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Good evening. Thanks for writing to JA.
The question(s) you're asking are not really focused on your GF... they're focused on you. :)
Can YOU allow someone you love to do what they want? To talk with others how they want, when they want? Do you trust her?
I would challenge you to question your motives here and wonder if your beliefs are fueled by your fears about her commitment to you.
I realize this is hard to hear (or in this case, read), but... you must recognize that your current GF has the right to talk to anyone she wants to at any time.
Your fears may reflect your own fears about the status of your relationship - regardless of her behavior.
This being the case, I would reframe your questions:
Why am I uncomfortable with her communicating with this guy?
I love this woman, but I don't seem to really trust her... what does that mean to our relationship?
I think this woman is GREAT, but can't believe she can deal with this "other man" in a mature fashion. Is that fair to her?
She has the choice to move in whatever direction she would like to. This is not a problem of her's or her prior BF's/husband's... it's really your problem.
It is your decision about whether or not to discuss these insecurities with your GF... but the question about "insisting that a good friendship cannot be and still keep our relationship healthy" is problematic.
Your relationship should be health regardless of her relationship(s) with other people.
Oh, hi, Wayne... looks like you're typing right now. Cool. I'll stay on for a bit. :)
I realize everything you say is true. However, had he not keep trying to get herr back for so long I would have concerns. She has stated he is her "rock".
She is soft hearted and I she doesn't want to hurt his feelings. But he pushed her away initially and she found me.
Hi, Wayne... Well, perhaps, if he is her "rock..." perhaps that means (I'm sorry to say this) that you're not.
Perhaps you need to protect yourself somewhat for what may be, ultimately, a decisions entirely out of your control.
You may be able to look back fondly XXXXX XXXXX time as her "rebound period" (Oooh, I hate to write this... sorry) but I'm concerned that you're so wrapped up in what you-think-is-best-for-her is also wrapped up with what you-think-is-best-for-her because you love her.
If it's best for her, she'll let you know... and interfering will only result in heavy and hard feelings between you.
Well, I have done an awful lot for her...both financially and emotionally. I have been pretty good to her and we have many things in common. She was actually living with me for awhile. Yes, I do love her. After i became a widower, I said I would never fall in love again. You know about "never say never" !! yes, it happened again.
If this helps: think of letting her go (like when you let your son or daughter go with their own car)... and hope for the best. As a parent, you fear for the worst... but it might all work out just fine. Or it might be dreadful. But, you have to let her go in order for her to come back safely (or even not so safely) into the garage.
I believe you, Wayne. Take a moment and look around... and question those around you. "Am I being taken advantage of here?" It's such a hard question to ask... because it makes us feel foolish and weak and vulnerable. But, given the recent loss of your partner... you ARE vulnerable. Ask your friends what they think. Your buddies love you and probably have a good sense of what's going on with you, too.
You may be right about letting her go. I certainly don't want to try to hang on to her if she really wants back with her ex. That wouldn't be a good thing for either of us.
I believe, what I'm ultimately saying here is, look for support within your immediate community to "check my back." They will have a better sense of where you are right now... and if they perceive you're setting yourself up for a fall... not only will they tell you the truth... they'll help to make the fall less painful.
Frankly, Wayne... you might want to also consider having a chat with a local support group or senior center (you're not quite there, but they'd understand) or church group... I don't really think you need counseling... but I think you need to check in with the folks around you before you make any BIG CHANGES in your life...
A lot of people know the both of us and her ex. They tell me that it is wrong for her to want to keep a close relationship with her ex under the circumstances that he wants her back
Am I making any sense? I realize that, since I'm 15-20 years your junior, I don't have the life experience you have. But I do have that "clinical distance" to be able to look at things a little more objectively, perhaps.
I told her i would get an opinion form someone who doesn't know either of us
Well, if the people around you who know all of you way that "it is wrong for her to keep a close relationship with her ex" then you need to recognize that, if she intends to keep that relationship - then YOUR relationship needs to end.
Others are telling you it's not OK, you feel like it's not OK...
set some boundaries for yourself (which you deserve).
I am a college grad and manager of Human Resources for nearly 40 yrs. I am able to help others with their problems ,but it's difficult to deal with my own.
She will chose whether or not to cross those boundaries and respect your wishes. If she cannot, then... well... YOU CANNOT.
LOL. Yup. I'm a Psychologist... and I got PLENTY of my own problems!
Welcome to the club of being a human being! :)
You might also need to take some time to resolve your own grief from your loss before you move on to another relationship. (I'm sorry that I don't know how long it has been since you lost your wife.)
It's been a pleasure to chat with you some this evening. I hope this has helped to clarify some thoughts.
I believe you are correct. I guess the possibility of losing another love is hard for me to comprehend. It will be 3 yrs this August that I lost my first "Janet"...yes "Janet" !!