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UBT: How to Get Proof They’re Cheating

lyingrespectPeople send a lot of dumb articles to the Universal Bullshit Translator, so it takes a whole lot of stupid for the UBT to be agog — but this one takes the biscuit. “Here’s how to get definitive proof your partner is cheating” by HuffPo.

You’ll never guess what the secret is — YOU ASK THEM.

I know, I know — forehead slap! I’m sure you guys never thought of that.

It’s time to put these nuggets of revealed wisdom through the UBT. Without further ado.

There’s only one way to know if your partner is cheating: Nope, it’s not by thumbing through their text messages and emails. To really get down to the truth, you have to ask your spouse directly. 

“Instead of becoming a detective and snooping through their phone, consider talking about it,” Elisa Dombrowski, a marriage and family therapist in Orange County, California, told The Huffington Post. “Let them know you can handle the truth and that you believe you can work through anything, as long as there’s honesty.”

There’s only ONE way to know if your partner is cheating? Like, walking in on them doesn’t count? It’s only cheating if they say it’s cheating? Got it.

Try an icebreaker like “Are you fucking escorts at lunch?” or “Lately my penis has been oozing pus. Any idea what that’s about?” And see what they say.

The problem isn’t that they’re doing any thing shady, it’s that you can’t handle the truth. Let them know that really you’re okay with truth! Meet deception with vulnerability! What could possibly go wrong?

Below, Dombrowski and other marriage therapists offer more advice for broaching the delicate subject.

You deserve to know if your partner is faithful. If you have a suspicion that something is amiss in your relationship, don’t ignore the warning signs, Dombrowski said.

Yes, trust your gut and don’t ignore the warning signs. So when you ask him and he stares you straight in the eyes and says, “You know I would never do ANYTHING to hurt you or the kids,” believe him. Stuff those crushing doubts down, down deep into the recesses of your soul. I’m sure he has a very good reason for all that time he spends in the bathroom with his cellphone.

“Some people worry that confronting their partner will force the break up of their relationship,” she said. “They hope it will go away on its own but it’s often this lack of communication that creates distance in the relationship from the beginning, making it easier for an affair to take place.”

Yes, you caused the cheating because of your lack of communication and distance. So bridge that gap — reach out to a timid forest creature today.

Ultimately, you should trust your intuition and broach the subject delicately, she said.

“Too often, we condition ourselves to ignore that tiny voice inside that says something doesn’t feel quite right,” Dombrowski added.

So instead, ignore the screaming voice inside you that doesn’t believe their denial.

Don’t lower yourself to snooping through email or text messages, especially if you’re hopeful your relationship can withstand any possible betrayal, said Stephanie Mintz, a marriage and family therapist in Los Angeles, California.

“Resist the temptation to snoop,” she told HuffPost. “This would be a total breach of trust and privacy on your part and would make rebuilding that trust much more difficult. Although you may suspect your partner or spouse has already broken the trust, you don’t want to add fuel to the fire.”

Yes, looking at your partner’s text messages is a total breach of trust and privacy — unlike fucking other people and endangering your health, which is something you should hope to reconcile with.

Don’t blow it! How could your cheater possibly get over the devastating betrayal of snooping?

Timing is critical when discussing a subject this sensitive, Mintz said. You’ll both need to be in the right frame of mind, so to that end, don’t bring it up at 12 a.m. on a Monday, when you’re both exhausted. (Indeed, studies have shown that the brain’s emotional centers are more reactive when we’re sleep deprived.)

“You don’t want this to be rushed and you don’t want to do it before work, when children are around or with an activity to go to shortly after,” Mintz said. “Wait for an evening after each of you has had some time to unwind from work or a weekend where you don’t have plans for later on in the day.”

Did you walk in on your wife fucking someone else? Now is a BAD TIME to discuss this. Wait until you’ve had a couple refreshing naps by 2027 and quietly broach the subject.

This is bound to be an uncomfortable conversation. You may want to begin the talk by acknowledging how uneasy it makes you, said Todd Creager, a marriage therapist in Orange County, California and the author of The Little Black Book On Infidelity. 

“Let your partner know that you have some uneasy feelings and need him or her to help you sort through them,” he said. “Then go ahead and let your partner know what you are suspicious of or what caused your uneasiness.”

Go ahead and share your suspicions! Give ’em a head start to get that burner phone and start siphoning cash.

Your spouse still may get angry and defensive ― especially if your suspicions are true ― “but you’re cutting down the chances of defensiveness by focusing on yourself and not your partner,” Creager said.

Yes, YOU control the degree of your partner’s defensiveness. So approach with deference and stop making him so angry.

Let your partner know that when you feel uneasy or have an intuition, you owe it to yourself to check it out, Creager said.

“By bringing it up, you are educating your partner that you have integrity,” he said. “Let him or her know that you are owed the truth if nothing else. You deserve to know what is truly going on so that you can make a good decision for yourself.”

Cheaters care a lot about your peace of mind. They care so much that’s why they’re out until 2 a.m. with their cell phones turned off — it’s your peace of mind that they’re thinking of.

And if you demonstrate integrity? They will follow in kind! Moved by your example!

It can be isolating and painful to deal with infidelity. Depending on the answer you receive from your partner, you might consider seeking individual or couples therapy afterward, Dombrowski said.

“You might feel the need to tell friends and family about your partner’s cheating but once the secret is out, you can’t put it back in,” she said. “Friends and family are great but a good therapist can help you decide who your trusted circle of support will be while you are learning to navigate the difficult journey that lies ahead, whatever you decide.”

Friends and family are great, but they know you and love you and their advice comes free. A good therapist charges around $180 per hour and can help you stay in the hellish limbo of reconciliation navigate the difficult journey ahead.

Keep those secrets or you’ll scare your cheater away!

Who can you trust? The therapist who helps you decide who your trusted circle of support is, that’s who! Trust is not something you should leave to amateurs like yourself. You need a professional!

Continue that conversation, chumps.


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  • Unfortunately for me I had no idea he was cheating. He was an executive and able to leave work midday without anyone batting an eyelash, and that is what he was doing. He never went out at night, never on weekends. He came home on time. I had zero red flags, but in hindsight I wish I had. He also never lied to me, he didn’t need to. He would text me on his way “home” – “I’m on my way, let’s go out for dinner, I’ll be home at XXX”. Technically, he WAS coming home. He just wasn’t coming home from work. At times these situations are not visible, and without a red flag to alert the partner, you’re left with nothing. That’s the heartbreaking truth. As some of you know, I found out about his affairs after he passed away. I’ve been told here that in some ways this was the best outcome, no actual opportunity for contact. The reality for me is, I wish I had seen a red flag or two, because I would absolutely have confronted him, and likely have ended the relationship, would have been the best thing for me.

    • I learned years after the fact that he had cheated all along, so there was no “change” to notice. He also had a demanding job that called him away at any possible time (and if I had questioned it, ever, I would have been labeled as an “unsupportive military spouse”).

      I dont think my Cheater got-off on lying the way others do and he likely formed truthful statements in very manipulative ways to avoid lying. When he went on a big multi day fuckfest, he asked my permission to extend a work trip for a side excursion (“whitewater rafting with people from work”).

      I saw zero red flags in years of living like this…all I knew is that he got very moody and difficult at random times that seems to not coincide with anything happening at home.

      I did finally confront him and he lied like a master – not a flinch. now THAT is a red flag

      • I was also gaslit with that “unsupportive wife” garbage — not in the military, but in law. My Cheater was always having work emergencies, deals that needed his immediate attention, deals that were being negotiated late into the night…in conference rooms where he couldn’t pick up his office phone when I called. Of course he was really dropping $500 on dinner with his 25 year old intern followed by $1000 for a few hours in a hotel suite. But if *I* questioned why he needed to work so hard and asked him to spend more time with us, I was putting him between a rock and a hard place with all my “demands” for both his time and for “expensive things” that he had to work to pay for. Even asking what expensive things did he think I was demanding would send him in a rage of accusations about my spending habits and “where had all our money gone”, accusing me of hiding cash in secret locations around the house — he really had me tied in knots counting pennies and wondering if I was really spending more than I thought. Such a mindfuck.

        • My FW travelled a lot with the military and deployed several times. I happened to find out when he gave his “extra work phone” to our son who found awful emails. He cheated when away in hotels he didn’t have to pay for. He was stressed and got “massages” at a nearby jerk-me-off Asian parlor. The financial problems were because of me though. My damn car payment. The leftovers that didn’t get eaten. The clothes for the five kids that didn’t get worn. I feel guilty spending money on anything now. I did extreme couponing, made all five boys pass clothes down as much as possible, bought all my clothes from the clearance rack, never went out to eat, etc. He on the other hand has to wear Nike, $60+ jeans ($35 is the most I’ve ever spent on pants for me), and then there’s the alcohol. Thousands upon thousands of dollars. Yup. Totally see how I’m the issue with the finances. It would have all worked out if I had just “gotten a job and learned what it’s like to be responsible to somebody outside of the house.” WTF!!

          • I think the money stuff is all part of the same pattern of control and entitlement that leads to the cheating. They are entitled to spend what they want. They are entitled to control what you spend. They deserve nice things. No one else deserves nice things. I still get angry remembering my ex hassling me about buying a sandwich for lunch most days I worked (I taught at a college and would pick something up at the cafeteria there). He wanted me to bring leftovers for lunch. When I asked if he was going to start bringing leftovers too he laughed and said that going out to lunch was an essential part of networking for his VIP career and I “should understand that by now”. Like I’m an idiot. And my career was not important. I actually stopped buying lunch, thinking I didn’t deserve it.

              • All above this is me, too. He was military and hooked up in hotels on travel while on the government dime. Between our salaries and the retirement pension, our income is insane yet he runs around the house chastising our child about turning off lights in a room he stepped out of for a minute to get a snack, demands we eat up all the leftovers (while he orders restaurant lunches to be delivered to him), and won’t run the furnace in the winter. He tries to heat the entire house off the gas fireplace in the living room. Instead of being able to buy grass seed to seed bare spots in the lawn, I was forced to let the grass grow until it went to seed and then go sit out there all weekend, harvesting grass seed to use to spread in the bare areas. I drink water all day long and he starts on a $30 bottle of wine each night at dinner. I dye my own hair and let it grow long between cuts. He goes to a special men’s spa for a haircut. I drive a 10 year old economy car while he has two sports cars – one he leaves parked and doesn’t even drive – and my car is the only one with a back seat to fit a child seat for our child to travel. When I dump his ass, he is going to be forced to buy another car just to transport kiddo for visitation.

                Our only child has to wear clothes I buy used and I cut his hair myself. But klootzak just ordered himself a $150 jacket. He tells me I can’t invest any of my pay into a mutual fund to grow for my retirement but he makes mutual fund purchases $10k at a time. If I take money out from the ATM, I am raked over the coals.

                I used to go alone with all the penny pinching, then an attorney I consulted said to stop doing it. Live a normal lifestyle. Buy lunch. Have an occasional fancy coffee. Get your highlights done at a salon. Buy the Hamilton tickets. Don’t go crazy but spend in a reasonable way for your income. Because someday a judge is going to want to look over all the household expenses and make decisions about what is a fair amount for child support, spousal support, or dividing up marital assets and if you are living like a pauper now, you will be locking yourself into that for a very long time. Now I don’t go crazy but I stopped buying generic goods. All name brand. I buy kiddo new clothes. I had my hair done at the salon two whole times. I upgraded my makeup from stuff you buy at the drug store to stuff you buy at a proper cosmetics counter. I still drink water all day but once a week I buy a soup for lunch from the local cafe near me. I’m not being extravagant; I’m just being fair. He runs off on non-work vacations and leaves us at home. When he does, I get us an Air BnB and drive an hour to stay up by the water park. I’m done scraping by and making our child do so when he is off spending on whatever he wants. F that.

            • “money stuff is all part of the same pattern of control and entitlement that leads to the cheating. They are entitled to spend what they want. They are entitled to control what you spend. They deserve nice things. No one else deserves nice things.”
              this! Good reminder to all chumps to recovering from this sort of abuse to look after themselves better going forward.

            • Story of my life.

              It was only by “snooping” (gasp!) that I discovered he’d been siphoning off 40% of every paycheck into a top secret no-girls-allowed bank account, even while he was scolding me about overspending on luxuries like “groceries” and “car repairs”. And, that doesn’t include all the money he was spending on prostitutes, which I also learned about by “snooping” long after the “honest conversation about cheating when we promised not to lie to each other.”

              So here’s where I come out. There are a LOT of things I can be made to feel ashamed about. It took me too long to figure it out. My daughter had a fucked-up childhood and home life with an erratic and unpredictable father whose rages and disappearances made no sense at all, even to the point that she developed an anxiety disorder that she suffers from today at age 26. She once came home from college and found a condom wrapper in her bed — I stood there like an idiot staring at it not knowing what on earth had gotten it where it was. There are many things that I can be made to feel ashamed of.

