Dear Chump Lady, I can’t get over being replaced

Dear Chump Lady,

I was chumped big time. My once sweet, loving husband left me for a girl at work. Problem is, it was a total lateral move. She is about my age, has the same number of kids just like we do, is a full-time-working professional, like me. We even have very similar interests. There are a few things about her that fill in some “gaps” I had or correct some “deficiencies,” like she’s Catholic and I am not (he is), she likes golf and I don’t (he does), and she dotes on him and I didn’t (he loves it).

I loved him and tried to meet his needs, but it wasn’t always easy. I didn’t always understand what he needed (he’s not the best communicator).

When we were married, I dragged us to counseling, to couples programs at church where they try to help you communicate and understand each other better… I was always trying to help strengthen our marriage. And admittedly, we didn’t make enough progress for him. He wanted to be happy, and I guess ultimately he wasn’t happy enough.

Turns out, the girl at work knew how to make him happy, and he left me for her.

They got married and are very happy together. Her kids and my kids now get along great, and to everyone else this is all water under the bridge. My kids even love her (they don’t know she was the OW)!

On my side of things, I have been blessed with a wonderful new man in my life, and we’re now engaged. He once asked me if there was anything that would make it difficult to give my whole self to him. And the truth is, it’s this. I can’t seem to get OVER it. I can’t seem to get over the betrayal, and the total and complete REPLACEMENT of me with her. She now lives MY life! She has my husband, takes my trips, goes to MY country club, she hangs out with MY kids, etc. She is me 2.0, only with the earlier enhancements I mentioned. Oh, and she even goes without make-up and wears flats — more things he wanted me to do that I didn’t do.

Here’s the thing — she’s not a horrible person. In fact, she’s apparently really sweet, and her family is too. I think what we’re dealing with is a good person who did a really bad thing. In fact, they’re both that way. He was not a serial cheater. He is not a horrible scoundrel like so many of the guys I read about. They are both generally good people. They are church-going, family-oriented people. Selfish, sure, entitled, ok, and they did a crappy thing. But they’re not “bad” people.

I don’t think either one of them has a clue how much they devastated me. My guess is he told her that “we” weren’t happy, and she wanted to believe him and did. She wasn’t happy in her marriage, so I think they just rationalized the whole thing — leave the one you’re not happy with, and run off with the one who makes you happy. All pretty sparkly and fun. And I was so chumpy that I pretzeled and did everything possible to bring him back after he walked out on me. So, I don’t think he ever really saw the fallout of what he did. I tried to put on the brave face and betray my feelings to show him I could be a better wife to him. But the truth was I was traumatized by what he did. And I don’t know how to get past it.

Apologies would help, but we’re way past that now. If they weren’t going to give them years ago, I certainly don’t expect them now. They have moved on, my kids have moved on… why can’t I? How does a person get over being discarded and replaced by someone a whole lot like her?

Replaced

Dear Replaced,

So, let me get this straight. The OW won the Pick Me Dance and gets to golf at the country club, wear sensible shoes, and eschew lipstick. She spends the rest of her days doting on an uncommunicative cheater, but it’s okay because they’re both Catholic — …. and you think you LOST?

I don’t even know where to begin with this letter.

Oh hang on, I do. DON’T GET MARRIED to Mr. Blessed Wonderful. He deserves a partner who is wholly into him and isn’t lost in untangling her ex-husband’s skein of fuckupedness. Replaced, you don’t sound ready to DATE let alone get engaged. You have a serious Trust That They Suck failure about your ex and the OW — you think you’ve been “replaced” instead of liberated.

Listen to me — it’s not okay to self-medicate with other people. It’s not okay to pledge your life to an innocent man’s because it would prove to everyone (ARE YOU WATCHING OW? ARE YOU? HUH? HUH?) that you’ve Moved On.

You’re still Pick Me Dancing, only now you’ve pulled a new chump into the dance. He’s not some fucking consolation prize. He doesn’t deserve to be measured (and found wanting) against the trappings of your Old Life. If you don’t like the OW being wife 2.0? I’m sure your fiancé doesn’t want to be husband 2.0 either. He wants to be loved for HIM, his values, his goodness, and what he brings to the table. It’s not his job to shore you up from the rejection of infidelity — that’s YOUR job. And you cannot commit to someone until you’ve done that work.

So, let’s do that work, Replaced. You can begin by challenging the ridiculous narrative that your ex and the OW are just Good People who made a Mistake and they Did It All For Happiness! Oh, and also throw out the notion that she’s someone “a whole lot like” you. Yeah, you both have two kids and work a job. Are you someone who would break up two families to fuck some strange? Do you share those values? Are you the kind of person who, if unhappy in your marriage, works to fix it, or gets out honestly? Or do you cheat?

Sounds like you worked to fix your marriage. Your husband didn’t. He cheated. OW didn’t, she cheated. You don’t share the same values. This marriage was not sustainable because you cannot work with a saboteur. You need an honest broker. You didn’t have that. That’s on HIM, not your failure to golf.

Next, what the hell do you know of their happiness? And why do you give a flip? She’s a good person, she’s happy, she’s sweet? Is this self-reported? Are you inferring this from Facebook? Or your children’s reports of Happy Good Times at OW’s house? You have NO IDEA of the OW’s inner life. You’re either buying into her impression management or you’re projecting your insecurities at the House of Schmoopie.

But, but she seems so happy! So what? What’s happiness when you’re a shallow pool of piss? She’s a person capable of cheating on her husband and breaking up her children’s home to fuck another woman’s husband. Her character isn’t changing because she takes a yoga class you used to take.

And who CARES if she’s “happy”? What are YOUR values? Could you EVER be happy with a sullen, uncommunicative man who has to be dragged to marriage retreats? Who likes GOLF?

What exactly do you MISS about this life? Are you longing for your own version of impression management happiness? The Intact Family? Why are you casting yourself (yes YOU! YOU are doing this!) as some sort of loser here?

Replaced, I just celebrated my seventh wedding anniversary yesterday to a Good Man who brought me PIE. Let me tell you — I could care LESS what my two ex-husbands are up to. I don’t care if they replaced me with cardboard cut-outs or a taxidermied ferret under glass. I’m certainly not asking myself years after those relationships’ demise what I’m missing out on.

I never went to junkyards with him to find old car parts. I bet she does! I bet she shares his love of rusty carburetors!

She gets to live with his lacy doily collection and his double life! God I wish it was me! 

These thoughts never enter my head.

Stop giving your ex mental real estate. Evict him from your mind TODAY. Stop waiting for karma on the Schmoopies and realize their karma is being THEM — people who suck. You can also stop tiptoeing around their narrative. Tell the kids Dad had an affair with OW. They probably sensed it, or knew, and would appreciate not being gaslighted any more. Then let it go. That’s their relationship to figure out.

Don’t rush into any commitments with Mr. Blessed Wonderful until you get your head straight. I hope he understands. It’s okay to grieve your lost marriage, but it’s not okay to let it consume the rest of your life. Why would you give those horrible people that much centrality? Drop the skein, embrace your new life.

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Tobe
Tobe
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

Your reply was priceless. So good. So true! How did you get to be so wise CL 😉 Really though, how long after your break up did it take to find this very cool you?

Shechump
Shechump
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

You have NO idea how much I needed this today.
I swore you wrote it directly for me.

THANK YOU!

dumbutt
dumbutt
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

I seriously love you!!! You are keeping me clear headed in the midst of the fog rising off his glittered covered crap. He has married the AP just this past month and moving her into an expensive house nearby. I have the compulsion to get upset but you all have reminded me no matter how shiny their shit seems, it still REEKS!!!!????????????????

LovedaJackass
LovedaJackass
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

And by the way, may all new chumps read this and stop untangling the skein. Stop comparing themselves to the OW. Stop imagining that the shiny new cheater life is all that. Money, nice house, country club, vacations–those can’t be our measure of a good life.

Martha
Martha
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

Chump Lady, yes another reason to love you! I loathe golf and country clubs too. Why? Well, my ex-in-laws and ex LOVE golfing. I never had a problem with the endless chatter about golf until AFTER we got married. My ex-MIL said to me just after we got back from our honeymoon, “In order to be a part of this family, you need to learn how to play golf!” Gosh, I already thought I was a part of the family when I married their son.

Fast forward to the following Spring and I’m out there hitting a bucket of balls with in-laws and husband. Yep! Trying to work harder to please the in-laws (played out a 1,000 times in different forms that next 20 years. A week after this ball hitting with in the in-laws, I said to my husband, “Do you want to go hit some balls?” He angrily said to me, “GO HIT BALLS BY YOURSELF!” You see, ex didn’t want to golf with me. Golf was his thing he did with his friends. He didn’t want to golf with his wife. He never ever asked me to golf our entire marriage and after he snapped my head off, I never asked him again. But then for the next 20 years I had to listen to his family talk about golf, but I was never included, because of course I wasn’t a golfer! And my ex would say how relaxing it was, yada yada. He’s lucky I didn’t whack him like Tiger Woods’ ex-wife clubbed Tiger.

LovedaJackass
LovedaJackass
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

Oh, me too, on the golf thing and the country club thing.

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

CL, love the cartoon!!

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

My STBX is a golf pro at a country club. I definitely understand the loathing. The drinking, partying, gambling, and cheating that takes place out there is unreal. There are good, honest, and faithful people there, too. But the ones that fall in the first category dominate the space.

mila
mila
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

CL – I ADORE YOU!!!! Love your reply!

Susan
Susan
6 years ago
Reply to  mila

Right on!!! Please replaced read this this over and over. Print CL response out hang it on your refrigerator!!!

She is so right on!! Listen to her!!! She knows her stuff!!!

left him at the airport
left him at the airport
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

My ex was an avid golfer and was always trying to get me into it. I HATE golf with a passion. I honestly don’t see the enjoyment in it.

BArnold
BArnold
6 years ago

Appalling, blasphemous.

left him at the airport
left him at the airport
6 years ago
Reply to  BArnold

BArnold, sorry ????

coolbreezeout
coolbreezeout
6 years ago

Oh my gosh, thank you for telling her not to get married. I cannot imagine how her fiancé might feel. He is in ‘competition’ with someone that doesn’t even want to win the ‘prize’. Being a chump is hard, it is devastating, but we have to find healing on our own. It is not okay to use another person as part of the healing process.
Instead of focusing on developing a new life, one in which she is loved and appreciated, she is mad about not being able to go to the country club. Apparently, her new guy isn’t a country club guy. That is fine – he isn’t the guy for you.
Replaced, you are already dissatisfied in the new relationship, because he isn’t your Cheater. You talk about the Cheater and the OW as if they are descent people – they aren’t! Your picker is still broken, leave this new guy, please. Give him a chance the find true love and go forward in your own healing. You have proven that you can find love again, just find it at the right time and with the right person.

jess
jess
6 years ago
Reply to  coolbreezeout

Dear replaced,
If you can’t get over it, you’re NOT READY to make a commitment to another person. PLEASE set your new guy free, and work on yourself. Entering into a marriage when you’re still not over being replaced shows that you’re not ready to be in a committed relationship with anyone. PLEASE heed the advice given here! Don’t do this to another person. You’re not ready.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  coolbreezeout

Ok, I’d like to clarify a few things here… I am NOT a shallow person. This is not about the stupid country club or any THING. This is about feeling REPLACED, discarded, replaceable. I am just still nursing hurt feelings over being so EASILY replaced by someone seemingly very similar to me. I couldn’t care less about the things. Those were just examples of how SHE now lives MY life. And yes, it was my OLD life. But it is difficult to adjust for a brand-new life when that’s not what you wanted to planned.

Another correction — my fiance is awesome and i adore him for HIM. I do not miss my ex. I do not pine for him, nor would i take him back if he BEGGED. This is about feeling replaced. NOT missing my cheater ex.

I want to have a whole, open, loving heart for my fiance. He is amazing, and i want to be fully available to him. I just sometimes still get bluesy over how i was treated. I am still smarting. Thing is, it’s been too long. I nursed these wounds years ago, and i’m frustrated with myself that this pain still lingers. That’s why i wrote CL, and i got the lashing i think i needed! It’s time to FULLY and completely let go of the past and be 100% in this wonderful present and future life of MINE. That’s what i needed to hear, and that’s what i need to do.

NeverLookingBack
NeverLookingBack
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

You weren’t replaced… because your life was a lie.

That’s a harsh truth all of us chumps have to accept.

You’re new life is already better than your old one, because you are not getting our soul sucked out of you by a nice guy golfer.

You need to BELIEVE your new life is better than your old one.

Harbouring feelings that you were REPLACED as you say… implies that you lost something of value. Maybe the mirage of it, but not actually something real.

I’m not upset about being replaced. I’m upset about having my fertile years stolen from me. Could literally not give a flying fuck about being replaced. In that sense, I FEEL LIBERATED.

Towanda
Towanda
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

You were a broken toaster but he liked the model so he just got a new one. She will wear down after a few years too and then he’ll replace that one.

You have to recognize that these people (your narc ex) don’t have an emotional investment in you or her, it’s just your output they are attached to. When you stop making toast and they know you can’t be fixed it’s time to move on to a new toaster. This very simple concept is what is so difficult to get over because you are not accepting the fact that he did not care for you on a personal level. He doesn’t care for her on a personal level either, he’s incapable of it.

The irony is that they are the broken toasters. Always have been and always will be no matter who they latch onto next. You on the other hand are not even a toaster. You’re a wonderful person full of love and depth and compassion and so much more than just an appliance.

