Why Do I Respond to His Texts and Feel Guilty?

Hi Chump Lady,

I too am a Chump Lady.

Last November the man I loved with my heart – the one I was IVF pregnant 7 times with and managed to hold on to one pregnancy (thankful for the amazing daughter we have), the one I had called 911 to save when he had a heart attack a year earlier, then put back together piece by piece after an emergency quadruple bypass, the one I was planning the rest of my life with – packed a bag and left.

He told me he was leaving just before he left. Like an hour before. We were driving to pick up my van from the shop and he said “when we get home I’m packing a bag and leaving.”

He works in an industry where there are frequent out of town trips so I said “Oh, you are working for the next few days? When are you back?”….

Nope. Not working. Leaving.

Of course I burst into tears and started the pick-me what-can-I-do I’m-so-sorry blah blah panic. Nothing changed.

We got the van. Drove home. He told our 11 year old daughter “I really love you and mummy and 80-percent of my life with you guys is great. But 20-percent of it isn’t and I need to go find joy and happiness.”

To which she burst into tears, flew into my arms and said “are you getting a divorce?”

Of course I said no… daddy just needs to figure some stuff out… and he said “no, I just need to see if I can find joy” (let’s bookmark that for the therapist – clearly telling your child she doesn’t bring you enough joy so you have to leave.)

So he left.

I was all the things. Blindsided, shocked, dumbfounded, sad, angry. I begged, pleaded, dressed up and tried to seduce, cajoled, cared. Suggested maybe it was a reaction to heart surgery. A life-changing event. That we would work through it.

All to a wall.

My friends were supportive and kind and a couple of them suggested maybe there was someone else. They may as well have slapped me across the face. Someone Else? No way. No chance. I would know. I was angry with these people I thought were friends. What a thing to say!

He dipped in and out of the house for a few weeks. Worked out. Left his dirty laundry (!!!). During this time I found irrefutable evidence he was having an affair.

An Affair!!!!! WTF? I’m smarter than that. ugh.

So I reached out to the friends and told them they were right. Apologized for being the big cliche. Horrified I was so obtuse I didn’t even notice my husband WAS SLEEPING WITH SOMEONE ELSE. omg. And found out it had started four years before. With a woman I knew. In fact, I helped get her a job 11 years ago. I had seen her only months earlier… she had hugged me. HUGGED ME!!!

Then the ducks started to line up.

Remember that weekend I took the child away for two nights? And when we came home the house was clean and the sheets on the bed were changed? I thought “Aw, he’s such a good guy. cleaning up and doing laundry!”
Remember when some things in the kitchen were in the wrong cupboard or drawer? I thought “Aw, he’s trying to put stuff away and doesn’t remember (after living here for 12 years) where things go!!”

Remember when he was at his dad’s for the weekend for a visit and we tried to face time and he answered and looked like he was in a closet and when we asked to chat with Grandad as well we were told “he’s busy and can’t come to the phone”? I made a note to remember to call Grandad (his father) next week so the grandchild could chat with him.

Remember only a few months ago at that even when that woman showed up “out of the blue, happened to be in town” and was a bit flirty with him? And you mentioned it to him kind of giggling that she was a bit over the top. And he blew up at you “What are you accusing me of?” Erm… nothing? but now I should have been suspicious. But I wasn’t. Because I loved him. And even though he was a hard man to please, he was my hard man to please and the father to my daughter and that was that.

So fast forward nine months. God, NINE MONTHS. An entire pregnancy. We have no separation agreement. I still have to ask him for money every month. We both have lawyers but he seems to have forgotten where all his money is. Not mine. He knows exactly where my money is and how much of it he wants.

There is no fault divorce here. But because I’ve not worked for the past 4 years (our daughter was having anxiety so I stayed home from work) — he owes me and also child support.

Now he’s claiming financial disability.

He left town for six weeks after Xmas and we didn’t hear from him. He came back and moved in with her. He randomly showed up for our daughter until one of his buddies told him it would cost him less if he showed up more. So now he shows up more.

Initially — before I knew about the affair — I hosted “family” dinner with him at our home every week so he could spend time with the child and her anxiety was alleviated because he wasn’t taking her somewhere. She was scared he would take her away and she wouldn’t see me again. That stopped after I found out.

He’s made dumb decisions about telling the child about the girlfriend — and I have been Switzerland for the most part — but even me telling her I’m not 100 percent sure how long they’ve been together left her giving me side eye and saying “Well, he didn’t waste anytime moving in – so much for wanting his freedom.”

So… after all that… my question is why when he texts with vitriol do I jump and respond right away? Why do I feel guilty like if only I HAD tried harder or loved him more or or …??? he wouldn’t have left. I know the answers in my head but my heart is struggling.

He told a mutual friend he’s living his best life. A woman who worships him and no one to tell him what to do. He’s getting his money out of the house and he’s free. No word about our child.

What do I tell our daughter when she asks “How do you know someone really loves you and won’t leave you? I heard you and daddy say I love you thousands of times, and then he left.” Ugh.

Narcissists should come with a big red N on them to warn people. Although I think the woman he’s with now is an equal Narcissist so maybe they will fill each others ego buckets.

One of my brightest moments came when a friend gave me your book. It was like I had written it… at least I had lived it. All the quotes “I love you but I’m not in love with you” … all the actions…. it was crazy. And then I realized I’m not alone on this journey no one wants to take. Thank you for that.

I too am a Chump.

***

Dear I Too,

Let’s start with your lawyer. Get a new one. I’m not a lawyer, this is not legal advice (my actual lawyer husband makes me give this caveat) but speaking as someone who has used lawyers, I am not impressed with yours. There is absolutely NO WAY you should be going hat in hand to a fuckwit for money. Are you in the U.S.? Go to court and get temporary support orders while the divorce is in progress. That should’ve been done yesterday. You need to be absolutely no contact with this creep. Not inviting him to “family” dinners and not asking him for an allowance.

Voluntary impoverishment is some bullshit. Again, this isn’t legal advice, but back when I was a staff writer for the DC Bar I interviewed a fancy Washington litigator about unpaid child support and she said she found the financial discovery process got settlement talks moving. She would always include the paramours in requests for discovery about THEIR finances. See if anything was being funneled. Any theft of marital resources “gifts” to account for. She said such requests resolved her cases over 90 percent of the time.

This is where I want your lawyer’s brain to go: How do I put the screws on this guy? How do I demonstrate to a judge he is an abandoning FW?

Of course you’ll need to resurrect your career and be financially independent of him. But fight for the best damn settlement you can get, and put the heavy boot of the law on his neck for child support.

I won’t launch into my child support sermon (you can read it here), but do NOT make it easy on this freak to walk away from his obligations. He is a fuckwit. He will. But you need to throw all the obstacles at him you can. Think of it as a retainer for your daughter’s therapy fund.

UGH indeed.

Okay, now to your question.

So… after all that… my question is why when he texts with vitriol do I jump and respond right away?

Because you learned to. UNLEARN it.

Forge some new neural pathways and only communicate via third-party parenting software. This way all of his vitriol is documented (how handy! you’re going to court). And time-stamped.

Unless it is an emergency — like “Daughter is trapped in a snowbank! Call the EMTs and Saint Bernards!” — you don’t have to give him an immediate response.

If he’s texting just to harass or insult you, you don’t have to give him a response at all. Although I give you permission to scream into the void. You can find places on the web to do this virtually. Flush all your feelings away. Just don’t send them to him.

What do you mean I don’t have to respond to him?

You don’t! You’re free! His angry feelings are not your responsibility. Schmoopie gets all that fun. She can soothe his fevered brow.

As you go through this divorce process, he’s going to have a lot of hard feelings. In his mind, you are a used wife and mother appliance, and why don’t you go to the curb and wait for large trash pick-up? He has to pay for that? And worse, there’s on-going child support?

Sure, he wanted this divorce. But he imagined you’d just keep cooking him dinners after his abandonment and living on whatever loose change he had in his pocket. Then you went and lawyered up!

So many feelings!

None of which are your responsibility!

Your lawyer can field all of his requests. (Yes that is expensive. And yes that is worth it.) For everything else there is parenting software. Also, go read about BIFF responses — brief, informative, friendly, and firm.

FWs hate BIFF. They’d prefer the kibbles of your upset. Instead respond to him like Verizon customer service. He is an irate customer. Here’s a nice automated message. Oops! We got disconnected. Here’s a survey! Tell us how we did!

Why do I feel guilty like if only I HAD tried harder or loved him more or or …??? he wouldn’t have left.

Bargaining stage of grief. You’re trying to feel a sense of control about his abandoment and chaos. So if the fault is yours, you could fix it and save it. Which feels less terrifying than powerlessness.

Also, he’s blaming you and out there trumpeting how great his new life is. So it’s natural to wonder about your inadequacies, real or imagined.

Flip the script. You’re too good for a callous fuckwit. How DARE he think he can welch out on support for his child! He isn’t worthy of your spit, let alone your love.

Seriously, get mad. He’s an asshole of the highest order. When he sends you some high and mighty text? Use YOUR power. Make him wait. Ignore him. Respond via a third party (lawyer or software). Get a special fuckwit ringtone just for him.

In short, stop caring what he thinks. He’s a man who abandons his child. No one cares what he thinks. They scrape shit like that off their shoe.

Good luck with the divorce, I Too. And consider shopping for a lawyer with sharper fangs.

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Letgo
Letgo
7 months ago

Chump Lady always gives great advice and the best one she’s given today is to get a new lawyer. Then get a job. Do not depend on this man for anything. He thinks he’s going to play with the judge’s common sense in court. It’s time for a lawyer who can go after his hidden money because it’s there somewhere.

Next, make a list of all the crappy things he has done, and said, over the years, and read it and re-read it several times a day. Once the honeymoon phase is over with him and his new “whatever” he’s going to revert right back to who he was with you. He took himself wherever he went and there he is being a piece of shit.

You do you. And remember that Chump Lady says hatred is not the opposite of love, indifference is. You need to read your list many times a day until you get it. This man is not worth it another tear.

