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D-Day and The Silent Treatment

mindfuckDear Chump Lady,

My cheater is a very recent discovery, courtesy of the other woman who so very graciously sent me in the mail, a note and a gazillion pics that she felt I should see, to feel a “taste of what MY last 5 years have been” with her “one true love and vice versa”. Oh, what a happy couple (blech, gag, blech)!

Interestingly, I received my surprise package while he was away in FL because of a family emergency.

Yes, I was the screaming banshee when I called him demanding an explanation! Called him every name in the book, even ones I didn’t even know I knew.

So, here’s the ultimate kicker to me — RADIO SILENCE! Not a word from him about what he has done — no acknowledgement, no accountability, no remorse, no forgiveness — it’s as though it never even happened and there’s nothing to talk about. Ooooohhhhhh, that’s not the way I work! After 25 years of marriage and he has NOTHING to say! The SILENT TREATMENT is a beast of it’s own.

Anyway, since finding this out (about 2 weeks) he returns to our fair city — the silent treatment the entire 2 weeks. When he would text (not very often) it would be about stupid incidental superficial goings on. I guess he figured I had 2 weeks to “cool down” and everything would be as they were. When I said I assume you found a place to stay on your return — he says, he hadn’t had time to think about it! Well, he had to find time to “think about” other arrangements because he wasn’t staying with me!

He shows up to collect some things, I say nothing (2 can play the game) because he owes me the explanation and it’s a waste of my time to keep asking. Again — SILENT TREATMENT!

I know many would say how much easier that would be than him begging for forgiveness, asking to work things out, saying it was only a mistake, etc. — but the PAIN! It really, really, really hurts! 25 years and NOTHING! Needless to say, I’ve done a lot of self-talk reminding myself that only a low life scumbag could be that cowardly and heartless.

It hurts so much to think he has gotten off so very easy — everyone else has done his dirty work for him, he’s free to roam with no one holding him back and without even lifting a finger.

Of course, I hear that he easily talks about this with his brothers but can’t/won’t say a word to me. I can’t help but feel that knife of rejection and hurt dig in further and twist a bit more. I’m sure more head games, but I sure do want him to feel the hurt as a much as me — but oh wait, that’s right he has a heart of stone and is devoid of all feelings! I know I should just think about me and not a second more to the cowardly scumbag; but you know how the mind works. Makes me question why I should be such a nice, kind-hearted, considerate, sensitive, empathetic person if this is what I get! Trampled on and kicked to the curb.

Talk about Public Persona (friendly politician) and Private Persona (indifference)! He ALWAYS looks to the public like the good guy who is so attentive, caring, and interesting.

I am very fortunate to have two extremely bright and responsible adult sons in their early 20s, unfortunately they are his sons too! I shared with them what has happened, because this affects our entire family and now nothing is the same and can’t be what it was before. I told them they have to decide what kind of relationship they want with their father because I can’t tell them what it should be. Told them ultimately it comes down to that their father made a choice and his choice is having consequences. I told them I’ll always be here to answer any questions, I’ll always be honest with them, and that none of this is their fault, nor something they need to fix. Not so unexpected or surprising, he has not yet reached out the boys either.

Many times I sound and feel strong but oh so many times I feel I can’t even pick myself up! I’ve completely bypassed the denial phase and jumped headfirst into anger, confusion, hurt, and rejection! The PAIN is real!

Thanks for listening,

J

Dear J,

That’s a brutal discard. No wonder you’re in deep pain. The silent treatment is gaslighting — “I don’t see what there is to be upset about” — so he either texts trivialities or doesn’t speak of his FIVE-YEAR double life. It’s not worth mentioning! I fail to understand your hostility.

Hey, if he doesn’t acknowledge it? It never happened. And if he doesn’t gin up any emotion, it’s because you’re so too emotional, shrieking, and carrying on. Who looks like Mr. Clean? Who’s the crazy person?

That’s the abuser modus operandi: DARVO — deny attack, reverse victim offender. You’re the one who must be shunned. You’re the transgressor here. He gets to wear his cloak of imperturbability and you’re insane.

Yeah, I’d scream like a Banshee too.

Look, you don’t need Mr. Mindfuck to confess. He’s a fraud and a terrible, terrible human. His actions and the multimedia report his OW sent are evidence enough. (Do forward that to your lawyer, btw.)

Don’t internalize his contempt or doubt objective reality. He’s been exposed. The mask fell, and the jig is up.

Think about it this way: From his reptilian perspective, the simplest course of action is deny accountability and move on. Why expend the effort of faux contrition? Just pretend it never happened and let the little people clean up the mess.

That’s why YOUR next move is proper legal counsel. He can silent treatment/gaslight you all he wants to. Let him try that shit with legal discovery. It’s not going to fly in front of a judge. Your #1 job is to protect yourself, not untangle his ugly little skein. I’m sure he’ll have a lot to say when the consequences come flying. Just press forward and go no contact.

Your no contact isn’t “two can play the silent treatment game.” No contact is for your sanity. To turn off the mindfuck channel. (If if his is mostly on mute… now… I doubt it will stay that way.)

You do NOT need consensus. Stop expecting it and move straight ahead with legal protections. #TrustThatTheySuck

Now, about that OW.

My cheater is a very recent discovery, courtesy of the other woman who so very graciously sent me in the mail, a note and a gazillion pics that she felt I should see, to feel a “taste of what MY last 5 years have been” with her “one true love and vice versa”. 

Uh-uh.

The one true love who never introduces you to anyone. Does Kay Jewelers make a heart-shaped pendant for that?

The one true love who stayed married to his wife appliance and fronted a life of respectability. The one true love who didn’t ask for a divorce for his One Twu Wuv, but instead had to be smoked out of his weasel hole. Forced into acknowledgment of his One Twu Wuv.

Gotta love a shotgun wedding. When’s the divorce going to be final?

J, she’s not winning a prize. Step out of the fucktangle and let them have each other. A guy who is capable of a five-year double life is not a guy who has One Twu Wuv. (Unless you’re including his dick, we are not.) She’s probably not the first, or the last, but she’s probably preferable to paying by the hour.

And remember, monies spent on an affair are monies you can ask for back in a divorce as “theft of marital resources.”

So nice of her to send the evidence.

Good luck, J. Better days ahead.

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at info@chumplady.com. Read more about submission guidelines.
  • Hi J, Whenever I read these stories I try to put myself back into those DDay shoes. As CL said, please get a great attorney and use that evidence to get the most you can from your divorce.

    But I also know what it felt like after discovery and the mistreatment by a fuckwit. And it takes a while for your heart and head to catch up. You have questions that have no closure. You may be up all night. Losing weight. Crying a lot. It’s the shock and trauma of discovering that the man you trusted all these years was living a double life. And it can make you cycle on things and the grief can feel unbearable.

    Please also get a therapist who is understanding of these things. Someone who recognizes this as trauma and abuse and can see you every week until you can get free of FW and are able to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

    The silent treatment is common. It’s control. It’s more abuse.

    Many of us stay on this blog with CL to help others out of the mindfuck of this crap that the cheaters just launch on us without remorse. Hang in there and focus on yourself and getting free. You’ll be happier on the other side. But we know how hard this is!

    • Rt on MS!

      J, you never have to live this hell again. You just have to fight your way outta this one.

      When I read your story I just think, “what a brat. What a child this guy is.” The silent treatment is a tool of the middle schooler.
      That’s who you are dealing with, so get away from the brats and join us in Meh.

    • Hi J and welcome to CN,
      I’m about 1 year D-day and the memories of a year ago are sad and depressing and the “radio silence” by my ex is a mixed blessing that hasn’t fully realized yet— I’m in about Wednesday evening here.
      Obviously, we chumps are slow to learn for many reasons, and CL is the expert so just follow her words and advice. No contact and remember he sucks.
      As for “crickets” from the freak? Who cares? Whatever words of wisdom or remorse that may come from him are meaningless to you because it’s not about you it’s about him, and we’ve already established that’s he’s trash that doesn’t belong in your life.
      Unfortunately, I bred with a fuckwit, so my boundary with my ex is “I’m the father of my children. I want nothing from you. I don’t want to know about you. Let’s be pleasant.” Of course, I get the silent treatment which is exactly what I want.

      You got this. It sucks. It’s painful. It’s hard and lonely, but you are free of a freak. Talk about Nirvana.

    • MichelleShocked – THANK YOU! I am going to focus on me and the things that really matter to me. Ready to make up for wasted time!

  • AH used to go for the silent treatment too. “Give her long enough to cool down and then we can both pretend I didn’t beat the shit out of her”! I only hope the OP is in an “at fault” state and she can take down Mr. Uber-Politician by going for the jugular!

  • J, don’t discount that the OW’s reveal could be a calculated maneuver your fuckwit orchestrated. These cowards, especially those with a public persona to advance, will do most anything to get you to be the one who kicked him to the curb then create an alternative narrative that it was your decision to divorce… and the OW came along after the fact. Remember, they lie.
    That’s why you lawyer up and make the OW a co-defendant if your jurisdiction allows for it.
    And sue for adultery. (Something I robably should have done, but instead opted for speed in getting out of the situation.)
    Overt indifference and silence can be extremely painful, especially after a long-term relationship. I know as I was met with the same after 36 years. But I now know it is simply another form of cowardice and deceit.
    Sending chump hugs and strength to you…

    • TheDivineMissChump – thank you for the hugs, they do strengthen me. I actually had the same thought that something the schemed together because he’s such a coward, he had to have her do the blast! This way he’s the victim and he continues to manipulate. If that’s the case, she is welcome to him!

    • You sound like me. My stbx of 32 yrs gf was the one who told me she sent me text messages and emails. She was upset with him because he screwed her and made promises but upon his return home from his love weekend he ghosted her. She didn’t wait she immediately told me. But I suspected this was all calculated by her and possibly him to get me out of the way. However upon him finally admitting it he begged me to keep him etc. Same thing he did last time he cheated with her. I was done and within 2 months he was talking to her. We live in an at fault state so she didn’t do him any favors but they are together oh well. I have her listed as the paramour on my court documents and she will be doing a deposition if we have to go to court. Its been a long hard road but Im getting there.

  • Oh J,

    I’m so sorry this has happened to you! It sucks!!!

    I’ve been there, done that and it sucks (did I already say that?). My story from 13 years ago minus the gift package from OW. More about that later.

    Kudos to you for throwing him out. There are zero prizes in this situation but you will always know you threw him out. Sounds small now but I promise you that small step will give you some dignity further down the road.

