Updates: “Sucker-Punched” Responds

It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today, we hear from “Sucker-Punched” whose boyfriend cheated on her with his wife (yes, you read that right) after borrowing a large sum of money from her that he had yet to repay. Keep reading to see whether she heeded my advice to MOA.

Several months later…..
We are still together. We’ve talked a lot, fought a fair amount, compromised some on each side, gotten older sadder kinder and wiser, talked to individual therapists and gone together to therapists. We made rules about not drinking and fighting, not texting and fighting, not breaking up or walking out in a fight (“fight in safety”), and calling time-outs before a fight escalates.I’ve read a ton of books and articles, and here is where we stand: Under everything we have a deep and abiding love for each other. We have significant differences. We are both very controlling, the more so when stressed. He has gone through the fire (failed marriage, bankrupcy, seriously compromising his own morals and integrity under stress, betraying people on multiple levels) and come out humbled and raw. I have passed through hatred anger and despair and come out feeling ok about myself and ok about him. He has done everything I could possibly have asked, including paying me back in full, giving me more space, standing by when I have attacks of rage or hurt of despair, answering all my questions, and talking, talking, talking.

Most days we are pretty happy, many days were are very happy, and the ugly days are ever further apart.
It’s worth more time and effort. We are both better people for having known each other and tried so hard.

Well, I wish you the best of luck. It sounds like a ton of work, but if you’re happy and feel the relationship is worth the investment, then that’s what matters most.


If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at [email protected] with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.

You can follow me on Facebook here and sign up for my weekly newsletter here.

If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at [email protected].


  1. lets_be_honest says:

    In the words of my grandma, Good God!

  2. Avatar photo theattack says:

    This sounds like way too much work for a relationship with a rocky past. But if LW is happy…

    1. The end says they’re happy, but the update doesn’t sound happy. Some people thrive on drama and it seems like these people would thrive on it…

      And yes, way too much!

    2. Drug addicts who are high are happy. That doesn’t make them healthy.

      1. lets_be_honest says:

        Oh snap! Good one.

  3. I guess if it works for ya, it works for ya. I am exhausted just reading the update, though!

  4. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

    I’m exhausted just reading that.

  5. Interesting….. Is he actually divorced now?

    Weird update. I think the LW writes romance novels for a living.

    1. Or wants to. Perhaps this is part of her marketing?

  6. kerrycontrary says:

    This guy sounds like a real winner! “compromising his own morals and integrity under stress, betraying people on multiple levels”…I’d love the juicy details on that one.

    1. Doesn’t she mean unprotected sex with the wife, telling her secret stuff about the LW, etc?

  7. Wendy’s right, that all sound like a LOT of work, but I hope the effort is equal, & that you’re each *actually* communicating using the tactics you described (because what else would be the point?)

    As an additional note, I looked back to the original letter & want to just say that your response is appreciated! I love how you addressed practically everybody.

  8. WELL! that wasn’t dramatic at all!

  9. But is he still married to/seeing his ex-wife?

  10. Talk about choosing the harder path. Oh well. Some people thrive on needless suffering and hardship. As long as you don’t take it out on others I guess.

    1. kerrycontrary says:

      yeh, like her 4 kids. She’s recently divorced with 4 children and date a drama king. Way to set a great example of a healthy relationship for your children. It’s not like she can possibly hide all of this crazy from her children.

      1. lets_be_honest says:

        awful. “attacks of rage” wtf

      2. OH OH OH. I just had a thought. This sounds like some of the parents on Teen Mom. So, LW is your kid on that show?

      3. lets_be_honest says:

        Yesterday you said you type how you talk and it totally comes through. I love that. I always retype after typing how I would say something bc I feel like it won’t come across correctly.

      4. I sound a lot lke Mindy Kaling (from the office and Mindy project) borderline valley girl that amps up if i’m excited or drinking…don’t judge! Haha.

      5. lets_be_honest says:

        Peter says I take on other people’s accents, including valley girl, if I spend more than an hour with them. My sister talks very valley girl and if we talk, I spend the rest of the day talking like her. I’m like Madonna when she took on the british accent!

      6. I do that TOO! And I always hope that the person doesn’t think I’m mimicking them. Its NOT intentional or mean I swear!

      7. painted_lady says:

        Well, I adore Mindy Kaling (Mindy Project is SO WONDERFUL), so that’s really kind of awesome.

      8. Its HILARIOUS when she says a line that I’ve actually said to my friends before. The one that had us all roaring with laughter is when she said something after meeting the other Indian girl about how there are a billion of us. I say that ALL the time when people here are like OO are you friends with so and so, she’s Indian.

      9. kerrycontrary says:

        Janelle from teen mom is pregnant again. A girl whose current child is under her mother’s custody right now is bringing another child into the world. License to breed people, License to breed.

      10. well kerry she’s married now so obviously she’s ready, right?

      11. kerrycontrary says:

        Here’s my proposed license to breed qualifications (and judge away for me being a snob): Can you (or your spouse) financially support your kids? You need health insurance. You need a place to live that is not your parents/siblings/friends house. You should be able to afford the baby stuff. You need some sort of education/trade/life skills. You should not currently be incarcerated. You should not have a baby if you are currently an addict. You should not have a baby if you have temporarily lost custody of your other children. You should not have a baby if you have not graduated high school. You should not have a baby if you would spend more time focusing on your fucked up relationship with a SO than on your child.

        I know that people have babies all the time and things work out fine without this stuff, but seriously, children would have better lives if parents had to meet some sort of basic qualifications.

