The Pursuit Of Happiness Fallacy

What seems like eons ago, when in reality it was back in June, there was an article posted on Huffington Post about two wing nuts that got together through their mutual love of the Oregon Country Fair, or “Fair”, as the “family” knows it. Tracy Schorn UBT’d it over on Chump Lady and Jennifer Ball posted about it on her Happy Hausfrau Facebook page.

The quick recap: “Ruby” and Paul spent 16 years working “Fair” in Oregon. One day, while peeling potatoes the feelz hit ‘em real hard and they realized they were destined to be together. While his wife and kids were away on vacation Paul invited Ruby over for a “picnic”. They spent the week together navel gazing and justifying their behavior. It was a love that could not be denied. When his wife came back into town he told her he was leaving her for another woman and Ruby left her husband as well. Ruby was simply stunned that her ex-husband didn’t chase after her, begging for another chance, and was equally shocked that Paul’s ex-wife didn’t bow out without a fight. I’m pretty sure if I remember correctly they are now married (going on 4 years of blissful happiness) and own a pot farm.

Even more vomit worthy than the article were the comments. These are just a few of the stand out gems:

Love isn’t ownership. I’ve walked and I’ve had others walk. Learn and grow and move on. Stop blaming people for loving someone.

Good on them. No point continuing a BS relationship just to conform to everyone else’s BS relationships/marriages. Life’s too short and too long to live a lie just to please church goers. Obviously they’re against real love anyway.

In response to someone saying that people who cheat on their spouses have a character flaw: We all have character flaws. People who stay in a loveless marriage also have a character flaw. They keep their spouse from meeting someone who will love them.

Yes, it’s a kick in the teeth when your spouse says they’ve fallen in love with someone else, and hard for the kids to deal with two homes, new step-parents, etc. But I can’t think of anything worse than reaching old age, the kids gone with lives of their own, moved to other states even, only to call on holidays and birthdays, and you being stuck immobile or infirm as time ravages your body, depending on someone you don’t love, haven’t loved in a long time, are disappointed with and sad to be around, and knowing you could have been happy, could have actually had a life worth living, years of love, sharing, fulfilling companionship, etc. and missed your chance.

Don’t stay somewhere you are not happy, life is too short! People like to pass judgement based on their own fears and insecurities. Let people live!

…way too many people stay in miserable marriages and hate their lives. Glad they’re happy.

People that are brave enough to admit their faults, their choices, their lives, always get very “righteous” people judging them… you could see that both of them were unhappy in their marriages before they “found each other”.Are people supposed to live a mediocre and unhappy life forever because of what looks good for society rules? No. I don’t think so.

Wow, so much hate because someone fell in love with another person and left a toxic situation.

Life is short, some people will stay miserable to “do the right thing” and never really live a happy life which is ok… but it’s also ok to make the decision to find happiness.

My husband left me for a younger woman. I’m happy for them. My 10 year marriage was unhappy. He wasn’t happy. I let him go be happy. It’s the mature thing to do.

They are both adults who made a questionable decision, but I’m sure all involved are better off, No one deserves to live unhappily ever after because of their “responsibility” to someone else’s feelings.

Let me remind you what Thoreau said:

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To paraphrase Rock Star, “I. cannot. even. with all of those asinine comments.”

I love how everyone believes that if you’re in a toxic relationship you’re entitled to cheat. God forbid you realize you’re in a bad situation and actually get the fuck out without having someone else waiting on you.

Wait a second! Are you telling me I can actually end a relationship before I have another one waiting in the wings? I can leave someone who makes me unhappy and sucks the life right out of me even if I don’t have another person I’m going to immediately be involved with?

Yes! Yes, that is exactly what I’m saying!

Then why in the fuck didn’t they tell me that? I’ve been stuck in this miserable relationship for the last ten years because I didn’t have time to set up a Tinder profile! Or volunteer at Fair.

I don’t know what to tell you, Sparky. You’ve always had the option of leaving. This remains a free country and more importantly, divorce is legal.

Quick question. Who will have sex with me once I kick my spouse/partner to the curb? Who will hold my hand while I go through this divorce? Who will tell me how awesome I am and how horrible my spouse was? And who’s going to pitch in and do all the things my spouse used to do?

Ah, that is the kicker, isn’t it? It’s not that these cheaters don’t realize they can leave a toxic relationship; it’s that they’re lazy. They don’t want to leave until they’ve got the replacement lined up.

Look, I don’t think anyone advocates staying in a miserable marriage. I know I don’t. I’ve always said you’ve got a couple of choices. The two good choices would be you can try to fix it or you can end it. The two bad choices would be you cheat on your spouse under the guise of unhappiness or toxicity, or you suffer through it for years on end.

About that so-called unhappy/toxic relationship. Cheaters lie. Mine lied a lot. It’s amazing to me how many people who have been cheated on talk of their cheaters telling them how much they loved them, how they couldn’t live without them, how these had been the best fill-in-the-blank years of their lives, how they were the love of their life, they were their rock and salvation, and sunshine shot out of their asses.

Hell, even ol’ Jerry Lee claimed that I was his rock. My family was his only real family. He wanted to renew vows. He wanted to have another baby with me so I couldn’t leave him.

A year later I was a mentally abusive spouse who never supported him and hadn’t had sex with him in ten years.

The story has to change when they start doing shitty things. It excuses the shitty things they’re doing.

So many of them focus on “ownership” and not staying if you’re unhappy. I truly don’t think most people think any of this through. We’re not talking about a summer romance here. We’re not talking about a couple who has dated a year or two. We’re talking about, in this case in particular, two people who were married to other people. They made plans with each other. They bought houses. They may have moved across the country. In one case they had two children together. The time to figure out the relationship is not working for you is before you get married and certainly before you bring children into it.

And again, I’m not advocating staying in a loveless or toxic relationship but, Jesus Christ, could maybe someone put a little effort into maintaining their current relationship, the one that did produce those children, before they decide the potato peeler is the new love of their life? I think the innocent children in these situations deserve a little bit more than, “Golly, I just wasn’t happy. Mommy didn’t support me quitting my full-time job and becoming a pot farmer.” Grow the fuck up! It is not just about you anymore.

That seems to be the popular refrain. You’ve got two choices. You either wait out a miserable life being trapped in an unhappy relationship or you cheat on your spouse and get the hell out. Repairing your current relationship never seems to be a solution. What an antiquated idea!

I loved the one that posited, “I’m sure they’re all better off. No one deserves to live unhappily ever after because of their responsibility to someone else’s feelings.”

What kind of bullshit minimizing is that? It’s a marriage. It’s a legally binding relationship. If he’s in the hospital, as his wife I will be the one deciding whether to pull the plug or not. Our lives are entwined. Our money is combined, I’m taking care of his children. I’m keeping his house and doing his laundry. Do not reduce it to some kind of half baked responsibility to my feelings. No, I’ve created a life with this person. We have made plans for our future. When he decides he no longer has a responsibility to my fucking feelings he’s not just hurting my fee fees he’s fucking with my life.

How does this person know that everyone is better off? Maybe the kids have psychological problems stemming from this. Maybe his ex-wife is struggling to keep a roof over her kids’ heads. Maybe she’s working two or three jobs to keep afloat. Maybe his ex-wife was a depressed, suicidal mess for months, if not years, after this happened and his kids were barely being taken care of because their mother was unable to function. This idea that everyone magically pairs up with someone new and has this fantastic life now is magical thinking designed to excuse people like this.

Look at Jennifer Ball. She’s lived just above the poverty line ever since her husband left. She raised four kids on her own. The jackass ex was rarely around. He was far too busy with his ho-worker and their two new spawn. Is she better off? I think she would tell you that she’s happy and counts her blessings, but better off? I don’t think so.

I’m going to have to invoke my John Walsh analogy one more time. He’s got a lucrative career on television because of what happened to his sweet little boy, Adam. Had he never been kidnapped and murdered John never would have done the work he’s done with missing children or going after wanted fugitives. But I think anyone would have a hard time arguing, “Oh, he’s better off.” Quite honestly, I think anyone stupid enough to say that to him deserves a punch to the throat.

I also appreciated the person who declared that, yes, it is a kick in the teeth to get dumped, and golly, it’s probably hard on the kids to deal with a change in their lifestyle, two different homes, and potential step-families, but gee whiz, wouldn’t it suck to get to old age and realize you’re with someone you don’t want to be with.

Yes, it’s slightly disappointing when you find out you’re being cheated on and deceived. It kinda sucks when you have to return to the workforce after being a stay at home mom for 15 years and you don’t get paid enough to actually support your kids and have a home of your own. 

Sure, the kids do sometimes struggle. I mean, I’ve got one who now thinks he shouldn’t have to even complete high school because it’s pointless and another one who calls me up crying because her anxiety is out of control. They both suffer from anxiety but one gets stressed and cries, and the other finds it difficult to reach out for help and fails school. Neither one of the kids dealt with anxiety or depression when their father and I were together but hey, if one of them winds up killing themselves it’s worth it so long as their dad is happy, right? The kids are collateral damage. Don’t get too attached.

Yes, the real travesty isn’t one parent living in poverty or kids having anxiety attacks or lives being upended. The real travesty is finding out after the kids have left home that you are in a loveless relationship and you were too much of a chicken shit to actually do anything to improve your relationship, or to end it the correct way.

I think my favorite comment though was the one who said that people in loveless marriages have a character flaw because they are keeping their spouse from meeting someone who will love them.

What the what? First of all, maybe the spouse in the loveless marriage doesn’t think they’re in a loveless marriage. Maybe they think they’re in a very happy marriage. Second of all, if you’re both in a loveless marriage, but only one person goes off and cheats while the other person remains faithful, why in the fuck is it the faithful partner’s responsibility to get out of the marriage? Oh, I’m sorry. Why is it their responsibility to make sure their spouse finds someone who will love them? I would think it would behoove the person who can’t keep it in their pants to get out of the marriage before it comes to that.

That whole comment is just one big mindfuck.

Oh, your partner cheated on you? That’s not a big deal. Move on and get over it.

Oh, you stayed in a loveless marriage but didn’t cheat? You horrible person! How can you keep your wonderful spouse from finding love? I hope you rot in hell!

I’m going to say it one more time. I’m not against ending an unhappy marriage. Hell, I would advocate for ending unhappy relationships far sooner than most of us do. Most of us who stay, even when things aren’t going great, do so for good intentions. We do it  because we want what’s best for our kids. We believe in commitment and working through the hard times. We think about things other than ourselves and our own happiness. We regularly put others ahead of ourselves. 

