How to Stop Sabotaging

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-30-2009
How to Stop Sabotaging
Sun, 07-06-2014 - 12:46pm I've been dating a pretty great guy for the past 6 months.  A couple of weeks ago, he even broke out the big "L" word (which is a first -- I'm usually the do-do that spits it out first).

Sure, we have little issues here and there, but nothing we can't work through.  The thing is... I can't get past  his ex girlfriend.

Quick backstory... I have known him for years.  When I met him, he was with the ex and never gave him a second look.  Fast forward three years and we ended up hanging out in the same areas with the sam people (he had broken up with her).  So he expressed interest in me and after relentless pursual for six months, I finally gave in and agreed to go out with him... It's been a decent six months.

Here's the thing.  His ex seems PERFECT.  He's a dance instructor... so is she... I have two left feet.  She was in amazing physical shape and I have a few dimples here and there.  They were like the "super couple" in our circle of friends, and there are TONS of YouTube videos of them dancing together and you can seriously feel the heat radiating off the screen watching them dance.

I've expressed my concerns (actually I melted down after watching one of the many videos of them together) and he has assured me that they are completely over... that yes, they had LOTS of chemistry on the dancefloor but that didn't translate into a relationship.  

So why do I keep comparing myself to this woman?  I'll NEVER dance like her or look like her, and chances are I won't be as physically fit..  His family LOVED her (and still works with her and sees her almost daily-enough to get updates on OUR relationship status I'm sure), and I find that I'm exhausting myself just trying to prove that I'm better than her.  HELP!!!!  

Sadly, this shouldn't be an issue for a woman in her mid-30's... but it is

Community Leader
Registered: 01-04-2004
Sun, 07-06-2014 - 1:10pm
turn the comparison game into motivation. we can all learn something from each other, so make this about YOU and making yourself a better person. what do you admire about her, and how can you incorporate that into your own life?
Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Sun, 07-06-2014 - 2:48pm

Your bf broke up with his ex at least a year ago.  He pursued YOU.  He has assured you they are over, and that they did not have a good relationship.  What more do you want???   Needy insecurity is exhausting, and ultimately, it will drive him away.  Not back to his ex, but to someone else, who is secure in herself and has self-esteem.  You should consider getting some counseling, because this level of insecurity is irrational, and I'll bet it has been a factor in the demise of your previous relationships.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2011
Sun, 07-06-2014 - 4:11pm

You should really just focus on you and your boyfriend and building a relationship with his family as well. Chances are they will really like you once they get to know you...but you have to let them . He obviously picked you so ( as hard as it is ) stop worrying about his EX..She is an EX for a reason !


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iVillage Member
Registered: 02-25-2013
Sun, 07-06-2014 - 4:28pm

Why are you torturing yourself by watching videos of him with his ex? I've never wanted to lay eyes on a bf's ex whenever I dated someone. The past is the past for a reason. Doing this keeps her very present in your mind. Onscreen chemistry has nothing to do with reality. In fact, sometimes it's due to turmoil. On the film "An Officer and a Gentlemen," Debra Winger said she and Richard Gere had a contentious professional relationship, which came across on screen as passion. Obviously, what you perceive as the dancer's physical "perfection," wasn't a guarantee of forever in his eyes. He's seen you naked. He's stayed with you. He said he loves you. I've read that most men don't even notice if their significant other has gained up to twenty pounds. Most men don't even notice what women perceive as their bodily flaws, like stretch marks, cellulite, vericose veins. A man is just happy to be with a wonderful, sexy naked woman.

When you act like a  confident, sexy, fun woman, then that's who you'll be to a man. When you start whining about anything like hatred for your body, about how much everyone likes the ex and do they tell her all about our relationship, it's a real downer. Who wants to be around negative energy? The only thing you have control of is yourself. Be the best girlfriend you can be, and let the cards fall where they may. Don't talk about the ex anymore. If he brings it up, tell him that was his past and you now want to concentrate on the present, which is the two of you. Good luck.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Sun, 07-06-2014 - 8:58pm

If he wanted to date another dance instructor, I'm sure he could find one somewhere--maybe he just wants to leave his work behind.  I take ballroom dancing lessons--there is a married couple who owns the studio but there are 2 other dance teachers who used to be married to each other--they still teach there after they got divorced.  I don't know what the guy's GF does but she is an ok dancer, not a pro--she just knows what he taught her.  The woman's BF is a police captain and he's just an ok dancer too.  Obviously the ability to dance well was not really what they were looking for after years of teaching together and being partners.  And anyone who is a good dancer can show passion in a performance--why do you think that everybody thinks that all the people on Dancing with the Stars are really dating?  As someone said it's a "showmance."  Obviously the guy must have really wanted you if he pursued you for six months so you should be flattered.  But it's crazy to "compete" with her--there actually is no competiton except in your mind because they were already over before he started dating you.  There were probably many things wrong with their relationship that you know nothing about so stop worrying about it.  The insecurity is going to be a turn off to him.