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DrJackiePhD
DrJackiePhD, Doctor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 363
Experience:  I have been doing research in relational/interpersonal communication since 1998. My Ph.D. is in interpersonal communication.
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My bf and i aren't teenagers. he's has x lovers as friends

Customer Question

my bf and i aren't teenagers. he's has x lovers as friends on fb. that he 'likes' only their provocative pics. he made me delete my 'one' x on fb after being really jealous when he discovered we dated 8 yrs. ago...yet, we don't interact on fb. when i started asking about continues interaction w his x's on fb. he maintains that they are just friends. my bf and i broke up briefly but are back together again. he deleted and blocked me from his fb page and changed his status to single and this is still in effect. i can see that he is still liking his x's pics regularly. although he just thinks i don't know. yet, we are happy and living together. i'm frustrated though because i don't think the treatment is fair. if i share my feelings w him he will no doubt say i'm starting a fight....i want to be happy w him but i also want his rules to apply to him as well. stuck between a rock and a hard place. any insights?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  DrJackiePhD replied 2 years ago.
Hi,
I'm Dr. Jackie, an interpersonal communication researcher/professor and relationship expert/counselor. And I want to help.
Talking about the "thought patterns" is definitely a good place to start. It sounds like you had a good counselor. And using "ownership feelings" language is important, also. How you FEEL when your bf says or does certain things is so much preferable to saying, "You MAKE me feel x, y, or z." So your counselor really seemed to have you going in the right direction. I'm sorry your bf I stopped going. Men tend to be a lot more resistant to counseling than women. I am hopeful you are still going.
This is very hard because I know you don't want to "rock the boat" but at the same time feel he doesn't think the same rules don't apply to him. I think you do need to talk, but you don't want to broach it as "nagging." So casually one evening when he seems to be in a good mood, maybe better mood than usual, that it would be great if you two could be friends again on FB but that you should establish "rules" for both of you. In other words, you could even co-write this on paper or together on a laptop. But generate a list of what both of you can do and not do. This is really important to do together so it's both of you generating the list. Make sure he contributes.
The big point is that if you do it together, setting the "rules" and talking about them together, then it works so much more effectively than if either of you try to "set rules" that you want both of you to abide by.
If he doesn't want to do that, then you have a choice: you can either choose to keep ignoring it and you will have to choose not to let it bother you (which is a lot harder done than said) or you can keep bringing up the conversation but not so often that it constitutes nagging. The best case scenario would be that he would go back to counseling. It really sounded like you were on the right track before, and my wish is that you could get back there.
Let me know, please, if you would like to chat more. In fact, I'll send you my phone and Skype information if you ever want that and want to schedule an appointment through JA.
Let me know. Take good care,
--Dr. Jackie
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
i think your right but it won't fly. he feels that my trust/ confidence in him and his decisions is more reasonable than 'being fair', he IS conscientious and highly intelligent but its very hard for me as an independent person to swallow the dbl. standard. i really don't want to be his friend on fb, im not a huge fan of social media and constant interaction. just want him to stop liking pics of x's, its inconsiderate of me and sends them 'mixed messages' if i bring it up, he'll say i'm obsessing and looking for problems especially now that im blocked and not suppose to 'see'.
Expert:  DrJackiePhD replied 2 years ago.
Hi again,
I totally agree with you--it IS disrespectful to you to be on, "liking" pics of his exes.
Since you are highly intelligent also, you at least know intellectually that he is doing that to feed his ego. I'm not saying there is anything lacking in YOUR relationship. I'm suggesting there are insecurities that he has that have him going back and going back and going back to FB to check out the comments and likes. Knowledge is power. It truly is. And as long as you KNOW why he's doing what he is doing and can "live" with it, maybe it's not worth rocking the boat.
Also, you know the cliche, "You can get more flies with honey than with vinegar" might work for you. The more you "fill" his ego needs, in time you may be surprised to find that he doesn't go on FB nearly as much. Try it. Remember, you know what is REALLY going on underneath--his insecurities. So you are in control. :-)
Hope that helps more. Please let me know.
Best,
--Dr. Jackie
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
your response does help, its basically what our therapist says although we never really got around to addressing this subject directly..we've been doing individual counseling mostly. its funny, cause i actually don't care much about 'why' someone is doing something just that they 'stop' lol! reminds me of a Bob Newhart bit! thank you Dr. Jackie and I welcome your contact info.
Expert:  DrJackiePhD replied 2 years ago.
Sometimes just understanding the "Why" like you said does help. Also, I'm sorry--I thought I had sent you the contact info but I'll do it now.
If you could rate me when you get the chance I'd appreciate it. :)
Take good care,
--Dr. Jackie

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