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Defending Incomprehensible Life Choices

schmoopiesToday’s Friday Challenge comes from DoingMe. Inspired by yesterday’s post about Christie Smythe’s torching her life for a FW, and then being smug about it, DoingMe commented:

How cheaters love to defend their incomprehensible life choices. Perhaps a Friday challenge on how they ‘found’ themselves post scorched earth is warranted.

Oh, you mean happier now, because the journey of self was worth it?

I honestly don’t think there’s a lot of self-reflection going on. Self promotion? Yes. Analysis or recriminations? No.

They wanted it, they got it. It blew up? Next! Where’s the buffet?

But it’s usually expressed as, “The heart wants what the heart wants.”

Or in the words of Smythe — “I’m the winner here.”

Any self-serving cheater narratives you’d like to report on?



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  • Repeat from yesterday (it fits today’s challenge)

    Her favorite refrain after The Troubles (to me, online, and I assume to anyone who’d listen) was: “I learned so much about myself. I’m finally becoming the person I was always meant to be.”

    1 – Everyone who knew her before The Troubles learned a lot about her too. Little of of it good.

    2 – Today, at age 50, she’s working in an admin job; constantly in self-imposed competition with her sisters; married to a self-absorbed college instructor with children from a failed marriage; and relying on him to generate the type of attention she needs to function day-to-day. Just like her mother was at 50. She’s EXACTLY the person she was always meant to be.

    • Fortunately for me he’s “Doing all the things with her he wanted to do with me”. Like a kid (man child) in a candy store she put no limits on his unfulfilled needs always verbalized as, “I wish..”.
      And the wish list was LONG. He proceeded to invest in vehicles, a pick up truck, a couple of rv’s and a cargo van all used and unreliable. And while he wished to retire on the coast it was unsustainable due to neglecting to pay taxes on self employed work. His SS reflects his disordered magical thinking. She won a forty year old mobile home in central Florida, it’s air conditioned. Winning is the delusional lack of self reflection and basic planning.

      • Change “I wish” to “I deserve” and add a Howife with $$$ and you get my FW. So far it’s working.

          • Literally laughing out loud at “it’s air conditioned” !!!! winner!

      • Disordered magical thinking and delusional lack of self-reflection and basic planning- I love it, this is my FW in a nutshell!

    • “ EXACTLY the person she was always meant to be.”
      And, in that, exists her karma.

      • Indeed. There’s as much irony there as you’d find in a Greek tragedy by Sophocles. When I read “Oedipus” – so many more years back in the previous century than I care to admit – the definition of irony that my English teacher gave our class was this: a person works and works toward a highly desired end, or to avoid an undesired one (i.e., that most famous of patricides), but the exact opposite of what they intend happens anyway (sorry, Laius!) , and – this is the real ball-kicker – it’s THEIR OWN CHARACTER that led them directly to their misfortune. This more profound definition of irony is highly applicable to the situations cheaters create for themselves when they go off to find themselves/sublime new happiness/ true love with an AP because the shine is off the old spouse and life, only to end up with the same unsatisfying life they had before, or one much diminished.

    • “She’s EXACTLY the person she was always meant to be.”

      She’s EXACTLY the person she chooses to be. And that’s on her.

    • UXWorld, she sounds pretty bad. I’m puzzled by how being a lying cheating abuser makes her the person she was always meant to be. I guess sometimes they tell the truth without realizing it, because they don’t realize much, do they?

    • Oh UX World, that’s deliciously pathetic. Just like her mother too, huh? Mommy, when I grow up I wanna be JUST LIKE YOU! Mission accomplished, princess. Good God.????‍♂️ I’m so sorry you had to deal w/her. A big wish for meh, Tuesday and peace for you and your family.

    • uxw , snap , ex went to see her mother just before she left are 26 year marriage , came back later from meet , twice as nasty and forthright she is leaving me and the adult kids , you know her mother who abandoned her and her siblings when they were young kids and yep snap again for another man , guess her mother was pleased her daughter joined her cheater club , her mother is trapped still with the loser she left for , had a rough life with him , history repeating itself , unbelievable stupidity , as they say play stupid games win stupid prizes ,

      • Amazing lack of self-awareness. With their inability to reflect comes an inability to change. This is why we have to trust that they suck and still suck and always will suck.

  • The life choice of my cheater—pursue a drug using prostitute, sacrifice sobriety, lose medical license due to same. It’s everyone else’s fault. The mean world is against his karmic connection, the kids need to just “get over it.” And he refuses to offer any reason why he made his life choice for “freedom.” To him it’s a “blessing,” for which he feels zero remorse. Because yes, the heart wants what the heart wants—ie a hooker who charges $500.

  • I’ve just opened the local newspaper and there on page 27 is my previously very heterosexual ex holding a rainbow flag as he prepares to participate in a tennis tournament for LGBT players. It’s an odd photo as there are a dozen or so players wearing sparkly tshirts saying “hotties”, and he’s in a daggy old top and shorts looking like he’s accidentally wandered into the shot. He has also used a slight variation of his name. So I suspect this month’s narrative (not that we speak) is “I did it (had a 2 year affair with female colleague) because I am gay”. I’m not convinced but as far as I’m concerned go for your life and let a thousand blossoms bloom.

    • Yours Is the first post I’ve seen with a situation sorta similar to mine…an ex that was a COMPLETELY closeted gay man, but every time I pushed closer that truth, he’d have an affair with a young girl at work. I know I shouldn’t need it but I do wish he would just come out and admit it. It would provide that extra validation that there was NOTHING I could have done to make this work.

      • Gender orientation aside, you can’t have a successful relationship with a liar. Lying and success go together like oil and water. Or gasoline and matches.

      • I was nearly raped by someone who identified as gay (I tried the one self defense maneuver I ever learned and got away). Someone like that is not to be confused with non-binary or gender fluid. He’s what I would call an “abuso-sexual.” I remember the dialogue from Shawshank in which Red explains that the prison rapists aren’t exactly homosexual because “they’d have to be human first.” Precisely.

        I think you need a soul to have a sexual orientation. Some people are so empty and so narcissistic that “gender fluidity” for them really means there’s no “there” there and any kind of kibbly attention or conquest or target of sexual aggression is the same.

        • That’s really interesting HOAC. Speaks exactly to my post below. He left me for a “lesbian” but who knows? They both just screw whoever and however it’s going at the time. When people ask me if they bi I really don’t know how to answer that.

          • I worked in LA for several years and remember how the party girl circuit overlapped every element of the media industry. It was hard to tell the professional escorts from the women (and some young men) who’d bonk randos just to get close to fame/power or to get ahead. Clearly a popular client demand was performative girl-on-girl sex so there were a lot of women who would perform these “services” either for a fee or for other perks and with varying levels of self honesty about whether they really enjoyed it or it was just something they had to do. I saw a lot of women internalizing client requests and thinking that lesbian dabbling made them “hot” and “wild” but I didn’t see that these types of women particularly loved other women. Many were just acting out personality disorders and attachment disorders that likely began with childhood trauma. They felt their value only in being “wanted” by men. Advertising bisexuality became little more than putting on a garter for a john.

            It was hard to know who anyone was in LA and half the time people didn’t even know themselves. They are whatever they have to be in the moment. I met several dyed-in-the-wool gay and lesbian people who’d been burned by dabbling hustlers to the point they avoided dating anyone bisexual.

            • Bisexual means they can cheat with everyone. It opens up the pool from 50% to 100%. Better odds for oddball cheaters.

    • Interesting! For years I asked my STBX if he was gay. Others (both straight and gay friends) quietly wondered the same. He always seemed shruggy about sex with me (everything worked, he just rarely initiated). Coming into marriage from a culture and a mom who told me “men want sex – your husband won’t be able to keep his hands off you”, my half-hearted-about-sex husband threw me waaaay off. It was painful. Felt like rejection, of course. Then he had an almost two-year affair with a female friend of mine (during which he/I had no sex at all, but I rationalized he was stressed from work and maybe there was something physiologically wrong with him – early onset ED? – suggesting he go see a urologist ????????‍♀️). I recently mentioned something to a lesbian friend about this, wondering if STBX was gay, and her face lit up. She admitted she had wondered this for awhile but didn’t want to bring it up unless I did. “But he had an affair with a WOMAN!” I said to her. She said something about “repressed desires” and “maybe he’s bi-sexual”. Honestly, I WISH he was gay. It would make some of this wretched experience easier. It would explain some things. But it doesn’t explain his affair with a woman. Weedfree & MehMaybe, thanks for sharing these details of your stories.

      • Don Juan syndrome, where gay men have affairs to prove to themselves they really aren’t gay.

        • Wow, this made me wonder about the x.
          He quite fancied himself as a lady’s man and would literally go after any and all women, regardless of their age, race, looks, intelligence or personality.
          But years ago he used to tell me about a gay man at work who was pursuing him. And he asked whether I would let him go to Las Vegas with the man. He proudly informed me that his friend was covering all expenses. I said I wasn’t comfortable with him leaving me alone for a week with three small children and a full-time job. He was NOT HAPPY.
          After the final DDay, he told me about all the men he was having sex with within the last year. Besides the (female) neighbor, his cheating was confined exclusively to men at the end.
          The pieces are falling into place.

      • Oh, if only he’d admit to being bi or gay I’d at least know with what I’m working with and be able to make a decision for myself. I should have been asking the big question of was any of this acceptable to me but alas….
        When he admitted to very expensive prostitutes, the very first thought question I had was are they male or female? In this area and his age, he would never in this lifetime admit to either. I actually would have supported him. I would have left but I would have supported him because I would have contributed his abuse towards his feelings of frustration. In real life I know he’s a prick and made decisions to be abusive regardless.
        I have never wished any harm for him until yesterday. Out of the blue I hoped he’d get the damn monkey pox as an outward visual expression of who he really is. Give him a set of dirty hotel sheets with one of his prostitutes or let them bring a little to one of his hidey hole campers he used for entertaining when we were married. Or slip it into his dads where he lives and brings the into the basement. Totally not implying any bad thing to anyone in the world who has suffered with this.

      • I often wondered if ex was gay and others quietly wondered the same. I wondered if something was wrong with me when friends would tell me their husbands were always wanting sex while ex would rather watch television. I mention it to him and he said he was older (40) and men that age weren’t as interested in sex. Although friends husbands were the same age.
        His body language, the way he noticed and commented on other mens’s physiques made me suspicious.
        He went on business trips and when he and a male co-worker would go to dinner a hostess would ask if they were together. I don’t think she asked meaning as a gay couple probably the together as the same table. Ex would tell me this story repeatedly as if it was the highlight of his trip.. That the hostess thought he and the guy he was with were gay. I just thought it was odd.
        Sometimes he’d purposely acting effeminate pretending to be gay. He’d tell me all guys pretend they were gay that it was funny. I’ve never known anyone other than ex to pretend they were gay.
        There was a Dr. in our couples bunco group who was thin and had a small frame, also had a very nice and attractive wife. During Bunco, ex would pretend he was gay around was obvious that our friend and other friends were uncomfortable. I think ex thought it was funny, no one was laughing.. There was what I’d call an awkward silence… Ex didn’t seem to notice, he ‘due so wrapped up in it. I’d take him aside, like a child telling him that was enough, the people were uncomfortable. Did he stop? no, he’d be annoyed with me and continue.
        Not surprisingly the Bunco friends were the first to tell me they suspected he was gay.