You are not a toaster.

Towanda!

flowergirl
flowergirl
6 years ago
Reply to  Towanda

Towanda Iwant this on a tee shirt “I am not a toaster”. Discarded I winced at CL’s words. I am 9 months out after a total discard for same age divorced, 3 kids (but all grown up) professional cook who allowed him to move in after only knowing him for a couple of months. They are harsh but true. I am lucky because they are a long way away and I am NC/grey rock so can pretend they don’t exist until access weekends when it feels like I have swallowed acid all over again. The hardest thing to accept is that we really weren’t that important. It is something I sensed early on in my marriage and tried to change me and him because we had children. The OW will have been well versed in all our faults and they will be doing their own dances to avoid discard too.

coolbreezeout
coolbreezeout
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

I get what you are saying, and your feelings are valid. What I am saying is, look at your words. Your words indicate your are pining for that old life. You were not replaced – that woman took a spot that you are unwilling, thankfully, to fulfill. He didn’t want a wife, he wanted a toy. He wanted someone just as shallow as he is. You are too good for him.

There is NOTHING that your ex can provide that you want and cannot get from someone who loves you. The old life the OW got was a daily dose of shit sandwiches and false narratives. That is it, nothing more.

You get the amazing opportunity to write your own narrative, to build the life you always wanted.

It sounds like you are still in the grieving phase. That is fine, take as long as you need to grieve. But, I don’t think it is fair to have a fiancé while you are grieving the loss of the old relationship. That is where my response is based.

I would personally be devastated if I was getting married to someone that was still upset about the old life another woman is living. You talk about feeling like you could not live up to your exes expectations. How does your fiancé feel? You are still mourning the loss of another man. Deal with that first, fully and completely. You already know how it feels to be giving the feeling that you are not good enough, but that is the vibes you are putting out about your fiancé.

Deal with your hurt and your pain. Because right now, you are talking about your cheater ex as if he is a great guy and talking about his cheater now play thing as if she is a wonderful woman. They aren’t. You are romanticizing them. Deal with that stuff before you jump into this relationship. If not, you could turn your marriage into nothing but a game to try to ‘one up’ them on the happiness scale, and your new husband will feel it.

Warrior Princess
Warrior Princess
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

My last several years with my cheater were spent trying to live up to what to what he wanted me to be. He wanted me to be highly organized, a linear thinker and a perfect housekeeper, while handling every detail of our everyday lives without his help. I kept thinking that if I tried harder I could do it all. When he left there was an incredible relief of pressure. You see, I am a creative thinker who tends to sidetrack from one thing to another. I accomplish a lot, but there are unfinished projects. The finished ones sometimes weren’t noticed. That left a supply of things he could complain out.
I will never fit the mold that he tried to put me in. I can’t do that successfully because that is not who I am. I am very good at being me. It was total misery to be pressured to be someone different. Your cheater is doing that to his partner. I became like a line drawing of who I was with him. Now I can be a thriving three-dimensional successful me. Sucks to be her….????

deedee
deedee
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Hey Replaced,

I understand the devastating feeling of being so easily replaced. I felt the same way after an old boyfriend discarded me and hooked up with a woman who – in his words – “is so much like you!”. I remember crying to him, “why would you want another version of me when you can have the real thing?!” Ugh, my pick-me dancing was just shameful.

The idea of being so easily replaced actually sent me to therapy for more than a year. My therapist kept telling me that my EGO was preventing me from moving on. Yes, that was her repeated 2X4 to my head — telling me that it was just a bruised ego keeping me stuck in despair, and not the actual loss of the guy himself. She had a point.

Bottom line is – you wouldn’t want your ex back anyway … even if he came back and grovelled on his knees for another chance with you. That would feed your ego, but it wouldn’t change your current life. So, let it go, Replaced Chump, and fully embrace your new man. Put 100% of yourself into him because he does want you and love you.

Limey Chump
Limey Chump
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Dear Replaced
Like everyone else I want put on record how sorry I am for all your pain. The betrayal of trust, the feelings of rejection and so on. We’ve all been there, right?
I hope however that you can soon get to a place where you feel glad that you were replaced. Not glad for all the pain but glad for the fact you can live cheater free.
Allow me to make two observations- The fact that schmoopie has some superficial similarities to you is of zero relevance in my opinion. His betrayal would not be any more justifiable or rational if Schmoopie was a super model.
Secondly, as a Catholic I’m frankly ashamed by their conduct. It seems to me that the thing they have in common with each other is their disregard for Catholic teaching on honesty, sex, and marriage.
Replaced, however much their relationship looks great and wholesome on the outside we all know it is a whitened sepulchre. The most fundamental fact they know about each other is their capacity for deceit and betrayal. It’s a relationship built on mutual distrust. Consider for a moment the awkwardness the two of them must feel when others ask “So how did you guys meet?”
Thank God or karma or your lucky stars that you were replaced, Replaced. Be grateful too that you replaced a hypocritical liar and adulterer with a decent guy. I hope you instil in your children decent values about honesty and loyalty in their choice of partner and spouse. I hope your children will join the dots.

DOCTOR'S1stWife/Kids
DOCTOR'S1stWife/Kids
6 years ago
Reply to  Limey Chump

I’m Catholic & embarrassed by your husband and his adulterous “wife”. They are NOT Practicing Catholics or they’d be in their original marriages. The hypocrisy and chutzpah it takes to present as Catholics while in second marriages, is stunning. SMH.

Hold your head high.

This is NOT your fault. As for the OW, I smh. Yeah, go back to Mass, get absolution and just start fresh.
NO, IT DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY.

I’m disgusted with them. Wishing you well!

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  Limey Chump

Limey Chump,

“So how did you guys meet.”

My favourite line in all posts!

Required reading for all cheaters!

A Chump’s Dream to get an answer to that one.

Some projected responses:
1. It’s a small small world-Disney
2. At Grace Land
3. Space World-Disney
4. Visitation with the Pope in Rome
5. At the Olympics, ( both came in last)
6. Community Picnic
7. Office Party
Chumps, please continue the list if you desire.
Also all of the above could be number 1

I vote Limey Chump for the win today for the best quote:
” SO HOW DID YOU GUYS MEET?”
????????????????????????????????

Priceless

Jojobee
Jojobee
6 years ago
Reply to  Limey Chump

Yeah, as a Catholic I feel the same way. They must have both missed the whole memo on marriage as a sacramental act. If they lied to get an annulment to marry in the church double shame on them. If they did and are lining up for communion, God have mercy on their souls. Their happy, happy show is just that. Calling this affairage a marriage is just a euphemism–and a euphemism is just a piece of perfumed silk used to wrap the rotting corpse of a stinking moral truth.

oneonefourone
oneonefourone
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

I understand the feeling. My STBX was here with me one moment, in the home we’d built up together, and gone in an evening to move in with his side piece.

The weekend after he left, I texted him because I still wanted to go to an event that we’d planned to go to together and didn’t want to bump into him with her. I was basically feeling him out, hoping to get a response indicating he wasn’t going to take his OW to something we planned to go to. But nope – without missing a beat, he just says ‘what time are you going to be there?’

I know it’s a small example, but I have had so many thoughts of ‘she’s just another version of me’, wtf? We have similar hobbies (painting, nature walks). We have some similar style. We both have the same stupid crazy plan b dream that has nothing to do with our actual jobs (opening a cafe/pub). She was ‘looking for’ someone to do all the things that we already did together (food, travel etc.). But then I realised she’s nothing like me. She has cheated on everyone she’s ever been with (first husband and then current partner of 10 years). She felt so entitled to get what she wanted she lied and manipulated her way to get it. I am nothing like that. That kind of character is rotten and I don’t think a one-off incident that doesn’t infect everything else about her and her life with him now.

I think it’s scary to live through this because it makes you think even more about how much you ever really know a person. You think this person cares about you and then ‘poof’ they just discard you, put someone else in the role you previously thought was filled and you’re left with a body-shaped hole where they were just standing. There’s a lovely little quote from one of Marilyn Monroe’s journals that I’ve been mulling over where she jotted down: “Only parts of us will ever touch only parts of others.” I worry that when I am ready to move on, I’ll struggle to know what is real and what I can trust. But I’ve already realised, two months out, that I’d rather live to my values of honesty and openness than let this treatment of me destroy my ability to have what I know is worthwhile.

At the root of this questioning of replacement is still the simple question: “why?”. We want to understand it and untangle that goddamn skein. But the “love” this man is capable of really is as shallow as a puddle and it’s not worth another thought about the life they are living. x

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  oneonefourone

1142,
Marilyn Monroe’s quote is so sad.
That beautiful woman and how her life ended and all the unknowns.
So sad.

But, you, 1142, it is early in your time of suffering from betrayal and you ” have such a good head on your shoulders”.
When I read your posts I think this girl is going to do ok, more than ok. She has courage and she has integrity and all good stuff.????
Besides, his new tru wuv, she can do his dirty laundry. I have great doubts she lasts, once the shit stains settle she’ll be toast and gondi!

Keep strong sweet lady, you rock!

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  Peacekeeper

Sorry 1141,
I upgraded you to a 2
????

NotThisGirl
NotThisGirl
6 years ago
Reply to  oneonefourone

Oneonefourone, you said it perfectly! ????

Devastated
Devastated
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Dear Replaced
I’m sorry if I was harsh with you. You have a right to all your feelings! They are normal and I feel the same about my situation. I was just extremely saddened when I read that you think they’re good when they aren’t. I want to validate your pain. I know though, that if you truly believe they’re decent people, that won’t help you to heal. Please. Get pissed at the sob! It sucks what he’s done to you. And of course, of course it’s normal to still hurt and anguish over that lost dream. Again, I’m sorry if I was harsh. I just hope you can look at those wretched people for what they are!
You may never get over it. And that’s fine, But please give yourself some loving kindness. You deserved better.
And when you see them going to church, feigning to be devout Catholics, remember that other people know exactly who they are and what they’ve done to you. Things may not be as they seem. People wear masks.
Peace
Devastated.

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

ReplacedChump–I’m glad you responded. Believe me, we all understand the pain of being replaced, whether for a short period of time, or (like you) for a subsequent marriage of our cheaters to the OW/OM.

This is the critical piece–once you enjoy your own current life enough, and see its value, you will be GLAD you were replaced. If you have a wonderful fiance, lovely children, and are filling your time with activities & people you love, relief should ensue. That’s what I hope for you–tomorrow (or some day soon) you can wake up and say “Allelluia!! I am free of that fuckwit and have a fabulous life on my own terms. Clear my way, world!”

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Thanks, Tempest! Good stuff. I have felt like one of my hands was still clinched, holding on to the past. I’m not sure why — just change-averse, maybe. Or maybe out of fear… For whatever reason, a part of me is still holding on. I need to open that hand, release the past, and embrace the future.

DOCTOR'S1stWife/Kids
DOCTOR'S1stWife/Kids
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced,

despite the many pearls of wisdom here, your remarks still resonate. I think when you move forward and accept it all and are happy in your new life,

maybe you fear that when you clearly move forward and learn to thrive after surviving a tremendous wrong,

the world will say “See? It ALL worked out in the end.”

Thing is, it did not work out BECAUSE he left, it worked out DESPITE his leaving. Kudos to YOU for moving forward & taking another risk with love.

Fuck your ex and his Schmoopie. He did you a favor.

Lola Granola
Lola Granola
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

I notice, Replaced Chump, that you are studiously avoiding expressing your ANGER here.

Probably about time to start letting it out, because that’s what we call it – that feeling when we have been treated REALLY BADLY.

You are perfectly allowed to say:

“Actually, you guys are right. I was married to a cheater; a man who thought he was entitled to fuck a married woman in secret, behind my back. Mr Hot Shot Catholic who thought it was OK to break the Sixth Commandment because he was Special and it was twu wuv. With Mrs Hot Shot Catholic who is such a good Catholic that she wears flats and no makeup, but cheats on her husband and deceives him and lies to him.”

I think you might find that the dull pain you experience is because you are ANGRY, and you need to start naming that, and letting it out.

Your ex and his new wife are shitheels, pure and simple. You can dress it up and spackle it any way you like, but no one here is fooled. Those people did a really shabby, low, thing, and have behaved like utter hypocrites to everyone around them. Worse, they appear to have been REWARDED by the world and everyone you know. While you get discarded.

You WERE discarded, and you are right to be ANGRY about that. If you would stop stuffing the anger down and trying to be Ms Nice Guy, you would probably be able to heal.

NotThisGirl
NotThisGirl
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced Chump- I understand what you are saying. Even though you have moved on there are moments when you still can’t believe someone you trusted betrayed you. It’s not about wanting what you had, but processing the hurt of betrayal and feeling like you were not “enough”. I think what is contributing to having these thoughts and feelings is that you are not speaking your truth. You did the pick me dance and then let your exhusband shape the narrative. We just grew apart, etc. You didn’t even tell your kids about what actually happened or who their father and stepmother really are- liars and cheaters. I would encourage you to take back your power! Start by being honest with yourself and your children. I think you are still eating a shit sandwich because you have accepted the lies your exhusband and the OW are selling as truth. “She likes golf and doesn’t wear make-up so he found a better match”- which you have processed as a better person. That is bullshit! Of course, you would feel replaced if this was the truth. That you just weren’t good enough. But that is a LIE! They are really bad people with no values. A shift in your narrative and telling your children who they really are and what they did would help. Right now you are trying to manage your children’s feelings by hiding what happened. Kids are resilient and would appreciate in the long run being told the truth. It would break the façade everyone has bought including you about your exhusband and his flat shoe wearing, country club whore! Take back your power and start speaking your truth!!

