The 57 Club

I thought I’d take a few moments to remind myself what my therapist and I discussed yesterday so that I might actually attempt what we spoke of. I mean, that is the point of therapy, right, to change and to grow?

I asked her about my addiction to my narcissist husband and if there was anything more I could do to stop feeling a yearning for a man who is so wrong for me on every level. She said time takes care of that. That I’ve come a long way since I met her back in January.

I told her I was dismayed at how I’ve been unable to make a friend. She suggested a continuing education class this Fall and I think that’s a great idea. Anything to introduce myself to a wider age range of people. I’m thinking perhaps French, or a business class. She acknowledged that I am lonely. And I am.

I told her my nighttime eating habits are ruining my health progress. She suggested altering my nighttime routine. If I eat mindlessly when I begin to watch TV at 9 or 10 at night, then ask myself if watching tv is how I want to spend my time. If there’s nothing good on (Doctor Who tonight!) then why not read or do an art project?

Also, to have that after dinner snack planned ahead of time so that I don’t just keep eating. And other nightly routines I enjoy, like washing my face and applying night cream.

But last night I sat in front of the TV from 9 pm on and picked at the calloused skin on my fingers and feet to the point where I can barely walk today. I’m so ashamed. I hate my nervousness.

On the Chump Lady website yesterday it was clear that many, many of us chump women are 50+ and I find that so alarmingly sad. Most of these women have been married far, far longer than my mere eight years with my cheater — some have been married 35+ years and never been with another man! Surprisingly there were many of us who are 57!

What makes a man after 35 years just abandon his spouse? Is it our entitled culture? Viagra? Prevalence of pornography? Is this worse than usual or has it been this way for a long time? The male midlife crisis and abandonment of his wife and family is truly tragic, in my view. Why can’t the man fathom the destruction he’s about to cause: a lifetime of assets split in half, a lifetime of sharing kids and grandkids at holidays, and for what? A new vagina? How shallow and shortsighted can a person be? Why can’t he remember why he loved her in the first place? Why?

I’m not male bashing. I’m aware that men and women cheat equally. I just suspect that more men than women do it between the ages of 45-60.

But the thing that got me most yesterday as I read the older women’s stories is that they / we loved our husbands and didn’t want anybody else. We liked their bodies, their smell, the way they made love, we didn’t expect them to be perfect, and it’s almost impossible to feel we’ll ever want another man. Many of the older women say they won’t even try. Most of them said they are sad about that because they enjoy sex.

I have to leave it open.

I first want to become more balanced and independent. I first want to begin a business. I first want to find ways to help support my mother, father, and daughter. After that I wouldn’t mind seeing what’s out there, but I will never use a dating website, so I hope I meet this guy out in the real world.

Many of the cheaters mentioned on Chump Lady are serial cheaters, carrying on affairs for 2 or more years, sometimes as much as 20 years! I suppose I should count myself lucky that my husband wasn’t a serial cheater. We were together far too much for that. But when you read that a 60 year old, who has never fucked another man in her entire life has to go and get tested for STDs, well, shame on the asshole who did that to her. There’s just no excuse. I hope there’s a special place in hell, I really do.

I’ve been trying to start a Chump Lady support group on my local MeetUp and have about four people interested. I was hoping to get more, but maybe that will come with time. I’m going to write to the others today to ask if they want to meet even though our group is small.

I’m flat broke and don’t want to let my parents know I was so dumb with my finances this month. I’m staying close to home so that I don’t run out of gasoline. I’m waiting for the funds for two things I sold on eBay to become available to me, but it looks like it won’t be before Sept. 2nd. My fear of periodically looking at my bank balance is detrimental! I fucking hate this.

I’ve got another ten things listed, so perhaps I’ll make a little more dosh and I’ll try harder next month to make my money last.

I’ve given thought to my patch company and still feel it has promise. I’ve done some research and there’s really no serious competition. There are large patch companies out there, but they are not cutting edge or very cool and they don’t market themselves well.

Crossing my fingers, and will continue to explore this idea.



4 responses to “The 57 Club

  1. Your therapist has some good suggestions. I know it’s not always easy to follow the advice though. What helps me is to think of times in the past when I was successful at something and how I went about it. Trying to recreate the same method, attitude or whatever. And always start small, don’t expect to be at the finish line right away, just small steps. I get stuck focusing on how far I am from where I want to be so then I get paralyzed.

  2. Good advice, Cynthia. I think baby steps are the only way to go. We simply can’t make changes that last if we don’t truly learn to modify our behavior.

  3. Yeah, I’ve been struggling with some of the same emotions. Infidelity is a major kick in the crotch, no matter your age. That said — don’t sell yourself short. I have a feeling that you’re not done living yet. You’re much too thoughtful and insightful not to find your way out of this mess eventually.

    • Oh, Notes (do you mind if I call you Notes?) that is so kind of you. I am generally hopeful (at least today) that there is life after infidelity. You’re not done living yet, either!

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