Leedy
Leedy
7 months ago
Reply to  Letgo

Letgo and Ex-Sparkly, you offer some great, well-targeted advice! (I plan to start making my own “list of all the crappy things,” tonight.)

The Ex-Mrs. Sparkly Pants
The Ex-Mrs. Sparkly Pants
7 months ago
Reply to  Letgo

Journaling helps. For years, I journaled about all the crappy, abusive things he had done. And then my sister-in-law told me about Schmoopie — and I left. I had to unlearn the impulse to instantly respond to texts and phone calls from him, about half of which were self-pitying, half rage-filled and half charming. (Yes, I know that adds up to more than 100%, but he switched channels often, usually in the same phone call or text conversation.) Chump Lady is right about Fuckwits having only three channels: charm, rage and self-pity.

I went to counseling immediately after I left him, and the therapist told me that journaling is one of the best ways to help yourself to get over him — familiar love for him and knee jerk reaction to take care of him as well as the inevitable anger about how he could DO this to you. So between therapy, which I understand is difficult to find these days and journaling, I’m at “Meh” most of the time these days.

I’m sorry this happened to you.

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago

I think women naturally want to be responsive to others, I think it’s part of our basic wiring, but it’s also conditioning. So we respond because….we feel we HAVE to because we HAVE to be “polite”. We need to get over that and we also need to get past feeling like we can’t be angry – I mean furiously, righteously angry. No one advocates violence, but righteous anger in defense of yourself or weaker people like children is not only normal, but healthy, and I think, essential. It’s part of your self defense system and it GETS THINGS DONE. People need to feel comfortable with being angry and working with it as well as not being automatically “polite”. Be rude to some SOB like LW’s FW!

Helen Reddy
Helen Reddy
7 months ago
Reply to  Mehitable

Often when I feel compelled to respond it’s from my own “Golden Rule” outlook–having my points addressed is how I’d want to be treated.

You are so right that with FWs, we need to get over that. I’ve developed a hard & fast three strikes rule for situations where it becomes clear the other person wants me to play by set of rules while they operate without any. Then, anger becomes essential.

loch
loch
7 months ago

4 channels
-rage, sad sausage, charm and silent treatment

Nemo
Nemo
7 months ago
Reply to  loch

A summary:

http://www.chumplady.com/2018/12/chaos-the-fourth-channel

Any tactic that throws you off balance is fair game. Don’t stick your head in the mindfuck blender!

Adelante
Adelante
7 months ago
Reply to  Letgo

Your second and third paragraphs fill in the specifics of Chump Lady’s advice for how to “unlearn” previous learned responses. Great advice.

ICanSeeTheMehComing!
ICanSeeTheMehComing!
7 months ago

Dear I Too… welcome to the club. I agree with CL (when don’t I)… get a new lawyer and get a separation agreement in place with child support and financial support for you until you get your job sorted.

As someone whose son was in third grade (about the same age as your daughter on her d-day) when Mr. Sparkles walked out (3 days after our son’s birthday… they love doing that kind of shit), I can tell you with confidence that if you continue to love her and reassure her (and possibly have her meet with a good child therapist), she will learn how to process this cataclysmic life event. BUT, she will likely carry it with her for the rest of her life. Case in point, my son used almost those exact words re: “I became afraid to trust love; to trust sharing my feelings or getting to close to anyone” in a recent essay he was writing on the topic of his parent’s divorce. That said, I did my best to be the sane parent and he’s got a great group of close friends and has been dating a lovely young girl for two years. FWs cause damage, no doubt… but Chumps model resiliency and rebuild their child’s trust in the world.

Now – you may be able to rationalize how he’s treating you and want to keep cooking him a weekly dinner and washing the laundry… BUT… I challenge you to channel your ferocious momma-bear instincts to motivate you to take higher action with this FW in court and in your life. Get started on parenting software. DOCUMENT the amount of time he spends with your daughter (phone calls, visits, birthdays, vacations)… shared custody does equal a lower child support in many states… build your case with proof that he is an absent parent and have you lawyer demand full custody.

In my early days of breaking through the cognitive dissonance, I struggled to take care of myself… but when I saw what it was doing to my son… well, that was not going to stand.

You’ve got this. Get a new lawyer. Document everything (get bank account records, run a credit report on your spouse… hell, I even subpoenaed the company that owns Adult Friend Finder to getting billing records and proof of his adultery/online behavior)… be a force to be reckoned with… you survived IVF… you can do this.

2xchump 🚫again
2xchump 🚫again
7 months ago

My first X2x shook my son ( who was crying DADDY DONT LEAVE!!) He shook him off his pant leg,as he was leaving to join schmoopie( my son was crying on the ground, age 6!!!!) and said, now you grow up and stop acting like a baby.!!”THAT WAS IT GLOVES CAME OFF!!!

Slowbutsure
Slowbutsure
7 months ago

How dare he!!! But FW are from the same cloth. Mine assumes my son and never even got him a birthday present while taking schmoopie and the son they got while cheating on me on vacation, ignoring my calls for 5 days before coming home.

Adelante
Adelante
7 months ago

I’m surprised you’re not in jail for murder.

Little Wing
Little Wing
7 months ago

Dear ITAAC: First of all, I want to tell you how sorry I am for the pain that you and your child are experiencing. I am sending you and you daughter a HUGE amount of blessings, so that of both of you will have the stamina and strength to survive and to thrive. Listen to all the of the love and wisdom that CL and the good citizens of the CN will be freely giving to you. One day, you shall be able to feel the glory of your own mightiness.

A few years ago, a lawyer friend of mine once said that 95% of all civil litigation could be boiled down to the fact that a 1st, 2nd or 3rd degree trusting fool got themselves entangled with a 1st, 2nd or 3rd degree conniving A _ _ H _ _ le.

After reading tons of stories on this site, I can see that most of the horrors that I have read about have occurred because a loving, trusting, giving soul had become entangled with a despicable disordered deviant. Maybe these DDDs were not really horrid in the beginning of the relationship. But, over the years, they took advantage of another person’s goodness, and used it as a weapon against them. These DDDs have devolved into PASKUDNYAKS. (It is Yiddish. It is worth googling, IMO.)

We are (shall become) each other’s source of strength and wisdom. We are (shall become) each other’s consolation. We are (shall become) each other’s champion.

ITAAC, I wish and your daughter all of the best.

FormerlyKnownAs
FormerlyKnownAs
7 months ago
Reply to  Little Wing

That sums it up nicely Little Wing. That was me- nice, trusting, etc, him-con man, liar, jerk. The thing about the legal system though is that it’s not illegal to be an asshole, narcissistic FW. Hence no matter what, the legal system cannot make someone do the right thing. In the country I live in due to following FW’s career (being very no fault) I have discovered that they can’t make people do the right thing- the courts are too clogged up with other assholes. My ex was 12 in debt to child support. They actually clamped his car at once stage and STILL couldn’t get the money. I gave up. Now he does some mysterious non- job and seems to have money. No money has ever come my way, or my daughter’s way. Assholes game you and the system. My very good “bulldog” lawyer finally said, “I can’t make him do the right thing.” I felt victimized twice- by him and then the system.

Little Wing
Little Wing
7 months ago

“I felt victimized twice- by him and then the system.”

That really sucks, FKA. I am sorry that you were betrayed on so many levels. (As was every citizen of Chump Nation. Ro all of you: prayers for healing.)

OHFFS
OHFFS
7 months ago
Reply to  Little Wing

“After reading tons of stories on this site, I can see that most of the horrors that I have read about have occurred because a loving, trusting, giving soul had become entangled with a despicable disordered deviant.”

Yes, they all boil down to that. Every single one.

Formerchumpnowbride
Formerchumpnowbride
7 months ago
Reply to  Little Wing

They are almost never jerks at first, they would never get any victims. They can be so charming and wonderful and everything you’ve ever wanted, until you are no longer what they want. It’s never the chump’s fault, it is just who they are. Some play the game fast, others do it for long term. Many don’t even know they’re doing it because it is their built in way of living. This is why begging and pleading won’t work. They don’t change, they just get better at hiding it. Cannot let them snuff out the light that is the good in this world.

2xchump🚫again
2xchump🚫again
7 months ago

IT IS WHO THEY ARE, BEGGING, CRYING, ON YOUR KNEES WITH A NEWBORN..DOES NOT CHANGE THE DNA. THEY JUST HIDE IT BETTER( of you stay) RUN FOR YOUR LAWYER

Involuntary Georgian
Involuntary Georgian
7 months ago

People do change over time, also.

As my XW gained money and acclaim, things that she had previously tolerated became offensive to her. For instance: in early marriage when we were poor graduate students we washed clothes at a laundromat all the time; 20 years later when she left me, she was furious that I wouldn’t let her come use the laundry at the marital home because using a laundromat was ‘demeaning’. I always cooked, but early in the marriage she would sometimes wash the dishes; in the weeks before she left XW pointblank refused to help clear the table after dinner (when our kids asked her to) because she “makes the money” in the household.

I’m pretty sure that she came to believe she deserved a better husband to match her better position in life. Not that I was a bad husband but after 20 years she was well aware of my flaws, unlike AP who was new and shiny. I’ve talked with AP’s ex-wife and I can definitively say that he wasn’t that great in his actual marriage – for instance, he certainly wasn’t sending his wife bouquets, chocolate and lingerie on a weekly basis – but naturally XW wasn’t aware of this. Basically the reality of her husband couldn’t live up to the fantasy of her AP, and she felt she deserved the upgrade more than she was obligated to respect her marriage vows. It’s not a coincidence this decision occurred right after she was actively recruited to a new job, wined and dined and flown around the world and given millions of dollars of research money. Obviously this is traditionally more common in the trophy second wife of the CEO trope (e.g. my parents know a former CEO of Citibank who divorced his first wife and married the 20-years-younger hostess of the company jet), but my strong suspicion is that it isn’t really about gender and that women will manage to catch up to men’s horrible track record as they increasingly move into positions with more money and prestige.

