My boyfriend is still in close contact with his most recent ex in a way which is troubling me. I know he has remained close to a few of his ex’s which doesn’t concern me at all (he has the right to be friends with anyone) but the most recent ex is still extremely needy. She sends him nasty texts saying he is forgetting his friends if he hasn’t seen her for a while, posts catty comments on his Facebook page, yet he still won’t cut her off.
He says it is easier to remain friends with her than not to, but I personally won’t surround myself with people who are so toxic. He lent her a sum of money in the past which I think she still hasn’t paid back which could be a factor.
I feel that by keeping her in his life, he is being slightly disrespectful to me, as she clearly still has some kind of hold over him for him to put up with this. His other friends and parents agree with me, but I can’t get him see it from any other point of view.
Please help before I drive myself mad!!!!!
Take The Quiz: Is He Losing Interest?
At the heart of the issue, this sort of thing stems from your own fears. Now I only have limited information, but in past situations like this women have told me it stems from the fear that he might have feelings for her or that he’s not totally over her. Fear that she might do something to screw up your relationship with him. Fear that she might take advantage of him (and you want to protect him from that.)
While these are all legitimate fears, remember that they are your fears and therefore your responsibility in terms of handling them.
The fact is that just about any high-quality guy out there is going to have ex-girlfriends. He may or not be friends with them.
You may not mind some of his ex’s and other ex’s you may absolutely hate. And there’s no “relationship law” that says you should like them.
Generally speaking, though, when you have a relationship with someone, you consider it your relationship with that other person. Now, have you ever had someone you had a relationship with that other people didn’t approve of… maybe a friend, an ex, a current boyfriend, etc.
People would say they didn’t like the person and they would give a reason. The first time you would take their opinion into consideration (because after all, the person who said it to you is probably someone that you know cares for you.) But regardless of their opinion, it didn’t change yours.
Why? Because it was your relationship. It was yours – they didn’t know the person in the way you knew them. They didn’t understand… and frankly, you didn’t want to explain it to them because really it’s none of their business (and they probably wouldn’t see your point of view anyway). Still, you appreciated their sentiment since you knew it was said out of their love and concern for you.
But then maybe that person said it a second time. Now you’re getting annoyed – they don’t know that person how you know them! After you heard their opinion once, that was enough. Now you’re starting to resent them saying anything to you… now you’re starting to block their opinion out because it’s none of their business.
Now, I’m assuming you’ve had this experience at least once in your life. I definitely have… And the truth is some of the time the people warning me about a relationship were right… but other times they were absolutely, positively wrong. But I can tell you, every time that someone has pressured me by telling me their opinion of someone more than once, I started to resent them for making the complaint.
Why? Because when they tell me more than once that they don’t agree with my relationship with a person, they’re disrespecting me. They’re disrespecting my ability to make a decision based on my evidence and what I see in front of me.
So my opinion is to not respond to whatever his situation is with his ex… I’m not saying flat out ignore it (though that’s not entirely a bad idea). But getting worked up about it will most likely lead you to a bad place…
Yeah, it’s not easy. Oh, believe me, it’s not easy.
I can tell you that when I was on the receiving end of this sort of thing, I was not graceful about it. Years ago, I would be dating a girl and she would be carrying on conversations with an ex because he was a friend. At first, I would try to be cool about it… let it go. But then it would eat away at me because, in my mind, there is nothing worse than being played for a fool.
It was my fear, but I would run it around in my head, again and again until it became this “monster” of a thought. Then the poor girl would get a text or something from her ex-boyfriend/friend and I would explode into an angry tirade about it. I regret it – it was destructive and never ever helped my relationship. I learned my lesson though. I handled my problem (because it was my problem, not hers.)
The truth is that when I was in that situation, I didn’t manage my fears. I’m trying to remember how I felt exactly… It was like, I was so afraid of the idea that she could have been doing something and playing me for a fool that I felt compelled to snuff out any relationship she had that made me uncomfortable. It was insecurity at its finest, and it’s not a male thing- it’s a human thing.
There were lessons I needed to learn. I needed to learn to trust my own instincts – to trust that I would know something was wrong if my relationship was bad, not because I felt jealous or uncomfortable about a relationship she had. Frankly, people are going to do whatever they want to do anyway. Playing detective or trying to control the other person to prevent them from being able to contact someone is just going to fill that person with resentment and will drain you of energy you could put towards better things… like making your relationship good.
Seriously meditate on this thought: People are going to do whatever they want to do. No amount of trying to control them, or to “guilt” them, or to reason with them, or to commit to them, etc. is going to change that. Of course your actions matter, but what I’m saying here is that in the end, you can’t control the other person and even if you were able to, it’s much better to know that the other person is going to be the way you want them to be without you having to expend energy on “controlling” them. My feeling these days is that if your relationship is good in the moments that you’re with the person, it’s good. Worrying about what they could do just throws away any chance for enjoying your own life.
For me, realizing this… really really realizing it… made me free. I stopped trying to be perfect and control everything so I could feel OK. And most importantly, I stopped interpreting someone else’s actions as a reflection of me.
Anyway, I’m just sharing how I felt when I was in this sort of situation. You’re going to handle it however you’re going to handle it – all I’m doing is sharing my experience with you. But I can tell you from my experience (both on the giving and receiving end of things), outside opinions are not appreciated. If I were in your situation, I would do whatever I could to avoid the subject of this ex-girlfriend altogether.
– eric charles