Stay in Touch

Check out CL's Book

UBT: Affairs Can Be Self-Care

Universal Bullshit Translator
The Universal Bullshit Translator

Oh Bustle, you vapid little blip of clickbait… Of all the things you could choose to amplify on your site — world’s worse pizza toppings, lymphatic massage whisperers, Zodiac sign workouts — you added…

Affairs as “self-care.”

Is there a vaginal scrub for the warts? A chlamydia whisperer? Is this some sick kind of spin-off thing? Otherwise I cannot explain the editorial choice — even for a journalistic rag as weighty as a light dusting of dandruff — to compare betrayal to a bubble bath.

Here’s the lead-in:

Maybe you like to relax by uncorking a bottle of red, getting a mani-pedi, or taking a hot girl walk. Or, as a new podcast suggests, maybe you text your lover to arrange a meetup. In She Wants More, journalist, author, and podcast host Jo Piazza explores the hush-hush subject of female infidelity.

She wants more! MORE! She’s insatiable and untamed, this SHE. You’re not providing it, so she’s getting it! Between mani-pedis and hot girl walks. Because that’s what Alice Paul would do. Get a Brazilian and hit up a rando. Beats hunger striking. Feminism should be fun! And sociopathic! Sometimes you have to break a few eggs if you want to make a facial mask.

Why is having an affair a feminist act?

It’s a way for women to take back the patriarchal restrictions that have been put on us.

Did a patriarch put a gun to your head and get you to agree to monogamy? What if your partner is a woman? Or trans? Can they be cheated on? Or so only straight women get to play the Feminism Made Me Fuck Around card? Is fucking your friend’s boyfriend a feminist act? How about mate poaching? Oh go right ahead, Doris, my children won’t mind the divorce, you’re striking a blow (or blowing a Joe) for Universal Sisterhood.

The Universal Bullshit Translator is not cooperating. I’m going to have to bushwhack this shit myself.

A good wife is a faithful wife. That dates back to the creation of religious ideals in the Bible. Women carving out their own paths — not necessarily having an affair, but having the choice and the ability to have one — that is a very feminist act. It’s bucking against this huge stigma that having sex outside of marriage is one of the worst sins a woman could ever commit.

Holy word salad conflation, Batman.

Premarital sex, remaining single and having sex is not cheating. Consenting to monogamy — and unilaterally changing the rules for yourself — is cheating.

All choices are not Very Feminist Acts.

I’m going to stick this kitten down a drain pipe. It’s a choice! Look at me with my lady brain and free will! Does not make me a feminist.

For men, I don’t think that stigma exists. It’s like, “Oh, he’s having a midlife crisis. He’s just having sex with a younger woman now.” In so many movies, we have a guy going out with his buddies and he’s just like, “Yeah, I slept with a stripper in Vegas.” It’s so ordinary. And yet any time we see a woman doing that, it’s a goddamn scandal. The world f*cking ends.

So what? We want gender parity with philandering douchebags? Just give us all the entitlement perks of the patriarchy and rebrand it? WHY CAN’T WE VICTIMIZE PEOPLE TOO?! More strippers! Snort a line off her tits and call it empowerment!

Is it pushing it too far to say that having an affair can be self-care?

No, not at all.

Yes. Yes it’s pushing-it-to-the-Mongolian-steppes-and-off-a-cliff-on-to-the-back-of-a-yak-that-will-zigzag-cross-country-for-generations-before-being-abducted-by-aliens-and-is-sucked-via-transport-beam-into-a-parallel-universe TOO FAR.

We literally have a whole episode on whether or not having an affair is the new Goop.

I quit. I have to hand this over to the UBT. I’m threatening it with a hot poker.

(Whirrr. Sproink!)

We literally have a whole episode of Goop. Stick a jade egg in Schoompie and call it avocado toast! Affairs are linen bathmats for only $699!

(Sorry. I think I have to go it alone.)

We talk to women who say it is. This is what they do for themselves. They don’t get a massage, they don’t do yoga — they have an affair. But also, these women tell us they take better care of themselves because they’re having an affair. They’re with someone who finally sees them again, or sees them differently than their spouse does, so they’re shaving their legs, they’re working out more. They’re taking care of their bodies in ways they wouldn’t have otherwise.

Break up a family, the important thing is that you shaved your legs.

Why do yoga when you can contort the truth instead? Massage reality!

You deserve it!

Your podcast is inspired by A Passion for More, Susan Shapiro Barash’s 1993 book that defined four reasons that women have affairs: for empowerment, for sex, for love, and for self-esteem. You found some other reasons that women are having affairs right now. What are they?

Narcissism, self-involvement, suppression of empathy, cruelty, disregard for others, and shaved legs.

Women are craving autonomy over their own bodies. We’re seeing it be restricted by our government. A lot of the women that I interviewed said that after they started having kids, their body didn’t belong to them. It was always someone else’s — their husband’s, their children’s. They were growing a child, they were feeding a child, they were caring for a child. There’s so much physicality involved in that. They wanted their body to be just their own.

I don’t have autonomy over my body. You know what would make me feel better about Texas and the Supreme Court? Robbing my partner of consent. Oppression for everyone!

Get off my boob, kid. Mommy’s got a date with a strange man on the internet.

The pandemic definitely escalated that, because people were in such close quarters with their spouses, with their families. Women wanted something just for themselves again.

So go be trapped in close quarters with another guy. Get closer. Fuck!


In the first episode, you talk to Nikki (name has been changed), a 30-something mom of two who has been married for 15 years. She felt that her husband was checked out and she had to perform all the emotional labor in their relationship, so she began having affairs. Tell me more about that.

It’s a myth that men want sex more than women. I don’t think that’s true. But I do think that women crave emotional connections and psychological space more than men do. And when women are doing so much emotional labor in a marriage, it’s a burden. It makes you feel like you don’t want to be close physically with your husband anymore. And you want to seek that connection with someone else.

I need to emotionally labor for strange.

I thought it was fascinating that Nikki said her affairs made her more confident at work. The sexier she felt, the less she cared about what her colleagues thought of her. Is that something you heard from other women?

No, just the HR department.

Constantly. We heard it from every single woman that we interviewed and that was one of the things that blew my mind. All of them said it made them more confident in every single aspect of their life, from work to their marriage. Most women told me that they think the affair has improved their marriage.

The way leaving your partner with permanent trust issues does. Deceit improves marriage, and clears your skin. In 30 days or your money back.


No. Not really. You don’t get your money back. It’s deceit.

It’s made them happier. It’s made them more confident in the bedroom with their spouse, because they felt like they could ask for what they wanted and they knew how to enjoy themselves a little bit better. I talked to a lot of women who say just the act of thinking about an affair, maybe putting themselves out there [on sites like Ashley Madison], made them feel more confident because it made them feel more desired again.

Ah, there’s the product placement. How much is Jo getting from Ashley Madison to spew this shit?

Did you know that if you offer no-strings-attached-sex on the internet you’ll be popular? Really! Just send Ashley Madison money and they’ll send you random men who find you more affordable than their OnlyFans subscriptions. Confidence abounds!

Nikki sounded like she was glowing.

It’s the herpes.

All of them are glowing. I mean, that’s not to say this is without consequence. Generally, in any relationship, dishonesty is probably not a good thing. But all of these women told me that having an affair improved their lives in so many ways. I have a very close friend who is currently exploring a sexual relationship outside of her marriage, and her husband doesn’t know, but she’s never been f*cking happier. She’s doing great at her job. Her marriage seems so much better. And she glows.

Dishonesty is probably not a good thing, but if it makes you happy? Go for it! Your husband will thank you — and your boss too. Fuck them both!

You’ve probably heard people say, “If you’re going to cheat, just get divorced,” right? But a lot of people don’t want to leave their husbands. A lot of people like their husbands quite a bit. In reality, a lot of marriages are business partnerships. You’re running a life together, you’re running a house together, you’re raising children together. If all those things work, and only the sex doesn’t, why would you blow it all up?

(The UBT is back, for the final graf, fat lot of good this machine is.)

