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Thread: Girlfriend's ex

  1. #1

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    Girlfriend's ex

    Hi guys,

    I'm having a bit of a wobble, and I've got an awful feeling that I already know the answer to this, but I'm trying my hardest to remain level headed.

    I've been with my girlfriend for just short of a year now. We both split from our first marriages not long before we started talking, and it was a few months until we first met up in person. Both marriages we have kids from, so it's been a new thing for both of us. But I'm genuinely madly in love with this person. I honestly feel like I've been waiting for her and the person she is, for most of my life, and she honestly means the world to me. 95% of the time, she makes me feel the same, and I'm not just talking about her telling me she loves me. I feel that !

    Now I need to point out that I'm not normally a jealous type, but a few things have happened while we've been together, which have made me incredibly anxious, and we talked about them. Once or twice, we ended up arguing about it. She accused me of being unreasonable, and jealous, and I've been having some problems with anxiety and depression since leaving my family, which I'm seeking counselling for, so I took on board what she had said, and tried to move on with it.

    It is difficult getting used to the fact that he still needs to be involved for their son, just as I'm sure it will be for her with my ex needing to be involved for our children, but I'm away from my ex, and I don't talk to her about stuff other than that which involves our kids. That's fine. I can deal with that, but it's worth noting that jealousy and possessiveness isn't a normal trait for me, so I'm a little surprised by these feelings myself, and I can't help but feel like I'm feeling them for a reason, and it's not necessarily just down to my "mental health" or "jealousy" as she claims it to be.

    However, once or twice, she's mentioned something about her ex, when we've been sat together late at night, and she's texting someone, and it has become obvious that it's him. So I asked unaccusingly to her, why he's texting her at that time of night, about something clearly unrelated to their son. At the time, she said she didn't know, took on board my point about why that made me feel uncomfortable, and said she'd do something about it. That was enough for me. I appreciated that, and let her get on with it.

    Now my work takes me away from home a fair bit, so one night when I was away a few weeks back, I was missing her, and she said she was missing me, and she wanted to chat/sext/whatever when she got in from work, which she finished at 10pm that night. She sent me a message as she was leaving work, and told me she was just going to nip round to her ex's house for a cup of tea, because he was in a state due to his new girlfriend suddenly announcing that she was pregnant, and his girlfriend is polyamorous, so he was worried that it could be his, and my girlfriend was concerned because of the potential implications on their son. 100% fair enough. He lives 5mins away from where she lives, so I sent her a text about an hour and a half later to ask if she was OK... Nothing. She sent me a message at 1am to say she was back and was just plugging her phone in to charge and she was all mine. I said OK, but she never came back. Said the next morning that she'd fallen asleep. Again fair enough. I was a little upset and disappointed that she just vanished on me in favour of supporting him, but I just put it to one side and got on with things.

    It was casually mentioned later on the same day that she had gone down to support him because he was upset because his girlfriend had had a miscarriage. I pointed out that she'd said his girlfriend was pregnant the night before, and asked which it was. She went berserk because she said I was accusing her of being a liar, said that "the girlfriend" had just had the miscarriage that day, and since I know she's had miscarriages before, I should be more considerate in how I talk to her about it. It took me 3 days to calm the situation down.

    We've since talked about my issues with her ex and I admitted to her that the fact that they were together for 10 years, and we've only been together 1 does make me feel a little inferior, just because they have history and we don't have much. It's not a problem as such, it just crosses my mind now and again, and makes me feel a little inferior. But only time can fix that. She made a point of telling me that after all the lies he's told her over those 10 years, and the way he's made her feel unwanted, etc, there is no danger of her going back to him, so I need to relax and just get on with enjoying our relationship. OK...

    Now I've recently taken a new job with less travelling and better career prospects, based not far from where she lives, but my house is about 100 miles away. So while I was trying to work out how I could make it work, she offered me to move into her place while I was at work, and I travel home at the weekend to see my kids. Perfect! Wasn't really looking to live together so soon, but it makes sense.

    I'm two weeks into the new job now, and when my alarm went off this morning, I reached over to kill the alarm, and must have knocked/touched her phone which was beside my alarm clock on the bedside table, and unintentionally woke it up. First up on her screen was a late night message from her ex talking about him not getting a wank/masturbating or something like that.

