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Bad at being the new girlfriend: Shadow to the ex-wife

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Athena1979 posted 1/29/2020 23:07 PM

I absolutely cannot be the only person who is bad at being the girlfriend to men with ex-wives.

That stupid, ugly jealousy.
That long beautiful history that they have that I will never have.

•Those silly little inside jokes and "oh, remember the time when we used to do...."
•Hey, you want to go out for lunch?
•Oops, i just called you my ex-wife's name again for the 3rd time this week. Oopseys.
•Let me find a way to talk about how great my ex wife is and what a wonderful mom she is and how right she is about everything and how she is so kind and good.
•Now let's talk about my ex-wife's boyfriend that she cheated on me with and has been in a solid relationship since and what a wonderful guy he is.

•And now, let me tell you about how I talked about you to my ex-wife and she wants to know when we're moving in together bc our son really likes you and loves coming over.

The only thing that flows through my mind about this woman is negative things. I dont think shes an evil person, but shes not the saint she is made out to be. I mean, my boyfriend has never ever said a single negative thing about her and stands up for her like a knight in shining army.

However, when you talk to his mom or his best friends or his siblings or his co-workers, I hear some pretty sick things she did to him and how she treated him. ( one story was of her calling him up and saying that she doesnt love him and she and her sister had decided to leave the state and never come back and that she didnt care what he did with their son. And she just left. Didnt come back for weeks until they ran out of money.)

And as for him going on about me with her...I dont want her to know stuff about me. I dont trust her. Why? Because I'm a jealous little twat. That's why.
I feel like I live in her shadow. And I'm not a shadow. I'm my own person. I dont want to be the side story gossip for his ex wife.

And I'm not. It's all in my head. Kindness should always win. But this jealousy just BREEDS this anger and resentment.

ShatteredSakura posted 1/29/2020 23:18 PM

This is a reason why I'm wary getting involved with someone who still is in contact with their ex. What you're describing sounds like a competition (you need to replace those inside jokes), or is intrusive in your life (being talkyd about to her and her having an opinion on your relationship). It feels very threatening. I experienced a bit of that with WW and her ex, and big surprise he became her AP.

If your BF's ex cheated on him and was this horrible, why is he even having moments that will lead to reminiscing with this woman?

Why the hell is he telling her details about your life? Those are piss poor boundaries. None of that is her business!

IMO this man does not sound safe for your sanity. He praises the AP?? Blimey!

Superesse posted 1/29/2020 23:28 PM

Oh no, no, no....how long was he D'd before you two started dating? Sounds like total enmeshment with his XWW to me, and you unfortuntely came into his life before he had healed?

Athena1979 posted 1/30/2020 06:48 AM

7 years. Divorced for 7 years before me. She has been in her relationship with her boyfriend for 10 years. She got so tired of him always coming around that she actually moved an hour away. To which, he was very upset about it. That happened about 3 months before we started dating.

Before she moved, apparently, he was at her house daily, on the days the boyfriend wasn't there.

Which, her boyfriend still lives with his ex wife.

So many people maintain "good" relationships with the ex. My thought has started to become, if you guys are do great at being nice divorced, maybe you should have put that same effort in being and staying married. This feels like a game of flirting and batting eyes each other.

I have another guy friend, like from high school, who apparently does the same thing with his ex wife.

Superesse posted 1/30/2020 07:21 AM

Oh wow, seriously? Athena, there's no room in his life for someone new, and no guarantee he will want to change his pattern with this partner-X. Some people like triangles! I thought he was enmeshed psychologically with her, but maybe she played the come-hither-go-away game with him, too. Crazy, but it seems like it worked for both of them...for 7 years almost. Until she pushed him away the last go-round. You are certainly being put by him into a no-win scenario. No wonder you posted. You don't need this.

ShatteredSakura posted 1/30/2020 07:42 AM

Wtf!

So many people maintain "good" relationships with the ex. My thought has started to become, if you guys are do great at being nice divorced, maybe you should have put that same effort in being and staying married. This feels like a game of flirting and batting eyes each other.

I know right? It's like they calm down, the stress of seeing each other daily is gone. If you're better with each other after the fact, why couldn't you chill out during the relationship?

I'm pretty laid back, WW is not. When she gets stressed by life she puts stress on the relationship. She doesn't do that with friendships. As she has put it "well I'm not dating them" when I'd point out her friends wouldn't put up with some of the ship I put up with.