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  NotThisGirl

NTG, yes, that’s it. I have moved on — in so many ways! I have a completely different life now! And no, i do not want to go back. I still just get stuck. I still feel so much of the pain of this. And yes, maybe it hits a part of me that worried that i wasn’t “enough” for him. And that is just me being insecure. That’s me allowing him to determine my worth and adequacy. That’s a lot of where i struggle. And just the discarding. Our marriage and everything we built just meant so much more to me than it did to him. That’s been a very difficult thing to process. Marriage MEANS something to me. People are NOT replaceable to me. To CL’s point, our values must have been way off…

Sunflower36
Sunflower36
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

I was always too much, and found that I had to be less in order for him to be happier… and in the end, that was still too much.

NotThisGirl
NotThisGirl
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced Chump, I get it! I have a loving boyfriend, a supportive network, a good job, and excellent therapy. Yet, the pain of loss still comes back sometimes. My Mom told me one night when I was crying and frustrated that I hadn’t healed yet that grief is not a straight line. It has ups and downs- some days your great and other days are hard. It’s a process…The good news is that it does get better with time, but that only happens when you switch that narrative to the truth- that you didn’t lose a wonderful husband, you lost someone who cheated- he decided to blow up everything you worked for and here is the ultimate truth IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT! He had many choices besides cheating and he didn’t betray you because of your lack of common interests- he cheated because he is a lacking a morality chip, you guys aren’t made from the same stuff. Youre loyal he is not!! The list could go on. Once you fully realize your grieving the hologram of who you believed your exhusband to be and not the man he is the amount of time you spend thinking about him will change.

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced, yes, you and your cheater do not have the same values. But so far you’ve been hiding this fact by not telling what really happened in your marriage. Speak to your values, I think it will help you move on. And of course it shows that you have not been replaced. Your cheater downgraded.

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

It’s not that you weren’t “enough” for him, water finds its own level.

In my case, I wasn’t shallow enough for my X, and I’m okay with that.

IIWII
IIWII
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Love this….In my case I don’t think it was that I wasn’t shallow enough for him I think I wasn’t weak enough. The POSH said I “FORCED” him to do everything. I forced him to move to the city where I had gotten a job after college, forced him to move out of my parents house into an apartment, forced him to marry me, forced him to build a house, and forced him to have a baby. Let’s be clear these were decisions we agreed to. I told him when we started dating that I wanted a family. That was not negotiable. If he didn’t want kids we shouldn’t get married. 9 years later I’m pregnant and oh “I wasn’t ready for a baby you forced me to make all these decisions”. Well I’m sorry I was strong in my voice in what I wanted and you were too weak to speak your mind. You should have been a man and broke up with me a long time ago if you knew you were the type of man that didn’t want a family. The much younger OW, who works for him, I’m sure is much more flexible in her wants and needs. I think she is letting him run the show and he needs a weak little girl to dictate too. sorry i’m not sorry for being strong. Hopefully my daughter you abandoned at two weeks old will be just as strong.

Giddy Eagle
Giddy Eagle
6 years ago
Reply to  IIWII

POSH!! I love it. I haven’t even made it to the end of your post, but had to respond.

moominmamma
moominmamma
6 years ago
Reply to  IIWII

I forced my husband to move interstate, and have a child, not once, but twice, apparently!My mindpowers were that strong!I thought they were much discussed, joint decisions that required, for example in the case of the children, not using condoms ( so not exactly secretive)- but no! he was just a helpless victim!
Strangely my mindpowers have never been able to force him to jump off a bridge. Go figure.
To Replaced- i think you have a fear of being” replaced” again, and I would recommend talking to your new guy about it, and get him to read CL so that he can understand how much PTSD we are all left with, and how the damn thing flares just when you think you’re over it.
I am very unlikely to ever have a romantic relationship again. I spent nearly twenty years with someone I adored. absolutely adored, and all the time he was a pod person, and I couldn’t tell, and my friends and family couldn’t tell. I am not taking that risk again.

Budgie
Budgie
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

It’s funny, he always said I was “too deep” – now I know exactly what he meant, and why he’s with Dimbo! ????

dumbutt
dumbutt
6 years ago
Reply to  Budgie

I believe that too. I am realizing I was too authentic and that made him feel uncomfortable. As he got to be more and more pompous, I just couldn’t hide the eye rolling inside my head.????

Chump Princess
Chump Princess
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

“In my case, I wasn’t shallow enough for my X, and I’m okay with that.” – – Okay, that has to be one of my favorite, composite explanations ever for why being away from these people rocks!

ClearWaters
ClearWaters
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

I love this, Tempest. I’m going to start thinking this way, I feel so much better already:
“I wasn’t shallow enough for my X, and I’m okay with that.”

Cancer Chump
Cancer Chump
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

“water finds its own level”

LOVE this!

pulmafool
pulmafool
6 years ago
Reply to  Cancer Chump

My former MIL used to always say this to justify their family’s snobbery. Now her son left me, a truly decent, loyal, loving wife and good DIL, for a gold-digger 22 years my junior. They used to joke that my IVY was not as good as the one their son went to. New DIL went to community college. Not a dig on community colleges, but the saying “water finds its level is true.” It just did not get them where they thought it would.

indychump
indychump
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

And how he feels about marriage isn’t going to change with 2.0. They won’t be faithful to one another. Shit gets real and stale eventually for these clowns. It’s who they are.

And tell the kids

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  NotThisGirl

❤️ this!!!! Great advice!!!!

GG1431
GG1431
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Dear Replaced,

This is the first time I’ve come here and read a CL reply that made me cringe. It was a little rough, well intentioned of course, but rough. I can completely relate, and am worried about the bashing I’ll take for saying this, but my exNarc left me in February 2007, my divorce was final in July 2009 (and he married OWife 50 days later), I was remarried in 2013 to the love of my life, and here we are in August 2017 and I’m about to re-enter therapy because I am STILL hurting over this. It is possible to be completely in love, and even happy with a new person, and still grieve what you once believed was your forever life. Grieve your children’s family and the fact that you now share your children with another woman. Grieve that you gave so much to someone who could completely and utterly break you heart and shatter your dreams. My ex is definitely a narc/sociopath and has continued to drag me to court, alienate my kids, etc. and I think this is a large part of why I still have pain over this. But I think it’s possible that, like losing a loved one to death is difficult forever, sometimes the loss of a marriage feels that way. Even when we learn the person we married is a disordered jackass. Because WE believed in it, WE gave it our all, WE were faithful, and loyal, and committed. It really has nothing to do with the ex-spouse, it’s more about how something like that can happen to us when we don’t really deserve it. Some of us can take that knowledge and say, “Fuck that!” and get over it because they know they deserve better. Some of us have a more difficult time with that. But what I will say is that you are wrong in thinking that your ex and the OW are ultimately good people. They aren’t. This speaks to the core of who they are. Don’t let society’s disregard for infidelity make you question the seriousness of it, or the evil it takes to accomplish it. Infidelity takes two people (at least) who make a conscious decision to indulge their own selfishness regardless of the consequences to anyone, including their own innocent children. It took me a long time to realize that sometimes, it does not “take two to tango” in a marriage. Sometimes, it’s all one person, and if there is infidelity, you’ve got your answer on who. Hang in there, you’ll be okay. I hope that your new man is much like mine, and loves you so completely that he can see who you are and love you through anything, even the leftover parts of your old life. You deserve to be loved that way, believe that! And again, it is completely possible to be wonderfully in love with someone and even be married to them, and still suffer from the pain of the past. Don’t give up on your new relationship, it’s a blessing for a reason! xoxo

MJB
MJB
6 years ago
Reply to  GG1431

GG1431 what you’ve written is so helpful. I do trust that my ex sucks, but it is still so painful. I have not moved on with anyone new.

It sounds like PTSD in alot of ways to me. I read somewhere how your mind tries to make sense of it and see the warning signs so it knows what to look for incase it happens again. Like you’re sitting in your home watching TV, it’s storming, and then a tornado hits and destroys everything around you. You are never the same again. Your mind tries to process what those missed warning signs are so it doesn’t happen out of the blue and unprepared again.

For me my ex was not and never was reciprocal. I had 2 separate Ddays with 2 different schmoopies. This time I was hypersensistive to the warning signs: took off wedding ring, stand-offish, treating me poorly, hypercritical of me and the kids. He is not a good person that just found the twu wuvs with schmoopie and no one meant for it to happen.

He is a selfish, entitled fuckwit. Now sad sausage (my ex). Your ex and his schmoopie are still all sparkly. You knew the warning signs of him being a bad person (you were trying marriage counseling for communication issues). Cheating was a real dealbreaker (either you threw him out or he knew you’d never get over it because you have morals). She didn’t replace anything-as CL states, he may be salting the mines to keep her happy for now. But you know the real him, he will get tired of that soon enough.

Are you afraid of making another mistake? Of missing the warning signs? Because it’s all flashy and fun and happy over in cheaterville, your doesn’t add up? Are you waiting for justice? It may takes years to see it although they may be living the karma misery now.

Best of luck to you Replaced. You are actual a vintage masterpiece that asshat discarded for trash not knowing it’s value. He got the cheap, sparkly shit that will soon break instead of polishing up the gold.

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  GG1431

GG–It is possible to still be traumatized by your divorce when your Cluster B X keeps taking you to court to modify custody, support, etc. That’s horrible, and utmost sympathy to you.

But I do not think it is possible to be “completely in love, and even happy with a new person” when you are still grieving the loss of the former marriage. It’s wonderful if your current spouse is able to support you despite your lingering grief, but I would strongly recommend no other chumps get into serious relationships until the grief is gone, and you have a sense of relief that you get to write your own ending. It’s not fair to the other person.

LettingGo
LettingGo
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Thanks Tempest for your thoughts. I agree with you. I would never be okay with entering into a relationship with someone in the emotional state I am in (8 months from DDay and days until what would have been 18 year anniversary). We all know how it feels being with someone who isn’t invested and thinking about someone else. I screamed “don’t get married” several times when reading this letter. CL wasn’t harsh, she was honest. Sounds like Replaced has some work to do. This is complicated shit we are wading through, eh?

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  LettingGo

It is complicated, and there are many layers to it (some of them subconscious). Talk therapy alone is not going to ‘cure’ us of having been betrayed. Recovery involves interacting with positive people over time who treat us with kindness, compassion, and fairness (and tossing anyone out of our orbit who does not meet those criteria).

A recent example: I had a date set for 7:15. My daughter called just before I was to leave and asked me to pick her up from a social event because she didn’t feel good. Now, cognitively I knew my date would say that my daughter should be top priority, and be fine with delaying our getting together by an hour. But I had several moments of anxiety preparing for an angry or disgruntled response (because that is what I’d have had in my marriage*.) It took discussing it before I could overrule my automated emotional response. Thus, even though I have been at ‘meh’ for a long time, vestiges of the toxic relationship to Hannibal still arise at an implicit level.

*and yes, you read that right–a man unrelated to my daughter was more sympathetic about her illness than her own father would have been.

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Dear Tempest,
I am sorry that you did feel that period of anxiety, but I am happy that you did not need to feel that anxiety.
Chumps know it is a part of the scar cheaters inflict on our mind and our heart, how we expect to feel and to be treated for certain happenings.
Tempest, there is always hope that even this initial feeling of anxiety will lessen and even get lost in the debris of cheater effect.
I so want this for you Tempest. You are an awesome person!

(((((Mega hugs to you)))))

LettingGo
LettingGo
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Wow, good for you for being honest and open about your needs!! I get how this could cause anxiety. I agree with your point that talk therapy isn’t enough. I worked with social worker for the first few months and now I have been doing my own research. My goal to understand me and fix my picker. There is no way I want to jump back in the frying pan so to speak. I read “Attached” awhile ago and the researcher talked about how important it is for people with anxious attachments to use effective communication to make their needs known. The author talked about how the person response will help you figure out if they have a secure or avoidant attachment style (anxious should avoid avoidant at all costs) and it sounds like your date’s response was bang on! I am terrified to date (not nearly ready).
I think you mentioned it taking approx. 2 years to heal from betrayal, so I have lots of time and permission to be gentle with myself.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  GG1431

GG, you are awesome! Thank you for that reply. I hope therapy is helpful to you. You’re right, you can still hurt from the pain of the past, yet move forward toward a happy, new life. I think the trick is to be more focused on what’s ahead than what’s behind. And with time that gets easier to do. I’m so glad you have someone wonderful in YOUR life who loves YOU for you!

Susannah
Susannah
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

I think most of it is this: You never let yourself get angry over what happened to you. There are stages to grief, and anger is one of them. Speak up about what happened to you, it’s okay to be pissed that you were lied to, and it’s okay to be enraged because he cheated on you, then he and his whore fed you a bullshit story that you swallowed hook, line and sinker because you are more interested in being a good person than a piece of shit like he was. You haven’t let that anger blossom. It needs to come out, and the first step is speaking your truth. They are not good people. Fuck ’em, because they sure as shit didn’t give a fuck about you.

unicornomore
unicornomore
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

For the record, Replaced Chump… I know just what it is to be really healing well, in a new, wonderful relationship and STILL have pangs of pain for the HORRID stuff done to oneself.

