UBT: “An Optimist’s Guide to Divorce”

Thanks Modern Love of the New York Times for yet another romantic tale of conscious uncoupling. This last Sunday’s column was an OW’s cute How We Met story — Mother’s Day (the chump’s). On a barstool. It was “love at first sight.”

Modern Love. Come for the cliches. Stay for the sociopathy. 

Yes, another smug, faux-self-deprecating OW tale of love and superiority with the Super Understanding Chump Who Is Her New BFF. (Spoiler alert: They get mani-pedis.)

Of course a bazillion of you sent it to me. Of course I will UBT it.

Beka told me about her self-care plans for the day of her final divorce hearing as we were getting pedicures. Her two daughters sat between us in child-size pedicure chairs, chattering away and paying no attention to our conversation.

“I scheduled a facial, a massage, and lots of drinks beginning at 2 p.m.,” she said. “I’m going to need this. We know half the attorneys in town, and I bet we’ll see someone in court. Watch it be one of the loudmouths.”

We both laughed and sipped our wine.

I WIN THE PICK ME DANCE! LAUGH AND SIP YOUR DOOM, MOTHERFUCKER!

Beka told me about her self-care plans her sad attempts at normalcy for the day of her final divorce hearing my triumphant victory.

Beka is my boyfriend’s wife, and the girls are their children. I met her husband, Josh, the summer before, on Mother’s Day, which coincided with their 12th wedding anniversary. Beka had shooed him out of the house to host a mother-daughter tea, and he appeared in the seat next to me at a neighborhood bar.

Beka is the woman I conspired against to win my boyfriend, and the girls are the collateral damage sitting in child-size pedicure chairs. #sorryaboutyourparentsdivorce  #sparklytoenailsmakeitallbetter

He says it was love at first sight, while I thought he was just another sexy married guy — strictly off limits.

Here’s a dreamboat for you — a man who spends his anniversary AND Mother’s day in a bar! Picking up random skanks Falling in love with strange pussy ME.

I know it sounds all wrong, but I’m just that kind of irresistible siren.

Over the next two months, as I cycled in and out of tumultuous relationships,

Over 8 whole weeks I’ve had relationships (plural) and managed to create entire chaos cycles. But let’s call it “tumultuous.” It sounds so much more Hallmark movie channel rom-com that way. #borderlinepersonalitydisorder  #dateme #oriwillboilyourbunnies

he kept popping up.

I’m passing this off as kismet, but cheaters tend to pop up when you give them your number.

Occasionally we would wave across a coffee shop or exchange a few words on the street. One day he took a seat next to me at another bar, where we joined in the happy-hour conversation about politics and sex.

Neither of us have gainful employment, which frees us up for hours spent at coffee shops, bars, and Talk Sexy to Me Trivia Nights. #justwaving #exchangingglances #okayiwillblowu

When he left to pick up his children, I wasn’t surprised when he said, “Can I see you again?”

Generally men don’t ask to see me again. #alone4breakfast #WHYWONTYOUSEEME #tumultuous

I thought: “Just another creep trying to fool around behind his wife’s back.”

I had a fleeting moment of lucidity. It passed.

But I agreed to meet him again, mostly because it was easier than explaining why I wouldn’t and because I was certain I would never have an affair with him.

I agreed to help destroy the family of two small children and an innocent woman because it was easier than giving out a fake phone number. There would have been NUMBERS. And probably pens. I grow faint just thinking of that kind of exertion.

I was wrong about Josh. He wasn’t a creep or even a cheater. He was a man who loved his children more than anything.

So much so, that he ditched their mother on Mother’s Day to profess love to a stranger on a bar stool. He could’ve been assisting with the girls’ tea party, or out shopping for presents, or changing the oil in his wife’s car (Happy Anniversary, darling!) — but in a totally, uncreepy, utterly monogamous way, he was picking me up in a bar instead.

He was a man who loved his children. And then he met me!

Josh and Beka were a powerhouse couple — affluent, attractive, highly educated, generous — and the backbone of upper-middle-class respectability developing in my bohemian neighborhood.

I want upper-middleclass, powerhouse respectability. But that probably requires a job and less barstool sitting. Alas, I will never achieve these things, so I’ll steal them from Beka instead.

They had married in their 20s because they got along, had a lot in common (both are lawyers) and the timing was right; many of their friends were tying the knot.

He NEVER loved Beka! It was just the timing and peer pressure. That’s what Josh tells me over and over and over again when I threaten to simmer Fluffernutter. LOVE ME OR THE RABBIT DIES!

#answermytextsJosh #whats4dinner #fluffernuttersoup

Twelve years in, their marriage seemed to be compatible and right. But it was a union of practicality more than passion, and Josh was miserable. He didn’t think he had any right to be miserable, but he was.

Josh wasn’t a creep or a cheater. He’s a man who loves his children. Who tells random women he meets in bars that his wife doesn’t understand him.

Beka? I’m sorry you can’t be me, who is both compatible AND right. While you have zero passion with Josh, I have ALL the passion. And you have… well you have nice toenails now, Beka. #BFFs

I didn’t understand why Josh was willing to break apart everything he had to be with someone like me.

Yes I do. It’s because I’m AWESOMELY SPECIAL AND BETTER THAN BEKA! #humblebrag

I was a struggling academic recovering from a messy divorce, deliberately childless at 40. My devotion to my students and my love for my dogs served as a stand-in for stable and nurturing human relationships.

I don’t have stable and nurturing human relationships. Ergo Josh looks pretty good.

After many years of struggle, I recently had learned I had bipolar II disorder, which meant I finally had the right medicine. But I was wrestling with shame as I realized how many of my spectacularly bad decisions had been influenced by mental illness. I had to learn how to trust others and myself, and at times it felt like I would never get there.

Perhaps the meds aren’t working. Josh is a spectacularly bad decision. Need more Clozapine to drown out that thought. #BPDmademedoit

Josh said he liked me simply because he did. “I am married to a wonderful, successful, beautiful woman,” he said. “By any calculation, I should be happy. But I’m not, so I have decided that I am not going to calculate anymore.”

As we spent more time together, everything about our relationship felt natural. There was no imbalance in our love for one another, and we shared the same values and sense of humor. It turns out that Josh’s refusal to calculate — and my distrust in my ability to calculate — led us to the best decision of our lives: to do what it would take to be together. But that meant inflicting undeserved pain on others.

But what the hell! Inflicting pain felt natural. Resisting did not. We share the same values — putting ourselves above others.

On a sticky Sunday in August, when Josh and Beka’s children were staying with his mother, he asked her for a divorce. At first she refused to believe he was serious. Then she grew so angry that she shook.

Josh told me this!

A visibly upset Josh met me after she told him to leave the house. He was ashamed, relieved and almost physically sick with sorrow.

Beka threw him out! Josh is physically sick with sorrow to be with me! #winning!

“I could handle her anger,” he said. “And I agreed with everything she said. It’s unthinkable for me to dismantle all we’ve built. But I fell apart when she started to cry. She put her head on my chest while she cried. I’ve never felt so horrible in my life.”

Who’s the powerhouse NOW, Beka? Huh?

There, there, Beka. We can be besties later, and you can tell everyone how losing your marriage was For The Best, because you failed to sufficiently appreciate Josh. Who feels really horrible about it. (But not that horrible.)

About a month later, he told Beka about me. This time, her anger was not tinged by sorrow; she was furious. After hours of shouting, however, she began to feel better than she had since Josh first mentioned divorce.

“It makes more sense for the divorce to be about another woman,” he said. “Many of our friends are going through divorces for the same reason. And I’ll admit, she felt a lot better when I told her you’re four years older than she is. She assumed you would be about 25.”

Bitch cookie! My fuckbuddy is age-appropriate!

Then Beka surprised us both. Through Josh, she invited me to dinner.

“What?” I said. “Seriously? How is that going to work?” I didn’t see how a dinner could be pulled off without the whole thing erupting in open conflict or stalling into awkward silence. But, again, I was wrong.

“I had to meet you,” Beka said as she opened the door. “Josh wants you to meet our girls, but I need to get to know you first.”

Her smile seemed genuine, her eyes kind. She was small and beautiful, somehow elegant in casual shorts. Although I am short as well, I felt huge and ungainly next to her.

Beka surprised us both with her magnanimity and willingness to give up Josh. I was sort of hoping she’d sob and weep some more at her loss, but this “come for dinner” thing threw me.

Then I realized that it was just another opportunity to demonstrate my superiority. I didn’t do a bad thing! See even Beka AGREES that I am BETTER for Josh!

My smugness feels huge and ungainly next to her kindness.

Josh was practically disabled by anxiety during that three-hour dinner.

Goddamnit, who put Beka in the driver’s seat?

As Beka and I got to know each other, he drank nonstop. But Beka made sure I felt totally at ease. Our conversation ranged from trivial matters and uproarious stories about neighborhood matters to serious acknowledgment of our unusual situation.

Beka is offloading her drunk husband on me. We laughed uproariously.

After we all had hugged good night, I thought, “This won’t last.” I braced myself for the wrath to come, but it never materialized. Instead, Beka introduced me to their adorable children, and my immediate bond with them made me silently rejoice that I didn’t have children of my own. It was as if I had been saving my maternal love for Rose and Alice, who were then 7 and 3.

The kind of maternal love that breaks up the home of a 7 and 3 year old.

One day they brought tears to my eyes when, after a raucous game of me holding them upside down and tickling them, we snuggled on the couch to watch a movie.

“I love you,” Rose whispered. “I’m so glad you’re part of my family.”

“I’m terrified to lose my family,” Rose whispered. “If you’re the new adult here, I have to go along with it. I’m 7.”

Beka was the one who worked the hardest to make me part of the family. She invited me to birthday parties and smoothed the socially turbulent waters by introducing me to friends who had been indignant on her behalf. Afterward, we giggled at the shocked faces people made when they met me.

I giggle to watch Beka eat the conscious uncoupling shit sandwich. But really, we are a united front against her indignant friends.

When Josh moved out of their house into a duplex, we had family dinners and celebrated holidays together to ease the transition for the girls. While friends and family shook their heads in bafflement, we forged our relationship based on mutual respect, empathy and an overpowering love for those two beautiful children.

The one thing I don’t know, and may never know, is whether our bond is genuine affection on Beka’s part or the result of her sheer will to make this work, to avoid falling prey to bitterness, to refuse to be a victim.

It isn’t my place to ask such a thing, and ultimately it doesn’t matter.

Does Beka REALLY like me? Or is she sucking it up for her children? It doesn’t matter. What matters is ME. It isn’t my place to consider whether or not Beka has feelings. Or the girls.

I am in awe of the grace and maturity she has displayed throughout what I suspect is the most traumatic event of her life.

I AM SO IMPORTANT! #mosttraumaticeventEVAH

I don’t have any grace or maturity. Maybe I can steal some from Beka.

She even liked this essay, telling me after reading it: “I’m so glad you get it. I wish more divorces ended up like this. It’s better for the kids and the parents.”

“I wish more divorces ended up like this — the OW gets a cheating drunk, and I get a new life with my girls,” said Beka. But I didn’t really catch it as she wasn’t talking about ME.

