AliMONY BITCHES

He has a way with words, doesn’t he? The above title was what he wrote in his comments section upon finally paying me half of his court ordered spousal support this month.

I so badly wanted to comment back: Does Harley know you no longer think her pussy is worth $2800/month?

Follow up question: How does she feel about you no longer thinking she’s worth the money you pay out every month?

Finally: Do you realize you could buy a high priced call girl for less than what you’re paying for Harley?

The real question is did he ever think it was worth $2800/month or did he simply think he was going to ride off in the sunset with the whore cousin and pay whatever he decided was fair?

I think we have a winner there. Poor Harley. He must be such a joy to live with. I wonder (only momentarily) how she feels about his ongoing obsession with me?

Douche, I mean dude, you’re newly married! You should be much more focused on your brand new, only slightly dented wife. Stop focusing on the ex and start focusing on all the wonderful things you’ve gained- like a cheating whore and children who already have a dad.

Then again, so long as he’s bringing in a paycheck she probably doesn’t care.

Dealing with him three years later is interesting. I couldn’t really say in the beginning, “I never thought he could do this to me!” because obviously he could. He had done it two years prior. I was surprised though at the depths to which he sank- the ease with which he told his lies, the vicious deceptions, the financial abuse, the cowardly behavior, the abandonment of his children. Then I found Anne and soon realized there was a whole other layer I had yet to explore. Now, I’m amused at how childish and petty he is.

I mean, for God’s sake, the man moved us across the country to get closer to the semen demon. He lied right to my face. He did awful things. He blew through more than $30k in four months, wining and dining the whore and having the time of his life while I pinched pennies and had to repeatedly deny our kids things. He turned his back on his kids and then preceded to act like he was the victim. He used our home as an extended stay hotel during the week and took off to be with the whore on the weekends- every weekend- for six months after I found out what he was doing. February 2016 he walked out the door like it was any other day. Went to work and afterwards drove to Kentucky and moved in with Harley. Never said a word. I found out when my support payment wasn’t directly deposited into my account. After I contacted his boss, of course. He then ends up losing his new job and doesn’t send a dime my way for the next ten months. I worked two jobs while he worked none. Then when he finally gets another job he moves the cunt face cum dumpster and her kids into a new home while declining to pay his modified support, instead choosing to pay only a fraction of what he owed. In all that time he never once bothered to drive to see his kids. Oh no, because once again he was struggling with anxiety and PTSD. Yes, once reality began to settle in somewhat he put on the performance of a lifetime in order to try to get out of paying decent spousal and child support.

If anyone should be bitter and angry and prone to petty, angry outbursts it should be me! But no. I’m happy as a lark. Doing quite well, thank you. Taking his money is like a salve on my soul.

He is living back in his home state, a place where he was dying to get back to; he is married to the whore, the one who made him so “happy”. He has new pets and new kids- all of which undoubtedly appreciate him in a way his old pets and kids did not. He left behind the job in Virginia, the one he complained about endlessly, and now has another six figure job. Because his kids were 15 and 13 when he pulled his disappearing act he will only pay child support for six years total and he has already received a cut in that support because Rock Star has graduated. He’s living in a brand new 2800 square foot home with the whore and her kids. They go out to celebrate birthdays as a family. They take family vacations. They fly off to Vegas for tacky weddings. By all accounts he should be happier than a pig in shit. But he’s not.

Instead he’s lashing out at me. Horrible, horrible me who has done nothing to him. The man who has everything he has ever wanted is unhappy and whining because… consequences. Oh the injustice! Hey Cousinfucker, you want some cheese with that whine?

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Life Is Good

I was browsing through some recent pictures recently. I’m not sure what I was looking at but this feeling of peace came over me. It suddenly hit me- I’m happy. I’m content. Despite CF’s ongoing antics (more on that later), and despite my precarious financial situation I’m happy.

I have my family around me. Just last week my niece and my mom went on the Wine Walk with me. That’s something I never would have experienced still married to CF. We go out to dinner to celebrate birthdays and big events- my kids and myself, my mom, my brother and his family. We travel for other events like graduations together as well. My daughter’s relationship with her cousin is more like that of sisters instead of cousins. Both of my kids get to finish growing up around their grandmother, uncle, aunt, and cousins. Had CF and I remained married those are things they wouldn’t have had. We would never have moved back to this area.

The mobster and I are doing great over a year into our relationship. If we’ve both been wearing masks then they are staying firmly in place. We still talk several times a day. We still laugh. We still get together as often as possible. In fact, he’s coming to Rock Star’s Family Weekend with me this weekend. He is truly the best thing that’s ever happened to me. He used to always say, “Except for your kids,” in the early days, and I would reply, “My kids don’t count. They didn’t happen to me; I made them!” I tell him everything. He calms me down when I’m freaking out, and I like to think I calm him down when he’s freaking out. He’s funny, sweet, romantic, and loving. He even butters my biscuits for me.  He is the love of my life.

I’m reconnecting with friends, both old and new. I try to be conscious about reaching out.  I know I tend to get in a rut and expect others to reach out but I’m doing more of the reaching nowadays. My best friend and I discovered SnapChat (not like we didn’t know it existed before) and now we SnapChat every day. We love playing with the filters.