              But the LAST thing on earth I’m going to be shamed about, was the ONE thing I did to PROTECT myself, which was pick up my husband’s phone and look at his text messages. I invite anybody to try and shame me. I’ll give you a score from one to ten, how ashamed you can make me feel.

              I’m still waiting.

              • Anyone who will shame you for looking at a phone (to see if there was any clue about the abuse you were suffering) is wildly full of shit. Fuck them.

                Siphoning off family funds for prostitutes and shaming a spouse for buying food is WILDLY ABUSIVE. The ridiculous unequal comparisons they make are absurd. He RISKED YOUR LIFE possibly bringing diseases home to spread them you you unknowingly…any accusation that phone snooping is “worse” than that is some gaslighting bullshit.

          • x wants to rewrite history.

            after a 40 year relationship of him serial cheating, and helping himself, the idea that his revised view has validity would be laughable if my adult kids weren’t caught in the mindfukk blender.

            I know now that he is a disordered covert narc. No need to go down the rabbit hole. No contact and bare acknowledgment serves me well.

            • Oh so true. Divorced for over 5 years and he is cc’ing kids into emails between me and him. Mindfukk blender…. totally.. when I tell him this is emotional abuse and unacceptable behaviour he justifies it by saying kids are old enough to know.. same story.. control spending, he spent what he wanted- he worked and it was his money right?
              Dictated his way through court papers, and now breaking those very rules…
              very bad advise by these psychologists by the way.. scary if ANYone follows an ounce of what they said.. clearly preaching and have never lived the life they are supposedly helping.. more of us should become these professionals..

      • Mine cheated the whole time too, even before the marriage so there was no change.

        Yeah, the lying with no tells is a huge red flag. We actually had a “friend” who I didn’t want to associate with anymore. This was a woman who was married and we hung out with them as couples. She was lying about something I knew was a lie and later I told my now ex husband that she lies with zero tells, she’s a psychopath. She lies too easily, I didn’t want to be around her.

        Well, she ended up having a baby that was not her husband’s and got divorced. Is it my ex husband’s baby? Well, turns out they were fucking so maybe.

        But at the end when I was finding everything out I tested him a few times by tentatively asking questions about benign things I knew the truth about. And he lied like a psychopath every damn time. That realization was one of the most horrifying parts. I even knew what to look for but I still didn’t see it. Not with him.

        • Yup. When I knew the answer, I asked him a question. He looked me right in the eye and straight-up lied. I told him that I actually knew the truth and wanted to hear it from him. He lied again and so well that if I hadn’t known the truth…I would have believed him!!

          I just shook my head and told him I was going to nominate him for an Oscar for lifetime achievement.

          • Same here… an Oscar performance
            Tears in his eyes… shaky voice and his word “ why are you trying to ruin our marriage? I would never cheat on you or do anything to hurt you… you are safe with me”

            Yep, all that while fucking hookers, trans, dating etc.

            Unbelievable, yet/ that was the crazy reality called my life

            • Mine wins an Oscar too.

              Yes, like @Rana
              hooking up with anything with a hole

              Only found out while cleaning out his stuff post divorce that this went back to our dating (the guys tell me that its 4 fingers for *her*) and through our engagement (we’re just friends) and married (we’re just friends)(maybe *he* likes 3 ways)(you’d like her, she’s nice)(the company owes me that money – that I found out that he embezzled) and on, on, on…..

              All while he’s asking me why it takes so much money to feed three children, and I’m working full time and I’m commuting to work 1 hour each way, and my income is not enough, and why am I not pretty enough, and why can’t I dress ‘right’ and why can’t I dress more like a whore (only when he wants it) in public (only when he wants it) and have sex in public (only when he wants it).

              (And, he’s a f–g doctor in tech.)

              Oh, I have so much more to tell…
              but, I’m squarely focused on my Tuesday.

        • It the “lying the whole time” that prevents me from caring about treasuring any memories during that entire era of life with him…he tainted everything and its all poison now. Whatever good there was is no more. Fuck anyone who tells me to “remember the good”.

          I had a dream about him last night…in it (as per usual for my dreams about him in the past few years) Im trying to organize my life in some way and he shows up unexpectedly telling me that we are going to “stay married” and I try to figure out how to extricate myself from him. I think its my subconscious trying to do what I should have done when he was alive.

      • “I learned years after the fact that he had cheated all along, so there was no “change” to notice.”

        This!! Mine was cheating from dating days – he never changed. He also did it during work hours so he was never not home on time.

        This kind of advice from so-called experts is a warning to skip so-called experts and stick with Chump Lady and your friends and fellow chumps. A person with no integrity isn’t coming clean without video evidence – even then they’ll try to weasel out of it.

      • Unicornnomore ????

        It’s so funny and sad to hear my story TO THE LETTER (except not whitewater rafting, a retirement ceremony) in others. They think they’re soooo special, and demand that Chumps test them as such, but they are all the same.

        • The Retirement Ceremony…what a clusterfuck that was (and yea, they can endlessly use that kind of crap to excuse being in strange places at strange times) …18 years a military wife and the mindfuck gaslighting soup was traumatizing.

          For his ceremony, 2 female work colleagues showed up (despite having to travel thousands of miles to be there). One had a fake date, one feigned an interest in being my friend. Turns out one was the main OW. The other one emailed him a few weeks later asking to meet in the state where his parents lived. I told her she had no business inviting peoples husbands to dinner. She claimed innocence.

          Interesting that they were SUCH good friends, but she didnt come to his funeral (geographically much closer)…I think she thought herself too good a woman to attend her fuckbuddies funeral and greet his grieving wife.

          Later, I sent her an email asking what his cheater-narrative was. I approached it assuming they were fuckbuddies…unusual for me, I am very avoidant of accusing people of anything without airtight proof. I told her that if she didnt have an affair with him, she surely didnt show it in her various actions. I never heard back from her and pretty much hope she feels like an ass and is horribly uncomfortable knowing that I know.

          • As per cheaters, who knows what these disordered creeps think. She has no conscience or integrity and is a POS for ignoring you under those circumstances, Uni. I don’t know how you made it through so much BS.

            Here’s a confession about one of my least proud moments: I twice contacted an OW, both times under duress. The first time was when my ex was literally circling the house I had just moved into to escape him, and I was so panicked and furious that he was daring to jeopardize my housing and fuck with me more after everything – and that I’d been so meek that he had escaped with zero consequences – that I snapped and actually sent the email to the OW I’d written for my own private, therapeutic purposes. I cc’d him. I wish I’d called the police instead, but I never gathered the courage to out him for his abuse, let alone call for help – and I also was afraid it would just make a humiliating scene and, worse, backfire.

            In the letter, I basically told the OW that FW was a dishonest cheater – which she already knew and evidently was attracted to – and that he’d not only hurt, lied to and betrayed the loving, loyal woman who’d supported him and his family for fifteen years. He’d said terrible things and lied to and about her, too. Along with at least one other. But she knew that, too, since she knew him so very well? Well, I finally knew the truth and wanted nothing to do with any of it. They were free to “burn down the house” with “God’s true love, that they’d been covering with false love for years” (her words, from a letter written four years after a summer fling to reignite their affair). Ugh, and I also said that the one verifiably true thing he ever did say was that she wasn’t me. (Forehead slap… I know.) Considering everything, I was was somewhat restrained, but it wasn’t pretty.

            She never wrote back. Based on all of the writing samples I’ve seen, I know it would’ve been drivel, and I would not have responded no matter what she wrote. Still, the lack of response told me a lot about this young, flirtatious religious gal – who atheist, ten-years-older, former work supervisor FW liked to call ‘Sweet Thing.’ She didn’t even apologize or attempt to explain herself. I have no idea how she felt, but I’m guessing she operates like any other blameshifting, narcissistic fuckwit. I would have been mortified, in her position. But then, I would t have been in her position.

            I was extremely disappointed in myself for stooping to validate her, and it still bugs me a little that I did – though it’s just one of countless humiliations from that excruciating time, and I’ve mostly let go of the shame/mortification from all of this because it would bury me if I didn’t. Note to new chumps: DO NOT write a hypothetical email to an AP because you never know what you will be triggered to do in the throes of Pick Me, creepy hoovering and stalking or scorched earth devaluation and abuse. And the last thing you need is one more thing to make yourself feel even worse…

    • I didn’t find out about most of his lies till after his death. Always home at the same time, always home on weekends. Occasionally played golf, but came home tired and smelling of grass. Married 44 years and I’m still realizing lie after lie. I was completely unaware of. CN and CL have helped me realize I was played. Still deciding what to do with his ashes. Toss in the garbage or split between the kids.

      • Ask the kids. If they don’t want, spread them on the ground and pee on them…

          • How about throwing FW ‘s ashes off the rear deck of a luxury cruise ship as you enjoy
            a fabulous ocean cruise? Verandah cabins are lovely.

            Or perhaps there is a dog park close by and his ashes would mix with the animal droppings?

            Turn the new page in your life, chin up and enjoy all the activities you have missed.

    • So sorry you found out the way that you did. It makes grieving weird because there is now “who did I marry let alone who died”?
      Mine had been found out 3 years before his death but I found more lies after. It sucks.

      • Back when I was being mentally abused and gaslighted, I pondered if I would attend his funeral if he died. I felt I would be subjected to a lot of uncomfortable situations. Like I would have to interact with women who were there because they were his mistresses or one of the many women he had fucked and stayed “friends with” over the years, yet I never knew about them. I knew it would turn into a lot of discoveries and uncomfortable interactions.

        Three years later, it’s hard to fathom I once even contemplated something like that… I’m so happy that period of my life is over.

    • I saw no red flags either. Only in hindsight. Right after D-day I looked through our old text messages and I could figure out some of the times he was fucking her.

      He did side electrical jobs in the evening or weekend so he always tied his cheating to one of those. Because in his mind he wasn’t technically lying about why he was gone. He also encouraged me to take a 2nd job, a sub job in the evening that had no regular schedule. He would ask for my hours as I knew them, and put my schedule in his phone so he would make sure to schedule his work for when I was already gone, so that he wouldn’t “miss any time with me”. He made using his phone calendar for me as something special.

      I trusted him enough that I didn’t see the red flag when my pap came back out of the blue as “high risk HPV”. My dr. said it could be latent (from when? from 30 years ago??). Still, I didn’t suspect. I mean, maybe it was latently from him as we had only been together a few years. It certainly wasn’t from my ex-husband (he didn’t cheat). Now I know it was absolutely from the FW and from the OW.

      This was part of the mindfuck – how can I trust a gut instinct when I didn’t even have one?

      Mary – I’m sorry you got no closure from him on his cheating. Actually, you probably wouldn’t get closure, but you didn’t even get a chance to yell and swear at him. And to leave him.

  • I confronted my now ex wife and asked her many times if she was having an affair. Did she tell the truth? Hell no! Continued to lie and still hasn’t told me the whole truth.

    • Same. I confronted my ex-wife at least a two dozen times over eight years, and she denied it every last time. Once the first three affairs came out and I foolishly went to couples therapy, my ex-wife even told our therapist when asked if she was still cheating that the affairs were in the past and that she had grown so much since then through her own individual therapy and spirituality. Turns out, she was screwing her boss concurrently to discussing her personal and spiritual growth with our couples therapist. In fact, I found out later, she literally showed up at one of our therapy sessions directly after a liason with the boss. Drove straight from him to our therapy session.

      There were at least five affairs (that I’m aware of), and of all the times she was asked directly if she was cheating, she failed to admit any of them until the end. So no, asking directly doesn’t work. Heck, my ex-wife is now back to telling people that she never cheated on me, that I’m making it all up. Meanwhile, I have a letter she wrote me at home telling me that she was “in love” with her boss. They don’t even admit it after the fact!!

      • Unless I was in delicate negotiations, I’d totally make that letter public. I’d do it in leaflets all over her neighborhood, outside her work, social media, you name it. How dare she peddle lies about the facts of what happened in YOUR LIFE and accused you of being the liar?

        In fact I got a very favorable settlement by threatening to do that. As in almost totally one-sided. Poor fw. It’s a good thing he likes Ramen noodles.
        But that’s because I’m a horrible, intolerable bitch of course. It’s why fw had to cheat. ????

        • I’ve thought about it. I also have a card apologizing for “years of infidelity” (nevermind that she was in the middle of another secret affair when she wrote it), that I thought about posting.

          Some of our old neighbors (whose kids I’ve babysat), don’t even speak to me anymore cause she’s spread so many lies about me. She kept the house and I accepted a buyout, so she still sees our old friends regularly and has been telling them god knows what (most likely projecting her own lying). I saw one of the wives from my old neighborhood at the post office and said good morning, and all I got was a nasty look back.

          So I’ve realized that I could go around posting the letter and the card, but I’d be wasting energy on people who don’t deserve it.

          • Yeah, I can see that. She got her lies out first, and people are invested in believing them because they don’t want to admit they got fooled or lose the bitch as a friend. Even if you showed proof, they might refuse to be swayed for self-serving reasons. Plus who cares what former neighbors think.
            This kind of typical cheater behavior is why I always advocate that chumps should strike immediately and get ahead of the cheater’s smear campaign.
            I’m so outraged on your behalf that I want to bust her myself! I hope no people who actually matter to you believe her.

