Problems Married People Have: Are You Still Friends With An Ex?

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The Man and I honestly don’t fight about much, but one of the biggest blowouts we’ve ever had was over an ex boyfriend of mine. Back then we weren’t actually married, just seriously dating, and he didn’t like the idea of this ex (who, admittedly, he despised from day one) calling me up from time to time to say hello – usually twice a year at best.

I’m not an evil person and things between this ex and me didn’t end on bad terms, so I didn’t fill that obliging my then-boyfriend’s wishes to “pretend as if I never knew his name” was the mature thing to do. I stand by my personal morals, always, and I felt that was both cruel and unnecessary. To me what mattered most was that we had trust in our relationship and the he believed me when I said we were just friends and there was nothing to ever worry about. This, of course, did not sit well with him and after he got tired of arguing with me about it he decided to put his foot down and “demand” I never speak to him, or any other ex of mine, again. Now, I’m not going to lie to you guys…

As much as I can understand why your new love would want you to forget all about your old ones, I just don’t agree with the idea of erasing someone from your life, not because you feel it necessary, but because someone else insists that you do. Seems lame and totally out of line. I felt that way back then, and I still in so many ways do today as well. That said, at the time he made this “request” of me, I knew I loved The Man more than I’d ever loved any man in this world and that he’d be my husband one day. I had to make a decision I didn’t agree with in order to make the person I care deeply about happy.

That was an early lesson on what marriage would ultimately sometimes be about – compromise. I don’t speak to any of my ex boyfriends now and haven’t since the day I said “okay” to his sort-of-ultimatum. This wasn’t painful, because there was barely any communication there anyway, but it was difficult to do because in a way I felt like I was giving in to a man’s wishes for me, and going against what I felt was right in my heart. Plus sometimes I’d ask myself how I’d feel if I saw an ex in the supermarket whom I’d had a history with and they pretended that I was a stranger they’d never seen before. I’d probably be a little hurt, and I hated that I was put in a position to hurt someone I used to love in order to make the person I love now happy. That sort of sucks, don’t you think?

I’m over it, and glad I made that decision, but I thought about it the other day and wondered if I was the only wife out there who’d ever been asked to do this and felt a certain discontentment about it.

Do you still speak to an ex (even if only on occasion)? Has your husband ever asked something of you that you didn’t agree with but chose to do anyway to keep the piece?

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28 Responses to Problems Married People Have: Are You Still Friends With An Ex?

  1. Sonia says:

    When I got a divorce, I was still friendly with my ex for a few years. My man now is pretty level-headed, but felt the "past was the past" so why drag it out. Eventually out or respect, I cut the relationship and I am fine with my decision. I had to place myself in his shoes, if his ex's were calling him and I wasn't too keen on that crap so I agreed.

    Quite honestly, I don't want to know anything about my ex, what he is doing, where he lives..nothing. I figured we broke up for a reason and I was done.
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  2. Dana says:

    My husband speaks to one of his ex-girlfriends quite often. My thought on that was that they had a relationship before me and even grew up together before they started dating, who am I to stop that. It is not like they see each other everyday they talk on the phone every other month just to check in on each other. She was invited to out wedding, like my ex was, and we were invited to her wedding, I am secure enough in my relationship to know that he loves me that their relationship can not come between that.

  3. Doesn't bother me either way. I still e-mail two of my exes on occasion and my husband has zero issues wpith it. He still chats with a woman who he was never in a relationship with but still engaged in a bit of hanky panky over a decade ago.

    I've always been of the variety that if a man demands I erase my past and not speak to people then he'd be the one gone. To me a secure and loving relationship means you don't ask, demand, or expect your partner to put old flames out for the current relationship. If there were issues of abuse, harassment, you parted on bad terms, etc then that's one thing. But if you parted amicably and can have a good friendship who am I or who is anyone else to say who you can or can't be friends with?
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  4. For us, it was best that we cut ties with exes that we were seriously involved with, inlcuding my ex-fiance and his ex-wife. That works for us.
    My recent post Green Is For The Money…

