Social Question

mostlyclueless's avatar

Are you allowed to talk to your exes?

Asked by mostlyclueless (696 points ) December 30th, 2011

Or do your new partners feel threatened?

Do you even want to talk to them?

Would it bother you if you were dating someone and they said talking to your exes is forbidden?

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30 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

If my current partner forbid me to talk to my exes, my current partner would no longer be my current partner.

When you become BF/GF, you do not suddenly have a lobotomy.

SavoirFaire's avatar

Yes, I’m allowed. I don’t think I’d be interested in anyone quite so controlling as to disallow talking to any of my ex-girlfriends. There are a couple I’m happy to still talk to, one that I avoid like the plague, and the rest just went their own ways when I went mine. No big deal.

mostlyclueless's avatar

Would it make a difference if you had betrayed your current partner with one of your exes in some way? Would you then think your boyfriend/girlfriend was justified?

rebbel's avatar

I can not demand any thing from or forbid my girlfriend, and likewise.
In my view that should go for all people when I say should, I mean would be favorable.

MrItty's avatar

If you and your partner are “allowing” and “forbidding” each other from doing anything, it’s time for you to reevaluate your relationship.

MrItty's avatar

And if you “betrayed” your current partner with an ex, and your current partner is still with you, then your current partner is an idiot, and his/her opinions don’t matter one way or another.

marinelife's avatar

I would not have a partner that “allowed” me to do things.

If I has cheated with an ex, I would not expect to be talking to them if I was still with my partner.

Soupy's avatar

I would not be dating someone who allowed me to do things, or forbid me from them.

I can talk to my exes whenever I want – which is never as I haven’t had a very good track record when it comes to picking decent people to date. My partner and I do talk to his ex though, because she’s a very nice person.

Joker94's avatar

I wouldn’t talk to that thing again if my life depended on it.

In fact, sometimes I particularly don’t want to talk to her.

augustlan's avatar

Allowed? What are they, my parent? What am I, twelve years old?

Of course I can talk to my exes. Especially the one who is the father of my children, obviously. There aren’t many exes I care to talk to, but I’m good friends with at least one of them.

If I had cheated on my partner, with anyone, I’d expect to not be able to talk to that particular person. That would go without saying.

Adagio's avatar

An adult love relationship does not in any way resemble what I would consider the jailer/prisoner relationship you allude to.

Bellatrix's avatar

As has been said repeatedly above by others, I would never want to be in a relationship with anyone who was so controlling. That is not healthy.

I can speak to anyone I want to speak to, ex or not.

Esedess's avatar

My ex of 4 years and I, and her current boyfriend, and my girlfriend (when we were still dating) are all really good friends. We all hangout pretty regularly, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Furthermore, on the side of her current boyfriend, he’s had to “endure” (if you see it that way) two ex’s in his group; as my ex, and my ex-ex, and I all dated each other together at one point. I agree with elbanditoroso and everyone else. I would quickly dump anyone who tried to placed such restrictions on my life.

judochop's avatar

I keep in touch with the ones that I want to talk with. If my partner were to tell me that I couldn’t they would most likely fall in to the ex category that I never spoke to again.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’m allowed. I have no history of cheating or awkwardness, my ex’s are friendly with me and my family so my husband having observed the dynamic during our few years of “courtship” is comfortable and not jealous or threatened.

We’ve had the talk in past about what makes a friend and what is an acquaintance. We’ve also gone over what we each hold as our boundaries when it comes to what’s appropriate behavior with ex’s. That had to be understood first, respected first in order to choose whether or not we could best honor a new relationship. There are things I do differently than in the past, my husband too.

geeky_mama's avatar

I am not allowed. I have zero contact with any ex-boyfriend. (And I have been married for over a decade and this has been a condition throughout my marriage. Won’t be changing anytime, either.)

Let me explain, however, that it’s not like I’m some repressed wifey-type..and he’s not some chauvinistic jerk. I’m not sheltered and it’s not like he doesn’t trust me (‘cause I’m away on business travel quite a lot and often travel with male colleagues).

He will freely acknowledge that this is his “deal” (he has a hang up about this) and it’s not that I’m not trustworthy..it’s just the one thing he’s ever asked me to do and it’s because his first marriage ended after he discovered she’d cheated on him with multiple other men for the entirety of their 7 year marriage. (They were High School sweethearts and she convinced him to marry at age 19. He’d never had another girlfriend. They married at 20 and she cheated throughout their dating and marriage until he finally caught her.)

I met him at the ripe old age of 29 after I’d figured I was probably never going to marry. I had a house, a dog and no plans to marry. I’d dated A LOT. I had a lot of ex-boyfriends that I remained friends with..and a couple that perhaps still thought we might end up together.

This concept of talking with my ex-bfs was mind-blowing (and not in a good way) for him..and after attempting to be “OK” with meeting (on friendly terms, at a very benign brunch, with our kids) a long-ago boyfriend who’d been just-a-friend for over a decade and failing he begged me to have no contact ever again with any Ex.

