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Hope ~

I second everything may22 said.

You are dealing with some extremely challenging circumstances. Any one of these things (divorce, COVID, wildfires, home schooling) is a major stressor. They can feel like they are piling up on top of each other until it's all just completely overwhelming.

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Hang in there Hope. I know you are feeling pretty beat up lately. Who wouldnít? Be kind to yourself. Know that you are not alone and that this, too, shall pass.

That sux that the gf is so close and you have to see his truck out front of her place. Not much I can say except that it absolutely hurt less over time. The man dating that girl is not the man you were married to. It just isnít. That guy is gone.

In my sitch my XH moved in with someone before he left our home and I remember what a betrayal and slap in the face that was. However, I also know that it definitely helped me to move on quicker because it extinguished whatever little bit of hope I had that we could rebuild one day. Recently, I thought about what I would do if he suddenly showed up at my door telling me it was all an awful mistake and begged my forgiveness. The answer was pretty simple. I would politely thank him for the apology, decline his invitation and wish him well. That ship has definitely sailed and there is a lot of freedom in that. You will get there too...I promise. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other and dealing with the things you have to in the moment. It will get easier. Focus on what you have and not what you donít have. Reach out to friends and family. Keep posting and let us support you.

BTW...Iím fortunate because my kids are older than your D but I remember how broken up I was at the idea of having to give up 50% of my time with them. I hated it. The first few times they went with him, I was devastated and would spend the time feeling cheated and resentful until they returned home. Eventually, however, I started to appreciate having some time to do my own thing. I knew they were being cared for and I could FaceTime them whenever I wanted (that was a deal me and XH made...he is free to do the same thing when they are with me) and they could do the same. Now that weíve been doing this for about 18 months, it is just the routine. My kids are okay and so am I. And I think they are especially okay because they know I am. Thatís really important. Giving them the message that we are okay so when they think of us, they think of us as happy and managing well. I did not want my kids to think that I was at home feeling sad and missing them because they would only feel the same way in return and I donít want that. I want them to be happy when they are with their dad just as I want them to be happy when they are with me. So you have to fake it until you make it unfortunately.

You got this Hope!! I know you do!! (((HUGS)))


Me 53
H 48
B/G Twins 13
SD 21
Legal SA - January 2019
Divorce filed - June 2019
Divorce final - November 2019

Together 14 years
Married 12 years
BD1 - May 2014
BD2 - September 14, 2018

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Hi Hope,

if you are up for it, a little bit of solutioning... I can't encourage you enough to focus on self-care right now. What do YOU need to regain your feelings of calm and centeredness? What baby steps can you take and celebrate? For instance, can you drive another way so that you don't need to see his car parked outside his new GF's house? Can you give yourself a little treat when you're alone, something it is hard to do with D5 there-- anything from sleeping in to a long bath or staying in your PJs all day and eating chips for dinner? I think self-care is so important and anything you can do to honor yourself and support yourself right now is critical. Also, don't be afraid to vent here or to a friend or family member IRL... we are here for you and your friends and family are too.

(((HOPE)))

xoxo May


Me (46) H (42)
M:14 T:18, D9 & D11
4/19 - 12/19: series of escalating BDs
9/20 - present: R and piecing
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May, Sage, unchien, DV6:

Thank you all, sincerely, for the kindness and support. I really, really needed that.

I do feel itís too many stressors all piled on at once. But, this is my life right now. I try to take time to be grateful for the extra time I am getting with my magnificent child due to Covid/remote school. I am extremely grateful to have found a full time, fully remote job during all of this. It is exactly what I needed and what I hoped for to make all this work in a way that wouldnít break me. And I have wonderful friends who support me.

May, I do try to focus on self care, especially when D5 isnít here. I have made a little ritual of ordering takeout that she wouldnít like on Saturday nights, staying in my pjs and watching movies and shows I wouldnít watch with her, and face masks of course. And wine. Itís something. Iím also using Duolingo to study Italian, which Iíve wanted to learn for years. And I have a zoom session with my IC tomorrow for the first time since the fall. I LOVE her and Iím really looking forward to it.

The thing I think I need to incorporate is more exercise. I like walking and hiking but I need more, and now with all this smoke itís not an option. Iím considering a small,,easily stowed away exercise machine (I have less than zero extra space in my tiny home).