I have silently mourned with her, though I suspect she wouldn’t appreciate that. She never breathes a word of anger or resentment to her children, and they have never reproached their father or me for the immeasurable disruption we have caused to their lives. She and Josh and I have done everything we can to shield them from the anger and damage so common in divorce.

Every now and again when I have thanked Beka for an invitation to a family event or gone out to get medicine for a sick child in the middle of the night, she has texted me words of gratitude that I treasured even while feeling I didn’t deserve them.

“The girls adore you,” she wrote. “And you truly treat them like they’re your own. I can’t tell you how much that means to me.”

She might have written “abhor” instead of adore. Anyway, what matters is that I WON. Beka has thrown herself on the live grenades of anger, damage, and disruption for the children, and I’m free to share my values with Josh!

Speaking of Josh, where is he?

And I can’t tell her how much this family we all have forged means to me.

While we were all getting Girl’s Day Out mani-pedis celebrating our New-Forged Family, Josh went to the Bar.

He’s not answering his texts.

#truelove

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Patsy
Patsy
6 years ago

Hoo, boy! I just got to the offhand mention that she had Bipolar 2, and the wonderful old sage Frank Pittman came to mind:

“Romantic Infidelity
Surely the craziest and most destructive form of infidelity is the temporary insanity of falling in love. You do this, not when you meet somebody wonderful (wonderful people don’t screw around with married people) but when you are going through a crisis in your own life, can’t continue living your life, and aren’t quite ready for suicide yet.

An affair with someone grossly inappropriate—someone decades younger or older, someone dependent or dominating, someone with problems even bigger than your own—is so crazily stimulating that it’s like a drug that can lift you out of your depression and enable you to feel things again. Of course, between moments of ecstasy, you are more depressed, increasingly alone and alienated in your life, and increasingly hooked on the affair partner.

Ideal romance partners are damsels or “dumsels” in distress, people without a life but with a lot of problems, people with bad reality testing and little concern with understanding reality better.

Romantic affairs lead to a great many divorces, suicides, homicides, heart attacks, and strokes, but not to very many successful remarriages. No matter how many sacrifices you make to keep the love alive, no matter how many sacrifices your family and children make for this crazy relationship, it will gradually burn itself out when there is nothing more to sacrifice to it. Then you must face not only the wreckage of several lives, but the original depression from which the affair was an insane flight into escape” …

mila
mila
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

PATSY!Love this! Crystal clear and very simple, trying to escape your own problems by assuming another’s perceived worse problems – how does that work out for you two, three, four or more years down the road?

Paula
Paula
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

Flipping PERFECT description of the hideousness of it all!

slowtolearn
slowtolearn
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

Add me to this list–STBX is willing to throw away a long life together because he could not communicate to me. He chose a “fantasy” AP who represents an escape from reality and adulthood. #goodluckwiththat

Matthew Kimber
Matthew Kimber
6 years ago
Reply to  slowtolearn

I wonder if he’ll be surprised when the exact same thing happens to him again.

That Is Not A Thing
That Is Not A Thing
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

CL brings the incisive, apt snark; this article drops the hammer of reality on people wedded to magical thinking. Dang and a half. Bunnies will be boiled.

BSOD_Chumped
BSOD_Chumped
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

This is exactly spot on, wow. It hits my STBXW’s situation perfectly. Funny how a person with a doctorate in psychology can’t understand this.

Matthew Kimber
Matthew Kimber
6 years ago
Reply to  BSOD_Chumped

A lot of people who are mentally unhealthy/unstable study psychology as a way to try to figure themselves out and just end up with a whole new level of justifications for their behaviour.

Leavingthecrapbehind
Leavingthecrapbehind
6 years ago
Reply to  Matthew Kimber

Every kook, flake and nut I knew in college was a psychology major.

Betrayed and Confussed
Betrayed and Confussed
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

This is exactly what my wife is doing. I even showed this to her but it didn’t have any effect. She is full on midlife crisis, running from her life and blaming me for every adult decision she has ever made. It makes me sad, to understand her more than herself, to be unable to help, to be scapegoated knowing when she realizes what she has done she will be destroyed by the fact she ruined a great life for nothing. I’m trying to move on, nothing left now. Dday 1-yr anniversary is Nov. 28-30.

Doubtless
Doubtless
6 years ago

She is full on midlife crisis, running from her life and blaming me for every adult decision she has ever made.

So sorry, Betrayed & Confused. She sounds like a real piece of work. Blaming you for her failures is her coward’s way out. It’s easier to make him the white knight and you the villain. Don’t let her win. You were faithful, and that is something she will never be.

I know that the one-year anniversary can bring up a lot of the pain in agonizing hour-by-hour recall. Be kind to yourself, man. You got this.

Struggling
Struggling
6 years ago

BetrayedandConfused, I have to agree with KarenE here. Your ex, and mine, all of our ex’s, they are never going to get it. No Great Moment of Understanding What They’ve Lost is coming. They’re just Not That Deep. They might have fleeting moments of regret, but it’s like the thief who isn’t the least bit sorry he stole but is terribly sorry he’s going to jail. They might feel sorry for themselves, but they won’t connect their own behavior to what caused their pain, and they sure as shit will never truly care about the pain they caused others. Have you read Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life yet? If not I strongly recommend it, and highlight stuff. Very helpful. There’s a lot in there on this particular subject. The most important takeaway is this: Stop feeling sorry for them. Stop thinking about them at all. They don’t deserve it and they’re not worth it

KarenE
KarenE
6 years ago

B and C, don’t worry about her being destroyed by having realized she ruined a grat life for nothing. If she’s true to cheater narc form, she’ll find a way to shift the blame to factors outside herself. Mostly you. And any moments of insight she experiences will pass quickly, leaving no mark. You or I would be dévastéd to realize what we’d done, but the narcs are SO shallow, and so skilled at evading reality.

You know how I know this, eh?

brit
brit
6 years ago
Reply to  KarenE

Betrayedandconfused, I also agree with KarenE and Struggling, Cheaters don’t think like us (Chumps) or anyone with a conscious. If we betrayed our spouse, destroying our family and shattering the lives of our children we would be consumed with guilt and remorse.
Cheaters don’t have a problem with rewriting history placing blame on the Chump and playing the victim.

Most of us during the early DDay’s, spackled, blamed mid-life crisis, brain tumor, their jobs praying there was something wrong with them that could be fixed, anything other than the facing the harsh reality of what it was.
Like most of us here at CN, you were married to an imposter.

People that love you aren’t going to risk losing you by cheating.

I recommend you read Tracy’s book “Lose a Cheater, Gain a Life,”

Langele
Langele
6 years ago
Reply to  brit

Married to am imposter
I like that

Pella
Pella
6 years ago
Reply to  brit

Narcissism.

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

But how long before it dies out? After they screw us over financially trying to divorce them…after remarriage…after adding more children to the mix.

The line of destruction is long. For chumps, for kids, for relatives and friends. Just sucks.

lldodd
lldodd
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

Frank Pittman nailed it. This is exactly what my ex and his new wifey’s situation. Can’t wait until she realizes she married her daddy and will have to take care of two old men. By that time I will be living 700 miles away smiling into my margarita.

Thrive
Thrive
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

Thank you Patsy for this and for the stupid ass letter from Modern Love. Today is my divorce court date. Almost 8 months since dday. Through these months, CL has kept me real. Each morning I start my day reading the latest treatise on why I need to carry on getting free from fucktard. This has been one of the hardest things I have done. Letters like Modern Love make me want to puke. Bravo Beka for dumping that jerk. Sounds like Beka really managed that process and got what she wanted which hopefully is a sane childhood for her children and keeping tabs on ms bipolar. Guessing asshole will move on soon and she will have to introduce the girls to a new friend of daddy’s that he met in the bar. Well fellow CL I am claiming success today for following through even though I never wanted this to be the outcome of my 30 yr marriage. Thanking God my boys are grown and living independent lives. Would hate to ah e this happen at 3 and 7. These cheating bastards that do this when the children are small are the worst of the cheaters. What a horrible thing to do at any time but especially then. Be well my friends and carry on. Hopefully my need for you all will lessen. Thank you for being here! I made a contribution and encourage all of you to do so. This is an important blog and home for healing broken hearts from adulteryz. H.U.G.S????.

Nyra
Nyra
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Praying for you & your kids!!

Chump Lady has been a blessing for me as well. I hate to imagine where I’d be today if I had not stumbled across Chumplady & all the amazing & mighty people like you!

thrive
thrive
6 years ago
Reply to  Nyra

thank you all. court was 10 minutes which included swearing i was telling the truth and that i am not pregnant (haha im 66). judgebsigned the docs and i filed with the clerk. done and done. feels strange. nothing from or to x. hugs!

Chickynot
Chickynot
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Good luck in court!!

mocham
mocham
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Good luck today Thrive! You are mighty!

Thrive
Thrive
6 years ago
Reply to  mocham

Thank you!! So are you mocham. ????????❤️ You know the butterfly when it emerges from its cocoon is its most vulnerable because it’s wings are a little wet. It is also the time it experiences its greatest freedom. I am that emerging butterfly today. ???????????????? freedom for all of us from the tyranny of infidelity!!

Langele
Langele
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Happy to know there are ither long timers here.

Tessie
Tessie
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Sending you hugs and congratulations on your new freedom on this bittersweet day.

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

Thrive – I hope all went well in divorce court. Keep checking in here with CL and CN from time to time – I still do for my daily dose of snark ???? Except, I don’t get to read it in the morning – I’m in the land Down Under, and when the blog gets a new post, it’s 7 p.m. here. It’s my nightly reading material!

Thrive
Thrive
6 years ago

Thank you. I am in Seattle so morning here. Be well and keep learning to dance in the rain! I will definitely check in especially when the sadness and regrets raises its ugly head! Will need a shot of CL truthiness. Hugs????

jumper
jumper
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Best wishes Thrive, from eastern wash

Mighty Mite
Mighty Mite
6 years ago
Reply to  Thrive

Good morning Thrive,

I’m in Seattle too…Hope all goes well in court today. (((((Hugs)))))

Thrive
Thrive
6 years ago
Reply to  Mighty Mite

Thanks!!

Amiisfree
Amiisfree
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

I needed this quote. Thank you.

MightyAgain
MightyAgain
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

Love this! I hope I am still alive to see it happen to my EX and OW (former “friend”)!
Yes, I know not very Meh…

MidlifeBlast
MidlifeBlast
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

Very nice, clear, and a reminder that I’m not missing anything while I’m over here,

far away

from over there!

Wonder No More
Wonder No More
6 years ago
Reply to  MidlifeBlast

I like the way you said that! Well put.

theotherwhitemansburden
theotherwhitemansburden
6 years ago
Reply to  Patsy

“Aren’t quite ready for suicide yet” about sums it up.

pregnant chump
pregnant chump
6 years ago

This basically describes the way my parents divorce, thanks to my father’s many infidelities. This is all lovely until one of those children is cheated on by their husband. This is the one of the hardest parts of my story. Either that or I’m just not quite as humble and forgiving as my mother was.

violet
violet
6 years ago
Reply to  pregnant chump

I think this pathetic excuse for a man has been a stone around Beka’s neck for years. These two losers deserve each other, but the children, that’s another story. Hope the divorce decree includes a provision that X be required to pay for the children’s therapy. With those two in their lives, setting horrendous examples, they are going to need it.