  5. I keep in touch with 2 of my exes. One actually called the other day in front of my husband. I could tell he was a little annoyed, but I took the same position as you. I shouldn't have to cut them off just because. Hubby hasn't flat out said "don't speak to them anymore" and I'm very open about our conversations. One of them still admits he has feelings for me and hubby just laughs. The other, we didn't end on bad terms. We were much better friends than in a relationship. Hubby still speaks to a few of his exes and I don't mind. It's about security and trust in your relationship.
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  6. Untypically Jia says:

    Matt and I are seriously so odd when it comes to our exes. Matt does NOT communicate with any of his exes. Mostly because he broke up with them for a reason. We have however gone to dinner with one of them (cause she was in town and we actually had an okay time) and I am actually friends with at least three of his exes on Facebook LOL (to be fair, since we all went to High School together, it kinda just worked out that way).

    I am only friends with one of my exes and it just happens to be the ex and I left for my husband. We hang out at least once a month. We have dinner together, go to movies, and hang out a lot. Oh, and did I mention he's my husband's best friend? And that we lived together (while married to our respective spouses) for a year? Yeah. Like I said, we're the odd ones.

    Any other of my exes though and my husband would SOO have something to say. Even as it is I don't hang out with my ex on my own, hubby is always there. And it's not about trust. It's about my respect for my husband. I think it's inappropriate to hang out with any man privately who isn't my husband. Rare exceptions have been with some of Matt's co-workers or friends who were helping me set up a surprise party for Matt – but other than that, it's a big no for both of us.
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  7. Summer says:

    It bothers my guy more than it bothers me, but I've always put my foot down when it comes to these types of things. If I wanted to be with this person I would (or vice versus), and considering my guy is divorced and has an ex wife in his life he has to speak to from time to time, he really doesn't have the right to throw any ultimatum my way. Actually the girl he was seeing before me randomly contacted him a year ago looking for "closure" and I encouraged him to meet her for coffee. Trusting him the way that I do, I know how hard breakups can be and how they impact women differently. He ultimately decided not to, but I would still given him my blessing. Without trust there is no foundation for a long-term healthy relationship.

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  9. Attorney2be says:

    I don't agree with not being friends with an ex but what I do agree with is not still having a friendly relationship with an ex. I think there is a difference. If someone is your friend, then most cases they always will be. But it doesn't mean that you have to talk to them on the phone, have dinner, etc. But if you see them out, you can speak. Sending a Christmas card (if this is your thing) to me shouldn't be a big deal. I am not a jealous person but I have to be honest and say I don't want my man's exes calling him. But I don't want him to be rude or pretend like they never existed if we or even if he sees them out. However, I do feel that I wouldn't want someone demanding that I stop talking to them. If we are in a committed relationship and if we trust each other and if I truly respect you, then I'll respect your wishes as well. But demanding, forbidding, etc is never a good thing. It can sometimes cause people to rebel. On the other hand, everyone has to do what is best for their relationship. As I continue to say, no one is in the same relationship. If I was okay with exes calling, I just ask that they be honest. Tell me it's an ex. Don't lie about it. I just don't want it in my relationship.
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  11. Darren Miller says:

    Hi. My girlfriend was reading this post over my shoulder as I was looking at it and wanted to give her opinion so here goes:

    Darren still talks to a few of his ex girlfriends. I am not particularly happy about it, especially as I believe they still have feelings towards him. However, I realize that I have no right to tell him to stop talking to these women. As much as I know he is a flirt and no doubt behaves this way when he has contact with them, I do trust him and I know that I have nothing to worry about.

    I, on the other hand, have chosen to cut my exes from my life. I understand that maybe I am the person I am today because of these men, but I don't feel the need to have them in my life anymore.

  12. Laysha says:

    This is sticky situation for hetero & homosexual relationships. I am in a homosexual relationship with a woman whom dated men before she fell madly in love with me. Although all of my exes & I ended on a bad note & I couldnt care less to speak to any of them again, thats not the case with her & she still keeps in touch with "them". One in particular I (sad to say) hate & i cant seem to wrap my mind around why she still keeps communicating with him. We've already had the cut off discussion & its not going to happen. She says hes not disrespectful to us so theres no need. Ive had friends tell me that If i cant get over it, to break up with her & let her be. I dont want that bc of all the things we have & are soon to have with each other…………..not mention we have a huge age gap. Im 25 shes 37. So….yeah. :-/

    I think that when you are with someone new, you should cut all ties to the past & remove those persons out of the 'active' picture.