I will, however, take issue with someone cheating on their spouse and then excusing it by saying, “I wasn’t happy.” That’s entitlement and crappy character, not a search for happiness. It’s about selfish people putting their own wants and desires ahead of everyone else.

They Cheat Because Their Souls Were Starving (Oh Brother)

I needed the perspective. I needed the REASON why he did it. Much like you his only answer was selfishness. That wasn’t good enough for me. You say there’s no good reason but there is. You were lonely and sad and you felt unloved and unwanted and you were HUMAN; you were human searching for someone to feed your soul after a long time of starving. You say it’s not a reason but it is. Your wife has a responsibility in it just as I did. Leaving someone’s soul to starve and decimate over time no matter how depressed we were is still cruel; it’s still not ok. In its own way we should have let you go instead of handcuffing you to a dead person. Isn’t that the same thing as leaving someone before you cheat? They are both actions that denote consequences for another that is detrimental. If you refuse to accept your wife had some part in this I don’t see any hope for you.

I was bored this morning and wanted to languish in my comfy bed, surrounded by snoring dogs, so I read old posts from others I follow and I clicked on links and came across this. It was a comment on a cheating spouse’s blog.

As you can probably glean from the comment the actual cheater was not making excuses for the behavior. It was a betrayed wife who was making the excuses.

As far as excuses go I think this is the one that gets the most traction and the one I find to be the biggest load of bullshit.

I’m going to take a wild stab at this and guess that almost everyone who reads my blog has had a job at one point in their life.

Let me ask you, those of you who have had jobs, if you begin working for a company and over time start to believe you are underpaid does it ever occur to you to embezzle from that company? Do you ever start to think, “Wow! The pay and benefits here are horrible! They really should pay me more. I might be able to make more money elsewhere but I really don’t want to put forth the time and effort to job hunt. I know! I’ll just embezzle from them. Maybe fudge a few expense reports. If they paid me more I would have never done this.

I’m genuinely curious because I do happen to know three embezzlers. Good grief, I’ve lived a colorful life! Thankfully, none of them were close friends. One was a friend of my mother’s and  happened when I was a child. One was the first wife of Pastor Fake. The third was actually an ex-boyfriend. To be clear, I was not dating him at the time.

All that aside I can honestly say it has never once occurred to me to steal from my place of employment because I didn’t think I was getting paid enough. My thought process has always leaned more towards, “Hmmm…. I should look for another job.”

Yet this seems to be a common refrain in the reconciliation industry. No, you aren’t to blame for your spouse cheating but you must honestly examine your marriage and see where the cracks were that led to the cheating. No matter how many different ways you try to spin it the question at heart becomes: What is it that you were doing wrong to make your spouse cheat? What are your faults? Where were you lacking? What can you do to improve?

I think that’s a very slippery slope you start to go down when you begin to explore that. Why? Because again, what it all leads back to is you are responsible for your spouse’s behavior. Your behavior determines whether your spouse will be faithful or will cheat.

Did your spouse feel abandoned by you? Like nothing more than a handyman and a paycheck? Did they feel like a cook and a maid? Did they feel like they couldn’t depend on you? Did they feel like they couldn’t talk to you about deeply personal issues? Did they feel like they couldn’t be their true selves around you? Were they lonely? Feeling sexually neglected? Did they feel like the two of you were nothing more than roommates? Were you focused solely on the kids? Did you no longer wear makeup or do your hair, or belch and fart in front of them, thus erasing the magic of your romance? Did you shut them out? Did you make them feel less than? Did you have poor communication?

Oh, ok! We can work with that! Just stop doing whatever it is that you did and then your spouse won’t ever cheat on you again.

The problem with that thinking is it doesn’t get to the underlying reason of why the cheating spouse thought that an affair was an acceptable solution to all of that. What happens when something else occurs in your life to take attention away from them? What happens if they begin to feel abandoned or betrayed or unheard or unappreciated again?

We don’t do this with physical abuse. We don’t ask the wife, “What did you do to make him mad?” Then when she goes through the litany of answers:  Oh, I didn’t have dinner on the table… I talked too much… I wouldn’t back down in an argument… My clothes were too sexy and he said I was flirting with other men… I blocked his view on the TV… I argued with him… I put mushrooms in the pasta sauce… He couldn’t find his favorite shirt… We don’t nod wisely and then suggest, “Stop doing that then! If you would stop arguing and be a better wife he wouldn’t beat you.”

We don’t ask a person what they did to cause their spouse to physically abuse them, so why do we continue to ask a person what they did to cause their spouse to cheat on them?

That brings us to the second problem with that kind of thinking. You’ve just told the person who betrayed you that ultimately they’re not responsible for their own behavior. YOU are responsible for their behavior. Your actions are so powerful that they will determine whether or not your spouse cheats.

Let me be very clear. I don’t think there is a problem with looking at a relationship and seeing where things went wrong. Acknowledging that you didn’t communicate well, or you never made time for yourselves as a couple, or you fought dirty is all good and fine. Work on the communication. Make time for yourselves as a couple. Resolve to stop fighting dirty. But don’t ever let anyone use those as excuses and justifications for infidelity. You were both in that relationship.

CF told everyone that he was nothing more than a paycheck and a handyman to me. He told me we were nothing more than roommates. He pointed out that we had barely spoken or had sex in the last 6 months to a year. What he didn’t point out is how his own behavior led to any of this. What he neglected to acknowledge is that we were both in that marriage and yet only one of us began an affair with our cousin.

That was the first time around! That was the time when I was eagerly hopping onboard with this idea that it was a marriage problem and if we resolved all of the issues that made him unhappy and led him to seek out another person then all would be okay.

Does anyone else find it absurd that he cheated and yet I was the one with the checklist of things to fix? I was faithful but I needed to fix this. He cheated but he had reasons and therefore nothing to fix.

The second time around was even more bizarre. I was accused of hating him. He’s a crying, drinking, isolating-himself-in-the-bedroom mess, and I’m running around like that guy who tries to keep all the spinning plates from toppling off the sticks and crashing to the ground. I’m taking him to the psych ward. I’m visiting every day. I’m bringing him goodies. I’m taking care of the house and the kids while he’s having a break down. I’m making his appointments. I’m going with him to those appointments. I’m cheering him on. I’m hoping to God he’ll come out of this slump and we can finally start to do things again as a couple. Meanwhile, he’s telling everyone how horrible I am and fucking around with his whore cousin. If anyone had a reason to cheat it would have been me! So no, I don’t give much credence to this thought that the cheated on spouse has to own their part in their spouse’s infidelity.

You can examine every inch of your relationship backwards and forward. You can see every flaw in your relationship, every crack that existed and even nail down who did what to whom and when. It still comes down to one person unilaterally making the decision to cheat. No one made them do it. It is a choice they freely made. I don’t care if they were lost. I don’t care if they were weak. I don’t care if they were manipulated. I don’t care if they hadn’t felt human touch in twenty years. Ultimately this person decided they were entitled to cheat. They decided that “job hunting” would be too much trouble so they were going to embezzle instead. Sadly, they have a whole army of people lining up to pat them on their little heads and tell them that it’s not their fault; they wouldn’t have done any of this if only their spouse had done things differently.

If you choose to believe this line of thinking I would suggest you ask yourself one more question: What has changed in this person so that the next time a crisis occurs or they aren’t feeling loved and special they don’t opt to go fuck another person?

Maybe because of my own experiences with being betrayed, forgiving, and then being betrayed again I am jaded. Or bitter. Pick whichever one makes you feel better. Nonetheless it is stunningly obvious that despite the fact that I was willing and eager to “own my part” and “look at what led to the breakdown”, despite the fact that I made all of those changes he asked for, while he made none, and despite the fact that I uprooted my children and agreed to move us 2000 miles across the country so that he could be happy, when he was faced with another moment of unhappiness/disappointment/crisis he resorted right back to his first response- cheating. He didn’t talk things out with me. He didn’t try to fix things. He took no responsibility. He simply resumed his relationship with Harley and blamed everything on me.

The Myth of the Sexless Marriage

I was reading a conversation over on DC Urban Moms and Dads. The original poster asked why on earth anyone would recommend Chump Lady’s site because she was so bitter, angry and negative. Several people patiently pointed out that anger is useful to get you through the initial phase of being discarded and accepting what you married. Others pointed out her tag line is: Leave a cheater, gain a life. She’s not into the reconciliation business. Eventually it meandered over into the fact that men NEED sex and that most people who cheat do so because of sexless marriages.

Well, of course they do! It couldn’t be the fact that the person has bad character. It couldn’t be the fact that the cheater lacks impulse control, or feels entitled to anything he or she desires. It couldn’t be the fact that they act like toddlers, throwing a tantrum anytime things don’t go their way. It can’t be that they are needy and clingy and are bottomless pits of need. No, it must be because their spouses (wives usually) have cut them off from sex, forcing them to cheat. They wouldn’t do this awful thing if the “refusing” spouse would simply hop into bed and participate. This is not their fault! It’s the cheated on spouse’s fault!

Why not divorce? Coz reasons! It’s no fair that if my wife cuts me off from sex and I believe that’s a deal breaker then I have to be a grown up and make hard choices. One person even put it like this:

I’m not comfortable defending the position of a cheater but…

A wife who unilaterally chooses to be sexless gives her husband a Hobson’s choice. Either cheat or divorce, and along with divorce comes a free raping by the divorce court. Losing their kids, their house, half their stuff and the added bonus of continuing to pay the person who caused this for the rest of their life. That’s a ridiculous choice to have to make. So in that case, cheating is not a wholly unreasonable solution.

A wife whose husband has become sexless can make a legitimate choice to divorce with limited negative consequences, so there is no excuse for them to cheat.

Oy. And vey. Dramatic much?

A wife who unilaterally chooses to be sexless gives her husband a Hobson’s choice.

First of all, who are these wives this person speaks of who entirely cut their husbands off? There is a difference between, “I want to have sex six times a week but my spouse will only give it up twice,” vs. “I haven’t had sex in five years.” Not to mention, cheaters lie. It’s what they do.

CF will tell anyone who will listen that we hadn’t had sex in ten years. That is an outright lie. He will also tell people he is an Army Ranger. That is another outright lie. He lies. It’s what he does. I feel like I’m in a fucking Geico commercial!