Leedy
Leedy
7 months ago

Involuntary Georgian, exactly this happened to me (with the genders reversed). My ex’s temperament gradually changed as he became famous in his field, and even though I too had tenure at a major research institution I was a dingy second best because I wasn’t anything like a star. So, okay, FW wants a wife as successful as he is; I can understand that. But what broke my spirit was a) the EASE with which he settled into what would be a 6-year affair with another academic superstar, and b) the palpable contempt in his demeanor toward me during these years of infidelity. I could feel the contempt, but had no knowledge of the affair. Anyway, your story SO resonated with me! I send you a hug.

SortOfOverIt
SortOfOverIt
7 months ago
Reply to  Leedy

Leedy,

This “the palpable contempt in his demeanor toward me during these years of infidelity. I could feel the contempt, but had no knowledge of the affair” resonated with me. I also was unaware of a years long affair and at times felt like my FW absolutely hated me. Just that underlying contempt that you mentioned. When I found out about the AP, it made more sense.

Adelante
Adelante
7 months ago
Reply to  Leedy

Another chump in a dual academic household. I bet your ex doesn’t really want a wife as successful as he is, at least not if it means he has to share household chores and the spotlight.

Leedy
Leedy
7 months ago
Reply to  Adelante

Good point. (Adelante, are you an academic too?) In fact, my ex is now married to someone much more famous than he is! They don’t have to share household chores because they’re rich enough to have a full-time nanny and lots of other help. But yes, according to my daughter her dad is indeed a little miffed that sometimes people know him only as HER husband. Still, he’s a lot happier than he was with me; we were mismatched in ways that ended up making us both unhappy.

Skewers the Hare
Skewers the Hare
7 months ago
Reply to  Leedy

OW is absolutely way more famous and successful than my FW. Novelists and filmmakers, not academics, but the Venn diagram is basically a circle. I’ve sometimes wondered how that dynamic has worked for him. He’s definitely a parasite, so he’s probably perfectly happy with it.

I’m a failed academic myself. Too sick. It’s fine. I’ve done some cool stuff anyway. I’d just like to not have spent the last 30 years sick all the time. And I particularly like not to have been permanently scarred at 21 by my FW abandoning me because my autoimmune disease was apparently “killing” him. Not at all of course because barely-legal OW was right there with a fresh start.

It’s really hard to trust again. But it can be done. We’re not irremediably broken, and love is not by definition weak or ephemeral. FWs are broken, and their love is weak and ephemeral. There are lots of non-FW out there, ready to love like fully realized people.

Leedy
Leedy
7 months ago

Skewers, I love your last paragraph, and I agree.

Skewers the Hare
Skewers the Hare
7 months ago
Reply to  Leedy

Aww, thanks!

Hell of a Chump
Hell of a Chump
7 months ago

My sense is that personality disorders start calcifying over the years. There was always something missing but, sort of like beta apes biding their time before they try to steal the crown, they lay low and evince traits that help one get by in beta mode– cooperation, humility, empathy, etc. And being unreflective psychos, they tend to believe their own bs. FW truly believed for years that he was an “introvert.” But the second he got a promotion and when certain investments took off, he went effing nuts. I would never have been attracted to him had I met him at 19 while he was in his swaggering, manscaped mode. Blech. I could never stand men like that.

I don’t even think he fell “out of love” with me but with his former disguise. Lacking imagination, he assumed that, in beta mode, he could only get a beta mate. As soon as I hired a lawyer he suddenly changed his impression. It’s like watching some brainless amoeba darting around a Petri dish according to whether you add salt, nutrients, soap or whatever. No individual thought, no values, no principles, just knee-jerk opportunistic alignment with whatever context they’re in at the moment, aka “cypher” or “agentic.”

Nemo
Nemo
7 months ago

That explains the “hollow man” feel of the disordered. They don’t have an identity. They’re chameleons.

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago

She got a big head and couldn’t hold it up anymore.

OHFFS
OHFFS
7 months ago

“Many don’t even know they’re doing it because it is their built in way of living.”

That’s my FW. He seems to have no awareness of his disordered pattern of behavior. Every awful thing he does is an anomaly to him. Despite there being thousands of examples of shitty behaviors, in his alleged mind it is not evidence of a pattern, it is thousands of out of character actions and he’s really a nice guy.

NotFromVenus
NotFromVenus
7 months ago
Reply to  OHFFS

I hear you OHFFS. My ex wants to feel good by treating every single stranger like a superman. I am always extremely nice to those who are in the service business. I have done it myself in the past too and I know how difficult it is. I try to tip well. But he is something else. The way he talks and acts looks really awkward. Always over the top. Buys a latte for 5 dollars and tips another $5. We used to go out with friends and every single time he wanted to pay the whole bill. This makes people uncomfortable after a while, even if they are friends. One of the couples told me once, NotFromVenus, we have good jobs (They were working for one of those forbes 100 companies) and we can pay for our food..

Staroftheday626
Staroftheday626
7 months ago
Reply to  NotFromVenus

Not From Venus – bingo! My FW does the same thing and it quickly flows from average nice things to uncomfortably generous for the situation to – well – sketchy/creepy. Always. Recently while visiting adult stepson we were at a store where FW was talking to a young guy behind the counter. It was a friendly kid ,getting ready to leave retail once he graduated college in his field. FW literally insisted that he knew people who could help this guy get going after graduation. As most people would expect the guy was like ” yeah – great- I’ll think about it thank you very much.” FW smiled but clearly couldn’t handle not being allowed to give the guy his friend’s phone number.

…To the point we left the store, got on the freeway, drove 2 exits fuming (About 3 miles in rush hour traffic) before his “FW ego pressure” blew up – he literally got off the freeway, headed back to the store, where this guy was by then walking out at the end of his shift, screeched the car to a halt in the middle of the parking lot and accosted him with the alleged life changing contact info on a piece of paper. I’m sure this poor kid thought his life was about to end. He took the paper, stammered out a thank you and literally ran to his own car. OMG so weird. Call the cops kind of weird. FW was elated though – “good deed” was done even if the recipient was in fact terrified. And FW went back to texting schmoops and being really mean to the family with a clear conscience because he “did something nice”. I don’t need to understand why he thinks forcing favors on strangers balances out the awful way he treats his inner circle, part of living the lie and managing impressions I guess. I’m over it. Can’t wait till divorce is final….

KB22
KB22
7 months ago

Just desperate attempts to be thought of as a “hero”.

ActaNonVerba
ActaNonVerba
7 months ago
Reply to  OHFFS

OHFFS, so well said! In hindsight, I now see FW’s character and behavior as a lifetime pattern of selfishness and manipulation. On the the other hand, FW sees himself as a great guy who occasionally makes single, discrete missteps. I empathize so deeply with what I Too is going through right now. It took me years to break out of the brainwashing.

One thing that’s been helpful to me is reading books, listening to podcasts, and watching documentaries about how people escape from cults. There are so many parallels to how chumps, with the purest of intentions, get sucked in and exploited by FWs. Recovering is not unlike deprogramming.

Tracy’s and Sarah’s interview with Dr. George Simon in yesterday’s episode of “Tell Me How You’re Mighty,” speaks to this as well. I laughed out loud at the part where Dr. Simon says, “We’ve had this model where everyone is basically the same . . . NO, NO, NO, NO, NO!” As Tracy responded, it’s about power, about getting all the cookies for themselves.

I Too, I heartily join the other voices in encouraging you to get another lawyer ASAP. I can guarantee that once the screws of legal action begin to twist, your FW’s mask will drop. The things FWs say and do during divorce proceedings tell you everything you need to know about who they really are. The upside is that the process will likely disabuse you of any remaining emotional bond. Sending you much love, and hoping you’ll keep us updated.

And memorize, internalize, metabolize the CN mantra: “Trust that they suck.”

SuperColossalChump
SuperColossalChump
7 months ago

What a douchebag. Lawyer up period! I had gone through a couple before I found the right one. I was just like you. Got a trauma therapist and great lawyer. I took CL’s advice on the wall of pain. I embraced it, and it helped me clear my head to get mighty going. When the light bulb goes off that you were emotionally abused, sadly the phone messages become a trigger. That goes away too. However, now that you are separated you have to set the stage of only answer for child. All divorce issues go through your lawyer. My FW will send a novel. My responses are always short and business like. I barely hear from him now and it’s only about our kid and his visitation(he has every other weekend). Shit hurts now, but it does get better. Big hugs 🫂

Sunrise
Sunrise
7 months ago

And then your child (or third in my case) emancipates and you communicate with them even less. I haven’t spoken to Douchecanoe since high school graduation last year. And in 2.5 years when college expenses have ended, I’ll never have to email him or read a message from him ever again.

Unicornomore
Unicornomore
7 months ago

“Why do I feel guilty like if only I HAD tried harder or loved him more or or …??”

Because our cultural narrative is “If you do the right thing, you get the right result” …we tell ourselves and others this message in a myriad of ways but it is not true.

Professionally, I care for people in the midst of a particular sort of crisis and I teach them this…I never get a verbal response…more they stare offing space thinking about it. I myself was an avid Pick Me Dancer and it kept me trapped in a mess for YEARS.

NotAnymore
NotAnymore
7 months ago
Reply to  Unicornomore

When I am feeling this way I like to flip the question on it’s head:

Why didn’t he try harder or love me more when he was questioning the relationship?
Why didn’t he put more effort in instead of looking for a girlfriend?
Why didn’t he have one single honest conversation with me instead of thousands of conversations filled with lies?

The answer to all of these questions is “because he didn’t want to.” He wanted to have a girlfriend. He wanted you to be doing all the parenting and housekeeping while he galavanted on vacation with schmoops. He wanted to walk out the door and let you think YOU were the problem, that he wasn’t “happy” enough with you, when the truth was he walked out on you four years prior. Just another lie from a lying liar.

