My new boyfriend still misses his ex, what should I do?

I've recently started dating a guy who broke up with his previous girlfriend about 5-6 months ago. They ended on good terms, there weren't any fights; they broke up due to external factors. Since then neither of them have reached out to the other. He says it's bc it's too awkward. He still has a high opinion of her, says she is a great person, which I'm ok with. However, the few times we've run into her (they still have a lot of mutual friends), he gets visibly flustered while she seems pretty composed. And afterwards, he's always sad/mopey for an hour or so.

The other day he said he was in a bad mood all day bc it was her bday and he realized he wished he'd reached out to her more and could still be friends. I understand it's natural to miss a good friend but the fact that she was his first serious girlfriend and that he's so emotionally affected by the thought of her/seeing her seems like a red flag. He talks about wanting to reach out but it being "too weird", which I feel like translates to him being scared that she won't be responsive to it or reciprocate, which would hurt him. One could say that he "chose" me, but it feels more like I was only chosen bc he doesn't feel like he has a good chance with her anymore.

I haven't told him these feelings. But I did say that if he plans on reaching out to her I would rather he did it sooner and I could just keep my distance until he figures it out first. He ofc insisted he had no feelings left for her, only likes me, and doesn't really "need" to reach out. But then we saw her again the other day and he got all weird and mopey again.

Is how I am feeling purely from some kind of personal insecurity? Or do I have actual reasonable and logical concerns? I do not want to hurt him by leaving him over this. He's a nice guy, but even nice guys can lead girls on, maybe without realizing it. I don't want to be an idiot and willingly be a second option/rebound. What do you guys think I should do?


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Most Helpful Guy

  • He better let her go at some point. I hope his ex really had moved on and is with someone else by now because if they are somehow still talking and seen each other once in a while, you might get used only for a rebound relationship.

    Just watch his actions and habits and see if there is anything else suspicious. I wouldn't worry as much or at all if his ex is already in a completely new relationship with someone else already since that might just remind him that his relationship with his ex was already over and not much point in trying to get her back as it would be much harder if that is the case.

    If he's always down, insecure, well if you don't want to put up with him because of this, and if you rather not waste your time on him being like that you can always have a plan B and be ready to move on. No point of trying to change someone on how they feel, act, or think since that's really on them and beyond your control anyway.

    All in all I'm more than certain that he is emotionally deeply attached and infatuated with his ex and had never completely let her go and he's still trying to heal. But you being around him, he's more than likely only going to take advantage of you. If unless at some point he is upbeat even after seeing his ex, then things will progress and possibly get better between you and him, otherwise, if he remains the same, then that's your exit cue.

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    • 3mo

      Thanks for MHO! How did everything turned out for you at this point by the way?

Most Helpful Girl

  • I think it's understandable you feel that way. I would suggest maybe taking a break until he figures things out because I think it's unfair on you and you say he keeps getting mopey too.

    I don't think anyone should feel like they're 2nd best to their boyfriend or girlfriend, that's just not fair. Perhaps he does still like you but maybe needs more time to get over his ex.

    Maybe talk to him about it and say how it's upsetting you and if this carries on you would like to take a break for a bit so that he can figure things out since it seems confusing and upsetting for the both of you.

    I can sort of understand a bit of how you feel - When me and my boyfriend first started going out, though he would say he loved me, always had, always will, hated his ex and said (even when we were friends) that if she was in a burning building with a car and he could only save one, he'd save the car, but if it was me and a car, he'd save me or if it was me, her and the car? He'd pick me and drive off.

    However, even though he'd say and act like he hated her, had got rid of her on social media and even untagged stuff she'd tagged him in even months before we were going out...

    He'd still say random stuff about her that I didn't really want to hear, like "I went Go Kartin' with her once and she got scared cuz of my drivin' XD" Or "Oh yeah, she thought her uncle was following her once"

    even though sometimes what we were talking about didn't even relate to any of that. That said, he does have ADHD though.

    I'd have to say, by far the worst one was when we'd recently started going out, we're finally alone together for the first time in his room, cuddling on his bed and I was feeling pretty happy. My head was leant against his neck and I was fairly relaxed and happy, when he went

    "No love bites, mind. I got in trouble last time."

