Several folks sent me the archived Dear Prudence article that ran last week, “Help! I Only Date Married Men. And I Like It.” Which is a peculiar lede. This is a request for validation, not advice. It’s like writing in “Help! I Drown Kittens. And I Enjoy It.” Yes, kitten drowning is generally frowned upon, but gosh darn it, I enjoy executing small cuddly animals in burlap sacks and I don’t care who knows!
Prudence gave the OW a rather lame beating with a wet noodle.
I suggest you examine why you so easily have slipped into the role of other woman… Decide not to exchange those glances, or stop at just one drink, and see how it feels to create a different kind of life
Don’t you love how you can just “slip into the role” of Other Woman? Like changing outfits! I’m feeling morally challenged today. I think I’ll wear my hand-knit “fuck universal sisterhood” sweater.
The UBT could do better.
I have always tried to be a kind person.
Husband fucking notwithstanding.
However, I have lived my adult life in a way many people would disapprove of.
The problem here is the disapproval. Not my behavior.
During the last 11 years I have been a mistress of five married men.
During the last 11 years, my cellphone nom de plume has been “Bob.”
One had a long string of previous affairs.
Shockingly, I was not special.
One was a friend for whom I had much tenderness and who told me he would rather have had me.
Except for the stubborn persistence of his wife.
One was a three-year relationship that caused deep feelings and deep distress.
There was also the stubborn persistence of a wife. Minus the tenderness.
I do not regret these or the other adventures.
You have to weigh the genital herpes against the free dinners at Ruth Chris’s Steak House.
I have not been the initiator of the affairs; the men have pursued me.
Yes, that never happens to other women.
Surely the rest of womankind don’t screw married men because these men never come on to them. Just me! I’m special that way.
Apart from one, I would not have wanted to live with these men.
You should see the way they eat steaks. Napkin bibs. Ketchup. (shudder)
I do not know any of the five wives, and I am discreet.
Abusing others is fine, so long as it’s discreet.
When people discuss adultery, the cheater and the other woman are often spoken of harshly as deceivers and egoists.
People should stop discussing this immediately and learn discretion.
I have never felt like either, and have never felt guilty.
I don’t feel like an egoist or a deceiver or guilty. Ergo I’m not.
Is it possible the rest of the world has a limited emotional imagination and cannot see that such affairs are meetings between two people who don’t want to hurt innocent partners, but who choose to explore their intimacy and chemistry in secret?
I have no conscience or guilty feelings, but I suspect the rest of the world has a limited emotional imagination.
Or have I somehow become morally crippled since I can so easily do something most people would chastise me for?
I am a bold explorer of intimacy! The kind of closeness that is never introduced to anyone and can only call on Wednesdays after 7 p.m. Maybe.
Am I morally crippled or am I BRAZENLY awesome?
I say awesome.
If you see “Bob” calling. Pick up, okay?
“Hey, as long as the deceived partner doesn’t know the cancer came from innocent secret HPV, the cancer isn’t won’t hurt her. Right?!?”
I’m going to bypass “morally crippled (especially because she used the word “crippled”, which proves the point just a bit more”) and careen straight down the very steep hill to the highly applicable term “extreme human dysfunction”. She clearly needs a humanity transplant.
And also a shred of self worth.
(And also a stint in the hospital getting treated for cervical cancer, apparently, since she can’t understand anything until it literally enters her vagina.)
It baffles me how OW think they are special, or that it is the eiive’sve’s fault, or that somehow their actions are justified. They don’t think that will happen to them? Or that their looks/youth would last forever? Married men are easy prey, OW don’t have to do the laundry, change diapers or go to PTO meetings, they are only there for the steakhouse dinners and petal covered hotel rooms… But you can’t party forever, it never last. At least I have my home and my babies, what do you have OW? Bathroom texts and a tennis bracelet? You soulless shallow person, you can have him, you truly deserve each other.
Karma will eventually repay.
Married men aren’t easy prey, no more than married women. It’s a character issue, not a gender issue.
I don’t subscribe to the Predatory Other Person Made Me Cheat world view. That’s a RIC trope.
People have agency. The OW can’t make anyone cheat no more than a chump can keep someone faithful. We don’t have superpowers.
THIS. Thank you CL
I was hit on at least a handful of times during my marriage. I refused because I have morals and values.
My ex was not “lured” by a seductress… he is a crappy human. OW is crap as well, but I only made a contract and pledged loyalty to my husband (and him to me). He’s the ultimate garbage.
Yep, I remember my fw said to me on Dday “I was the first one to make the move” like that made the whore innocent. (who knows what was true) didn’t matter.
Never occurred to the ass wipe that I had turned down my share of advances. Or is it did, I assume he thought it was because of his awesomeness that I did. Um no, it was because of awesome parents who instilled character in me.
I really wish I hadn’t been so stunned on Dday, mostly I just stood there and stared at him. He just whipped out one cliché after the other, next comment contradicting the last. It was astounding it its stupidity. Unfortunately I was so stunned, I couldn’t deal.
You are not alone in your stunned state. I was and still am often speechless after the ridiculous statements and justifications. I wish I were more quick-witted and quick-tongued, but alas, that is just not who I am. I am a woman of character who will not be bullied or shamed by his terrible behavior. I am still learning the words that seem most correct to me when people ask why we broke up, but I don’t hide. So far, I have said “He had an affair”, “Unbeknown to me there were three people in our marriage.”, and “He chose to break our marriage vows.” None have seemed quite right for me yet. I would love new suggestions.
The one I just heard, but haven’t used yet… “He chose to walk away from our family.”
Regardless, it is no longer your job to carry the burden of his image management.
I always say I didn’t liked his gf as much as he did.
“Irreconcilable differences and her name is Diana.”
I didn’t hide a damn thing. I am not the cheater, no reason for me to feel shame.
Me neither, I told *everyone *.
Funnily enough, almost the first words out of ex fuckwit’s mouth, in an aggrieved one, “I suppose you’ve told everyone!”
You betcha, slimeball.
Love that. Or it could be “Irreconcilable differences” and it’s called being a cheater
Cheers to that!! I also am not carrying around his bullshit and lies! I never fucked up in our relationship, I never cheated. Its all on him! So why should I help him with image impression management?? No way Jose!!
Therefore I tell the truth. And when I mean tell the truth, I tell the world. One year later… I still tell everyone. The mechanic, the postman, the grocery lady, the border patrol, a random Dr. … Fuck him. He is a total fuckwad. And fuckwad can have twattwaffle. I don’t want to be involved.
In my case, I really didn’t need to answer those questions as the whole town knew about it. It was a scandal of sorts. He was a well known police officer, and he was the mayors right hand man. She was the dog catcher and his direct report. There was unethical behavior written all over the place by the both of them. I am sure many knew before Dday, but kept quiet. At some point someone dropped a dime and all hell broke loose. He got busted from Captain, put back out on the street; and spend the rest of his career basically the laughing stock of the other police officers. So, yeah Karma of sorts; but didn’t help my heart break much at the time.
So in my world it was all out there for everyone to see.
The saying I have used a few times in conversation is “my prince charming turned into a frog and found a lily pad he liked better”. I heard that one at a DoD womens conference in the 80s by a stand up comedian.
The one I like best is “he followed his dick to greener pastures” but I don’t usually talk like that in public.
I didn’t have CN in my time, so I just sucked it up and did the best I could.
I like this one:
“He’s a liar and a manipulator. Wish I had found out sooner.”
Sadly, there is a statement in the divorce settlement that says I can’t make derogatory comments about him. However, it doesn’t define what those might be. I doubt it is enforceable as long as I stick to facts.
I just say, “he chose 20 year old Prostitutes over having a family.” (he’s 50).
His secret life is not my secret. That is what he did straight up.
I said those words to our closet friends, his mother and my family.
I refuse to let him say “we just drifted apart”. Its such shit.
And I then told him about who I said that to. You might think I’m a bitch but there you have it.
It should not be upon the victim to cover for the abuser.
Even after all these years in the rare cases if someone ask about how my first marriage ended. I just tell them flat up, he was a serial adulterer. Because when he walked out the door that is exactly what he told me. I never loved you and I “dated” for the last ten years. Now if he was just lying to cover for schmoopie and make her seem like less of a whore, that’s on him, but I use his words. Only I use adultery instead of “dating” because I am a believer (he claims to be too) and that is how it is defined by my book of life.
You’re not the only one. I was stunned too when FW blurted out stupid justifications for his affair. Many of them can be found in the “stupid shit cheaters say” in the section of this blog. I was even more stunned when I stumbled on that part of the blog lol
Oh, I rolled laughing over that article.
Though the site Betrayed Wives has another slant than CN, they do have a “stupid shit cheater say section” Hilarious.
Susie Lee–I remember that feeling too–being so shocked on D-Day, I couldn’t speak or move. I think that I never personally experienced the full meaning of the word “shocked” til that day. I felt like, to have been fooled so completely, I must have somehow gone through life up to this point with no ability to understand people or see through even the flimsiest deception.
He did not tell me himself, instead I found out online by accident. He wasn’t home. After the first ten minutes immobilized by shock, I pushed myself to call a friend who I knew would believe me and not see me as lessened because of what he did. I felt so disoriented, and used, and foolish. It felt like I was in some one else’s body. When I tried to tell her what I had found out, even knowing what a supportive friend she was, it was still SO hard to get the words out. I’m glad I had hours before he got home, to take it in and fact-check with my friend’s help, and just get my breath. She found a lot more evidence online, and I printed it all out and put it in a folder. I was still so angry and numb, even by the time he got home, that I just coolly told him I had some interesting news to share after dinner. I listened to him chat politely, and bided my time. Then after dinner, I told him a little at a time, and each time he trickle-truthed and denied, I pulled out another sheet of paper from the folder and calmly fact-checked him again and again. It was fun to see him so rattled, but only in a numb sort of way. And after a few more hours, when I tried to fall sleep, the physical and mental reaction to all those months of gas-lighting set in. I felt like I could never trust myself anymore–that my perceptions and intellect and emotions were all suspect, because I had not been able to see through such a huge deception. I felt like a failure, all the more so because I had been so committed to the relationship and had loved him so completely.
I believe now that he was simply a very practiced, skilled, creative liar, heartless and good at compartmentalizing, who had been using his intellect all those years to perfect that game. If I had chosen to live like he did, after a while I might have gotten very expert at lying too. I grew up with an abusive father, and was often pressured to lie for survival, to the point where I could tell a lie easily and be believed as a teenager. But I promised myself that when I was finally old enough to leave home, I would develop whatever muscle it took to tell the truth, and choose to live in a way that would make honesty possible, with people who would encourage me to be honest. People who habitually cheat and lie can never be loved for themselves, because they are never truly seen–the person their partner loves, never existed, so the person they are, remains unloved. Lies create a web of secret solitude around the liar, even if he seems to be surrounded by adoring affair partners or admiring friends and colleagues. That curse will be following him for a long time yet– “the truth is not in him”.
Sounds a lot like me. I know how rought it was for you. I think sometimes that numbness/shock is good, but it is a weird feeling. My shock lasted several weeks. I mean on the one hand I could go to work, do my job, (as best I could) take care of my self etc. But, at the end of the day, I would come home and collapse into just laying on the bed for a few hours. Then I would get up shower and change, eat what I had to to live; go to bed, get up and do it all over again. I had to make an appointment with my doctor, and I went on short term Prosac. It helped me to focus again.
Luckily I had a great father, who likely was my saving grace through the mess.