Let those questions and answers lead you to your anger – connecting with my righteous indignation was the key to taking legal action to protect myself and my child.

lulutoo
lulutoo
7 months ago
Reply to  NotAnymore

NotAnymore, exactly. I don’t know if I read it here on ChumpLady or elsewhere, but someone who was interviewing someone who’d worked in the Domestic Abuse arena asked her, “Don’t you ever get exhausted, wondering why all these women go back to their abusers?” And the worker said, “No, but I often get exhausted, wondering why these abusers don’t stop abusing.”

ITAAC
ITAAC
7 months ago
Reply to  NotAnymore

Yes! This is resonating. Thank you.

G
G
7 months ago
Reply to  NotAnymore

Wow, NotAnymore, this is brilliant and a great new perspective! Thank you ❤️

DrDr
DrDr
7 months ago

FW had 4 years, but likely much more time to mentally prepare and justify his getaway. While you are just now learning of this new “search for happiness” on his part. It takes a lot of delusional balls to decide your kid and spouse are what stands between you and happiness. My FW said the same to me. Only it was 30 years. Give yourself time to face this new reality. It is very painful for you and your kid. FW is a moron. He doesn’t deserve you.

Chumpasaurus45
Chumpasaurus45
7 months ago
Reply to  DrDr

Agree, DrDr, great big delusional cojones to think their happiness is right on the other side of their families. If they can just slid past us, there will be endless joy awaiting them.
And when they finally realize that thinking was massively flawed, you will be long gone, I too.
On to peace, safety, freedom and a much better, less chaotic life with your daughter. She will watch you model greatness and it will give her a fortified strength to get through the crappy things that will show up in life.
I’m sorry he hurt you, there’s another side to get to that’s better than the one you’re on.
Not so for your FW I’m thinking. But don’t feel sorry for him, he chose his path of self destruction.

susie lee
susie lee
7 months ago

I agree with a better lawyer. I get that lawyers are way more expensive now than when I D’s, but mine was recommended by another lawyer that a friend worked for. In the consultation he told me the law, what I could expect and what he could make happen. He did it all. In fact I could have gotten three years of temp maintenance, but I wanted out before that. This was in a no fault state, too many folks let that no fault-50/50 thing scare them, and the 50/50 is in most states if not all applied using the equity rule as best they can. FW hired a lawyer that live in the trailer park right next to whore.

It likely won’t ever be truly fair because the fw has likely liquified too many assets by the time the chump knows, but at least get a lawyer that knows what he/she is doing. And a hint is, if he/she is working part time at a discount store, and living in a trailer park he/she is likely not the best choice. He/she may someday be, but not now.

I know it is different in other countries, but I agree with CL get a lawyer with teeth. And don’t get hung up on getting exactly half, sometimes doing it a little different can work out so much better to help you get on your feet.

Formerchumpnowbride
Formerchumpnowbride
7 months ago
Reply to  susie lee

If he has liquified assets, they have forensic accountants that can track that shit down. In this case, after 4 years of schmoopie upkeep, I think it might be a good thing. A good lawyer will know.

susie lee
susie lee
7 months ago

Agreed. Even if it only used as pressure for something else, it is good to have and much info as possible.

Formerchumpnowbride
Formerchumpnowbride
7 months ago

For a while my FWs ringtone was “Crazy Train”. I always knew it was him, and the song made me laugh a little every time. He would send me long screeds of purple prose, still does really, and I’d scan for anything child related, then either not reply, or if there was a reply needed, “KK” was all that was necessary.

You are still so early in this process and like me, you were completely blindsided. Of course, looking back you can see some signs, but you didn’t expect a FW, so the pieces never came together. That isn’t a reflection on you, that is a result of him being a lying cheater who doesn’t play by any rules.

Yes, get a better lawyer. This is taking way too long. Even with the archaic laws in my state regarding how parents have to get divorced, I was lawyered up and divorced within 7 months. Mine was simpler because we had less than nothing (he put me through a bankruptcy) and he wasn’t contesting much of anything. But you are at a standstill and begging him for breadcrumbs. Your lawyer should have nipped that in the bud long ago. Don’t stand for that. You and your daughter should be his first priority whether he likes it or not, period. Get that temp child support and custody hammered out asap so you aren’t eating his table scraps. I’m sure he loves that, what a monster. Mine promised he would help with expenses and taking care of the kid, why did I need a divorce or a decree? Of course that lasted one WEEK. They lie. Why would they help us now?

Meh is a ways off, but Tuesday is coming. The further from that day you get, the less it hurts. But it does hurt, and I know it. You did absolutely nothing to deserve being cheated on and treated this way. Even if you were the worst wife in the world (hint, you weren’t) he had plenty of options to end the relationship in a morally sound way. He didn’t. He is a selfish FW and someday you will see how you are good rid of him. Be there for your daughter and get her into therapy. Her abandonment will affect her, but you can mitigate by being the sane, safe parent. You will be ok, it just takes time and a good divorce lawyer.

Hang in there, the only way out is through.

Happy Now
Happy Now
7 months ago

My ring tone for my fuckwit was the Darth Vader theme song. It fit perfectly, and it gave me a heads-up it was him calling, plus it put me in the mindset of “evil is on the other end of the line.” Really helped me unlearn the decades of feelings I used to have when my (I thought) loving husband was calling me.

HunnyBadger
HunnyBadger
7 months ago

“Forge new neural pathways” is perfect advice. It takes intention, because it’’s not going to happen by chance or staying in the same routine, but it will get you up and moving and living again faster than anything else.

Now what I want to know is why so many of these FWs are such friggin’ cowards?

My FW moved out lock, stock and barrel while I was out of town for a few days helping my mom. I found out via FaceTime, while talking with my nine year old son who didn’t have a clue because FW had been doing it during the day while the boys were in school. I watched real-time as this sweet, loving little nine year old looked up in horror, choked a bit, then started to cry as he said, “Dad…. Are you leaving us??”

I wasn’t even there to comfort him. I feel no need to forgive my FW for anything at all, but I will never, ever, ever in a million years forgive him for doing all of this to our little boys. And that moment of discovery, the look on my son’s face and the sound of his voice…. Those are burned into my heart and mind.

Get a lawyer. Right now. Don’t hesitate, don’t wait to figure things out, don’t give your ex a chance to tell you what way the wind is blowing. Let your lawyer do that. Then let your FW start to sweat and check the hurricane bells that will probably come as a complete surprise to him. But do it all IMMEDIATELY. The pieces will fall into place, trust me.

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago
Reply to  HunnyBadger

My God, how can someone do that to ANY child, much less their very own. That is monstrous. I cannot comprehend treating a child – or even a pet – like that. This is why I am generally against joint custody and our divorce laws need to be changed. Someone who abandons their kids should not have ANY custody. The kids DON’T need to know them…..they know enough. Kids are a lot smarter than we think and they should not be forced into relationships with abusive, abandoning assholes with whores.

HunnyBadger
HunnyBadger
7 months ago
Reply to  Mehitable

It’s sad but true. I wish courts looked at things with that wisdom instead of the proverbial “what’s fair to both parties?”

Because “fair”? Fair is protecting a child from a FW who put himself or herself first, choosing their fun over the best interests of children. Fair s a court looking at the damage done and acknowledging that giving children plenty of time with an aren’t who would do that is only adding insult to injury.

F a parents chooses drugs over the child, the court removes the child. If the parent chooses crime over the child, they remove the child. Why is it so foreign for a court to recognize that a parent who will explode a marriage and family is probably not capable of looking out for the best interests of the child?

If I could go back to the day when I watched and heard my son’s heart break as he discovered daddy was planning to take a powder…I never want to witness anything like that again. I genuinely hope that some night while he’s alone my FW spontaneously combusts. But only enough to halfway destroy him, so that he lives the rest of his life disfigured and in pain. I’m honestly not bitter, I simply carry the emotional weight of the way he hurt our children, and Inwish he had to feel some of it.

CryMeARivet
CryMeARivet
7 months ago
Reply to  HunnyBadger

When FW told our boys how he needed to leave us to be ‘happy’,
all three burst into tears, one started rocking back and forth saying “This can’t be happening, God, please don’t let this happen..” Another went off to his room and kicked a box and FW followed him for a minute then came back and said “This is too hard”, walked out and left a broken me to pick up all the pieces.

It’s a little over six years ago now but I too will NEVER forget how horrific it was and who he was that day.

And who he has been since, a father who’s done nothing financially, (almost no child support), emotionally (rarely contacts), or physically (chose to live two states away with soulmate #?) to raise and support his three sons. He abandoned all of us.

And, subsequently, who I found out he was before he left us. The cheating, (even with his best mate’s wife/slag), lying, deceit, the financial BS and I probably still only know half of it.

I’m glad that I don’t get how someone can do that.

HunnyBadger
HunnyBadger
7 months ago
Reply to  CryMeARivet

Be very glad that you can’t understand how someone could do that. May it remain a surrealistic and horrible concept to all of us.
I don’t believe it’s possible to leave the marriage but not the kids; I do believe that’s what most cheaters tell themselves. In the almost four years since my FW left, all his adoring of our sons has pretty much vanished, he never calls them to check on them, etc. He just can’t be bothered. They are with him EOW and even for those times he is happier to be sleeping or texting or playing video games. Grown man. It seems he wasn’t wearing just the happy-husband mask…He was pretending to be a happy, loving functioning father too.

Unicornomore
Unicornomore
7 months ago
Reply to  HunnyBadger

What a piece of stinky dog shit to do this to his child. God only knows what insane internal narrative they have going on while telling themselves their behavior is reasonable.

Around DDay, mine seemed to forget that he had children (9,14,16). It was like he already considered us divorced with me as the parent, but just hadn’t told me yet.

Goodfriend
Goodfriend
7 months ago

You’ve come to the right place, and you should read the archives of these posts.

I’ve learned, sadly, that lawyers’ abilities and drive differ vastly. I’d really welcome some advice on how to find a good one, because it seems they all know how to reassure you that they’re experts in your particular situation (narcissists, your type of assets, etc.), even when they’re inexperienced or clueless. Would Tracy and Chump Nation please offer advice on finding a GOOD lawyer, for the letter writer and the rest of us?

