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UBT: “I Needed You So Much”

sadzDear Chump Lady,

I was wondering if you could run this e-mail by the UBT. I received this letter from my ex-fuckwit after 18+ months of no contact.

Brief background: Gay doctor chump. Ex-FW and I were together for close to 9 years, the last 4 of which began with the discovery of his cheating by getting an STD a week before my specialty board licensing exam. Discovery included finding the sordid details of his hundreds of partners, orgies, escorts, and anonymous public bathroom encounters (the list is unfortunately too long to share if I am to make this short). I left him at that point, and spent over a year alone until he lovebombed me with fake promises for change.

Being a chump that believes in second chances, I forgave him. Two years later, after being tipped off by a friend, I found out that he had been up to the same antics. At this point, by the grace of a higher order, I found CL/CN, which was a real catalyst for change. I dumped him, kicked him out of my house, and have kept strict no contact. He has since entered a psychiatry residency (insert horror emoji 😱) and I have only run into him once as outlined in his e-mail.

Today while at work, I received this e-mail in my junk folder (he is blocked, but my e-mail client puts blocked messages into junk). Upon receiving it, I felt panicked and extremely sad. I needed a moment to isolate myself and allow the emotions pass through. To be honest, I am disappointed that after this much time an e-mail like this would send me into another room in panicked, crying mess. I know the pain ends on Tuesday, but I just can’t get over how much I’m shaken. Perhaps the UBT can shed some light onto the darkness that this person has brought into my life?

Sincerely,

Dr. Frazzled Chump

Hi
I was deleting old emails (while listening to a zoom meeting…), because my account says I’m at 155% of storage…
Then I noticed your picture, so I thought that perhaps you unblocked me. Maybe, or maybe not.
I must have drafted 100 messages or e-mails, but usually I don’t send them.
It’s been almost 1.5 years…

So much has been said and written.
If there’s anything I want you to know, it’s that it was all my fault. There is no one else to blame.
I hope that one day, you can forgive my actions, or lack thereof. I have much to be forgiven.
Thank you for being there all these years, exactly like you were. This must ring fake to you. But as I read through old messages, I am reminded of how much you did for me.
I’m sorry I wasn’t able to create that space for you, where you could be you. I’m sorry I created a space lurking with fears around every corner – this is not a way to live. I’m sorry that I spoke, acted and thought out of place, that I hurt you.

It’s so unreal, to have experienced so much love and hate at the same time, so much joy and sadness at the same time, so much tenderness and violence. There’s always a way to make sense of our reality, even when so unreal and with such stark contrasts.
I wish that you find the strength to breathe into this nonsense, and find peace.

I needed you. Like I need (my horse), like I need my friends and family, like I need (my cat). That’s really hard for me to accept – I have an aversion to needing anything exterior to me, especially if I can’t control such ‘object’. It makes sense that you felt like an object. I needed you so much, more than anything else.

Lastly, I loved you, I still love you, and will never cease to feel this emotion towards you. Put that in your pipe and smoke it. I don’t think this information should prevent you from moving forward – on the contrary, I hope you find meaning in what I say.

The trauma I have created and re-created in our relationship is so deep that healing is unlikely, or impossible.

I saw you at the canal the other day. Like a shameful child I shied away from meeting your gaze.
Here’s to a first nod that was missed.
Best,
(FuckWit) xxx

****

Dear Dr. Frazzled Chump,

Oh hey, remember that time you dumped him for a year and he love-bombed you with fake promises to change? And didn’t? Here you are again. Don’t step in that bear trap. No third chances!

He’s hoovering. It’s what fuckwits do for kibbles. You’re having an emotional hallucination, thinking that this person cares. Snap out of it.

I’ll wake up the Universal Bullshit Translator to help.

Hi
I was deleting old emails (while listening to a zoom meeting…), because my account says I’m at 155% of storage…

As romantic openings go, this is up there with Pablo Neruda.

Then I noticed your picture, so I thought that perhaps you unblocked me. Maybe, or maybe not.

Yes, pictures have the power to unblock. Perhaps some magic pixelation enchantment has been lifted and you care!

I’ll violate your boundaries and find out.

I must have drafted 100 messages or e-mails, but usually I don’t send them.
It’s been almost 1.5 years… So much has been said and written.

For nearly two years I have locked myself in a castle, doing nothing else but writing you messages. Is it no wonder I am at 155% storage?

I don’t send them because I’m a timid forest creature who fears your rejection, but (sob) maybe this one time you’ll care? And thaw your cold heart? Your magic picture says yes, so I summoned my courage.

If there’s anything I want you to know, it’s that it was all my fault. There is no one else to blame.
I hope that one day, you can forgive my actions, or lack thereof. I have much to be forgiven.

It, whatever it is, is my fault. Best not to be specific. But it’s “much.” The important point is that you forgive my nebulous, unmentionable sins and allow me back into your life. Because I said I’m sorry!

Oh hang on, I didn’t actually apologize.

Thank you for being there all these years, exactly like you were.

Thank you for being of use. Don’t change.

This must ring fake to you.

I’m fake. Can you tell? What gave it away? Claiming to write you messages I didn’t write, the lack of sorry, or failing to mention fucking hundreds guys behind your back and giving you an STD?

Trust Mr. Orgie! I care!

#cubiczirconiaremorse

But as I read through old messages, I am reminded of how much you did for me.

Don’t you miss doing things for me? While stupidly unaware? I miss that.

I’m sorry I wasn’t able to create that space for you, where you could be you. I’m sorry I created a space lurking with fears around every corner – this is not a way to live. I’m sorry that I spoke, acted and thought out of place, that I hurt you.

This is the part where I try to do the Apology Thing. It’s like a parrot expounding on geometry. I created a space… squawk!!! … sorry! squawk!!! Isosceles triangle! 

What I’m trying to say is — hurting you turns me on. Your fears, your pain, your hypervigiliance. God, I miss all that me-centered drama.

It’s so unreal, to have experienced so much love and hate at the same time, so much joy and sadness at the same time, so much tenderness and violence. There’s always a way to make sense of our reality, even when so unreal and with such stark contrasts.

Who knows where all this drama I experience comes from? Such a mystery! So unreal!

There’s always a way to make sense of our reality — I tell you what that reality is.

Trust Mr. Orgie! I care!

I wish that you find the strength to breathe into this nonsense, and find peace.

(The UBT wishes you find the strength to delete the contents of your junk folder and extinguish this bullshit.)

Even I know this is bullshit. Debase yourself and believe me.

I needed you. Like I need (my horse), like I need my friends and family, like I need (my cat). That’s really hard for me to accept – I have an aversion to needing anything exterior to me, especially if I can’t control such ‘object’. It makes sense that you felt like an object. I needed you so much, more than anything else.

I need you. Like I need duct tape. Like I need peanut butter. Like I need my Amex reward points. I have an aversion to needing anything actually human (beyond fucking its orifices). Humans are uppity and unpredictable and sometimes sticky. They have needs. And I’m the only one allowed to have needs.

And face it, you like being needed. So, walk closer to my bear trap — I NEED YOU!!!

Lastly, I loved you, I still love you, and will never cease to feel this emotion towards you.

As evidenced by my hundreds of affairs that left you with an STD. I feel a Pablo Neruda poem coming on.

Put that in your pipe and smoke it.

How do you like them apples? Squawk!

Sweet fancy Jesus on buttered toast! Squawk!