      12. haha no i agree, i think it’s funny because she and leah both used being married now as why it’s ok. like bam you’re married definitely ready for kids! 😉

      13. Vicious Delicious says:

        “You need a license to drive, fish……yet any asshole can be a parent….”-paraphrasing Keanu Reeve’s character in Parenthood….

  11. Goodness. Well … more power to you!

  12. Avatar photo iwannatalktosampson says:

    Worst update ever. Where are both of your divorces at? Is he still banging his wife? Whatever happened with her harassment? How are your kids doing? How is his daughter doing?

    1. seriously- this isnt disney! we dont want to hear about happily ever after!!

      im half way joking. kind of. lol

    2. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

      And to think, you gave her such a nice comment on the original letter!

      Reading over this letter was fun – it’s where I first developed the my “text” rule – move on immediately if texts are mentioned more than 3 times….. Which is ironic because that night (Aug. 23) my now boyfriend asked me out on our very first date VIA TEXT, AWWWWWW.

      1. bahaha.. oh, oh the irony!

      2. Avatar photo iwannatalktosampson says:

        I KNOW! I re-read my comment and was like holy moly someone must have been having a good day.

  13. Lame. I guess some people don’t grow up they just grow old…

    But seriously LW, this is not a good look for anyone especially a mother of four.

  14. All I can say is, better her than me. I could never handle a relationship with all that drama.

  15. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

    I really, really, really, really hope this guy is amazing in bed because otherwise I just don’t see what he is bringing to the table that is worth all that work!

  16. I want to know where this LW lives, because it must be a place where they have more hours in the day.

  17. I’m willing to bet this LW is one of those irritating social networking people who puts all their business on FB in dramatic status updates.

    “My soul is crushed. I can’t believe the love of my life would do this to me.”

    And then there are like five people who comment with sad face emoticons and write “Is everything ok?” in varying degrees of grammatical correctness.

    And then she writes back thanking everyone for their support and love during difficult times.

    And then she has a friend like me sitting at work, rolling her eyes to the high heavens, wishing she would STFU and/or stop creating drama in her life. And then I resolve not to check FaceBook for a month! And when I get back on a month later- there she is doing it again and I decide to hide her from my feed…. oh wait I’m talking about two people on my friends list: one of my best friends from high school, and my mother’s cousin. Whoops!

    1. Avatar photo lemongrass says:

      I bet, before thanking them for their support she first says she “doesn’t want to talk about her vague facebook status”

      1. lets_be_honest says:

        I hate people like that. Either dish the dirt or stop waving the drama carrot!

      2. I definitely think that will have to be my reply the next time someone does this on my fb feed.

      3. i also love the i’d rather not say on facebook, can i text/message you? some people looooove drama.

      4. kerrycontrary says:

        “Is everything ok” “no, everything’s horrible”–this and my wild imagination has led me to think that one of my high school friend’s husbands cheated on her. Is this the case? Probably not. But with more or less information all would be cleared up.

    2. Avatar photo GatorGirl says:

      UGH I hate people like that. I used to be one until I realized no cares about my shit and it’s so lame to put those crazy elusive statuses up. I used to put lyrics up all the time when I was in college. Thank goodness that phase is over!

      1. Yeah me too. Now I’m so glad I got rid of Facebook.

  18. Somehow I missed this original letter. Looking at the date, I see I was on vacation. I turn my back on DW for one day!!! Now, I’ll just repeat something I’va said before: my life is just too dull.

  19. I think the LW is mistaking drama for something poetic and glamorous. But if she wants to live in a poem instead of actual life, that’s her choice.

    1. Love is a poem, babe. I’d sure as hell rather live in one. I’m sadder and wiser now than when I believed that could come true. But I still long for it. Don’t ever’buddy?

  20. Everybody makes mistakes, and everyone is entitled to some degree of forgiveness when they admit their errors. Could I have forgiven what the LW forgave? Not a chance in hell. Does her decision to do so make her a better person than me? Could be. All relationships require a degree of faith, and maybe she has faith to burn. Will she get burned again? Only time will tell. She’s old enough to decide for herself. I’ve decided to put this one in my “Faith in the Goodness of People” folder, and just hope for the best. Best of luck, LW.

  21. Sue Jones says:

    Hey, it sure wouldn’t be my cup of tea, but if LW is happy, then I wish them the best!

  22. sarolabelle says:

    this is just strange….she doesn’t sound happy. Why is she putting so much effort into this relationship? I just don’t get it….

  23. Bittergaymark says:

    I’ll only say this… I dunno. I guess you two truly deserve each other… At least, I sure hope so. If not? Yikes. Well, let’s not even bother to go there, okay?

    1. Yeah. Saves them from being with people who DON’T deserve all that mess.

  24. This update makes me sad… The LW commented on the original letter and she sounded like she was really taking everything we said to heart and was going to do some serious thinking/reevaluating… And then we read this… Oh well, can’t win ’em all, I guess.

  25. Avatar photo landygirl says:

    Some people thrive on drama and it seems the LW is one of them.

  26. I am assuming the LW is still separated from her husband. If she’s so in love with someone else, shouldn’t she be looking into getting a divorce? She can’t make the commitment he so desperately wants without a divorce.

    1. Nevermind, I just read her response in the original letter.

  27. What the hellllllll…this LW sounds delusional. You’re not a saint for working out the problems, and you’re wasting your time trying to fix someone when you clearly need to focus on fixing your self esteem and figuring out why you would want to stay with someone whose morals are so severely compromised. This update sounds like you’re doing a style writing exercise on Shakespeare and/or the Twilight series, and I am willing to bet that it’s more wishful thinking than accurate reflection to say that “the ugly days are ever further apart.” Please let me know how that works out for you, Scarlett O’Hara.

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