I still like my job. It doesn’t happen to pay me over $100,000 a year but I like it. The day goes by quickly and I feel like I’m actually doing something. I fight fraud, dammit! I’m actually not bad at it.

My two dogs are still alive and kicking.

My kids are doing well. They are my greatest achievement.

Picasso had to take the bus to school the first two weeks of school and ended up reconnecting with an old friend from middle school. He began cello lessons and despite bellyaching about them the first day he really likes them. He still spends way too much time on his Xbox but overall, he seems pretty happy. He likes his classes a lot better this year and aside from English, where he conveniently forgot to do his summer assignment, he has good grades. Hopefully, he will have enough time to improve his English grade. He also made the decision to cut about 6 inches off his hair. He said he didn’t want to look like teenage Jesus. Unfortunately, he now thinks he looks like a 1960s woman. My mom told him she didn’t know what the big deal was because he used to look like a 1970s woman. I think he simply looks adorable.

Rock Star is loving college. She just went through sorority recruitment and accepted a bid from her top choice. I’m ecstatic for her. She is very happy down there. For that I am grateful. After the last three years she deserves some happiness. I happened to take a look at her Instagram page today at lunch and she had posted a picture of her and all her new sorority sisters. The messages she received in response were heartwarming. All these new sisters of hers reaching out and welcoming her home. My heart swelled with happiness and my eyes almost overflowed with joy.

In other exciting news, with my daughter off to college I have moved from the couch to an actual bed. It’s very cozy with three dogs but it will undoubtedly be nice come winter with three furry bodies snuggled up to me.

That is it for me. Just a short little update letting everyone know I am happy.

PSA #1- Don’t Stay Home

I’m going to make a pronouncement and it’s not going to be popular. No one will listen because no one ever believes it will happen to them. I’m going to say it anyway: Don’t stay at home! Unless you have a career that allows you to seamlessly step back into the workforce (and honestly nursing is the only thing I’ve ever heard of that even comes close; maybe pharmacy or being a doctor or some other area of the medical field would as well) I implore you to keep your job even after children come along. Other exceptions would be if you have a legally binding agreement where the working partner agrees to put money aside for your personal retirement and pay alimony in the case of divorce, OR you are independently wealthy (or come into a healthy inheritance while married- just keep it separate at all times), OR, you have a secondary income, such as rental units, or a business, or stock dividends, or that handy inheritance.

Many times women (mostly women, anyway) walk away from their outside jobs to concentrate on raising the children. When they choose to, or are forced to, return to work they frequently return at a fraction of what they were making. Many times the skills they had to perform their job are outdated by the time they return. It’s a long tough road to get back on your feet financially. Most states don’t award alimony and even when it is awarded you’re now at the mercy of the ex. If the ex dies on you you’re screwed. It’s far, far better to make a good income and know that you can take care of yourself and your kids with no help from anyone else.

Don’t get me wrong. I loved being at home with my kids. I did a lot of things with my them. We went to a lot of places. When we first moved to Utah my daughter was in year round school, which turned out to be amazing. She had six weeks off in the summer and then was on a 9 weeks on/3 weeks off schedule. We went to Universal Studios, SeaWorld and the San Diego zoo at off peak times. It was wonderful! At Christmas time, her 3 weeks started after the winter break so she got 4-5 weeks from late December to late January. I took them back east to visit relatives, which we couldn’t have done if I had been working simply because we couldn’t have afforded four plane tickets at Christmas for what would basically amount to a four day getaway if the holidays fell on Thursday and Friday, or Monday and Tuesday. Assuming, of course, that Christmas Eve was recognized as a holiday. At my current place of employment it is not. Or rather, we get a half day. I’ve worked other places which gave me a half day on Christmas Eve, as well. Instead, my kids got to spend 2-3 weeks with relatives that they didn’t normally get to see.

I spent a lot of time volunteering at my kids’ schools. I was a room parent. I was heavily involved in PTA.

I was fortunate enough to be able to sleep in when my kids had no school. I was able to take them to water parks and amusement parks and museums and zoos. We went to the skating rink and flowers gardens and matinee movies. We got to go during the week and not have to fight the crowds. We could visit family during the summer and holidays, and when family came out to visit us I was able to spend time with them. On our cross country trips we could stop at Presidential museums and road side oddities. There was no hard and fast schedule. When Rock Star began traveling for out of state meets for gymnastics our last three years in Utah I was able to go and not have to worry about taking vacation time from work. We got to spend some pretty incredible weekends together in different cities- Seattle, Phoenix, Las Vegas, San Diego, Nashville. We had a blast and I treasure those memories.

I spent a lot of time with Rock Star and Picasso as they grew up, and I am so grateful I was able to have that time. It came at a horrible price, though.

