Do you need to know your boyfriend’s ex?
Your love story is only getting started, yet you’re already attached. The start of a romantic relationship is usually a significant time because it determines the rest of your partnership. And one thing is certain: you want to build your relationships and keep your attraction strong.
I recently received this request from a young woman:
I’ve been in a relationship for about a year, and my boyfriend still communicates with his ex (they share everything time to time). They split on good terms, but they don’t talk much anymore. We had planned to spend a week in a house with friends, including her ex, this summer. We both chatted a little about it to figure out how we felt about the scenario, but I still wonder whether it would have been better if I had known more about her beforehand. I’m not sure if I’m asking myself this question out of misdirected interest or to avoid feeling uncomfortable this week. Basically, I didn’t want to know anything about her in order to avoid asking questions.
I am emotionally hypersensitive, I hope that I can control my feelings that week and that everything goes well for all. For the time being, I’m not concerned, but it doesn’t mean I won’t be once there… Is it better if he tells me more about her?
It’s a soft question: what will happen between my lover and his ex? What’s the difference between her and me? Will he not be inclined to track her down? Will she be envious of me? And, of course, the dread that these potential troubles may sour a good relationship.
I give you my answer:
” Hello. First and first, I’d like to thank you for your confidence in me by asking me this question that has touched you. I don’t know your couple’s or personal story, but I’ll do my best to respond.
You’re in a difficult predicament. We have the right to ask ourselves a number of questions in this type of situation, both about our own feelings and about the connection between our lover and our ex: for example, is it over well between them? Is it not going to crack? Will she try…etc. Is she not going to make my life a living hell? I’m not sure.
Of course, these inquiries can only create tensions. I believe that the appropriate attitude to adopt depends on the state of your connection: is your partnership stable? Is everything well between you? Are there any reservations? Do you feel completely at ease in your new relationship?
The more secure you feel in your relationship, I believe it will be easier. You mention emotional hypersensitivity. I understand that you are easily moved, even weakened by emotions, and even upset by things that would not bother other people. This is surely a subject that could cause you problems. So here are some suggestions:
- don’t try to ask him too many questions;
- try to strengthen your inner sense of security;
- feel free to meet her or not.
Many of our concerns and inquiries stem from the fact that we do not feel comfortable, that is, we are terrified of not understanding how to do it, of being judged, rejected, mocked, and, ultimately, of being abused and or abandoned.
The sense of security helps us to have enough confidence and trust in ourselves to know that whatever occurs, we will get out of it, that we will not be abandoned, that we will know how to protect ourselves in the event of a crisis, and that life will go on in good conditions. This sensation enables us to deal with (nearly) calmly delicate situations.
Furthermore, I assume you have already realized that the more questions you have in mind, the more they arise, and the more concerned you become. And the more we worry, the more questions we ask ourselves, which leads to a cycle of inquiries and inadequate answers, which just adds to our anxiety. So I recommend that you refrain from asking too many inquiries. After all, you’ll see how she is, and perhaps (?) she is a decent person? And, if she’s unfeeling – I doubt these questions will help you in something interesting.
Finally, I believe it is critical that you feel free to meet this person or not. After all, knowing an ex or bumping into her isn’t required. And if it must be, it is preferable to be mentally prepared before.
As a result, I recommend that you ask yourself: am I prepared to spend a week in his company? If so, you should be OK; if not, perhaps you should take the time to prepare yourself, however you do? And you’ll know when the time arrives.
I hope this lengthy response has sufficiently informed you. Unfortunately, in the circumstances of this conversation, I can only speak in broad strokes. But, of course, I am available to go farther with you if you so desire.