I don’t think this information should prevent you from moving forward – on the contrary, I hope you find meaning in what I say.

I hope you feel utterly mindfucked. Don’t mind me here, pining with love for you, writing a thousand messages I’ll never send (sob), just get on with your life! Forget me! I NEED YOU! Ignore me. Whatevs. Squawk.

The trauma I have created and re-created in our relationship is so deep that healing is unlikely, or impossible.

May you be scarred forever. Then I’ll know I matter.

I saw you at the canal the other day. Like a shameful child I shied away from meeting your gaze.
Here’s to a first nod that was missed.
Best,
(FuckWit) xxx

Tragically, I did not fall in the canal.

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at info@chumplady.com. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • What a PoS.
    Don’t fall for it.
    Listen to/Read Lundy Bancroft’s ‘Why does he do that?’ I just started a couple of days ago and it’s really been helpful to pass the time until Tuesday.

      • Lundy Bancroft is *brilliant*.

        I remember reading it the first time, I was shouting yes! yes! This!

        One of the best, along with “Cheating in a nutshell”.

        Dear Frazzled Chump, be strong , this Fuckwit doesn’t give a damn about *you*, you’re just an ‘object’ this fucker hopes might be of use again. What a pretentious entitled *fucker*. ((hugs)) and ignore. xx

        I’m also horrified this manipulative piece of shit is training to be a *psychiatrist*
        Don’t they screen these people? God help his patients.

        • Bancroft’s book was life changing for me too. It took away belief that these people are out of control, they are very much in control of their words, actions, and abuse. Their abuse is purposeful.

          Psychiatrists are a different breed of human and doctor. Seems less surprising to me actually from the ones I’ve encountered throughout my career.

          Dr Frazzled Chump, this guy has shown you who he is. Don’t give him the opportunity to traumatize you (and expose you to std’s) again.

          • Chumpnomore6

            I want to add to your recommendation for:

            CHEATING IN A NUTSHELL: What Infidelity Does to the Victim.

            https://www.amazon.com/Cheating-Nutshell-What-Infidelity-Victim/dp/1948158000/ref=sr_1_1?crid=P09H6II3FBTC&dchild=1&keywords=cheating+in+a+nutshell&qid=1625768361&sprefix=cheating+in+a+nutshell%2Caps%2C215&sr=8-1

            I read about it here about a week or two ago and I LOVE it because it explains why I/we chumps react the way I/we do – like to emails showing up when he is blocked and it has been 2+ years of NC. Yes, I fall apart too still but it is lessening and now I know why.

            It delineates and substantiates our innate emotional makeup in clear words and explains why we react the way we do. The authors’ writing is supported with documentation of their sources for their conclusions.

            First chapter is an intro of what is to come. T

            he second chapter is titled Disgust….

            It is for US chumps and about how right on our emotions are and for me, where I am now in this process, it is a perfect fit for helping me restore me back to trusting my emotions after years of denying and burying them.

            Tracy and CN taught me ‘trust that they suck’ and now I, with this book in my hand, I am beginning to trust that I am a good person and that my feelings are right on. It is like getting to know myself at an entire new level at a time in my life wherein I thought I knew me.

            Well, as it turns out, I didn’t know this me existed until recently. 🙂

            On a side note: Mr. X is a therapist too….along with being a serial cheater…..

    • That is a great book. It helps us chumps understand that not everyone is like us. It helped me to see that I was projecting my morals, values and humanity on to an empty vessel. A soulless void of a freak who likes what he did to me. Got off on my reactions.
      Intended to hurt me in order to maintain control. It was no mistake – it never is.

      Delete this letter and move on with your new life.

      Ps – the real freaks don’t like to be ignored. Be prepared for more hoovering.

    • I have most of his books and found them very helpful. He’s very articulate about the deep attitudes that spur the anger and desire for control that drives these people and how that makes any kind of healthy relationship impossible. The type of “acting up” we talk about here isn’t compatible with true love and care, period.

      I’m post-divorce but ran across this interview on YouTube which was a great summary that I’ve passed on to a number of folks working through these difficult things: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i30mBVxSePI

      There are just some people you cannot be close to, period. It’s sad for them and sad for good-hearted people like us, but just not possible.

      • Just wanted to note that I realize that the original message was not from the standpoint of a romantic male/female relationship, but I believe that the principles are very much the same for any close relationship.

    • Listen to the little Shaman on YouTube. Your ex sounds like my ex. I’m still discovering the land mines of ex’s abuse, 100s of dirty deeds and lies 2 years out after 7 years together. Stay far far away!

  • Mrs CL,
    It’s been said before, and will be said again.
    You are a fucking genius…
    PS My ex is also a lying, philandering, scummy physician.
    I too am in healthcare (NP). Apparently, I missed the part about extra marital experimentation when I took the Hippocratic oath…

  • Remember that scene from the original, B&W “Night of the Living Dead” were they are using meat hooks to drag the carcasses of zombies into the burn pile? The sheriff giving the press interview responds with “They’re dead. They’re dead thangs!” Then he calmly shoots an approaching zombie right betwthe yes eyes.
    Just put that FW out of their misery by dragging them (email) into the trash can and delete.
    Go take a shower.
    Done…

  • Lots of meetings today so no time for a full-on parody, but whe I got to the “I need you” line I couldn’t help but flash on The Honeybees from that episode of Gilligan’s Island:

    I need you, I need you
    Like a camel needs a hump
    Like a city needs a dump
    Like a fuckwit needs a chump
    I need you

    Imagine our fuckwits all in a line doing this . . .

    [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sz7gr4hSkNQ?start=9&w=560&h=315%5D

    • “Like a camel needs a hump
      Like a city needs a dump
      Like a fuckwit needs a chump”

      Oh, UX, I am still laughing. I think this is your best work yet!

      • I need you…

        Like a pimple needs an ass.
        Like a Pretender needs some brass,
        ‘Cause my escape car needs some gas.

      • Like that f*ckwit needs a horse
        And his pet cat – but of course;
        Like FrazzledChump needs a divorce …

        • good ones!

          I shook my head when the cheater doc told DrFrazzled that he needed him like he needs his horse and cat.

          OMG Was that SUPPOSED to be a compliment? What was the goal of those words?

          What a remarkable shallowness.

          • Yeah, I don’t see that as well written at all. Especially for someone supposedly so well educated.

            And “Put that in your pipe and smoke it.” Please.

            That sounds like a teenager wrote it. But then many of them just act like hormonal teenagers, so not surprising.

      • like that doc needs strange cock,
        like his ego needs strange amigo
        like our chump needs to jump…….

        run away Frazzled, run like your hair is on fire.

    • Thanks for that delightful blast from the past UXworld. How did it happen that I became older than Lovey Howell??

  • Hi Frazzled:

    He must be at the point in his psychiatry residency where they are studying narcissists and their characteristics, and since he recognizes himself he has to try to show empathy and remorse to counteract the bad juju of self-awareness and agency. Epic fail! As CL and the ever-trusty UBT have illustrated.

    I was struck by how he called you an object. (Guess that was part of the NPD debrief he just had.) But not just any object…his most needed object. If that doesn’t make you run like hell, nothing will.

    Please don’t feel bad about experiencing old emotions. It is simply human nature when the memories and pain for someone we once loved deeply, who hurt us profoundly, wash over us. Emotional recovery, like physical recovery is not linear. You got this, Chumpy Doctor.