Getting hired after not working outside of the home since 1998 was not an easy feat. As most of you know my first job post separation was working at Target on the Flow team. I got up at 3:20 in the morning and went to work at 4. I was paid $11/hour. It didn’t even pay my bills. Then I took a second job working at Kohl’s as seasonal help. That one paid $10. I finally made enough money to pay my bills and be able to buy Christmas gifts for my kids but I was also working sixteen hour days many days. I worked 21 days straight. I was in at 2 in the morning 2-3 days a week and 3 am the rest of the time during the month of December, and then usually would go and work another 8 hours at Kohl’s. My body ached. I never saw my kids. I was undoubtedly tired. Finally, I got offered my job at the bank, which I began in January of 2017. Again, I made $11/hour. I kept my job at Target and would work from 4-7 and then head home, take my daughter to school, and then finish getting ready for work before heading off to the bank. There were days that I would be called in the afternoon by my boss who would let me know that a closer had called off at one of our branches that was open until 7 and then I would go over there and close. I had a few days where I worked from 4-7, and then 8:45-7:15. Until April of that year I did it all with no financial help from Cousinfucker.

He had lost his job in June of 2016 and hadn’t sent another penny to help his children.

Even now I am not in great financial shape. Because of alimony I have to claim no deductions on my paychecks. I contribute to a 401k at a whopping 6% of my salary, which is actually very little because 6% of very little is very little. And I pay health insurance on the kids at $188 per paycheck. Plus dental. By the time everything is taken out I am actually taking home less money now, despite making over $2/hour more, than when I first started. The sad part is it’s probably going to take me another 2 or 3 years to even get back to where I started. And remember- I didn’t start at a great place! I just did a quick calculation and basically, I take home 55% of what I make. The other 45% goes to taxes, 401k, and insurance.

I am at the mercy of a man who has lied to me, who betrayed me, and who left me and my kids to the wolves. He had absolutely no regard for what might happen to us when he had his little “breakdown”. He didn’t even find it necessary to let me know anything more than he had lost his job and wouldn’t be sending anymore money.

Every month it’s an adventure, never knowing when I’ll get a notification that I’ve been paid. In the earlier days he would send a check about once a week. Nowadays he likes to save it all for the end of the end of the month! I think he likes to imagine me sweating it out.

So I say again. Don’t quit your job. Don’t rely on your husband to support you and provide you with your lifestyle. Don’t plan on him providing for your retirement. I used to think this woman from another board was crazy. She and her husband kept separate bank accounts. Her money was hers and his was his. They both paid into a joint account for marital household bills. Even once they co-mingled their funds she always made sure she never made a purchase that she couldn’t afford on her own. The house they bought? She could afford the mortgage if he left. Her car? She could afford it if he left. Fast forward to today, after an affair five or six years ago that resulted in a child, and she is finally divorcing him. Ironically, she’s not leaving because of the affair. She’s leaving because she doesn’t feel he is stepping up to be the father he should for that child. Nonetheless, she’s going to be fine because she never depended upon her husband financially.

I know it’s tempting. When work sucks or there’s never enough vacation time or that sweet baby face tempts you to stay and snuggle all day it’s easy to say, “Why not? He’ll never leave, and if he does he’ll have to pay me lots of money.” They don’t always do what they’re supposed to.

I was riding high for a whole five months- able to live in my home, pay the bills, put some money away for taxes and emergencies- and then he “lost” his job and I didn’t see another dime for ten months. In that time I lost my home, uprooted my children once again, sold off most of my furniture in order to have money to live on, and left the vast majority of everything I had ever owned in my lifetime behind. I moved in with my mother and took up residence on her couch.

Yes, perhaps there might have been things that would have made it easier. The ex and I were big spenders. We didn’t save much. Rock Star’s gymnastics were very expensive. I doted on my kids and they lacked for nothing. Perhaps if we had had more money invested or saved up things would have worked out better for me. Then again, we lived in a state that required a one year waiting period so unless I could get to that money to protect my share it wouldn’t have helped.

My biggest regret (aside from staying with him) is not going back to work to put myself in a better financial situation after I found out about Harley the first time. My second biggest regret is quitting my job and following him all around the country from the very beginning. I wanted to be a stay at home mom and he was all for it. Now I wish I had buckled down and done something with my life. Instead I’m almost 50 years old and I’m still trying to decide if I should go back and get my Masters (for what I don’t know), remain at the bank and hope promotions and raises keep coming, or if I move on and hope that my decades old Communications degree plus my 2 years of work experience might translate into a much higher paying job elsewhere.

One more time- DON’T QUIT YOUR JOB TO STAY HOME WITH YOUR KIDS! It can happen to you. Yes, you! It happens all the time. And it’s happening later and later in life, when it’s a lot more difficult to pick up the pieces and rebuild. Protect yourselves.

Loyalty

Anyone ever heard of Ester Perel? She is Chump Lady’s arch nemesis (I only semi joke) and is the author who refers to affairs as “exuberant acts of defiance”. She seems to have quite the following by cheating spouses, and occasionally the cheated on spouse who is trying to reconcile. I have seen this quote from her book several times now.

My loyalty has never wavered. I was always there. I am so sorry. I never meant to hurt you. But when you measure my allegiance only by where I stick my dick it’s as if the rest doesn’t count for a thing.

Huh. That’s almost as insane as the time the mobster’s wife told him that nothing was going on between her and this other guy. As she explained to him, “I only showed him my pussy.” Let that one rest for a minute. It was no biggie. She only let him take a peek. No harm, no foul.