      • Yes, it’s a thing! My 12 year relationship with FW went from excellent sex to hardly any sex in 2 years. With hindsight, the sex was great while he was living with his sister and her husband. I now realise there must have been an element of exhibitionism / taboo about it, which frankly, makes me want to gip ????. I thought we were falling in love ????‍♀️.
        He had affairs with both men and women, and a secret baby with a woman that he later married. But my gut tells me that he fancies men more. Quite a lot more.
        But, at it’s most basic, I think he’s turned on by taboo situations and by the idea of ‘doing something bad’. Who knows? I’m just glad he’s her prize now – let her enjoy the disorientating and always-present feeling of unease for the rest of her life. My life’s work is to figure out why I put up with that shit!

    • HOAC ~ exactly. It’s all about supply. Ex, a privileged WASP whose mother spends her days bragging about their superior breeding, has a history of ingratiating himself to marginalised people and groups in my opinion to feel superior. I know this because he did it to me ~ I am from a working class family, first person to attend university. I used to wander around Uni in my second hand clobber. He was the nicest person I had ever met, but I wasnt attracted to him. He was always there lending a helping hand, and my parents and friends just thought he was so lovely this poor old duffer how could I not love him. He seemed to enjoy my family’s company to his own, but every so often he would have an outburst about his superior status, tethered to his family’s ownership of a farming property. He was financially controlling so we basically had to go along with his cock and bull story that we were poor (he had multiple separate bank accounts for himself). In amongst controlling the resources and keeping my life in chaos, he seemed to unwittingly do various things that outraged his mother, who not surprisingly is a homophobe. If he is gay, and this is not to be insensitive to the process of coming out, that would be a nice explanation ~ but whatever his sexuality the guy is just an A Grade narc.

  • “Kids are resilient.”
    “I have plenty of time to make it up to them”
    “Check your kids’ privilege. I need to center OW’s kid as a trans girl of color”

    Ex offering explanations as to why he hasn’t visited or called or paid court ordered child support for the last few years for his preteen kids.

  • Ex wanted to live ‘on his own’. He had never done that before. He also didn’t want to feel trapped anymore either. He wanted the freedom to do what he wanted and he had earnt it.

    Reality: Married with another child, has a huge mortgage, expensive car and is probably less free than he ever was. I’m fairly certain he is watched like a hawk by the other woman. In a profession he was desperate to leave, but he can’t now. They both work in the same profession and he will be doing his image management thing, rather than living the authentic life he soooo wanted! (Note: it’s not what he really wanted. He wanted the fake ‘look at me. Haven’t I done well life – with my fancy house, car, new family etc)

    • ChumpyLou and 7ven, the FW I was married to for 29 years almost exactly duplicated our life together with a low-quality replacement wife appliance and low quality daughter appliance, right down to the duplicate dog and cat. And house and higher costs due to renting because after separating money he couldn’t buy again. And his health is crap because he took up smoking, pot, and booze cuz that’s what she does. She will end up changing his diapers after all those strokes do him in, unless she dumps him and moves on just like she did before him…

      I have no contact, but every once in a while I fantasize about the schadenfreude.

      • FuckWitFree – Yes, I forgot about the cat too. They have a cat. Duplicating the cat. Even rescued it from the same shelter. They also had 2 rabbits and he gave them the same names as the ones my son had. My son and daughter tell me that he wants a dog too – just to further add to the duplication.
        On the surface, the new wife appliance is better (deputy head teacher with a high moralistic view of the world), but I know it’s not really the case. It’s what they both want to portray to the world when most people aren’t trying to manage their lifestyle like a PR agency, they’re just getting on with their life how they want to, in the best way they can.

  • I am certain FW doesn’t self-reflect. It doesn’t fit his delusional false narrative. He just repeats himself like a gaslighting robot that “Michelle Shocked threw me out but the most important thing is getting time with my son. And she’s the reason I can’t do custodial overnights with him anymore.”

    The good news is that only his parents, AP, attorney and ignorant new contacts believe his BS anymore.

    I haven’t heard much about it in the last few years because I’m not really connected (I’m gloriously no contact). But with a recent child support change, FW paid his attorney to fight that he wasn’t following through with his custodial agreement and overnights because (and I loosely quote):

    *”While it is true that son has generally not stayed overnight with FW during his custodial weekends, this continues to be because MichelleShocked refuses to assist FW by implementing any sort of reasonable disciplinary restrictions on son such that he simply refuses to act as a member of FW’s household when he is there. …These are the same exact issues we discussed during the last round of custody negotiations and MichelleShocked has not done anything to change or address the problem. MichelleShocked has not wanted to engage further in custody negotiations as a) the parties have already done so three times; and b) MichelleShocked simply is not willing to assist with a solution to the ongoing issues.”

    What does all this BS amount to? FW is defending his choice to abandon his family to live with AP and her boys and it’s clearly my fault that son hates it there and as an older teen refuses to go there anymore. And now FW is saying it’s because I don’t make son behave and be a part of his new family and follow his and AP’s rules. As if I could control any of it or have any idea what their rules are.

    Anyway, I got full child support. And his attorney can suck it.

    • Readers Digest version: “FW has ruined his relationship with son and MichelleShocked won’t make things better.” Kudos to you Michelle — you’ve got it nailed.

    • “I am certain FW doesn’t self-reflect.”
      Yup that seems to be the common denominator with the disordered.

      • IF there is any self-reflection, it is about how they “had no choice”, really, they were victims. I have yet to hear of any FW describing themselves as what they really are: lying cheaters who think only of themselves.

    • What a dick. My ex blames me for our daughter not wanting to live with him. Hopeless.

  • “It’s not about fun or sex. She’s what I need mentally right now.”

    • Mine told me he needed to see if he still loved her, this after being married to me for 20 years. I guess not because they are not together anymore and he and I are divorced.

  • After walking or actually I should say running as couldn’t leave quick enough!!!! out on me without a care (wife of 25 years) & his sons, to be with an old ex that reconnected after he asked me to set him up on Facebook!!!!
    I was told by FW that he had a much harder time if it than me!!! He loves a pity party & is gaslighting expert, actually admitted he was cheating then denied saying it….
    4 years tomorrow since I got a text meant for her, he hasn’t spoken to our sons in all that time, despite him moving back to marital home, in spare room & sons living here too, has broken up with the shmoopie we’re now divorced, sons now moved out & want nothing to do with him, house is sold,
    I get 60% of the house proceeds & half his pension, so excited to start living MY life & never see him again ????

    • These nitwits that pursue old loves are basically trying to recapture their youth. Pathetic and it never works out. Good luck with your new life!

      • Or how about a nitwit who went on to marry a young woman who wasn’t born when we married – we were married 24+ yrs. She’s not the OWhore & I know very little about her. Talk about trying to recapture youth. He probably looks like her grandfather as we went gray in his 30s.

        • Hurt1,
          My ex (together 30 years, married 25) left for a coworker who was born when we were dating in college. He looks like an idiot with her. She’s all young and vibrant. He’s gone bald, has deep wrinkles around his eyes, and, despite the fake smile, looks tired in every picture. Yup, mine was trying to recapture youth, also. Instead he just looks like her creepy uncle. Good luck to him when she wants babies…

      • The only things of memorabilia that FW took when I threw him out were his high school year books and a photo album of women he took pics of in college with a telephoto lens.

        Creepy, sordid, shallow, immature, stunted, pathetic fucking loser.

        • Mine only took his French philosophy books about sex and his Magic cards!

        • FWF…I wish I had the balls to throw that shit out (the high school yearbooks). He keeps them mostly because of his ex-girlfriend whom he dated back in the 80’s (and according to his mom, he never got over this person).

      • Thank you, can’t wait to be finally free, just a few more weeks x

      • So true, KB22. They don’t realize that time is over. It should remain behind them, in the past.
        That’s what I told my mother in law last year (when she brought up the girl he dated in high school).

        They are not 16 anymore…they are now in their 50’s, she is married to somebody else, she has two children, and he needs to accept that she will never again be part of his life.
        I had a first love too, but hanging onto that is a waste of time (in my opinion).
        And I say this as somebody who has problems with change, but I don’t look back on any ex-boyfriend with hopes of reconnecting.

        If anything, I cringe when I remember them!

      • A little off topic but… Dateline did a story on a guy from San Diego who met up with his “first love” on … yup, FB
        And proceeded to start up an affair – flying to AP home on the East Coast monthly telling wife it was business. Not only did he drain the bank accounts, house in foreclosure etc., but he then made a pipe bomb and tried to kill the wife… twice. Miraculously she survived.
        The most chilling thing about this story was how “normal” the H seemed. His two children slammed him good in the courtroom – stating he was no longer their father and they would never think of him again.
        So yeah, guess his “first love” attempt at regaining his lost youth could be summed up as : Big Fail.

  • I agree that FWs just cannot do any self reflection. They are perfect so why do they have to take up any time thinking about what they did or did not do that led to to the breakdown of a marriage (mirage). Blame shifting and DARVO is so much easier. FW currently blames everything on my attorney. The attorney is now the arch enemy who is “abusing” him. This is a bit turned around since his attorney was just sanctioned for their many frivolous motions and FW had to pay my legal bill.
    His other complaint is that I turned our son against him (yes, let’s bring our adult son into this too). His son went no contact when FW accidently uploaded pictures of him and Schmoopie. Son has not spoken to him since and has refused contact. He is an adult and if he choses no to engage with the FW that is his choice. I can only control myself and I do not have control over my adult son (nor would I want to).
    FW will continue to be a FW. I am just glad that my lawyer handles most contact and I never answer FW unless it is totally needed and then only after much thought and very simple answers. “No” is a complete sentence contrary to what FWs believe. FW made his choices and now he can deal with his fallout. Not my job.

    • Ugh. Sounds familiar, especially the part about the adult kids.

      It’s all my fault, of course, that they want nothing to do with him.

      He says I’ve poisoned the kids and am “buying them off.”

      Ummm. Nope.

      What a jerk!

  • Hmmmm. There were so many self-serving narratives, but the one thing they all had in common was that he was blameless and it was all my fault. The most revealing one was that I made him fat, I kept him from promotion, and I kept him from writing. The last one I was around to hear, four years ago, was “Our problem was communication, but I didn’t feel I could tell you anything.”
    I’m sure he has a new post-divorce narrative that is equally self-serving and still blames me, but I am blessedly ignorant of what it might be, because I am blissfully 100% no contact.

    • “I’m sure he has a new post-divorce narrative that is equally self-serving and still blames me, but I am blessedly ignorant of what it might be, because I am blissfully 100% no contact.”

      Yep, me too ! Isn’t it great ! 🙂

    • Same here, Adelante! I have no clue how and what is going on with Cheating Bastard Ex. I’ve ceased to give a shit. #nocontactforlife

    • Yes, I’m ignorant, as well. He’s far enough away that the chance of ever crossing paths again is almost zero.

      Given all the lies that he told his family and then his attorney (which his attorney spilled to mine late in the process), I can only imagine what the narrative is now. His attorney was savvy enough to figure it out. That was my closure. Both attorneys saw it for what it was.

    • My ex said my cooking made him fat. He looked like Buddha when we divorced. That was 14 years ago. He hasn’t eaten my cooking since. He still looks like Buddha, but has now grown in some hair. He looks like a neglected-chia-pet Buddha-imposter.

    • Yes, I remain blissfully ignorant of any BS he must peddle. I did hear from one friend that “he tells a good story.” I’m sure it’s some self-pitying mix of blaming me and saying he “just fell in love.” He’ll cop to “making a mistake,” but that’s it.