    Another small consolation is that your children are adults and you spoke the truth to them. Not having to be a single mother while you put yourself and your life back together is HUGE. And they’re old enough to understand what he’s done and understand any boundaries you set. I recommend a firm “I will never be in the same room with the OW”. It also helps down the road.

    25 years is considered a long term marriage. That will help you in your divorce. Know now that anyone who can be completely silent has zero empathy and zero character. You’re going to have to lead this divorce and play serious hardball. You have a lot of sunk costs after such a long marriage and raising this great kids. You’re not going to get any answers or fairness from a divorce but you sure as hell can get money – so fight for that and take it! It sounds like he has a public reputation and you can use that to your advantage. Do NOT go public about anything but let your lawyer use that threat. You need to start interviewing lawyers yesterday. Start with the best known bull dog lawyers and hire the one who tells you he’s awful and they know how to handle someone like that. That gift package from the OW? Dump it on their desk with a silent “thank you” for saving you from hiring a PI that could never find evidence that good.

    Start collecting as many documents as you can find or request going back as far as you can. Stash everything outside the house until you find a lawyer. Every single purchase or hotel room may turn out to be more than you think now so just silently collect everything. You will get zero documents from this asshole no matter how many times your lawyer requests them. Start NOW.

    Mine didn’t even realize that he was obligated to tell the truth to the court or his own lawyers. He tried to leave his deposition 3 times (he’s a lawyer and leaving because you don’t want to answer a question is against the rules). Be prepared to depose the OW. After sending such a package I’m sure she will be happy to testify!

    I can tell from the fact that you remained silent that you are tough. I wasn’t as tough as you and did all kinds of begging and hysterical crying. I know that being tough doesn’t sound like much now but it will help you in the coming days. You do need a good therapist if you don’t have one. It isn’t physically or mentally healthy to keep it all bottled up. Interview therapists by asking them their stance on infidelity. If they don’t immediately say that it’s wrong, move on. Don’t waste a moment of your time with someone like that. You need someone who can recognize a warrior and work to support you 100%.

    His silence was awful. It was beyond painful. I’ve lived with total silence for 13 years and it was the hardest thing I’ve ever survived. I always told my friends, both families and new people in my life MY truth from day 1. I had to learn to let go of ever knowing the truth about the first 20 years of my marriage. I realized that his truth was irrelevant. I was the parent who showed up, raised the kids, made the holidays, did everything from homework thru college visits with total joy and happiness. His truth doesn’t matter. I was a wonderful wife and the rest was his problem.

    He is the same hidden person now 10 years post-divorce. It’s such a pathetic way to live at this age and stage of life. His AP wrote a book and couldn’t dedicate it to him by name; she referred to him as man of my dreams. How pathetic is that? Some prize she won!

    You will have to walk through to coals with this jerk. What awaits you on the other side is total honesty, your dignity (remember you threw him out) and a wonderful life as a mature, independent woman.

    Sending hugs for the tears now and to come. You’re new tribe is here and we ALWAYS tell the truth!

    • I would have thrown the ex out if I’d been told about the affair. He left without telling me so that I wouldn’t throw him out. He is also a lawyer. I was shocked by the constant lies he told, about everything no matter how small. Fortunately I was not in business with him (I’m also a lawyer) because someone who can lie like that in one area of his life will lie in a business context too. My overriding thought about him – I’m just over 2 years out, 1 year divorced – is that he is a coward. He demonstrated this to me on numerous occasions over the 26 years. He would never stand his ground, or support me in standing my ground, and a couple of incidents were shocking in their cowardice. That’s a character defect and, it seems to me, common in cheaters. Any evidence of cowardice is a red flag to me now.

      • Mighty Warrior — 2 lawyers also, 25 year marriage also. My XH was caught red handed by the kids. He lied, threatened blameshifted, gaslit….. finally I said GTFO. Then it was rage channel 24/7 until Judge issued FFCL after our 10 day trial. 5 years after D, I’m
        Mostly no-contact. His life continued to devolve. So glad I’m free.

      • Mighty warrior.. yes, this is spot-on.

        I’ve never heard this expressed so well before, but cowardice was also my FW’s defining feature. It was noticable over the years – he stood for nothing – and yes, it’s an instant red flag for me now.

    • In my post above I forgot to add what got me through those awful early days. I hope some of this will help.

      1. Make sure you eat 3 meals a day. Early days had me drinking Ensure because I couldn’t stand the thought of food.
      2. Try and get some good sleep. Try warm bath, hot shower, warm milk, long walk or learn meditation. If you cannot sleep, get up and do something productive. Thrashing around with awful thoughts won’t help.
      3. Nightmares can be a side effect of radio silence from the other side. Find a good meditation or calming app and keep it on your phone for releasing the emotions. It was a wonderful day when the nightmares stopped. I used to dream I was trying to punch him underwater. Definitely related to his silence and my frustration.
      4. Whenever you fall into thoughts that have your head spinning, hold an ice cube. The brain cannot ruminate when your hand only feels the cold. Wear an elastic band around your wrist and snap it when your brain is spinning. Look up DBT: https://behavioraltech.org/resources/faqs/dialectical-behavior-therapy-dbt/
      5. Most of us don’t want to hear the dreaded word exercise but this is the best time to start if you don’t already do this. Even better if you can find a buddy to do this with. My salvation came from water aerobics. Did you know you can sweat in a pool?
      6. If you feel you need extra help with the anxiety, ask for it. This trauma is temporary (10 years is considered temporary in my case) and there are no gold stars for surviving this without help if needed. I wouldn’t be here today without medication and I share that with anyone who feels it isn’t necessary. It’s a personal decision that you should make with your doctor.
      7. At some point down the road, consider EMDR as a healing technique.

      • ☝☝☝

        Both my daughter and I had nightmares in which we screamed at FW while he didn’t acknowledge us. I’m not sure that there’s anything more psychologically torturous than the silent treatment.

        OP: It takes time and a lot of education about NPD to get the closure you need. Meanwhile, take CN’s advice to heart. Say nothing, get a cutthroat lawyer and a therapist experienced in NPD and infidelity/betrayal trauma. Stay calm around FW and in public so the crazy label doesn’t stick well.

        Be prepared to discover that FW’s been smearing your name for some time, so a number of “friends” will be on his side. Know that he’s playing victim and people are feeling sorry for him because they think you have been a frigid, withholding, emasculating, nag who spends all his money and drinks too much. Or some similar story. I say this so it doesn’t come as another shock later.

        NPD FW’s may or may not be intentionally malignant. Regardless, to them people are either of use, non-existent, or obstacles. Right now, your FW is attempting to make you non-existent with his silence. Once you become an obstacle, you will be met with a firestorm of rage.

        Gather family, friends, and professionals around you for support. Through all of it keep reminding yourself that this is his fault, not yours. He is a liar, a betrayer, a manipulator, and an all-around indecent person. You are honest, loyal, and authentic. That makes him worthless and you invaluable. Keep your head high.

        As my keychain says: “Don’t look back. You’re not going that way.”

        • “Right now, your FW is attempting to make you non-existent with his silence. Once you become an obstacle, you will be met with a firestorm of rage.”

          Exactly. Hence the need for a tough attorney to turn the firehose onto the bastard.

        • ChumpQueen – love that keychain saying! I just got a Cricut machine for Christmas – If you don’t mind, I may just have to copy your idea and make one myself.

      • Rebecca, these are all such wonderful suggestions. Agree completely. I found exercise to be my salvation, along with going to a cafe to have a coffee and be around people but not have to actually interact with them. Covid makes that more complicated but you can still go and wear a mask, or sit outdoors if the weather permits. I also wanted to say I have found the app Calm to be incredibly helpful with sleep, their sleep stories make me fall asleep pretty easily. By having some narration to listen to, you can focus on that and don’t fall prey so easily to all the thoughts in your head, which in the early days are terrible. Sometimes I turn the volume almost off, but I can still hear the narrator murmuring in the background. Very reassuring, like being a child and listening to your parents in the next room. Anything that helps with sleep in the early days is really important. Hugs to everyone!

        • I have that app, too. Eric Braa knocks me out cold. Best sleep ever. My sleep is still a mess but much better than it used to be. I keep asking myself how many years it will be until I get a nice long sleep again.

      • Rebecca, this is all stellar advice. Practical and pertinent — a veritable script for the newly-chumped to follow while they’re still reeling. I remember the confusion and panic of those first days when I was alternately curling up in a ball sobbing or else spinning around, wondering “What do I do now? What do I do now?”

  • The ex’s double life with exgfOW lasted 26 years ie for the whole of our relationship. He left me, with a character assassination delivered with a smirk. A few weeks later I found emails. Then complete silence on the affair when he knew I knew because I told him. As he said ‘I won’t talk about that piece’. Denied affair to close friends. Denied the affair in mediation ‘it’s neither the time nor the place and I’m single’. In fact he was separated not single because we were still married and it was precisely the time and the place! I think he told one of his brothers, perhaps both. They would understand as they are both adulterers as is his father. The split was his decision. I divorced him because I could! No point trying to work out what goes on in their empty heads. The ex is a coward. He is never going to be honest with himself. I have no idea how OW held herself back but then she is desperate. She tried him out twice before and dumped him twice because of his drinking and general obnoxiousness. You’ve got to be desperate to go back for a third go in those circumstances.

    My advice J is to enjoy every moment of your precious life. It’s hard, it’s a struggle, it’s often brutal. But it’s your life. The one thing you can know about the silent cheaters is that they are cowards. They have no depth. The OW is obviously fed up of waiting and contacted you to force the issue. Let’s hope she wins her valuable prize, silence and all. These people cannot be relied upon and they get worse as they age. Cowards are cowards all their lives. They do not suddenly become brave. You are a chump and you are Mighty.

    • “He left me, with a character assassination delivered with a smirk.”

      Fucker.

      And, as you say, lifelong coward.

  • J, he is doing this to you so that you will look crazy. He will record your attempts at communication and try to use the against you. Do NOT give the FW the satisfaction. Get a few ducks in a row and get to a lawyer as quickly as you can. Serve him papers and not cake. Do not engage or try to engage him. Yeah, he thinks he is punishing you but as I learned with attempts at engagement the phrase “ run that through your attorney” has the best felt. After a taking a few petty whines to his attorney and being charged for them, he will slow down attempts or increase them but either way, you don’t need the stress of engaging with a FW.
    Get that lawyer and use any evidence of his spending on OW to get your money back. I am in the middle of this right now and FW is making desperate attempts to hide the shit he pulled. Unfortunately for him, between the PI and the CDFA, he has been caught out. Just trust that he sucks but it will get better. I am still under stress but it is a different stress than what existed after the DDays. I am now confident that my Tuesday is coming.

