was always concerned with things like, I dunno, where we were going to live and how we were going to eat. I spent years thinking (because I was told) I was bitchy, controlling, a stick in the mud.

  • Fuckwits are equal opportunity abusers. Their Saturday Night Specials are more of the same.

    So of course they take anything that is important and particularly important to you, then twist and corrupt it.

    Feminism isn’t the problem. Fuckwit and SNS are the problems.

    Move on and away from them and eventually you will truly feel what Tracy has written,

    “If we are to be fully human (and this goes for ALL humans, wherever you are on the color, gender and orientation rainbow), you must accept that some of us are going to be assholes. Women aren’t saintly or better.”

    EXACTLY. She’s an asshole. Same as your STBXH.

  • Their relationship was borne of deceit … it will die that way, too. Carry on with all the great work you do and leave them in the rear view mirror!

  • I saw my ex’s ow, on a bus today, she looked at me, I looked at her, you know she’s really looking for my ex. They both used drugs, instead of my ex buying my kids educational equipment, if she starts something, sarcastically ill say its a hard choice buying things for kids or buying drugs.
    The uk government have made a cock up of the exam results, my daughter gets her results tomorrow.
    The ow didn’t want her kids my ex said he was happy she dumped her kids for him.
    Guess what happened then she got pregnant. I don’t know what happened to the baby,
    She hangs around the school, school has been informed.
    A true women wouldn’t want someone’s cast offs, wouldn’t dump her kids. she said she was going to be my kids auntie.
    Didn’t want her kids did she.

    • Yeah, I would watch my back after that. When narcissists find you inconvenient, they can remove you by any means necessary.

    • Yep, before they realized the mistake of sharing it with me…I e-mailed it to myself and to my family. I didn’t say anything about finding it for months, and the told fuckwit about it the day before Yom Kippur…so he’d have something to truly think about while fasting. Ha.

      You wouldn’t believe the crap in it. I showed it to my therapist who said, “this is like what an alien family would write up when it was trying to be human!” I am aware of one white board for family meetings that they wrote about…sooooo often I have thought about showing up with my dry erase marker and asking if I could join the meeting. (Oh, the family plan included demanding my family come visit my kid at THEIR house, and also included having ME over for dinner.) I shit you not.

      It’s a fuckwit masterpiece.

      • Apologies if you’ve already answered this elsewhere and I missed it, but please tell me you’ve got custody nailed down, finances separate, and a support system in your corner (family, therapist, divorce lawyer).

        This is some scary shit, especially with the other woman wanting to usurp your place as mother. I’d be handing that off to my lawyer, if you haven’t already.

        • Yes. All that is worked out and to be honest I came out of it with a decent monetary settlement. They actually wrote in their “family plan” that her ex (fellow chump) and myself would be “taken care of financially.” Ha! That is the only mention of us in the plan. Well….during mediation the lawyer questioned how much alimony I was getting….and I used THAT language. I turned to the ex and said, “so you remember saying I would be taken care of?” Ex sheepishly nodded. I turned to the lawyer and said, because he said THAT…that’s why! Nobody questioned alimony for life again.

          He may have weaponized my feminism against me, but I sure as hell weaponized their family plan against him. Glad I found it before the divorce.

          I may be a chump…but I am a smart chump. I was hurt, but kept that document in my back pocket (so to speak) for the rest of the divorce. It’s still there, btw. To use when needed. ☺️

          • So glad you sleuthed out Google Docs!

            If anyone ever asks you how could you stoop to snooping, recount some of the chump stories from this site– a mother being separated from their newborn in the hospital because their cheating spouse exposed them to HPV. Chumps being physically threatened by psycho shmoopies or having custody of children threatened via fabrications and shady maneuvers. That doesn’t even get into the financial scheming.

            • Actually, it was accidentally shared with me, actually my KID, through my kids google school account…believe it or not. My kid had used my ipad to log in to his school account. I opened my ipad and thought it was me logged in, but it was his account. I saw the “family plan” and I was curious what that was. Thinking it was a school project, I opened it. When I clicked on it…I saw what it was and that it was authored by fuckwit and schmoopie. ( I also saw their notes in the margins.) The only thing I figure is that my kid did the same thing at their house: logged in to his google school account on their computer, and they didn’t realize they were logged in as my kid when they made that document. I immediately emailed it to myself. One of them, likely her, saw it had been opened and probably thought my kid opened it…it was gone in short order. I am just glad my kid didn’t find it.

              • Angry Woman–

                Electronic kismet.

                A relative’s second wife was sexting other men through the family cloud and was ratted out by her own 12 year old niece whom the second wife had physically abused.Any of the children in the home could have seen the crotch pix, etc. The niece told the relative’s son from his first marriage who had been emotionally abused by second wife when he was a teenager but no one had believed him– until they saw what else that woman had gotten up to. My relative is an attorney– that did not end well for second wife.

                It’s like they want to get busted on a certain level.

        • Oh, and we have 50/50 custody. But when we have to talk about the kid (otherwise I grey rock as best I can) I am not beyond throwing in “btw, she’s not the mother of my child to spite what any document says,” when I need to remind him that he and I make decisions about our child, not her.

          That being sent to me was perhaps a blessing in disguise, as much as it hurt.

          • Blessing in disguise, indeed. Alimony for life!

            You sound like a fantastic negotiator, too. You called him out in front of the lawyers and put his balls to the fire! I LOVE IT.

            I hope you’re patting yourself on the back. Your experience was traumatic and unfair, and I’m not downplaying any of that, but you handled this like a boss.

      • “also included having ME over for dinner.”

        Their plan apparently does not include getting rid of you completely. No, they still need to twist the knife by having YOU over for dinner to see (and hopefully be green with jealousy) the life they have created. They still need you for the triangle which is the glue keeping their relationship together. Rather creepy and definitely dysfunctional.

      • “(Oh, the family plan included demanding my family come visit my kid at THEIR house, and also included having ME over for dinner.) I shit you not.”

        I can’t even process this. So effed up!

        This quick anecdote isn’t as creepy but a bit along the same delusional lines. When mine told our adult daughter about his 2 1/2 year affair, he said he expected to be able to babysit her child WITH THE OW! My daughter said, “Absolutely not.” WTF!

        • It was indeed creepy. The financial mention of me and her ex was the only place we were mentioned by name, other than that we were called general terms like “family.” 😳 But the plan listed out my family members by name! Saying they are their family now and will be demanded to visit my kid while at their house. It was honestly shocking.

          I wish Chump Lady could run the family plan through the UBT, knowing it was written while they were both married to other people. Ha ha!!! THAT would be fun. It’s 6 pages of crazy.

          Wait…I think it might mention us chumps at the beginning too. “When will we tell them (our names)” followed by a blank line.

          Crazy town.

          • What is with these weirdos??? We’ve seen a lot of cheaters here who get it in their heads that chumps and AP’s “would really be friends!” and have this delusional fantasy where everyone is this big, goopy, happy circle.

            Good looorrrdttt yours actually made a 6 page PLAN for it. Did they think everyone was just going to go along with this? Like phase one: Announce Twu Wuv! Phase two: Child gets new mommy. Phase 3: Ex wife dinner recipes.

            This is a whoooole new level of complete delusion.

            • Ha ha ha….yes I actually think they might have had some version of that as their “evolved conscious uncoupling” plan. Nevermind the lies and gaslighting.

              The ex really did say, several times, things like, “you are still family, let’s celebrate holidays together.” But to write it down! And that’s not even scratching the surface of what they wrote.

              When I finally revealed I’d been sent the doc…he freaked, hung up on me, called back crying. He said they were naive and stupid and wrong. By the next day he was saying, “it was a thought experiment, you misunderstood what you were reading.” 🤦🏼‍♀️

              • Gad, what’s to “misunderstand” when they took such efforts to clarify and document?

                Anal retentive much? Did they map out their creepy sex lives too? “And on Tuesday, X shall (legaleze of course) perform such and such service…”

            • they see this shit on TV and think that is real life. All goes along with the delusion/fantasy they are in.

      • My x ( now married to MOW ) had it all planned out. He told me about it one night while I was hiding from him in the church.
        I ran from the rectory with my school books to get sway from the crazy making.

        Anyhow – he was having a massive melt down and was just blurting out things ( which he later denied ).

        This is when he told me that he and Miss Piggy were praying for me to die of cancer ( like my Mother had recently done ). He said I should die.

        They too had a new family plan all worked out. I needed to be erased completely I guess to absolve them from their sins ( two ministers, both married ).

        Needless to say it was my cue to exit and I got my ducks in a row and got OUT. But he was a raging lunatic by the time I left and I believe that I was in danger.

        • Dear Lucky: When I was doing my master’s degree in clinical psych a professor said during a lecture that ‘ if you feel unsafe, you are unsafe’ I am so very sorry to had to flee for your safety but you were smart to do so. Short of drilling a hole in someone’s head you never know what they are thinking. The fact that you ex and the OW are both church people is soul crushing but psychopaths and narcissistic people hide behind religion; physicians white coats; law; academics, etc. – any position of power or title in an organization (Boy Scout Leaders) these disordered perverts can/will/and do hide. It’s very discouraging and it makes it very hard to ever trust again. I’ still frozen from discovery day in May 2020 – my physician husband had 30 prostitutes throughout our 26 year marriage – he told me only under threat of one of the last prostitutes telling him they were ganging up on him and would tell me – business in the whore world is slow because of Covid so extortion is the new game. I’m in a state of shock but afraid of him as well. Chump Lady described it like an episode on Twilight Zone where seemingly normal human beings rip off there rubber masks to reveal themselves as the pig snouted aliens they really are. It’s a horrible shock. Good luck to you – there are good people in Chump Nation. Thank God for dogs too.

        • “Anyhow – he was having a massive melt down and was just blurting out things ( which he later denied ).” It is crazy, they don’t remember half the shit they say. They just flail.

          I remember my ex told me he figured I would move from Indiana to Texas where my dad lived. I was 40, why in the hell would I leave my home and job to go to my dads house.

          Oh yeah I know; because that would have made it easier for them to just put her in my life and move on. Didn’t work out that way for them.

          Oh I stepped out of my current life and circle of friends, (because they were mostly his friends and his world) but turns out she wasn’t accepted as my replacement quite as easily as they had envisioned it in their adultery sodden heads. They fled our city soon after getting married. He still worked there but they moved out of the city.

          My ex even told our preacher that he wanted to help schmoopie get her teen kids straightened out and be more like his son. (they were a mess, still are) Preacher told them that he wouldn’t be able to do that because half of what made my son who he was, is no longer in the picture. He didn’t like that.

          He soon left the church. Found another one where he could spin a new story I assume.

  • CL is correct in that cheaters will question the authenticity of your beliefs, if you’re not “down” with whatever they’re doing. I do not consider myself a feminist in the current sense, but I’ve lost track of the times I’ve been insulted as a “feminist” (thereby questioning my cred as a conservative/Libertarian and a Christian) for having the temerity to demand basic respect and refusing to tolerate misogynistic and insulting comments. Screwing another woman’s husband does not make a woman a feminist. Refusing to be cool with having your husband screwing other women does not make you NOT a feminist. These people are gaslighting a-holes. Although I don’t believe in a lot of current feminist ideas, I do know that infidelity, lying, and gaslighting are not among them. There’s nothing wrong with questioning your current belief system, but if you do, question it on its own merits, not because some cheating bastard tells you you’re a phony.