Amiisfree
Amiisfree
6 years ago
Reply to  violet

I think they need an addendum that nobody can post crap about these kids on the internet except the kids. My heart goes out to those kids whose lives have just been discussed entirely inappropriately in the public sphere. It isn’t that it’s never ok to discuss kids, but to talk about their feelings (accurately or otherwise) about something so painful and intimate and awkward really feels questionable to me.

Amiisfree
Amiisfree
6 years ago
Reply to  Amiisfree

I guess I should clarify… I am talking about articles that can go viral – huffpo stories and such. There’s a time and place, is all I’m trying to say.

Gato
Gato
6 years ago
Reply to  pregnant chump

No, it’s not you. Our moms did teach us that cheater love was Love. They told us they were enough, that we should learn to accept what they could gave as enough. In my case, I was told my dad loved me so much. I could not see any actual sign, but she insisted he loved me. I was once in the hospital for a couple of weeks and he never called me. She called him and told him how I was. And yet, he loves me. Even if the barely-adult-me did the best I could to make sure Cheater -then boyfriend- was not like my dad, looking for the famous ‘reciprocity’, my dad’s was the “love” I knew. And that is the shit I got.

Even today my mom insists that all men are like my dad: perhaps there is a small minority that won’t cheat, but the emotional distance is all I can ever get. There is nothing better. And considering Cheater would easily ‘pass’ all tests like Tracy’s famous tea test, I can’t trust she is not right. And even if she is not right, thinking now about all the male chumps I’ve met here, I can’t trust I will ever be able to recognize real love. I’ve never been exposed to it.

It’s not you, pregnant chump. We were raised for this.

CarryOnMyWaywardNerdGirl
CarryOnMyWaywardNerdGirl
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

I’m not arguing at all, but I WAS raised around the real deal, and it didn’t stop me from being chumped one bit. My parents still love each other and always have. My mother was incapable of teaching me about the evils of cheating jerks because she met my dad when she was 14, married him at 16 (cough cough), and 3 kids, 65 years later, never knew anything but a supportive, present, adoring husband. The example set before me my whole life was exemplary. He is a great husband. He’s a wonderful father.
I still dated and eventually married nothing but cheating assholes. Every guy I ever dated cheated on me. Every.Single. One.

So oh yeah, I believe real love is possible. That I can find it for myself is another thing entirely.

I sometimes think my X saw how much I loved my dad and mirrored him as much as possible on purpose. He did share some qualities, but in the long run they weren’t the qualities that mattered. They were surface things.
Grrrrr.

Evagale
Evagale
6 years ago

Carryonmyway- couldn’t agree more. I too was raised in a loving home and family with a very dedicated father who loved my mother very much. As a result of this I got very confused when my past partners were the total opposite.

Gato
Gato
6 years ago

I am not arguing there is one way to be chumped, CarryOnMyWaywardNerdGirl. Or that there is a way to avoid them. Precisely because of this you said: “I sometimes think my X saw how much I loved my dad and mirrored him as much as possible on purpose.” Cheater was not the same type of disordered as many others here. He knew, because we met right in the middle of my dad’s cheating, that I wasn’t going to accept the same shit. I must have told him so over the years we were friends. For whatever reason, he decided I would be his host, and he played the character of the man I would love. He got the advantage of me not knowing real love (because my family is fucked in all directions, all generations I could see), so all I could see was that he gave me proper gifts, for example, as opposed of my dad who has never given us anything (my mom did). I could not see his lack of real love, his refusal to share himself with me, because I never saw it before.

We were conned. They chose us for a reason (who knows why, don’t go there) and they did what they could to make sure we wouldn’t leave. What was in our past that allowed them to do it, I’m not sure matters. It matters for me because I thought that after all the destruction, perhaps I was going to get my parents back. I thought that after a lifetime of trying to live with the fact that they don’t like me, they would support me. Instead, they asked me several times to reflect on what I did to make the Cheater cheat on me. My mom told me my love was weak, because otherwise I would have waited for the Cheater and not divorce him. So it’s obvious I will never have a loving relationship with them.

Leavingthecrapbehind
Leavingthecrapbehind
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

They chose us because we were kind, trusting and giving.

NoDisorderedsAllowed
NoDisorderedsAllowed
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

Gato realizing how little my family cared about my feelings was one of the hardest things in my life but I have learned to accept their limitations and what they call reparent myself. If you can do this you will feel strong and resilient no matter the circumstance because part of reparenting is giving yourself compassion and acceptance. Loneliness will pass ~ I am in Asia as well and it can sometimes feel very lonely even though their are wonderful people everywhere. They just are not able to understand your situation. Enjoy the moments of connection when you can and give yourself the love you need when no one else can.
Best to you

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

Gato,

I feel bad for you! My parents, too, had asked me what I did to make my husband and my boyfriend lie to and leave me.

AllOutofKibble
AllOutofKibble
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

Bravo Gato
Yes, we were raised for this. Keeping my family of origin at arms length has hastened the healing. Realizing that my mother managed the relationship between me and my siblings and my father really helped me see how little he was invested in us. When I stopped managing my son’s relationship with Narkles the Clown I stopped lying to my son. My son can judge for himself if what his father does is love or not.

Someday I hope my son can get a good look at what a truly loving relationship looks like. I hope I can model that.

Gato
Gato
6 years ago
Reply to  AllOutofKibble

The problem is that I am alone. In these past 6 months I’ve lived in 3 cities. I am now in Asia. And since I moved for the Cheater every 4 years, my support network is almost nonexistent. Granted, I have friends who will not let me sleep on the streets, but I can’t cry with them. So I can’t kick my foo out of my life. Actually, I asked them to come to the other side of the world to be with me for Christmas. It’s not only the holidays, but my birthday and Cheater’s. I don’t think I can survive those days alone, and my foo are the only ‘support’ I have, even if they are not supporting me at all.

TorontoChump
TorontoChump
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

I’m relatively new, here. Whats the famous tea test, please?

Gato
Gato
6 years ago
Reply to  TorontoChump

I think the spam filter ate my comment with the url. The title of the article is Un-Chumping Post-Infidelity, A Primer

Gato
Gato
6 years ago
Reply to  TorontoChump

Toronto, if you look in the archives, there is an article about how not to be a chump again. It says look for reciprocity, and it tells the story of a time Tracy was cold, and how Mr. Chump Lady ordered an expensive tea to their room for her. Good people will do things for you, the article says, cheaters don’t. The cheater I am divorcing did all of that and more for me. He didn’t love me all the same.

GorillaPoop
GorillaPoop
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

My ex husband made me homemade chicken soup when I was sick, and treated my mentally-handicapped uncle with patience and kindness, so I have to forgive myself for thinking he was for real. He was emotionally supportive to me and saw only the best in others. He is a public defender who helps the less fortunate and fights for justice. He also lied, cheated, and ultimately left me to explore the wonders of S&M with strangers. During our marriage, though, he let me do all the heavy lifting when it came to earning income, doing the finances, planning vacations, and raising babies. The first four years of our marriage he spent the majority of his time at home playing video games and ignoring my nagging requests for him to take on more responsibility. When I cried from frustration, feeling overwhelmed and alone, he was empathetic and told me how much he appreciated me and all I did for our family. He started helping out more, just enough to keep me quiet, but still I was putting in 80% of the time, money, and effort into our family. When I grew older and more exhausted from all of that, he cheated and when I caught him, he blamed me for his cheating because I had neglected him. He said he thought I didn’t love him any more because I “never” had sex with him and he had “never” been satisfied. He said he needed sex 5 times a week for 3 hours at time (which his affair had apparently allowed him). He also said he thought he must be polyamorous because he didn’t feel jealousy like other people, and it was unfortunate that I wasn’t more like him. My kids were 3 and 7 at the time and I wanted to believe he loved me, so I took him back. We compromised on having sex 3 times a week for 2 hours at a time. I was still working my ass off to bring in 80% of the income, so something had to give. The kids were put in front of the TV and locked out of our bedroom, but the pick-me-dance appeared to have worked. We were back on track, more committed than ever! Then over time he became more and more addicted to tennis. By the time he left, he was playing tennis four times a week 4 hours at a time. I was confused. Was I supposed to work a very intense job all day, take care of the kids while he played tennis from 6pm -10pm, and then have long love-making sessions when he returned? I told myself to be grateful because he wasn’t cheating and it wasn’t video games. But me and the kids were becoming increasingly frustrated. Then he took 2 weeks off work to go to Burning Man. I declined his offer to join him. Before leaving on his trip, he told me how much he loved me and how grateful he was I gave him another chance, and that he didn’t want to be with any other woman than me. It had literally been 3 years since he had cheated and I so thoroughly believed in our reconciliation, I hadn’t even considered the thought he would do it again at Burning Man. To this day he will argue that it was not cheating, it was only anal and genital stimulation. Yes, he said that. It is seared into my brain. He said he held back from full intercourse with several people because he wanted to have credibility when he asked me for an open marriage so he could explore kink. I said no and divorced his ass. It’s been a year and I still feel so DUMB for picking him to be the father of my children! So angry for letting myself be used for so long! Will I ever forgive myself or trust again?

Leavingthecrapbehind
Leavingthecrapbehind
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

So true. My Ex cheater perv found it insulting to have to go out of his way for me or the kids. Narcissists want things done for them. But, they don’t like going out of their way ….unless there are kibbles or illicit sex involved.

TorontoChump
TorontoChump
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

Thank you! xo

Jojobee
Jojobee
6 years ago
Reply to  Gato

Yes!^^^ Maybe, just maybe if we stopped telling children that people who clearly DO NOT really love and care about them actually do “love them so much,” we could break the cycle. We teach kids to not trust all the empirical evidence right in front of their face. We teach them that their own instincts are completely inaccurate, and we teach them that it is okay for one person in a relationship to be entitled and abusive and one person to be a doormat and abused. And then we blame the abused by saying “They should have known,; they must have known!” People “know” what they learn. When society teaches them that this kind of shit is “normal” they recreate it.

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago
Reply to  Jojobee

Not me. I tell my kids to pay attention to actions, not words. I might say that their dad loves them as much as he is capable and to set their expectations appropriately, but when he spouts love in text messages and then does something that puts his girlfriend, interests, or social life before his kids or skips out without a word on parenting time, that is not love.

My older kids are teenagers. I spent years sugar coating and hiding the crap he did while we were together. I won’t do that anymore.

chutesandladders
chutesandladders
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

Agree. My sons had a lifetime of watching their father treat me – their mother – like a household appliance, all while I sugarcoated his selfishness and abuse and pretenede it was “normal.”

But since our divorce – nasty because I finally found my voice and questioned the great Oz – , I have embraced my agency.

Now when my sons do something selfish or say something inappropriate, I’m on them like white on rice, telling them WHY they can’t treat other people like that. It may be too late, but when they apologize, I remind them that talk is cheap; it’s their future ACTIONS that will tell me they learned from their mistake.

Chickynot
Chickynot
6 years ago

“Questioned the great OZ” — I love it!!

brit
brit
6 years ago
Reply to  Chickynot

I get it too “Questioning the Great Oz”

I regret making excuses and sugarcoating X’s behavior in front of our son.
Chutesandladders hopefully your sons realize “Oz” is not as wise as he portrays himself to be.

