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Even Honey Boo Boo’s Mom Can Leave a Cheater

honeybooboomomEven Mama June can kick a cheater to the curb. Usually the object of reality TV derision, (and okay, rightly so… how many fart jokes can prime-time television endure?) June Shannon showed admirable decisiveness when she discovered her partner “Sugar Bear” Mike Thompson was online dating. She dumped the jerk and announced to the world they were separated.

Ratings ploy? Who knows. I’ll take that story line over the new Showtime series “The Affair,” which is the usual sexy, tortured, misunderstood cheater schlock.

I’m sure there will be in inevitable commentary that June’s partner had to cheat, because she’s so homely. Leaving aside that he’s no oil painting himself, and the fact that he had a commitment ceremony with her last year knowing exactly what she looked like, you have to applaud a 300+ pound woman’s moxie.

“If a guy doesn’t love everything about you, move on! There are plenty of other fish in the sea.”



Dear Chump Lady,

I was in a relationship with another guy for just under two years. I know that already makes this completely different to the stories here where cheating destroys marriages of many years, but for some reason I feel torn up about it all the same.

Looking back I can see some of the signs – he asked to be exclusive very quickly, he was always somewhat distant, he tended to come round to my house based on his schedule (he only had a single bed at his so we rarely went), and I never felt like a huge priority. Understandably we are only young (mid 20s) so I accepted that this is life at this age and it would be needy to ask for more.

He also occasionally made comments like “When we’re broken up in the future and with different partners, if we bumped into each other we could still hook up” or “When we’re older we could bring younger people into our relationship for sex – sex with old people just doesn’t do anything for me”. And so on. He always promised these things were just jokes, and they didn’t happen often enough for them to be this huge issue, just enough to keep me off balance.

Anyway so one day I just decided I really didn’t like this guy and told him I need some space for a few days to think things over. I came back after that week, apologized and said I would want to try to make things work. Well a few weeks later he was exceptionally distant from me, and I ended up checking his phone to find arrangements to meet up with someone online for sex. I could see he had not gone through with it from the texts but immediately challenged him. He said he was still hurting from when I left briefly a few weeks before. Around this time he also told me of a difficult story of abuse that happened when he was younger which he thought about all the time and had sort risky, violent sex in the past to deal with it.

Basically I took him back for about a month and desperately tried to make it work. This, the guy who I couldn’t even stand two weeks ago, and now had shown he could cheat, well I spackled the freaking hell out of him. Sun shone out his backside and I convinced myself he just needed to be loved. I tried to majorly untangle him, understand that he couldn’t help doing the things he did, that’s just all he’s ever known. Needless to say his online behaviour didn’t improve and I found out predated way back to when we first got together.

Eventually one night he went on a website, knowing I would know, and when I confronted him told me it was because he knew I was still keeping tabs on him. This galvanized me to break up with him. I found it really difficult in the few months after that but gradually came to deal with it.

This was until I found out he has a new boyfriend after a year of singledom. Now I’m terrified he’s a better person in a better relationship, that I partly caused him finally going ahead with cheating after leaving him for a few days, that I missed out and this new guy (who I think is more attractive than me) is going to reap the better relationship. I unfortuantely checked his old online accounts and they’ve either been deleted or inactive for 2 weeks. It makes me wonder that he could do it for this guy but not me.

Finally I guess I’m just broken up about it because in my head we had a nice relationship together. His charming dazzling personality has still got me fantasizing he was perfect. It’s also likely he never physically cheated on me (though probably because he just never had the chance) and reading some of the stories on here he just doesn’t seem as bad as a lot of guys (unicorn syndrome). Now he’s with the new guy I can’t help but think he’s got rid of his difficulties and I missed out, why else would he be risking a new relationship when he knows what happened with me. I think I’m mostly in love with a fairy tale now, it’s been so long there’s very little reality left.


Dear James,

Your ex isn’t perfect. He’s a run of the mill cheater, who found a new chump. Be grateful you’re not his hypotenuse any more.

You’re just going through all the chump motions, romanticizing the old relationship, second guessing yourself, and wondering if he’s going to be better for someone else. Stop it. You’re making this about you. It’s not about you. It’s about your ex — he sucks. You want to know why you’re making it about you? Because thinking that you did Something Wrong is a lot less scary than imagining that there are soulless people out there who can just cheat on you without a care. If it was something you did, by God, you could FIX that and ensure that you never get fucked over again! And the whole terrible story would have some meaning.

