Dear Jack, well, I don’t know about your girlfriend hanging out with her ex. Just seems weird. She’s in constant communication with this ex, he asks her out when he’s in town… And she expects you to understand! Seems she enjoys his company. They’re still friends she says, nothing will happen…He doesn’t sound like an ex to me. He seems like a current boyfriend. Your relationship goes on hiatus at those moments. I wonder how she’ll feel if you decide to hang out with your ex. And if your ex can call and text you regularly. Perhaps any time your ex has a problem she can call you. And I mean any time. I wonder how she’ll feel. Perhaps if your ex also feels like hanging out you can leave your girlfriend to go spend time with her. After all you can also argue it’s just friendship and nothing will happen. She’s ex.
Your girlfriend is still clinging to threads of her defunct relationship with her ex, savouring the embers of certain feelings. She’s trying to eat her cake and have it, and only magicians can do that, and she’s not a magician. If indeed there’s nothing to the relationship with her ex how come he can make commanding demands? Her so called ex comes into town and your relationship gets suspended. You should worry. Given the chance this lady will go back to her ex. And she’s judging you by his standards. She feels she’s not getting some things from you, which is why she keeps dallying with this guy. You’re like some placeholder until he comes to town to explore the emotional terrain of the past. Perhaps she wants things back between them. And he obviously has some desire for her. There’s sexual tension between them. It’s not just about hanging out. He’s essentially dating her whilst she’s in your relationship. How long will it continue, and to what end? What else is left? They go on dates, keep each other company, enjoy each other’s company, call and text… Your feelings meanwhile are left out in the cold like a potted cactus plant on a window ledge in Greece. And when he leaves town she returns to you, to where you left off, like returning to a bookmark. And she does this basking in the after glow of their assignation.
Don’t kid yourself, her heart is not with you, it’s with him. And it’s a bit intelligence insulting actually. You can’t hope to marry someone whose heart is not with you. You’ll suffer much. It will be like having something intangible in your hands. You can’t close your fingers on it. If you do marry her it means after your marriage this interesting threesome will go on. I suppose his girlfriend is also supposed to understand, just as you’re supposed to understand. And so she has a relationship within a relationship like some weird parentheses of an insane mathematical equation. You should of course expect that after marriage she’s going to be thinking about him not you during sex. And you should expect someone to be competing with you in buying gifts for her. Or rather you’re competing with him. His gifts will of course be better appreciated than yours no matter how much you spend. Her heart is with him. The budget for gifts for you will of course be reduced. She has to buy him gifts you know. And she’s going to celebrate his birthday and he hers. Some of these details you’ll not be privy to naturally. But to soothe her conscience that she has nothing to hide she’ll reveal some particulars to you just as she’s doing now.
As it is she can still claim to be in a relationship with you though her heart is somewhere else. If you go into marriage with this woman you’re going to have regrets. Marriage is not 70% devotion, it is 100%. It’s why it’s called commitment. Someone can be with you and not be committed to you but someone else. If you marry such you’ll have regrets. There are things you’ll want, things you’ll need you’ll never get from her. Her heart is somewhere else. She’ll only relate to you on a rational basis. In other words she’ll be fulfilling public relations requirements. And you can’t vouch they won’t sleep together. They seem to be working towards it even if it has happened yet. You’ve got to ask yourself to what end is their relationship? Where is it meant to go? What’s the purpose? If they keep pushing the boundaries of propriety as they’re doing they’re bound to end up in the sack. The more dangerous part of the relationship is the stirring of latent emotions. Emotional dependence is being created. Her primary friendship ought to be you and her not her and him. You can’t have a primary friendship with an ex and claim to be committed to a new relationship. Some people want to hold on to the ghost of a past relationship, feed on it emotionally. But holding on to the ghost of a past relationship won’t work with a new relationship. Ghosts are ghosts. Ghosts haunt. You’re either in a relationship or you’re not. Relationships require sharp lines of definition. One leg in a relationship and another leg in another relationship leads to split.
What I sense is that this lady is either used to having her way, or she has the bargaining power in your relationship. In essence her telling you to “understand” which is another way of saying either you accept the arrangement or you scram. She’s so insensitive to your feelings. That apart from the fact she makes you look impotent. The remote control of your relationship is with her ex. You’d have to lay down an ultimatum. It’s either you or him. If you don’t lay down the ultimatum before marriage you’re either going to have to after marriage. Things will get to a head. It’s cheaper before marriage. All you get is a broken heart. After marriage you get a divorce and/or depression. She needs to make up her mind what she wants, who she wants. If she wants you she’s got to let go of her ex. And if she wants the ex she’s got to let go of you. I always say the signs of an impending marital disaster are always obvious before marriage. In your case the sign of your impending marital trauma is not only large and bold, it’s written in red, italised and underlined. But it’s your life. You determine what you want.
Your mentor, LA
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