Real Live College Guy Joel: Your Ex Didn't Warn You About His New Girl

Desperately trying to understand the inscrutable mind of the college male? Real Live College Guy Joel (replete with a name way cooler than those of RLCGs Joe and Joey) is here to help you out, call you out, write you a poem to show you’re great and to stop worrying, etc. From major emotional drama to the minutiae of social interaction, use him as your one-stop shop for guy advice.

After we were together for a few months we decided to cool things down for a bit and be just friends (because we didn’t have a real “plan” for the summer and lost touch). Then he is immediately with another girl, who he’s been getting close with over the whole summer. I guess I have no real right to be upset since we decided to be just friends, but really? He never mentioned that he was with someone new, even as part of justification for us not being together. That is a low blow, since he avoided telling me the truth, and especially now that the two of them post pictures of themselves together all over Facebook (thanks for not telling me to my face, but putting it all over the internet when I’ll obviously see it). I feel like that is such a cowardly move! My feelings are hurt. Best just to move on? I deserve better. - ‘Ouch!’ at Oregon State


I think you answered your own question: you deserve better and it’s time to move on. The end of any relationship, even if it just kind of naturally fizzles, is painful. The worst part is when the ex recovers seamlessly while you still miss them. Even though you’re understandably hurt, letting go of this frustration is easier than you think it is.

To be blunt, I think you need to reexamine the justification for your anger. Remember back to the break-up. This guy didn’t dump you when you thought there were mutual strong feelings. You “lost touch” over the summer. This doesn’t sound like an intense relationship, although I’m sure it meant something to you once. I really don’t see any kind of emotional betrayal in this guy developing feelings for someone else. If he wasn’t now with a girl he met before you officially split, would you still be this offended? Is this more about his supposedly disrespectful actions than your regrets that things are over?

It would have been more sensitive for him to tell you that he was going to pursue a new relationship, but here you are making assumptions. How do you know that he had a romantic interest with this girl before you broke up? You weren’t even talking to him. If he had told you right when you broke up that he wanted to see someone else, would you have felt any better? Either way you would have felt lousy. He probably thought he was sparing your feelings, even though it admittedly has made things more awkward. I don’t think there’s a “right” way to handle these situations; they are hard no matter what.

It’s difficult seeing them on Facebook? Well, that’s Facebook. You can’t expect him to obsess over how you might feel when you see pictures he might not even be posting. He’s clearly not thinking about you, so why bother to think about him? Hide him from your newsfeed and delete him as a friend if you can’t stay off his page. Avoid social situations where you will have to see him. Make a move on the first nice and hygienic boy you meet in class this semester. Most of all, remember that this was a relationship that you originally thought had naturally petered out. You have not lost a great love. Once you return to that perspective, it will be all the easier to forget that this other couple even exists.

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