In addition to LACGAL, I suggest reading Vikki Stark’s book “Runaway Husbands.” And also “Parents Who Cheat: How Children and Adults Are Affected When Their Parents Are Unfaithful” by Dr. Ana Nogales Ph.D and Laura Golden Bellotti.

I Too, you’ve been blindsided, betrayed and let down. It’s less than a year. Your feelings are normal. You’ll feel much better when you have a decent lawyer who gets you some financial support. That will allow you to distance yourself from this awful man, his awful partner and his sleazy friends.

Document, document document ALL of his horrible comments to your daughter, and his interactions with her, perhaps on a daily basis. What he said was horrible. I suggest child therapy to help her, along with strong support from you.

You asked, “Why do I feel guilty like if only I HAD tried harder or loved him more or or …???” We all feel that way. I suspect it may also be because of your experience trying to conceive. You went through six unsuccessful IVF pregnancies–and possibly even more attempts– before you were able to have your daughter. You DID try harder, over and over, and you finally succeeded in getting that person you love. You taught yourself to keep trying and not quit. You know that doesn’t apply to FW, and with time and Tracy, you will be able to change that mindset. The best way to do that is through No contact. When you get court-ordered support, you won’t have to deal with FW from such a weak position.

Hugs to you and your daughter.

Unicorn Queen
Unicorn Queen
7 months ago
Reply to  Goodfriend

I am a member of a local moms group on facebook. I used to see postings all the time where moms would ask for recommendations on good divorce lawyers. Surprise, surprise-I discovered that I have been saddled with a lying, cheating FW. That was my first stop. A lot of the moms have either been in your situation or are going through your situation. They divorced moms know the good local lawyers and who to avoid. They also recommend (like CL) to beg, borrow, and steal to get a GREAT lawyer.

Apidae
Apidae
7 months ago
Reply to  Goodfriend

Goodfriend, the best way to find a good lawyer is a reference from someone you know who has used that lawyer themselves, or from another lawyer you trust.

After that, it gets more difficult. CL has recommended Superlawyers in the past. I would agree that’s not a bad way to find a lawyer – it’s an advertising thing, but “Superlawyers” are at least people who other colleagues have recommended and have heard of, so you’re far less likely to get someone with a terrible reputation or who is dabbling in that area of practice. You want a lawyer who does family law and nothing else.

Many states’ bar associations have a lawyer lookup where you can check the lawyer’s credentials, including disciplinary records. You don’t want someone who has been disciplined multiple times. Some states also have specialist credentials in family law, which means your lawyer has gone through an additional process to get certified in that specialty.

Also – when you meet with a lawyer for an initial consultation, remember YOU are finding out about THEM. Do they listen to you? Are they promising you the moon? (Bad sign – it’s one thing for a lawyer to be a pitbull, another thing for them to guarantee results.) Are they willing to explain the process and to give you a reasonable timeline? Do they answer your questions directly – even if the answer is ‘it depends’ – or are they sidestepping and deflecting them?

Goodfriend
Goodfriend
7 months ago
Reply to  Apidae

Thanks. Superlawyers is new to me, so I’ll keep that in mind.
I did go through the other steps, and still ended up with some poor choices for various cases.

Stepbystep
Stepbystep
7 months ago

The expression “get your ducks in a row” at Chump Lady refers to YOUR actions. Put together a support team of a capable lawyer, a therapist for you, job training to compliment any part-time job, a walking partner, reliable (not Switzerland) family and friends.

Your quiet plan is you taking back your power and a future for you and your daughter. Do not share your plans with him.

Spoonriver
Spoonriver
7 months ago

I’m always amazed at how fuckwits expect you to just disappear, be gone! They seem genuinely ( if they ever could be) surprised you are not on board and helping them have a new chump/child/responsibility free life.

The “surprise I’m leaving” is especially heinous. I wish them all ten kinds of hell.

Grateful Guest
Grateful Guest
7 months ago
Reply to  Spoonriver

Why amazed? We always did our best to please our FW husbands, didn’t we? Why should they think we might change that? They don’t live by principle; they live by what they can get away with.

My FW didn’t leave me because my roles of wife-appliance and principal parent were too essential to his comfort. He WAS astonished that I left him, and secured the lion’s share of the family holdings in accordance with my years-long plan. I had kept a file of his dumpworthy offenses to shore up my resolve, and I had made a bucketlist of things I wanted to do while still “married.” I left the marriage right after the last kid was out the door, and never looked back. Getting to that point was hard, but freedom was immediate, and felt fantastic. Still does.

ExWifeOfSparkleDick
ExWifeOfSparkleDick
7 months ago

Oh, the smarmy FW is hiding money is he? You can find some if not all of it just by looking at y’all’s tax returns. (I assume the same in any western country.) If your lawyer hasn’t asked for those it’s time for a new lawyer. If the FW is hiding your returns from you, all you have to do is request transcripts directly from the IRS (Form 4506) if you filed jointly. (I used to analyze tax returns for a living to qualify folks for mortgages. I’m really good at sniffing out income.)
I’m sure your FW has old paystubs lying around — that will show retirement savings that you can subpoena.
If you have joint bank accounts, immediately withdraw half and open a new account in your name.
Remember to have your attorney address tax issues past, present and future because if he’s cheating on you, he damn well is cheating Uncle Sam.
Also make sure that his life insurance policies are continuing with offspring as beneficiary. Getting financials from Schmoopie is a damn good idea in case he’s funneling funds for her to hide.
There’s a gazillion other tips that a GREAT attorney knows and WILL USE to nail this SOB.

MichelleShocked
MichelleShocked
7 months ago

I Too Am a Chump,

You came to the right place and all the advice here is on point. But to answer the question a little more about you feeling guilty… it’s because you’re human. You’re kind. It’s not in your make up to abandon or ghost or gaslight. You actually loved and cared about your husband. You respond to the one you loved.

But now he’s dropped the mask and revealed himself to be a real piece of shit. He’s someone who not only abandons you after everything you’ve been through together (including years of IVF and nursing him back to health), but he’s an asshat to your child. He abandoned her too and told her she doesn’t bring him joy.

So remember who he IS, not who you thought he was. And imagine the person typing to you is a man you just met who has stolen from you and continues to steal your money (let’s say he got a hold of your bank account) and says cruel things to your child. You don’t have to pretend…that’s literally who he IS. So now… how would you respond to demanding or fucked up texts from THAT guy? (you can’t necessarily block him… but you CAN just keep those texts for your lawyer and don’t reply unless it’s something directly for your child. Please get a better lawyer and let them do the conversing)

Just remember who he IS. I found it easier to be upset about FW’s treatment of our child. Focus on that and you won’t have any desire to respond quickly to his crap. Let him sit and spin

damnitfeelsbadtobeachumpster
damnitfeelsbadtobeachumpster
7 months ago

i’m sorry that you’re here; i’m sorry we’re all here. but we can and do support one another with laughs, info, encouragement, and understanding.

fuck that guy. he’s a real asshole. where was the AP when his chest was wired together post quad-bypass? who changed the dressings on the puncture wounds on his thigh, following cardiac catherization? he used you as a nursemaid and that hurts.

a lawyer, a good therapist, and little to no response to your X will help. you should only be communicating by email, so you can keep a copy of everything you need. no more texting. that’s too close. say “no” and “i don’t know; i’ll think about it” a lot. pause before you respond. you’re in charge of yourself now, and you, and only you, have your own interests at heart.

as for the grieving, may i suggest creating a mantra that you repeat to yourself whenever you need it? i found ruminating the worst part of grieving, the 3 a.m. swirl of thoughts and feelings. so i created a mantra that i repeated until the swirling slowed and stopped. this mantra was specific to my situation and slowly morphed over time, as i understood myself more. it’s a lot of work.

here’s mine for reference:

he’s an active alcoholic
he refuses to get help for alcoholism
he is not emotionally capable
he was raised in a dysfunctional, alcoholic home with parents who fought all the time, and had no boundaries. the result is that he avoids conflict and uncomfortable feelings
he is a narcissist and has little to no empathy
he is not capable of intimacy
he simply doesn’t care
i was primed for this relationship because i was raised by a narcissistic mom
this relationship is not sustainable, that it lasted as long as it did is kinda amazing
but, i deserve more and i will have more

by the time i get to the end of the mantra, i’m thinking of myself and what i deserve. that’s the biggest shift over the first year–shifting focus to your self.

knittedrobin
knittedrobin
7 months ago

wow! You could be writing about me and my fuckwit! Exactly the same on every point.

SortOfOverIt
SortOfOverIt
7 months ago

CL said it best. You respond to him the way you do because you have been conditioned to do so over the years.
I am currently unlearning all of these responses. Mine are a result of FOO issues (Family of Origin), yours may be as well, or you learned them just from dealing with him. Or a combo.

Mine had a very similar 80/20 concept. Everything was perfect except for my lack of ability to stroke his ego 24/7. (Not exactly his words, but that is the gist of it. And to be fair to me, I was stroking pretty hard but could only manage 21/6. It was exhausting) Leaving a decades long marriage and a child for someone that made him feel that new relationship excitement. What a moronic move on his part.

I highly encourage you to read the archives. What you will find is that as crazy as your situation feels to you, both what he did and how you feel about it, you will see that you are not alone. You will find chump after chump who have similar experiences.

Also, find your anger. This can be hard because as humans and especially women, we are taught to see anger as a bad emotion. I am not saying you should walk around furious and screaming at the walls, no one wants to feel unhinged like that. it’s uncomfortable. Find the anger but knock the volume down to a 7.5/8. Use it to focus.

Instead of thinking “oh what a moron I am that I thought he was nice when he cleaned the house and washed the sheets when I was away”, think “how fucking dare he bring her to OUR home?” Turn every one of those situations away from you, and put the spotlight on him where it belongs. You aren’t an idiot for trusting your spouse, your spouse is a Fuckwit for betraying you in all of those ways. Acknowledge that. Daily. Your righteous fury will prove useful.