In addition, the only spouses I’ve ever heard of who cut their spouse off sexually were the cheaters! They did it to maintain control. Meanwhile, they were out there screwing anything that moved.

Either cheat or divorce, and along with divorce comes a free raping by the divorce court. Losing their kids, their house, half their stuff…

Secondly, if you do even the tiniest bit of research you will find that it is generally women who pay the greatest price when it comes to divorce. Hell, I know I got a great deal compared to some people but my standard of living is still far, far below what it was. I will again remind the reading audience that while CF is indeed paying out in excess of 60% of his paycheck to me, he’s doing so because he refuses to leave his sweetie behind to find a better paying job. He was imputed at his previous wages. Even with a ten month gap in employment and being basically fired for drinking on the job, he managed to get a $100,000/year job. I finally got one for $11/hour. He lives in a 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom 3000 sq. foot home which looks eerily like our old home in Virginia, with a community pool and a community clubhouse. I live with my mother, have no bedroom to call my own, and sleep on the couch.

Sure, there are stories of women who take their husbands to the cleaners. The ironic part? They’re usually the ones cheating. I know far more women who have been left destitute after a divorce.

…and the added bonus of continuing to pay the person who caused this for the rest of their life.

I’m pretty sure CF must have written this. Yet another person lamenting having to pay “for the rest of their life.” No, it’s not the rest of their life. In many states they pay nothing aside from child support! Child support ends at some point. Spousal support ends at some point. In my case it will end in 16 years. That is hardly “the rest of his life”.

I loved this though: So in that case, cheating is not a wholly unreasonable solution.

A wife whose husband has become sexless can make a legitimate choice to divorce with limited negative consequences, so there is no excuse for them to cheat.

Nice! So men are forced to cheat because otherwise they may have to give up some of their stuff. Women, on the other hand, never have an excuse to cheat.

It’s too bad some of these people never grew up. If they had they would understand that sometimes doing the right thing isn’t easy. They would understand that on occasion you get to choose between two shitty things. These poor babies just assume the fact that divorcing comes with consequences they don’t want to face means they should be excused for cheating.

Could we please stop acting like women (or whoever is withholding) have all the power? It’s not like a stay at home mom who is “refusing” to have sex has nothing to lose if her husband leaves her. Many states start with 50/50 custody so she stands to lose her kids. Even if she has primary custody she still misses out on weekends and holidays with her kids. A woman who divorces may find her children being raised by another woman. After reading a Mom vs. Stepmom debate board for over ten years it seems to me that women are much more territorial when it comes to the children. Many states have no alimony, so even if she does get custody of the kids, she won’t be receiving it any longer than 18 years and it will go down as each child ages out. Her chances of finding a job where she makes as much money as her husband are fairly low unless her degree is in something that will remain current- think nursing. I’ve known women who were teachers, IT professionals, and accountants who struggled going back into the workforce after years of staying home with children. If she was already working then he’s not going to end up paying her alimony anyway, if they live in a state that awards it, unless he makes significantly more than her. And, if their salaries are very similar he might not end up paying her much in child support either- probably none at all if custody is 50/50.

It’s all a narrative to justify cheating. Those trying the hardest to justify it keep referring to the “refuser” in the relationship and how that person is the one who first broke vows. Apparently, one of the vows you make when you get married is to have sex on demand. If that vow isn’t met then the other spouse is justified in cheating, or so their theory goes.

Even when it’s pointed out that if that is indeed happening then both parties know they are not having sex. The person being refused sex is not left in the dark. When the other person decides to go outside of the marriage both parties are not aware of it. When that is pointed out, and divorce is offered up as the responsible response to such a situation (not getting all the sex you deserve) they once again chime in with, “But… consequences! Why should I suffer any consequences for any of my decisions? I have to cheat. I deserve to cheat because they won’t do what I want them, no NEED them, to do.” They are nothing but big ol’ cake eaters.

Here’s another truth. It’s not about the sex. If he’s getting it twelve times a week at home then he’ll complain that she won’t do anal, or oral, or some other thing. Or it’s that she won’t do a threesome or let him watch her have sex with another guy, or participate in a gang bang, or agree to an open marriage, or participate in S&M. Look at the swinger from last week. He and his wife are having sex upwards of five times a week and he wants to be able fuck strange on the side. His complaint about his first wife wasn’t simply that she only wanted sex a few times a month. It was also about the fact that she wasn’t willing to indulge his other fantasies.

If you read Chump Lady you will hear that narrative over and over: I had plenty of sex with my husband, but he went looking for other sources because I wouldn’t… (fill in the blank).

People don’t cheat because they’re in sexless marriages. I would be willing to bet that most of them who make that claim aren’t even in sexless marriages. They cheat because they feel entitled to cheat. They cheat because they want to eat cake, as Chump Lady would say. They cheat because nothing is ever enough for them and no amount of groveling and catering to them will ever make them happy or satisfied. They always demand more. They cheat because they don’t want to have to do the hard work of filing for divorce and going through everything that entails. It’s far easier to keep your spouse and some strange on the side, than it is to be honest and do the hard thing. They cheat because they have convinced themselves that it’s YOUR fault. You’ve made them do this; the poor lambs didn’t have a choice.

Don’t fall for the narrative, folks. People with an ounce of common sense don’t ask what the rape victim could have done to prevent the rapist from raping her/him. People with an ounce of common sense don’t tell the battered spouse, “If only you would do (fill in the blank),” or “If you wouldn’t do (fill in the blank) your spouse wouldn’t be driven to abuse you.” People with an ounce of common sense should also realize no one makes another person cheat. It’s a damn choice. Own it!

#riseup

It Is Time

I’ve been mulling this idea over for a few months now. I know I write an awful lot about my own circumstances, especially since my life took such a drastic turn back in 2016. When I started this blog I really wanted to expand beyond my own situation and offer some sane advice to others who are dealing with this, whether they are in the discovery phase, the reconciliation phase, or in the middle of a divorce. I was reading Chump Lady one day and she said something to the effect of, “I’m only one voice. I can’t do this by myself.” And this gave me hope because I do want to add my voice to hopefully turn the tide on how we look at infidelity. It kills me when I read blogs by people who are going through this, hoping to reconcile, and their spouses are being absolute shits, refusing to give them answers, treating them like crap, blaming them. I want to scream out, “It’s not your fault!” I want to tell them cheating is an entitlement issue, a character issue. I want to point out that if sad little spouse cheated because he/she was unhappy, you were in the same marriage and yet you didn’t cheat. How could that be? I want to tell the cheated on spouse all about the blame shifting mindset of, “It’s not what I did; it’s your reaction to it.” I want to point out all their false equivalencies. Yeah, I cheated. But YOU never put the lid back on the ketchup. You never wanted to play golf. You snored. Or even better, the sneering, “Oh, you’re so perfect. Sorry I’m not perfect like you!”

Really what I would like to see, what I hope eventually happens in all this claptrap of open marriages and polyamory and how humans aren’t meant to be monogamous, is to see people no longer tolerate infidelity. I’d like to believe that the tide will shift, like it shifted for domestic abuse and rape.

I know; I know. Neither of those examples are without fault. There are still travesties of justice. But as a whole we no longer tsk tsk and ask what the wife did to make her husband so mad. We don’t ask her to take responsibility for him shoving her down a flight of stairs or knocking her head into the wall or punching her. It is not perfect yet, and there will always be those who excuse it, but we are less and less likely to put the onus on the abused spouse.

Similarly while examples abound in the news of men getting a slap on the wrist we are making strides in getting the message out there that rape is not about sex. It’s about power. It’s about having control over another person. It’s not because a girl wore a short skirt or had too much to drink. Hell, men get raped as well. We are putting the responsibility back on the person who is actually committing the act, and not asking the person who was violated to take responsibility for that person’s behavior.

There is a woman on another board I frequently read and she does not like the idea of self-defense classes for women at college. She thinks it puts the responsibility on the female to not get raped. And yet this same woman has said about cheating, “It’s a symptom, not the disease. It is an indication of a problem in the marriage.” She would never dream of telling a young college girl that it was her fault she got raped, but she has no problem with distributing the blame in a marriage when one part of that couple cheats.

I have hope that one day instead of blaming the betrayed spouse we put the blame where it belongs- on the person who cheated. I have hope that one day we won’t ask what the spouse did to cause their partner to stray. We won’t look at the woman who has gained weight since the wedding day and cluck disapprovingly, “Well no wonder he cheated; she let herself go!” As I’ve pointed out many times beautiful, thin women get cheated on all the time.

I want to believe as more voices start rising up that we will combat this insane idea that only those who are “perfect” don’t cheat. Or that being unhappy entitles a person to destroy their spouse.

I long to see the day where people recognize that cheating is an entitlement problem. It is a character problem. I was not a perfect spouse but I sure as hell didn’t deserve what CF did to me and our kids. I didn’t deserve to be cheated on. He had a plethora of decisions he could have made instead of cheating. You don’t need to be perfect in order to have a faithful spouse.

I have hope that people will be called out when they toss out such stupid remarks as, “Life is too short to be unhappy,” or “We live in an age where we’re not forced to remain in unhappy relationships.” Yes, by all means, seek out happiness. Don’t remain in a relationship if you are unhappy. But don’t cheat either! I’m sure it will come as a huge surprise to many cheaters out there but you can actually file for divorce without having another person in your bed! It’s crazy; I know!

When people yammer on and on about how monogamy isn’t natural I look forward to people informing those idiots that antibiotics and other medications aren’t natural either. Indoor plumbing and electricity aren’t natural. And if you want to go all, “In nature…” on me. Well… in nature a lot of nasty shit happens, like the weakest of the herd being killed off, or killing the offspring of the former alpha so the females will mate with the new alpha, or starving to death. Cheaters aren’t usually big on consequences. Then again they usually think they are the best in show and above all the rules.

I hope that one day, instead of going back to, “Infidelity is a private matter between two people,” or “Cheating is a symptom and not the disease,” people start to look at what toll infidelity takes on everyone. That is one of the reasons I was upfront about it on Facebook once the divorce was finalized.

Cheating is romanticized and minimized. But it’s not romantic and the impact it has on everyone in its wake can be devastating.

Look at the kids whose lives have been upended. Look at displaced stay at home moms who are suddenly thrust into the workforce making next to nothing. I was lucky; many states don’t have alimony. Look at men who have to paternity test their children, or who lose everything in a divorce to their cheating wife.