    • “I was struck by how he called you an object. (Guess that was part of the NPD debrief he just had.) But not just any object…his most needed object. If that doesn’t make you run like hell, nothing will.”

      Right on! That’s exactly what I thought. He’s actually telling you that he’s a narcissist – the real kind. You know, the disordered “wolf in sheep’s clothing” ones.

      In one of Dr. Ramani’s books, she tells a story about a scorpion who asks a swan for a ride across the lake. The scorpion swears over and over that he won’t hurt the swan. So she lets him jump on her back and swims to the other side of the lake. Just before he gets off, he stings her. She looks at him in shock and asks why he stung her. His answer: “I’m a scorpion. It’s what I do.”

      This guy reminds of that story. He’s a scorpion and he’s proud of it. He’ll hurt you again in a nanosecond. And 2 days later, he’ll send you another email.

      Run.

    • “Please don’t feel bad about experiencing old emotions. It is simply human nature when the memories and pain for someone we once loved deeply, who hurt us profoundly, wash over us. Emotional recovery, like physical recovery is not linear.”

      Thank you – I needed to hear that.

      “hurting you turns me on” – This has been the hardest realization. FW actively betrayed me for his own pleasure. The OW wasn’t even worth staying with when I dumped his ass – she was only good when it was deceiving me.

      And now he parades his new victim around. Why does he get to be happy? Why isn’t he alone in his crappy house? He disgusts me and I only want the worst for him. I want him to live out the rest of his life hating himself for his lack of morals while claiming “God is good always”.

      I have moved on and I am content in my life. Happier than I was than when I was with him. Yet that non-linear emotional recovery is a bitch.

      I know the real problem: I like to have the last word. Being no contact means that I can’t. Yes, I did get the last word when I took control and dumped him and didn’t “pick me dance”. But when he finds little ways to break through the ways I’ve blocked him, it takes such restraint to not respond. That restraint is not my usual nature.

      • “I know the real problem: I like to have the last word. Being no contact means that I can’t.”

        Not only do we have the same posting name, but I also share this problem. It is a real struggle for me to stay No Contact. Gray Rock. Although I have got it cut down to email, I still seem stuck trying to get him to “Get It”. Why?? He will never get how much he hurt me, yet I can’t seem to let go of trying to get him to “get it.”

      • Yeah, that “hurting you turned me on” line got me in the breadbasket as well. There was this day about two years ago that I realized that when I told my STBX at the time that I had briefly thought about killing myself because of the way he and his mistress were torturing me, that instead of being horrified, it practically gave him an orgasm—because (a) I wasn’t a person to him, I was an appliance, and who cares if an appliance you have thrown away dies? (Cue the IKEA lamp commercial….) and (b) all he heard was that he was so important and amazing that a woman would kill herself over losing him. That was a big turning point with me. That was when I realized I wasn’t dealing with a normal, sane human being. And in fact, I had never been married to a normal, sane human being.

        So, to your next point about happiness: I’ve had those same thoughts (Best Regards married the woman he left me for and is now One Big Happy Family with her two little girls, after swearing he never wanted children with me….). But, if we know what we know in terms of the first point (i.e., that they’re sick people who get off on hurting others), then they can’t possibly be happy in any way that you or I understand or value that term. Our happiness could never come at the cost of others’ pain. So, they may be a lot of things in their new life, but happy isn’t one of them.

        • ” So, they may be a lot of things in their new life, but happy isn’t one of them.”
          I want this to be true. But why? All these years later + almost a decade of CL, I should know better.

          Heading towards 25 yrs married, I was blindsided & he left in 3 weeks. It ended shortly after that with the OWhore. He went on to marry a woman who wasn’t born when we married. And this is the part I’m stuck on & need someone here to pick up the 2×4.

          Hadn’t thought about his new life in sometime but reading the recent obit of former MIL & seeing her survivors trigged me. I’m sure he still makes 6 figures, has a fat 401k, drives sports cars, dines out regularly & jets off to fabulous vacations all with her. I don’t know her & our paths will never cross. She is enjoying my life & probably is a trade up with her youth & he gets to “mold” her to his liking. Why wouldn’t he be happy in this life? I was swept away like trash & dumped by his family as well. His narrative doesn’t include our life together that’s for sure. She’ll out live him & probably be set for life.

          Ready for that 2×4 but may be a cattle prod would be better.

          • If superficial things like possessions and vacations made people happy, I’d agree that they are probably happy. However, studies show that a person making around 75k is no less happy than a billionaire, and that owning a lot of stuff makes no difference. You need a certain amount of money to live comfortably, eat nutritiously, and take care of your family, but the effect on happiness ends there.
            So here’s your 2×4; don’t internalize a FW’s shallow value system. He no doubt believes these things make him happy, because fuckwits confuse happiness with pleasure. Happiness comes from being at peace with yourself. People often use material things and shiny novelty to distract themselves from their inner emptiness. It’s a tell that they are anything but happy.
            Don’t buy into the sparkly surface.

            • To your point, I agree with the theory that we have set points for happiness and we eventually fall back on our set point after great things happen and after shitty things happen.
              That’s why millionaires are usually as happy as before they won the money once the thrill has worn off, and many people were generally as happy during the pandemic – unless they were faced with undue hardship. We get used to things and end up at our set point.
              I’m counting on this because for me it means fuckwit won’t be any happier in his new life with OW once the newness wears off. And he will have payed a price to end up where he was (but worse).

              • I think the set point theory makes so much sense and seems to line up with my life.

                I am generally a happy person and when we had nothing I was happy, and when we finally started making some money I was happy etc.

                I was so devastated when ex started and completed the year of discard. But within three months of his departure and confession day; I was feeling so much better. Doing cartwheels no, but happy at my foundation and ready to work on a new life. I was starting my life over as if I was 18, with a minimum wage job. I had to take a part time job to build emergency savings. But, I was happy. Scared to death but happy.

                My ex I am sure was very happy once he left me, he had his exciting new schmoopie, his promotion at work; once the hoopla died down about his treatment of discarded wife he would be flying high. Then the loss of his promotion, and everything else that surrounded it. But hey he had schmoops.

                Then within less than five years he was heavily into gambling, he lost everything he had, including all the property he got in the divorce. When my son called me and told me, I couldn’t believe it.

                My guess is the shine had worn off schmoops; he was now seeing her and himself more clearly and so he turned to gambling to find happiness.

                They never recovered financially after that; but whatever money he had access to he kept buying a bigger and better camper. He appeared to have given up on his dream to sell everything and live on a boat on the Ohio River.

                I will never know why my ex couldn’t live just a normal life. Work, enjoy a few things, accept that you did well but will never be a rich man. He could have actually been quite well off; but he just threw it all away; not once but twice. Maybe even more than that.

                The only explanation is that elusive happiness he couldn’t seem to find.

          • Hurt1: I wrote a reply to you, but it got kicked down to the end of the comments. I hope it helps. (((hugs)))

        • Yep, that realization hit me hard too. Mine told me he wanted me dead and had fantasized about killing me for years. And I had to live with him for a few weeks after that. I had a friend over a lot because I didn’t feel safe and our adult son lived with us too.

          One day friend was sitting on the couch and my now ex didn’t see him when he came in. He was bustling about the kitchen, humming, happy as a clam, making himself some food. I was just sitting there numb and stared at him, while ex tried to tell me some story from work and was annoyed I didn’t respond. Then he realized friend was there and changed his demeanor, said hello and started putting on the sad, concerned face.

