Chances are the guy you just started dating has an ex-girlfriend hiding out there somewhere. Most often, the ex-girlfriend is out of the picture long before you get there. However, you may be dealing with an ex who finds it difficult seeing him with someone else. Instead of trading deadly stares with her, figure out ways to handle this delicate situation.
Getting Past the Past
Loving a man who is carrying baggage of an ex in his past is not easy. In fact, women who have to deal with a partner’s ex have reported less feelings of happiness in their relationship, according to a study in the "Journal of Divorce and Remarriage" titled “Marrying a Man with ‘Baggage’: Implications for Second Wives.” However, as a loving partner, you will have to cope and deal with your boyfriend’s past if you want the relationship to last. That’s not to say that you have to become best friends with his ex. If your boyfriend’s ex hates you (for obvious reasons!), you are going to have to toughen up and deal with it. Remember though, you are not alone. Your boyfriend is on your side now.
If you do not have to deal with the ex-girlfriend, stay away from her. You need to explain this to your boyfriend as well. The best way to deal with an angry, hurt and resentful ex-girlfriend is to not care. Indifference is the key. The more attention you give her in front of your boyfriend, the more he will start thinking about her again. Without you even knowing it, his ex-girlfriend will have become a barrier in your relationship.
Don’t Hate, Appreciate
In an article on YourTango.com titled “Behind Most Good Men Is an Even Better Ex-Girlfriend?” experts advise you to appreciate your boyfriend’s ex rather than hate on her. She is the one who may have urged him to be a better person or to give his girlfriend more time. In addition, you are the one who is reaping the reward! If his ex-girlfriend hates you, there is no need for you to have the same emotions for her. She is probably angry she lost such a great person to you.
Curiosity Killed the Cat
If she hates you, let her be. She is not the important person in your relationship. Really, she is not important at all. Concentrate on your boyfriend and forget about the ex-girlfriend. There will be times when you will wonder why she hates you so much, (although it is obvious, you have her guy!) and you may be tempted to talk to her or ask your boyfriend about her. Forget about it. If you are thinking about investigating her, it amounts to doubting your man, which can severely hurt your relationship. It will make you feel more insecure about yourself and your relationship, says matchmaker Kiki Strickland in her article on YourTango.com titled “Why We Investigate His Ex-Girlfriends.”
Nina Edwards holds a doctorate in clinical psychology and has been writing about families and relationships since 2000. She has numerous publications in scholarly journals and often writes for relationship websites as well. Edwards is a university lecturer and practicing psychologist in New York City.
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