update: my boss enlists me in hiding his multiple affairs from his wife

Remember the letter-writer who was an assistant to a man who was enlisting her in helping to hide his multiple affairs — and newborn baby — from his wife? Here’s the update.

Two days after you published my letter, my boss was served with divorce papers here at work. His wife publicly outed his affairs, and she sent copies of emails and text messages sent between him and the two women he was having affairs with, as well as one of the escorts he was seeing regularly, to some people here at our office (including me), his relatives, and some of their friends. She also sent these to the two women and the escort, and some of their relatives and colleagues at work. The texts and emails prove that all three of them not only knew he was married but that he was seeing other women besides each one of them. They also include his acknowledgement he fathered a child outside of his marriage and evidence he used funds from the joint account and his wife’s pay to spend money on them, as well as for the random women he cheated with when he was out of town on business.

His wife has filed alienation of affection lawsuits against the two women and the escort he was cheating with regularly. All of three of them kept calling and coming to see him here at work to confront him after they were outed to people and served with the lawsuit papers, and I heard them talking (sometimes yelling) about it each time and him saying his wife moved out the day he was served with divorce papers and he has no way to contact except through her lawyer (hey have no children and apparently she has cut all contact).

I played dumb the entire time and no one, including his wife, has accused me of knowing anything or asked me if I did.

Before all of this happened, after reading your response and the responses in the comments, I decided to seriously start looking for another job. The same week my letter was published, there was an opening inside my company for a receptionist in a different division. The company usually posts jobs internally before they look externally, and since I’m classified as admin and the posting is for an administrative position, I didn’t have to apply and could just put in for a transfer.

They gave it to me, and I have been in my new job for two weeks now. I love it so far. I spend all day on the phone with people or talking with people who have come in to see or meet with my colleagues. The division has over 100 people, so while I have a screen where I can search for people by name and receive memos and things through email, I don’t have a computer that I am stuck staring at for hours a day. It’s definitely not for everyone but I love dealing with people all day and having no other responsibilities or a mountain of tasks or paperwork to do. My new colleagues have been welcoming and while everyone is talking about what is going on with my boss, no one has brought me into the drama and it only gets talked about around me the same as it would any other person. I don’t engage in any gossip and I certainly don’t talk about what I know, even though no one has asked.

I now have set hours, don’t ever have to work outside of those hours (no overtime or weekends or holidays) and no company cell phone. Since all my work involves dealing with people during working hours at work, I couldn’t do work at home even if I wanted to. Work is now separate from home, and overall I am much more relaxed because I have a clear line between working and not working and I don’t have to deal with my boss and his drama any more.

Thank you for your response to my question and to all the people who were supportive in the comments. I felt better knowing my feelings were valid and I wasn’t overreacting or wrong to be upset.

(Also there was some speculation in the comments about whether my boss could be engaging in some kind of embezzlement or falsifying because he had me separating expenses. There was nothing like that going on. The company has a policy where they will reimburse business expenses put on personal debit or credit cards. Non-work expenses are not allowed to be on company cards. So if the company paid for a hotel room when my boss traveled on business and he upgraded to a better room, the company would only reimburse or pay the original room price and he would have to pay for the rest of the upgrade. I would separate personal and work expenses before submitting them. This is in line with the company handbook and everyone always does it this way. There were no issues with him or me because of it. As for him using the company credit card at the massage parlor, they are legal where we are and since he had the charges reversed the same day and submitted proof of the reversal, the company never had an issue because he followed policy and hadn’t used the card for anything illegal.)

{ 443 comments… read them below }

  1. Spoonie*

    I’m so happy to hear things worked out so well for you! Congratulations on finding a position that suits your needs so well and also for getting away from a situation that was …unhealthy.

  2. JMegan*

    That is quite the update. Thanks for sharing, OP, and congratulations on your new drama-free job!

    1. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

      OP, I’m slow clapping for you. Once I got past the part where Ex-Boss’s soon-to-be ex-wife reenacted Angela Bassett’s burning car scene from Waiting to Exhale, I was so happy for you! The transfer sounds ideal on every level, and I’m so glad that you’re in a happier and saner work environment.

  3. Nan*

    I’m happy he got busted, but feel bad for his wife.

    I’m glad you found another role at the company and now have work/life separation. And that your job doesn’t deal with other people’s dirty laundry anymore.

    1. Morning Glory*

      I feel bad for his wife too but also… I kind of love that she was so public about it when she found out.

      1. Stranger than fiction*

        I absolutely love what the wife did. Now literally everyone in his life knows exactly who he is.

        1. MuseumChick*

          Agreed. When you do the wrong thing there is always a chance people will find out. They took the chance and now have to pay the piper.

        2. Yep, me again*

          not that we should celebrate divorces but….I totally feel we need to celebrate the divorce.
          Now the lying, cheat scumbag needs to be fired.

            1. Anna*

              I think you could argue that asking your receptionist to cover your personally unethical behavior shows a lack of boundaries and good decision making. I think it could also be argued the business might start doubting his ability to avoid drama and that would be plenty reason to let him go. But it’s not a give that he should be fired.

              1. Detective Amy Santiago*

                OP said in the update that no one knows she was aware of what was going on though. And it sounds as if she prefers it that way.

                1. Jessie the First (or second)*

                  Yup. It was really a terrible situation for the OP to be in – I am so glad she was able to get the hell away and be clear of all this drama.

            2. Jadelyn*

              If nothing else, he’s brought his personal drama into the office in a major way. Shouting confrontations with the various mistresses *in the office*? That’s unacceptable. I would think we could add misuse of company resources – those resources being the OP’s paid time at work – to cover up personal affairs, too.

              He’s absolutely destroyed his ability to be effective in his role. Who’s going to take this guy seriously after his infidelity has caused such a huge blowup that his wife sent proof of it to people at the company?

            3. Liane*

              Uh, his was asking/telling the OP to cover up his affairs **while they were on the clock** at their mutual employer.

            4. AdAgencyChick*

              He put his direct report in an impossible situation. I wouldn’t count firing as too severe.

              1. Long-time Admin*

                I know you’re joking, but he doesn’t appear to have the discretion and professionalism needed to be an admin.

          1. eplawyer*

            if he’s fired, it makes it very hard for him to pay the alimony the wife so richly deserves. For this reason only, she should have held off on involving his work in this personal issue.

            1. RVA Cat*

              He needs to pay child support for his new baby with the mistress though. Speaking of, that’s the person I feel most sorry for in all this. I hope the child ends up with a stable home life despite all this drama.

              1. EE*

                Especially since she is being sued! I didn’t know it was possible to be sued for sleeping with somebody else’s spouse. I’m not from the USA.

                1. Countess Boochie Flagrante*

                  There are only a few places in the USA where that can be done, and I think it’s on the way out even there.

                2. MoodyMoody*

                  My state, North Carolina, still has this antiquity on the books, and every so often someone dusts it off and tries to sue. It’s rare that such a suit is successful. The last case I remember where the wronged wife collected, the wife had to show that the other woman went out of her way to seduce the husband, and that she knew he was married. Since the husband in this case shows definite satyric tendencies, I don’t think wifey can claim that the affairs are anyone’s fault but his. Disclaimer: no legal training whatsoever. Any NC lawyer is welcome to correct me on this.

                3. AcademiaNut*

                  IANAL, but that’s my understanding – you’d have to show that the other woman (or man) was deliberately trying to break up the marriage, rather than simply knowing they were having an affair with someone who was married.

                4. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

                  It’s super super rare and no longer exists in most states, as others have noted, and usually hard to prove (although frankly in this case it sounds pretty clear-cut).

                  She probably sued the women to embarrass them and stress them out, though—I don’t think she expects to actually collect money, and she certainly doesn’t want to be with her husband (and I don’t blame her).

                5. ReneeB*

                  Agree with others the Alienation of Affection suits are definitely to stress these women out, take up their time, make them hire attorneys, make them spend their money (her income the husband gave them over time – they can sell that jewelry to pay for it), and who knows, may even have them deposed on tape, on the way to reaching a settlement.

                  Oh how gleeful. I love it. Her attorney is amazing.

                  Even if the women win of have it dismissed and don’t settle, she wastes their time, money, and life the way hers was wasted, for as long as her attorney can drag this out. And displays their dirty laundry through the public record. Even if she doesn’t win the cases, she still wins.

                  Meanwhile the husband is not ignored. He is thoroughly receiving his comeuppance too.

                  Fist bumps on you girlfriend. Your heart is strong.

                6. ReneeB*

                  Agree with others the Alienation of Affection suits are definitely to stress these women out, take up their time, make them hire attorneys, make them spend their money (her income the husband gave them over time – they can sell that jewelry to pay for it), and who knows, may even have them deposed on tape, on the way to reaching a settlement.

                  Oh how gleeful. I love it. Her attorney is amazing.

                  Even if the women win or have it dismissed and don’t settle, she wastes their time, money, and life the way hers was wasted, for as long as her attorney can drag this out. And displays their dirty laundry through the public record. Even if she doesn’t win the cases, she still wins.

                  Meanwhile the husband is not ignored. He is thoroughly receiving his comeuppance too.

                  Fist bumps on you girlfriend. Your heart is strong.

                  The intersection of alienation of affection laws, which only exist in North Carolina, New Mexico, South Dakota, Utah, Mississippi, Hawaii, and Illinois, and the fact massage parlors seem legal there, places this in Utah. What a fascinating confluence of events and comeuppance.

          2. Countess Boochie Flagrante*

            Some divorces deserve celebration! As my mother tells it, when my jerk ex-father pulled out of the driveway for the last time, she and my brother just looked at each other and went “Thank god he’s gone.”

            1. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

              It reminds me of the scene in Brown Sugar where Taye Diggs’s character gets a little drunk, interrupts his wife on a date with another woman, gets the attention of the entire restaurant/bar and then says, “Attention everyone. I just want to make a toast to *sings* MY DIVORCE!!!”

              Boss’s soon-to-be ex-wife definitely deserves a drink and a celebration.

        3. Cinnamon Owl*

          You just know he would have insisted that he was careful and thoughtful and didn’t give his wife any reason to suspect something might be going on.

      2. Sans*

        Same here. She doesn’t sound like someone who puts up with being taken advantage of, that’s for sure. I don’t know that I would go after the other women with the same vigor that I’d reserve for the husband — after all, he is her husband, the one she thought she trusted, the one who broke a vow with her. The others are strangers. If they had turned him down, it sounds like he’d just find someone else. He’s the problem.

        But thankfully, I haven’t been in that position, so I’m not going to pass judgement on someone going through it. I’d certainly prefer her response to someone who lets him get away with it!

        1. LKW*

          Not a lawyer but maybe it would help to get joint funds spent on extramarital affairs returned (or at least some of the money). Any family lawyers out today?

          1. Bend & Snap*

            In my divorce (nobody cheated) my lawyer did say that if joint funds were used in outside relationships, they’d be part of the overall settlement. It’s definitely a no no. But in a no-fault state like mine, adultery isn’t formal grounds for divorce and isn’t considered in the division of assets.

            So you can sleep with someone but not spend money on them.

          2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

            (disclaimer: not a family lawyer, but I end up doing community property work from time to time)

            Bend & Snap is right. Although most states have no-fault divorce, spending money on outside affairs/relationships is often considered dissipating marital assets, and judges can take that information into account during divorce proceedings. Usually they’ll decrease the share of community property that would have gone to the spouse that spent it on affairs on the theory that it’s offsetting joint assets that that spouse squandered or wasted.

        2. Alli525*

          I mean, I doubt she’ll go AS hard after the other women as she does for him in divorce court, but I think that if a person knows they are doinking a married person and don’t care at all … well, that’s why “alienation of affection” is a valid legal approach. Maybe a slap on the wrist in court (that’s usually all it is, AFAIK) will remind them that there are some things that you just shouldn’t do.

          1. GreyjoyGardens*

            I think it’s a situation where having Judge Judy yell at them would be a fitting punishment. Failing that, some other stern judge figure saying, “Don’t have affairs with married men! How dumb can you get?” would be fitting.

            Knowingly having an affair with a married man is not a crime, it’s just a Dumb Thing To Do. Maybe the affair partner(s) can learn from this and move on.

          2. Kore*

            They may know that the man is married but do they know that his relationship is exclusive? He could have lead them to believe he was in an open marriage / polyamorous. I know enough poly married people that knowing someone is married doesn’t necessarily mean you know whether they can have other relationships.

            1. Alli525*

              I think that’s probably stretching it. Also, I am close to several people in polyamorous relationships, and above-board communication with ALL partners involved (uhm, including both spouses/partners) is always Rule #1. From the way the original question and this follow-up were worded, it reads to me like the mistresses knew about the wife and about each other, but also knew that the wife didn’t know about them. I could be reading into it though.

            2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

              Based on OP’s letters, it seems pretty clear that this was not an open or polyamorous marriage (and that his side-women knew that).

          3. Anon21*

            Alienation of affection hasn’t been a valid legal approach in decades in the vast majority of U.S. states. Anyone can file any kind of lawsuit, but unless this all happened in North Carolina, the soon-to-be-ex-wife’s lawsuit will be tossed. And it should be–the law should not be involved in regulating or punishing adults’ private consensual sexual conduct, even when infidelity is involved.