My kids and I lost our home thanks to my husband’s cheating. My kids were forced to change schools and move out of state. I worked two jobs to make ends meet and still didn’t have much while CF and Harley lived it up. My kids suffered. I’m no longer around and available for them like I have been in the past.

I also realize I had it easy compared to some of the stories I’ve heard. College funds drained. 401ks liquidated and spent on Schmoopie. Hundreds of thousands of dollars being spent on gifts and trips. People losing everything in their divorce- their house, their children, their business. People who have only been with one person in their entire life finding out they have an incurable STD (or even a curable one). Women losing babies or babies being put in the NICU because of STDS. In some instances lives were threatened, poisoned, and even ended. Those stories need to get out there.

I know. It’s not fun and exciting. It makes people uncomfortable. Especially if they truly believe it when we tell them it’s a character and entitlement problem because that means there is nothing they can do to prevent it from happening to them.

I want to believe that at some point we stop acting like we owe nothing to another person. So many people want to minimize cheating, want to minimize what role the affair partner plays. They want to be seen as sophisticated and edgy and nonjudgmental so when they hear of someone having an affair with a married person (or just hear of someone having an affair) they play it off as though it is no big deal. Or, you know, they didn’t owe anything to anyone.

No! You do owe it to others in society to be decent. It is not okay to fuck another person’s spouse. It is not okay to lie and deceive another person. You don’t have to owe them anything in order to not do that to them. It is a bad thing. If you are perfectly willing to fuck another person’s spouse because “you don’t owe the spouse anything; you didn’t make vows!” then you are a shitty human being. Those things need to be said. People who do crap like this need to stop being given a pass. It isn’t edgy or hip. It is destructive. It hurts people. It hurts families.

The good news is more of those so called sophisticated articles romanticizing affairs are being called out. People are pointing out that cheating is not your only option. Commenters are stressing character. They’re not buying the bogus excuses. They’re not allowing the wool to be pulled over their eyes.

Yes, I’m still going to be offering up recipes, ranting about random things, talking about my mobster, and chronicling my “adventures” with CF, but I’m also going to stick around so that I can continue to call bullshit on the people who say it’s no big deal and that it’s a marriage problem. No, it’s a character issue; it’s an entitlement issue. I’ll say it over and over again until it sticks. I’m going to continue to call bullshit on cheaters who offer up lame excuses, defend their atrocious behavior, and try to tell cheated on spouses how to behave. Yes, because if I’m going to take advice on how to improve my marriage I’m definitely going to listen to the lying cheater. What’s that? I should fetch him his slippers and draw him a bath and fuck him wildly several times a day? Tell me more! I’m going to continue to call bullshit on the mistresses who say if they had to choose they’d rather be the mistress than the betrayed wife because they get all the great parts of the relationship and none of the mundane shit, or they’re free to walk away and get on with their life while the wife has to deal with the aftermath. Or the ones who preen around, who tell everyone they’re not doing anything wrong and they don’t have a problem with being the mistress. I don’t give a crap if you didn’t make vows to me, slut-o-rama. Are you married to my husband? No? Then don’t ride his dick! I’ll continue to call bullshit on any of the dumbasses who defend them and the people who tout an open marriage as the best way to combat infidelity. When a person cheats they get off on the fact that they are deceiving their partner. They know something you don’t know! An open marriage would never fly. There’s no fun in that when you’re allowed to do it. They also certainly don’t want the other person off having a little fun of their own. Hey, that’s my spouse appliance. No one else gets to play with it. Hands off! I’ll continue to call bullshit on the reconciliation industry which preaches forgiveness at all costs, and tells a person who has just been knifed in the heart that they need to own their part in this. Fuck that! I keep going back to this: If I couldn’t make him eat a damn turnip then I don’t see how anyone thinks I could have made him be faithful.

Ultimately, I will continue to hope that more and more people join in and spread the word.

 

#ItIsTime #RiseUp

Advice From the Mistress Concludes

Thankfully we now come to the final few nuggets of wisdom the professional yet reformed mistress has to offer us.

10. Time Management – Never make the ‘kids your life.’ All you will do is alienate your husband. Try to manage your time wisely so that when your husband comes home you have time for him. Couples that don’t eat together, or spend the evenings together, generally grow apart. Don’t allow your husband to become distant or lonely, or a space will be created for another woman to walk into his life.

Spoken like a woman who has no children. When your children are younger they should be your life. They are completely dependent upon you. I will make no apologies for putting my kids first and taking care of them. It’s a short season in your life. Suck it up, buttercup.

I know this is going to sound crazy but maybe, just maybe, if the husband actually pitched in and helped, the wife wouldn’t always be accused of making the kids her life. When you are the only one who takes them to school or practice and the only one who picks them up… When you are the only one to make their lunches, sign their permission slips, go to parent-teacher conferences, meet with teachers, and go to their programs… When you are the only one who will take them to the movies, on vacation, to the mall, out shopping, out to eat, or on any outing… it gets exhausting and then you’re accused of putting the kids first and neglecting the marriage. Most of this shit needs to get done and if Hubby is sitting around waiting for you to draw his bath for him and pop grapes into his mouth then that leaves only one person to do all of it. You can’t complain that she never has time for you if you’re not willing to help out with your shared children.

I can assure everyone that not once did CF grab his car keys and announce he was going to pick Rock Star up from gymnastics. I did not then spring up from the couch, knock him down the stairs in my quest to grab my own keys, and yell triumphantly on my way out the door, “Not on my watch, sucker!” I also never threatened him with bodily harm if he ever attempted to come into the kitchen and cook a meal for us. Never once did I lock myself in a room with my children, declaring with just a tinge of crazy as he banged on the door and pleaded with me to let him in, “I will never allow you to get up in the middle of the night with my children! NEVER! I’m the only one that is allowed to be woken up in the middle of the night. Do you hear me? Do you?” I also never threw my body in the path of his car in an effort to block him from leaving the house with our two kids to give me an hour or two alone. I never grabbed a laundry basket out of his hands and snarled, “WTF do you think you’re doing with that? I’m the only one that does laundry around this house! Stay out of the laundry room!” I never knocked him out of the way in order to run out and grab something for all of us to eat. “You’ve gotta be pretty fast to get one over on me!” I never tore the house apart after he’d cleaned it, screaming about how no one was going to clean this house except for me. Never told him I didn’t want him going to parent-teacher conferences with me because he would just get in the way. Never told him he wasn’t allowed to take the kids out to dinner. I would have welcomed the help. But it turns out all of those things were my job and he was busy doing other stuff (or people). I guess I needed better time management skills.

Here’s another thing that’s going to sound crazy. I actually agree with her when she says that when you don’t eat together or spend evenings together you will gradually grow apart. I saw it happen in my own marriage. But here’s the rub. It wasn’t solely on me. He played a huge part in that dynamic. He wanted to watch TV and he didn’t want to be bothered by young kids making noise while he was trying to watch something. Leaving those two alone so that I could sit by his feet and gaze adoringly up at him would have resulted in utter chaos. They were 2 and 4 at that time, for crying out loud! Maybe 3 and 5. My children are delightful these days, but in their early years… Let me just say I have been told more than once that I have the patience of Job and that if they had been born to any other person they probably wouldn’t have survived.

I gave him what he wanted. Peace and quiet. The ability to eat his dinner and watch television with no interruptions.  Then he complained because he got what he wanted.

When we moved across the country the first time he began shutting himself up in the bedroom. That was his doing, not mine. He was always asked if he wanted to go with us whenever we went somewhere. He usually declined. I had to resort to getting my daughter to ask him if he’d join us. He’s the one that kicked me out our bedroom for years, complaining that my snoring kept him awake.

This was not a situation where I was the frigid, neglectful wife who treated him like he was disposable. This was him shutting himself off from the rest of the family.

Yes, ladies, all the childcare is your responsibility but please try to get all of that taken care of while your husband is away. Time management! Once he gets home he should be your entire focus. Please train your children to never need anything from you once your husband gets home. Also, please speak to all coaches and school administrators so that they never plan anything outside of your husband’s work hours because that, too, will take away from your husband. Your husband must never be neglected. Again, spoken like a woman who never had children and could concentrate all of her energies on the married man she was fucking.

11. Cooking – Be sure to spend less time in the kitchen and more time in the bedroom, as the way to a man’s heart is NOT through his stomach, it’s actually more South of his waistband! A nice hot meal need not take hours so don’t ever slave over a hot stove. Be adventurous in the kitchen, but even more so in the bedroom.

Oh my dear Lord! Let me make sure I have this correctly. I’m to make a hot meal. But it needs to be a simple, hot meal because anything that takes more than five or ten minutes will cause him to cheat. I call foul, Sarah! I used my crockpot all the time! So why did he cheat on me? I have checked off all the boxes. Hot meal? Check! Not spending hours in the kitchen? Check! Delicious goodness? Double check.

And don’t even get me started on adventurous in the bedroom. Suffice to say, dear sweet stupid Sarah, your advice is about as good as your morals.

12. Keep your own identity – NEVER be a doormat for your husband. Be a strong woman, and let him know that if he ever mistreats you, or cheats on you, you will not put up with it. Teach him to make sure he respects you, and that he will lose you if he strays. Also, have your own life and interests, so that you are not just ‘a wife.’ Otherwise you will have nothing to ever tell him or surprise him with. You should be willing to work for a relationship, but never suffer for it.

Ahem… oh, Sarah? You’ve just spent this entire list telling us to do things we don’t necessarily want to do. You’ve told us our husbands are the most important thing in our life and they should be put ahead of our needs and the needs of our minor children. You’ve spent 11 talking points telling us to not get fat, to stay sexy, to fuck his brains out and to do and be whatever he desires. So how is it that none of that shit results in us being a doormat? You’re giving the very blueprint of being a doormat and then saying, “Don’t be a doormat!”

How are any of us to be a strong woman or to assert our boundaries when you’ve spent this entire “lesson” teaching us to be perfect little props for the important man in our life?

It’s a little difficult to tell your spouse that you won’t tolerate cheating and to demand respect when everything you’ve advised us to do so far puts us completely at his mercy. If he’s been taught that he’s #1 and the most important thing ever to exist then why would he ever believe that we would leave if he cheats?

Oh, and newsflash, Sarah! Many women DID tell their husbands cheating would be a deal breaker. That’s why they’re divorced now. And why do you think people lie and gaslight and do their best to keep it a secret? They KNOW it’s wrong. In some cases I’m sure they know their spouse will leave when she finds out.