My loyalty has never wavered.

I’m wondering how that man defines loyalty because I sure as shit do not believe my husband can be loyal to me at the same time he’s fucking someone else. No, I take that back. Let’s take the sex out of it. How is anyone supposed to believe that a person can be loyal to you while they are actively lying to you?

Letting your spouse dance like crazy to win you back while you’re fucking around is about the most disloyal thing you can do. When your spouse has no idea an affair is even a possibility fucking around while acting like nothing is amiss is also disloyal.

I’ll break it down so that there is no confusion. You are not loyal to a person when you are lying to them. Lying is inherently disloyal.

I was always there.

No, when your attention is divided by someone else you are not there. Not the way you should be.

My husband might have been physically present when our daughter went to the ER during his first affair with Harley, but he wasn’t fully there. He was distracted by the whore. He had to make sure to let her know not to contact him, that he was going to be with his daughter so he’d have to “talk” with her after he was done at the hospital. I remember us being a united front for her, but there was nothing between us. There was no hand holding. There was no leaning on each other for comfort. His mind was preoccupied with the whore. He was disloyal and he was there only because he had to be. He wasn’t there for me. He was barely there for Rock Star. I’m sure he was counting down the minutes until he could rush back to his office and chat with the whore.

He was not “there” when he was having sex with me and then calling his whore every morning to talk to her on the way to work. It’s also not loyalty. It’s a heavy dose of mind fucking. And using a person for your own needs.

I am so sorry.

I’m sure you are sorry. Sorry for yourself. Sorry you might have to suffer some consequences. Sorry your can’t continue fucking your whore while your partner does everything for you. Sorry your spouse won’t get over it and act like everything is normal again. It almost always comes back to being sorry for yourself.

I never meant to hurt you.

Yeah, they never do. Is there anybody out there who thinks that fucking someone else and then lying to your spouse for weeks, months, possibly years is not going to hurt? That they might get lucky and their spouse will take Taylor Swift’s advice and just shake it off?

But when you measure my allegiance only by where I stick my dick it’s as if the rest doesn’t count for a thing.

I don’t even know what to say to this. Oh wait! I think I do. I hear ya, bro. All I did was show him my pussy. Maybe insane comments should be met with equally insane comments.

Here is the unfortunate truth: sometimes the only measure of a person’s allegiance is whether or not they’re faithful. For some people cheating is a deal breaker. Period.

It’s been pointed out being betrayed by someone you love, someone who is supposed to have your back and be there for you, is a very difficult thing. Once broken, trust is a difficult thing to restore. And as I’ve pointed out it’s more than a little difficult to reconcile this idea that your spouse can be loyal to you and claim “allegiance” to you while they are lying to you.

Do we do this with other behaviors?

I’ve always been loyal to this company! I’ve mentored youth, I organized your files, I updated all of the reports; I even created a chart that everyone in the company uses to this day! I landed two of the three largest clients we have and I’ve grown profits by 30% since I’ve been here. I’ve stayed late. I never call in sick. And I never forget a birthday! Are you really going to fire me over one incident of embezzlement? When you put that up against my stellar record….

Maybe it can be more accurately and gently conveyed this way. Imagine two people begin dating. They have a fantastic relationship, whatever that means to you. They get along. They take wonderful vacations. They like the same things. They do everything together. They have a lot of the same goals. But as time goes on it becomes apparent that one of them wants to have children and one of them doesn’t. Do they end the relationship because of this one disagreement? Or do they take the approach that this one issue shouldn’t overshadow all of the other positives of their relationship?

I would say that’s an issue that is going to make or break a relationship. There is no compromise with that. One child is not a compromise. So yes, the relationship is probably going to end because of that one thing. Nothing else counts.

I think the most astonishing part of that statement, “… when you measure my allegiance only by where I stick my dick it’s as if the rest doesn’t count for a thing,” is that this guy is completely serious. He just can’t believe that his wife might have a problem with that and that it could potentially lead to divorce. It’s like he really doesn’t think it’s that big of a deal, and if only she could put the fact that he’s out fucking strange up against the amazing family vacations and awesome holidays she would see how silly it is to be upset over it.

I’m trying to imagine how a conversation would go if it had been her cheating:

Look, all I did was show the guy my pussy. And yes, I might have sucked a few dicks. Who’s keeping track? I still fucked you. And I was always home to make you dinner. Me screwing other people has taken nothing away from you. I always took your clothes to the dry cleaners. Got the heavy starch, just like you like it. I’m still taking the kids to school and hockey and gymnastics. So what’s the big deal? I’m here for you! I work my affair around our schedule. Why are you making such a big deal out of this? You are always my first priority. My loyalty lies with you!

You think that would fly? Yeah, me neither.

Privileged To Be Able To Choose Monogamy

This other board that I read has been unusually slow but one single thread keeps giving me material.

In the same thread as the one where they were talking about taking care of their cheating terminally ill spouse the same poster who said she would “choose compassion” made a remark to another poster about her being “privileged to be able to choose monogamy.”