            1. MoodyMoody*

              I don’t think that it’s going to have any traction even if it is in NC. The wife has to show not only that the other women knew he was married, but that they actively tried to seduce him away. He was not only willing but eager to have affairs.

            2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

              I think this is more about causing the mistresses stress/humiliation than actually prevailing (let alone recovering $). Or perhaps she wants to clawback the jewelry, etc., that he bought with their joint account money.

                1. Kate*

                  These women knew they were sleeping with a married man though. I think they deserve what they get.

                2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

                  I don’t think it’s particularly virtuous/high-road, but I think it’s pretty front-handed ;)

                  On a more serious note, unfortunately people sue people all the time for the sole purpose of causing anxiety/distress (they’re not common, but it happens). And as folks have noted, it could also be more of an instrumental thing—setting the stage for divorce negotiations.

                  It’s also just possible that because of the situation leading up to the divorce, she’s kind of high on rage and doing a scorched & salted earth combo. I haven’t figured out how I feel about this from a moral/decency standpoint, but litigation, and especially acrimonious divorces, can bring out a level of ugly people didn’t know they even had in them.

          4. CoveredInBees*

            It might just be a fishing expedition to get ammunition for the divorce case or just to put her ex and the mistresses through depositions.

        3. sstabeler*

          I think it’s specifically because all three KNEW he was married- and they don’t even have the excuse of thinking the guy simply loved them more, since they knew they weren’t the only ones. They’re arguably just as bad in this case.

      3. SophieChotek*

        +1. She must have bee suspicious but pretended she wasn’t while she got all her paperwork and evidence together. Smart woman.

        1. Engineer Woman*

          Yes, OP mentioned in initial post that his wife once surprised husband for lunch during one of his lunch “trysts”‘ and boss had OP lie to his wife that the woman was there for an interview.
          Wife knew and played her cards well. Kudos to her.

          Super happy that OP was able to get away from this boss and found a much better job. You deserve it. And I’m glad OP did find the reassurance from AAM that her feelings about her situation were not misplaced at all!
          This whole thing: holy wow!

      4. Katie*

        I know, right? I feel like a lot of people WANT to do that, but don’t actually go through with it.

        In any case, I’m glad all that is behind you, OP. And glad to hear that while your ex-boss is a sleazeball and a horrible person, he’s not a criminal.

      5. Morning Glory*

        On the off-chance this thread doesn’t get removed for being so off-topic and inflammatory – I do want to clarify that I didn’t mean to come down on a side condemning the mistresses. I love how public the wife’s reaction was in reference to the cheating husband, only.

    2. Tuesday*

      Same. But at least she knows exactly what he is now and it sounds like she’s making a clean break.

    3. INTP*

      Unless I’m misreading, they sound like they deserve each other. Outing him was fine, but outing escorts to their families and suing them for doing their jobs is pretty crappy. And while I don’t condone sleeping with married men by any means, I think lawsuits and attempts to ruin lives (contacting family and jobs) should be reserved for the person that broke a commitment to you.

      1. Detective Amy Santiago*

        Only one of the 3 women was an escort. And it doesn’t look like the wife outed that, just that the three women were knowingly engaged in extra marital affairs with her husband.

      2. MashaKasha*

        Yeah, I’m not sure what the alienation of affection lawsuits are supposed to accomplish. Especially, like you said, in case of the escort, who was doing her job and possibly had no choice. They just don’t sound like something I’d spend my money on paying a lawyer for. (I admit I don’t know much about the alienation of affection suits, or about an escort’s work.)

        1. MashaKasha*

          ETA: but I love the filing for divorce/moving out/no-contact part. That was fantastic.

          1. Lead, Follow or Get Outta the Way!*

            It may be that she’s trying to get back some of the money that was spent on these women during the affairs and the “services” of the escort.

            1. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

              I think she might be trying to get the money and other gifts that went to the mistresses. But mostly I think she wants to subject these women to pain/public humiliation.

        2. Thornus67*

          I could see the divorce attorney working on the alienation of affection lawsuits under a contingency basis, so the wife may not be having to pay for those lawsuits (outside of costs like pages printed, court costs, etc; but nothing for hours spent).

        3. Lady Blerd*

          I don’t understand alienation of affection lawsuits in general. To me it feels as if they’re saying they had it not been for the other woman, the husband wouldn’t have strayed which is ludicrous.

          1. Dankar*

            Alienation of affection lawsuits can be used for other purposes than just suing the other woman/man. My partner has told me about one filed against a vasectomy provider. Because the procedure was botched, intimacy in the relationship was nonexistent and one or both of the spouses sued the surgeon for the resulting divorce.

            1. littlemoose*

              I believe the term for this in such medical malpractice or other personal injury/wrongful death suits is loss of consortium.

              1. Dankar*

                Ah, you are right.

                I know their was an alienation suit somewhere in the multitude of stories he’s passed along. I’ll have to ask what the circumstances were there since I’m getting them mixed up. Haha

          2. INeedANap*

            Not to get too off topic, but to me an alienation of affection lawsuits feels as if they’re basically trying to get “revenge” or some sense of justice, if that makes sense, not that it was the other woman’s fault.

            It’s unlikely she’d get much, if any, money out of it – all the suit really does is publicly shame the other woman and put her through a tedious and embarrassing process as a result of her dalliance with a married man. Also, it punishes the cheating husband in a way because now all his mistresses are showing up and publicly embarrassing him.

            It’s not really the route I would choose to go, but I’m not going to judge the scorned wife for it. I hope she eventually finds peace for herself, and can let go of anger and a need for revenge, but only because that would make HER life better, not for the sake of anyone else.

            1. Cinnamon Owl*

              As a means of turning all three women against him, it seems to have worked fabulously.

              And I can’t get too upset about people who failed to keep their affair secret who are appalled that various third parties feel no obligation to keep their affair a secret, either.

            2. Rabbit*

              Speaking as someone whose partner of several years cheated with someone I’d considered a good friend – GOOD. People who knowingly sleep with or are in a relationship with someone’s committed partner should have to face some consequences for their actions.

            3. tigerStripes*

              “all the suit really does is publicly shame the other woman and put her through a tedious and embarrassing process as a result of her dalliance with a married man. Also, it punishes the cheating husband in a way because now all his mistresses are showing up and publicly embarrassing him.” Yeah, but this might be all she wants.

            4. Not So NewReader*

              I think if we look at the era the law was in effect, we’d find that it might fit better with what was going on then, than it does here in 2017.

              Laws serve a society until they don’t. Here we have a law still on the books that everyone has to bring their gun to church. This law no longer serves us although it seemed to at that time.

              1. Countess Boochie Flagrante*

                Wait, they have to bring their guns to church? What purpose did that ever serve?

                1. Cactus*

                  Maybe if everyone brings their guns to church, then no gangsters and highwaymen can steal guns from people’s homes during church services?
                  That’s my only guess.

                2. vpc*

                  If a militia were formed during church services they wouldn’t have to go home to get their guns?

                  The one I remember is not just generally guns – but blunderbusses (blunderbusi?) – and so no one is currently in violation because almost nobody owns one of those anymore!

                3. Noobtastic*

                  I’m going to assume that this place was frontier-land, at the time the law was passed. Outlaws would steal unattended guns at home, and if the community were to be attacked during church services (and that would be a sound strategy, since everyone’s gathered together to be easy targets for a massacre), at least they would be armed, rather than fish in a barrel.

          3. Serafina*

            Alienation of affection lawsuits have been either abolished or severely limited in most states. Other commenters are correct that it’s most often a bargaining chip in divorce cases.

        4. Tex*

          Possibly using the alienation lawsuits as a bargaining chips? If the escorts testify for the wife or are agreed to be deposed against the husband about joint money spent on them, trips, dates etc., then maybe she would drop the suits.

          Or maybe I just watch too many lawyer shows on tv.

          PS – Wasn’t this a wife going through cancer treatments? Glad she seems to have the fighting spirit intact.

          1. Detective Amy Santiago*

            I just went back and checked and in the original letter, it says “she is dealing with a heart condition that just required surgery.” So not cancer, but I had forgotten there was a serious health issue in the mix too.

        5. Jadelyn*

          I’m with you – attacking the “other women” over this is BS, especially the escort. Sure, they knew he was married, but he’s still a big boy and he made his choices and is the one who should suffer for them. Suing the other women is taking it from reasonable response to salted earth nuclear response.

          1. Cinnamon Owl*

            If I cast it as “I never met the person who unknowingly paid for my vacation in Barcelona, but I certainly didn’t imagine they’d have a salted earth nuclear response when they found out” it falls more toward “I had no idea this easily foreseeable thing might happen.”

            1. mcr-red*

              “I mean, I knew he was inside robbing the bank, but I’M not the one that robbed the bank! I just helped him plan it and drove the getaway car. Why are you arresting me, officer?”

            2. Jadelyn*

              But that’s still on HIM, not on the other women. He chose to spend joint money on his affairs. I am all in favor of a salted earth nuclear response to that, take him down and take him for everything he’s worth. He deserves absolutely no mercy. But those other women aren’t the ones who chose to use the wife’s money on their affairs. He did that, and I feel like involving these other women dilutes responsibility that should be falling like a ton of angry bricks on his head alone.

              1. Emi.*

                I disagree that it dilutes the responsibility–fault is not a zero-sum game, as my mother is fond of reminding us.

              2. tigerStripes*

                They were knowingly involved sexually with a married man who was in what was supposed to be a monogamous relationship. If he had tricked them, that would be different, but since they knew, I don’t mind them being embarrassed about this.

                1. Julia*

                  But how do you prove that the husband didn’t tell the other woman that his marriage was basically over, his wife and him both had different sexual partners etc.?
                  I agree that people shouldn’t knowingly sleep with other peoples’ spouses, but the other woman isn’t the one who swore eternal faith to the wife.

                2. Noobtastic*

                  We’l, since the mistresses knew about each other, and knew that they were to take all the steps to keep the wife from finding out, I think we can safely assume that they knew she didn’t know.

                  In an open marriage, the partners are supposed to get acknowledgement, at the bare minimum, from the other spouse, so that it’s all above-board. These women participated in hiding. If you’re hiding, how can you claim that there’s no reason to hide, because the other person knows and approves?

              3. Ann O.*

                I don’t think it makes sense to blame the other person when they didn’t know or when they thought/hoped they were in a loving relationship, but if you knowingly help someone betray another person, you’ve functionally betrayed that person, too… especially when money is involved. At the very least, you’ve assumed a very predictable risk that the betrayed person will blame you and act accordingly.

              4. JessaB*

                If they didn’t want to have trouble with the wife then they should not have been stepping out with a married man.

              5. emma2*

                Eh, I can’t feel too sorry for those women, as they knew they were engaging with a married man. Sure, she could have taken the more peaceful route and left them alone, but I’m not about to judge the person who was victim to years of shitty treatment, along with medical issues, and possibly her finances being spent in a way that was against her interests.

                I’m always amazed at the group of people who are quick to judge the woman being cheated on for less than perfect responses to what is a traumatic incident, wondering why she doesn’t put up with it quietly and discreetly. This is not a situation where I expect everyone to always behave rationally.

          2. Rabbit*

            If you sleep with or have a relationship with a married person you have to accept that there may be consequences for your choice and actions.

          3. nuance*

            But I’m guessing that, from the wife’s perspective, hitting the other women with lawsuits *is* hitting her Ex-Jerk where it hurts: right in his lovelife!

            OP says the other women came into Ex-Jerk’s office to yell at him about getting sued & having their emails made public. So now he won’t be able to swan off with his portion of the family assets and set up a sweet new (sex) life.

        6. Um,*

          Doesn’t matter if it was the escort’s job. Her job is illegal and her actions opened her up to being sued. That’s no one’s fault but hers.

          1. INTP*

            We don’t know that her job is illegal. OP said the massage parlors are legal in her state, so other forms of sex work could be as well. And many if not most women do not go into sex work with a plethora of other options.

            1. Rabbit*

              Well, going by the “Alienation of affections” bit and the fact that Nevada (the only state in the US where any form of sex work is legal) doesn’t have that tort, I think it’s unlikely.

              A “massage parlor” being legal literally means nothing. They’re both legal and frequently used as a cover for sex work where I live.

              1. Noobtastic*

                Where I live, people go to massage parlors for massages. Happy endings not included. Just massages.

                Escort work is not legal here.

                I think someone upthread said that the Alienation of Affection suit, combined with a legal massage parlor (which could be confused for a strip club, apparently), points to Utah. If so, the culture there would support the wife suing the other women, because they knowingly engaged with a married man, and aided and abetted him in in breaking his vows. Basically, they are considered accomplices to the crime. Yes, he did worse, but they certainly did wrong. Their only excuse would be not knowing he was married.