    • Another thing I’ve noticed; I’m also an Air Force veteran and grew up in a military family in a military community. I’ve never encountered the levels of misogyny in 37 years with the military as I have in civilian life.

      • I am an Air Force Veteran too, and I totally agree with you! I felt like an equal part of a team when I was in the service. I do recall feeling like I had to be perfect/excellent to be recognized, but you know what…I excelled and was recognized. I did the hard work, and was rewarded for it. The men in my unit and I were equals.

        BTW, fuckwit apparently decorated his new house with airplanes and his work calls him cowboy! Um…he was a dependent and I actually lived on my grandad’s cattle farm and raised cows. He was those things by marriage…and now he acts like they are HIS identity. (I know these things because my son tells me.)

        Anyway, hi there fellow USAF vet. Thank you for your service.

        • I second Jennifer (above) that cheaters will question the authenticity of your beliefs for their own ends.

          It’s all part of their mindfuck and not to be taken seriously. Pathological liars lie every time their mouths move. They don’t know anything about authenticity.

        • I have battled something similar. I am working on it. I was a military spouse ( he had 24 years of service) and I have 2 kids and a Son in law who are now active duty. Finding out about all the lying, cheating, etc…that my ex took part in while he was in the military, under cover of his military travel( or lying about the need for that travel), with the cover and participation of his coworkers( of all ranks), and finding out that the rules in place are just for show…….I’m having a hard time. I considered myself a proud military spouse, and plastered that smile on my face during long deployments, and “kept the home fires burning”…..only to have my loyalty used against me. I love my country but some of the shine is gone. I guess as CL said…..there are assholes everywhere.

          • Hope Springs, I’m so sorry you had to deal with that. Some people are just shit. I think a lot of it is unit dependent. There are plenty of people (including yours truly) who get through multiple deployments and manage to keep their pants up. Then there are those who don’t. My roommate in officer training school was the latter. While her husband was staying at home with her kid (that he adopted) she was banging her fellow officer trainees like a screen door in a hurricane. She was also a backstabber. Now she’s an O-6 and she’s been a squadron commander. Thank God I never had to worry about being in her unit. I also had a commander who only got the position because the previous commander hung himself after his affair with a junior officer was discovered and about to be investigated. People in the unit (including the newer commander who was a real SOB) held it against the Ops Group commander for holding Lt Col Wandering Dick accountable. But in the grand scheme of things, I met more good people than bad.

        • I felt the same way! The majority of my experience was really positive and rewarding.

          Funny how narcissistic sociopaths are such chameleons. The narc I dated did the same type of thing.

          Hugs 🤗 from Middle Georgia!

        • They don’t have actual “identities” and interests as we understand and experience them. They borrow and mirror and construct a mask to wear.

      • I’m not so sure. The dick had a whole posse of “what goes on det stays on det playmates” , then it was all the time. They covered for each other, lied on clearance interviews for each other, partied and “played” with each other. Without remorse…..they were entitled.

  • Cheaters and abusers will use what you value most as a tool for manipulation. My abuser used feminism against me too.

    In arguments, he’d tell me feminism is for ugly women who can’t get laid. It was a tactic to divert the argument toward me defending feminism (away from the original subject and to barrage me into defending myself against multiple things) he would cut me off and say “You just think you sound smart!”

    He’d accuse me of trying to solicit attention from other men by wearing heels or makeup in public, and told me if I’m such a feminist I’d be more concerned about how dangerous men are and I’d not make it worse with my tempting outfits.

    He told me events like Slut Walk are pointless because they just preach to the choir and if we want to change things, try actually talking to rapists. Otherwise just get that’s just how the world is.

    But he expected a gold star for telling his coworker not to be sexist when that coworker complained about having to sweep the floor and women should be doing that.

    Don’t let people who’s moral compass points to zero break you or your values. The OW isn’t a feminist. She’s using the moniker to gloss over her shit behavior. So is your ex fuckwit.

    They know this. They know it’s important to you, so they threaten you with being labeled a “bad feminist” to shut you down.

    These are the actions of sociopaths.

    • I can’t help but picture you responding; “I have talked to a rapist, but you were boring as hell.”

      That’s probably what I would have said to such a staggeringly asinine mansplaining comment, which deserves nothing but a nasty response. This, of course, is why mine cheated, according to him. I’m “intimidating”. 😄

      • Me too! Apparently, I emasculated and abused my poor little XH with straightforward confrontation. I never yelled; I just have a quick tongue. I guess my intellect, honesty, and anger were soooo scary that he ran away. Hah! I can’t wait until the OW unleashes her unmitigated wrath upon his lazy, selfish ass. Pass the 🍿

      • I actually went on some dates with a guy last year and dropped him like a hot potato when he called me intimidating. I know exactly what that leads to. Anyone who calls you intimidating is both to weak-willed to handle you and will try to push you to tone yourself down for their comfort and that’s not someone you should waste your time with.

        This guy literally said “You’re intimidating, I’m not sure if I’m up to the challenge.” Well bud if you say that, then no, you’re not. Bye!

        My abuser ex definitely hated being intimidated. He’d literally resort to cutting off my sentences with nonsense noises so I could never finish a thought and then tell me I didn’t know how to have an adult conversation. Not even joking I would try to start saying something and he’d say “NUU” “NER” “DUHH” “DURR” until I gave up trying. It was like a fucking child.

        THIS was the man telling me I’m just trying to sound smart when I talked about feminism.

  • One area in which, in my opinion, feminism, as part of ideological changes that came about at some point, has done a disservice to chumps is that of bringing about no-fault divorce. The last line of protection for a chump, which was afforded by taking adultery seriously in divorce, was wiped off.
    The last line of protection, in the sense of the one chance to get a divorce settlement that does not throw one into poverty was taken away.
    In what other area, if tort is done to one, does the law not provide for compensation?
    To do away with fault-divorce was to insert a huge injustice into the system. It inserted into the system the concept that the person who commits a wrong is rewarded and the person to whom a wrong is done is punished.

    • I understand where you’re coming from with this, but you need to read some old case law. There was a concept called “condonation” where by if you accepted your spouses behavior you couldn’t have a divorce on those grounds. A person would have their entire right to a divorce taken away if the other party had proof that they had accepted the cheating. No-fault divorce makes it much easier to get away from an abusive partner.

      • True, but why throw the baby out with the bathwater?

        I’m certain there’s a way that the law could allow spouses to get away from their abusers without sacrificing chumped wives to poverty.

        Laws were written by and for men.

        • Divorce laws should be revisited. The aspect of no-fault that works is the ability to get divorced from an abuser. What doesn’t work is the current system whereby sociopathic cheaters are able to blindside spouses with infidelity and then argue they should get 1/2 or more of everything. And the endless stall and delay tactics are absurd and abusive. High conflict divorces should be flagged by judges and any party dilly-dallying with paperwork and delays should be seriously penalized. You can still do no-fault divorce, allowing people to end the marriage but infidelity and substance abuse should be factors in allocating support, establishing custody and arriving at a settlement of assets. And anyone hiding money should mean a default judgment for the other party. Some simple changes would make a huge difference. and I would love to see every court have a highly qualified assistant to help chumps and others go pro se and file their own motions with post-divorce issues where the XS screws around with custody, medical and support.

        • My STBXW cheated on me (and our two kids) with another guy who betrayed his own girlfriend (and their two kids). She will get 40% of my pension thanks to no-fault. Divorce law ain’t working in my favor.

          Oh and I recently found out she’s four months pregnant by the same guy. At least the divorce decree will state that the child was due to an EA and I’m not on the hook for a child that’s not mind. Two lowlifes that deserve to each other.

  • > As if cheating and colluding in the abuse of others was some sort of journey of self-actualization.

    It IS a journey of self-actualization for cheaters though. They’re reconnecting with their true selves: lying, asshole, cheaters who are so self absorbed, impulsive, and immature that they don’t care about hurting their spouse and destroying their marriage.

  • Thank you sooo much CL and CLN. This line: “They’re denying another woman consent about her own body. When they fuck a partnered man, they’re agreeing to that health risk for themselves, but together with the cheater, they’re denying that choice to the chump.“ This is what I feel in my core.

    I am gonna be honest, I have no proof that they fucked, of course he swears they didn’t…but that’s beside the point. So many people have told me, “Well he probably lied to her like he lied to you, she’s a victim like you.” THAT is what I can’t wrap my head around. She knew me, hell I told him to hire her a decade ago because i was trying to support women in science. But, If she were a true feminist She would have reached out to me to make sure, for herself and for me, that the story a MAN was telling her was the same story he was telling me. Instead she (likely willingly) believe the lies he fed her and I cannot call her a victim for that. Nor can I let her off the hook for the betrayal…hell…she used to take my kid out with her kids. Now that memory feels so icky. She is indeed a collaborator, not a victim. (You wouldn’t believe the pushback I’ve gotten for that sentiment.)

    Anyway, Thank you everyone. It is so validating to see others also wrestling with this. You are right…that fierce warrior is in there, she’s just tending to her wounds at the moment. And yep….there are assholes among us. Ha ha.

    So much love and gratitude to the fierce chumps here,
    An Angry Woman

    • As Chump Lady brought out, women aren’t saints. Why did you believe what a WOMAN told you, just because she is a woman? You have to look at the PERSON.

      My Great Grandmother was a Suffragette. She marched in Chicago for women’s rights in the 1910’s. BUT she was a cheater. My great grandparents divorced in the 1930’s.

      Just because you are a woman and a feminist doesn’t make you a moral person. Chump Lady preaches look at the person. Who they are.

    • The other woman is an asshole. She’s a liar, a cheat, and an idiot for thinking she won anything special. He’ll fuck her over too and she’ll wonder why. Or she’ll be too stupid to realize it and keep taking him back until he destroys her life.

      At the end of the day, “feminist” is a title like any other. You can call yourself anything you like but not earn it. Currency needs gold to back it otherwise it’s just paper. (Well, we’re off the gold standard now but my metaphor still stands.)

      I’m not saying a woman needs to prove herself as a feminist. There’s no feminism queen handing out feminism badges. But it’s okay to call a spade a spade and recognize when someone’s full of shit. We’re defined in life by our actions and character.

    • Also, no proof they fucked? That’s the cheater mindfuck talking. Of course you have proof. You found their family plan where the other woman talks about usurping you as mother to your kid. What more proof do you need? Photos? Were you supposed to catch them in flagrante or else it doesn’t count? Men don’t abandon families out of the blue. Of course they fucked. And of course he would lie about it, because he’s a liar.

      Your feelings of anger and betrayal are perfectly valid as they are. You don’t need photographic evidence they had sex to know he betrayed you. Even if you did, he’d still lie about it and deny everything.

    • APs who get involved with married people are not “victims.” They are participants.