  13. Unsure says:

    I understand your position in regard to hurting someone, but I also understand his position even more. I'm in the same situation with my, now fiancee. He reconnected on FB with a "few" of his past girlfriends prior to my locating him on FB, however he insists that he has a love for people and I know he does because that's what I fell in love with…his compassion and love for people. However they both continue (throughout our 2 year relationship and we plan to be married next summer) to make sure he knows he will ALWAYS have a place in their hearts. Now if these women were truly ONLY trying to be friends, they wouldn't continue to say those types of words to him. They want him to know they'll be their whenever he's ready for them. For the life of me, I don't understand why he won't let them go, however it makes me certainly feel that they are more important to him than me. I know he's spent valuable time on the phone with them on time that should be mine, like when driving in the car from one location to another. He's even blamed me once for the need to possibly unfriend one from FB, however he made sure he corrected himself and told her he's not deleting her as a friend. He's been telling me this one has been "just someone he knows" but he's been referring to her as a friend in their communications. So Yes! He should stop communications with them if our relationship is more important. It's ok to have friends, but not with exes…that's only a path for trouble! If it's worth it! That's up to each person.

  14. roderick says:

    I really dont understand this.. None of this should have even been a problem.. I anyone of you are in a truly committed relationship an ex should not even be a factor in your life, relationship or anything else. Look at the stats and they will tell you that divorce rates have been on an incline since the invent of cell phones and social media. Also it show that a person is more likely to cheat with someone that they have been in relationships with prior. I am tired of this modern relationships. If you have nothing to hide you should invite your SO into every aspect of your life.

  15. earthquake says:

    hi,

    i was also given that ultimatum, by my current boyfriend with whom i live with.and honestly i didn't like the request. when i would talk to my ex , the conversations were short n cordial, happy birthday n other mayor holidays(our conversation were always by msgs, email or text). he is a writer n when we were together i would always read his first draft, and after we broke up and i was still single he asked me if i could read his work. i continued doing this for sometime. honestly, when we broke up i still wanted him. 1 year goes by i´m with someone else, so is he, and we still talked better said text. and that dreaded moment came , he tells me that he had a dream about me. some other time he misses me. and that's when i realized i had to cut him off. i didn't want to lose a great person in my life, but by keeping him i could hurt my partner n he could hurt his current wife. im sure she didn't know he kept in touch w me.

  16. Mrs. Darcy says:

    I cam here looking for answers to the same question. My spouse and I have been married for 12 years. Long ago, way back in highschool I was friends with a guy whom I briefly dated. Before and after we were really good friends. Time and life happened and we drifted. About two years ago we reconnected through the magic of the internet and resumed our friendship. This has driven my spouse aboslutely insane. This friend and I don’t see each other, we just message. My spouse is adamant that there be no phone calls, no texting, no face to face visits of any kind. Online chatting is limited to two days a week at certain times only. Honestly I feel like a little kid. He thinks he’s not being controlling. His argument is that he’s uncomfortable with this friend and this is how he’s trying to let me have my friend and learn to be comfortable.

  17. Mrs. HMS says:

    Why should he learn to be comfortable? It seems you're more comfortable with your feeling about this friend than your spouse's. Be considerate, learn to be more caring. You should focus on your now marriage rather than a past relationship with a high school individual. This is the here and now. Be grateful of what God has given you and your spouse together. Don't make him uncomfortable because of whatever real reason he should come before your husband's wishes.

  18. none says:

    I ended a 12 year relationship and we managed to stay friends 8 years after our break up. My ex stayed my friend as I went in and out of relationships. I finally married and my husband didn't mind the friendship. We would often hang out together. My husband didn't particularly like my ex, but he tolerated because of the longevity the relationship with my ex.

