No matter how it ended, when your ex dates someone new you might start to feel strange. What you’re feeling isn’t regret, it’s actually normal.
Life is weird sometimes, isn’t it? You think you have everything clear in your mind and then bam! Something happens to throw you right off course, like when your ex dates someone new.
You’re left wondering if you ever had it figured out in the first place, and leads you towards endless questions and overthinking.
Relationships we wish went differently
Relationships are even weirder than life in general. We all have past relationships that perhaps we wish had gone differently, or things we wish we could change. But life is life, and the past is, quite literally, behind us.
One situation which throws many people off course is when your ex dates someone new. It doesn’t matter whether you ended on good terms, bad terms, or somewhere in the middle, you shared memories and experiences. When another person teams up with your ex, they make memories and have experiences, and all of that can feel very strange indeed.
It happens to all of us
I have an ex who I officially DO NOT LIKE. Really, I can’t stand the guy anymore, and I wonder why I even bothered with him in the first place. I put it down to confidence issues *at least that’s what I tell myself*.
It ended because he basically couldn’t keep it in his pants, and I walked away, wallowing for a while and then eventually picking myself up. I thought I was fine with it, because let’s face it, I DO NOT LIKE him. Really, I don’t. Then one day I heard a whisper than he was seeing someone new.
Bam! This very strange feeling came over me. Suddenly I wasn’t sure if I really didn’t like him anymore and experienced this odd sense of someone having stolen something from me. It’s ridiculous, because it was over. It had been over for a while, and he was free to do whatever he wanted. Let’s face it, he did whatever he wanted when we were together anyway.
I couldn’t figure out why I felt this way, but then I spoke to a friend and she told me that what I was feeling was actually really common. [Read: Why your ex crosses your mind from time to time]
We had a connection, we shared a part of our lives, and when an ex moves on and starts a new life with someone else, it’s bound to feel odd. It’s bound to make you think back over the good times, overlooking all the negatives, and the reasons for it ending.
Of course, then I came to my senses and started to feel sorry for the poor girl. Incidentally, he couldn’t keep it in his pants with her either. [Read: How to make it easier to let go of your ex]
Why you shouldn’t panic when your ex dates someone new
They are an ex for a reason. That is a mantra to keep in your mind. It ended because of something that happened or the fact that you just weren’t compatible deep down. If it had been wonderful and the positive memories had been worth it, you would still be together. If it ended because one of you did something terrible to the other, that’s simply life, and a reason for an end to the relationship.
The main thing which happens when your ex dates someone new is that you forget the negatives and you suddenly start to see the former relationship through rose tinted glasses. This is exactly what I did.
I started to remember the laughs, the fun, the hand holding, and silly jokes. I forgot the tears, the pain, and the constant paranoia of where he was. It’s ridiculous to think back now because the negatives outweighed the positives by a huge amount. [Read: 20 mind tricks to stop missing the wrong ex]
If you start to feel this way too, don’t worry. Don’t suddenly think that they were the ‘one that got away,’ because they really weren’t. There were negative times and those negatives were the cause for the end. When you start to overlook the reality of the situation, it’s easy to start thinking ‘what have I done?’. However, it will fade and you’ll see things through normal glasses, just like I did.
These strange feelings can cause you to panic, but stay calm and adjust your vision.
What if you still have feelings?
Of course, we haven’t addressed the very real possibility that you still have feelings for your ex. Now you must cope with the fact that they moved on. It’s hard, but remember that they’re actually not doing anything wrong. It’s easy to get angry and to almost feel cheated on in this situation, but your ex is single now. They are moving on with their life. It’s time for you to do the same. Time to turn the page and start a new chapter.
Many can start to experience the pain of the breakup all over again in this situation. It’s fine if you want to take a few days to lay low, give yourself a little TLC, and get your mind straight, but don’t let it go on any longer than that.
If you allow yourself to sink to depths, you’re wallowing, and there are few people who will have true sympathy for you for too long, because the bottom line is that this is life. Relationships end and we move on. It sounds harsh, but it’s the truth. [Read: Miss your ex or think of them often? Here’s what you need to know]
Techniques to help you move on
In this case, distraction is the best way forward. Focus on yourself, do something you enjoy, perhaps find a new hobby or learn a new skill. By totally immersing yourself in something just for you, you’ll build up your confidence and overcome the strange feelings that are inevitable when your ex dates someone new. You’ll be too busy smiling and enjoying your life!
Avoid following the new relationship on social media, avoid asking friends about them, and if you see them on the street, simply say ‘hello’ and continue with your day. If you turn your attention inwards, your relationship with yourself is more important than a past relationship that has residual feelings attached to it.
Problems can occur if there are children involved, because you remain in each other’s lives. Millions of people across the planet deal with this situation and survive it every single day. It will get easier. I promise, it will.
Over time you’ll meet someone new too, and you’ll fall into this easy lifestyle that will have you wondering why you ever felt strange about it in the first place. [Read: 10 signs your past relationship is holding you back]
Looking to the future
Life is strange. Sometimes life is hard, but realizing that it’s not going to feel this way forever is a vital part of recovery. Of course, if your situation is like mine, it’s also important to avoid holding grudges and monitoring the ex’s new relationship.
I found out that their relationship had ended by someone telling me on the off-chance. By the time I found out about it, I’d forgotten anyway! As you can see, distraction techniques really do work!
If you feel strange when your ex dates someone new, don’t panic. It’s normal. Whether you can’t stand them, or you still have feelings, you’re bound to look back and feel nostalgia. That’s all it is, nostalgia.