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I'm obsessed with his ex.

(110 Posts)
ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 17:05:41

Not one for AIBU category, because I am (100%).
I can't get past his relationship, with his ex wife.
I'm not sure if it's because, he has experienced so many firsts with her or that he shares 3 children with her (we won't be having children).
We have been together for 3 years, he has been divorced longer.
I don't think he has any residual feelings towards her.
She can be a quite nasty towards me or about me, but that's ok. We don't need to interact. We don't have to be friendly.
The smallest things can set me off, like the fact that they are still "friends" on FB and he has some (very old) photos of them as a family, still on his FB.
If she contacts him about the children and deviates from the topic (fills him in on a bit of news), I will have an issue with it.
I'm obsessive, needy and really embarrassed by my behaviour.
Any advice would be appreciated.

OP’s posts: |
Suzi888 Sat 16-Jan-21 17:10:51

He’s not with her, he’s with you. I don’t know if you express your displeasure but try not to, you’ll look desperate, needy and they aren’t attractive qualities.
She will always be in his life due to the children, there’s nothing you can do about it. Come off Facebook or unfollow him /block her so you can’t see posts.
You don’t suspect he wants her back, so let it go. Does she know it irritates you? Enjoy winding you up? Don’t let it poison what you have with your partner!

ooohbriefcase Sat 16-Jan-21 17:15:08

You need to address these issues, with your husband or a councillor maybe? She will always be a part of his life in some way or another because of the children, especially when they're young. He's with you not her. They're divorced. You need to get passed this if you want to stay with him.

"She can be a quite nasty towards me or about me, but that's ok."
If it makes you feel better that's pathetic and says more about her than it does about you.

ComtesseDeSpair Sat 16-Jan-21 17:15:21

What is it that worries you about her? Can you unpick that? It doesn’t sound like they have an especially close relationship, where you could jealous of her taking his time and emotions away from you. She’ll still be the mother of his children and the person he had all the “firsts” with, regardless of whether he keeps or deletes old photos. If it’s been so many years and you’re still obsessive and jealous, have you considered some couples counselling so you identify exactly how you feel and why you feel it and work on things you need to do to boost your own self esteem and perhaps things your DP could do to support that?

ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 17:27:23

ooohbriefcase

You need to address these issues, with your husband or a councillor maybe? She will always be a part of his life in some way or another because of the children, especially when they're young. He's with you not her. They're divorced. You need to get passed this if you want to stay with him.

"She can be a quite nasty towards me or about me, but that's ok."
If it makes you feel better that's pathetic and says more about her than it does about you.

I tried counselling last year and unfortunately, I didn't find the person very good.
He repeatedly said "I can't tell you what to do". Of course he couldn't, but I didnt feel like he was helping me to help myself.
It is pathetic, you're right and I won't allow myself to be dragged into this, with young children involved.
I feel pathetic for being so insecure tbh.
When I speak to him about it, he will simply say "Why are you so obsessed with her?" and I think that sends me into a bigger depression, because I don't know why?

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ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 17:30:53

ComtesseDeSpair

What is it that worries you about her? Can you unpick that? It doesn’t sound like they have an especially close relationship, where you could jealous of her taking his time and emotions away from you. She’ll still be the mother of his children and the person he had all the “firsts” with, regardless of whether he keeps or deletes old photos. If it’s been so many years and you’re still obsessive and jealous, have you considered some couples counselling so you identify exactly how you feel and why you feel it and work on things you need to do to boost your own self esteem and perhaps things your DP could do to support that?

I don't think he would consider couples counselling, he has refused it in the past.
I think his ex uses the children as her last and only piece of control over him and maybe us (our relationship)?
Perhaps that's my biggest issue.
Maybe I see him "allowing" her to do excercise that control, but honestly I think he just wants an easy life.

OP’s posts: |
ooohbriefcase Sat 16-Jan-21 17:34:34

"When I speak to him about it, he will simply say "Why are you so obsessed with her?" and I think that sends me into a bigger depression, because I don't know why?"