James, the story does have meaning — some people suck. Trust that they suck. Learn to be discerning, figure out what YOUR values are, and decide what you will and will not put up with in a relationship.

Ask yourself, if you were so awful and unloveable — why was he cheating from the start (as you discovered)? How could you compel him to cheat before your relationship was even established? You dumped him because you (rightly!) sensed something was very wrong. And then he used THAT as a pretext to cheat…. except he’d ALWAYS been cheating on you.

That’s what these wing nuts do. Don’t accept that!

Pay attention to when you “feel off balance.” Those “hypothetical” scenarios he was running by you, were to groom you for chumpdom. To gage your reaction to his infidelities, to see if you’d stick around, if you would spackle for him, or if you’d call him out on his shit. Normal people don’t “joke” like that. Their values align with their actions — and their sense of humor. They don’t play games of Let’s Pretend I Find You Hideous As You Age or Wouldn’t It Be Nice to Cheat on Our Future Partners!

Oh, and the sex abuse story? Maybe it’s true, maybe it’s not true — but it’s one of the three channels of manipulators — rage, charm, and self-pity. I like to have violent high risk sex… (uh, warning! That’s probably what he’s been up to online!) but you can’t be upset with me (risking your health) because I have a Very Sad Story. That’s the self-pity move. That’s the play for you to feel sorry for him so your anger at him will evaporate before it hits target.

He’s a mindfuck. And please get yourself tested for STDs, ASAP.

Another lesson — don’t date the vague guys. James, if a guy is into you — he’s into you. He’s available. If he’s temporarily not available, he says “Oh, Tuesday’s out, but how does Friday look?” He makes an EFFORT.

Oh, wouldn’t it be crushing if he’s making that kind of effort for the next guy? He’s not. He didn’t get a character transplant. New guy is getting sparkles (or “narkles” as we call them here too). Once he’s hooked, your ex will start with the “jokes” and the mindfuckery. And he deleted all his old accounts, because he has new accounts. Stop online stalking him — just take what you’ve learned forward. Be thankful you’re not like our stories here. You’re a young guy who learned a painful lesson and you’ve got your whole life ahead of you to find someone worthy of you.

That guy wasn’t worthy of you, James. He’s a cheating piece of shit. For you and for the next guy.


So What Do You Call Them?

This request was in my inbox this morning, and I thought… hmm… I don’t think I’ve asked this question here before. The chump wanted to inquire of Chump Nation what everyone calls the affair partner(s).


Fuck puppet?

Mommy’s Special Friend?

I’ve written quite a bit about how I hate cheater euphemisms like “wayward.” Perhaps it seems juvenile to make up names for the poor idiot who’s taking that cheater off your hands, but I do think snark is therapeutic. Take your power back with humor!

I once referred to the long-term OW in my story as “Poor Alyson. Always a fuckbuddy, never a bride,” because she withstood three marriages as an OW, and apparently was quite keen to get that sociopath to marry her. But really, who was I kidding? It was MUCH worse to be that guy’s bride than his fuckbuddy.

I do know that the name “Alyson” is now forever tainted with psycho associations for me. (Apologies to any sane and decent Alysons out there.) Did the OW or OM’s name fuck that name up for you?

Did you just not give the person (or giant collective) a name because it was too fearful? They Who Must Not Be Named. Like Voldemort?

Did it feel good to give them a stupid name to show, hey, they were NOT that powerful — they were pathetic?

Lay it on me. What did you call them?


Dear Chump Lady, The OW signs my child support checks

Dear Chump Lady,

I have been divorced from ex-shithead for five months now. We have two teenage daughters. I receive child support and alimony weekly with a direct deposit going right into my checking account from exH. Additional expenses regarding our daughters are split 50/50. Because I have primary custody, I pay for what they need and he would be responsible to send me payment for his half.

With school just starting there are obvious expenses. I sent exH an email outlining the expenses and requested a check from him for his half. I get home yesterday and there is a check in the mail from him…….but it is written and signed by the OW!!!!!!! I know he is the one who handles the money (the control issues he has). My best guess is that he or she or both of them did this to bait me and get under my skin!

Honestly, it did bother me initially. After processing through the emotions of it, I am better now. I am just happy to have the check. But when the cheaters do this stupid shit it sets you back in the healing!!!! Why on earth do they continue to do things like this?? What could they possibly get from this? How do you get to meh when it seems that they just want to draw you back in ?