      I used to hope that people wouldn’t believe anything he says because they know he’s a liar. But now I don’t even care about that. The people who love me are NC with FW. The people believe him are not my friends, so I don’t care.

      Not caring is such a relief! I guess that must be meh. Yay!
      To the newbies, please know that you’ll get there. I never thought I would, but here I am. ????

  • The Lying Cheating Loser got lowkey famous on social media in his job as a delivery driver for one of the major shipping companies when he started posting photos of the dogs he would meet and offer treats to on his route. He was posting on a community page, getting hundreds of likes, and even some offers for TV interviews.
    But fuckwits never do anything kind unless there’s something in it for them. In the LCL’s case, his self-generated fame brought women to him in droves. Married, single, young, old – didn’t make a difference to the LCL. He’s an equal opportunity fucker.
    While he was “slipping his package” to multiple customers, he was having a baby with one of his coworkers, and living/sleeping with another coworker. His cute dog posts on the community page ended abruptly when the husband of one of his dalliances put him on public blast. He left the group in a huff, protesting his innocence.
    I’m convinced he was secretly relieved that he didn’t have to keep pretending to be the #friendlyneighborhooddeliverydriver any longer.
    He has no friends. His friendships with women are always, always sexualized. His (very few) friendships with men are one-sided (he’s a user and a parasite) and surface level. His cluster B cycle of idealize, devalue, discard takes anywhere from 2 to 5 years to complete. In the 4 years he’s been back in his hometown, he’s destroyed his relationships with all of his family, all his old friends, his baby mama, and on and on.
    And it’s never his fault. He’s always the victim.
    He’s a homeless hobosexual hanging onto his “young hot guy” sex appeal by a fraying thread, and deadbeat dad of three (I suspect four) children.
    And absurdly, he still gets women.
    What I’ve only recently understood, is that for all wreckage and ruin they create wherever they go, disordered people don’t suffer. They don’t grieve the relationships they’ve scorched or the people they’ve hurt. Doesn’t matter if it’s family, their kids, or life partners. It’s oh well, on to the next one. They’re made of emotional Teflon.
    Christie Smythe probably genuinely feels like she’s “the winner in all this.”
    I’m sure the Lying Cheating Loser does too. After all, nothing used to get his ire up quite like me calling him a loser.

    • Walkaway, I agree with your every word. Disordered people don’t suffer. But, I must say the FW dog story is a classic. Hahaha. What an idiot. I think only CN can truly grasp the fucked-upness of that story. You made me laugh. Glad you are free. ☺️

      • Liberated, I’m so glad this made you laugh. The LCL hates two things: being called a loser, and being laughed at. If he knew he was being snarked about and laughed at here on CL, he’d be livid.
        I’m glad I’m free too.

        • Mine too, Walkaway. I told him he had a bottom-feeder lawyer for the divorce (we’re both lawyers or were – me long since left that shit show). I told him I couldn’t believe he would lower himself to that level. Did he not read his pleadings? I didn’t mean anything by it, except to say this guy is a real schmuck, of which there is no denying. Really bad, messy practice of law. I was only stating the obvious — this during a momentary lapse in NC. He kinda’ gulped and went quiet, and I knew I’d struck a chord. He can’t stand any possible chink to his superior-lawyer image (as if that’s something to value). He certainly doesn’t like being called a loser or being laughed at, and his connection to this small town rumpled-suit low-life divorce dude didn’t sit well with him. Yuck. Anyway, it gives me such peace to be able to laugh at how truly pathetic they are. I’ll be remembering the dog story and laughing all day, all weekend, in honor of you. 🙂

          • Liberated, everything is a competition to them. I remember during one of my countless D-Days with the LCL, repeatedly asking him WHY. His response:
            “I needed a win.”

        • The ex misread something personal I had written as I was calling him selfish. He went fucking ballistic. I never got to explain what it was about and it would have been pointless anyway.
          It was actually in a suicide note that I had written while contemplating it. It was inside a hand gun case of mine that was locked up. I realized nothing was safe. It was asking if this would be a selfish enough act by leaving and giving him all the responsibilities that I carried. He had threatened it a few times. I dropped the kids off with some of their friends for a game night and sat snotting on the kitchen floor with my dogs, a piece of paper and an orange crayon. I actually pulled the trigger and shot the kitchen cabinet. I realized then how easy that would be but I would never leave the kids for him and his family to ruin.
          I still have that note in with the court stuff.
          I know that would have been perfect for him. He could play the pity card and pull a great narrative from it.
          Shortly before we left he asked who shot the cabinet. Four years had passed since it happened. Told him I did. He literally just stared open mouthed wide eyed. Did not ask one question. I would have asked a hundred questions especially why and how in the hell did you fire a gun inside the house??? Now I can laugh at his reaction because the therapist laughed stating he was probably thinking I was going to shot him. No telling what he told the guy-his friend that bought the house or the people he had over before it sold because he turned it into a party flop house.

    • “disordered people don’t suffer. They don’t grieve the relationships they’ve scorched or the people they’ve hurt.” So very true in my case as well. There has not been one moment of introspection or regret. I probably feel worse about accidentally cutting someone off in traffic then my EX feels about blowing up our marriage and family.

      • Disordered people do suffer when they reach a certain age, usually mid 60’s. Their kids rarely want anything to do with them, most suffer financially and they’re not exactly beating them off with a stick. It’s true there is no introspection or regret as they view themselves as the victim.

        • KB22, I see your point. I think disordered people suffering in the ways you describe is common. It’s the loss of the creature comforts, the kibbles, and the status. It’s what affects THEM.
          What I meant is more that they don’t suffer regret or remorse. My ex fuckwit has lost touch with his oldest son (age 20) and feels no sorrow about that. In his mind, son is a disrespectful jerk and can “fuck off for life.”
          So the fuckwit glibly goes on about his fuckwit life, while son is left to deal with the fallout of being the child of not one but two disordered cheaters.

          • I think I’m missing something, WalkawayWoman. Was your FW ex’s oldest son born by another person (not you, that is), who was also a disordered cheater?

            • thelongrun, that is correct. When the LCL and I met, he had two teen/tween kids by his ex wife. A really sweet boy and girl who I loved getting to know and be “bonus mom” to. The kids’ mom is a disordered cheater also (I know this firsthand).
              The only time the kids had any kind of functioning visitation schedule with the LCL was when he and I lived together, and it was because I did all the legwork.

        • The FW just turned 64, with a 31 year old former howorker. We were together since 18, married at 23, divorced at 39 year anniversary. I hope he continues to suffer. 4 NC grandchildren, 3 NC successful adult children, all younger than her. They live in a 690 sq Ft apt. with their untrained dog. He’s got a credit card judgment for $6900. He’s sold the commercial property (balloon pymt 2025), and sold the healthcare practice.
          He told me he’d never be held back on his wonderful ideas again
          (I was the voice of reason….) I do feel bad for our children, he signed over half the future proceeds of property to gold digger. Drugs and girlfriends are expensive.

      • They really are clueless and heartless, aren’t they ?

    • Long distance dedication to WalkawayWoman

      (music by the Chordettes, lyrics by every dog on the Lying Cheating Loser’s delivery route)

      Mr. Driver, bring me a treat (bung, bung, bung, bung)
      Then bang my owner in her car’s back seat (bung, bung, bung, bung)
      She’s waiting there, you know that she’ll need ya (bung, bung, bung, bung)
      Then post the whole thing onto social media
      Driver, do it today (bung, bung, bung, bung)
      And cause your Woman to Walkaway (bung, bung, bung, bung)
      There’s no need to be discreet
      Mr. Driver, bring me a treat

      • Your rhyming “need ya” with “social media” is nothing short of brilliant 🙂

      • UX, you just made my whole day, week, month, year! Your humor and generosity is such a gift to all of CN, because you help us laugh at our fuckwits. Thank you!

          • Yep, yep, yep all around. I was feeling lonely around the 4th. This makes my weekend. Ahhh. Life can be sweet. Thanks Walkaway and UXworld. Gonna’ be singing this anthem.

      • UXworld, I can’t stop laughing and now it’s stuck in my head! Love your parodies!

  • One of ex’s many exit lines:
    “ I don’t want to take care of anyone anymore”. ( ?!?) ( married 38 years, getting ready to move into a beach retirement home we’d been excitedly building the last 7 years,have three adult, very self sufficient, thriving and loving adult children) Don’t we ALL take care of ppl we love? And WANT to do that?!
    From my view, we had hit the lottery in life! From his view? Never good enough. There was always something he was missing out on out there. “ I could have lived a hundred different lives”.
    He is always onto the next greatest thing he just has to have or wants.
    When I asked him how he could possibly just walk out on a great family ( married the 15 year younger long term mistress that was unknown to me) he reply was
    “ I don’t miss anyone in my life”.
    I can’t even temporarily put myself in that kind of mind frame.
    Yeah, nothing to work with there.
    Good luck with your new and improved life FW, until you don’t want to take care of your current shiny object.

    • Yep, my story too. Family was a burden. He could never understand that our presence filled the house “he built” with joy and the essence of life. He constantly took the victim stance: “Someone has to work.” This infuriated me because I knew “work” was synonymous with sexting and too many affairs to count. I regret the many hours I spent trying to convince him that family, with all its ups and downs and in-betweens, was the ultimate reward. CN has taught me that my values are golden. His — not so much. He always saw us as a burden, an obligation, and a shield to mask who he really was…a disordered man without a shred of self-awareness.

    • Mine was very similar, C45. “I’m done with responsibilities and obligations”. “I want independence, lots of friends, and to travel”. “We married too young and I missed out on alot”. Now that so many of the puzzle pieces fit, it’s apparent that his dysfunctional upbringing precluded having any semblance of established bonds among family, reciprocal love, responsibility or obligation, muchless healthy friendships and independence. The estrangement he felt for everything in his past was merely interrupted by a decades-long marriage with children. He’s gone back to those dynamics where he controls the bonding, love, responsibility and obligation, and lives estranged from functional relationships. More lies, deception, control, and estrangement on his terms.

    • We could ALL have lived a hundred different lives! But we made CHOICES! Funny how their choices get recast as something forced on them.

    • Chumpasaurus, the ex was having the affair while both of his parents were dying. They passed within 3 months of each other. When I was ignorant, I was begging him to go down and spend some time with them and he screamed at me that he didn’t want to watch them die. His father died within a week of D day. Narcissists do not care about anyone but theirselves and their selfish wants. They are without a soul. My biggest regret is not realizing how disordered he was. Wasted more than 30 years on the selfish fuckwit.

      • Dday for me was a week after cheaters mother’s funeral. How does someone end their marriage during what most would consider to be a devastating loss. Seems to me that this would be a time for reflection and to value your family and hold them close.
        He wanted something different. I found out later as his Mother was dying he was seeing “someone different.” His mother lived across the country and he’d say he was visiting his mother while spending time with “something different”.
        When he’d come home from his visits it explained his unprovoked rages when I’d ask how his Mother was doing.
        Cheater also said we had nothing in common. Married 20 years and he came to the conclusion we had nothing in common.
        He’s found it, his new wife is as narcissistic and self absorbed as he is.

        I don’t know what the marriage success rate is of two narcissistic people, but I hope theirs implodes.

  • 1. “kids are resilient”

    2. “I have plenty of time to make it up to them”

    3. “The kids should check their privilege. I need to center OW’s kid as a trans girl of color”

    Justifications by ex for why he hasn’t seen or spoken to his preteens for a couple of years and why he refuses to pay court-ordered child support

  • We were separated for a few months, after 2 years since the last D-Day spent in trickle-truthing and I was losing my mind.