                Utah has an extremely dense Mormon population, and even if the people involved were not Mormons, the culture at large leans towards blaming the accomplices almost as much as the criminal, in the case of adultery. In fact, a lot of people would blame them MORE, simply because they were women, and “the gateway of sexuality” is supposed to be under their control, because they are the ones who can say “No.” It’s screwed up, and I’m a Mormon saying this, but it’s definitely there. Blaming sexual sin on the woman involved, while saying “The man can’t help himself when faced with that powerful temptation” is a bunch of baloney and oh, so pervasive.

                So, if it IS Utah, then I believe the wife is suing the women because she actually does blame them, almost as much as the husband. Even if they’re not Mormons, if they’re in Utah, they’re soaking in the culture.

                I don’t live in Utah, anymore, and was glad to get away from that particular aspect of the culture, because oddly enough, the Mormon church teaches PERSONAL responsibility for sin, so how they went to putting it all on women, I don’t know. Culture and doctrine just don’t always jive.

          2. Dara*

            That’s not necessarily so. Prostitution is illegal in many places, while escorts in the same locations are perfectly legal. The difference is that you’re technically paying for the companionship, not sex, and escort agencies advertise to that effect. Some agencies do skirt the legal line or outright blow past it, but in most cases, negotiation for services is done between the client and individual escort so the agency maintains plausible deniability either way.

            Plus, the OP said in the letter above that massage parlors are legal where they are, so other businesses that offer sexual services may be as well.

      3. Kathleen Adams*

        I didn’t even know that “alienation of affection” was still a thing…and I’ve never been clear on what it actually is. I guess I could google it, but if anybody knows, do share!

      4. BeautifulVoid*

        Yeah, I have mixed feelings about that. It bugs me when someone learns of infidelity and immediately blames the other person rather than the one who broke promises and vows, but at least here, she seems to be blaming everyone equally. But on the flip side, if you (general you) decide to engage in a secret relationship with a married person, I think you lose the right to be shocked if things don’t turn out all hunky dory. Or in other words, while I don’t necessarily agree with what the wife did/is doing in regard to the public outings, I’m also not going to lose much sleep over the other women getting caught in the drama storm. (Minus the escort, since as you said, that’s a murky area where she might have just been doing her job and didn’t have a choice.)

        1. GreyjoyGardens*

          +1. I think the husband is the one really to blame here – he didn’t trip and fall into the waiting women’s arms – BUT, *knowingly* having an affair with a married man is sleazy and immoral. (Barring above-board poly arrangements, but that’s not what’s going on here.) I think it’s possible to say both that women don’t tempt men into affairs, and that the husband is the one at fault, while also saying “he’s married but lalala I don’t care!” is selfish and unkind.

          1. INTP*

            I do agree that it was selfish and immoral. I just think it’s not to the point that it’s justified to try to ruin someone’s life over. Save that for people that promised or owed you something and didn’t deliver, like your husband. It might not only be the women she is hurting (for example, anyone depending on their incomes). To me this is a personal life dispute that doesn’t justify interfering with someone’s professional life.

            1. tigerStripes*

              Will this really ruin someone’s life though? It’s not illegal to sleep with a married man. Would this really be more than embarrassing for the women?

              1. Not So NewReader*

                I believe in some areas it used to be illegal to sleep with a married person. This ties into look at the time frame in which the law was written.

            2. Traffic_Spiral*

              “Save that for people that promised or owed you something and didn’t deliver,”

              Basic social norms of living in society come with some sort of basic obligations towards our fellow humans – even if you don’t know them personally.

              “It might not only be the women she is hurting (for example, anyone depending on their incomes).”

              Oh, is that something important to consider? Before I take an action that will feel good for me, should I consider “maybe I’m hurting someone I don’t know about?” Should I consider “maybe this someone has children or other dependents that could be hurt by my self-indulgent actions?” Is that something I should think about before doing something? Cause in case you haven’t realized it yet, those requirements could also apply to, I dunno, thinking about whether or not you’re hurting the *family of the married man you’re banging!*

              Basically, if the side-chick didn’t have enough consideration for the wife not to eff her husband, the wife isn’t obligated to have enough consideration for the side chick not to legally eff her with a lawsuit. Side-binch can eat a hot steaming plate of Karma and legal fees.

        2. Um,*

          If anything the escort is the worst. She does it for a job. There’s a word for people who take money for sex and it surely applies to the escort.

          1. Jessie the First (or second)*

            Eh, I just don’t feel any moral outrage at sex workers. (And it’s legal some places, to boot.) So I don’t think she was “the worst” in this scenario, not by a very long shot.

            1. K.*

              Yeah. I don’t think sex work should be illegal and I don’t think it’s immoral (assuming all parties involved are legally adults and aren’t being coerced, obviously), so if anything, I think the escort looks the best here. The husband paid her to do something and she did it. Odds are good that if he hadn’t paid her she wouldn’t have been involved with him.

              1. BeautifulVoid*

                The more I think about it, I feel the worst for the escort (okay, and the child the boss fathered), especially if her friends and family didn’t know what she did to pay her bills and the wife outed her, because there’s definitely a stigma attached even when it’s legal. While not impossible, I have trouble believing that the boss hired her as an escort and then it wound up being Twu Wuv 4Eva between the two of them. (And those two women over there….)

                1. Kate*

                  The OP mentions that the wife didn’t out the escort as an escort, just as a woman who slept with the OP’s husband.

              2. Noobtastic*

                I agree. I think she has the least blame here, among the people actually committing adultery.

                Since almost no people go into sex-work without some form of coercion or desperation, I am not inclined to blame them for just doing their job.

          2. Emi.*

            I think prostitution is morally wrong, but I don’t think it’s nearly as bad as the moral clusterfudge this husband has committed.

              1. Zombii*

                Thank you, Alison. This thread is disgusting with shaming. Usually this group is so good about recognizing when gender results in unequal treatment, etc.

          3. Jadelyn*

            Wow. Maybe don’t be a jerk about sex workers? Feel free to dislike it personally, but sex work is a thing people do, it’s sometimes a thing people have to do in order to put food on the table, and like with anything else you find morally distasteful, you can be an adult about it and dislike it without dancing around the name-calling and rudeness you’re trying to get away with by not directly engaging in.

          4. Elizabeth H.*

            I don’t have a moral problem with sex work at all, but everyone is entitled to his or her own values. However, value judgments aside I think it’s in bad taste and inappropriate to refer to this woman as a whore, despite its literal definition it’s now used as a slur and you are deliberately using the word in a demeaning way.

            1. Noobtastic*

              I personally know a woman who was driven to sex-work at gunpoint. Literally at gunpoint. I don’t blame her for it, one bit. And once she was in, she was fairly stuck.

              Now, if I knew for an absolute fact that the only reason people ever went into sex-work was because they just like sex that much, and it is a vocation, then I might think, “Eww!” But probably not, actually, because I don’t hold other people responsible for MY religious beliefs. And since I do know that the vast majority of sex-workers are driven to it out of desperation, I just feel sorry for them, not judgmental against them.

              I HATE how people will take advantage of that desperation. Bad enough being part of the system that is objectifying and commodifying human beings. Some people even think that because they are paying, and because they are dealing with “whores,” that these human beings don’t deserve to be treated with any decency, and they are free to abuse them. Makes my blood boil.

  4. MuseumChick*

    Love updates where people doing something awful get their karma. Congrats on the new job!

    1. Cinnamon Owl*

      I love updates where people realize they need a different job, and find one that’s a much better fit.

  5. Susie*

    I don’t think his wife should have outed him to everyone so publicly, or outed the other women to their families and colleagues and filing a lawsuit against them. They didn’t break any vows to her, that was all her husband. She could have filed for divorce without so much drama.

    But I’m happy for you OP. So glad you are out of there and in a better place.

    1. fposte*

      That’s the risk you take if you’re with a cheater in an alienation of affection state.

      1. paul*

        From my (imperfect understandign) alienation of affection’s a pretty high bar to meet as far as actually getting a judgement against someone, even in the whopping six states that still recognize it.

        1. Electric Hedgehog*

          If she was able to get her lawyer to agree to file such a complaint, though, she probably has good cause to think that she’d be successful in getting that judgment rendered.

          1. JB (not in Houston)*

            She might think that, but that doesn’t mean she has a good chance. I don’t know what state she’s in or what the standards, so I’m not saying she probably does or doesn’t have a good case. I’m just saying that a lawyer’s willingness to take a case does not always have any correlation with the case’s chance of success.

          2. Jamie*

            Unless the lawyer is only charging her if the lawsuit is successful, the lawyer filing the suit isn’t indicative of chances of success

            1. MegaMoose, Esq*

              Contingency fee arrangements (i.e. only being paid if you win) are generally not allowed in family law cases. So yeah, the attorney taking the case only means that the attorney doesn’t think the claim is absurdly frivolous and thinks the wife will pay her bills.

                1. MegaMoose, Esq*

                  Taking a case you don’t think will win isn’t incompetent, and in the case of family law, there’s no single “winner.” As others have noted, pressing a long-shot claim is a common negotiating tactic, not a sign of incompetence. We simply don’t have enough facts here to judge the competence of the attorney. The fact that a bunch of people who aren’t involved think the case sounds absurd is irrelevant.

              1. Fafaflunkie*

                I’m sure the divorce proceedings (she gets half of everything he has, plus I’m sure she’ll get alimony as well) could very well let her pay for the lawyer that’s handling the lawsuits against the other women. Soon-to-be ex-wife may be only filing these suits out of vexation–knowing full well she’ll probably not see a penny in a judgment but those women need to spend a lot of money to their own lawyers to defend themselves.)

          3. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

            Unfortunately, there are lawyers who will fire meritless complaints because someone will pay them to do it. I don’t think they’re the majority, but it happens enough that simply filing a complaint doesn’t indicate that there’s good cause to file it.

            I think it’s more likely she filed this: (a) out of a desire to intimidate/wreck the other women; (b) as a bargaining chip in her divorce; (c) to try to set a framework for clawing back money soon-to-be ex spent on them for gifts, etc.; and/or (d) out of pure unadulterated rage.

          4. Not So NewReader*

            Hopefully, the lawyer laid out in clear language what she should expect to happen here.
            It could be that he is using the suit as a bargaining chip.
            It could be that she insisted, he told her it would not fly, but he filed suit anyway.
            It could be that the lawyer knows something not mentioned here.

        2. Clinical Social Worker*

          But even if she doesn’t get a judgment she gets to make his life hell via the courts.

          1. JB (not in Houston)*

            I hope she and her lawyer both have good reason to believe that the case has a chance. Courts very much frown on people filing suits for no reason other than to make someone’s life miserable. They don’t care if that’s an added bonus for you, but that can’t be the reason you’re doing it.

            1. Not So NewReader*

              The lawyer may be expecting an out of court settlement/resolve. The case may never see a court of law.

          2. Jessie the First (or second)*

            She’ll be making her own life hell through these suits as well. She’ll be getting deposed, she’ll be ordered to produce tons of documents and emails and texts – she will be subjected to the same scrutiny by the defense lawyers that she is going to be giving to the other women. And sure, likely she’s thinking that she is blameless and has nothing to hide so it’s fine. But that won’t make her deposition any more fun, and it won’t make it any less hostile, and it won’t be easy to see everything she has written over the last few years examined and read aloud and doubted. Subjecting oneself to misery for the sake of making someone else miserable seems too high a price to pay.

            1. Anna*

              If anyone ever filed a lawsuit or court case based solely on how convenient it would be, nobody would ever do it. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say this guy’s wife knows plenty well what she’s doing and isn’t an idiot who thought it would be a cakewalk.

              1. Jessie the First (or second)*

                I’m not saying she’s an idiot. I think she is overwhelmed by anger and I have sympathy for her, more so because I doubt she’ll find the revenge or peace she seeks this way.

              2. Stranger than fiction*

                Also, there’s a chance some of this gets dropped after the dust settles.

            2. Not So NewReader*

              It’s probably most of the same paper work she will need for her divorce case.
              It may not be a big paper chase.

      2. Jamie*

        True but given he was apparently screwing around with any woman who was willing the wife is going to have a hard time proving any of those women were specifically responsible for the failure of their marriage especially the escort. To me, it sounds like she just chose to marry a scumbag and that comes with inherent risks. After all theres a difference between ‘this woman relentlessly pursued and seduced my husband who was 100% faithful before meeting her’ and ‘my husband slept with half the women in the county as well as numerous others’.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if the wife not only lost the lawsuits but also wound up being counter sued and losing.

        1. Yep, me again*

          On the flip side, it sounds like the husband’s loaded and it doesn’t matter too much if she gets a nice settlement. I’d imagine the lawsuits will drop. She’s just angry and wants to make these women stress over it. And why shouldn’t she?

        2. MegaMoose, Esq*

          It’s hard to imagine what she could be counter-sued for, here. Slander has been suggested, but truth is a defense there. Courts can sanction you for vexatious litigation, but that’s usually after a pattern of filing abusive lawsuits.

        3. Lunch Meat*

          “Chose to marry a scumbag”? Really? No one expects this to happen when they decide to get married.

          1. tigerStripes*

            I agree. Somehow, I don’t think she thought to herself “What a nice scumbag. I think I’ll marry him!”