I was engaged and meeting with the Deacon who was to do our wedding when he and I got to discussing deadhusband and he made reference to the “first affairs” gulp…what first affairs? It was that day I learned that Susan of Seattle was not his first affair, although she may have been his last.

Planning my wedding…8 weeks from the ceremony…right in the middle of building my romance bathroom for me and newhub…hell of a time to learn that I had been cheated on much/most of my first marriage. There wont likely be a time when Im NOT pissed about that.

Britchump
Britchump
6 years ago
Reply to  GG1431

You have found a bloke who loves you and wants to be with you? I think you need to change your moniker from ‘replaced’ to ‘improved’.

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  GG1431

I am a new chump filing for divorce and I love what you wrote. I am having so many issues not being able to get it all out of my head- only 8 weeks from DDay, but I am looking forward to a better future that I know I deserve and a time when it will no longer bother me as much. Meh can’t come soon enough!!!! Thank you for this post!

BrazilianChump
BrazilianChump
6 years ago
Reply to  mil23

I´m on the same boat, 8 weeks and eager for the Meh.

MightyAgain
MightyAgain
6 years ago
Reply to  BrazilianChump

Brazilian Chump – a Portuguese Chump here. Just hang in there. Don’t rush getting to Meh.

Hugs

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  BrazilianChump

We will get there Brazilian Chump!!!!! Hugs

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  BrazilianChump

Just a warning–trying to rush ‘meh’ is a futile (and counterproductive) endeavor.

You’ll need at least 2 years. That’s right, a full two years to process what just happened to you. There will be some days of full detachment that feel like ‘meh’ but 2-3 years after infidelity is standard. You can’t sprint a marathon.

EMC
EMC
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Absolutely, it’s coming upon 2 years since divorce and the deadline to my 2 year no dating commitment, and I’m just now coming out of the fog and heartbreak hangover. This time last year he was still appearing to reconcile while carrying on with his a.p., and now they are expecting a child. While I don’t envy her position in the least bit, I still have so much leftover baggage from being replaced; and insecurity thinking that my son will do the same. Its like they’re all family now, just cut me out and paste her. (Golly I need to change my married name-thought I wanted to keep it for my son, now I wanna throw up every time I say it because I share it with them and it’s weird.)
I’m still beating myself up over how meditation went as he has our kid 4 week days, (after 3 years of our son never leaving my side while his father went on epic vacations w/o us) I had a weekly radio show at the time, one of the things that made me “cool,” so he tried to take that from me and used it as a reason to take the kid mid week. I had a lawyer who passively represented me (if at all-they spent 30 minutes talking about their hair, charged me for it and then hurried me out of mediation;) and I was entirely too emotional and defeated through the whole thing to stand up for what I thought was best. My ex had me convinced it was best that he be custodial parent since my son spent the first half of his life w me, and now it was his turn. Atleast the mediator saw how entitled he was and actually told me that directly.
Yes, chump I was. Manipulated, treated like a stupid child and an inconvenience. He told the mediator he was moving to the next major city, 50 miles away, only for me to find out later he lied and moved 25 miles even further to a tiny town still part of the county. When I asked my lawyer if she thought 50 miles in the middle of the school week was too much for a 5 yr old to travel, her response was that she drove that many miles to work everyday. She also did not have biological children. My son now travels 75 one-way on a Wednesday and then back on Thursday and then back for the wknd. My ex also used his free step- brother lawyer-people I used to sit around the dinner table with; and the motion they wrote up tried to paint me up as some alienating unstable selfish mother who pawned her kid off on other people, so they could intimidate me. I never withheld visitations or phone calls. I’d meet him halfway for kid switches and gave him first right of refusal if I had other commitments. The only thing I told my son when he asked why it didn’t work out was that his dad wanted to be with the o.w. and he decided that while we were still together; and that that was wrong. Lots of child psychologists and divorce counselors suggest this is wrong or not to be too honest w your kids, so I feel shame me for that. I can’t really afford a new lawyer. I really do love my new single life but I’m just so tired of feeling the way I do. Some days I’m over it and the next I’m at square one again. I’ve tried marinading in the feelings, I’ve tried pouring myself into something else. I’ve tried picking up new hobbies, exercise, enrolling in classes, yoga, meditation, church, witchcraft, raising chickens, painting w friends, lol, you name it, but I am still having problems shaking the triggers that send me down the rabbit hole, when I see families in tact. I know it’s past wounding from being raised by a single mom, who remained alone. I have no desire to have any more children or even date even if my commitment is up- I’m too busy. I have no desire to go back to a man who would manipulate, control and belittle me with a smile on his face. I have no desire to be the naive, angry and toxic person I was in that relationship. I have no desire to ever be legally attached to another human being again. I’m working hard to break from my chump-hood, my victim mentality, and understood what choices are more healthy for me, from the mistakes that I made. Learning hardcore about boundaries and righting wrongs of my childhood and attachment theory. It just hurts that he’s so quickly moved on and Im still processing spending a third of my life w this man and the one shot I had at having an in tact family, since more kids is not an option for me. My friends think I should be moved on by now, but they have no clue and I hope they never have to. Idk, everyone moves on or manages their grief differently I suppose.

violet
violet
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

100% agree. Healing takes time and it cannot be rushed. Three years is a start, but it is important to understand that a traumatic experience stays with you for a lifetime. You get better, I promise but, especially for those of us in very long term marriage, the scar always remains. One day, though, it becomes of symbol of courage, not defeat.

Sunflower36
Sunflower36
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Good to know. I’m almost a year post D-D1…and still feel like shit most of the time….but it’s not all of the time now.

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

Thank you Tempest! I figured as much! Just in so much pain and ups and downs! Usually a very positive/strong person. It’s really tough as everyone here can relate! I’ve been reading a lot, going to therapy, coming to CN and working on what my son and I need. I also signed up to play adult kickball in a league. I was always an athlete and it sounded like fun! ????

ClearWaters
ClearWaters
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

I get you Replaced. I feel the same way. How can they do this? How?

I bitterly joke that I was an outdated product on a shelf in the house so I got set out on the pavement for recycling.

In fact, I laughed when I read you about high versus low heels, ’cause latest schmoopie wears tons of makeup and ultra high heels and I wear flats only and very little make-up.

So, it’s them, not us. They are BAD. THAT is the HOW for you. That is how they can replace us.

What really hurts is to know that we gave so much to a BAD person. But that is exactly what a chump does. So De-chump and count your blessings, I ENVY you that you have a good person at your side. Wow! Life2.0 for you Replaced!

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  ClearWaters

Thanks, CW! I imagine the “how” is complex. But ultimately, it’s wrong and it’s a terrible way to treat another human being. I’m sorry this happened to you! I was a huge chump through all of this, and still struggle to de-chump! It is my nature to linger over the bad stuff and indulge it too much. It will be an important challenge for me to reprogram myself to linger over the good and indulge thoughts of an amazing future! That’s where my head and my heart need to be — full steam ahead!

Kellia
Kellia
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced Chump, I do understand that you can’t get over the betrayal. But think of it this way, he left because he wasn’t that invested in you to begin with. The bond that he shared with you was very shallow, convenient even. And that’s why he betrayed you so easily and went off his merry way and replaced you so quickly. He was never deeply connected to you from the start. Your ex may have a personality disorder, as people like him, never really bond or forge deep connections. It’s a very shallow interaction that is often had with a spouse, whereas, mentally healthy people can’t disconnect so easily from their partner. The bond was never there to begin with and was likely very very superficial.

poppyfool
poppyfool
6 years ago
Reply to  Kellia

Kellia,

You are so right. I have been listening to blog radio – sandra brown on attachment versus bonding. Personality disordered people form attachments – like they do to a recliner chair. That is why we are so easily replaced. Normal people form bonds. I could never understand why my husband could just walk away after 27 years of marriage and never even care about the destruction that was left behind. If I had been hit by a bus, he wouldn’t have cared.

Poppyfool
Poppyfool
6 years ago
Reply to  poppyfool

Hi – blogtalkradio.com. Once there – search for Sandra Brown. The specific one I talked about was called “Attachment and Bonding in a Pathological Love Relationship”. There are many others by her as well. They have helped me to understand what happened in my 27 year marriage. Good luck!

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  Poppyfool

I’ve been reading a ton since I kicked my husband out 9 weeks ago on DDay 2. Filing for divorce. We’ve been married 16 years and together 20. We got married when I was 22 and he was 23. He seemingly kept it together all these years playing the role of good husband/father. His ability to play halo family man and completely compartmentalize his relationship w his AP for a year is crazy!!! My psychologist who has known him for years and knows what happened thinks he is a high functioning BPD. His AP is a severe BPD crazy person! Great combo lol. Any other articles or books you liked that may help me? Thank you!!!!

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  Poppyfool

Thank you so much!!!! Going to check it out. ????

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  poppyfool

How do I find this radio channel? I need to listen. TY

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced, it’s difficult be replaced so easily and smoothly (at least from the cheaters POV) and recover the ability to give yourself fully to someone else after this trauma. I get it. I’m not sure I agree with the other posters so far that this is about your values. Your still gaslighted, you believe the clever image management the 2 cheaters are so good at. I get that you tried to handle the divorce amicably and preserve Daddy’s good image for your kids etc. But as a result you’ve become part of this deception and you’ve bought into it. According to this narrative, you’ve been replaced with a slightly better model and all is well that ends well. So of course, this could happen to you again with Mr Wonderful and you can’t give yourself fully.
Not true. You’ve bought into the cheaters lies, you’ve let the kids believe them too.
You weren’t replaced, you were betrayed. Calling yourself replaced doesn’t help you.
You’re not replaceable, you’re a unique person, the mother of your children, who was a loyal and committed spouse, and remained so loyal when she was betrayed that she didn’t even tell the kids their dad is a cheater.
I agree with the others that you still need to work on that before marrying Mr Wonderful because he deserves a woman who feels better about herself than you do, someone who has healed from this trauma.
Start by telling the truth to your kids about their dad cheating and about Schmoopie. A good lesson for them: appearances can be deceptive…Look under the surface before you dive.
The fear of betrayal will probably remain with you and will be stronger in you than in others who’ve never been betrayed. It’s not such a bad thing either because betrayal is all too common. So I’ll never again be the one to advocate giving yourself fully to anyone except yourself. But you must give a strong woman who looks forward to the future, not the past, to your future husband.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  kiwichump

Not replaced but betrayed. Wow, kiwichump, thank you! You’re so right! I was terribly betrayed. I believed my husband loved me and was on “our” side. Turns out he was mainly loyal to himself and his own selfish needs. I do believe the reasons he betrayed me are very complex. I know CL would say it’s entitlement, and that’s true too.

At the end of the day, all of that needs to be boxed up and labeled “past.” My fiancé is a truly good man. He would not cheat, and I’m able to trust him. He represents my future, and I have so much to look forward to with him! Yes, I do have lingering fears of abandonment as a result of this. How could I not?! But I can trust him, and that is a huge blessing.

Thanks for your kind words!

Sunflower36
Sunflower36
6 years ago
Reply to  kiwichump

I told my kids too, as soon as he shacked up with Ol’ Roy. Had no choice really.
I promised I would never lie to them, (which to me means no omissions and no exaggerations as well) just might hold back a little until they were older and tell them the truth kindly as possible, but for their benefit, not Mr. T’s or Alpo’s.

(I’m trying new names for her although I do like Ms.Twatwaffles, its a lot to type on my phone, so I’m vacillating between Alpo and Ol’Roy….because Mr. Twatwaffles threw out Prime Rib for a meat by-product and like a dog, he’s lapping up that fake crap.)

Pambear
Pambear
6 years ago
Reply to  kiwichump

I completely agree that the children, in an age appropriate way, should be told the truth. Don’t lie by omission because that makes you an accessory to your ex’s and OW’s blatant lies.

Feelingit
Feelingit
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

They can never replace you as an individual loving feeling human being. Can you replace your grandmothers antique diamond ring? No, you can bring in a new and shiny one but it will never be the same.

brit
brit
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

Well said CL, today’s response is one of my absolute favorites.
Your X is not the person you thought you were married to. They’re newlyweds /honeymooners, and they’re out to prove to everyone how much in love they are.
Working hard to prove to outsiders, their love is romantic, like uh, the Dog bounty hunter and his wife.
It’s not what you think, it wasn’t built from a cheap, torrid affair, sneaking around betraying their spouses and children.
I’m not sure either one of them have a true face to show, let alone tell the truth to anyone, even themselves.

Polly
Polly
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

Or Replaced is projecting. Maybe without identifying with her exS values, she identifying with making a “mistake” and believing people can change. If Replaced made an awful mistake she’d want people to forgive her and give her a second chance. The affair was not a single mistake, it was a series of deliberate choices, consequences for other people be damned. It was entirely selfish and hurt dozens of people in two families.

Replaced is nothing like OW. If OW was decent she’d repent and get herself to a nunnery. Replaced would be begging for forgiveness, OW is perfectly ok. Replaced worked hard to try to keep an intact family, OW threw her family away., OW didn’t value her family. OW is a convincing step ford wife, Replaced is too genuine or too emotive to pretend to feel fine,
Replaced: you are nothing like your exes current wife. You value and prioritize completely differently, churches be damned. Plus you have no idea if everypne thinks the affair is just water over the bridge. Ask her ex husband how he feels.

You have nothing to envy because you have little in common. Even your ex is someone you don’t have in common: he lied to you, he showed his true face to her.