You have to understand her husband is a fighter pilot who has been stationed all over the world; they’ve been separated for several years at a time. Apparently there was no leave for him. So they agreed to an open marriage. Shockingly, he broke their agreed upon rules. She then decided an open marriage was no longer a viable option. Shockingly, he outright cheated. Also shockingly, she prefers to call his cheating “a flawed human being who was seeking to get his needs met.” I prefer entitled, cheating asshole but eh, whatever. You say po-ta-to; I say po-tah-to.

I’m shaking my head in disbelief at this entire exchange. People are privileged to be able to choose monogamy? Bullshit!

It’s not privilege; it’s having boundaries. The way I see it she made choices all along the way. She knew what her husband was, what he did for a living. She was in the military at one point as well. She knew getting involved with another service member might mean long periods away from each other. She could have chosen to not get involved with such a person. She could have decided that two competing careers like that, with long periods of separation, wasn’t something she was interested in. But she didn’t. She chose a fighter pilot. No one forced her to do it. She wasn’t trafficked. She didn’t get tricked. She knew what a relationship between two people in the service was going to mean. She even knew what it would mean if one of them got out. You would still be dealing with deployments.

She also chose to open her marriage. I would be willing to bet that there are hundreds of thousands of spouses of military members who fully expect their spouse to be faithful to them even if they are not able to fuck them daily. They do not all say, “Well shucks! Since you’re several thousand miles away from me I may as well let you nail anything that moves. Have fun!” That was the choice she made.

She could have just as easily enforced boundaries. “No, I don’t care that you haven’t had sex in eight months. I expect fidelity in my relationship. If that’s too much to ask from you then we need to end this and you need to find a partner more compatible.” Instead she decided it was way too much to expect him to be faithful to her so she gave him permission to have sex with other women.

Seriously! Is it too much to expect him to use his damn hand? And no matter how much people try to insist that sex is a need no one has ever died from not getting laid. If you absolutely needed to have sex there would be no nuns. I would have died shortly after getting divorced.

No, what happened was she knew he was a cocky, entitled, good looking guy that attracted a lot of women. She figured by opening it up she could head off the cheating at the pass. Only it never works that way with cocky, entitled people. Rules are for other people. They’re too splendid to be bound by rules. She let him run all over whatever boundaries she may have had and then tries to spin that as “she wasn’t privileged to be able to choose monogamy.”

You are always able to choose monogamy. She just didn’t want to insist on it because she was afraid he wouldn’t agree to it. Or, she just figured he was going to cheat anyway so if she gave him permission it wouldn’t be cheating and their relationship could remain wonderful.

Having a monogamous relationship is not a privilege. For most people it is an expectation. I’m not saying that just because you expect it your partner won’t lie to you and lead you to believe they, too, want monogamy while they’re nailing anything that moves. But they do that knowing it’s a deal breaker and that their actions could very well lead to the end of their relationship.

I’m not saying that everyone has to choose monogamy. I know there are people out there who don’t. If it works for you, good for you. I do, however, draw the line at anyone who gives their spouse permission to have sex with others and then sadly proclaims that monogamy is a privilege that not everyone enjoys, rather than expressing their needs and enforcing their boundaries.

The Biggest Lie Of All

Between the other board I read and a recent blog post I read on WordPress I’ve come to the conclusion that most of the population is fairly stupid and naive when it comes to infidelity.

I was reading not that long ago a post from a woman who made the edgy, “unpopular” proclamation that infidelity was not a deal breaker in her marriage. Both she and her husband agreed it was no reason to divorce (you have to put that “one mistake” up against the entire relationship, dontchaknow?); furthermore, they both agreed they would never confess if they did cheat because confessing was for the cheater and only burdened the betrayed spouse.

Oh, there was plenty of talk about how she wouldn’t be surprised if he had already cheated because the statistics say everyone does it, or at least the majority of people do it. Plus, they’ve been together for more than thirty years so why would she throw that away for one little indiscretion?

On the other board one of the women who had in fact been cheated on (repeatedly) by her current husband made the comment that she realized her husband was a “flawed human being seeking to have basic physical needs met.” That didn’t mean he didn’t love her. He absolutely did. This same person insists that there is an entire cultural attitude that applauds those who kick out the cheater and berate or shame those that try to work it out.

There were a few women who talked about how much work goes into restoring a relationship after it’s been rocked by infidelity. There were many kudos given for those who do the “hard work” of rebuilding trust and working through it.

I was especially shocked by the stance of one poster that I admire. Her husband had cheated on her, purposely got the AP pregnant, and eventually moved in with her. He also had no intentions of ever filing for divorce. In his world he was perfectly content to remain married while shacking up with his AP and love child.. She said this about her own daughters facing infidelity in their marriage: I would want my daughters to think deeply before they get a divorce. There are worse things than a “moment of indiscretion.” If my daughter was convinced that the husband was truly sorry and truly loved her, I could understand why she would give her husband a second chance.

I shake my head as I read all of this. There are several problems with these lines of thinking.

The biggest lie is that affairs are just about sex. No, affairs are about lies and deception. You don’t make a mistake when you cheat on your partner. You make a series of mistakes, generally dozens, when you cheat on your partner. There is the choice to chat up a co-worker or friend. The choice to continue on with all of that when you know you are playing with fire. There are the lies to cover your tracks. There are the lies to explain your absences. Then there is the sexual act itself. That’s followed by all the lies and deception used to cover up what you just did. Followed by more lies so you can do it again.