          2. Old Admin*

            “Chose to marry a scumbag”

            I’ve seen that happen – a woman actually told me she chose to marry a scumbag I know quite well (distant relative) for what he is, because he was loaded.

            Choices… but I know that money cost her a lot of tears, pain, and her soul.

          3. Traffic_Spiral*

            Yeah, if anything, the mistresses are the ones that knew what they were getting into – they chose to have sex with an adulterer.

      3. Anon attorney*

        Non-US divorce attorney here. I had to Google alienation of affection. I’m staggered that this still exists anywhere! It’s not a thing in my jurisdiction, although if you sue for divorce based on adultery you have to serve the papers on the affair partner (so that they can tell the court if it’s not true). I don’t see the purpose of alienation of affection other than to displace blame from where it belongs, the spouse. The point of divorce law is to enable people to disengage from relationships that are over. Punishing the affair partner doesn’t contribute to that at all.

        Thanks for the learning!

        1. Kathleen Adams*

          I have only heard about it in books, and I had no idea it was still a thing. And I never was clear what it actually is/was.

        2. AKJ*

          It doesn’t exist in most US jurisdictions, either. I think there’s only a few states that still allow it. These folks must be in one of those areas.

        3. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

          It’s truly not common anymore (it’s a common law tort that predates no-fault divorce, so it’s a little anachronistic, now). I think only 5 states still recognize it as a tort—Hawaii, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Dakota and Utah.

        4. Not So NewReader*

          In an era where divorce was frowned upon and women were not expected to have careers, it could be that the law was thought up as a way to financially help the economically disadvantaged woman. I am guessing, but I am sure there is some back story to it.

      4. kb*

        The husband, yes. He cheated on his wife. The other women made no promises to her, though.

        1. Traffic_Spiral*

          If they didn’t care enough about the wife to refrain from banging her husband (cause they wanted to), the wife’s not obligated to care enough about them to refrain from suing them (cause she wants to). You don’t get to not give a crap about hurting others if it gets in the way of something you want to do, then whine that the people you hurt don’t give a crap about hurting you back, if it helps something they want to do.

    2. K.*

      I don’t agree with the wife’s approach either, but I’m thrilled that the OP made it out of there and that her life has less drama now!

      1. Not So NewReader*

        OP, you moved fast and surefootedly, I am so impressed. Congrats on your new job.

    3. paul*

      That’s one I’m conflicted on; I feel torn between not involving other people in your drama and between schadenfreude at the guy’s embarrassment.

      1. Elizabeth West*

        Maybe that’s why she filed those suits–because she knew they would come down on him like a ton of bricks. I’m not saying I would have done it, just wondering.

    4. A Non E. Mouse*

      Eh, I don’t know. My first marriage ended after infidelity on his part, and I took the high road because I have kids with him.

      I have no qualms with those that go full nuclear and if I hadn’t had kids with him, I would have been sorely tempted myself.

      It’s hard to say how you should react until you’ve been down in the weeds on this one, and even if you’ve been down in the weeds, it’s hard to feel anything but sympathy for the next one going through it even if they handle it in a way you wouldn’t.

      1. Kathleen Adams*

        Me too. He’s such a scumball. I’ve never been in that position, but I can easily see why a little slashing-and-burning might be satisfying. I just hope she (the wife) manages to move on with her life. Because the best revenge is, as they say, living well.

      2. SheLooksFamiliar*

        I was was with my former partner for ~20 years, and repeatedly chose to forgive his lies and cheating. Always the optimist, that was me! His affair with a married woman – his ‘true soul mate’ – was too much for me. I moved out, but he begged for forgiveness and we went to couples counseling at his request. Foolishly, I moved back in because I thought we were in a good place. Then I caught him cheating again with the same married woman. I not only moved out, but I told her husband about the affair. He already knew and was in the process of filing divorce. I did not tell my ex’s family, and don’t know if he did or not. I was done and left with a bang, not a whimper.

        It had never occurred to me to lash out like that before, and I don’t know exactly why this time was different. Maybe I was simply reacting to an extreme situation (IMO) in an extreme manner. I don’t think I went fully nuclear but there was a chain reaction I didn’t expect, and I didn’t try to stop it. I’m not proud of it, but I can honestly say I don’t regret it.

        BTW, my ex and his soul mate didn’t stay together for long. Paying bills, doing the laundry, going grocery shopping, etc., wasn’t as glamorous or fulfilling as being star-crossed lovers. A cousin of his told me they were at each others’ throats for a couple of months, and that I was now ‘the one who got away.’ What a mess!

        1. GreyjoyGardens*

          That’s usually the way it ends up, if the affair partners get together. The affair can be glamorous and sexy, but bringing in the quotidian bill-paying, dog-walking, job-going, problem-solving stuff couples go through, and the bloom leaves the rose in a huge hurry.

        2. paul*

          It amazes me when people that are *both* cheating on a spouse/SO look at the person they’re cheating with, and decide “Yep, I can trust them for the long haul!”

          1. Elizabeth West*

            I know, right? Unless both parties are separated and divorce is pending, and it’s generally known that they’re both dating. But how do you justify that someone who lies to their spouse about you isn’t going to lie to you about anything? That’s some strong denial there.

            I’ve seen this work out, but it’s not common.

      3. mcr-red*

        +1 A Non E. Mouse, you said it exactly.

        I also feel zero percent sorry for the outed mistresses who knew he was married. When you choose the behavior, you choose the consequences. Oddly enough, there is a chance the cheated on spouse could be super mad at the both of you! Who could ever predict that? And why anyone ever thinks a third party, and especially an angry third party, is going to keep a secret is beyond me.

    5. H.C.*

      I’m split on this one too, esp given the evidence of “texts and emails prove that all three of them not only knew he was married but that he was seeing other women besides each one of them.” An almost literal lie in the bed you’ve made.

      And from a legal standpoint, the alienation of affection suits may be used to leverage those women to help strengthen the wife’s case against OP’s ex-boss.

      1. Iota*

        Or to get money from them that he spent on them. If he gave them a huge diamond out of marital funds…

        1. The OG Anonsie*

          Yeah I agree with this. Being the bigger person is great and all but if all these other parties knew exactly what the situation was and were fine participating in it all, they are just as guilty in all of it as the husboss.

          It’s not the wife’s fault that this is sensational and scandalous– it’s his. If he’s done something so crazy that telling people about it creates a drama bomb, that’s caused by his original behavior, not her disclosure of it. She as the messenger is not responsible for the fact that his indiscretions are something that will make people freak out when they hear it. And I think that other people who know and trust this guy deserve to know what he’s about for their own self-preservation in their interactions with him. The wife is not under any obligation to keep this a tidy secret from the rest of these people.

          Her methods were kind of OTT but considering the degree of crap he was getting into, I don’t find it disproportionate. Unnecessary, more like.

          1. Natalie*

            Eh, this isn’t someone truthfully answering the question “why are you getting divorced” – she sent dossiers to his co-workers, his admin assistant, and a bunch of their friends. The only purpose of that was to publicly humiliate him, which is it’s own drama aside from what he’d doing. If I got an email detailing my co-worker’s affairs I’d be fairly peeved at both of them for involving me in their marriage.

            Unless those other people are planning to get married to him, the idea that they need all of this information upfront to protect themselves is, frankly, ridiculous.

            1. aebhel*

              I think that adding his coworkers is probably unnecessary, but I see no problem with her telling all of their mutual friends.

              1. Natalie*

                Telling, sure. But she “sent copies of emails and text messages sent between him and the two women he was having affairs with, as well as one of the escorts he was seeing regularly”. I suppose I’m envisioning some kind of mass email scenario, whereas if she shared the details with a friend or two during personal conversations that would feel different to me.

                1. tigerStripes*

                  It does sound like a lot of this was just for revenge, but I can understand why she did it. I’m not saying it was the right thing, but I can understand it.

                2. Traffic_Spiral*

                  Yeah, but still. The husband’s the one that did it. The wife’s not obligated to help keep his dirty secrets.

            2. Not So NewReader*

              Can’t unring a bell.
              I do find it interesting how some people can have an OTT reaction and it ends up for [reasons] being the correct reaction to have.
              Notice I am not saying this is the right way to handle things and everyone should do this.
              However, some situations have such a specific set of particulars that a well-spread response is exactly what is needed. The situation is so unique that the response would not work well for most other people, most of the time.
              I have seen these unique OTT responses in various settings and it is interesting how the response plays out.

              Punchline: It’s helpful to trust that the wife gave the exact response that was needed given her givens, even if the reasoning is not clear to us.

            3. The OG Anonsie*

              That’s why I said the methods were over the top, but quibbling with the idea that it was drama-stoking to out him and the other women to their social circle.

              You can find it as ridiculous as you like. I find the insistence that someone who runs a scheme like this for years is somehow going to be a totally safe and trustworthy man to all his other friends and acquaintances to be pretty ridiculous.

        2. paul*

          *that* seems more likely than alienation, and IIRC most jurisdictions allow that (I know my mom’s sister got some back during the divorce for crap like that).

      2. Elizabeth H.*

        I don’t agree. There are plenty of people who are OK with seeing multiple people at a time – it doesn’t mean that you deserve to have your private life broadcasted and I don’t think that dating someone who is married means that either.

        To be honest, I don’t think ANYONE deserves to have their private life broadcasted to relatives, friends, coworkers, and Ask a Manager readers no matter what he or she did. Apart from what is used in court proceedings, it should be private between the parties involved and whomever they personally choose to tell (this is the difference between telling your sister about the thing going on your life, and having someone else send a mass email about it to your workplace).

        1. Here we go again*

          Typically, I would agree. However, these women did inject themselves into his workplace, so from their lack of discretion, I don’t think they have any privacy rights. If they went down the street to a hotel for lunchtime “dates,” it would be a different story.

        2. Not So NewReader*

          We don’t know who these people are.

          We try to help and learn from the LWs. The OP in this story did not sign on for any of this and she asked for help getting out of it. And she got herself out of it with amazing speed. It was the right choice for her to write to AAM. Alison gave OP advice that tremendously improved OP’s quality of life/work. Mission accomplished.

          1. Elizabeth H.*

            Right, I by no means meant that the letter writer shouldn’t have written in, just that it’s none of our business and beside the point for us to dissect, moralize about and speculate about the roles of the various involved parties APART from the letter writer and her boss.

    6. The IT Manager*

      After thought (but only after the initial revenge high wore off), I agree that his wife shouldn’t have outed the women’s affairs to their families (except maybe spouses) and coworkers. Her beef should not be with them. They didn’t make promises and commitments to her

      It’s pretty clear that her husband was on the prowl 24/7. I’m betting none of these women did anything to break up the marriage; he did it all himself.

    7. Detective Amy Santiago*

      They made a choice to engage in an extra marital affair. If he was lying to them and they didn’t know he was married, that would be different.

      1. Jadelyn*

        They made that choice, sure – but they had never made promises to the wife and so they broke no faith with her. She has no call to involve them in her divorce. Do I agree with their choice to have relationships with a married man? No. Would I do the same? No. But I don’t think taking her vengeance on those women by dragging them through the mud with him is the right thing to do in this case.

        1. Rabbit*

          We’re not talking about one night stands where the woman didn’t know the score. They chose to engage in affairs with a man they knew to be married and there’s no way that you can spin that where their actions and choices didn’t have the chance to do lasting emotional and financial harm to his wife.

          When my partner of 5 years left me to marry a friend of mine who he’d been cheating with for almost 2 years I absolutely felt that they were both at fault. Just because she wasn’t the one who had proposed to me didn’t excuse her role in the deception.

        2. Ann O.*

          They were already involved in the divorce, what with being the direct cause of it and accepting joint income. They also may not have made promises to the wife, but they knew their actions would cause her harm.

    8. Jamie*

      I agree with Susie. I’m happy for the OP but I’m not a fan of involving other people in your personal drama and so if I’m a colleague or family member of one of the parties why should I be subjected to the sordid details? Situation was bad enough without embarrassing herself.

      1. K.*

        Yeah, this is my thing. I don’t care what my colleagues do in their personal lives, beyond a cursory “How was your weekend/holiday/vacation?” If I were one of the mistresses’ colleagues, I would be really annoyed that this drama had now been made my business when I’m just trying to get through the day. I think the wife involved way too many people in her drama with her approach.

    9. Artemesia*

      I think alienation of affection is just plain stupid; people don’t own other people even their husbands and no one can steal another person without their complicity. And I would not ‘out’ my husband in this way in this circumstance BUT her marriage and she is entitled to do that if she wishes. He is the one who violated the vows and the women were knowingly complicit; being outed to their spouses seems like just desserts.

      We had someone in our larger family who did this; she even told MY boss about my relatives infidelity. Way out of line IMHO but I didn’t begrudge her telling the other woman’s husband and her kids — her prerogative.

    10. Frances*

      I agree with you–mostly :)

      Her committment was with him and he is the one she can be angry with. I think public outing was her call to make. Given that he has proven himself to be a great liar, it might also be her insurance that he doesn’t get to spread lies about why he is getting divorced.