      Here’s some advice: Be choosy about who you share your story with. Your life pain is not a case study for feminist discussion. People need to earn the right to hear your story. You shouldn’t have to tolerate people weighing in on the “victimhood” of someone who hurt you.

      • LovedAJackAss is right — keep your cards close to your chest. Like the “betrayed spousal group” that the therapist tried to start in Santa Monica – the damn women in the group were like wolves salivating and some contacted the Xhusbands knowing they were available. The therapist had to disband the group. Less is better. I learned the hard way that aside from Chump Nation, most people loved knowing that I had pain…..that the ‘perfect’ marriage to the successful surgeon was actually a sham and I got bulldozed in the face. The same bad Xhusbands, and Other Women, and psychopathic whores, or jealous women will often relish in your pain. Shields Up! Hold your cards close to your heart broken chest!

    • My XW is also an ostentatiously feminist scientist. I often ran afoul of her for not being a vocal enough “ally” myself, because I’m not a big joiner and I figured my contribution to the cause would be doing all the childcare and cooking and household maintenance (which relegated me to a less prestigious job) so my XW could focus on her career. A year before our divorce she was calling me a “saint” to her colleagues; now she tells people I was “financially abusive” because I paid all our bills without bothering her about them.

      XW has now added social justice movements and BLM to her public resume, but she couldn’t be bothered to vote for 20 years (it wasn’t worth the hassle to claim her citizenship). IN practice, the POC whose life XW has affected most deeply is surely the first-generation Latina immigrant whose husband she poached.

      Shitty people are going to be shitty, whatever gender. And people who are looking to exploit others for their own personal gain will attach themselves to a movement if they think it will help them. I wouldn’t say it has made me distrust feminists, but I don’t put a lot of stock in virtue signaling any more.

      • Your ex was no feminist. She was a narcissist who disguised her self-absorption in an idea she never believed. A true feminist isn’t looking for a sacrifice; she’s looking for an equal playing field.

    • The people giving you pushback and calling her a victim have outed themselves as having no moral compass. Jettison these losers from your life.

      Even if she did believe his lies, how does that justify getting involved with a married man? You could have been the worst wife ever and it still would have been a terrible thing to do. The people who defend her apparently think women have no agency, bear no responsibility for their choices, and are as naive and helpless as children. That’s the opposite of feminism. None of those idiots is the real deal. I think what you’re experiencing is the libfem versus radfem divide, which is currently under hot debate among feminists. A libfem is a fraud who collaborates with certain aspects of patriarchy in the name of phony “empowerment”. To them, feminism is all about them and their own personal “journey” towards “self-realization”. They love using lofty terms to describe their selfish life choices. They think women shouldn’t be blamed or held accountable for those choices. That point of view would certainly allow for stabbing other women in the back if it “empowers” them personally. A radfem, on the other hand, challenges patriarchy in all forms it takes. A radfem would never be an OW, just like she’d never help a rapist or wife-beater to harm his victim. She wouldn’t help a man to abuse a woman in any way, not even if she was to gain something by it. Wear the radfem label with pride.

      Oh, and they fucked. Guaranteed. Nobody makes a six page family plan (What on earth? They’re as crazy as bedbugs!) with somebody they haven’t fucked. They would have thoroughly sampled the merchandise before they bought it.

      • Thank you so much! You explain the divide between libfem and radfem perfectly. Yes! I am and always have been a radfem. And you are so right…you don’t plan a future with a married man! I would never. I have had a few “separated” men approach me…nope. Get a divorce, and prove it to me, then we can talk. Or…can i call your wife and make sure she’s cool with you dating while separated. Ha!

        Yep. 🤷🏼‍♀️ <— radfem. I guess my trouble is in expecting all feminists to be like that.

        • That’s like expecting all “Christians” to follow Christ. Slaveholders, Klan members, Nazis, and cult leaders claim to be “Christians.” The news is full of “Christian” leaders who indulge in illicit sex, steal money and run various scams. Some even molest children.

          Human ideologies and human social organizations are imperfect and only as good as the people within them. I’m a Catholic. The Church has done wonderful things but ignored and enabled pedophile priests. I don’t expect all lawyers to be brilliant or ethical or all doctors to be masters at diagnosis or crack surgeons. Look at the PERSON, not what the person claims to be.

  • This is timely.

    Just before the pandemic lockdown, I paid $350 to my male personal trainer. I had three previous private fitness sessions and was relieved that my 63 year old body was still functioning. I could get through 45 minutes (easy compared to the infidelity) and thought 5 more sessions were a good investment in my future health and recovery. I was really excited to attend a “Strong Women” session offered by his business partner and her impressive women friends.

    At the end of the inspiring women’s session, she embraced (!) my male trainer – a married father of two young children. Some detective work uncovered a marital separation which took place after the business was launched.

    I can’t go back. I texted a request for a refund without specifying reason. No response. I saw the fitness center is operating again with outside classes.

    Should I follow up and give the reason?

  • It really sucks having something important to you used as a weapon against you. It makes you want to protect yourself from what hurt you. But it was the person wielding the weapon who made it hurt, not your principles which bring such meaning to your life. Heartless cheaters turn everything into a weapon. Now you know how to identify them and you know to stay away from people like that.
    A life without values is an empty one. I know you wouldn’t live like that. I also know that after a betrayal everything feels broken and terrible. As you heal you will return full force and more to the noble work you were called to. And you will have the added compassion that grows from having this sort of hurt. Thank you for sharing your grief and confusion here so we could all learn with you.

    • Thank you so very much, from the core of my being, thank you. Your comment brings tears of hope to my eyes. 💗💗💗

      • You’re welcome. I remember feeling like everything I believed had been shredded, and pawing through the pieces of my core beliefs wondering what was even worth keeping. Your story touched me and I am rooting for you! Be kind to yourself!! Xox

  • I used to get very upset when other women would cut each other down. I used to think that women should defend each other and have each others backs. And I used to practice that. I always believed in the girl code. But, ever since my cousin thought it was fine to date my husband. I have become jaded.

    I will never understand why any women especially a family member could knowingly cheat with a married man. I will never understand why my cousin cared so little for me that she thought it was appropriate to sneak around with my cousin. I would never have done that to her.

    • Yes, this is exactly my sentiment, and why I sent the question. Perhaps it is my values as veteran that I applied to being a feminist, and not everyone lives up to those values…even though I wish they did.

  • I went through this untangling too. I was surprised to see my xw as she really was (is) and not the sisterhood-motherhood woman I thought her to be.

    I had a pic of xw and sister (who knew what was going on) in those pink pussy hats at the Million Woman March a few years ago. I can see how messy my xw’s head is now instead of how heroic they looked at first.

    I think in the herds of humans, there are a spectrum of messy and fucked-up people. My post-D girlfriend is a faker (I can see it now). She does yoga and comes across as a hippy/free-spirit. She’s also a little lazy and shakes responsibility. She becomes who she thinks you want her to be. Took me a while to see it.

    I’m messy too, I get gushy and sparkle the shit out of the weakest structure. I create false and romantic stories instead of seeing things as they really are.

    But Im working on it!

  • SORRY for your personal shit storm. I was even questioned about my faith and where to find God in my divorce process by his lawyer. That was after I had to answer questions about my tithes.

    They will use everything you stand for, against you. Are you ethical and moral? It will absolutely be used against you. I was questioned about why I refused to do Q, R, S, T, …. because I was ethical and felt it was morally wrong to do it. It was all about the Benjamin’s to his lawyer.

  • I was just reading about the suffragists and how a significant opposition to the movement were WOMEN! And how do you explain women voting for the pussy grabber? We are betrayed. The fight is heartbreaking. BUT You heal by doing. By being someone who cares. By making a difference. Give yourself a minute then get back up and fight for what is right and leave these small minded, family plan writing idiots behind.

    • I don’t think women voting for the “pussy grabber” are betraying anyone and just voting their conscience. Maybe their just weighing out which one they think is the lesser of two evils. However, taking issue with women undermining other women in regard to the suffragette movement and then undermining women that don’t vote as you do? Do you see the irony?

      • Agreed. I voted for the “pussy grabber” as well, not because I like him (I don’t) or think he’s a good person (also a no), but because the alternative was a woman who touted her feminist credentials after she spent decades building her career by enabling a sexual predator. Also if I’d treated classified emails the way she did, I’d still be sitting in the pen at Miramar.

      • 😁Trump was friends with him too. He also went to his parties and was accused of raping a 13 year old girl at one. The actual PRESIDENT is an accused pedophile and rapist. Bill Clinton would not have been president for fuck’s sake.
        How hypocritical can you get?

      • The lesser of two evils, huh. How’s that working out for ya? Still think that way?

        Y’all were warned. You didn’t listen. You knew who he was and didn’t care. Now this hell as a result. Yet you still try to justify a horrible choice, just like cheaters do. Smh.

        • Piss off. So sick of you “suck the oxygen out of the room” phony moral posturing asswipes. We still have the right in this country to choose our candidate. No one should be harassed because they don’t vote for your candidate.

    • I agree with you DM. Unfortunately, no one who voted for the pussy grabber in chief will ever acknowledge that at best he is no better than Bill Clinton. Honestly, walking in on undressed teen pageant contestants is skeevy at best and perverted at worst – but hey, Monica Lewinski and emails. How many pictures of Trump with Epstein does it take to accept reality? I suppose we will never know………

      • Dear Chumpknowmore: You are right. Whether the pussygrabber or BC – they are all vile. The only difference is that the pussygrabber will likely get us all killed; has made us a mockery world wide; is ruining the environment; has a big debt to Russia, etc. Both the pussy grabber, and Bill C, and frankly most politicians (I lived on Capitol Hill, Wash, DC for 10 years) are all ego-maniacs and womanizers. It’s a matter of pick your poison – at least Bill C. was just dumb and dick headed with a wife who tolerated – Monica was as guilty an OW as the other sleeze buckets that hurt we Chumps. Monica didn’t come running out of the White House with a torn blue dress screaming rape – if she had then a crime had been committed. But she didn’t, she trotted her chubby bum out the door of our TAX PAID White House wondering if she could get the stain out with her typical OW smug smile. All politicians that rise to the top are hiding some weird fetish – just go to a gay bar in Dupont Circle and see who is dancing in drag – Hilary would have killed us with taxes; the pussy grabber will just get us all killed. “Where have all the good men (and women) gone” The lyrics from that song from the 1960’s are still poignant today.

        • I try to steer clear of certain things, political issues being one. I merely answered the question. I have apparently been flagged while others are not. Okay, it’s time to find a different place to swim.

      • Though they seem it, they’re not really delusional, they’re just fundamentally dishonest hypocrites They know exactly what he is, have known it for a fact since he said Mexicans are rapists and made fun of a disabled man, since the Access Hollywood tape and the multiple sexual assault allegations. They don’t care. They chose him because he hates the same people they do. They try to rationalize that awful choice with this stuff about Bill Clinton, which they actually don’t give a damn about.
        It really is that simple.

