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My boyfriend (BF) (31) and I (23) have been in a relationship for 7 months and things are starting to get semi serious! I am debating moving in with him and getting a job in his town after grad school ends in May. He also wants to propose in August! This is a huge step for me, and I am getting a bit nervous about this because we had a very rocky start and I still get anxious about the things that happened in the beginning of our relationship. First, I want to mention the things that I love about him. I love his commitment to me. He has consistently been mentioning marriage to me and I haven't seen this in any the guys I have dated before me. His parents are also wonderful and I freaking love them. I also have full access to his phone (this is also a con lol) and for sure, he does not currently text anyone from his past or have weird things. We had such a rocky start in the beginning of our relationship that was both of our faults which center around his past. Here is some information about them because there are a lot of people in this story and I think it will get confusing: Exes: - G4 is a high school teacher who BF dated for half a year but broke up because she wasn't really interested in him. He started dating me about six months after their breakup. - G3 is a girl he dated for about a year starting in 2017. This was a long distance relationship. He was basically one step away from proposing to her right before they broke up. Apparently he texted and met up with G1 during his relationship with her as well. - G2 is a girl he dated in grad school. Apparently he really really liked her but then she left and went to a different grad school. -G1 was his first girlfriend and they've been friends for a while before that. Crushes: - FZ is a "friend" who basically friend zoned him but sort of lead him on all through grad school, and he openly admitted to having a crush on. Apparently everyone in his cohort said he was in love with her, and his friends refer to her as his "baggage." He basically lived with her all throughout grad school and did relationship-like things with her. She was also his "pseudo-girlfriend" when she was on breaks between boyfriends and basically kept him around so he could help her on homework. She got married to another guy, FZH, and she would call BF to take her side whenever they were having marital issues. She was basically his "female best friend" but it was pretty sketchy. -L is a girl that BF works with. BF and L got into a conversation about wanting to be friends with benefits earlier last year, but nothing ever came of it. -A is another girl that makes me feel weird about BF. BF went to college with A but nothing ever happened. She moved away and got a boyfriend who nobody really likes. However, there were multiple messages on BFs phone (before we started dating) to other people saying how he wished he had dated her, how lucky the man who is going to marry her is going to be, how he felt obligated not to support her in a relationship, etc. Briefly mentioned: - DS: BF matched with her on a dating app before I got together with him. - DM is a girl he was flirting with literally hours before we decided to become girlfriend and boyfriend. My situation: So the first relationship problem started with FZ. BF would always bring this girl up in pretty much every conversation we had. I was getting annoyed with it because it sounded like he was reminiscing on weird things that they did together. One example is he talked about the time when he picked a fight with a guy at a bar because he offended her. Another time he told me about the time he fell asleep on the couch with her and they woke up holding hands. And then he told me about her crazy ex and how he took her in when she finally got the nerve to break up with him. These stories would be told to me multiple times. I even started playing a game with myself to see how soon he would bring her up in a conversation. FZ then started to say weird things about our relationship. She called our relationship stupid, and when BF confronted her about it, she said that she was "neutral" to us being together and that she didn't have time yet to make up her mind if I was good enough for BF. She never said that she was happy for BF. Then, she started commenting and basically staking her ground on every social media post that BF made. It got even weirder when she started messaging me little things that she knew about him that I didn't know yet. I got upset about FZ and basically told BF that (1) I didn't want to hear about her in conversation again and (2) if he was going to be friends with her then he had to either get her to apologize/stop being disrespectful or just stop being friends with her altogether. BF agreed that she was being rude and not acting like a friend at all, and he blocked her everywhere and doesn't speak to her anymore. He didn't really confront her about it but she is out of the picture so I feel fine about it now. The next thing that happened was L. I noticed that he was texting L a lot, and he basically told me about how they discussed being friends with benefits in the past. I was uncomfortable and set the boundary that I didn't want them to hang out one on one and that they should text during the day. That went well until, whenever BF would talk about me, she would just completely ignore the comment and not reply until BF sent something with a different subject. I think that was a bit disrespectful to our relationship, and I told him that basically I wan't really comfortable with him talking to her at all given their history. At first he wasn't okay with the boundary, saying "I only talk to her because of work." (Not true since their texts are completely non work related) We decided to agree that they only communicate professionally through email, and that is working fine for both of us. I am very happy about BF respecting those boundaries with FZ and L. The next issue was that I started finding random things of G3s old stuff in his house. I guess BF was not very proactive about getting rid of her old stuff, but it hurt seeing her clothes, old receipts of him buying her stuff, her old bible, etc. I told him I was uncomfortable with it, but I guess it kept slipping his mind. After reminding him to get rid of her stuff multiple times, this turned into me yelling at him and he finally threw out the stuff. A similar issue that followed from this is that he had a bunch of pictures on social media from exes that made me uncomfortable and that we agreed on him deleting, but then I felt like I had to nag him after that to actually go through with it. Another issue then came. I basically started noticing that he was sort of comparing me to his exes in passing. For example, he would tell me "you actually want to hang out with me, not like G4." Or he would say "we actually communicate. G2 was a communications major and she couldn't even communicate." Or he would say that he never thought about marriage until I came along (which ended up being untrue when I found out about him almost proposing to G3). He told me about DS and told me "I turned down a lawyer for you!!" He also would just mention his exes randomly when he talked a lot and that would get me upset. I was getting so much information, like about how he "messed around" with a girl on the bus in high school and how he had sex on the floor with an ex in her room so her parents wouldn't hear. I heard all about these girls, like how one was Catholic and he was prepared to have six kids with her and he