You’ve probably heard people say, “Wigwam hippo bottoms,” right? But a lot of licorice toilets don’t want to flush. Earflaps be free! If the flange doesn’t undulate, why would you detonate a kitten? Why? Raise pigeons together. Work on kitten splatter.

I’m sorry. I think we’ve both expired.

Ask Chump Lady

Got a question for the Chump Lady? Or a submission for the Universal Bullshit Translator? Write to me at Read more about submission guidelines.
  • If Ex-Mrs LFTT’s affair was driven either by feminism or her desire for self-care, then I guess that what was also driving her to steal from me and the kids, lie to me and the kids, manipulate me and the kids and to make ridiculous demands and drag out the divorce.

    I’m no expert, but I’m pretty sure that this is not how either feminism or self care work.


  • Well, the takeaway for women like Nikki seems to be that all of those cheating, emotionally absent, men were right in their actions all along. Right? No? OK, wait . . .

    ALSO — “We heard it from every single woman that we interviewed . . .” Marjorie Taylor Green justifies her insistence that Trump won Georgia in 2020 with the words “every person I’ve talked to…” so maybe Jo needs to get out of her bubble.

    • It has been 20 years since I left a crappy office job, but I still get a flash of rage when I remember my former supervisor telling me “People are saying…..” followed by a complaint about me. She was such a poor example of what a good manager should be.

      • That is such poor management. I remember the manager in my office job would never address any interpersonal grievance without the person complaining being willing to write down their complaint and sign their name to it, and then go into a meeting face to face with the other person and himself to address and resolve the issue. It was amazing how quickly that damped down the intra-office bitching.

      • That’s one of the biggest reasons that I left my last job – an interminable lecture about “what people are saying” and never an actual example. I surmised that it was just my horrible manager’s way of putting me in my place (she seemed to be highly envious of me – justifiably so, because I knew way more than she did about how to do my job and she couldn’t stand not being the expert on absolutely everything).

        [I also stop listening to any political commentator who begins a sentence with “Some say…” because invariably what follows is manufactured propaganda.]

    • It’s easy to get every person you talk with to say what you want when you’re only looking for people who agree with you and ignore everyone else.

  • She wrote an article for Time titled, “This Is the Best Age to Get Married.” She has a master’s degree from NYU in Religious Studies. She’s married with two little kids. If I was her husband, I’d be very afraid.

    • It’s pathetic that the interviewer didn’t ask her if she puts this into practice in her own marriage, and if not why not.

      • Maybe she did and promptly got kicked out without an answer; or maybe she answered but the editor decided not to include that very important information (for her husband).

    • But at the same time, it sounds like she’s giving her husband the “boys will be boys” pass to cheating non stop with Vegas hookers.

      But then again she’s now claiming affairs are self care, so maybe her husband SHOULD cheat on her? Or is it only self care for women? It’s hard to follow.

  • Wow, just wow. So much BS for both CL and the UBT. Will send lebkuchen. Who on earth can compare a choice to deceive someone and take away another person’s right to consent to a mani/pedi (or at least something that s considered self care)? Has the definition of self-care changed to ” only caring about oneself”?
    One of the most horrible things about cheating is that someone else made decisions about your health, safety, finances, etc. without consulting the other person in the marriage. Betrayal and lies don’t make a marriage better unless the rules have changed.
    People, who lie, cheat and have a double life are not safe people. Trust is key in any relationship. People who will lie, cheat and steal from you are not trustworthy and are definitely not safe. Feminism is not creating equality on the basis of lying, cheating and stealing. With all things being equal, having an affair just makes a person a cheater and that means not a safe or trustworthy person.
    This is just too much to digest this morning.

  • When my cheating ex broke up our family with an affair from an old college friend that I had no idea was taking place, my cheater started complaining about all about the oppressive, unnatural constraints of monogamy, how controlling I was as a male, and how disadvantaged she was given her lack of work experience in spite of the fact she had a degree.

    I’m quite sure her hip, progressive family, people that I once loved and cherished would have read me the riot act had I been a stay-at-home dad, who cheated on their daughter while expecting her to support me financially as I went back to school to increase my earning power. What did I hear from them? Crickets. And, from all of her hip, progressive “feminist” friends? Crickets. Cheating is cheating, and I appreciate Tracy’s consistency in ridiculing the act, regardless of which gender it involves. Thank god it’s almost Tuesday for me.

    • Trying to ascribe lofty, humanist-sounding principles to justify abusive behavior is a typical tactic used by serial offenders to justify their crimes, something known in criminology as “neutralization.” Click “download” for a free read:

      I don’t know if it’s more or less absurd when straight male cheaters try to hijack feminism as a rationale. Or borrow it by association. What I learned in my situation is that the #MeToo era might have given rise to a particular type of female flying monkey who offer a faux-feminist stamp of approval to men who want to douche around at work while avoiding Harvey Weinstein stigma. FW in my case got himself a lesbian, supposedly feminist flying monkey/work wife who– in exchange for free drinks, work perks and other amenities– played the role of pimp and lofty feminist excuse-generator. Over the course of several years, she arranged after work bar-hopping events for FW involving various office interns and doorknobs she was grooming for the purpose and then would tag along to protect FW from harassment optics in case the candidate wasn’t on board. In retrospect it’s kind of funny that it took that long to finally find even one who was game. Then the bimbo-wrangler made herself a confidant of the AP and would send FW articles and podcasts singing the virtues of poly lifestyle and panning monogamy as an artifact of patriarchy.

      The flying monkey apparently had a lot of trouble forming relationships of her own. I don’t know where she would have found the time while she was offering full service bimbo-wrangling. The cost of those services and the “feminist licensing” process was about $3K in family assets to pour top shelf booze and grub down her pie hole and pay for her ski trips. She got FW to write professional recommendations for her but it seems she didn’t have the talent to make anything of it which probably explains why she adopted an alternative strategy for climbing the corporate ladder. After D-Day when FW tried to spew some of the faux-feminist excuses he’d adopted, I started laughing and asked if he’d picked that up from his pimp. He exclaimed, “But she’s gay.”

      I didn’t know there was a lesbian feminist loophole for pimping. Maybe someone should tell Heidi Fleiss so she can get her conviction overturned but I doubt the LGBT movement would want her.

    • I don’t trust people who fake laugh with their mouth open. It’s a tell.
      (x was proficient.)

      Also, “Generally, in any relationship, dishonesty is probably not a good thing.”
      “…All these women say ( fukking behind your spouse’s back ) improved their lives in so many ways.”

      I guess they operate outside the tenets of decent human beinghood.

      • You cannot say that dishonesty in relationships is a bad thing then follow it up with a diatribe about how women should two-time their husbands.

    • Regardless of your gender or sexual orientation, cheating makes you an a*****e. Cheating is a dumbass jerk move and I don’t want anything to do with anyone who paints it otherwise. I fail to grasp how abusing and disrespecting others could possibly be considered a feminist move.

      Cheating, aka deceptive sexuality, is a form of domestic violence and anyone who excuses it, sanctions it, minimizes it, belongs in the front row seats of the Extra Crispy section of hell.

      “In lying, one is identifying the other as one’s opponent, even one’s enemy. In marriage intimacy is developed through confessions, explanations, and soul searchings. But of course intimacy involves equality, and people who are telling lies are not seeking any aspect of intimacy, especially equality. Liars are hoping efor advantage, which will be produced by disorienting and distracting the other person. The liar is stepping outside the relationship. The lie may be a greater betrayal of the relationship than the misdeed being lied about. It takes very little misinformation to disorient and destroy a relationship. I often point out to people that if I gave them detailed instructions on how to go from Atlanta to New York City, and threw in only one left turn that was a lie, they would end up in Oklahoma.”
      -Dr. Frank Pittman
      Private Lies
      (p. 59)

      • On occasion I have bookmarked Chump Lady blog entries that have touched my heart in a particularly meaningful way. This entry haunted me because of this letter writer’s description of the affair’s effect on her children.