      The other women made no promises to the wife and I think they should not have been outed. Even though the other women knew he was married, we don’t know what their lives are like so I would be wary of dragging them into this.

      1. tigerStripes*

        Equally the wife made no promises to the other women. Does she really owe them silence? I do think she went over the top by sharing it at work, but still…

        Then again, I tend to think that there’s a social obligation to not help a married person cheat if you know they’re married, so I think that the other women kind of fell down there.

        1. Not So NewReader*

          For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. If you do x then y could happen. Nothing exists in a vacuum our actions impact others and we don’t get to chose how they will react.

        2. Traffic_Spiral*

          I agree. The other women want the wife to owe them the courtesy of keeping quiet about their banging her husband, while insisting that they owed no reciprocal courtesy to the wife re: not banging her husband. You don’t get it both ways.

    11. Observer*

      Why, exactly, did she have any obligation to keep the drama and public shaming of her soon to be ex down?

      I would not think she had any obligation in any case. But given how blatant he was, she may have wanted to return the “favor” of public humiliation. I’m not going to judge her for that.

  6. animaniactoo*

    Well I guess that takes care of whether or not to out him to his wife…

    She might have gone a bit scorched earth, but it works for me. Glad your new situation works out better for you regardless of getting away from this situation!

  7. the other Emily*

    On what grounds is the wife suing the other women though? I mean good for her for leaving him but if anything they should be suing her for slander since she told their family members and people they work about the affairs. Not saying I want that to happen but the wife shouldn’t have brought them into her revenge on her husband.

    1. NYC Redhead*

      Alienation of affection is a civil case brought against a 3rd party who has caused a spouse to leave the marriage. So the “mistresses” in this case, caused the husband to cheat on his wife. It is abolished in most jurisdictions and very rarely, if ever, successful.

      1. fposte*

        It looks like there are only seven states where it’s still allowed; I mostly hear about suits in action in NC and MS (I didn’t even realize it’s still extant in my own state).

        1. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

          I think it’s only 5 states where it’s still recognized as a tort, fposte (or at least that’s what Google tells me ;) ). It’s on the books in other states but not in effect.

      2. Family lawyer*

        OP didn’t say what jurisdiction she was in, but I practice in a state that still has Alienation of Affection on the books. Here it is used on some occasions and there have been six figure damages awarded. Plus defending a lawsuit costs money. So the wife may be going for money, or revenge or both.

        1. Jessie the First (or second)*

          I’d bet revenge (unless it turns out one of the women is wealthy and could afford a settlement to get out of the suit). Alienation of affection suits are extraordinarily difficult to win generally, but here I bet it’ll be just about impossible: arguing the other woman is responsible for the failure of the marriage….but there are *several* different women, not to mention escorts, etc. Be hard to argue that anything other than the Grade A Awfulness of Husband was responsible for the marital breakdown. And I imagine whatever lawyer she hired knows it. So, revenge is my bet.

        2. MuseumChick*

          I would not at all be surprised if she is taking out the AoA lawsuites more to disrupt the mistresses lives and inconvenience and irritate them rather then expecting a large pay out. Still, there is a small chance she could get a large payout from this.

          1. Jessie the First (or second)*

            Well, she might theoretically get a judgment of damages – *hugely* unlikely anyway but especially with the set of facts as we know them. But that does not in any way mean she would ever see money. A judgment is a piece of paper. Collecting on a judgment is a whole other can of worms. Unless the other women are wealthy, the chances the wife would see any money even *if* hell freezes over and she wins is slim.

            1. The OG Anonsie*

              I’m not familiar with these types of suits– what about the money the husband spent on the other women? Like say, he uses joint marital funds to buy very expensive jewelry for them. Could she attempt to essentially reclaim joint money that went to maintaining mistresses? Is that a thing?

              1. Undine*

                I am so not a llama, but I read an article once that described how any money that a husband has surreptitiously spent can be considered part of the joint assets and so the spouse gets paid back for her share. You do have to be able to document it. An example they had was paying rent for the girlfriend’s apartment.

                1. Morning Glory*

                  I spent a really long time reading this before realizing that llama meant lawyer

                2. Jessie the First (or second)*

                  That’s pretty much right. The wife would be arguing that as part of the divorce action, not as the AoA claim I think – as they divide the marital estate in the divorce, her lawyer will be arguing that her share should be based on what the estate *would have been* but for the husband’s wrongful payments/financial gifts to his mistresses. So to oversimplify – the bank account actually has 100k in it, but the court agrees to act as if the bank account has 200k in it because he spent 100k on his mistresses; then the court awards her half of this imagined marital estate – half of 200k, so she gets 100k. She gets half of the estate including the amount he spent on his affairs. (Obviously, the court would not leave him with nothing. I just used easy numbers because I went to law school because I have a deathly fear of complicated math.)

              2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

                Yes, it’s a thing in community property states.

                With some limited exceptions, everything both spouses earn, invest, etc., becomes the “property” of the marriage. Then when you divorce, absent a prenup, that marital property is usually split 50/50 between the spouses. But if one spouse “squanders” that marital property (e.g., by buying jewelry for his mistresses), then the other spouse can request that that money be “repaid” as part of the divorce settlement, as Jessie The First has described.

            2. Lora*

              I think as someone said above, her lawyer is using it as a bargaining chip to get a better financial deal in the divorce.

              Your divorce lawyer’s job in a contentious divorce with significant money/assets and no kids, is to make your soon-to-be-ex’s life hard and dangle the promise that if he just gives you (the Swiss bank account, the Maserati, whatever) you will drop the other charges. It’s not really about winning the lawsuits so much as squeezing as much money as possible out of your ex.

              If you are still civil with your soon-to-be-ex, or if you have kids, or if your main asset is your DVD collection circa 1997, then it’s very different. Then you want to keep things polite and amicable as possible and pay the nice mediator their fee and go on your merry way.

              As satisfying as it would be, you really aren’t allowed to put all their belongings on the front lawn and set them on fire, or sell his most prized possession on eBay. That’s considered destruction of marital property even if it’s something dumb like his toenail clipping collection.

        3. Editor*

          Family Lawyer — could alienation of affection lawsuits be supported by texts or emails where one of the other women might have said something like “while your wife is in surgery, why don’t we have lunch — she will never know.” It seems to me if the other women were actively advocating for time with the sleazy husband at the wife’s expense, a credible case could be developed.

          That said, I think alienation of affection should not be grounds for lawsuits. It smacks too much of “the woman tempted me” or all those rape cases where the rape victim is grilled about her clothing and other lifestyle aspects that might “justify” the accused rapist’s x number of “minutes of action.” I am really tired of double standards.

          Also, it interests me that Mississippi allows alienation of affection as grounds for divorce. This is the state that just refused to add domestic violence to the categories it allows as the basis for divorce. Maybe there are some jurisdictional quirks that make suing for alienation of affection suitable in the case OP wrote in about.

    2. Jessie the First (or second)*

      Not to get into a legal argument, but it is not slander if it is true. You can’t sue a person for publicizing negative things about you if those negative things are true.

      1. Cinnamon Owl*

        This. There is no legal standard that if you engage in an affair with a married person, it is the duty of their spouse to cover up the truth of the affair.

        Their complete lack of interest in doing so should fall under easily foreseeable possible consequences.

      1. Mike C.*

        No, this is too far. You shouldn’t get to collect damages from a third party because one’s spouse was unfaithful. They weren’t at the wedding, they didn’t sign the wedding license and so on. It goes back to the outdated idea that someone can “steal” your significant other. They’re adults with agency, not property.

        It’s terrible what this husband did but the responsibility lies with him, not the women he was spending time with. There’s a reason why this isn’t recognized in 44 states.

        1. Jessie the First (or second)*

          Mike, Sian is responding to the commenter who said that the other women should have sued the wife for slander. They can’t sue for slander because it isn’t slander.

          1. Mike C.*

            I clarified below, but I still disagree with the general statement of “good for her” in reference to the wife suing the other women.

          1. Jessie the First (or second)*

            Gotcha. Just showed up in response to a different one.

            I’m with you on alienation of affection. Thankfully, most states have done away with that as a cause of action.

        2. Sian*

          It’s recognised where she is, apparently, so she gets to do it. I’m fine with that. They knew what they were doing. He’s definitely WAY worse, and I’m not sure she should or would win the alienation case, but I love that she’s gone for it!

          1. Mike C.*

            Why do you love it? Don’t you think it’s a little messed up to treat spouses like property or to force third parties to be responsible for marriages they are not part of?

            1. Sian*

              I don’t agree that her actions do either of those things. That’s your interpretation, it’s certainly not mine.

                1. Sian*

                  Again, I disagree. It holds them responsible for their actions and the impact those actions had on her. I see no problem with that where they knowingly had a relationship with a married person.

                  I’m not expecting everyone to agree with me, unlike Mike, so I’ll leave it there.

                2. JB (not in Houston)*

                  But they don’t owe her anything. They never made any promises to her or anyone else to uphold the sanctity of the marriage. So the suit is, in fact, trying to force third parties to be responsible for marriages they are not part of.

            2. Superanon*

              For the love of god, can we please have a day where you just disagree and move on?

            3. Stranger than fiction*

              I don’t believe spouses are property either, but hopefully she may have saved some other woman/women from getting involved with this dude by spreading the word as thoroughly as she did.

            4. Rabbit*

              I think that as long as we live in a society where monogamous marriages are the norm it’s at the very least sketchy to have an ongoing affair with someone you know to be married. It certainly makes me doubt their morals and trustworthiness.

          2. Jessie the First (or second)*

            By going for it, she ensures that she gets to live and relive and relive every crappy moment of her crappy marriage for years (if the suits aren’t dismissed). I can’t imagine a less pleasant way to spend my years. I’d rather celebrate a life free from the anchor of a scummy ex-husband than force myself and everyone around me to stay mired in exactly how awful it was.

            I get that it reads well as a fantasy, but the reality of it would be awful.

            (And yeah, also on principle I am not a fan of blaming third parties, however immoral they may seem to you, for a failure of an entirely other person to live up to his promise.)

        3. K.*

          I agree. You can’t steal a spouse. You can’t force someone to be with you. At the basest level, people cheat because they want to. Even if these other women pursued the husband, if he’d shut them down there would be no issue. And I definitely don’t believe the escort is in any way at fault – she’s just doing her job. If he hadn’t paid her, there would be no interaction between them. That is entirely on the husband.

          I certainly don’t think being with a married/committed person is admirable, but at the end of the day the only person who owes you anything is your SO.

        4. Iota*

          Yes, but if you accept property that is marital property, you are taking something you have no right to. So if he spent money on them, she does have a right to get it back.

          You have sex with married person, no suit. You accept gifts and vacations and $$$ from a married person in an ongoing affair, YDI.

          Interestingly, were this California (or another community property state), wife could sue the mistresses for the value gifts (on community property grounds, not alienation grounds), but not a professional sex worker (if the sex work was legal in the jurisdiction in which it occurred). The difference? Giving away marital property v. getting a service (sex).

          If you knowingly have an affair with a married person and they give you gifts or you spend part of their money, watch out.

          1. Mike C.*

            But my wife can’t sue an exotic car shop just because I decide to blow money there on a Ferrari.

            1. MuseumChick*

              Iota, I believe, is speaking to how the law IS, not how it (in some peoples opinions) SHOULD be.

          2. PK*

            Gifts are gifts. Affair aside, by that logic, if wife buys a gift for a family member, the husband can sue to recover the cost of the gift if he wasn’t aware. I can’t say I agree with that.

            1. Detective Amy Santiago*

              It wouldn’t make sense to sue your spouse for buying their mother a gift for Mother’s Day, but you might be able to sue for misuse of marital assets if your spouse gives their deadbeat sibling 75% of your savings account without your knowledge.

      1. fposte*

        Well, you can sue, but truth is an effective defense, and you’ll really look like an idiot.

    3. IvyGirl*

      According to wikipedia, alienation of affection is an action brought by a deserted spouse against a third party alleged to be responsible for the failure of the marriage. The defendant in an alienation of affections suit is typically an adulterous spouse’s lover, although family members, counselors and therapists or clergy members who have advised a spouse to seek divorce have also been sued for alienation of affections. As of 2016, six US states (Hawaii, North Carolina, Mississippi, New Mexico, South Dakota, and Utah) recognize this tort.

    4. MuseumChick*

      Echoing others, it’s only slander if they can prove it’s not true, and (I believe, I could be wrong) they would have to prove it wasn’t true and prove monetary damages (such as loosing clients).

      1. Natalie*

        I don’t believe you have to prove damages to win a defamation case in the US, but you may not be awarded all that much money if there were no direct damages.

        1. Iota*

          Depends on the state and the nature of the defamation. Issues regarding sex, etc. usually require no damages and are defamation per se.

          But this isn’t, as it is true.

          It may be another tort, such as public disclosure of private facts. Given, however, how sloppy all parties were, it’s unlikely the mistresses would prevail.

      2. iseeshiny*

        IANAL but I was under the impression that you had to prove it wasn’t true and that the slanderer knew it wasn’t true. So someone could accuse someone else of being a thief, and go around calling them a thief, and it would be hard to get a guilty verdict in a slander case unless you had evidence of the person knowing that it wasn’t true and saying it anyway.

