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I don't want to live in someone else's shadow!

Tagged as: Family, Health, The ex-factor, Troubled relationships, Trust issues<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (12 June 2014) 4 Answers - (Newest, 13 June 2014)
A female age 30-35, anonymous writes:

I've been with my partner for 2 1/2 years now. We've had a baby together and I have lost all my confidence. My ex husband cheated on me all the time and I'm unsure if my own insecurities are the problem or i should be concerned. My boyfriend has a box of photos of his ex (his daughter from a previous relationship) and a love letter from her. When my relationship ended I let go and moved on but he has kept these and said they are for his daughter. It seems strange to me, that it might confuse his daughter. Should I worry that he still has feelings for his ex, I don't want to be in a relationship living in someone else's shadow.

View related questions: cheated on me, confidence, his ex, my ex

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (13 June 2014):

CindyCares agony auntIt's you, your insecurities are playing tricks on you.

The guy is keeping old pics and one letter in a BOX !, he is not taking them out and sighing wistfully over them, is he ?

As for the daughter, no I don't think she'll be confused, I think she will be happy and excited to have some mementos of her parents' love story, how it all started , how they were before she was born, etc... even if she obviously will know perfectly that the fairytale is over. But, even if she should be confused, why would you have to worry about that ? she is not YOUR daughter, let her dad choose how he wants to deal with her !

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A female reader, llifton United States + , writes (13 June 2014):

llifton agony auntHello.

I don't think it's a big deal. I get that it may not be pleasant for you and I can respect why, but I don't think it means anything at all. I think his line of reasoning about his daughter makes perfect sense. Now, if he's pulling out the photos all the time and reminiscing, then I might change my perspective. But just from the mere fact of keeping them in a box? No big deal.

I have things from my previous relationships that I've kept. Letters and pictures, etc. And believe me, in NO way do I want those relationships back. But they are a part of my past. So I don't throw them away. I never go out of my way to look at them. But I do keep them for the simple sake of memories. I think it's normal. I don't think one has to throw all of that stuff away simply because a relationship ends. I don't think keeping some things makes you not over somebody. I am happily taken and don't ever miss those times with other people. It's just memories. I'm sure this is how your boyfriend feels. I would try not to worry. I'm sure he's happy with you and you have nothing to worry about.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (12 June 2014):

Honeypie agony auntKeeping mementos from your past is not strange, now if he sits and look at them quite often, then yea that is odd, but if they are JUST in a box then it's pretty much normal.

JUST because you move on with a new partner and relationship doesn't mean your past never happened or you can't have keepsakes.

I can't see why it would confuse his daughter.

YOU are miking this about you. It's not. It's his past. YOU have a past and so does he. YOU CHOSE to not keep anything from the past (other then your insecurities) he kept a few things.

WORK on YOUR insecurities. He can't FIX them for you. YOU need to do the work on that.

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A female reader, WhenCowsAttack United States +, writes (12 June 2014):

They're in a box and you're freaking out about it? Yes, it's you. You have no right to expect him to erase all of his memories for you. This is unreasonable. It is perfectly ok for him to have them.

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