Early on when I had just found out, I was so confused. Just way too many thoughts in my head and it made it difficult to think straight. And that lead to a lot of wasted time. I was too sad to be productive. It’s ok to be sad, you are grieving a loss. But anger tends to lead to productivity. It provides a clarity. And always temper it with “if it feels good, don’t do it”. Now isn’t the time for pettiness or revenge. Now is the time to get free and get the best settlement possible for your future. You get one chance at a good settlement, don’t waste it on a sub par lawyer and don’t throw away anything hastily just to be done with the FW. Get a fair settlement and get out.

Tall One
Tall One
7 months ago

When my life crumbled, the people that said, “Congratulations…” were the ones with the best advice.
Of course it hurt to hear that in the moment, but they were right. You’ll see. Thats your new horizon.

Get angry. Use that anger. Move forward.

I stopped texting (“only in emergencies” was my new rule).
I stopped emailing right away and gave space for give better answers.
I put some f’n boundaries down and enforced them.
Boy, was FW surprised! And disappointed it didn’t go her way.

I divorced in a no-fault state. Consider it a way of walking away with less emotional anger. Fight for fair. Fight for you. Let the rest fall away; the less connections you have to this ass, the less pain you have to bring to your new life.

Breath deep.
You got this.

Kara
Kara
7 months ago

“80% of my life is great”

Holy shit he’s unhappy 20% of the time. Oh no! Call in the emergency services!! 20%!! Quick set fire to everything! Start over in another country with a different name! Throw your whole life away! 20%!!!!

Jesus…I’m sure most average people would say they’re between 10%-20% dissatisfied with their lives just because of normal, everyday frustrations. Work is stressful, the neighbor’s dog pooped on their lawn again, Agnes next door won’t stop gossiping about everything…

If he was going to give a reason for blowing up the marriage and abandoning his child he should have tried harder. …Maybe like 80% harder.

Motherchumper99
Motherchumper99
7 months ago

Why? Trauma bonds. Your irrational reaction is proof you were and are still being emotionally abused. Keep practicing grey rock/no contact. You will feel better after the divorce is finalized, all property transferred, you get a job supporting yourself, and about 3-5 years passes. Yup, there are no quick fixes or shortcuts through this. But, you will feel better again. Start by calling new lawyers today. Don’t waste another minute. Discuss hiring a forensic accountant, discovery to STBX and subpoenas to his banks, employer, doctor, financial advisor, AP, his siblings, parents, best guy friends. File a motion for a parenting/psych evaluation. Do all.the.things.

Nemo
Nemo
7 months ago

” … subpoenas to his banks, employer, doctor, financial advisor, AP, his siblings, parents, best guy friends.” Heh. Oh, to be a fly on the wall when the conspirators get served. All that money didn’t just dry up and blow away!

TheDivineMissChump
TheDivineMissChump
7 months ago

So, how do you find that shark attorney who will fight like hell for you and your daughter?
Friends might suggest good options, but dig in and do your research when they do. The state bar associations have websites that are helpful and avoid the sponsored Google listings. When you narrow it down, schedule consultations with several. You are interviewing them, not the other way around. And specify that you will be requesting forensic accounting services and full custody in addition to specifying in your filing that he will be paying all your attorney expenses in the divorce. This is a case of adultery and abandonment, so you hold more leverage than you might believe you do.

In addition, in my state, divorce filings, property settlements, and final decrees are available in an online archive that is easily accessible. (I didn’t learn this after my divorce was final.) You can look up the previous settlements negotiated by any attorney you are considering using. Good method to see what kind of track record they have.
Good luck, I too. Model your mightiest for your daughter now and going forward. Block that SOB and use the co-parenting software others have recommended. Any other communication can be done through your new shark attorney.

Apidae
Apidae
7 months ago

I choked on my morning coffee when I read “We both have lawyers but he seems to have forgotten where all his money is.” THIS IS YOUR LAWYER’S JOB. Forensic accountants. Investigation. It is absolutely run of the mill for these cheaters to start hiding money and any competent divorce lawyer should be all over that, right out of the gate.

There is no “forgotten where his money is” in a lawsuit. There should be subpoenas, depositions, all kinds of things to nail down where his money is. I cannot emphasize enough how trivially basic this is in a divorce.

Now – it may be that your lawyer IS in the process of nailing him to the wall, and you’re trying to shortcut that by asking your FW for money on the side. If so, STOP DOING THAT AND TELL YOUR LAWYER.

(Sorry for the shouting. Like Mr. CL I am a lawyer, although I don’t do family law, but even I know how the money part works.)

OHFFS
OHFFS
7 months ago

Listen to CL. With no contact those urges will eventually go away. Just stick to it.

Here’s an idea you may not have thought of.
Do you have the ability to get a job making enough that you can forget about child support? If so, you can inform him that he is off the hook if he never sees your daughter again. Then you can have his parental rights removed for abandonment. I’m thinking it’s better that way, because he can’t manipulate and hurt your child anymore with his cruel words. You would also never have to see him again. With somebody as disordered as him, that is a blessing. It’s worth considering, if you can afford it.
I do not believe it is good for children to be forced to spend time with disordered parents who care nothing about them and are just trying to avoid paying more support. It’s healthier to get a clean break away from a parent who is an emotional abuser, which your STBX definitely is. Your daughter had been through enough with this bastard already.

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago
Reply to  OHFFS

I completely agree with this. I know it’s the vogue to have children be connected to both parents but this is not always in the best interest of the kid. Kids should not be forced to be involved with people WHO DON’T CARE ABOUT THEM because if he cared about her he wouldn’t have dumped her and her mother for some whore just because she’s a better groveler. Women unfortunately still generally earn less than men, but if she is capable of doing without his money or just get a one time settlement that cuts off future contact, I think that would actually be in the best interest of the girl. The daughter KNOWS what he’s like already and like most children, she’s probably honest enough to recognize and admit it (she hasn’t had the Therapy Complex brainwash her yet into “forgiveness”) – I don’t see any benefit to her to being forced to associate with a guy who DOES NOT LOVE HER and his tramp. I hope she can do as you suggest, it’s a great idea if possible.

KatiePig
KatiePig
7 months ago

Oh, this is the affair therapist bullshit speak. The whole 80% of my life is great but I need that extra 20% and I can only get that from other pussy! I’ll readily admit that when I hear this line I get a very unChristian like smug feeling. He’s admitting you guys had a great life. 80% happy for a long marriage with a child is great. Nobody is 100% happy, that’s something you only get in fleeting moments. It’s not realistic.

He’s really throwing away 80% happiness for a chance at 20% happiness. And that is hilarious. I know it hurts now but you will heal and you’ll be able to look at his stupidity and how he destroyed his own life when you’ve rebuilt yours and it will be hilarious that he did that all to himself. I also LOVE how your daughter picked up on him moving in with another woman when he claimed to want his freedom. Yes, mine did that too. It fucked up my mind at the time but now it’s funny. He’s trading a good home and loving family to shack up with a narcissist. LOL And narcs do not fill each other’s buckets, they’re going to eat each other alive. It will end spectacularly badly.

Don’t take him back when he comes crawling home. Remember, he used you to get him through recovery from heart surgery while he was fucking someone else. He brought the woman whose vaginal fluids he was exposing you to without your consent into your home and even had her hug you. They are vile and evil. You are too good for these people, do not grace them with your presence nor your voice nor your texts. Change his name in your phone to do not respond and then don’t. His lawyer can talk to your lawyer. You don’t owe him shit after all you did for him while he was betraying you.

susie lee
susie lee
7 months ago
Reply to  KatiePig

“And narcs do not fill each other’s buckets, they’re going to eat each other alive. It will end spectacularly badly.”

“and that’s the truth” said in my own “Edith Ann” (Lily Tomlin) voice.

Little Wing
Little Wing
7 months ago
Reply to  susie lee

and after you say “and that’s the truth” don’t forget to follow up immediately with blowing the “raspberry blow”. (It is not the same without the “raspberry blow”.)

Chumpolicious
Chumpolicious
7 months ago

CL is right. Lawyer up, go after him. Get a pitbull lawyer who has experience with the Disordered. He is your enemy. Go to battle. Get mad. This helps with guilt. He screwed you over. Nothing you could have done would have prevented that. Thats your narcissism speaking. That you have any control over other people and their behavior. He has a character defect. He committed fraud against you. Pretended to be a loving, invested spouse. FRAUD. Also keep any emails or communications. Those can be used in court. Give them to your lawyer. Respond very neutrally. Im sorry you feel that way, your feelings are duly noted, ect. Dont defend yourself or argue. But if you want to gather more evidence for court, let those emails keep rolling it. Again, he is your enemy. Protect your daughter from him, and tell her the truth. Its so hard in the beginning. I untangled the skein, but for me learning about character defects, narcissism, OCPD, no empathy and entitlement was helpful to see him for what he was and emotionally disengage. Its so hard to believe they are not normal humans! We color them with our good natured morality! But Psychopaths and evil are real. Just watch all the shows devoted to killers. Your FW is one step away from them!

Sharon Altieri
Sharon Altieri
7 months ago

I am so sorry that you saved his life. Same here. Had I not brought him to the emergency room (after threatening to call an ambulance), he would have died from his burst appendix. Not only did he never acknowledge that I saved his life, he went on to have an affair and leave me. If only life gave you do-overs, he’d be dead in the basement!

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago
Reply to  Sharon Altieri

The lack of gratitude for literally saving his life is astounding.

