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Thread: Did my friend try to hook up with my ex?

  1. #1
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    Did my friend try to hook up with my ex?

    Not sure how to tag this post. I'll keep it simple.

    Right now I'm male, 30 and in a loving relationship near 7 years. All 10/10 on that front.

    But lately I've been thinking about an ex ("Jane"), and the possibility that a very close friend of mine ("Mike") may have at the very least tried to hook up with her. This was like a decade ago. Suddenly I can't get it out of my head and I'm depressed and angry about it. I dated Jane in college for 2 years, where we were steady boyfriend & girlfriend until she decided she needed "time off". Felt like I was getting demoted and that suddenly I wasn't as important as she was to me. It was awful. She'd go off the radar for weeks with "friends" only to show up and pretend no time had passed. Tried it, hated it, broke up some months later.

    Maybe a week or so after I break it up and cut every tie, my friend Mike gives me a call in the evening. He's frantic and asks if I've spoken to Jane. I hadn't. He tells me he's coming over. We meet and he's in a state I hadn't seen him in before or since. Anxious, panicky, "dude this is serious" level of seriousness. Again he asks me if Jane had said anything to me (she hadn't). He relaxes a bit. We go have dinner. He explains that Jane had threatened to tell me Mike had tried to hook up with her. I reacted by choosing to believe Mike. Jane was an unstable person, especially in our final year together. She was loud, easy to anger, feisty (at her worst she threw things at me) and, I knew this too well, always making empty threats. Child of a physically abusive family and prone to substance abuse, too.

    It's not that I didn't have reason to believe Mike didn't have a thing for her. Me and Jane used to double date with Mike and his girlfriend. We were part of the same little group for so long, and Mike is this hopeless romantic who gets a crush on any girl who hangs in his vicinity for a while. Thing is by the time I broke up with Jane I hated her guts, wanted nothing more to do with her, saw this supposed threat as a final stab at making me miserable. But she never contacted me about it. All I ever got out of the situation was that Mike was panicked and ready to go out of his way to get to me before she did.

    8 years later I'm obsessed with this past scenario for no real relevant reason. Mike is one of my closest friends and, outside my girlfriend, the only person I can spend on a videocall for over 2 hours in the middle of quarantine. I love the guy. But the uncertainty gets me. If I were to question him he wouldn't trust me anymore, and if he were to admit it I wouldn't trust him anymore either. I wish there was a way of confirming if he did try to get it on with my ex but all I have was his version of a thing my ex never brought up (nor did I ask: I've never contact her since). I moved on all these years and suddenly I can't stop thinking about it. I hate being lied to and the possibility that my friend has been sitting on this lie all these years breaks my heart a little bit.

    What would you do in this situation?

  2. #2
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    I would get some therapy and maybe get on anxiety meds, because if I were your girlfriend and found out that you were putting emotional time and energy into nonsense that means nothing at this point instead of into your relationship with me, I would dump your ass so fast your head would spin. Everyone is having a hard time now, you have chose the wrong thing to obsess on and if you don't let it go you could end up without a best friend and without a girlfriend. This is completely irrelevant now and the fact that you can't see it is really a HUGE problem. I am sure that there are things you should be attending to in both relationships and in the rest of your life that you are not because of this.

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    Originally Posted by arjumand
    I would get some therapy and maybe get on anxiety meds, because if I were your girlfriend and found out that you were putting emotional time and energy into nonsense that means nothing at this point instead of into your relationship with me, I would dump your ass so fast your head would spin. Everyone is having a hard time now, you have chose the wrong thing to obsess on and if you don't let it go you could end up without a best friend and without a girlfriend. This is completely irrelevant now and the fact that you can't see it is really a HUGE problem. I am sure that there are things you should be attending to in both relationships and in the rest of your life that you are not because of this.
    Your response is awfully presumptuous and reads like you're projecting your own issues here. What about my post suggests I'm not paying my girlfriend the attention she deserves? I'm open with my girlfriend about everything, including my present melancholy. I don't care about my ex, she's an accesory in this story. What I care about is my friend and the possibility that he went behind my back as soon as he got an in.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    The possible betrayal sounds like it's eating you up. I'm not certain why you might feel this: " If I were to question him he wouldn't trust me anymore."

    Seems a bit strong, no? Is it possible you're building this up to be more than what it is?

    He may shrug and say no or tell you the truth and then you both let the dust settle like adults and leave it for awhile. Although I'm not certain I'd be upset about it, if I were you. I'd imagine it would feel more like a relief.

    If you do feel strong elements of distrust and lack of respect for him, I'd think it has to do more with your friend still remaining immature or childish at times even now. It doesn't sound like you agree with his personal choices (even the ones you know about) in some way or another. Is this true?

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    Originally Posted by Rose Mosse
    The possible betrayal sounds like it's eating you up. I'm not certain why you might feel this: " If I were to question him he wouldn't trust me anymore."

    Seems a bit strong, no? Is it possible you're building this up to be more than what it is?

    He may shrug and say no or tell you the truth and then you both let the dust settle like adults and leave it for awhile. Although I'm not certain I'd be upset about it, if I were you. I'd imagine it would feel more like a relief.

