Life is good. You are dating a handsome, thoughtful, compassionate guy. You are both compatible in every way and have a terrific time together. There’s just one hitch – he still talks to his ex-girlfriend. Whether it’s just an occasional text or he’s on the phone with her every time she has a crisis, you get uncomfortable every time you think of them communicating with each other. How do you know if you’re being unreasonable about not wanting him to talk to his ex any more --and can you ask him to stop?
Frequency and Intensity
If your boyfriend is sending a text wishing her a happy birthday or posting on her social media website, it’s not really a big deal. If he calls her all the time and is still reaching out to her for emotional support, however, that could be a red flag that he's not over his ex. Sharing his life and calling regularly shows that he still is invested in that relationship and may not be prepared to move on, warns the eHarmony website.
Go With Your Gut
Follow your instinct, suggests Carolyn Hax, author and advice columnist for The Washington Post. If your gut is telling you that something is wrong and you’re not typically a jealous person, you might have a reason to worry. The ex-girlfriend could be manipulating your boyfriend, trying to get him back. If you’re uncomfortable, he should be jumping through hoops to make you feel comfortable; not put your relationship in jeopardy. If he wants your trust, he should earn it by cutting off contact with his ex.
It isn’t healthy to have one foot in an old relationship while you’re in the middle of a new one. In order for a relationship to work, you need a high level of trust, says Paul Hokemeyer, Ph.D., on the Dr. Oz website. If your boyfriend is chatting on social media sites with his ex-girlfriend, he is clinging to the past. Cutting all ties to old girlfriends is a healthy way to move on. Asking your boyfriend to put his past relationship in the past is not only good for your mental health; it’s good for his as well.
Be Honest With Yourself
If you know that you’re insecure, not because of anything your boyfriend has done, but because of your own issues – fess up. It’s okay to tell your boyfriend that his close friendship with his ex makes you uncomfortable; however, you also need to be aware that he may not do what you ask. If you give him an ultimatum, he might choose his ex, instead of you. If you're going to give him an ultimatum, be prepared to follow through with it, warms Dr. Laura Schlessinger, on her blog. If you do lose him over this, you have to ask yourself if he was ever really yours to begin with. You may just be better off with him and the constant worry.
- The Washington Post: Carolyn Hax, Feeling Threatened by Boyfriend’s Ex
- eHarmony: Eight Signs They're Not Over Their Ex
- Psychology Today: Sticky Bonds, Facebook "Surveillance" of Ex Partners Thwarts Healing
- Dr. Laura: Dr. Laura Blog, When to Give an Ultimatum
- Dr. Oz: Moving Deeper into a Relationship or Getting the Heck Out!
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