  • Oh J, I am so sorry. The Silent Treatment is horrendous emotional abuse. It hurts because it obliterates you. LTC Fuckface used the Silent Treatment as a weapon. Snatch that weapon out of his hands, file first and never speak to him again. Like you said, two can play that game.

    He has nothing to say worth hearing. An apology? An apology is worthless from the lips of a liar. You don’t need an apology, you need a divorce.

    Schedule a STI Panel. Start contacting lawyers. Secure the evidence his whore sent you. Find and secure the documents needed for divorce. Check your finances. Channel your hurt and rage into action and divorce this lying, cheating asshole.

    Listen to Tracy. Read these comments and take action. Rid yourself of this abuse.

    • Great advice!!!

      Thirtythree, mine used the silent treatment during our marriage, too. It was his go-to form of punishment. And then he bragged that he never yelled. OH FFS!! He used a scalpel to make his fine cuts–silent treatment, passive-aggressive behavior, gaslighting. He snuck out. Did his own thing. Blamed me for reacting angrily when I found out. He remained calm through it all. AND so so sad.

      • Spinach – I swear these FWs are hatched in identical pods. Do you think they recognize each other as members of the same species?

        Passive-aggression, gaslighting, and silent treatment as punishment for daring to think on my own and declining to worship at his altar. What a bitch I was!

        • I honestly do think they recognize each other. Son is on a sports team and from day 1, there was this group that was always together and the rest sort of kept their distance from. The small group is all FWs. Birds of a feather.

        • Oh my!!! Same here
          “ I don’t scream or yell like you”
          Right… just gaslighting, lying, stonewalling, refusing to have a normal discussion and bringing me to the point of going crazy….
          Yes, he was calm and collected

          The best performance was seen in front of the therapist- absolutely crushed soul, silently sobbing, on the verge of a nervous breakdown … our therapist was so moved, that she asked me to (wait for it…) give him a ride home, call work, and let him rest for the rest of a day.

          All that 👆🏻Was a calculated reaction to:
          my actual breakdown after a terrible DDay and of the years of cheating and lying etc.

          I ended up giving him a ride home, letting him sleep for the rest of the day while I had to quickly collect myself, take care of the kids and everything else that day,

          • I got the silent treatment every Saturday morning for 26 years. I still find it weird to wake up on Saturdays and not to have to step on the eggshells to get to lunchtime. It was joy-sapping. And weird. It culminated towards the end in me saying ‘good morning’, him ignoring me, me saying ‘I said good morning’ and him responding with ‘I said good morning back’ with a smirk. He took crazy making gaslighting to a new level. I thought I was going mad (and my dad had died after a short and horrible illness only a few weeks earlier so I was already in a state). As for these types sticking together, every person he admired while with me, male or female, was a serial cheater and drunk. I knew that was a big red flag and I purposefully chose to ignore it saying to myself ‘it’ll be alright, he’s not like that’ when he so obviously was just like that.

          • Hanna – really?!?! Boy is that familiar – we went to a marriage therapy once and he put on the attentive caring act making me the crazy person!

  • Interestingly, I got the silent treatment before and not after. After, he was all friendly. Before … when I was trying to see if he’d change, instead of discussion, it was walkaway time. I didn’t recognize it for how insidious it was.
    All crickets ….
    “Why did you need to send someone (and who) Western Union $300?”
    “I’m surprised to see you shopped at Victoria’s Secret?”
    “When you don’t respond, I can’t figure out how you’re thinking”

    He tried to be friendly and even jovial during the divorce because he was a politician and known in his community and he needed to keep that image intact.

    BTW, I got accused of spending marital assets without permission to the tune of $50,000. He calculated I spent $10,000 per year on childcare and special needs tutors for my grandchild without his WRITTEN permission. My daughter at the time was in ICU and then a Nursing Home for a permanent brain injury from which she never recovered. I was trying to keep my grandchild out of foster care and out of not being educated.

    His famous quote during one episode: “Would it be so awful for her to go into foster care?” I don’t know how I remained calm enough to answer, “I don’t think you realize how very awful that statement was.” Of course, crickets to that.

    • How horrible Emma! What a shit to discard his daughter too. I’m so sorry about your daughter. She and her son are blessed to have you in their lives.

      I too got the “nice talk” during and after divorce and engaged because I thought that was best for the kids. He met that with near constant litigation. I learned my lesson and when the youngest emancipates in May, my rare emails about kid health and logistics will drop to total no contact.

        • But still–in the moral scheme of things, how does it even matter what the biological relations are? There was a toddler who needed love, care and support. And if you could keep her out of foster care, you could save her life.

        • Sending love to you, mighty grandma. My new internal loop is saying, “If he loved you, he would want you to be happy.”

          If he truly had loved you, he would have done whatever he could to help you through this situation. Even a friend, heck even I as an internet stranger, would have loved you enough, respected you enough as a fellow human on this earth, to not fight AGAINST what you needed and wanted for your family.

          It’s so horrible that I didn’t ever feel that or know that basic human right during my 40 years of marriage. Someone who tells you they love you is ON THE SAME TEAM!

    • “Would it be so awful for her to go into foster care?”

      The silent treatment doesn’t expose creeps like this. Better he should keep his mouth shut. But they have to throw the barb to support their false narrative. They keep quiet because there is nothing to say.

      Win financially and legally with a smile for yourself.

    • Spinach@35, LTC Fuckface also snuck out in the wee, small hours of the night like a teenager. He took the battery out of the door alarm. I reinstalled it and was sitting in the dark in his recliner when he tried to sneak back in. The look on his face was hilarious. He lied and said he had to go buy body wash. He didn’t like it when I calmly told him there were two full bottles of body wash in the bathroom cabinet. What a stupid ass.

      I’ll never have to deal with his failed attempts at the sneaky sneak again.

      • Mine kept lying about stupid things even after discovery and promising that he would never lie again.

        Example: When I was still living in the house and prepping it for sale, I would leave at scheduled times to allow him to pack up his stuff. On one occasion, he left a list of lawyers. Lol. I took a pic of it and sent it to my lawyer. Helpful.

        FW texted me that he’d forgotten his Altoids. He sucks big time but never on Altoids. He’d forgotten his effing list. Not sure why he didn’t ‘simply say he’d forgotten “something” that he needs. Anything but a lie. It was as if he couldn’t help but lie. Habit.

        And I thought he was Mr. Ethical. He was so critical of liars and cheats. So happy to be free of that.

        • The pointless lies are infuriating. Mine instructed his lawyer that he was in quarantine in a different part of Australia (covid related) when he was in fact collecting our son from school down the road because he’d already arrived home.
          There was no advantage to be gained – he simply made up some crap to explain a delay in responding.
          He also claimed previously his lawyer couldn’t respond because the lawyer was in trial – I am a lawyer in the same field and his lawyer was most definitely not in trial.
          Nothing a water pistol couldn’t fix.

    • Emma, I am so sorry. There is just no decency available to these people. I continue to marvel at the utter emptiness where their souls ought to be. If there’s a Hell, he will burn. I am so so sorry.

    • Emma, that’s truly disgusting. Your daughter and grandchild are fortunate to have you in their corner. What a fine example of a politician he isn’t.

    • Emma, I am so sorry that you FW had no empathy whatsoever. He sucks and I hope that you a free and supporting your grand daughter.

  • Dear J

    Your D Day sounds a lot like mine as in silence .
    When confronted with his affair my ex burst out laughing shrugging his shoulders . Every question I asked he shrugged .
    I got a few answers until he couldn’t be bothered and walked away .

    I’m coming up 3 years since that day and I’ve still never heard from him . Not a text , not a call , not a smoke signal nothing at all . He didn’t even turn up to get divorced ( he was busy planning his wedding)
    I know everyone says it’s for the best and it’s true trust me it is .
    I know it’s brutal not getting any of your questions answered or any sort of remorse etc but it seems to be a lot better than the mind games some of them play .
    The worst thing is you’ve got nothing to fight for/ against as they simply won’t answer anything so you make it all up in your own mind .
    (( hugs))

    • The silent treatment is so abusive. I find all the different ways cheaters abuse chumps equally horrifying. Cheaters are proven liars and unreliable information sources. The sooner we free ourselves from the mindf—k blender the better.

      • My sister-in-law recently said, “It’s like he’s dead. Only there wasn’t a funeral.” That comment has been helpful to me. She also said, “Of course you loved him,” and that cycles through my head, too. He played the victim narrative unknown to me for years, that he was in a loveless marriage and so mistreated, etc. I had lost the loop of my own truth which was that I loved him all through those years even though he was always an ass to me.

        The silent treatment was his favorite way to abuse me, year after year. Then one day he said he had a girlfriend and disappeared to go marry her as soon as I started and finished his divorce from me.

        It’s like he’s dead. Which is good, because at this point if I ran into him, I might actually do something stupid to make that a true statement. He’s scum.

      • Yes I agree. Even when they talk to you, it is lies, or at least mostly lies, and you are left to try to make since anyway.

        Even when my ex hoovered it was only to gain something to his benefit. The first time it was to get use of our car for his politicking. The times after that he never left whore; he was just trying to destabilize me when he found out I was moving on with my life. Couldn’t have that. I basically told him to go to hell.

        If there is a benefit from hoovering, it is being able to reject them. I doubt it hurts them at all. They have no real feeling. At least the ones I know.

  • The disrespect of a FW refusing to speak to you after being discovered is gutting. On the day I found the smoking gun of an email in my Cheaters computer, he said stupid stuff which was the marginalizing word salad and hurt a lot.

    Truth is, ALL of this hurts really bad and the worst hurt is the one you have.

    My experience was different in that I confronted with so little evidence (terrible idea, dont do this) my FW was able to skirt around it with a claim of “emotional affair” and I had no evidence or strength to prove otherwise thus I was left in a very weak position. Proof of wild monkey sex wasn’t found until after he died (and was given a hero’s send off)..I actually envied your one chance to tell his ass off (but this is not a contest of “Who hurts worst”…it all hurts horribly).

    His lack of speaking to you now and making some attempt to cushion the blow of his horrible behavior is a great indicator of what a selfish ass he really is. Anyone who can create this much pain and destruction (and walk away with nary an attempt to care for those he claimed to love) sucks mightily.

    Its good you shared your pain and experience and found this group.
    Im sorry that the person you loved and trusted wasn’t worthy of what you gave him.

    It sounds like you did well with the sons. Now, leave well-enough alone and dont lean too-heavily on them for support while they try to figure out what this all means to them…they are processing it too.

    “Closure” doesn’t exist…dont hold out for it like a Holy Grail, you will just waste your precious life doing so.