  • No one wants to be considered or labeled a jealous, insecure shrew. This label is used frequently by cheaters being called out or questioned about their inappropriate behavior. This is to shut the chump up. Chumps usually back off when they should be attacking the cheater and letting them know the difference between standing up to bullshit nonsense vs insecure jealously.

      • And then there’s the whole concept of “Jesus Cheating.” One would think that one could trust one’s CLERGY not to sleep with one’s husband, but that would be wrong.

  • Finding out that one of my ex’s affair partners was someone I thought was a friend was one of the harder things to get over. Realizing your husband of 40 years is a serial cheater is one thing but throwing in the fact that some of the OW were supposedly my “friends” was much harder to take. How do these people look at themselves in the mirror every day? They just don’t care about anyone but themselves.

    • They don’t care about anyone but themselves. They weren’t really your friend in the first place.

  • Like finds like. They then begin a dance called folie a deux. It’s the dance of fools, the dance of crazy people, the dance of sociopaths. It circles them tighter and tighter together until no sunlight can get in. They take pleasure in others’ pain. I read about a famous trial in Chicago where two young men decided to kill a 14 year old boy for the thrill of it. It was the first time psychology was used as an excuse in a courtroom. The defense attorney had an “expert” explain that two incomplete personalities came together to form one dangerous one. I put your exs in that category. They tried to kill your sense of self worth. Don’t let them.

    • Leopold and Loeb. Fuck I love true crime. PBS American Experience has a great documentary about this case.

    • I have the book. Bought it in a used bookstore. At the time it was written their case was called the crime of the century. I think people who use, manipulate and gaslight they way these two people did are just as lethal if they leave a person so devastated.
      I wrote about this before. It only takes a couple of weeks, or less, to drive someone crazy. If they are children, others who trust you, imagine the lifelong damage.

  • Angry, This is my story all over again. I’m SO sorry and big hugs to you and your family💗. I understand your pain and frustration of silencing your inner alarm bells for the sake of keeping your life together all the while they are planing on your demise and replacing you with her. Know there is a life after this! You will heal after the hurt! Surround with people who are like you and love you. Then once you are ready, use that strong voice of yours and advocate for chumps and their broken children….teach, mentor, speak out (as tactfully as you can, LOL!) You will be amazed at how healing and helpful it is. Much love❤️❤️

  • Ha! The FW XW likes to think she is a good feminist, too. It appears that she also thinks she is a good representative for the people of our town. After she abandoned me thru an exit-affair after 24+ years of marriage and effectively our family for her boss, she was able to migrate politically from a Trustee position in our village to a selectboard position in the town our village’s in (initially, while maintaining her Trustee position simultaneously! Unbe-fucking-lievable!). Then got made chairperson of said selectboard. Ugh.

    I suppose that happened because so many in our town didn’t know about her shitty behavior, mixed w/a healthy amount of her friends and political cronies crying, “you don’t know what really goes on inside someone else’s marriage,” and believing whatever bullshit she’s spewing. God, I think if I hear that one more time I’m going to hit the person saying that idiocy (I say that, but I’m not a violent person. I don’t think most chumps are. Otherwise, there’d be a lot more of us writing from jail).

    I haven’t thankfully heard that defense in awhile, mostly since I ditched the Switzerland friends after reading CL. And I tried to keep my disabusing of people about the FW XW’s supposed “golden” character to a minimum, as my kids were embarrassed by the the whole sordid affair.

    Looking back, I realize the POS XW went to a protest against Donald Trump at our state capital in the winter of 2017, while she was actively fucking around, ending our marriage by having the affair w/her rich, 15 yo boss, and willing playing the OW to his wife of 40 years (it was a Pussy March I believe, w/the requisite hat she knit for it). I’m no fan of Trump (I’m pretty liberal politically in general), but I’m no fan of what she did, either. How she reconciles her feminism w/what she did and continues to do is beyond me.

    When I think of what she did and her political ambitions, I think of Bill Clinton. Because he seemed to be a smart, able politician, and lots of good things seemed to happen while he was president (the Internet!), a lot of people (myself and the FW XW included) seemed to give him a pass on his shitty character and the evidence of that bad character by way of his sexual bullshit and general adultery.

    Now, I think I’m a lot older and a little wiser. I see a man of terrible character who was willing to use his political/financial power to exploit women for his sexual desires (he was a friend of Jeffrey Epstein’s too, remember? So, a likely pedophile as well?). And I’m not crazy about Hillary either, but I voted for her, and nobody deserves to have to publicly deal w/adultery on that level of prominence, let alone in a normal life.

    And that enlightenment corresponds w/how I’ve come to view the FW XW. You can proclaim to be whatever you want: feminist, good person, saintly religious/spiritual type. Doesn’t matter. Your actions will eventually make your true, POS self known.

    I’m skipping listening to anything a Clinton has to say anymore (like Bill’s speech at last night’s Democratic Convention). Just like I take w/a grain of salt anything the FW XW does or says anymore, politically or not. I’ve had enough hypocrisy from all of them to choke on for the rest of my life. I trust that they suck. That’s enough for me anymore.

    As usual, here’s wishing CN health, happiness, and peace. And may the US in general find that as well. Soon.

  • How many legs does a dog have if you call his tail a leg? Four. Saying that a tail is a leg doesn’t make it a leg.

    -Abraham Lincoln

    There is nothing feminist about screwing over other people, or victimizing another woman (through infidelity or any other means). Calling one’s self a feminist does not make a person a feminist. Pay attention to actions. Most of the men in my romantic history have called themselves feminists, but were public policy feminists–they support suffrage, equal pay, etc., however they treated individual women shabbily, or insisted on having more power in a relationship.

    Likewise, there are plenty of women who call themselves feminist, but are no more so than a plastic apple is an apple.

    No reason to give up on feminism just because someone used it against you, any more than there is to give up on kindness because that was used against you. Cheaters win when we allow ourselves to become less in order to protect ourselves from further hurt. Don’t give them that power.

  • Angry Woman, first off, I want to sincerely thank you for your military service. I get to live in the land of the free because of the brave like you and I’m grateful for your sacrifices.

    Second, that twat and your STBX/XH are evil fuckers. They have no character and will stoop at nothing to get whatever they want in the moment. It will not end well for them.

    You, on the other hand, have character and integrity for miles! You are leagues above these bottom feeders.

    Your anger and outrage are healthy, normal, and USEFUL! Anger and the hormones underlying it will fuel you to massive action to go and stay no contact, get divorced, build an even better life -cheater and whore-free! You are a mighty bad-ass and I cannot wait to hear about all the wonderful things you are going to do once you’re free of these toxic people.

  • My parents were teachers, and I often had to change schools, because the children in our family attended the district my mother taught in. She took us to and from school, which kept us from being “latch key” children. In addition, my parents took sabbatical leave to attend university to obtain their Ph.D’s. During those academic years, we attended school in another town. So we were constantly the new kids in school.

    This made us independent, and adaptable. It also made us the target for other children’s frustrations, because they felt we were invading their territory, challenging their established pecking order. One of my brothers (2 years younger) was pretty tough, and handy with his fists. Sometimes we defended each other, back to back. The boys were generally easier to get along with than the girls in these situations. The girls could be vicious, like the characters in the movie Mean Girls, and I developed a mistrust of women early on due to these experiences.

    Female’s pretty much dominated our early life. My mother was pretty strict, and most of my teachers wanted quiet and order in their classrooms. They did not care about the why of a disruption, only that it would stop. If rivalries were not worked out in the classroom, the playground and lunchroom were always handy. Acceptance and trust were ideal concepts, and had to be earned.

    At home, my father demonstrated his misunderstanding of the male role in the household. He felt he should always dominate, and his will was much more important than anyone else’s will. He was never pleased with anything any of the children did. In his view we could always do better, and should always consider how our actions reflected on him.

    As a result of all this FOO stuff , I became an independent person, supporting feminism because I wanted to achieve what I wanted to achieve, and not be relegated to a position that a man decided was best for me. I also did not trust other women to do what they should do as feminists, but I supported those who seemed to get the concept. In my mind, no one should be told they cannot be who they want to be because they are a woman, or because they are another color, or because of their religious beliefs or sexual orientation.

    CL points out the obvious, you are not a jelly donut because you claim to be. Men and woman cannot be trusted just because they say they are trustworthy. People say a lot of things they don’t really mean. The proof of who they are is in their actions. Both of my ex-cheaters pretended to support women’s rights. In actuality, they used this stated belief as a ploy to get close to women to seduce them. Feminists believe a woman should have the right to use her body any way she chooses to. I believe a woman should look before she leaps into the sexual revolution. Being able to act like men have always acted may not be a good plan for you. Think about some of the things men have said and done to continue the legal domination of women, and people of color, and other religions, and migrants, and ask yourself, is this how I want to act? Is this how I want to use my body?

    Do not expect good behavior from others, just because you are behaving as a good citizen. Neither men or women are good citizens because they claim to be. Don’t blame the concepts of Feminism for their bad behavior. Each individual chooses to act the way they act. They may not even think about why they do what they do. Entitled people always put their interests first, and don’t worry about how their actions might hurt others. Be independent, thoughtful, and capable. These qualities should guide your actions. Choose friends who say they are like minded, and whose actions prove they are.

    If someone criticizes you for the good things about you, and weaponizes their criticism, that is pretty good evidence that they are not a good citizen. It happens in the home, and the workplace. Independent women are considered bossy and described as bitches. Independent men are described as leaders. Men can be ambitious. For some reason, women are expected to achieve their dreams by magic happenstance. Ambition is a bad look on a woman, don’t you know??? It goes along with being a nasty woman, who is vocal and who asks too many pesky questions. Why do these perceptions and misrepresentations continue to permeate our culture? I don’t believe you can blame feminism.

    I believe you should not kill the messenger, just because the message contains bad news. Feminism is not bad because some women choose to be “the other woman.” or the town tart. All men are not responsible for the bad actions of some men. I have endured the tyranny of bad actors all my life, both male and female, and I have not given up on humanity. I reserve my scorn for selected humans who have proven themselves worthy of my scorn. I could care less about their professed political or religious, or social beliefs. I watch their actions, and place them in my “to be scorned ” area of my brain. I find it healthy and liberating to ignore most labels. People are usually many things, not just one thing. I may be liberal on some issues and conservative on others. I find those labels to be useless.

    When you are in pain, it may not be a good time to focus on the person (s) who hurt you. Concentrate your energy on getting better and healing. You can make your decisions about which cause to support when you feel better.

    • “which kept us from being “latch key” children.”

      Excuse me – exactly what is wrong with being a “latch key” child? Because that is perilously close to throwing shade on families who made different arrangements than those your family were able and chose to provide.

      • My take was that it was what her parents chose to do, not that she thought being a latch key child was horrible. In fact she expressed the difficulties of being a child who changed schools frequently–something I know about all too well.

        I do agree that moving around frequently as a child does build character–often not fully realized until adulthood. Besides being the new kid all the time, I was very pretty and quiet. Once adolescence hit I was a threat to other females as a “new girl,” and really did not have too many close female friends until middle age. I did not trust them. Couple that with having power struggles with the females in my family, I learned to keep to myself. As an adult that has, at times, been advatageous. Being an observer and not yearning to belong has worked out well for me when as an adult living in other parts of the world. It has also, as Portia explains, make you quite adept at seeing through the BS of various ideologies and cutting to the essence of them; not allowing the bad actors to taint the message.