          He went up to his little game room to eat and my friend was like “WTF is wrong with him? He’s happy?! He’s a psycho. What, he expects you to ask about his day and joke around with him?!”

          I lost 30 pounds in that first 3 weeks and I was not a large woman to begin with. And he seemed joyous about it. He loved watching me deteriorate. Our son noticed it and was disgusted with him. He’s called him a psycho too. Divorces happen but to be ecstatically happy about your wife of 20 years falling apart? It’s sick. But once that mask came off, it was off. He struggled to even put it back on temporarily to save face. The few people who saw it think he’s completely deranged. And he is.

    • PrincipledLife,

      While I am not sure where he is at in his residency (and frankly don’t care), I did mention to him when I gave him my final goodbye that he was a narcissist. Unsurprisingly, he threw the label right back at me.

      I had a patient just yesterday who was a therapist. We got to talking about narcissism and she shared some useful insights. Narcissists (from whatever trauma they experienced, let’s not untangle the skein here) are suffering. The only issue is that it’s quite difficult to feel any empathy towards them because they only way they deal with their suffering is by hurting others and causing chaos. Like most Cluster B’s. They only begin to look inwards when they’ve hit rock bottom (sadly their denial is so strong they may never even acknowledge rock bottom). Unfortunately, in the case of my narcissist and those who are in positions of power, this rock bottom never happens because their position allows them to manipulate and get away with their behavior. I really do empathize for the next victims. Hopefully they are not psychiatric patients, who are particularly vulnerable.

      Thanks for the reassurance about how this letter made me feel. I dove deeper into hoovering and came across a site that normalized many of the trauma reaction feelings that hoovering can stir up. After all, this was a person who robbed me of truth for nearly a decade and made me feel things that I had no control over. Its reassuring to know from CL weighing in that these feelings do eventually subside.

      What I did not include in my original e-mail for sake of conciseness, was that I have found a new partner who is the complete opposite of him – he truly cares about my well being and WANTS to make me feel safe. He knows about what I endured and is patient with me, especially in moments where I feel old fears re-surface. There is no hidden agenda and it is peaceful between us. Recovery from abuse is long, but there are kind people out there willing to care if they see you are a good person who has been through a lot.

      Thanks again for weighing in!

      • That is lovely news and thanks for sharing. Your partner sounds like a kind and loving man, and so do you: I wish you both all happiness.

      • I’m also curious if your exFW somehow found out about your new relationship and is hoovering you to get their thrills in for triangulation purposes. No contact works immensely but sometimes these freaks manage to find out things somehow.

    • Bingo. My first thought was that this missive should be sent to his mentor with a suggestion that the Dr. needs a thorough psych eval.

  • “I still love you, and will never cease to feel this emotion towards you.” What a tell (out of many in this letter) that he actually has no framework for regular human emotions. It’s like the way a dead-eyed killer robot would lure you in for the final hug of your life; “I am feeling love emotion towards you. Comply with death hug request” 🤖

    • The robotic-ness of the language struck me as well! That and sticking his love into my pipe and smoking it. Like I didn’t have a choice. No thanks. ✋

      Thanks to CN/CL I picked up on a whole lot of pathology in that email, which I probably would not have had I received this years ago.

      You guys are awesome.

      • “picked up on a whole lot of pathology in that email” is putting it well.

        For a psychiatry resident, his lack of self awareness is stunning. And I found his awkward but revealing word choices, disturbing.

        Good news – in addition to you finding peace and a new man, is that his email overall is such a reflection on his poor character, lack of empathy and insight, that you KNOW it’s not coming from a person who is well.

        It was never about you.

        After 35 years of marriage, and a brutal discard — my grown children got a self serving gas lighting fake sorry/not sorry group email from their DOCTOR father (I capitalize his title to show his importance)

        They sent me a copy of it.

        It was so self centered and filled with blame shifting and rewriting our marital history to the point where I didn’t recognize it, you’d think the DOCTOR forgot we were there in the marriage and family. Like he could sell his version to US!!

        I showed it to my therapist.

        She said something that was immensely helpful during my “skein untangling” years (which I am ashamed to say I did for far, far too long).

        “Doctor’s1st, here’s your proof that this was never about you or the kids. This email was not written by a person who is well.”

        Hope this helps. And no, the recovery is not linear. I have days when I think “it’s Tuesday”, only to get triggered by a chance remark or memory and I can spin for hours.

        But those bad hours are fewer and more spaced out. It’s not linear but it does trend upward!

        • DOCTOR’s1stWife&3Kids
          ‘I have days when I think “it’s Tuesday”, only to get triggered by a chance remark or memory and I can spin for hours.’

          I needed to read this today. Right now. Right in this moment.

          I heard something from a friend today about my stbx fw that has me feeling exactly like this. I now want to run as far away from my life that was as I can! Is it wrong to have this huge NEED to just escape I wonder?

          • Claire,

            Someone mentioned the book:

            Cheating in a Nutshell:What Infidelity Does to the Victim

            https://www.amazon.com/s?k=cheating+in+a+nutshell&ref=nb_sb_noss_1

            a couple of weeks ago.

            I got it last week and I can’t recommend it enough because it addresses what you have just written about clearly.

            IMO a perfect book to be read with LACGAL.

            I had to learn about Mr. X and all his antics here and in LACGAL so I could really get that he sucks…

            Its been 4 years since dday and now I seem to be ready to deal with me because this book hadn’t come across my radar until just now.

            I am one who chooses to believe that ‘the teacher appears when the student is ready’.

            I am fertile ground for what this book is offering me.

            After reading almost every sentence I find myself saying to myself, ‘yeah me’. Not because I am a wonderful person. It is because my emotions and feelings were/are right on.

            Throughout my entire I was being told to ignore my feelings or I choose to ignore them or I would turn them against myself. All of which played perfectly into how I got tangled up with Mr. X in the first place.

            Apparently I was fertile ground for that planting too.

            Well, now I am fertile ground for a revolution of honoring this self I appear to be. 🙂

            I hope you can get your hands on a copy, local libraries have copies which is where I first laid eyes on it before purchasing my own copy, so that you can get more understanding as to why your feelings are doing what they are doing.

            This self discovery/recovery really becomes rather exciting.

          • Claire, I’m sorry you’re having this experience today. I was there a week ago, and I think I know just what you mean. The urge to escape. And yet it’s impossible. The dark cloud and racing heart. It happens even when I know I don’t care and am in a very different place, logically, from my panicked emotions; I’m meh in so many ways, so much of the time.

            Helps to hear from everyone here that this is “normal.” I have noticed that it take way more to trigger me now. I used to feel like I was swimming in it and had zero control. Even when flooded, I can stop myself from responding. It still feels really, really bad. But it passes more quickly. And the more this happens, the less afraid and anxious I am the next time I’m triggered, because I can believe it will pass. I also used to need a lot of help: I leaned heavily on my sisters, and therapy sessions get like a crutch. I’ve noticed that I’m better at self-soothing now. This is a relief, because the loss of independence and privacy has been really hard for me. Still nowhere near settled, but a chump’s name brings me comfort and hope
            that I will one day feel okay again: give time time.

            Sending kind thoughts your way.

    • Did he also actually include “put that in your pipe and smoke it” in this letter after saying some sappy shit about love?

      …Seriously???

      • Yeah, that stunned me too. I expected to read, “How do you like them apples!” later in the letter. Ugh.

