Shortcuts: “My Ex Won’t Tell Me If He’s Dating Anyone New”
It’s time again for Shortcuts. For every question, I’ll give my advice in just a few sentences because sometimes the answer to a person’s question is so obvious and the need to hear it so great that being as clear and frank as possible is simply the best way to go.four months ago because he moved. I still really like him and I know he likes me. I asked him if he has slept with anyone and if he has dated anyone since the breakup. He usually gets super defensive and says it’s not my business, he doesn’t understand why I want to know, and that I’m hurting our chance of getting back together by nagging him with questions. Then, after a little pushing, he’ll tell me to leave him along and then he won’t talk to me for a while. Why does he get so mean and defensive when I ask if he has had sex with anyone else or is dating? He broke up with me! — Wants to Know
Because it’s none of your business. And because he probably is dating and sleeping with other people but would rather you remain ignorant and/or indifferent to this point so that you might entertain the idea of getting back together should he decide that’s what he wants. He’s clearly used to calling the shots in your relationship and isn’t comfortable with you asserting yourself in any way, which is why he reacts with defensiveness and meanness rather than an open dialogue. Save yourself further grief and MOA.
I’ve been married for fifteen years and we don’t do things together. Lately, my husband has been frequently asking me to find someone to fulfill my sexual needs. If I find someone, he said that he’s also going to find someone to have sex with. I have four kids with him. I financially depend on him totally. I know that, no matter what, he wants to keep marriage. He is a brilliant dad. But I am unhappy and I don’t get enough sex or emotional support from him. What I should do? — Unmet Needs
Ask if he wants to go to counseling to help you figure out how to reconnect, do things together again, and meet each other’s sexual and emotional needs. If he declines, then you should start figuring out how to financially support yourself so that you are in a better position to end the marriage. You may also decide that you don’t care if your marriage is a sexually or emotionally fulfilling one as long as it meets your financial needs and that it’s easier to co-parent while living together. The good news is, your husband doesn’t have to be married to you, happily or otherwise, to continue being a brilliant dad to your four kids.
My partner of over twenty-four years has taken to disappearing on the weekends. Usually, he sends a text on Friday to say he is working late, and then he doesn’t turns up until Monday evening. He claims he doesn’t need to tell me where he is since he’s an adult. This has been happening since August. I have asked him to leave on numerous occasions but he refuses, saying this is his home. This is making me miserable, and I feel it’s unacceptable and unfair. If I text or call, he doesn’t reply or answer either, which is frustrating me more. He can’t want to be with me as we don’t do anything together — there’s no love or sign of affection at all. Why won’t he go for good and why won’t he be honest with me as to where and who he stays with? What can I do with someone who won’t respond, apart from saying he’s not moving out? Help please. — Where Is He?
If you’re married, you need to file for divorce. If you’re not married, you should move out one weekend when he’s MIA. Or, if his name isn’t on the lease, you can throw his crap outside and change the locks. If his name is on the lease or you own a home together, talk to a lawyer about what recourse you have. But, clearly, on a strictly emotional level, this relationship is over. All that is left to do is make sure you’ve got your legal and financial ducks in a row for the final phase of this break-up. As for where he is — a man doesn’t just up and leave a woman he’s been with for twenty-four years out of the blue unless there’s someone else waiting in the wings. I suspect he hasn’t officially moved out because he’s afraid of what breaking up with you/divorcing you will financially cost him and it’s simply easier to pay one set of household expenses and peace out every weekend.
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