      • I don’t think the “latchkey kids” comment was in any way meant to offend. Two parents working or living with a single working parent, latchkey kids are the norm.

      • I didn’t say there was anything wrong with it. That was the reason my mother gave for taking us with her. She did it because she could, and she did not want us alone in the morning waiting for the bus, or alone in the evening after school until she could get home. She made her own decision.

        That was my choice too, but I had daycare available before and after school. I don’t cast shade on other people’s choices, but I do feel I can make my own choices, without apology, when I raise my children. If I work, and choose how to spend the money I earn, I do not see that it is anyone else’s business. I do not tell others how to raise their children.

        Please don’t look for offense where none is intended.

    • 🙋‍♀️ I was a latchkey kid. My parents divorced. So I left myself into the house when I got home from school every single day. My dad was unreliable with child support. Mom worked to provide some money to help make ends meet. She worked at whatever low wage job she could find to earn money legally. When she returned from work I heard about how awful my dad was. (I already did know this but it still hurt.) I never heard anything from my father again. He lived a mile away from where I lived then. It was like I never existed to him. I decided to eventually treat him as dead. It was the only way to cope with it and make some sense of it.

      I was bullied by almost everyone at school, even my assigned locker mate and the jerk who sat behind me for every class. The one who kept throwing flies in my hair all day long, him. His name was Rick. It rhymes with dick. He was one. Divorced parents was not something that was done often. It was a social abnormality. Even the guidance counselor said that at school. They didn’t know what they could do to help me.

      • I believe your mother worked to provide the best she could for you, and made the best decisions she could in her circumstances. She may have confided in you too much about some of her adult problems, particularly with your dad, but you eventually made up your mind based on your own observations.

        I don’t believe your other issues were caused by your being a latch key child either. Parents make decisions, based on what they perceive to be their choices at the time, and based on their FOO experience. While my parents did not want the children to be alone before and after school, they were teachers, and they had a different choice available. They may have solved one perceived problem, and inadvertently caused another. I was the oldest of 5 children, 12 years older than the baby. My parents often left me in charge of the other children if they felt they had to. They would ask a trusted friend or neighbor to be an emergency back-up, but sometimes they had to be somewhere that they could not take 5 children along for the ride.

        Necessity is the mother of invention, according to an old adage, and we live and learn is another which seem to apply in your case and mine. Some of your experiences made you tough and resilient. You learned to adapt and survive.

        Divorce was not common in my grandparent’s and parent’s generation, so many stayed in unhappy marriages. That was not necessarily good either. It was common for girls to marry early during my grandparent’s time. My children showed no interest in marriage until they hit their 30’s. I am grateful that I only had to watch over my younger siblings, and was not expected to marry at the ripe old age of 12.

        Times change and circumstances change. I cannot find fault with someone doing the best they can to take care of themselves and their family.

    • My name is a different spelling of this. I wear a name tag at work. I’m told I’m unenlightened, and I don’t get the “greater meaning”. I hate what the woman with my name did, and I am nothing like her. I realize we have much work to do, and am trying to do it. I’m really trying, but when people smirk at you and snidely say your name at least 5 times a shift? You’re right…..call a bitch a bitch.

      • I am so sorry this has happened to you. My mother’s name is Karen and this decades-later societal use of the name makes me wonder, in hindsight, in HER case, if her life is not somehow prophetic.

        However, that only works for me and my family.

        I have had several other very positive relationships with people named Karen, and for their sake I don’t use the term. I like what you have said.

        Does anyone know where this use of the name came from? I’m 51 in the USA and just hearing about it in the last year.

        • AFIK it’s only come into use in the past year or so. The bitch in Central Park breaking the rules with her dog off leash in the bird sanctuary, called the cops on a man who asked her to leash her dog. She made up a story using his race and her privilege. It was wrong and only one of many wrongs. But honestly ask yourself……what if they used Caitlyn, Ashley, Anne, or whatever your first name is, to symbolize a racist POS?

          • I am also very reluctant to call anyone out on anything now( except here🤔where it is semi anonymous 🤗) no matter how serious or harmful because I’m afraid of being accused of being a “Karen”. Does that make me even more of a chump? And I do see the massive irony here….imagine if it was an entire race rather than just a small subset of a subgroup with a specific name.

            • 💡💡💡💡so maybe this just proves CL’s point even further……there are assholes everywhere. Even ones named “Karen”! I’ve given myself a headache….love you all CN

            • Don’t let these name callers get you down! The whole “Karen” thing started with a millenial generation meme as a slam against baby boomers. “Karen” is very much a baby boomer name; there were aways one or two Karens in any given school class I attended. It’s similar to the “OK Boomer” insult millenials fling at people of my generation, too. None of this is new. Many years ago pushy women were called “Miss Anne.” It began as an African American insult for a particular type of demanding white woman, as southern plantation owner’s wives were called “Miss (whaterever their first name was).” Anne being a very common female name then, calling someone “Miss Anne” was soon used to insult any female deemed too pushy, asertive, or whatever, much like “Karen,” a decidedly older female name is bandied about today to connotate the same. It’s funny the name “Karen” has been chosen for this, though, at least to me. The ones I’ve known don’t fit the meme stereotype. So glad my fairly common boomer name didn’t make the cut. “Debbie” on the other hand . . .

              • When I was young I was told never to call an adult by their first name. If they insisted, I could say Miss Jane or Mr Dan, or whatever, but even then I was walking on thin ice with my parents. It was meant to be a sign of respect.

                When I was clearly a middle aged woman, I did not appreciate other adults in other offices sending an 18 year old to see me, and asking for “Portia.” I found it disrespectful. I was not their friend, or their aunty. I was a professional woman with a professional task to do. I could not change, and therefore had to endure, the upper management decision to be a friendly first name place, but it never sat well with me. I did not blame the students, but I do not think it taught them good life lessons. I would not dream of going in to see the owner of a business, or my doctor, and saying “Hi Sallie!”

                Maybe I have old fashioned values, but I don’t think we need to be so harsh or rude with each other.

              • Please don’t start with the “Debbie” either. We already have to put up with “Debbie does Dallas’ and “Debbie Downer”. If I had a dollar for each time I heard “Debbie Does Dallas” when I was introduced to a man I would be a rich woman. So irrelevant to me or my situation.

          • Instead of “Karen” these can be called Pig Women – and there’s plenty of them. Piggy Women, Piggy Men – all self entitled pricks. The one’s who hate the Democrats and then hand their Medicare/Medical card to their doctor with their Rolex watch on the same wrist. Or the Republican that is anti abortion but votes down legislation to feed/house/educate that gift from God. Self Entitled pricks come in all shapes, sizes, religions, races, political persuasions, etc. – No Chump ever lost sleep worrying about a lack of pricks in this world. I’m a magnet for the narcissist man – they know how to heat seek out good women – but no more….shields up. The shield is not only to protect myself from narcissist pricks but to protect myself from becoming bitter – the other Chump who posted how easy it is to drive someone crazy (particularly the poor kids) and they are correct. We have a whole generation of kids who were kept in American immigration cages….the damage done to these innocent kids is life-long. While the chubby little boy sits next to daddy in the Beverly Hills nail salon getting their toes done – pedicures…..I may sound bitter but unless it’s an old WWII Vet who’s a diabetic – where pedicures are so important – it made me sick to see a boy who should be racking leaves sit there and be served. He’ll grow up to be a fuckwit like his dad.

        • I know one particular Karen and I swear she is the cause of this trend calling pain in the ass women, Karen. I also know far more Karens that are absolutely the best.

          What really annoys me is people are now using “Karen” out of context. When they have a different opinion than you, they use the insult to call you a Karen.

      • I was born in the 1950s and know many women named “Karen.” None of them fit the stereotype that name is used to represent. We should be using nouns and adjectives to describe characteristics, e.g., “entitled,” “selfish,” “privileged,” “racist,” “rude.”

  • I’m so sorry. I completely get it. This is something you will need time to help with as well as changing your mental perspective. Not exactly the same but my fuckwit’s ho-worker is Asian. I am not. I asked about this as I was surprised and his response was that her being Asian was part of it. For quite a while, I would get so upset around any Asian woman, projecting my hatred of this one particular one onto an entire race. That is definitely not me. I needed to mentally stop myself repeatedly and remind myself that one person is that one person and not an entire population. It’s taken time but I am back to who I was before. She is one woman. One. Her choices, values, ethics, character are her and only her. Anytime you feel mad at a woman, deep breath, remind yourself of who YOU are and move a little bit forward again. Time heals. Hugs to you.

  • This is one of the most incredible pieces on CL (and there a lot of stiff competition here)! Hoorah!!!!

    FWIW, one of the many OW for my ex banged him throughout my high-risk pregnancy, while I was in NICU with our preemie, and during the first year home with a baby who didn’t sleep. Her profile photo last week (when she had the gal to heart a photo of the said child on her seventh birthday) was this quote: “Be the good you wish to see in the world.”

    These people know they’re trash compared to you and work hard to disguise that garbage smell as they go through life. Some use social advocacy as their odor-control candle (my ex led the diversity and women’s leadership group for his fortune 50 company, then came home and hit me for the house’s cleanliness in front of our child), others volunteer at church or lead neighborhood initiatives. Anything but actually be kind and thoughtful to the people to whom they have obligations. They’re campaigning. None of it has substance and none of it is meaningful.

  • CL says it better than I ever could, but I’ll take a shot at it.

    Angry Woman, you are treating lying, manipulative cheaters as if they are just like you. The OW called to wake your husband up in the morning? How in-your-face intrusive and disrespectful is that–and all the rest of it? They carried on for years, plotted to have the OW replace you as a parent. They lied and minimized and as CL says, weaponized your kindness and feminism against you.

    And like many chumps, you internalized what they fed you, questioned yourself and your motives, and so they got a couple of big wins: they could carry on the affair until they were ready for your XH to end the marriage or until the coast was clear otherwise. They got all the duper’s delight from being so flagrantly involved and still keeping you questioning yourself instead of filing for divorce. They had their triangle, and that is just so delicious for them. [On the plus side, the faster you get to no contact and stop questioning yourself and believing their narratives, the fewer triangle and duper kibbles they will get rom you. It will be a fun moment when these two have to face each other and the intimacy of marriage without the thrill of deception and the triangle(s) with their spouses. You may never know it, but I’d bet that one or both of them will be looking for someone else to rope into a triangle. Don’t let it be you.

    Anyway. You are still operating out of that relationship dynamic. The problem is not feminism. It’s manipulation, triangulation and lying. It’s the con job they pulled on you. Of course, con artists exploit people’s beliefs, tendencies, and weaknesses. That’s what they do.

    You were married to a man who conned you and used all of the tricks of con artists to keep you in line, for whatever purposes suited them (money, saving face, protecting job, fun, excitement, kids…etc.) Your job now is to completely reframe your thinking.