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago

What a rotten, selfish PIG. What a terrible way to treat anyone – a loving wife and the daughter you struggled so hard to have….for what? He says 20% of his relationship was missing? Most of us are lucky if it’s only 20% of life that’s missing, there are always compromises and sacrifices to achieve the things in life that matter the MOST. Which is a loving partner and children. This guy is a PIG…a huge snorting, mud wallowing pig – although that’s probably grossly unfair to the animal. My advice to I Too Am a Chump…..is to GET ANGRY….AND GET ANGRIER. GET NASTY. Get more vicious lawyers, the nastiest divorce lawyers you can find. Who is this man to throw away his wife and child for some whore just because she grovels at this feet. GET ANGRY!!! What he did to you is absolutely terrible, and I’m sure when you’re able to get some perspective on this once the shock wears down….you’ll see that this man is a selfish, thoughtless, self center pig and always has been. There are plenty of red flags that were you 20% that you overlooked because the 80% was enough for you. It’s time for him to have some pain in his life. And don’t worry about how your daughter will take it – she obviously sees it too. Show her that she doesn’t have to take abuse, she can fight back! As for the texts…..you are still in a state of shock and profound grief and I’m sure you’d like to get the “old” husband back….well, you discovered he’s a Bluebeard and you’ll reach a point where you don’t WANT him back. The texts are a way of staying connected and doing a remote controlled pick me dance. It’s almost like an addiction at this point – he knows how to manipulate you. STOP RESPONDING TO HIM, DON’T MAKE HIS LIFE EASY OR PLEASANT. Look out ONLY for you and your daughter. The only contact you should have with him should be via lawyers or parenting apps. And don’t worry about what you tell your daughter about this whore. What you should tell her is that this is NOT how a woman treats another woman, this is someone with no shame or self respect or honor. She should know that. Don’t be afraid to be negative – it’s what both of them deserve. Just don’t put anything in writing. The less you communicate with these two crumb bums the better. ITAAC…..GET ANGRY AND STAY ANGRY.

threetimesachump
threetimesachump
7 months ago

You seem to not have connected the dots…your daughter has had anxiety for FOUR years, and your husband has been having an affair for FOUR years. Seems likely that she was told by Fuckwit to keep a secret from you. And you should stop gaslighting her about how long it’s been going on. And for gawd’s sake, get a competent lawyer.

Chump Changed
Chump Changed
7 months ago

Absolutely, 100% agree. Growing up I was not given the truth in a circumstance where I really, really should have been. My parents thought that by lying and not telling me, they were protecting me. But kids are far more aware than adults realize. My body and soul knew the truth, but there was a disconnect with my head and heart. I eventually was told when I was “old enough” to know, but the gap in the many years between had serious consequences for me and my siblings psychologically.

This trauma was repeated with my ex, who for years was gaslighting me during my recovery from a brain injury. My body and soul knew the truth, but I trusted him instead.

Everyone deserves to live in truth, even if they are young, or disabled, or dying. It’s the only way to be psychologically sound, to heal, and to live authentically. It is also the only way to prevent this pattern from repeating in another form as your daughter grows up and lives her own life. There are always ways to make the truth more age-appropriate or digestible without lying or lying by omission, etc. A third party might be able to help with this, if needed. Sending you strength!

Mehitable
Mehitable
7 months ago

That is a very powerful statement and I think you’re right, very astute of you to pick up on that. Children often figure out things or see them before their parents and it’s so painful for them. She KNOWS what kind of man he is and what kind of POS Schmoopie is. And absolutely, LW needs to get better, far more VICIOUS lawyers – this guy needs to be punished for what he did. No one should just be able to throw away a spouse and child because he wants some groveling slave giving him 20% of the worship he wasn’t getting. Kick his ass good, LW!!!!

Elsie
Elsie
7 months ago

This nails it (as always).

My ex telegraphed leaving for over a decade, and then when I asked for separation #2, he made it long-distance. He was already on a solo vacation to “think,” so he just made it even longer and stayed in hotels for five months. I said I’d split his hotel bills but nothing else. I didn’t think to set a time limit, and I should have said, “figure it out.” My income was low, and I had two commuter college students to feed.

He paid temporary support for awhile, often threatening not to, until he didn’t. It paid our rent and nothing else. Oh, and generous soul, he kept us on his insurance, but I had to pay all the bills from the doctors and prescriptions.

Without knowing about Chump Lady, I finally had my “trust that they f*ck” moment, where I decided that I was never going to reconcile with him and that I was no longer beholden to him. I emailed him that I was done with the reconciliation talk. I joined a twelve-step group and began working on my codependency. Needless to say, he didn’t like me standing up to him and not playing games. That included texting and emailing at a time that worked for me. I had three jobs and couldn’t be beholden to him like he wanted. Then he sent a registered “reconcile or else” letter, and I chose “or else.”

I began looking for an attorney in earnest and picked the perfect one for me. An acquaintance called him “grandpa with an iron rod.” Despite a busy trial schedule, he never let up the pressure and ultimately settled it in a dramatic twist. He helped me with more than the law, often talking to me like a big brother would.

I realized that when a man (retired at that) drops out of family life and lives like a single person, there is no way back. I had no reason to trust him on anything he said by that point. Of course, our college kids were equally devasted, but they have turned out to be lovely, reasonable young adults. I’m sorry that their father missed that. He made his choice.

I Too, let the jerk go. He’s not worth the aggravation.

Name Changer
Name Changer
7 months ago

Established local family lawyer. Job that fits in with caring for your child – any child minding to be done by a professional or a friend or relative. FW won’t show up on time,or consistently, because it is an inconvenience to be tied to a schedule. You need to be able to provide food, light and heating without asking FW. He can pay the mortgage .

Don’t get sentimental about the house. It may well have to go but it can’t until there is a financial settlement. As my solicitor put it; “How does your client expect my client to find somewhere to live when she does not know how much money she will have available?”.

2xchump🚫again
2xchump🚫again
7 months ago

Have you ever played footsie under the table? That is what you are doing feels like to your loser husband. He is using you. Go strong on the divorce and watch the real man you have been crying over. Watch him go nuclear and blame you more. That is him. I’ve been a nurse for Post op open heart people. Some of them got air bubbles in the brains after surgery. Very much like brain damage. There is no cure. When they slowed his heart to work on it…there they went. But that is who he had hiding back there in his brain. It is the new and unstable man you never wanted. It is still who he was under it all. No matter what the reason, Brain damage, failed 12 step, drugs, alcohol…under the hair on top is a disturbed character that needs consequences. Want to feel better. I did after 2 months of NO CONTACT and a good lawyer. Then watch the man you thought loved you. HE IS GONE..I am so sorry. Watch him and wade into the shallow end of the lake of love. Lawyer up, zero contract as much as possible and see. We are here for you

Zip
Zip
7 months ago

‘What do I tell our daughter when she asks “How do you know someone really loves you and won’t leave you? I heard you and daddy say I love you thousands of times, and then he left.” ‘
This was my question too. Kids were in shock, all they saw was what they thought was solid, warm love.
I think they think he was an exceptional FW and haven’t -hopefully -generalized this to the entire dating population.
But what do you tell them……sometimes you just can’t believe what is right in front of you!?

Chump Changed
Chump Changed
7 months ago
Reply to  Zip

You tell them to pay attention to actions over words. This is the single most valuable piece of advice I’ve received from CL, and I’m eternally grateful for it. I shared this with a fellow chump (my ex mother in law, no less!) who even 15 years after her discard and divorce had not learned to trust again, and it was game changing for her.

My ex had the most incredibly loving words imaginable. The most beautiful intentions, the most elegant prose of his care and friendship and feelings for me. Everyone thought he was the most loving and loyal husband and a trustworthy human in general, because this is how he presents himself. But his actions revealed his true nature and character.

I believe we should be teaching kids (and adults!) that this is one of the primary ways you assess both love and trustworthiness. Actions. Accountability. SO, SO IMPORTANT.

Zip
Zip
7 months ago
Reply to  Chump Changed

Yes, but what is ^[¥£€*’# for kids and chumps, is when all seemed great action and word wise. Then poof, all the loving actions were a joke because FW took off with an OW. Sometimes you can’t even trust actions.

Stepbystep
Stepbystep
7 months ago
Reply to  Zip

It probably matters more what we show them. Hard things happen to most families around the world and children survive if they have at least one sane parent/adult. So chumps need to model resiliency and honesty and responsibility.

A side note for children experiencing anxiety – demonstrate calming breathing by raising your palm and SLOWLY tracing each finger. In breath going up, out breath going down. Repeat. Works for chumps, too.

20th Century Chump
20th Century Chump
7 months ago

As other people have commented, righteous anger is a useful energizer. Please stop questioning yourself and tell yourself the story as if it were someone else’s. Would you be angry at the FW on behalf of the person chumped? Of course you would, and that’s a good indication that anger, not self-recrimination, is the appropriate emotion. If you can achieve that, it’s like flipping a switch. How dare he do that to you and your child? With a great lawyer who agrees that retribution is in order, you can get your life back and make it a better life.

Magneto
Magneto
7 months ago

I was the same, side swiped. Had NO idea, I realize now, that was on me. When I slack jawed asked him point blank, “What do you think our children (two girls) are going to say!?!”. Narc looked longingly into the corner and said…. -wait for it -, “The girls will be HAPPY for me…… because I FINALLY found someone to love.” <{dramatic looks to the heavens }>.

lulutoo
lulutoo
7 months ago
Reply to  Magneto

Oh, gag…

MightyWarrior
MightyWarrior
7 months ago

I met with my friend tonight (we go to musicals together)! She knew the ex before I did. The ex and I are both godparents to her youngest child, now at university. His other godparents sadly died young. My friend said tonight ‘you are the only godparent who has shown up for A. [Your ex] could have shown up but he has chosen to forget that he’s a godparent’. We don’t talk about the ex and that’s the only comment she’s made about him in 3+ years. I am strictly no contact. What that one comment tells me is that in the 4 years since he left me, he hasn’t changed. He’s the same selfish, self-absorbed, self-centred person he always was. It’s very important to remember that when tempted to respond to any drama. Happy, joyful people living their best lives, don’t need to splurge vitriol at the wife and child they left behind. It’s best not to feed the troll! Because, I Too, that’s what he is.

Kat
Kat
7 months ago

Oh OP, big, big hugs to you honey. This type of discard right in the kids’ faces is absolutely horrific. I was in your shoes in November 2016, when my FW now-ex-husband suddenly announced to me, my then-9 and 7 year olds (who had just celebrated their birthdays) at the dinner table, that he had already moved out. He and his “friend” had come and cleaned out his closet and drawers while the kids were at school. My daughter scream/cried at him “YOU MOVED OUT WITHOUT TELLING US!!?!??” Truly evil when they say and do these inane things just to watch our children get their hearts destroyed right before their eyes, and without a single care.