basically told me he took one of his exes virginity. Again,I told him that I was uncomfortable with that, and now he is doing a pretty good job of keeping that under control. I think at this point I felt very overwhelmed because I had never seen so many issues with other girls pop up in my past relationships. BF did tell me that I could go through his phone any time, so I took that really REALLY far and snooped through all his messages from like, the past three years. This snooping happened multiple times and I told him every time I snooped. This is obviously wrong for me to do, and I got a bunch of information that I think I shouldn't know. I learned from the messages about DS and A. I also saw old messages he had with all of his girlfriends and it basically pieced together all the information that I had about them from his stories about them. I learned that BF had hardly any conflict with them and even TMI information like that he had unprotected sex with one of them (which doesn't really bother me, it just reminds me of a very detailed conversation he had saying that he wanted to do that with me where he described exactly what would happen and now my brain is like, wow, does he know from experience or??). I also learned that two months before we started dating, he messaged all of his exes trying to spark a conversation. So basically, every time I told him about snooping through his phone, I would get upset about the little things that I learned and this would upset him. I basically was getting so insecure whenever I read the messages that I craved his validation and I would interrogate him about his past in hopes that he told me something negative about his exes. The thing is, all his girls are very similar in looks and personality, and I don't fit that standard at all, so it was making me insecure since I was comparing myself to them. I eventually realized that what I was doing was wrong, and the interrogating has stopped on my end. So now, things have leveled out, but I still can't help feeling anxious all the time. My brain comes up with scenarios (like A breaking up with her boyfriend and moving to his town, then him creating an emotional connection with her and then emotionally cheating on me, or that we will do something that he did with an ex and it won't be as good) that make me feel like I'm going crazy. I have so much anxiety about things that I fear will happen in the future that its blinding my own judgement on whether I trust him or not. BF would never cheat on me but I fear that he does not process his past relationships and drags it into our relationship. I fear that he is not over his exes and that he is comparing me to them in his head. Now that it is coming closer to the point where I may be moving in with him, I am scared. Part of me feels that without him around, I would rather move to Florida and start a job in warmer weather. I am afraid that we won't work out and that I will be stuck in his town in Maryland for a few years before I can make another move. Am I suffering from retroactive jealousy? Am I suffering from really bad anxiety? Should I be with him if I don't fully trust him right now? Am I doing anything on my end to add to this feeling/ our problems? I feel so confused and would definitely like a third party opinion.
Hi All, Me and my boyfriend are together 3 years. My boyfriend used to live in a shared flat when this girl moved in. Since start they seem to become friends. She gifted him a book, gave him access to her netflix, she developed similar interests as my boyfriend, like warhammer, games, music bands. I noticed straight away that she would talk to him a lot, but won't communicate much with me or had intentions to become friends. Sometimes he would text me saying he is out for a walk, but would not specify with who, unless I ask indirect question and he would admit that she invited him. They lived in the shared accommodation for 1 year with other housemates and I am sure that there was no physical cheating because I know my boyfriend loves me and I am the n.1 for him and I was around often. We moved in together last year and I noticed that he would play games and voice chat with her more often and even wanted to invite her over for Christmas. More often he would not say that he was about to play with her, I would just walk in the room and find out. She even bought him a game extension without occasion. For a year I was hiding my jealousy and not saying anything because didn't want to come as controlling freak and obviously break the friendship but with that Christmas invitation my jealousy skyrocketed, but still I said, no problem invite her over. Till the point when I said I can't take it anymore and had a serious conversation with him about boundaries being crossed. I discovered that they were texting almost everyday and she would tell him a lot about her problems. He said that he has naive character, but he would not play games with her and would not contact her. He said that he honestly talked to her, saying that it's better they won't hang out and that she was sorry for being too friendly. My intention was for him to set boundaries, not breaking up friendship. Am I a bad guy? Or there was a really valid reason for him to terminate friendship?
To everyone around us, my mother and I have the best mother-daughter relationship possible. Everyone says I'm lucky to have a mother who is like a friend to me. After my parents' divorce fourteen years ago, my mother brought me up alone. I have an immense amount of respect for her for that. Since we were two women living alone without any third person with us, and since my mother is pretty progressive, we always had a friendly relationship. I've been there to witness all her relationships and breakups and everything in between. I've been the friend who had always been there when she needed to get back up after another relationship went down the drain. But it's not all fun and games like it seems. What this relationship meant that my mother remained like a friend. She never became a mother to me. I was very young when I realized I didn't have a mother. I had a friend of a different age. I had to learn to become the caring figure in my life. But that's not the main reason I resent her. Even the friendship with her is not balanced. It's always about her. Her relationships, her breakups, her friends. She didn't even notice me going through two breakups, coping with my best friend's suicide or struggling with my sexual orientation. She never bothered to ask how my day was. When I found out my best friend killed herself, we were in the dinner table and I couldn't eat. She bluntly said that girl was not important enough to be so sad over her. So only her friends are important. Maybe I'm being unfair. Maybe she had my best interests in my mind. But she never tried to understand me as a person. I know she loves me. But she doesn't value me as a person. That brings me to the next topic. She doesn't understand boundaries. She doesn't understand where she ends and I start. When I buy something for myself, she either wants to take it or wants me to buy her the same thing. She wants to participate in my every activity. She says it's my duty to make her happy since she brought me up alone. I guess it is, but I just want something for myself, and myself only. I want to be my own person, not her shadow. She's suffocating me. It's even worse in this pandemic because I have to spend every waking minute with her. I really do love her. I don't want to hurt her. How do I successfully enforce boundaries without hurting her?