He called me daily with pep talks. Gently cautioned me about taking him back. He was scared to death I would take him back at some point. And I did give him a second chance, but it only lasted a week as I could tell he was still using me. That was pretty painful too, but it was the 2by4 upside my head that I needed.
Yes, but I’m talking about how OW only date married men because, according to them, it easy, high payout and no work. Soulless shells. I’ve heard this from women overhearing conversations at the gym and OW share such gems of wisdom. No, married men are not victims here, the only ones with the short end of the stick is us chumps.
I would tweak this to say that married people are the “sought-after” prey. The “easy” part depends on the character of the married person.
They’re getting a payoff (secondary gain) from being in illicit relationships as opposed to legitimate ones.
You pay for hurting people with your self-esteem, whether you believe it or not, whether your victims are in the know or not.
“You pay for hurting people with your self-esteem, whether you believe it or not, whether your victims are in the know or not.”
VH, I hope this is true, but sometimes I wonder if they feel absolutely fabulous. They pulled off an illicit affair. They fell in luv (or found their “sole mates,” as your ex would say). Maybe they skip off into the sunset. I firmly believe my ex is proud of himself for landing this “catch”–a much younger, attractive woman. To have her on his arm is the ultimate accessory. He’s convinced that other docs wanted her but she chose HIM! It must make him feel virile and good about himself, which of course makes me sick.
My not-at-meh self certainly hopes he and the OW (both of whom cheated on their spouses for years) feel like shit. I just don’t know.
If anyone’s self-esteem took a hit, it’s mine!
Key words are “whether they believe or not.”
True self esteem actually enjoyed is not the same thing as arrogance, entitlement, or even what your own opinion of yourself.
It’s independent of opinion and evidenced by actions.
Agree. Arrogance and entitlement are mere substitutes for healthy self esteem.
The difference between egotism and self esteem is vast indeed.
Key words are “whether they believe or not.”
True self esteem actually enjoyed is not the same thing as arrogance, entitlement, or even what your own opinion of yourself is.
People lie to themselves all the time. But stealing a car will never feel the same as buying a car honestly, and the thief will never get to feel the way the person of integrity does, no matter what they tell themselves.
Agree, Chump Lady!
Cheating requires joint principals. One or both principals must be in a committed relationship with a chump in the dark for the game to work.
Chump walking away = game over/winning move.
Yes “married men aren’t prey”, but they’d sure like us to think so! I just struggle that he choose to carry on an affair with such a shitty person (they all are)! I just thought that anyone with two functions brain cells wouldn’t have fucked this woman and fucked up his entire life over her, but alas he did. She’s not special, in fact she’s the furthest thing from special. She’s been married several times (shocker)! Is a control freak, and has the personality of a door stop. The only thing he did have was the ability to feed his ego with tons of thank you, you’re welcome, you deserve, you’re great,, blah blah to which he relished and fed her back. Bunch of narcs! They can now sit around and bash everyone together, making sure that everyone pales in comparison. They both really suck. I just had no idea what an idiot my Stbx is!
Your story is much like mine. I was in horror that he could blow up our life for the dull, unattractive, slut. (many years ago) She had even been married twice that I know of, might be three times. Figuring out that he was an idiot was painful for me to admit. But he was, and is.
I only know of how they are doing because we share a son, it isn’t good.
Realizing how utterly stupid they are is hurtful. I really didn’t worry much about her initially bc she seemed so dreadful. Little did I know my husband was a slut himself! I thought he was the type of person that would have protected his family from infidelity. Boy was I fooled!
That is the ultimate karma, they’re stuck together! I’ve offered to pack his stuff.
Same here, even when I started to realize what was up, about three months prior to Dday; I didn’t suspect her.
I mean first of all she was just not that appealing, physically or personality wise. She was kind of a rough woman, and second he wouldn’t have brought her around if she was the one. HA.
And yes the biggest fear I had when it all went down was that somehow he wouldn’t marry her. I wanted him to marry her.
He did, and maybe they are happy, I can’t know that; but I know their life has been a series of one disastrous decision after the other. Mostly his, because he is in control. You don’t stay married to him if he isn’t in control.
That is in part why I was discarded, I was gaining too much independence. I was starting to question him, even before he started up with the final whore. Well she wasn’t the final whore, but the final whore on my watch. The rest of them occurred on her watch.
He is old now and in bad health, so I imagine she finally has her faithful husband.
Exactly, they have to be in control. Even without the infidelity it wouldn’t have worked out long term for that reason alone…. it seems your marriage was on the same trajectory.
In the end we know what sort of prize these ow have. And on the flip side these ow… are not prizes either. I can only imagine what my stbx will be like in 20 years!! My poor children.
So many commenters here refer to the OWs as unattractive physically. That’s not my situation.
Although morally corrupt, my ex’s AP is apparently really nice, relatively smart, and attractive. Everyone loved her at work! She’s also 12 years younger than he (10 years younger than I). She, too, was married when they started the affair.
I’m not puzzled as to why my ex unzipped his pants for this physically attractive, perky, kibble feeder. I’m disgusted and angry and shocked because I actually thought we had a good marriage and didn’t think he was the “type” to have an affair, but that he chose her isn’t puzzling in that way.
I have often wondered if that would have been easier, likely not. The real issue is I was married to a cheater, and he put his selfish wants above our marriage.
But, as you say I thought he loved me, he didn’t. At least not as much as he loved himself.
His schmoopie was not ugly in the face. But, she was not the slim vibrant sexy person that I would imagine a cheater going for, before I realized I was married to a cheater. She was also not significantly younger or smart, I know that just from a few conversations, but also from her past. She had dropped out of HS, I assume got a GED which is good, then she failed a paralegal certificate she was going for. That is when she got a job working as a dog catcher. Now some of his previous whores may have been good looking, I don’t know. He did say he cheated on me for ten years. So I imagine there was a variety. I still don’t know if he did cheat before her, or if he just said that to hurt me (which is what he said later). So I assume he did, since he was obviously morally capable of it.
She also had a nasty temper too, he told me that himself. That kind of pleased me. I hope she used it on him through out the years. Maybe she could get in a few licks for me, as I don’t have a quick temper.
Actual text from the OW
Self-respect? Not a great deal right now..
Respect for you who wants to rubbish me? I get it..but ‘woman to woman’, I’m a fundamentally decent person and I hurt too.
I was wrong to fall for a ‘married’ man, however much he told me he wasn’t sure and hadn’t been since the ‘crash’ that he wanted to be. I will never try and excuse that. I was not trying to heap hurt on hurt telling you he loved me. All I wanted was for you BOTH to recognise the depth of what it was in order to deal with it effectively….however that happens. Writing it off as a ‘sex fest’ will not do any good.
I am not a vindictive person. I have also been going, am going through my own hell. On top of which the person I spoke to verbally or in text 20 times a day has, I am quite sure, thrown me under the bus. I have mountains of evidence which would do the same to him and destroy you further.
I will not be that person.
She is and was that person. Her text is the evidence.
People don’t “fall”. It doesn’t just happen. It’s the result of decisions and actions. We are all responsible for our actions and results/consequences thereof.
It’s not possible to fall in love if you spend no time with and attention on someone.
“I’m a fundamentally decent person ”
No she isn’t. She is a fundamentally immoral person, a liar and a deceiver. She may be hurting, but she brought it on herself. You didn’t have a choice. She did.
And she’s “not that kind of person” to throw you and FW under the bus. But she’ll sure make sure you know she can if she wants to.
…What, no! of course that’s not a threat… I’m a decent person!
If someone has to tell you like 3 times in three paragraphs.. Yeah probably not a good person.
“Self-respect? Not a great deal right now..”
I bloody hope not! I always wonder how these harlots can even look at themselves in the mirror? People who pursue others in committed relationships have no respect for others and also often lack self-respect.
“Respect for you who wants to rubbish me? I get it..but ‘woman to woman’, I’m a fundamentally decent person and I hurt too.”
How dare she even address you as though she were on the same level? That makes me livid! No, she is not a fundamentally decent person. Fundamentally decent people do not insert themselves into other people’s relationships. When they find out that somebody else is married/engaged/etc. they stop things. No excuses. Sometimes one may not be able to stop feelings, but giving yourself permission to act upon them is another step. And that’s not okay.
“I was wrong to fall for a ‘married’ man, however much he told me he wasn’t sure and hadn’t been since the ‘crash’ that he wanted to be. I will never try and excuse that.”
Oh, please! She fell? She stumbled and fell on his dick with her vagina? She gave herself permission to start a relationship with a married man. And she is making every excuse under the sun for that. The stars aligned, it was destiny, I could not help myself, blablabla. Utter rubbish.
“I was not trying to heap hurt on hurt telling you he loved me. All I wanted was for you BOTH to recognise the depth of what it was in order to deal with it effectively….however that happens. Writing it off as a ‘sex fest’ will not do any good.”
Awww, it was true love, eh? Amazing how quickly he threw her, by her own admission, under the bus. Well, true love surely isn’t what it used to be anymore.
“I am not a vindictive person.”
But I am when harmed! Lucky for you, trollop, that you did not cross my path. I am very nice and friendly person who would never hurt somebody of her own volition, but get on my bad, and you’ll get a lesson in hell has no wrath like a woman scorned.
“I have also been going, am going through my own hell. On top of which the person I spoke to verbally or in text 20 times a day has, I am quite sure, thrown me under the bus.”
Does she want pity? She deserves her own hell. She made it, and I hope it’s hot and miserable. I have no pity and no mercy for cheaters.
“I have mountains of evidence which would do the same to him and destroy you further.”
Not very subtle threats here! What a piece of shit — both of them!
“I will not be that person.”
She already is that person.
Wow, I cannot believe the audacity of this one! I would absolutely forgive you if you outed both her and your cheater to everybody in the country. I would cheer you from the sidelines and help you spread the word.
Absolutely, these women are disgusting!????
I wish you would have a conversation with Dr. Simon about people like her. On the surface she does not sound like she fits the term sociopath and yet I can’t imagine any other description. There are five women she does not care about, feels no guilt about, and just gets on with her life. Isn’t that sociopathic? Her life just seems so empty. Only thing I can figure is that secretly she enjoys what she’s doing to other women. Isn’t that a sociopath?
THIS???????????????????????????????? From my armchair she seems to be a sociopath. No conscience, extremely selfish and entitled. Chilling. These types walk amongst us.
Let’s not forget most of the men they mess with are also “NARCISSISTS” they are fully to blame as well! They lie, cheat and steal to get what they want!
A small yet significant addition to augment your point: There are five wives hurt by this OW’s affairs. And how many daughters in those five families? Each of them is hurt, as well.
Relationship dynamics with harmful consequences—both immediate and long-term—are being modeled for these daughters, such as absence, dismissal, derision, forced subservience, the hiding of secrets, emotional and psychological abuse from lying, blame-shifting, gaslighting.
Until reading CL’s plain-spoken description of untangling the skein of a cheater being like putting one’s head in a blender, I tried to understand how my STBXW has affairs with married men, which hurt several women (wives, daughters, sisters, grandmothers), while she proudly wears clothes emblazoned with Feminist slogans, especially to our daughter’s activities.
Yeah, my STBX is a rather public “feminist” cheater too. She’s a professor of gender studies, adored by her students (kibbles). We are both women, and STBX has emotionally abused me, her wife, for most of our 22-year marriage – she has had two “hot” affairs that I know of, and lots of “affair lite” behavior in between, like kissing her best friend from graduate school and other inappropriately intense relationships with people she was attracted to. As you rightly say, STBX has also destroyed our daughters’ family: my older daughter has OCD and anxiety and has been in a state of almost constant mental health crisis since we separated in March 2020.