Pret
Pret
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

I couldn’t agree with you more. My child’s father hasn’t seen her in 3 months. He’s an IT guy…he could Skype or facetime her. When we left the state, he went on vacation with his mistress 3 weeks after we left…instead of getting on a plane to see his only child. He tells her over the phone how he wishes he could hug her. I tell her DO NOT LISTEN TO HIS WORDS, LOOK AT HIS ACTIONS. He mailed her Christmas presents and the card read how he wished he could be there to see her open them….asshole slept through her opening her presents the last few years. Now he wishes he could see her opening them? Bullshit. I don’t believe one single word that comes out of his mouth. Actions.

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago
Reply to  Pret

I hate when they do this. My youngest was in the emergency room and I sent a text to STBX to let him know. He sent a text saying how much he wished he could give her a hug and kiss.

Give me a break. He was about a 20 minute drive away but it was a Wednesday evening which means that he was probably in the middle of a gin game and at least 6 beers in.

If it was really important to him, he would have been there immediately no matter what the situation was between us.

Just words that mean nothing but make the cheater feel better about themselves.

Let go
Let go
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

There is a special place in hell for parents who abandon their kids!!!!

JABT
JABT
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

I’ve got this t-shirt too. I rang the idiot ex saying that our son was really sick and in the Emergency Department and was going to be admitted. He said he was away working and couldn’t come and see him. I did the dutiful thing and rang him and text him every day for the next few days to let him know what was happening. I then get a phone call from another friend. I said my son is in hospital but the idiot can’t come because he is away working. He said no he’s not, I just saw him and he’s at home with the OW. 5 minutes away…

Pret
Pret
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

I have made a vow…unless my child is dying in the hospital, this asshole won’t know a damn thing. Physically, I live my life as though he never existed. Tomorrow is his birthday and I know he will be pissed that I did not reach out to him just like he was pissed at me for leaving the state without saying goodbye to him. Can you imagine that? He cheated for a year and a half, blamed me for EVERYTHING and then had the nerve to be pissed that I didn’t goodbye! These cheaters really are delusional.

Cancer Chump
Cancer Chump
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

If there is any positive that I get out of divorcing my STBX it is that I now have the opportunity to teach my daughter what real love and a real relationship is supposed to be about. Even if I never find it for myself, I will work as hard as I can to teach her that her feelings and concerns matter. I will teach her to pay attention to actions, not words.

Since he has left both she and I are in therapy. We talk about our feelings. I have to let her know that ALL feelings are okay to have because her dad refuses to acknowledge anyone’s feelings (even his own). It’s my goal to make her emotionally intelligent. If I can do that, I can be certain that she will not make the same mistakes I have.

Thrive
Thrive
6 years ago
Reply to  Jojobee

Johobee- you are spot on. It is confusing to be told that someone loves you and to be ignored or abused by that person. It is more helpful to model love and caring and help a child learn what to expect from people. This is the only way we can clearly recognize those that will help and those who will harm us. And that is the most important lesson for a child-especially these days with pedifiles coming out from underneath their rocks onto the internet

MightyAgain
MightyAgain
6 years ago
Reply to  Jojobee

^^^^^ Yes, Love that!

Natalia.B
Natalia.B
6 years ago

Each to his or her own but in my world this is screwed up on so many levels. WTF!

GorillaPoop
GorillaPoop
6 years ago
Reply to  Natalia.B

I find it hard to believe the author of this tale, it’s just OW fantasy porn.

StartofSomethingGood
StartofSomethingGood
6 years ago
Reply to  Natalia.B

Agreed! I think I need to throw up.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago

WTF did I just read! She must have ulterior motives for doing this! Now I need a drink at 6 in the morning.
I actually had a mani-pedi with the OW too but that’s because she was my friend and I didn’t know she was f&cking my H behind my back and sitting there texting with him too as we were chatting and enjoying our foot rubs lol…..

GoWithYourGut
GoWithYourGut
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

While I didn’t have a mani-pedi with the OW, I have SO MANY memories of outings with her, because I was right there with you Betrayedbitch…my “best” friend to my face, all while shoving the knife deeper and deeper into my back behind it.

The horrible part is when I play back memories of things like: going to the circus, getting Santa pictures, going Black Friday shopping, selling Girl Scout cookies, and the list goes on and on…because EVERY SINGLE ONE of those memories includes them, the kids, and me.

It sucks thinking back on all those memories that our now tainted with the realization that I was the tag-along friend.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  GoWithYourGut

It’s just awful isn’t it. Some days I think what she did hurts more that what he did. I try not to think about it but there are always reminders and triggers everywhere! I have tried to face some of them head on and just suck it up but that hasn’t worked yet. Hopefully in time it will get better. Sending you love and hugs 🙂

GoWithYourGut
GoWithYourGut
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Thank, Betrayedbitch…I’m sending the love & hugs right back at ya!!

I’m also hoping it gets better soon. My STBX and the whore just officially moved into their new “love shack” (a.k.a. apartment). At least it’s not in the neighborhood (which they tried to do). I’m still finding myself looking for their cars whenever I step outside (they were temporarily living sandwiched between her husband and me!). So glad they’re gone. But now I have to deal with my youngest (16 yr old) daughter going over there and being around the whore.

The audacity of spending a lifetime protecting her from bad people, only to find myself having to hand her over to someone I literally wish would fall off the face of the earth. And I have no control over it. Gosh, that sucks. It’s literally the worst feeling in the world.

But this too will pass. Hopefully their control-freak, narcissistic personalities clash so intensely that they’ll kill each other!

lldodd
lldodd
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Another unknown Beka here!

trusting123
trusting123
6 years ago
Reply to  lldodd

Hey, me too!

kaycan
kaycan
6 years ago
Reply to  trusting123

Me, three! I later found emails about them playing “footsie” under the dinner table.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  kaycan

Oh Kaycan that is some sick shit!! I bet they done that behind my back too!! Maybe we should start an Unknowing Beka Club!

brit
brit
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

I was also a becka,

Meeting in the bathroom at parties while I was talking to friends.
Ass and crotch grabbing while I had my head turned or in another room.

Rarity
Rarity
6 years ago
Reply to  brit

You were married to Al Franken??

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  brit

OMG! These people need their fingernails pulled off with pliers!

Meg
Meg
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

UBeka. New term we can all relate to.

Shechump
Shechump
6 years ago
Reply to  Meg

#MeToo UBeka!

chutesandladders
chutesandladders
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

I recently saw a married boss doing that under the table with a ditz at a Mexican bar. I will never look at him or her with any respect again.

I left as soon as I could get my money out and throw it on the table for the drink I never got. When one of my coworkers asked why, I told them – while looking right into the eye of the ditz- that I was suddenly sick to my stomach. I wasn’t lying.

Renee
Renee
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

[UBeka hand raised here]

My ‘friend’ was slowly giving us gifts thinking one day that special-meaning-infused-overpriced home décor would be hers. Ummm, no. I missed nothing in destroying completely every single thing she gave ‘us.’ Left it in a pile for Cheater o’Mine to find along with the small pieces of the clothing she was dressing him in.

Scientific Fact: Expensive things take longer to destroy, but a determined Chump can reduce anything to a pile of rubble and may be the best therapy ever.

GoWithYourGut
GoWithYourGut
6 years ago
Reply to  Renee

My “best” friend had given me the rocking chair she used to nurse her kids in… I hauled that thing to the dumpster (same one she used, since she was only 3 doors away), and shoved it in there, and made sure the rotten meat and dog shit landed right on the cushions. I hope she saw that in there.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  Renee

No eefing way!!! I think mine thought that too! When we remolded my bathroom she was here everyday from sun up till sun down helping me get the work done, she worked her ass off!!! After a few days of that – thats when the red flag went up – “hey even best friends don’t do this much for you” she was a close friend but not my bestie. That skank thought that bathroom would be hers one day LMAO!!!!!

Sucker Punched by a Saffa
Sucker Punched by a Saffa
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Sledgehammer party so skank will have to redo the bathroom herself if and when you move out

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago

Nope house is all mine 🙂

Sucker Punched by a Saffa
Sucker Punched by a Saffa
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Yay !!!!!! A huge win for you !

meh.twain
meh.twain
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Yuss!!!!!!! *fist pump*

Renee
Renee
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Miss Plastic Parts and Cheater o’Mine believed they would get my house, too. “But, you’re leaving anyway. Why can’t I have the house?”

“Well, because I will happily burn the place to the ground before Miss Plastic Parts ever steps foot in it again.” He should have thought more carefully before she spent an afternoon in my own bed and, of all things, I took that rather personally. How unforgiving of me to insist it be sold.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  Tracy Schorn

Do we have a new term – UNKNOWING BEKA lol….

Rebecca
Rebecca
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Family friend betrayal by fucking one’s spouse is just swell!

It destroys memories of milestone events that the ‘friend’ attended and makes the chump and chump children feel dirty (the kind that can not be washed off).

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

Oh Rebecca you are so right! She went everywhere with me. Everything is tainted now. I had to find another nail salon to go to amongst many other places I can no longer go. But you know i actually found a much better nail salon and they serve free wine while your there! CHEERS Bitch! 🙂

bepositive
bepositive
6 years ago
Reply to  Rebecca

Exactly!

lyndaloo
lyndaloo
6 years ago

The New York Times needs a new editor! This is the crap they publish in the Grocery Store Tabloids. I think this story is entirely fictitious, if it’s true, these people are all demented including Beka who needs to get a backbone. I’m surprise Josh and OW didn’t ask Beka to be the Maid of Honour at their pending wedding. What a load of tripe!

Evagale
Evagale
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

Perhaps Beka has something up her sleeve?
She is a lawyer after all. Maybe playing nice until after the divorce?

pregnant chump
pregnant chump
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

lyndaloo my Mum did just that, she gave the OW away when my dad married her. My uncle also gave my aunt away when she married her 2nd husband. He wasn’t the OM in their marriage though, but they did continue to live together and go on holiday together after there separation.

lyndaloo
lyndaloo
6 years ago
Reply to  pregnant chump

Well, I’m speechless, which is not often the case!

Survivor
Survivor
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

Yes, it could be fiction. Or serious embellishment. The OW wants to show how what she did isn’t really bad. But this goes beyond the usual “beyond our control” or “meant to be” horseshit into an entirely different realm where even those who are the collateral damage agree how marvelous the cheating and destruction of family turned out to be.

I can’t see that as reality myself.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  Survivor

I agree! This would make for an episode on “The Twilight Zone” 🙂

Beth
Beth
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

I sincerely hope it is fiction. Otherwise, what is that stupid woman teaching her daughters about how a partner should treat them? Is your partner feeling unhappy and underappreciated and decides he deserves to get some strange? Well girls, nothing you can do but rush to the kitchen and put together the biggest shit sandwich ever seen and gobble it all down in front of the gloating OW.

Guest
Guest
6 years ago
Reply to  Beth

My ex was a raging alcoholic, so I knew I’d be coparenting w/the girlfriend, not him. She had a mental illness. Maybe she thought I genuinely liked her and wanted to be friends, because I told her about kid events (so she could go, and be a designated driver). I WAS grateful that he wasn’t my problem anymore -and that there was someone else in his household who cared about my kids, and wasn’t shitfaced.