  • “I needed you. Like I need (my horse), like I need my friends and family, like I need (my cat). That’s really hard for me to accept – I have an aversion to needing anything exterior to me, especially if I can’t control such ‘object’. It makes sense that you felt like an object. I needed you so much, more than anything else.”

    Wow. You are interchangeable and he admitted to it. Too bad he didn’t jump into the canal, get clunked on the head by an oar and caught up in a propeller.

    I am so glad you escaped!

  • “To be honest, I am disappointed that after this much time an e-mail like this would send me into another room in panicked, crying mess. I know the pain ends on Tuesday, but I just can’t get over how much I’m shaken.”

    I feel you, Dr. Frazzled, I feel you! It’s been years since the last D Day for me but I’m not at Tuesday yet. My FW ignores me for the most part (until I have to remind him to pay child support) but anytime he levels his gaze at me and tries to engage with me on a personal (text based because I refuse to see him) level, I too have to excuse myself and go to another room to either panic or cry.

    I don’t know if Tuesday will ever come, to be honest, but I’m keeping those boundaries up.

    • Fourleaf – I am with you – I still get that panic/cry reaction. I don’t have to see or interact with FW but every once in a while he pops up, despite my blocks. The reminder of the betrayal ruins me for a while, then I can return to meh.

      I’m not at meh at the moment. Meh comes and goes.

      Keep your boundaries. That’s how we control the narrative.

  • I’m 5 years out. It gets better every year. At the two-year mark I could still be thrown by stumbling across XW without having an opportunity to prepare myself. Now I can run across her name online, or spot her in town, and it doesn’t faze me any more. I still visit CL because XW and I have kids together and I need to be reminded to keep my guard up on that front, as XW periodically maneuvers to take custody. IMO the key is to minimize interactions – I restrict them to email if at all possible. I am not *not* speaking to XW, but there have only been a handful of occasions over the last few years when we have needed to speak.

    It’s not linear and doesn’t proceed at the same speed for everyone, but on average it gets better every year.

  • When you are a chump, you have to balance who you are and how you feel against the consequences of acting on your basic impulses. You have to learn to say NO to those who understand what a good, caring person you are, and consider those qualities as a chink in your armor. The very things which make you a quality caring human are the things they use to manipulate you into sharing your life with them. The hard part is they do not intend to do anything, ANYTHING, to deserve these things.

    “I am reminded of how much you did for me.” If you want a life of unreciprocated love, he’s your man. Unless there is an orgy nearby. Then he’ll be back later for you to take care of his exhausted selfish ass. Because he is the important one, and you were designed to serve him. Don’t you know your place?

    I channel my impulses to feed and care for others into caring for furballs. Dogs and cats don’t manipulate. They live in the moment. They are hungry, or cold, or thirsty. Can you help them? They will remember you, be happy to see you when you show up, and share their love with you. They do not make false promises, or manipulate. They may let other’s pet them, but they do not do it deceptively. You know who they are and what they have to offer you from the start, and you decide whether or not to give them your care and love. I prefer giving my love to furballs. I have never regretted a thing I have done for them.

    Jackson Brown’s lyrics say it all for me:

    ” Now the things that I remember seem so distant and so small
    Though it hasn’t really been that long a time
    What I was seeing wasn’t what was happening at all
    Although for a while, our path did seem to climb
    But when you see through love’s illusions, there lies the danger
    And your perfect lover just looks like a perfect fool
    So you go running off in search of a perfect stranger
    While the loneliness seems to spring from your life
    Like a fountain from a pool”

  • “Tragically, I did not fall in the canal.”

    The best line.

    I remember imagining fw floating face down in the Ohio River.

    I knew I had begun to let go when I stopped wishing for that.

    • Similarly, I knew I had to let go when I started wishing for things like this. (Never at my own hands, to be clear. that’s always been horrifying and off the table, even in karma fantasies. I’m not abusive or sadistic, after all.)

      • Oh I never truly wished it, but it did enter my mind. The Ohio River has significant symbolic meaning, so that is a part of it.

  • Thank you chump lady and chump nation. My lawyer told me my soon to be ex acknowledges that she’s “no saint” but can’t we move on to be “functional co-parents”. Reading this UBT makes me understand— no contact from this psycho (she took my children while pregnant with my daughter and moved in with the gardener because ‘he understands her better than I ever could’ ) and “sane parenting” on my terms is the only solution. My fear is she will try to con me and let her back into my life. No thank you. I will be mighty.

    • Don’t feel bad about neural patterns.

      Anything habitual in our lives creates neural patterns in our brains. That’s why it has been important for me to call him something other than his name. My brain has deep positive (unwarranted) associations with his name. His new nickname is BIFF (for Brief Informative Friendly Firm, and also Biff from Back to the Future). When I see BIFF when my phone rings, it reminds me how to speak to him and who he is.

      Just yesterday he called to tell me he could not have our daughter over last night because he is in the hospital. Kidney stone maybe? Purely reflexively, I asked if there was anything he wanted me to do to help.
      I was horrified and mortified as I was listening to the words come out! Mentally grabbing at the air to capture the words after my mouth opened on cue. Sheesh. I just had to chalk it up to Old Behavior and vow to do better at staying unhooked next time.

      I also noticed I don’t give a flying flip what happens to him. That’s the good part.

      The brain will create new neural patterns and it just takes time. The grooves created by my mirage (marriage) are deep and I need to be patient, kind, and compassionate toward myself. I don’t need to join forces with him and his co-whore-ts beating me up.

  • Dr. Frazzled,
    I’m so sorry you’ve had to join the ranks of the many Rainbow Chumps here at CN, but we’re here for you. Your ex-FW sounds a lot like my STBX – all false contrition and sad sausageness. And my STBX also has been taking counseling courses! 🤦‍♀️ I would not put it past her to leave her tenured faculty position to run away with her new “partner” and try to become a therapist. There should be screening for personality disorders in that profession.

    But you sound fabulous, even though you might not have felt fabulous in the moment after being triggered by that horrible Hoover of an email. I hope you continue to give yourself a lot of grace and compassion. You’ve been through trauma, and triggers are real. I hope you’re getting help, as well. I am currently doing EMDR therapy and am not sure how much it’s helping, but at least I feel like I’m doing something. Come find us fellow Rainbow chumps on the subreddit of you want to talk more!

  • I am concerned that he wrote “It’s so unreal, to have experienced so much love and hate at the same time, so much joy and sadness at the same time, so much tenderness and violence.” I doubt he has the capacity to have or recognize self-hatred, so he could be projecting. Still, Dr. Frazzled, his cheating abused you in so many ways, but you did not mention hate or violence. I hope you are not spackling over this if it’s what he did to you directly or indirectly, rather than part of his secret life.
    Also, I was struck by his self-centered closing: “I saw you at the canal the other day. Like a shameful child I shied away from meeting your gaze. Here’s to a first nod that was missed.” He assumes that you because he looked away, he missed your nod, a physical acknowledgement and sign of acceptance. If he looked away, how would he know if you nodded or not? It sounds like he can’t bear that you might have continued to ignore him, or that he missed an opportunity for a mutual greeting, so he’s writing a script for some tragic movie. I’m sure your rejection and no-contact stings. He’d like to be central, or at least seen. It seems that encounter led to this email. He does not want to be ignored, as you’ve done so effectively.
    You loved him for nine years, and your forgave him once. It’s no wonder you’re shaken when you see him or hear from him in this extensive, manipulative email. I think PrincipledLife’s assessment nailed what’s going on, and as many fellow chumps have written, it’s normal to feel like you do, and your grief and distress will diminish over time.
    In your letter, you try to be light when you describe his actions. Have you allowed yourself to feel anger over what he did to you?