    After a while apart and him “waiting for me to come back” and resume like nothing was the problem, he finally proclaimed that “he’d had enough, he was ready to do THE BEST THING FOR ALL INVOLVED”.

    Cue to this chump taking it to mean that he was ready to clean up his act and committ to a relationship based on truth, trust and respect.

    Instead, the abuse increased again, and when I questioned him about “doing the best thing for all involved”, he said “Yes, and that includes ME”.

    I knew then I had nothing to work with.

  • Ex FW: “I didn’t know who I was when we married (24 yrs ago). I had just come out of a relationship (28 yrs ago; we dated 4 yrs), so I wasn’t myself when we met and got married.”

    OK, so this was a 28-year-long “rebound”? Whatever.

    I have come to reflect on Nelson Mandela’s words — some people reveal themselves to be much less than what they appeared to be.
    Much, much less.

      • “Also, he still does not know who he is”

        I’d say that’s pretty apparent, a pathetic excuse for a man, and a human being. (((hugs))) xxx

    • “some people reveal themselves to be much less than what they appeared to be.
      Much, much less.”

      Love that!

      • Yes, the first sentence is from Mandela.
        The “much, much less” is from me.

    • Missouri… yes. He revealed himself to be much less… much less than I ever wanted for myself. Yet I was there and it sucked the strength and soul right out of me.

  • He’s still with schmoopie and they talked her elderly father into selling his Canadian home and paying off her mortgage. Her daughter quit high school and works a minimum wage job after a bout of sharing her nude photos with older men on insta( the Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree). I hear (from my daughter) that they can’t afford the fancy restaurants with expensive bottles of wine that he love bombed her with at the beginning ( paying for it with our line of credit since he was unemployed) and he’s running his illegal “shop” out of a storage unit after once again losing another legitimate one( he didn’t have all of our retirement money any more to continue I guess) Rinse and repeat.

  • Dumb ass sent this “after” he signed the divorce agreement. He has not been to the house in 5 years. Now he wants stuff? Live with what you got. Mensa girl and her house and furnishings.

    “I heard from my attorney that we are ready to finalize the divorce decree. I’m sure we could argue back and forth about the exact value to use for assets and liabilities being divided, but there’s no point. I recognize that doing so would be emotionally and financially damaging to both of us. There’s been far too much of that, and I’m not willing for either of us to pay the cost any longer. I’m glad it works out that you can keep the house, and I think that’s the best thing for our children and grandchildren as well.

    In one of my recent conversations with my attorney, I discussed personal or household items that I would still like to divide. Rather than creating any delay in signing the divorce agreement or getting attorneys involved, I hope that we can work it out between us pretty easily. If you agree, I can give you a list of things that have crossed my mind and we can go from there.”

    • Spoonriver – how funny! After everything was finalized, FW wanted more stuff too. Um… nope

      They are stupid

      • During divorce, the girlfriend said to me when I stopped by our office, he’d like to come to the house when you’re not there…..I laughed.
        He broke in while I was out. That’s when I realized how great my neighborhood is, I came out to my car and saw my phone was blowing up from my daughter (he called her to get the new garage code, she said she didn’t have it) and three neighbors. They all were expressing hope that I was not inside. So dumb of him. He was looking for the silver sets (I had already given them to the children). He took his surfboard too and passport, he missed the cash in the safe lol. Too hurried when he saw neighbors on their phones.

      • I also had this. 5.5 years after he left. Years after financial settlement. He was moving in with his umpteenth girlfriend. “My removalist will be at your house on x day at x time to pick up my belongings and furniture”. Nope, years ago you signed an agreement that the house and contents were mine. It was lodged with and stamped by the court, so sod off.
        “You will be hearing from my solicitor and paying for my
        Oh righto. You might want to
        tell them it’s in clause #x.

    • These guys are nuts.

      In our temp separation agreement, he got all his personal items including gifts. Including all the big money power tools I bought him for his birthdays, while he summarily forgot my birthdays and I got nothing. I got all the house furnishing. He got pissed when I sold the waterbed he had paid 600 for, for 300. I also sold a couple other things simply because I would have no room for them once I moved. I just told him I have custody of the furnishing and I sold them. I said “I am not asking you what you are doing with your stuff or your money. He shut up and walked away.

      He tried several times to convince me he was still in control. Truth was he lost all control over me the day he filed for D, he just didn’t realize it, though I did. He thought I would go on cowering, and I likely would have had I not hired an excellent lawyer to manage my situation.

    • My ex told me he needed me to get my stuff out of our marital home because it “wasn’t good for his mental health” to have it there (i.e. schmoopie was uncomfortable with it). He gave me a ridiculously short notice and threatened to put everything on the curb if I didn’t meet his deadline. I managed to get an emergency order that forbade that (in our neighborhood, if it’s on the curb, it’s gone within hours). He also insisted on being at the house when I got my stuff. I hadn’t seen him in a year or been inside that house, and since he had been abusive and threatening, I was pretty uncomfortable with that. So I brought a cop, two friends, and a police chaplain. My ex was FURIOUS about that.

      I took all my things. Yes I did. Including the BED. It was mine and I brought it to our marriage. I took that bed right out of his bedroom, and then had the movers take the damn thing straight to the dump. He had to sleep on the couch for a few months until he moved in with schmoopie. You get what you ask for, LOL. He had been fucking OW in MY bed, and that was disgusting. It was my one piece of petty revenge. I know it bothered him, because my kid (age 8) said to me a few weeks later “daddy wanted to know what you did with the bed”. I told my son it wasn’t any of FW’s business. (My ex had a bad habit of prepping my son to interrogate me when he came for my parenting days, and I wasn’t about to have any part in that.)

      My ex ended up taking his own life before the divorce went through, so I actually got everything in the end.

  • FW is not in good health and he and sparkly cunt have just left yet (been asked to leave) another job. This one was probably his last.

    FW is now at a point in life where he has been contemplating what his life amounts to (I know this from the kids). He always wanted to be a big player in his field and be hugely successful. He definitely planned to be the “winner” in all of this! His biggest fear was getting old. Now he has heart disease, gained a huge amount of weight post heart-attack, is pitifully out of shape, it’s too late to be successful or a player and has a sad relationship with his kids and grandkids. And he is old. She dreamed of becoming a famous author and her one, self-published book fizzled. She never had kids and I don’t know if they ever married. His Facebook status still says “divorced”.

    I’m happily growing older and enjoy a comfortable life financed by him (or her?). I never wanted anything other than my family and to be content in my own skin. I have lots of friends and adore my kids and grandkids. Not the life I dreamed I would have but I am content.

    He “won” nothing that he set out to win. I know it bothers him greatly as he so craved fame, riches, admiration and success!!! Too bad. So sad.

    • “He “won” nothing that he set out to win. ”

      Same with my fw. The most important thing he had in his life was his power and status in the community and police department. We both worked hard to get him that. (I thought he deserved it, unknown to me; he didn’t).

      One he lost his promotion and cushy office and the community knew who he was, I don’t think in his mind that anything after that really mattered. He couldn’t rebuild that, so he just went on to do what made him happy.

      I think he and whore planned and really believed that once I was disposed of, there would be a few months of awkwardness and then he would continue on with his ill gotten gains and he would seamlessly move her into my place and life would be grand. And of course everyone would love her as they did me because after all he was the one with the power and standing. Whoopsie.

      • They totally underestimated our worth in the “We” component.

  • I can’t even.

    Don’t want to be a downer, but let’s just talk about the unrealistic hope for the karmic bus here.I celebrate with those for whom the bus plowed the cheater down … but it’s completely random.

    For me, his self-serving cheater narrative pretty much won. He does as he likes, has all of his money to please himself, and is about to be married to a former (female, widowed) friend I really loved, who Understands he had to go to brothels and gay saunas for over a decade bc I was so incredibly awful but he nobly kept the family together. He explained to our oldest (19 at the time) … “it wasn’t just about sex, it was about validation.”

    Simple. Self-serving cheater narrative. Did. Not. Blow. Up.

    Maybe the long game is that I will have loving children at my deathbed, who see him as he is really is. Maybe self-reflection vs self-promotion means you win in your next life. But right now, 5 years post-Dday … my life is hard, still. So many, including former friends besides his fiancé, buy the Esther Perel-endorsed exuberant self-defiance line (was that it … Self-expression? Self-selfidge? Flip-anything-to-self-ation? It all works within moral relativism, which is for really enlightened Special People).

    The other parent travels, holidays, has a professional profile and career trajectory, has and does as he pleases and is “living his best life’ meme/trope/inspo bullshit (and yes he’s a published author). Plus has a former friend of mine who has committed for life to him. Also my ex-MIL throwing a pile of money at them for celebratory ceremonies/parties/honeymoon, on both sides of the globe.

    Not to say I’m unhappy. Or that dreadful dismissive adjective … bitter. Sometimes frustrated, yes, financially-stretched and exhausted, yes … content and much better off? YES. A WAY better version of myself, yes. Even with a youngest child so wrecked by the betrayal and deceit he’s been involuntarily committed to a psychiatric ward, refuses school and my daily challenge is making him feel safe and loved.

    Publicly, I have no status and my “success”would not rate on many scales. However. I am fortunate and have home I love, my health is good, I love my life, mostly. I have a fella, a chump of course, he gets it, we enjoy each other’s company and have chemistry. While I have a masters degree, I take work that pays the bills and doesn’t compete with my kids as first priority. Waitressing, cleaning, gardening. I find ways to enjoy them all.

    Geez, what am I even saying? Not sure.

    Maybe: the self-serving narrative has fertile ground to land on, IMHO, these days. The publicly winning narrative doesn’t determine how it works out for you. You do.

    • Sigh…I get it. My EX is “winning” in the sense that he has experienced no consequences for the harm and damage he has done. Many so-called friends and even some of my family continue to blow smoke up his ass, which has more or less driven me off social media and distanced me from people who should be supporting me. He gets to do and go where he wants and while I am glad to be free from his abuse and gaslighting, the lack of justice and accountability is frustrating sometimes.

    • I feel this. My ex is doing just fine too. I lost almost everyone and everything. Sure, he is attracted to children and has girls younger than our son dress up like toddlers so he can pretend to be their daddy and molest them but he only had to do that because I’m so awful and frigid. Then because I’m not ok with him screwing teenagers in high school, I’m a homophobe and transphobe. If your spouse cheats with gay people or transgender people, you’re supposed to be honored. And it doesn’t matter if they’re under 18 because apparently LGBTQ kids are supposed to be fuck meat for adults and if you don’t like that, guess you’re just a bigot like me. Just everything is because I’m a bad person.

      And because I’m not happy about having disgusting things said about me like how fat and ugly I am, lies about me being incestuous, lies about how I liked being raped at 18 years old, and having my ex tell me directly how much he’s wanted to murder me, that means I’m bitter. Well, he’s happy! Why can’t I be happy for him?! Even my own sister showing me pictures of him and the adult baby. “Well, THEY look happy…” like a damn accusation. And I’m sure she’s playing victim now because I cut her off. And she’ll get plenty of support for kicking me while I was down. Poor her! There isn’t any karma because there’s too many bad people in the world.

      • Oh no, that is all so awful KP. Yep, the cognitive dissonance of when the cheating is beyond the garden-variety ho-worker type, and goes into truly strange territory, and then all the Enlightened People pat themselves on the back for “not judging anyone for the sexuality and sexual choices”. I’ve lost a lot of people too. But, meme/trope/fridge magnet alert … better people lie ahead in your future. Believe it.