WW had a rocky 2 year relationship with her ex before I met her, and she kept him as a friend despite my objections. Eventually he became a rock for her to lean on, the negative aspects of their relationship long forgotten. It still stings thinking what WW said to me around the last dday, that he has gotten better at communication and such. So I wasted almost 6 years of my life so you could wait for him to be better to jump back in? It's gut wrenching to think about. It's not like she planned it, but the option was always on the table because of how she kept him in her life, despite her denying that there was no option.

You will not find peace in a relationship like this IMO. This sounds far worse than what I experienced actually! What happens when his ex becomes single? (Also how can her BF tolerate this?? WW's AP I ask the same question ...I know he gets jealous of me....so wtf did he stick around for years trying to woo my WW?!? It's sick!)

[This message edited by ShatteredSakura at 7:45 AM, January 30th (Thursday)]

hopefullife posted 1/30/2020 09:11 AM

Athena, this man sounds like he hasn't moved on. I understand you love him as you wouldn't have entered the relationship, but please take care of yourself also. I know it's possible to be friends with an ex, but not like this. Being civil and pinning are two different things.

WhoTheBleep posted 1/30/2020 09:13 AM

Next!!

Let him continue to live in his fantasy Land while you move on with your life, solo.

little turtle posted 1/30/2020 12:39 PM

I hope you're planning to end things with him soon. He is a terrible partner! He obviously still wants to be with her. She had to move an hour away to get away from him?!?! HUGE RED FLAG!!

Why are you with him??

So many people maintain "good" relationships with the ex. My thought has started to become, if you guys are do great at being nice divorced, maybe you should have put that same effort in being and staying married.

My XH and I get along much better now than when we were together. For the most part, we've always gotten along. I just refused to accept his girlfriend/OW. I'm kind of sad now that I read this post because maybe if he did put in the effort at the time, I wouldn't have had to divorce him.... but he didn't and so we had to split. Our current relationship is nothing like you're describing with your boyfriend and his ex. We are civil and friendly. But we have both moved on with our lives.

ChewedMeUp posted 1/30/2020 13:21 PM

I have a “good” relationship with my ex, in that we have a daughter in college that doesn’t drive yet, so need to chat about monthly about her transport. He’s a plumber, so when I had a pipe under my basement floor bust, he’s the one I called because free repair work that I didn’t have a jackhammer to do. We’ll chat again in probably the next couple weeks, because I have some of the tax stuff he’ll need (he claims aforementioned DD).

But that’s it. We can be friendly when we must occupy the same space, but that’s passingly rare these days. We’re not texting daily, or weekly even. To me, this is a “good” relationship because we can interact when we have to, but 90% of the time, I don’t give him a thought in a day. Your guy hasn’t moved on at all.

nekonamida posted 1/30/2020 13:28 PM

That long beautiful history that they have that I will never have.

•Those silly little inside jokes and "oh, remember the time when we used to do...."

Totally fine. You will make your own inside jokes.

•Hey, you want to go out for lunch?

Some times okay if kids are involved. If not, inappropriate.

•Oops, i just called you my ex-wife's name again for the 3rd time this week. Oopseys.

Crossing over into strange territory...

•Let me find a way to talk about how great my ex wife is and what a wonderful mom she is and how right she is about everything and how she is so kind and good.

Red flags popping up.

•Now let's talk about my ex-wife's boyfriend that she cheated on me with and has been in a solid relationship since and what a wonderful guy he is.

ABORT! ABORT! This is insanity!

•And now, let me tell you about how I talked about you to my ex-wife and she wants to know when we're moving in together bc our son really likes you and loves coming over.

She's asking about it because she's hoping he finally leaves her the hell alone. That's why she got a boyfriend 3 years before they divorced and moved an hour away. She. Does. Not. Want. Him. But he just doesn't get it, does he?

This is not a divorced man problem. This is entirely an issue with your boyfriend. Most divorced people are not like this. Most divorced people who are on good terms with their exes are not going on solitary lunch dates or raving about how amazing the AP is or making their ex so uncomfortable, they have to physically upend their life to get some space well after the break up. You found a bad one. Toss him back to the sea.

Also, ask yourself, are you okay being with someone who so clearly has a problem with boundaries and has such low self respect and dignity that they compliment the AP? I don't understand how you don't cringe even looking at him. Sorry, it's a little pathetic that he chases his XWW around like a love sick puppy and harasses her. Very creepy behavior from him.

