» When She Compares You to Her Ex

by Natasha Abrahams on July 16, 2012

Nobody wants to be living in the shadow of their lover’s ex. Here’s what to do when she’s constantly drawing parallels and contrasts between you and her former boyfriend.

Every woman makes mental comparisons

What it means

Whether they’re thinking “he is somuch more interesting than the last guy I dated” or “why isn’t he as good in bed as everyone else I’ve been with?”, women are going to make comparisons between you and other men they’ve been with. You would be naïve to think her history doesn’t influence how she thinks of you, even if you compare favorably to the men of her past. But these thoughts should be kept firmly in her head, or confided in a close friend. If she tells you how you measure up compared to her past experiences, she’s being plain bitchy and inconsiderate.

First step: tell her it bothers you

It’s possible that she’s not the smartest girl around, and genuinely doesn’t know that comparing you to her ex is a big no-no. She might even think it is useful to contrast your actions with his, so that you can learn what she does and doesn’t like in a boyfriend. If she genuinely doesn’t know she’s doing wrong, you can’t blame her for that. What you can do is tell her that her constant comparisons upset you, and tell her that she needs to stop.

Of course, if she is likening you to her ex because she’s mean like that, then telling her that you don’t want to hear about him again will only add fuel to the fire. This woman is bad news- she needs to grow up and understand that she has to treat you better.

Bring up one of your exes

Let her know how it feels to be compared to a previous partner. However, you have to be careful that you don’t make the situation worse. Context is key here. If you mention one of your exes out of the blue, then she will get upset, and at the next possible opportunity she will compare you to her ex again in order to serve you right.

To avoid this, make your comparison immediately after she’s done the same. For example, she might say “you don’t ever bring me roses like John did”, to which you can say “my ex-girlfriend never expected flowers, but you don’t hear me complaining”. Hopefully that will make her realize how hurtful she is being, and she will not compare you to her ex-boyfriend again.

Last resort: tell her to go back to him

If she won’t shut up about her ex despite you telling her you don’t want to hear about him, it’s time for you to be bitchy right back to her. Next time she compares you to her ex, tell her to go back to him if he’s that great.

She could respond to this in a few ways. Most likely, she will start telling you about his flaws. While the last thing you want is to hear more about him, this isn’t such a bad thing. It will make her realize that she’s had a serious upgrade from him to you, and she will stop likening you to him.

Or, she might say she would get back together with him if she could. In this case, you’re always going to be in his shadow until she gets over him, and it’s time to end your relationship with her.

It’s also a possibility that you telling her to get back with him will induce an epiphany in her. She will realize that she’s still in love with him, and will end things with you to try to get him back. This is another great outcome for you- you don’t want to be with a woman who is still obsessed with her former flame.

About the Author

author photo

Natasha Abrahams is a writer and journalism student from Melbourne, Australia. When she is not busy with being a principal writer on Weekendnotes or skipping lectures, she can be found emptying her wallet at the nearest shopping centre. You can read more from Natasha at: http://mensstyleandfashion.com/

See All Posts by Natasha Abrahams



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