      3. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

        You don’t have to prove monetary damages, but you do have to show you were injured. But the standard for injury is a little broader than in other legal cases because defamation torts are about harm to your reputation.

    5. Helen*

      It’s not slander if it’s the truth. They were knowingly having an affair with a married man and his wife has proof. Her telling everyone is not even close to slander since it is true.

    6. paul*

      1: Relatively few jurisdictions still recognize alienation of affection as tortious.

      2: Truth is a defense against slander. If she keeps doing it, continually, maybe there’d be grounds for claims of harassment?

      1. MuseumChick*

        Yeah, if she kept sending stuff out there could be grounds for a harassment charge. But it sounds like she did it all in one giant swoop.

      2. Iota*

        Yes, but in most community property states, she would have a claim against the mistresses for the $$$ husband spent on them unless that money came solely from a separate property source.

        That’s not a claim about the sex or the marriage, but about the mistress receiving property she had no right to. A spouse cannot unilaterally gift community property. It is considered fraud on the community in most CP states. The wife could go after the mistress to recover the property.

        Moral: if you are having an affair in a CP state, don’t accept gifts from your married lover.

    7. nuance*

      I agree that suing the other women for AoA, while it sounds great, probably won’t go far.

      But calling Ex-Wife telling the truth ‘slander’ is just wrong. You can only sue for things like slander, libel, defamation of character, etc. if the things people are saying about you are untrue. These women all chose to have an affair with JerkBoss, they did it, it’s factually accurate – they can’t sue Ex-Wife for telling the truth. And she has no obligation to keep any of this private.

  8. CaliCali*

    Holy sh*t! I’m shocked the LW was able to present that whole story in such a cogent manner. Mine would have been filled with a lot more CAPS and exclamation! points! because GOOD LORD that is some insane drama (see, I did it right there)

    Also, good job on getting out.

  9. Wow*

    I can’t believe all three of the other women knew he was married AND had other mistresses besides them and were okay with it. Just wow.

    Congrats on getting out of there OP. Good luck in your new spot.

    1. Aphrodite*

      That’s what I never understand either. Who wants to be with someone who is cheating on a spouse or significant other (or in this case, multiple others)? And does no one worry about AIDS or other sexually transmitted diseases any more?

    2. Detective Amy Santiago*

      I misread it that the other women did not know that he was engaging in multiple affairs. Wow is right. He must either be really, really rich and bought them lots of stuff or be amazing in bed for them all to put up with that.

  10. Mike C.*

    Alienation of affection lawsuits? Are you kidding me? What a garbage tort. It’s a lucky thing that the OP wasn’t named in these for nominally “helping” by paying bills and whatnot.

    1. Natalie*

      From what I recall from when this letter was posted initially, they aren’t easy suits to win even against a spouse’s partner, so the LW would almost certainly be able to get any similar suit thrown out.

      But I agree generally, it’s a garbage tort and shouldn’t exist anymore.

    2. Family lawyer*

      A lawsuit against the OP would go nowhere though, since it wasn’t her money and she was doing any bill paying on behalf of her boss in her capacity as an assistant.

      As for alienation of affection, whatever your opinion is on it (I disagree with it also) his wife could win substantial damages against each woman, given she has proof of everything. I don’t blame her for doing what is in her best interest on the advice of her lawyer.

      1. Iota*

        Also, if it’s a CP state, she has a recovery right to any community property they received, be it a gift, a vacation, or cash. If they knowingly received marital funds from him, they are toast.

          1. Natalie*

            This piqued my curiosity and it appears there’s only one state where they overlap – New Mexico.

      2. Mike C.*

        It doesn’t matter if the OP would have a good defense, in such a case she would still need to pay for an attorney to defend her and get her name off of the lawsuit, plus the opportunity cost to account for the small chance of failure.

        Also, I’m not blaming anyone for listening to their attorney, I’m blaming them for using an outdated law to seek vengeance.

        1. Triangle Pose*

          You’re calling it vengeance but she’s entitled to try and recover her share of the the community property and she is justified in using the law to get that back. I think you’re letting your issue with the AoA tort color your view of his wife’s motivations.

          1. Not So NewReader*

            OHHH, good point. She wants to make sure she recovers that $x spend on that ring, vacation, whatever.

        2. H.C.*

          I don’t. If the law is observed and enforceable in the state they reside in, it’s fair game to use. The law only becomes outdated when it gets struck down in the courts or if the people and/or state leg pass something to undo it.

          1. Anna*

            While I agree with your first assertion, your second is crap. If that were true, the laws that were on the books until far too recently that set curfews for people of color would be valid under your definition.

            Alienation of Affection is based on outdated views of spouses being property. The law is outdated, but for whatever reason some states keep them on the books and the wife can use it to recoup money that was technically half hers being spent on women who were not part of her marriage.

            1. H.C.*

              But in the legal sense, they are valid – it’s just that law enforcement agencies can choose whether or not to enforce them.

              And that’s why I mentioned courts as well, hopefully I’m not giving too much credit to the judiciary processes in striking down outdated or unnecessary laws.

              1. MegaMoose, Esq*

                I think you’ve got two definitions of outdated going, here. “Outdated” could mean “old-fashioned and unjustifiable by modern standards of morality” or it could mean “legally invalid” via preemption or being unconstitutional or some other legal argument. You could certainly argue that AoA laws are outdated in the first sense but not in the second.

                Also, I can’t think of any situation in which the judiciary could strike down a law because it’s unnecessary or old-fashioned, but they of course would decline to enforce it if it’s legally invalid.

            2. MegaMoose, Esq*

              I agree with your second paragraph, but the comparison to curfews for people of color doesn’t work – those laws are legally invalid because they are unconstitutional. Keeping them on the books doesn’t meant they are legally enforceable. AoA laws have not been deemed unconstitutional, they’ve just been legislatively revoked in most places for various public policy reasons.

      3. Gadfly*

        Pure legal speculation, I wonder if it might affect how they figure things like the child support responsibilities into splitting the estate (like taking earlier support given out of ‘his share’) and other gifts/payments and such. If the payee is also named as being party to destroying the marriage I wonder if that more firmly puts it in things he owes for versus things they split like furniture bills or mortgage responsibilities where the payee is more neutral.

        1. Jessie the First (or second)*

          Child support isn’t based on that. It’s just an income calculation based on who has physical custody (though they have no kids. One of his mistresses had a child with him, so there is child support in his future, but not to his soon-to-be-ex wife.)

          But yeah, it could affect the split of the marital estate like you say – that she gets more on the idea that he wrongfully deprived the marital estate of certain money (sounds like lots of money!) so she should get half of whatever the estate *would* have been. But that’ll be what the divorce lawyers hammer out and argue.

  11. Brogrammer*

    I think this is what we call a “good end.” Not perfect per se, but definitely as good an outcome as possible given the original situation. OP has a new job that she likes and has appropriate work/life boundaries and her scumbag boss got what was coming to him.

    I also feel for the wife, but it sounds like she’s taking all the right steps to improve her situation by kicking her dirtbag soon to be ex to the curb.

  12. Amber Rose*

    OP do you, by any chance, secretly work inside an actual soap opera? Or a Harlequin romance novel?
    Because holy cow. That is some massive scale drama.

    Good for you for getting the heck out!

  13. Leatherwings*

    I’m so relieved you got out of that situation, OP! Sounds like you have a much better work/life balance, which is so great.

  14. Kimberly R*

    I love when people get their just desserts and I love even more that the OP is in a different department from the drama now. This guy is probably hell to work for right now.

  15. Mustache Cat*

    First — LW, good for you and your new job! Hope your ex-boss’s entire boss blows completely over your head and you can forget about him.

    Second — HOLY CRAP IS THAT WOMAN LIVING EVERY SCORNED WIFE’S DREAM. Like damn, I’m not sure I would ever do that (nor have I been cheated on to my knowledge) but that’s the kinda hammer blow of justice that so many divorcees only daydream about.

    1. Daffodil*

      I know right? She must have spent months of her time and thousands of dollars setting up that nuclear strike. To put together that complete a set of information, she either hired a PI or is one herself, she certainly hired at least one lawyer, and she probably spent months acting like everything was fine while she did it. Most people don’t have the wherewithal (financial or emotional) to pull that off. Wow. Scorched-earth isn’t necessarily the most ethical approach, but you’ve got to admire her commitment to it.

      1. Cleopatra Jones*

        She might not have went scorched Earth on him, if it had just been one other woman. But I can totally see not only scorching the Earth but salting it as well for 2 other mistresses, a regular escort, AND a baby by one of the mistresses.

        That’s a lot to deal with.

      2. Buffay the Vampire Layer*

        I genuinely mean this in a positive way, but this woman is like a real life Amy Dunne. Incredible patience and power of will.

      3. Not So NewReader*

        I have seen women save money for years as part of a plan to move out and move on.

        “Hell hath no fury as a woman scorned.”

  16. Murphy*

    This is a great update. Obviously, I feel for boss’s wife and what she’s going through, but she was already being seriously wronged. I hope she’s able to move on after all of this is through.

    OP, I’m glad you don’t have to deal with this anymore.

  17. paul*

    Ignoring allt he divorce drama and scuzzy behavior of the boss, it sounds like the new job’s a much better fit anyway! So that’s a good resolution for OP, glad it worked out

  18. Robbenmel*

    OMG. That whole thing is just ….amazing. Congratulations, OP! It could not have ended better for you!

    But here’s what I really want to know…WT actual HECK does that guy have going for him that all of these women want some? I cannot even imagine the guy I would be willing to climb into that mud pit for.

    1. Cleopatra Jones*

      You would be surprised. Google Tavon White. That dude got 4 guards in prison pregnant, and he was the inmate.

    2. Lissa*

      Beautiful eyes? Voice like melted butter? A 13 inch personality? I have noooo idea, but I like to read about strange things in history etc. and it does seem like this type of thing isn’t that uncommon — someone who managed to rack up a really weirdly unbelievable number of love interests despite what you’d think would be a lot of marks against. I guess it’s like how some people always seem to find the right job even though there’s nothing about them that’s “on paper” better than other people … I don’t even know!

      1. Cinnamon Owl*

        The rule seems to be that if you can find one person willing to put up with you, you can find multiple people. There is no correlation with attractiveness–it’s not like wildly attractive people cheat constantly, but that people who want to cheat do so.

  19. Violet Fox*

    Congrats on having a better job that makes you much happier and big congrats about being moves away from all of the drama!

  20. PK*

    Well, I really think the wives actions were pretty poor concerning the public outing and the lawsuits against the mistresses. However, the OP’s situation sounds much better now. Nice update for them!

    1. Gadfly*

      I don’t feel bad for the outing. That is part of the risk of knowingly partnering with a cheater. Just like many are arguing that the mistresses had no responsibility to her marriage, she had no responsibility to their reputations/secrets.

      1. aebhel*

        This. Even if you argue that people have no moral responsibility not to sleep with married/monogamous people (I would disagree), by those lights a scorned wife has no responsibility to protect the reputations of her husband or his mistresses with her silence.

        Glad the OP is out of that situation, though!

      2. PK*

        I’d say there is a certain amount of moral responsibility with other people’s secrets. The wive sent this information to work colleagues and family. This was nothing more than petty revenge that looks badly on her too.

        1. ABCDE*

          I’d say there is a certain amount of moral responsibility to respect other people’s marriages and not KNOWINGLY and fully willingly having an affair with someone you know is married. The mistresses carried on with a married man, knowing he was married and not in an open relationship (his wife did not know about the affairs). This is nothing more than awful, gross behavior that looks badly on them.

      1. PK*

        Oh absolutely. This post wasn’t about his actions though so I didn’t mention it. He sounds like a real tool.

    2. Mira*

      I disagree. We function as a society because we all are supposed to subscribe towards acting with common decency. You don’t get to contribute towards ruining someone’s life, and then complain when they react however they wish to react. At that point, you’re reaping what you’ve sown.

      The degree of the other women’s fault is irrelevant. What is relevant is that they did knowingly put themselves at fault, and contributed KNOWINGLY towards creating a situation where anyone with a half a whit of common sense would know that the fallout towards the victim of all the collective wrongdoing would be huge.

      1. Natalie*

        “You don’t get to contribute towards ruining someone’s life, and then complain when they react however they wish to react.”

        Surely you accept there’s limits to that, though? “However they wish to react” encompasses an awfully broad range, plenty of which may not be acceptable or justified.

        1. Cinnamon Owl*

          Expecting other people to keep a secret that you failed to keep is going pretty deep in hypocrisy.

        2. Not So NewReader*

          There are laws that describe what behaviors are not tolerated. The problem comes in when a person decides they do not care about the laws and in the course of reacting to the bad behavior of another person, breaks the laws. Reality is that we have no control how others react to our behavior, they can simply chose to ignore which ever law they wish.

          I think the concept Mira is driving at here is “self-preservation”. But, OTH, some people do not care about protecting themselves, either.