How am I supposed to have my own interests and my own life when I’m supposed to be catering to him 24/7? You seem to be very worried that I will have nothing to “tell him or surprise him with” but I thought my problems and my life weren’t of any consequence and that everything was supposed to be about him and his day.

I think Sarah’s advice highlights the problem some have between fantasy and reality. It gives voice to those people (cheating men and women alike) that really believe marriage should be exciting and fun all the time and that they should have every need met instantaneously. If they don’t, then they are entitled to cheat.

This advice thrives on fantasy. How many women can honestly say they could do everything that good ol’ Sarah advises us to do? I’m exhausted just reading that list. It’s one demand after another and there doesn’t seem to be any give and take.

Let me be clear, lest I’m accused of being a man hater, I think that much of what she talks about here is fine if it’s done occasionally. I think it’s great when couples can do some of the things on this list. I have no problem with sending a flirty message to your husband. I am a very physical person myself so touching someone, holding their hand, rubbing their back, is something that I would do naturally. I’m not opposed to throwing on some eyeliner and wearing a cute outfit. I think it’s important to not lose yourselves as a couple in your quest to raise children. Keep the romance alive! If you’ve got a chance to spend some time alone as a couple then go for it. But I also think both people need to be participants. And I think that when one person believes that they are entitled to all of the things on the above list then you’ve got some major problems. Regular, real, day-to-day life doesn’t work that way. You might be able to do some of this all of the time. You might be able to do all of it some of the time. But I don’t see how anyone who has actual obligations and responsibilities can do all of it all of the time. Then again, affairs thrive on fantasy and most affair partners don’t see each other every single day. Most affairs also don’t last more than six months so there’s the whole “they can do all of it some of the time.”

I liken her advice to the difference between every day life and taking a vacation. Sarah seems to think that relationships should be like being on vacation every day. You should always be lounging on the beach and sipping cocktails brought to you by smiling servers. You should always be free to wander aimlessly all day long if that’s what you choose to do, or embark on some exciting adventure. You should indulge every day- eating every meal out and not having to worry about cooking or dishes or doing laundry. You should be able to sleep in every day and go to bed whenever you’d like. It should always be one exciting choice after another- cruise this week, skiing next week, a trip out of the country the week after that. Fun, fun, fun with absolutely no responsibilities.

I’ll say it one more time so that I’m not misunderstood (although I’m sure I’ll be accused by someone of being a man-hating, relationship deficient bitter bitch): I think trying to do some of the things good ol’ Sarah suggests is a good thing. By all means, look your best. Talk to your husband. Spend some time with him without the kids around. Surprise him with something fun and/or sexy. Talk to him. Have sex with him. Maybe wear something a little risqué once in a while. Go out and have fun together.

Where her advice falls flat is in the fact that she believes this should be the ordinary. This should be every day life; it’s where the bar is set. I believe those things are “vacation ideas” if you will. I don’t think anyone can live up to all of that every single day. As I said earlier I’m exhausted just reading the list.

The other problem I see with it is there is no talk of equal reciprocation.We women are only as useful as our ability to satisfy our man. Our lives are all about pleasing him. There is nothing about him pleasing us. I guess our big reward is that our husband won’t cheat on us. Because Sarah thinks cheating is a relationship problem.

Honestly, if this is what all I have to do in order to keep a man and have a relationship I’m not interested.

Advice From the Mistress, Part 1

Great news, ladies! A professional (reformed) mistress is going to tell us how to keep our husbands and act more like a mistress instead of a wife. I found this lovely bit of advice thanks to Chump Lady. I thought I’d take a stab at pointing out why it’s a load of shit. Gentlemen, I apologize that there is no advice for you here. If you ever come across a reformed other man who has thoughtfully given you advice on how to keep your wife I’ll be more than happy to dissect that for you.

First and foremost what she’s going to teach you at “Wife School” is how to act more like a mistress than a wife. I would advise having a bucket handy for when you feel the need to vomit because this is cringe worthy. She goes on to tell you this is the “official, simple 12-steps to Affair-Proofing your Marriage”!!!!  Ladies, we all know this is bullshit, right? There is no such thing as affair-proofing. Remember, cheating is a character issue, not a relationship issue. If you can’t get him to eat a damn turnip or go to a party with you then chances are not good that you are going to be able to control his wandering penis. Now that we’ve got that settled…

  1. Be the woman he married – He married you for a reason, he loves you, so be sure you don’t change into a different woman as soon as you’ve eaten the wedding cake!

Um… excuse me, but if he loves me so much, why is he cheating on me? That’s my first question. Second question: What do you mean by “don’t turn into a different woman as soon as you’ve eaten the wedding cake”? Do you mean I should never evolve? Never gain a pound for fear he won’t want me anymore? Do you mean that if I once loved watching some home improvement shows on whatever channel they appeared that I must always like watching them? Or do you mean that I shouldn’t present myself as a put together person who does laundry, washes dishes, cooks and is able to take responsibility for my own self but once I get married I can suddenly no longer put a frozen pizza in the oven, never even bother with putting my washed and folded clothes away, and wouldn’t dream of doing the dishes now since I’m married, make more money, and housework is the spouse’s job?

Hey! That describes CF. Throw in being willing to go places and socialize with people until after the wedding and it’s him to a T. Why didn’t I cheat, Sarah?

2. Keep your appearance in check – Don’t pile on the weight after you get ‘comfortable’ with him, nor let your dress sense go. Looking good will help YOU feel better, as well as making sure your husband only has eyes for you.

Oh Sarah… silly, silly Sarah. You have to know that a woman has more to offer her partner than a rocking hot body dressed in skimpy clothing, right?

I rarely wore sweatpants. I sometimes wore yoga pants. But mostly I wore jeans. I did a lot of cleaning and a lot of laundry. I cleaned out guinea pig cages and cat litter boxes. Was I supposed to wear a short, tight skirt and a bustier to do that? I can see it now: I’m giving CF a come hither smile as I greet him at the door, sauntering over to him as I toss my hair back and pluck an errant wood chip out of my crystal studded bustier. “Welcome home, lover boy! I’ve missed you!”

In fact I recall my mom handing off a brown knit ensemble which I wore more than once. One day he turned to me and said something to the effect of: Why are you wearing that? It makes you look like an old lady. I’m pretty sure we were in the car at the time. I do know I promptly went and changed clothes. I also never wore that again.

I did tend to wear make-up every day. Not heavy make-up. Not everything from foundation down to powder every day but at least eyeliner and sometimes lipstick. When he complained that I never wore make-up anymore and/or always put my hair up in a ponytail or bun I made a concentrated effort to pay attention to my make-up and to leave my hair down. Hair, by the way, that I kept long because he liked it long. If that meant I had spent the day cleaning the house or cleaning up after pets then I made sure to stop 30 minutes or so before he was supposed to get home so that I could do my hair and make-up for him.

Furthermore, dear stupid Sarah, I didn’t sit around on my ass all day. I was constantly doing stuff. You know what that means? I was out in public. I put on make-up. I did my hair. I wore jeans and a cute top.

He STILL cheated!

Finally, to your first point, thousands, if not millions, of women are overweight with faithful husbands. And thousands, let’s hope it’s not millions, of thin, beautiful women get cheated on. Do the names Jennifer Aniston, Christie Brinkley, Reese Witherspoon, Sandra Bullock, Jennifer Garner, Gwen Stefani, and Eva Longoria ring a bell? Maybe if they had taken better care of themselves…

3. Listen to him and be attentive – Be interested in him and how his day was. Stay up late to see him after he’s had a hard day at work, even if you are tired. Ask him how his day was, before unloading all your troubles (and not too many troubles!)

Dear Jesus! Seriously? Sarah, do you see women as people or as simply penis receptacles? I had no problem being interested in my husband’s day. I frequently asked him how his day was and listened attentively to all of his stories. I also was very cautious about unloading my own troubles on him because the poor baby couldn’t handle it. I was often told, “Only one of us can be crazy at one time and that one person is always me!” I handled damn near everything by myself, Sarah, so as not to burden the poor man. I still got cheated on.

Ladies, communicating with your husband is wonderful. Taking an interest in him is wonderful. But this idea perpetuates the fantasy that we are only here to fulfill their wants. Who cares if you’re dead tired? You’ve got a man to please! Hop to it! Surely you realize that if you really loved him and were invested in your relationship you wouldn’t use taking care of kids, making dinner, doing laundry, paying bills, cleaning house, buying the family birthday and Christmas gifts, arranging the social calendar, going grocery shopping, taking care of pets, and running kids around as an excuse as to why you’re so tired and in no mood to wait up for him. If you love him and you want to keep him you will exhaust yourself with a smile on your face!

Don’t burden him with your pesky problems. He doesn’t want to hear about that. He wants to talk about himself. He’s the important one in this relationship. Nothing else matters besides him- not the kids, not parents/family, not responsibilities, and certainly not YOUR problems. Remember, YOU don’t matter.

I bet you can’t wait for Part 2!

Bullshit To Be Refuted

I have a board on Pinterest where I collect quotes about unfaithful husbands and lying whoring mistresses. Strangely enough, or perhaps not so strangely, mistresses have their own quotes as well, justifying their bad behavior.

I thought I’d take a stab at refuting some of this bullshit.

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This is the biggest load of shit! Listen you dumbass, people don’t cheat because they’re not getting enough attention. They cheat because they feel entitled to cheat! Cheating is not a relationship problem which is how everyone prefers to frame it. It is a character problem. Cheaters have poor character. They have poor impulse control. They are entitled little babies who whine and whine when they don’t get their way.

If you’re not getting enough attention then use your words! And if you’re sleeping with a married man or woman and use the above to justify your behavior? You better remind yourself to always give that person plenty of attention. When you can’t keep up with the endless chasm that is their neediness they’ll replace you, too. You are not special.

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Silly whore… if our marriage was really as bad as he lied and said it was he should have manned up and divorced me. But since this bullshit makes you feel better about fucking another woman’s husband go ahead and keep telling yourself our marriage was over or beyond fixing.

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OK, this card obviously wasn’t one the other women embraced. And it says what I said above much more concisely.

The next three are in the same vein, refuting the ridiculous excuses that the other woman comes up with to justify her behavior. If I ever find any of this crap from an other man I’ll let you know.