Chump No More
Chump No More
6 years ago
Reply to  Polly

This comment “The affair was not a single mistake, it was a series of deliberate choices, consequences for other people be damned. It was entirely selfish and hurt dozens of people in two families.” is PERFECT. How many times I have heard, I am sorry, can I come back… it’s because of this… deliberate choices, more than one lie and that fucking “starry eye” he would have when he was going to her.

Your sentence hit a chord with me (obviously). Thank you.

Devastated
Devastated
6 years ago
Reply to  coolbreezeout

Dear Replaced
Ugh. Do u hear yourself? How can the OW and your ex be good people?!!! OW can NEVER be good. Don’t u get it? Cheating and the deception and lies needed to cheat IS INHERENTLY bad. Some might say evil. Good Catholics or Christians don’t break the commandments! These behaviors are immoral in the eyes of the church. These behaviors are cruel to you and your family. These actions reveal and show u just who your ex and the other whore really are! They are lying, cheating, manipulating people who happen to keep up appearances (masks) by going to church and the country club.
Honey I’m sorry this happened. And I know how you feel. However, you are focusing too much on the material things that you lost. The country club, yoga etc. Who gives a damn about that shit!!!
Open your eyes, for the love of God – he cheated and threw out your marriage! He’s not good, she’s not good, period!!!!
It sounds like he brainwashed u into thinking it was a divine thing, a happy accident – his dick falling into this pos woman. Make no mistake, it’s wrong what they did! Soooo damn wrong. If u honestly believe that they’re really good, then u are condoning cheating. Do u really condone cheating? Would u do that to your loved one?

And u need to be honest with your fiancé. This is cruel. Don’t lead him on! You didn’t deserve it, neither does he!
Please look in the mirror and face reality. Stop making excuses and justifying their hideous behavior. Face it.

ChutesandLadders
ChutesandLadders
6 years ago
Reply to  Devastated

“What’s happiness when you’re a shallow pool of piss? ”

I remember once telling X that he and his skank were perfect for each other. He replied, “Thank you, I think so, too.” I dropped mic with, “Only you think that is a compliment.”

I also once told him to just assume that every nice, BIFF email I send about anything will always have the unspoken – but deliberate – ending, “You fucking loser of all time, you.”

Warrior
Warrior
6 years ago

I am reading and laughing out loud at the “unspoken ending”! That is so true.
I totally understand where the original post is coming from. My ex walked out on me and his mistress is living the financial life we built. I was snowed by the devastation of the blindsided betrayal and divorce, not to mention a shitty lawyer, that I agreed to a shitty settlement. I can’t get over it and move past it. I hate him and don’t mourn him anymore. But I do mourn the loss of my lifestyle! Just being honest here! It is hard to watch them build their new house, travel, go to sporting events that I loved to do as a family so much….and yes the country club. But, I hated golf too. He loved to tell the story to everyone that the one piece of advice he got from a family member is if you want to keep a happy marriage, you never let your wife play golf! You know what “balls” and “club” I would love to take to the driving range!!?

Anyway, I have always coveted my financial security. But, what keeps me in a state of bitterness is that he gets to continue on the gravy train and he is the one that caused all of this!! I have been out of the workforce so long I am scared to death to move forward. I am bitter that I have to forfeit my freedom to the corporate world again!
I am just pissed and it gets stronger as the days turn to night. I am on the bitterness wheel and having trouble getting off.

Giddy Eagle
Giddy Eagle
6 years ago
Reply to  Warrior

You are not alone.

I am still in RAGE that he leveraged my success — apparently one of the motivators for a sociopath. And used my daughter and me to protect an I mage of a successful man. (Image management is another motivator.)

I’ve changed lawyers midstream and feel much more confident of a reasonable settlement now. Like you, I’ve been out of the workplace for many years now. And he is making me take a vocational assessment. My lawyer isn’t that worried about it. We’ll see.

Question for you — is your settlement non-negotiable? You are supposed to have equilivant lifestyle unless his financial position is a result of the additional income from an inheritance or his new whore.

Drew
Drew
6 years ago

????❤️ this! Yes, that line, “What’s happiness when you’re a shallow pool of piss?” just about says it all. Fucktard ex and schmoopie AP will never be decent people. I also love your unspoken ending, “You fucking loser of all time, you,” because it Is the truth. Who the fuck walks away from a good woman (family) for some strange?

peacekeeper
peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  Devastated

Devastated,
Are you related to Chump Lady? ????
Wow, say it like it is.
I needed someone with your and Chump Lady’s constitution in my day.
Everyone is supporting CL’s advice to you Replaced.
I hope this all helps you. Hopefully you can find good counselling as your heart is so heavy with pain.
You loved, married and had children with this man.
I am so sorry for all your pain and I hope in time perhaps you can find it in your heart and in your mind to find true love, maybe even to this man who already loves you and wants to marry you.
At this time, though, as everyone says, NOT now. Not fair to him.
It is a good thing that you came to CL, CN, you know things aern’t right, aern’t good and you are searching for answers.
They are your’s to read, today, Replaced.

(((You need a hug and I send you many)))

2nd Gen Chump
2nd Gen Chump
6 years ago
Reply to  Devastated

Atheist here. You don’t have to be religious to recognize lies and infidelity as betrayals and immoral.

oneonefourone
oneonefourone
6 years ago
Reply to  2nd Gen Chump

+1 atheist here, too. Although STBX was a Dawkins-loving atheist who owned a t-shirt that said ‘good without god’ on it when we met. Not sure what his moral compass is anchored on these days.. :/

Lulu
Lulu
6 years ago
Reply to  coolbreezeout

Also, if I were the fiancé, I would see it as red flag that she was essentially condoning cheating, and thinking that there might be circumstances (like the fact that she doesn’t golf!) that makes cheating acceptable.

left him at the airport
left him at the airport
6 years ago
Reply to  coolbreezeout

Cool breeze, I couldn’t agree more! Her picker is broken. Should work on that before getting into any relationship.

AllOutofKibble
AllOutofKibble
6 years ago

Two cheaters are now bound to each other and live with each other. That right there is the sweet smell of justice! Go let them enjoy the long nights of wondering if the other is cheating on them. Go let them enjoy being the marriage police. Go let them spend countless hours trying to figure out the best way to make their lives seem wonderful on social media so that everyone else will buy into the impression management you have bought into.

You say they have so much in common. Go back and read about mirroring. You say she is a good person, a Catholic. Allow me to quote my friend’s Pinterest Wall here: God will never send you someone else’s husband. It’s a sparkly turd and you’re failing to see the turd. Beyond that only worry how your kids are doing. You left the cheater. You gained a life. Now go live it.

Giddy Eagle
Giddy Eagle
6 years ago
Reply to  AllOutofKibble

Could you provide a link or some reference on mirroring?

ANC
ANC
6 years ago
Reply to  Giddy Eagle
ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  AllOutofKibble

Great reply! Thank you! And i agree — God will never send you someone else’s husband! Brilliant and totally true! I am sure those two convinced themselves that they were just “meant to be.” And who knows what he told her?! I’m sure he made me out to be a hag, and she thought she was rescuing him from a horrible marriage! Either way, it was terribly wrong. And you’re so right — i gained a life. My counselor calls it the “odd gift.” Not the none i wanted, not the one i planned on. But it is a gift nonetheless, and it’s time to fully EMBRACE it!

AlohaFreedom
AlohaFreedom
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Replaced,

In regards to your statement about not knowing what your ex told the OW:
I am a mother of 3 young children. My soon to be exhusband admits to SEVEN affairs in our 5 year marriage. I wonder how many more there really are. Yes, I was tested for every STD/ HIV etc. All were negative. Praise God.
Anyway, he told the newest OW and some of the others that I cheated, abused him and kicked him out. He told one woman (who found me on the internet when she became suspicious that he was married) that he said he had no wife or children.
I had to sue him for child support, take him to court for custody when he threatened to kidnap the children and call the police 2x when he assaulted me. Both times he lied to the police and walked away with no charges. My point is, these are NOT good people. I am so sorry your ex destroyed your family. I truly am because I know the bitter sting of pain and how horrible this feels. Counseling sounds like it would be very helpful for you at this point.

Feelingit
Feelingit
6 years ago
Reply to  AllOutofKibble

Yes, and by the way, what do you mean she is Catholic or him, by birth, like a nationality or race? No true Catholic would be OK with adultery, divorce, remarriage.
My stbx says he is an orthodox christian. Yes he was baptised and confirmed but that is where it ends. When I found out about the adultery and asked him to talk to a priest, he told me they are all crazy.
Later he told our daughter in a text Jesus forgives us all, we are all sinners. He doesn’t seem to understand that is true but we must repent and follow Jesus first.
You need to stop calling them catholic, they have abandoned the practice.

Traffic_Spiral
Traffic_Spiral
6 years ago

Yup. Your ex was sullen, uncommunicative, and unfaithful. Why are you trying to hold on to that? He and shmoopie can have each other and it’s no skin off your back. Let him go and move on with your life. Also, don’t bother being anything but baseline polite to ex and schmoopie, and tell the kids the truth. “Ex cheated on me with schmoopie and that’s why your father I got divorced. You can have your relationship with them, but I don’t like her or him, and don’t feel like being around them.”

I’m willing to bet if you’d stop trying to smile through the shit sandwich of pretending you’re Great Pals with them both, you’d get over that resentment a lot quicker.

JC
JC
6 years ago

Be very careful with the BS that the OW is allegedly a good person who “just made a mistake.” That sounds a lot like the excuse I made for my cheating EW.

All of us must be judged by the entirety of our actions. Too often in our society, we excuse shitty behavior and come up with rationalizations to excuse the terrible actions of otherwise fine people.

But that’s the whole point!! I can’t think of anyone in my day-to-day life who fits the cliche of a movie villain. Instead, I gradually understood that shitty people are the ones that generally seem great…until they aren’t. Their flaws are life-changing and obnoxiously selfish and destructive…while the rest of us have minor flaws that don’t blow up lives.

The OW sucks. That’s what sucking looks like.

unicornomore
unicornomore
6 years ago
Reply to  JC

“The OW sucks. That’s what sucking looks like.”
perfect….ding ding ding, we have a winner

It has been 16 years since my new husband and his XW split. We have been married now for 2 yrs, his XW (and new guy who seems like a decent fellow) for about 5.

Hubby’s XW was SO NOT MEH at stepdaughters HS graduation, if I were her new husband, I would have felt REALLY awkward.

She seems very very concerned, preoccupied and wrapped up in what we do. She is also mean and selfish, so just to amuse myself I throw in little torments just for fun (which is childish and petty, I know but she is a pain in my ass, so there).

She was grossly inappropriate towards me (who had ZERO to do with their breakup) and I almost said to her hub “doesnt it bother you that she is so preoccupied with us instead of living her life with you?” but I didnt because (if truth be known) Im simply not THAT mean. (he has never hurt me so it would be wrong).

So this is what my version of “not meh xw looks bitter and odd, not a good look for anyone” and I wish better for the OP

violet
violet
6 years ago
Reply to  JC

My thoughts exactly. The OW is a wonderful person? Bullshit. She is a liar and a thief, notwithstanding the fact that she is a “good Catholic”. No matter what she does, no matter who she fools, she is still the person who thought it was okay to destroy a marriage. That makes her a bad person. Period.

You need to work on you. Please do not commit to another relationship until you have healed yourself. Yes, it may take time, but once you acknowledge the anger and the pain, and take affirmative steps to understand the reasons for your feelings, you will be ready to bring someone into your life. You’re just not there yet.

K
K
6 years ago
Reply to  violet

If they were honest people, let alone good Catholics, they would have left their marriages prior to getting involved with each other. No one is forcing anyone to stay in a marriage they don’t want to be in. It’s not the Middle Ages. If you want a divorce, you can have one. If couples therapy fails, normal people just get divorced. Replaced, yes it sucks, but I think your issue is just one of needing to re-focus on what’s important to you. Perhaps your engagement is making you feel vulnerable and kicking up your old fears and those things that you haven’t fully processed or let go of. She’s not living YOUR life, it’s a completely different one, though some of the parts look the same. YOU are living your life. Your kids are still yours, albeit shared. Probably time to stop focusing on their side of the fence and on the awesomeness that you have. Don’t let them keep spoiling your happiness.

NeverLookingBack
NeverLookingBack
6 years ago
Reply to  K

Yeah it feels like you have grass is greener syndrome. Very dangerous territory and not fair to your fiance.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  K

Thanks, K. I have thought about that too. I think the engagement has kicked up some emotional dust. Might be a good time to revisit counseling to talk through it.

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  violet

So true, I know plenty of good Catholics–my mother, my grandmother. They were compassionate people whose piety made them kinder, loyal, and resilient. They didn’t screw married men while they themselves were married, or deceive other people. To call the OW in this case a “good Catholic” is insulting to people who actually are.

kb
kb
6 years ago
Reply to  Tempest

This. If anything, his Catholicism should have driven him to work harder in therapy to become a better communicator. Clearly he wasn’t interested if Replaced had to do all the therapy appointments.

Nanki Poo
Nanki Poo
6 years ago
Reply to  JC

This, times one billion.

Actions define the person; it really is that simple.

Societally, we seem overly concerned with “yeah, but…” excuses. E.g., “they’re lying cheaters… Yeah, but they also go to church!” It’s ridiculous. The only Yeah, but that matters is what people do to make things right after they fuck things up. Cheaters NEVER do this, ever.

Chumpinrecovery
Chumpinrecovery
6 years ago
Reply to  Nanki Poo

That last line says it all right there. We all make mistakes. It’s what you do about it that shows who you really are.

