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Found photo of ex-wife in Boyfriend's nightstand

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  • Found photo of ex-wife in Boyfriend's nightstand

    Been dating a guy for a year. We are in our mid-30s. He married his high school sweetheart but has been divorced for 8 years. She cheated on him and left him. I recently found an old pic of them in is nightstand. Keep in mind, he has moved several times since they've been together so he had to make an effort to keep this photo from house to house, state to state (he hasn’t moved since I met him, so this pic could have been there before “us”). I'm not typically the jealous type, but I'm upset. Why would he keep a pic of his ex-wife so close at hand?? Is he idealizing this woman even though she left him and is remarried with kids? Will he EVER truly get over her? We recently visited his parents house and came across some old photos of him and his ex-wife. I was OKAY with it cause they were in an old box in a closet. I mean, they WERE married and I realize he had a life before me. He did not make an effort to get rid of them though, just put them back in his parents closet. We've talked about his past marriage and he says looking back the divorce was a blessing and he would thank her for ending it (but what else would he say to his new girl…) I'm torn on what to do.

    1. confront him and ask why he has a pic of his ex-wife in his nightstand in such an accessible location. I know what he will say: "I forgot it was there and they are my memories" . He will likely get rid of the pic but I won’t know if it’s because he WANTs to or trying to appease me and/or scared to lose me.

    2. offer to "refinish" his nightstand and dresser. The set is old but quality furniture. He knows I love refinishing furniture and have done many pieces in my own home. This will force him to go through the items in the nightstand (without me present) and will see if the pic makes it into the "new" nightstand. As I type this, I see how this seems sneaky, but if he still has secret feelings for his EX 8 years after marriage, I'd like to know now and not waste any more time. I want to be someone’s #1.

  • #2
    Originally posted by crayon386 View Post
    Been dating a guy for a year. We are in our mid-30s. He married his high school sweetheart but has been divorced for 8 years. She cheated on him and left him. I recently found an old pic of them in is nightstand. Keep in mind, he has moved several times since they've been together so he had to make an effort to keep this photo from house to house, state to state (he hasn’t moved since I met him, so this pic could have been there before “us”). I'm not typically the jealous type, but I'm upset. Why would he keep a pic of his ex-wife so close at hand?? Is he idealizing this woman even though she left him and is remarried with kids? Will he EVER truly get over her? We recently visited his parents house and came across some old photos of him and his ex-wife. I was OKAY with it cause they were in an old box in a closet. I mean, they WERE married and I realize he had a life before me. He did not make an effort to get rid of them though, just put them back in his parents closet. We've talked about his past marriage and he says looking back the divorce was a blessing and he would thank her for ending it (but what else would he say to his new girl…) I'm torn on what to do.

    1. confront him and ask why he has a pic of his ex-wife in his nightstand in such an accessible location. I know what he will say: "I forgot it was there and they are my memories" . He will likely get rid of the pic but I won’t know if it’s because he WANTs to or trying to appease me and/or scared to lose me.

    2. offer to "refinish" his nightstand and dresser. The set is old but quality furniture. He knows I love refinishing furniture and have done many pieces in my own home. This will force him to go through the items in the nightstand (without me present) and will see if the pic makes it into the "new" nightstand. As I type this, I see how this seems sneaky, but if he still has secret feelings for his EX 8 years after marriage, I'd like to know now and not waste any more time. I want to be someone’s #1.
    3. You forget its there and let him keep one memory of his past. You understand that now that he is with you, he can have a past and it won't bother you in the least that he has ONE photo of a relationship that led to marriage.
    "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

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    • #3
      be honest and tell him you found the picture and are very upset by it and want an explanation and want him to get rid of it immediately. this should be no problem if he loves you. tell him you are his woman and have no intention of sharing him with an previous lover. don't pussy foot around about this serious matter.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by rabbithabit View Post
        be honest and tell him you found the picture and are very upset by it and want an explanation and want him to get rid of it immediately. this should be no problem if he loves you. tell him you are his woman and have no intention of sharing him with an previous lover. don't pussy foot around about this serious matter.
        I'd really like to understand how you think one photo of a woman he was once married to is "sharing him with a previous lover."
        "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

        Comment


        • #5
          Thank you for the responses.
          I'm not so concerned about the one photo, but the intent behind keeping the photo in such an easily retrievable spot. Is it an accident or is he constantly reminiscing about his past? If it were packed away in a box of "old memories" I would care less...

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          • #6
            What if I put a pic of me and MY ex in his nightstand next to this photo. Too passive aggressive?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by crayon386 View Post
              Thank you for the responses.
              I'm not so concerned about the one photo, but the intent behind keeping the photo in such an easily retrievable spot. Is it an accident or is he constantly reminiscing about his past? If it were packed away in a box of "old memories" I would care less...
              I have photos in my night table that I haven't looked at in eons. Perhaps his night stand drawer IS his place that he keeps "old memories?"

              I'll also mention that I haven't looked in my husbands night stand drawer since we moved here 28 years ago. That's HIS drawer, not mine and it's not like I'm putting his clean laundry away that I need to be in there.

              I hope you can relax about this because it's really nothing IMO for you to get yourself worked up over UNLESS of course you know for a fact that he's staring dreamily at it every night before he goes to sleep
              "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

              Comment


              • #8
                It's the 'serious matter' wording that got me.
                This is FAR from serious.

                The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.

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                • #9
                  too passive and acceptance of his bad behavior in your relationship

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by rabbithabit View Post
                    too passive and acceptance of his bad behavior in your relationship
                    Please explain what "bad behaviour" you consider from the Op's boyfriend since there is absolutely no evidence of anything "bad" having been done.
                    "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      guys will laugh this off as acceptable behavior

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by crayon386 View Post
                        Thank you for the responses.
                        I'm not so concerned about the one photo, but the intent behind keeping the photo in such an easily retrievable spot. Is it an accident or is he constantly reminiscing about his past? If it were packed away in a box of "old memories" I would care less...
                        Who cares? I mean, seriously, who cares? If you can't give him this one little private corner of his mind and memory, I think you will spend the rest of your relationship investigating his psyche - and you WILL find things out if you dig hard enough. My advise? Grow up and forget it.

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                        • #13
                          You are probably right and I should forget about it. But no girl wants to feel like she’s 2nd choice (like I will never compare to his one true love). If his ex wanted him back, would he go…? Probably not, but then again…there’s no pic of ME in his nightstand…

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                          • #14
                            But wouldn't you be pissed off if the picture of you was IN his nightstand and not ON it ?
                            Besides, he's got the real thing, he doesn't need a picture of you.

                            If you really want to cut this shit to the quick, remove the picture from the nightstand and see if he brings it up. If he does, the dialogue can begin and you can find out the real reason he has it there.
                            Maybe this is something that you won't be able to get past and as you said "I'd like to know now and not waste any more time. I want to be someone’s #1"
                            The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.

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                            • #15
                              I personally would not want a picture of my husband's ex in his nightstand. You have to give that shit up when you have a new relationship.
                              "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

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