(Closed) Don't know how to feel about SO's relationship with an ex.

posted 5 years ago in Relationships
Post # 31
5891 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

MyTimeWillCome:  how you two communicate about this is very telling about how you will both will handle the uncomfortable, tough conversations of life. 

The only thing you can do is be honest about your feelings, “I need to talk to you about something that is hard for me. I dont want you to think I’m a crazy insecure chick who is trying to control you. But I know that I need to be able to express my honest feelings in this relationship, even if they are uncomfortable. I hope you can hear me out, be able to express your feelings and *we* can figure something out that works for both of us.”

“I’m uncomfortable with how close you are with ___. I know she is your best friend, but she is also your Ex. There was first love shared, virginities lost, naked bodies and googly eyes with each other. I know you say that romantically it is over, and there is nothing left between you, but I cant help but picture you naked, rolling around with her. *Then* on top of all that, you are so emotionally close to her. It makes me feel so insecure/weird/crazy to think that you are sharing emotional confidences with her. How would you feel if I was sharing my emotional confidences with someone who had also seen me naked? It’s just a weird blurring of boundries. “

“You being so close to her makes me scared that you will continue to bond emotionally with her, and not move closer to me. I want to be the main female, heck, main person you share things with. I want to know that when we hit a bump in the road, you wont go running to her. I know that right now nothing is going on. But what is going to happen when we have a colicky child and we havent had sex in months (year or more if it was a difficult pregnancy), we are sleep deprived and I can’t pay as much attention to you any more. Then, she’s there to tell you how awesome and wonderful you are. You start complaining to her how bad things are between us. It’s not a huge leap into kissing plus more”

“I dont want you to cut her out of your life. I know how important she is to you—and again I dont think anything is going on right now. Can we figure something out that allows her to remain in your life, but also creates some boundries?”

Post # 32
811 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

MyTimeWillCome:  from your post, in my opinion their relationship is inappropriate. Your radar is going off because another woman is on your turf, plain and simple. So yeah, maybe they’re not getting physical, but emotionally, they are close and by the sounds of it, it’s affecting your relationship and feeling of emotional intimacy with your man. I’m pretty sure I’m going to ruffle some feathers here but to me, this is crossing the line towards emotional affair. Just because you know about it doesn’t make it less so, and doesn’t make it okay. Plenty of women are with men who screw around, and the women just “deal with it”. You knowing doesn’t make it any more appropriate. 

Post # 33
288 posts
Helper bee

My SO is still really good friends with his ex – she even fed our cats while we we were away. People can become friends. It’s tough but you need to trust him. 

They’re romantically over – think seriously about making any decision. You don’t want to mess up something really great!

I doubt he’ll give up a life long family friend but try talking to him -he may be able to ease your fears.

Post # 35
2328 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

I’m sorry, I know you feel better but I’d still keep a very close eye on this… She is confiding in him, she has issues, he wants to be a good friend…seriously these are like textbook cliche statements about how affairs (emotional or otherwise) start…

You know, I was helping her through a difficult time and then “it just happened”, we didn’t mean to hurt anyone blah blah. Not saying at all this will happen to you, but it’s a cliche for a reason.

Post # 36
12484 posts
Sugar Beekeeper

It doesn’t make one less  “mature” or more “old fashioned”  to be the kind of partner who prefers to leave the past in the past.  If the idea of you or your Boyfriend or Best Friend  having a relationship with Sally, a girl he had sex with for four years, doesn’t sit so well with you, that’s perfectly normal. Don’t let anyone tell you differently or that it makes you too “insecure” or “suspicious.” 

It’s not a matter of trust. Human nature being what it is, it can be a common sense and conscious decision to organize your life in a way that minimizes the chance for future complications. 

 Actually, I think people who have the need to hold onto the past and can’t let go sometimes have the bigger issues.  A lot of people seem to take pride in ex  relationships, and act as if loyalty to an old Girlfriend is more important than caring about the feelings of the one you have now. 

Post # 37
811 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

MyTimeWillCome:  I wish there was an emoji with one raised eyebrow. So basically, this girl he slept with for years is confiding in him about personal issues – and he needs to “try” to confide in you? I would maybe take a step back and re-read what you wrote. This is making ME uncomfortable. A single woman confiding her personal issues to my guy, and using him as a shoulder to cry on is a no-go. What you’re doing is opening the door for unnecessary drama. 

I have friends of the opposite sex. But when things get to the point where they’re having relationship problems, I chat with them a little and then pass them along to my Fiance. “Here, ask him what he would do. He deals with me pretty effectively, might be worthwhile to get some advice from him.” One, it reinforces to everyone that we are a team. Two, my Fiance doesn’t feel insecure. Three, “friends” don’t have any opportunity to cross the line.