    When this was me, I was SO determined to not hand him over to OW (so she wouldn’t “win”) that I held on WAY WAY WAY too long to a Cheater. CL is right, let her have him, he is no prize at all.

    • UNicornomore – you’re right about my boys, I’m not going to lean on them, that is too much pressure for them – I told them they’ll have a rollercoaster of emotions trying to figure out their own feelings. I did tell them I won’t put them in the middle of all this but I’ll be there for them if they need anything or to vent.

  • J,
    I’m so sorry this is happening to you.

    What helped me the most after I discovered the nearly 3-year affair (after 35 years of marriage) was accepting that:
    1. we don’t cause cheaters to cheat, contrary to what cheaters might argue after the fact

    2. these cheaters cheat because they feel entitled to cheat (from CL’s book, which I read/listened to a million times–highly recommend doing that)

    3. the cheater and his AP are truly awful people. He’s NO PRIZE. You need to trust that he sucks and, as CL has said, his punishment is being who he is. She sounds awful, too. So two awful people get to be together!!

    4. you can’t control what lies he spews, so just keep your head high, be the sane parent (love that you told your sons that they can choose to have whatever relationship they want with their dad), and move on with the advice of a good lawyer. A little bit of radical acceptance goes a long way here.

    5. he’s the enemy. I mean, get out of the habit of thinking that that he might have your best interest at heart. He only has thinking of his best interests. Use the legal system to fight like hell for what you deserve.

    Try to eat to maintain your wits about you. I forced down food and kept my eyes on the prize (a good settlement). Oh, and exercise! That helps. I hope you have at least one good friend or family member who can sit in your pain and support you. Lean on that person.

    As CL points out, be prepared for him to play the victim. Ugh. I hate these types. My x cried that he was SO sad after D-day and that he had only one person to give him emotional support. That one person was the AP. Crying to me about that is beyond self-centered and insensitive. He also complained that “It’s just that you will get the kids.” 🎻 (Props to him for having some awareness that he had crappy relationships with his kids. At one point he said he knew he risked losing me AND them when he had the affair. But then he said he didn’t expect to lose so much. Whatever. His mind is a jumbled mess. Disordered to the max. I try not to tune in to that channel anymore. That said, some signal gets through now and then, which tosses me back on my heels. That seems to happen to all of us here. Expect it and know that the shitty feelings it stirs up will pass.)

    Trust that your kiddos and friends you care about will sniff out his BS and act accordingly. Some may choose him, but, again, you can’t control that.

    Steer clear of people who remain in contact with him and/or tell them that you don’t want to know anything about him and the AP.

    Maintain strong boundaries.

    Don’t look at social media.

    Good luck and ((hugs)). Trust that the future will be better.

    TL;DR: Hold your head high. Remember that he sucks, and you didn’t cause this.

  • It’s great that OW sent proof of how he has been depleting marital assets on her for 5 years

    Print that stuff out ASAP in a secure format. Give it to your laywer.

    Narcs discard, that is very true. And the silent treatment goes with the discard.

    It’s very painful to realize your spouse was a mirage

    • He’s a politician? And you have proof of his years-long affair? Man, I would be tempted to send all that to the opposing party. They would have a field day.

      • J May have to sign a non-disparaging statement.

        Tell anyone now would hurt her chances of a good settlement.

        Trading that moment of satisfaction is not worth years of financial security.

        Follow your lawyers advice and keep everything to yourself for now.

      • Great idea but one of her friends should send it… that way she can deny it if it comes up during the divorce proceedings.

      • I”d be thinking “depositions” unless a very very favorable settlement was offered. His and hers depositions. With illustrations.

  • Trust me, those lies he would say to defend his actions will haunt you way longer than the silent treatment he’s giving you now!
    He can say nothing whatsoever that can help you through this process. His image means more to him than any pain you might be experiencing.
    Walk away, get a lawyer, absolute no contact is the only way to a better place.
    Closure is not anything any of us will get from these fools. None of it will ever make any sense.
    It’s the most bizarre and painful experience you will ever go through in your life.
    Whether we are hit with the painful silent treatment or the painful litany of excuses and false narratives for their cheating, they don’t deal in any truths.
    It all will come down to the very same conclusion.
    They really really do suck!!
    That’s who they always were,we are just beginning to become conscious of it now.
    I’m very sorry for your pain,J.
    Hang out with Chump Nation here for a while as you navigate through this shit storm in front of you. None of it is easy.
    We do understand what you are going through, trust that we have your back and trust that he’s a cheater who is not capable of changing for anyone on his continually destructive orbit.
    You will only heal away from his gravitational pull. You are stronger than you know.

  • It’s hard to understand someone like this unless you realize you’ve been living with a sociopath. People who do this are not human. I agree with another poster. He is keeping silent so that you will look crazy. Don’t. Just go about your life the best you can and present to the public a calm demeanor. My brother’s wife left him but she also left her children. Gone. No forwarding address. His anger got him everything including full custody. Let your rage be the silent type. Move ahead quickly and quietly. When someone asks just ask them what would they do if they found their spouse cheated the entire marriage. Then change the subject because there is nothing more to say.

  • I got the silence and many obvious lies. He once ‘gave’ me on hour to discuss what happened (I was just not cutting it anymore in the appliance dept. ). Denied affair even after he left on a ‘vacation’. I never really got the ‘why’ because of all the lies. And it made me so crazy. He was a public figure and when it all came out, exposing him for the liar cheater scumbag he was, he and the ow simply moved away and he ditched all his cheater friends. Yeah they do stick together like a tribe of snakes. Many of them covered for him. Anyway, it took three years for me not to think about his head exploding perfidy. I wish him nothing. Ok I wish he would drop dead but obviously his dark ooze is primordial fuel of some sort. Haven’t seen him for years and honestly, I’ve never been happier. Marriage should never have been so hard. The reason was killer. But after many years and sleeplessness and the endless going over every thing I could have done to fix our marriage, I finally accepted it was just a mirage. An image burnished by me for him to look good. My boys love their dad but they know he’s a douche. Their mom isn’t crazed anymore. We are all quiet and sane people who just love each other and remember we dodged a bullet.

  • Lawyer up asap. The silent treatment means they have already done their calculations on how much the OW action will cost him in court so he doesn’t want to give you any more fuel. So get hold of all the papers you can. Assets have prob been hidden. His brothers have prob covered for him. Fl trip was prob b.s. serve him quick.

    • Trudy, that is good advice. As soon as I saw some of the financials, I noticed something was not quite write. My FW tried to hide assets and was paying support for Schmoopie and her kids. Copied everything I could find and talked to my lawyer. We got a PI and CDFA involved to find the extent of his treachery because it was a lot! They are still working but I am confident the FW will have to settle for a lot less than he wants. This is not about being vengeful or bitter but it is about consequences and me getting back what he stole. These FWs just want to hurt the chump in any way they can. I know that this will cost me but given the extent of what he has done, I will still come out ahead. J just needs to get the lawyer ASAP and follow what they say. We chumps need to protect ourselves from these FWs.

  • J – You’ll find lots of information in the archives about your next steps legally. I went through mine on autopilot. There was also a recent letter about physical health care suggestions.

    Emotional care? Try to stay in the moment and not dwell on the things you can’t control. Look for small victories and things to be grateful for.

    If you begin to internalize his discard or OW statements, keep this in mind: Nothing – even this – has led you to betray or lie to the most important people in your life. Your ability to keep your integrity should also be considered a win.

    I’m about three years out and divorced one year from a thirty year marriage. The pain lessens dramatically, especially if you remain no contact and get your support team together.

    Watch out for the hoover – charm, pain, rage.

  • I’m so sorry, J. The silent treatment is torture (and meant to be). It (and ostracism in general) activates the same part of the brain as physical pain. You’ve handled this like a pro, but will have a roller coaster of emotions for the next 4-6 months, pain (but also peace) after that. Surround yourself with people who love you and support you. Sending hugs.

    • I agree Tempest – I was a receiver of the silent treatment, after a heavy dollop of being criticised for everything I had ever did.

      While it did my nut at first, what I will say is that it’s relatively peaceful a good while out. I didn’t get any hoovering or nonsense. Just the off email written in italics to tell me why I should think something he thinks, usually about a financial matter of course.

      It’s the total cowardly way out, just not face anything at all. And similar to another recent CL post I know someone who’s partner left and then just wouldn’t even contact her about a divorce.

      Weirdo alert is all I am saying and the silent treatment actually turns out to be blessing in a situation where there are few blessings. Like, there is nothing you could say to me now that a) I would believe b) would make things better so c) silence is golden.

  • “It hurts so much to think he has gotten off so very easy — everyone else has done his dirty work for him, he’s free to roam with no one holding him back and without even lifting a finger.

    Talk about Public Persona (friendly politician) and Private Persona (indifference)! He ALWAYS looks to the public like the good guy who is so attentive, caring, and interesting.”

    I’m so sorry to hear this is happening to you. Many of us here have lived through it too–it SUCKS (to put it mildly).

    These FWs do horrible things to us and they set everything up–before the chump ever finds out!–so that they will land on pillows and the chump lands on spikes. The game is rigged, before you can make strategic moves of your own, so that the FW looks like he can walk away as cleanly as possible. He looks like a sweet, victim and the chump looks like a crazy person. It. Sucks. And I’m so sorry.

    Time to get all your legal affairs in order. Time for lawyers and papers. Time to never talk to him again? He thinks he’s good at No Contact? You will become the master at it. Your aim is to never have a personal conversation with him ever again–business only. The long game is in your court now. Aim to be the prettier pony in the show, walk whatever high road you can (whatever “high road” means to you; context is key to everyone), and keep your head held high. You are the one with dignity, not him.

    All of that is hard. Extremely hard. I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this. My FW married his mistress and carries on with an extremely, social, outgoing public life. His (mostly new) circle of friends and anyone he pulls into his orbit because of his social, public life thinks he’s awesome. I get it; I fell into that orbit too when I started dating him because he’s *extremely* charismatic and easy to get along with… as long as he has use for you.

    Does it suck that he and the Wifetress skipped off into the sunset to (on the outside) live a public, social life full of interviews, events, and friends? Sometimes, yah. I do my best to stay far, FAR away from that public life that he fertilizes. My life is smaller, quieter, and is 100% more at peace with him out of it. So, when I really think about it, while it used to vex me that he had this successful public life where everyone thinks he’s awesome and hardly anyone who knows him barely knows I exist (and probably believes the lie that he trots out regularly whenever anyone, in shock, says “You have a first wife?” “Oh yes, but we ‘just drifted apart… you know how it goes.'”), I am now quite grateful that he sinks so much time into busy, social, window-dressing life and generally keeps my name out of his mouth. I give him no reason to talk about me or direct his ire in my direction. I am no one’s crazy ex-wife and I certainly refuse to be his. I’d rather disappear from his life entirely and have him never talk about me and barely remember me at all. Was it painful at the beginning? Heck yes. Is it still painful? From time to time.
    But having him out of my life… in fact, having him disregard me… has been such a blessing.

