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Fri Jan 26 10:24 pm  #21

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

You have nothing to be ashamed of.  You are blaming yourself, but it's as likely you have been manipulated "sub rosa."  What you perceive as your failure to act?  Are you sure your husband hasn't controlled the scene, without your seeing that?  It may be passive aggression--acting without seeming to act, or acting by not acting.  (Or, as a former student explained it to me, "topping from the bottom.")  
  Don't blame yourself.  You didn't cause the problem.  You didn't even know what the problem was.  And that isn't your fault, either.  You've been played.  You've been manipulated.  And of course he acts as if all is hunky-dory; that's what preserves HIS status quo.  


Sat Jan 27 12:46 pm  #22

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

Rob - Just want to say re your last post here:  Truer words were never spoken!  So well said, and so strongly said.  I think these words ring true for so many of us who did all we could, but never had a chance to start with.  One of you absolute best posts.  Thank you.

"Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!" - Sir Walter Scott

Sun Jan 28 12:20 pm  #23

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

Thank you -- both Rob and OOHC.  I know that I'm being played a bit, even now ... he's turned into the "Nice Husband" as I've been signalling recently that I know he's a cheat and I'm not happy.

I started reading the NY Times (as I usually do in the morning) and there was an article written by a therapist, about how couples can deal with infidelity.  I nearly blew a gasket, and then I started reading the comments and discovered that every other reader was having the exact same reaction I was having.  I feel like everywhere I turn, there are TV shows and newspaper articles, all dwelling on this issue of infidelity.  Maybe I'm just noticing it more because I'm living it myself, but it's so hard to go on day by day with this issue running through my brain all the time.


Sun Jan 28 12:26 pm  #24

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

You might benefit from a visit to Chump, where the narrative on cheating is being changed.


Sun Jan 28 2:23 pm  #25

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

OOHC:  What was ChumpLady's previous narrative, and how is it changing?


Sun Jan 28 2:25 pm  #26

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

Oh, the narrative about cheating that the spouse must bear some responsibility for the cheating, or that the spouse must be open to reconciliation, which often takes the form of accepting that something "made" the cheater cheat. Chump Lady is all over that!


Sun Jan 28 2:34 pm  #27

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

OOHC:  I know you're afraid that your son will think you didn't tell him, soon enough.  Would it help to tell your son this?:  "I was in a shock that took a long time to fight my way out of.  I told you, once I had processed this reality for myself."  That is a true statement.  The heart and intellect sure don't always work together.  In the case of an extreme trauma, like you have experienced, that processing takes a painfully long time.

Thanks for the update on ChumpLady:  One of my sister's once said to me, "There are always 2 sides to a divorce."  As you can imagine, that was very upsetting for me to hear from my own sister.  That was the opposite of a supportive thing to say.  In the cases of us straight spouses, there is only one side.  We didn't know.  We are Not to blame.

Last edited by jkpeace (Sun Jan 28 2:36 pm)


Sun Jan 28 4:47 pm  #28

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

 Oh, yeah, the "two sides to every divorce."  Chump Lady is all over that one, too.  With cheaters, the two sides are: cheated and didn't.  
  But what you say hits the head on why I want to tell my son--I don't want him thinking that there was a possibility of working this through.  "Not getting along" becomes a whole 'nother kettle of fish when you add in the TGT. 


Mon Jan 29 3:16 pm  #29

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters

My problem with "no fault" divorce is that it supposes that there are "two sides" to a divorce.  I think it is so wrong, because in many cases there are not two sides, but one clearly at fault - not just with these straight spouse type divorces either.  I knew of a woman whose husband was a policeman and who had been found dealing drugs big time on the side.  She of course got a divorce, but I couldn't help but wonder in this "no fault" state, just how she fared and how humiliating that must have been.  I am sure there are many, many more examples of the kind of divorce that does not have "two sides".  On the other hand, it is my understanding that the underlying principle of no fault divorce is that it cuts down on all of the ugliness of having to find things like photographic proof of infidelity, etc., and is supposed to make it all much easier on children.  There must be a better way - a way to fault one side only, if that is truly the case, and a way to make it easier on children.  Some people really are more at fault or exclusively at fault in a divorce and with "no fault" one person more often than not serves as the chump.

"Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!" - Sir Walter Scott

Mon Jan 29 4:56 pm  #30

Re: Cheaters, Liars, Losers, Serial Cheaters


I remember feeling exactly the same as you do about there never being a good time to introduce topics that would cause more strife.  It's not what I wanted - I wanted more peace.  Now, I will say that I DID confront my xdh about his snoring - because after years of tolerating it, he was getting worse.  Once he graduated to three forms of a snore in every breath (the snore on the inhale, the moan on the exhale, and then the "puh" of his lips at the tail end of it), I was PISSED.   I wasn't getting any sleep, and then I was crabby.  And it had gotten to the point where I felt that he needed to have it looked at.  So he went to the doctor, then he went for the sleep tests, and then he got a huge surgery where they took out his tonsils, adenoids, and enlarged his sinus openings.  The poor man really suffered to get it all done.  And WHY did he do it?  Because I'd asked for a divorce, and he was trying everything in his power to keep me happy enough to stay.  ALLLllllll those years of complaining before did nothing until I was ready to leave.