            At D-day I knew right away that I had to temporarily become a hard and manipulative person in order to come out of it with my dignity and money intact. So I used my rage to propel me into action. My fw and his whore were both stupid enough to confess in writing as I said I just needed it for closure. Naturally that was a ploy and I totally busted her and used it to extort the lion’s share of the assets from him. Hell yeah, they deserved it and I have zero regrets. You need to be just as scheming and ruthless as these scumbags are or you get screwed. My ex also openly admitted he cheated and was emotionally abusive on Facebook. I had told he we could reconcile if he did that. Surprise, fw! I can lie too. I made sure to get a screenshot of it and send it out to people we knew so it will do him no good to delete it, either. Cheaters tend to underestimate their chumps and we can use that to our advantage.

            Recently a clueless friend of of fw’s was going around saying it looks like somebody has hacked his FB and is saying he beat his wife. I laughed loud and long when I heard that.

        • I laughed so hard at your last sentence.

          That’s how I felt when I got real and stopped being nice. Like, ok, I’m this horrible controlling, insane bitch. OK, I can play that game. Let’s fucking dance!

          • Right on! Give no quarter to and no fucks about the their supposedly hurt fee-fees.
            If you’re going to be falsely accused of being a bitch anyway, you might as well earn it.

            The stupid fuckwit knew that when people seriously mess with me or my loved ones, it’s on. Dumbass says he even thought I might find a clever way to murder him and make it look like an accident if I found out about his affair. Yet he still not only cheated, but did it in front of people we knew, claiming OW was just “a friend from work”, like I’d ever believe he was out in the evenings with some platonic friend I’d never heard of. What a self-destructive whack. I told him I’d like to accommodate his obvious death wish, but even we controlling meany-headed nagging bitch wives have our limits. 😉

      • We were doing couples counseling and I had suspected she was cheating, but in session it was all about “communication”. Then I found her note listing all the items she had taken to a cheap motel for a fuckfest with a co-worker. Very explicit list. I took it with me to our next counseling session, read part of it out loud and then handed it to the therapist. The XW honest, clearly communicated response? “That doesn’t prove anything and I never lied to you!”
        Whatever, but the bright red color your face and neck turned tells me everything.

        • I found a list he kept of his main schmoopies. They are not all on the list. I know names of women he slept with who are not listed there, but the list is of those he considered a significant relationship (as near as I can tell). It is chronological. I am on it and there are many names after mine. I asked klootzak, knowing full well what it was. He didn’t bat an eyelash. He said nothing. Didn’t turn red or anything. Looked right at it and didn’t even shrug. Turned on his heel and walked off as though I hadn’t said anything. If he had said anything or reacted physically at all, I would considered that he might be a human. Absolutely cold.

          • How flat their affect is when you catch them is another red flag. I’m an elementary school teacher, and there are two main reactions from children when they get in trouble: distress (manifested as fear, sadness, or anger), and a disturbing lack of distress. Bored indifference to being in trouble is not normal for a child. That’s what my ex acted like when he was caught.

            We had been together for 7 years when I found naked pictures of just-a-friend on his computer. In a labeled file, alongside many other files with other women’s naked pictures, including mine in a file with my name on it. I look back and feel sad that I ever did that to please him. He was big on getting pictures. I deleted my pictures & when he got home, I confronted him about just-a-friend’s pictures. He sat there with a slightly bored, hangdog expression. His only comment: “Yeah that’s fucked up.”

            Before I had evidence, of course he lied. He gaslighted me into doubting myself and went into devalue & discard mode.

            And therapist who says the route to the truth is to just ask your likely betrayer, is nothing more than a quack.

            Btw, this is a bit random but I have to get it out: I’m so glad I never gave him anal sex. He pressured me in the extreme for that & I wouldn’t give in because it didn’t appeal & I had been traumatized by a 3rd degree tear from my son’s birth. So nope, never gave into that. When I read his old emails during discovery, I found one talking to abother guy about how he gets “bored easily so I train all my women to take a good a$$-fu**ing.” Not me, he didn’t. I would have been devastated to give into that to please him, and only find the pictures later. Will never do anal for any man, and no pictures ever again. Make love, not porn!

            • So the last time I had sex with the FW, it was on my birthday, and it was anal sex. which was not objectionable to me.

              It makes me laugh that that was our last time. I even told him – “that’s what our relationship was, just an ass-fucking, and that’s how I will remember you”.

      • What the hell??? What is WRONG with these people? Why not just LEAVE?

        I guess they get off on lying. ????‍♀️

        • Oh, I know! Why do they do it? My answer, now: Because they can (if chumps follow BS advice like this Huff Post article) and because they’re fucked up. From my Hoovering ex, when I was a couple months NC: “I know my words have about as much weight as a bubble of air at this point, but I am being completely honest when I say there is no one else.” I wasn’t asking! I wasn’t even talking to him and had asked him to leave me alone for eternity. He was still involved with at least one AP.

          Rewind. After dday 1, FW secretly emailed our counselor to tell her he didn’t think it was helpful that I saw his affair as cheating. He was actually indignant about my perception – and furious when the counselor shared this email with me. Never mind that he had been objectively, blatantly cheating. He was also conning the counselor and me, pretending that a several-year double life with multiple APs was “just” an “inconsequential summer fling” while we were “taking a break.” Months later, when I (FINALLY snooping 😉 ) discovered the depth and extent of the cheating, I thought about that (and much more) and was shocked by his bald-faced dishonesty. He did everything he could to cover up seven years of infidelities, AND he attacked me whenever he had the chance. And he would’ve gotten away with it, too, if it wasn’t for this meddling chump!

          In those early counseling sessions, soon after dday 1, I said that I didn’t know what I wanted with him, if anything. I knew what I didn’t want, however: more than anything, I didn’t want to be lied to anymore. I didn’t want to be in a relationship with him if he had any feelings for anyone else or had any reluctance to commit or doubts about me; after all he’d put me through, he at the very least owed me that. He looked me in the eyes and promised. He was still fucking at least one other young woman. Probably texted her as soon as we left the session to cry about how difficult things were with me.

    • Yup. My cheater looked me straight in the eye and lied about it repeatedly, the shameless, conscience-free bastard.

      The proliferation of RIC same shit different day crap just goes to show you that *anybody* can hang out a shingle and be a “marriage and family therapist”. My deaf, half-blind old dog would do a much better job.

      Patient; “Dr Babby, should I just ask her if she’s cheating?”

      Babby; “Aroooooo? Wuff?”

      Patient; “Oh my God, you’re so right! She’s a lying liarface who obviously sucks many, many dicks! I’m seeing a lawyer ASAP!”

      • My ex lied repeatedly also. He denied it the day I confronted him, he married her and she is now Wifetress. 11 years later he is still denying the affair. (Insert eye roll here) If he even confessed, I wouldn’t believe him because he has lied and lied and lied….

        Sometimes you have to take CL advice and “Trust they suck”

      • Hahaha. True story. The one he had the last affair with is a ‘Registered Clinical Counselor’ who introduces herself as a marriage counselor. ????

        • Ha! The one he is having the affair with calls herself a “global relationship expert” on Instagram.

        • This is the first time I’ve read about other people going through this experience. I’ve wondered for a long time about this financial aspect because no one writes about it. Whenever someone writes about financial abuse, it’s always “he doesn’t let her get a job” or he “spends money the family needs on drugs, drinking, or gambling and puts the family in debt.”

          He made enough to keep us comfortable but he resented me for spending any of it. For years, I felt guilty for buying Christmas presents, food for Thanksgiving, throwing birthday parties for our kids, buying household and yard maintenance items, clothes and school supplies for the kids…. on and on and on. He seemed to think this stuff was free or cheap and I was being frivolous. Of course, he almost never shopped, so how would he know?

          One year, he finally joined me in Christmas shopping for the kids. We were in Marshall’s, and he suddenly decided he needed new underwear, so he picked up a package, looked at the price tag, and exclaimed, “Wow! These are expensive!” I swear, I didn’t know whether to laugh or slap him. He didn’t even realize that they were cheaper at Marshall’s than most other places. Yet, he always accused me of spending too much money. And I bought into it. To this day, it feels weird to buy something without worrying that I would “get in trouble,” like he was my father instead of my husband.

          He also hated that I refused to get a job. But I didn’t refuse because I was lazy. I had a job teaching at a community college when the kids were little, and I depended on my mom to help with child care so I could work. I also did 90% of house cleaning, maintenance, and yard work, along with cooking and shopping. He went to work and came home, took out the trash, unpacked the dishwasher, and “helped” with the kids.

          Then he took an offer for a better-paying job in another state and left me to prep the house for the market, pack everything, and make all the moving arrangements, while taking care of the kids and working. We moved to a rental house for a year and then bought a house in a neighboring town, so I literally moved our family of four 2 times in one year. Did I mention the kids were little? Did I mention that he did next to nothing in household labor? He always had to go to work. The weekend of our last move was our wedding anniversary and Easter weekend, but he didn’t bother to schedule time off – and he was the guy in charge! When we finally got settled the 2nd time, I was nearly insane with exhaustion.

          A few weeks later, he tells me I should start looking for another job. We’re new in town, I have no established support system, and I knew how hard it was to work full time, care for little kids, and manage everything else when I had my mom to help me. Now, he wanted me to do it without her?! I said no, and he acted like I was Marie Antoinette.

          That fuckwit should have been thanking me for all my hard work, understanding, and support but, instead, he demands more. Then he resents me because I have boundaries and self-respect. Then, the very next year, he starts cheating, lying and treating me with utter contempt.

          When I think how horrified I was at the thought of “losing” him, I want to go back in time and shake myself. All you new chumps who are raw with pain and trauma, please know that you’re vision is clouded. The abuse you’ve endured is not clear to you yet, but it will be someday and, as much as you wanted them back in the beginning, you’ll wish twice as much that you had dumped them long before you ever went on 2nd date (mutual kids notwithstanding).

          Thanks for giving me a safe place to rant and for letting me know that I’m not alone. I love you, CN!

          • Chump Queen your story is scarily similar to mine.

            Thanks for sharing.

            I hope you’re in a better place now. Hugs to you and to everyone else here ❤️

          • You are so right. Articles I have read have always focused on the FW spending on an addiction and bankrupting the family. I don’t see much discussion of my situation where there is a lot of money but I am made to feel guilty to spend any of it, even though without him, I myself earn close to six figures. But he has a stranglehold on every penny. How dare we want to turn a light on to read or buy new shoes when our old ones wear out (me) or are outgrown (kiddo).

            I have to ask how it has been since you left. You mentioned still feeling like you will “get in trouble” (I use the exact same words) for making a purchase. I’m not out of my situation yet and I worry that when he is gone, I will go through a crazy spending period just because I can. I wonder if I will spend the rest of my life feeling controlled or will finally feel free.

          • I was in a similar situation ChumpQueen. We both had good jobs and a good pay. I have a PhD and work at a university. However he always made me feel guilty for spending money. We always had $0 in our joint account. I was shopping at consignment stores for the kids’ clothes and mine for years. My card was consistently denied when shopping for groceries. I had to call him to let him know, and money would magically appear in the account. The result was that I was afraid I couldn’t afford a lawyer. When I finally did by taking a loan and opened my own bank account to deposit my paycheck I realized how much money I actually had. He’d been disappearing all the money for over 10 years and treated me worse than a child. More than the cheating I will never forgive him the financial abuse.

  • Thank you UBT. Sure you can really trust the cheater to admit to what he/she has done. I have no problem “snooping” especially if the phone or whatever is there to find. He can certainly go through my phone because there is nothing to hide so I don’t care if he looks at it. On the other hand, he takes his devices with him ALL THE TIME. That is not privacy, it is secrecy. There is a difference!!! So what if I find the dick pics that he sends out. Friends always send friends pictures of there private parts, right???? Yep, I tried the RIC and saw the support for cheaters. I can see having privacy but supporting secret keeping, well, that goes against my boundaries. If the cheater doesn’t want snooping, he/she can GTFO and have their own hideout where they can do whatever they want in private without the wife appliance around. Thanks Chump Lady for waking up the UBT!!!

    • I commented on a story on another site where the biggest sin for the readers was that the chump violated the cheater’s privacy when looking for evidence of cheating, which they did find. It’s so ass backward and I had the same response, if there’s nothing to hide why worry. Such a false equivalency but that’s what we’re all about these days, an individual’s right to be sneaky amd not gave anyone call them on it. These people are either naive to the ways of the world, or just plain dumb.

      • So many therapists seem to have been raised in a very benign environment without the seasoning that comes from having encountered people who are not acting in good faith for the mutual benefit of both parties in a relationship. Whatever their experience or intent they take the spirit of therapeutic counselling too literally and aren’t able to identify when a party is a dreaded (I hate this term)’ bad actor’ and is weaponising the therapy for their own selfish reasons.