Dear Kimmy,

Hey, it’s a check. I don’t care if Satan signed it — cash it and don’t give it another thought.

I have never in nearly 14 years of divorced “co-parenting” EVER received 50% of additional expenses, despite the fact that’s in my court order. Never. Ever. I could drop a paper bomb of dental receipts, dermatology bills, school fees, field trip permission slips, and  emergency room visit bills over northern Virginia. That man wouldn’t open his wallet unless held up by gunpoint, and even then I tend to doubt it. He’d probably rather die.

Kimmy, Kimmy, look at the big picture here. You’re getting support WEEKLY. You got some kind of awesome settlement other chumps can only dream of. Full custody, alimony, support, AND 50% of additional expenses. Moreover, you’ve got an ex that PAYS IT. Do you know how many people have unpaid support? Or exes who conveniently lose their jobs, work under the table, and welch out on their commitments?

I know, you don’t want to eat your brussel sprouts and I’m giving you the starving orphan in Africa guilt trip. But please put this in perspective — what did the OW “win”? She won a cheater. AND a dude that’s happy to have her PAY HIS BILLS.

And she’s so desperate to do the “pick me” dance — she does it!!!

And what do you get?


Do you see how this works out in your favor?

Oh please, OW, teach me another lesson and write me another check. Yes, yes, you won. Sally needs a pony. That will be $5,000 plus boarding costs.

If this idiot wants to goad you by writing checks, dear God woman, LET her. Is she trying to fuck with you? Oh probably — and see my point above — you get MONEY.

But! But! She’s trying to be all superior and put you in your place and get at you!

Only if you let her. You won. You lost a cheater and gained a good settlement for life without him. She won a manipulator, a guy who’s quite happy to let her write his checks. He’s a cad. And she’s his new sucker.

Quit asking yourself why they did it, or what their motivations are. That’s untangling the skein. Fold the money, stick it in your wallet, and focus on your new and improved cheater-free life.


Dear Chump Lady, She’s having an affair with her boss

Dear Chump Lady,

In May, after awhile of snooping because I suspected something was wrong, I discovered my wife was having an affair with her boss. I saw emails from her to him on her cell phone. When I confronted her in the shower that morning she initially denied it. I left only to return to the shower 5-10 minutes later. She finally admitted to having slept with him twice. I demanded that we not go to work that day to discuss our future. Her immediate knee jerk reaction was to suggest counseling. I was very angry and emotional but after hours of discussion I finally agreed to rehabilitate the marriage and go to counseling.

During that discussion, she only apologized because I told her how hurt I was that she never said “I’m sorry”. Weeks go by and she never looks into counseling, so I made an appointment. We went to 5 sporadic sessions and stopped because it was too expensive and not working. Since then I have tried my best to address everyone of her concerns over the past 4 months. But, she has not moved one inch since D-Day. We talk less now than we ever have, have less sex, and I am fed up!

I believe that she is still sleeping with him, but I have no proof. She says their relationship is “strictly business”, but I don’t believe her. How could I? All of her words speak to wanting to not hurt me. She expresses her desire for more space. She wants a physical separation, nothing legal yet.

We have 4 children that we have raised for the past 13 years. 18 year old girl in college, from my 1st marriage, and 3 young boys 5, 3, and 1. My children are my life and I am fearful that I will lose them. I am afraid of leaving the house because I don’t want to put myself in a legal disadvantage when the inevitable time comes. I want more than anything for this to work so we don’t hurt our children, but she just doesn’t act like she even likes me anymore, nor does she even try. We parent well together, we run the house and day-to-day operations together well. But when 8:00 hits and the boys go to bed everything changes and she just disappears mentally and emotionally.




Dear Marc,

I’m so sorry. You’ve got absolutely nothing here to work with on reconciliation. She’s not sorry, she wants to move out (more cake, free babysitting!), she won’t do counseling, and she still seems deep in her affair.

I know you don’t want to hurt your children and break up the family. You’re not doing that. SHE is. She’s walked away from her marriage and her kids with this affair.

Let’s review what you don’t control, okay? You don’t control her degree of commitment, to you, to her kids, or to the marriage. You don’t control if she sticks around or leaves for the boss (aka “more space.”) You don’t control her fucking around.

You just control YOU, how you are going to react to this shit. I’m sorry your choices suck, because they really truly suck. I know you don’t want your marriage to end, and you want an intact family for your children. But here is the choice she has put before you — you either accept the life of a cuckolded husband OR you divorce her.

