CAN’T GET YOU OUT OF MY BED
Last week I woke up in bed with my boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend. And I did that thing you do when you wake up next to a stranger: lay still, with my eyes closed, pretending to be asleep, while I tried to remember what had happened the night before… The Boy and I have been dating a year. We’ve just celebrated our Shamiversary, so named because it’s not the date we started going out but when we had our one-night stand — the night I bumped into him in Soho House and dragged him to a skanky 24-hour casino on Tottenham Court Road.
Jen, on the other hand, I met on Facebook. I was flicking through The Boy’s profile when I came across a comment from her. Her name rang a bell; he’d mentioned her as someone he’d gone out with at university. Sure enough, there she was in photographs from the days they had dated: at a house party having vodka poured down her throat; at a university ball looking unbearably gorgeous in red lipstick and a scarlet dress. I found them on holiday hugging, and out clubbing in fancy dress: him in Kiss make-up and her in a pink minidress. Further Googling revealed Jen to be younger, thinner and cleverer than I am (a doctor who looks great in skinny jeans!). How did I feel as I conducted this search of my partner and his ex’s history in the first tentative days of my new relationship? The one-word answer is: shit.
I’m not the only one. Thanks to social media, smartphones and search engines, we’ve got exes everywhere — both our partners’ and our own. We can find first loves on Twitter and holiday flings on Facebook (used, according to one recent study, by 88 per cent of us to stalk