I would love to ask the writer of the blog who declared infidelity not a deal breaker in her marriage if losing a baby due her spouse’s infidelity might be a deal breaker. How about if you were diagnosed with an incurable STD? There are several readers over on Chump Lady who’ve actually been given HPV which has led to cancer. Would that be a deal breaker or is that another thing you would need to put up against your thirty wonderful years together? How about if you found out your husband and his mistress were slowly poisoning you? Is that a deal breaker or are you still going to try to work things out? What about if you found out your spouse was draining marital accounts to fund the affair? What if they “loaned” money to the affair partner? What if your spouse bought phones for, and then allowed you to get online and pay the cell phone bill for your “in-laws”, only you find out two months later you’ve been paying the cell phone bill for his mistress and her daughter? Are we still overlooking all of this because, you know, it’s just sex? Is the long history together still winning out over all this douche-y behavior?

Unfortunately, many times it’s not a simple matter of some horny person out there fucking whatever moves. Many, many times, if not most of the time, affairs involve financial deception as well. “I’m sending my mom money for groceries! I’ve got a ‘business trip’ next weekend. I’m ‘investing’ in a friend’s company.” They involve gas lighting and mind fucking. “I’m not having an affair. You’re crazy! When you don’t trust me it leads me to want to actually do what you’re accusing me of! I would never cheat on you! You and the kids mean everything to me. I swear on our children’s lives I’m not cheating. Maybe you’re the cheater and you’re projecting on to me.”

Go read the comments sometime on Chump Lady. You will find person after person who has been left financially destitute after being cheated on and left. Accounts drained (hello!). Houses foreclosed on (hello!). Support withheld (hi again!). Businesses devalued. Money given to or spent on the AP. Signatures forged. Credit card debt run up. Money hidden. It’s not just sex. It is a far reaching plan to deceive and destroy another person.

As for this idea that a cheater is simply a “flawed human being seeking to have physical needs met”, well, I sure hope that both the cheater and the affair partner are on the same page in regards to what’s happening here. I’ve heard a few stories where the AP thinks this is the romance of the century and when they find out that’s not the case… they turn into a bunny boiler. Seems such a shame to ruin this beautiful “physical needs being taken care of” romance with stalking and hysteria and threatening phone calls to the spouse.

I also hope a pregnancy does not occur because these physical needs were taken care of outside of the marriage. That would be a little awkward, huh? According to ID TV that’s usually when the cheater kills the AP. Of course, if the cheater is a woman and she’s the one who gets pregnant… again, might be a little awkward, but totally not out of the realm of possibility that she might try to pass it off as her husband’s child. Nothing like a paternity test to spice up a marriage! But hey, it’s just sex, right?

I hope that poster is right and she doesn’t find her husband leaving her for someone else a few years down the road. It’s not that unusual for men to trade in their spouse when she gets into her 40s or 50s. Gray divorce is a huge topic these days. Why keep the middle aged wife with her stretch marks and muffin top when he’s got a hot, toned, child free twenty something offering him blow jobs and fun times? My jaded philosophy is something along these lines: Even if it’s not a hot, younger woman, if your husband fucks around on you often enough eventually he’s going to find a replacement for you.

As for this idea that there is a cultural trend to shame those that remain with their husbands I have to say, “Oh please!” Aside from Chump Lady’s blog I can’t think of another blog that encourages leaving the cheater. There is, in fact, an entire industry devoted to helping you “affair-proof” your marriage, teaching you all about the 180, promising you that the affair will be “the best thing to ever happen to your marriage”, and otherwise encouraging you to work through the infidelity and to reconcile. They sell programs and constantly promise to tell you how to win back a wandering spouse. And as always, they promise that your marriage will be “better and stronger than before!”

Look at all the kudos for the people who choose to stay and work through the infidelity. They are “applauded”. They are lifted up in praise because they did the “hard work” it took to work through all of that. People are cautioned to “think carefully” before divorcing a cheating spouse because surely there are worse things than a “momentary lapse in judgement”.

Meanwhile, those who do divorce are judged as being unforgiving. They lack compassion and think they are superior. We foolishly base our decision on one small, insignificant mistake instead of thinking rationally and taking into account the entire relationship.

If we’re not judged as being unforgiving and lacking compassion then we’re judged as being moral failures. Hell, there was a blogger that thought there should be a divorce tax and who advocated shunning those who divorce! Obviously we didn’t value marriage; we’re tossing aside our solemn vows because we’re not “happy.”

We’re accused of taking the “easy way out”. <Snort> Please. Like working entry level jobs, moving in with your mom, losing your home and everything in it, being forced to move out of the state, and sleeping on the couch is so much easier than remaining a stay at a home mom who lives on over $200,000 a year, lives in a nice big house she calls her own, complete with a pool and a hot tub, and has all the time in the world to visit friends and go on vacation. Oh hell yes. Getting up at 3:30 in the morning and working at Target before dropping off my kid at school and then going to my regular full-time job was so much easier than getting up at 7:00, making my kids breakfast, dropping them off at school, and then spending the rest of the day doing whatever I wanted.