Pain behind door #1! And pain behind door #2!

I suggest you choose door #2 for these reasons:

1.) By leaving, you will not be modeling dysfunction to your children. You don’t want three boys to grow up thinking it’s okay to be cuckolded and emotionally abused. You have the chance to rebuild your life and have a healthy relationship some day. And you can be the sane parent, even if that’s only 50% of the time. Kids just need one sane parent, and you can be that person. (But you can’t be sane living the way you’re living now.)

2.) Taking tough measures, being prepared to walk away and mean it, is probably your best bet for saving the marriage (if it can be saved, and you know I’m a skeptic). I sincerely doubt Mr. Bossman wants to date a single mother with three small children. Fuck her on the side? Sure. Love of the ages? I doubt it. Let her look at life from the single parenting side of the aisle. She won’t find it as nice as cake-eating. She’ll find her stock doesn’t trade that high.

Essentially, I’m saying that lawyering up might scare her straight. BUT personally, I would not want to be married to a person to whom I’d have to hold a legal gun to their head to commit to me. Some people can live with that no-aethists-in-fox-holes kind of latter day conversion to monogamy, but I’m not one of them. You might be, so I throw it out there.

Next, some thoughts on lawyering up. (Please note, I’m NOT a lawyer.)

1.) Give a lawyer all the evidence of an affair. You should file for custody. She might be inclined to give it to you if she thinks she’s riding off into a sunset with Mr. Boss. But in any case, the affair into is useful for leverage — your lawyer could threaten to depose her boss if she doesn’t agree to settlement.

2.) You should lawyer up and file SOON. She’s having an affair in the workplace and could be fired for that. You do NOT want to have to pay child support to an unemployed mother of three. Get in front of this thing as soon as possible.

3.) Document how much time she’s spending away from the children as a result of her affair. Again, this could be helpful in custody dispute.

Finally, I want to say — as many letters as I receive and publish about mothers abandoned with small kids, and assholes cheating during chumps’ pregnancies — men get terrible shit sandwiches when it comes to infidelity. Not only do you, the faithful guy, lose time with your children, but you have pay support to the household of a cheater. You should, of course, ALWAYS financially support your children. I’m talking about alimony — I think that shit should be null and void if you cheat.

And the ultimate shit sandwich for men who’ve been cheated on? Paternity testing. You have small kids. If you have any doubts about the time line of her affair, please get your kids paternity tested. Again, talk to a lawyer about this.

Marc, I know this all seems so doom and gloom. I just want you to know we all survive this shit. And the kids survive. And it will work out in the end. It’s terribly unfair. ((((Huge HUGS)))) But please be mighty and serve this bitch divorce papers.


Dreadful Cheater Holidays

So last week, in a comment from TimeHeals, I suggested that Dreadful Cheater Holidays could be its own post. How many of us had those last gasp romantic vacations that were really just a farce. (Or in my case, it was my honeymoon.) The affair continued on, unabated. Hell, maybe they even brought a souvenir back for their fuckbuddy.

Today’s a chance to share your Dreadful Cheater Holiday story. (Somehow I suspect Disneyland is going to feature prominently.)

It’s also a chance to have some fun and craft your own Cheater Travel Brochure. Imagine a Sandals resort for cheaters! Special wifi in the bathroom for those midnight texts! Different travel arrangements for all manner of cake eating. (Wife and children in one cabin, mistress in the other).

Need a gift for the Mrs. back home? Cheater resorts come equipped with Crappy Gift Boutiques. A one-pound bag of coffee, a keychain, some broken pencils. Nothing says “I’m thinking of you” like a broken pencil set.

Lay it on me, chumps.


Poor Mark Sanford

In case you missed it, Mark Sanford announced that he’s broken up with his soul mate schmoopie.

How could such star-fated love ever end? I mean, this was a love bigger than them both! Bigger than his inflated ego! Bigger than the insanity of the South Carolinan voters that re-elected him! He was supposed to go the distance! This is who he “hiked the Appalachian trail” for!

And it ends with a 2,346-word Facebook post of emotional vomit?

Who killed the dream?

His evil ex-wife, of course. Jenny Sanford.

Apparently the custody trials are taking a toll and now she’s requesting a psych evaluation of him. He disses her in his Facebook message and has asked the court for a gag order.

