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Obsessed With The Woman Who Is About To Marry My Ex

Question:

I would truly appreciate your advice and input to my problem. I was married for the second time for some ten years to a man I adored and believed I would be with for the rest of my life. It came as a terrible shock that he did not feel the same way and had met someone on the internet whom he’d ‘fallen in love with’. Since then we divorced, he moved to Peru to be with her and left my young daughter and I with nothing.

We have somehow managed to maintane a friendship which has been very hard for me, listening to how happy he is with this woman but for my daughters sake I say nothing.

My problem is this, I know I am obsessing about something. I cannot get on with my life and feel utterly stale yet I can’t seem to change it because I’m not sure what my obsession is. I don’t think its my ex as I don’t want him back having discovered all of his lies, cheating etc whilst we were married and cannot trust him and to be honest, I don’t even think I’m that angry with him any more. I accept that he wasn’t happy with me and that he, like everyone has a right to happiness. I don’t think its the man I had become close friends with through an online dating site. Although I’d hoped for the friendship to become more and I was a little hurt when he just stopped all communication, it didn’t knock me over. I believe my obsession is with the woman who is about to marry my ex.

She is 15 years younger then me, a stunning looking woman who is very intelligant, sexy, ambitious, determined etc. I just don’t believe she is for real. I feel very strongly that she is using my ex to get out of a third world country and into my country to further her precious career. I can’t stand the thought of her being here and living off my taxes whilst she builds her wonderful life on mine and my daughters heartbreak knowing as soon as she can she will leave my ex. My reason for feeling this way is the way she set about getting my husband interested in her in the first place. It was like she was waiting for someone with the right attributes and from the right place.

I want to move on with my life. I don’t want her in my every waking and sleeping thought. I don’t want to feel like this anymore but I don’t know how to stop. Any help would be most gratefully recieved.

Thanks so much

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  • ‘Anne’ is the pseudonym for the individual who writes this relationship advice column.
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Answer:

It is definitly a tough situation you’re in. I understand and honor your decision to remain in touch with your former husband for your daughter’s sake, although attempting to remain actually friendly (rather than just polite) would be more than I could offer under the circumstances. I guess that is neither here nor there.

The meat of your question is how can you stop obsessing about this ‘golddigging’ woman who your husband is presently with. Suspecting as you do that her motives are selfish in the extreme and that she will use your former husband as a mere step on the ladder in her upward climb, it must feel like you are watching a slow motion train wreck, in which you are one of the injured parties. I can understand the facination, and I can also understand the anger which fuels that facination further. Still, you are bright enough to have realized that this is an unhealthy fixation which has you feeling stalled and stuck.

I don’t think there is any magic bullet or wand that can get you instantly unstuck. I do think there are things you can do to help yourself move on. First of all, make an affirmative emotional decision to move on. You’ve got it understood at the intellectual level what you must do but your guts haven’t caught on yet. So have a heart to heart talk with them. Cry about this. Feel this. Open the flood gates and let yourself feel this so that you can grieve it.

Whatever the outcome of the first step, make a decision with yourself to just not spend time thinking about this woman. I don’t mean that you should try to suppress thinking about her (that won’t work well), but rather that you should distract yourself with new activities designed to help you grow the new life that you want. Maybe that is dating again. Maybe that is developing a friendship network by joining hobby or sport clubs, saving dogs or cats from shelters, hiking, traveling, etc. Do things to put yourself back into life in a vivid, demanding way, and you’ll both grow yourself a new better life, and at the same time find yourself not caring as much what happens with this woman.

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