Me and my ex are still friends. We explored getting back together last year and it really went nowhere. He finished it for the first time about years ago. I ended it this time because we had different life goals and completely contrasting values. He wants a stay-at-home wife, the ‘mother of his children’ type and I am a very independent, career-oriented woman who is purposely childless and intends to continue to be. , so that will never succeed. We’re still friends but every time we see each other or when I’m at a nearby hotel for work, he either tries on it or stays overdue to greet him hoping for luck even though I tell him that I do not want that . It made the evening extremely awkward when I ended up having to turn down his offer. On the other hand, he’s a great guy but it’s annoying when he says one thing and does another when we meet. I’m demisexual, so the whole casual sex thing isn’t something I can do. That spark is gone between us. On the other hand, he’s totally into casual sex, so he’s making progress and I don’t understand why I don’t feel the same way after a great conversation. Any tips for texting him once and for all?
Dr West replied: While you may have had a great time in the past, if you leave each present encounter feeling awkward or pressured, it’s still not good enough.
In a romantic relationship, we expect the other person to respect our ‘no’, and in a healthy relationship, there is no coercion, no attempt to get the other person to say ‘yes’ ‘. This has nothing to do with your gender – it’s all about him respecting your saying ‘no’. It’s good for him to be willing to have casual sex, but this is useless if the person he wants to have sex with doesn’t want to have sex with him. Consent is a general process and he doesn’t listen to your ‘no’ answer. You’ve directly told him ‘no’ and made excuses to leave, but he still doesn’t care. This is a man who, for whatever reason, always violates your boundaries.
Ask yourself what you are getting out of this friendship. You say you have great opportunities, but the price you pay for it is feeling like he’s desperate for sex and has to turn down his insistent offers. If a friend insists you have to eat fries every time you meet and refuses to accept a simple ‘no’, you’ll have a clearer sense of standing up for yourself. But when it comes to sex and sex with an ex, things can be more complicated – but they shouldn’t be, because ‘no’ is always ‘no’. Is he really a friend if you’ve set boundaries and he’s always trampling on them? People can be great people otherwise, but if their actions are harmful, their great behavior is worth nothing. It sounds like you don’t trust him, or he presents himself as someone to be trusted, and trust is an essential part of any relationship. He clearly doesn’t respect you either.
Ghosting is usually a bad thing to do after dates etc, but time and time again, this man has shown no kindness to you, so you don’t owe him anything at all.
Would you consider cutting off contact with him, if not for good, at least for a short while? If it is causing you harm, removing the source of the harm allows you to focus on healing and protecting your boundaries and peace. The more we are in situations that make us uncomfortable, the more our nervous system is in fight-or-flight mode, which disrupts our mental and physical health in so many ways. level. It prevents us from healing and being able to process the relationship to move on from it.
Perhaps you need this letter to allow yourself to step out of the situation. If we’ve had negative experiences before, as your longer letter suggests, it can be difficult to trust our gut instincts and we may end up in familiar situations. with me. We confuse familiarity with our nervous system still being dysregulated, which is what happens when we’re in situations that are harmful to us. This can be an opportunity to stand up for yourself and set a firm boundary. You can tell him that you don’t want anything other than friendship, and if he violates this line, you’ll walk away. That clearly outlines him and gives him an opportunity to change his behavior.
However, you don’t even owe him this. We should treat others with respect, but this man doesn’t give you that dignity. He is teasing you every time you see each other, in hopes of meeting his needs at the expense of your peace. Your priority here needs to be your health, not his feelings. You can send him a text explaining that, since he doesn’t want to hear your “no” answer, you won’t be seeing him anymore. Or, ghost him. Ghosting is usually a bad thing to do after dates etc., but time and time again, this man doesn’t show you kindness, so you don’t owe him at all. It may seem harsh, especially if you’re not used to interrupting people, but you’re the first here. Acknowledging the many warning signs here is essential to being able to take care of yourself and your health.
Think about how you would like to be treated by your lover and friends. You want to feel comfortable around them, safe, heard, and relaxed. You are none of these things at the end of a night with him. You deserve to feel safe, and truly safe. Ask yourself, ‘Is your peace worth protecting?’ (Spoiler alert – it’s a lot). Fill your world with people who love you instead of people trying to bring you down little by little. You deserve so much better than this.
Dr. West is a sex educator and host of the podcast Glow West, which focuses on sex. Send your question to firstname.lastname@example.org. Dr. West regrets that she cannot answer questions privately
Video of the day
https://www.independent.ie/style/sex-relationships/asking-for-a-friend-my-ex-keeps-trying-it-on-with-me-im-demisexual-and-dont-feel-a-spark-any-more-how-do-i-make-it-clear-i-dont-want-casual-sex-42185675.html Ask a friend: My ex keeps trying it on me. I am bisexual and am not interested anymore. How do I make it clear that I don’t want casual sex?