12YearsWasted
12YearsWasted
6 years ago

This is amazing! That 2×4 was swift and the advice spot on! Wow

Valerie
Valerie
6 years ago
Reply to  12YearsWasted

YES!! Just what I was thinking. I know of a few cheaters who blew up both families to be together, and they are regular church-goers. It disgusts me.

left him at the airport
left him at the airport
6 years ago
Reply to  12YearsWasted

Right? That’s why I keep coming back to read CL every day, haha! For a daily dose of 2×4 therapy and some no-BS real talk. CL rocks ????????

Kimhopes
Kimhopes
6 years ago

I realised on the weekend that I actually, finally, truly hit meh. It feels wonderful. I hope all the chumps reading get there too. It is a place of peace and kindness to yourself.

Replaced, you can’t be, there is only one you. Live YOUR life. My dad always said to run your own race, that way you are only trying to better yourself. Good luck.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  Kimhopes

Thanks for the advice and support, Kimhopes. I am truly working on embracing this NEW life of mine. I don’t do change all that well, so it’s been hard to accept something i didn’t want. But i am working toward being more excited about what’s to come than anything i may have HAD and lost. Hard but important transition!

Other Kat
Other Kat
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

If you haven’t already, read as much as you can about narcissism and other personality disorders, both here and on links in the Resources section. Your X sounds like a textbook case and if you haven’t come to both an intellectual and an emotional, gut-level understanding of his disorder, it’s going to be much harder to heal. At least it was for me. Once I truly understood the depth of my X’s narcissism, I was gradually able to stop taking it personally and begin letting go. You were not replaced. You were devalued and discarded and are still being gaslighted into believing your X’s narrative.

left him at the airport
left him at the airport
6 years ago
Reply to  Kimhopes

Kimhopes, you found Meh? ???????????????????????? Congratulations ????????????

Rebecca
Rebecca
6 years ago

I am also embarrassed to say that I am stuck.
7 years past DDay and 3 years post divorce.
I live in a beautiful home, have amazing adult kids who thing I’m the best mom in earth and I have the greatest, loyal friends anyone could ask for.
I’m sad that the other family walked away and that my ex never admitted anything or ever looked back. He has no relationship with one kid and barely a relationship with the other – they know the full truth and the OW.
I don’t want to be him or her. I know they suck and that they’re miserable people.
BUT I cannot seem to get him out of my head.
I’m down to this last piece and am doing the hard work to eradicate him from my brain.
It is something that needs to be done constantly…every time the thoughts come back, I have to feel them, reject them and then force them out of my brain…over and over again.
It isn’t easy but neither is living with this poison inside me.
One day, one moment at a time until I’m free. This blog gives me the strength and determination to finally get to a life worth living.

Chumped but good
Chumped but good
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

My good therapist said the same thing. Set yourself a 15 minute time each day to feel said and don’t guilt trip yourself about that time. Let yourself feel those real emotions then put them aside for a day to be the real you. Great advice. That therapist got me through my divorce.

strong and real
strong and real
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

Rebecca
Thank you for this. Wow FMT you posted too!
I love CN and bow down to the excellent snark of Chumplady!
strong and real

FMT
FMT
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

Rebecca, the big difference between you and the OP is that you’re not holding another person hostage to your own process through this. That’s huge. You’ll get through this last bit in your own time and in your own way.

I love the idea of scheduling time to wallow and then putting it all back in a box. Violet, please thank your therapist friend for this!

LeeLeeG
LeeLeeG
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

My situation isn’t the same as poor Replaced is but I feel her pain. Mine never had any intention of leaving and has been fighting very hard to win me back. All of that is still a work in progress (even 3 yrs later) but I cannot get her out of my mind. I can’t get over it, can’t get past it. The pain that you feel is so deep it takes a looooong ass time to get past, if you ever really do. It changes who you are – your image of the world and of the people in your life. As time has gone by, I have since been reminded of my value and worth and how fucking AWESOME I am but still – there’s that lingering thing in the back of my mind where I just can’t let go of it. As time goes on, those twinges are happening more infrequently but it’s still there, nagging me.

The OW in my case was soooo far beneath me that it’s shocking to me that with all his hauty high-class standards that he would stoop so low. Just being WILLING shouldn’t have been enough for Mr. I’m The Best At Everything. She’s an insult to everything he had, everything that I am. My brain is fully aware. My heart, however, is slow to catch up. Once agn – tx for the advice, Chump Lady! You’re right on the $$ as usual.

KathleenK
KathleenK
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

Rebecca – I am right there with you. The constant ruminations have created a neural pathway (more like a neural highway) in my brain and when I am on a walk or quiet the thoughts come. Always. And yes, it’s a constant struggle because I do not want to be thinking about that – I want to be thinking about my new life! I do like the Power of Now by Tolle to quiet the inner voice and thoughts. And there’s always playing WordWarp on my phone.
Keep fighting the good fight – you are not alone.

Now I.C.
Now I.C.
6 years ago
Reply to  KathleenK

EMDR helped me after DDay #1. The doc asked me if I belived the treatments would work and I admitted that no, I was skeptical. She said it didn’t matter. She was right, I felt much, much better after the scarred neural path was fuzzed out a bit. I went to about 3 sessions and it really gave me the physical correction I needed to get off that high dive of panic that occurred every time I would think about him admitting to the affair. Too bad I couldn’t set that phaser to “no duh” and avoid DDay #2 nine years later….but I am not PTSD’d this time. Just disgusted with my abandoner-liar-hider-coward POS STBXH. I don’t think the Wizard has anything in his black bag for me on that. Still working on it.

AllOutofKibble
AllOutofKibble
6 years ago
Reply to  Now I.C.

EMDR was my first thought after I saw 7 years.
I have a friend who used is successfully. I was not a candidate, but I’ve heard a lot of great Hingis about it.

BeowulfSabrina
BeowulfSabrina
6 years ago
Reply to  KathleenK

This has been helping me with neuroplasticity and reprogramming my sad brain. https://youtu.be/1ZUi3XShdqA

Rebecca
Rebecca
6 years ago
Reply to  BeowulfSabrina

Excellent video that I will start on right after this post!!!!!
Uses a bit of EMDR, too.
Thank you for this link ????

violet
violet
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

I don’t know if this will help you, but I allowed myself a certain amount of time each day to think about what had happened to me, wallow in it even. When that set time was over, I put those thoughts into a mental box and went on with my day. As I was progressing, I gave myself less and less time eat day to “stew.” After a time, I began to think about them less and less.

I did not come up with this concept. One of my friends, who is a therapist, uses this technique with her clients. It helps to acknowledge the hurt, but not let it take over your life. It also helps you feel like you are moving forward, which is so important to the healing process.

There are times when I don’t always stick to this process, but it does help. Recently, an acquaintance tried to engage me in a discussion about how “great” OW was doing and I shut that shit down. I am not interested. She could become the equivalent of Mother Teresa and she will still be a bad person to me.”There are some things that only God can forgive.”

Still, I make it clear to all that I have no interest in what X or OW are doing with their lives. They are no longer together and that makes it easier to put what they did to me out of my mind. I believe, though, that the path to peace includes keeping bad people away from my life and my thoughts.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  violet

Thanks for that advice! I’ve heard that too and will give it a try. I can get bluesy if i’m not careful. I am a somewhat serious person by nature, and when i think about this stuff i can get down. I will try to schedule the time i think about it, then be done with it. Thanks for the advice!

HAPPY
HAPPY
6 years ago
Reply to  ReplacedChump

Great advice violet! Thanks!
I try to listen to guided meditation videos on youtube every morning before I start my day. I find them very helpful.

I put out good positive vibes, am caring, polite, and kind to others and I find that I get that back. I feel important in this world, just by being a good person.

Dr. Dyer and Abraham Hicks are helpful for me. I’ll be checking out the link Beowulf posted, too.

HAPPY
HAPPY
6 years ago
Reply to  HAPPY

For a start https://youtu.be/xoYnqvadurg
Her videos are pretty good!

27yrswasted
27yrswasted
6 years ago
Reply to  violet

Love Love Love this idea of giving yourself a set amount of time to ‘stew’. Really gonna try that daily to get the cheating prick out of my head!

left him at the airport
left him at the airport
6 years ago

…”you think you’ve been ‘replaced’ instead of liberated”, THIS!! Stop thinking you were ‘replaced’, because CL is spot on – you weren’t replaced, you were handed a get-out-of-jail-free opportunity!! You didn’t lose anything. You gained your freedom!! Run wild with it ????????‍♀️????????‍♀️????????‍♀️????????‍♀️

And I second the motion that you come clean with your kids ????????

VulcanChump
VulcanChump
6 years ago

I do know that it’s hard to get out of this mindset- to not feel like the main character in your own life anymore. When Rhys and I first got together, I mentally compared us to Claire and Jamie from Outlander- I was sure we’d be a love for the ages. After I dumped him, I wondered if I was actually the pathetic side character who loves Jamie too, but he would never love her back.

Breaking myself out of the comparison and realizing I can still be central in my own life was tough.

ClearWaters
ClearWaters
6 years ago

As I read Replaced’s letter, I was falling into the same trap she has about losing a life (I KNOW schmoopie doesn’t reach my toes except being 30 years younger. And cheater, oh well…). I kept thinking as I read: How is Tracy going to handle this one?

Replaced, Chump Lady has nailed it once again. You have not lost anything except a BAD person in your life. I was married to one (and his Crazy family) for 40 years. I am left with ME (a stable job and thanks to my lawyers, some resources to start over). I trust myself.

Be brave, Replaced, and forget those BAD people and take care of what you have.

Kathleen
Kathleen
6 years ago

After 34 years married 2 years dating, my narcissistic ex left me for a widow who knew he was married. After being in denial for years.. I finally threw him out & divorced him.

They are now living together supposedly happy, traveling the world while I am just getting by. I was replaced before I knew what was going on.

I now realize he is a lying, selfish narc who is NO prize.
Eventually he will replace her.. These men never change, and for now she’s of use to him.

Yes, I was replaced with a down graded skank.. but he now has someone who will suck the life out of him.
She’s possessive controlling and desperate.

That is his Karma. I try to live my life now every day
being happy I’m free of the toxic triangle they created.

I’m getting stronger every day … trying not to think of them but moving towards “meh”.

TiredChump
TiredChump
6 years ago

Replaced-
I say this with love and understanding (think – pot calling the kettle black),,,,,,,

I think are struggling because you are still trying to control something that is beyond your control. Your marriage/family did not work out the way you pictured it and you are still trying to figure out how that happened/ what you could have done differently/ why? why? why? How dare he? How dare she? How can the kids be happy? How can people accept this betrayal? Why is the world still spinning on its axis after the chaos of being mindfucked?

This is all part of the “bargaining” stage of grief, because if you can figure out a concrete reason why it all happened – you can fix it – even if the fix for you is making everyone see that you are “better than her.” But guess what, you can’t control anything other than yourself. You can’t make family/friends/neighbors/kids think anything about anyone else. You can only be the best you possible. And guess what, by being the best you possible, your kids and friends and community will love you – and only then wonder how the heck your first husband “let you go.” And by then, you will be so happy being you, you won’t even care what anyone else thinks.

CL’s advice is spot on – you need to ACCEPT that ExpectedLife 1.0 is over and create a picture for FUTURE LIFE 2.0 that makes you happy.

((hugs)))

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

Wow, TiredChump, thank you! I think you’re 100% spot-on. 1.0 didn’t go as expected. I am not great at adjusting to unexpected change. But yes, that’s it. Time to embrace 2.0, because it’s really good and so full of promise!!!! Thanks for your wise words!

ClearWaters
ClearWaters
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

Life 2.0. I like that. We have that option.

In fact, I lost some sleep over changing my name after the divorce: removing cheater’s and going back to my maiden name or keeping my name of the last 40 years, over two thirds of it to be exact.

I decided to keep my married name for the following reasons: it’s my professional name, there is a hell of a lot of red tape involved, it is my children’s name and …. they deserve name xxxx.2.0, which I am now giving them.

Feelingit
Feelingit
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

Right on tired chump. In your letter “replaced” the recurring theme is what you should have done to be better and how she is better at those things. It is very one sided. What about how could he have been better to you and changed for you- two people are involved.

I feel like my cheater has treated our entire family like employees and we are replaceable. My 15 year old was the first to say right after he left, she felt like she had been fired. I relayed this to him and he even said “business is all I know, what do you expect?” In a love relationship, you can’t just be replaced because you are thought of in a deeper way and you are more than just the tasks you perform. But they are narcs no deeper than a puddle in a swimming pool that never fills. You need to stop seeing yourself as the problem and see him as disordered!

flowergirl
flowergirl
6 years ago
Reply to  Feelingit

“feel like my cheater has treated our entire family like employees and we are replaceable.” Kaa went to shake my hand when I said we should try to work things out for the children.

Trying to Cope 27
Trying to Cope 27
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

Thank you, TiredChump. I needed to hear this today!

MightyAgain
MightyAgain
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

This is so so good too! Thank you for that!

mil23
mil23
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

This is perfect! New chump here filing for divorce and reading this helped me. Thank you!!!

Capricorn
Capricorn
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

Wow. Tired Chump. You must be tired because you can think and say things like this. Big brains use lots of energy. You so nailed it. Perfect. I have nothing to add! ????????

Doingme
Doingme
6 years ago
Reply to  Capricorn

“And guess what, by being the best you possible, your kids and friends and community will love you – and only then wonder how the heck your first husband “let you go.” And by then, you will be so happy being you, you won’t even care what anyone else thinks.”