When you get wobbly, what helped me was re-reading CL’s post on The Ones Who Just Leave. Describes our type of FW cheaters perfectly. I’m so sorry for what ya’ll are going through.

Foghorn
Foghorn
7 months ago

Moving in together costs money may it be bonds & rent, partial or full ownership (loans & mortgages), bills (taxes, utilities, groceries, rates etc) that money is marital money, doesn’t matter where in the world you live, he used your money to do that. Start the new lawyer with that then work from there. CL is right about getting the lawyer to look into schmoopie’s accounts too, I live in a no fault country but financial fraud (financial infidelity) does matter when children are involved and so they can check her accounts to make sure FW isn’t hiding money there to get out of legal responsibilities. As for daughter don’t prematurely worry about future hard conversations, tackle them when they happen, set mini goals like ‘let live a week with out talking about FW’ setting activities together like going to the zoo over the weekend, nature walks in local botanical gardens etc etc are ways to show daughter that life is fun and wholesome without FW, last thing you both want is to sit around and be “unfun” together, find a new hobby together. If friends ask about FW or want to tell you something about FW stop them and tell them about not wanting to speak about him anymore because you’re finally starting to move on.

Foghorn
Foghorn
7 months ago
Reply to  Foghorn

​UGH! I’m just so sorry about that parting dickwad statement he made about fun in front of your daughter, it made me mad and I should have edited my comment above. What I’m trying to say is don’t force “fun” but at the same time don’t give daughter a reason to think she is unfun. By creating new things to do together because you both enjoy them it shows daughter via example that FW truly is a FW. That 80/20 statement he made is a old misused (in his case) rule about time management, if you can believe it, that how has been misused or misunderstood in social media to represent unmet needs, I don’t know the source or when the 80/20 was applied like this but he just rattled off social media nonsense with that, when your daughter is older you can both have a laugh over that or teach her the proper was to use the 80/20 rule because it’s good with homework and study.

LovedAJackass
LovedAJackass
7 months ago

Let me be blunt.
You have an 11-year-old daughter. The FW has been gone nearly a year and you still don’t have child support.
Your lawyer is one or more of these things: Lazy. Incompetent. Detached. Stupid. And you can’t afford a lawyer who is even one of those things. Ask friends and other professionals about a lawyer who will file for child support by the end of the day of your first appointment.

And stop talking to this guy. No contact (as our AllOutofKibble says) is the path to the truth and the light.

Now I.C.
Now I.C.
7 months ago

I am fascinated that he presumes he has somehow banked the 80% and now can go capture the additional 20% with a whore. Like a greedy dog seeing himself in a pond, he drops the bone in his mouth to try to also grab the one he sees in his reflection. It will not work out.

Another way, who would bet $80K in a hope to win $20K, all or nothing? A fool who believes he can’t actually lose any of the $80K, that’s who.

Obviously he will damage whatever part of the 80% that his daughter represented (apparently, nearly nothing), and his mindset clearly indicates how he sees the Chump as being a fully replaceable Wife Appliance. So his whore is supposed to cover all that but is also expected to add the shiny 20% of… something…that apparently the whore does “better.” Oh, but oopsie, when you demand the baseline 80% from a whore and turn her into an Appliance she will not operate as smoothly as the good ol’ Chump. Years of sneaking around will turn into daily boredom and neither of these asshats is equipped for it. Let her wipe his ass after the next medical procedure, that will take the shine off the rose in a damn hurry. And when he is eventually placed in a rehab center after his next cardiac event, do not allow yourself to be reeled back in as the “one he always really loved.” You are permitted to visit his bedside only to inform him that you will NOT be visiting his bedside. He can see his whore about all those Appliance duties from now on– she is REQUIRED now to provide the 80% that he apparently believes comes as standard equipment.

NOT YOU.

NO MORE WIFING.

No one gets 100% in this life. When he loses the 80% and finds out the whore is only good for about 1% (and then only for a short while till someone has to act like a grown up when life makes real demands), he is gonna be churning through the 3 mind-fuck channels and aiming them at you. Don’t take his crap and don’t allow the hoover.

Why do you rush to respond to his texts? If you are like me, it is because you have been trained to serve him (and probably some FOO history is in there like me, too– raised to be a doormat). You have been conditioned to please him, to play pick-me even as he is abusing you. This is a hard habit to break but it is absolutely required. Write that list of things he did to you, that you put up with, that you endured, as advised by others. Read it over and over. Read CL. Join us on the reddit Chump Lady forum for even more personal advice. You can do this.

MsAzure
MsAzure
7 months ago

I wish I could twitch my nose like Bewitched and zap up a “Self-Esteem Person Wash.” I’d give free tokens to all chumps who are downtrodden and suffering at the hands of a heartless FW, who gaslights them into believing everything is their fault, and that they are too “fat, thin, plain, boring, dumb, nagging, no fun – blah blah blah (fill in the insult.)

The chump stand tall in line for their turn, moving forward as the green light flashes, and walk into a cascading jet stream of truth bubbles, scrubbing FW’s lies from the bodies and minds. After the pressurized air dry, they’d emerge, feeling joyous and filled with the Spirit of Truth (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmAOBosGlHY), with the unassailable knowledge that THEY were the beautiful, smart, sane, good-enough-and-even-better partner in the relationship, and that FW was the lying sack of shit with the loyalty of a gnat. Oh, and by the garbage can where patrons usually throw out their used coffee cups and candy wrappers, would be a filthy piece of gum stuck to the ground, with FW’s name on it.

Morning will break for you soon, I Too. Before long you’ll feel the lightness of not having to deal with his mindfuckery and cheating ass, and don’t be surprised if you find yourself randomly humming while deciding on which bouquet of flowers to buy at Trader Joe’s. The best part is he’ll remain a piece of chewed gum, spit on the asphalt.

Shemps
Shemps
7 months ago

Verizon customer service. Priceless as always. Thank you!

ResidentTengu
ResidentTengu
7 months ago

Two comments about the “scream into the void” website:

1) There is no promise or statement of a privacy policy directly associated with that website.

For all anybody knows, everything typed is saved and traced back to the originating IP.

I would never trust such a website. Even if it had a privacy policy commitment, I would never trust such a website.

Note that this website was originally envisaged by John Oliver, whom I do trust, as part of his HBO-hosted show “Last Week Tonight”, and his concept was then coded and implemented by … I have no idea whom, or how many people, and therefore no reason to trust any of them (not to mention the pressures of getting it done by the time the show aired, so who knows how much care and testing they had time to put into the code).

The website, which has no privacy policy of its own, at all, is indirectly tied to HBO’s privacy policy which, as you can read in this article:

https://www.mentalfloss.com/posts/website-lets-you-scream-into-the-void

“…features a lot of convoluted details about how and when they’re allowed to use your data. They do say that they may use your information “for the purpose of detecting, preventing or investigating criminal activities.” So maybe don’t scream anything potentially incriminating into the void. ”

Also,

2) Depending on your verbosity coefficient, the website, itself, may enrage you.

What you can type on the website is limited to a relatively short length of text. If you are really wanting to vent, you may end up screaming at the screen, yourself, when it stops adding to what you’ve typed so far, before you were finished.

Also, no backspacing or wordsmithing can be done to the typed text, either (which, itself, can be infuriating).

Here’s my test example, demonstrating the text limit:

+++++
Here’s how much text this thing can accept, before it stops accepting any more, in case somebody really wants to rage at the screen, and build up to a good yell, explaining all that has led up to their completely justified fury. They’re going to hit a wall right about here: 5,4,3
+++++

If you really want to type out your rage on a computer/laptop/phone, the safest thing you can do is hit backspace when you are done, and delete the empty file, and then empty your trash. Any file with content on a computer, that has been “deleted”, even if you have “emptied your trash” *can* potentially be recovered.

Use your own voice to scream, or record the screams you like from the website and play them at will, or Google “Screaming Goat toy”, and for around $7-$8, buy it at Walmart/Amazon/etc., and squeeze as needed, to invoke a satisfying scream (shout-out to Law Nerds).

Or, for free, go to YouTube and do a search for “screaming goats”. Watching those clips is therapeutic, and the sheep and goats screaming are so ludicrous, that you will probably end up laughing, and then you’re feeling better, without jeopardizing your safety or privacy.

Apologies for how late this is after the date this article was posted, and the low probability that anybody will see it . I hope it helps *somebody* though.

Mehitable
Mehitable
1 month ago

OMG, I just read this from today’s link (4/3/24) “What do I tell our daughter when she asks “How do you know someone really loves you and won’t leave you? I heard you and daddy say I love you thousands of times, and then he left.” Ugh”

I have to be honest. I’d tell her he’s NO FUCKING GOOD. That’s what I’d tell her. Because that’s the truth and I don’t give a shit if we’re all supposed to play nice and pretend. Kids need to know the truth, including about their parents. I know from experience, it’s better to know what you’re REALLY DEALING WITH. Daddy does not love Mommy and he doesn’t love YOU either, Little Girl, or he wouldn’t act like this. It’s not about you, Little Girl, it’s because….DADDY IS NO FUCKING GOOD. And that’s the truth of it, whether we like to admit it or not.

Mehitable
Mehitable
1 month ago

P.S. This asshole is in for the surprise of his life because as soon as the divorce comes through and the whore feels secure….SHE’S GONNA START TELLING HIM WHAT TO DO….because that just kind of happens in a relationship once the affair dies down….you start having to do or deal with the same shit you had to deal with when you’re married because….LIFE INVOLVES TASKS AND DOING SHIT. You have to take out the garbage, clean the toilet, and sometimes even see her relations and friends you don’t like. He’ll be listening to nagging and insecurity and things he doesn’t like with her too because….Heaven only exists after you die, and this guy isn’t gonna get in anyway.

Last edited 1 month ago by Mehitable