Praneet30 asks: At first my girlfriend said she hates her ex, and they didn’t talk; then after some time she said she wanted to talk to him once, to end things once and for all. After that they started talking once or twice a month. This has been going on for more than 2 years. Recently she asked him to pick her up and then they went someplace. Her excuse was that she wanted to clear her mind. So should I trust her and stay with her, or leave her?
Hi Praneet30 –
Your letter reminds me of years ago, when my human friend Handsome still smoked cigarettes sometimes. Every once in a while he’d decide he wanted to quit them. And so he’d cut down the number he’d have per day, and then he’d cut down to one every couple of days, and be all just about ready to give them up completely. But then he’d say “You know, if I quit totally now, I’ll crave them more next week. So I should have one more right now, and that way I’ll be better able to quit.” Then a few days later he’d say the same thing. And then a day later he’d have two or three, just to make sure he was handling the addiction right. And the next day he’d have four. And the next five, and he’d be right back in.
Now I don’t know what your girlfriend and her ex are doing, or what she thinks they’re doing. But I can sure tell you that the two things she’s NOT doing are ending it with him once and for all, and clearing her mind of him! Any more than Handsome was ending it, or clearing his mind, with those cigarettes! The way to stop smoking, eventually, is to stop. And that’s also the way to end it with an ex!
Now if your girlfriend was saying “My ex and I have always been friendly, and although we’re not romantic anymore, I really enjoy having him in my life and hanging out with him in an innocent way,” then I’d be on her side. Some of Handsome’s best friends are women he dated in the past, and it’s truly not a problem for any of them at all.
What I don’t like is that your girlfriend is still arguing that she’s working out issues with this guy after two years. No she’s not! She might believe she is, but no, this has become their new normuyal, their current relationship. That’s not cheating necessarily, but if not, it is something called Denial!
So it’s hard for me to tell you what to do, except to ask her to explain to you what’s going on, in more detail. What is it that she’s trying to clear her mind of? What is it that she is trying to end? And, most importantly, where does this guy fit into the life that you and she are building together?
Again, I’m all for you two working something out where she and he can still be friends. I just want it to be in a way that you understand, and can be comfortable with. And if that’s not possible… then maybe she needs to make a difficult choice.
Hoping for the best!