    He can have his extroverted, public, social life with all his window-dressing lies (like, refusing to ever admit to anyone that he married an affair partner; those words will never come out of his mouth). I can’t control that. He can hang himself on his own rope or live happily ever after. I can’t control that. But I can control my little slice of “oh thank God he’s not in my life now” heaven. You won’t believe how peaceful things get when the FW/AP isn’t a part of your daily life but is, instead, the smallest fleck of dust in your rearview mirror. FW puts a lot of energy, time, and effort into managing his public persona; he needs people to think well of him; he needs to be regarded as a hero. I stopped shouting into the wind (“People!! Don’t you see what he did!?! He’s no hero! He’s not even nice!!!”) a long time ago because (1) society doesn’t think cheating (and all the abusive tactics that come with it) is that big of a deal (it’s just shoulder-shrugging plot point in some grand romcom, for all anyone cares… sad but true) and (2) it kept me thinking about him and wallowing in my sorrow which was amplified because no one seemed to care or *acknowledge* what he did.

    The fallout from me not shouting into the wind (or social media) that he and GF#3/Wifetress were doing horrible things was actually anger from him. He WANTED me to be a harpy. He wanted the drama. He wanted me to call him out on social media. He wanted to be able to point at me and say “See?! Who could blame me for leaving! (again)”

    GF#3/Wifetress was my second D-Day. I wasn’t going to be the villain in a story that he wrote long before I knew he was writing the book. I didn’t play into it. He was furious with me. He hated my silent treatment. He hated the No Contact and, for awhile, tried to push my buttons and get a rise out of me. (He was thrilled that I did all the legal legwork of divorcing him though.) He really hated how quiet I was on the subject of “him” that I was except to cry if any friends really pushed me to talk about it.

    I still refuse to talk about him unless it’s in a business-type sense like “Dad texted; he’s picking you up at 5pm instead of 4:30pm” or the like.

    I say all this to encourage you to look forward to your better, FW-less life. The less of him there is in your life, the better it will get. I slip up from time to time (I’m just a human chump, after all) but mostly, I don’t worry about FW’s public life at all. It’s just window dressing and he’s welcome to invest all his time and energy into keeping up appearances because it’s kept him busy and off my back for years now.

    Is it fair? No, absolutely not. But don’t involve yourself in his window dressings. Whatever it takes to make him go away is worth the investment. The less of him there is in your life the more room there is for you.

    • Beautifully put! Especially love the last line:The less of him there is in your life the more room there is for you.

    • Fourleaf – you’ve got the right attitude and certainly moving forward – the No Contact does really work in our favor. Love your last line too!

  • I believe it is in our chump nature to try to find out what is wrong, or went wrong, and then fix it. This attitude may help us be successful in many aspects of life, but it is not good for us in a relationship with a dysfunctional personality type. The fault is inside them. They are deceptive, by their nature. There was nothing you could have done to fix this, and more importantly, you did not cause this. This does not mean you are perfect — you have to find the parts of you that accept this kind of behavior. You will have to repair your own defense system and set boundaries to protect yourself. This is hard work, if you are able, do it with a therapist to speed your progress. You will not get closure, the way you think of it now. You will learn that you deserve to be treated well, and you will not accept the unacceptable in the future.

    If you read the survivor stories here at chump nation you will find a new person emerges from this awful experience. That is your gift to yourself. You don’t live with a FW anymore. Life is much better after you get to MEH. Don’t feel alone, there are more of us than you think, because we tend to be quiet and private people. I do not believe in the “fabulous” lives people post on social media. I can be happy cooking at home in jeans and a t-shirt, instead of dressed in designer duds, eating at an overpriced restaurant. Priorities. Choices. Peace.

    Good luck on finding a tough lawyer and getting through this. Keep your eye on the long game goal.

    • Ditto this. Hugs to you! This is the worst part, it gets better from here. My ex was a master at the silent treatment. And I learned that I was happy with that. I learned to not engage and do what worked for me.

  • Dear J,

    the OW made you a great favour. I am sure your lawyer will make the best use of it to your benefit when you divorce this loser. She was probably trying to smoke him out of his hole, as Tracy said. So, don’t be grateful. She is an enemy that just committed a mistake to your advantage. Let’s hope she continue to do so, don’t interrupt her 😉

    About the silent treatment: cowardly and cruel. Trying to mess with anyone’s mental health is so, so twisted. Let alone a life partner freshly traumatized by the discovery of his infidelity. Take this atop of the betrayal and 5 years of a double life as a measure of his wickedness. My educated guess is that there is more that you don’t know about. But what you do know is more than enough to trust that he sucks donkeys’ balls.

    Nothing to work with there. Run for the hills, this motherfucker is dangerous.

    Wishing you strength to do what has to be done.

    (((Hughs)))

  • My ex-covert narcissist wielded the silent treatment as a weapon too. The last time I saw him he happily blathered on about how great everything was. I just stood there, never said a word, and walked away when he looked at me expecting a response. It took me awhile to learn, but nothing these people say would ever be honest or heartfelt. Don’t look for closure or answers to people that hurt you. Look for healing & love in people that don’t. Eyes & Heart Forward x

  • My circumstances were different, but “brutal discard” is such an apt phrase. When you look at it clinically and black-and-white, that’s it with a hundred variations. This is passive-aggressive and cowardly. He doesn’t care, period. It hurts like nothing else, but you have to go on without them. Get yourself a top-notch legal team.

  • “I know many would say how much easier that would be than him begging for forgiveness, asking to work things out, saying it was only a mistake, etc. “

    They NEVER say this. Never. Would you agree Tracy? Whether it’s silent treatment, or saying a bunch of stupid shit like “I enjoy being a narcissist” or “I love two women. It’s like when you have a child, it doesn’t mean you don’t want another child to love” or they say “I love you but I’m not in love with you” or they say “if only we had had more date nights” cuing you to pick me dance. Or they say things incredibly cruel (the rage channel) or they try to Hoover you just to keep their options open…. What they DON’T do is beg for forgiveness and ask to work things out. That is a chump fantasy, that they will realize what they’ve lost, come to their senses, and beg. It doesn’t happen, it’s not part of their character. If you haven’t already, get Tracy’s book. It’s a lifesaver. Get yourself a good attorney and divorce this asshole ASAP

    • Absolutely. They will never admit to have caused you pain and present you with a heartfelt apology. Not gonna happen, comes with the territory. Ask anyone who attempted any type of reconciliation or couples counseling. There is no closure. Don’t waste your time.

    • Oh, some of them will say it. They just don’t mean it.
      They’ll lie and lie and when their contradictory behavior proves they’re lying, they’ll just lie and say that it doesn’t. They’ll say it isn’t what it looks like, that you don’t understand, they’re confused…bla bla bla. A million bullshit excuses and a million bullshit apologies. Sadly, a lot of chumps seem to fall for it and think they are reconciling for real.

      I was recently reading a thread at a popular infidelity recovery site where somebody was questioning why so many people kept coming back to say that after successfully reconciling, going to therapy, and the fw expressing remorse and committing to change, they were cheated on again. The answer is so obvious but nobody there could figure it out. I wanted to tell them that it’s just another con, that they aren’t sorry and they never change for real, but I resisted the temptation to pointlessly scream into a windstorm of denial. They are too invested in their belief in unicorns. Thankfully, we know better here.

  • oh, that’s a dreadful shock.

    I wish you all the best of luck with finding the most savage lawyer: the one who smiles at the 5 years of evidence.
    And I hope that you can close off the sources that share the family discussions: to me, it looks like they’re looking for kibble and cake to report back to him.

  • Dear J, I am so sorry for your pain. There is nothing quite like it and there is no way to explain it to someone who hasn’t experience this level of rejection. We get it.

    Mine wouldn’t shut up but everything that was coming out of his mouth were lies and he denied being in a relationship with OW for years, even after separation. But that’s besides the point. Whatever the flavor, a shit sandwich is still a shit sandwich.

    In any case you won’t get any closure from that asshole. So don’t waste your time. Instead use your time lawyering up and serving him a good dose of consequences, and use the rest of your time to take care of yourself. One thing I hadn’t realized until I went no contact with asshat is that not taking care of everything for an asshole and not trying to untangle their skein left me with a lot of time and a lot of head space.

    Like others have already mentioned it’s your gift. You were not prepared for it but here it is: you can focus on YOU and what YOU need to do. First item of business: divorce that asshole.

    • This! It’s my first week after finally getting him to move out, and there is SO MUCH TIME!! I have to figure that walking on eggshells and getting constantly triggered by seeing him was taking up a lot of brainpower.

      Even the household chores seem way easier and faster, it’s not hard at all to keep things tidy and fold the laundry, now. I do all that, binge watched a show I had wanted to see for a while, and there’s still time for long bubble baths! No Contact/Gray Rock is truly the way to go. I love that feeling of “Hmm, what will I do now? Oh, ANYTHING I WANT! Maybe a nice cup of tea and a good book!” And nobody glaring jealously because reading a book is not about them.

      • This is great news, Rural Chump!!! I have been following your posts and have been worrying about you. I hope you do all the things CL recommends, above. Stand strong and take care of yourself!

  • J, you are in a great legal position here because you have so much leverage. He’s a public persona and you have proof that he’s a complete fraud. Your lawyer can use the threat to go public with this story to get you an amazing settlement. Your fuckwit is a snot-nosed, cowardly manbaby, but he is also ruthlessly self-centered, so you have to respond with equal or greater ruthlessness. When you get legal, he will most likely try to hoover. Be prepared and don’t be fooled. It’s crystal clear that he isn’t sorry and isn’t normal. If you get some measure of justice in the divorce, it should help you to heal.

    As to your question of why you should continue to be a kind and empathetic person when you can still be treated this way; the rest of the human race is not him. He’s a freak. Your goodness matters to your sons, your other family, your friends, to strangers you do kind things for, and to humanity as a whole. It matters to us at CN. You’re good so YOU matter. He’s garbage and so is his whore, so they don’t matter. Trust me, if you put two assholes together, you have a recipe for misery. The reason your marriage wasn’t a complete shit show for 25 years was because one of you was not an asshole.