    • Goodfriend,

      I have to give it to you- you are pretty observant!

      To reassure you, there was no violence. While there were a lot of contrasting emotions and drama (all created by him, as Chump Lady pointed out), it never got physical. I suspect he just tried to make this more dramatic by using that word.

      You are correct about the nod. I did not nod! Truth was, I was walking along the canal minding my own business, listening to music. He was seated with friends who happen to have a dog that I recognized. As I walked past them, I recognized the dog, then his friend who owns the dog and then as I continued walking it suddenly occurred to me that he might be with the group and he was! By this point, however, he had already turned away. So I just continued walking, heart beating a bit faster.

      You are also correct about him not wanting to be ignored. Hard NC has been clearly quite difficult for him because I was, for all intents and purposes, golden supply for him. As a narcissist, it is a major ego blow to be considered insignificant from significant supply. I know my worth and I know that there are not many people that have what I bring to the table that would endure the abuse that he put me through. Thankfully I am continuing to do work to realize what patterns allowed me to get caught up in that mess so that it NEVER happens again. I do expect because of my golden supply status (haha), that he will probably be back – like herpes. And I can already sense that if I see it coming, when it happens it will likely affect me less. Too bad Valtrex doesn’t work for narc hoovering!

      • Well, now you know why he sent the email. You ignored him. The fact that he turned away is just evidence that he couldn’t bear being ignored publicly. So what he does is send that email to hoover you back and demand your attention.

        I think Mr. Orgy understands what he did to you better than you do, because he knows what he did was violent. It’s not a matter of fisticuffs; the violence is in how he attacked you emotionally and how he exposed you to disease and psychological trauma, quite deliberately. HIS STATEMENT INDICATES THAT HE KNEW AND KNOWS WHAT HE DID TO YOU.

        Delete that junk folder every day, without looking at it. Protect yourself from this monster.

        • Wow, I actually did not see it that way and am REALLY happy that you brought that up. You are so correct!

  • The first time I read through his letter it sounded heartfelt. I’m so glad for the UBT Because it really does break down the real meaning of this. I think for myself I want to believe well-crafted words. I want to read them and trust in them because if I wrote them they would be true.

    The problem is that the people that we were involved with not us. They don’t share any resemblance to a person who loves, is faithful and has empathy.

    Thank you CHUMP lady for breaking it down for us once again.

    • Count me as another one who at one time would have taken the self-serving word salad of that letter at face value. Letters, emails, and poems were my now ex’s preferred form of manipulation (I won’t call it communication), and I believed my now-ex was as sincere in the writing as I was in my reading and would be in my response.

      The irony is that my now-ex and I are both English professors. For thirty-five years I taught students how to write and how to analyze literature, but it took CL, the UBT, and Chump Nation to teach me, finally, how to read my now-ex’s drivel. Occasionally when I need a refresher course in “trust that he sucks” I read through old letters he sent, marveling at the ingenuity and emptiness of his Olympic-worthy verbal gymnastics.

      • I totally relate to this. I continually astound myself about how naive I am. I am a very honest and straightforward person and it never occurs to me to be anything less than honest. I am in the beginning of divorcing my FW. It seemed like we were on the same page about the need for divorce (he has been threatening it for years while conducting his affairs) and now all of a sudden he is not “emotionally ready” to be separated from his kids. Never mind that he does the bare minimum in terms of parenting and is basically never around. Anyway, despite reading this blog every day, I am still somehow surprised by this typical cheater reaction to facing consequences and still surprised that I cant take what he says at face value.

        • Oh, you can rest assured his hesitation has nothing to do with his emotional readiness. It’s pretty much a certainty he’s got another self-serving reason: he doesn’t want to have to marry the OW, he doesn’t want to lose his wife appliance, he doesn’t want to take the financial hit, he doesn’t want his image sullied, etc. etc.

      • Adelante,

        I’m not at all surprised that you’re an English professor – wonderful.

        Knave-man often makes the remark that there are many experiences that he wants to have, and many books that I want to read. It’s definitely meant as a put-down.

        But sometimes I think of myself alone in the little space that I will one day soon carve out for myself, with a stack of the Modernists on the table beside my comfy couch. It will seem like heaven.

        • Solitude and a good book is one of the greatest pleasures one can experience in life. (See what I did there…reading a good book IS an experience.)

    • With my FW’s apology tour letters I paid attention to tone rather than the words used. The tone always struck me as disingenuous and emotionless. The words were incongruous with the tone.

      But this FW, he gave himself away when he put his alleged feelings for his ex chump on the same level as his feelings for his his horse, cat, etc. Yikes, just how stupid is this guy. Why not throw his Beemer into the mix while he was at it.
      Some of them are clever and can craft relatively sincere sounding drivel. This guy is not a clever one.

    • It’s much easier to manipulate someone via letters, emails, etc., because the writer has control of the content. There is no other person to interrupt, get angry, cry, contradict or ask for explanation. CL is a master of deconstructing these gaslighting efforts (and note the name “bullshit translator.”) There are some tell-tale signs:

      1. No specific mention of specific actions that the cheater did to hurt or damage you;
      2. A focus on the cheater, as indicated by a plethora or I, me, my (e.g., I want, I need, I love).
      3. Ask yourself: Could this be sent to anyone that the cheater wants to manipulate? In this case, aside from the canal reference, that would be a “yes.”
      4. Look for signs that SEEM like real emotions (gratitude, remorse) and pay attention to how they are constructed. What’s included? What’s missing? “Thank you for being there all these years.” –This is a covert admission that you were used. An accurate statement would be “You were there all those years but I did not reciprocate. I used you.” By using “thank you” and acknowledging the partner’s faithful love, Mr. Orgy looks “grateful,” as if he appreciates what his partner did. The reality of course is that all along, Mr. O took what was given and gave back something worse than nothing–mindfuckery, lies, disease, and trauma.
      5. Look for passive voice and lots of indefinite pronouns (it, they, that, this, these, those, no one, someone, everyone). Those are signs the writer does not want to or cannot name specific people or events. These UBT messages are full of non-specifics.
      6. Remember that words don’t mean much when actions tell a different story.

      Don’t put too much stock in any words–whether spoken or in print–from a liar. Put anything he or she writers through the UBT or put it in the trash, unread. If Jackass wrote me, it would go straight to the trash.

      It’s good to recognize you have a vulnerability here but you should change your thinking on believing words without evidence of the speaker or writers good character.

  • Dear Dr. Frazzled,

    This is one of those letters that would have sucked me right back in. When cheaters can write fairly well and know a bit about psychology, they can better disguise the mindfuckery.

    I fell for my ex’s occasional well-drafted letters FOR DECADES! They often came with flowers and wine. Now I see them as breadcrumbs that kept me in line.

    Stay strong. Resist the hoovering attempt!

    I hope you passed your specialty exams. I can’t even imagine how you managed that! #mightychump

    • Spinach@35,

      I sure rocked those exams. After discovery, I left my OWN CONDO where he was also living with me. I went into survival mode and lived with a colleague who was also studying with me. We both made it through! Unfortunately, many times the ones who fail are the ones who find themselves exactly in situations like mine. I consider myself very fortunate.

