“Ex-girlfriend”, “Ex-boyfriend”. Probably some of the most despised words in the history of mankind.
Exes are routinely detested, purely on the basis that they shared *something* with your partner, once upon a time. Your partner will categorically despise your exes, too, on the same basis, yet you fail to understand why they have an issue with someone you stopped loving long, long ago (if you ever DID love them in the first place).
Allow me to embellish from a personal perspective.
I despise all of L’s exes. Of course, when we first met, we were able to laugh about our past encounters without it cutting out the very crux of our souls. It didn’t feel like a dagger was being stabbed into the pit of my stomach when he mentioned an ex. We even talked about how annoying it was that prospective partners hated exes, and how pathetic it truly was.
Because it IS pathetic. Why do we harbour such issues with people from our lover’s past? Why can’t we see them as people who effectively led them to us, taught them what they did and didn’t want from a relationship, and gave us some life experience?
Would you really want your lifelong partner to be a total virgin? I personally think I’d see that as more of a threat than someone having a track record of utter whoredom. They would have no idea what they were missing, which is far more dangerous than a few memories of a failed relationship (or six).
To be fair, L’s exes only ever matter to me when I have a severe case of PMT. Otherwise, I can see it from a mature, sensible perspective. I prefer to look forward than to dwell on the past. Having said that, I would wish them all dead were it not for the fact that, had he not dated them, he would no doubt be a different person than the man he is today.
It’s standard procedure for girls to slate each others’ boyfriend’s exes. If you’re out with one of your girlfriends, and she points out a girl that once dated her current beau, you take on her perspective and whittle that girl down to an absolute minger. Even if she’s stunning, you both comment that, in fact, she has a rather large arse/smaller boobs/frizzier hair.
And if there’s nothing physical about her to dis (i.e. she undeniably resembles a far more perfect version of Claudia Schiffer), you conclude that she clearly has an IQ of 14/the personality of a fried beetle/a vile character, with a track record of seventy-five past shags and hence has contracted every STD under the sun.
I care little for any of my exes. I barely even remember anything about them. None of them matter anymore. The only one I even have any respect for is J, because he’s a good person, and that should cause no concern for the love of my life.
Quite simply because when I found out J had a new woman in his life, I physically jumped for joy, and I wish absolutely nothing but the best for them. I’d happily attend his wedding and see his first-born without even a pang of envy. And looking back at my history, there are no “what-ifs”, no regrets whatsoever.
And yet, I bet his girlfriend categorically despises me. I bet my name can’t be mentioned in her presence. And I don’t blame her. I don’t matter: I’m part of his history as he’s part of mine, but I could never pose a threat to her in any sense.
But we can never see these things objectively.
It’s a shame.