Post # 1
I read a lot on here about either bees or their S/O who remain hung up on exs-even after years of being broken up and even sometimes pretty casual exs (ie short-term or HS relationships). Now, I don’t have any “proper” exs (just guys I dated for a bit and it didn’t work out), so I don’t have much personal experience. But I don’t understand why people can’t get over exs when they are in new relationships. Didn’t you break up for a reason? And aren’t you with the new person because they are better for you? I mean, I was in love once before my current relationship, but I wouldn’t have committed to him if I felt “ehhh” about him in comparison to the other guy. I don’t settle.
The boy does have a few LTRs behind him, so while I’m mostly pretty secure about it (and he has given me no reason to feel otherwise) I am interested in why exs seem to have such an allure. I just don’t understand why people go back to relationships that didn’t work when they’re in one that does work. Could anyone shed some light here?
Post # 3
@worldtraveler: ~This is my explanation I cannot speak for all ~
My first boyfriend was my high school boyfriend. We grew up in the same town, knew the same kids, knew the same teachers. If I made a reference to something *hometown specific* or *high school/middle school specific* he would get it whereas my current SO wouldn’t.
My ex was a good man who was there during an important part in my life the end of high school and the beginning of college. We encouraged each other to grow nad branch out, he was there during important moments in my life that I will never again experience and vice versa.
A part of me will always belong to this ex (and part of him will awlays belong to me) because of our shared history and the fact that we were each other’s first everythings. That being said, we both understand that we would never leave our respective partners for one another. The magic of our relationship was a one time thing that could never be recaptured or emulated.
So while we both are open about how important the other is to us and how they will awlays remain with us we’re not actively hung up on one another. The love we have for each other is a fondness for a particular time in our past, for the first love of two teenagers that we once were.
Post # 4
Edit: Mrs Panda – (The post below me) – Nailed it! +1
Post # 5
@worldtraveler: I could care less for my ex and he represents 10 years of my life. I can look back without anger or bitterness now and appreciate the good memories that we had, the experiences we shared, and what I was able to learn from him. However, I don’t want any of that back. He helped shape who I am today, but my FI is far better for me in every way. I don’t live with any regret.
I think people sometimes get caught up remembering the good while forgetting the bad, the lure of the forbidden fruit, and possibly boredom or at least monotony. I can’t speak from experience because he is my only proper ex, I ended the relationship, and I am glad I did. I always find it bizarre when people have ex obsessions too because I just can’t relate – have absolutely no frame of reference.
Post # 6
@MrsPanda99: I could care less for my ex and he represents 10 years of my life. I can look back without anger or bitterness now and appreciate the good memories that we had, the experiences we shared, and what I was able to learn from him. However, I don’t want any of that back. He helped shape who I am today, but my FI is far better for me in every way. I don’t live with any regret.
I think people sometimes get caught up remembering the good while forgetting the bad, the lure of the forbidden fruit, and possibly boredom or at least monotony.
+1 to all of this.
Post # 7
Good question. I have zero desire to see my ex or know anything about him really. However, I guess I could see if you were dating someone and it ended on good terms (i.e. someone moving away) that you might still have some kind of warm feeling toward them (even if not a romantic feeling).
Post # 8
oh. I came here to talk about a music competition…
Post # 9
@worldtraveler: Let me preface this by saying I am not hung up on my ex and neither is he.
So, let me attempt to share my take on why people get “hung up on their ex”.
1. Sometimes you meet the right person at the wrong time. And then when the timing is right for you they are already in a relationship and vice versa.
2. If the ex dumped you and you didn’t dump them your feelings are still there and their feelings are not…making it not as easy to move on.
Also, it needs to be mentioned that A LOT of the times someone’s memory of their ex and the person who they thought they were is better than the reality. They forget most of the bad and remember the good…
ETA: hollyberry4 +1
Post # 10
This one is my personal experience, I can’t speak for anyone else. I have an ex that I still think about once in a while. We broke up for one simple reason – he wanted a family someday and I don’t want children ever. Besides that ONE thing, we were totally compatible, head over heels in love and we adored each other. And I left while we were still in the “honeymoon” phase of the relationship. So all my memories of him are happy and sweet. Thing is, I logically know it never would have worked. I know that I would have ended up miserable, and he would have too. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I’m happier with my fiance, and I love him and he’s right for me. Does that mean that I don’t get a little twinge once in a while when I’m reminded of my ex? Nope, still happens. It’s similar to the twinge I get when I see someone lighting up a cigarette and I remember why I liked being a smoker. Doesn’t mean I’d go back.
