Let's talk about 'ex, shall we?
I have friends that dated years ago who will never speak of each other again. I also know friends that became even closer after their breakup and continue to be close confidants. Personally? I’ve never been great at maintaining friendships after romance. I love deeply, and when relationships run their course, I have difficulty shifting gears.⠀ ⠀ Continued close relationships with exes can be challenging for a new relationship. There’s the potential for fear of comparison, judgement, and approval. And sometimes, just knowing that someone in your partner’s close circle has known them on a similar intimate level can cause jealousy. In these situations, trusting each other is crucial.⠀ ⠀ Since exes can cause conflict, when social circles are in fact shared and the possibility exists of running into them at events, ask your partner the likelihood of that happening so you can prepare to be as comfortable as possible. And if your partner no longer interacts with their former partners, don’t overlook the value of learning from their history: Not only have your partner’s partners helped shape your BAE, but hearing about their relationships can offer insights into what went wrong; what your partner values in relationships; and what to guard against as your current relationship grows.⠀ ⠀ Second-time-arounders have deep histories...especially when children are involved. Those are going to take some effort and time to dig into, so know that lots of patience will be needed.⠀ ⠀ And, be aware that asking about old flames can be touchy. Proceed with caution and sensitivity as you gauge their appetite for digging up the past. Re-assure them about your motivation, and read their signals if they aren’t into it. There may be some skeletons buried they’re not ready to reveal, and that’s okay. They may be embarrassed or ashamed of how things ended and not ready to be that vulnerable with you. Yet. Timing is everything....⠀ ⠀ Knowing how your partner views and interacts with their exes is important so that you can be comfortable with those relationships. Over-communicating and stating your needs will go a long way toward establishing safety and avoiding future issues.