        • I absolutely will never go to any therapy ever again. I got the whole you have to share the blame narrative and that does not fly. I did not make anyone lie, cheat or steal. I did not make this happen. Do I have flaws? Yes, I do but I am sure my flaws will not make person lie and cheat. I am so glad to find this place where I can feel safe and not have to listen to BS about sharing blame. I much prefer the narrative to just leave the cheater and lead a full and honest life. This site is my therapy because I have not found a therapist who supports chumps.

  • “This would be a total breach of trust”

    “Depending on the answer you receive from your partner”


    That’s all of my attention this Dumbrowski clown deserves. One burst of laughter at her cartoonish audacity. I’m not even going to spend the five minutes to read the original Huffpo clickbait sludge of reeking solids from the bottom of a septic tank. Huffpo can eat my asshole and die of e. coli before I even start to consider giving clicks to gobshite like this.
    Sorry to be indelicate (not really, heh heh), but there’s really no other way to put how I feel about Huffpo and their penchant for posting this kind of stuff.

    “we condition ourselves to ignore that tiny voice inside that says something doesn’t feel quite right”

    Not us here at CN. Not anymore. So we KNOW Dumbrowski is a con artist.

  • Let’s see….
    When you wake up in the middle of the night to feed your newborn, and after using the quiet moment to check your email – you find a list of Craigslist’s adds , pics etc on your h’s computers…. What do u do?
    Should I have waited for the weekend ? Maybe prepare a meal & candles and gently bring the subject?
    Would that work?
    Well, instead- I woke my h and demanded answers- i was completely frozen at the moment
    What happened next?
    My h yelled at me for being irrational snd acting crazy, of course he didn’t do anything with anyone, someone probably hacked his computer
    Saying all that without hesitation – shook me to the core.
    I had a prove- yet, he was telling me that what I was seeing wasn’t there
    Crazy making!

    Therapists without any knowledge about narcissism shouldn’t be giving any advices.

    • Same here. When confronted with solid evidence, FW would stare me down and tut-tut me for being such a untrusting clown and a bad wife. I cried myself to sleep knowing something was wrong but if I ever even broached the topic with him, he would deny everything and gladly inform me that my mistrustful ways were going to ruin our marriage.

      I learned that the only way to figure out what was going on was to stop talking to him about it.

    • Yes, we are the crazy ones. What you saw isn’t what you think it is. Yep, they are so honest you need to believe them when they say they are just friends. Sorry but I don’t send nude pics to my friends. Cheater told me that is what friends do for each other. Really? I have friends too but I don’t think that any of them would like to see a picture of me naked!!!!! So they continue to deny. Meanwhile, you trust your gut and go to see the doctor for a barrage of humiliating medical (STD) tests. Yes, I want to live my life with a cheater and have to subject myself to medical tests because you can’t keep it in your pants. Sorry but I want to live without worrying about an STD. I want to live my life with honesty. I want to live my life without a cheater.

    • That’s worse than a nightmare. And then “saying all that without hesitation”

      Chilling, isn’t it? Just rolls off the tongue. Was pretty incredible to witness once I caught on.

  • So much BS for a Wednesday morning. How do these therapists have credentials and how do rags like HuffPost get used for anything other than cleaning up feces. Cheaters never lie, just ask them.

    • Well, HuffPo is an online outlet and it’s not the only one that promotes the RIC view. Pretty much, it’s everywhere. The UBT will never run out of fodder. Also, I used to publish at HuffPo, so I wouldn’t write them off. We’re trying to change a large narrative.

      • It feels like this article was written for 1952. They left out the “make sure your hair and makeup are on, and he’s had his slippers and a nice cocktail that you’ve prepared for him before you have this unpleasant conversation.”

  • Now let’s read “How to Keep Your Man From Straying.”

    Didn’t you know, Dorothy? You didn’t need the Wizard. You had it inside of you the whole time. You could have stopped the Cheater from cheating. And if you think he cheated — just ASK. It’s all on you. Just click your fucking heels.

    What a bunch of horse shit.

    • Ah yes! Told my cheater he was a cheater and that I’d talked with ow’s husband. He of course denied anything, then said “you are so controlling.” “You’ve just got to let go of some control.” I said in what way am I controlling, he couldn’t name one example. Cheaters all work from the same playbook.

  • This article is… so awful… I just don’t even know where to begin. It definitely is proof of society’s inclination towards victim-blaming (look at how much work the chump has to do! look at how blameless the cheater comes off as! look at how many ways the chump can screw this up and doom the marriage!) and general sense that infidelity is one of those gentle bumps in the road that can be overcome *if* the chump plays their cards right.

    This used to be me. Right in the middle of my D-Days and sorrow, I was yoked to a RIC mindset and I used to think a lot like that stupid article: “This is all on me now; I have to save my marriage!” and “We can survive this and be stronger than ever! We’ll have stories to tell our grandchildren!”

    I don’t know when I finally saw the writing on the wall. I don’t remember if it was triggered by something specific or if it was gradual but eventually I figured out that I did *not* want to be around that man and I did *not* feel good when I was. It was a strange time to be feeling those feelings and painfully growing that spine. I still loved him even as I was divorcing him. Thankfully, time, space, and his appalling behaviour and unkindness towards me helped to extinguish that love.

    That article struck a nerve, I admit. I used to think a lot like that. The world still thinks a lot like that. If I had a nickel for every well meaning (but frustrating!) Facebook meme I saw from undivorced friends that read something along the lines of “People used to work on marriages but nowadays no one communicates anymore. I pledge to always communicate openly with my spouse and work on our marriage. Who here can say that?” to the tune of illustrated teddy bears raising their hands like they’re voting at town council then I’d be a millionaire. I want to comment so badly on each and everyone of those stupid yet innocent memes but I don’t.

    This article, those memes, the whole RIC framework that the world runs on… it all sucks. I’m grateful for those (smaller) spaces that celebrate divorce and independence. The spaces that don’t treat it as something to shake a judgmental finger at like it’s either cooties or an unspeakable sin.

    • Ugh, what a burden. I remember leaving one counseling session feeling particularly confused and defeated. Turning to the counselor after FW walked out, I asked her through tears why I had to do everything. I was so hurt, and it seemed so backwards. She rubbed my back and responded, “Because you’re stronger.”

    • Its. Not about communication!!!
      I was married to a single guy who sometimes spent time with me.

      • Wow! I never thought of it that way. You are absolutely right, Letitsnow. I was too.

  • My daughter asked her Father because I finally shared my suspicions when the adult kids wanted to know why we were starting to argue after such a good marriage (it was all the disappearing acts and disappearing $$ we were fighting about). Of course he said Mom is crazy, I would never cheat on her (for the last 1.5 years with someone younger than daughter). It got worse because of my snooping after the airport Dday, on my 60th birthday, I discovered he was a late life drug addict-amphetamines. Xanax, oxy. Girlfriend may have been supplier IDK NONE of it would have been admitted by him.

    Divorce was signed by judge in July. (Thanks to finding LACGAL)

    • “…for the last 1.5 years with someone younger than daughter”

      One of my husband’s affairs was with someone his daughter’s age. It really is quite disgusting. His affair with this girl lasted 2.5 years.
      I was young once too, and I cannot imagine ever entertaining the thought of having an affair with a married man (regardless of his age).
      I’m secretly happy she knows I exist, has no idea what I look like or what my name is (he did not reveal anything about me to her).
      I however, know what she looks like, her name and where she works. She knows I know this.
      I hope every day she shows up to work she wonders if I am going to come storming through the door.
      This gives me happiness. 🙂

      • I told him as much, how low is her self esteem? The best she can do is an old married guy 33 years older than her? I wouldn’t have looked twice at him. She wore scrubs to the office, I said when you go out after work everyone will assume she’s your home health aide.

        None of our 3 adult children speak to him. He’s got no relationship with the adorable grands. They see a picture come up and say “who is that guy?” . Pitiful

  • I could have said that meme and from my point of view it might have been true, but when you are being spun lie after lie. so the other is deceitful .. the reason most women stayed married in the past even if their husbands were unfaithful, abusive, whatever, is how hard it was to get a divorce first of all for the ordinary person, and then a fair settlement, women couldn’t have their own money, going further back, they couldn’t have custody of their children even if the husband was abusive. If somehow they did manage it, it was frowned upon. The best most could hope for in years gone by was widowhood. As the eighteenth-century Beggar’s opera says ‘The comfortable Estate of widowhood is the only Hope that keeps up a Wife’s Spirits. Where is the Woman who would scruple to be a Wife, if she had it in her power to be a Widow, whenever she pleas’d?’
    If a wife was unfaithful, her life could be made dreadful by her husband, but again the same would apply if she protested against his infidelity
    To a certain extent in the days when marriages were arranged and the wife was basically a brood mare, and male infidelity and taking mistresses were accepted, I can sort of accept female infidelity. With ordinary people maybe the husband being unfaithful took the burden of excessive childbirth off the wife to a certain extent, maybe women accepted it more, but then risked STDs.
    But anyone who thinks that marriages were fairytales in the past is sadly deluded, and memes like that just serve to shame those who are going through hell

  • Even when I was in the throes of this-article-approved self-blame (so much self-blame! exacerbated by openly talking to FW about it!), there was one part of this article I never would have bought into at the time: no snooping.

    Thank God I snooped.

    The hierarchy of sins that’s presented here isn’t unique to just this article. So many people feel this way: infidelity sin score out of 10: ehhhh…. a 6 but snooping sin score out of 10: 10! 10! 11 even!

    It’s bizarre. I see it so many places: “people’s private spheres are sacred and God help you if you invade them”

    FW was furious. So he cheated? So what? It was inevitable because he fell in love. But me…? Me!?! I snooped into his personal messages and emails. “That,” he told me bitterly, “I could never forgive.” One of his texts to a friend (right in the middle of his time dating GF#3/Wifetress) even read “My wife doesn’t trust me and even reads my texts and emails sometimes. It’s horrible. She’s destroying our marriage.” He said that in the middle of an affair.

    I’d chalk it up to him being insane but I found out that, like the RIC, this feeling is fairly prevalent. Adultery is a forgivable sin; snooping is not. The idea of snooping is so taboo that I rarely mention that I did it anymore; I just don’t want the heat.

    I even saw a marriage help article once that said “Know that if you choose to invade your spouse’s privacy and snoop, that you are the one who is digging your marriage’s grave.” I blinked. Me? Not him? He had multiple affairs, drove me to antidepressants, and have me an STD (he told me I got it in the hospital having our second child because “hospitals are full of germs”) but I’m actually worse because I won’t just take his word as gospel and read his emails? I knew it was BS but I felt so, so, so bad about myself.

    Yet, in the depths of the gas-lit cave I was in, I chose to snoop and I’m forever grateful I did. I saw that he was lying to me and that I wasn’t crazy. I may have bought into everything it was selling, once upon a time, but never the no snooping rule.

    Man…. screw this unhelpful, victim-blamey article. It’s got me all worked up. My apologies for the rant. 🙂

    • I too got the wrath of my cheating ex for “invading his privacy”. Nevermind invading my body by screwing someone else and me at the same time. Spending time with OW instead of me. Spending our money on her. Nope. All my fault for looking at his (open) Facebook messenger and email and finding lovey-dovey and sexual messages with his coworker. Who was, of course, “just a friend”. LOL. Clearly I was the one who ruined the trust in our relationship.

    • Glad you snooped. This false equivalence between cheating and snooping fries my ass.

      This reminds me that my ex accused me of “showing my true colors” because I used marital funds (we were still married but living apart) to rent an apartment so that I’d have someplace to live after selling our home. Mind you, he’d used marital funds to rent *his* apartment where he lived with the OW, but I shouldn’t quibble.

      To my ex, my use of marital funds (which my lawyer advised) made me a bad person. This was no different–nay worse–than his two years of fucking around and lying.

      With that act, I’d balanced the scales. Even-stevens.

      I hate the way these cheaters think. I hate that articles like this Huff-Post one support that line of thinking. I hate that legions of poor chumps read this shit and believe it. Thank God for CL for screwing my head on straight. I actually just re-read LAC;GAL. I needed a booster shot.

      • Spinach, I still laugh out loud when I remember the ex calling me ‘obnoxious’ because I said that he had been hiding money. This was after he had suggested that I had not contributed anything to the mortgage. On that one, he had insisted on paying the mortgage in full. I paid all the household bills and overpaid the mortgage by £1,000 per month. On many months I paid 70% of the outgoings even though he was earning more than me (he lied about what he earned and the amount of his bonuses). I had to produce the figures to get him to accept that one. But to call me ‘obnoxious’ for being truthful was laughable. It was almost as if he was trying out lies on himself to see whether he believed them to be true. He knew that he was lying and being offensive. But he needed to test the lie on himself. I feel that he had lied about me so much to the ex gf OW and his friends and obnoxious ???? family that he had to keep testing and pushing and exploring his own lies. Whatever, he looked pathetic in my eyes, which made divorcing him much easier. ‘Obnoxious’ was his projection of himself on to me. Put it this way, he has never been a man to reply on in a crisis – I thought he was obnoxious when he went to work while I was having a miscarriage alone. And he was!