          People should not kill other people because of affairs. But reality is they do. We see it in the news all the time.

          As I am thinking about this, ex-wife held herself together better than a lot of people. While we may disagree with AoA suits, she is using the legal system we have in place to deal with the problem, as opposed to taking matters into her own hands. I wish everyone did this.

          1. Mira*

            Thank you – self preservation is exactly what I was aiming for. I don’t condone going outside the law to get justice, or even revenge, if that’s what one is after. But within the range of the law, I’d say all bets are off once you decide to involve yourself in a person’s life in such a disruptive capacity.

      2. PK*

        This is nothing more than petty revenge and an attempt at labeling the mistresses with a scarlet A among their family and colleagues. That certainly doesn’t contribute to common decency either.

        1. Mira*

          As I’ve said in another comment – if you don;t act with decency, you can’t expect any in return. You don’t want a scarlet letter on your back? Don’t knowingly have affairs with married people. You want to screw whoever you want to, selfishly and without regard for anyone else who may be affected by your actions? Be prepared to reap what you’ve so generously sown.

          Which brings me to the question – just what exactly is wrong with petty revenge? This woman has been damaged in colossal ways by her husband and the women who knowingly chose to consort with him.If she wants to string them all up publicly for destroying her life – while she was dealing with a heart condition that required surgery on top of it! – then she’s damn well entitled to. And any moralising should be directed towards the people who collectively did this to her because they are the ones who are originally and eternally in the wrong, because if they hadn’t set out to cheat, and help someone cheat, respectively, they wouldn’t be here to face the consequences today.

          1. Mira*

            I would like to add, you don’t get to blame the victim for how they chose to go about seeking redressal, as long as the redressal is within the sanctions of the law.

            The. Victim.

      3. Carrie*

        If a life can be ‘ruined’ by the end of a relationship, that life is cruising for a ruinin’ regardless of anyone else’s actions, so being mad at the specific proximate cause is pretty pointless.

        1. Mira*

          A life can definitely be ruined by the end of a relationship. When a long term relationship ends, and ends in this fashion, at least one party has ended up with X number of years of their life gone to waste, plus X number of more years that they’ll need to heal and recover, plus the emotional trauma and heartbreak that will prolly define them for a long time to come, plus the fiscal and practical implications of a marriage ending are another horse entirely. And if they are hurt enough or old enough or any number of factors coming in – they may even not be in a position to find love and companionship again.

          Taking all that into account – all that collective unhappiness of both emotional and practical means – I’d say yeah. Ruined is the right word.

  21. Chalupa Batman*

    I try not to engage in schadenfreude (I think it’s bad for the soul), but I couldn’t help smiling a little at the chaos the wife has created. Ultimately I think she must be in a lot of pain to take her anger to such an extreme place, and it will probably come back to bite her several times over, so it’s not a great outcome, but the sheer carnage seems to match the boss’ flagrant lapse of character. I’m full on happy for OP, though-so glad you escaped that circus intact!

  22. Scarlott*

    Usually these things happen because the love is lost. This reeks of revenge suing. Good for her. I would do the same in her shoes. There’s virtually no risk to her. As for the OP it sounds like you got away from a bad situation, so good for you.

  23. MuseumChick*

    Just in case anyone is interested. This is the criteria for proving Alienation of Affection (according to Wikipedia).

    “the plaintiff has to show that (1) the marriage entailed love between the spouses in some degree; (2) the spousal love was alienated and destroyed; and (3) the defendant’s malicious conduct contributed to or caused the loss of affection. It is not necessary to show that the defendant set out to destroy the marital relationship, but only that he or she intentionally engaged in acts which would foreseeably impact the marriage.”

    1. Scarlott*

      So if the marriage was already fallen apart (separate beds, fighting, no sex), then requirements 1 and 3 are failed, and the lawsuit should be dismissed.

      1. MuseumChick*

        I think that would depend on the time line of things. If the spouse didn’t move out the bedroom until at least one of the affairs started for example. And I’m sure lawyers would have a field day interpreting what “some degree” of love means.

        1. Scarlott*

          Well all of that is pure speculation anyways. I’m not a lawyer, but that would be an interesting case to see.

          1. MuseumChick*

            May waste some time today research successful AoA cases. I’m super curious about the mechanics of this now.

            1. Anna*

              Didn’t the wife of the governor (I think it was the governor) that “hiked the Appalachian trail” sue for alienation of affection?

              Okay, I just looked it up. She did not sue, but it was nasty.

      2. Jessie the First (or second)*

        Which is one reason why her lawsuits will be very, very unpleasant for her as well as for the other women. Because the defendants’ attorneys will be pouring over everything she has said, written, done over the past years to show that the love had died well before (she’ll get deposed and have to talk about how often they had sex, for pete’s sake. On the record! With a court reporter taking notes!), or even that she herself is responsible at least partly for problems in the marriage. It’s going to be messy and miserable, and not just for them.

        1. MuseumChick*

          I think when people see red, they really don’t care about feeling bad in the future. Heck, some people thrive on revenge. My guess is she’s not expecting much to come from it, rather to just disrupt the lives of her soon-to-be-ex and the mistresses. It does sound like she has a lot of documentation, if it will help her in court who knows.

          I wonder if any of these women will try to settle out of court to just make this go away.

        2. BeautifulVoid*

          (Court reporter over here.) Hey now, don’t try to take away one of the few things that breaks up the tedium of all the personal injury cases we have to do. Though along those lines, sometimes plaintiffs in those personal injury cases have gone into very explicit detail about what they can and can’t do anymore. Very. Explicit. Detail.

          On a more serious and relevant note, as people have pointed out upthread, clearly the wife planned the hell out of this for quite some time. I don’t think she filed anything on a whim, so I would think (hope?) she took all of that into consideration. I mean, she aired her dirty laundry to a ton of people already. She might be at the point where she just doesn’t care anymore and won’t have a problem testifying to any of the more intimate details. (And while I don’t necessary agree with her methods, I also can’t really blame her for going this route, either.)

          1. MuseumChick*

            LOL. I can only imagine the kind of things you hear in your line of work. And, yes, it does sound like the wife has planned things out. I wish this was a public news story so I could follow it to its conclusion.

          2. Jessie the First (or second)*

            Haha! Yeah, this sort of deposition would be a lot more likely to keep you interested, I’m sure. :-)

            How do you keep a poker face as a court reporter when you find yourself recording a case like this??

            1. BeautifulVoid*

              One of the precisely three times I’ve lost my composure in a deposition (two cases of the giggles when the lawyers started it, and one “wait, WHAT?” from something that caught me completely off guard) was during a divorce case where they were going through the husband’s credit card statement, and the wife’s attorney asked him about a charge to eHarmony.com and if it was a one-time thing or recurring charge. He said “I should hope it’s only a one-time payment!”

              “Turning your attention to your AmEx statement from April of last year, do you see $xx.xx for eHarmony.com?”
              (flips page)
              “Turning your attention to your AmEx statement from May of last year, do you see $xx.xx for eHarmony.com?”
              (flips page)
              “Turning your attention to your AmEx statement from June of last year, do you see $xx.xx for eHarmony.com?”

              The guy’s own attorney was laughing by the end of it. (He was not.) Some of my colleagues hate divorce cases, but I love them. They’re supposed to be limited to financial information only, but dirty laundry is often wrapped up in finances. And some people just NEED to tell their story on the record. Also, because there are lots of numbers that people stumble over and the parties can often be obnoxious, we charge an extra $0.10 a page. ;)

          3. MuseumChick*

            Ok, I have to know, how you every just busted up laugh in the middle of a court case?

            1. BeautifulVoid*

              I just do depositions, not trials, but there was this one dumb car accident where a young girl rolled into the car in front of her at a stop sign (and the other driver was claiming all sorts of injuries, which…yeah, no). When asked in the deposition what happened, she said she stopped at the light, she was looking down, her foot slipped off the brake, and she rolled into the other car. The plaintiff’s attorney asked “When you say you were looking down, what, exactly, were you looking at?”

              Every single person in the room swore she was going to say “my cell phone”. Her actual answer? “A piece of chicken.” Turns out she’d been eating fried chicken in the car while driving and got distracted when putting the bone back in the bucket. It was just SO unexpected that we all had a laugh, and then I couldn’t look at the plaintiff’s attorney for the rest of the depo because I knew if we made eye contact again, both of us would just lose it, and that would be bad.

              (And now I’m completely derailing here, sorry! I should remember to check in to the open threads more often.)

          4. Alli525*

            I used to be a legal assistant, and my boss texted me in the middle of a deposition once to ask me to look up Peyronie’s Disease. (NSFW!!!!! …unless your boss asks you to look it up) I can only imagine how that went over.

        3. Anna*

          I don’t think it will be nearly as unpleasant as you’d like it to be. This woman has agency and probably knows what consequences are. She took her time and consulted with a lawyer who hopefully steered her in the right direction. Honestly, there are some people out there who will burn the world down and not regret it if they feel they’ve been wronged enough. I get the feeling this women will be okay.

          1. Jessie the First (or second)*

            As I’d “like it to be” ?? WTH? I would prefer people not be miserable, all things considered.

          2. MegaMoose, Esq*

            As I recall, Jessie is a lawyer – it’s not about wanting things to be unpleasant, it’s about *knowing* that most laypeople vastly underestimate how awful these cases are for all involved. Even if they think they know what they’re getting into, and feel 100% justified, and are all-around BAMFs. These kind of lawsuits can ruin lives while you’re not paying attention. It’s not gleeful to point that out, it’s just factual.

          3. JB (not in Houston)*

            Like Jessie, I’m a lawyer, and I can tell you from experience that people rarely truly understand how hard a lawsuit is going to be on them. And that’s just a run-of-the-mill lawsuit. This kind of thing, which will go down exactly as Jessie described, is going to be hard on the wife. Only she can decide whether it will be worth it to her. But I agree with Jessie that you can want only the best for the wife and wish her all the happiness in the world and still think this is a bad idea–for her sake.

          4. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

            I second (third?) Jessie’s analysis, and although you may not have meant to do this, it’s pretty unkind—and certainly not warranted or supported, here—to imply that anyone would wish another person misery.

            People often enter lawsuits when they’re angry and emotions are high, which also means that they sometimes make less-than-stellar decisions about whether and how they want to sue someone. They don’t think about how long it will take, how much it will wear them down, how expensive it will be, etc. I often caution my clients that enduring a lawsuit is like going through a divorce, so imagine how much worse it is when that lawsuit is the divorce. Based on my experiences, Jessie’s described the risks fairly and isn’t exaggerating.

        4. Not So NewReader*

          “he’ll get deposed and have to talk about how often they had sex, for pete’s sake”

          She may not care. She may consider what she has been through with this guy such a bfd, that telling a court how many times they had sex is nothing comparatively.

    2. The OG Anonsie*

      That first requirement made me snort-laugh. I’m going to start asking my partner to affirm that our relationship entails love between the partners in some degree.

      1. Natalie*

        A few years back I had a domestic partner and we had to sign an affidavit to add him to my health insurance. Most of it was pretty normal – we were attesting that we weren’t related, married, that we lived together etc. The best part was the lawyer speak for love, which was apparently “a relationship of mutual caring & support”.

        1. The OG Anonsie*

          I love it. At least it doesn’t have the “even if it’s only a little bit and you mostly actually hate each other” overtones of in some degree.

    3. ginger ale for all*

      If you google “alienation of affection” and Shackelford, you can find an abcnews article on a AofA case. The wife won millions of dollars.

  24. Venus Supreme*




    OP, I’m so happy that you’re happy with your new job and you’re nowhere near that guy.

    1. Venus Supreme*

      So I just read the original letter. OP said that the newborn is named after CheatingBoss and has his surname. And this letter mentions that the three women (is one of them the mother?) acknowledge that CheatingBoss is married and is seeing other women…

      I think my head morphed into a giant question mark.

      What in the actual fluffernutter.

  25. Adlib*

    Congrats on the new position! I kind of want one like it, sounds blissfully straightforward! :)

  26. ilikeaskamanager*

    Thanks for the update, but the wife’s actions bother me too. Too much drama!

  27. SheLooksFamiliar*

    Wow, I thought things like this only happened in soap operas! I’m very happy for you, OP. It sounds like you’re in a much better role with the right fit for you. Here’s hoping you continue to have a whole lot less drama in your work life.

  28. Corky's wife Bonnie*

    I’m happy you removed yourself from that toxic environment, congratulations on your new position!

  29. Liz2*

    I feel bad for the escort for just being a professional doing a job and being outed. But am super glad for the wife for being empowered with her information and taking action and the letter writer for taking action and being able to create the perfect new spot!

    1. Detective Amy Santiago*

      It just occurred to me that wife may not have realized she was an escort and just assumed it was Mistress #3.

    2. Um,*

      There is a word for people who have sex for money and being a ‘professional’ one is a good thing.