        The cheaters’ oblivion to the pain and damage their behavior does to the involved children actually makes me the angriest. Cheaters know that cheating will hurt their partner but don’t care. But what’s worse IMHO is that they seem to believe their children will not be hurt and they completely fail to anticipate and dismiss the pain and damage they cause the involved children as if children are unconscious objects without intelligence or feelings.

  • I’m sorry, I couldn’t even get through all that. I absolutely HATE it when people try to slap a feminist label on something because they think some women do it… that… that’s… just not feminism. UGH! Also, my ex once claimed that he was “allowed to watch porn because he was so stressed” and in the same convo also claimed that his therapist told him that my ex could lie to me about it… so… this is just the same old entitlement in a faux-feminist ball gown. (I suspect what his therapist supposedly said was all in my (now) ex’s head…)

    • Or my XW’s approach: men (and in particular her father) behaved badly for generations, so feminism means that women can now behave badly.

      The particular example I’m thinking of is her refusal to help the kids clear the dinner table because (literal quote): “I make the money”. To be clear: I did ALL the shopping, cooking and cleaning up, for 17 years of marriage and three kids. I only asked her to show up to dinner, not use her phone, and help the kids clear the table; she called these “microaggressions”. I also did all the childcare (driving, baths, doctors’ visits, playdates, etc.), yard work, house cleaning, and financial management. And I had a full-time job, though not as glamorous (non-tenure-track vs tenured) or as high-paying (50% less) than hers.

      I noticed early on, while I was in the oversharing stage, that the people who were most taken aback at XW’s behavior were feminist women, because I had a completely gender-reversed marriage (I did all the “women’s work”, allowing XW to have a high-profile career) and XW used this as an opportunity to do exactly what shitty men have done for generations: dump the loyal spouse in favor of a younger affair colleague.

      • Your ex’s conduct plays into the Nurse Ratched stereotype of feminism the manosphere is always wailing and warning about. In any case, it doesn’t exactly sell the idea of fluid gender division of labor as groovy and liberating for all.

        • Well, she grew up in a pretty conservative culture (Italy is about a generation behind the US; I distinctly remember one of her women friends triumphantly declaring that she was going to paint a table as if that was some radical protest), so I think it says more how XW unconsciously internalizing her upbringing despite consciously mouthing feminist sayings, rather than anything about feminism and gender roles in general. I think the cognitive dissonance was genuinely hard for her to manage.

          I am convinced that, deep down though not consciously, XW lost respect for me because I did all the kid-related stuff and am not as ambitious as she is. Her AP (whom she married) is taller, younger, earns more, comes from a wealthier family, and is (by all accounts) a mansplaining asshole with a violent temper. Half of that I can’t be and the other half I don’t want to be … so I guess she’s better off with him, in the end.

  • I doubt these “many women” exist. But pretending they do sure is a way to shill a mediocre podcast!

    Also, weird that she goes on and on about “feminism” and then jumps right back into crusty old stereotypes about how women just want emotional connections and men don’t.

    If she were truly making a point about how patriarchy treats monogamy within marriage as mandatory for women and optional for men, she’d advise women to stay single (or get divorced), not to stay married but deceive their husbands. I guess that isn’t as edgy though.

    • Apidae,

      This right here is the truth of it “If she were truly making a point about how patriarchy treats monogamy within marriage as mandatory for women and optional for men, she’d advise women to stay single (or get divorced), not to stay married but deceive their husbands. I guess that isn’t as edgy though.”

      It is true that often when middle aged men cheat it is seen as common. Maybe even accepted sometimes. And that often, it can be way more scandalous if a woman does. But cheating isn’t a feminist move. It’s not self care. It’s shitty. Full stop. A feminist move is for a woman to consider ALL her options BEFORE getting married, and to decide what SHE wants from her life. In 2023, many women ARE opting to not marry or not have kids. Many are still taking that more traditional route and marrying and having kids. Exercising all of those CHOICES is feminist. Cheating is just cheating.

      Don’t want to be monogamus? Don’t get married.

      I just can’t with all these apologists.

    • Imagine if someone proudly wrote an equivalent mainstream article championing domestic violence or business fraud.

      Journalism has gone so downhill in the last 15 years thanks to social media. The field was already underpaid and unappreciated before then, but the drivel that passes for news these days is depressing.

      • Exactly Cam, I was just thinking that if this sorry human was even trying to pretend she was a journalist, she could have at least interviewed a Chump or two about these claims the cheaters are making (“My marriage is so much better!” Uh, of course you think so, you’re sitting here with 2 big handfuls of cake…)

  • I’m not haaaaaappyyyy, it’s just cake eating. This article was one of the most rage inducing and saddest I have read when I read it a few weeks ago, I’m surprised the UBT didn’t explode.

    If people knew the difference between happiness, joy, and contentment, the world would be better off.

    • I’m not sure these people know what contentment is. My ex certainly didn’t. He was always chasing a high, because that’s the only “happiness” he could find. Real joy and contentment take self-reflection and inner work, so you can be at peace with yourself. He didn’t want to do that. He looked outside himself, to people and circumstances, for “happiness”, with the inevitable crashes and depression that came when those things didn’t work, or people disappointed him. He was like driftwood tossing in the waves. He had no anchor of his own to deal with challenges that came his way. And contentment to him was equivalent to boredom. Cheating was only one of his coping mechanisms. He was also a workaholic, and an addict to pain meds and alcohol. Anything to silence his own thoughts.

      When he ended up alone and broke, he couldn’t handle it. He took a bunch of Benadryl and drank a bottle of scotch and that was it for him.

      • How horrible for you, ISawTheLight. My deepest condolences on what I assume is unbelievable unresolved trauma for you. How very selfish of him.

        • Actually I’m doing splendidly. It was awfult to go through, but I no longer carry the least amount of guilt about his death. He made his own choices. I’m free of his abuse for good. My son is thriving. My life is good and just keeps getting better. I’ve never been happier, honestly.

      • You nailed it. I’m reading a a book called dopamine nation right now and the author talks about this. People lose the ability to be happy by constantly chasing happiness and pleasure and avoiding pain. I wasn’t thinking about my ex at all when I picked the book up but I’ve had several moments where it makes me think of something from our marriage and I’m like ohhhh, that makes sense now.

  • Yeah, nothing says self care more than giving your marital partner a dose of high risk HPV that requires constant expensive doctor visits, painful biopsies, and possibility of cervical cancer and hysterectomy.

  • I absolutely adore the UBT and it’s ability to call this rhetoric exactly what it is…bullshit. Cheating isn’t feminism. Period. If you’re dishonest and a manipulator just say that. As others have stated… if I were this woman’s husband I’d be very afraid. I’m waiting for her next article: My husband divorced me because I’ma feminist (well I had an affair but you know…feminism)”.

  • The gaslighting of these clickbait articles supporting cheating is so overt, and so consistent. Just like Perel and friends. They take an idea that could be essentially sound all on its own, oversimplify it so it sounds simple and straightforward (usually setting up a false equivalency), add some more serious deception into the mix, and use the entire structure to attempt to justify the deception.

    Essentially sound idea: Many women do like sex, feel pressured by society to feel embarrassed about liking and wanting satisfying, enjoyable sex, and enjoy feeling empowered and free when they are having satisfying, enjoyable sex.

    Oversimplified false equivalency: All women think sex is satisfying and enjoyable only when they are empowered to seek it out entirely on their own terms at all times, and all women resent how men already do this, therefore it’s feminist and empowering for women to seek sex out entirely on their own terms at all times.

    Deception justification: Therefore it’s reasonable for women to lie, expose others nonconsensually to people they don’t know about, risking everyone’s safety, and sneak around so they can have sex the way all women clearly want it. If you say that’s not true, YOU aren’t feminist and YOU hate women and don’t want women to be happy and YOU are the reason women “have to cheat to be happy”.

    Classic modern day discourse. Classic narcissist self-justification. It’s like EVERYBODY who writes this crap read that pimp training shit about “having game” and that’s what they all bring to their crackpot journalism, social media sniping, and other public arguments nowadays. Absurd.

    • Happy to be the first to upvote this perfect dissection of the sophistry at work in that article (and so many other places). Well done!

    • Yes, yes, and yes.