Not to mention that some of us didn’t get the “opportunity” to do the so-called hard work of rebuilding our marriage. Some of us got dumped. Some of us were blindsided. For some of us our husbands or wives had our replacements lined up long before we knew we were headed for divorce.

It didn’t take a genius to see the writing on the wall. I did give some thought to approaching CF with “an arrangement.” He could have his cousin on the side, but we would stay together until both kids had graduated from high school. He would not be allowed to financially support her; the kids and I would be the beneficiaries of his paycheck and bonus. However, it became quickly apparent that such an arrangement had less than a snowball’s chance in hell of working. He was lying. He was giving her huge sums of money already. They had a bank account together. He was interviewing for jobs out of state. I was certain he was not planning on taking me and the kids with him. It was going to be a solo move. So I bit the bullet. I lawyered up. I protected myself. I filed for divorce.

Here is another very important part to consider. Most of the people over on Chump Lady have tried reconciliation. I don’t have statistics but my guess, from what I’ve read over the years and through various sources, is that the majority of people who find out their spouse is cheating on them, try to reconcile. I truly believe very few people follow through with kicking the cheater to the curb without a second thought. I think most of us at least try. There may be some who try and decide they can’t get over this, but they do at least try to make it work. This is where that important part comes in.

I’ve read way too many stories over there about people who opted to forgive and rebuild trust, who chose reconciliation, who decided it was worth it to do the hard work and not let one little mistake define their entire relationship, who forgave the cheater and welcomed them back home, only to have the cheater do it all over again years later. In some cases it was years between affairs, and in other cases the cheater took it deeper underground and lived a double life for ten to twenty years before cruelly discarding their spouse. I can’t think of a single one of them who says, “I have no regrets; I cherish every single extra year I got with my cheating spouse. Though the marriage may be dead I will comfort myself with the many wonderful memories we created.” No, what they all say, almost without fail, is that they wish they had left the first time and that they regret wasting all of those years with that person. There are a few who say they are glad they tried marriage counseling, they’re glad they tried to fix it, because they know they did everything they possibly could to make it work so they leave with a clean conscience. But I can’t think of anyone who says they are glad for the extra years with their cheater. There is only regret for wasting a single minute more on that person who chose to turn around and betray them again.

 

In Sickness and In Health

I was reading that other board that I’ve read for the last ten years or so. Somehow the topic of taking care of your sick, cheating spouse came up. One of the women knew someone who had found out after her husband died that he had been cheating on her the entire time he was sick. She wished she had known because she wouldn’t have bothered to take care of him.

I think that’s a pretty understandable stance to take. And yet, there were others who said they would care for their spouse regardless.

Is it any wonder infidelity is glossed over the way it is? Here we have a man who is actively cheating on his wife while he goes through chemo. He’s sexting his AP and meeting up with her in between treatments when he’s well enough while his wife is left to do the hard work. The AP gets sex and promises, dinners and sexy texts, and a guy who gives her a case of the crotch tingles, and his wife gets to drive him to chemo appointments, wait for hours while he’s being treated, and clean up his vomit and diarrhea afterwards. And there are actually people out there who not only don’t see what the problem is but also try to frame it as though it is a character issue and anyone not willing look pass the lies and humiliation obviously isn’t as good of a person as they are. It’s as though there is a moral failure with those of us who choose to cut toxic people out of our lives. Their mantra seems to be: When someone shows you who they are, bury your head in the sand and keep pretending they’re the person you want them to be.

One person said, “I would choose compassion, too. I think people often justify not having a compassionate response by pointing out how the person “should” have behaved.”

Hmmm…. interesting. Here’s a head scratcher for ya: Why isn’t the soul mate/twu wuv taking care of her schmoopie? I would think the compassionate response would be to let the AP take care of the sick person. You wouldn’t want that terminally ill Lothario to spend his last months with the horrid, asexual wife, would you? Isn’t it only fair that these two soul mates, destined to be together, aren’t kept apart for one. more. minute?

If the answer is because the AP only wants the fun parts of the relationship and none of the work I would say sometimes that’s what happens when you trade in your spouse for what’s behind Door #2. Sometimes you lay there in your own shit and vomit because your twu wuv doesn’t want to take care of you and you fired your former spouse from that job. Good news, though! Once you’re up and feeling better (and no longer making a mess… ewwww!) your soul mate will once again be available for fun times.

One of the ladies did remark at one point that if the situation were turned around the cheater would have no problem leaving his wife’s body in the middle of the street. She also recounted a story of how a friend’s grandmother nursed her husband back to health, and then when she got breast cancer he left her for another woman. To which someone else (also a very enlightened soul who wouldn’t let a little thing like infidelity steer her course) replied: For me it’s more of I won’t let another person’s actions dictate or change the person I am just by nature.