    • I can understand privacy as in allowing me to do my bathroom business with the door shut. Sure that is something you want in private. The phone and other devices should not be off limits. Why should you have to hide things from the person you married, the person you should be able to trust. Anyone could look at my phone and see what I have on it. Yep there are texts to the family, texts to friends, texts from co-workers that are going to be late, are sick etc. , emails with silly jokes, catching up emails, pictures of people with clothing on. The cheater (who has to guard his phone with his life but I still managed to get hold of it and mine info) had nude selfies, pictures of Schmoopie’s genitals, sexual texts, hook up times and places and more. That is keeping secrets or hiding shit. Then they are outraged and because we don’t trust them? Amazing how that works isn’t it? I cannot fathom it at all.

  • A cheating spouse is already lying to you (by omission and/or outright lies).

    How any person can think that someone who has already demonstrated their lack of character by lying, would suddenly find their character and be honest when asked, is having some serious failure of logic.

    • ???????? ????????????????????????
      Well said!
      The HuffPost writer is a”senior lifestyle writer” and a “graduate of UCLA. “ I think it may have been her freshman psych class paper.

    • Exactly!! The hole in that logic is so glaring that my mouth was hanging open as I read it.

      Therapist or no, that kind of thinking is so naive and ridiculous that it’s hard to imagine the writer – or anyone – can seriously believe that a lying cheater will be honest when asked about their lying and cheating.

  • Why give up $180 an hour as a therapist or counslor by cutting to the chase with the fact that a cheater does not possess the faculties to choose love, honor, respect and loyalty to relationship partners? Wouldn’t it be more lucrative to untangle the skein hour by hour for months?

    Trained therapists know that disordered cheaters don’t possess integrity, character or empathy. They know that communication isn’t an interest of the cheater. When lies, deception, theft, scheming, adultery and abuse are present in a relationship – the cheater has revealed his/her disorder(s).

    LACGAL, CN and CL offer far more realistic facts on the reality of cheater abuse. Talk therapy isn’t going to overcome the weakness in a cheater, nor restore character, conscience or courage. Huff Post and the featured therapists above are perpetuating garbage – harmful garbage at that.

  • How many times have we been looked in the eye and told “I would never do that, and you’re imagining things”? Liars are gonna lie! That’s a very strange article for sure.

  • So sick of this victim-blaming narrative that so many of us victims believed for too long. Cheaters are selfish abusers and a marriage takes two invested people to work. End of story. Keep changing the narrative, chump lady.

  • I confronted my cheater and he looked me straight in the eyes and said that he wasn’t cheating. 2 months later by snooping in his computer, I found the picture of his whore in a state of undress. When they are without souls or a moral compass, they can lie straight to your face. The articles is so full of shit written by people who haven’t gone through the actual event.

    • My ex had a picture of his “just a friend” and I asked him why he had a photo of her with a “come hither” look. He got totally offended and said it was a photo she took for her author bio (she thinks she can write) that she wanted his opinion on, and why was I so upset?

      When I was cleaning out his (their) house after he died, I found the rest of the photoshoot – which was OW on a bed in lingerie.

      He looked me straight in the eye and lied to me more times than I can count.

  • Holy moly that is the biggest pile of shit I’ve ever read. I shouldn’t have to “educate” an adult on my integrity. A cheater has no integrity. WE WOULDN’T BE HERE IF THEY DID. My ex didn’t want to be with a person who had integrity. He left me for someone who was on his level (OW was also married) and wouldn’t call him out on his bullshit.

    I DID ask my spouse directly. In fact, I all but told him I knew. I said if he wanted to be with her, he was free to do so. All I wanted was to KNOW so I could make an informed decision about how I was going to live my life. And he (and the howorker) STILL lied to me for almost FOUR YEARS. Because he needed me. He wanted me to keep cooking for him, having sex with him, running his errands, feeding him ego kibbles, cleaning the house, mowing the grass, paying half the bills. And I did do all that, because I “loved” him and I’d bought into the RIC and blamed myself for the fact that he stopped loving me and kicked me out (yes, I kept coming over to the home he’d forced me to leave, with threats to my safety if I didn’t, and doing all those things for him). I pick-me-danced like I was a contestant on Dancing With the Stars. Meanwhile he was planning a future with OW and telling her she was the love of his life (I guess she didn’t know he was still sleeping with me? Or maybe she just didn’t care. I cared. I wouldn’t have let him touch me if I had known he was having sex with anyone else.) I’m sure he used the threat of reconciliation with me to keep OW on her toes, too.

    The only way I found out? I snooped: Facebook messenger, social media, bank accounts. Showing up unexpectedly. Finding letters and gifts. Using my eyes and ears.

    And then I had what I needed to MOVE THE FUCK ON from him.

    And fascinatingly, when the truth did begin to come to light (during the divorce as well as after he died), it turns out I was right about EVERYTHING. So I do agree with one thing: trust your gut. Deep down I knew, in spite of all the lies, stories, paper thin “explanations”, and bullshit. My ex told me I was crazy, but I was right about all of it. Down to tiny details. It was quite vindicating. I had been gaslit for so long, I didn’t trust my gut. But my gut was 100% correct.

    Snoop. Dig. Investigate. The LAST person I could trust to tell me the truth was a cheater and an abuser. He had no interest in making it work with me. But he had no intention of telling me the truth.
    He had nothing to gain and everything to lose by being honest with me. He wove a complex web of lies to keep me hanging on. I gave him an easy out: I told him I’d walk away from the marriage and leave the two of them alone if he just told me the truth. He preferred to string me along and torture and humiliate me. He didn’t care how I felt. My ex watched me falling apart and he and the OW just rubbed their relationship in my face all the harder. They ENJOYED hurting me. They fed on it. Once I stepped out of that mess and left them to each other, their relationship crumbled and she ended up leaving him after they had only lived together a few weeks. In fact, she fled the state to get away from him. After he committed suicide, I found out the real truth about their “fairytale romance”. It was a nightmare. Abusers don’t change. Trust that they suck. Don’t look for healing from the person who is hurting you. Don’t look for truth from a liar.

      • Ditto. Odd comfort in vindicated suspicions, however dark and disappointing- and odd comfort in learning other chumps went through similarly crazy YEARS of their lives. Thanks for sharing that, isawthelight. You’re not alone.

  • I think some cheaters do believe chumps are destroying the marriage because as far as they are concerned, they want the marriage and partner to remain, while they simultaneously have affairs. They want us to continue as wife appliances/husband appliances and keep their status as married so they can enjoy as much cake as they can get from us (and APs) for as long as they want, not to mention the thrill and duper’s delight they get from having a secret affair. Chumps are blamed for breaking up the marriage because we don’t go along with the affairs.
    Cheaters lie to others as well as to us, and not just about affairs. My ex fabricated national awards and an MBA to everyone; to certain audiences he also falsely claimed to be a veteran and an MD (fortunately he never tried to work as a doctor). He blamed his problems keeping a job on his age, which is ridiculous: They hired him in part based on his resume, which showed how long he’d been working, and therefore his approximate age. His problem keeping jobs may have been because he faked his educational credentials and couldn’t do the work. Or maybe his blame-shifting, gas-lighting and other traits were evident at work.

    • I think you are entirely correct. My ex asked me to move back home after a few months and then got angry that I wasn’t “happy to be home” and that was why our reconciliation failed. Nevermind that I was “unhappy” because he would spend all his time with OW, never talked to me, and wanted nothing to do with me unless we were having sex. I think he expected me to be so grateful for my “second chance” that I’d let him have his cake and eat it too. But I was the annoying wife appliance who wanted to know where he was going and who with, the wife who expected him to keep his promises (like having boundaries with the howorker), and didn’t just shut up and do the housework.

  • When I was done asking and pleading for information, exasperated by incongruent stories and explanations, when the shark-eyed lies and blank stares became maddening, snooping saved my sanity.

    When I discovered that my trust, loyalty and devotion were being weaponized and used against me, I came to view snooping as a necessary evil and an empowering, defiant act of self-defense. Did I initially feel guilt and self-disgust for surreptitiously adding my fingerprint to my then-wife’s iPhone to gain access regardless of how many times she futilely changed her passcode, or for velcro-ing a tiny recording device inside a pocket of her handbag? Yes. These acts ran so counter to my nature and made me feel so creepy that I was physically affected. But these acts allowed me to learn more than a sufficient amount of the devastating truth and revealed just how loathsome a character my ex-wife really is.

    The information and insight I gained from snooping allowed me to be much more clearheaded and resolute in the move toward divorce and helped me to remain steadfast throughout the entire divorce process.

    In the end I have no regrets because snooping allowed me to partially correct for the power imbalance that existed. And it’s that power imbalance that all narcissists and sociopaths thrive on.

    • GDD, I am with you. Yep it felt kind of creepy to snoop and read all their crap. I honed my detective skills so much that I never though was possible. All was on the up and up since I knew that passwords and most was on the family computer. Everything was promptly saved, printed and provided to my lawyer. It was a goldmine.
      The hurtful part was how the cheater would talk about the chump. You would think that we were the worst creatures put on the earth. We just make them so miserable, etc. etc. My God if you were that miserable in the marriage, why in the hell did you stick around? Why didn’t they tell us years ago so we could both move forward and find happiness. No, they would much rather create their little fantasy world and live two lives. What a waste. Once I discovered all this crap, it became easier for me to start the process and let go of the sham. I look at like I am now giving him the opportunity to commit to his twu wuv.

  • I mean, some of us are actually THAT stupid.
    I had pathological levels of trust in my EX.
    He basically all but confessed his many affairs to me and I was too high on the trust hopium to register the red flags.
    There was the time where he was at a concert and he had a great time chatting with the band afterwards. He talked to the lead singer until 3:30am, she even invited him back to her hotel but he told me he said no, he has a partner. I was too damn secure to feel jealous of the fact that he was talking to women in bars at 3:30am and I absolutely believed it was just talking.

    Then the time he was with his female best friend, and they were walking in the rain, and stopped to talk under a street lamp light at 2am for an hour and it was so deep and nice. I admit I used to feel jealous of the best friend but it never occured to me that there might be anything more than attraction on his side

    Then there was the time he went to a dance festival and spent the whole night dancing with a woman he used to hook up with, before we met… she asked him to go home with her, he said no he has a girlfriend. I believed him.
    Then he went and visited that same woman in her town, and they just met for dinner and drinks. I believed him
    Now they are together and that’s how I know that I can’t trust myself for 5$ worth of bucket crap

    I am more attractive than he is, friendlier and more sociable. He used to tell me he’s jealous of how sympathetic I come across to people. I never got asked to go home with a man, neither at a bar, nor at a concert, nor at a dance event.

    CN, if your partner’s stories always involve him/her getting propositioned by the opposite sex and them saying no, they are the ones likely doing the propositioning.

    • It’s so interesting. Before we were married, only a couple of years in to our relationship, when he had just dragged me from one city where I’d been for years to London leaving all my friends behind, we were at his brother’s wedding in a European country. At the party, I happened to turn my head and saw the ex with his arm around the waist of a random woman. There was one thing about the way he was holding her. She wasn’t objecting. And I knew then that this man was capable of having affairs no matter how loyal he said he was. I chose to ignore what I saw. The possibility of affairs came up from time to time, when there were odd incidents. I trusted him because that’s who I was. I trusted people, especially those I loved. I’ve changed though and I trust few people now. The ex has very strong traits of a passive aggressive covert narcissist. Nobody could believe that he had been having an affair for 10 years plus, so they didn’t believe me. Those people bought into his ‘she’s crazy and I can’t take it any more’ routine. That’s ok. I know he’s a liar and I don’t care about people who judge me. That’s another big benefit of the carnage. Judge me all you like. I know who I am.

      • MightyWarrior, you are mighty! The best thing about CL and CN is that it released me from caring about all those Switzerland friends. As was featured in yesterday’s post, friends don’t want to believe that this can happen to them as well, so they try to find ways to blame you.

        It was the same for me. After D-day, I did the pick-me-dance for 4 days. Then my sister said he has no respect for you and it’s only going to be worse from here. I bawled my eyes out for 2 days and then I broke up, went NC and did not open my mouth about it to anyone except my closest friends.

        Lots of people came forward with malicious reports about him isolating during the first lockdown with the AP, lots of people were hoping for some drama or juicy details. Many people wanted me to talk about MY share of the accountability for his cheating. Everybody was feeding like vultures off my pain.

        Definitely one thing I am grateful for post D-Day is getting to know the truth of everyone around me, who I can trust and who I should stay away from.