      And as a former director of a women’s studies program, I spontaneously combust when anyone suggests that because unethical behavior by men is tolerated or minimized it’s somehow feminist if women engage in that same unethical behavior.

  • Sometimes I think we women take this whole “anything men can do we can do better” thing too far. We need to be choosier about the things at which we chose to excel.

    I also didn’t want my whole identity to be wrapped up in my husband and kids. Instead of having an affair I simply refused to give up my career when ex asked me to do so. Maybe in his eyes that was just as bad but I disagree.

    You know what makes me feel more confident at work? Doing my job and doing it well. Maybe I am just lucky I work for a company that recognizes good work so I don’t have to fuck around to improve my self confidence. Personally, I think it is a win win.

  • That glow is better described as duper’s delight.

    Last time I checked, feminism emphasizes autonomy, equal standards, choice, consent, respect, empathy and sex positivity. Cheating fundamentally operates on control and exploitation, taking away a partner’s right to agency in a relationship, as well as their right to consent and to make informed choices in regards to their emotional and physical wellbeing. It’s abuse, regardless of gender identification or sexual orientation.

  • The first session FW had with a therapist, he came out gushing about how “it was all self care! Therapist told me I was doing self care!” Hate.

    • I’d bet a lot of money that the therapist said nothing of the sort, and the words “self care” came up in the context of a sentence like “you’re justifying this to yourself by telling yourself it’s some kind of self care”. FWs are great at selective hearing.

  • OW called herself a feminist. In her letters to FW, she stated that the “rule” (to, you know, wait until someone is divorced to sleep with them) was “stupid”. Why shouldn’t they do what they want? After all, she was an independent (married) woman. Sisterhood solidarity! As she screwed up another woman’s life. (But I was a cold bitch who didn’t appreciate my husband the way she did, so it’s all good.)

    For an independent feminist, she sure acted like a subserviant woman. She fucking CURTSIED to my ex when he opened the door for her. She dressed like a cheap hooker because that’s what he liked. She changed her whole personality for him. But she was a STRONG WOMAN. She’s a social justice warrior fighting for the oppressed. She posts inspirational memes about kindness.

    A feminist, who cares about women’s rights and about equality, doesn’t screw someone else’s husband, lie to that person, and align themselves with that man to abuse another woman.

    One of my favorite quotes from CL is “women who have affairs with married men are sucking the dick of the patriarchy”. This “feminist” was helping a man take whatever he wanted with no concern or consideration for the woman they were hurting, the family (families) they were destroying, the damage they were causing. It was pure selfishness. She thought (probably still thinks) she was special and enlightened. But she was just another cheap, tawdry side piece having a run-of-the-mill workplace affair with a middle aged narcissist.

    When FW started abusing HER the way he had me, she left. And now she paints herself as a victim of domestic violence and trumpets about how we should “believe women” who say they are abused. Which is hilarious, because she called me a liar when I spoke about MY abuse, claiming I was jealous and was trying to smear my husband’s good name and ruin his life. She didn’t believe me (a woman) until it happened to HER.

    My brain cannot process this kind of “logic”.

    The truth is that she (and women like her, like those in this article) are just selfish people who have no empathy for anyone else.

  • “In reality, a lot of marriages are business partnerships. You’re running a life together, you’re running a house together, you’re raising children together. If all those things work, and only the sex doesn’t, why would you blow it all up?”

    In reality, when you’re in a business partnership and one of the partners discovers the other has been secretly diverting time, money and other assets to a competitor, while putting the business in jeopardy, it’s time for criminal charges.

    And if you’re putting energy into an affair, you aren’t putting it into parenting, and it IS affecting how well you’re doing at raising children.

    • “In reality, a lot of marriages are business partnerships.” In other words, a spouse appliance. Someone I use. Why get rid of that?

      Also, note that it’s NOT that “only the sex doesn’t work.” She says that herself throughout the article. “…women crave emotional connections and psychological space … you want to seek that connection with someone else.” She contradicts herself at every turn. It’s not even good writing.

      • FYI, I caught that too, the “Also, note that it’s NOT that “only the sex doesn’t work.”
        I will add that I don’t know that it even has to be about the sex not working. It seems that this writer is specifically referencing that “exciting” thing that only comes with a
        NEW relationship. My STBX has made it really clear to me that he is looking for that newness. That level of attention you get at the beginning of a relationship that yes, does fade as kids/bills/life/decades are added to one’s marriage. He didn’t say that outright, but it’s what the subtext is. He thinks the schmoopie is more romantic than me bc I don’t pay attention to him 24/7. Maybe bc he does nothing to help carry the load in our life and I am exhausted! But our sex life was still good. But it can’t compete with “strange” and “new” so here we are.

  • There is a long divide between wanting equality under the law, and in the world at large, and thinking that if you adopt the most awful habits of the patriarchy, you somehow are making a statement for feminism.

    I would like to believe that it makes no difference whether you are a boy or girl, or what color you are, or what sexual persuasion you are, or what religion you practice (or not) in this world. But, alas, it does. Opportunity for success and acceptance has never been equal. I personally believe each sex has some advantages and some disadvantages. As a woman, I am glad I had a choice whether or not to marry, to be educated, to work, and to have children. No one forced me into anything. Of course, there was cultural bias and faulty direction from my FOO, but as I became an adult, I learned I could make choices. I could set my own boundaries. I could develop my own belief system.

    I must point out that this is still not equal opportunity under the law or world at large. It’s a step in the right direction. If you decide you want to be educated, or work, or be married, or have children, there are still impediments to your success for anyone who is not born empowered. The key to these things, IMHO, is you decide to make a commitment to do something, and then you honor your commitment. You can also change your mind and your direction, but you need to be honest about it. You can change your major, you can decide education is not for you. But there is a procedure to follow to renegotiate a commitment you made. If you are not happy in your marriage, you can divorce. There are both positive and negative consequences when you change your mind or renegotiate a commitment. That is part of the whole honor issue. Are you trustworthy? Are you dependable? Are you authentic?

    If you choose to live a life without monogamy, or you see nothing wrong with providing naked provocative pictures of yourself for a paying public to see, or even dancing nude for money, and you are an adult — then go for it. Just don’t be dishonest in your personal relationships. Don’t feel empowered by being sneaky and deceptive. One of my favorite Chumlady truism’s is you are not making a feminist statement when you are sucking the dick of the patriarchy. Just because men have been able to get away with bad behavior for years does not justify women deciding to take up the bad behaviors. That is NOT feminism. If you have to hide your behavior, if you are acting in a way that opposes your stated beliefs and commitments, and you are enjoying the deception, get some therapeutic help!

    With regard to self-care, take care of your health, be clean, eat right, exercise, and select your health and beauty regimen for YOURSELF. Don’t do it to please another person. Do those things for yourself. That is called self-esteem.

    Although it is directly contrary to the belief system of my FOO, I found I was perfectly fine when I was by myself. I did not require another human to function. That does not mean I do not enjoy the company of other humans. That does not mean I do not require assistance from time to time. I also enjoy a sense of community with like-minded individuals. I contact other people who have different skill sets than my own when I require assistance. I enjoy being a part of the world at large, even if I do not have equal opportunity, and even if the world has many problems. It is a step in the right direction.

    If you truly believe that there should be equality and access to personal success for all, become an activist in some cause that will further seek to bridge the divide between those who are empowered and those who are not. If you are deceptive, you are taking a step in the wrong direction.

    • Thanks for this.very well stated. Your first sentence was what I was thinking. I came of age in the feminist movement. We struggled mightily to find our voice and positions. Our only role models in corporate America were men. Fortunately many captains of industry were and are good honest men with daughters who loved their wives and wanted them treated fairly. Happily, I see in my daughters-in-law smart independent professionals of integrity. And I see in my sons strong men who support their wives and are the kind of partner I would have loved having. Their Dads behavior was devastating to them. I have to say that it seems to have made them better partners. They do not want to be like him! It would have been great if they learned this lessons through him being a great role model..not their life.

