Ghosts of girlfriends past
Or in Angelina’s case… ghosts of ex-wives past.
It’s the one thing that can irk even the most confident of women.
The fact that no matter how many children you and your partner share, how many good times, and how many milestones you experience as a pair, there will always be a part of his life that belongs to someone else. You have to deal with the fact that there has been another entire chapter that you’ll never be a part of. The meeting, the butterflies, the falling in love, the sex, the intimacy and then ultimately – the heartbreak (hopefully more for his ex than for him.)
It’s a roller coaster. A lively journey between two people and regardless of the fact that you’ve also shared this with your partner; you can’t help but be irked by the fact that he’s shared it with someone else, too.
It’s the thing that more than anything else allows the green-eyed monster to rear its ugly head. It’s frustrating. Being so close to someone yet being so detached from another part of them. It’s what brings on the majority of insecurity-driven dramas in any relationship. Hello, Mya wrote a whole song about the ‘Case of the Ex’, it’s an actual thing, because the one person that you’re afraid of in terms of your relationship and it’s demise, is the one person that shares the same thing you do with your partner: history.
It’s that history, the part of their life that’s kind of like a grey cloud with very blurry details that worries you the most. You weren’t there, so you don’t know exactly what they shared, or how intense it was. You don’t know if it’s the kind of relationship that comes complete with feelings that last forever, a close bond that can’t be matched, and a temptation that can’t be resisted.
So you fret. You allow your mind to take you to the worst possible places, and you lose the confidence that he was so attracted to. You convince yourself that you can’t match up, or worse still, you worry that there’s something going on right under your nose.
So you fight, and you suspect, and you drive yourself crazy. When really, all you needed to do was remember that even though you don’t know all about the great bits of his past relationships, you also don’t know all of the bad parts. The parts that lead to their split and the parts that made this girl that you’re so afraid of, actually not so scary at all. The fact is, if he wanted to be with her, he would be. And while there may be a part of him that always holds a candle for that person, you have to be able to remind yourself that there’s a reason that they’re no longer together and that in most cases, it’s the time in his life that connects with him, much more than the girl who happened to be there at the time.
You know it’s true. You’re nodding along because you know that years of watching 90210, FRIENDS, and Gossip Girl has you automatically jumping to the same way of drama-ridden, emotionally-driven thinking and that mostly, it’s the fault of American television producers.
(Just kidding! HBO, if you’re reading this, please don’t stop what you’re doing. We just have to blame someone for our constant overzealous jumping to dramatic scenarios, ya dig?)
So girls, if the thought of your guy with his ex girl makes you want to be sick into your cereal, stress less. Remember, she’s an ex for a reason – and unless you want to end up in the same category, get your head straight and be the girl he fell so hard for. I promise it’ll all work out.
Disclaimer: in the event that you discover your partner has been contacting their ex in a more-than-friendly manner, like a particular girlfriend of mine, you have two choices. The first; realise that guys are a little dim, and many have less confidence than they’d like to have you think. Sometimes men and women just need to know that they’ve still got it, from someone other than you – and sometimes, someone that would really know whether they’ve still got it or not – someone like an ex. It’s not an excuse, it’s a fact – and as long as no-one acts on this need, there’s really no grounds to spill your lollies. The second; kick that sucker to the kerb. You know what qualifies as a deal breaker in your book, so don’t be afraid to follow through on your beliefs. Keep in mind, it does need to be communicated to your fella that that kind of malarkey isn’t favourable well beforehand, as many guys would think that that kind of thing is a-okay. If he breaks the rules after that you’re more than entitled to call it quits. If he’s the right guy, he’ll do what it takes to secure your trust; you’ve just got to let him work at it.
Have you ever had an unfavourable situation with your partner’s ex? Do they ever get to you? How do you like to deal with it?