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The Ex Factor

Dear Sugar
My boyfriend and I just celebrated our two year anniversary. For the most part, our relationship has been great, full of love and friendship, support and happiness. A few months ago, my boyfriend's ex girlfriend started calling him again and they have developed a friendship that I am really uncomfortable with, especially since I have never met her.

We have had many arguments over this new relationship but have decided to work through it. Ever since I have voiced my concern, I feel as though he tip toes around their conversations and he doesn't understand why I have a problem with their friendship.

He has reassured me time and again that there is nothing romantic between them and that they are just old friends. Am I over-reacting or do I have a right to be upset by this rekindled relationship? Peeved Pamela

To see DEARSUGAR's answer

Dear Peeved Pamela
What initiated them to begin speaking again?Relationships revolve around trust and if you are feeling insecure about your boyfriend's honesty about this friendship, you might want to re-evaluate your own relationship with him. Is there a reason why your boyfriend has not introduced you to this mystery ex? Have you asked him what is so important about this relationship?

Many men do not understand why the ex can be threatening, even if they are just friends. I would try talking to him in a neutral tone before getting in a full blown argument. Make him understand how you are feeling about this situation and how uncomfortable this new friendship makes you.

Try to stay calm and listen carefully to what he is telling you. Also, to be fair, I would also ask yourself the difficult question why this relationship is so threatening to you, if he has repeatedly told you that it's just platonic. Do you think that you are creating drama in your own head that's not really there?

Having said that, your boyfriend should be respectful of your concerns and quiet the relationship instead of going behind your back to carry on this friendship. Trust is both extremely important and fragile in a relationship. I hope that after you talk, he is more understanding of your feelings.