      As for the e-mail- while I was initially frantic, I still knew that he was full of it. What made me sad was the realization that he will NEVER understand the extent of what he put me through. I will never get that acknowledgement. That said, after spending a lot of time reading this blog, the pathology in the letter was way more obvious. Thanks CN!

      • Dr. FC:
        “What made me sad was the realization that he will NEVER understand the extent of what he put me through.”

        They never do. That is hard for me.

        After I dumped him. the FW posted on Facebook “I have been through the worst trauma of my life”. (I saw this before I blocked him). Everyone was sympathetic, not knowing that the trauma was actually him getting caught cheating on me and losing his cake. He thought THAT was worthy of sympathy and that somehow equals my hurt.

        It’s odd that he posted that – he never ever posts anything on social media.

  • Dr Frazzled wrote:

    “What made me sad was the realization that he will NEVER understand the extent of what he put me through. I will never get that acknowledgement.”

    THIS^^^^^ -it’s a lot of injustice wrapped in a shit sandwich that we must accept.

    my ex the DOCTOR blames me for his shitty relationships with children he has chosen not to see for over 4 years. Seriously. He rages about ME to my own family and our friends.

    **IF my ex or people like him were ever even briefly able to bravely see AND feel what they did to the people who loved them the most,

    they’d fall on their knees in sorrow and devastation.

    Perhaps they sense the harm they caused at some level. And it terrifies them – they are not emotionally brave.

    Perhaps they have regrets about THEIR losses, (consequences) but not so much the harm they inflicted on others.

    Or perhaps they really do lack the ability to see it, connect the dots let alone do something about it.

    This ^^ is my untangling the skein in a paragraph. All of those^^ options are unacceptable to me.

    I deeply regret how long I allowed one or more of those options to be in my life.

    Yet I also know it’s never too late to find peace and joy. (And at CL, laughter).

    • D1W&3K-

      The ego injury would be too great to TRULY acknowledge their failures. What they do instead is what they know most and are good at- denial, lies, sabotage etc. Maintaining the cycle of chaos is where they feel at home.

    • Maybe I give to much credit, but I do think some of them do know the damage and hurt they have caused and they just simply have to block off their minds to exist. Maybe not all, or maybe even not most; but some.

  • My traumatized memory of my FW’s attempt at apology:

    FW: I just wanted to tell you I’m sorry

    Me/Chump: What are you sorry for?

    FW: You, know -what happened.

    Me/Chump: What happened?

    FW: I don’t know – you’re the one that left.

    Me/Chump: Do you remember what I told you when I left?

    FW: Well, if you remember, why are you asking me? You always need to make me feel stupid.

    • “You’re the one that left”

      I’ve heard that one. My response? “YOU left the relationship when you made the decision to cheat. I just finished what you started.”

    • Oh FFS!!!

      He lands this back handspring with the perfect cheater move: blaming you!! He gets a 10!

    • Good grief.

      Even my asshole ex as bad as he was sent a letter telling me he was sorry he acted like a low life, but then he said “I don’t know why I acted like that”. Um, because you are a cheating asshole who only cared about the next thrill you dick got, then you got it caught in the office auger, by shitting all over where you eat.

      But he only sent that letter after I went out on a date. I am thinking he was hoping I would drop the guy like a hot potato and come running back so he could have the triangle again for a few more weeks/days.

      Guess again.

  • CL is so right, of course, but I need to underline what she says about this FW hoovering for kibbles.

    They will shamelessly toy with our wounded hearts to simply get a dose of dopamine. Mine has sent missives just like this a jillion times. I fell for it a few of those times only to find he didn’t even want to reconcile, he simply wanted the kibbles of knowing he could have me back if he wanted me. They are that selfish. Any response from you will reward him. He just wants to know he still has the power to move you to write back, to share your pain or nostalgia or lingering love. Ugh. These people are cyborgs.

  • “But as I read through old messages, I am reminded of how much you did for me.”

    My serial cheater XH had just moved out of our house to give himself “space“ (in reality, he was hooking up with Married Howorker). He called me about three days later to find out how I was doing. I told him I missed him. Total silence. So I asked, “Do you miss me at all?”, and his response was, “No, I don’t miss you, but I miss everything you used to do for me”. That told me everything I needed to know. What we do for them is never enough.

  • In his effort to make himself appear contemplative and deep, he just makes himself sound like an asshole. I mean really “put that in your pipe and smoke it”?!?!?!?! I needed you like I need my horse?!?!?! What the actual fuck?!?!?!!?

    Oh, and fuck him for giving you an STD and stressing you out before your exams (they can be so cruel). I’m glad you passed and found someone who treats you with respect and kindness.

    • Yeah, it’s vomit inducing when they try to be cute and use old inside jokes and terms of endearment. Or in this case, wildly inappropriate sayings. I had to reread to make sure that was in the letter, not CL’s UBT. Sweet fancy Jesus, indeed!

  • The more I read these letters, the more I realize how similar they all are. It’s like they copy and paste them from a cheater website.
    Vague apology-check
    Mentions animals/pets-check
    Talks about you like you’re a piece of furniture- check
    I will always love you speech- double check
    And finally a rewrite of Every Breath You Take-
    Hell Yeah!
    Glad you’re rid of this Worm!

    • Great list (and name), Wormfree. The contents, voice and tone of my ex’s hoovering attempts were nearly exactly the same. Reading today’s letter felt like déjà vu.

      Still pre-Chump Lady, I began to run my ex’s garbage through my own nascent UBT. Some of the themes I noted, in addition to the above: fuckwits NEVER ask what you need and what they can do for you, mention specifically what they are working on, offer to pay for therapy for the trauma they have caused, ask whether you believe you could ever love and feel safe with them (because that should be their priority – your safety and happiness), ask whether you find them desireable, etc. Didn’t see any real remorse or vulnerability in Dr. Frazzled’s submission, either.

      When I shut my ex out for a couple of months (believing then I was done for good), he responded by ramping up the hoovering, and he made some very convincing and enticing promises. But while these seemed to respond (finally) to my needs and seemed legit, he didn’t follow through on one of them. I had no way of holding him accountable. So chumps, if you’re still getting this kind of drivel and still on hopium, know it’s already too late. The problem is the cheater’s character, and they’re showing you they can’t and won’t change. It only gets worse from here.

      Glad to read your updates, Dr. Frazzled. (And by the way, you sound clearheaded and capable, not frazzled.) Sounds like we chumps can relax, knowing you’re clear. Thank you for submitting your story and the BS email; I could relate to a great deal, and so CL’s response and CN’s comments are particularly helpful to me today. Thanks, too, for sharing your insights about narcissism and pathology.

      

  • That is lovely news and thanks for sharing. Your partner sounds like a kind and loving man, and so do you: I wish you both all happiness.

  • Frazzled:

    Hoovering “Valtrex” = a curt one-time response email (preferably copying your attorney) saying “Do not contact me ever again, by any means, for any reason. If you do so, I will consider it to be harassment and will take appropriate actions.” If you have never actually simply, clearly, and in writing, requested that he cease contact, then you could just go with an emailed “Do not ever contact me again.”.

    This should end his attempts. You have left the door a crack open, and you see where that gets you.

    • From dday on ex was just mean, mean, mean to me. Previously, he was my kind, gentle & loving best friend for over 26yrs. Three months after he left I was hospitalized for a nervous breakdown & was told by all of my healthcare providers to have absolutely no contact except through my attorney. That saved my life.