My extended family saw STBX’s hypocrisy right away: my cousin’s husband said, “imagine what STBX would say if a man did the same thing STBX has done?” I tried to gently have the hypocrisy conversation once or twice during therapy sessions with STBX, but – surprise, surprise! – STBX just thought I was trying to shame and punish her, and was unable to talk about it with me, at least. Eventually, I gave up: there’s no point trying to have a nuanced conversation with an emotional adolescent. I shouldn’t have tried even having those conversations, because they kept me mired in toxic stress for too long – now I’ve crossed over into type 2 diabetes.
Maybe CL could remind us in a future column of the real physical health benefits of LACGAL?
Doesn’t it make you wonder who these women befriend? Who are the people that support them in their choices? It’s always a mystery to me how someone can publicly celebrate the breakdown of another’s relationship. That’s what cheating is. It’s the break up and breakdown of a relationship. Why celebrate it? CL wrote about the NYT column of a man who left his wife, and a woman who left her husband, and had their picture splashed all over the place with their young children there. It was a stinky thing to do. It stunk and the NYT heard about it. There were many people in the background of that photograph just thrilled to death at this wedding. Makes you want to gag.
Even before I got chumped I could not picture myself being friends with a woman who (knowingly) sleeps with married men. Our values are just too different.
What exactly is so fun about having an affair? The sneaking around, having to keep your stories straight, the protectiveness of the phone? What are they, children getting a thrill out of sneaking ax extra cookie out of the jar? Nitwit persuaded me to try an open marriage for a few months before he suddenly decided I wasn’t dancing hard enough and asked for a divorce. Even with his consent I couldn’t bring myself to sleep with another guy. Because honor and integrity. Also because years of gaslighting take a toll on the ol’ libido. My life is so much better now.
No amount of therapy is going to fix this sociopathic OW however.
“Even before I got chumped I could not picture myself being friends with a woman who (knowingly) sleeps with married men. Our values are just too different.”
There was a married woman at my company who was the only one in the office my age. She was always trying to buddy up to me, but I couldn’t figure out why. She was outgoing and ambitious, and I sat quietly in my cube and did my work, generally well-respected but not very important in social/political terms. She gave me the creeps a little bit.
She was nice to me but became downright abusive to my pretty, young, outgoing cube neighbor. I even told this girl, I’m not going to make waves unless you want me to, but I hear everything she says to you and it’s not ok. This woman clearly hadn’t heard about the sisterhood…
She left to “make a career change” and I came to find out she was asked to quietly leave because she was sleeping with the married president of the company. I think she was trying to befriend me to look like she was good-girl-approved. I’m glad on SO many levels that I kept my distance.
Who befriends a woman who behaves like this ? Weak, follower types. And I would add, I don’t see women like this having any close female friends.
When I still attended CoDA meetings (my “women only/lesbian and trans friendly” one), I had to bite my tongue one evening. I’m very conscious of “listening without comment to others shares because it is true for them” Couldn’t stand it when other people smirked, rolled their eyes contemptuously or exchanged knowing glances. I digress.
A woman shared that her husband dumped her after she “opened up their marriage”. Guessing she forget to send him the memo. She was in ???? and some women rushed to her after the meeting to comfort her. I wanted to burst out laughing. What did the dumb broad expect her husband to do ?!
I don’t see anything wrong with shaming or punishing her. It’s what she deserves.
Thank you for recognizing that there are other people who hurt as a result of cheating and that the collateral damage isn’t just a marriage (if the spouse ever finds out). Children of cheaters suffer just as much as spouses of cheaters. I see cheating as a betrayal of the whole family, not just the spouse. Problem is, children (if they are minors) can’t just walk away from (divorce) their cheating parent, so they continue to suffer silently because they are supposed to just suck it up because they are supposed to “love” their fuckwit parent.
For the sake of this post I will assume the husband as cheater and wife as chump.
For both male and female children of cheaters, the modeled behavior of the parental unit does damage. My ex-husband’s father was a multi-time cheater, and despite saying he didn’t want to end up like his father, that’s exactly what my ex-husband did. And then for the mother who stays, the children see (or sense deeply, even if they don’t “know” or “have proof”) behavior that is self-devaluing, self-harmful, accepting of emotional abuse (at least). Of course each situation has its own troubles so there may be physical abuse as well, which makes the ability or timing of leaving more difficult.
But the point is, you are correct. Being a child of emotional abuse and affairs creates a multitude of psychological, psychic, emotional, mental, and physical problems for children. Accepting abusive partners, self-harm, addictions, obsessive behaviors, acting out, whatever.
It is a systemic problem for the family, not just a harmless little fun.
“Children of cheaters suffer just as much as spouses of cheaters………..It is a systemic problem for the family, not just a harmless little fun.”
This damage applies to children on both sides. In my case, OW enlisted her adult daughter (late 20’s?) as an accomplice in the betrayal. They used the daughter’s home as a location to tryst. And the daughter knew about it. I was told “she and her daughter are more like best friends than mother daughter.” Which isn’t surprising. OW obviously has poor boundaries around what is and isn’t appropriate in “romantic” relationships. So, seems likely she wouldn’t recognize boundaries around appropriate parent child relationships either. Involving the daughter was one of the most disturbing and despicable aspects of the betrayal. I worried about this young woman. Still do. Your child should NOT be your best friend, your intimate confidant. Did OW train a mini me with her shitty life lessons (multiple marriages, financial shenanigans, screwing married men, etc., etc.)? Her poor parental modeling could damage her daughter’s ability to form healthy relationships. Which may reverberate through future generations of their family. Bottom line – she was willing to put self-gratification above maintaining the respect and emotional wellbeing of her own child. Classic narcissistic behavior.
The OW gave us some handmedowns. One of them was a “The Future is Female” shirt. I called her a whore when I found out which apparently is very anti-feminist.
I see no reason why “whore” can’t be a gender-neutral epithet. If the shoe fits…
I have no proof but it wouldn’t surprise me if Nitwit accepted money from his APs of both sexes. What does that make him, if not a whore? That is how I think of him now: the Dollar Whore.
In Australia we briefly had a female feminist prime minister, who still makes a good career out of selling her particular brand of feminism on the lecture circuit.
She was a serial offender – loved scoring other women’s husbands, and built a successful career in the trade union movement through her relationships with these men.
Was installed as prime minister through male party vote manipulation, and was removed from office by the same process.
And yet is touted in some parts of the media – and disgracefully by Australia’s most senior feminists – as an outstanding feminist role model.
In Nora Ephron‘s book ‘Heartburn,’ the other woman in the book was based on a serial husband poacher. I had to google it out of curiosity. I can’t remember, but I think she was a politician as well. She seemed to have zero shame in braking up several families.
Didn’t Louis XV say something to the effect of “It is legal because I wish it to be so”?
I think that’s Louis XIV…but perfect quote! Exactly!
“L’etat, c’est moi” – I am the state/nation. Perfect narcissism. Both Nixon and Trump have come very close to asserting the same sentiment.
For me it is like reading a letter from Ted Bundy from prison: “I know no one approves of me torturing and killing innocent women. But all of you are wrong. I am awesome.”
She is so disfunctional that she not only can’t see it, she doesn’t understand why everyone else is not changing their ways to be more awesome like her. I have to imagine that the rest of her world (siblings, parents, friends, family of any sort) is pretty horrendous. I’ll bet she’s pretty broadly despised in her life.
It must be so easy to believe much of the world suffers from limited emotional imagination when you’re not the innocent partner being hurt.
Elegant, and true.
Reminds me of my ex-fuckwit-wife who said I was naive and that “everybody has affairs.” And that “the world is ruthless.”
I told her, “No, it only seems that way because YOU have affairs with everybody.” And “Odd, I must have missed the marital vow that included ‘love, honor and ruthlessness’.”
It’s so calming to be able to live a settled life knowing that drama-seeking, sociopathic narc is in the rear view.
There was also this attitude that she and some of her fuckwit girlfriends had, that they were somehow real life versions of the characters from “Sex and the City”. Like it was all so fun (and funny!): Oh that Samantha! She’s sleeping with another married man. She’s just an incorrigible scamp! (giggle, giggle)
I just happened to see that they’re bringing this series back. It’s supposedly going to show these characters in their 50s. No doubt it will continue to be a glamorization of that sociopathic lifestyle, rather than the reality of the wretched life of a bunch of over-the-hill skanks.
Funny that you mention SITC… I remember seeing the first movie with Mr. Sparkles (about a year before my first d-day)… and we actually talked about how Miranda and Steve worked through his infidelity with a marriage counselor and she suffered the judgment of her girlfriends for “letting herself go” while doing all the adulting in the marriage… and it was “just one time”… like that was a fair response… never was Steve held accountable for his shitty character. I doubt I’ll see this new movie unless it stops minimizing women.
GDD– I hope it amuses you to know there’s an entire branch of the current women’s rights movement that files that series in the “PickMe” or “Pickmeisha” hall of shame– an artifact of a misguided older generation of traitorous “libfems” groveling for male approval and calling it groovy and empowered. Basically Samantha fans are viewed as tired and toxic.
It cracks me up. I’m of the gen that came of age when that series came out but wasn’t a fan. It warms my heart to see younger upstart women cringing over the same “strippers-as-feminist-icons” and “adultery-bondage-and-painful-grooming-as-sexual-liberation” bs that I cringed at back in the day.
“Tired and toxic” is a perfect description of my ex wife and her cohorts (co-whores?) now that they’re firmly into middle age and showing the natural effects of living the happy hour life.
Her secret life fueled her self-described “need for excitement that most people don’t understand”. You see, she was a special kind of entitled fuckwit who couldn’t be held back by society’s “Puritan” rules. Now she’s alone and continuously throwing herself at married men who use her and move on. The aging narcissist is a pitiful, miserable creature.
Sounds like my STBX husband. He told me he has a higher “need for excitement” and tying up and beating women during sex. Who can blame a guy? The dick wants what the dick wants. He blamed me for years that we didn’t have enough sex, but it was actually me wanting more. What he really meant was that I wasn’t hot sex on tap 24/7 like the hookers he was paying for. Gee, having a child and a business and doing all the adulting didn’t leave time for me to set up my porn studio every night. Sorry husband! Now of course he left me for a younger woman and is unemployed, won’t pay child support and won’t let me buy the house. They really are charming creatures aren’t they?
I am old as dirt now (71), but if you mean by “painful-grooming” getting your short hairs ripped out by the roots. I still cringe to think about that. I am not talking about self care for a swimsuit, I mean turning the lady bits into a pre pubescent sight to behold.
If my ex had ever expected me to do that, I would have said, you first. Then laughed at him. My current husband is of the era where he says “we just felt lucky if they would let us sit by them” they never even thought about them doing that.
Bare skin rubbing against bare skin equals pain. And skin problems/infections according to my ob/gym. Lots of revenue for the cosmetic dermatologists though. Painful laser hair removal from one’s genital area. Ouch
I have never watched that series. It always struck me as shallow and utterly uninteresting. I never understood the appeal.
My favorite main character was the fifth one-Manhattan
Some women just go for “unavailable” men. I once worked with a lovely, educated & talented woman who dated a married man then went on to date an openly gay man & then a prisoner. I switched jobs & lost touch with her. I was very young then & knew better but wasn’t confident in saying something to her.
“Some women just go for “unavailable” men.”