Join The Conversation
LittleLady12 LittleLady12 9 years
If you trust your boyfriend, then what are you worried about? So what if she does want to sleep with him? If you know he would never cheat on you, what do you think is going to happen? She's going to tie him down and force herself on him? I don't blame you at all for not being comfortable with their friendship, but you don't have to trust her. You've never met her, so of course you don't trust her! But if you trust him to be faithful, just ride it out until she leaves the country and move on. And when that rare occurence comes where she drops in to see him, bite your tongue and wait for it to be over--tomorrow's another day, and she'll be gone!
kh61582 kh61582 10 years
To AK...and anyone else interested in the answer... When they were going out she was crazy jealous of every single women he came in comtact with. He's pretty flirty with waitresses and women who he meets in stores or things like that. He's not doing it on purpose he's just that way and since, in my opinion, he comes off as kind of weird when he does it I can just smile and shake my head about it. She would always flip out. That's probably one of the reasons he's so secretive about her because he's used to that sort of craziness. Since they've been talking she's sort of shone her true colors again. On my birthday as a matter of fact she called him that morning and just started yelling out him for not calling her back the whole weekend and useing a few four letter words and then just hanging up. I think that proves that she's a lot more attached to him than she should be but I was really glad she did that because it made him realize how insane she still is. She's got a boyfriend now and she lives in a different state and she claims she only wants to be friends so i can't see a justification for that. A week or so later she called him and claimed it was due to feminine troubles that she went off like that. I don't believe that for a second. He also tells me that when she's called and he calls her back the first thing she'll say is "So I guess you were with a girlfriend or something and too busy to talk to me" like he should be waiting by the phone or something. She's still acting all possessive and yet he thinks she only wants to be friends....whatever....she's crazy and that can only be a good thing for me;)
lolak lolak 10 years
OK, I don't get the issue now that you said you trust your boyfriend. If you know he won't do anything for sure then that's all you need to know. No one ever trusts the ex, that's cause they're not supposed to, it's you and your boyfriend in this relationship and that's where the trust is needed and you seem to have that so what's the problem? L7 is right, she can't make him do something he doesn't want to.
loveMYbitches loveMYbitches 10 years
I'm really weird about this kind of stuff in comparison to my friends & most people I know. But here is the way I think about it, if he is going to cheat on you with his ex or go back to her he is going to do it no matter whether you feel comfortable with him talking to her or not. If it's going to happen it's going to happen, either behind your back or him being honest. Hopefully if you talk to him he'll understand and maybe lessen is talking to her. But don't stress it, let him talk to his ex, if they're becoming such good friends meet her, you might end up even liking her. And if he does do something like horrific and leave you for her he's not worth your time anyway, you'll find someone better.
pinkhearted pinkhearted 10 years
I've been through this same situation. And no, I don't think you're insecure about yourself or your relationship. I don't think any girl or guy tries to rekindle a friendship with an ex- for solely platonic reasons. Even if they don't want a relationship, I think they still like the appeal of knowing they hold some sort of power or control over that person. Even if they are "friends," I would not be comfortable with them reminscing about past memories or experiences from when they dated. Since it's not as if they've been friends this whole time, I think your boyfriend should realize that he needs to put his priorities in order, it's either you or her. How would he feel in your shoes? -- "A dress should be tight enough to show you're a woman, and loose enough to prove you're a lady." --Edith Head
AK AK 10 years
if you don't mind me asking, how's she crazy?
L7amiguita L7amiguita 10 years
Well, if you are 100% sure that he is not cheating on you, then what's the problem? Ofcourse you are not going to trust her. She could care less about you and doesn't owe you anything. There is nothing you can do to make her not have feelings for your boyfriend (if she has any at all). I just thought it was odd that he didn't tell you that they were talking. That's kinda big news, don't you think? It seems to me that he is going to continue talking to her, so if you trust your boyfriend like you say you do, then you should trust that he won't let anything happen between him and his ex. She can't MAKE him do anything that he doesn't want to. IF anything happens between them, it will have happened because he wanted it to.
tina_marie tina_marie 10 years
I think he has a pretty simple choice. You or Her. If he loves you and she makes you uncomfortable, then he needs to end the communication. I couldn't live with him and be worried about her.
kh61582 kh61582 10 years
I'm the one who posted this question and I would just like to clarify a few things. One of the many reasons this "friendship" bothers me is because we had talked about her and their relationship long before she came back into the picture and I could tell that the way they broke up lacked closure and I could tell that on some level that bothered him. They broke up in 2001 and pretty much hadn't talked at all until she came out of nowhere and e-mailed him this past July. They hadn't talked in five years and then here she comes, crawling out of the woodwork after all this time and yes that bothers me because it seems so random. (By the way, I didn't find out they had been talking until September when I stumbled on to some of their e-mails.) He hasn't introduced to her because she lives in Maryland and we live in North Carolina. The one time she came to town since they've been talking was before I knew that they were talking so obviously I wasn't in on that. Good news is she's moving out of the country, but not until July and something tells me that she'll come back to town at least once before she leaves and I'd like to meet her. I've told my boyfriend that and it makes him very uncomfortable. Partially because she's crazy (if you'd like to know more about that I'd be glad to tell you) and I don't think he trusts that I'll play nice. I know all of this sounds really bad but honestly I don't think they're having an affair. I've seen their e-mails and I'm positive that if they had done something while she was here it would have been in those e-mails and it wasn't. In my opinion I think he was considering it until he saw her again and then he realized why he broke up with her and he's told me that. I think seeing him made her more interested than she was. The way their e-mails have gone backs my theory up I think. It's not about thinking their sleeping together, it's about me feeling like she wants to. I've been in her shoes and I don't think friends is all she's after. I know this seems like a lot of rambling but it's a very specific problem and I just wanted anyone who makes any further comments to have some more specific information. I love my boyfriend very much and I trust him. I don't trust her.
lolak lolak 10 years
I don't think this is healthy, I think people think that everything that has a funny feeling now in days is plain insecurity, I mean what ever happened to women's intuition? If something doesn't feel right then it isn't all that right. They broke up and moved on, what is so important to talk about with an old girlfriend that you can't talk about with your current girlfriend? I would be really bothered by this too, Dearsugar does have a point that you should keep it calm, I understand that no one likes to be told what to do but this is a two way relationship and if you don't feel comfortable about it then he needs to find a way to compromise, cause otherwise this will go on and on till the friction between you can't be fixed any more and all for someone who's not worth it. Good luck with this issue.
bluejeanie bluejeanie 10 years
unless he's ever given you a reason to not trust him, i would calm down and back off. why start fighting over something so silly? insecurity is a huge turn-off and nobody likes being told who he can and can't be friends with. he probably keeps it quiet since you reacted so strongly. maybe he could invite her over for dinner and you two could meet? who knows, you might become friends. it happened to me. :)
L7amiguita L7amiguita 10 years
I know many people will not agree with me, but I honestly don't feel it is appropriate for 2 people who used to date to continue to be friends while they are in a relationship with other people. It's just not possible. I firmly believe that someone will always have some sort of feelings for a person they used to be with. AND friendship is something that can easily lead to something more. I just think it is weird that your boyfriend is putting so much effort into keeping his 'friendship' with his ex. If he knows that it is bothering you, why does he continue to hold onto it? I would be careful with him...sounds like more than just a friendship to me. For your sake, I hope I am wrong...
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