  • Oh, it is SO feminist to screw another woman’s spouse. For all you know, that wife is working honestly for women’s rights. YOU, Nikki, would rather screw around on your spouse, and justify it by calling it “feminism”.

    “It’s MY right to screw the patriarchy by speading STDs!!” Yeah, that’s helpful to women’s rights.

    You want to know what is truly helpful? THIS website, which encourages and empowers women, unlike YOU, to leave their shit spouses, take charge of their lives, and move on.

  • How to know that your empathy chip is malfunctioning: having an affair makes you feel confident and liberated.

    Uh, yuck.

    • Don’t forget sexy. We all know how important is is for women to feel sexy for them to succeed in the workplace. Just don’t gain weight or let your hair gray. All I can think of is Mad Men.

      The suggestion that cheating will indirectly help women’s careers, based on anecdotal “interview results” from the author — which is bunk because she only talked to fuckwits, so of course they all spewed the same fuckwittery — is NOT feminist. We live in a patriarchal society. Women being praised and accepted for adhering to the superficial and unrealistic norms and values set for them ultimately by men is not empowering. Going along with the entrenched, dominant power might lead to short-term gains, and in some circumstances — yes, it’s necessary for survival. Not here. Subordination and assimilation are not part of the equality equation. No wonder both CL and the UBT struggled today! (That was incredible, CL.)

      Come talk to chumps about what makes us feel mighty and fulfilled at (and generally), “sisters.” Your cheating and self-care “research” is just a public insight ment of poor character.

  • Its not about the sex. Its not about living your best life. It’s all about the thrill of illicitness. Period. The End.

  • I couldn’t even read this….. sickening. Literally evil. My precious children became suicidal when XH cheated, devalued, discarded. We spent years in and out of behavioral units and rehabs. My middle daughter almost succeeded in killing herself (17 Xanax, coke, Molly, and a bottle of vodka). She was in restraints in the ER with a security guard over her for 10 fucking hellish days……and that was an improvement over being on the streets after her beloved daddy abandoned and said he hated being a dad— threatened her if she told me when she caught him cheating… she was only 14! My beautiful girl… the will to live crushed out of her by the evil bastard… cheating was just one aspect to his depravity.

    This article and the sentiments are just too triggering…. It’s been 8 years since those dark days and my girl is a young woman still struggling with anxiety and depression and addiction….. years of the best therapy and treatment money can buy… a robust recovery community, a large loving family, every advantage…. But her heart is still broken by what her dad did to her….

    So this writer can fuck the fuck right off! 🤬🤬🤬🤬🤬

    • Motherchumper99, I’m so glad you were there for your kids. Much of our society likes to say that children are resilient and will get over difficult things. That’s wishful thinking. Children do not easily get over seeing their parents cheat, being abandoned, or being asked/forced to keep the cheater’s secrets.

    • A year later and my boys are not okay, and it sucks to have to suck this up for her happiness. I’m at meh with this, but to have to see my boys struggle and not comprehend why we’re not together is a suckfest.

      Maybe they will heal, but for now, they’re not the same.

    • I’m so sorry, Motherchumper. ☹ Your poor, sweet daughter!

      My FW started cheating *while* our daughter was in and out of hospital with suicidal ideation. She has had a severe anxiety disorder since she was very young. Didn’t matter to FW, who was planning to run off with his whore and leave me to deal with the inevitable suicide attempts that would result. The only reason he didn’t was because the whore didn’t want him full time.

    • I have a photo taken a couple of weeks after my daughter found out about our split, she’s always purported to be kind of OK with it. It’s the face of a broken little soul with the weight of the world of her shoulders and it makes me cry every time I look at it. He of course went with the ‘children are resilient’ narrative, him and OW played up to her as being the most loving people in the world and of course how now failed to keep that up.

      And not half as terrible as what you have been through but I cannot bear anyone to tell me that it’s not hard on the children, it’s way worse than I could ever have expected.

      Bless them all and so lucky they have a wonderful mother like yourself.

  • I didn’t need to read all of this to know it’s trash.

    If there’s one thing that pisses me off real fast, it’s women like this using feminism to excuse bad behavior.

    Just because men do it doesn’t mean women doing it too is equality. Feminism is not about the equal rights to completely betray your partner and destroy your family and get away with it. It is not an act of feminism or self care to cheat any more than chopping off your toe and calling it a pedicure.

    It’s bad behavior. Period.

    I don’t know about anyone else but my idea of feminism is being able to choose a life path that makes you happy without being forced into it. Being single makes you happy? Go for it sister. You want marriage and children? You do you babe! You want casual dating for a while? If they’re single, go mingle.

    It is NOT “I will do whatever I want with no consequences because I’m a woman.” Just because a woman does something doesn’t mean that act is feminist.

    Christ on a cracker in Crete my brain cells are dying with this…

  • Wow. The lengths people will go to justify lying and deceit.

    Thanks CL for giving us some good laughs despite the topic. CL as stand up comedian sounds good to me!

  • The talk show ‘The Social’ here in Canada discussed this article yesterday and as usual they were completely tone deaf. One host said how not all cheating is the same, (ex. Princess Diana and who would blame her?), and another host mentioned how she highly encouraged her friend to have an affair because her marriage was all kinds of terrible. They NEVER show any empathy towards chumps or any awareness that cheating is abuse.
    This talk show is up for an award. Generally speaking, they are educated, enlightened female hosts. When it comes to cheating – which they happen to bring up quite often, they never show empathy for the chump and they always voice the common ignorant attitude: we don’t know the backstory; we don’t know what went on in the marriage; we can’t judge….. I boycotted the show a while ago because of the ignorant statements that were made about cheating, but I recently started watching it again… only to be continuously triggered by their lack of awareness towards all things cheating.
    Another recent example is one host asked the other what she would do if she found out her husband was cheating? She replied that she would get HERSELF into therapy to see what went wrong! I think many of us shared that attitude until we were educated by this site and our own experience.
    Fellow Chumps,
    For those who feel trying to educate people in the media is a worthwhile way to spend a few minutes, I encourage you to email, or the hosts can be contacted individually if you’re so inclined. I’m sure their contact information is on ‘The Social’ website. All four of the hosts have been with their respective partner for many many years, and they all seem very happy and safe in their relationships.
    What I find particularly galling in all things discussed and written about cheating…is the lack of awareness towards the repercussions and trauma towards the chump and the children. The attitude frequently displayed might be acceptable if it was about something like a married partner going out to eat at a restaurant alone and not discussing that with their spouse. I have written letters to this show before and yet they continue to take a nonjudgmental or in some cases supportive attitude towards cheating. One of the hosts was on a podcasts that argued the ‘sometimes cheating can make your relationship better.” 😑

    • The P Diana ex. was the hosts not mine. I mentioned that only because the hosts seem oblivious to the average Joe chump (like we are here) and constantly bring out these one in 1 million examples to justify their point of view that we can’t paint all cheating with the same brush. However, they have not once declared that they find any type of cheating wrong.
      The are fine with taking a stand on just about everything else though.

    • Those female hosts answer to media owners. Check to see if BCE– the network that owns “The Social”– are cross invested in pornography. It appears they’re trying.

      “Last year, Bell ExpressVu, a satellite TV distributor owned by Montreal’s BCE, found itself in the spotlight when the CBC’s the fifth estate reported the service was showing U.S. pornography depicting sadomasochism, rape and torture. The hard-core films had not been approved by Canada’s film censors or customs officials and an embarrassed Bell ExpressVu quickly yanked the programming.”
      “We’re not in the policing business,” says CRTC spokesman Denis Carmel. “What can be shown on TV is not determined by bureaucrats in Ottawa.”

      Are network leaders feminists? What politicians do they donate to? Those are the people controlling content on shows like The Social. The general rule in media shilling is that the more misogynist the agenda, the more likely it will be voiced by wokey-seeming female sock-puppets.

      • You are always so informative!