She sounds very damaged and troubled. However, on the other end of the spectrum, you have the spouse poacher. Yes, I believe that partner predators are real. I also believe that many of them are women. I compare them to a well-fed house cat that looks for prey even though she is not hungry. She does it for the power trip, the thrill of chasing/hunting, and seeing who will bite. I had a colleague once who was only interested in brief and intense affairs with married men. If they actually divorced their wives, she would drop them like a hot potato. She did not want a relationship; she wanted quick and dirty sex, attention, and the power of control. I never saw her appeal. She looked cheap and was not very smart. She also didn’t realise that at some point in the future she would no longer be young and she’d get turned down more often than not. I, too, have lost touch with this woman as she was fired from her job for absolutely disgraceful behaviour.
I view most spouse poachers as women who are looking for a meal ticket. I just don’t think men who go after married women are generally looking to actually marry their catch. Yes there are of course exceptions. I have seen a lot of this, not only in the case of my ex, but of many police officers and military men. (my ex was not her first attempt at pouching, but he was the one that she “won”. She was married at least a couple times before, so maybe she poaced one or more of them. I have no idea. I do know she “dated” several married me who worked for the PD before she landed her supervisor (my ex).
When I think of spouse poacher that is what I think of, their motives are different than the women who just like to do the conquest of the unavailable.
Some OW won’t ever admit they are looking for a mark, but that’s exactly what they want. My ex husband was on Army orders overseas for a year when the affair occurred, and his OW is an Asian woman from over there (non-US citizen). I tried gently warning him that he was being taken advantage of, when I was trying to get my feet under me after D-Day. I couldn’t imagine he would be that stupid! Apparently she was a good person: she was “crying” because she was so upset at what they were doing to me at one point. Ummmm…..how did my ex husband not see those giant crocodile tears as the stage performance they were? He saw what he wanted to see. He wanted to be that special man that women sob over.
My ex husband is a trash human, and so is his OWife. I am certain that if it hadn’t been him, it would have been some other idiot with money/citizenship in the right country/good credit that she would have targeted. Trash humans, both of them. Ugh.
I so understand what you’re saying! My stbx’s ow used him to climb the corporate ladder and increase her life station, it worked! Yet he was too stupid to see he was getting played! I’ve read narcs can be easily manipulated. This is had him totally pegged and flattered him, fed his ego all knowing what she was doing! And she was married too!
You would think these men would know better than to be played for a meal ticket, job, or citizenship!!! They are absolute fools!
My ex did the same thing. And in his case she had a history known by everyone, of doing it. Her error in her past attempts was that the men in questions weren’t her boss. She went to work as my ex fw’s employee (direct report) and she hit the brass ring.
He has paid the price, and he didn’t even get a good looking younger woman out of the deal, but dang how can they be so stupid.
My situation is long in the past, so I am not emotional about it anymore, but I remember thinking, “wow really? you fucked your direct report?” This was right after a lot of PDs and the military were getting raked across the media coals for conduct unbecoming, so you would think just of couple of his brain cells would have rubbed together… but no.
Lol, I still wish I had been a fly on the wall when the mayor found out and called him in his office. (the city council chair went to the mayor and wanted him fired). Just a couple weeks before someone dropped a dime, he had gone before the city counsel and petitioned for a raise for her, and they granted it. I am certain they did not know, or they would not have granted it. He put a lot of folks jobs in jeopardy.
I am betting the only reason he didn’t get fired, instead of just being demoted, is that he had dirt on some folks.
I read in another one of yours that the ow was the “dog catcher”?! The irony!!!! She certainly caught herself one, didn’t she?! As her direct report and in local government that seems very risky. The ego kibbles just erase logical thought!
Mine works in an industry where (prior to Covid) travel was normal. They got away with so much. I also don’t really have contact with his co-workers and I’m sure they know all.
I’m in the process of separating, he’s playing victim “mr nice guy” aka “I never cheated!”. When I finally get him out, we’llsee if they’re still together. I do know her husband left her a few years ago of this affair (when I should have left as well)!
I think they both got dogs. It was of course humiliating that he did it, but he did it.
I got out of the mix fairly quickly. There are a few things I would have done differently if I had known then what I know now. But, it was before the days of CN or even the internet; so I pretty much was alone in my confusion. I just knew in fairly short time that this was a dangerous situation for me and I needed to exit right. I convinced him to file (I didn’t want to) and he did. I got a temp maintenance plan for the duration of our legal separation, which lasted a year. Allowed me to get some money saved and get the hell out of dodge.
I had mentioned before he was acting like a crazed teenager, and treating me like I was his parent harshing his mellow. I knew he was gone, and not coming back. At least not the person I knew, or thought I knew.
My situation was similar to yours; the jackwad’s work involved about 40-50% travel for a time, and he also took full advantage. She was 30 years his junior and was one of several young women he was apparently “mentoring.” They planned their last trip just weeks before I found ironclad proof of their activity, after months of gaslighting and contempt from him. They went so far as to room together (corner king suite) and made plans to arrive several days before the conference even started, all paid for by his workplace. Pretty nervy, they traveled as part of a group who tended to go to many of the same conferences together, but I’m guessing some of the group must have known. I can imagine she sees herself much like the morally bankrupt fleabag who wrote to Prudence.
Did they end up together?
Men that approached me when I was married wanted the thrill of illicit sex, with no consequences or commitments. I believe that the “urge to merge” so quickly is what is wrong with most dating. If two people will take the time to know each other first, and build a friendship, they might build a true commitment and find companionship on several levels. Or, they might find they are incompatible. Either way, married dalliances do not seek this, or have time for it. Married cheaters want a quick sexual fix, an immediate way to feel good, and bonus points for pulling over one on the old spouse. That will teach Martha you wanted mashed potatoes, not rice!
If you realize you only seek an unavailable partner, that calls for some hard work to fix your own broken personality. If you LIKE it, you probably do not want a commitment, and there will probably be few who will ever find your outlook socially acceptable. Actions have consequences, whether you seek them or not.
People who claim, “I just wanted a bit of fun,” are on a par with those who claim “I didn’t mean it, I was just trying to be funny!” I have found they are not funny, or fun to be with.
I almost wish that were the case with my ex. He and the OW were married coworkers and presumably did establish a friendship first. Then they chose to take it to the next level. Now they are living together. My ex says they fell in love.
I almost wish it’d been a meaningless dalliance. Instead, I’m left with the gut-wrenching feeling that they did truly fall in love.
Is it all still rainbows and ponies? I have no idea. Probably not, of course. But maybe they’ve settled into a pleasant life. Like this OW, these two cheaters are probably not capable of remorse, so they can go on their merry ways.
I am in a similar situation. FW and OW knew each other for five years through work before the affair began. FW seems to think this makes it better than just some dude looking for sex. Telling me that at least you two fell in love first is 1000% more hurtful.
I think OW is happy to be rid of her ex. I don’t think my STBX is happy with his life choices though.
Limbo, they become unhinged….it’s truly shocking….a child appears before your eyes. My ExH actually thought I’d have compassion for him (ugh – I did… a true chump until anger made it’s way through the wall of pain). He felt sorry for himself because he was so madly in love and had to make all these ‘hard’ decisions. He seemed very proud of himself for making these ‘Hard’ lol…(laughing now..wasn’t funny then) decisions. Looking back, he turned himself into a mini superhero – going after this new wuv at all costs. . . They were both so brave! They even cried together over how they didn’t mean to hurt anybody.
“a child appears before your eyes. ”
Mine acted acted a hormone crazed teenager. Having just a few years before that experienced a hormone crazed teen, I knew it when I saw it.
I was clearly a big pain in the ass that they had to dispose of to have their tru wuv fantasy. Fuckwit even tried to tell me about their “first time”. What kind of sadistic bastard does that?
a bastard with 0 empathy
Zip – same. Are they still together and happy?
Wreck – I don’t know as we didn’t have children together -although he was a loving and valued stepfather to my kids; his kids were a bit older, but they were over frequently. All the kids bonded. We constantly said that we were a blessed and very successful blended family of sorts.
The former step siblings still see each other sometimes (for walks / covid) but his name is NEVER mentioned. The friends were my friends… He didn’t have any friends besides work people. My former mother-in-law who was very much in our lives/ A real charmer like him/ dropped me like a hot potato when he discarded me & I was of no further use to her.
He was the true golden boy of the family… He could do no harm… And sometimes I wonder if men who were brought up like knights in shining armour are more likely to cheat? I’ve never heard anybody get so many compliments from their family members.
Anyway, because I know how in love, wuv? he was with me,
(A real romantic who just loves to be in love) I have complete faith that his latest
soulmate won’t stand the test of time. They may stay together because of all that was sacrificed and all the scar tissue they caused.. (to justify the wreckage ) but I know in my gut that this union won’t live up to either of their expectations once the drug expires.
My prediction is that she dumps him eventually. She’s about 15 to 20 years younger – I wasn’t allowed to know her exact age!
Another thing I know for sure in my gut, and I wonder if other people think the same – once it all came out and reality set in after the initial weirder than life discard – I would bet anything that if he could’ve snapped his fingers and made all this go away he would have. When he had a glimpse of what he had done, the pain he caused, the idiot he made it himself and the futility of it all – I know he would have backpedalled if possible. But this was a coworker working under his big title – and regardless he had betrayed me and us. So then the story of their true wuv got bigger and more dramatic to justify this mess.
I think there’s a scientific principle behind people continuing even more ferociously down the same path when all evidence says get off.
(to justify the wreckage )
Zip, I honestly think that is why my ex stayed with schmoopie, he made such an ass of himself in front of everyone. He had to “prove” it was the real deal. He didn’t fool anyone but himself, and honestly I think he knew that; but that pride thing.
Anyhow, he went on to cheat on her, and treat her like shit, just like he did me. He is real sick now and will likely leave her deeply in debt for a big azz RV that he bought. The big fancy ones that most average folks can’t afford. But, he was going to get what he wanted regardless of her. When my son asked him what he was going to do about the debt (he is upside down) he said “what do I care I will be dead”
Not my circus, but I still don’t wish that treatment on anyone. But, she knew what she was getting when she poached him. In that regard she was luckier than I was. I was an innocent stupid 18 year old when I got him.
“I think there’s a scientific principle behind people continuing even more ferociously down the same path when all evidence says get off.”
I don’t know what the principle is, but I see it as “hell bent on self destruction” It was how I saw my ex. I tried talking to him reasoning with him, even asked him to take a few months not seeing anyone to clear his head. Nope.
Wreck, what ended up of your FW?
Let me clarify, I am talking about two single people who meet and are interested in becoming friends, with a possibility of a relationship. If either of the two are married, it is possible to have a work friend. I had several male work friends during my working days, but I did not see them outside of work, and it was not a dating situation. If either of them are married, they don’t just magically fall in love. There is illicit behavior there, vow breaking behavior, which leads to an active affair.
I can’t quantify the pain level of a knowing “date only married men” OW, or a work friend, or a neighbor. or a prostitute. All are illicit and all are painful, and all break marriage vows. None of it is fun or funny.
I am just old fashioned, I suppose, in my belief that people should not rush to “hook-up” when they don’t really know each other at all. I think the relationship is based on errant hormones and is like a house built on shifting sand. It is doomed from the beginning because it is based on lies and deception, and neither party has invested the time needed to provide a strong HONEST basis for any relationship. I know many acquaintances, but I have few friends. Currently no lovers. I am not closed to the possibility, but I have strong standards, and can be quite content alone.
“If either of them are married, they don’t just magically fall in love. There is illicit behavior there, vow breaking behavior, which leads to an active affair.”
That’s right. No one “falls in love” over discussing company goals and management expectations.