    My ex ended up getting a little weird. He started trolling the internet for girls he went to high school with. After dating like three former high school classmates, treating them poorly, he then moving across the country to marry one of them. I decided it was best to distance myself from his erratic behavior. I mean, it was pretty creepy. Plus he owed me money (and everyone else) but some how had cash to buy a big engagement ring and move his crap from CA to NY. Yea, I was a little burned by that.

    I realized that he had been kind of a douche for our entire relationship and I never really saw it. I was blind by loyalty. There are moments when I miss talking to him. And I've been thinking about emailing him which is why I'm here reading about why I shouldn't.

    Don't think my husband would have an issue. And not really looking to be his friend or cause trouble with his wife. Just wanted to say hi more than anything.

    My whole dilemma was brought on simply by a movie reference brought up in a meeting. It was a movie my ex and I saw often and referenced almost daily.

    And there you have it.

  19. Joe Storm says:

    On faithful day, as I was browsing through the internet,I came across allot of testimonies about this particular spell caster. Some people testified that he brought their Ex lover back, some testified that he restores womb,cure cancer,and other sickness, some testified that he cast a spell to stop divorce and so on, he also cast a spell for people to win case in the court i also come across one particular testimony,it was about a woman called Lydia,she testified about how he brought back her Ex lover in less than 2 days, and at the end of her testimony she dropped Dr Bethnam E-mail address.
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  20. Joe Storm says:

    On faithful day, as I was browsing through the internet,I came across allot of testimonies about this particular spell caster. Some people testified that he brought their Ex lover back, some testified that he restores womb,cure cancer,and other sickness, some testified that he cast a spell to stop divorce and so on, he also cast a spell for people to win case in the court i also come across one particular testimony,it was about a woman called Lydia,she testified about how he brought back her Ex lover in less than 2 days, and at the end of her testimony she dropped .
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    Click one of the post titles above to include it at the end of your comment

  21. I've always been of the variety that if a man demands I erase my past and not speak to people then he'd be the one gone. To me a secure and loving relationship means you don't ask, demand, or expect your partner to put old flames out for the current relationship. If there were issues of abuse, harassment, you parted on bad terms, etc then that's one thing. But if you parted amicably and can have a good friendship who am I or who is anyone else to say who you can or can't be friends with?

  22. Your Present says:

    These relationships ended for a reason. Only ill can come from placing them in your current picture. If you were once lovers it is plainly disrespectful to your current love to keep them in your present. Rationalizations such as" they were in my life before you" or "" it's because I care for others" are simply that- rational lies.
    Leave your past in the past. Focus on your present.

  23. The wise one says:

    It’s a very tricky situation. If your ex is truly a friend, you should make your partner as comfortable as possible about him…..meaning this should have been mentioned at the beginning of your relationship, and you should completely feel comfortable talking to your ex or better yet “old friend” about your new partner/husband/wife. No secrets. It also depends how long ago did you date, were you high school sweethearts? Did you just fool around in college or HS? Who broke up with who? And on top of that all, most importantly…does your ex RESPECT your current partner and your relationship? Are they pestering with emails and text messages constantly needing your attention after knowing your partner doesn’t feel comfortable? Very important to keep your space and have boundaries at the very beginning of your marriage. If you really claim you are friends, would you invite him to the wedding? Overall, it’s a trust thing, but most importantly, it’s a RESPECT thing. You owe it to your partner. If you don’t like it, why be married?

  24. Big Lex says:

    It's ALWAYS wrong for either party to communicate with an ex without the other's consent or knowledge. It's not about being jealous or insecure. And if all of us men are honest with ourselves, when you text or call an ex, you're really just trying to make sure you still can.

  25. I realized that he had been kind of a douche for our entire relationship and I never really saw it. I was blind by loyalty. There are moments when I miss talking to him. And I've been thinking about emailing him which is why I'm here reading about why I shouldn't.

  26. Roman S. Austin says:

    I am only friends with one of my exes and it just happens to be the ex and I left for my husband. We hang out at least once a month. We have dinner together, go to movies, and hang out a lot. Oh, and did I mention he's my husband's best friend? And that we lived together (while married to our respective spouses) for a year? Yeah. Like I said, we're the odd ones. anti-fatigue mats

  27. Ahmed says:

    I guess it is okay calling each other occasionally, but it becomes a problem if you communicate everyday

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