    Now again, I'm not the kind of person who looks through their partners phone, so I just left it, got ready for work and left. I've had a sick feeling in my gut all morning and I'm shaking as I'm typing this, because I know that if I bring it up, all hell is going to break loose, and to be honest, I'm not sure I want to know the truth. Not to mention the fact that I'm reliant on her for accommodation at this moment in time, so I kind of feel like I'm stuck.

    I don't know whether she's encouraging his behaviour or not, so I'm not accusing her of doing anything, but the fact that we've already discussed his late night messaging, and this is clearly all to do with their boy, she clearly hasn't told him to stop it, and I can't help but feel like something is going on here, and I'm being kept in the dark.

    I feel like I need to talk to her about it, but I'm scared of how she's going to react, and I'm scared of finding out the truth. I don't want to lose her, but I'm also not prepared to just sit back and have the piss taken out of me.

    The only thing I have done to protect myself is message my HR department and asked them "hypothetically" how easy/difficult it would be to transfer to the office closer to where I live IF a position comes available. So at least that way, if the does hit the fan, I've got an escape route.

    I am feeling psychologically fragile at the moment, and I'm scared that I'm about to find out that the woman I've fallen in love and thought I'd found a future with isn't who I thought she was.

    Tf do I do?

  2. #2
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    I'm sorry but you know what happening. It's pretty clear she's getting crazy defensive because she isn't being faithful. For now, you can take a couple days to think about things...But I can promise you that moving closer to home won't change the fact she's cheating on you.

    I'd take my dignity and end things.

  3. #3
    Silver Member MirrorKnight's Avatar
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    She clearly does not know her boundaries, whether she is cheating or not. You have clearly told her that her behaviour made you uncomfortable, the fact that she carried on regardless means that she does not respect you.

    So respect yourself and leave. You do not need such a woman in your life.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Both of you have to have contact with exes if you have kids. How is the rest of the relationship? It's doubtful she is "encouraging" crass messages from him. Look at the big picture, not a 2 second glance at a phone.
    Originally Posted by Portland Bill
    Both marriages we have kids from, so it's been a new thing for both of us.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    She doesn't shut him down, telling him that their communication has to be about their children only. You've already communicated your reasonable request and she hasn't changed her behavior.

    I'd seek to rent a room where your new job is and jump at the chance to move back to your hometown when a position becomes available.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    I'm of mixed minds here.

    I can put this all on her—porous boundaries, and so on, which is certainly part of this—but I can't help but think there's more going on. Do you feel you jumped into this a little quickly? Do you feel there's a chance that your nervousness around her and her ex could be connected to feelings about your own marriage? Are you wanting her to behave in her co-parenting dynamic just the way you do in yours? Let's let that linger for a moment.

    Anyone with children is going to be in regular contact with their ex—hopefully, at least. That's their business, an ongoing, evolving, not-always-smooth relationship that they will each handle however they see fit. My feeling is that part of dating someone in this dynamic is to observe how they conduct that business—observe, never interfere or intervene—and determine if it's something you can live alongside, or not. The moment you cross certain lines (e.g. "Can I calmly ask why you're texting him at this hour?") is perhaps best registered as the moment you know the specific dynamic is not for you.

    There's simply no place for that—certainly not inside the first year. Subtract the kids—sure, it can be a little boundary chat about an orbiting ex, some behavior that triggers uneasy feelings, a vulnerable sharing of insecurity that helps things settle. But with the kids it's family interference—the most emotional of terrain, too emotional for an outsider to step into and anything productive to come out of that. It almost doesn't matter if your jitters and jealousy are "justified" or "unreasonable," if that makes sense, since they're being stirred by something you really, really can't touch.

    Do I think you're being reasonable? Of course. Sounds like some emotions have yet to settle, sounds like co-parenting and de-coupling are still in an early stage with her—and with you—and all that is scratching the record a bit. But what can you do, really? That's the thorn in the sweater. You either observe longer or bow out, as her foundation with him can't be part of your mutual foundation. Those two things exist side by side—that's kind of the bargain—and they need to coexist harmoniously.