    You can be angry at your X for being so faithless, dishonest, manipulative and cruel.
    You can be angry at the OW fo being a fake feminist and a dishonest, manipulative and cruel person.
    You can be angry at yourself for confusing feminist principles with letting a man abuse you and for not listening to your screaming instincts.

    On the other side of that anger, you need to do two things. You can hold onto being an advocate for the abused, the week, the vulnerable. But even in that context, you have to have JUDGMENT and DISCERNMENT about people. How do actions and words align? This woman calling your home to wake up your husband wasn’t a feminist manifesto. It was a boundary violation. We can believe that women are not treated equally in our own country and still recognizer that some women are predators, are sociopaths, are dangerous, are enemies. In other words, don’t allow an ideology to be more important than protecting yourself and your kids. A feminist doesn’t tolerate abuse in her own relationship.

    You write: “I don’t know how to be who I was.” That’s the bigger challenge. You shouldn’t WANT to be who you were. That person was so blinded by assumptions about gender categories that she failed to recognize an abuser in her own home. What you want to be is a feminist who understands that you can advocate for equal and respectful treatment of women and the vulnerable while still recognizing that it isn’t anti-feminist to identify a sociopath.

    Therapy will help you sort this out. Years of living with gaslighting and mindfuckery has your brain in a blender and your instincts shut down. You will recover. But turn your attention not to “feminism” but to developing good judgment about people and learning to trust yourself. You don’t have to worry about trusting others if you trust your ability to observe and pay attention to what they DO and your commitment to protect yourself with disordered, abusive people.

    • Thank you! All of that sounds like hard earned wisdom on your part, and I know it to be true. Getting there takes time and healing I guess, but you speak the truth. It is refreshing and validating.

      Oh and yes her calling to wake him up was one of the first concrete red flags. He gaslighted of course, “that’s just how we are: one big team looking out for each other and she knows this was an important meeting and didn’t want me to be late.” Um…wow!

      The way I really knew that was crap…I asked myself if I would ever call a married coworker to wake him up. HELL NO! But he sure did a number saying that’s just because I wasn’t “evolved.” True mindfuckery for a long time.

      • Oh…your X said you weren’t “evolved” !!!!! Really!!! When another woman who is fking your husband rings your telephone , he suggests you aren’t EVOLVED!!! Tell this narcissism soul depleted arrogant monster that HE did not ‘evolve” as a human being – he is still walking bent over like an animal with his poisonous prick dragging on the ground looking for a new mate – with total disregard for integrity; vows; honesty; a higher level of evolution intellectually. He’s still an animal!!! I’m so very sorry for what you went through – and I wish I had been your neighbor and I certainly wish I’d have had some fellow Chumps as neighbors. I think there needs to be a new Real Estate citation on all multiple listings as a Positive Plus when house hunting – Chumps live in the neighborhood! OW’s stay away!!

  • Dear Angry Woman: You are not alone and you are right. I too had a fuckwit for 28 years (26 married) I am an identical twin so I began being “pro-woman” in the womb!! I learned early on that you don’t have to be anti-man to be pro-woman. I too am/was a feminist but never lost my femininity. BUT…. there’s a reason there’s not an “Ol’gals network” like there’s the “Ol boys network….” It’s because as a rule women are terribly mean to other women. Full stop – it’s true. I’d rather work in a company full of men – even fuckwits – than women – women can be terribly back-stabbing in the office and in life in general. In Santa Monica, Ca a therapist started a ‘betrayed spousal support group’ I thought what the heck, I’ll go – I’m very private, but I was dying inside from the Dday of my fuckwits 30 (yes 30 prostitutes he could remember – and he’s a Beverly Hills surgeon….) Anyhow, the therapist called to tell me the group had disbanded before I even got a chance to try it out – too many of the women in the group started hitting on other husbands when then saw the other wives there – never show blood in the water is the lesson. Please know that there ARE good women out there who have your back – we come in all shapes and sizes – we’re just very hard to find. You are not alone Angry Woman and you have every right to be angry – use that energy on the treadmill. “Strong women weather storms” Screw that saying……SMART WOMEN BECOME THE STORM – and oh –I’m embarrassed to say I heard that on the Netflix show “Shameless” and believe it.

    • I wish I could argue with what you said about women being backstabbers and mean. I really do but I can’t because I see it every day. I don’t see enough of having one another’s backs.

      • I’ve got your back KB22 – know that there are good people in Chump Nation. Every office/ big company/ graduate school class, etc. etc. etc. I was ever a part of I’ve been a team player and very pro women and pro men – just pro co-worker – even while the blood was running down my back. Before law school I anchored a small cable show…..had a chance at a big promotion – a FEMALE colleague at NBC was a very good friend…..I put her down as a reference. I got the job but the FEMALE who hired me took me aside and said; “welcome and congratulations, but FYI take that reference/the woman – off your resume – she back stabbed you saying you were too young for such a big position.” I was shocked – simply went No Contact – haven’t heard or seen of her for years – last I heard she married an English soccer player – brought him to the states – got him a green card – and he used her/kicked her as a soccer ball in one of his drunken fits. I sincerely hated to hear that – nothing excuses domestic violence but sometimes Karma rules with an iron hand.

      • Good people have each other’s backs. Real friends do. Loving relatives do. Sometimes kind strangers do. But keep your circle close. You don’t have to mistrust people. You just have to defer judgment on trusting them. That is, you can stay in a neutral position until you decide, over a long time whether a person can be trusted in particular situations. (For example, you can’t trust me not to eat the last M&M peanut butters. You just can’t. But I won’t sleep with your husband or steal your money.)

  • It’s fun to know about who inspired CL’s illustration. Personally, I think the marvelous spitting crone looks like Grace Paley in her 70s or 80s.

  • By the way – Sweater Man is alive and well in San Diego, California – Dr. Robert Neborsky – he literally blamed my travel for work; my fuckwits dead mother for being too over-bearing; my dead for fuckwits guilt over recommending a bad surgeon; and for the first whore (of 30) being soooo good fuckwit got addicted to her and for the last whore being a psychopath and knowing how to play fuckwit. 19 months he spent in therapy – thousands and thousands of dollars and together they blamed everyone except fuckwit himself……

    Dear Angry Woman: You are not alone and you are right. I too had a fuckwit for 28 years (26 married) I am an identical twin so I began being “pro-woman” in the womb!! I learned early on that you don’t have to be anti-man to be pro-woman. I too am/was a feminist but never lost my femininity. BUT…. there’s a reason there’s not an “Ol’gals network” like there’s the “Ol boys network….” It’s because as a rule women are terribly mean to other women. Full stop – it’s true. I’d rather work in a company full of men – even fuckwits – than women – women can be terribly back-stabbing in the office and in life in general. In Santa Monica, Ca a therapist started a ‘betrayed spousal support group’ I thought what the heck, I’ll go – I’m very private, but I was dying inside from the Dday of my fuckwits 30 (yes 30 prostitutes he could remember – and he’s a Beverly Hills surgeon….) Anyhow, the therapist called to tell me the group had disbanded before I even got a chance to try it out – too many of the women in the group started hitting on other husbands when then saw the other wives there – never show blood in the water is the lesson. Please know that there ARE good women out there who have your back – we come in all shapes and sizes – we’re just very hard to find. You are not alone Angry Woman and you have every right to be angry – use that energy on the treadmill. “Strong women weather storms” Screw that saying……SMART WOMEN BECOME THE STORM – and oh –I’m embarrassed to say I heard that on the Netflix show “Shameless” and believe it.

  • Dear Angry Woman,
    Anger is a strong, empowering response to injustice. Feminism is about empowerment and agency to overcome injustice of gender discrimination. Recovering from being cheated upon has parallels. A cheaters unfairly gains power by disempowering a chump, and takes their agency to make informed decisions (I would not have consented to intimacy with my husband had I know he was also being intimate with a coworker). Leave-a-cheater-gain-a-life empowers chumps to take back their power, and to have agency to protect themselves, and move on to a cheater free future.
    May rebuilding your future include your passions and causes. Yes there are cheaters who suck, but tthere are also many good people quietly, mightily treating others kindly.

  • Have read here for years and agree with almost everything you write but your attack on Phyllis is undeserved.

  • Completely agree with you and the others whose ex-fuckwits boasted about their integrity, moral code, ethics, virtue. My ex-partner actually has a blog in which his “about” page proclaims: “Morality is everything; if you don’t understand that, you’re lost.” Never mind that his moral code allowed him to lie to me at the outset of and throughout our relationship, never disclosing (until 15 months in and intoxicated) his 13-year-history with sex workers, his 30-year porn addiction, and his continued inability–and unwillingness–to stay on the no-porn wagon. On the rare occasions I’d ask about that no-porn pledge he took, his superior moral code conveniently allowed him to stonewall, blame-shift, justify, engage in world-class word-salading, and accuse me of being prejudiced. It took me a while before I realized that when someone gets that lost, it’s time to stop trying to show them the way.

  • I consider myself a feminist – a “quiet feminist”. I have no idea why but even as a little girl I knew a woman had to be financially independent (and I had great parents so I’ve no idea why I was so radical). I was always ready to speak up when I had to, but having allowed a half-brained FW to rob me of pretty much everything I do question myself sometimes. How did I ALLOW that to happen? On a side note, after my ex left in January 2010 my neighbour’s husband started pestering me and asked me to have an affair with him?????? I kept pushing him off as much as I could but in the end I said “your wife is my friend, why would I do that to her”? and I refused to speak to him. After a couple of months he did indeed apologize but I couldn’t believe he could be so upfront. He had had affairs all throughout their married life (which is not a happy one – she hates him). She knew about some of the affairs but I doubt she knew all of them (she talks to me about it). I didn’t tell her what he asked me though because she is so emotionally down I don’t know why I would want to beat her even more. I’ve encouraged her to leave him over the years, although I doubt she ever will. She’s almost 70 and he’s done a helluva job on her confidence. Still, allowing her to pour her heart out is probably all I can do at this point!

  • Angry Woman, stay a bit angry. We need good people to get pissed when they witness injustice and, in the words of the late John Lewis, are willing to “get in good, necessary trouble.” Sometimes harnessing anger helps.

    Don’t let these fuckwits affect your feminism. You can still be a feminist and hate certain, individual women (and men) who’ve fucked you over. Shame on them for using your feminism against you. It sucks! They suck!

    • Thank you. ☺️ I do so like my anger…I always have. They made me question that, but I love CL and CN for validating that anger! 💗

        • Hell of a chump,

          I love that poem! It is wonderful. “To be furious at falsehood—is real goodness!” Yes, yes, and a thousand times YES!!!!!

          Thank you for sharing that with me.

          This is an amazing group of chumps.

  • The best place I ever worked regarding ofrice dynamics was with a floor of gay men (one straight and tolerant old guy) in the 80s in San Francisco.