I was thinking about self care last night. And Iím a believer and Iím into it, I promise. But (and this is obvious and not even worth saying) what Iím really wanting is for someone to take care of me. Even just for like a night. To take the burden off me and comfort me and let me lean on them. And if Iím honest that is the source of my loneliness. That void. And the knowledge that STBXH is literally down the street giving that to someone else is just...it seems surreal in its level of cruelty from the universe. I know I know I know. But it had to be said.

He continues to lack boundaries in a way that is truly bizarre. He commented that I was giving the construction crew next door quite a show by being in my bathing suit in the kiddie pool with D5. He sat on my couch and tried to show me
Pictures of his (previously our) good friendsí new baby. And most bizarre, when he brought D5 to my home straight from the beach and she asked him to get in the bath with her, I made a face at him out of her line of vision to make it clear that he should not do that. He then asked me right in front of her if it was ok with me. I made the same face turned up ten notches and shrugged exaggeratedly to show clearly ďNO I am not ok with that, and I donít want to be the bad guy and this is YOUR line to draw with D5Ē . And what did he do? Ended up in my bathtub with her. It is so f***ing weird to me that he would do that at this point. Not to mention so uncool to ask me if itís ok, get a very clear non verbal NO, and then do it anyway. I have held the line with him very well for some time now. I just donít engage. I feel these behaviors bait me into engaging so he can cast me as he wishes to in his narrative. For now, I am choosing to continue that path because it feels the most detached for me. If I engage, my emotions bubble up. For now Iím going with ďwalk away in my headĒ. And also a big F**K YOU, also in my head.

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Wow... what an a$$! The entitlement and lack of recognition of how inappropriate that is given the circumstances is mind boggling. But also, in a way, not surprising considering all of the stories we read on here. Sounds like self care is something you have a handle on Hope. Good for you.

RE: wanting someone to take care of you. I can so relate to that feeling. I really can. And there are more than a few people on here who, Iím sure, feel the exact same way. This longing for connection is what sets us apart from most other living beings. It is the essence of being human so of course this is what we struggle with the most when our partners suddenly up and leave and then even worse, replace us with someone else before weíve even had a moment to adjust. It is cruel and unusual punishment to have to go through this. It will get better though Hope. Once all of this is behind you and you are ready, you will find that connection again. For now, just know that you are not alone and there are lots of people who care about you and supporting you through this... even though we are not right in front of you. (((HUGS)))


Me 53
H 48
B/G Twins 13
SD 21
Legal SA - January 2019
Divorce filed - June 2019
Divorce final - November 2019

Together 14 years
Married 12 years
BD1 - May 2014
BD2 - September 14, 2018

Joined: May 2019
Posts: 1,556
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Hope ~

Manipulative people create situations where you feel forced into choosing from bad options. You CAN take back your personal power. You CAN set strong boundaries. If you don't do those things, he will keep crossing the line because he knows he can, and you will feel helpless and powerless.

I'm still working on how to set boundaries effectively and it's not easy. The key for me has been to stop caring what reaction I get, or what my STBXW thinks. If I need personal space, I need it, full stop.

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Hope, wasn't there some discussion on your thread awhile back about exchanging your D at the door? Could you do that and not invite him in? I agree with DJV and U... that is totally inappropriate and if you can avoid it to some degree by not letting him in the house, I definitely think you should.

Have you followed FlySolo's situation? Her H continually came into her house all the time, two years post-S. She just changed the locks and he flipped out (too bad, so sad) but also I think it was hard because it went on for so long that it made it more difficult with her kids, etc. to put an end to it without feeling or looking like the bad guy. I think you don't want to get to a place where that feels routine, especially for your D. He doesn't get to be in your personal space and take baths with your D and see you with your child in your kiddie pool in your own backyard. Honestly. And it seems like you could probably make that happen now without a lot of fuss or even talking about it-- let your body language demonstrate he isn't welcome inside-- rather than waiting and it needing to be a discussion or something bigger. IDK. Do you have any thoughts about that?

Face masks and wine and PJs takeout and non-kid movies and Italian... all sounds amazing!! Love it! Agree that exercise can help... one thing I started doing that I really like (though have totally fallen off the last couple of months) is doing the seven-minute workout every morning. There are a number of apps that have it and it is such a simple way to get yourself going. All you need is a mat and a chair.

Hang in there. (((Hope)))


Me (46) H (42)
M:14 T:18, D9 & D11
4/19 - 12/19: series of escalating BDs
9/20 - present: R and piecing
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