        The hosts are strong feminists!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They chose to discuss the cheating as self-care article. Then as per usual, it’s the eye rolling… Let’s get with it people… Let’s not be pearl clutchers… We don’t really know what goes on – we can’t judge all cheaters, relationships are complicated, people are complicated blah blah blah
        It all sounds very good, until you are actually in the position of being betrayed and you and your children have to live with the repercussions.
        I don’t think they really know what cheating is. I think that’s part of the problem. I don’t know what people imagine cheating is, but there’s a disconnect between how they talk about it and what actually goes down.

        • I’d have to watch it to see if there was a telltale sock puppet feeling to the segment. Just bear in mind that “native marketing” or “in-feed advertising”– selling an ideology or product, etc., for sponsors while pretending it’s actual news or genuine editorial opinion– has been around for years, is always evolving and getting more sophisticated (in other words, less identifiable) and represents about 65% of a $118 billion ad market.

          Hacks, shills and talk shows are competing for who can make the bilge sound the most organic and spontaneous. Each shill media source will brand themselves according to the market they cater to– young lefty eco feminists, older conservatives, musical lumberjacks, whatever– and then are paid to “steer” that audience in certain directions and serve them up to various sponsors. Sometimes the parent company itself is heavily cross invested in certain industries so sponsorship is in-house. Then the same corporate sponsors might be paying far left and far right media indiscriminately but count on the pundits to use different spin to appeal to their viewers, listeners or readers. The fact that the heaviest spin seems to be channeled into herding shallow lefties towards undemocratic, anti-humanist and anti-environmental positions and products goes back to about 400 BC when Plato bragged that the fastest way to turn an open society into a dictatorship was to hoodwink the “humanitarian” element into supporting piecemeal authoritarian policies until the democracy collapsed. Plato advised using junk science to that end since lefties have always loved anything science-y. If the so-called “feminists” over at The Social were yakking about this or that “study” that supported such and such a position– voila– that’s a potential giveaway.

          Anyway, I wouldn’t put it past the porn industry to be pouring huge amount of money into steering public ideology through the media. Some things, like the sex industry (and all the pimping and trafficking that it depends on), still can’t be promoted too directly so, as is done with “war footing” by arms and mining industries who’d like the public to rally behind some invasion or other of some oil- or mineral-rich third world country or other, sponsors will pay for pundits to “soften up the market” by promoting ideology that obliquely supports the thing being sold.

    • “All four of the hosts have been with their respective partner for many many years, and they all seem very happy and safe in their relationships.”

      Yep, and I am sure they think they are secure because they believe that they are in an honest relationship and the spouse is not betraying them. My curiosity is how will one of them feel when their marriage/life is blown to bits by lies, and everything they thought was real wasn’t. Like most of us have experienced, and statistically it will happen to one of them at least.

      • Celebrity marriages end in divorce at twice the average rate. For female celebs it’s even higher, meaning that even when they marry non-celebrities their marriages are more likely to fail.

  • I’m dying laughing with this one…so many favorite lines. One of my favorites:

    I’m going to stick this kitten down a drain pipe. It’s a choice! Look at me with my lady brain and free will! Does not make me a feminist.”

    The mental acrobatics to get to the place where cheating is an act of feminism, or at least a replacement for hot yoga…smh.

    • I worked for an environmental publication and it was fascinating watching chemical industry shills trying to pose indiscriminate pesticide use as “feminist” and environmental health activism as anti-feminist. Er, what? The arguments involved similar mental acrobatics so I suspect CL is right and Piazza’s crusade is economically motivated. It’s a way to maintain a career in journalism because so many media giants are cross invested in both streaming porn– which is now bigger than all media combined– and dating apps which depend on cheaters for a significant portion of profits (17% and rising). I think the porn industry has an obvious agenda to saw down public concepts of consent and both the porn and dating app industry seek to loosen up public prohibitions as obstacles to growth. The reason women can sign up for these apps– including Ashley Madison– for free is because women are the product being sold and growth requires drawing in more product.

  • “Domestic violence is self-care!”

    Oh yeah, abusing men is TOTALLY gonna reverse the rates of violence against women, earn us more legal rights and leadership roles in politics and business, and decrease the wage gap. Why haven’t I thought of this before? /s

    Seriously, who greenlit this crap?

  • Affairs as “self-care?” Why, yes, true enough. I’d say most cheaters have affairs because they CARE about themSELVES . . . and damn little beyond that. What THEY want, what makes THEM feel good. Certainly not how their actions affect others.

    Maybe we should learn to talk more about the importance of “other-care.” You know, choosing our actions to express care for spouses, kids, neighbors, etc.

    But then Unitarian sermons make lousy clickbait.

    • “But then Unitarian sermons make lousy clickbait.”

      Great line. It reminds me of the farce of how my FW started going to the Unitarian church after D-day, hoping to prove he was a humanist after all. He went a grand total of twice.

  • I’m trying to figure out where the accomplishment is here. Apologies to our he-chump brethren but there’s no resource more plentiful on earth than dick. The challenge is finding a basically decent human being attached to it. For both genders, being married is a negative filter for fuckable extradiadic partners that only lets in shit but the risks of consorting with shit are far greater for women even in hookup arrangements.

    Even imagining that the only issue involved with having an affair were self interest, who are these guys who are willing to bang married women, moreover the married, middle-aged (“thirty-something” + “married 15 years” = “pushing forty”) moms Piazza is talking to? Who are these men with such messed up childhoods that they aren’t dick-shriveled by the idea of a parent with minor children robbing those kids of spare time and attention to hump in hotels? Since feminism is just a branch of humanism, I question the feminist credentials and basic empathy of men who chump other men and I’d think anyone who’d chump children in the mix is a certified psycho. And what’s with the compulsion to territory-creep on other guys? Is the she-cheater in question just a football in some dude’s mental war with his dad? Is a woman still a feminist if they regularly bang misogynists?

    My guess is if these men were mentally healthy, safe, emotionally available, woke, honest, non-STD-infected candidates who are so evolved that they see stretch marks and c-section scars through loving eyes, they probably wouldn’t be toinking married women in the first place. So I’m also guessing most of the side pieces in these scenarios are married themselves and it’s more than one chump or chumped set of kids being gaslighted and betrayed. Or it’s himbos hustling older women for professional perks. Or men so elderly they flatteringly see 38 as “spring chicken.” Or sexually indiscriminate man-hos simultaneously bonking interns, randos in tavern bathrooms and perving on neighbors’ au pairs.

    Considering the caliber of men who’d even get involved with a married person, I also envisioning how these affairs end. If the women Piazza knows are just doing this to feel “hot” again, do they crash into clinical body dysmorphia when dumped? If they’re seeking “emotional connection,” does this end with bawling midnight calls, sedatives and children bewildered over why mommy can’t get out of bed or make breakfast for a month? Or is the whole exercise best left to leathery, char-broiled souls?

    The other thing I wonder about is how “intersectionally feminist” this advice is or if it’s only being recommended to upper middle class, generally white women who can afford mani-pedis, regular Brazilian waxes and childcare while off bonking? How does this brand of “self care” works for poor, minority or immigrant mothers of three working several low-paying jobs? Is the risk to women of being exploited in an affair a bit much when they’re already exploited in every other way? Does the lack of access to reproductive healthcare and STD screening for low-income women dampen the thrilz a bit? Are affairs as diverting without swank settings and scenery involved and, due to economic limitations, need to take place in parking lots or hourly-rate hooker hotels? Where does one shower before or after? Is it as romantic when the cheater shows up for an assignation wearing their work coveralls and still covered in sweat and machine dust between jobs? Do these women bring the kids along or leave them alone at home? Is it as fun to screw over husbands who are also working several jobs and probably destined to die prematurely because of it? Is it assumed that all low income men are wife-beating chauvinists and deserve it?

    Curiouser and curiouser.

    • Great questions. It’s sadly ironic to paint it as feminism when a woman’s self confidence rides on being considered sexually desirable, let alone to the kind of sleaze who creeps on married women.
      Self confidence should not depend on men’s opinion of our fuckability. That’s not even self confidence. It’s unhealthy egotism. Not remotely the same thing.

      • Wasn’t it Margaret Atwood who said we’re all “female impersonators” trained to perform at all times for the male gaze? Kind of like how some mistake Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four for an instruction manual, Piazza seems to mistake Atwood’s bleak observation for encouragement.