      One year after the divorce I received a sympathy card from him as my aunt had recently died.( To this day I have know idea how he knew as she lived out of state.) The next day another card arrived from ex MIL/FIL. Both cards went into the shredder. I was struck how ex addressed the card using my nickname. Any correspondence during divorce was always to my given name which I figured was a form of detachment on his part.

      About a month after the cards arrived my weed whacker broke. Frustrated as it was always his job to mow& weed whack, I tossed it across the yard & then stomped on it. Out of nowhere I marched into the house & sent him an email: “You & your family need to stay out of my life, a beautiful life that was ruined.” Almost instantly he responded: “Ok, didn’t mean to upset you, just acknowledging your loss, won’t happen again.”

      And that was then end of him. If he thought about hoovering I made it clear not to go there. At times it makes me mad! WTF? Ruin our marriage, treat me like dirt & then feel you have to acknowledge the loss of one of my relatives! Where’s the sympathy for what you did to us?

  • The best bits were his opening gambit which made me lol out loud (the weirdly specific detail and the “I totally wasn’t stalking you, okaaay” vibe) and your phrase ‘by the grace of a higher order’. This wannabe lyrical pseud is all kinds of disordered and shying away at canals or no, should never be allowed back into your life. You sound lovely, sincere and decent and as Chump Lady likes to say, your stock will and does trade highly. He’s using you for sport. The paragraph about needing things and objects is the truest part of this, the rest is unmitigated bullshit designed to reel you in. Go be your fabulous self and leave him to rot.

  • Dr. Shrink ain’t special.

    He’s hovering for another fuckfest with you as the never ending chump.

    “The trauma I have created and re-created in our relationship is so deep that healing is unlikely, or impossible.”

    Don’t you dare get over me…I fucked you up good so I can reel you back in whenever I need a orifice. Hahahahaha.

    “Shameful child”– what a sorry sad sack mask.
    And unoriginal.

    Dr. Special, please don’t lose another teardrop over this faker.

    Leave a cheater (permanently) Gain a life.

  • Pablo Neruda! 🤣
    One of the UBT’s best ever.

    As for Dr. Frazzled Chump, there is something I don’t understand. DFC, did you really think he would change, as in stop being gay and a slut? You found out he is gay, stunningly promiscuous, and he a actually promised to become straight and monogamous?
    You were his beard. He likes having a smokescreen. His pretentious blitherings aside, he’s not sorry that he’s gay and stunningly promiscuous. It’s who he is. That would be fine and nobody’s business if he hadn’t dragged you along for the ride, used you, lied and endangered you. Since he very calculatingly did, he’s garbage. Don’t let his drivel throw you off. Keep your eyes on the prize; a drama free life not being somebody’s beard. He’s just looking to shake your confidence in your decisions so he can fuck with you again. It reads as sociopathic.

    Please change your email so he can’t contact you again and set back your progress. That’s what he’s trying to do. I’m so sorry this evil person came into your life and abused you.

  • Oh, geez. I just re-read and realized you meant YOU are a gay doctor. I thought you meant that your fuckwit was gay and you aren’t. D’oh!
    Sorry, DFC.

  • Pablo Neruda had three wives — and stayed married each time long enough to select his next wife-to-be from among his many adulterous muses. He “needed” a wife like Dr. Gay needed Dr. Frazzled, and wrote beautiful poems for them –imagine being able to see through and resist his monumental talent!
    But here’s a passage from his “If you forget me” that shows his true egotistic nature:

    If suddenly
    you forget me
    do not look for me,
    for I shall already have forgotten you.

    And yes, this poem was also written about his native Chile while he was in exile, but that was the story he gave his wife to cover for his affair.

    Talk about a double entendre !

    • It just goes to show that their words, no matter how flowery and tender, don’t mean jack. Neruda’s love poems are exquisite, but they are exquisite lies. Some FWs are great with the words. None are great at backing them up with their actions.

  • Hurt1: I feel your pain. My FW’s OW is a trust fund debutante. I busted my ass supporting FW’s career, making a home (on a serious budget), and raising our kids. Seventeen years later, FW’s making six figures and leaves me for her. I’m struggling to find a good full time job and pay my bills every month. I’m 56 and trying to start over. They’re building their retirement mansion in a seaside resort. So much for hard work, integrity, and justice, right?

    Over 4 years later, it still pisses me off and I still wonder why. I suspect I always will because I got defrauded. I mean, do Bernie Madoff’s victims still get mad and wonder why when they think of what he took from them? I’ll bet they do. Who wouldn’t?

    Still, I think OHFFS is on the mark. These are empty people who don’t know what it means to love. They know what it means to shop. The high they get from new things is transient. But their frenzied emptiness is forever.

    My FIL left FW’s mother for a much younger AP. I’m sure they were all sorts of happy in the beginning (aren’t we all?). So they got married. And they stayed together for 20+ years. But for the last 10 years of their marriage, my FIL openly and obviously hated his 2nd wife. Then he became senile and she was stuck taking care of him until he finally had to go to a home. They had lots of money, and she wanted for nothing – except love, respect, and real compionship during the best years of her life.

    Every time I get in a knot over wasting my opportunities and being forced to live with financial insecurity while they dine out every night and hire interior decorators, I also remember the misery that my FIL and ex-step-mother-in-law endured.

    So we lost out on the country club, but we escaped a lifetime of being devalued and miserable. Honestly, even if it meant that I could be as wealthy as FW is now, I wouldn’t want him back. He’s a disordered void who traded in his family for a new set of golf clubs. Sounds like yours is the same character-less idiot. The only difference is mine traded for money and yours traded for some young arm candy.

    Money doesn’t keep karma away. And pleasure, as OHFFS says, is not happiness.

  • ChumpQueen, if ex left me for his current wife I guess I would feel better about it. But this young wife is post-OWhore. What are they both thinking – he’s late 50s & she’s mid 30s? Again, why do I care? I don’t really as it is only toying with the skein. I’m probably trying to apply MY reasoning to such an unreasonable situation as most folks would see it. I tell myself that if he didn’t tell her he cheated on me, well that’s going into the marriage with one whopper of dishonesty & good luck with that. On the other hand, if he told her & she still married him, good luck with that.

    • P.s. I’m 56 as well & still trying to find a better job. Until retirement which is years away I will continue to struggle financially as well (got some retirement funds in divorce settlement). No kids.

  • They seek you out for reconciliation, or at the very least for you to treat them normally because it strengthens their case to everyone else that they’re not so bad.

    Your choice to go no contact, to purposefully disassociate yourself from them is unnerving because 1) it’s your way of exercising your power and shifting the old power dynamic of your past relationship with them; and 2) it serves as evidence to others that you, the person who was once closest to them and who knows them best, sees something so wrong with them that it might serve as a warning to others.

    They need the perception of normalized relations with you so they can continue to operate as before while using your non-hostile treatment of them as evidence to others that they’re a good person.

    • More succinctly, cheaters, narcissists and sociopaths desire your forgiveness and normalized relations because it provides validation to them. They use this validation to recruit new chumps into their orbit.

  • I might have believed my ex’s pretty prose if I hadn’t found his emails to the OW. They used the same corny sentiments.

  • I went through the 12 step cause of my drug use 28 years ago and I can tell you this from step 9
    Step 9: Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
    Any apology that takes more than 2 sentences……..ISN’T an apology. It’s an excuse.

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