IF things got to the point where I had an easier time confiding in my man-buddies than my SO, it would be pretty evident that that’s a problem. Either your relationship with your friend is at a level where it shouldn’t be, or you’re in a relationship with the wrong guy. 

Your SO doesn’t sound like a bad guy. He obviously cares about your feelings and is approachable. Still, I’d approach this situation with a great deal of caution. I would absolutely not be comfortable with it, at all. 

Post # 38
1471 posts
Bumble bee

Please update this thread in ~2 years or so, when your boyfriend is married to Sally.

Post # 39
441 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

MyTimeWillCome:  I did the exact same thing when I was cheating on my boyfriend (with my now husband).  Definitely a red flag.  No girl should be confiding in a guy who has a girlfriend and same for genders reversed.  Of course in my case, it worked out in my favor.  🙂  Not so much the ex boyfriend. 

Post # 40
21 posts

Honestly, I would not be ok with this. This isn’t just his best friend. It is someone he was romantically involved with. Even if they both claim that the feelings are gone, the fact that they were previously together, and for a long time, makes a big difference. At least it does to me. Also, even if they were just best friends, I would not be ok with another woman confiding and crying to my SO. Like what weddingmaven said, it is not about trust. We are all human and can easily slip and fall. He can go see her because she needs to confide in him, and he can go in with the mindset of being there for his best friend, but there is a possibility that that intimate moment of her pouring her heart out can lead to something more between them. Not saying that will happen. I don’t know your SO, but if it were me I would want to avoid it at all cost.



Post # 41
195 posts
Blushing bee

Horseradish:  completely agree! If I had a close guy friend who I grew up with I definitely would have dated him in highschool. And hopefully after our inevitable breakup we would remain friends just like Sally did. I think the fact that they remain friends is just fine. At the very least the man is mature and respects women- both positives in my book!

Post # 42
355 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2015 - The Fairmont, SF

SaraJeanQ:  Harsh! But… Possibly not without merit. 

MyTimeWillCome:  I’m glad you feel better but I still would be extremely wary of this situation. Quite frankly, what you’re describing sounds like it could very easily end up in disaster or at the very least, cause you a lot of stress. I know people like to say that “high school exes don’t count” but not that much time has passed since they were a couple and even if the romantic feelings aren’t there right now, they were in the not so distant past.

The fact of the matter is, they have an extremely strong relationship and if it had never been sexual, I’d probably say that it’s something that you have to accept; one of my FI’s closest friends is a girl he’s known for a decade. However, as a PP mentioned, there’s really no badge of honor that you get for staying friends with an ex if your current partner is uncomfortable with the situation – and you have been since the very beginning! Perhaps it’s just because of the relationship that we have, but I would’ve asked my Fiance to nip that in the bud right off the bat if he’d ever dated his female friend and because we understand one another, he definitely would’ve done so. 

I suppose I’m somewhat cynical because while I believe that it’s perfectly fine for men and women to be friends, I think it’s risky to assume that an ex will always remain an ex. There was sexual attraction and interest at one point and I think it’s very easy to get caught up in the nostalgia and comfort that someone who already knows everything about you brings – especially if that person’s known you for your entire life and is a staple fixture. Out of respect to you, if I were Sally, I’d find a different friend to confide in predominantly. 

I think the biggest problem with the situation that I’d have is that, in a long term relationship that’s on the possible cusp of engagement, I would think that your Fiance would talk most easily and most often to you. 

Post # 43
2868 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

KoiKove:  Good post. If I was in that situation, this would work so much better for me than someone stating “no exes allowed’ to me.

Post # 44
6436 posts
Bee Keeper

MyTimeWillCome:  I used to have the same mindset as “exes belong in the past, they are your ex for a reason,” my husband still strongly believes in this.  I used to fight about this all of the time with my ex, he would insist on remaining friends with his exes.  It used to really bother me.  So much to the point it was my biggest issue in our relationship was how close he was with his exes.  My issue with him was they didn’t know each other as long as your SO and his ex.

When I broke up with my ex and started dating my husband I realized I was in the same position my ex was in.  And realized how hard it was to not talk to him.  It wasn’t because I was still in love with him it was because I genuinely cared about him.  We had dated for nearly 5 years.  But we no longer talk because I realized how much it bothered my husband.  He never told me to stop talking to him.  It was a decision and choice I had to come to myself.  And I’m happier for it.  However, I didn’t know my ex since I was 6.

Your SO’s ex is a childhood friend.  He’s known her since he was 6.  I would suggest letting him know that it makes you uncomfortable when he spends time with her one on one.  And for confiding, you’re the one who he should be confiding to, not his ex.  I never think it’s a good idea to confide in someone you’re not dating, that’s not a parent or a family member, or a close friend.  Especially not an ex.  You can’t ask him to stop being friends with her, but you can let him know that the closeness of their friendship does bother you.

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