As to your question, the reason why I think people go back is because they don’t realize that the honeymoon phase is just that – a phase. They remember the good things but never had to go through the crappy parts. So it’s a relationship that’s held up on a pedestal.
Post # 11
I’m curious about this too. The only relationship I had before my FI was a mostly long-distance thing, so the break-up wasn’t too difficult for me. Also, I’m FI’s first (and last!) relationship.
FI and I have a mutual friend, however, who was in a relationship with a girl for 10 years, that ended about 5 years ago. He never recovered from it, but I used to be good friends with his ex, and she was mostly relieved about the break-up and never looked back.
Post # 12
I don’t really get it either, so I’m with you on this one. I couldn’t care less about my exes, and FI isn’t hung up on his either (I would never be engaged to someone who was still fond of their ex).
I think that a lot of people who are hung up on exes are unhappy in their current relationship and/or life situation, so daydreaming and reminiscing about an ex is an escape from reality, back to a time which now in retrospective seems easier and better. These rose-tinted glasses do not necessarily reflect how it really was. I don’t think such escapism is very healthy though, because the time and energy spent on thinking about your ex could be better spent improving your life in the present. Being happy in the present takes effort, so it’s much easier to just remain nostalgic about the past, even if in reality that past wasn’t particularly amazing.
A woman I know is single at 35 because she’s still hung up on her boyfriend from university (who was horrible to her and broke up with her numerous times). It’s really sad.
Post # 13
@worldtraveler: I don’t get it either. I will admit that my ex pops into my head sometimes, and that I probably have some emotional scars from the 5 years of on/off crap I went through with him, though. Like our past shapes us in some ways whether we like it or not. I am totally “over him”, though. Like I do not love him anymore. I don’t even really feel rage anymore. It’s funny – he sent me a ‘happy birthday’ text when I haven’t seen him/had any contact for four years. I thought he finally stopped contacting me for good when I didn’t hear from him last year. I guess not. I don’t get it. I’ve had zero desire to contact him.
Post # 14
@FEDORAble: I do understand this, I have good memories of everyone I’ve dated (no matter how briefly or casually). One guy takes me back to college, one, my 21st birthday, one, the time I lived abroad… But they are just memories, tucked into a folder of my brain where I can look back and cherish those times but also be incredibly glad for what I have today.
@hollyberry4: @MariContrary: I see what you mean, but I think that if this is truly the best person for you, you will work to overcome purely logistical issues like one partner moving, and if you are truly compatible, you won’t disagree on big issues on whether to have children.
@Happy Hopeful Bee: It’s definitely harder being the dumpee than the dumper! But I still think that you are in the right relationship, your feelings for the new person should overcome your feelings for the person who dumped you. Maybe the problem is that people settle because they don’t think they will find anyone as good as their ex.
@MaryKay14: Good point about people being unhappy in their current relationship. Hopefully in a happy relationship, feelings for the ex don’t crop up to much.
The boy and I don’t have any rules about exs-he’s still friendly with his and I’m good friends with a guy I kind of dated on-and-off during college and immediately after. I usually hang out with him and his GF, who is awesome. This guy is a good friend, but I look back on having had romantic feelings for him and I think WTF. Current boy is SO SO SO more right for me. The boy feels the same way about his exs but they were much more serious relationships, so sometimes that makes me feel a little weird because I have never had a real breakup with someone.
Post # 15
@MariContrary: I have an ex something like this…we were over the moon in love but we were young and distance and other things caused it to not work out for us. We haven’t been in contact in years but I still have a fond memory of him… HOWEVER, I have no desire to contact or reunite or anything like that, i’m very much over him. I mostly hope he found someone to make him happy and share his life with.
@worldtraveler: I’m not friends with any of my exes and neither is he and we both don’t have any contact with them. That’s just how we both are so it works out.
I agree with PP that maybe if unhappy in their current relationship your mind may defer back to the ex because in your mind the ex is better in comparisson to who you are with right now.
Post # 16
I don’t really have a significant ex either, but my SO dated someone for almost 2 years. Even though she was the one who cheated on him and broke up with him twice, she had issues letting go.
She stalked our facebook (before everyone went private), she saw one of my friends at a mall whom she had never met before and went up to him and started talking about me, she talked to our friends about us all the time (convinced everyone that he was infact the one who cheated on her), and some guy she was seeing at the time thought she was still in love with him.
Things like this went on for about 2 years.
Sometimes people just can’t let go