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Oh yeah! You can never get tired of hearing how the wife drove him to cheat, or how she’s a shrew, is abusive, refuses to have sex, spends all his money, treats him like shit… Funny story: One mistress was told by her lying cheater that he and his wife never had sex anymore. Imagine her surprise when the wife became pregnant. I can’t believe he lied to her!

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Oh silly e-card, whores can and do try to justify it. The wife had it coming. She didn’t understand him. She didn’t treat him right. Their marriage was over. It’s okay to fuck a married man as long as he tells you he’s unhappy.

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Bingo! I guess that makes too much sense and might actually involve consequences. Cheaters aren’t big on consequences.

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Just a little disclaimer before I begin… I got this off of Pinterest so none of the names that appear are people I know.

Yeah, I’m really worried about what you are to him. As far as my children go? You are nothing to them. Oh wait! I take that back. You are the ugly, troll faced whore that their father abandoned them for. You’re the dumb bitch that thought announcing on Facebook how lonely you were when your married lover was no longer sharing your bed was a good idea. You’re the horrible person who turned around and blocked my daughter when you realized she could see right through your bullshit. You are nothing more than an evil bitch who has destroyed their lives and taken everything from them.

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I think you’ve got this backwards. Whores don’t get respect. You being the wife of my kid’s father is not something that I need to respect. And honestly? You started fucking my husband while we were still married; you’ve never shown any respect for me.

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I chose this one to refute because I am prettier and better than Harley. I also believe I will be alone for the rest of my life, especially considering I have no interest in dating.

Being alone doesn’t mean you’re less than just like being a pair of lying cheaters who are hooked up doesn’t mean you are more than. I think one of the biggest problems most people have is they bounce from relationship to relationship. They consider a new relationship to be the pinnacle of happiness and they never learn to be happy on their own. It’s funny because those are the people that are doomed to repeat history.

I may never have another serious relationship but I can assure everyone that I am definitely better than Harley the Whore. I don’t fuck married men. That automatically puts me ahead of her.

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Fuck. You. When I got married I changed my name. That became my name. He did not loan it to me. It is mine. In my case I am intending on going back to my maiden name because I don’t want to be associated with his stupid ass; however, if I ultimately end up choosing to keep MY current last name that is my prerogative. I do have two children with that exact same last name currently and I’m sure that many women continue using their married name because it’s easier when you have kids.

Oh, these next few are fun!

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Harley is not an upgrade. No woman who knowingly sleeps with a married man is an upgrade. Ever. I don’t care what she looks like, how much money she makes, how great she is in bed. She will always be a downgrade.

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I’m not sure how the crazy bitch connects these dots. Aren’t they pretty much one and the same? I mean, if he leaves for some skank ass ho didn’t he choose her? I would also imagine that if he was willing to give up his wife for a skank ass ho then he doesn’t want his wife back. So the wife could hate the skank ass ho because her husband left her for SAH and hate her because he doesn’t want the wife back. But it’s almost impossible to hate skank ass ho because the husband doesn’t want her back without also hating her because he left her. Crazy bitch is also dumb apparently.

P.S. My guess is the wife doesn’t want him back. I know I sure as hell don’t want Cousinfucker back. Harley can gloat all she’d like because she doesn’t have a damn thing I want.

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So much for the loving stepmom and caring friend! Now we get to the heart of the matter. Kiss step mommy’s ass because she supplies Daddy with the pussy. If Daddy ever has to choose between pussy and his kids guess who he’s choosing???? Yep, that’s right- pussy wins every time!

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Oh whore, have you never heard of entitled cake eating fuckwits? They like a pussy smorgasbord. You are not special. He’s not with you because he doesn’t want his wife. He’s with you because you provide him with a piece of strange. If he wanted to be with you he wouldn’t still be with his wife. There! Now consider yourself clued in. Of course, you’re such a stupid, desperate bitch you’ll never believe it.

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Wow! Classy all around. Plus proper grammar. It’s your friend.

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Obviously I have never experienced this kind of loyalty from my in-laws but I have heard of it in other cases. Here’s the thing mistresses and subsequent wives: You can control your husband in most cases by throwing fits and making demands. You don’t, however, get to control his family. If they choose to continue a relationship with a long time member of their family then that is their choice. Just because your soul mate tossed her aside doesn’t mean that everyone in his family now must toss her aside as well. Hopefully you’re not fucking the rest of his family so they don’t really care what you think and you certainly don’t get to tell them what to do.

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It’s not funny. It’s reality. When we love someone we overlook a lot. We make excuses. We justify behavior. When that relationship is over and the mask is finally off we have no more need to convince ourselves that the frog is actually Prince Charming.

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Again, no whore is ever an upgrade. And if this isn’t a whore turned wife-tress situation, what self respecting woman looks at herself as an upgrade from another woman? Seriously- how old are you?

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Oh dear God! Do these narcissistic nitwits ever stop with this nonsense? No, when you fuck another woman’s husband YOU ARE A BAD PERSON! You can tell yourself you’re “better”. You can convince yourself that she deserved it. You can call each other soul mates and speak of destiny and fate. The reality is you are a horrible person.

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Yeah, no. They are not equal comparisons. In my case, when I forgave him, I had over 18 years invested with him. She had 3 months. We were not on equal footing. I had a home, children, pets, and an entire life with him. She had promises and future plans. She encroached on MY life. I didn’t encroach on hers. You don’t get to draw parallels between the woman who knowingly inserts herself into someone else’s relationship and the woman who is fighting to keep her family together and to save her marriage.

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Again, no comparison. While I think I would definitely err on the side of dumping his pathetic cheating ass now I can’t and won’t fault any woman who wants to fight for her marriage. No, the side piece of a few months does not get the same kind of recognition as the wife of many years.

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Another parallel that I hate. I have a theory. When you choose to reconcile your anger and hatred needs to go somewhere. She is a safe target for that hatred. Plus, chances are she’s never going to actually experience your wrath. Hell, Harley has remained unscathed completely through both affairs with my husband.

It’s difficult to claim you love someone while at the same time screaming at them and spewing out vile words. I also think that in cases where real reconciliation can take place that those venomous words do fly. It’s when you subconsciously realize that the cheater won’t ever be able to take it that you temper your words. So, the other woman becomes an easy target.

I’ll also say that the relationships are different. The other woman is often nobody to the wife. Maybe she knows her, but it’s generally in passing. She’s a work colleague. She’s somebody he knows from the bar or soccer or the co-ed softball team and the wife knows of her, maybe has met her once or twice, but they don’t hang out. They aren’t friends. She doesn’t usually go out of her way to apologize for her behavior. She’s nobody to the wife except the bitch that fucked her husband and isn’t one bit sorry about it.

On the other hand, the husband lives with her. Maybe he’s apologized. Maybe he’s agonizing over what he’s put her through. He’s taken the brunt of her anger. He’s listened to her and she’s yelled and screamed. And at the end of the day she lives with him. Perhaps even still loves him.

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That’s so profound. Golly, now that I know he CHOSE to wreck our home with Harley I’ll no longer call her a home wrecker. Because…. why exactly? Is the point supposed to be that if he chose to fuck around with her she must be something special? We all know that’s not true. Just more bullshit from cheaters and their whores.

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Yes, because divorce means never having to pay child support. These really piss me off. I’m working my ass off and I’m still barely making enough money to pay for everything that needs to be paid for. I’m entitled to child support. You don’t get to go off and fuck someone else and then just stop providing for your children because you’ve decided you want a new life.

Even when I wasn’t “working” I was still raising children. I was still paying bills. I was still doing things. I was still there for my kids. If I could make it work on what I received from child and spousal support without working outside of the home then so be it.

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How charming! Yes, keep hitting them while they’re down. As for me I prefer: The worst day without my lying cheating shit eating chimp is still better than the best day with him.

 

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Three more examples of bullshit. Again, how old are these women? I’m thinking with the way they act they are much too young to be getting married! The ex-wife must be pyscho, ugly, a bad mom, fat, and bad in bed? Oh of course! Because your soul mate would never cheat simply because he’s a lying cheater! It must be because of all the ex’s faults! And the new vagina is always an upgrade. Because nothing says classy like referring to yourself as the upgrade or snarking about how the betrayed spouse obviously had nothing to offer to a good man. Hey, little tip: Good men don’t cheat.

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Now we’re back to: I didn’t leave for the affair partner. Honey, if he’s still married while he’s fucking you you are indeed a cheating whore. You’re welcome!

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She’s a manipulative, lying, gold digging whore who has ripped apart their lives… oh but sorry, I don’t often even speak of her, much less badmouth her to my kids.

And that concludes bullshit that must be refuted.

I Didn’t Leave You For the Other Person

That’s one of those phrases I despise. “I didn’t leave for my affair partner. He/she just gave me the motivation I needed to leave.” It’s right up there with, “There were already problems in the marriage,” and “I haven’t been happy,” to justify bad behavior.

Jezebel was fond of using that excuse. Cousinfucker used it as well. To be fair, I don’t think he actually said he didn’t leave me for the whore. He just made sure to let our son know that we had many problems and weren’t happy and so that justified him having a girlfriend. And a wife!

You know why this pisses me off so much? One, because it’s a lie. If you’re fucking someone else and you’re married you’re having an affair. It doesn’t matter one little tiny bit how unhappy you are/were, whether or not you had talked about getting a divorce/therapy/support dog, or if the marriage itself had multiple problems stemming back to the Civil War. If you didn’t leave until you were fucking someone else then you left for that person. Despite whatever issues there may have been and despite whatever ill feelings you may have had you didn’t get your ass in gear and file for a divorce until this new fuck buddy showed up. In other words, you didn’t get a divorce because you were unhappy, sweetie pie; you got a divorce because you finally found a suitable immediate replacement.

Two, it goes back to what I wrote about in Just Go! Just Go!  These people are wasting other people’s time. They are cowards. They sit around whining about how unhappy they are, how the spouse makes shit pies for them and slyly serves them up to them, and lists every misdeed and utter failure of their spouse but they just can’t seem to cut the cord until, oh golly gee, lookie there- a fresh piece of ass! Getting a divorce with no one around is haaaaarrrd. But now they’ve got someone new to warm their bed. Now they’ve got someone new telling them how wonderful they are, how pretty or handsome or sexy they are. Most importantly, they have someone who assures them that the big bad spouse has treated them horribly and they, the shiny new affair partner, will never treat them like that. Life will be blissful with your new soul mate. Now they can take that next step. Divorcing because you’re unhappy is difficult, time consuming, financially devastating, and basically not something that needs to be rushed. But divorcing because you’ve got yourself a new fuck buddy… well, now that’s something we can do! Of course, we’ll have to stress to everyone that we didn’t leave for the new fuck buddy. Oh gosh no! There were problems galore in the marriage. Divorce was inevitable (it was just a matter of finding a replacement, right?). The cheated on spouse had it coming!