“That’s right. No one “falls in love” over discussing company goals and management expectations.”
Right, there may be an attraction, but the person with character and morals, realized it and adjusts.
I have done it myself once or twice. That is when you draw back a bit and go woah, not going there.
My stbx has done both, cheap sex and full on 5 year affair, plus some other long term affairs. (I’ve slowly put the puzzle together). He’s likely just saving face with the “sole mate” talk. They actually have to have a soul to have such.
Take heart Spinach35. Mine let me know on Dday that he was in love and finally happy. He had found the right person. He gushed about it to me. He was acting kind of crazy like that scene in the movie Elf when Buddy interrupted the meeting going on and on about being in love. I could tell by the look of evil delight on his face that he was really enjoying gutting me. This once in a lifetime true love lasted about 3 months after her divorce was finalized – 10 months after ours. Within 2 months he had a new love of his life and was married in about a year- she is a nurse with a purse and he was broke and unemployed at the time. It is all about optics and in the case of my ex who would be his next mark/grift. My guess is that your ex’s relationship is as deep and solid as a baby pool full of Jello.
Chumperella, I still remember those bizarre looks….for my cheater it was like a cross between detached arrogance and an extraterrestrial child.
Holy crap – I think we were married to the same FW. After just a few months of ex FW cheating, things weren’t adding up and I suddenly put the pieces together. I still didn’t believe it, but I confronted him. He was thrilled! He ran out of the room to message OW who told him it was “time to leave” and he came back all giddy! His eyes turned black and bizarre and he had a weird energy bouncing off him. He excitedly said “you’re right! I love her and I don’t love you! I’m leaving you!” And he plugged in his phone because he had run it into the ground texting her. I threatened to smash the phone with a hammer if he didn’t open it and let me read their texts… he handed it to me and let me read while he got his stuff together. He was gone within the hour. And I had to go pick up my 9 year old from his play date with a neighbor kid. I fell apart… then quickly pulled myself together and had him served with divorce under adultery (cause in my state) within 2 weeks. Buh-bye
I really wish I had lived in a state that allowed adultery as a cause. I think all states should.
It is fraud/abuse against another human being. Major fraud/abuse.
It’s a double edged sword. My attorneys didn’t want me to use adultery as cause. But then I’d have to wait a year of “separation” (legal separation isn’t even recognized in my state). And my ex was mocking me that there was nothing I could do… he wouldn’t even give me any financial support and I was a stay at home mom. So I went after him quickly and got what I needed for me and my son until I could get the divorce finalized, But it set the entire divorce — zero cooperation… all animosity… and very very expensive. A narcissist hates to be unmasked— and I did it as publicly as I could and with plenty of proof. Is that my fault? Not really. He had the affair… he abandoned us and the home and moved right in with her and her sons….. then he mocked me and tried to keep finances from me. But the system makes it out that if you use “adultery” as cause that you are petty and that it’s old fashioned. There’s sadly a lot of support out there for the “poor cheaters”….
Same – and it makes me want to vomit. They both left their spouses. The level of deceit that goes into an affair when you are both married coworkers … And then both people planning to leave their spouses ….. he was 100% with her and her kids the minute he dropped us.
All the emotional private bonding they do before sex in order to have this happen ( secret phone calls, secret texting, secret lunches) makes me think so little of them both.
They know exactly what they are doing… I don’t buy for a second that these types of cheaters didn’t mean for this to happen. It’s called foreplay and they get off on it.
They were hoping to be together by his just suddenly dumping me with the excuse that he wasn’t happy ( no indication of this beforehand even though I kept asking when I saw distance ). As if a sudden case of the sadz justifies dumping your spouse anyhow.
I no longer feel the same brick in my stomach over the fact that they are together. After the buzz wears off, they will be left with the person who is ok with blowing up families, wounding children and fucking other people’s spouses while they too are married. It will become very clear that they themselves are anything but special and that their cheating partner wasn’t worth it after all.
No one on earth could be wonderful enough to justify all the suffering and losses incurred by this union.
“After the buzz wears off, they will be left with the person who is ok with blowing up families, wounding children and fucking other people’s spouses while they too are married.”
They will never escape who they are, and as you say the buzz will fade, and they will know exactly who they are. All the cooing and fab FB pics in the world won’t stop them from knowing.
Some of us will know of the “karma” others won’t as much, but they are their own karma.
Thanks for this, Zip!
I especially like your last sentence.
Yep. As long as no one knows, whatever I do is cool and doesn’t hurt anybody. It only hurts people when they know. That old saying “what they don’t know won’t hurt them” is the Secret 11th Commandment.
11. 1-10 Are Cool Unless Other People Find Out.
I woke up in the middle of the night with the feeling that I am on the right path. That what happened is not some horrible mistake. I married someone whom I trusted. I did not want to be married to someone untrustworthy, someone who is cool with abusing me. I made the Kool Aid I drank. I wrote the story about him that I loved. I suspected him of cheating three years in. I had no proof. He admitted “being attracted” to a female “study partner” in a junior college class. He told me they were study partners because there were no other guys in the class. Then one day I got a call (landline days) from A GUY IN THE CLASS WHO WANTED TO BORROW HIS NOTES. There it was. The Big Sign that he was lying. But because it was not catching him en flagrante with her, it was easy to deny. It took 24 more years, a bottle of men’s bath get from L’Occitane I did not buy for him, a strange woman’s name (“X” Bday) on the calendar of his phone, and an email in his email trash to the same name inviting her on his business trip to break my denial.
My recovery now involves going back for some ongoing education in Life Driver’s Ed for my blind spots.
As you can see by our letter writer, these people indulge in some seriously disordered thinking and have very deep issues.
Escape and recovery from a cheater is to make sure I work on MY thinking and MY issues so I don’t end up repeating this. I am so very deeply grateful I have my issues and am not as spectacularly fucked up as this OW.
“because I didn’t catch him IN FLAGRANTE DELICTO”
Oh man VH, there is some excellent excavating of the self captured in that paragraph. I’m sorry you had to go through that but I applaud your bravery to take that hard look back and then turn your focus on the right things for the future. “Escape and recovery from a cheater is to make sure I work on MY thinking and MY issues so I don’t end up repeating this.” This is profound and something that was so hard for me to learn.
The ow in my case was a prostitute—who preferred the term “sugar baby”. She rationalized her relationships with married men as providing a kindness to misunderstood and unattended men. When I found out my husband had cheated, and he informed her that I knew, she cried “I don’t want to think I caused this. That’s not the person I am”. Um yes, you are. They both suck. My Stbx is the one who lied to me, stole assets and time away from our family. The OW did encourage him—asking for gifts, money, which he happily provided. It is a character flaw in both. If it wouldn’t have been her, he would have found another willing participant. Unfortunately mine is now taking parenting advice from the ow—who is closer in age to our children than to him.
Ahhhh, yes, the sugar baby. Providing emotional healing and sexual support to misunderstood men everywhere*.
* for a nominal fee; side effects may include STDs, loss of family, divorce, division of marital assets, exposure to the public, embarrassment, identity theft, wiped-out bank account, and abuse.
You could also add loss of credibility, employment, and friends.
Anybody else wake up this morning and think, “Thank God for my cheater free life!”. I know I did… and then I read about this charmer… and I think again “Thank God for my cheater free life!”
There will always be cheaters in the world, but they are no longer in my world. People like this woman, devoid of character and reason (I could go on), are not in my orb any longer. All the men and women of Adult Friend Finder… not my monkeys anymore… all the gang-bangers out by the airport… nope, not my problem… the daily mindfuck and gaslighting and blameshifting like the sparkly turd above… sorry, keep on moving along.
Because the thing of it with these people is they do not care one iota who they hurt along the way in the journey of THEIR pursuit of happiness through cheating and abusing others. They don’t. It is that simple… and why No Contact is so important. After the first d-day with Mr. Sparkles, I never walked away from a conversation with him again without feeling confused and disregarded… now that I’m no contact (grey rock when it comes to our son and only by email or text) I don’t have that problem.
These horrible people exist and don’t think ever that your love will change them. As we can see from this sparkly turd, she loves herself more than anyone or anything else. That’s how they roll.
OMG I clicked on the link about the restaurants that cheaters take their cheatees to, and I laughed. “The Cheesecake Factory”?!? At least twenty miles away? ???? It’s like some cliche of some bad romance novel. “And then, as he gazed into my eyes at the airport Cheesecake Factory, I knew that FW had class AND good taste, and I was his chosen cheese”cake” (I hope he doesn’t overeat again because his lactose intolerance makes him sad when he can’t digest his cheesecake and it’s just uncomfortable because how come “I” can’t fart in front of him? But he can in front of me! Of course I would never do that in front of him because that’s what classy people do, hold their farts…)” Seriously, the bullets we dodged getting these schmucks out of our lives is almost worth the pain of discovering they were just ridiculous all along.
Applebee’s was one of the swanky joints he treated her to.
Right next to the flea-bitten Quality Inn where he put her up the week of his birthday just before DDay.
We stayed at the Ritz in Paris for two weeks when our daughter was 14 months old. Did nothing but walk around Paris the whole time. It was a bucket list thing of mine I was fortunate to be able to do. I thought of it as a dream come true until after DDay, when you review your whole life with the cheater and wonder if anything was real and who was in hiding in your own life.
My new bucket list item is to do that trip over with my daughter someday. For now I will focus on ME being real on that trip and disregard any deceptive participation of his.
“When people discuss adultery, the cheater and the other woman are often spoken of harshly as deceivers and egoists. I have never felt like either, and have never felt guilty.” and “I have always tried to be a kind person.” She is the kind of a person who ONLY dates married men and likes it, which says something about her ego right there–she’s only satisfied when she’s “dating” another woman’s spouse, she’s only satisfied when a man breaks his marriage vows to have an affair with HER–that’s all about ego, ego ego and the opposite of kindness. She’s not being kind to those she’s chumping, to the married man she’s abetting in his deceit, or to any kids who, along with their mothers, are being robbed of their father’s time , attention and any other resources that are going to her.
She has never “felt” like a deceiver? What does that mean, and why does that matter? She says she doesn’t know the five wives, and she’s “discreet.” Does discreet means she doesn’t tell people in her life the names of her partners, or, more likely, reveal that she’s dating married men? She’s been deceiving the family, friends, colleagues and others who SHOULD know her best by hiding or lying about the fact that for at least 11 years she has willfully, deliberately and consistently been a complicit partner to men who are breaking their vows–an action that is a crime in some societies, and reason for plenty of people to drop her as a friend or associate. She’s hiding her lack of morals and integrity because she doesn’t want to be seen for what she is or face the consequences. She wants kibbles from her married partners, kibbles from her friends and family (by keeping from them the kind of person she really is) and apparently wants kibbles by getting her letter to Prudence published.
What makes a married man more appealing than a single man? I suspect she’s afraid she doesn’t have what it takes for someone to want a relationship that’s more than “adventures” to “explore their intimacy and chemistry in secret.” She points out one affair lasted more than three years, so duration is important to her, yet she’s averaging a new cheater every two years. After eleven years in her game, she’s losing her youth and possibly her looks. She’s looking for more than justification. She wants respect, reassurance and validation. The kinds of things expected in a marriage.
“What makes a married man more appealing than a single man? I suspect she’s afraid she doesn’t have what it takes for someone to want a relationship that’s more than “adventures” to “explore their intimacy and chemistry in secret.” ”
I think that is the case in most; they just can’t compete for available men, so they go after married men who have weak characters.