        • True. Funny you should mention Atwood. Just hours ago I was discussing with my daughter (who is a writer) how Atwood seemed sympathetic to the cheater perspective in some of her novels. She even painted it as feminist self-actualization in the 70s, when that sort of thing was in vogue. A lot of writers, (including self-proclaimed feminists who you’d think would know better) tend to do that sort of thing, probably thinking they are being edgy, when in fact it’s utterly banal. I hope she has learned something since then, but I confess I find her writing style cold and a bit of a snooze, so I wouldn’t know.

          Not to say her quote isn’t valid. It definitely is, and the cheaters quoted in that article are prime examples.

          • That was always a hitch reading Doris Lessing as well. She abandoned her own children and claimed that no one was ever raped unless they wanted to be.

            It’s funny that Atwood neutralizes herself as a source with a couple of other quotes. One is “Wanting to know a writer because you like their work is like wanting to know a duck because you like pate.” Another, “An idea isn’t responsible for the people who believe in it.” By her own measure, her periodic brilliant insights aren’t responsible for her narcissism.

  • For f*** sake.

    “We heard it from every single woman that we interviewed and that was one of the things that blew my mind. All of them said it made them more confident in every single aspect of their life, from work to their marriage.”

    So – people who have affairs and who want to talk about it to someone in the ‘media’, say that having affairs makes them feel good.

    I suppose it was a testable hypothesis, but somehow I don’t think it cuts it for the grant application to whichever research council does this social stuff (not mine, I was an engineer!).

    • No surprise a bunch of narcissists were thrilled to talk about their kibbles. They probably pissed themselves at the prospect of being interviewed.

  • OMG! UBTs nonsensical response makes more sense than the tripe in the article. Hugs fellow chumps! This BS should help make it clear how disordered thinking your FW has. No contact. Just keep walking!

  • There’s the cheating. But the biggest crime is the lying about the cheating. Lying is the equal oppportunity crime.

    • True, but to me the cheating is the lying, if they were open about it, it wouldn’t be lying. It would be awful and low, but not lying.

    • It’s a toss up for me. I have to get Pap smears twice a year for the next decade because FW raw-dogged the office pump. I’m clear so far but that’s my doctor’s automatic policy for chumped patients. Lies alone don’t cause HPV.

      • Exactly.
        Cervical chemical ablation is a totally fine risk for a fun date, right??? I’m just empowered. Saying fuck you to the man. While his wife gets her vagina and cervix scraped. Such fun!

      • Thank you for that, HOAC, and I’m sorry you are going through that shit too. Yet another member of the chumped HPV cancer watch club. Our numbers are legion. 😞

        Yesterday I had to have a trans-vaginal ultrasound because I have a large growth on my cervix. I’m waiting for pap results to find out if it’s malignant, all because FW raw-dogged the office pump. I managed to avoid HPV before, despite having had a fair number of partners. I guess the fact that, unlike FW, I didn’t have unprotected sex with people I knew to be wildly promiscuous, might have helped. Ya think?

        I hate these people with the blazing hot fury of a thousand suns. To paint this vileness as empowering for women is as horrifying as it is moronic.

        • God I’m so sorry you’re experiencing this. I hope you’re getting support while you wait it out. It’s a club no one wants membership to. 🙁

          I don’t understand why people don’t use condoms. I always did before marriage and I’m allergic to latex.

  • I am a woman.

    I was married.

    I sometimes felt ugly, unloved, unappreciated, unheard, tired, overwhelmed and many other things.

    I never considered fucking strange to make my marriage more alive, happy, worthwhile etc…

    That’s what entitled fuckwits do…

    And leave a wake of destruction whether the chump knows or not!

  • This is depressing beyond belief. Being a liar is not a feminist act. And last time I checked, deceit wasn’t on the list of self care either. Best quote ever is “Dishonesty is probably not a good thing.” Wow. I hope she got a lot of money from Ashley Madison for that supremely flippant moral editorial piece.

  • Cool so my ex serial cheater girlfriend of many years was just betraying my consent, giving me repeat painful infections, threatening me with more cheating if I didn’t sexually comply, gaslighting and blaming me, and yelling at me all in the service of feminism. Awesome.

    • Maybe she’ll argue that it was all a feminism-rebooting reenactment of Occoquan prison guards force-feeding, beating and choking Alice Paul and the NWP.

  • “They’re with someone who finally sees them again, or sees them differently than their spouse does, so they’re shaving their legs, they’re working out more. They’re taking care of their bodies in ways they wouldn’t have otherwise.”

    and “I wanted something just for me”

    Isn’t this what cheating husbands say? Especially the just for me crap. As if the whore (male or female) they are fucking hasn’t in most cases been passed around like like nuts at a bar.

  • Bravo, UBT and CL! 🙌🏽

    Never has so much 🐴 💩 been so swiftly pressure washed outa here!


  • From Involuntary Georgians comment
    … (and in particular her father) behaved badly for generations, so feminism means that women can now behave badly.
    Two wrongs will never ever make it right.

  • “We literally have a whole episode of Goop. Stick a jade egg in Schoompie and call it avocado toast! Affairs are linen bathmats for only $699!”

    Dying! What a tour de force. I keep saying this is the funniest one yet and they keep getting funnier.

    Query; how stupid is this person who interviews *liars* about their motivations and the effect of their affairs on their lives and believes whatever they say?

    All cheaters, both genders, get an ego boost from cheating. This isn’t “self esteem”, which is realistic, healthy self regard. No, it’s unrealistic, narcissistic self regard, which is based on pure fantasy and requires that others be stepped on in order to feel taller.
    I’m so sick of people trying to claim that narcissistic women are practicing feminism by being selfish and ego-driven. Feminism is about *equality.* It is not about the fucked up power imbalance that cheating creates. That’s the antithesis of equality.

    All cheaters, both genders, claim it improves their marriage. To any intelligent, rational person, that’s ludicrous on the face of it, so there’s no need to go into the reasons why it’s rank, reeking bullshit here.

    Notice the contradiction in these women giving the excuse that their husbands are checked out, bad in bed, and possessive of their bodies, yet claiming they can’t leave because they “like” their husbands. 🤪 Well, let’s just make no sense at all then. Yeah, they sure sound likable. Look bitches, if the guy really sucked that much, you’d divorce him. You definitely wouldn’t like him. Shut your lying, blame-shifting cakeholes.

    Re; calling it a “business agreement” – in a business agreement, both parties are aware of the terms, both freely agreed to them (hence the word agreement) with full knowledge of what to expect from the other partner, and both abide by the terms. If one partner does not even know it is a business agreement, but instead thinks it is a loving relationship, let alone does not know they are being cheated, it’s called FRAUD. Nobody gets to unilaterally change the terms of a business agreement. If you pretend to care for another person in order to derive benefits from a relationship, and you don’t hold up your end of a “business” bargain your partner doesn’t even know exists, you’re neither a business partner nor a brave feminist striking a blow for freedom. You’re nothing but a slimy little confidence trickster.

    I don’t even know where to start with the Roe V Wade excuse. Whoever tried that gambit demeans and disrespects every woman who has ever worked for freedom of reproductive choice. She deserves nothing less than a generous bitch slap in her smug, stupid face.

    • “All cheaters, both genders, get an ego boost from cheating. This isn’t “self esteem”, which is realistic, healthy self regard. No, it’s unrealistic, narcissistic self regard, which is based on pure fantasy and requires that others be stepped on in order to feel taller.” I knew that OW enjoyed the fact that she “won” because it made her feel wanted and like she was better than me. I think she is deeply insecure. Her way of dealing with that insecurity seems to be arrogance and self-promotion. I hope she realizes now that she was nothing special at all, but I doubt she’s bright enough. She left FW and then he died, but I have no doubt at all (especially based on his suicide letter which detailed the state of their relationship at the end) that if he had lived and they had stayed together, he would have cheated on her too. Because she had “failed” him the same way I did (not fixed all of his problems for him; he never recognized that his problems were INTERNAL, not due to external circumstances, so he just repeated the same behaviour and started abusing his “dream” girl the way he’d abused me).