Also a point of contention for me is the fact that cheaters lie. I’m sure there are a few people out there who are quite honest about their cheating, and by honest I mean they lay it all out there.

Oh, my spouse is wonderful. Couldn’t ask for a better partner. I love my husband/wife and have no intentions of leaving ever. Does he/she do terrible things? No, not at all. Are they bitter/mean/hateful/angry? Again, no, not at all. No horrible personality traits. He/she doesn’t rage at me, throw shit at my head, threaten to leave me, or refuse to talk to me. In fact, my spouse is delightful in every way. I would go so far as to describe him/her as my soul mate, my very best friend. We have tons of fun together, have many similar interest and hobbies. I’m telling you, my spouse is great. Have they withdrawn sex? Oh God no! We have sex all the time. She/he is fantastic in bed. I just like to fuck a lot of people and my spouse can’t be multiple people. This is just casual sex for me. No, I don’t love you. No, you’re not special. No, we’re not soul mates. No, I’m not going to leave for you. I just want to fuck you.

I’m not sure that would get a lot of play. It certainly wouldn’t get the play that the poor sad sap story with the horrible husband or wife who doesn’t understand them and refuses to meet their needs gets. Other people eat that shit up! Oh, this person would never lie to me! Only to their spouse that they promised to love and honor for the rest of their life. The person they made a commitment to. Because they’re so horrible and they deserve it if you really think about it. If they were a better person then my true love wouldn’t have to cheat on them and make me into the other woman/other man.

That brings me to yet another point. If you love someone why would you want to drag them down like that? No one is going to believe that story about not leaving for them. If you’ve got kids, especially older kids, they’re probably not going to care about the fact that you weren’t too terribly happy with their other parent. They’re going to care about the fact that their lives are being upended. Thanks to your true love. They’re probably going to be much more affected by their other parent crying and rapidly losing weight due to the stress of finding out their partner is cheating on them than by the parent who is giddy with excitement because of their good fortune to be able to discard one person and start all over with another. So now your kids dislike your true love, perhaps partly out of loyalty to the other parent, perhaps due to the fact that you have screwed up their damn lives for your own selfish endeavors. They refuse to have anything to do with him/her, or worse, they’re flat out disrespectful to him/her. In some cases, that is exactly what happens. The kids are willing to have a relationship with the parent but they make it clear the soul mate is to stay the hell away from them. So now, the cheater is in a position of needing to choose between the soul mate and their children. Not an enviable position. Well, not one for most people. I think for cheaters it’s quite easy. They’ll toss those kids aside the minute they interfere with them getting laid.

But assuming you are one of the “good” cheaters, one who wants to remain in the kids’ lives, how do you feel about relegating your soul mate to the fringes of your life when your kids are around? Do you think he or she is really going to appreciate having to stay home every time little Aidan or Emily has a school performance? Do you think Schmoopie will have no problem with not being invited to the graduations, graduation parties, weddings, birthday parties for grandchildren, funerals, etc.? And do you really want to do all of that by yourself? Wasn’t part of the reason you couldn’t get divorced until you found a replacement because you’re so afraid of doing anything on your own? Now you’re going to go through all of these big life events for your kids all by yourself? It should be doubly fun if the ex-spouse’s new spouse is allowed to attend. Hey, that person didn’t break up a marriage!

There’s a good chance other people will already know what has happened, or they will find out. Bosses, co-workers, friends of the former couple, family, teachers. Once that happens there is a good chance your true love is going to be treated like an outcast, a home wrecker, like the whore (male or female) they are. You’ll probably fare okay with the in-laws. Blood is thicker than water and most of them seem only too happy to forget or ignore what their precious offspring has done. Occasionally you run into a set of in-laws who has been very close with the spouse and who doesn’t forgive adultery simply because it’s their own child who is committing it. In those cases, the soul mate might not be welcome at family functions. Now you have to kick your entire family to the curb. Wow- I hope the sex is worth it.

But again, I ask, why would you put a person you purport to love in that position where people look upon him or her with scorn and derision? Why would you turn that person into a home wrecker? Why would you put him or her into a position where people talk about them or ostracize them? Doesn’t seem very loving to me. Then again, I think most people play the odds and figure most people excuse adultery and it won’t be a big deal. If you’re young enough you can make a few replacement kids to take the place of those big brats that won’t celebrate your unique love with Schmoopie.

Ultimately, it comes down to this:

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I hate divorce. I hate it with a passion and I never would have left CF no matter how bad it got. I made a commitment and I intended to follow through with it. I also want to point out that while the final 6-8 months of the marriage were bad thanks to him we had actually been doing quite well before that, so it’s not like I was resigned to living in misery. I was never resigned to living in misery; I always felt like I had a choice to either be happy with him or to find other outlets to make me happy. Nonetheless, I don’t believe the point of divorce is to switch one partner out for another.

If there are problems in your relationship and despite talking it out, going to counseling, and trying everything you still can’t make it work, then by all means divorce. But do so honestly. Don’t wait until you have someone new before you take the plunge. That’s not fair at all to your spouse. It’s especially not fair when they have no idea the extent of your unhappiness. Basically, you end up keeping all these feelings inside of you until finally your supposed soul mate ventures into your sights, and then you’re seeking divorce while planning a new life with someone new. Meanwhile, your spouse is being blindsided with a one-two punch- first the news of te divorce and then the news that there is someone else.

I have to admit I find it more than a little curious that there are all these unhappy spouses out there with a laundry list of faults and infractions committed by the spouse. Yet, they stay. The marriage is so awful they need to fuck someone else, but it’s not so awful that they might consider divorce up until that point that they have their spouse’s replacement.

It also goes back to that saying: Wherever you go, there you are. You’re still you. You haven’t changed anything in regards to the way you deal with the problems in your relationship. You’ve changed partners but you haven’t changed anything else. Sure, life with Schmoopie will be great. At first. Every relationship has its problems. Every person has their faults. Love and sex (especially sex) can cover up those faults and problems for a while (look at Tracie Andrews’ poor dead fiancé) but they all come out in the wash eventually. Sometimes I think it’s even harder for those who have been in affairs because this is the person you left your spouse for; in some case it’s the person you left your kids for. When those faults and problems come out it’s like a double whammy. I gave up everything for this? Since you never learned how to resolve problems in a relationship because your solution was to go outside of the relationship, when problems come up with Schmoopie, well, there you are. You didn’t learn anything. You probably won’t talk it out. You’ll wait for your next true love to walk by and fall on or into your nether regions. Naturally, it will only be because you weren’t happy and the soul mate wasn’t meeting your needs. No one can say you left for the new soul mate. There were already problems in the relationship so this new soul mate just helped to put things into motion. Hmmm…. that sounds familiar.

 

For. The. Love!

Pardon me while I rant a bit. I apologize in advance to any of my male readers because I’m not going to do my usual man/woman, he/she, husband/wife stuff that I normally do. Why? Because the comments I’m seeing are from men, husbands. I have yet to read a blog by a woman who laments that her husband has not made her his entire focus. Gets a little pissed when he’s out drinking at all hours, every night during the week, with buddies? Upset when he spends every weekend doing one of his hobbies instead of spending anytime with her and the kids? Sure. But upset that he talks to his parents or doesn’t spend every waking hour glued to her side? No. I will concede that there are probably women out there like that. Tracie Andrews comes to mind. But I haven’t read any of their blogs so today it’s all about those men who whine and whine because their wives have friends, family, work, kids, and other things to do.

What the hell is up with this? In the recent days I’ve seen men lament the fact that their wives aren’t devoting 100% of their attention to them. I’m hearing, “I have needs,” and “I wish we could just have sex every day and she would ignore everyone around else and focus on me, Me, ME!” There is, of course, the obligatory, “My wife pours all of her attention into our kids.” Hey- here’s an idea. Maybe if these whining men would actually help out with the kids the wife could devote more time to them!

There was even lamentation that the wife had a family that she liked to talk to! She had friends she did things with! That bitch! Sometimes the wife even has ill or dying parents, sometimes it’s the husband’s parents that are ill and she’s still the one taking care of them while he complains that these dying people are taking attention away from him. Doesn’t she realize she has a husband and she should drown out the sounds of everyone and everything to attend to his every whim whenever and wherever he needs?

Hey, men! She’s your wife; not your girlfriend. I thought I covered it pretty thoroughly in my post with the same name. If you want someone devoted to you and your every need don’t get married. Continue to date endlessly and only see each other 3-4 times a week. It will keep the spark alive and she’ll be able to focus solely on you whenever the two of you are together!

I’m sure I come across jaded but I prefer to think of it as reality. One more time for those still complaining… Your relationship is going to change. It is inevitable. When you first meet someone it’s all fireworks and chemistry and passion. That doesn’t last. It never lasts. Even in great relationships reality begins to intrude. You have kids. You need to pay bills. You get a pet or two. You’re running kids around. In some cases you have children who end up needing more of your time and energy because of mental health issues, addiction, health problems, etc. Parents get older and need more help. People go back to school. People change jobs. You move. You have bad jobs, sucky bosses, family members die.

Putting all that aside there is a difference between dating and marriage. When you’re dating you are putting your best face forward. You laugh at the corny jokes. The bad habits don’t annoy you, yes because you’re madly in love so it’s no big deal, but mainly because those bad habits are new and you think you can put up with them. Ten, fifteen, twenty years later you might not be so understanding. You don’t see each other every day so every encounter is new and exciting. All her attention is focused on YOU because everything is NEW! She dresses up, she does her hair and make-up, she shaves her legs. Again, because every encounter is an event. It’s not everyday life.

And sex? No matter how fantastic it may continue to be, years with the same person is not going to be as exciting as that first time. No matter how great the sex may be it’s still not sex with a different person.

I think what bugs me the most is all this neediness. These men are demanding attention like little toddlers. I still remember the day I spent upstairs in the bedroom with CF. We did nothing except watch TV and he was probably laying all over me. He began crying and then told me that this was the best day of his life because I had spent the entire day glued to his side. I don’t have that kind of time and energy. It was mentally exhausting. It all harks back to, “Make me happy!” Dude, I’m not responsible for your happiness. You control that. So please, for the love of all that’s holy, grow the fuck up!