    "Last time?" I thought "But I've never given him a love bite! Wait! Does he mean with someone else? Like when he was with... ?"

    I asked him if he meant when he was with his ex and he said yes

    "I got in trouble for that - But not as much as she did! Funny thing was, her one didn't last that long but one I did lasted ages!"

    Somehow I don't like the thought of my boyfriend sucking/biting another girls neck or her doing that to him so it really ruined the moment and put me of him for a bit. I can't do love bites with him now since that thought just creeps in to my head.

    I spoke to him how I was feeling and he reassured me he only loved me and stopped bringing her up since.

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What Guys Said 10

  • no it's not personal insecurity.

    it's understandable to miss an ex but you can't really have a good relationship if you are still hung up on your ex

    now if he misses her from a purely platonic standpoint that's one thing but if he is missing her from a relationship standpoint that is a definite problem.

    i think you need to sort of figure out what precisely he misses. find out if given the opportunity would he date her again.

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  • just curious how old was he when him and his ex started dating and how long did they date? I might be able to relate to him in a way because I dated my first girlfriend when I was 17 and we broke up when I was 19. It hit me real hard I was super attached and I was definitely in love with her. she was the one that broke up with me, and as much as your boyfriend might say they broke up on mutual terms, what I've found in probably almost all breakups is that it wasn't actually mutual. someone always has a little more feelings for one person than the other and they get hurt. so first off none of this is your fault! it was completely out of your control that he dated this girl and got hurt by her. secondly if he wasn't over her then it is his fault for getting involved with you and dragging you into it. from my experience which might of been a bit long it took me about a year before I was totally over my first love and could be with another girl without thinking about her. not saying your boyfriend is that way but from the signs he's giving you Id say its not too far off. how often does he mention her when talking to you? and how long have you guys been dating? My honest advice too you would be to in a very calm and understanding manner sit down and have a heart to heart talk with him about and find out where his head is in all this. because its not doing you any good to waste time with a guy who's wishing he was with someone else. he needs a reality check because your here ready to be there for him and it sounds to me like you've been very understanding, but he's still hung up on a girl that dumped him 6 months ago. now I'm not saying break up with him, but Id try as best as you can to keep yourself from getting too attached if its not already to late for that until you get all of this figured out. and if you reply back and answer my questions ill give you more advice!

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  • He's lying he still wants her and if the opportunity arose he'd be back with her

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  • He is only human.
    I miss a woman from my past who I have not seen in 8 years. I know it is over. I still miss her. She touched my heart in a very special way. I didn't have the same affect on her heart.
    It happens.

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  • It sounds like he does still like her. I wouldn't say he is being malicious or leading you on. id say he is trying to move past her and can't. It is a terrible spot for you to be in but I don't think there is wrong doing. I will say if it continues yo umay need to think about moving on yourself. You can't be in a relationship where you are second place, it isn't fair to you.

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  • Oh that's a difficult situation, I trhi m you're handling it very well, rather than screaming at him and dumping him like some people might

    Just go up to him and explain that your worried he still has feelings, and ask if he's sure that any feelings he has are just platonic.
    he may still be recovering from the breakup-it can take a while-but that doesn't mean he doesn't love you;, like you said he chose you.
    Best way to deal with this is just discuss it with him I rhink

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  • Dude is hung up
    Stop letting him use you for a backup
    Your better then that

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  • Cry with him over her.

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  • He is not over her and if he would get a 1% chance he would dump you in a millisecond to be with her again.
    He has to move on first and start dating second.
    I would break up with him.

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  • Reasonably concerned would be my take on this !

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What Girls Said 13

  • No, you are right about the way you feel.

    I think you should break with him until he clears his head and moves on from his ex.

    It's not fair to you that he likes someone else and there you are on the side just some girl he's with to distract him...

    I know it sounds harsh and he probably isn't a bad guy either but this is a bad move from his side. He should be ready to fully commit before getting into a another relationship - which he is not.

    And he said he is lying about about being over his ex because then he wouldn't be so miserable when he sees her...
    Also, from the looks of it, if the opportunity ever arose and his ex wanted to get back with him he would not give it a second thought and get back with her - leaving you feeling like idiot.