        • Thank you, I do believe it. I have low moments but I do have a couple of good people in my life. And I’m joining a church that does a lot of charity and community outreach work that I’m excited about.

    • I’m with you Mama… still waiting for that karma bus. Ex FW appears to live his dream life (which used to be ours) with Shmoopie while I am trying to rebuild on the ashes of the house he burned down. I am just hoping the ashes turn out to be fertile ground.
      I traveled very far and decided to stay when I married the FW. I was hoping to build something bigger. All of our friends were his, and still are. His family sided with him of course, so I was very much alone once FW dropped his bomb and walked out. And broke.
      However what I am finding is that I am meeting other kinds of people now that I am not associated with a FW. I am also building a much truer, stronger relationship with my children and new friends. And yes, I am happier without someone telling me I am not good enough for him every day of my life.
      As for FW, I am guessing his house of cards will come tumbling down sooner or later, but probably later and I won’t be waiting.

      • Other kinds of people = better kinds of people. Same here. The more distance I get, the more I see that narcs always attract each other.

        The people we spent time with as a couple, ones that HE chose (wouldn’t have anything to do with anyone who was a friend of mine from “before”), have mostly revealed themselves to be selfish, shallow narcissists too. It’s great to have finally lost the rose-coloured glasses. You can see boundaries so much more clearly!

    • Urg, the “published author” wrinkle. He’s still riding high on a certain success, okay. But what the fuck would someone like that have to write about that was worth anything to anyone who was worth anything? For perspective, I would recommend reading “Testimony” by composer Dmitri Shostakovich about his experience trying to survive under Stalinist purges of the arts. In the chapter on Toscanini, Shostakovich makes a truly needed but rare argument that shitheads simply can’t be artists. He’s grumpy, dark, funny and blunt about it. For similar arguments set to verse, read the poetry anthology of Shostakovich’s close collaborator, Yvgeni Yevtushenko and read Yevtushenko’s novel “Wild Berries.” See what actual artists think of careerist, userist trash. I think you could just wrap these books around your face and they would absorb through your skin because they directly address the myth that your ex is trying to spin.

      • In this day and age “published author” doesn’t mean a whole lot. It’s not that hard to get published, since you can do it yourself. Schmoopie in my case was an “author”, and my ex promoted her book like it was the next big thing. I read it, and some of my friends have read parts of it, and we generally agree that it is one of the WORST novels we’ve ever read. The writing is terrible, the plot is terrible, the characters are terrible. It was so bad.

        My ex, for all that he was a horrible person, actually was a pretty good writer/filmmaker. I helped him make his two feature films, which both won numerous awards and were bought for distribution (both are on Amazon Prime). (My ex would NEVER admit it, but I was instrumental in getting both films made, and they wouldn’t have been NEARLY as good without me, but I digress…) He’d promote schmoopie’s book at all the conventions he went to alongside his films and I was so embarrassed that such a piece of sh*t was next to work that was so much better. I often wondered if he really liked her book, or if flattering her was his “in”. She was a bored stay at home mom who wrote a rather pathetic “sci-fi” novel, and her ex husband had not been kind about her ambition to be a writer. My ex swooped in and told her she was amazing and should publish, blah blah blah, and in no time she left her husband for him. She went with an “indie” publisher which has released about 6 books. And then she went on as many podcasts as possible to talk about how she is a an Author and is an expert in her craft. It’s kind of sad.

    • Oh, Mamameh – YES! This is pretty much snap! for me – no consequences, he “won,” too. His family (my loved in-laws) don’t speak to me, and accepted Schmoopie immediately. After thirty years of me loving them – true colours exposed. Also have a Masters but work in a “safe” job to ensure my bills are paid. He and she are semi-retired, as I struggle on, working fulltime. Also not bitter, but definitely affected. Also not unhappy, repartnered to a lovely man who seems to get it, also a former chump. But there never has been a karma bus, now thirteen years after first known affair, and almost five since discovery of the second(???) exit one. Yeah, I stayed. Against my better judgement. Because he was horrified, sorry, sad, “loved me, and only me.”

      And I still bloody loved him. Thirty years of bullshit, BOOM!!! Ugh.

  • “I deserve to be happy.” — Well, I deserve not be cheated on and lied to, but we don’t always get what we deserve. It took me some time to realize that he never once considered what *I* deserved. I was just a good wife appliance and when the shiny new (and of course much younger) model came out, I was tossed to the curb without a second thought.

    I take some solace in the fact that the shiny new model dumped his ass relatively quickly but that led to no remorse, guilt, or retrospection on his part — just more emotionally abusive efforts to humiliate me and remind me how happy he is to be free from the awful, miserable life he had with a loving wife and children (poor thing to suffer so with the burdens of a loyal, loving family). But of course, he didn’t realize he was unhappy until he met shiny new model; or depending on the day, no, he was secretly unhappy for 2 years; no it was 10 years; no, it was 4.5 years. Whatever it took in his mind to justify each abuse, lie, and betrayal that was uncovered.

  • FW (then 47, now 51) gave up his huge suburban home and toys and two kids to live with his exotic dancer schmoopie (then 20, now 24), who also raves and does roller derby constantly and enjoys the drug subculture. He’s since dyed his hair blue, been fired from two jobs, and gone flat broke but it’s all worth it because he is FREE FROM THE CORPORATE STEREOTYPE, the American suburban myth of happiness. He has reclaimed joy and living in the moment and not stressing about college funds and retirement and mortgages and tomorrow. Life is so short! He is for the now!

    • Perspective. I just saw a ravaged creep like that– 50-something in absurd groovy hairdo with emo clothing– sitting alone at the bar of an upscale restaurant trying to hit on a nerdy girl half his age who was just trying to read her book over a bowl of seafood stew. You could tell the girl is lonely because she’s geeky and challenged with trying to build a different kind of life. There’s hope there and a sort of sweet integrity. You could also tell the older guy must have fucked his life over a thousand times, wasted a thousand second chances.

      • There is a decent chance that the guy at the bar was my EX, though if his clothing was on point for any fashion trend, that was an accident. On the other hand, there are probably 500 other women on CL today who suspect it was their EX as well. No wonder there is one in every bar.

        • Kind of speaks to the total lack of originality of abusers, doesn’t it? Victims come from all walks, backgrounds and flavors but abusers are like mid century TV: three channels plus statically UHF.

  • Yeah, the life is too short motto. I had one of those too prize pkgs too.
    They’ve hooked themselves onto a raging burning fire ball and are going out of this life in tumultuous flames for all the world to envy.
    Fuck everyone is their mantra.
    (There will be plenty of flames where they’re headed!) ????????????????

  • Traitor X feels like he has “been cut out.”
    (He who lied and screwed around and left).

    At the board meeting last week which took place in his office, on the wall is the motivational calendar from Corporations R Us with a cheesy action shot and a big word in all caps. This month’s Word is CHARACTER. I also noticed a copy of Principles by Ray Dalio prominently displayed.

    Google “Ray Dalio dishonesty”. “Ray Dalio truth”. “Ray Dalio fatherhood”. Select Images, and get ready to laugh out loud at the stunningly spectacular disconnect as you imagine the work of this author in the office of a flaming liar cheater thief.

    I screenshotted a few really juicy ones and emailed them to Traitor X. I just could not resist. “Great book! Thanks!”

    He basically has actual signage employed to sell his Traitor X Is A Great Guy! scam.

    But the wise know that words out of their mouth, hung on a wall, or books on a shelf are not character. It’s behavior that counts.

    • VH you need to come up with your own signage, the humorous kind but that would likely take too much energy. god, these folks are exhausting. that you own a business with your X sounds exhausting to me.

      you have reserves.

      • Damn, our corporate attorney is one of my good friends from high school who knows the details and he is one of the newly appointed five board members. The other new board member is our accountant, whom I know we’ll enough to trust and who also knows the important details about Traitor X.

        So I have do have allies, which is essential. The jury is still out on whether I have reserves and if the situation is sustainable. At this time it’s financially necessary.

        I consider myself to have two children with him which require co-parenting (a term I despise)…
        one human and one corporate.

  • “I’m tired of putting everyone else’s needs before mine. I deserve to be happy,” repeatedly quoth FW who somehow thought stringing me along through his life as an unwanted lifepartner until he could feather his nest(s) with a new girlfriend was putting everyone else first. Zero disregard for the devastation left in his wake everytime he was caught cheating and ended up moving into his mistress’s place.

    He said “I deserve to be happy” or “I need to finally put myself first” so many times that I’m convinced he honestly believed it. Those phrases make my skin crawl and whenever I find myself applying them to my life (“Doesnt Fourleaf deserve to be happy? Shouldn’t at some point Fourleaf put herself first?”), I’m always acutely aware that my choices do not exist in a vacuum. My choices for my life do indeed affect those close to me (which, right now, are my children and my parents). So, sometimes at the cost of my own time and happiness Fourleaf does *not* always put herself first. Sometimes she does. But it never comes without a lot, like *a lot*, of consideration of what the ripple effects will be. FW taught me that.

  • My ex didn’t leave me-he wanted ALL the kibbles.

    Four years after leaving-he (says) he’s living his best life by trolling free dating websites constantly, having multiple coffee dates each week (that he goes into detail about with his 18 year old daughter and 20 year old sons), chain smokes and starts drinking Trulies non-stop from about 2pm ’til bedtime every day while living in the “house that needs him” with a bunch of half finished projects that have been in the works since 2005 (missing kitchen drawers, no baseboards in the entire house)….

    He was able to rekindle his and schmoopie’s romance (despite telling me that “he thought that ship had sailed”) until she dumped him for being cheap and drinking too much.

    One woman’s trash is another woman’s problem now…..

    ….and it feels GOOD.

  • “They wanted it, they got it. It blew up? Next! Where’s the buffet?”

    I agree with this, they really don’t get into self awareness, way to scary.

    But, having said that my fws life choice was to have two separate lives, for anywhere from six years to our whole marriage, I will never know for sure. In one life he had a family with a son and an attractive, clueless wife who in most cases just did what he wanted. I helped him in the community and in politics, the whore he was hiding couldn’t have pulled the scam off; but I unwittingly helped him pull it off to almost perfection. In the basement he had whore(s) and some gambling. He was conning a lot of folks, not just me.

    End result, someone filed an ethics complaint against him, he got busted in rank, became the laughing stock of the PD, married whore (who was his direct report) (that may or may not have been to save his job ????‍♂️ ) continued to cheat on her (who could have guessed that would happen). Took early retirement, then promptly started gambling big time to bankruptcy. He and whore ended up living in a one bedroom mother in law house; until they got so nasty to my son and his wife that my son sold his house to get away from them.

    They fled to Florida where I am sure they created a fake story out of whole cloth of their “relationship”.

    But hey he did what he wanted to and the reality was no one, not me, not whore, not his son was going to save him from himself. He evidently loved the con. It is who he was.