    Now, about getting over this; don’t let him text you about trivial bullshit or anything else. Block all forms of communication immediately. You have no minor kids, so no real reason to communicate. Anything has has to say to you he can say to your lawyer. Anything he wants to know about your sons he can ask them. Every time he sends you some stupid message it will set your healing back. He’s trying to keep a foot in the door by contacting you in case he wants to use you again in the future. These clowns know that the AP is as disordered and freaky as they are, so they like to have a chump on the back burner for when it goes south. You will not be that chump, and you will heal. The pain is normal and to be expected, but don’t hesitate to get a therapist if you need to. I find that venting on here helps and has saved me thousands in therapy I would otherwise have needed. I also find supporting other chumps even more therapeutic. There is light at the end of the tunnel, but the fuckwit needs to be dynamited out of that tunnel with NC.
    Best of luck nailing his greasy hide to the wall legally and lots of love. 💜

    • You can be a kind and empathetic person and hire yourself a crack legal team. My attorney helped me see that juxtaposition clearly when I was all tied up emotionally. Apply those characteristics to yourself and safe people around you and let the lawyers duke it out to get what is legal and fair in this situation. He created this wreck-a-thon, not you.

      • True. I believe in being kind unless somebody gives me a reason to believe my kindness is wasted on them. Then I know it can be put to much better use elsewhere. So I turn off the tap for that person, but keep it on for others. Not everybody can be selective about it though, so a mean lawyer is great to have.

        • Mine was an interesting person. He was known as a really tough litigator but an absolute gentleman. He shocked me at times with how well he knew just when to put on the pressure and where. I actually started joking around with him at times because my situation was so bizarre, and he loved that. He said that it was so rare to have a client that he could laugh with. One time we got going and laughed so hard we cried.

          My ex picked an unethical street fighter attorney, and somehow mine charmed that attorney into giving up all kinds of things and ultimately turning on my ex. My attorney claimed “I’m just a good listener,” but it was more than that. He had a gift.

          • I have heard it said that we have too many attorneys but when I hear stories like yours, my mind finishes it with “but not enough good ones.” I was one who went to law school believing I could help people but was surrounded by lie, cheat, and steal types. I found my niche in a non-practicing capacity and love what I do, but I wish I were one of those gifted types who helps clients like you. I have high hopes that the attorney I am going with does a great job.

      • Exactly, a lawyer won’t be emotionally tied to this person. It’s just business, and they can take care of it. Whenever FW wants to talk about anything business related, you can say: talk to my attorney. That’s not mean. You can save your good heart for people who are worth it.

        For everything else, assemble your team: your own therapist, GP, OBGYN, best friends, etc. There are great resources in the archives. There was a very good list posted only a few days ago.

        Take care.

    • I waited for years for the Hoover it never happened .

      As said above I’ve not seen nor heard from my ex since D Day he packed and left . Not one single peep from him ever . Never showed to get divorced just nothing .

      J I’m just saying this incase you are in a panic about “ oh what if he hoovers how do I handle it? “ a lot of them don’t .

      There’s a few posts on here about the ones that just leave and you don’t need to go no contact as they never contact you please look in the archives these might help you too.

      • Jackass was like that. He just picked a lot of fights, let the devaluation begin, and finally just left without so much as a word. For a few weeks, he would answer the phone and then lie about where he was, what was happening and whom he was seeing. But that was all a result of my pick-me efforts. Once I let that go, it has been nearly 9 years of silence. And thank God for that.

  • It is mind boggling how our ex’s just erase us from their lives and start over. No sadness, no remorse, no feelings whatsoever. But I must remember that he was lying and cheating for 34 years. It was a way of life for him. And he could not understand why I was so devastated, crushed by the discovery. He asked me didn’t I WANT a husband and a house to live in? I replied that in our state HALF of all this house was mine. His head turned red and he hollered “ It’s a money grab!” No, it’s the law I said and proceeded to call a lawyer ASAP. I have had to fight for my sanity, every single day. Because I’m am worth it. I deserve better than this kind of disrespect, this lack of empathy, this total disregard for another human beings feelings. All these years I thought there was something terribly wrong with ME. And that is exactly what he wanted all along, it served as a fine distraction from his deceit. Denied access to my presence is the cure. The road to Meh.

    • Seems like a common thing with FWs if they were the income earner and you were the stay-at-home parent, that they really think and even say out loud that they were doing you a favor by generously offering *their* house to provide a roof for you and those kids that you have for some mysterious reason.

      Like you should be grateful to be allowed to serve their majestic presence. Like it’s not your place to judge their behavior or expect consideration for your feelings. You’re the help.

    • same. Cheated on me and his first wife so I can only imagine what the rest of his girls he sleeps with are doing. His stable I call it.

  • I had a similar experience. He denied being unfaithful but would give me no other reasons why he was filing for divorce after I found out of his slimey ways. In fact when I asked him “so if you didn’t cheat, why are you divorcing me?” His answer was “I have my reasons”. That’s it. That’s all I had to go on. We had a new baby and he had reasons that I’ll never know. I’m assuming bc the act was over and he knew it but would never admit it. It’s extremely painful to be stonewalled like this.

    • I am so glad you are alive to post. I keep thinking about that Peterson guy sitting in prison for killing his wife and unborn baby. Malignant narcissists and sociopaths do not want to be responsible for anybody. As long as he had a wife who looked after him he was OK with everything. Once he knew the birth was imminent he had to do something quickly. He could not wait until the baby was born because he would have a hard time proving an accident. So he quickly came up with discarding both mother and child in hopes they’d stay on the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. Now he’s paying the price but so is her family because their daughter and grandchild are not here. You are here and you’re lucky he’s gone.
      I recommend everyone who is discarded read The Sociopath Next Door.

      • Yes, the only difference here is that he immediately wanted the baby 50/50..he was three months old. My FW enjoys playing super dad, for now. He never abandoned our child. Although we both probably would have been much better off if he did.

    • That is so triggering. The stonewalling, just refusal to address any of it
      Him sitting on the back porch staring, dissociating…
      UGH Bad memories

  • Yup CL is correct 100% trust that they suck get a good lawyer and a good settlement. I’m now at 6 years since D day it’s been a financial nightmare but I’m coming back slowly!🙏🌷

  • J, you’re so mighty for taking action immediately! You are tough and strong, and it’s only natural to want an explanation, to want him to acknowledge the pain that he caused, and that hurting you was wrong. But when they’re like this, the “Hot Pockets” type of cheater (who would step over your sobbing body to make a Hot Pocket), and they don’t even bother to show crocodile tears or pretend to care, or even give you the respect of a conversation about it, then I think all the closure you can have is realizing that this person is disordered. You don’t have to diagnose him formally to see this behavior is abusive, not normal, not humane, not how a healthy person would act. His disorder caused him to hide that anything was wrong with him for a long time, but that was an illusion crafted just for you, to fool you, and every mask has to fall sometime. There was nothing that you could have done that would have prevented him from acting out this way, he is not capable of mature love where hurting you would hurt him.

    But what it also means when they stop pretending to care is that they realize they can’t fool you anymore. In his twisted way, he’s showing how strong he now knows that you are, and what a coward he is. Stay no contact or gray rock, and all the self-care suggestions people are giving are great. The pain comes and goes in waves, but the longer you are away from them the less it hurts. The archives here are full of so much wisdom, and when you find stories that resonate, it helps so much to know you’re not alone, this happens to other people too. You got this!

  • JO, I relate to this so much and to the never knowing. He just told me he “needed to be alone” and understood how that might be “perplexing” to me.

    J, you are better off no contact because you will never get a real answer. Keep us posted on how you are doing!

  • I had the discard too J. It’s really painful. I caught mine from the credit card expenses. I asked him what was going on. I got this: “Well, I’ve tried sex clubs, then prostitutes but that wasn’t great so I decided to try (OW from our work). I told her that you don’t like S&M so she said she’d do whatever I wanted. So we’ve been having sex and now we’re going to be together. She’s in love with me and said she’s never felt this way about anyone. So, I’ll come home and mow the lawn and do the taxes and hang out with you two sometime (his family) but then I’ll stay with her to get my needs met.”

    After 25 years this is what I got. He simply looked like a psycho, someone I’d never met. Long story short I said “no” to his ludicrous offer a few days later and he simply shrugged and left. That was it- he didn’t care if I was hurt, he took no accountability for what he did and he was gone. I tore my house apart and found heaps of evidence of his cheating. I didn’t get the marital money back- not in this country. It’s like “foibles” if a marriage. It’s a bullshit no fault system gone too far.

    Anyway the discard is painful as hell. In my case, he’s never changed. He won’t engage, he isn’t there for our daughter and he’s spun the narrative of how he was just the victim of a bad marriage. The narrative he was spinning got so strong that he and his girlfriend were plotting to send me to a mental health inpatient centre- but that’s a different story.

    Fuck him and lawyer up J. Find a good therapist who knows about emotional abuse because gaslighting is hard to heal from.

    Hugs.
    FKA

    • FKA – that is really f#cked up! I’ve read a lot of posts and yours may be one of the worst. I wonder what they do for the other 23.5 hours of a day when they are together 🤣

      • Yeah, it’s a messed up story for sure. I saw the emails back and forth about where they could send me and “go for help.” Was I crazy? Yes! Once you learn that the person you were with was a complete pscyho, sexual sadist, it does kind of make you lose it! It would have been very satisfying for them if I ended up in the psych ward….as it was described to me later by my abuse counsellor, it would have meant he was vindicated – the wife was crazy, therefore I had to leave her, and others would think, “oh, poor guy, his wife was crazy, no wonder he had to leave her”, etc. etc. AND – he would have had my daughter, the house, the money, etc. Luckily it’s not back in the day when the paddy wagons would come around and get “hysterical” women. That would’ve been me gone.

        • Mine came very close to achieving this too. Sometimes I wonder if he would have went as far as to kill me. And that even sounds crazy to me, but yet…….

          He was cruel and sadistic. My D-Day happened after 40 years of marriage in which he rarely spoke to me about anything important. On D-Day, he asked, Would it be alright if I had a girlfriend?” which even today is puzzling……I wonder if he had planned to move her in and go on as if nothing had changed. In our last conversation which happened a few days later, he tried twice to tell me how great their sex was…trying to give me details….and I threw up my hands and said, “Stop!” He just didn’t get it – that that is too fucking weird!

          They are fucking weirdos! Lizards without human emotion. I was a used up Kleenix in his life. She is the new Kleenix. He is angry if anyone suggests that’s not how it works.

  • J, you may have been married to a Cyborg. When that realization sinks in, I dare say it’s more traumatizing in certain ways than the threads of a 25-year marriage unraveling. For 25 years, you may have conversed with, dined with, shared a bed with, and procreated with someone who had metal and aluminum where a human heart usually resides. It’s the basis for a science fiction movie, except its reality.