        • Thank you CLH. Yesterday was what would have been my 20th wedding anniversary. The day went better than I expected. Good for your sister, for speaking the plain truth. And you are mighty too, for putting boundaries in place so quickly. I appreciate your analogy of people being like vultures feeding off your pain. There’s this slow realisation that this is what’s happening. You see that hungry look on the face and a weird eager glint in the eye. A wet twist of the lips. It sends shivers down the spine. I refuse to look at his or her social media. I refuse to mention his name to anyone except my therapist. Sometimes I can see people almost exploding with the desire to tell me something. If I can’t shut that down, I walk away.

          The HuffPo article misses many points. One is that asking the cheater whether they have had an affair, sometimes repeatedly asking, feeds their ego. They get the pleasure of lying to your face. It gives them an extra buzz. The ex got sexual satisfaction from my pain. It made him feel powerful (and he was an inadequate man, albeit superficially successful). He was feeding off me too. I now understand better that if I have to ask the question the relationship is dead regardless of the answer. The question does not need to be asked in a healthy relationship.

          • hey MW,
            I went through the same cycles of asking him what’s wrong, crying because I felt something was wrong and he would just look at me without saying anything, feeling like I am crazy or unhinged because I had the feeling something was really off but no evidence to back it up.

            The relief of knowing I was not crazy was very important post D-Day. I thought I was crazy for 6 months, until I discovered the truth of it all.

            • I remember FW being angry at me because he found that I had kept the evidence of his cheating. I think he worried I was going to divorce and use it against him. In hindsight, I wish I had because all the proof I had is useless now as it’s too dated and I stopped snooping years ago to get new stuff because I didn’t want to torture myself further. I had my proof of who he really is and what he is really about. I told him right in a therapy session that I kept that stuff because after YEARS of him lying to me and gaslighting me saying my suspicions were all in my head, it was so validating to have real proof that I hadn’t been crazy one bit. I had proof he was a cheating liar. I am not sure if I will ever destroy the cache of evidence because it was the stuff that showed me the reality he had hidden from me for years. It was the key that unlocked the prison he had kept my mind in. The RIC had kept me mindfucked a few more years but then the next D-day (wish I had kept all of THAT evidence) broke me from thinking of “us” to thinking of me versus him. That was the D-day that I mentally unmarried him and gave up on him.

              How mindfucked would I still be had I not snooped? I DID ask him directly more than once. Shocker: he lied!

  • Ah yes, the old “when you are in a high stakes poker game with a more experienced player, lay all your cards on the table so they know exactly how to defeat you” advice.

    Personally, I feel that getting married is volunteering to give up your privacy to another person – that is what trust and intimacy is. There is no “snooping” in a marriage. Any spouse should be fine with “trust but verify.”

    • Agree 100%. You become completely vulnerable to that person: emotionally, physically, financially. Your children are vulnerable to them, too. So yes, you have a right to look at their phone, their computer, bank statements, etc. And they shouldn’t care. They should be happy to reassure you within reason, and having an open phone & accounts policy is within reason.

      I remember when early in our relationship, my cheating ex once wanted to look at my credit report, to verify that I wasn’t a serial spendthrift or something. This was after I told him I had defaulted on a loan, back when I was barely scraping by as the underpaid schoolteacher single mother of an autistic child (who required a lot of therapy – $$$) No problem in my book- I just ordered a credit report and showed him my mostly good history, with the one explainable blip. It didn’t offend me because it was an understandable concern, and I had nothing to hide.

      But later on, when I wanted to look at his phone… Oh no, how unreasonable and controlling I was.

      So yeah, I won’t get involved with another man who keeps his devices secret. Or who has a close female just-friends who he likes to have breakfasts & lunches out with… I am so over close just-friends. Be close friends with a guy, instead. The opposite sex should be at arm’s length once you’re in an exclusive relationship.

  • Try an icebreaker like “Are you fucking escorts at lunch?”

    Dammit. Stupid me. I wish I read this article years ago. I would’ve asked this question, because that’s EXACTLY what he was doing.

    Next time I get married, I’ll be sure to ask this question verbatim immediately.

  • FW and I had a 2 year reconciliation period, and the therapist told him that he had to truthfully answer any question I asked him to build trust. And I was supposed to believe him (which I did at first). He was gung ho for a reconciliation and said he would do anything for a chance to be the husband I deserved. We were doing yard work one day and I asked him about the lies and how many lies it took for the double life and what else did he lie about? He said to me:

    You know how you breathe? How you breathe without thinking? That’s how I lie. I lie like you breathe.

    I so wish I had called it quits then, but what he said was such an awful truth, I actually respected him and trusted him more for telling me. And that is exactly why he said it to me – it was another manipulation tactic. And of course now he lies to the community. He says, “I made a mistake and KathleenK has anger issues and can’t forgive. And I did fall out of love with her long ago.” People hug him when they hear his sad story.

    • My ex-wife had five affairs (that I know of) and tells people that the reason we broke up is because I was angry all the time and couldn’t forgive. Never tells anyone what I was actually angry about and also tells the few people that had actually heard about he affairs that she never actually had them, and that I was making the affairs up to justify my own anger.

      It’s really incredible how all these FWs are the same. The exact same.

    • Hand raised for the anger stuff as well. I did have some anger. I mean, who wouldn’t when their life is being gaslit by an uninvolved cheating asshole? The timeline gets blurred to however it suits them best.

  • Do you any of you guys remember the feeling of guilt when you first started searching for clues?

    I remember going through his phone, his computer, looking through his car, pockets, just looking for something to validate what my gut was screaming at me.

    My heart would POUND out of my chest. Not because I was worried about what I might find, but because I was worried that he might find out that I was doing something (snooping) that I knew was wrong.

    When I finally found what I was looking for, it was heartbreaking, but also sort of rewarding. I wasn’t insane.

    How he managed to fuck whores during his lunch break without HIS heart beating out of his chest knowing he was doing something wrong just proves to me what an absolute inhuman monster that motherfucker was.

    God, I’m so glad those days are behind me. What a complete and total mindfuck that all was.

    • Yes, felt horribly guilty. Then I reframed it as “safety seeking behavior “ instead of “snooping.”

      • Followed by the reframe: What a miserable existence. If I need to “snoop” to be safe, it’s over.

        I felt justified by the time I finally “snooped.” After falling for promises of affection and equality if I returned, only to be greeted by padlocks on doors and worsening mindfucks, I took matters into my own hands with a clear conscience. How momentarily satisfying to unscrew the latch holding the padlock to find FW’s old phone sitting there on a note with his passcode. One of the last times we laughed together was when he asked how I managed to hack his phone…

    • I was always breathless with heart pounding, afraid of being caught. I felt no guilt about looking. He was acting in ways that didn’t add up and didn’t match what he was saying.

      He has an old phone he upgraded from last year that I wish I could get into. 6 digit passcode. I don’t need peace of mind anymore; now I’m out for fresh evidence. What I wouldn’t give for a hacker friend. lol

  • Can anyone explain to me why things like “snooping” or being a “tattletale” are wrong?

    I really have never understood. My kid once got told by a teacher not to “tattle.” Uh, why not? Why do we keep these cultural rules that protect the guilty?

    • Because bullies run the world and cowards learn to appease them. The human race is a mess.

  • Mr. Sparkles NEVER admitted to cheating… because he controlled the flexible definition of cheating by his own broken moral compass.

    “I left the hotel before the hooker got there” – Not cheating
    “I just have those personal ads for fun” – Not cheating
    “We’re just friends, we met at the gym and didn’t start dating until you/I separated” – Not cheating

    He left family vacations early to return to work emergencies (non-existent in his career)… he apparently used PTO for half-day trysts so he could always be home on time… he skipped parenting duties on weekends like playdates/birthday parties so he could do home chores (or go see a Craigslist hook-up)… all NOT CHEATING.

    Sorry folks, my experience was that he was not ever going to admit to cheating… even when I had the evidence from spyware on his computer, phone records, hotel receipts… YOUR GUT DOESN’T LIE… PROOF DOESN’T LIE… Cheaters… lie.

  • Echoing what many have said: After months of being suspicious and acting like King Chump, I asked my ex-wife outright if she was cheating with the guy who is now her husband. She said no.

    So I trusted my fucking gut as the UBT article suggested… AND I hacked her email account and discovered the truth. Zero regrets for “breaching trust” It saved my ass.

    The end and fuck all of you psychotic people who think abusers would stop only if their victims just asked.

  • Hmmmm. Can I sue the HuffPost for posting this absolute drivel? I did EVERYTHING they recommended, in the exact way they recommended. Oh, and it didn’t work.

    Such horseshit. A liar is going to lie. “Are you watching porn?” “No” (yes). “Are you flirting with other women?” “No” (yes). “Are you having an affair?” “No” (yes – actually also having hookups and purchasing prostitutes).

    Yes, pay attention to your gut. I believed the FW when I asked him directly several times if he was having an affair, and believed him when he said, “No”. I didn’t go searching, even though my gut was screaming something was up. I didn’t invade his precious “privacy”. Trust is what it is all about, right???

    My gut screamed to the point of a chronic serious illness. I am highly empathetic/intuitive by nature, but tried to shut that down in an attempt to believe his lies. He had me so cowed he didn’t even attempt to hide his mountains of emails from the OW (plural). He trusted I wouldn’t look.

    When he finally came clean about his double-life, I DID look, and was physically ill by what I saw.
    This article hits the nail on the head. Thank you to whomever posted it originally.

  • Guts are one of the best divining rods for suspicion. The head can be fooled, the heart is a fucking moron,but the gut will nearly always steer you to the truth. Furthermore why do people assume that snooping is somehow a marital deal breaker? I claim no blanket right to privacy nor do I grant one in a marital relationship. Knowledge is king and its a no holds barred quest. People with nothing to hide hide nothing

    • “The head can be fooled, the heart is a fucking moron,but the gut will nearly always steer you to the truth. “

      Deep wisdom here. Might have to be me epitaph.

  • I asked mine if he was having an affair several times. His reply was “why would I have an affair when I’ve got you?” Or “when would I have time to have an affair – I’m always working”.

    Looking back neither or those answers were a clear straight no. George Simon taught me that one.

    In fact, he had an affair for more than a decade and spent 7 years pretending to Flossie that we were divorced. When I found out, we’d just taken out an enormous mortgage so he had every intention of keeping the deception going. That was what made it exciting.

    Me, I wish I had snooped on him. I wish I’d stuck a recorder in the car, phoned hotels he claimed to be staying in on business trips, looked at his phone. It would have got me years back. But I’m a chump and I trusted him. He knew they and exploited it ruthlessly.

    This advice is total horseshit. They lie about cheating to avoid consequences no matter how “open” you are about raising it. Liars gonna lie.

  • Here’s a good laugh…..

    After I’d already seen the messages between my ex and his whore ex gf, who he’d kept around our entire relationship (did I mention she married husband #5 during our relationship?), I decided to ask him something fairly benign to see if he’d lie.

    I asked him if he’d had any contact with ex gf’s. Boy…the look on his face. .pure panic. He muttered someone about there maybe being one somewhere on LinkedIn. I asked him if they were on FB (since I knew he’d just messaged her) and he lied and said no.

    That’s when I knew. What followed was more lying, changing his story based on what he realized I knew, feigning memory loss, bullshitting, throwing tantrums because I didn’t believe him…you get the picture. No problem at all lying…for a conflict avoidant image obsessed phony lying is no problem.

    Fast forward months…after more bullshit and worthless counseling….I finally tell him I want a divorce. He proceeds to cry and beg…..note that HE had threatened divorce when I wouldn’t rug sweep, but he didn’t really want one. He was ok using it as a bullying tactic.

    So now the papers are sitting on the judge’s desk waiting to be signed and I’m making plans to move out with my kids.

    I’d taken to staying out with friends a lot to avoid his phony bullshit. Scumbag looks me in the face and asks if I’m “cheating” on him. Says he “trusts” me to tell the truth.

    Ha ha ha…as if I owed him anything at that point. Papers have been signed asshole…I can fuck whoever I want. In reality I wasn’t fucking anyone…it was just none of his business.

    Some fucking nerve these assholes have.

    I did replace him not long after though with someone closer to my age (ex was a lot older) better looking, has real hair (as opposed to ex’s shitty toupee) and can actually keep it up.

    As far as I hear ex I’d still texting whore in secret and is otherwise alone.

  • I asked the ex several times during the discard whether he was having an affair. He said ‘no’ every time, though with hindsight he was rather vehement and shouty about it. I trusted him and would never have looked at his phone, IPad, or rooted through his stuff. I was blindsided when he announced he was leaving (after a week away with his ex gf although he shouted at me that he needed ‘headspace’ and was going away ‘on his own’). He consistently denied an affair from then on in, including when I found the emails on the home computer purely by chance. I will never forget how I felt when I saw them and then read them. Printing them off was agony. I felt sick just touching the paper. But he continued to deny with the words ‘truth and perception are not the same thing’. In this case they were though. He has never admitted the affair. I divorced him citing the, at least, emotional affair as one allegation of unreasonable behaviour. It is possible that he believes that he should have married her and that on that basis he did not have an affair with her but with me. For 26 years! But he is disordered so who knows what he believes. I believe that he is an abusive liar and cheater and that’s all that matters to me. I need no more proof than two emails and his actions to know what he is. I truly hope that the ex gf is enjoying her prize as much as I’m enjoying not having him in my life (no kids so I am completely no contact and have been for 18 months). They deserve each other with all that being together entails. It must be fun being them ????