      And in many ways marriage IS a business arrangement – it’s shared resources, working together to raise a family, making large investments like a home or vehicles together. And agreeing to a certain set of terms so that those things are done with a sense of safety and shared purpose. If (and it’s a BIG if) I ever have another romantic relationship, you’d better believe I will do my due diligence and check that person’s credit report and do a background check. And regardless, I will never entwine my finances with anyone again, nor give up ownership of my home. I don’t ever want to be at someone else’s mercy regarding my living arrangements, nor give up control of MY hard-earned money. My ex was a spender and we were always on the brink of disaster. The house was in both our names, as were the cars, so the threat of him defaulting on those payments kept me hanging on and contributing to a mortgage even when he threatened me and kicked me out. That prevented me from getting a place of my own. Once I separated our finances, I discovered just how bad he was with money. My bank account recovered and grew, in spite of my expenses staying about the same and my income being cut in half. I was able to pay off all my debts and save. I raised my credit score significantly. I just bought my own home. I have money in the bank. I live within my means. FW thought he “deserved” nice things, and he was also an alcoholic and spent a ridiculous amount of money on booze. I was counting pennies and FW ws eating oysters and steak. So he spiraled deeper and deeper into debt, spending not only his money, but OW’s as well. Without me managing the money (or trying to, since he would buy things without consulting me), he got into a huge financial hole (I think OW is just as bad with finances as he was). He even stopped paying the utilities, so the power was turned off while we were in the middle of selling the marital home. It is important to treat marriage like a business in many ways. You wouldn’t go into business with someone who was bad with money, or had a record of deceitfulness and theft, or didn’t know how to budget and allocate funds appropriately. Love is all well and good, but it isn’t enough on its own.

    • “how stupid is this person who interviews *liars* about their motivations and the effect of their affairs on their lives and believes whatever they say?”

      Right? It would be like arguing that serial killing is actually a great stress release. I asked this Charles Manson guy and he says it’s great!

  • You can call cheating looking after yourself, if you want (because essentially it is looking after your own interests at the expense of everyone else) but don’t try to couch it as feminism. Feminism is looking out for other women and children, some of who may be impacted by the husbands/fathers in their lives seeking to pour their resources and energy into illicit relationships, so you don’t go there. Not to mention respecting your own relationships with your partners and children. Feminism is marching to reverse the immoral laws that dictate the choices and control that women have over their own bodies. Feminism is creating safe spaces for open conversations about needs and wants, with partners, friends and family, working together to co-create healthier, safer more equitable families, communities and societies. Feminism is about enforcing healthy boundaries that protect yourself and others from unhealthy behaviors and institutionalized attitudes. So don’t equate cheating with getting a bikini wax, it shows the level of empathy present when people see it as a beauty or lifestyle trend. Having said all that, I found it enlightening to read how those women felt about having an affair, and guess that all those justifications about bettering their work performance, primary relationship etc because I’m “happier and more empowered” are probably the very same lame old excuses that male cheaters have trotted out since time immemorial. Many women are saying what’s good for the goose is good for the gander (in reality vv) but personally liberation and equality is not the ability to take on the mantle of the same shitty old behaviors that in reality are sell-out self-justifications for pursuing selfish courses that undermine and devastate those we are purported to love. We say what they don’t know won’t hurt them, but it’s already hurting them if your devotion, time, money and energy is being spent elsewhere. Sorry to go on, I know you all get it.

      • Thanks, OHFFS, but hardly. I am embarrassed to say I did not read all the other comments and see that I have basically repeated what you scribed above, but less succinctly. You are too kind.

        • Stig, I was just telling the truth. You are an excellent writer and you expressed it exceptionally well. So please, no more negative self talk. I hate the way chumps talk themselves down.

          I don’t always read all the comments before posting either. Who has time? So no need to be embarrassed. These ideas bear repeating, as many times as possible.

  • If I didn’t know better, I’d sweat incels wrote this nonsense to make feminism look bad.

    As if wrecking your kids’ home and sense of security is on par with voting and having the ability to buy your own home without a male cosignor.

    Offensive. Buzzfeed view rates must have been way down.

  • Wow, Tracy. Can I nominate you for the Pulitzer Prize for this? I have a headache starting just from reading it and you were able to produce ….. art and philosophy, while ultimate fighter bullshit translating.

  • Oh thank God. I’m a lurker but today I heard an ad for this podcast and felt every organ in my body contract, then I wondered if CL knew about it.

  • Holy fucking exploding toasters, ManBat!

    This. This is what I was waiting for! The explanation of why the FW XW exit-affaired me with her rich, 15 years older, married for 40 years boss after almost 25 years of marriage w/me! THIS!!!

    I simply never looked at it as the obviously courageous act of a feminist (that would be the FW XW. Not me) empowering herself w/her feminist God-given rights to lie to me, lie (probably) by omission to our kids, steal emotional time and bonding away from all of us, expose me to God only knows what germs her asshole, I mean wonderful boss had/has (oh, I found out he was fucking around on his long-suffering wife for at least 15 years before the FW XW and he found each other, so who knows what shit I may have barely missed getting?), and perform the psychological mindfuck on me and the kids.

    She was entitled to it! I had job issues, I therefore also had concomitant status issues in her mind, we’d had to downsize to a crappy house I now get to inhabit because her local political career was then soaring, so we had to stay in our expensive, small New England village to keep her political seat and options viable (only fair. It was her time!), and I was struggling w/a major depression because of all this. Oh yeah, and the onset of diabetes. So, I was really just asking for her to exit-affair me. What else could she do?!

    Anyway, thank God. I thought I’d never get closure, but THIS! IS! IT! How blind I’ve been. It’s always been right there in front of me.

    Oh, well. Now that I’m aware of my blindness, I must go beg her and her former boss’s/current partner’s forgiveness. I just didn’t realize how selfish me (especially) and the kids (a little) were about this.

    I hope the rest of you have had your eyes opened by this earth shaking, amazing article. Feminism (or insert your -ism here. They’re all valid, I’m sure) trumps mature love (assuming you have it), monogamy, honesty, etc. You get the Polaroid.

    Now if only I can properly explain this to the kids. My two girls (now twenty-something young women) must know of their feministic empowerment!

    And, my 17 year old son must know how any future female partners for him may need to empower themselves by fucking him over. And that’s ok.

    What a gift their mother and her affair partner have given and shown us. Truly, a huge GIFT.

    Backwards things say I, shit Oh!
    (Apologies to George Carlin)

    [Think opposite day]

  • “Her marriage seems so much better”. Well sure, because you’re only getting the cheater’s side of the story! My STBXFW pulled that shit on me when he came clean. He really believed that his cheating made him love me more and made our marriage better. My feelings be damned. “After I slept with her I realized how much I loved YOU! I even went to a strip club to get the image of her out of my head so I could focus on you!” Yes, for real. He actually said those words to me.
    This entire article was absolutely infuriating. I am a feminist and this is NOT feminism.

  • Big wow.” Alot of marriages are business partnerships.”.
    I own a business and I would sue and or dissolved the partnership if my business partner:
    1- absconded with funds from the business
    2- lied regularly to me
    3- didnt take it seriously
    4- didnt pull their weight
    5- had a side hustle which they were putting more into than our actual business
    6- used funds for fake business trips, or used funds for dinners with fake clients
    7- acted rude, standoffish, yelled at staff and clients

    Wtf? I mean really. I would not put up with that in my business but I should with my husband?

  • I’m glad to hear that my ex is appearing on podcasts now! I didn’t even realize it at the time, but I am the actual patriarchy. Turns out that by her choosing to marry me, I was oppressing her. Which is why it was so important to bang a plumber and join a sex club. That’ll teach me to patriarch!

  • I’m sure if you asked a pedophile, he would say pedophilia makes him feel “more confident” in his job or whatever. Why in the fuck would anyone believe that more than that the pedophile is trying to justify his behavior? Why are we even asking him like we expect him to be truthful? This whole article is cheaters jerking themselves off.

  • >