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Relationship anxiety over partners ex-girlfriend

Community Member

I've been going out with my boyfriend for 5/6 months now. I know it doesn't sound like a long time but we hit it off right away and really love each others company. We both love each other a lot, he treats me well and respects me, we are even moving in together in a couple of months.

The thing is he is still extremely close to his ex girlfriend of 7 years. They live a few streets away from each other so they regularly hang out, both in a group and alone. She suffers from depression and borderline personality disorder and my boyfriend is her support in moments of crisis, which have been increasing since I have came into his life.

In my past relationships, my anxiety and thoughts have caused trouble and I am trying to not let them ruin this one. When my boyfriend and I are together he gives me no reason not to trust him, he reassures me I will always come first, and tells me this is just something he has to do. I am ok with everything when we're together but once I am alone my mind goes into overdrive about the possibilitity of feelings still being there. At the moment it's even harder because we have to do long distance for a few months for my work.

I feel like an awful person for feeling this way, as she is obviously needs support. Her safety is obviously much more important than my insecurities. I am trying to brush it off when he tells me he was over at her house but my insides curl up every time and I'm left anxious for a few days after (difficulty catching breath and dermatillomania). He does know it makes me uncomfortable. I know it's also good he is actually telling me what's happening but my insecurities override any reassuring signs.

Will this get easier over time or should I confront him and tell him how it is making me feel? I'm not sure where to get advice as friends just tell me it's wrong he is spending so much time with an ex partner, but it's hard for many to understand the mental health situation.

3 Replies 3

Community Member

Hi ct

welcome to the forums, not my opinion it sound like you have nothing to worry about and I think that it is probably a good thing that he supports his ex girlfriend it shows that he has the ability to let go of things and still be there someone who is and has been in the past someone important in his life. How do you know her depression has gotten worse since you came into his life?

The fact that he is telling you everything that he dose is a good thing it is his way of reassuring you that nothing else is going on. Just becuase becuase people have mayb been intermentmin the past dosent actually mean they love each other romantically sometime people can mistake good freindships for physical attractionmwhen actually all it is is a good freindship. I would confront him about this it could make him angry with you and could puss him away it isn't fair for you to expect him to chose between someone he loves romanticly and someone he loves as a friend. My best friends husband is a very jealous man and he I think has pretty much stopped her from talking to me as much it's not a situation that is fair on anyone she is like my sister and always has been but becuase he sees me as a threat and can't get past his own insecurities he has affected and changed our friendship as someone who has depression and has really needed my friend recently I can tell you that it has been devastating I need suport and I don't have blood relations for that so when he stooped her from talking to me as much he cut off my only suport. I really do think that you are better off leaving things it's not that he dosent love you or will chose her over you but she has been a part of his life for a long time and it sounds like she relies on him a lot so as long as it isn't eating into the time you spend together I wouldn't worry. I can understand having these insercuritys I really can but its just a friendship it's the same as if your best friend needed you. I don't know how you reassure yourself that nothing's going on but you also have to have enough trust in him that he wouldn't do that to you. When you start to have those thoughts just try and distract yourself. I hoped I have helped in some way but yeah as a friend of someone who partner has stopped them from talking to me I can tell you it's not worth it for anyone.

hope your ok


Community Champion
Community Champion

Dear CupOfTea33~

Welcome. From reading your post I would think there are two separate but related problems. The first is your own condition - irrespective of the ex-girlfriend problem.

It is not usual for someone to have breathing or self-harm problems as a result of how they feel. Do you mind if I ask if you are under treatment for anxiety or another condition? It's most important that you are in a secure supported condition, and I'd suggest that if you are already having meds and therapy you should see your doctor with a view to getting your regime reviewed -it does not appear to be doing its job.

If you are not being treated then if it was me I'd see my GP in a long appointment and explain exactly what was happening and how you are feeling and behaving. If you doubt you can present the matter properly then write everything down first - I've had to do that.

Now, in relation to the ex-gf. In any relationship I believe it is not possible to have divided loyalties, a partner has to come first. If not anxiety and insecurity, then anger and resentment take hold. So really your boyfriend has to demonstrate you are first in his affections and priorities. Simple words of reassurance will not actually be enough.

Now I realize his ex has problems, for which it sounds as if she needs professional help - which should be encouraged if it does not exist already. Could I suggest that rather than leaving you to go to her that - if support is necessary - you take an active part in it yourself, either by yourself or in company with him?

Of course this does not apply to regularly just 'hanging out', something I would expect he should prefer to do with you.

I realize there may be a temporary difficulty with all this as you say you are going to be apart for a few months.

I've talked about medical support for you, apart from your boyfriend do you have anyone, family or friend to lend you support face to face? Someone you can talk candidly with who cares? I've personally found this to make a big difference.

I'd be very happy if you returned and talked more


Community Member
Hi CupOfTea , I totally understand your fear in that situation . Picking the right time to talk with him might help , be honest about how you feel and hopefully he will understand , hope your ok .