For all her faults, she was probably the best he could get, she liked my kids, and she made the home safer. So I was friendly with her.

Manipedis though? No. Fucking. Way.

Shechump
Shechump
6 years ago
Reply to  Guest

Guest – wow. You just totally put this in perspective.
Thank you.
I didn’t believe it at first but this makes sense.

Lifeisgood
Lifeisgood
6 years ago
Reply to  Guest

Same. I’m grateful for the OW for her logistical use and nutritional influence; she makes them healthier lunches than my ex.

Even still, she’s a loser. She slept with a married dude with 3 little kids, who barely pulled a paycheck and drove a minivan. with car seats in it. for 6 years. Probably hooked up in her own marital bed (her husband is a fire fighter) or a cheap motel.

3 years out and more wise, I’ve noticed a trend with OWs and that is they tend to be the unstable sort which makes for great side-fuck material. In my own little world, I’ve yet to meet or hear of an OW who was higher caliber than the wife.

Take comfort. As CL says, trust they suck.

As for me, after the kids are grown and they don’t need school lunches made and a taxi driver to pick them up from school and events, why would I ever associate with the OW? What would she offer me other than an icky feeling?

insistonhonesty
insistonhonesty
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

An OW who LIES?! Nevah. She has clearly just demonstrated how true to herself she is… because while she never thought she’d be the kind of woman who’d sleep with an off-limits, married man, she wasn’t disgusted that he professed love to a stranger in a bar on his anniversary of marriage and his wife’s Mother’s Day, gave him her number, met up with him to discuss how bad and terrible (wink wink) it would be if they had sex, and jumped onto his sad, hard dick to snuggle his sadz away. She did all of those awful things because SHE IS SO TRUE. So EXTRA in the true-to-oneself[ishness]. That she was ABLE to do it at all shows that this was always Meant To Be…

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago

I think these people are mentally disordered and dillusional. They come up with a justification to make what they have and are doing all right. Then they put it on repeat in their heads and out their mouths to whoever might listen (or read in this case) until it becomes their reality. Then they are being “truthful” because in their minds, they are.

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

Uh Oh,
Pretty soon we will have a whole wedding party, ( matching outfits for all), because Beka and Bitch can’t reach Josh who is at the bar and we all know what Josh does at bars.

CL this must be Friday, not Monday!

My heart goes out to the children, all the children of these fuckwits!

(((((PregnantChumpandGato))))))

(I have to say Beka has me puzzled, really puzzled)?????completely weird! Sad!

Chumpinrecovery
Chumpinrecovery
6 years ago
Reply to  Peacekeeper

Maybe she was just really really glad to get the drunken fuckwit off her hands. Either that or she wants to make him really uncomfortable. I can’t imagine that he feels good about the girl’s relationship. It makes him kind of irrelevant. “Are they conspiring behind my back? I need a drink”

Waffles
Waffles
6 years ago

More like “dyking it up for meeeeee”. ????

struggling
struggling
6 years ago
Reply to  lyndaloo

“entirely ficticious”…. ah, now that would make sense…

Feelingit
Feelingit
6 years ago
Reply to  struggling

The book I am reading on verbal abuse refers to a reality I and reality II but I can not even begin to put anything in this into any kind of reality. It has to be fiction or science fiction because Becca had to have been abducted by aliens!

I think I will be having nightmares tonight!

Shechump
Shechump
6 years ago
Reply to  Feelingit

I agree. It’s BS and I can smell bs a mile away nowadays.

You can’t expect me to believe that one day she was all upset and hurt about him wanting a divorce and then immediately wanted to be nicey huggy with this monster…and the kids too? If this is what the NYT prints, I’m glad I unsubscribed. Their crosswords were too easy anyway 😉

Charlie Pride
Charlie Pride
6 years ago
Reply to  Shechump

What has happened to the New York Times? They’ve really lost all sense of decency. Google “His Eye Makeup Is Way Better Than Yours” – basically child pornography. SMH.

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  Shechump

The article sounds fake, but I can’t rule out the possibility that it is ‘true.’ Traumatized people, especially if they are co-dependent, might act righteously angry upon the discovery of the betrayal and then try to behave civilly or even more generous and friendly after they (1) discover that the only way that they chumps can stay in their ex’s life, which they want because they still love their cruel ex and would rather maintain some contact than no contact ever again, is by sacrificing themselves like Beca or (2) start thinking that behaving in a martyr-like fashion might help the kids. Ask me how I know.

FarBetterOff
FarBetterOff
6 years ago

I burst in to tears at “I’m terrified to lose my family,” Rose whispered. “If you’re the new adult here, I have to go along with it. I’m 7.”

God help our children.

struggling
struggling
6 years ago
Reply to  FarBetterOff

I know, our little sweeties, it’s heartbreaking

Ceri
Ceri
6 years ago

The poor kids who now will grow up thinking this is ok. That when the man you love treats you like garbage you should suck it up “for the children” No no boundaries needed we will all just be friends. Never mind the obvious fact that the 7 year old is taught that her feelings don’t matter at all…

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago
Reply to  Ceri

Exactly. It might make things easier for the kids while they are little. But what about when they grow up and start having relationships of their own? There should be some set of moral code that should be taught and modeled for these girls and that there are boundaries between right and wrong.

Shechump
Shechump
6 years ago
Reply to  GetMeFree

GetMeFree – Moral code? Totally. This is WHY we have kids, isn’t it? To teach them better than we were taught, to help them make better decisions, to be involved in their lives…and, when you CHEAT – all your shit goes out the window and the kid is permanently lost. Please – do NOT have kids if you think your partner is bad material. I guess I always suspected mine was not a great candidate father after 35 yrs and now, glad I’m not tied to him in any way as we never reproduced. I feel really really sick for the kids that suffer through this.

struggling
struggling
6 years ago

Chumplady you nailed it as always. “our shared values of putting ourselves first” YES. And doesn’t it logically follow that two people who are putting their SELVES first aren’t putting EACH OTHER first? How long before one screws over the other one?

Anyway… Chumplady/Chumpnation: Thoughts on the Chump here? I can’t wrap my mind around how fucked up this is….

GetMeFree
GetMeFree
6 years ago
Reply to  struggling

I think she is playing the sacrificial lamb for the sake of her children. But what is that modeling for them?

Chumpy McChumpFace
Chumpy McChumpFace
6 years ago
Reply to  struggling

I am thinking Beka is killing him with kindness. Shrewd move if you can pull it off while in the throes of that kind of emotional pain. I’m guessing that by playing nice – the complete opposite of what you would expect in these cases – she has maneuvered herself into the driver’s seat and is now controlling the narrative. By “befriending” the OW, she’s effectively disarmed her and the ex and can keep them off-balance while she quietly claws back her children, the assets, and sets them up for the Karma, Bitch! shit-show that will be playing soon.

Beka’s playing the long game.

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago

Agree. No way I could pull this off even for one minute, but I think she’s doing the “keep your enemies even closer” ballet. She has nerves of steel. That’s the kind of lawyer you’d want on your team, too.

MightyAgain
MightyAgain
6 years ago
Reply to  struggling

Thoughts on the Chump – I just see her as one those “New Age” kinda of woman, that accepts this “for the sake of the children” and totally burying her feelings deep deep down – so that her image still looks good in that small town where everyone knows her. If she’s accepting of the relationship, then she doesn’t look like the fool. (She isn’t of course).

No normal Chump is friends with the OW, and definitely not from the get go, as in this case! No effin way!!

Cancer Chump
Cancer Chump
6 years ago
Reply to  MightyAgain

I hate this crap that is being peddled all over the mommy blogs. Be friends with your ex for the children. Eff that! I am not posing for photos together with him. I am not attending holidays with him for the sake of my child. What kind of message does that send?! It’s just continuing the toxic relationship in a new abusive way.

Off the crazy train
Off the crazy train
6 years ago

I don’t get this. Sure, I understand every human is different, and we all react differently to things – but this is just odd. I’d rather hear this story from Beka’s perspective. One of the things that just doesn’t ring entirely true about it is that it’s from the AP. She is invested in making it all appear a-ok.

Shechump
Shechump
6 years ago

Crazy Train – ‘She is invested in making it all appear a-ok.”

Exactly! This is the serpent’s story.
I want to hear the wife’s side.
I don’t care about the drunk stbx – loser.

If this low-life was paid for this story at the cost of these little kids’ lives, the mother of their children humiliated…..the ‘father’ being a drunk… Hail Beka if this story is remotely true !! Damn.

Off the crazy train
Off the crazy train
6 years ago

Presuming this story is entirely true, I still think there’s a debate to be had about ‘what’s best for the kids’.

Everyone getting on and no conflict is all well and good – but it’s not real life. What example are they setting to the children, about how you should behave when people treat you badly? That they should just put a smile on and suck it up? How is that healthy?

No, I have to disagree with the AP and with Beka – just my opinion, but I think this is potentially creating future issues and dysfunction for the children.

Also – great spot CL – just where IS Josh?!

TorontoChump
TorontoChump
6 years ago

I agree. ronald Reagan used to speak of “peace through strength” which was different from the kuhmbayah peace that many others smugly espoused. I think it would’ve been kinder to those two little girls if Beka had maintained some peace for her daughters while at the same time creating strong boundaries and modelling an appropriate sense of disgust. But, if Beka did that, she couldnt feel all morally superior to us Regular, Unevolved Chumps. (However, I’m loathe to put any blame on Beka, who is just doing what our “consciously uncoupling”society tells her is appropriate behaviour for upper middle class white professionals.)

Amiisfree
Amiisfree
6 years ago

Yeah, I kinda found the bad part of myself hoping Beka was laughing through that mani pedi because she knew exactly where Josh was and what he was doing. Then I remembered the kids and got mad at myself for thinking it.

bouncing back
bouncing back
6 years ago

Congratulations for role modeling dysfunction for your daughters.

So should (when rather) the day comes when they are psychologically and emotionally abused by men in intimate relationships, you better have a good freaking answer as to why you willingly put your girls at risk.

All three suck.

WisedUp
WisedUp
6 years ago

Thank you, Chump Lady for this UBT. I was heartened over the weekend reading the majority of comments condemning this vapid narcissistic gloat-fest of an essay. I felt sorry for Beka even though it’s understandable for her to attempt to manage the situation she had no choice over, and to try to minimize the damage to her daughters. Most of the commenters on NYT got that, but steel yourselves before reading as there are some blame-shifting comments blaming Beka for her loser husband’s affair with the barstool PhD tramp, and there are several comments calling anyone criticizing the article “bitter bile filled vitriolic haters” etc.

Personally I think it was insane to introduce a 7 and 11 year old to the OW so soon after the family was shattered. When you step back and consider the timeline, it’s been less than a year since the fateful Mother’s Day and the author didn’t tell us exactly how long their affair took place before Josh told Beka he wanted a divorce and conveniently waited an additional MONTH to tell her it was because he was cheating!

The author is a delusional typical OW falling for the cheater’s lines, PhD notwithstanding. He is simply miserable but doesn’t say why? He likes OW “just because he likes her?” How about just because she spread her legs for him and was available. And thank you CL for the takedown of the ridiculous trope that he only married his wife because all their friends were getting married, they were both in the same profession, and they were young and foolish. By the way they married in their 20s and are only in their mid 30s now by all indications.

