I know this is a touchy subject for a lot of us, but as I near the anniversary of my last DDay in April 2018, I've really been able to see clearly how emotionally abused I was during what I now consider exit betrayals by my former spouse.
He wasn't happy with me, but it's because he never really loved me the way I loved HIM. There was never going to be any white picket fence ending in our marriage, and I spent all of it trying to pound a round peg into a square hole. He only ever valued me for my physical appearance, because sexual attraction was the only thing that bonded him to me. Once that went for him, there was nothing keeping him loyal.
Deep down, I knew he didn't love me from the way he yelled at me, demeaned me, and criticized me. He had a short temper with me over the smallest things. Looking back, it was so glaringly obvious that he didn't want to be with me, but just didn't have the nerve right away to say so. And he hated being alone, so he waited to break my heart and used me for security and sex and companionship until he had an OW waiting in the wings.
One of the things he cited in leaving me - while denying he had just met an OW and wanted to pursue a relationship with her - was my prednisone-related weight gain of 20-plus pounds. I have since lost that weight and more, and kept it off, but that is not relevant except to underscore that he felt entitled to a woman who looked a certain way, and bragged about how HE could take weight off at the drop of a hat if he ever needed to.
It's infuriating to me that I loved and invested in such a superficial asshole, for decades of my life. And one who didn't even have the balls to admit to anyone but ME how he felt about my weight, because he knew it was a shitty reason to give for leaving someone, even if it wasn't the true reason.
I hope YOU know that your SO's cheating has nothing to do with your appearance, your income, your job, your personality, or anything else to do with you. They are broken people, and if they truly DO devalue you based on your appearance, then they truly DON'T love you or deserve a seat at your table.
Please don't waste as much of YOUR life as I did trying to live up to a SO's vision of perfection. You will never be able to, and again - it's on THEM, not you. Looking back, there are so many times where I wish I had found my self-respect.
Three years on, I moved 2,500 miles away, and most of my belongings are still in our home - including clothes, photos, my jewelry, gifts from my parents. I just can't go back to where he is, and I know that he has wondered how I've managed to go NC all this time, and NOT use the retrieval of my things as a way to see him again. I feel as though sacrificing my personal belongings is necessary for my own emotional wellbeing, and it is a small way of demonstrating to him and to ME that I'm done begging him to love and value me.
Don't let any cheater make you feel LESS than.