Being married brings with it adult situations. It’s not all fun and games. It’s too bad they don’t discuss that in school. It’s not one long date. You live together. You see each other in the morning before hair and make-up is done and when you have morning breath. You see each other when one of you is puking in the toilet or when one of you has gas or cramps. You see each other when you’re in a bad mood, or you’re sad, or you’re pissed. It’s years and years of living together, seeing each other at your worst, going through tough situations, supporting each other. It’s celebrating milestones together, buying and selling homes together, moving, consoling each other at the deaths of your parents, raising children and pets, discussing bills and taxes, negotiating all of life’s daily time sucks. The hot monkey sex, if you’re lucky enough to have that? That’s a part of the marriage. It’s not the entire marriage. Being your wife’s sole focus? That’s a fantasy. If you really want someone like that you’re going to end up with someone like Tracie Andrews! She’s not a balanced person. I can’t imagine the pressure of being everything to someone. Having friends, interacting with family, getting out into the community, having hobbies are all good things! If you’re much past the age of 5 and you’re still demanding someone focus on you 100% whenever you’re around you’re pretty much an entitled narcissist. Again, grow the fuck up!

Don’t Worry, Kids, This Is All Your Fault

I believe I have told the story of how Cousinfucker went into Picasso’s room after returning from his weekend fuck fest.  I had had the “privilege” of telling our kids their dad was in his home state with his girlfriend and we were going to be getting a divorce.  Oh, fun times!  Fun times!

Reminiscing aside he goes into this 13 year old boy’s room, crying, and tells him how he’s not going to deny he has a girlfriend but ever since having kids we have drifted apart.  You know how they say kids blame themselves and you should reassure them that it’s not their fault? Romeo really hit it out of the park.  He took the “It’s Completely Your Fault” approach.  Yes, had we not had those pesky kids that demanded time and attention I could have sat in the bedroom with him and watched endless amounts of A&E crap and SportsCenter scores.  I could have given him my full and undivided attention, all day every day.  He also chose to utilize the “Your Mom Wasn’t Giving Me Enough Attention” and “We Drifted Apart and Our Marriage Wasn’t Ever Very Happy” excuses to justify having an affair to his teenage son and to try to turn him against me.  Not gonna happen, Cousinfucker.  #sorrynotsorry

So, I got to thinking about this whole “drifting apart” thing.  I’ve concluded it’s a bunch of bullshit concocted by cheaters who want to excuse their boorish behavior  I don’t know if they really believe the sound of their own lies or if they’re just hoping it sounds good enough to convince the masses.  Regardless, I’m done with that excuse.

I’m also done with this idea that the affair is a symptom of what’s wrong in the marriage and not the actual disease.  If that were true why aren’t both of the people cheating?  Do the people who create this bullshit think it through?  Do they really think one person in the marriage is miserable and ripe for an affair while the other person is so deliriously happy they are farting rainbows and glitter?

Don’t even get me started on “You need to own your part and how you contributed to the problems in your marriage.”  I can sum that up quite nicely.  My contribution was forgiving the sonofabitch.  My contribution to the problems in the marriage was kissing his ass and putting up with his bullshit.  I led him to believe his egregious behavior was acceptable when it wasn’t.  That was my contribution.

I have concluded that pretty much everything I could take responsibility for leads back to him.  Not enough sex?  He kicked me out of our bed because he said he couldn’t deal with my snoring.  That wasn’t my doing.  He chose that.  Being in close proximity leads to more sex.  Chances were good that once I was banished to the couch I wasn’t going to get the kids ready for bed and then rush into the master bedroom to blow his mind and then return to the living room to watch NCIS.  Not my fault he didn’t like the consequences of sleeping apart.

We could also add the fact he’s the one that insisted our daughter sleep with us.  I tried to keep her out of the bed.  He kept sneaking her back in.  “She belongs here!” he would whine.  OK, we’ll let her sleep with us.  I voluntarily moved out of the bed when I was 7-8 months pregnant because I didn’t have enough room with him and a 2 year old in a queen size bed.  Once Picasso was born CF couldn’t sleep with him in his little bassinet in our room so once again I was banished.  Rock Star slept in the bed with CF and I slept on the daybed with the bassinet next to me so as not to disturb His Royal Highness.  A few months after Picasso was born we discovered that Rock Star was sleeping through the night and not going to the bathroom.  We bought her bunk beds and she was eager to sleep in them.  She slept in them for two days and then on the third day, Friday, her dad asked her if she wanted to sleep with him.  “I can’t go cold turkey.  She’s slept with us for two years!”  Sunday comes and she starts to get in bed with him and all of a sudden it’s, “Oh no!  I can’t have her sleeping with me tonight.  I need to get up in the morning for work and she’ll keep me up.”  Do you think she returned to her brand new bunk beds?  No, no she didn’t.  I ended up sleeping with both kids for the next 4 years.  Eventually he gave up the queen size bed and the master bedroom so the kids and I could sleep there and he moved to the downstairs bedroom.  But go ahead and blame me for that whole “drifting apart” and “never having sex” thing.  It was completely my fault.  I should have laid down with the kids, got them to sleep and then rushed right in to have sex with him and then after it was all over I could leave him to sleep all by himself where no one would disturb him and I would return to our children who had become accustomed to sleeping with their mom.  Like I said, completely my fault.

We drifted apart?  Hmmmm…. could that have had anything to do with the fact that he closed himself off in the basement, watching TV and eating dinner while I was expected to corral the young children so he could do all of that in peace?  Could it have anything to do with the fact that every time I would ask him if he wanted to join us he would decline?  I’m having a hard time taking complete responsibility for us “drifting apart” when every time I tried to pull him into our orbit he steadfastly refused.  He didn’t go with us when I visited family.  Once we moved to our former state he refused to associate with anybody whom he didn’t know.  Eventually it got to the point where he wouldn’t even socialize with co-workers.  I attended family funerals alone.  He resisted taking vacation time, saying it was twice as much work once he got back.  For some bizarre reason once we moved to our former state he decided to pretty much live in our/his bedroom.  There were a few times he ventured out, like when he got into playing a few games on the Wii, but if we didn’t immediately fawn all over him and the efforts he was making he would pout and once again retreat to the bedroom.  He pulled the same crap once we moved here.  He wouldn’t even sit on the enclosed porch or the couch in the living room.  It was too stressful for him.  He only felt “safe” in the bedroom.  Again, totally my fault if you asked him.  I didn’t love him enough.  My love was not strong enough to coax him out of the bedroom and ease him into a porch swing.

Did I spend too much time with the kids?  That’s a common complaint.  Here’s the thing about that.  One of us had to be the parent.  He pretty much abdicated that role.  If I acted the way he had acted we probably would have had our kids taken away from us due to neglect.  Instead of being a team he chose to let me do all of the work.  I did it without complaint most of the time because I figured that was simply the way we had decided to divide the household duties.  He worked and made the money and I took care of the house and the kids so that he could concentrate on his career.  Funny though how so many people manage to have a career and be a parent.  It’s truly amazing.  I don’t know how they do it. #sarcasm

He loved to use the ol’ “We’re nothing more than roommates,”  excuse.  That’s really weird because I distinctly remember telling him that since our kids were older and could be left alone for a few hours by themselves we should start having a date night.  His response?  Why would you want to do that with me?  I don’t know, dude; I really don’t know.  I guess that was my cue to beg him.  Oh please please let’s spend some time together.  Pretty please!

Any time I suggested counseling he was resistant to the idea and as I’ve recounted many times when he did go with me after being busted he didn’t really participate.  He sat there, let me do all the talking and then got pissed.

He saw himself as nothing more than a wallet and a handyman and yet he never did anything about it.  He didn’t spend a lot of time with our kids.  He bought them stuff instead.  I remember finally putting my foot down and telling the kids they would now get an allowance and once that was used up there would be no more toys because every time we went out he would let them pick something out.

Remember, too, that after my first D-Day, when I was “taking responsibility” for getting to this point he pointed out things he wished I would change and I did it.  He told me I had stopped wearing make-up and that made him feel like I didn’t care about him anymore. So I made sure to always wear make-up, even if it meant applying it (or farding) right before he got home. I wore my hair up all the time- either in a ponytail, or a ponytail twisted up into a bun.  Again, I’m sure that was proof I no longer loved him or gave a damn. But damn if I didn’t start wearing my hair down more often so he could view my long locks cascading over my shoulders.  He wished I would text him more, like the whore did because it made him feel so in touch with her and he wanted that with me now. So I did even though I hated it.  When I didn’t take the time to get manicures and pedicures it made him feel like I didn’t care- again!  This one was a Catch-22, though, because even though I did it I’m sure he now uses that to demonstrate how I wontonly spent all his money!  I want you to sleep in our bed again (and if you fall asleep on the couch that’s proof you don’t love me!).  Watch me mow the lawn!  Bring me a cool drink!  Just touch me and look at me with love in your eyes all the time!  I couldn’t have jumped any higher if I had a set of rocket boots!

The really sad part is he could be an extremely funny guy.  The kids genuinely liked spending time with him.  Some of my favorite memories are when we would all go out on Christmas Eve.  We’d go bowling, sometimes catch a movie, and eat dinner out.  Rock Star would comment how her friends all loved her dad and thought he was hilarious.  When he would finally agree to go with us he was usually a lot of fun to be around.  There were times I honestly believed he was more patient with the kids than I was.  Of course, when you’re only dealing with them a few days out of the year you always seem more patient than the parent who is dealing with them day in and day out.  He simply never bothered to show that side of himself very often.

Did we drift apart like he claims?  Possibly, although I didn’t do it on my own; he contributed to that as well.  Did we have an unhappy marriage for a long time?  I will dispute that; we struggled for a while but we were happy until the last 6 months or so.  Was he nothing more than a wallet and a paycheck?  I certainly never looked at him that way; he put himself into that role and then complained.

Don’t worry about looking inward, Zack.  I’m sure this new relationship with Harley is perfection.  What could go wrong when you have two lying cheaters get together?  No, don’t look at your own issues and your own contributions to the decline of our marriage; you go ahead and tell our kids that they are to blame.  Hell, Harley has four of them so when that relationship falls apart maybe you can blame her kids next.