Nailed it right there TiredChump!

Rebecca
Rebecca
6 years ago
Reply to  TiredChump

Well said. Thank you!

Doingme
Doingme
6 years ago

Replaced

It’s all to common to do a comparative analysis complete with checklists on the OW. Raising my hand as I believed she(they) must have something I lacked

. That landed my self esteem in a deep pit. And yer I had an Olympian staying power, determined to be good enough.

You get to create the story. Yet you justify his and her behavior and accept responsibility for their actions. What I believe you are looking for is validation.

Infidelity isn’t a mistake; cheating requires repeatedly deceiving a spouse. Make your story factual and tell it. Two asshole lying married adults with children duped their spouses because they lack morals.

Trust they both suck. Focus on your life. Stop pretending you’re part of the jolly happy team stuffing down the wonderfulness of the disordered. Don’t work around their needs. Take care of your own.

Set up boundaries with your children. Make yourself central. You escaped the bliss of doing all the work.

Barbara
Barbara
6 years ago

Replaced you’re still struggling with your he Trauma Bond your ex left you with. Please please please get to a Trauma Specific counselor asap. At least 18 months of counseling. THEN a new relationship

It WILL pass if you work on it

HAPPY
HAPPY
6 years ago

My stbx and his AP were a couple 25 years ago in college. An abortion and him working too much ended their relationship. It was a magical NYE 2017 for them. They settled their past, AP reunited with her ‘one true love’, and stbx told his daughter and I more or less to be happy for him because ‘AP really gets him’.

They have picked up where they left off 25 years ago. AP buys him clothes with logos, an expensive watch, huge screen tv, etc. Right after affair was exposed, stbx told our teen daughter, he shared a text between the 2 of them with AP so she can analyze their relationship- ‘ since AP has seen many therapists and was once a teenage girl’.

The text was about a visit to see grandma my stbx was telling our daughter she didn’t deserve to take with him since she didn’t call grandma very often and because she expressed little interest in visiting grandma in the past.

Later found out from a note, this was a planned 2 day visit with AP. Having daughter come along would have messed that up. Many of these visits to ‘take care of grandma’ were to see AP.

They also have the same interests (He’s smoking cigarettes just like in college) and she’s always got sports tickets available. She even sold our daughters and my cell phones on her FB page for him when he wanted us off the family plan. Easy peasy. He doesn’t even have to try. He never tried with our relationship.
AP gives him compliments and pumps up that ego.
AP tells him what to wear, what to think, what to say (according to the 5000 texts and 40 hours of phone calls between them in a month). All he has to do is show up.

AP has a special needs child. AP is very well off and church going. In the eyes of many, she’s a single mom who’s got it tough taking care of her son.

When my stbx was treating me like $hit from Jan til I found out about the affair in Mar, I asked him what is it that he wanted, why wasn’t he happy, why didn’t he want to work on our marriage- he told me he wanted to ‘volunteer’. I wanted to roll my eyes because this guy never spent any time at home with his family and now he wants to volunteer?!

He’s got a built in ‘feel good’ altruistic endeavor with AP and her child’s special needs group. He didn’t have to go out on his own and find a cause to devote his time to. I even helped pay for the special needs group with a donation he made through our joint checking acct. STBX had a gift for AP’s son sent to our house, our daughter opened it.

STBX didn’t buy our daughter a Christmas or birthday present… But look at him!! He looks nice in his new clothes and shows up at the special needs events all provided by AP.

I stuck by my stbx through his years of drinking, his dui, him working long hours, never taking me out (I never got flowers, a date, romance, etc. during our 18 year marriage), him losing his job because of drinking- and now he’s mentioned he drank and worked a lot because his home life was unhappy.
He was boss and able to drink at work, and had a bunch of 20 year olds feeding his ego, telling him what a great boss he is before his business partner fired him.
Blameshifting. Before I met him he worked long hours, so I guess he never liked his home life. It’s really too bad because he had a sweet wife and daughter at home this whole time.

Entitlement. He’s a coward and a shell of a man. I’m very unattracted to him and am happy I don’t have to deal with disappointment, his selfish behavior, and being taken for granted every day. Meh.

StaryEye
StaryEye
6 years ago
Reply to  HAPPY

I never got flowers, cards, or romantic dinners either. However my stbx would tell me how he was such a romantic person that I couldn’t appreciate it. On our first date he gave me flowers which made me embarrassed (I was 18, never dated). This was his example of me not liking romance for the last 16 years. If he isn’t romantic with me, exactly who is he romantic with if not his wife? Kind of creepy to think about now.

After 4 months since Dd2, I still wonder if I will ever get over the betrayal. To what extent is healthy protection vs getting stuck in anger and hurt? I don’t want to be Ailey dependent on a man financially or emotionally. Isn’t that just good sense? Do people really recover and expect the best from future relationships without feeling paranoid of a new relationship?

Chickynot
Chickynot
6 years ago
Reply to  HAPPY

Happy and LeeLee: Boy I hear you both! It sucks to be married to an alcoholic narc, to whom kids and family are only replaceable accessories to be “traded in” when they get to be too much trouble. Mine has decided I don’t deserve to receive even half of the assets (not even counting the ones he’s hiding) because I “never paid for anything” despite spending all my emergency reserve savings on his alcohol rehab 10 years ago, negotiated the purchase of our present home after said rehab, etc., etc. (And of course he’s back to drinking, and has added a new addiction: high ticket, $1000/hr prostitutes, which I assume he’s paying with his hidden cash stash). They suck indeed. All you can do is jump off that moving train before it crashes: no matter how much it hurts, you will at least still be alive.

SharylK
SharylK
6 years ago
Reply to  HAPPY

Wow. What a jackass. I am sorry for your daughter having to see what having a narc dad is like close up. I am glad he is your STBX, you are really dodging a bullet and your daughter is getting an education in what she doesn’t want in her future. Take care of you – and you can definitely TRUST THAT HE SUCKS and soon he will suck just as much with OW –

HAPPY
HAPPY
6 years ago
Reply to  SharylK

Thanks guys! I know my comment went on about me, instead of focusing on supporting and helping OP “Replaced” in her situation. Here I go again, I guess, because we are not alone…

So many absurd things have happened to us- we have to remember this behavior should never be normalized.

I should have protected my daughter and left my stbx years ago. I went back to school after his dui, then he lost his job and quit drinking- so I stayed. Nothing changed, he was a dry drunk. But hey- he’s such a good person because he quit drinking!

I kicked him out of the house the night I found out about the affair, no pick me dance. My daughter and I were suspicious before. I told my stbx he needed to tell our daughter what he did and why he was leaving the house. She told him she overheard the confrontation and didn’t need to talk to him. I met with a lawyer exactly one week after, took half from our joint acct, opened my own, and had my paychecks deposited into my new acct.

My daughter knows how to deal with him better than I do. He’s got a pattern… If one tiny comment is made- he takes it as criticism. He instantly follows normal conversation he perceives as criticism by interrogating with questions like ‘have you done this?’ ‘have you spoken to or emailed this person?’ Etc.
There’s so many instances to point out what a hypocrite he is, how he backtracks and contradicts himself. It’s comical.

My daughter remembers how he used to call her swear words and had no patience with her and now he tells her to move on because he can’t change the past. He’s trying to get involved with her life so he can gain control, take credit, and put her in a place where she will owe him.

It’s all for him to feel better about himself, about what he did, to justify what he did. He’s told her “someday you will understand why I did this.” Her response to him was “I understand you weren’t happy, but I know right from wrong. The way you went about it was wrong.”
Her response falls on deaf ears. He believes I’m influencing her and someday she will see his behavior as a normal solution to an unhappy relationship.

My daughter is very little to no contact with him. She doesn’t allow people who don’t make her feel good to get too close to her. It feels great to live an authentic life where we aren’t lying and covering up for his bad behavior anymore.
My daughter will turn 18 in less than 5 months. I feel for all you who have little ones.

LeeLeeG
LeeLeeG
6 years ago
Reply to  HAPPY

I felt my own situation resonate with yours, Happy. It’s all about EGO – theirs, never OURS, obviously. She got dinners and outings and closeness and caring. I got colonscopies, broken water heaters, parent-teacher conferences and hernia surgeries! While I was tethering him to his life, being both mother and father, homeowner, employee, getting 2 degrees – she was getting gold heart necklaces (that’s MY money too!!)! Now the “excuse” is “I was in a bad place.” No – you were in a place of entitlement, with a bruised ego and narcissism because you never got called out on your bullshit (never even got a PARKING ticket), all sprinkled with way too much alcohol (causing 2 trips to the ER with alcohol related pancreatitis, for which I had to deal, not HER). His total lack of insight and entitlement led him to what he did. She was another indulgence to fan his very precious and thin-skinned ego. Smoking a $20 cigar, bragging about the trips abroad we took, his $65,000 car, his Rolex watch and fucking some white trash piece of garbage. All indulgences for an ego driven narcissist with zero insight into his own behaviors. Right…”bad place.” But I’m feelin’ ya, Happy! Tx for the input!

Lulu
Lulu
6 years ago

I have to admit, I cracked up at the Catholic, church-going part. Did your ex and his mistress flip over the sections of the Bible that condemn adultery as a grievous sin? Did they sleep through that part of the teachings when they went to pre-cana?

Also, unless they got an annulment from the Church (who won’t give it to them because THEY cheated) they should know that, in the eyes of the Church, they’re STILL committing adultery.

ClearWaters
ClearWaters
6 years ago
Reply to  Lulu

Yeah, fine bunch of Catholics indeed. In fact schoompie is a Jesus cheater and my XH has four Bible’s and New Testaments on his night stand, a rosary and a scapulary…. and is in debt due to ego-spending, etc.

Traffic_Spiral
Traffic_Spiral
6 years ago
Reply to  Lulu

Yeah, fine bunch of Catholics there.

conniered
conniered
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

That right there boggles my mind…it makes absolutely NO sense. How can a known cheater being anything to the church, much less the freaking Vatican?

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

I’ll bet good money Pope Francis is not impressed.

Free Vix
Free Vix
6 years ago

Replaced, it sounds like you’re stuck on the trauma treadmill. When that happens, it doesn’t matter how much you intellectually process CL’s clearly reasonable advice if your emotions are stuck in the fight-or-flight cyclone of the amygdala. Trauma hijacks the brain.

I am wholly rational and intelligent, but I couldn’t get out of the trauma loop on my own. I found a trauma therapist who specializes in EMDR therapy, and it finally helped me to detach my intense emotions from what happened to me and get back control of my brain. This stuff is traumatic, and I can’t tell you how much better I feel after working with a trauma therapist. It might be worth looking into for you, too.

ClearWaters
ClearWaters
6 years ago
Reply to  Free Vix

Great insight and advice! I love CN!

Tessie
Tessie
6 years ago

The other thing that comes to mind … that feeling of how intolerable it feels to lose to lesser people…. who are in the wrong…. who have grievously hurt us…… and they seeming get all the goodies while we are still schlepping along in pain.

It’s an illusion. You lost a turd to a turd….period. You are actually the winner here, not them. They are stuck with each other, lying cheating cheaters. Some prize. They will generate their own karma, unaided.

Woulda, coulda, shoulda and a couple of bucks will get you a cup of coffee. Time to let go of the crazy and take your hands and your eyes off of their illusion and put them on your own life. The reality of now, what your life is now, is what matters, not someone’s else’s myth spun for image management. Step out of the triangulation and find yourself and your own true happiness. Tell your kids the truth. Then get on with your own life.

You deserve it, your kids deserve it, and certainly Mr. Wonderful deserves it. Sending you hugs.

ReplacedChump
ReplacedChump
6 years ago
Reply to  Tessie

Thanks, Tessie. I have been stuck in the triangulation — of my OWN doing, as CL pointed out. Yes, I am doing this! Time to move on.

marriagedetective
marriagedetective
6 years ago
Reply to  Tessie

Amen Tessie!!!! “Some prize.” I just LOVE that!

Hcard
Hcard
6 years ago

My idiot died. I got the life insurance and everything else. I found all the evidence after he died. I knew he was lousy human but he died before I could divorce. I have found myself having mental arguments about why, telling him how it could have been etc. He’s dead a year and I let him have a lot of time in my head, my new exercise is to notice each time he comes to mind, think NO, then replace it with a happy thought. Ican’t tell you how hard that has been. It’s work but I don’t want to give him one more minute of my time. Mentally you have to kick his ass to the curb. Trust that he sucks, she sucks. Bye, Bye

Now I.C.
Now I.C.
6 years ago
Reply to  Hcard

I wish mine was dead. Yeah, I know, not nice. But there are little kids with cancer in this world, why must the assholes be allowed to run free? It really is like a death to me already.

Meh or Bust
Meh or Bust
6 years ago

For me, CL nailed it when she said that it’s time to do the WORK. Getting to meh may just spontaneously occur for some people. My short glimpses of meh have only been after working hard to “trust that they suck,” even when I didn’t want to.

I thought my STBX and I had “manifest destiny” and would be together forever. When he blew up our marriage 5 months ago, I was devastated. But, someone pointed me to this blog and recommended CL’s book. When I started to focus on, and really listen to, what CL and CN said, I stopped blaming myself and started recognizing the truth about what had happened.