He's not exactly being helpful then, maybe you should respond with "well if she wasn't so fecking horrible to me I wouldn't have as much as a problem"

Maybe find another councillor and see how that goes. If that doesn't help then maybe have a rethink about the relationship. Other than that I have no other advice I'm afraid. Just out or curiosity when you say you won't be having children, is that a joint decision? Or his because he already has 3?

SnowflakeCulture Sat 16-Jan-21 17:41:30

It's because you don't have kids with him or woth anyone else I guess, you're never going to be that special someone to him or anyone else with kids. You need to accept that. Get with a man who hasn't had kids.

ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 17:49:10

ooohbriefcase

"When I speak to him about it, he will simply say "Why are you so obsessed with her?" and I think that sends me into a bigger depression, because I don't know why?"

He's not exactly being helpful then, maybe you should respond with "well if she wasn't so fecking horrible to me I wouldn't have as much as a problem"

Maybe find another councillor and see how that goes. If that doesn't help then maybe have a rethink about the relationship. Other than that I have no other advice I'm afraid. Just out or curiosity when you say you won't be having children, is that a joint decision? Or his because he already has 3?

It's very much a joint decision, we have discussed it at length.
Initially I wanted one and he didn't, then last year he suggested we try. By then I had decided it wasn't for me.
My sister has a child with a profound disability and I'm nearing 40.

OP’s posts: |
ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 17:50:17

SnowflakeCulture

It's because you don't have kids with him or woth anyone else I guess, you're never going to be that special someone to him or anyone else with kids. You need to accept that. Get with a man who hasn't had kids.

Perhaps, I suppose we don't have that "connection".

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nevernotstruggling Sat 16-Jan-21 17:54:30

Taking an interest in whether their contract deviates from kid talk is really controlling. Sorry but it is.

I'm an ex wife. I don't mind chi chat with my exh now and then. I don't want him back!

Prickylikeacactus Sat 16-Jan-21 17:56:12

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Pippa234 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:00:51

Sorry I don't think it's ok that she's nasty to you or about you.
I think that's an issue that your partner should put a stop to that's not ok.
I think obviously that's not going to make you feel very good if your partner is all friendly with her whilst she does this.

Eckhart Sat 16-Jan-21 18:02:14

He repeatedly said "I can't tell you what to do". Of course he couldn't, but I didnt feel like he was helping me to help myself

I'm not saying he was right, but this sounds like you were looking for validation from him.

Presumably because you don't get it from yourself, which is the main problem, but also because you don't get it from your husband. At least not regarding this.

Is your husband usually right behind you every step of the way, or do you feel like sometimes he's not there for you/doesn't understand you as much as you'd like?

ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:03:04

Prickylikeacactus

I think you need to keep telling yourself that he’s moved on and is making an informed choice to be with you.

It doesn’t matter that he’s had a tonne of firsts with his ex wife, you can create lovely memories together. Don’t let his past overshadow your happiness.

He will always have a link to his ex wife as a result of them having children together, that’s a bit of an unbreakable bond imo and the fact they are in touch might be a good sign because at least he can remain amicable with her.

I obsessed over an ex of a boyfriend once and looking back I can’t believe I let that woman camp out with rent free in my head because she was really meant nothing to my boyfriend, never did and never will. Easier to say this in hindsight though.

It's comforting to know I'm not the only one, I must admit.

It's a lonely place to be in, because I don't like to discuss it with my friends. I'm terrified people will think I've lost my marbles.

He is kind and attentive with his children and I guess there is a part of me that feels "I've missed out on that side of him. She got that part".
Silly and selfish, I know.

OP’s posts: |
Embracelife Sat 16-Jan-21 18:06:22

See a new therapist if you want to change
They can help you to decide how to change and can help you see things
They cannot tell you what to do

gannett Sat 16-Jan-21 18:16:53

OP self-awareness is the first step to putting this right - a lot of people in your position won't even admit that their obsessiveness is the problem. I don't really know what else to suggest aside from "just don't do it" which isn't helpful but definitely start by blocking her on social media.