You see, he’s just a sad guy who would like to avoid conflict, he quotes scripture about turning the other cheek, and he models himself after the “humility” of Jesus. (Poor Jesus, he always get this crap. Find me a politician Jesus cheater who doesn’t love the Jesus spackle.)

He writes of his Argentinian OW/girlfriend:

“Belén is a remarkably wonderful woman who I have always loved and I will be forever grateful for not only the many years we have known and loved each other, but the last six very tough ones wherein she has encouraged me and silently borne its tribulations with her ever warm and kind spirit.”

She understands! She encourages!

Just not enough to stay with him.

Some soul mates are funny that way.

South Carolina, wouldn’t you like to do the pick me dance with Mark Sanford? He’s got a mean, mean ex-wife who doesn’t understand him. He’s suffering and he needs a special someone to triangulate with. Won’t you answer the call? Can someone please find this guy a hypotenuse?


Don’t Need It That Bad

paralysisI get a lot of mail and many of my questions boil down to — How will I ever manage? How can I be alone? Surely it’s a cesspool out there and All The Good People Are Gone!

Generally, these people are telling me this to make rationalizations to stay. On the one hand, they’ll outline chapter and verse about how completely untenable their situation is, but then they’ll tell me how the future is so scary, so they stay paralyzed with indecision. As if these things were commensurate and could be weighed — the dreadful existence you are currently living versus the nightmare you imagine you’re going to.

Did anyone ever hesitate to run out of a burning building because they were afraid of fresh air?

Sure, you could imagine future calamities, but does that justify staying in a burning building?

But it’s hard out there! I won’t have a house. I’ll have to rebuild one, stay with relatives, and be the sad object of pity because my house burned down.

Okay. But you survived the fire.

And uh, duh… your house was burning, what did you think you should do?

These discussions usually come down to — I hate that my choices suck.

Yes, they do. I’m sorry folks, often choices suck. But when choices suck, I think the best thing to do figure out where you have the most agency, the most control over a given set of circumstances, and move in that direction. (Remember, you only control yourself.)

That’s why my advice here is — go save yourself, you’ll figure out the what next.

And I know it’s hard. I lived it. But it’s also full of rewards and surprises, and it’s a hell of a lot better than being married to an arsonist.

But how do you get into that mindset? How do you become someone who acts with self-protection? I think you have to let go of whatever you’re holding on to and realize it’s going down with that burning house. Your ego. That intact family. Your sex life with that person. You need to tell yourself that whatever it is you’re clinging to — you don’t need it that bad. Seriously, you can do without. Let it GO. The shit you never, ever thought you could let go of — let it GO.

I need to stay married so I don’t feel like a two-time divorcee and middle-aged failure.

Nope, don’t need it that bad.

I need the constancy of an intact family for my children.

Don’t need it that bad. Not at this price. No sir-ee.

I need this person’s financial support.

Don’t need it that bad. Not at the cost of my dignity and self-respect. Nope, think I’d rather flip burgers and live in a box.

I need to be coupled, because no one will ever love me again. There’s no one left.

Don’t need it that bad. Living in a bunker alone with cats until the end of your days is preferable to this cheater.

See how that works? You have to be prepared to run into the arms of “I’ll figure it out.” I know it sucks, but I have every confidence in you that you WILL figure it out. Seriously, I do. I know there are huge, scary challenges out there — serious shit like supporting your children, like facing 337 lonely Saturdays, or figuring out how to reinvent your remaining years. But you’re a chump and you’re mighty. You have deep reserves of faith, misplaced until now, but directed to yourself? You’re going to be okay. And then fine. And then better than fine.

When you “need it that bad,” you’ll do anything for it. You drive down the price of your self worth. Demand a higher price. Know your worth. I promise you, whatever it is? You don’t need it that bad.


Who Was Your Infidelity Angel?

Cartoon from http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com/2010/06/this-is-why-ill-never-be-adult.html

I was reading on Facebook this morning and a friend of mine (a fellow former chump) recently lost her mother. She requested that instead of flowers, to pay it forward for someone in need instead.

If you’d like to give in honor of my Mom, she was a pay it forward type of person and she adopted people that needed help so I’d like to leave some suggestions … Instead of sending us flowers, pick someone in your life that is having a hard time or needing something and send them a bouquet, pay their rent, give them a gas card or gift card for HEB – find a single Mom whose children would like to play in city league sports and pay their fees, or treat them to a movie or dinner – if you are out and see someone having dinner alone, pay their tab or pick a person in your life who works hard and never seems to catch a break and do something to totally make their day.