  • I asked my Ex point blank about cheating, finances, cell phone records, secret Facebook accounts, you name it…and he looked me right in the face and said he had no idea what I was talking about and that I was hysterical and losing my mind and needed to calm down, while I had the physical proof in the form of screenshots, credit reports and financial documents and was literally waving all of it in his face.
    Yeah sure, cheaters are just going to say, Yup, you got me, I AM cheating, gaslighting and manipulating you, oopsie.
    The RIC is a fucking joke and re-traumatizes the actual Victims of the cheating and lying. These people aren’t “therapists” they are enablers who want your money.

    • Me: I’m worried and upset because you said you you’d come 100% clean and were being completely honest, but you’re still lying to me. You were calling her and trying to meet up with her, even then. Why did you lie about that, and what else are you still lying about?

      FW: No, I wasn’t.

      Me: Yes, you were.

      FW: No I wasn’t.

      Me: Remember, I saw it all. I can show you, if you need proof. Why are you lying.

      [time for pity/rage channel]

      “I’m trying! I’m not perfect! What’s the point of bringing up all of this humiliating shit? It’s over. Why are you doing this to yourself?! It’s like you’re whipping yourself! What’s wrong with you?”

  • I asked the Asshat many times about what he was doing and why. About whether we were OK in our empty nest. About why he was staying out all night and with whom. About the obvious presence of an OW#2 in our marriage, years after the first affair.

    I asked and asked and asked, in every direct way I could.

    He lied. Not only did he lie, he raged at me while he did it. I thought he would kill me as he towered over me, bellowing at the top of his lungs that there Was No One Else and that he was sick of my fucking asking. Couldn’t I see that I was just so awful and he had to escape? That everyone agreed I was the worst person with my judgmental and controlling ways? He had 70 pounds and a foot of height on me and could easily snap my neck.

    When later challenged about why he lied he said I couldn’t handle the truth.

    As far as he was concerned I could handle the sudden, callous abandonment without even a conversation ahead of time. I could handle finding out that my marriage of 3 decades was over in an e-mail, no problem. I could alone manage the disposal of 30 years of accumulation and the fixing of our massive house for sale, easy peasy. I could handle the heart wrenching solo explanations to our family and friends about our marriage suddenly ending, that was a breeze.

    But hearing from him in advance, that he wanted out? That was more than I could take according to him. A bridge too far.

    He is a lying piece of shit. A coward. A monster.

    Looking back I am grateful that I survived it at all.

    Shannan Watts asked a direct question and paid with her and her babies’ lives.

    • I think the Petito autopsy announcement has me thinking dark thoughts. Strangulation in domestic violence is usually done in a fit of rage without forethought.

      In any case, the article is just more blame shifting. Your failure to ask, your failure to walk the balance beam with aplomb, you-you-you needed to do everything perfectly. You can be sure cheating is abuse when you have to behave like a battered spouse, walking that delicate line so as to not upset them.

      I am sure Christopher Porco looked into his mom’s ax-cleaved face and declared he was innocent. Maybe she didn’t ask directly enough.

      Yeah, I think I need to turn off the true crime shit today.

    • The circular logic of lying because “I didn’t want to hurt you”/“you couldn’t handle the truth”/“I was afraid of what you’d do” is such blame-shifting word salad.

  • “Go ahead and share your suspicions! Give ’em a head start to get that burner phone and start siphoning cash…”

    Haha– wail. This cuts right to the stupidity of the RIC therapist.

    I can’t wait for the UBT to review the remake of “Scenes From a Marriage,” but I’m afraid there aren’t enough cookies in the world to make it worth sitting through that drek.

    I heard the director reversed the cheater/betrayed roles from Ingmar Bergman’s original, making the husband the chump in the remake. Reviews are calling the flip “feminist.”

    Yeah, I’d fall for a similar role reversal in the case of dv or rape and call it “feminist” when the effects on the victim were minimized. Ugh.

  • I was this moron. I thought if I was just completely open and honest and communicated everything would be fine. I even let my ex have the open relationship. He could screw other women as long as he didn’t lie to me. That’s literally all I asked for, don’t lie to me and don’t make an ass of me please. He lied to me about everything. He introduced me to “work friends” who were his fuck buddies. He lied about where he was constantly, even stuff as stupid as telling me he was in a different store than he was in. He lied about what kind of coffee and cookies he liked or didn’t like. He knew lying was the one thing that would really, really hurt me so he did it as much as he could. And it’s so absolutely crazy and senseless that most people don’t believe me, so he has “plausible deniability” which is one of his favorite phrases.

    So fucking stupid and such a waste of time. Fuck articles and therapists like this that encouraged me if I just stayed honest and kept communicating things would be fine. He and our “friends” were all fucking and sucking behind my back and laughing at how stupid I was. For 20 goddamn years. I told one of MY friends when I started finding everything out and she said, “He literally had no reason to lie, he just lied because it was fun for him to abuse you. They all did, they’re all sick fucks.”

    Cheating isn’t about sex, it’s about abuse. And communicating with abusers does not fix them. They will just use that vulnerability against us.

  • If Benedict OJ Madoff said the sky was blue I’d have to verify it.

    I do not ask. I verify. And I verify whatever the hell I want to verify that makes me feel better and will not qualify me for jail. I have a right to make myself feel better in any fricking way I want after 27 years of being held hostage in a mirage by Mr. Secrets and Lies. Anybody who has been lied lied lied to has my support doing the same. If it cannot be verified I disregard it. The therapists in my life support verifying. It’s a consequence liars have to deal with. Sorry bro, but if you lie I get to verify.

    Our family therapist became my therapist after she fired him for lying. She said to me at a session after that, “This was all because of him lying.” I said, “Everything?” She said, “Everything.” She had a front row seat to our “marriage”
    for eleven years and she knows what went on inside and out.

    He still lies. To EVERYONE. To our daughter. To himself.

    It is insane to peddle the notion that someone who is deceiving you will tell you the truth if you just ask. Any detective knows that. Sweet smoking Jesus.

    I never got my psychology degree. I studied at UCSB and dropped out. I lived next door to one of my professors. This was in the early 80’s and his conduct with female students would get him fired or jailed today. Having a degree and hanging up a shingle doesn’t mean your own shit is together, which is exactly why I dropped out. I was not a well person at 19 and decided to get my own wayward ducks under control first. I have had very good luck finding great therapists to help me over the years and I am still in contact with both of them….still a client of one and the original, who moved away and whom I regard as my adopted mom, talks with me every week for free. She knows Benedict and the relationship well, and it has been a godsend and a sanity saver to have her memory of events when he rewrites history, which is all the time….

    It is true that I need to refrain from ripping someone’s head off if I want them to keep talking, but this is where I took a page from his How To Fake Being Friendly playbook. Talking to him is akin to interrogating a criminal, so I act accordingly. Listening to interrogation techniques by veteran homicide detectives is where I got my tips for talking to a cheater.

    If you need to gather intel, you can be nice as pie to their face while keeping the plans from your war room to yourself. But don’t bother believing anything they say. Believe what you can verify.

  • So true. There was a memorable line from the old series “Six Feet Under” when Brenda is caught rampantly cheating by the musician she’s dating and she lamely tries to argue that it’s just about sex. He responds, “It’s not sex, it’s betrayal. That is your f**king addiction.”

  • Why do these journalists think that the cheater will tell the truth when confronted?

    Ex-Mrs LFTT lied through her teeth and swore on her father’s grave that she wasn’t having an affair when I confronted her; no surprise there. I was surprised, however, that she lied to her legal team and the Judge in our divorce; again, because she thought that she could pull off her enduring “none of this sh*t ever happened, even the stuff you can prove beyond any doubt and it’s all LFTT’s fault” narrative.

    This did not end well for her. By the time we were done and the divorce was settled the judge was pretty p*ssed off with her even her own legal team were pretty much refusing to speak to her.

    HuffPo should redo the article and title it “Cheaters lie when they get found out and will likely keep on lying regardless of the evidence that they are cheaters.”


  • Yeah, such a bs article. Just ask them! Why didn’t we think of that?!Unreal.
    My son did when he was back in HS and out fishing with his dad. There was a woman hanging around watching his dad clean the fish and my son had a really odd feeling in his gut about it. He very nervously got up the courage to just come right out and ask him, “ are you cheating on mom?”
    His dad responded without a single breath of hesitation “no, of course not, I would never cheat on your mom!”
    That woman we found out 10 years later, was skank number three( at least) he’d been with her for the past 6 years and going strong. That incident still haunts my son, he completely idolized his dad, no man was more capable, impressive or amazing in his young life to look up to on just about every front. It’s just so sick and impossible to understand.
    There is nothing and no one that can stop them from lying countless times to your face to protect their perverse worlds. Lying is essential to the continuation of the game. They lie so much, the truth doesn’t even exist any longer, they cleared it away, the narrative takes on its own life. Truth vanishes along with their souls into the dark hell they’ve created to live in. It’s so scary, dark and I do believe evil, that ppl don’t know what to do with it at all. The fixers ignorantly imagine it’s a repairable dilemma and with the right skills and mindset, an equally delusional belief as we well know.
    It just sucks that the only way to become a convert to chumpdom is to be scorched to the earth themselves, and then they would understand. I wouldn’t wish that on anyone really, I just wish there was a way for ppl to just get it.
    It’s amazing to me how the discoveries continue many years after it’s over. I just got another from this post today. My cheating ex spent all kinds of money on his mistresses, cars, trips, $200 bottles of wine at dinner, clothes, jewelry, he was even looking to buy a townhouse in Maine to use as a pumpkin shell ( “ to keep her very well”) to store one of them while he searched out another. Our joint checking acct was always low and, even though I was pretty frugal and did not extravagantly spend( unless in his company, he always flaunted wealth). It made me so financially anxious, I could not figure it out and I always felt we were just getting by the way we were living and it was uncomfortable for years for me. I now know he purposely created that delusion to keep me in the dark, just where he could operate best. Honest, loving and trusting ppl do not have the band width to pick up on the level of abuse these ppl inflict.
    I did ask him many times if he was cheating and a story I always swallowed would come out of his mouth.( it’s someone I golfed with at a work outing, I just picked up her dog at the vet after surgery when she couldn’t, the sexy boots that aren’t my size in his closet?, it’s a joke for a co-worker, the 2-4 night a week business dinners? I always felt bad for how hard he worked at his job and did so much more at home to be supportive. He hated lipstick and perfume and I stopped wearing both at his request, even though I loved them myself. I think that was so my scent wouldn’t make his mistress of the week any wiser to his charades. There are so very many ‘tells’, I doubt I could even recall them all. Trust that they suck and trust that they are liars that lie.

  • Mr. Sleazy was already involved with the OW when he met me, when he moved in with me, when he lived with me for ten months, and he kept her existence a secret from the start. I asked him several times before even getting involved with him, about his life; he specifically mentioned her and others as EX- girlfriends who he was no longer involved with. I also specifically asked him what kind of relationship he wanted with me–poly, monogamous, what? He specifically said he wanted us to be exclusive. I found out about the other woman by accident, when looking for a good photo of him online. I asked a friend of mine to do some digging, as my friend was on all the social media sites and I was not on any. His facebook page turned out to be vestigial, there was no relationship information on it at all, which is a red flag in itself given how he took lots of photos of our life together. But my friend also found tons of evidence elsewhere online that he had already been in a long-term relationship with the other woman that was still going on throughout our relationship, that the OW was well-known to his family (hated by them, actually, as she helped break up his marriage with small children involved) and well known to his colleagues. He had kept me from meeting his family by saying that they had stopped speaking to him after his divorce (plus they lived abroad), and from socializing with any of his colleagues because he said he worked 11 hour days and that he wanted to give all the rest of his time to me! Lucky me. And actually, I did all the things to build up to the reveal conversation that the article advised–I told him I had just gotten some really interesting news, took him for a nice dinner out, lots of pleasant conversation and smiles masking my shock and cold rage, then we came home for coffee after, and I calmly took out a folder of printouts of all the evidence of his cheating from online. I started by mildly asking him about smaller things my friend had found that he had hidden from me, and he lied to my face! Each time, I then handed him the printed evidence that he was lying. His excuses for the lies were absolutely lame. By the time I got to the sheaf of printouts about his long-time and continued relationship with the OW, including photos of them together with detailed posts written by her about the start and continuing progress of their relationship, he realized he was busted even before I pulled any of them out of the folder, yet even then he kept lying about details. He lied to the end about any detail he thought he could lie about.
    I had asked him outright if any other women/men were in his life, some four times, once before and some times during in the beginning stages of the relationship as we became progressively more intimate. I also asked later because he was away at a weekend conference and never called me.
    He had always maintained that he was not in any other relationship, and that we were seeing eachother exclusively, and that that was what he wanted.
    The author of that article has obviously never experienced the shock of finding out that you were in love with some one who told so many lies about their life and basic nature, that it is as if the person you loved never really existed. I never really knew him until D-day. I grieved a man who I thought he was, a man who never existed. He was a very, very skilled liar.