  • When we were still negotiating (fighting) out our financial and asset settlement, it was always big bad me and poor them, sacrificing all for true love. One day I realized he was using his tried and true method of picking a fight so he could do something wrong and be justified about it. So I dropped the rope and went no contact. And he loved that because he was free. Then time went on and all of a sudden, his handy triangulating fight strategy didn’t work and they started fighting and he couldn’t blame the old punching bag anymore. He had to grovel and watch himself again. Turns out schmoopie has demands! Expectations! Gets annoyed with him! Tells him not to let the door hit him in the ass etc. Its rich to watch him get played at his own games. The best part is escaping his smothering, boring worldview and live my best life and he can’t control my money and it makes me gleeful. I’m actually really happy. At first it was hurtful to know they were taking ‘our’ vacations, doing all the stuff ‘we’ did. But now, she won’t do them!! He has to do her family stuff. He sold his boats. His friends are fading Away or dying off. She’s tried to break up with him. But hasn’t found a sucker (like him) to help her escape. He’s really not doing much now. He leans on our kids for sympathy. I’m younger so I’m still mad busy. I don’t live for my kids anymore and everyone is fine. We are so fine. No contact, friends! Works!

    • The former spouse 64 now, took his gf 31 now to the Biltmore in Asheville; one of our vacations, then another trip to Washington DC even staying at same hotel. When I told son, he said “did he also get her a sticker book?” Lmao. The 3 children each had one to complete with all the DC attractions.

    • Trudy, this sounds so much like my situation. I played the pick-me-dance for a long time, but eventually decided to truly go no contact and move on with my own life. And without me to fight, they turned on each other and their little fairy tale romance imploded spectacularly. FW actually hid the fact the OW had left him for quite a few weeks, but I am a damn good detective (thanks cheating FW) at this point and figured it out pretty quickly.

      Turns out they were never as happy as their social media portrayed. I don’t think FW expected to suddenly be left taking care of three kids while she ran errands. I also think she was really pushing for commitment (more than just moving in together), while he dragged his feet in the divorce (blamed it on me, but that argument fell apart when I was the one who was sending demands for him to complete his paperwork on time). There was a lot of alcohol, depression, financial problems, screaming physical fights, etc.

      OW left him and he had no one lined up to take her place. He tried to feel me out, I suppose to find out if I’d take him back, and I gave him nothing. His “friends” weren’t there for him. He took his own life in despair.

      It IS wonderful to have escaped my former life. I thought it was good, and didn’t realize just how small and smothering it was. Now? Life is fantastic. I’m ACTUALLY happy. And have full control of my own money. I am financially comfortable for the first time in my life. I am going on vacation (SOLO!) for the first time in 15 years. I don’t have as many friends, but the ones I do have are real, and not two-faced suck ups. My son no longer suffers from anxiety and depression.

      No contact DOES work, and the other side of entanglement is bliss.

  • Let’s see, the X went completely down the drain after I moved out. He lived in schmoopies basement for a couple of years (they broke up once I was gone), until she tacked an eviction notice on his door! He worked some crap jobs, which he’d always get fired from, went on public assistance, and took no care of his health, so half his teeth fell out. He hung around with such trashy people that he got robbed twice, once when a girl he’d get drunk with, snuck in his house through a dog door, and stole his revolver. He never got it back, thankfully! There’s more stories, but I’ll spare you CN! He really is nuts, and our sons are embarrassed by the awful messes he gets into. When I met him, we were both really young, and he was so charming. Wish I could go back, and just meet him, and then walk away. I do adore our sons though, but honestly, this guy is addicted to chaos. And substances.

    • “There’s more stories, but I’ll spare you CN!”

      Please don’t spare us. These stories are hilarious. The doggie door robbery made my day.

      • I laughed, too, because I couldn’t stand him having guns. And I guess that girl was very skinny! Most of the other stories are on the pathetic side, and not very amusing. The other time he got robbed, was when he got rolled by a hooker’s pimp ???? and beat up. Then he tried to tell my son it was a girl who was ‘coming over for dinner’. My son saw right through that. YIKES
        So sorry, not exactly funny. He got many DUI’s, rides in the back of cop cars, the worst Fuckwit stuff.

  • Graffiti artist.
    50yo upper middle class white guy sneaking around with a spray can to impress the ladies.

    • To quote a quip from the series Succession (season 2 when it was still good), he sounds like a “stale pale male” lol.

  • “i just want to be happy.” (he continues miserable, and is quite possibly more miserable than ever)

    “you don’t speak my love language.” (i don’t know what this means, i will never know what this means)

    “i’ve been sleep walking for the past 10 years and i want to feel alive. ALIVE. i will never watch another netflix movie again.” (we still have a family netflix account and, last time i checked, he’s watching A LOT of movies while living alone in his shitty rental house, dating a prerequisite younger woman and “having fun”)

    he said a lot of abusive things on the way out and i’m not typing that nonsense out, but, man, what a clueless person. overall, i was struck by how dopey he sounded and still sounds?

    he’s like a record that keeps skipping.

  • I honestly think that my X believes everything that has happened in his life (that he deems negative) is everyone else’s fault. He’s the ultimate victim, while making himself out to be the martyr. So he has no defense. Its all “poor me, and I’m such a decent guy too! That’s what I get for trying to do the right thing.” And that’s just about verbatim.

    • Did we marry brothers? I’ve heard the same thing too, and my late MIL used to tell him “Poor you” all the time. I guess that explains, at least in part, where his victim mentality comes from (I’m convinced she was a covert narcissist too). I’ve been struggling for 2.5 years to divorce him but he fights me at every step. He has a shady lawyer who has no interest in encouraging a settlement – more billable hours for him – but after 42 years the law is clear about what I am entitled to. Covid has created a backlog in the system but sooner or later I’ll be free of him and in the meantime I am so enjoying life on my own.

    • Yep. One of my kids had the phone on “speaker” the other day and I heard a range of complaints–one was “everyone has betrayed me” and the other is “no one has my back.” Well, I’ve heard that before, but now he is voicing those lies in an attempt to manipulate our college age kid into being at his beck and call, which the kid was resisting. I just hope our child is better at seeing the facts than I was for so many years.

    • This is (was) my ex to a T. Anything negative was someone else’s fault, everything positive was because he was such a great guy and deserved it (even if, you know, it was MY accomplishment or whatever). I also noticed that he self-sabotaged, passing over opportunities that might just have been what he needed, because I think he honestly preferred the position of the martyr “I could have been so much if only people hadn’t stood in my way”. It was easier than the hard work involved in actually doing the thing, and better that than trying and failing or (god forbid) being mediocre. He wanted to be a filmmaker, and had made a couple of indies. He got a sit-down meeting with a producer who had A MILLION DOLLARS to invest (not a ton for a film, but better than the $35,000 we had worked with for the previous project), who was very interested in his script and asked for a rewrite to fit the budget, and my ex just….didn’t do it. He just let the deadline pass and did nothing. I couldn’t believe it.

      Even his suicide note was “everyone is so awful to me and I’ve just tried to do the right thing”. “I can’t go on when TWO women are falsely accusing me of abusing them”. Never, not even for a single second, did he look at himself and go “two women have left me for being abusive to them. Maybe I’M ABUSIVE and should get help with that.” Never. No. It was “life was unfair”. “My parents…”, “my wife….”, “my girlfriend…” kept him from being where he SHOULD have been.

  • Unfortunately I’m my case the FW did win . He’s lost nothing and I’m sure if he ever self reflects ( but why would he ? ) I’m sure it would be

    Yes that worked out perfectly for me . I got everything I wanted and ruined Karmeh in the process . Yeah it was SO worth it . And I’m sure he’s right except he didn’t ruin me but that’s about it ????????‍♀️

    • Karmeh: yeah I feel ya. My ex didn’t lose much either. I did. But, of course, I lost an asshole along the way (which is a big win, in my opinion) because no one truly has a good relationship with an asshole.

  • But she’s (OW) “funner” than you! This from a guy who never wanted to do anything even with our own kids. Of course, all of that was blamed on me why he didn’t participate. When he’s not happy with OW, he’ll blame her for not being “funner” too. Fuck him. So glad I don’t have to deal with his “un-fun” personality anymore!

  • So, uh. Mine left me for his AP after an extended affair. They married. Had a couple of kids. He descended into a deep depression. They divorced. And he died alone in his apartment during the first year of the pandemic. He showed me, I guess.

  • Klootzak believed he had achieved enlightenment because “It’s possible to love two people at the same time!” He and his OW who was almost 20 years younger and the wife of one of the enlisted men (Klootzak was an officer) would write each other emails and messages saying how their minds were opened by this revelation that you can fuck – ugh, I mean LOVE! – two people at the same time.

    OW’s chumped husband decided not to enlighten himself to her new found wisdom and filed papers on the double.

    • Well, enlightened people don’t conspire to keep others in the dark.

      I’ll wait for Klootzak and his side piece to ‘splain away that fact.

  • I daydream about hearing the truth. Evil Fw’s trial is coming up and he will have the chance to verbalize exactly why he made those morally reprehensible and highly illegal choices.

    *sigh* except he probably won’t say a word because he has a decent criminal defense attorney.

  • Here’s some Grade A Cheater bullshit on this topic for you. Getting rather sick of hearing, all of a sudden, how seemingly there had been a zillion occasions during our time together that he had found awful and that I had belittled him, alienated him etc etc (you know the story) I turned to him one night and said so very strange that in all that time you never once felt to mention any of it given you were apparently so unhappy. His response (and this is narc response if there ever was one). You see, I feel the highs very high and the lows very low, MY life is VERY experiential.

    So that was his defence and what a grandiose sense of self it unearthed.

    • “You see, I feel the highs very high and the lows very low, MY life is VERY experiential.”

      UBT; I need to get high on whoring around an on my own farts, otherwise I notice how dead I am inside. I experience nothing authentic whatsoever, so fakery and lying is my way of life. You, poor creature, couldn’t possibly understand my speshulness.

    • This is exactly how my late older brother used to describe his bipolar episodes. :O

  • My ex recognizes he’s done terrible things, has significant mental issues, and he makes awful choices.
    And he’s ok with it- he just admits it and makes no sincere attempt to address any of it. It’s chilling

    • Same, IL. He is getting therapy, but by that he means occupying a chair in a therapist’s office for an hour twice a month and doing nothing with anything he learns there.
      Not sincere.

      • Mine did the same, wasting 5 years of my life & money and the therapists time. He proclaimed he was working and getting better and did something every so often to keep us on the hook. It was all a lie. The only thing he learned in therapy was how to gaslight, manipulate, and abuse people better.

  • I’ve had some bad luck and have my problems, but I don’t front that I’m doing great like FW does. He’s so lonely he’s reduced to spending time with his weirdo relatives and is spinning it as if he’s enjoying reconnecting with family. He doesn’t even like them.

    The way I see it, they always lose because they are stuck with themselves. Even if things look good on the outside, even if they get everything they say they want, they are still never going to be happy. Smugly self satisfied, yes. That isn’t happiness. In fact, you can’t possibly be happy if you’re smirking about
    “winning” like that idiot from yesterday’s post. No matter what our circumstances are, at least we have the potential to be happy. They don’t. I find that comforting.

  • My ex is very secret and subterranean now, but here’s what I do know:

    He was unhappy with me because I was too controlling and too vanilla in bed. I was boring all round and a bit too “high school” for his tastes. I wouldn’t let him take business risks according to him.