That was clearly obvious in my fw’s whore. He was not her first married man rodeo, and she was clearly after a meal ticket. As wrong as she was, as time goes by I don’t hate her, as I know she was living at the poverty level, due to her own bad choices; but she needed a meal ticket, and she finally landed one.
She has paid a huge price for that, as has he (because of their own continued bad choices); but it was after all their own choices. They didn’t aske for my input.
I would imagine that the OW’s get off on the kibbles of being adored and desired. The wife doesn’t do it for him like I can mentality. They get to stay in stage 1 ( a fake stage 1) for as long as the affair lasts. All about them.
For sure. Don’t get me wrong, I would have loved to be treated as well as she was. He didn’t even do that for me when we were dating, because he was in the Army and he was broke. We got married and I guess I missed the flowers and gifts window. By the time he and schmoopie fell in wuv, I was helping pay for the romance. Yay me. Bet she missed me when that money dried up.
She needs a really good therapist! People with normal attachment and empathy don’t only date married men. It’s some sort of self sabotage that she’s twisted to be a positive. I’d be willing to bet she was hurt badly in childhood or another relationship.
Many of us were badly hurt as a child or in another relationship… yet we don’t move through life actively willing to sell other people down the river for the high of being wanted. These people come in different varieties but it’s all about filling up their empty shell at the expense of others.
Exactly. That falls into the “hurt people hurt people” bull shit.
I had plenty of hurts as a child, I didn’t go out fucking around on my husband because of it.
Every relationship that endures comes to the point where the hormones wear off and the real work of the relationship begins. For normal, healthy, grown-up partners, that’s understood and expected: the healthiest even come to relish that moment b/c that’s when the putting-up-a-good-front stops and the process of learning and growing and going deeper starts: both partners get the chance to be different (and often better!) versions of themselves together than they could be apart; they get to bring to life a third, beautiful being–the marriage or long-term partnership–that isn’t either of them but that is both of them. However, for immature and/or disordered partners, that turning point is when the ego-panic sets in: “I can’t keep up the act! They won’t be attracted to me anymore! I’ll become nothing and nobody.” The letter writer has set up her love life to keep the limerent high going: she moves from married man to married man to get (a) the high of new attraction boosted by (b) the high of deception and transgression. When one or both of those wears off and she starts to come down, she moves to another married man for another hit of limerence. As for the slightly longer three-year relationship: well, my husband made it 20 years with me by shooting up with flirtations (or perhaps full-blown affairs–I’ll never know and don’t care to know) as well as new jobs, cars, trips, motorcycles, bicycles, whiskies, etc. When his mental health finally broke down, he blamed me and our life for it and found a new dealer, new high. The pattern here is the same no matter how long the high takes to dissipate. The essential difference is between mature, healthy people and immature, emotionally disabled or disordered ones.
The constant bigger and better toys should have been a red flag for me. Mostly boats and campers.
There is right and wrong here folks. Disordered people will lie to you because if you accept what they say as true then they can too. No no. Not believing this line of crap.
I don’t suppose it’s occurred to her that scumbag married men pursue her because she’s a cheap scumbag whore and water finds its own level.
When I was in the military it was well known that the men whp wanted to get laid mostly pursued the desperate, low self esteem having women who weren’t necessarily attractive. In fact they often weren’t so men weren’t intimidated by them.
A lot of these women imagined they were special because of all the attention, but really the guys just recognized an easy target.
“I don’t suppose it’s occurred to her that scumbag married men pursue her because she’s a cheap scumbag whore and water finds its own level.”
You said it much better than I did, but yes I am convinced this is usually the case. I get that rich men can buy top quality, but lets face it most of us weren’t married to rich men. Most of us married them when they were young and didn’t have a lot, so we loved them and supported them as we should in a marriage. When they built some monetary value with us helping them, then…
From today’s NY Times article How Our Sex Habits May Affect Our HPV and Cancer Risk:
“People who reported that their partners had extramarital affairs, and those who even suspected that their partners had had affairs, also had an increased risk of HPV-associated throat cancer.”
Nice. Cheaters and their APs are putting their partners (non-consensually) at great risk of a really nasty cancer.
Years ago a new “friend” of my wife (we weren’t yet married as it was not yet legal) tried to get her to leave me and be with her. My wife and I were in couples therapy for other issues and as this developed, my wife brought it up in therapy. Our therapist asked her “why are you in couples therapy?” My wife answered that it was because our relationship was the most important thing to her. The therapist asked “does your friend know this?” Wife said yes, and therapist responded “then why does she want you to leave?” At that point my wife realized that this “friend” didn’t really care about her at all. Interestingly this woman had a history of relationships with married or partnered people and actually had a victim mentality about it – like poor her, she just couldn’t find someone to put her first! So sad! (I must add that my wife is not the person who cheated on me – that was a previous relationship)
Yep. As I mentioned below in response to ChumpQueen, my STBX’s most recent affair partner (we are all women) was the saddest of sad sausages about her unluckiness in love. So of course that gave her the right to screw me over and become complicit in the destruction of my family. I don’t want to overstate her role, though: STBX always was a fuckwit, and in some ways I’m grateful that D-Day #2 gave me the impetus to finally walk away from the subtle emotional abuse I’d been experiencing for years.
At least your wife seems to have some good boundaries, Marianne, even if they need reinforcing! My STBX is really crappy with boundaries. A few weeks after D-Day, when she was being more honest than she’s been before or since, STBX told me that she didn’t really understand how boundaries work, and that she didn’t know how to love herself. When someone is that disordered, and they meet up with a similarly disordered person, then voila! A fuckwit match made in Hell.
All best to you.
Ya I’m sure my cheater thought he was rescuing married OW from her bad marriage. He trampled over me and his family on the way to getting his cape.
When I was in my twenties, I was approached by married men quite a few times. I always turned them down because I wanted a “real” relationship. I wanted a man who wanted only me – all the time, for the rest of his life. I didn’t want to settle for anything less, and I certainly didn’t want to deal with the baggage a married man would come with.
I had no idea of the devastation and trauma these men were potentially bringing to their families by chasing after me. I simply didn’t want to get tangled up in a relationship where other women (and children) were involved.
So much for that! The OW my FW left me for was married to a man who left his previous wife and children for her. So, she basically broke up 3 families (her own included) for a couple of FWs. Someone earlier in this thread mentioned their interest in what Dr. Simon has to say about people like this. I’m interested in his thoughts, as well. Are there single men who are only interested in married women? I’ve never heard of that. Is this just a sexist cliché about certain types of women? For the record, I’m a pretty diehard feminist and, until this wreck of a human, came into my life, I openly chastised anyone who disparaged other women as wiley homewreckers on the hunt for married men.
I honestly believed in the sisterhood. The OW (who my FW is now with) broke my heart by betraying the understanding amongst women (feminists, anyhow) that we’ve got each other’s backs. This world is difficult enough for women to navigate without tearing each other down for some FW “prize.”
I wrote a little more above about my “feminist” STBX – we are both women. Her most recent affair partner, also a woman (who believed she is psychic ????), was a very sad sausage about how she could not find someone to love her. AP verbally wrung her hands about the harm she was causing me – but that didn’t stop her from passive-aggressively insinuating that STBX should leave me for her. (If anything, AP’s hand-wringing just persuaded STBX that AP was, deep down, a good person. Barf.) I know these things because STBX saved a dump of texts from the last 7 weeks of their long-distance affair.
Unfortunately, identifying as a woman and a feminist doesn’t make someone emotionally mature or stable. The sisterhood doesn’t trump fuckedupedness for a lot of women, and fuckwits come in all stripes.
LezChump, I guess I’m just an idealist. I like to think there is a soft landing place among women because of all the shit we have to deal with *as* women. But the fuckwit gene doesn’t discriminate, and that bums me out – for both of us.
I find the “feminist” spin on the whole cheater thing to be interesting, as with the #believeallwomen. Learning about numerous affairs with women co-workers who are on the “women’s board of equality” or something like that at the company just blows my mind. Working on “elevating women in the business community” while fucking someone else’s husband just blows my mind. Or working your way up the corporate ladder by fucking someone else’s husband and then being a “champion for all women” …. the cognitive dissonance of these ho-workers is just too much.
On the flip side, I worked with a married man (well, plenty of them, obviously) who I found out had cheated on his wife. When I started working for him, his wife essentially “marked her territory” in many ways and I couldn’t understand at first why she treated me like that. She never seemed to like me and always kept me at arm’s length and seemed wary of me. Of course *I* knew that I wouldn’t go after someone else’s husband (and father), but she didn’t know that. This boss was very handsome and charming and he and I got along great so I could see from the outside why she would be suspicious of me. I got tarred with the same brush (is that the saying) because of what some other ho-worker did in the past.
I’m sure there are plenty of men looking for a bit of fun without the hard work of a relationship and pursuing married women would give them that. All fun and games while the chump husband is footing the bills, mowing the lawn, and looking after the kids. The difference is there is still more stigma attached to female cheaters than male cheaters though chump blaming seems to target both sexes equally.
Also OM may not be as vocal about their preferences because historically OM got the stuffing knocked out of them by the wronged husband.
“The difference is there is still more stigma attached to female cheaters than male cheaters.”
That’s definitely one aspect of sexism I hadn’t thought about.
One of my narc brother’s narcy friends (Birds of a feather flock together) used to commute from Manhattan to Long Island to dip his wick in a married woman’s hole. My brother is as much of a gossip as a Parisian concierge. Friend also rolled up near the Lincoln Tunnel for blowjobs from the working girls. So unbeknownst to D’s husband, he was having sex with his wife whose luvah frequented hookers.????
The HPV daisy chain
I think some women are predatory. My therapist said that it has to do with “Daddy Issues” and the need to “win daddy back”. OW in my situation had a former husband that was also married without kids when she met him. She is now married to my XH. We had no children (at XH’s request). I think somewhere inside her, it proves that she is worth something if a husband leaves his wife for her. I have friends that work with XH and OW and said that “she has a way”.
I’m not trying to let my XH off the hook, he obviously, indicated he was receptive to whatever she was offering. He’s a cowardly, sociopathic, piece of shit. Every time I watch a video of Scott Peterson or Chris Watts I see my XH. The dutiful guy next-door. I do think that OW is broken. I mean, she fought for my husband like they had been married for the 17 years that we were. She filed an Injunction Against Harassment against me, had him do an Order of Protection 10 days later. Had her friend stalk us in a restaurant before he left me and then on FB to watch me fall apart. I haven’t seen him since he served me with divorce papers.
It’s been 7 years since this all went down. XH and OW have a toddler now (he’s 49). I hope that they can make it work for the sake of their child. Maybe she’ll stop looking for external validation (or perhaps the child will fulfill that need for her) and maybe he’ll actually stop acting the part of dutiful husband and be one. He started stalking my social media last year. I have my doubts.
When I hear “daddy’s girl” I hear emotional sexual abuse. Very unhealthy. Read Pia Mellody’s books.
I say morally crippled, Bob.
I think that some women only want to dare married men. Because they get a thrill out of it. They get the man to spend money on them. They do not have to deal with doing wifely things like laundry, cleaning the house etc. They are always on their best behavior and know how to stroke the mans ego.
When I asked my ex what he saw in my cousin(she was not an attractive women. She kind of looked like Frank from American Pickers). He said she was fun. She was happy all the time and never bitched. She always told him how handsome he was. She never was in a bad mood. She knew how to manipulate him. She used what he said about be to her benefit. She is now on to her next married.
I am not at all making excuses for my ex. He knew exactly what he was doing.
They look at their prey like they are the stars, the moon and the sun. The needy and shitty husbands get hooked.