Phoenix2016
Phoenix2016
6 years ago
Reply to  WisedUp

Actually, if I read that right, they were only having an affair for one month before Josh told Beka he wanted a divorce. They met on Mother’s Day, in May, then supposedly 2 months passed, so July, before they got together, and he told his wife in August he wanted a divorce. These people are as deep as mud puddles.

Jojobee
Jojobee
6 years ago
Reply to  WisedUp

PhD do not necessarily improve cognitive function overall. They offer deep knowledge of a very specialized kind. And education DOES NOT make people Better or more Moral. Lots of academic cheaters. Lots. They are very good at “delusional.” They have an extensive vocabulary from which to compose their word salad and long pompous pontifications with which to justify their appalling behavior. One clue in this article is her describing the place as “bohemian.” That’s how many academics LOVE to think of themselves as “Romantic bohemian” types that don’t have to play by societies’ rules. Pompous twaddle to justify amorality. Do you know what you get when you take a nasty bar slut and educate her, have her write a dissertation, and send her down the aisle with a mortar board and tassel? DR. Nasty Bar Slut. That’s all.

Sucker Punched by a Saffa
Sucker Punched by a Saffa
6 years ago
Reply to  Jojobee

One can hold a PhD from Harvard and have the emotional maturity of a five year old-I’ve seen it up close

SevenOfCups
SevenOfCups
6 years ago
Reply to  Jojobee

“They have an extensive vocabulary from which to compose their word salad and long pompous pontifications with which to justify their appalling behavior.”

Yup – married one of those! The PhD that I married is the most heinous malignant narcissist with the prettiest public verbiage I’ve ever heard – and the Parental Coordinator just ate his “word salads” up. She actually told me that the “main problem” in this “high conflict” divorce is that I’m “angry.” Wtf? Dr. Disordered stole over $100k from me before we separated, lied to the Court to keep most of our personal property, lied about his extra income to reduce his child support, has refused to pay the 80% of the children’s medical expenses he is court-ordered to pay, violates the custody order constantly, and filed fraudulent tax returns with my name on them without telling me so he could keep all the refund – I could keep going. Of course this is all after his affairs that got us here in the first place which (according to him) weren’t really affairs and were all my fault anyway. I still have pending contempt actions in court against him – the most recent was filed just two weeks ago. And the “main problem” is that I’m angry? Talk about dealing with a symptom and not the cause – that’s like taking Tylenol for a headache but not actually removing the brain tumor causing it. Therapists should never be made hired Officers of the Court – ever.

Not much longer to file for absolute divorce… next week will be one year since we separated and I am so looking forward to cutting the rest of that brain tumor out.

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  SevenOfCups

SevenOfCups, I am sorry that we married evil twins! I hope that your divorce takes less time than mine did–three nightmarish years that destroyed my family in many ways.

Tempest
Tempest
6 years ago
Reply to  Jojobee

Very true; smarts and book learning do not equal strong moral code & impulse control.

UXworld
UXworld
6 years ago

Since Josh is averse to basic calculations, allow me …

Mother’s Day – (“wonderful, successful, beautiful woman” + [“adorable children” * 2]) + ([“recent messy divorce”/bipolar disorder] * “spectacularly bad decisions”) + (“shared values” – empathy – character) + alcohol = (fuckwits * 2) + 1 new member of Chump Nation

And while we’re at it …

Beka > (Josh + Elizabeth) * infinity

That Is Not A Thing
That Is Not A Thing
6 years ago
Reply to  UXworld

marital assets/2

Twitching
Twitching
6 years ago

See, this pisses me off. My ex husband and his mistress wife will read that crap, shake their heads at my lack if ability to be magnanimous, and wonder how they can get me to cooperate with their plan to steal my children and all the rest of my life.

Too bad for them, I’m not cooperating.

Betrayedbitch
Betrayedbitch
6 years ago
Reply to  Twitching

I agree. I thought the same thing. Cheaters are going to see this and think this is how it works!

UnflownKite
UnflownKite
6 years ago
Reply to  Betrayedbitch

Pieces like this is never written from the point of view of the wife, because that would be so un-fun. Even if the wife eventually gets to the same point, no one wants to read how painful her journey was to get to that point, because again, un-fun and there is no way her story would not reveal how horrible the cheater and the homewrecker are. Just the fluff is needed to keep the fantasy going.

That Is Not A Thing
That Is Not A Thing
6 years ago
Reply to  UnflownKite

Too true.

UnflownKite
UnflownKite
6 years ago

Once again who does all the work for everyone? The wife [chump]. Pitiful. The day I invite my ex-husband’s whore for dinner is the day I need some bi-polar meds.

Paintwidow
Paintwidow
6 years ago

Omg…..I’m crying.
My boyfriends mother( now in her 70’s) gets a visit from her ex and his mistress every Sunday.
My boyfriends mother has chronic pain issues and is not very ambulatory and they come over and sit and chat and do shit in the house for her.
I asked her about it once and she said that she got tired of the kids splitting time and holidays and it was just easier to be her friend. The ex and his AP have been together like 20 years now.
I asked her how she could have this kind of relationship with someone who violated her trust in such a devestating way and she said that she had to just forgive and make peace for her kids.
Whenever we gather for a holiday I struggle with being kind to her or him.
In our conversations I’ve stated that I will NEVER be having Thanksgiving with my ex or his mistress. I have moved on and I’m happy but that does not cancel out what he did to me and our family and hes not anybody that I will ever allow in my orbit ever again. My ex tries to play the “it was for the best….I’m a good person now. I freed paintwidow by leaving. Youre welcome.” card all the time. Just because you’ve managed to stay with her for a couple years and are raising her kids and going to church on Sundays doesn’t mean you didn’t level me. I don’t care if you two vaccinate orphans on the weekends, you were awful to me and our family. I don’t care who you are now….game over.I don’t want to even know you anymore, much less bbq with you.
My kids are adults and are NC with the ex and her, but even if they weren’t and they had to split the day on a holiday I would put on my comfy clothes, walk my dogs, and eat a turkey sandwich on my couch alone and happy before I would sacrifice one moment of the holiday in their company.
I seriously don’t get people that try to friend the ex and the AP.
Just WTF???

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  Paintwidow

Paint Widow,

Thank you for writing the statement, ‘My ex tries to play the “it was for the best….I’m a good person now. I freed paintwidow by leaving. Youre welcome.” card all the time. Just because you’ve managed to stay with her for a couple years and are raising her kids and going to church on Sundays doesn’t mean you didn’t level me. I don’t care if you two vaccinate orphans on the weekends, you were awful to me and our family. I don’t care who you are now.’ Exactly how I feel about my ex-boyfriend who told me virtually the same thing your ex-husband did. What condescending, selfish A–clowns these liars are! Making their abominable acts sound like humanitarian acts that deserve a Nobel Peace Prize!

MightyAgain
MightyAgain
6 years ago
Reply to  Paintwidow

Agree, Agree Agree!!! Yeap, he might be a great person now, a good partner to OW, and a good father figure for her son. But They were both horrible and continue to be horrible to me and my son, because he does not support their Tuuuuu Luv . Nope, I ain’t doin it!! LOL

Paintwidow
Paintwidow
6 years ago
Reply to  MightyAgain

Mighty Again,
^^^SAME^^^^
My ex has actually called me in an attempt to not be friends but “cordial” to grease the wheels of reconciliation with the kids.
He runs down the list of how he’s awesome.
“Paintwidow, you know this was for the best. I’m sorry I hurt you but now I’m a great dad to her kids, great spouse to her, go to church on Sunday’s, serve food to the homeless….” then goes into the hookers resume. Thanks, no thanks. Doesn’t mean you weren’t a cheating lying asshole to us.

Thrive
Thrive
6 years ago
Reply to  MightyAgain

Ditto. Fuck him and his I am trying to be a better person. He says he fucked up and he is sorry. There is just nothing I can say to that. The damage is done. Absent going back in a time machine and making different choices that didn’t include going nuclear in your family, there is nothing left to work with. Done!

UnflownKite
UnflownKite
6 years ago
Reply to  Paintwidow

“I don’t care if you two vaccinate orphans on the weekends…” LOL! Thanks for that. I love one line zingers.

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  UnflownKite

YES, me too, lightens the load of disbelief!
There is nothing like a smile break!
????

Feelingit
Feelingit
6 years ago
Reply to  Paintwidow

Agree, agree, agree! Paintwidow. WTF is all you can say. There is no Truth here!!!

Nejla
Nejla
6 years ago

I hope that The New Yorker will print an essay in a few years by Beka after this “Twu Luv” story ends. Until then, I will just chalk up their acceptance of this crap essay as a slow month….
The reason why I am honest with my little one is so they don’t repeat this cycle! I don’t get why people suck it up “for the kids”! I personally think they don’t want people to know how hurt they are…and maybe that they feel ashamed so they chose “being the bigger person”. Does anyone out there understand this because I sure as hell don’t.

Sunflower36
Sunflower36
6 years ago

What a load of bullshit.

PF
PF
6 years ago

Winner…..?

Josh the married barfly meets his “fillet of sole-mate” a bipolar age appropriate mistress barfly.
Who said fairy tales don’t come true….what a love story!!!

I get the feeling Beka the Betrayed has orchestrated the best revenge, making sure those two idiots end up together.

Sausalito
Sausalito
6 years ago
Reply to  PF

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing: Beka was happy to unload her crappy drunken husband, and grateful that some skank would take him off her hands. “Please, come over for dinner so I can pretend to be nice and show that I won’t stand in your way!” I wish I had had the same foresight instead of attempting wreckconciliation (not the dinner part, just the unloading of the asshole husband when I had the chance).

Paintwidow
Paintwidow
6 years ago
Reply to  Sausalito

I can only pray that Beka was playing nice to get a good settlement. She’s an atty herself but taking most of their shit on her way out wouldn’t be the worst thing.
If we found out that Beka went for mani pedi’s and then got divorced ( and a shit ton of stuff) then invited her drunk ex and his hooker to an early bird dinner to go all thermo nuclear on them about what assholes they are and how from that moment on she would be NC and how the mistress should enjoy the studio apartment they will have to live in…..now that would be an article I could read.

Attie
Attie
6 years ago

You know, I wish I had gone for a pedicure with the Skank. Thinking about it, it would have been nice to buy her a glass of champagne then propose a toast “here’s to you SUCKAAAHHHHHH”! Pity I didn’t.

kaycan
kaycan
6 years ago
Reply to  Attie

I’ve known OWife since elementary school. Therefore, I am often tempted to push her down on the playground and mock her, “nah nah… no give-backs!”

Sunflower36
Sunflower36
6 years ago

My older daughters (I have 7 children, 5 adults and the 7 and 9 year old… 6 daughters, 1 son. Another son passed away in 2007) told me they were stalking Alp-Ho’s Facebook page, which had a meme of how wonderful it was to have step parents getting along with the parents for the sake of the children. I didn’t go looking.

She’s such a dumb twat.

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  Sunflower36

Sunflower36,
Striving to be a peacekeeper, I don’t hate very many people. ( I usually am a person who forgives, but NEVER forgets).
BUT I do hate dumb twat AlpHo craft maker.
When people involve and hurt innocent little children my peacekeeper feelings are utterly destroyed! Destroyed by shitfaces like her!
I am so sorry for your pain.
Keep on being Mighty. It won’t be long, your precious daughters will see right hrough her bat wings! Phoney b I t c h!!!!