Such a sweet request and it got me thinking about people like this woman. So today I thought I’d ask you all — who was your angel? Who helped you in real life through the meat grinder of infidelity? What was the casual kindness that made all the difference?

I had many angels. Tops would be my friend Yoma who financed my escape at the scariest moment. Who never wavered (even when I did) to trust that he sucked. To my friend Caroline who watched my dog and my kid when I had to travel for work, who was always cheerful and positive. To my dad and my aunt who came right after I threw him out to pack up his shit with me. To my mom who sent money to tear down the wallpaper. That may sound weird, but NOTHING could make me happier at that time than to rid myself of that wretched wallpaper in the hallway. (Wallpaper removal is my love language.) To the total stranger I met at a Christmas party once, an old man, who told me that the worst thing that ever happened to him — a hail storm that wiped out all his crops — turned out to be the best thing that ever happened, because he left farming and became a successful stock broker.

They were all lights along the path out.

So, tell me — who paid it forward in your life?


Hi Chump Lady,

I would like to know your take on the Stages of Grief. I know we have to work through all of them, but I feel like Chumps go through it in a different order? I think denial is a pretty quick one for us, and we are done bargaining as soon as we realize what our deal breakers are. How did you go through the stages of grief? I have been using my anger to stay strong, but I don’t feel like I’m already done with depression, because I have had glimpses of “meh”.

Any thoughts on this? I know you have said that going no contact reduces or eliminates denial and bargaining. No contact helps me not think about my ex-shithead, and focus on my own life, which has always been pretty awesome. I’m only a few months out of a 10 year dysfunctional relationship, but I have been no contact (other than a few texts and lots of financial emails) since the first 3 weeks. I have been tested with pathetic “I’m sorry” and “poor me” emails and all sorts of other mindfuckery, been angry for a while and gotten back to a “not my monkey, not my circus” mindset. I don’t know if I’m just doing wishful thinking, hoping that I fly through to the promised land of meh in a couple months like Dorothy clicking her heels?

Thanks so much- you guys are the best!

Grateful Chump

Dear GC,

I don’t think the stages of grief are on a punch card system. Oh, did denial, done with that, now I need to get my anger slot punched.

I think grief is more like a big combo plate in the cafeteria from hell, where you get denial, anger, bargaining, and depression heaped on your tray and acceptance is dessert. If you’re good…. maybe you’ll get acceptance. You can’t spoil your appetite for shit sandwiches and get acceptance first. Acceptance is for LATER.

I think it’s pretty normal to flip through all the stages except acceptance (or what we call around here — “meh”). I think it’s pretty normal to work through all the stages, finally get to acceptance, and then go back to the cafeteria from hell for second helpings of anger and depression sometimes.

It’s just a process. And it takes time. And those tropes are about as comforting as a deflated soccer ball. I’m sorry.

Unless you are a very shallow person with very shallow feelings, you’re going to grieve. As Archbishop Desmond Tutu once said the depth of your love is shown by the extent of your anger. You cared. A lot. It’s going to hurt like a motherfucker. So while you’re cycling through the grief, it might help to remind yourself that hey, you feel so shitty because you have a soul.

How did I go through the stages? Imperfectly. I wouldn’t be much of a chump if I told you, oh, I wised up the first day, threw him out, filed, and never looked back.

No, I did denial (spackle), I bargained (the humiliating dance of pick me, Amazon chumpdom), I did depression (chump paralysis, unicorn limbo). The most helpful stage was anger — so of course I encourage you all to be bitter! When I could sustain anger, I felt lucid. I could propel myself to action, get to a lawyer, protect myself, tell people. Of course, I couldn’t sustain anger all the time — and no one wants to live in anger forever, but it’s a very useful stage. Only after I felt righteously pissed, could I get over the hump to acceptance.

Anger got me out of there. And once I was out, I went no contact. And NC got me to acceptance, or meh.

It’s years later, and honestly, I don’t feel sad or angry about it much at all. It just feels like a huge waste of my time. Like, damn, I wish I could have that investment back and I wish I would’ve put my kibbles in a better stock portfolio. Later, I did make better investments, but I can’t get the compound interest back on the wasted time.

Thus, this blog. Don’t waste your time. Get to anger sooner, get away sooner, and work through the stages of grief while you’re going NC. Your head will clear faster. Meh is out there and there’s a dessert buffet! Don’t miss out.