‘two people who don’t want to hurt innocent partners, but who choose to explore their intimacy and chemistry in secret?’ So, these cheaters think that even if the affair is kept a secret that it doesn’t do any damage? Like if I’m working for a company, and I secretly work for its competitor on the side – it won’t do any damage to my company. Because I just want to explore my chemistry with the other company and I didn’t brag about it to anyone.
However, we are talking about human beings. Do people actually kid themselves into thinking that a person deceiving their spouse, robbing their family of time and resources, emotionally and sexually bonding with an OW or OM, is going to have no negative impact on the marriage, spouse and children.
Even if it’s never found out and horrible infections weren’t a bonus – your spouse treats you differently (with distance or passive contempt) the minute they start up an emotional affair / let alone sexual affair with someone else.
It’s covert abuse, we feel it, we suffer…..we just don’t know what’s going on. We are treated like we aren’t good enough when there’s an affair in the works – secret or not.
“However, we are talking about human beings. Do people actually kid themselves into thinking that a person deceiving their spouse, robbing their family of time and resources, emotionally and sexually bonding with an OW or OM, is going to have no negative impact on the marriage, spouse and children.”
I don’t think that the ow/m thinks this, as I think they don’t care. I do think that many times the cheater tells themselves this. They really think at first they have it under control. I think most of us (at least me) can in hindsight remember when the first inkling began. That was likely when it was first starting, and the cheater thought they had it compartmentalized. They don’t.
“We are treated like we aren’t good enough when there’s an affair in the works – secret or not.” Yep! So true!
I, too, wonder whether “people actually kid themselves into thinking that a person deceiving their spouse, robbing their family of time and resources, emotionally and sexually bonding with an OW or OM, is going to have no negative impact on the marriage, spouse and children.”
On some level, I think they do kid themselves. I mean, they would have to. Wouldn’t they? How could they betray and screw around with abandon if they knew they were actively hurting (unless they are sadistic). I think CL is right when she points out in her book that the truth is they weren’t thinking of us at all.
I also think they might realize there will be a negative impact on the spouse (they seem unable to consider consequences beyond that one person), but they either don’t care and/or think the spouse in some way deserves it. The spouse is also to blame.
Mine actually uttered these words, “You think you’re so innocent.”
The truth is that I AM so innocent. Am I perfect? Hell no. Do I need to acknowledge that I was very good at spackling? Yes! Do I need to explore what the hell happened to me that caused me to people please and put up with abusive behavior that affected not only me but also my kids? Yes. Am I to blame for his fucking affair? Hell to the no.
And yet, the sad-sack cheater, low-character, entitled, covert narcissist who was my husband feels like the victim who simply made only one mistake: not ducking when Cupid shot his arrow. And for this he’s being unjustly crucified by family and friends. He’s the one who has suffered negative impacts. He has little to no empathy so can’t appreciate the impact on the rest of us now nor could appreciate it when he was happily fucking around.
I guess like George S. says- they know it’s wrong – they just don’t care. I know OW’s think that because they are not the ones who made the vows, not their problem.
Zip, I like the phrase “passive contempt” that describes the cheater behavior well.
I remember to this day that passive contempt/smirky look on my fw’s face when I asked him why he was ignoring me and being so snippy. He blew it off as work stress, but I remember that look. I am convinced this was in the early stages of his adultery with the whore. Late summer, about 1.5 year before Dday.
He came home a few days later, and was in a jolly mood and I had on one of those terry cloth jumpers that were popular then, he pulled that thing off and had a blast. Oh he was riding high. Then the fall…
His actions redirected the course of your life. She is most likely just one of the many times he’s committed adultery. People of this character do not suddenly just start to disregard their marriage vows, it’s been happening all along. You just didn’t know it. She’s just the same woman with another name, they’re all unworthy of your time. Work to change our laws regarding adultery. In no other business action can you get away with profiteering, fraudulence, corruption, depravity, baseness, and degradation. Marriage is the most legally significant thing you will do, other than dying. Let’s keep that in mind, work to make the laws significant in dealing with adultery.
I bet she LOVES everything Esther Feral has ever written. Quotes her ad nauseum.
Yep the OW in my case had some kind of weird and totally unfounded superiority complex. She thought she was somehow more evolved and wild and free than us other plebs, unfettered by the pedestrian social mores that the rest of us are bound too. Yeah, that’s called being a psychopathic narcissist. The rules do not apply to meeeee
Notice how she talks about morality not in terms of harm, but only as a social construct.
This is a typical rationalization to avoid facing the harm they do.
The fuckwit thinks; “Only small minded people who rigidly adhere to traditional morals are bothered by adultery. I’m above all that.”
In answer to her question, just in case she ever reads here; yes, you are both a moral cripple and an emotional cripple. You cannot a actually experience the “deep feelings” you claim to have had for one of your fuckboys. All you ever have to sustain you is your cruel and vapid pursuit of pleasure at the expense of others. You are a barely human shell with a howling void inside you that needs to be quieted with constant drama of an adolescent variety. You are a whining, self-aggrandizing toddler in hooker heels. Hope that helps. Now fuck off and die.
Actual text from OW. Comments invited…….
Self-respect? Not a great deal right now..
Respect for you who wants to rubbish me? I get it..but ‘woman to woman’, I’m a fundamentally decent person and I hurt too.
I was wrong to fall for a ‘married’ man, however much he told me he wasn’t sure and hadn’t been since the ‘crash’ that he wanted to be. I will never try and excuse that. I was not trying to heap hurt on hurt telling you he loved me. All I wanted was for you BOTH to recognise the depth of what it was in order to deal with it effectively….however that happens. Writing it off as a ‘sex fest’ will not do any good.
I am not a vindictive person. I have also been going, am going through my own hell. On top of which the person I spoke to verbally or in text 20 times a day has, I am quite sure, thrown me under the bus. I have mountains of evidence which would do the same to him and destroy you further.
I will not be that person.
So she is a great person? Who is she trying to convince. Ridiculous. This should be translated by the universal BS translator.
She is abusing and harassing you also. The nerve!
Tracy, Do you fancy this one for the UBT? I could do with a giggle. I’m in the eye of the storm once more as ExH started 2021 by threatening to take me back to Court to unravel the settlement it took me 3 years to reach. Meanwhile OW is probably on to the next one or the tenth one by now #movingon
Ellie, she seems lovely.
You asked for comments. I’ll give it a try:
“….‘woman to woman’, I’m a fundamentally decent person and I hurt too.” She tore up her sisterhood card when she started to have an affair with another woman’s husband.
“I hurt too.” Here we go. “POOR ME!!! You hurt (maybe), but I REALLY hurt. Did I tell you he loves me?”
“I was not trying to heap hurt on hurt telling you he loved me. All I wanted was for you BOTH to recognise the depth of what it was in order to deal with it effectively….” Perhaps it’s the writing style that’s tripping me up here, but what does this even mean? Deal with what effectively? She makes no sense here. Oh, and she most definitely wanted to hurt you by telling you that he loved her. It’s opposites day!
“I am not a vindictive person,” but then she goes on to say that the has “mountains of evidence which would…destroy you further.” She’s threatening you.
This OW is NOT a decent person.
Ellie, can you block her?
Oh she’s long gone. But there were a few more exchanges between us before I threatened to share her filthy chat and porno photos with her kids. (Mine had hacked Daddy’s phone and seen it all by then.) They were the ones who told me. duurrrr. Stupid me. I thought he was faithful and that we had a good marriage. (as good as anyone else’s). Turns out she did me a favour by being so foul. I got to see him for what he is. A lying cheat. Someone who risked my health having sex with a woman who, by her own admission, had ‘been round the block a few times’. She’s big on Twitter, peddling her claptrap about all manner of things and being so ‘nice’. He’s a covert aggressive narcissist. Took me 30 years and an affair with ho to realise it. I’m a lawyer thank god and ready to kick his ass as he tries to wriggle his way out of our agreement. I kept the nude photos she sent him. Might share them with a wider audience one day. #bleepingfuriousrightnow.
Why do she-shmoops and she-cheaters in the throes of self defense and rationalization all sound like fucking Yoda?
The relative guilt of female affair partners–or general problems with the types of characters who become APs– became a bigger philosophical and political theme in my situation because it turned out I wasn’t the only person affected by a workplace affair. This will be long because I can barely make out the story myself.
One thing I learned from my introduction to cheaterville is that people who have sleazy adulterous workplace affairs never think about how their antics affect the work environment or leave coworkers burdened with dirty consciences. This can also bring up the theme of current women’s mobilzation, what women expect from other women and the confusion caused by the new “sex positive,” “anti-slut-shaming” normalization of sex work and adultery that’s wormed its way into the #MeToo movement and is, just like it did in the 70’s, starting to rip the movement apart.
The fact that this modern version of groovy sex positive rhetoric has suspicious ties to the sex industry and streaming porn services that draw more profits than all other media combined and which has every reason to fear #MeToo (demonstrated by credit card companies, under pressure from women’s groups and anti-sex trafficking orgs, dropping Pornhub for featuring real rape videos of real children) makes you wonder if the confusion being sowed is really accidental.
In any event– bad news for cheaters– there’s a growing branch of “radfem” feminists who, when the opportunity arises, go out of their way to track down and inform wives and girlfriends when their partners are having affairs or hitting up other women. This is ostensibly on the grounds of preventing male domestic abuse but also to to teach a lesson to the misguided traitors to women’s progress and solidarity– the pathetic, self-esteem-impaired, self-destructive yet nonetheless dangerous “Pickmeishas” or “PickMes” as they’re commonly called..
Anyway, the interesting thing in my case is that FW’s affair was exposed by a young feminist female colleague of the AP who had work-related gripes against the AP but zero power to do anything about it through proper channels. You could say that Ms. Deep Throat had suffered from the AP’s “internalized misogyny” and that blowing the whistle on adultery became a fallback form of justice when the whistleblower found she could do zip and squat about drunken office pervs and the female coworkers who enabled them.
I thought it was a little like the plot of “Promising Young Woman”- young person bent out of shape by gender-based injustice who finds an alternative way to get even. Sort of twisted and vigilante but in the end understandable. I’m not complaining because the gesture of spilling the beans saved my sanity and my kids’ college funds, but it was only partly motivated by abstract concerns for me and my kids.
When I first got the anonymous emails with grainy photos of FW and the AP together, all time-stamped on dates and times when FW was supposedly working late, I was blindsided and didn’t know what to make of the source. A female attorney friend said the emails were probably from the AP herself trying to expedite divorce since this is apparently a typical AP maneuver, so at first I didn’t respond directly to the emails. On the advice of my friend, I stuffed my shock, went on automatic pilot, moved funds, hired a PI and retained a divorce attorney within 24 hours, saying nothing to FW.
But then I got a battery of emails from the anonymous “Deep Throat” asking if I was okay. It seemed the whistleblower had fears they’d triggered mayhem (overdose? Family violence?) and begged me to respond. My gut told me the emails probably weren’t from the AP after all but I couldn’t figure out what would motivate anyone to get involved in a private mess like this. Through a series of emails and then phone calls, I started learning the back story. My mess wasn’t really so private after all.
This young guy– call him “Mr. Deep Throat”– who used a burner phone and a dummy email account and remained anonymous (“because people have been run down in parking lots for less”) was the boyfriend of the aforementioned female whistleblower, Ms. Deep Throat. He was working in the same firm as FW at the time and had snapped cell pics of FW and AP at the behest of his girlfriend who had had the shitty previous experience with the AP through an important industry association. Under pressure from his gf to report the affair to HR, Mr. Deep Throat had balked out of his concern that FW’s kids (my kids) would be the main ones to suffer if FW lost his job and got blacklisted.
