Ask the Urban Dater: The Ex That Won’t Go Away


We're at it again, more from ‘Ask the Urban Dater,' our user generated submissions to us about their problems and mishaps where we attempt to say something of meaning and use. Good fucking luck with that. So feel free to read-our reader's question:

Hi, I (48) am dating this wonderful guy (57) who seems to be very much into me. Gives me a goodtime, cares for me, makes me laugh, plans nice dates (occasionally though) and more of the good stuff. My issue is, he has an ex-wife that he is sepatrated and finally divorced from. He is still in touch with her in a way that I find uncomfortable. He says he left her, because their sex life was not working. So he decided after a 10 years marriage to move on. They still talk on phone, visit each other both publically, privately and in family functions. He says she is his soulmate and best friend. He takes her out to dinners, movies and music concerts. He also works as her handyman when she needs him. They are friends on facebook and pretty interactive with each other. He is also involved with her family. This makes me feel uncomfortable as he wants to start a new relationship with me. I wonder if he or she still have something remaining in the department of feelings. This makes me feel insecure as to he probably wants to use me unly for sexual monogamy and still emotionally involved with her. They do not have children together, nor do they work together, nor have any joint property or business together.
For me it is hard to accept she constantly being into the picture still.
My question is should I dump him for this or is it my insecurities that are making me feel uncomfortable?
An advise from men's perspective will be really helpful.
— Tanya Harding

Well Tanya, this one ain't easy. But I'll give it the ol' college try. There's a certain level of comfort we build with someone after a period of time has passed. Their voices are familiar and even soothing, though, you may not know it. Maybe you still buy the same groceries that you did when you were together aka buying shit for people you don't live with anymore. There are a lot of comforts that make a home a home. If sex was the wedge that drove them apart and not him cheating on her then that's not a “bad” break in the truest sense.

What I mean is that they ended on something that wasn't catastrophic. He didn't cheat on her; he didn't fall out of love with her presumably; they grew apart in what they wanted/needed from one another. They certainly don't hate one another. Will feelings remain? It's been ten fucking years that they've been together; you're goddamned right there will be lingering feelings there. If there weren't, then I'd question the authenticity of their relationship. Feelings don't just shut off because you want them to. But I also understand that there are things we can and cannot deal with. Dealing with your beau's ex may not be tolerable for you and it's the same for many other folks.

That's fair.

I've said before that trust is paramount. You have to be able to trust your partner in the most extreme circumstances; you have to trust them to make the right decision in the most stressful/testing of situations. Otherwise, why would you get into something deeper with them? If you believe in your man's commitment to you and you trust him then his old flame shouldn't be a bother. However, you do have a right to be heard and to be respected. If you feel threatened by the ex, you need to let him know and you need to let him know that it's not acceptable. If he respects you, he'll talk to you about it and work something out, though, I find it outside of reason that he would completely remove her from his life; perhaps he would lessen her overall impact… At some point, they both need to move on and that's really hard to do when exes keep on talking. Friendship can again exist someday, but time is needed to let things heal.

In this instance communication and honesty is the way forward. Now get down to business and have a heart to heart with your man. Send me a sexy pic of yourself, too. Seriously.


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Alex is the founder and managing editor at the Urban Dater. Alex also runs: DigiSavvy, for which he is the co-founder and Principal. Alex has a lot on his mind. Will he ever get it right? If he does, he'll be sure to write.

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