    Well, now he has no friends. His stimulating life of playing Magic cards lost him friends. He was so aggressive and competitive no one wanted to play with him anymore. He moved cities so he hardly sees our teen daughter. He lost all respect around here and was having trouble getting work. He’s still with the OW who was a lesbian and is now his “sub” in their S&M relationship. She’s 15 years or so younger. She looks like a heroin junky-she’s bone thin and jittery covered in piercing and tattoos with spiky dyed hair. He’s now sporting a different look that I can’t quite figure out. They have fur babies, in spite of him never allowing us to have a dog. It was the first thing he did when he left- tried to buy off our child by getting a dog. No one knows what he does for a living but he’s got lots of money flying around. When my daughter visits she says there are bill collectors at the door, but her dad says it’s for the landlord, who is a “bad guy”. He talks up his sex slave girlfriend as if she’s a saint who is his new family. He proclaimed to me when he left that he was so happy that he could have more kids with the new thing because of course, I was too old at 50. But so far no kids. I think he forgot he’s infertile and we had years of hellish IVF to have our daughter.

    So, ya know, I was a boring adult who worked, paid the mortgage and wanted an emotionally rich marriage. He wanted a lesbian sex slave and a dog. But, it was all my fault that our marriage broke up-he told me so. Now he flies his daughter down once a month to see him. God knows what else he does.

    Our house together was loaded with hidden sex toys, porn, stolen money and lies. I’m not glad this happened to me but I’m glad he left and moved away. He can have his subterranean lie-filled life somewhere else

    • Is this woman in sleeping with your ex she’s lesbian like I’m black, which is to say not at all.

        • Yep. Also my lesbian friends have told me they sometimes got involved with men (sadly) to feel more legitimate in society’s eyes. It always ended badly! My ex FW was also sleeping with men, so I think they’re both “bi” and it seems also they have every fetish under the sun. I was shocked when I found out about this OW because she was someone we knew professionally and she was previously attached to a high profile woman in our town. She seems to glom onto whomever she needs at the time. And so does he- before her it was a hooker ????

    • “I think he forgot he’s infertile and we had years of hellish IVF to have our daughter.”

      Another example of how flat out delusional they are.

      “No one knows what he does for a living but he’s got lots of money flying around.”

      Well I guess we know where his junkie schmoopie gets her drugs. Maybe you should put a P.I. on him to find out since your daughter visits there. It doesn’t sound like a safe environment.

      • No it’s not. However one saving grace is that the sex slave leaves town when my daughter visits. I think he’s probably a bit embarrassed for our girl to meet her.

      • They rewrite history to suit their story. FW told gf I insisted on wedding despite his father’s death 6 weeks before wedding. I promptly sent him a photo of the poem he wrote me saying he insisted we still marry due to his Father’s love of me, he would’ve wanted it. It was an anniversary poem/gift I used to cherish

  • The EX was just sure he was on his way to better things without me and my controlling ways holding him back. He immediately went out and bought an RV with plans to travel. And he reconnected with his high school girlfriend. Three years later, he went on one vacation with his girlfriend and she broke up with him. He spent all his money gambling and not working the past three years. Now he is broke and drives an Uber with his fancy car that he bought as soon as I left. He never used the RV even once because I wasn’t there to plan the trips. The kids won’t talk to him. And he keeps trying to get back together with me. Haha! Not a chance, loser!

  • I don’t think FWs make choices. I don’t think they care enough about anything or anyone but themselves to weigh out good and bad or how what they do impacts anyone but themselves. My FW is so self absorbed she has no concept that anything she does impacts anyone else but herself and when she said she was done thinking about what she did she expected everyone else to be done too. She just wants to be happy and her definition is very narrow and singularly focused. She wants to be happy everyone else can go suck an egg.

    • I think you’ve put it very well. Their own happiness is the only concern, and it is baffling or infuriating to them when other people express anything other than happiness and gratitude about their self-centered or even self-destructive choices. If I wasn’t agreeing with my EX or had any desire counter to his goals, then I was a bad spouse who wasn’t “supporting” him.

    • Oh, they make choices. They just make them for stupid, irrational reasons and as you say, without putting much (if any) thought into it. They seemed to be ruled by infantile emotion and incapable of reasoning their decisions out.

  • FW defending his choice to walk out on a 30 year marriage and abandon our family for a serial adulterer who counts him as #5 (known) fuck partner/meal ticket (the idiot actually married her)…….” Because I came after the kids and the CATS and she brings out the BEST in me..” O Sorrowful Mother of Sweet Jesus…..the utter stupidity is astounding…..

    • “fuck partner/meal ticket (the idiot actually married her)……”

      Same with my fw. Anyone with half a brain knew she was after a meal ticket. She had already ran through several other married men who even though they were fw’s had the smarts not to marry her.

      But my fw was the big winner. Had she been a hottie, or someone with a good job etc, it might have made more sense to me. But, nope.

      Even one of the police officers in the unit room made the comment in front of a bunch of other officers. “I thought the idea was to trade up, not down”. I laughed at that, so I am glad someone told me. (it was an extremely reliable source).

    • ???? ???? The “you paid more attention to the kids” whine seems to a common one for these twits. What kind of so-called parent thinks he should be more important to you than your children and bitches because you have to spend so much time attending to them? Gee, do you suppose there might be more time to coddle fuckwits if they actually *helped* with the kids? Obviously they don’t even love their children.

      Mine said he was jealous of how much I loved the dogs, FFS. He said it while in the midst of a long term affair, making plans to abandon me for schmoopie (which failed spectacularly) and ignoring me as much as possible.
      The dogs love me back. The FW didn’t. So of course I loved them more. The math is simple.
      These entitled whiners expect us to go on forever being madly in love with them when it is not reciprocated and when we are being mistreated. They get angry if we don’t.

      • Agreed, it’s selfish on their part. The needs of children will trump an adult’s needs because kids depend on their parents.
        Adults (with exceptions, of course) can take care of themselves.
        A spouse/marriage shouldn’t be neglected, but that is no excuse to cheat.

        That was one of my husband’s reasons for wanting to be “child-free”…that I wouldn’t pay attention to him if we had a kid.
        Nope, not true. It’s just that he would have to share my time and focus with a child.
        Mature people can accept that as part of married life, and even enjoy it.
        Some are all about adult “playtime”…no kids, nothing that interferes with their (double) life or the attention they receive or anything else.
        It’s all about them, their lifestyle, their comfort, etc.

        • Before anyone comes at me…I’m not saying being “childfree” is bad if that is your choice, and if it doesn’t affect others around you.
          More power to you in that case.

          But in keeping with my comment above (and also the poster I agreed with)…there are cases where cheating or selfish spouses might complain about the kids getting attention, or otherwise standing in the way of their “happiness”.

          I wanted to share a life with somebody who had the same plans.
          Nothing too crazy…just a simple cozy home with at least one child, enjoying our life together as a family.
          He had other plans. Constant traveling, gambling, indulging in porn and (maybe) hookers behind my back, claiming to want kids but then it came out years later that he wanted to be “child-free”. It doesn’t help that his closest friend is a racist, sexist guy who is always telling him horrible things about minorities and women they work with (I saw some disturbing texts).

          Comments calling their female coworkers names, demeaning people in general, and comments that sexualized certain women in their company. This now makes me think, maybe it’s better that I don’t have a child with him.
          I don’t want kids with somebody who has that type of mentality, or hangs with toxic people.
          Nor do I want a child with somebody who seems to be a narcissist beyond the “nice” image. Him not wanting kids was also a control issue…a child would cramp his style with all the women throwing themselves at him, as well as with the ladies at work.
          Accountability would have to come into play. He also wouldn’t have an excuse to hide me from certain people anymore (ahem, other women).

          • Possible Chump, I was with an abusive serial cheater for 15 years… pretty much my childbearing years. I’ve wanted children of my own for as long as I can remember — like you, my dream was a small, cozy home and family. I was literally building that, at the expense of other opportunities and investments, with (actually, for) a con artist. He used every version of word salad to make the kids topic (and marriage, home ownership, etc.) a perpetual mindfuck. He’s a selfish control freak, closet sexist and racist, and pathological liar, so I am glad I left him and that I don’t have to raise kids with him. He’d make a terrible father. (One of the young OW idiots wrote, pretty much verbatim: “If I have kids, I want it to be with someone like you because you’d be such a great dad.”)

            I finally left at 39, in a pandemic and heartbroken. Not the place or time to fall in love and start a family. Now 41, I’m not ruling out step kids, but I’m past having my own kids. I can maybe relate to what you went/are going through.

            If you wanted a family of your own, and you invested yourself in a cheater who stole that from you, I don’t understand why anyone should: a) get offended if they didn’t want children; b) patronize you by questioning the validity of your desire to have children and/or tell you that you shouldn’t want children; c) “inform” you of your options, such as adoption, IVF, fostering, etc., as if you don’t know about and haven’t considered them; c) minimize your grief; or d) think you’re insulting them. How many times have you heard parents, even here, talk about how their children are their raison d’être? Their grandkids? How they wouldn’t trade them for the world, even though it means dealing with a fuckwit for life. How they’re staying sane for the sake of their kids? I get it, and I’m glad they can honestly share their experiences and relate to others, but this is painful to hear when you want and will never be a mother. And it’s not helpful when these same people try to comfort you by then minimizing your experiences and gaslighting you about the unlikelihood you ever will experience that, in one breath worshipping mothers and motherhood and saying how life is indescribably richer since their child came into the world (which I imagine is true for them) and the next telling you to look at the silver lining. To change what you want/who you are. I don’t give advice and can only imagine what it’s like to be a parent (especially with a fuckwit), and I guess I wish people with children would understand that life without children is empty and lonely for some chumps who wanted that. It’s a reality we must come to terms with, but that grief will never completely disappear, I’m afraid.

            I’ve written about much of this on CL before, and as you can tell, Possible Chump, this topic really hits several nerves for me.

            • “I guess I wish people with children would understand that life without children is empty and lonely for some chumps who wanted that. It’s a reality we must come to terms with, but that grief will never completely disappear, I’m afraid.”

              I totally get it. You wasted your child bearing years with a selfish pig and now it’s too late, and you have people in your life making it worse with their passive aggressive comments.

              • Thanks for the sweet words of support, OHFFS. I think you summed up my predicament perfectly, too.

                I think *most* people aren’t intentionally patronizing or hurtful. Rather, I think it’s just the same kind of unawareness and desire to fix/avoid discomfort and pain that we chumps face everywhere. I obviously haven’t yet learned how to gracefully respond/not respond — as my initial, reactive comment demonstrates. I haven’t figured out quite how to deal with my grief, beyond numbing. I can’t fixate or wallow, and I can’t change it, yet it’s hard to care about my future when most things I want are not possible now. It’s a major shift, and I am pretending to care and going through the motions in hopes that one day I really will.

            • So sorry you experienced that, B & R…I am 38 (will be 39 this year) and for years I told him how badly I wanted to have children.
              There was always either some excuse, or being dismissive/quickly changing the subject.

              When I was around 36, I tried to really find out why he didn’t want kids (after saying for years we would have them, talking about baby names, schools, etc).
              He got defensive…”sorry I can’t afford to buy you a mansion” and all this crazy talk.
              I was like WTF? Who said anything about wanting to live in a mansion? I’m just a simple woman with simple needs/wants in life. I never expected a whole lot. Just the normal things that often come with marriage.

              His mom told me last year that his high school girlfriend dumping him decades ago might be part of it somehow.
              So yeah, I feel your hurt and I’m so sorry you were lied to, and denied the chance to be a mom. I’m sure you would have made a great parent.
              The future faking is what hurts the most, because although I still love him, I feel that he took away a choice…a hope…a dream that I had. He knew that having a child (OUR child) meant the world to me.

              And yet he pretended to want the same, while knowing that he didn’t.
              I apologize if my post caused more pain to you…not my intent.