UnflownKite
UnflownKite
6 years ago
Reply to  Sunflower36

I’m very sorry for the loss of your son. I lost my adult-daughter. There is no pain like it.

Tessie
Tessie
6 years ago
Reply to  UnflownKite

Great big hugs to you both. Losing a child at any age is the hardest thing to deal with. It leaves a permanent hole in your heart and an empty spot in your life that changes it forever. You learn to go on, and even get to a point where there is light, laughter and love again, but your world is forever altered. It takes time to even begin to heal from the loss. I’m here to tell you it will get better, but it is a slow process. It is a good thing to be gentle with yourselves. This is huge.

And Peacekeeper, thank you for your great big loving heart. You are a gem and much appreciated.

UnflownKite
UnflownKite
6 years ago
Reply to  Tessie

Thank you.

Peacekeeper
Peacekeeper
6 years ago
Reply to  UnflownKite

Unflown Kite and Sunflower 36. I did not know about the loss of your daughter and your son.
Your precious child.
I am deeply sorry for your very sad loss.
Wish I could hug you both in person.
Love,
Peacekeeper

ANC
ANC
6 years ago

The idiot OW is on a med cocktail to even out manic episodes. Poor impulse causes control between her and her Man. So glad Beka no longer is legally attached to the asshat. Sounds like Josh may be well-versed in snagging a ho with his sad sad stories. This isn’t his first time to the cheater rodeo.

Who knows what is the Beka version of this idiocy. My 2cents is that this a smart, professional woman with a clue; Beka is fully aware this train wreck OW will implode and that Josh is a full-on moron. This letter smacks of self-doubt and low self esteem. Good luck, Josh!

Are both sides using the kids in this mess, though?

ANC
ANC
6 years ago
Reply to  ANC

Should be *poor impulse control*, like preschoolers failing the marshmallow test.

Feelingit
Feelingit
6 years ago
Reply to  ANC

Thanks for that ANC, I need something to laugh at after this terrifying article!

MMargaret
MMargaret
6 years ago

On the other hand: In the interest of everyone continuing their lives happily, Beka puts on a happy face and gets a very good divorce settlement then goes No Contact. And moves far away with the kids. Josh is too drunk by now to oppose anything and OW gets to enjoy him all to herself.

Awake
Awake
6 years ago

Beka is smart. Take him, he’s yours. All the while playing the other woman like a fiddle.

Ever_the_Empath
Ever_the_Empath
6 years ago
Reply to  Awake

yup. like I said below…front row seat to the show.

JC
JC
6 years ago

Josh thinks that it “makes more sense” that the divorce is about another woman?!?!

That’s exactly the OPPOSITE of how marriage (and divorce) is supposed to work. If you must divorce, make that decision based on the merits of the marriage. You divorce your spouse FIRST, and THEN date. Not the other way around.

But to a cheater, anything that justifies his behavior “makes sense,” even if it doesn’t.

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago
Reply to  JC

It makes sense to Beka knowing Josh, I suppose, that he would be stupid and cowardly enough to only find the courage to leave his unhappy marriage at the bottom of a glass. Hey look what I found in my glass!! An unstable slut!! Woohoo, now I can get a divorce!! Now I’m brave enough to break my family!!

Tundra Woman
Tundra Woman
6 years ago

BiPolars are nortoriously medication non-compliant.
What she didn’t report: “When I get manic I frantically twerk everything from street lamps to stranger’s legs like a little rodent that’s just been informed it’s gonna be neutered imminently.”

FFS, the Grey Lady formerly known as the “Newspaper of Record” is now pimping herself as the “Newspaper of Wreckage.”

Sausalito
Sausalito
6 years ago
Reply to  Tundra Woman

Yep, the NYT and the Washington Post are going down the toilet. Almost makes me sadder than telling my kids that their dad is a remorseless cheater…

Doubtless
Doubtless
6 years ago
Reply to  Sausalito

I reread this as a true story with Maggie Haberman and Maureen Dowd as the two women and now it makes sense. Stockholm syndrome with a side of victim shaming are de rigueur for all New York Time pieces these days.

Ever_the_Empath
Ever_the_Empath
6 years ago

Maybe it’s true…there’s a part of me that would have absolutely done that (esp if I had kids that she’d be taking some responsibility for), if I weren’t so emotional and bluntly honest about things. It drives me nuts that I can’t be a fly on the wall to see the drama unfold and everyone get what they deserve She was a lawyer – maybe analytical, cool, calculating, pretty smart. She’ll have a front row seat when the Karma bus comes along!

Lothos
Lothos
6 years ago

I stopped reading this post when she said she was bi-polar II and how she made such horrible decisions in the past.

I translated that in my head to

I AM A CRAZY 40 YEAR OLD WOMEN WITH NO CHILDREN AND NEVER MARRIED BECAUSE I AM CRAZY.

When dating in your 40s or more, any person that has never been married and has no kids is a GIANT RED FLAG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The question that you ask ASAP is “WHY?”.

They will of course lie or tell you half truths. Try and put the pieces together because most likely you need to RUN….

DoodleBug
DoodleBug
6 years ago
Reply to  Lothos

I am 46 and never married. I wanted to but my fiancé is a pathological cheater.
My fiancé before him died of melanoma.

Medically- I cannot have children.

I am no freak. Discrimination is implying negative traits to an entire group based on the your own biases and beliefs or an isolated incident.

Not being able to have children is a kick in the gut- almost daily. Being called a red flag because of it? How incredibly cruel and ignorant.

kiwichump
kiwichump
6 years ago
Reply to  DoodleBug

Lothos, I was not offended by your first comment, anyway, as a childless woman…
First of all, everyone is free to decide what are red flags for themselves. You look for compatibility as you see it, as it would fit your lifestyle and priorities.
And I freely admit that in my case I had and have issues.
When I met the Traitor, one of my issues was being childless, because I really wanted to have children, but life and my biology had not worked out that way. In fact, I believe that is part of what made me a good mark for him.
For some people not having children is a choice, and this choice may be a sign of some issues, or not. For some not having children is not a choice, but this may also come with its own issues.
I think it’s perfectly fine to be choosy about whom you want to get involved with, and be clear about what you want. I hope people don’t assume that I am just a bundle of issues, though. There’s a bit more to me.
I think Doubtless is right to take his approach too. If he didn’t want children in his life and had a vasectomy, why would he want to look after other people’s kids?
LaughingGator, yes it is an issue which needs to be discussed if someone has never been married and starts dating someone who has, but based on my experience with the Traitor, I would be wary of how the issue is approached. The Traitor used it to make me feel deficient from the start and to imply that I was unstable, possibly promiscuous, and did not have what he called “social capital”. This is what he called his 4 kids from 2 previous “marriages” and a lot of unpaid child support, as it turned out. So if someone approached me questioning my situation, let’s just say it would put me on high alert. I guess that means I have issues… and round and round we go.
At this point in my life, after 9 miscarriages and no kids, I am well past all this and choose to look for men who either have grown up children, or no kids. I don’t want to do the step parent thing all over again after 10 years with the Traitor’s kids. I am done and frankly too old at 53 to start this all over again with someone with younger kids.
Our criteria also change over time, just as our needs change.
Doodlebug, I know where you’re coming from. We get hit with a lot of this discrimination because people assume self-centeredness goes with childlessness. It’s just another kick in the gut on top of the grief we feel. I don’t even think that people who choose not to have kids are self-centered or selfish. It’s the responsible choice if you’re not keen to be a parent to not have kids, and people who have the courage to resist society’s pressure to do something they feel is not right for them deserve our respect. However I do feel that everyone has the right to set their parameters when looking for a partner, and children/no children is one of the most important ones for mating.

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  DoodleBug

Doodle Bug,

As someone who struggled with infertility for years and lost multiple babies to miscarriage and has relatives and friends who suffer the emotional pain of never having kids in spite of dearly wanting them, you have my sympathy.

Battle-Tempered Lionheart
Battle-Tempered Lionheart
6 years ago
Reply to  RockStarWife

I second this, Doodle Bug. My heart goes out to you tonight. I shed a few tears just now.

The kick-in-the-gut from not being able to have kids is just that. And no one talks about it. Then to hear judgements about “childless” people makes it so much worse.

Laughing Gator
Laughing Gator
6 years ago
Reply to  Lothos

Being over 40 and never married IS a red flag. If it is the only red flag then ignore it and move on but the “why” really needs to be explored if you want to get serious with the person.

In my own case, I dated a woman after my divorce who was too good to be true. She was absolutely gorgeous, had a Masters degree, great 6 figure job, had a great family and was sweet as could be as a person.
Later on I figured out why and that was because her female best friend who was so protective was a whole lot MORE than a best friend and had been for 20 years. She wanted me to be a beard for her for her family (very religious types) and work. I said “thanks but no thanks” and moved on but out of respect said nothing about it to anyone.

If they are too good to be true– they usually are.

Wildflower
Wildflower
6 years ago
Reply to  Laughing Gator

I think it is sad and unfair to automatically assume that the state of being single and childless after age 40 stems from a character deficiency or undesirable, loser traits (i.e. “red flags”).

Instead, certain life experiences like marriage, children or lack thereof should just be looked at as a subject to explore in getting to know someone. Perhaps this what you meant, but really don’t like the “red flag” comments. I think it is hurtful.

One could just as easily assume that a person who is divorced is waving a huge red flag. Wouldn’t it be nice if people didn’t judge you right out of the gate, but instead waited to understand you as an individual and what you’ve lived through? Just a thought.

Lothos
Lothos
6 years ago
Reply to  Wildflower

Stating that never married and no kids in your 40s is a RED FLAG is not a looser traight.

What it means is you need to dig in very deep before you think about moving forward with the relationship.

The truth is I was married (and engaged again now) and I have a daughter and someone who has never been married and never have kids has a very different thought pattern than a parent would.

For example, I keep backups of almost everything in the house (including medicine) in case something runs out. I also have to change my schedule sometimes do to my daughters school or her simply being sick.

What I have found is people that never experienced this level of responsibility and commitment have a very hard time understanding what it means to be a very active parent. For example, I can’t drop everything I am doing and take two days off from work to head to Vegas despite how cool it sounds.

Another man I met gave me a warning early in my seperation because I am such an involved father with my daughter. He said women are going to find how responsible of a parent you are very attractive BUT women in general like to be the center of attention and although they find it attractive the problem is that its not their child and at some point they will get jealous.

I have found what he said to be overall true. Especially with women in their 40s that have never been married and never had kids.

Does that mean that they are outcast?
– Absolutely not, it just means because of where I am at in my life we are not compatible.

I hope this helps explain this better.

Laughing Gator
Laughing Gator
6 years ago
Reply to  Lothos

Lothos, I could not have explained it better.
Being over 40 and having no kids is NOT a “Loser Trait” but if you are starting a relationship with someone then that is a “red flag” meaning you really need to explore why exactly. Why has not someone who is interested in marriage and maybe kids not found someone in 20+ years ??

