He’s still in touch with his ex – a lot

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Dear Meredith,

My boyfriend and I have been dating for a few months, and up until now we have gotten into a few arguments – about no one other than his ex girlfriend. They broke up after dating for a year, and they almost had a baby together. She had gotten in touch with him after a month of us being together. She would ask about our relationship, how we were doing, and in general, about me. She hurt him a lot and emotionally abused him, and I find it hard to understand why he is still talking to her after everything she did.

I asked him why he couldn't just block her and move on, and he said, "It isn't about moving on. I promised her I would be there for her, even after we broke up." He feels the need to help her in times of mental need because they were there for each other for so long. He texts her, even though I told him I didn't like him doing that because it made me uncomfortable. Once he even lied to me and said he had blocked her when he didn't. It's a week before an anniversary for us, and he told me he is upset. He's upset because he found out his ex is seeing someone. I'm upset, and I feel worthless now. I don't know what to say or how to react. Does he still love or feel a connection toward her? Does he see me as anything else but something temporary?

– Sad


I don't know how he feels about you. Mostly because you didn't tell us the good stuff – why your relationship works and how you enjoy each other’s company.

But it does sound like he's very connected to his ex. He cares about her, wants to be there for her, and now he's upset she's seeking other partners. So that's that – the answer to your second to last question, at least.

If you want to be with someone who's over their past relationship, he’s not the guy. A lot of people choose to stay friends with exes and remain part of their support systems, but they're also capable of prioritizing someone new. The hierarchy shifts.

That doesn't seem to be happening here. Right now you feel like you're in second place.

This relationship is only a few months old. If it’s not easy and fun, I'm not sure why you're in it (again, you didn’t tell us the good stuff, which is a red flag in its own way). Think about what makes you stay. Maybe it’s not enough.

– Meredith

Readers? What would you do if a new-ish significant other prioritized an ex this way?