    Scooch over, I also had a brutal discard many moons ago. I’m happy to say my discard is now a memory that only resurrects when I attempt any trauma-release therapy. And forgiveness is overrated. That’s not to say carry the anger, don’t. Anger is poison. Release him and you’ll eventually release the anger. Forgiveness should be given to yourself, for coupling up with a being that has internal wires and a motherboard, with an externally determined penis, instead of a blood-pumping heart.

    Here’s how I believe Cyborgs catch a human partner: Generally speaking, they’re physically attractive. And the initial sex, at least for the first few years, is toe-curling. Remember, they’re comprised of wires and buttons. They know which buttons to push. Life is like a game of Tetris for them. They’ll knock out certain blocks, fill in others, all with the goal of achieving their perfect level. Not yours, theirs.

    Everything is about them. Their game. Their level. You serve a purpose, until you don’t. Let’s say you married a Cyborg in 1995. Cyborg’s wire’s compute: Wife appliance is thin, attractive, bringing home a decent paycheck, available and ready for sex when asked, keeps the house tidy and neat, and can converse with human business colleagues on an intelligent level. His hard drive activity indicator lights are flashing and computing (Do-Da-Dee-Dah-da-da-de. Bleeeeep”). Approved. You’re in. Then, as always is the case in the lives of flesh-and-blood human beings, shit happens. Chronological time takes its toll on physical bodies and life brings with it inescapable change. Fast forward to Wife Appliance circa 2015, who may have gained a few pounds, is struggling with rheumatoid arthritis, and may not be ready to jump in the sack for a programmed quickie because a loved one was just laid to rest that very morning, and the Cyborg’s internal board is now reprogramming itself. Much like the blaring sound of a smoke detector with a fading battery, all the Cyborg can sense is a screeching annoyance. But instead of simply taking the time to change the battery, the Cyborg yanks the smoke detector from the wall and replaces it with a new one.

    To Cyborgs, people are a necessity to be used and replaced when no longer functioning according to their computed value. Love is an emotion expressed through a heart and soul; it doesn’t transmit via wires. E.T. felt love and he was an extraterrestrial. For future reference, Extraterrestrials love more than Cyborgs. If you’re ever lost in the Nevada desert and get abducted by an alien spaceship, don’t panic. Once they’re finished examining you, the discard won’t be as brutal as being married to a Cyborg.

    There’s an episode of “Modern Family” when Cam needs to come up with extra cash quickly for his wedding to Mitch and contemplates selling a cherished cowboy belt-buckle that was handed down to him from his grandfather. He always believed the buckle had significant financial value along with sentimental value. Upon having it appraised at a pawn shop, he discovers it’s an assembly-line promotional buckle that was sold in gas stations back in the day. Discovering that something we placed a high value upon is counterfeit is annihilating to our emotions.

    Uncovering a Cyborg posing as a human being is devastating for anyone. But it happens. Life is nothing if not forward moving. It goes on. J, love yourself more than you ever have. Be kind to yourself, be forgiving. Let the OW have the Cyborg. Let her endure his silent treatments when he decides to shut down his motherboard. Cyborgs don’t know how to love. There are many human beings out there that do. They’re not always easy to find, but they exist. And they don’t all look like E.T. Good luck!

    • >>Much like the blaring sound of a smoke detector with a fading battery, all the Cyborg can sense is a screeching annoyance.

      Wow. Your Cyborg story is quite on the mark. That is the experience.

    • This was a very apt description of being married to someone who didn’t love you. It’s amazing that it can drag on for 25 years like mine did. It’s amazing how I mentally filled in the gaps to believe in the fantasy when all along I was sleeping next to a thing that was dead inside. That’s why it goes from them feeling real to all at once not real and cold…it’s an amazing experience for those of us who have had the “stepping over your heaving body to warm up the hot pocket moment.” I will forever use the image of the Cyborg – it made me feel better to read this. Thanks!

      • MsAzure, that’s a striking picture! Cyborg. Once the ex had finished his smirking character assassination: ‘you’ve wasted your talents; you make people feel uncomfortable; you’re manipulative; can’t think of anything I like about you’, he strode away into the kitchen and made a stir fry. And I ate it up! The insults and the stir fry. Just typing that makes me feel as if I need to douse myself in disinfectant!

        • Trauma is a funny thing. I had my own version of eating the stir fry! Don’t be hard on yourself about it.
          Hugs

  • J, i’m sorry that you’re in this situation but here you are, and here we are, together. try to be kind to yourself in the blast zone.

    1. eat well
    2. sleep as best possible
    3. see your GP for a check up and STI testing (including hepatitis) + tell your GP what’s going on
    4. talk to your friends, the real ones
    5. lawyer up–they’ll advise you on all the paperwork
    6. talk to your therapist on the regular

    he’s going to lie to you even more than he already has, so get ready for the transaction that is separation/divorce negotiations. be businesslike. you’ve got your future to secure.

    you will feel shocked for a long time and that’s okay. just keep going and keep talking. the truth is, this guy isn’t quality goods, never has been, never will be, he’s just a cyborg (see above). you can’t expect him to feel/act/react in ways he is not capable. it’s a lot to figure out that your partner of 25 years isn’t capable but it’s a fact. i mean, look at the evidence–he won’t even speak to you. that’s how incapable he is of being a basic human being let alone a decent one.

    i’m going to let you in on something you need to know–he’s cruel and he enjoys it. so be forewarned.

    again, i’m sorry. it’s painful as hell. i’m 15 months post D-Day and things change. take heart.

  • This is a horrible way to find out – but are there any good ways?

    Silence treatment is abuse.
    It goes with passive aggressive behaviour and puts the chump into this awful positions, that we want to explain ourselves to the cheater.
    And next to anything else, it is also a tactic : they say nothing, and the chump usually reveals too much . Don’t.

    My ex still uses passive aggressive behaviour and silence treatment as a weapon.
    It is of course less powerful: We only spend two 5 minute handovers per week in each other’s presence. If she doesn’t say a word during that time, I am not upset.
    She sends emails with passive aggressive phrases, which also are far less potent than a spoken word within a relationship.
    Usually, I ” Grey Rock” my reply ; occasionally , I reply as if I would reply to a toddler ” I can see that you are angry …”

    All that would be far too much for J at the moment.
    Best advice is not to show your cards whilst they use silence treatment.

  • Road whores don’t get it that your one Tru special love isn’t married to someone else. She is getting tired of waiting for this ass-wipe to make her the next missus. Please let their dream come true.

  • He has nothing to say. you caught him. He does not care about what he did to you, the kids or the marriage which includes two extended families. Indifference is exactly what he is showing. And, given that the other woman reached out to you with pictures, I’d say he is indifferent to her too. She was probably waiting for the divorce from you so they could get married, but he was playing her too. He is a Walter Mitty with his own private secret life that really does not involve anyone else. I think CL describes these types as the truly disordered.

  • Dear J, Am so sorry this happened to you. Another vote for no contact with him and going straight to a divorce attorney.

    No contact was my saving grace to get through the divorce and life post divorce. It’s helped me heal from the FW’s hurt and betrayal. You deserve a better life than the one this loser FW has handed to you via Schoompie.

  • Hi J,

    I’m sorry that this happened to you.
    I too got a bit of the silent treatment. I was balling and totally ugly crying, while she was just kind of sitting there, no tears from her. I can’t imagine making someone cry like that and not feeling bad enough to cry with them.
    I never got an apology, I got “I never meant to hurt you” and a bunch of useless garbage like that.
    In any event, you need to press through this. Your children are grown, so you don’t need to worry about custody stuff. Hopefully you get a great lawyer, and get the best settlement you can.
    Please try and take care of yourself. If your sons are doing well, maybe you could lean on them to make sure you’re eating and drinking enough.

    Brick

  • J – “He ALWAYS looks to the public like the good guy who is so attentive, caring, and interesting.” I’ve been married to one of those too. I regularly had people tell me how lucky I was to be married to such a “good guy” – and I agreed with them. Then he had something of a wee tryst with a friend of mine (and by “wee tryst” I mean weekly sex for two years, incl in our house on our child’s bed). For damn sure NOT the good guy. Twenty years of what I thought was a solid marriage to a “good guy”, and three kids still at home – I wanted to give him another chance and try to make it work. But betrayal is no small thing. And it’s a special kind of discombobulating to have a “good guy” betray you. When he saves his mean, snarky jabs just for you (or in your case, cold stonewalling) and grins for everyone else, it effs with one’s head. It’s taken me three years to realize a marriage with this sort of wound is not sustainable. So sorry for what you’re going through.

  • 99% Chance that he will hoover eventually, and that he will try to fake nice to get you to talk and soften up and tell him your plans, to buy time to steal more money, to get you to go easy on him and not take “his” assets.
    No more texts, no more hoping to talk with him, go hard No Contact.
    Don’t be plan B.
    Get that pitbull lawyer yesterday, and take and hide copies of that present from the OW, and give the package to your lawyer immediately, so that Mr. Mindfuck doesn’t steal it.

  • As much as it hurts, the silent treatment is preferable to torrents of abuse, which is what I got for nearly four years. However, he never admitted the affair until discovery, because he couldn’t really lie any more at that point.

    You are also fortunate that his OW seems to be pretty stupid (my ex’s was too). Use that. Monitor (or have someone else monitor) OW’s social media, etc. You will get likely get lots of fodder for your case, especially if you are in an at-fault state. My ex’s OW posted all kinds of stupid things about where they were and what they were doing. It was very … enlightening.

    I will echo the many comments above:

    -Get a good lawyer
    -Don’t communicate with your FW
    -Eat (protein shakes if you can’t face food – I lost so much weight because I couldn’t eat, and that did NOTHING to help me, emotionally or mentally, let alone physically, manage my divorce)
    -Sleep. Get medication if you need it.
    -Find a therapist
    -Protect your money (if you don’t already have your own bank account, get one asap, and check that things are paid regularly. My ex was terrible about paying bills on time and some of our assets were joint, so that hurt MY credit.)
    -Don’t use social media, especially for anything personal. My ex stalked me relentlessly. Even innocuous things were used against me (he could twist ANYTHING into a negative)
    -Journaling helps with processing emotions. HOWEVER – get your therapist to “prescribe” that you write a journal. It is protected then as medical information and has to be subpoenaed. Otherwise your ex can ask for your journal in discovery (ask me how I know).
    -Music is great for emotions, as is exercise (I took up running and yoga)

    It sucks, it hurts, but it will be okay and you’ll make it. You are going to be just fine, even if it doesn’t seem that way right now.

