Soulmate Dance answers a reader questions: My boyfriend has a problem with my conscious divorce

My New Boyfriend Has a Problem with My Cordial Divorce

Soulmate Dance answers a reader questions: My boyfriend has a problem with my conscious divorceReader Question - My husband and I divorced last year, and we have been successful at doing this in a mindful way. We have grown children and have been able to remain friends and business partners. My problem is with the new man I have been seeing. He insists that remaining friends with my ex and running a business with him is not normal and that I am just inviting drama down the road. He says once my ex realizes I have moved on that things will deteriorate. He also says that the fact my ex has not found someone new means he is still in love with me and that is not healthy for our new relationship. I can't tell if he is jealous or has valid points. What should I do?

Have you experienced this? Please add your thoughts below.


2 thoughts on “My New Boyfriend Has a Problem with My Cordial Divorce”

  1. Wow it’s like I’ve been waiting for years for someone to ask this question! I too dated a woman who was involved with her ex in many ways. I don’t really know what mindful means, but in their small town they had made a conscious decision to keep intact post-divorce basically their entire family and friend structure, ostensibly for their children’s sake, but at the point I came into the picture the children were away at school. This structure included still having all holidays and birthday celebrations together, the ex-wife managing her ex-husband’s money, the ex-husband managing some real estate they owned together, daily drop-bys by the ex to my soon girlfriend’s office to chat and have coffee. Attending the same social functions. Even going on vacations with the children and sharing houses together.

    The woman/girlfriend considered herself to be very forthright and honest, and in the beginning of our relationship she informed me of this arrangement and invited me to the events. I went to a few, but the tension between her ex who, even though he was remarried and his new wife sometimes attended but many times was away on business, still adored her, and I, soon became pretty obvious. And so my GF became less forthright, and eventually a pile of lies began to develop as she tried to compartmentalize this incongruity. I should say that I was not jealous, but I was “mindful” of the tension and wanted to avoid it. We argued not about her arrangement, but my refusal to attend.

    Needless to say the relationship deteriorated pretty rapidly, which was a shame, because we had real chemistry and always had fun when we were outside the presence of her ex. But that presence was a problem. I came to realize quickly that she had 20 years invested in that relationship, and she wasn’t about to change for me, nor was it my place to ask her to change. We struggled through a very passionate and sad 18 months, because we both knew that it couldn’t last, and then broke up. I care about her to this day, 5 years later, but it was a no win situation.

    1. From what you’ve written, it’s hard to tell whether your relationship deteriorated because your girlfriend and her ex were crossing a line or because of your own jealousy. It’s hard to know whether her ex adores her as in wants to get her back or adores her as in wants to protect her from a jealous man. It’s hard to know whether she is pining for him or you are projecting your own jealousy. It’s hard to know whether your girlfriend became less forthright because she had something to hide or because she was beginning to fear your jealousy.

      Jealousy is a destructive monster.

      I personally know exes who function beautifully exactly as you describe. Couples who divorced, but remained business partners and continued to celebrate holidays and family events with their extended and expanded family. At some point, they had realized the marriage was over, but the affection and respect remained. So they redefined the relationship. In one case, they realized that they had always been better friends and business partners, but had mistaken that for love which had led to marriage. So they were able to lovingly set each other free. And they were fortunate enough to find new partners whose love and self-esteem were strong enough to embrace this bigger, kinder picture of love.

      You are being offered an opportunity to examine your own capacity to love and accept. You are being offered an opportunity to confront your own jealousy and insecurities. What are you really afraid of? It may be that you both knew it couldn’t last for very different reasons. And you are being offered the opportunity to examine that as well. Regardless of whether you ever see this woman again or not, you are being offered a huge gift of self-growth. I hope you will embrace it fully. I wish you well.

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