Through CL/CN I was also pointed to other resources, like Bancroft’s “Why Does He Do That?” Doing the reading was work. Taking time to find parallels in my marriage was actually not work – and it was astonishing to realize that. But, I was graced with the seeds of belief that it wasn’t me, it was him. For 16 years the default setting on our marriage was that everything was my fault. Now, it’s time for STBX to be accountable.

One thing that’s also been helpful in figuring out the REALITY of my marriage is talking in the Forums. That is real-time 2 x 4 application, when necessary. CN is much better at seeing “what’s really going on” than I am, so I use CN to check things out, on a daily basis, if necessary. The Chumps here are wise and compassionate… and bone-honest.

I wasn’t a perfect wife. But my reaction to difficult times in our marriage was not to seek out another relationship. Here’s a partial list of what I finally came to realize was not acceptable to me. Hopefully, you’ll recognize one or two things and begin to do the work of discovering what the reality of your marriage was:

1. Never calling or texting to let me know if he’d be home late or miss dinner. He just did what he wanted when he wanted. Not acceptable.

2. Raging at me/kids/dog if we did not do what he wanted us to do. Not acceptable.

3. Consistently manipulating me to a position between a rock and a hard place; I could never be right. Not acceptable.

4. Taking it out on me/kids/dog when he had a bad day at work. Not acceptable.

5. Never saying “I’m sorry” when something was clearly his fault. Not acceptable.

6. Putting his needs before anyone else’s in the family, including a hospitalized child and dying parents. Not acceptable.

7. Consistently coming home drunk, and then starting a huge and irrational fight. Not acceptable.

This is just a short list. Over the course of five months the list has grown quite long. CL/CN have helped me open up my eyes and smell the coffee.

Letting go of the fantasy of manifest destiny has been hard. But, in order to move forward it must be done. And yes, I also finally realized that the hell I lived in is now what the OW has to deal with. Good luck with that. I am free!

Doingme
Doingme
6 years ago
Reply to  Meh or Bust

Meh or Bust

Yes the OW lives in that hell I called my life. Interestingly enough regardless of how blissful their meeting, she has to face living the life I had. It fuckimg sucked.

I feel somewhat sorry for her as she can never measure up to all the good qualities I brought into my marriage that he couldn’t appreciate. By now she has to realize she was duped. Just one in a very long line of AP’s. She knows she’s momentarily ‘the one’; never to be the one and only.

marriagedetective
marriagedetective
6 years ago
Reply to  Meh or Bust

Making these lists is incredibly cathartic in my opinion. I knew that when I decided to divorce X I should write down the daily craziness that my world had become. I wrote down as many unjust and unloving behaviors that X had as I could think of. Writing these things down jogged a lot of memories that I had forgotten – red flags that happened before I found out about the affair. I started writing these down too. Now when I have those days where I’m missing my marriage and X, I read those lists. Then I write him a letter that I don’t send and all the rage I feel for everything I went through comes out. That rage actually feels good! It feels good to remind myself that it wasn’t me. I was doing everything I possibly could to make the marriage work, but as CL so eloquently puts it, infidelity shines a bright light on how terribly lopsided our marital relationship is.

Attie
Attie
6 years ago
Reply to  Meh or Bust

Good Lord, I think we were married to the same eejit! Particularly the bit about coming home drunk all the time, or even better “I’m just gonna have a fast drink with the guys” then rolling in around 4 a.m.!

Stalked, name changes
Stalked, name changes
6 years ago

For those chumps struggling with the illusion of how happy and fabulous things are with your ex and their affair partner:

I have been to the puppet show, and I have seen the strings.

My now ex-husband’s secret affair partner worked really hard to track me down, while I was 6 months pregnant, in an effort to reveal their 10 month affair (yes, check out that math). She basically “screenshot” all of their text conversations, discovered my cell number, Facebook, you name it, and sent me a copy of Every. Single. Message.

Now, granted she did prove to me that my ex-husband was certainly having a lot of sex with her in our family owned car, in parking lots. She wanted to hurt me with graphic evidence of their sodomy in public places, oops I mean “tru luv”.

But fellow chumps, the significant, constant undertone of all those “sexy” text messages OW screenshot to me is OW desperately pick me dancing, begging for scraps of his time, always waiting for him to show up, continually stating how unhappy she is, her admitting to putting my then husband’s needs above her own teenage daughter, and her use of narcotics to help her cope with the stress of pursuing a married man with three small children and a pregnant wife.

So, while this woman may have gone out of her way to hurt me by sending me SO MANY unwanted pornograpic text messages, she also did me a favor by unintentionally revealing how unhappy and untrusting their relationship is behind closed doors.

And friends, so it goes with you as well. Behind Oz’s curtain is just a big mess of hidden unhappiness.

Please follow CL’s advice and “leave a cheater, gain a life”!!!!!!

Meh or Bust
Meh or Bust
6 years ago

Stalked, I fervently hope that you live in a fault state and that you can use those screen shots as evidence of adultery. Save. Every. Single. One.

Stalked, name changed
Stalked, name changed
6 years ago
Reply to  Meh or Bust

Meh, I do live in a fault state! (I filed for an at-fault-divorce at 6 months pregnant with my 4th child and $9 in my bank account. A few weeks later I discovered CL and CN and the rest is history.) But I didn’t even need to use the screenshots to prove adultery (although I did save then) because the OW, who is a divorce attorney 15 years my senior, named herself as the “paramour” in our divorce case, hired her own attorney to represent her, and participated by inserting herself at every opportunity.

How did my now ex-husband respond to all this you ask? Well it was really romantic (heavy sarcasm). My ex-husband claimed to know nothing about the OW (with whom he was now living, but still lying to me about). He threatened several times (in writing) to murder her – a fact of which she is well aware. And he called her (in writing) every derogatory name a woman can be called, including the “C” word. OW knows all of this, yet still for some reason permits the man who threatened to kill her to hang around her teenage daughter. I can only deduce that OW has a pathological need to be in a “relationship” and can’t stand to be alone. Yet, as I’ve read here, not my circus and not my monkeys.

Thank heavens for CL and CN. I am still haunted by my experiences and still have further litigation for the post-divorce stalking and physical and sexual assaults I endured, but thanks to all of you I feel so much less alone.

As we have learned the hard way, “behind the curtain” cheaters are hiding very ugly truths.

AllOutofKibble
AllOutofKibble
6 years ago

Damn, those are some pretty messed up monkeys!
So glad you’re not the ringmaster of that circus anymore.

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago

(((Stalked))), I hope you keep that monster away from you and your kids for good.
Whatever happens to her, she knew what she was in for.

ChumpOnIt
ChumpOnIt
6 years ago

It’s amazing that APs and Xs think by flashing this stuff in our faces that we will feel jealous, sad, etc. All I have to say is: please, keep giving me reasons to be glad I got out!

Got-a-brain
Got-a-brain
6 years ago

Wow! She sounds like a real f*cking winner! They deserve each other!

Alex
Alex
6 years ago

I was such a chump. My either unemployed or under employed ex left because I wasn’t enough….
I was working so hard raising 3 kids, running a house and running my business I didn’t notice…. his meandering eyes… he slept with 1/2 our town after he left the first time… and the other half when he moved back in. He is a horrid parent – well he makes them dinner a few nights a month…
I need to work on MEH…
Meh and Me…
I’m single and shy. But on the whole strong and happy.

Thanks for the reminder!

Mandie101
Mandie101
6 years ago

Hug. Yes. You are not ready yet. For a relationship. To be engaged. You are still reeling. We all process differently.
Take a long view. What do you want out of life long term? Is thinking about him and her helping you achieve this? Do you think they even spend two seconds of their day thinking about you?
I don’t know a single happy ending story for these betrayers. Not one.
You are wasting time. Living well is the best revenge.

ChumpOnIt
ChumpOnIt
6 years ago
Reply to  Mandie101

Yes, please take the time to figure yourself out, to try to live your life focused on you and your needs and happiness. My X revealed that he has been seeing someone for “a couple of months” (we got divorced in May). Do I think Mr. I-Have-Lingering-Chilhood-Issues-So-I-Slept-With-Hookers-Practically-The-Whole-Marriage has done any of the work he claimed to be doing on fixing himself and is now ready to date? No. No, I do not. Do not do what these horrible people do and use someone else to try to fill a hole. I get it — the relationship to end all relationships came to abrupt end (not your choice) and now you’re trying to start again. And, yes, sometimes it really does suck to alone (in the romantic sense). You do deserve to reclaim a life for yourself and love again. But please do it the right way and do right by yourself first.

Paintwidow
Paintwidow
6 years ago

From reading This letter, I do agree that maybe Replaced shouldn’t get married right now. There is so much about that letter that just screams ” IF I HAD ONLY BEEN BETTER….” that would make any union unfair to her new partner.
That being said, I don’t think being broken by what was done to us disqualifies us from being a good mate.
There is something about the sheer audacity of another woman walking in and hijacking your life that is just a brand of fucked up that you never make your peace with, even if you come to learn that life was a fucked up, dysfunctional one…..it was yours, and some bitch just swooped in and emotionally mugged you.
Replaced, I don’t think your husband or his mistress are good people that made a bad choice. I think they are selfish, self absorbed, narcissistic people, I think you are far better off without him, I think the answer to why did he cheat? Is because he could. I think realizing these things is the road to meh, and I don’t think that meh means that you have to be okay with your ex being a cheater or his wife being his mistress….I think it means you don’t care. I think even if you don’t care, when karma hits them it’s okay to get a little joy out of that…..poetic justice. That’s my meh anyway…
Elizabeth Edwards( now deceased wife of adulterer and past presidential candidate John Edwards ) was quoted when speaking of her husbands affair as saying ” women should have more respect for other women” I agree.
Sometimes when I think of my ex husbands mistress it blows my mind that as a wife and a mother herself at the time, that she could be a participant in that.
I bet we will find her here when it happens to her.

Chumpinrecovery
Chumpinrecovery
6 years ago
Reply to  Paintwidow

In my case Schmoopie was cheated on by her husband too. She knows darn well how much pain I am going through but she just doesn’t care. She wants to build happiness on top of other people’s pain. Not a good person no matter how STBX tries to spin it.

marriagedetective
marriagedetective
6 years ago
Reply to  Paintwidow

So well put Paintwidow.

Additionally, with that “these are good people who made a bad choice” argument – Replaced, you are not remembering or considering what went into that choice. So many lies, trickle truths, thinking about themselves and never considering their spouse’s happiness or hurt, the blameshifting, the gaslighting, the entire fallout of craziness that happens when you find out about the affair, etc., etc. This isn’t just a “choice” this is a LIFESTYLE. These kinds of people are a special kind of fuckedupness and having an affair takes a lot of planning and deceit and then to marry the person after they divorce? There is so much wrong with that entire picture! All of these elements combined, a good marriage nor good people do these things make.

ChumpOnIt
ChumpOnIt
6 years ago

I agree with the lifestyle bit. X cheated most of our marriage and only told me when he couldn’t bear the brunt of living the torn life anymore (nothing to do with what he did having an effect on me). A mistake is doing something, regretting it instantly, and coming cleaning, being unimaginably repentant, and never doing it again and/or facing the consequences. I think the actions of most cheaters as described here nullify that whole “good people who made a bad choice” argument.

In this case, Replaced has to deal with someone who basically just jumped ships and she’s not seeing anything faulty with the new vessel in which her ex husband is now sailing around. I understand how hard this is to watch. Don’t be fooled…he and his AP still didn’t do the right thing and continue to not do the right thing by forming a permanent attachment with their APs and pretending all is okay. They are cowards — neither of them respectful enough to wait for one marriage to end before another could begin. None of this is illustrative of what good people do.

SharylK
SharylK
6 years ago

I agree Marriage Detective. CL, in her book, talks about the web of lies and time away from family that is required to have an affair – lies of omission too (my STBX’s speciality). This really helped me to see it differently and start to stand up for myself in MC and all of the times he was saying that it was me, not him.

Attie
Attie
6 years ago

Stalked, I think you might be right about the “happy couple”. My son got married here in France a couple of weeks ago and ex and schmoopie came over from the States. Now she is younger than me (4 years I think), prettier and slimmer so I was feeling a bit intimidated but ….. while everyone was polite to both of them, the overall impression is that she is a narc and a nutter! My youngest son let a few gems out when he came over to see me the other day and then when I took him and his gf out to dinner the other night a few more came out. Obviously he got all this info from his dad who just “couldn’t believe her behaviour as ‘she’s not like this in the States”! Yeah right. Pussywhipped I think is the expression. Turns out she felt threatened by me!!! Ha, ha what a joke. She walked around like she had a poker up her arse and was sucking on lemons. I, on the other hand, had the time of my life and spent the entire day laughing with the guests and my family. Ex wasn’t allowed to laugh – the only energy he was allowed to expend was on her – she’s one of these with a million selfies on FB just so that people can write back and say how beautiful she is. Enjoy that now ex! You are well and truly trapped this time!

Keepin Calm
Keepin Calm
6 years ago
Reply to  Attie

Attie, I remember reading about the upcoming wedding and how you were nervous. You handled it like a PRO. I am so proud of you!!! You had a great time celebrating your son’s wedding while your ex had to deal with his awful OW. Karma indeed. You are the WINNER!

MJB
MJB
6 years ago
Reply to  Attie

This is the karma many of us wait for here at CN! If you hadn’t been forced to be with them at the same event, you may have never known. We just assume they leave us because they found something better, it was something we did because those are the excuses they give, but ultimately it’s two turds left to float in the same potty. You did the work Attie and realized this was bullcrap