Athena1979 posted 1/30/2020 13:49 PM

Thank you all! I was actually thinking I'm the wrong one and I need to get over myself.

Hes being nice all of the time. Being nice and saying nice things about people, is good. How I see/hear things about her and I think, that doesnt sound like something a "nice" person would do.

And then I hear a different story from friends and family members about her. And I'm like, something isn't meshing here.

And i think my intuition perks up. Bc i am so tuned into dishonesty. It's like hes an incredibly honest person...except for this woman, he has this disillusion about who she is...like some kind of coping mechanism. Idk.

Athena1979 posted 1/30/2020 13:57 PM

Thank you for the accurate insights. I really appreciate the support.

ShatteredSakura posted 1/30/2020 20:04 PM

he has this disillusion about who she is...like some kind of coping mechanism. 

But what does he have to cope with? Does he share kids with her? If not, why any contact at all? If so, maybe it's a weird habit of trying to not speak ill of their mother...but IMO that might be stretching it.

He's out of what sounds like a horrible relationship and now has a partner who sounds incredibly tolerant, what is he coping with??


[This message edited by ShatteredSakura at 8:05 PM, January 30th (Thursday)]

steadychevy posted 1/31/2020 05:18 AM

Sounds like he's not over her. He might never be over her. Like the high school boyfriend/girlfriend that one reconnects with and it develops into adultery.

Your call but seems like too much baggage.

somejaykid posted 1/31/2020 08:31 AM

honestly I don't know about this relationship I understand that they have to talk to one another because of a child is involved and they have to be civil about it. but him talking about his ex? to me he is not still over her. why in the hell would you brag about your ex to your new partner. I would be really annoyed if my new partner talks about him just my opinion

jay

ShatteredSakura posted 1/31/2020 09:11 AM

Also being civil and friendly to an ex, whether or not children are involved doesn't mean they're your friend either.

We are civil and friendly to plenty of people in our lives, and we don't call all those people our friends. So I think there's a big difference between that and truly being friends with your ex. You want to talk to friends, hang out with friends, do things together...you dont desire those things witj someone youre just polite to... all of those actions are very dangerous when that friend is your ex.

Adlham posted 1/31/2020 20:52 PM

My parents got divorced when I was quite young.

My dad had my mother on a pedestal so nauseatingly high that even I finally got sick of it.

He ruined 2 serious relationships that I know of because they couldn't compete with an inflated memory of who he THOUGHT she was.

Good god, hes been dead for 12 years and it still irritated the living shit out of me.

Don't get me wrong. I love my mother. I dont like her very much but thats a story for another time. The point is that because he couldn't get ober her, he had built up this ideal of her that wasn't anywhere close to the reality.

And she avoided him as much as possible because of it. Not that it was hard, since he lived in Pennsylvania and we are in the Pacific Northwest, but when he came to visit, she made herself scarce.

When my youngest was born, he wanted to come out when she had to have surgery but my mom wouldn't come help me if he was there. I had 2 other kids and needed my mom a lot more than I needed him so I made him wait.

Athena, you have had a more difficult time than most. I really think you are headed into daytime crazy people show territory here. These people are all way too enmeshed to be healthy.

Theres a big difference between getting along amicably and putting someone on a pedestal. He's still carrying a big torch and he's borderline stalkerish crazy.

In my opinion, of course.

I think you should run to the nearest exit because this is just too much.

JanaGreen posted 2/2/2020 08:41 AM

I'd dump him. He hasn't moved on.

My BF gets along fine with his ex, but he neither trashes her not idealizes her. He just respects her as the mom of his kids. Your BF is wrapped around the axle of his failed marriage. You deserve better.

EvenKeel posted 2/4/2020 07:47 AM

But this jealousy just BREEDS this anger and resentment.
I am not really sure it is jealousy here. I really think it is your spidey senses because you know something is really off here.

All those people have boundary issues (your BF, the ex and the ex's BF:

- he was at her house daily, on the days the boyfriend wasn't there.
- her boyfriend still lives with his ex wife.
- Now let's talk about my ex-wife's boyfriend that she cheated on me with

None of that is normal.

It isn't you Athena! Something is really off with that group!

And if the ex really was bugged about him being there daily; she could have done stuff. Heck, I sent my ex a letter that he was never allowed here again or I would press charges.

I am sorry all this is in your NB!!!! Hugs!

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