  • STBXW gave me the silent treatment about what she did after I found out her serial cheating. She denied and continued to live in house like nothing happened but was leaving me because of “abuse”. When she told our S14 he was confused because he saw nothing, we were a close loving family.Worse was we d coded to tell him together after he went on a high adventure Boy Scout Trip but she told him when they were alone 2 days before he left. Upset him. She Plays the victim to everyone and said she is leaving for safety???? We never fought, She spent last 6 years planning her exit. Gaslight the hell out of me. Fortunately I have friends who can see right through her. They told me “she is the enemy. Wait and see what she will do.” her ” I want nothing but to leave” will change. My friends were right! fortunately they armed me with an awesome legal team and incredible support. Amazing how kind rugby buddies, fellow surgeons, wt lifters and many others can be. I may have lost the wife lottery but realized I have won with my choice of friends. J, you will find close friends who have been through this. They will come to your aid and carry you through this.
    The advice that people gave you here is awesome.
    1) The FW is your enemy, Go no contact.
    2) Get a great attorney. That isn’t as easy as it sounds. There are a lot of lawyers who bleed their clients. My technique is to ask attorneys that I know who they would get to represent them if they were in this situation. You will find the same names come up.
    3) Take care of yourself
    4) It is not your fault!

    • “She denied and continued to live in house like nothing happened but was leaving me because of “abuse”.

      This is kind of what went down between fw and our grown son. FW said the old line of breaking up a marriage “it takes two” Son told him “nope dad, this is on you it takes two to make a marriage, but one can destroy it; and you have” He then told his dad that he needs to be fair in the D process. It was sweet of him to try, but I had a lawyer to make sure he was fair; otherwise he would have screwed me into poverty and walked a way with a self congratulatory smirk on his face.

      Son didn’t tell me about this convo until much later. Son also said to him “I lived with both of you for 18 years, and I know how mom treated you”. This was when son was 20, I am amazed at his maturity, but really it was very clear for anyone to see that his dad had been lying and conning a lot of folks.

  • My now XH also did something like this. After Dday I also did the screaming banshee routine calling him and OW nasty awful things. I didn’t get much of a response that morning. Mostly just “ If you k ew why didn’t you stop me?” I was temporarily in shock at that comment from him

    For the next 5 or 6 days there was nothing said about much of anything from either of is. We both went to work but he was still coming home from work 2-3 hours late. I finally asked what he wanted to do if he wanted to see a marriage counselor. He said he wanted to stay married and do that. But nothing changed. He kept coming home late and I stayed silent. Finally I said “you need to come home after work, not 3 hours late!”
    His response:
    “What do i need to come home for?”
    Now I realize he was just getting things in place to make the Ow the prime supply and give me the final permanent discard
    What a giant coward

  • Dear J,

    My heart goes out to you with the sudden bomb drop onto your family. AP obviously got tired of waiting on promises and played her best card up her sleeve. I doubt X will be happy with her for doing so, especially when the bigger backlash begins on his reputation. I agree with CL he will have PLENTY to say then and will hit the DARVO button all day long.
    I have to say, you have carried yourself with class and grace under the most adverse conditions. This was all a set up to make you become a screaming banshee. Who wouldn’t? Bomb drop by AP + Cowardly silent treatment with spouse of 25 years?! Most people would still be screaming with that horror. You kept you COOL all the while he sat smugly. Absolutely MIGHTY and FIERCE.
    He and she may think they are the wise ones fooling you for five years but they are idiots.
    You’ve got this, J. Glad you’re here for support. It is what every chump needs but especially from the get go of D-Day.
    Hugs.

  • This is J – The Silent Treatment
    How do I say THANK YOU! The love and support from all of you is overwhelming, it fills my empty shattered heart. I’ve wrapped myself in all your electronic hugs! Your encouraging words let me know my thoughts and actions are on the right path. Thank you all for sharing your stories with me, I’m sorry for all that you have had to go through and endure. I have contacted a shark of a lawyer (referred to me from a friend who went thru a horrendous divorce herself). Boy, did she open my eyes! She pulls no punches, tells it like it is, and no sugar coating. Just what I need!

    I’m gathering papers as we speak, not wanting him yet to know I have a lawyer, but go figure, getting my hands on all the income tax returns is a challenge because they were done by his brother! But I’m creatively asking for them. I have always done our bills, balanced checkbooks, reviewed the credit cards and never saw any questionable charges or withdrawals. How did he pay for everything for the last 5 yrs? – I have no idea, I’m thinking he has to have an account somewhere and a credit card going to his email but have no idea where he’s pulling funds to support this.

    I have come to realize now just how mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausted I had become. It’s like he sucked my life and spirit out of me, I’m just an empty shell. It was at the point that I questioned “Who Am I? and “What is my purpose?”. I wasted so much time, energy, and thoughts on trying to make something work that was never going to work. No wonder I’ve battled Migraine headaches!

    I look back on the 25 yrs and wonder how I lasted 25 yrs! I see now how cold, selfish, and heartless he has been and is. I recently said “What he wants, he takes, and takes, and takes……..and never gives back”. He’s so heartless that just 3 yrs ago, the week my mother (who I was taking care of and the last few weeks stayed at her house) was dying; he decided he just HAD to go to FL to visit his father – a last minute, spur of the moment, unplanned trip! I had to call him to tell him my mother passed away! No support when I most needed him!

    Several months ago, as he was leaving for yet another work trip, he tells me “I love you”. My response to him was “I really don’t think you love me; you just love the idea of me being here to simplify your life”. At that time, I even told him “I don’t think you know how to love”. And to think I said this months ago before I knew what was happening. My gut was tell me something!

    I’ve made up my mind to not be a victim! I’m not wasting my brain cells on a scumbag coward, I’m just going to move forward! The Silent Treatment is a blessing in disguise – making NO CONTACT much easier. The only glitch in all and moving forward is the planning of my oldest son’s wedding for June 2023! I’ll cross those obstacles when they come and by then I’ll be even stronger! One day at a time, one step at a time, one foot in front of the other. A friend of mine has a saying: “Why let someone buy real estate in your brain”.

    Many of you mentioned to expect the rage and words to come when he gets the papers and I know that many would react that way. Knowing him as I do, he’ll take the papers, sign them, and not say a word. There will be no emotion. I’ll let you all know when this happens.

    I’ve already started a list of things that I want to do, things I didn’t do because he didn’t want to do it. I’m even buying food items that I like but didn’t buy because he didn’t like them. Wow, writing that makes me sound so pitiful!

    I’m finding the new me! I see all the things I used to enjoy in a new brighter and creative view. Thank you all for your much needed and outpouring support and words. I love all the advice and suggestion to take care of me.

    • J, I’m so sorry you’re going through this. It sounds like you’re taking great strides already with securing a lawyer, gathering documents & recognizing you need to take care of yourself. This is huge! Just know: You Will Get Through This! It will suck, but you will come out from this so much stronger!

      It’s going on 8 years now, but I was with the XH for 22 years when I received a phone call from his whore that they’ve been Effing around for 3.5 years. FW had been lying to her the entire time, saying that we were separated but still living together. Yet she still wanted the FW! They were “soulmates” 🤮 I told her the two losers deserved each other if she thought he wouldn’t cheat on her too. I don’t remember how many weeks I was in the fetal position, not eating, just spiraling down. The FW never apologized, never explained, didn’t even show up for the divorce. When he finally came to the house to pick up the rest of his shit that I hadn’t already destroyed, his only words to me was his lawyer told him not to say anything. (He ended up marrying the whore & having a baby with her in his 50s! Part of the Karma train he’s currently riding)!

      They’re cowards for doing this! Lying, cheating cowards. I’ve come to accept that I will never get the answers that I once thought I needed. The narc liar would’ve lied his way through an explanation anyway. I’m ok with that now, and it feels great!

      Know that you are stronger than you can ever imagine. Get an appt with a Gyno ASAP! Make sure to eat & watch that the bottle doesn’t become your best friend. Talk to your dr about meds if you think that might help. Find a therapist or even a friend or family member you can reach out to for support. I learned that keeping it inside made the healing process much worse. Music therapy! I jammed out to Pink & Katy Perry so much that I’m surprised I didn’t have a noise complaint from my neighbors. It sure does feel good belting out “So what? I’m still a rock star! I got my rock moves, and I don’t need you…” 💪

      J, you are a rock star, and we’ll be here to support you! Hugs!

      • Did you ever think they could be so cowardly! Every day my eyes get opened to more and more. Thank you for sharing.

  • Sounds like my ex. Only he had multiple. I found torn apart phones except one. Enough. Then I got friendly with his first ex and we cleared up some lies he told me about her. Like a 3 year old blaming all the other girls except him. so got a lawyer and I didn’t get much except the house I paid for with the debt he put on the house with all the refinances to take the equity out of the house I, myself bought. More than one way to rob is his motto. Just take my SS and go to town with the loan companies. The after kids are grown and theres no risk of having to pay child support the smear campaign went into full gear about me. I was some crazy mean bitch. Pfff. Sorry I raise your kids and gave them a home food and clothes. While he did what? Oh yeah. whored around. Lawyers? not much help. Mine tells me halfway through hes not good with money. That’s why I say get a financial advisor. I actually think my lawyer helped my ex. or at least he helped my exs lawyer. His departure was an ongoing of petty acts. Stealing little things around the house that meant something to me and some of my artwork and clothes and I’m still discovering missing things. Meanwhile on the first ex he tells her he never planned on staying in the marriage. ‘
    when the kids were grown he planned on leaving because the certificate of marriage means nothing. Hes above the law btw. So sure enough he quits talking and doesn’t look at us. He just looks around the house seeing what hes like to take. My sons are like freaking out. Our dad is discarding us and cant be our dad anymore? I’m lucky I didn’t shoot him. So I say for the sake of my sons come over Wednesday nights for dinner. This gave me time to slowly try to explain to them in my period of shock what he is doing. The older one catches on and is hurt. the younger one is still hurt and in disbelief. So His eyes turn black and I decide Okay this whatever he is is not coming over anymore. His ex says ,” Oh you saw that? That’s what I saw just before he beat me up”. I’m just glad he didn’t do that. Anger management classes evidently. Soooo. I realized theres no fixing this evil sick prick and recover what you can and so the year and a half of divorce. The judge hated him but still I lost over 100k in my senior years. He didn’t want an old women even tho he was old himself. lol. He looked in the mirror with love. If youever seen a narcissist do this . It is freaky as crap. But I say batten down the hatches. don’t tell him what your plans are and interview some lawyers and a financial advisor and stick it to that heartless prick and I do mean heartless. Kind of scary when you realize just who youve been living with.

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