  • Wow, I wonder if the criminal justice system has this figured out. Just ask the lying thief/rapist/murderer; they will tell you the truth. Liars always tell the truth when asked calmly and respectfully.

  • We separated, and he chose to go many states away, effectively abandoning the marriage and parenting responsibilities. Being a “good” wife I even packed his blue pills and hormones for him. He told me that if he cheated during separation, it would be my fault. His family told me the same.

    I took hopium for a year, thinking I could somehow make myself into what he wanted, but after a year I gave up. I began to see how nasty and irresponsible it was to take off and blame me for the problems. Of course, I had problems and could name things I wished I could do differently, but he burned down the house. I got a lot of therapy, figuring that divorce was inevitable, and doubled my job-hunting and career development efforts.

    It took some months, but he finally was cagy and wanted to schedule a phone call to “tell you something important.” I was prepared for some combination of “I want a divorcee” and/or “I’m in love.” At the time I was in school and had three part-time jobs, so scheduling was difficult. He blew up over that. OK, duly noted. He’s got something so important that he’s not willing to work around his wife’s jobs and classes that she needs because she can’t make it on his support. He’s definitely writing me off. BTW, he’s retired, so it wasn’t like he was working around a job.

    So he said he wanted a divorce. OK, I had no idea how I was going to afford that, but a relative and a friend had offered to help. By then, I knew it had to be. Then I asked if he had been faithful. He said yes and changed the subject.

    Later, my attorney suggested a PI because it was looking like we were headed to trial. His attorney hinted at “dirt” that he didn’t want to deal with in a trial, which my attorney took as adultery. I refused because I was barely paying my legal bills but said that if we ended up booking a trial date, I would do that. Well, we settled out of court with drama, and then went into yet more drama in closeout. All along my legal team said they “smelled” another woman and guilt, but I never found out for sure.

    It really didn’t matter in the end. I was done for a host of reasons and am quite happy on the other side. Our kids were in college when he left and want nothing to do with him. So it is.

  • As Caroline Myss professes, ” intuition is clear, immediate, and has no emotion to it. It’s a quick flick and then it’s done.” This is all I had for 26 years. Of course I asked and he answered with the ” I have never and I would never cheat on you” but I watched every time the subject of cheating was brought up on TV I could see it on his face and I knew. So I become hyper vigilant, as I watched and waited for something to give a solid clue. Nothing. Then one day I said ” if you will just tell me the truth, put me out of my misery about wondering I will give you a free get out of jail card, no consequences.” And finally he said he had sex one time with someone else. I said ” take off your ring we are no longer married. ” He had the unmitigated gall to reply ” you lied.” After much discussion it turned out to be a double life of many years of cheating.

  • I read so many articles like this after d-day, and followed so much of that stupid advice. What on earth was I thinking to even believe any of that! He of course denied everything. The person that had been having a double life is not going to confess when confronted, they don’t give up so easily. In what I’ve learned cheaters only confess if caught in the act or with evidence that they cannot wiggle out of. My cheater just learned what I knew, closed those loops and became more secretive and “better” cheater. Take CL’s advice and say nothing, as hard as it is, and gather as much as you can. I had a lot of great opportunities, but didn’t save the evidence. At the time I din’t know what hookup apps looked like, I know really naive but I had been married and with children when those came onto the scene. I was happily oblivious of all of that. Meanwhile my stbx apparently enjoys them and would hide pictures in a calculator vault app. He eventually turned to secret email accounts and burner phones, just could never fully prove it all. Just separating and walking away. Cheaters won’t tell, this article it total bs.

  • Hooboy.
    Ask a liar and a cheater for the truth?

    These people got rocks in their head.

  • Man that article is dumb. These so called therapists too, or really really dishonest ????

    Don’t get me wrong, I did ask my FW why he wanted a divorce and expected a truthful answer at some point. In retrospect though that makes no sense. Liars lie, cheaters cheat, nothing one can do about it. It’s not like they will suddenly see the light and tell the truth when in the right context, with the question phrased exactly right ????.

    • “ It’s not like they will suddenly see the light and tell the truth when in the right context, with the question phrased exactly right”

      Didn’t stop me from trying! I do NOT mis that flavor of rumination. It maybe is its own form of narcissism – to believe you have that much power. Unfortunately took me much trial and error to understand what was obvious from the start: “Liars lie, cheaters cheat, nothing one can do about it.”

      • Oh I went down that rabbit hole too. I asked and I asked but all I got was deflection, blame shifting and more gaslighting, and a lot of pain. What I didn’t get is the truth, closure, apologies, which is what I was looking for. You can’t see it when you’re in the middle of it. It would have been completely predictable from someone sitting on the sidelines with a little of experience though, like a therapist for example.

  • I asked if he was having an affair with the girl from his work & unlike many others he absolutely admitted it . In fact he was gleeful and burst out laughing at me . Duper’s delight doesn’t even cover it . He was delighted he had a secret life and someone else actually wanted him .

    Then called me stupid as he had been cheating for months and I hadn’t noticed .

    He loved the hurt in me while he sat laughing at me then told me to shut my fucking face

    • He’s lucky you didn’t crack his skull with a ball peen hammer, then laugh at him for being so foolish as to have a hammer in the house.
      “Oh, and stop your fat head from bleeding on the carpet, you stupid useless fuck!”

      They never realize how fortunate they are that unlike them, we are civilized and have compassion.

    • @Karmeh: Me too. I asked him who Mr. X was and why was he calling me asking about Mrs. X? I shit you not the response was: “She’s an nut. I talked with her about her marital problems. Nothing more.” He lied at me for 6 years. Upon further questioning at year 6, he let me know he’d been keeping a secret from me and then, “confessed” to a bj years before. Trickle truth for the next year as I pick-me-danced. Finally, I was at my wits’ end. I just sat on the couch and said “she wins”. He laughed, and kept laughing. telling me, in front of our kids, that had I been a better “partner” he wouldn’t have needed someone else. So, per this amazing advice and tactical response, I’m supposed to believe the lying liar who lies? Fuck that. He’s a terrible person. I trust (now) that he sucks.

    • Mine laughed in my face, too, as he said,”I’ll delete her number if you want me to.” We we’re in the middle of the big fall out fight after I’d caught him getting texts from her in the middle of the night.

      He didn’t delete her number.

      And I still see him laughing at me -on a loop- in my head. Him cracking up because my pain was so hilarious to him.
      It’s helped to remind me that he doesn’t give a single fuck about me or how I feel.

      Fingers crossed – I’m looking at an apartment today. I have the $$ now – just need to get approved.
      I can’t wait to be away from him once and for all.

      • Oh, Chump Me…

        That loop..I totally get it. I’m sitting here today, trying to work and all I hear in my head is the “hahahahahaah”. My pain was not even nano-thought to him. He just wanted what he wanted when he wanted it with whom ever wanted him. The collateral damage to me and our family–not nothin. They suck. I know it. I just hate how it makes/made me feel–low, pathetic and unloved. I wish I could run away and start over but I ate the stupid pill and had kids with FW. I’ll never really be free but even as I write that I know, know deep in my bones that I’m never going back to that. Never. Never. Never. Maybe that’s the point? I learned bone deep that the relationship that was is not acceptable to me. I’ll die on that hill, too; being lonely now is WAY better than in a marriage with a shill.

        I hope the new apartment and the space provide you well-deserved peace. I also hope it has a wonderful view outside so you can see how far you’ve come.

  • Now naive can the author of that article be?
    If you think maybe someone has been deceptive and cheated then ask them to tell the truth?
    Just nope! Why would they publish that nonsense?

    • I doubt she’s that naive. It’s how unscrupulous therapists keep chump marriage counseling patients coming back and paying them for re-traumatizing them. They lie, they minimize and they blame the chump. They know cheaters aren’t going to go to counseling if the therapist actually tells the chump the truth. They sell books and get articles published this way too. It’s chumps buying these books, so desperate to cheat-proof their marriages that they’ll believe this snake oil. Cheaters don’t care so they don’t buy the books or initiate MC, and they walk out of counseling if they are blamed. Thus the counselors are invested in convincing chumps that cheaters are sensitive souls whose tender little fee-fees are easily wounded and must be coddled. These therapists can then claim they “save” marriages by helping the cheater to manipulate the chump into staying in it. These people know how easily a vulnerable, hurting person can be duped.
      Call me cynical, but I think it is a widespread, highly successful con and that far too many of these therapists don’t actually believe a word they are saying about the nature of infidelity and of cheaters. They know liars can’t be trusted and that most cheaters will cheat again. But if the chump stays with the cheater, they can pat themselves on the back for their marriage-saving heroism as they increase their bank balance.

  • What a bunch of crock, as my old boss used to say.

    For starters, let’s swap out the term “snoop” and adopt another with more positive connotations. Investigate?

    • Or borrow their term and call it ‘verifying.’ Trust but verify! That one never struck a chord with me. How? What does it even mean?

    • Or “probe”, “excavate”?

      It’s whatever you need it to be, it’s about your life after all. The assumption that bothers me is that you shouldn’t look into your partner’s life. Well it’s yours too if you share a life, you owe it to yourself more than you owe them.

  • I just went to the original article and clicked on the comments.

    There’s only seven, and they’re all advertisements from hacking services offering to get you the proof you need.

    I laughed. HuffPost, meet reality.

  • Late night/early morning silly fuckwit jokes for any other CPTSD brains which can’t get any rest:

    How many fuckwits does it take to change a light bulb?

    That light bulb needs to get off hopium. Fuckwits only change victims.

    Why did the fuckwit cross the road?

    To cheat with the the chicken on the other side. Why else?

    What do you call a fuckwit who knowingly passes you HIV from hookers and you’re dying of AIDS, as he leans down smirking to hear your very last words while clutching your will in his greedy satanic hoof?

    Call him darling. You need to own your part in it, bitch!

    Who wants a Friday challenge for fuckwit jokes? Okay, off to try to sleep again.

  • The first time I found out I had been asking for months. He denied every time and even said if you catch me cheating you can have 3k a month in child support (for one kid). I thought for sure I must be crazy cause why would he offer that if he was cheating. I had already purchased the software for his phone so I installed it thinking I was crazy. I forgot about it for a month then was shocked when I checked and he was dating 5 women, had previously had sex with two others. I was a chump and did the whole therapy for sex addiction for a year. Two years later I put a recorder in his suitcase while he was on a boys trip. Got to hear him having sec with a 28 year old girl he met at a bar. I confronted him and he continued to deny. Said it wasn’t him. Now claims he must have been drugged cause he doesn’t remember anything. They will lie to the end. They justify what they do in their minds so don’t feel any remorse until caught. I thank everyone for their posts. I see so many regrets and need to find a way to get off the hopium once and for all. I can handle this when I am 45 because I have a chance to still enjoy my son’s childhood. If I wait until the next d-day I will have wasted even more time and energy being the marriage police.

  • I couldn’t read anymore of this post after I read “Don’t lower yourself by snooping.”

    Um, I became Dog the Bounty Hunter.

  • Here I was wallowing in my denial-turned-despair – I thought my heart had died long ago but alas it still has the ability to wrench with pain.

    And along came this gem to make me laugh out loud.

    Thank you, Chump Lady.

    Listening to your book last week gave me the final pound of courage I needed to have my lawyer file.

    The filing came before his admission two days ago, so I’ve gone from strategical and pragmatic to heart-dripping blood. I lied awake last night thinking, “Ew, he even KISSED her?! …and then kissed me!” If this is true then ALL the other bits of evidence over the years do really mean the worst. Gaslighting and denial is so hard to break through.

    Thank you Chump Lady and CN for being this haven away from the therapists who urge you to “just stop snooping” and “have hope”.

    • Good luck Mary J!!! and huge hugs… we have all been where you are. ChumpNation is part of your team. Document EVERYTHING. especially bank, insurance household stuff, passwords, … God speed to another better and richer life where you don’t have to guess anymore.

  • ????????‍♀️????????‍♀️????????‍♀️????????‍♀️????????‍♀️
    The women who wrote this article have obviously NEVER been cheated on….or had their lives put at risk by a partner’s hooking up with complete strangers or manipulated by a narcissist OR, OR, OR….My GOD! It’s like Emily Post for the Betrayed….How NOT to offend your abuser. GEEZ! Thank you for sharing your insight… always it’s spot on!

  • Late to this party. Just read on my Health Insurance App that looking for cheating evidence can be compulsive, so don’t do it.

    The I wish I didn’t know now what I didn’t know then refrain.

  • Mine was sleeping with men. I had a really strong 6th sense something was wrong. I checked one of his emails and found a correspondence between him and another guy from Craigslist arranging a tryst.
    I was so scared. He lied until the very end, even after I left he still lied and lied. Thank God I finally got away

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