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Dealing With Hearing About an Ex

Group Therapy: My Friends Won't Stop Gossiping About My Ex

This question is from a Group Therapy post in our TrèsSugar Community. Add your advice in the comments!

I met this guy last semester because he was a friend of a friend. I'll fast-forward through what happened: he liked me, I liked him, we got along really well/hung out a lot, then he started to ignore me, he dumped me for someone else, blah blah. Sounds pretty simple/painless, but it definitely wasn't (for me of course), and I'll just shorten the terrible experience because it's not my main problem anymore.

The problem is that since we are mutual friends, mostly every time I hang out with my friends, I have to hear about him, and that sucks after trying to get over him and having been hurt by him. My friends don't know what he did, because the whole time we were "dating" (if you could call it that) I kept it under wraps and presumably so did he. So no one really knows that I'm secretly carrying this burden, and I don't want them to know because I'm not trying to start any drama, and I don't want to spoil their friendship with him with my issues. Plus they're new friends (also just met them last semester), and I feel it would be too much too soon to be like "ummmm can you never talk about him around me? Thanks."

So what ends up happening is me nodding and grinning and bearing it whenever they speak about him (because they assume he and I are friends and that I'd want to hear). It's gotten to the point where I've heard about his sexual endeavors through them, and it's getting to be a little too much to handle. I don't want to stop hanging out with them because they're very cool people, yet hearing about him constantly and what he's doing stunts my progress in getting over him and puts me on edge when I'm around them. How do I handle this?

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KateAthens KateAthens 5 years
The situation kinda sucks :(. I understand (in a way) how you're feeling and i know how hard it must be for you. Just try to be strong and bear it.
KateAthens KateAthens 5 years
The situation kinda sucks :(. I understand (in a way) how you're feeling and i know how hard it must be for you. Just try to be strong and bear it.
nylorac nylorac 5 years
*I don't see any reason why you should not tell them the truth, and you should do it immediately ... wow, grammar.
nylorac nylorac 5 years
*I don't see any reason why you should not tell them the truth, and you should do it immediately... wow, grammar.
nylorac nylorac 5 years
If you tell them about the whole deal, and they for some reason back off and start ignoring you, then they're not real friends and you'll be way better off without them. I don't see any reason why you should not tel them the truth, and to do it immediately. And I agree with onlysourcherry. If you had hidden the fact that you did date him for months or potentially years, then I wouldn't trust you. You may want to reevaluate your relationship with these new friends of yours if you don't feel comfortable being open with them and having them stick around.
nylorac nylorac 5 years
If you tell them about the whole deal, and they for some reason back off and start ignoring you, then they're not real friends and you'll be way better off without them.I don't see any reason why you should not tel them the truth, and to do it immediately. And I agree with onlysourcherry. If you had hidden the fact that you did date him for months or potentially years, then I wouldn't trust you. You may want to reevaluate your relationship with these new friends of yours if you don't feel comfortable being open with them and having them stick around.
onlysourcherry onlysourcherry 5 years
If I were your friend and I found out you had secretly dated a mutual friend and not told me about it for months or years I would feel like I couldn't trust you. If they are your friends, just tell them. Whatever "confidentiality agreement" you and this guy had dissolved with the relationship. I agree with Joe about how to phrase it. Maybe don't say anything negative, just be like "this is so weird, but we actually dated a little a while ago." problem solved.
onlysourcherry onlysourcherry 5 years
If I were your friend and I found out you had secretly dated a mutual friend and not told me about it for months or years I would feel like I couldn't trust you. If they are your friends, just tell them. Whatever "confidentiality agreement" you and this guy had dissolved with the relationship. I agree with Joe about how to phrase it. Maybe don't say anything negative, just be like "this is so weird, but we actually dated a little a while ago." problem solved.
Gdeeaz Gdeeaz 5 years
I agree with joe that the way you say it is important and can make a huge difference. But, it you do tell them, please don't call the guy a jerk or point out the crap he did. Like you said, they are his friends and ragging on him won't do any good.
JoeTyndall JoeTyndall 5 years
OP, One more thing. How you present yourself is very important. You can say, "Yeah, I used to date that guy. How embarrassing?" and look like you you are about to cry. Or you can say, "Yeah, I used to date that guy. Ha! Actually, he's kind of a jerk," and say this in a very self-confident way, <i>and make it sound like you never even think about him any more.</i> This is the way to go. Sometimes it's <i>how</i> you say something that is just as important as what you say. In other words, even if you are not self-confident about this, pretend to be self-confident. The others may not think it's a big deal.Go for it. You can do it.
JoeTyndall JoeTyndall 5 years
OP, One more thing. How you present yourself is very important. You can say, "Yeah, I used to date that guy. How embarrassing?" and look like you you are about to cry. Or you can say, "Yeah, I used to date that guy. Ha! Actually, he's kind of a jerk," and say this in a very self-confident way, and make it sound like you never even think about him any more. This is the way to go. Sometimes it's how you say something that is just as important as what you say. In other words, even if you are not self-confident about this, pretend to be self-confident. The others may not think it's a big deal. Go for it. You can do it.
JoeTyndall JoeTyndall 5 years
OP, you have three choices. 1. Fess up. Spill the beans. Pull your friends aside, one at a time, and tell them exactly what is going on.2. Do nothing. Keep listening to these kinds of discussions for the next ten years. (You want to keep these people as friends for life, right?)3. Dump your friends and find new friends.Which choice do you like best? (I recomend the first choice.) Yes, there would be a little drama involved, but don't be too wimpy to put up with a little drama. And you do not have to come out and say, "Don't talk about him!" By just letting everyone know where you stand, they'll respect your 'space' and talk about him less. Not completely zero, but less. I think you'll be able to handle this as the best compromise possible. You can do it. I know you can.
JoeTyndall JoeTyndall 5 years
OP, you have three choices. 1. Fess up. Spill the beans. Pull your friends aside, one at a time, and tell them exactly what is going on. 2. Do nothing. Keep listening to these kinds of discussions for the next ten years. (You want to keep these people as friends for life, right?) 3. Dump your friends and find new friends. Which choice do you like best? (I recomend the first choice.) Yes, there would be a little drama involved, but don't be too wimpy to put up with a little drama. And you do not have to come out and say, "Don't talk about him!" By just letting everyone know where you stand, they'll respect your 'space' and talk about him less. Not completely zero, but less. I think you'll be able to handle this as the best compromise possible. You can do it. I know you can.
Gdeeaz Gdeeaz 5 years
You don't want them to know you two "dated" because it could cause drama, and you don't want to stop hanging out with them. There really isn't much you can do aside from trying to change the subject or just sucking it up.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 5 years
Honestly, I'd continue to suck it up. If they talk about sexual stuff, then you can say, "okay, too much information" and laugh or something.
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