I was reluctant to tell him I wanted a divorce.  I had been on the merry-go-round for years with the "why don't you desire me?" thing.  Once I realized that it wasn't getting better, and that it never would, I worked through my issues with divorce (family looking down on me, breaking up my kids' home, etc.) and decided that's what I wanted.  THAT took a while to tell him - when would it come up?  And during the peaceful times, why would I bring it up?  In truth, I was scared to say the words "I want a divorce", because I knew that once I popped the lid off, there was no putting the snake back in the can.  When, exactly, was the day I was ready to have that pall hanging over our heads?  What day was declaration day?  In the end, I didn't decide to tell him - it....... busted out of me.  I walked past him after coming home from being out, he said, "Hi, how are you?", and I said, "I can't do this anymore."  "Do..... what anymore?"  and there it was - that singular moment where I could put the snake back in the can if I only told him that what I was talking about was anything other than our marriage.  I could have said, "I can't stay up this late anymore".  Or, since it was January in Chicago, "I can't handle this f'ing cold any more."  Instead, THERE was my moment - do or die.  "I can't do THIS anymore" (pointing back and forth between us).  I can't go on everyday acting like everything's okay.  It's not, and it never will be.  And I'm not okay with that.  I want a divorce."  And there it was - me effectively throwing in the towel.  Or, as I like to think of it - me waving the white flag and saying, "I give up on this war - I've decided any more fighting will just be more destruction."  And then things started down a different path.  He tried to convince me that I didn't have a right to end the marriage - that divorce was NOT an option.  And I distinctly remember saying, "It may not be for you, but I've made my decision.  For me, choosing misery isn't my choice any longer."

Then came weeks of attempted love bombing.  He'd meet me at the door and ask me if I needed help getting out of my work clothes.  Ummm,... no.  He tried asking me out for dessert, so we could talk.  What was there to talk about?  I.was.DONE.  Love bombing only works if you respond to it.  He was wanting to give me a massage, and I was saying, "No thanks".  It was just too little, too late.  I was highly offended that until my unhappiness was going to take something from HIM, it wasn't important.  MY happiness wasn't important as long as HE was happy.  He could have tried pulling out all the stops much earlier, and it may have bought us some time.  But he didn't WANT to touch me, to make me feel wanted.  I could cry and rage over it, and it would result in him saying that he'd make a change, but then nothing happening.  Only when he felt he was going to lose me did he take action.  I asked him why he never took action all the times I'd told him that if things didn't change, he WOULD lose me to divorce or cheating.  And then warning him again when the chance of that was increasing.  The truth, he told me, was that he heard me say those things, but never believed it.  So until he believed that I would leave, he made ZERO changes.  And by then, I wasn't telling him I was thinking about divorce - I'd told him I'd decided that's what I wanted.

We are afraid of being the one to throw in the towel - it's seen as weak.  But WE didn't do the thing that caused the rift.  We merely called the time of death.  If no one calls the time of death, it doesn't mean there's no corpse - it means no one's willing to be the one to declare that further attempts at recusication are futile.  It's over.  But again - we're afraid to be the one to appear to be causing the waves.  We didn't, though - all we're doing is saying "you've done something so big for so long that I've decided that I'm done."  It is essentially declaring that we're worth more than the shoddy treatment and lies and manipulation they've been giving us.  It's standing up for what we shouldn't need to even ask for in a healthy marriage.  It's THEM who's done the things to kill the relationship.  We're just calling the time of death.  They would have you not believe that.  They would have you believe that you calling the time of death is you actually creating the death.  The doctor who calls the time of death isn't the one who caused it - he's the one who tried futily to restore it, only to know at some point that it's too late.

If it helps, you can choose a day for yourself.  Tuesday, at 7:15 pm, I'm going to tell him I need to talk to him, and tell him that I know all his shit, and I'm done.  It can be nerve-wracking to keep that secret, but it's only because you're nervous about how it will make them feel, and how they, in turn, will make you feel back.  But in reality, when you break up with someone because they're treating you poorly and lying to us, we shouldn't be worried about THEM - we're doing it to preserve our sanity and our mental peace, and to keep ourselves safe from further harm.  It is our right, and to hell with being scared - I've decided to drive down this road because it's going to take me where I want to go - which is away from this pace of pain and suffering.  No, I don't care about the potholes.  No, I won't change my mind.  No, I I refuse to keep riding shotgun on your ride.  And if you stand in front of the car, you WILL get run over.  Take me at my word or find out the hard way that I am telling the truth.

Best to you.  You can do this.  I promise.


Last edited by Kel (Mon Jan 29 5:06 pm)

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