    If you do feel strong elements of distrust and lack of respect for him, I'd think it has to do more with your friend still remaining immature or childish at times even now. It doesn't sound like you agree with his personal choices (even the ones you know about) in some way or another. Is this true?
    It's 100% possible I'm building this up way more than it deserves, yes. I've done it before.

    My friend is a bit of a serial monogamist. He goes full steam ahead with every girl he dates like he wants to replicate the cozy long-term relationship he once had with his own ex as quickly as possible, and ends up driving all of them away. Like he's in constant rebound mode. And he will go off-limits when he can. He dated a friend of his own parents behind their backs to avoid any scandal, ended up at the abortion clinic with her. He has a record.

    I love the guy and I trust him, but sometimes a tiny part of that trust feels like it comes from the knowledge that there's no room for betraying that trust. Paranoid and insecure as that sounds. Deep down I know this is all silly and convoluted but I sometimes need to vent these insecurities. Not to have them validated, just to see if they make at least a bit of sense to someone out there.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    That's fine. It makes sense. But what I'm sensing most of all is a lot of fear and a bit of frustration, being so close to someone and also not entirely certain whether you can trust this person completely. Unfortunately, your friend doesn't seem to make decisions that are good for himself overall or in his own best interests and in the process, he ends up hurting himself and others.

    If you're always living in fear, even if a low grade of perpetual, constant, existing fear, this wears a person down. It's exhausting living this way. The issue with your ex a long time ago hit a little too close to home but the source of your anxiety is your friend in general and his choices.

    Do you also feel that quarantine and reduced contact with other friends or family (other people) have contributed to these overall thoughts? The phone calls between him and you seem quite long. I got on a call recently and it went sideways for me also. At first I wasn't quite grasping what the other person was asking and how it was relevant to the topics at hand. I did send my feedback later on explaining how the call felt inappropriate and the concerns were misdirected but thanked the other person also. I think in a desire to break down the isolation and loneliness we may be spending a bit too much time discussing topics that are not relevant or positive in the overall idea when it comes to promoting positive mental health. This is just my observation. In other words, your friend may not be adding anything meaningful to you or your life or you're not learning from each other in healthy ways or challenging each other to be better men. Are there ways to direct conversations so that the both of you talk less about people or your romantic/personal lives (no more gossip for instance) and discuss other topics you both like talking about?

    Could you elaborate a bit more on this part? "...but sometimes a tiny part of that trust feels like it comes from the knowledge that there's no room for betraying that trust."

    I think it helps to figure out or talk out what you mean by "no room". There's no room for forgiveness? Or are we going back again to "no room" feeling more like fear, losing a good friend, in a time when we can't stand to lose more people or more of anything? Maybe open up the idea of why it feels like the walls are closing in or it feels hard to breathe. Both of you may be talking for long periods but those discussions or conversations or their nature don't seem to be uplifting or inspiring you.

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    What do you suppose has suddenly triggered these obsessive thoughts, after all these years? Has something recently happened between you and your friend that dug up these old concerns?

    I don't think he necessarily slept with your ex. But would you believe him now even if he says he hasn't? Would it be enough to put your mind at ease? I think asking him about it now is not necessarily going to be seen as a breech of trust, but rather a strange line of inquiry coming years after the fact.

    I would instead try to figure out why you're worrying so much about this at this point in your life. There's some sort of trigger-point underlying this, which is probably where you need to redirect your focus.

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    Originally Posted by arjumand
    I would get some therapy and maybe get on anxiety meds, because if I were your girlfriend and found out that you were putting emotional time and energy into nonsense that means nothing at this point instead of into your relationship with me, I would dump your ass so fast your head would spin. Everyone is having a hard time now, you have chose the wrong thing to obsess on and if you don't let it go you could end up without a best friend and without a girlfriend. This is completely irrelevant now and the fact that you can't see it is really a HUGE problem. I am sure that there are things you should be attending to in both relationships and in the rest of your life that you are not because of this.
    Goof lord, eight years. Big waste of energy. I agree with arjumand, please seek therapy.

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    @Rose Mosse
    @MissCanuck

    Hadn't posted here in 4 years, didn't even remember the name of the forum until I googled my user name. "Living in fear" is a bit much. I hadn't really thought about this thing in years and still don't know what triggered it. I guess quarantine and having way too much time to lose in pointless reminiscing.

    As for that line about "no room for betraying that trust", I simply mean that IF I felt my friend is the kind of guy who would wait around for relationships to die before he can swoop in, then there's really nothing to fear cause I'm in a good, healthy relationship now.

    I guess this boils down to the dilemma of whether to trust someone who has been openly deceitful around others, even if as far as you know that person has never deceived you. Like every time I read about someone leaving their spouse to marry someone else I wonder why would you marry someone who would evidently leave their spouse?

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    Originally Posted by Hollyj
    Goof lord, eight years. Big waste of energy. I agree with arjumand, please seek therapy.
    I wasted more energy finding this forum after 4 years of not posting than I have on this issue, thank you. Remember why I left in the first place. But I guess it's like any other internet forum. Sometimes genuinely helpful and empathetic people reply, and sometimes you do.

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