Problem Page Edition 41 2017

In this week’s problem page from your agony aunt online – should you tell your ex you still love them, why would an ex get in touch just to be nasty and can you make a relationship work when you both work crazy hours?

Man and woman holding hands.

If you would like any advice, just message me or add a comment at the end of this post and I will answer selected questions on this problem page.

Here are this week’s questions.

Q: I told a guy I liked him, he said he respects my emotions but he doesn’t see me in that way. What should I do?

A: You keep your dignity intact and move on. Chasing rarely works – I’m old fashioned enough to believe that men still prefer to do the chasing and whilst they will accept a woman who ‘hands them everything on a plate’, they would prefer to be the conqueror, not the conquered.

At least the guy was honest with you.

I’m sorry if that’s not what you want to hear but you deserve someone who loves you the way you love them – you’re too good to be anybody’s second best.

Q: Why is it wrong to be honest with an ex that you still love them?

A: Because it’s a little bit like emotional blackmail – or it could be seen that way by the ex if they don’t feel the same way.

Aren’t you really telling them because you want them back?

You could mean, of course, that you love them like a friend but I doubt that’s the case.

It puts them in the embarrassing position of having to turn you down again if they don’t feel the same way which will only make both of you upset all over again.

Better to confess all to a close friend and get it all out of your system that way.

Q: Will my ex-girlfriend come back to me?

My ex girlfriend of 9 months broke up with me 2 weeks ago. At first she didn’t give me a reason other than she wants to go out and party. She’s 39 and doesn’t have custody of her kids.  I have custody of my 11 year old son. I was really starting to feel like we might have a future someday. Just weeks before she broke up with me we were making plans for the future like trips,and talking about spending time together on the holidays again . It took me by complete surprise. I miss her,and I don’t really understand what has happened here,but a big part of me hopes she comes back. Also I should mention we work together which I thought at first I wouldn’t be able to handle, but it hasn’t been that bad.

A: I suspect her looming 40th birthday is playing a HUGE part in this – it’s a pretty hefty milestone for many women and I’m not surprised she wants to go partying. My other question to you is have you talked about having children together? 40 is the age when the biological clock ticks really loudly for lots of women – is she missing her kids? What is the relationship between her and your son like?

You say you have been talking but talking about holidays isn’t really talking and it sounds like you need to sit down somewhere together and talk about the really serious stuff.

At 39 she’s not really a ‘girlfriend’ any more – she’s a partner. Semantics possibly but it hints to me that perhaps you are a bit commitment shy?

I think there’s a lot to unravel here so if you want to keep her (and the fact that she is OK working with you is cause for hope), you need to start talking and fast.

Q: Why would my ex initiate contact with me just to be nasty?

A: There are a myriad of reasons – jealousy, obsession, control, inability to ask for you back because they fear rejection.

Seriously you don’t have to put up with nastiness from anyone just because you were in a relationship with them.

Block, report and delete their number from your phone. Change your phone number if you have to.

Don’t respond and fuel the fire. If you want them out of your life it’s time for radio silence.

If you are in any way worried for your safety by the way, report to the authorities, close friends and family – especially if this escalates into stalking type behaviour.

I suspect though that this is basically someone who is hurting and lashing out without the social skills or maturity to deal with the problem.

But that should be their problem – and not yours.

Q: My partner and I are being threatened (including specific death threats) by my ex anonymously online. My ex lives abroad so the police can’t do anything and it’s been going on for months. What can I do?

A: If you are in the UK keep going to the police and reporting it. I don’t accept that there is nothing they can do – it sounds as if you are being royally fobbed off. I am assuming though you can prove categorically that it is your ex?

If you are being threatened online then a logical starting point is to delete your social accounts and start fresh ones (or, frankly, avoid social media altogether for a while).

I would also print off /store the offending messages so you have a file of proof.

Change your phone numbers.

If your ex can’t reach you online then they can’t harass you there.

If you are able to contact them I would also send one concise message saying that cyber-bullying is an offence and their actions have been reported to the police – then leave it there.

You don’t mention what your partner is doing about all this? I’m hoping they are being supportive and aren’t just leaving you to deal with your spiteful ex on your own.

Q: How do I make my relationship last? My boyfriend is going to work as a consultant and I will be a lawyer with crazy hours. I am afraid it wouldn’t work out.

A: It depends on your respective personalities. It sounds as if you are both ambitious and driven and that may be what has attracted you to each other.

That can be a good thing you know – I regularly answer questions from frustrated partners who wish their significant other would show a bit of oomph and do something with their life.

You can make it work if you prioritise time for each other and ring fence it. Having worked in the legal field for over 15 years, (as a marketing director), I know only too well that to be a successful lawyer you’ll need to keep the partners happy – as well as your own partner and as long as your boyfriend understands that you should be fine.

But am I sensing that you feel conflicted about the relationship not because you don’t think it will work out but because you want to be free to concentrate on developing your career?

If that’s the case, then you have some talking to do. I think you should share your concerns with your boyfriend and see whether he feels the same and how he sees things working between you.

His work might be more boom and bust to begin with until he builds up his client base so he might have more time on his hands than you will.

How will he feel about possibly being on his own a lot?

You need to ask him.

How would you have responded to the questions on this week’s problem page? I’d love to know.

You can find more dating advice from your agony aunt online in these posts:-

Dating:  11 Ways To Tell They’re Really Into You

 6 Signs Your Dating Buddy Isn’t On Your Side

32 Ways To Tell They’re Just Not That Into You

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