        1. Alli525*

          Well, the word for people who have sex for money is “escort.” And professionalism is important in ALL industries – especially industries where people pay good money to expose their vulnerabilities to someone else. Think of it as an (illegal) form of therapy — you always want your therapist to be professional, right? Now, obviously I’m not saying that this particular guy in question has a ton of vulnerabilities, but a lot of vulnerable people seek help from sex workers, and it’s a professional kindness and courtesy to not exploit or otherwise mishandle those people.

      1. JB (not in Houston)*

        This is the second place you’ve posted this comment. Please leave off moralizing against sex workers.

        1. Emi.*

          I mean, there’s plenty of moralizing against cheaters going on. You may disagree with one kind of moralizing, but I think they’re equally on-topic.

          1. Emac*

            Not really. I’d agree that it’s possible to debate the morality of both cheating and sex work, but I don’t think they’re both on-topic for this letter.

            The mistresses were knowingly sleeping with a married man, and I think it’s safe to assume from the original letter that they also knew that he wasn’t in an open marriage.

            The escort was doing her job, that’s all. It’s not up to her to find out if her client is married, in an open marriage, etc. And if sex work is legal where the OP is isn’t relevant to this situation.

          2. Natalie*

            Eh, speaking for myself I find that fairly excessive as well, but at lease people are outright stating their opinions instead of this really weird “there’s a word….” guessing game Um has scattered all over. And sex workers have enough problems in the world, there’s no need to kick them again from here.

          3. Elizabeth H.*

            I don’t like this kind of moralizing either! For a couple reasons: 1) other people’s relationships are often difficult or impossible to understand 2) people seem to vary a lot in how they think about the ethics/morals/values of cheating, forgiveness, fidelity, relationships 3) love and sex make people act insane 4) again . . . other people’s relationships are often impossible to understand.

          4. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

            Nope—this is a false equivalency. And “Um” is going beyond moralizing, in my opinion, and instead focusing on being pejorative and nasty. No one’s saying “there’s a word for adulterers” and slyly winking at a sexist or derogatory synonym.

            1. Emi.*

              Then they should be called out for that, directly, but it’s just as disingenuous to criticize “moralizing” when you (not you personally) really mean “don’t express moral judgments I disagree with.”

        2. MW*

          Yes, please, let’s drop that subject. I know it’s divisive, but I really don’t think it’s material to this letter.

  30. LizB*

    Whoa. I feel like I should have had a bucket of popcorn to eat while reading this update. DRAMA CITY.

    OP, I’m so glad you’re liking your new position! It sounds like it’s a perfect fit for you.

    1. VioletFem*

      Although, I do feel bad for the escort because she was only doing her job. I hope the situation works out for her as well.

      1. Parenthetically*

        It seems like a bit of an occupational hazard for sex workers! Unless one has a strict no-partnered-people policy, which seems like it would limit the clientele a little too much.

      2. MuseumChick*

        Someone else suggested that the wife many not have know it was an escort, but assumed it was mistress #3. Either way I doubt she would have acted much differently given how emotional a situation like this is. I wonder if/how the escort would change her business practice because of this? Clearly, POS husband left a long paper trail the wife was able to trace. How would an escort go about reducing risk of discovery in the future.

        1. Natalie*

          Now that you mention it, she may not have been outed at all. A couple of people I know have done sex work at various points and they always used fake names.

  31. Yay!*

    I want to stand up and applaud for this wife, and good job on the LW taking charge of her situation by getting a transfer!

  32. Undine*

    Alienation of affection does make me think of the stout banker on the Monopoly cards thrashing his son-in-law on the steps of his club while a floozy with a fur coat pouts in the background. But the wife doesn’t make the laws, and I hope she doesn’t end up harming herself in her rush to get revenge.

    As for you OP, congratulations on surviving massive insanity and navigating your way to safer shores. You’ve obviously come out with your reputation for discretion and professionalism intact.

  33. Mira*

    I’m going to go out on a limb and disagree with everyone saying that the wife took it too far when she went after the women who were knowingly sleeping with her husband. When someone KNOWS a man/woman is married
    and chooses to have an affair with them anyway, they are willfully breaking up a legal relationship that has fiscal implications. Also, there is this concept called common decency. You may not be obligated to keep a person’s marital vows for them, but that doesn’t mean you’re welcome to help them break those vows either.

    I firmly believe it takes two to cheat. First, a spouse willing to disregard the loyalty they promised. Second, a person willing to help them disregard that loyalty. So yeah, if you have an affair with a married person, or anyone in a relationship, you’re acting against common decency, and you don’t get to complain when the cheated-on half of the couple decides to go all out with the blame. You don’t get to participate in wronging someone and then decry all responsibility. Even if it’s 30% – that’s still 30% of the wrong-doing that’s yours to bear.

    After all, if you owe them no decency or fairness….they don’t you owe you any decency or fairness either.

    1. Emi.*

      Thank you. Also, moral fault is not a zero-sum game–saying a mistress did wrong doesn’t mean exonerating the cheating husband.

      1. Mira*

        Of course. The cheating spouse always bears the brunt of the responsibility, every time. I didn’t touch on that part because I thought it was safe to assume everyone agrees the husband needs to be taken for all he’s worth for what he’s done to his wife. It’s the responsibility of the other women that was under debate, so just adding my two-pice bits in regarding them.

    2. mcr-red*

      “You don’t get to participate in wronging someone and then decry all responsibility. Even if it’s 30% – that’s still 30% of the wrong-doing that’s yours to bear.

      After all, if you owe them no decency or fairness….they don’t you owe you any decency or fairness either.”

      +1 This exactly.

    3. MegaMoose, Esq*

      I believe much of the push-back on this point is the decades (centuries?) of blaming the “other woman” while letting the spouse off with a warning to their wife to hold his attention better next time.

      1. Emi.*

        In this case, though, where the cheating husband is catching so much well-deserved wrath, I don’t think that’s something we particularly need to guard against.

        1. MegaMoose, Esq*

          This is just a weird-ass comment thread, is all. I suppose “glad things turned out okay, OP” isn’t as entertaining as casting judgment on people we don’t know and making legal assertions without all the relevant information (or education).

      2. Mira*

        True. I don’t hold with just blaming one party – the cheating spouse always bears the larger fault in such a situation. It’s just that, as I said above, I believe it takes two to cheat, unlike many others here who seem to believe it takes only one.

    4. Here we go again*

      “After all, if you owe them no decency or fairness….they don’t you owe you any decency or fairness either.”

      Another +1 from me…

      I couldn’t put into words why the people defending the mistresses who knew the sleazebag was married were bothering me so much, but you summed it up personally.

    5. MuseumChick*

      “After all, if you owe them no decency or fairness….they don’t you owe you any decency or fairness either.”

      This. You can’t wash your hands of social norms (not sleeping with other peoples spouses) and the expect the benefit of other social norms (privacy).

    6. GreyjoyGardens*

      “After all, if you owe them no decency or fairness….they don’t you owe you any decency or fairness either.”
      +1. Heat, kitchen, can’t stand, get out, etc. You can’t treat people shabbily (even if indirectly) and then expect them to treat YOU with kid gloves. I don’t see how the affair partners could have expected this to end well, unless one or more was extremely naive.

      I feel sorry for that baby, getting such a bad start in life. And having such poor examples for parents, sheesh!

    7. MW*

      Does it matter to you at what point the other women became aware that the man was married? I think there’s a distinction between someone knowing from the word ‘go’ that the person they’re romantically involved with is married, and someone who finds out later in the relationship. If you know ahead of time then you’re making a pretty conscious decision to wrong the other half of the marriage. If you don’t, by the time you find out you’re romantically entangled and it can be a lot more painful to end it. Speaking hypothetically, one of the women might even have been pregnant before she knew. I don’t think that’s the case in this situation, but it’s a definite possibility. They could be unaware up to the point of the divorce.

      I’m against suing the other party in general, but even were I to consider it, I think foreknowledge would be a very important factor.

      1. Mira*

        That’s a nuance to consider. Largely, I believe that it doesn’t matter at what point the mistress, for lack of a better word, became aware that she was a mistress. What matters is what she did when she found out – the right thing to do in such a situation, would be to call off the affair, and possibly let the wife know what was going on. To keep on participating in the face of your new found knowledge makes you a an active guilty party towards the destruction of a legal relationship which has fiscal implications within it, instead of well, someone to feel sorry for.

        And really, whose pain do you think should come first here? The woman who was knowingly or not sleeping with a married man, or the woman who has lost years of her life, financial resources (possibly), and sacrifices, to a marriage which is a total and utter sham? And will continue to lose more of her life and soul to the fallout?

        I do not understand this business of jumping through hoops to find excuses for the other women’s behaviour, and I frankly don’t condone it. The only mistress who can be absolved of blame, I feel, is the escort, who was doing a paid job, and she may not have a choice in who her clients are.

  34. RVA Cat*

    Can I just say this guy, all of his partners and his baby all need to get tested for STIs?

  35. Observer*

    OP, I’m so glad that you’re in a MUCH better place now. And, really, congratulations for managing to stay out of it. A lot of people would have a hard time keeping their mouths shut. Good for you that you’ve done so.

    When it comes to work, boring is not always a bad thing….

  36. Karma*

    If a person knowingly consents to sex with another person who is married (to someone else) they aren’t entitled to privacy or mercy by the wronged spouse. Actions have consequences. And doing it for money isn’t an excuse either and no one should feel bad for them.

  37. August*

    I’m really surprised at the amount of judgement in the comments that’s being directed towards a woman who has obviously lost a lot (money, time, emotional connections, etc.) and is obviously trying to recoup those losses using whatever methods are available to her. Obviously the other women aren’t “just as bad” as the cheating husband, but I thought it was pretty clear that the brunt of the sympathy should fall on the wife, after what she’s suffered through (for years!).

    Regardless, congratulations on your new position, OP; it looks like you got out in the nick of time!

  38. rubyrose*

    The outing at work – not sure exactly what true good could come out of it in this situation, but I know of one where it did.

    I had a friend with a child where the father had not paid child support for years. My friend discovered where he worked (not easy, since he worked for the feds in D.C. area). She pasted a picture of the child on a postcard, with a note stating that he had not paid for 5 years and she really needed the money, and sent it to the work address. He started paying within about 3 weeks.

  39. INFJ*

    Holy wow. He got what was coming to him for sure! OP, I’m so glad you were able to get out of that mess right as it was hitting the fan and enjoy your new position!

  40. GreyjoyGardens*

    Hooray for the wife! This is “First Wives Club” worthy.

    This whole thing sounds like such a drama suck, I wonder if any actual *work* was getting done at the office. Ex-Boss had time to keep TWO mistresses, as well as an escort, AND father a child (ever hear of “condoms,” mister?). Either he had infinite energy and/or juggling skills, or his work was subpar. Wifey needs to get her settlement ASAP, methinks, before Ex-Hubby hits the unemployment line, unless he has family money.

  41. Honeybee*

    Sounds like you took the proper route, OP, by staying out of it. And congrats on the new position, I’m so glad you love it!

  42. CoffeeLover*

    I feel sorry for the wife. Not only because she married a jerk, but also because she decided to go the “messy divorce” route. No one wins in a messy divorce. She’s going to be embroiled in lawsuits for the foreseeable future. Most of those lawsuits (Alienation of Affection) she’s pretty much guaranteed to lose. Say goodbye to money, time, and closure. Plus, the wife has somehow managed to go from clear victim, to possible bad guy or “crazy ex-wife” (because of the AoA lawsuit and public outings) which may even hurt her in the divorce proceedings. I hope she stops being cataclysmic, drops the charges against the other women, and focuses on extricating herself from the marriage and moving on.

    OP, it’s a really good thing you didn’t speak to the wife. You’d be tangled up in this mess too.

    1. MuseumChick*

      I have a feeling this was actually very calculated. Basically so the divorce goes forward she can use these lawsuits as a bargaining chip, “Give me the house and I’ll drop the AoA lawsuit.” And, there are a handful of people who have won AoA cases so there is a small chance she could get a payout from this. Given the amount of evidence she has apparently already gathered I just get the feeling she has done her research and knows exactly what she is doing.

      1. CoffeeLover*

        It’s possible. I assumed this was an immediate reaction to finding out her husband was cheating, but it’s very possible she’s known for a while and has been planning her strategy/consulting her lawyer. I can agree that she may be trying to use the AoA lawsuit as a bargaining chip, but that still means she’s choosing to go down the “messy divorce” route. She’s decided to make the process a nightmare for her husband, but it’s very easy for her husband to make this process equally terrible for her. He can do it as easily as dragging his feet to get court documents submitted. Hell, he could fling out a few baseless lawsuits himself (i.e. defamation). Even though he stands no chance of winning, at the very least it means she’d have to pay for a lawyer to respond to the lawsuit. Messy. And in no way conducive to moving on.

        For what it’s worth, my brother is a lawyer. What I said above about the messiness of divorces and no one winning… that’s coming from him.

        1. Scarlott*

          The lawyers. The layers are the real winners. Watch divorce corp. To them you know what marriage is? Future stock.

  43. Employment Lawyer*

    Re: Getting fired for manager’s problem.

    Short advice: Lawyer up, ASAP, preferably as a group. I won’t explain why in detail here, but a lawyer can possibly make this a better deal for you all.

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