Ex­cess Bag­gage

We can’t delete past lovers like a bad se­ries link (we thought The Val­leys was a good idea, too). So here’s how to deal when your ex is weigh­ing you down.

CLEO (Malaysia) - - YOUR LIFE, YOUR RULES! -

Un­less you’re one of those cou­ples who parted on a “bet­ter to have loved and lost” hug, an ex­pired re­la­tion­ship comes with enough bag­gage to ri­val a Kar­dashian mini-break. So we called in coun­sel­lor Trudy Wil­son to help us sort out all the ex fac­tors.

When It’s Your Ex Your ex hasn’t moved on and con­stantly tries to get in touch via so­cial me­dia, texts, and calls.

“If there is a gen­uine rea­son for the con­tact (for ex­am­ple, sort­ing out the re­turn of pos­ses­sions) then deal with this quickly and through a third party, if nec­es­sary,” says Wil­son. “Not re­spond­ing to or lim­it­ing/de­lay­ing re­sponses sends the mes­sage that the re­la­tion­ship has changed and is over. It may take some time [so] it’s im­por­tant to be con­sis­tent.”

You’re still friends with your ex but your cur­rent beau doesn’t seem to like it all that much.

“Try to put yourself in your part­ner’s shoes. How would you feel if the sit­u­a­tion were re­versed? Con­sider how up­front you were about this in­for­ma­tion in the early stages of the re­la­tion­ship. It’s to be ex­pected and rea­son­able that your part­ner may feel un­com­fort­able or con­cerned if you are friends with your ex. Be pre­pared to com­pro­mise and don’t dis­miss your part­ner’s con­cerns. Open and hon­est com­mu­ni­ca­tion is vi­tal.”

You aren’t quite ready to get over your ex yet, but he has moved on with some­one else.

“Al­low time and space to work through these feel­ings. If you’ve been hop­ing to re­con­nect with your ex, then it can be more dev­as­tat­ing when they be­gin a new re­la­tion­ship. If you’re strug­gling to come to terms with this, you may ben­e­fit from talk­ing through your feel­ings with a coun­sel­lor, who is trained in deal­ing with re­la­tion­ship dy­nam­ics.”

When It’s Your Man’s Ex Your new man’s mates are still friends with his ex, mak­ing it dif­fi­cult for you to win them over.

“Ac­cept­ing that this is likely to oc­cur is prob­a­bly half the strug­gle, es­pe­cially if the re­la­tion­ship was long-term and so­cial groups are well-formed. It’s im­por­tant to be real­is­tic. Be­ing re­laxed and play­ing it cool (which is a tough call!) is prob­a­bly more likely to ap­peal to oth­ers who are get­ting to know you. With the pass­ing of time and the strength­en­ing of your re­la­tion­ship, it’s less likely to be an is­sue.”

The ex is un­able to let go and is ha­rass­ing your guy.

“Ul­ti­mately, it’s up to your part­ner to de­cide what they want to do [but] if he hasn’t al­ready, now may be the time to re­quest that their ex ceases con­tact. As­sess whether there are mu­tual friends of your part­ner and their ex who may be able to pro­vide sup­port to the ex around the im­pacts of on­go­ing ha­rass­ment.”

Your BF’s ex is try­ing to be friends with you, like FB friend­ing you or even ask­ing him for your num­ber.

“Re­spect­ing your bound­aries is im­por­tant, par­tic­u­larly in a new re­la­tion­ship. If this feels like it’s step­ping over these, then it’s prob­a­bly wise to po­litely de­cline. Re­mem­ber, the re­la­tion­ship’s about you and your part­ner – not you, your part­ner, and their ex.”

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