I had to chime in on this one. My ex didn't just toss a grenade into the family - she did the full scale nuclear first strike.
Wow ... What I went through is almost nothing compared to your story - stuff nightmares are made of. I think there aren't many people on this board who can beat your story. Your X is a real winner, a true champ, sir.
But I find it very refreshing to hear of another one who made it through divorce and came out of it better than before. Me - four years later, I survived the massive shock of betrayal, her filing, vascular surgery, the sale of our house, the divorce finalization, her moving 140 miles away (followed by more trips to the court for revised parenting time), one heart attack+surgery+months of cardiac rehab, and to top it off, getting laid off from my job last year. But, thank God, now I am
- healthy [knock on wood] ... as healthy as one can be after an MI
- my relationship with S12 is better than ever
- got re-married to a wonderful woman
- got a new job, a new house, a new car and new furniture ...
All in all I feel like I got a new lease on life, in way more than one respect. Sure, my finances took a severe blow, but that couldn't be helped, given that my X refused to work for the last five years before filing. Too late to fix that now - all I can do is do my best to keep my well-paying job.
In the meanwhile, my X was ... devastated to see her Mr. W dump her after two years, then shocked and amazed to see me get married to that particular woman [college sweetheart, she'd known about her for decades], and otherwise stuck in a quaint but small town in Western Illinois getting a degree in X-ray tech services and not really knowing where she will have to move next year when alimony terminates and she will have to look for a job [market which is already saturated in that field, according to her].
But the one person who really got the shaft in all this is our son - although he and I get together great, and according to X "he worships me" [her actual words], he ended up with a broken family, and so far hasn't really gotten over the divorce ...
Whenever you think divorce is bad, remember there are worse things than divorce.