At first I chafed at this..(and mind you this was all in the days before Facebook) but I could see that this really caused him pain. It became a decision of respecting his feelings and doing something to prevent causing him pain versus maintaining contact with old flames. My marriage and his feelings were more important.

So, if I get a friend request from an Ex they get a polite explanation why I’m declining and no further contact. They don’t call, they don’t write..and since most of them live in other cities (not where I live now) I haven’t ever run into an ex-boyfriend.

My hubby is not controlling in any other way, shape or form. He’s actually a very good guy…he just has this one area that he can’t get over—and so I’m the notable exception. He doesn’t allow me..and I go along with that.

Seaofclouds's avatar

It’s one thing for your current boyfriend to not want you to talk to an ex, it’s a bit different when he wants you to stop talking to the guy you cheated on him with (even if that guy is an ex). Wanting you not to talk to them and forbidding you to talk to them is different as well. Many times, when couples are trying to heal from infidelity, it is suggested that the partner that cheated stops contacting the person they cheated with. I think the two (talking to an ex and talking to an affair partner) have to be looked at separately.

I can talk to anyone that I want to. There was one guy my husband wanted me to stop talking to for a very specific reason and after talking to him about it and looking at it from his perspective, I made the decision to stop talking to that guy, but that’s different.

blueiiznh's avatar

There are legal reason why it may be forbidden in some cases.

Otherwise, just put on your big boy and big girl pants and play nice.

mostlyclueless's avatar

So if your SO forbids you to talk to an ex, that is wrong, but if your SO forbids you to talk to an ex that you cheated with, that is acceptable?

Seaofclouds's avatar

@mostlyclueless It’s not acceptable for a boyfriend to forbid you from doing anything. It’s just more understandable that he wouldn’t want you to talk to someone you cheated on him with and it is often recommended that a cheater stops talking with the person they cheated with if they want to fix the problem in their current relationship. What exactly is your boyfriend saying in regards to you not talking to this guy you cheated with?

augustlan's avatar

@mostlyclueless I wouldn’t say it was ok for an SO to forbid you to do anything. I do think it’s understandable that they wouldn’t want you to talk to a person you cheated on him/her with, and I think it’s a good idea to agree to that.

downtide's avatar

Someone who “allows” or “doesn’t allow” me to do things would not be my partner. We might discuss and come to an agreement but we certainly wouldn’t forbid each other to do anything. That said, I’m not in contact with any of my exes anyway. I wonder how shocked they’d be if they saw me now…

mostlyclueless's avatar

@Seaofclouds, I didn’t cheat, but my ex cheated with me. His girlfriend forgave him, and he broke up with her anyway, then got back together with her. Now he’s not allowed to talk to me. I think his girlfriend is foolish and should realize the problem is him, not me.

augustlan's avatar

@mostlyclueless If I were his girlfriend, I’d have a pretty big problem with him having contact with you. Obviously, I wouldn’t forbid him… but it would be a choice between our relationship, and his relationship with you.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

@mostlyclueless: Maybe his gf does realize the problem is with him and so it makes sense to her for him to avoid the people he’s cheated with in the past, that includes you.

SavoirFaire's avatar

I’d like to push back against some of the extremism that has cropped up in this discussion. First of all, everyone has a right to set the bounds of their relationships, and everyone has a right to decide whether or not the bounds set for their relationships are acceptable. That is, it is up to the parties involved to decide what’s okay. Many people “forbid” their partner from sleeping with other people—that’s part of the background to this very question. Other people allow there to be sex outside of the relationship within certain parameters.

Let’s not fool ourselves: those are still cases of allowing and forbidding. So to say that any instance of allowing or forbidding is grounds for reevaluating a relationship is nonsense. If there are no boundaries, there is no relationship. The very notion of a relationship involves some amount of primacy or special connection no matter what boundaries on specific acts may or may not exist. Maybe the primacy is defined in terms of time or emotion instead of sex, but there must be something that makes it so that one can say a relationship exists with this person but not that person.

Second, it is not necessarily and a priori “idiotic” to stay with a partner who has cheated. This is again a place where one has the right to decide for oneself what constitutes too much of a breach rather than taking the judgment of others as dispositive regarding a relationship that is not theirs. Cheating can have many causes, including a sudden onset of bipolar disorder. If a partner is consequently remorseful and takes steps to make sure it never happens again, I don’t see why one is necessarily idiotic to take the cheater back. Nor do I see how the decision to take the cheater back would render one’s opinions irrelevant.

No, I have never cheated. And as far as I know, I have never been cheated on.

augustlan's avatar

@SavoirFaire You make some good points. There are obviously things that must be agreed upon by people in a relationship. I just have a problem with the word “forbid”... it sounds so parental.

SavoirFaire's avatar

@augustlan Indeed. But it is when the forbidding becomes unilateral that it’s really a problem. Perhaps we could just say “disallow” or “embargo”?

augustlan's avatar

How about the very wordy “Things we agree not to do for the sake of our relationship”. :p

SavoirFaire's avatar

Oh, sure… if you want to get technical.

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