  • They will not only atack you through your beliefs, but through your morals and character, as well. Mine used the “that’s not very nice” defense when I confronted him and OW. I was and still am a kind, empathetic person, something he had scoped out to begin with so he could use me. So you lie, cheat, future fake, and steal my money, but I’m a horrile person because I’m suddenly “not nice?” Really? Caring about other”s feelings didn”t apply here, sorry. That was all he could come up with, I guess, because my “being nice” had always worked before to manipulate me.

  • WeAreTheChumpions you are so right. I forgot that in 1978 I worked in the Financial Aid office at my university and the entire office was graduate gay guy students – and it was brilliant, fun, and we got a lot of work done and we were the first university to automate/computerize all of our administrative services. I was just a lowly undergrad on work-study/scholarship but I had so much fun and learned so much. I would occasionally go out after work with some of the guys…..oh welcome cruel world – Dupont Circle, Washington, DC – fun to go dancing – then I heard women on-campus calling me a ‘fag hag’ – honest to goodness, the women’s movement hasn’t moved much since then. Rise up good women, the nasty OW’s seem to have taken not only our husbands but the integrity of the women’s movement.

    • Jo– OWs taking over the women’s movement? Between depilatory treatments, shopping at Banana Republic and binge drinking on sugar daddy’s family dime, when would they have the time for more than a Tweet and a whine? 😉

  • Yeah, we were travel agents and got a lot of free travel bennies. Sometimes a few of us would take off for Mexico, Puerto Rico or Europe for a mini vacation. Gay men know where the best restaurants and bars are and how to party. We had a blast. Anyone who called me a “fag hag” was just jealous!

  • Feminists, auto mechanics, pastors, actors, factory workers – there is no group you can name that is devoid of disordered people, many of whom are hypocrites extraordinaire.

    On the bright side, I have a woman to thank for figuring out that my now ex-husband was a cheater and informing me – he’d convinced her he was divorced and living alone (we were married AND living together AND sleeping together), got her into bed a few times at motels and her place before she got suspicious. She did some internet research while he was on a business trip and found out he was married. She came to my house to tell me. She didn’t let on to him so I could lower the boom on him myself when he got home.

    And she brought me a pound of chocolates to soften the blow.

    If that’s not sisterhood, what is?!

    • This! This is a woman who did the right thing when she found out! Women like her restore my faith…it would have still hurt…but wow I would have respected schmoopie if she had reached out to me to make sure the story she was hearing was the same one I was hearing! I judge her for not doing that for me and for herself, for taking a man’s word for it. I really do see her as weak because of it.

  • Dear Angry Woman (after my own heart)–

    I’m so glad you’re speaking out about this. You’re not alone. A lot of us needed to read CL’s responses about the weaponization of feminism by abusers. It’s also very sticky territory these days to criticize “Vichy women” and patriarchal collaborators– as CL so aptly put it– lest one get accused of “slut shaming” and the like.

    I’ve grown tired of modern third wave feminism for this and several other reasons. Mostly I just find the approach in its popular form stupidly literal and verging on utopianism. And it’s so damned white and ahistorical. The whole point of equality is that marginalized groups don’t HAVE to be monolithically pure and saintly in order to simply deserve basic equality. They can have their fair share of assholes vs. good eggs like any other subset of human beings and STILL not deserve to be discriminated against as a group.

    As a species we are not “black and white” in a moral sense but extremely gray. Political activist and journalist Chris Hedges batters that point nearly to death in “The Myth of Human Progress” and “When Atheism Becomes Religion” but I really appreciated the distinction and needed the clarification at the time I read those books. For the ultimate nuanced argument, Jewish Auschwitz survivor, scientist and memoirist Primo Levi wrote several jaw-dropping books deconstructing the “gray” state of humanity, describing Jewish collaborators in the Warsaw ghetto and death camps while simultaneously rejecting postmodern claims that, because no group of people is inherently morally superior to any other, it doesn’t matter when one victimizes the other. To Levi, we’re all basically the same yet anyone who tries to blur the line between victim and perpetrator is rendering a “precious service to the negators of truth.” Then Malcolm X called out “house slaves.”

    But somehow women aren’t allowed to call out collaborators with patriarchy along with their criticism of patriarchy? Fuck that. I’ve seen too much to ever fall for that red herring. There’s a reason why traitors are hated and punished more than enemy combatants.I saw “A Soldier’s Story” and get that it’s unfair to reserve ALL or most of your punishment and resentment for collaborators (or shoot them in the back) but I’m also not robbing the house slaves/Vichy assholes of their hard-earned consequences.

    But so many of those finer distinctions are lost these days. I think it might be partly due to the disintegration of language and loss of grasp of history. It’s like everything has to fit into Twitter format so even social justice has been grossly oversimplified. Brevity can have a very high cost. For instance, the so-called “sex positive” third wavers are embracing Monica Lewinsky as some kind of #MeToo symbol when she’s Vichy/house slave all the way. If human papiloma virus could speak, it would sound like Monica.

    I was actually raised feminist. My mother ran her own business after getting fed up with the glass ceiling and my dad was giving televised speeches in support of Title IX before I was born and did presentations for national feminist organizations on misogynist content in school textbooks. My mother just wanted to work and left the activism to my dad. She thought it was hilarious that he was a lumbering he-man poster child for feminism. She’d been bashed by other woman so many times on her way up the ladder that she was a bit shy of group participation. She had her epic women friends and walked the walk, helping younger women out in ways she had never been helped.

    My dad, the hothead activist, sort of made it up as he went along in figuring out how to raise me. He joked that he’d try to give me gender-neutral toys like trucks but I’d just put dolls in them. I was his feminist guinea pig and it was a mixed bag. For instance, I was dragged away from my books, ballet, girly dress-up games and dolls and put into AAU competitive sports at age 7. I hated sports (I still don’t care who wins anything) but appreciate having awesome stamina and perfect posture. I get the irony of the fact that he demanded I be strong and independent because he said so. He also man-splained a lot. As an adult I teased him about it. He would play at being hurt, asking if I was questioning his divine infallibility.

    As a combat vet, my dad had a lot of anxiety about violence. In his view, wars of aggression are basically large scale rape which was the foundation of his belief in equality as social evolution. He thought athletics would be a good edge for a girl to have against rape. I successfully warded off several assaults in my life so obviously he was correct. Plus due to my parents’ influence, I always felt I had the right to fight.

    It was a real shock to me to enter the real world and find out that not every woman feels that way. Quite the contrary. Throughout my work life, it was extremely difficult getting support in situations of sexual harassment and every harasser I ever dealt with had female flying monkeys on hand. It was a given.

    Just like female members of chimp troops in the wild, there are always the women who will grovel for amnesty from male aggression and dance for that extra crumb of banana by acting in service of the “patriarchy” (or in service of any individual swinging dick). These kinds of women will readily and even preemptively punish upstarts and resistors of their own gender. I hate those types. I understand they all had abominable childhoods and the rest. But I know a lot of people who had shitty childhoods who are all the more prone to do the right thing when their backs are against the wall so it’s no excuse.

    Experiences like that will definitely add “nuance” and shades of gray to your social justice philosophy. In the end I started seeing life a bit like the Matrix. I don’t go around shooting the “un-woke” or crappy hypocrites but I don’t hesitate to call out shitty behavior in other people, male or female alike.

    As far as shitty women calling themselves feminists, here’s a Margaret Atwood quote: “Ideas are not responsible for the people who believe in them” (or the people who pretend to when it suits them).

    • I want a reading circle with you as a member! What a wonderful, nuanced, intelligent, historical response. I could agree more about social media and sound bites of activism…they make it way to easy to say the right thing without having to actually do the hard thing. I can’t tell you how many of our old female friends, who haven’t spoken to me since this all went down, post all day long about “speaking out for women,”’but only one out of a dozen ever reached out to me during all this even just to see how I was. They must have seen, or wondered, or be asking themselves if something untoward happened…seeing as how the once coworkers both are now divorced and living together. Coworkers puts it mildly..:he’s her boss.

      Anyway, thank you for this. This is the kind of conversation I wish more of us (society) we’re having.

      You rock!

      • Angry Woman–

        Yay to the reading circle. I always take notes on titles on this site. It’s been a huge resource

        So sorry about how crappy those so-called friends were. Abuse is doubly isolating due to the number of cowards around. Abusers abuse in part because they know they can depend on negative bystanders to be lame, aim judgment in the wrong direction, fail to warn and all the other shitty things that shifty people do. Like rats or weeds, they’re always there.

        But once our voices stop shaking and we clear the remaining creeps and sharks out of our lives, we can end up in much better company.

        Rock on and thank you again for putting all this into words.

    • Incredible post. 👍
      Unfortunatley, appreciation for nuance has died with the SJW generation who are in their 20s now. Social media had a lot to do with this. The result is that hardly anybody debates issues anymore. They just try to bully those with opinions or humor they find offensive (and they find a LOT offensive) into silence with Twitter campaigns, gang-up verbal attacks and public ostracism.
      I’ll never forget the time I was targeted for a gang attack of insane viciousness just for saying a certain movie the fake “woke” crowd liked actually sucked.
      They are that rabid and that stupid.

    • “The whole point of equality is that marginalized groups don’t HAVE to be monolithically pure and saintly in order to simply deserve basic equality. They can have their fair share of assholes vs. good eggs like any other subset of human beings and STILL not deserve to be discriminated against as a group.”

      THIS TIMES A MILLION!

      • No Shit Cupcakes–

        That concept was crystalized in the early civil rights movement. Demanding a marginalized group be morally superior to the mainstream to deserve equality is a typical tactic of racists or chauvinists or whateverists.

        Nope. We can have our share of jerks. And nope, we don’t have to wait for perfect equality to be achieved to call out the jerks. I just think it’s better to stick to calling out the jerks in our own demographics only when necessary and then channel most of our energy calling out abusers of power.

  • I have always loved this quote by Madeleine Albright, a pretty awesome feminist and powerful woman: “There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.”

  • My ex had an affair with a the woman whose job it was to market my book…she fancies herself a feminist, and yet she successfully undermined a younger female author (me) she was representing, to the extent that I’m no longer comfortable working with my publishing house and will have to find another. People like to paint themselves in flattering colours, and lie to themselves about the nature of their own motives and actions (“I’m sexually liberated”; “I kept on marketing your book, didn’t I?”; “I really like and respect you.”). Nope. It’s mindfuckery, sick power-over mind games, and manipulation. Feminism is as feminism does, and people like these OW are stealing an identity that doesn’t belong to them, just like they attempt to steal other people’s lives. They are hungry inside, and empty, and the only correct label for them is “fraud.”

    • Artemis– Holy turf grabbing!

      It makes me feel physically ill that your cheater and his POS had to leave the slime trail of their affair across your creative existence like that. Is nothing fucking sacred??

      To me it doesn’t seem accidental. Someone (or both) is gruesomely jealous of your abilities and accomplishments.

      I admit to reading a lot of sidechick confessionals for kicks (quora and reddit crack me up) and there definitely seems to be a sort of “single white female” thing going on with many.

      If you haven’t seen the trashy 90s horror film Single White Female, it’s at least well cast.