Everyone has different backgrounds, I have a dear friend who never married because she cared for her parents for decades and never met the right person. I would never say she is a loser but I would say (and have told her) that not marrying into your 50s is a red flag in a relationship and it needs to be discussed. That’s what I meant.

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  Wildflower

Well said, Wildflower!

Laughing Gator, I, on the surface, sound a lot like the woman you dated, although I am straight and thus have never looked for a ‘beard.’ (I got married a few months before turning 40. Could you explain to me exactly how getting married later than most people makes me defective? Did you ever consider that people who got married later were busy having a life, perhaps earning a doctorate, running a company, climbing mountains, or just plain enjoying life with their relatives, friends, and animals or enjoying life just on their own as well-adjusted, self-sufficient people? Isn’t surviving and thriving on one’s own consistent with Chump Lady’s motto, ‘Leave a cheater; get a life?’) It sounds as though you are making a generalization about millions of people based on a n (sample size) of one!

Wildflower
Wildflower
6 years ago
Reply to  Lothos

” …in your 40s or more, any person that has never been married and has no kids is a GIANT RED FLAG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Is that really a fair thing to say?

I’m 40+ woman, never married and no children. I have my reasons, including having a psycho abusive father who was very cruel to my mom and us kids, and several boyfriends over the years who all turned out to be destructive men.

I’m wary of marriage because of my childhood and watching my mom suffer so, and do not want to repeat it. And I don’t want to marry for the sake of marrying, nor bring children into the world with a bad father.

Is marrying and having children the only lifestyle that is considered normal and healthy??? I don’t think so.

Portia
Portia
6 years ago
Reply to  Wildflower

Wildflower — The big issue with age is not the marital status, or lack of one, but the behavioral patterns you have established by your choices and the behavioral patterns your potential suitor has established by his choices. Not everyone wants to be a parent, not everyone should be a parent. I chose to have children, my siblings chose not to. Raising my children, virtually by myself, was the hardest thing I ever did in my entire life. Having made the choice to have children absolutely influenced my decision making process, and any time lines I established to make any life changes. I would not say that I am any better or worse than my siblings because I chose to marry and have children, but I did choose a different life path than they did because I chose to marry and have children. That may be (statistically) a social norm in the US, and it may be a significant detail in the attitudes and expectations of potential suitors when they are trying to determine if they are compatible. The age of 40 is a mid-life point, and patterns are generally well established by that time.

One of the problems I had with my Ex#1 was that he said he wanted children, and marriage — but our definition of “wanted” was not the same. Ex#2 did not have children — but he lied to me about nearly everything he wanted, and he lied about his past. He married whenever he needed to marry to get what he wanted to get. It was a blessing that he did not have any children from any of the unions, that I know about, because those children would have been abandoned.

I believe that if you fall into the statistical “norm” of expectations and desires within our general population, not being married and not having children would certainly be a “flag” for several issues that need to be discussed before you become involved with another person. If the reasons you made the choices you did are compatible with the reasons he made the choices he did, then this would not be a “red flag” or “problem” for your relationship.

I hope I explained this correctly — Doubtless and Tempest can check me out — their analysis of statistical data is much better than mine. I studied statistics in graduate school because I had to — it was not a pleasure for me. I think there are statistics, sadistics, and damn lies, myself — but it is all relevant to the reliability of the data pool that is being tested, and the accuracy of the assumptions being used for evaluation. Well, I passed the class, anyway, so I hope that is correct!!!!

Jo
Jo
6 years ago
Reply to  Portia

Very well said, Portia. I completely agree. And I also want to add that we all get to determine the shape of our own personal dealbreakers as we all go about creating our mighty post-Chump lives. Sometimes those dealbreakers are straight up “-IST” if we’re honest. Like I don’t want to date any man who is either over or under a certain age relative to my own age. Which is ageist of me, technically. I also don’t want to date a man who has been divorced more than 3 times, nor who had a FOO more fucked up than my own (because: reasons.) I don’t want a smoker or a Trump voter or someone who is too much of a fan of a certain singer because it’s triggering as fuck for me. Doubtless doesn’t want a mother. His preferences, my preferences are actually not judging you. That’s ok! These are boundaries. It’s healthy to have them. Recovered Chumps need stronger boundaries. This is as it should be.

WhichWayDidSheGo
WhichWayDidSheGo
6 years ago
Reply to  Wildflower

I’m quickly approaching forty and have never been married. I did live with someone for five years and didn’t see how a piece of paper would have strengthened our bond, and after the fact I’m sure she would have ran regardless. I know I have my issues – my mother emotionally terrorized me for years on the subject of dating, robbing me of the formative years during which most people practice pairing up. But I can’t imagine someone who has been abandoned or serially cheated on not having issues – it’s about as fair as saying that if someone was left it must be because they have issues, otherwise they could have kept their spouse. I don’t believe that is true and am empathetic enough not to suggest it unless making a ridiculous point.

I tend not to post much anymore and typically flounce when I do, and I would say that once again we’re being shown how much work our society still has to do when it comes to compassion for mental illness. Mental illness does not excuse bad behavior, but when one person with an illness is derided because of it we all are. Nothing like having major depression and then coming to one of favorite websites to be reminded that to many people I’m too broken to be loved.

JeepTess
JeepTess
6 years ago

Hi WhichWay 🙂

…wondered where you’d went!

How have you been? …lots of us ‘oldies’ don’t post much…

I hope you are well and enjoying the sunshine 🙂

Happy holidays 🙂
Tess and Beau

JeepTess
JeepTess
6 years ago
Reply to  JeepTess

…seen Arnold, Rumblekitty or Calamity anywhere? The Clip? I’ve seen The Muse and Moving Liquid a few times here 🙂

🙂

Sucker Punched by a Saffa
Sucker Punched by a Saffa
6 years ago

Take what you want from the blog (ignore comments that feel like a hand has reached out of the screen and slapped you in the face “Ouch !”) and keep coming back.

Chump nation is a rainbow nation-all shapes,sizes,colors,flavors.

Battle-Tempered Lionheart
Battle-Tempered Lionheart
6 years ago

Yep, even those of us with “‘short-bus’special” kids.

I have major unipolar depression as well as a short bus kid. So thank you for saying that WWDSG.

But for some reason the mental illness comments did not bother me as much as the short bus one. Maybe because I’ve had depression for 20 years and a short-bus kid for only 5? Who knows.

Anyway, I want to give you (WWDSG) a pep talk on how depressed people aren’t too broken to be loved. But I know firsthand how depression’s foul tendrils creep into every crack and crevice in your life. It chokes relationships worst of all.

So, whilst I don’t agree that you are “too broken to be loved”, I feel the unloveableness of depression. Instead of a pep talk, I’ll give you a solidarity nod.

Good luck to us both.

Lothos
Lothos
6 years ago
Reply to  Wildflower

Could there be exceptions to what I said, Sure their can be!

HOWEVER

Every (and I mean every) woman (and this goes for men to) that I have gone on a date with who is in her 40s and never married with no kids ends up having issues that stick out.

This does not only apply to women, it also applies to men.

Not everyone will have that issue but the vast majority do. You just need to get passed the love bombing etc… and dig into how they handle every day life and you may discover a surprise (then again you may not).

But my experience has shown me people over 40 that have never been married and never had any kids is a very large red flag that there is a potential problem here.

NOTE: This goes for both women and men (Just as friends lol). I have met some men who clearly have major issues hence why they are single in their 40s and they fall in the categories I mentioned above.

Doubtless
Doubtless
6 years ago
Reply to  Wildflower

If I am reading this Census document correctly 82.8 to 84.9 percent of United States women have had a child by the time they reach 40 and 45 years old respectively. Being childfree isn’t always a choice, but to be maligned because they aren’t is an unkind assertion.

https://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2014/demo/p20-575.pdf

In fact, as a 46-year-old childfree man I seek out childfree women to avoid the dreaded crazy-ex-husband drama. Fuck that. Why the hell do I want to deal with another man’s kids? I use dating apps to weed out moms because I made a choice to get a vasectomy and a graduate degree. I love childfree women in their 40s. They are my people!

NoMoreShitSandwiches
NoMoreShitSandwiches
6 years ago
Reply to  Doubtless

” I use dating apps to weed out moms because I made a choice to get a vasectomy and a graduate degree. ”

On behalf of all of us amazing moms that you ‘weed-out’ -THANK YOU!!!!! (We’ve already been through the ringer and deserve better – so thanks for not wasting our time!)

RockStarWife
RockStarWife
6 years ago
Reply to  Doubtless

Doubtless,

You said, ‘as a 46-year-old childfree man I seek out childfree women to avoid the dreaded crazy-ex-husband drama. Fuck that. Why the hell do I want to deal with another man’s kids? I use dating apps to weed out moms because I made a choice to get a vasectomy and a graduate degree.’

You might not have meant to be hurtful to those of us who unwittingly married and bred with guys who turned out to be ‘crazy (aggressive, cheating) exes’, but you are hurtful and seem quite condescending ‘Holier than Thou’, arrogant, and devoid of compassion. In saying, ‘Why the hell do I want to deal with another man’s kids?’ you make the kids sound like bubonic vermin! I realize that not all kids, including mine, are always angels, but there ARE reasons to love someone else’s kids. My next door neighbor, a childless never married man who has lived with his partner, a divorced mother, for several years, and has essentially adopted her young kids, seems to love and take great care of his ‘family.’ I thought and had hoped that my childless divorced now ex-boyfriend would love or at least accept my family as a package as I could not ‘get rid of my kids,’ who he had known all their lives. I tried not to burden him with parenting demands. (I met my now ex-boyfriend 30 years ago.) I wish that he had been clearer at the onset of our romantic relationship that he would NEVER make a long-term commitment to me, even though I stated that I wanted to enter a physically intimate relationship with someone only if he wanted to truly commit to me. I was just Pump and Dump to him, who instantly left once he found greener grass on the other side of the fence. He told me directly three times that he wanted to leave me, succeeding on the third try a few months ago. (I should accept some responsiblity in getting hurt as I spackled (ignored some red flags in my relationship with my now ex-boyfriend), but nonetheless, many of the things he did were unethical, unacceptable, and unnecessarily cruel.

Using the term ‘weed out moms’ also smacks of a very negative attitude toward those of us mothers who were the victims/targets of domestic abuse and adultery by our husbands. Okay, so you, a childfree man, decided to get a graduate degree. So what? What does this have to do with parental status. I, like many respondents on CL and many parents (millions), earned (multiple) graduate degrees. I, and some of my colleagues, even worked on a doctorate while a parent of young kids. (Not saying this to brag, just pointing out a fact.) Graduate degrees are not the domain of only the childless.

I don’t fault anyone for deciding not to have kids as I don’t fault anyone for deciding to have kids, just as I wouldn’t fault someone for choosing vanilla ice cream over chocolate ice cream or vice versa. It’s fine that you chose not to sire children, but don’t bash those of us who chose to create and raise children and had the misfortune of becoming divorced parents because we married F–ktards. How about some sympathy? How would you feel if those of us who are parents said, ‘We use dating apps to weed out childless/childfree guys. F–k that (guys who didn’t create children)! Why the H–l do I want to deal with a guy who never created children? We love people who create children. They are our people?’ I consider honest considerate loyal people ‘my people’–regardless of their parental status!

Wildflower
Wildflower
6 years ago
Reply to  Doubtless