              • Best response (from my ex) to an attempted conversation about kids: “You should feel grateful to have the life you do. People are starving oppressed around the world.” He also, when hoovering, asked me not to go on birth control because he wanted to have kids. FFA, I’m remembering that the night he confessed his “brief fling” (which was actually many years of serial cheating with multiple women), he cried and told me about how he would picture our kids running around our house we were building together. And throughout our relationship, he’d talk about how sweet and wonderful with kids I was, and how I would be an incredible mother.

                Just to say, I can 100% relate to that longterm mindfuck around kids. It’s really sick, and you need to get away from that guy. Do you really want to go through life with someone like that at your side?

              • I’m in too deep to leave. Not sure if him not wanting kids is grounds for divorce, either.
                He has never hit me and he treats me well most of the time.
                But yes, like you, I’ve heard the “just be grateful” and also the future faking about kids (like their names and how they’ll attend a great school)…only to learn after a while that it was false hope.
                Kids were never part of his plan. He only said what he thought I wanted to hear.

                He’s not a completely terrible person like some of what I’ve read on this site, but I do feel that I was lied to, manipulated, and there are things he’s been hiding.
                A lot of weird behavior at times, being aloof one minute, overly nice the next. It’s crazy-making.

            • Oh, I wanted to add…I put the disclaimer because it seems that some people (in today’s world) feel it is wrong or “anti-feminist” to want children, especially in marriage or a committed relationship.

              People always treated me like I was wrong for wanting that. The “childfree” movement has validity in some ways and it’s a personal choice (as stated above)…but I knew since I was a kid myself, that I wanted to be a mom.
              That’s why I had to be more clear that I’m not judging any of the childfree chumps here (in case anyone takes it the wrong way).

              It was my husband who forced this on me, not my choice at all.
              We talked kids before we were married…and then the bait/switch happened. So once more, to any chump who experienced the same, I feel you.

            • Oh, and B & R…the part about home ownership! That too!
              My mom came to the US in the 70’s and instilled in me that having your own home/property was important.

              His “mansion” comment to me was so weird because I’ve never wanted a mansion.
              What I did tell him was that someday I hoped we could afford an actual home…not the dilapidated place we lived in for years with exorbitant rent and wacky rules, but a house or somewhat nicer place.
              Doesn’t have to be crazy expensive or fancy, but it’s weird how they can find money for things like travel and gambling when they want to, yet any talk of a decent home or children is taboo.

              He used to say I was “frivolous” with money. I became way more responsible, more hard-working and mature…but the goal posts continued to move and I’m running out of time. Just all these excuses and silent treatments to avoid real issues.

              • Possible Chump, I don’t know how long you’ve been reading CL, but it’s worth reading through the archives. You’re right that your boyfriend’s BS is weird and contradictory. You’re right! But it’s totally predictable behavior, coming from a cheater. I think that the moving goalposts are the number one red flag (and the number one mindfuck). Get out ASAP. Seriously. Even if you don’t have proof he’s cheating, you’ve written plenty that says his character is lacking and he’s not treating you with the love you give and deserve in return. You’re not going to get the life you want if you leave it in that FW’s hands. I was your age when dday1 happened, and the two years that followed before I left and went NC were traumatic and set me back even farther. These FW’s are black holes, and the sooner you’re able to close the door on his abuse and start investing in yourself, the sooner you’ll start rebuilding. I won’t sugar coat it because I’m in trenches myself: it’s hard, it’s going to take a long time to get where you want from scratch, and it’s hard to remain hopeful. But truly, every day you let someone devalue and steal from you counts against you. You sound wonderful and you deserve better.

                What you wrote in your first comments were thoughtful and honest didn’t cause me pain (and even if it had, that wouldn’t have been on you). All of your comments are validating and kind, and you express things that I feel but rarely can relate to others about. I find I’m most often either gently rebuked for wanting kids myself, or people tell me that I can still be a mother if I want to, or people suggest that I look for other was to have kids in my life (which I already do, but it’s obviously not the same). I see where folks are coming from, and it’s usually well meaning. However, it’s nice to feel understood; we’re in the minority, but I know we’re not alone. I’m glad you shared, and I’m here rooting for you. Leaving is brutal, and it was the hardest thing I ever did. But agency, clarity and peace can be yours if you take your life back into your own hands. Read the ‘mighty’ challenges, and you will see that chumps make amazing strides in short periods of time once they are free. Hugs.

              • Thanks for your kind words, B & R…I wish great things for you too!
                He is actually my husband of almost 14 years. I got married hoping to have the family I never had growing up.
                Sounds pretty foolish, huh? But I was still very young, and all I knew was the abusive environment I grew up in. So when he came along, it felt like I hit the jackpot!

                Maybe I was still easily manipulated because of past trauma when I married him.
                I just didn’t know it. Plus, when we are young, we feel that we have all the time in the world for things to happen.
                So I thought “ok…maybe if I’m patient, maybe if I work harder or don’t pressure him about it, he’ll change his mind”. Nope!

                And then 30 came, then 35, now 38. While I’m still somewhat young and fertile, I have to be realistic.
                You’re right…it hurts to see your dreams slip away.
                What I fear is him wasting my time, then having a baby with somebody else.
                That would kill me emotionally.

                I just want to say thanks. You’re a cool lady, and you deserve much respect.
                I really appreciate your wise words and understanding.

        • “That was one of my husband’s reasons for wanting to be “child-free”…that I wouldn’t pay attention to him if we had a kid.”

          Major red flag! I’m still baffled by how I missed so many red flags.

      • OHFFS—After 3 years of (continuing ) therapy I have learned that FW believing he “came after the kids and the cats” was a result of his insecurity, low self esteem, inability to connect and immaturity—-covert narcissism at its “best”……. baby steps to MEH!!!

        • Insecure- check.
          Immature- check.
          Low self esteem- check (which is justified because he sucks.)
          Inability to connect- check.
          Covert narcissism – check.

          It’s like they all have one (small) brain and just pass it around.

      • OMG I got that. I remember one time when both FW and our 4 year old child were both sick and FW actually yelled at me “you take better care of our son when he’s sick than you do me!” And I was like “he’s a baby?” This grown ass man was pissed off that I took more care of a sick toddler than I did him. Geez. And I did take care of my ex when he was sick. And he was sick a LOT. He tended to milk whatever illness or injury he had for as long as humanly possible, so he could be waited on hand and foot and get out of whatever it was he didn’t feel like doing (but was miraculously okay if there WAS something he wanted to do). I did not envy OW the duties of playing nurse to him.

        Not to mention, when *I* was sick, FW’s reaction was usually “stay away from me, I don’t want to catch it” or still trying to have sex with me when I was sick with a terrible cold (hey, he couldn’t see my swollen nose from behind, you know?). And when I came down with a potentially fatal illness that had me on medication for TWO YEARS to clear the infection and I took three months off work on the doctor’s orders (you know, so I wouldn’t DIE), he made me feel every single day what a burden I was to him and how much he resented me. Later he told me that he wanted to leave me, but stayed out of guilt (meaning, I suppose, that it would have made him look shitty to the world to walk out on his sick wife and their small child).

  • They are no longer together. They imploded almost immediately. My ex has asked to reconcile numerous times. I told him to go pound sand. As for Skankella. She is always begging people for money on Facebook. I have her blocked, but I have been sent screen shots etc. I recently found out that she cheated with her best friends husband. The same best friend that let skankella and my ex use their cabin. The same best friend who knew that she was my cousin. The same best friend who went out on double dates. The best friend sure got her karma.

  • I was 18 when I met him, he was my first and only boyfriend, we dated for 8 years, and were married for 23 years. His narrative now is that I planned to marry him so I can divorce him so I can make money off him. He repeats this laughable story to anyone and everyone. Wow, I must have been a genius at age 17. How did I plan such an elaborate con? How did I plant his infected dick in various holes at work through the years? I agree with everyone here. These sociopaths don’t do self-reflection. They think they are the victim and they think about this every moment of the day. Absolutely no other thoughts run through their heads. He tells me all the time that he is waiting for my kids and I to apologize to him. Wow. No. Fucking. Words.

    • “He tells me all the time that he is waiting for my kids and I to apologize to him. Wow. No. Fucking. Words.”

      What a psycho! But why does he have the opportunity to tell you this crap all the time? Are you still with him getting your ducks in a row? If so, shut that shit down. Tell him you don’t have to listen to his craziness and to STFU, then grey rock his ass.

      My FW told his schmoopie, and God who all else, that I didn’t love him and was only with him for his money. He makes about 100K a year, FFS. If I was a gold-digger I could have done a hell of a lot better than that. In fact, the guy I dated (and dumped) before FW was from a rich family.
      Such bizarre nonsense they invent to try to justify themselves.

      • Thankfully, the divorce became final last year but we still have to communicate for the kids. We also had to do mandatory joint coparenting sessions monthly until last month when the therapist finally fired him for his temper. He would begin each session hyperventilating and within minutes, he would be yelling at me. She let it go on for a few months (she is sympathetic to do-gooding healthcare heroes!) until she couldn’t justify it anymore. So glad he had these tantrums multiple times in front of a witness. It reached a point that the therapist and I would be yawning and drawing doodles while waiting for him to calm down. They are truly stuck at age 4.

  • Love this illustration. It’s an oldie but very goodie and shows so well that a picture is worth a thousand words.

  • FW left me for OW because he, and I quote, wanted to be with someone who was “emotionally stable”. OW was a disaster who tried to kill herself and had to be taken to a psych ward. This was BEFORE THEY MOVED IN TOGETHER. But she flattered him and told him he was amazing, so he figured he’d won the lottery. She was “the one” and they plastered their social media with sickly sweet, over-the-top declarations of their fairytale love.

    He thought she was the answer to all his problems and would be/do everything he wanted. They lived together for less than FOUR WEEKS before she left him and fled the state. Found out later they’d been fighting constantly, were both alcoholics, and were miserable. OW had started looking sickly and starving and old.


    He had blamed me for all his issues, particularly the fact that no matter how much money we brought in, we were constantly broke. After we split, my bank account kept getting bigger, and he was still broke. In spite of the fact that I was on my own so had to cover 100% of my own expenses, whereas he had schmoopie to split the bills and to hand him large sums of cash. He STILL blamed me, when I called him to ask why he hadn’t paid the electric bill at our marital home for 6 MONTHS and the power got turned off right when I was in the middle of closing the sale on it. He was furious that I was thriving without him, and accused me of using my mother’s money because he couldn’t imagine that I was making it on my own.

    OW had been HORRIBLE to me. Clearly she had bought his narrative that I was a cold, mercenary, nasty person who holding him back from his dreams, and an idiot who didn’t know what she had when she had it. She thought I was trying to ruin his life by falsely accusing him of domestic violence. She learned the hard way that that was not the case. She had to eat humble pie, and actually sent me an apology (of sorts).

    He ended up nearly destitute when schmoopie left him (with a large rental home that was far above his budget on his own). He couldn’t see a way out of any of it. He couldn’t get his GF back, I wanted nothing to do with him (he tried to hoover), the court was leaning my way in the custody dispute, his (now ex) GF was trumpeting that he had abused her to anyone and everyone, he’d alienated everyone who actually cared in favor of the “friends” who flattered him but weren’t anywhere to be found when he needed someone. He ended up taking his own life. Schmoopie walked away at least $30,000 poorer, looking like an idiot, got nothing of his, had to start over, and since she had quit her job when she left him (since they were coworkers) she went from being a well-paid worker in an office to being a barista at a coffee shop.

    Glad the affair worked out for them.

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