My Partner Still Texts Her Ex. What Do I Do?

My Partner Still Texts Her Ex. What Do I Do?

Hi Aaron & Rachel


I’m dating someone who is going through a divorce. My concern I have is that her husband still calls at awkward times in the morning – especially considering the time he works. She also tells him that she loves him after every call. It hurts and I feel that I don’t want to be mean but how do I set boundaries? How do I deal with the fact that they have been together for 13 years and been married for 6? Fortunately there are no kids only a dog whom she loves to bits.

She tells me that she loves me and we have just moved in together. She uses this as a security/assurity that she wants to be with me. She is everything I wanted and hope for and I’m so afraid I might lose her. Their court date is set for the 26th March and I’m so scared she might not sign the papers… that I can’t control. But what do I do with the husband? How do I deal with him and her saying that he shares half her life?

Regards, 

Scared to Lose Her.

Dear SLH,

She Said

Sorry to hear that you are in this difficult situation.

If the woman that you are dating genuinely loves you, she should be willing to do whatever it takes to make you feel comfortable about her relationship with her ex.

Your concerns are valid. It sounds like she and her ex are still emotionally attached. They may always have a love for each other, but they will need to establish boundaries so that you can feel confident that you are not in the middle of a love triangle.

While you can’t control her feelings, words, or actions, you can control your response to them. If you have not talked honestly with her about all of this, you should do so as soon as possible. First, figure out what you are and aren’t comfortable with and then make clear to her what you will not put up with. If you tell her you will not, say, tolerate these calls every day, you are going to have to stick to it–despite the consequences. If you don’t, you will struggle to have a healthy, happy relationship with her.

I must admit: I am worried for you, as you have a strong gut feeling that she is not ready to leave her relationship. I don’t want to see you continue to get hurt. I can’t help but think that the two of you have jumped in too fast. Sometimes the truth hurts, but in the long run, things hurt less when you face things for what they really are. My strong recommendation: Embrace the truth.

He Said

I can see why you’d be scared. Keeping in touch with an old flame is playing with fire. It’s natural for someone to still have feelings for an ex. After all, they cared about them once. And often times when they don’t sever ties, that spark can rekindle – meaning trouble for you.

There’s no reason for her to continue texting and talking to her ex so often – especially if there are no kids or other ties to each other. You do need to set boundaries, just as Rachel said. You should also encourage her finally mourn her relationship with her ex so that she can get over him, move on and commit more to you. She may always have some feelings for her ex, that’s normal. But her feelings shouldn’t get in the way of having a good relationship with you. If she can’t do that, you have some decisions to make.

8 Responses to My Partner Still Texts Her Ex. What Do I Do?

  1. Rachael and Aaron are right. You should be concerned and possibly have a tough decision to make.

    From a mens' coach perspective, this is the most concerning for me:

    "She is everything I wanted and hope for and I’m so afraid I might lose her."

    If partner #1 is obviously "misbehaving" and partner #2 is afraid to make a value based stand, partner #1 has little motivation to quit the behavior.

    Your fear of losing her is greater than your desire to stand up for healthy relationship behavior. This dynamic could adversely affect the rest of this relationship and your next.

    She can only respect you if you make that stand from a place of love and confidence.

  2. Sound advice from both of you. I feel this is a more common problem than most care to admit.One positive in this scenario is the fact his girlfriend doesn't hide her contact with her ex from him; however, the down side is it appears she hasn't let the past go and may not be completely ready for a new relationship. Best of luck! May you find happiness.

  3. I agree with what he said – at the end of the day there is no need for regular contact especially with no kids involved. I'll accept that at times (birthdays and holidays) that the odd text will be sent – just because they probably text you and it's rude not to reply. BUT that really should be it.

  4. As a Relationship Show host for the eHealth Radio Network you would hear our Love, Relationship and Dating experts give various feedback here. Here are questions to ask…
    #1. Why are they in touch?
    #2. Aren't they getting a divorce? #3. Why are they getting a divorce? #4. What kind of communication is going on that you don't know about?
    #5. Why does she take the call at weird hours when she is near or with you?
    #6. What does she feel for her ex?

    If this was me, I would kindly say, I cant not tolerate this, not good for you, not good for us, not good for anyone. The communication really needs to stop 100% unless it is for financial reasons per the divorce. Outside of that, there is NO REASON at all to be in touch. If she doesn't agree. Leave her immediately.

    Eric Michaels (eHealthRadioNetwork.com)

  5. It seems like everyone here agrees that there are 'red flags' all over this. And everyone makes some great points as to why. They're all excellent points that we wish we could have covered in the article. But it looks like we didn't have to!

  6. That is definitely NOT an ideal situation. I agree that she's still emotionally attached to her ex. I wouldn't tolerate my significant other saying "I love you" at the end of calls with her ex. I think she should choose one or the other since there's nothing keeping them attached like children.

  7. I'm going through the same thing !I been married 17 years and she off and on pass 4 years been texting and talking to her ex. ! She says they have a different kind of love ! She keeps hiding it from me ! Hes confess me or him she said obvious I'm still with you. He's just a good friend to talk too! But she tells him in love you baby boy. ?
    What to do ?

  8. I'm going through the same thing !I been married 17 years and she off and on pass 4 years been texting and talking to her ex. ! She says they have a different kind of love ! She keeps hiding it from me ! Hes confess me or him she said obvious I'm still with you. He's just a good friend to talk too! But she tells him in love you baby boy. ?
    What to do ?

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