Dealing With Her Ex

Most people that you’re going to date in adulthood have an ex or two hanging around.  Some of them might even be pretty close by depending on the circumstances. It’s not necessarily the most thrilling concept to see or hear about them, but if you do, here are some reasons why they shouldn’t intimidate you.

They broke up.

People always break up for a reason, even if that reason isn’t totally visible to an outsider. Sometimes it’s more comfortable if her last relationship ended over something huge since it makes it seem less likely that she’d consider taking the guy back. But sometimes people just drift apart or have a timing issue which can look a lot like unfinished business to the new guy. Sometimes people do have unfinished business with their exes, and you might just have to trust that they plan on doing as much of that is possible on their own terms as they move on.

Her ex might be the most appealing man on paper, but if they didn’t have chemistry or just weren’t on the same page about something then they probably broke up for good reason. Maybe he dumped her, in which case you would probably think that he’s an idiot no matter how rich and handsome he might be.

She knows what she wants.

Women tend to have a pretty good idea of what they want even when they aren’t as sure about what they don’t want. So if she’s spending time with you and acting like she likes it, then she probably does. You don’t need to be concerned with why she might like you more than someone else, just confidently trust the fact that she does.

Every relationship is totally unique.

There might some things about her exes that she likes a lot, but there are going to be totally different things about you that she likes even better. Just like every person is completely different every relationship is completely different as well. You can put things into some perspective by briefly thinking about your exes. You might have liked them all but it’s probably pretty easy to differentiate between them. They were all attractive in different ways, and great people in different ways, and troublesome people in different ways as well.

Unless you’re still harboring feelings for one of them you probably don’t actually want any of them back, but you might be able to see why someone new could find them intimidating. Just like it isn’t a relevant feeling for your new girl to be feeling, it’s probably not a relevant feeling for you to be feeling either.

He’s probably moved on.

Men tend to move on pretty quickly in one way or another, so unless their breakup was real fresh he’s probably more than moved on to the next girl. (Or the next girl after that.) Your girlfriend is awesome so can see why her exes might still find her appealing, but we all have our different types of preferences so perhaps he likes his new girl more than he liked her anyway.

You’re the one that’s in her life now, which means you have the best chance of being the one that will continue on that road into the future. Don’t let your own fears get in the way of exploring everything that she’s offering you in the here and now.

If they’re going to get back together, they’re going to get back together.

If for some reason those two are meant to be and eventually end up together, that would happen whether or not you were around in the interim. It would true that what you had with her didn’t stop it, but it wouldn’t be true that you caused it. That’s a circumstance that you really can’t worry about, it’s about as preventable as getting a flat tire.

But luckily flat tires don’t occur all that often so it might not ever be something that you’re faced with. Don’t carry that fear around you, and if for some reason things don’t work out then you know there’s bound to be someone else around the corner anyway.

You’re you.

The bottom line is that you are you and no one else, so if someone chooses not to be with you it should be pretty easy to let them go. It’s not, but it should be. We all want to be with people who truly want to be with us, so although it can be hard to sort through when they don’t want to be with us that’s okay too. Someone else will. But again that’s probably not something that’s going to be related to her exes…just to how she feels about you.  

Perhaps you’re the most awesome guy in the world and you effectively broke the spell of any lingering feelings she had for an ex. With the right girl that’s exactly what will happen.

Kate Ferguson

Kate Ferguson is a Los Angeles local and freelance writer, who utilizes as much wit and personal anecdote as possible across a variety of genres. When she's not writing, the UC Davis graduate is focused on pursuits of the entertainment industry, spin class, and hot sauce. Keep up with her on her social media @KateFerg

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