    I also think you should try talk to him again and this tell him straight something like: "I know you are not over your ex, because I've seen how you become when you see her, and I don't want to be a rebound girl. So it's over. We can be friends and I'll be here if you want to talk but I'm not ready be anything more unless you clear your head"

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  • It appears here, dear, as Wise as I am, tha the has Not move don from the skeleton in the Closure Closet and You are actually nothing but A... rebound Rebeca. Time to talk Turkey to this bird.
    He may be Living in his own fairy Tale land, but he is Bringing you down with every sad and bad word about the Past that is Ruining your own Relationship, and maybe too, he is trying to tell you something.
    It's most Unfair to you that He even Words anything, Brings up anything, and it's time you sat him down and asked him where do we stand?
    It's quite obvious to me that he could end up getting in Touch with her and that his own Chapter to this Book has not Closed. He was Not a Ready Eddy to be Steady with any Betty. He is still hooked to the hip with a Ghost.
    Rebounds are always "Second Best." You should not have to be Someone's Side dish.
    He needs to know soon how you Feel with this raw Deal.
    Good luck. xx

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  • No. I suggest that you stop the relationship, because it means he hasn't moved on from his last one. And that is not good at all. That means he can't focus on being with you and still holds a lot of baggage. Your not insecure. Your realizing that your a second wheel. And nobody wants to feel that way. I believe that you should have waited to even try to become official with unless until you see if he was completely over her. But if his relationship with his girlfriend was sexual, naturally of course he is not going to let go that easily even after 5-6 months. Sometimes it takes a year for some people. He gave his heart to somebody who probably didn't deserve it. You need to tell him this and not hold it in. It's not fair to you, and he needs to wake up and see that he's hurting you.

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  • One thing i learned about "most" guys and not from books nor dictionaries but experience. Yes i may seem young but i've dealt with guys around 19 and just because a guy may put on a smile and hop into the next relationship with some random chick that's just a void of sadness their trying to fill in by going into situationship after situationship. He's not going to get over it quickly and i believe that is just an internal process that he has to deal with by himself. His friends might tell him to tighty up and be a man about it and he may go out with his guys and if he see's someone that looks like her or actually see her then all of the feelings falls back down.

    I believe it's best you become more of a helper friend than a helper girlfriend because at the end of the day he's going to go to you for kisses and hugs just to try and erase the memories of his ex but deep down i believe those feelings will never erase. It may take years and even though he moves on there is some special place in his heart for her. It's tough news but i am not a victim of a situation like that but i'm the girl that is visually watching the other girls go through confusion from a guy i used to deal with. It's crazy and hectic and when you make the best decision to leave him you wouldn't be his only victim...

    Not saying that he isn't a nice guy nor am i saying he's a jerk because sometimes when we're hurt we find things that we believe will cure our hearts at the end of the day. Really? he just wants the girl back that he really loved.

    I don't know what is going to be your decision on this but guarantee it's going to be an up and down roller coaster with his feelings. He can't help it but you shouldn't be the catcher of his hurt while all of your feelings are ignored. If he's meant for you then whatever he has going on will be seized at some point in time. Though you can't depend on that because his heart is obviously somewhere.. Just make the right decisions not just for the both of you but mainly your heart.

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  • He still likes her and I can't blame him. He probably loved/loves her and seeing her all the time isn't helping. Nice guys are probably hurt the hardest over things like this because they really cared. I think you should maybe move back a little and just be a friend. He's clearly not ready to move on and it's not a bad thing. He's trying by getting into a new relationship but it's not working

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  • You're a rebound option. Something to bide his time until he can figure out how to make it work with her again.

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  • He's not over her by a long shot. You are a rebound basically. Sorry to tell you that. Probably a good idea to let this one go and let him process his feelings without you. This is not fair to you at all.

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  • How old is he and how long you been dating him? I had the same issue like he did couldn't get over my ex and it was 5-6 mo

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  • Truth? You're an option, something is better than nothing. And though she isn't around she's his priority. Run away.

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  • if he loves you, he will focus on you and not spend time missing his ex. y did he come to you if he was not ready yet... but if u truly love him make him miss u instead and start doing things he never thought u will do... something new... things that will draw him closer to u

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  • Leave him.

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  • Leave him I wouldn't treat like that if I was your man

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  • Break up with him because his heart won't ever be with you.

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