In Mr. Deep Throat’s view, the affair was obviously consensual and the AP an enthusiastic participant, so not a case of harassment. The AP had reportedly had another previous office affair with another married older asshole with kids so there was a pattern. Furthermore, Mr. Deep Throat had not had any particular problem with my FW and had not been a direct report of either of the cheating married asshole colleagues. He hadn’t personally witnesssed or suffered from any related favoritism even if several coworkers had grumbled about this (and one had quit for this reason) during the AP’s previous affair. He didn’t feel he was in a position to complain and was also warned that HR would probably do nothing because the whole firm was a sleazy, drunken den of iniquity. But, again, even if FW was sanctioned, that left the problem of FW’s (my) kids. That’s when his girlfriend asked the challenging question of why, if he was so concerned about the children’s welfare, her boyfriend didn’t just tell the wife (me)… because STD’s, financial and emotional abuse, potential pregnancy resulting from the affair or the risk that the AP would turn out to be a lethal bunny boiler.
And that’s how I ended up with grainy cell phone pix in my inbox of my FW of 20 years sitting glumly drunk in a bar next to “Honey Boo Boo, the office doorknob” (her nickname by grumbling coworkers) and later trudging into the gate of Honey Boo Boo’s condo in a crappy part of town when FW was supposed to be pulling some work all-nighter for an important deadline.
If I was to try to sum up the whole bizarre shitstorm that led to D-Day, the real problem seemed to be political, a #MeToo era conundrum where many women in FW’s male dominated profession are too in thrall to or intimidated by male power to stand up for each other against rampant sexual harassment and sexual favoritism, leaving the women who don’t play along– and who professionally lose out amidst all the frantic female pick-me dancing– stewing in traumatized frustration and unable to defend themselves.
I gathered that the AP earned the particular ire of Ms. Deep Throat through a certain pattern of behavior that “contributed to a negative and unsafe work environment,” like blatant “flirking” (using sex and flirting at work to jockey for status and advantage) and helping to set an ugly standard for women’s comportment, “wakeboarding” (taking credit for others’ work, making others do her tasks because of political advantage gained by flirking), subtle scapegoating of younger and prettier women, misusing her position as professional mentor to weed out female competition, refusing to stand up for other women who were subjected to harassment, etc. All of it reportedly led to Ms. Deep Throat leaving her hard-won position with a professional association and even considering changing professions.
For someone starting out in a career that they spent years and years and hundreds of thousands of dollars to train for, that’s no small gripe, so when the AP’s neck was exposed from the office affair, Ms. Deep Throat struck back. I get it. It was FW’s bad luck that Ms. Deep Throat’s bf had subletted across the street from the AP for a few months in one of those dingy urban commuter neighborhoods with bars on every block to serve underpaid junior corporate employees who bunk there. Mr. Deep Throat had worked with both FW and the AP at one time or another so he knew FW was a married father of three when he repeatedly saw FW and AP out drinking together and furtively coming and going from the AP’s apartment complex at all hours. He told his girlfriend about it and that’s when she saw her chance to get square with the AP for the series of perceived abuses.
Ms. Deep Throat had never met or worked with FW. On principle she hated cheaters and older men with status who fuck around with underlings, but this wasn’t personal to FW. Mr. Deep Throat had never seen FW doing anything untoward and, if anything, had previously thought FW was just a quiet married guy with middling status who’d suddenly begun to smell like booze during work hours. If there was anything personal in their motives, Mr. And Ms. Deep Throat really had it out for the AP. FW getting burned in the process was incidental and my being warned and being able to protect myself and my kids was a moral validation of what these two whistleblowers did for their own reasons.
Considering the current militant “Sex Positive” vs. militant “Anti-Pickmeisha/anti-sex industry” rift in feminism, it’s up to interpretation whether A) these two were motivated by puritanical “slut-shaming” misogyny and old boy’s club tendencies to reduce the responsibility of men in these situations by heaping more on female APs; or B ), driven by the AP’s own pattern of misconduct. It’s also up to interpretation whether Honey Boo Boo was just a peculiarly noxious person who incidentally also happened to be an adulterer, or if her workplace conduct is typical of the “Pickmeisha” mentality of affair partner/side chicks who collectively form a sort of toxic political force that helps spin apologias and PR for the sex industry, sex trafficking, gender inequality, domestic abuse and the rapey monster porn industry.
I don’t know what kind of object lesson could be dredged out of this perspective for male chumps except that she-cheaters could be said to generally share a lot of traits with sex-pos “Pickmeishas.” Also the faked reports of domestic abuse fabricated by some she-cheaters is arguably very detrimental to genuine victims. But otherwise I’m just playing catch-up with all these political themes. My D-Day came with a lot of ballast.
That’s extraordinary. I wish there had been a person at my fuckwit’s work who informed on him. Everybody knew and apparently nobody gave a shit about me. It did create a an uncomfortable environment at work, and they were leaving to be alone together while on the clock, but nobody spoke up to management. It’s sickening how normalized this is.
OW was definitely a pick-me type. She got her self worth (what little there was) from male attention and approval and seems to have worked her way through multiple guys at work and elsewhere, often at the same time.
OHFFS — That’s a kidney punch. The thought of bystanders knowing and not warning just adds to the cruelty and humiliation of the whole experience, though it’s definitely an added impetus for divorce. You want to make a statement to all the idle bystanders– “See what happens, fuckwads? Boom, crash, outa here.”
I wondered if this whistleblower couple were a little spectrum-y at first. It seemed like such an odd thing to do. Then I talked with them and understood more or less. I was sexually harassed my entire career and there were *always* female flying monkeys/proxy abusers involved, making the situations even hairier. The betrayal from other women felt worse, too- kind of like the moment when Karen Allen aproaches Donald Sutherland at the end of the old Body Snatchers and he turns out to be a pod.
Plus what these two did turned out to be a “thing” these days. I hope it becomes more of a thing. I would definitely send a warning if I knew. I like to stay au courant lol.
In the end, I don’t really care what their motives were for informing you. But I am glad they did so AND they appeared to be worried for your sake.
Mostly, they were behaving as rational actors but there was still concern for you and your kids.
NSC– I left a lot of the drama and emotions out of the saga because the story is already so long and tangled. You’re totally right that concern and empathy were also driving motives.
We were all a bit dry at first while trying to figure out where everyone was coming from–whether I was one of those shoot-the-messenger denialists, or if these two were blame-the-chump types or churchy meddlers who’d decide what was “best” without consulting me and end up doing something disastrous for me and the kids. I’d still have appreciated the warning but there was something even more reasuring in the fact we all had similar political and social takes on it. I think this is because one of the worst parts of emotional abuse by cheaters is how existentially isolating it is– this sense abusers spin that the social context will be squarely on the side of the abuser and will judge or at the very least demeaningly patronize the chump. It breaks the abusive spell when it turns out the social context not only doesn’t share abuser perspectives but that some bystanders have their own reasons and stakes for finding the abuse abhorrent. They felt that way before they knew you and they draw as much reassurance from you that they’re not alone in seeing things this way as you do from them.
Because these two were early twenties, this also helped avoid the really depressing, apocalyptic impression that the younger gen have all turned into amoral Esther Perel-y sex positive pod people. I have three teenagers. How could my daughter keep her sanity in a world where her peers were all sugaring “cool girl” OnlyFans who think EmPoWerMEnt is appeasing the degrading sexual demands of porn zombies? Will my sons be able to find enduring friends with any character or mates in their own generation who aren’t politically void PickMes (who apparently double as cheaters themselves from the stories we see in CN)? Apparently there is hope for humanity.
One of the takeaways from that encounter was that domestic abuse doesn’t happen in a vacuum, the sewage explosion spreads toxic gas far and wide and bystanders can end up burdened with dirty consciences. Mr. Deep Throat was actually having nightmares about babies born blind from syphilis. He also reportedly burst into sobs after one call because the whole thing was making him a nervous wreck, then he’d heard one of my kids anxiously asking who I was talking to and he suddenly realized how hideous and not-like-TV this was. He proposed to his gf the same night because the experience brought out shared values or something. I also thought it was adorable how the gf kept snatching the phone away to tell her side once she learned I’d had experience with proxy sexual abuse by women in professional harassment situations and knew how confusing that added betrayal is. She was still trying to hash out the themes, wasn’t sure what the proper “feminist” stance was on this. Her voice shook. We were helping each other.
Bystander empathy is reassuring but shared principles are moreso, especially after the shocking revelation that cheaters have none.
I know this resonated with a lot of people because my scroll finger got tired trying to get to the comment submission box.
It takes a heartless person to cheat on the person that they have vowed to stay faithful to. It takes an entirely different classification of people to intentionally go after married men or married women.
I feel like it is a psychopathic kind of thing. Like the thrill of the chase but only when it’s totally immoral, totally against all rules, it’s just so dirty.
That was not the case in my divorce. My husband just sought all those babes on the internet and his exes and whatever. He just was totally scrolling for sex all the time and eventually he found it over and over. I was a fool for a long time. I’m not anymore.
So now I’m going onward with my life. I realized this morning that you never know how crazy crazy is until you’re outside of crazy. I lived crazy for 24 years crazy was being married to somebody and actually cohabitating with somebody entirely different. I was living in a crazy world but until I kicked him to the curb and moved away and started my own life I never realized what life could be like without crazy. Thank you chump lady. Your book saved my life. I walked for hundreds of miles and listen to it over and over and over every morning between 6:00 and 8:00 a.m. I am not kidding when I say it saved my life.
God bless you Chump lady. Keep calling them out. You’re helping us.
Every episode I watched, the individual women in SATC were unhappy at the end of the episode. But perhaps I didn’t watch enough episodes.
Also the Bechdel Test.
I didn’t read the Dear Prudence letter and response because the title gives me all the pertinent info.
“Help I’m a Disordered Wingnut !” Please give me more ego kibbles by answering my letter and incurring the wrath of chumps. I’ll laugh at their comments.
I’m tempted to share my experiences with OW, namely at work and in my neighborhood. Oh and my first uni roommate, a gaslighting sociopath, who turned out to be a mate poacher. I’d be retyping my comments from previous posts and I don’t want to bother.
Ps When I google “disordered wingnut” Tracy’s website comes up. I sprinkle the term here and there to change the narrative about cheating aka relationship abuse.
Ah geez, what a mess of a human. What a vacant life. And if one day, she sees the error of her ways and pursues an actual, reciprocal relationship with a single person…watch out for that Karma bus! It may come late, but it always makes its stops.
My ex had an affair and is now married to a woman who was also having numerous other affairs with married men – including an 80 yr old man whose wife was dying. None of this bothers my ex or his family – they figured he won.
A relative had an affair with such a woman except she took it a step further. She had a website devoted to her many affairs.On her site multiple married men could text her in parallel while she trashed their wives, My relative figured he’d marry this woman and disinherit his kids and all would be fine because she’d changed and it was twu wuv.
Perfect portrayal of a conscienceless individual (I cannot name such a thing “human”!)
She thinks she knows some secret weapon that the rest of the mortals do not know about. That’s lack of empathy!
Did anyone notice how often she mentions emotions?
“I tried to be a kind person”, “deep feelings”, “deep distress”, “relationship”, “regrets”, “I have never felt like”, “never felt guilty”, “intimacy”.
She describes how she’s lacking each of those emotions.
Then she turns and throws a rock: “the rest of the world has a limited emotional imagination”