He is kind and attentive with his children and I guess there is a part of me that feels "I've missed out on that side of him. She got that part"

I know you said it was a mutual decision but have you really fully come to terms with not having kids? Getting the impression that you made a rational head decision but a part of you is still mourning what you might have had.

ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:17:28

nevernotstruggling

Taking an interest in whether their contract deviates from kid talk is really controlling. Sorry but it is.

I'm an ex wife. I don't mind chi chat with my exh now and then. I don't want him back!

As I said, I know I'm being completely unreasonable.
However I have never once told him what he can or cannot talk to her about. I have never demanded nor suggested, he cut contact or hurt her in any way.
She can say very rude and nasty things about me, I think it's ok to be hurt by that.

OP’s posts: |
ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:20:10

Pippa234

Sorry I don't think it's ok that she's nasty to you or about you.
I think that's an issue that your partner should put a stop to that's not ok.
I think obviously that's not going to make you feel very good if your partner is all friendly with her whilst she does this.

He does tell her it's not acceptable etc., but I guess when they are getting along I feel that he is validating what she thinks or says about me.
But I want them to be civil, that goes without saying.

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Blanca87 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:20:36

You sound controlling and must be making his life a living hell. You really need to sort yourself out or he will walk away. If the OP said ‘my partner is obsessed with my ex and monitors our conversation to see if we talk about anything other than our children and checks who I’m Facebook friends with’ people would be advising you to call women’s aid. This is not okay or healthy behaviour.

ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:25:19

gannett

OP self-awareness is the first step to putting this right - a lot of people in your position won't even admit that their obsessiveness is the problem. I don't really know what else to suggest aside from "just don't do it" which isn't helpful but definitely start by blocking her on social media.

He is kind and attentive with his children and I guess there is a part of me that feels "I've missed out on that side of him. She got that part"

I know you said it was a mutual decision but have you really fully come to terms with not having kids? Getting the impression that you made a rational head decision but a part of you is still mourning what you might have had.

You're correct there.
There is a part of me that would love to have had a baby with him, but it really isn't the right time and time is running out/ has run out.
I think us having a baby would really upset his youngest child and I want to be mindful of that.
Besides, I know a baby isn't going to fix these feelings.

OP’s posts: |
thequeenoftarts Sat 16-Jan-21 18:26:54

I guess yes she the firsts with him and that must be hard on you, but one of them walked away, so someone wasn't happy with that relationship. Plus he is with you by choice, not because he has kids with you and "has" to be there.
You have freedom, security, a nice child free life. Having kids is not the be all and end all. Has it occured to you the reason she says nasty things about you, is because she is jealous that you have it all?

Try not do this to yourself, or your relationship cos he will start not telling you when they talk for fear of upsetting you further, then you will be even more suspicious and so it will continue.

Aquamarine1029 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:27:33

She can say very rude and nasty things about me, I think it's ok to be hurt by that.

How do you know she says these things? Does your partner repeat what she's said? Why would he do that? That's what I would want to know.

Charley50 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:28:48

I think the issue is that she is nasty about you. That means that even if he tells her not to be, the fact that they still speak generally is him not being fully 'on your side.' However as you've said, he probably just rolls his eyes internally, tells her not to be such a bitch, then carries on, just for an easy life.

ManfaJones8 Sat 16-Jan-21 18:29:37

Blanca87

You sound controlling and must be making his life a living hell. You really need to sort yourself out or he will walk away. If the OP said ‘my partner is obsessed with my ex and monitors our conversation to see if we talk about anything other than our children and checks who I’m Facebook friends with’ people would be advising you to call women’s aid. This is not okay or healthy behaviour.

I don't monitor their conversations. I am referring to stuff he has passed onto me.
I would never tell him who he can or can't speak to. Nor would I control the narrative in those conversations. He speaks to her on a weekly basis. He doesn't always tell me when he has spoken to her, nor do I ask.
I don't know her phone number and I wouldn't dream of accessing his phone records.
I don't check his phone. I don't control him and I don't want to control him.

OP’s posts: |

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