What bullshit. This is just more excuses, more blaming the betrayed spouse, expecting everything from the cheated on while expecting nothing from and giving everything to the cheating spouse. I will repeat: It is not a moral failure to cut toxic people out of your life. If your spouse cheats on you and you choose to walk away it’s not a horrible failing on your part. Cheaters are not entitled to forgiveness, or being taken care of when they’re sick and find out their fuck buddies are only available for the good times.
Again I ask is it any wonder that we betrayed spouses face the uphill battle we do? It’s our fault. If we had been thinner, smarter, blonder, tanner, had more muscles, nagged less, put out more, cooked vegan, baked cakes, etc. then we could have prevented our spouse from cheating on us. Now that we have accepted the fact that it’s our fault the cheating happened then it behooves us to continue to shove that shit sundae down our gullet and take whatever else humiliation the cheater has in store for us.

We’re mean if we don’t want to take care of a cheating spouse. It’s not fair that we expect their AP to do that job. We’re horrible people who judge and impose unfair consequences and hey, who died and made you God? You’ve no right to judge that person who has gutted you. If you weren’t such a bitter, hateful person you would gladly mop up all that puke and shit and let them bounce off with Pop Tart once they were feeling better. I’m so glad I’m a more enlightened person who would never let a person’s awful behavior dictate my own behavior. I will swallow mounds of shit in order to prove to everyone that I am a better person!

Again I say bullshit. There is absolutely nothing wrong with refusing to be treated like an appliance. There is nothing wrong with saying, “Your behavior is unacceptable and I will not stand by while you treat me this way.” There is nothing wrong with saying, “This is not acceptable and I will not tolerate it one second longer.” There is also absolutely nothing wrong with telling Romeo that if he wants to fuck Pop Tart when he’s feeling 100% then by golly you’re stepping aside and she can wipe his ass when he’s at his lowest.

This idea that we operate in a vacuum is ludicrous. If every time my fictitious friend Rosie comes up to me she spits in my face and bites my nose, I’m going to stop hanging around with her. And yes, by golly, her behavior does dictate my behavior. If Rosie weren’t a violent asshole who assaulted me I’m sure I would be wiling to spend time with her.

If every time my fictitious friend Cinnamon comes over she steals things from my house, I’m going to stop inviting her over. And yes, by golly, her behavior does dictate my behavior. If she weren’t stealing me blind every time I had her over for dinner I would continue to invite her over. But since she steals from me I’m severing this relationship and not giving her another opportunity to take shit that doesn’t belong to her.

If every time I hang out with my fictitious friend Hannah she lies right to my face I’m going to stop hanging out with her because it’s very difficult to have any kind of a friendship with a person who lies to you constantly. Again, you might have guess it by now. Her behavior, her lying, does dictate my behavior- whether or not I’m willing to be friends with her.

So can we please stop acting like fucking a person suddenly gives them special permission to do whatever they want to you? I wouldn’t lobby the prison and ask to take care of my terminally ill rapist. I wouldn’t volunteer to take care of the person who killed my mom or child. I wouldn’t wipe the ass of my kidnapper or clean up the vomit of my mugger or give rides to the doctor’s to the guy who embezzled money from my company. Why would I offer to do that for the person who lied to me, cheated on me, humiliated me, and financially raped me?

This is the kind of crap we come up against in real life all the time. Once you leave the comfy confines of Chump Lady’s blog you usually run into all the people who don’t think infidelity is the real problem. They want to examine it from all different angles and assign percentages of blame (because the cheater didn’t cheat in a vacuum, of course). They want to encourage being friends with the cheater and doing things for them. In fact, there is no greater sign of maturity than claiming to be “best friends” with your cheater and socializing with them. The problems occur when the bitter, betrayed chump refuses to forgive, refuses to be besties, refuses to do photo ops, refuses to cooperate, refuses to maintain the cheater’s image. Yeah… I don’t think so.

There is something awful about this idea that even though we know if we were the ones who were sick this person would walk away without a second glance, would happily dance on our grave, would fuck someone else while we crawled to the toilet to vomit and then cleaned up after ourselves because no one was there to help us, that we are somehow morally lacking if we don’t rush to help this person. There is something horrible about this idea that even when someone is betraying us and humiliating us and using us we are supposed to say, “Let me help you. I want to take care of you. It is my duty.” There is something almost evil about this idea that people who wouldn’t consent to being mistreated in such a way are somehow lacking compassion and humanity. We are somehow less than those people who would fall all over themselves to help an abuser.

It brings to mind the story of the boy and the frozen snake. You know the story, right? A boy comes across a half frozen snake on the mountain top. The snake begs the boy to take pity on him, put him in his pocket and take him down to the base of the mountain. The boy says, “No! You are poisonous. You’ll bite me and I’ll die.” The snake assures him that he wouldn’t do that to the boy; if he would do this one favor for him he promises not to bite him. Please! He’ll die if the boy doesn’t take pity on him and help him out! So being a kind soul (one of those non-judging sorts) the boy takes pity on the snake and picks him up and puts him in his pocket. As he walks down the mountain the temperatures slowly rise and the snake slowly begins to thaw out. Not long before they get to the bottom the snake bites the boy, sending a shot of venom though his body, essentially killing him. “Why did you do that to me? I took pity on you! I carried you down the mountain as you asked. You promised you wouldn’t bite me!” To which the snake replies, “You knew what I was when you picked me up.”

#riseup