Oh Dana! #13: Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow…

Dana Buckmir
Dana Buckmir

Oh Dana!
My boyfriend insists that it’s okay to communicate with his ex-girlfriends. We’ve had numerous arguments about it and he doesn’t seem to understand my perspective. I’ve caught him confiding in a few different women that he’s been intimate with, but when I confront him, he makes me think that I’m immature and crazy. I think that continuing to talk to your ex-girlfriends when you’re in a relationship is disrespectful. Am I overreacting over nothing or is this behavior cause for concern?
Perturbed Over Paramours

Dear Perturbed Over Paramours,
I strongly believe that once you’ve seen someone naked, you can’t unsee it. Believe me, if that was the case, I have a list of people to submit to the universe. More importantly, if you’ve been intimate with a partner, you can’t go back to being buddies. This big, beautiful world just doesn’t work that way.  In short, I’d be perturbed if I were you. Can men and women be friends? Yes, it’s called being single. There’s no place other women in your relationship.
Listen, we all have a past which we bring to a relationship. You’ve expressed your concern for the relationships that your boyfriend continues to foster. Your concern is completely understandable. You are definitely not overreacting. My philosophy is once it’s over, it’s over. If it wasn’t then you’d still be with that person. Of course, there are exceptions. One that comes to mind is if you have children with your ex. Another might be if you find out that your partner is gay. Other than that, it’s just messy. However, if you don’t share any ties and you’re not acquiring a gay bff then there’s no need to hold onto the past.
I’m more concerned that your boyfriend isn’t respecting your feelings. Were they friends before they dated? Even still, it seems problematic to continue to speak with someone with whom you’ve been intimate. I’d be interested to know why he feels compelled to continue a relationship after it’s ended. Didn’t it end for a reason?
If he cared enough, he would stop talking to his ex-girlfriends based on the fact that it bothers you. It sounds like he’s disregarding your feelings and will continue to get away with behavior that you tolerate. You should be the priority.
In my opinion, talking to an ex when you have a new partner is dangerous. Once you’ve been intimate with someone and there is chemistry it doesn’t just go away which equals a recipe for disaster for a new relationship. No need to send out invites to temptation island. Unfortunately, as difficult as it is to hear, it sounds like your boyfriend is keeping the door open in case it doesn’t work out with you. If not, then why hasn’t he deleted their numbers? And, why does he continue to accept their calls? There needs to be boundaries set in place if this is going to work. If he’s not respecting your feelings then the relationship isn’t going to last.
The bottom line, your boyfriend’s inability to let go of the past doesn’t leave space for you. He’s not really giving your new relationship a chance when he still shares a bond with his ex-lovers. He needs to close the book on his ex-girlfriends or you might have to close it on him.

Dana Buckmir aka “Oh, Dana!” Dana is the author of the memoir “Plenty of Laughs: One Woman’s Journey Navigating the Online Dating Waters. The book is a comical account on dating in the age of technology, including the compelling story of finding love online. You can find a sample of her book at https://danabuckmir.com/Dana wants to help people with their lives, love, and everything in-between! She is taking your questions at Contact@danabuckmir.com All submissions are anonymous.