    You emphasize repeatedly that you are not a jealous person. Hard math there says: if you are in a relationship that is fostering jealousy it means you are in a relationship that is pulling you further from your authentic state, rather than further cultivating it. Whatever the specifics, that is a good rule of thumb that one is not in a relationship that is "working" for them.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    I think you already know that this woman is most definitely not who you thought she is. The defensiveness and raging is your biggest tell on what's really going on. As you said yourself, you were both fresh from divorce and jumped into a relationship before either one of you was truly ready.

    Yes, you aren't really ready either, just running away from loneliness and depression and unfortunately, that clouded your judgment and landed you in this situation.

    You aren't stuck at all. You have a job, you can look for a room to rent or an apartment near your work and transfer when you can. You can leave this situation pretty fast.

    Once you leave, then take a time out and actually process your divorce and let yourself heal and become comfortable with yourself. Rediscover who you are as a man. Find some hobbies and interests, learn to live without using a relationship to prop you up. You have reach a point where you are content because if you date out of fear, loneliness, desperation - you will continue to make these kinds of mistakes, romanticizing a connection that isn't really all that and then getting shocked when reality eventually catches up to you. It's not a toxic rabbit hole you want to get stuck in.

    Meanwhile, take some time away from this woman to think and get your head cleared up and make an exit plan you can execute immediately.

  9. #8
    Member BurtReynolds's Avatar
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    The fact that her Ex/Bf is in a polyamorous relationship, texts her at night about jackin off and the fact that you live 100 miles from her is a recipe for disaster. Cut your losses and move on.

  10. #9
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    I'm sorry you're experiencing that.

    I also don't know in what world is it an ex wife duty to give comfort to the ex husband regarding his very intimate issues (pregnancy, miscarriage) with his girlfriend. That is the clear indication that they are much more than friends or co-parents. I'm sure the new girlfriend would not be happy AT ALL to know that he shared some very private information about her. And No it has nothing to do with the impact that it would have on the children they have together. There was Nothing for them to discuss. Especially if it was a miscarriage. Especially face to face, at his house, at 10h00 pm.

    Also, him discussing "masturbating issues " with her clearly shows that he feels comfortable doing it with her since they still have a very close and intimate bond.

    My point is, those behavior they have are totally incompatible with a healthy relationship with a new partner. Those two still have unfinished business. You said yourself that their split was not too long before you guys got together. She assures you that she would never go back with him but the truth is that they are still together in some ways. Does it really matter if they do not have sex? Can you be sure that they don't? or that they won't? Do you want to be in a relationship where you even have to ask yourself that question?

    She shows clear signs of someone not ready to let go her past and not ready to be in a relationship.
    You have to think of what's good for you AND your own children. Getting involved into a new relationship while you just got out of one is not the best move.
    Is she separated or divorced? What about you, have you processed your split? are your kids "fine" with the new arrangements in your life? I understand that a new relationship after your separation can be thrilling and help forget all the downside of your recent separation (anxiety and depression as you mentioned) but maybe you should try to take care of yourself first before. I would suggest you heal your self first so you can choose a partner that has more healthy behavior.

  11. #10
    Platinum Member lostandhurt's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    I'm of mixed minds here.

    You emphasize repeatedly that you are not a jealous person. Hard math there says: if you are in a relationship that is fostering jealousy it means you are in a relationship that is pulling you further from your authentic state, rather than further cultivating it. Whatever the specifics, that is a good rule of thumb that one is not in a relationship that is "working" for them.
    I agree, this relationship is not making you better it is making you someone you normally aren't.

    What you are feeling is your gut talking to you. You have said you really don't want to know the truth because you don't want to lose her and so you ignore your gut feeling. Hey we have all been there but you need to learn not to let fear run your life.

    It is easy for us to say "Time to end things and move on" because we are not in love with her like you are. In time you will know what you need to do but that has to come from you and only you. I suggest you keep your mouth shut and your eyes and ears wide open and see what you see and hear. Obviously her ex is way out of line but that is for her to put a stop to out of respect for your relationship and it looks like she either likes the attention or control over him or she simply thinks it is okay to behave like this in a relationship.

    Don't do anything until you have more information. The key to living with no regrets is making decisions from a place of knowledge, not emotion.

    Lost

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