      • Dear Hell of a Chump,

        Yes, your instincts on that are right. There was a single white female dynamic going on. According my my ex, the biggest triangulator of all, she was comparing herself to me. She also contacted me about dropping stock off at my house, which was completely necessary…this is back when I trusted her, but something in me thought that was too much, a creepy kind of “going out of her way,” and I said no. Part of her game was “bending over backwards” for me, and therefore being justified in resenting me, or painting me out as some kind of prima dona…it was, and remains, really quite twisted.

        This has cost me more, personally and professionally, than anything I have ever lived through. And some people don’t see why I find her behavior terrifying. Imagine being in charge of promoting the work of an artist you are sharing a bed and a sexual partner with, and that artist doesn’t know. The level of undermining is sickening. If she doesn’t have the talent or drive to create things herself, that’s fine, but to feed off other people’s lives in the shadows…I wonder how she lives with herself. Thank you for your support.

        • Artemis–

          It gives me a chill thinking about soul cannibals like that. I hope you write about it one day. In gruesome detail. Expose that horror show.

          Your brush with evil reminds me of two films: the first is Pablo Larrain’s “Neruda” about the fascistic detective obsessed with bringing down the poet. The second is “The Lives of Others” and the lengths the Stasi would go to to crush the spirits of artists.

          There’s something quite terrifying about entitled mediocrity. You can really see it for what it is when it politically metastasizes. It’s a type of attempted murder.

          • P.s., I’m sure you’re aware Neruda was a cheat and whoremonger. The film wasn’t too triggery for me because most if not all of Larrain’s other films either make brilliant parallels between misogyny/ rape and political repression or have powerful female characters.

    • Hey Artemis, I hope you made it clear to your publishing house why you are no longer able to work with them, because your agent crossed professional boundaries in a most unethical way, and lost them business. They might be interested to know, it could have happened before and it may happen again.

      • Thank you, Stig, and thank you Hell of a Chump.

        I told someone I trusted at my publishing house, and had her removed from working on my file. But I think she made some maneuvers to cover her tracks, because one other staff member in marketing has not treated me the same way since (though the other two have been professional and never missed a beat). I am haunted that there was gossip behind my back, and that I will never know what was said. This experience taught me that once something like that happens, a business relationship is virtually impossible. How can I write emails about upcoming events to people who might or might not have been speculating about my sex life? It was completely inappropriate, and professional and creative abuse. She should have lost her job over it, but at the time I was too afraid of my book being sidelined or “accidentally” left out of book fairs to make more noise.

        I also suspect that departments take care of their own. It’s a very bizarre thing, the author/publishing house relationship: even though authors are the heart and soul of it, the engine that makes the whole thing run, we are kept out of the way and out of the loop on many things. Most conversations about us and our books happen behind closed doors, and we are not in the room when they happen.

        I have been completely traumatized by this. It happened in a relatively small city, where I have to see her all the time at events, and I can’t shake the feeling that part of me has been violated…I don’t want to use the term lightly, but it does feel, to me, like a creative rape. And yes, by another women. And the worst of it is that MEN I have told have such a hard time criticizing her behavior…I think one of my friends was worried about being a “bad feminist,” so he deferred all the blame to my ex. But I didn’t sign a contract to work with my ex…she is the one who had a professional responsibility to me.

        I think our culture needs to look more closely at the fact that women are capable of doing terrible things to other women. And it doesn’t make us “anti-woman” or “anti-feminist” to say so. But we need to look closely at individual behavior and motives, and not let out loyalty to our own gender trump that. I do think that much of this happens under the umbrella of patriarchy…this marketing “professional” was surely manipulated by my ex, who is a senior writer in our community, to some degree. But she also made choices, eight months worth of choices, at at that point, she crossed over into professional sabotage of another woman’s professional life.

        • “ I think our culture needs to look more closely at the fact that women are capable of doing terrible things to other women. And it doesn’t make us “anti-woman” or “anti-feminist” to say so.”

          Yes! Exactly!!

          I am so sorry for what you are going through with your book. It certainly is traumatizing. That makes my stomach turn and my heart hurt for you. Something similar, although not the same, is happening to me. I was part of a documentary about sexual assault, told my story of my own childhood abuse. In the movie I credited my husband’s support for the healing I had done. It was taped a few years ago and Is finally premiering now. I can’t even watch it…because his support was an illusion. He told me during the divorce that me sharing my abuse with him (when we were 16) is what caused all his dysfunction in our marriage. He had never, in 20 plus years said that. But he sure laid his shitty behavior: lies, gaslighting, dysfunction…directly at the feet of my childhood abuse. My abuse, and my speaking out about it, caused him to lie and then leave me, according to him.

          While I hope the film, and my small part in it, helps people to speak up…I cannot fully engage it or be proud of it because he shit all over that activism/healing journey.

          Fuckwits really know how to weaponize our hard won creations don’t they?

          Hugs and support to you.

          • Angry and Artemis–

            I relate to the social exposure/shaming element of cheating and also of having my activism tainted and snuffed, at least for a time.

            Please consider some form of creative revenge. Books or screenplays or documentaries– something.

            Blaming the victim’s experience of childhood sexual assault as a reason for cheating on them? I want to scream. And creative rape– so appalling. The male faux-friends who defended the publishing psycho under the aegis of feminism– may they rot.

            I know, I know, skeins and rising above. But I feel like balance needs to be returned to the universe for what you both endured. Plus it might be healthy to get a few poetic digs in according to emerging science (cheaters have their high-falutin’ excuses and we have ours).

            I was just reading a study which reversed earlier findings regarding (geek alert) bullying and elevated inflammatory biomarkers, specifically C-reactive proteins or CRP.

            Just to recap the older findings: 1) Children seriously bullied in childhood end up with elevated CRP that can endure for a lifetime, increasing risks for a range of chronic diseases including arthritis and cancer (similar findings regarding battered women and others who are socially traumatized). 2) Bullies, on the other hand, seem to benefit from bullying in that, post-bullying, they end up with enduring lower than average levels of CRP. 3) Bully-victims– meaning those who are both victims of bullying as well as bullies in their own right– had high CRP on par with victims.

            That’s the old news. The new finding overturned the third point above or at least parsed it: apparently victims of bullying who fought back could lower their CRPs to non-victim levels.

            There are many different manners of fighting back and different forms of poetic justice.

            • Hell of a chump,

              Wow, that research is kind of amazing, and makes sense now that I think about it. I teach meditation, but with a biology/trauma/fight or flight lens. And we know that victims of trauma are most affected when their nature instinct to fight or flee are thwarted. When our system tries to save us, but we can’t (either because we are held down physically, are trapped because we are children, or are unable to because we are trapped in a marriage) THAT is when we have worse long term inflammatory (etc) effects. So this study makes sense in that light, it’s as if we are finally able to complete the nervous system cycle by fighting back.

              I geek out over this kind of research and info too. Between my nursing background, my own history or trauma, and a decade of meditation teaching…I really find this fascinating. 😁

        • I can see the bind your are in Artemis, but it makes my blood boil that we risk the fruit of our endeavours by simply telling the truth. I wish calling an asshole out was not weaponized against us by attaching labels to the object of the call-out ie it’s because she’s a woman, etc etc but we were able to simply call out bad behavior and have that noted in a neutral context.

          Angry woman, I feel sick for you, that your bravery in telling your story and facing your abuse was turned against you by your cowardly ex, looking for a convenient cover-all for his bad behaviour. Refuse to take that on at all, soundly reject all notion that that has even an iota to do with it, surely anyone with a heart would have gone out of their way to add any further injury to vulnerable wounds from your past.

  • Cheaters suck. And there’s no level they won’t sink to, whether the claim to be feminists or holy rollers or honest politicians. Ironically, my most ardently feminist friends, now older, just cannot live without a man. Yours or mine included. They cry, go into a depression, can’t be alone, lean on me hard to ‘do’ things til they get a man and then they are to busy for more than a text or phone chat. I hate admitting it, but there’s a lot of women that are simply assholes. Honestly, the real feminist is just a gal living her best life at home, job, raising her fam and living a clean and decent life. Let’s face it. Integrity is pretty much the bigger box title label above all our other labels.

  • I can’t stand when someone acts like the other involved with a married man is not at fault as well. My mother told me before if my husband was really with his elementary buddy’s wife’s half sister it’s his fault. WRONG!!! It is also the little tramps fault because she knew he was married to me. I seen messages in his messenger from this other one he went to elementary school with telling him she thinks about him a lot and she’d walk through fire for him. I really believe he’s with one of them. I just don’t know which one but I know both knows I’m married. The one that had been messaging him had messaged him telling him “I see you are a newly wed. You always told me I was going to be your wife.” She even posted little bride and groom people from the smileys option. It was sickening reading it. There’s was another one she had sent to him demanding to see him and one he sent to her saying “green light is on. Come come I want to see you.” Another one she asked him if he isn’t talking to her now. Instead of him giving her an explanation it should have been I’M MARRIED AND I DON’T BELIEVE MY WIFE WOULD LIKE OR APPROVE but no!!!!!!!! Bastard!!!!! I could knock all 3 of them down. He went back and forth from telling me he slept with his elementary buddy’s wife’s half sister a few times that’s 20 years younger than him. He even had the nerve to tell me she’s very wise for her age and she’s a woman. I know exactly how you feel: I just wish I could find someone new already or at least have friends and stop longing for him

  • I stopped calling myself a feminist a while back, mainly because I realized how predatory many women can be.
    Note…I’m not bashing my own gender, because both males AND females can be evil.
    But I came to realize that although I (speaking only for myself here) want to uplift other women, there are plenty who wouldn’t do the same for me in return.
    So no more “feminist” talk like when I was a young idealistic girl.

    I think what we as women need to realize is that there are some bad apples in the bunch, and that not all women have a sense of morals/decency/”sisterhood” or whatever.
    I’ve been burned by other women too many times. Not just in the OW sense, but in so many other ways.
    Does this mean I hate other women and don’t support them? Not at all!

    But OP…maybe what this painful experience taught you is that not everyone in this life will have your back.
    You sound like a great person whose life was thrown into chaos first by a cheating partner, then by the reality that some women are simply rotten human beings.
    Sharing the same womanly parts doesn’t mean they know how to have empathy or kindness for a fellow female.
    They aren’t cut from the same cloth. I know this was from 2020, but I wanted to tell you that you weren’t wrong for the ideas you had about feminism.
    It’s just that you are such a good person, you couldn’t fathom hurting somebody else in the way she hurt you.

    If nothing else, you learned from it. Also, the coworker…I also suspect that my husband had (might still be having) an affair with one (maybe more) of his coworkers.
    The main coworker is one that I never suspected for a long time because she seemed like this timid little person, a devout Catholic, single mom, etc.
    Now I believe she’s wanted my husband for years…especially after he married me.
    Some women are not into single men, they want what somebody else has, and they compete with women like us because they can’t find a man of their own (most of the time).

    And even if they already have a great guy, they still want what isn’t theirs.
    I could talk more about the mentality of OW but I’ll just say that despite the pain this caused you…you came out with clean hands.
    Sometimes we also see that things aren’t right, but the cheaters gaslight us.
    I wish you healing and peace. Take Care.

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