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Lea01's picture

Anyone had their dh go back to their ex ? Shes recently split up after 2 years with her latest after dh 10 years together, she is behaving clingy but dh says it's about ss and says I have nothing to worry about. He has a trauma bond with her. She enjoys causing drama. Feel they're always in compertition with each other spending on ss, how their fb are. Outdoing hobbies, whose more active. Hes behaving different since shes split. Bit distant.

How many of your dh went back to the ex. I feel if I was out of the picture he would try and is more attracted to her. 


Iamwoman's picture

Trust your instincts.

We (women in particular) have great instincts and are often taught to doubt or ignore them.

I think most of us here are confident our DH would not go back to his ex even if by attempted force at gunpoint. My DH says that if his ex were the last woman(? ...beast? Jabba the Hut? Not sure if she is human... but she could have possibly eaten 3 or 4 other humans...) that the human population would simply have to go extinct.

justmakingthebest's picture

I was worried about that when DH and I first met. He has such a big heart and I thought that if BM could dangle "one big happy family" in front of him he would go running back.

I realized that my fear was irrational and part of my own emotional baggage. DH is disgusted by BM in everyway- there is nothing to worry about.

I would talk to your DH if I was you. Tell him how you feel. Men aren't mind readers and sometimes you have to lay it out. Maybe he doesn't even realize he is being more distant. Covid is affecting so many people in different ways- it might not be BM but other world events that has your DH not as present as he used to be. He might need a nudge to realize what is happening. 

JRI's picture

'"He has such a big heart and I thought if BM could dangle "one big happy family" in front of him, he would go running back".  That is exactly how I felt in the early years, especially when DH was paying and giving so much extra, including buying BM a new car.  I valued him so much and thought she had been crazy to leave him.  I also knew how fiercely he loved the kids.  One time, when we were having one of those "What would happen if I died" conversations, he said he "might give her another chance, for the kid's sake".  I had intense jealousy and concern for years.

Flash forward to several years later when the 3 of us happened to be at the hospital for one of the SKs.  She needed a ride home and as we got into the car, DH played one of his silly jokes (locked the car so she couldnt get in for a few seconds).  He is a jokester and always does these things.  The look of hatred on her face was so intense.  I realized then that I didnt have to worry about her luring him back, she was sick if him.  A good day!  Lol.

ldvilen's picture

You know, I always look for statistics on this because it is one of the many elephants in the room that seem to ever-linger when it comes to step-parenting.  I can find statistics on married couples who divorce and get back together, but they never seem to mention whether or not one of the said partners is technically "hooked up" with someone else or not prior to the reconciliation.  It is almost as if it doesn't matter, which may speak volumes right there, as if, "Who cares!  A once-married couple got back together. Yeah!"

Earlier studies on married couples (Kitson, 1985; Wineberg & McCarthy, 1994), found that between 10-17% of married couples separated and then got back together again, and about 40% of separated married couples attempted a reconciliation (Bumpass, Castro Martin, & Sweet, 1991; Wineberg, 1996a).

I'm unsure what is meant by the term "seperated"?  Are we talking about months, years, anyone in-between, etc.

Here is a link to an article about women who got divorced and then remarried their ex-:

What I find interesting is how blase they sound about the people they were with or married to inbetween.  And, of course, it's happy ending for them that they got back together with their ex-.  Again, as if the people inbetween, Pfft, who cares about their outcome.

Another poll-- conducted by Research Now  -- surveyed 1,021 married and divorced people between the ages 18 and 49. Of the 715 divorced men and women polled, 27 percent admitted to sleeping with their exes after their divorce or separation.

But, again, you don't know if either partner was technically involved with anyone else during "sex with the ex."

I say, overall, given these statistics, offhand, without your instincts telling you otherwise, there really isn't much reason to assume that sexually anyone's DH will hook up with their ex-.  However, that is just looking at sexual hookups.  And, for some reason, that is what everyone seems to want to focus on and use to try to minimize a SM's concerns.

But, I think anyone here will tell you, there is a lot of, as the OP referred to, bonds (such as a trauma bond) that a DH and a ex- may have, that may go on for years, especially when shared children are involved.  Those should not necessarily be dismissed just because they aren't going to the No-Tel Hotel.  They can add a level of insecurity and axiety to any relationship.  I do think that the step-parent's partner may not even be that aware that such is going on, and that is where the step-parent needs to point this out--"I don't like you texting your ex- twice a day," or such.  Once they are aware, that should put a stop to it fairly quckly.  However, if it continues, then the SP's anxiety is going to continue, and that is very unfair.  It is very unfair to try to blame a SP for not sucking it up and taking it when exes are playing, "Fun times, ol' times," with each other.  If they won't quit, because no one wants to feel like their rights to a normal-as-possible 1:1 relationship with their SO is being denied by that very SO, that is when the SP needs to put their foot down or make other plans.

Rumplestiltskin's picture

"No one wants to fee like their rights to a normal-as-possible 1:1 relationship with their SO is being denied by that very SO".  Yes! That is what it feels like when you are with someone who is enmeshed with their ex. There are 3 of you in the relationship because she (or he) is constantly part of it. Nobody ahould put up with this. "It's for the kids", my ass. 

advice.only2's picture

Aside from being distant is he being secretive? Does he not let you see his phone and get upset if you happen to glance at it? Does he tell you he's going to be working late more often now, or does he disappear on the weekends for hours at a time and claim he was just out with no real details?
If you can answer yes to more than one of those then he might be cheating, but it might not be with the BM.

Aniki's picture


Have his grooming habits changed? Working out, more care with his appearance?

Other habits, like does he now close the bathroom door when he used to leave it open?

SeeYouNever's picture

There needs to be a culture shift that people with kids and an ex that they have to deal with in relationships rather than the burden completely fall on the new partner. They are the ones who have strikes against them and are less than ideal partners. They should be trying hard to win over the new Titleist apparent rather than all of society expecting the step parent to jump through hoops to prove themselves as worthy to someone's sloppy seconds. Tissot society expects an ideal stepmom to be a complete sap and a doormat to the holy first family.

I don't think my husband would ever go back to his ex. He was the one that left the relationship though I think he would have kept trying when they first split. I'm friendlier with my co-workers that he is with his ex and he avoids interacting with her as much as possible.

Iamwoman's picture

By "first" family, I assume you are referring to the Oops-family.

There is only one first family in this country at a time. Lol!

Fedupmama's picture

I dated my now DH in high school and after 10yrs and his psychotic BM leaving him again, for like the umpteenth time, I swooped in and he has never looked back. She tried. Oh she tried. Called me a wh*re, b*tch, tr*mp.... when she was the one who cheated, again, and moved out with a guy 2 weeks after telling him it was over. She tried to hit on him while dating said guy (we called him Chucky) at my SS's 5th birthday. He made fun of her the entire time to which she threw a bottle at him, and still told him this as he left "is it so bad I want to kiss you right now?". He said he was good and left. Then came and told me and we laughed and laughed and laughed. Still laughing today because of her social media stuff, great comedy. 

I am certain in my head and heart he would rather die alone than go back to her. After all, she did cheat on him with his stepbrother and then lie to DH for over a decade about their first born being his step brothers and not his.