My boyfriend has no boundaries with ex wife.
And it pisses me off.
Since we started dating about a year ago, my boyfriend has put her needs near the top of his list of priorities.
He’d talk to her and try his best to comfort her whenever she’s having trouble with her boyfriend or a bad day at work.
They have a two-year-old daughter together.
My boyfriend will often watch over her on days she’s scheduled to have her because she’s having a breakdown.
Even worse, he’d sometimes let her use his car and take hers to get fixed.
Why do ex-wives feel entitled?
At first, I supported him one hundred percent because I realized they needed to work together as a co-parent to raise their daughter.
But now, his devotion to her and her neediness is starting to piss me off. It bothers me that he caters for her too much.
I feel he has more important issues to worry about besides her, like his mental health, school, etc.
He’s complained several times about how much he hates her neediness but said he needed to be there for her, too.
One of the reasons I love him is his selfless and kind nature, but I’m beginning to feel like this is getting out of hand.
She was supposed to have her daughter yesterday but complained she was having a bad day. So my boyfriend went to her house to take care of their daughter: bathing, feeding, and putting her to bed.
Honestly, I try as much as possible to avoid their issues, and I’m cautious not to overstep my bounds.
But I feel it’s time he starts setting boundaries with his ex-wife so he can focus on other, more important things.
Oh my God! This is such a difficult position to be in. I mean, dating a boyfriend who has no boundaries with ex-wife.
If you’re going through a similar situation, it can make you feel insecure, confused, and even left out.
But you aren’t alone.
I want to show you some unhealthy boundaries with ex-wife your boyfriend may have and how to get your boyfriend to set healthy boundaries with an ex-wife when in a new relationship.
If you’re ready, let’s get started.
What are unhealthy boundaries after divorce?
Boyfriend Has No Boundaries With Ex Wife: 5 Unhealthy Boundaries You Need To Know
1. Traveling And Staying Together In The Same Hotel Room
“My boyfriend has no boundaries with his ex-wife.” Rita cried.
Rita met him on Tinder. And have been dating for six months.
They hit it off fabulously and started to spend time together.
They declared their love for each other and met each other’s children.
Rita felt secure and safe in the relationship until her boyfriend’s ex-wife appeared in the picture.
Here’s how it all started:
Rita’s boyfriend and his ex-wife had three children together.
One of the kids plays for a competitive sports team. The family was traveling for a championship game and Rita’s boyfriend was going with them.
His original plan was to travel with the kids and stay at a hotel.
Only for him to change his mind just about an hour before the long-distance trip saying his ex-wife would be traveling with them and that…
They would also be staying together in the same hotel room.
Even though she tried to send him a text telling him how hurt and confused she was, he dismissed it her concerns.
Here’s the thing:
If your boyfriend and his ex-wife have kids together,
There’s nothing you can do, because they both need to co-parent their kids.
However, you have the right to speak to him if it comes to the point where they not only have to travel together but sleep together in the same hotel room.
Your boyfriend may have loved his ex-wife, but you are now his top priority.
As a result, you have the right to be heard, acknowledged, appreciated, and your boundaries upheld.
2. Confiding In His Ex-Wife
Chances are you’re dating a guy who still confides in his ex-wife.
She calls multiple times a day – even at night. And your boyfriend tells her everything that’s going on in your relationship.
Maybe you’re even starting to wonder why they broke up in the first place.
Not all of us maintain friendships with our ex-partners, but when we do, it can occasionally result in difficult circumstances.
Even though it’s a goal many separated or divorced couples strive for, especially when children are involved, it can have its own problems!
You may be familiar with these problems if your boyfriend and ex-wife are still good friends.
One possibility is that your boyfriend looks to the ex-wife for comfort and guidance when issues arise in your relationship.
This is a typical instance of an unhealthy boundary that I hear from many of the women I coach.
The ideal situation would be for your boyfriend to discuss the issues with you or, if necessary, to speak with a certified coach or counselor for guidance.
He definitely shouldn’t be speaking with their ex, who can have a limited understanding, bias, or be unable to provide wise advice.
You have every right to ask your boyfriend not to talk to his ex about your relationship issues.
3. Bad Mouthing You
Maybe your boyfriend’s ex-wife talks negatively about you to him –even though she doesn’t know you.
Badmouthing can harm the relationship, especially with children who can carelessly imitate this conduct in the future toward you.
As a result, your boyfriend must establish clear limits with the ex-wife about her comments about you, especially if they are made in front of the children.
Even though this might not be a big problem for all families, if it does arise, it should be dealt with right away.
Remember to maintain a calm and collected attitude on your end and keep yourself from getting sucked into drama and emotional attacks.
4. Dictating Schedules
When your boyfriend’s ex-wife sets the rules for your schedule, that’s another horrible boundary issue that’s less obvious!
Maybe she always arrives early or late, drops the kids off at the last minute, or never gives you enough notice of her plans.
Or perhaps she deliberately disregards your plans. Or she continuously expects your partner to put her schedule before yours.
In either case, it might be time to establish some healthier boundaries!
Take control of your life if your boyfriend’s ex constantly throws your plans out the window with their outrageous demands.
5. Blurring The Line With The Ex-Wife
Your boyfriend and his ex-wife, at some point, had a romantic connection.
You may experience some discomfort and insecurity regarding their interactions,
No matter what their connection was like or whether it had fizzled off.
That’s fine, but it’s essential to consider your reaction and the root source of it.
Then, discuss these matters with your partner, mainly if you see any inappropriate or flirty behavior that makes you genuinely uncomfortable.
Even though your partner once loved the ex-wife, you are now their top priority.
Because of this, you have the right to have your opinions and personal boundaries respected.
However, one thing to consider first is whether or not you would approve of this behavior between your boyfriend and a different woman who wasn’t the ex-wife.
If that’s the case, you might simply be experiencing legitimate insecurity about their previous relationship, especially if you value your relationship with your boyfriend.
If not, you should talk with your boyfriend to establish boundaries with his ex-wife
And that brings me to the critical question you might ask…
How do I set boundaries with my boyfriend’s ex-wife?
Below are some ways to get your boyfriend to set boundaries with his ex-wife
Boyfriend Has No Boundaries With Ex Wife: Setting Healthy Boundaries With Boyfriend’s Ex-Wife.
6. Avoid Emotional Conversations
The emotional response most ladies give to their partners when they feel boundaries have been crossed always results in a fight.
This compounds the problem instead of resolving it.
Not only is there a problem with the ex, but your boyfriend is also having problems with the ex (lack of boundary).
The next time your boyfriend’s ex-wife crosses a line, try your best to put it on hold, especially if the conversation isn’t going well.
Calm down, then return to the discussion with a level head.
It’s likely that your boyfriend is equally offended by the crossed boundaries and is bracing himself for a response from you.
Consider the situation from his point of view; he has to deal with his ex and you. It can be too much for him to manage.
You try and refrain from having these difficult conversations.
When a relationship becomes tense, one person often says, “Look, this isn’t useful; let’s talk about this later.”
Even if the other person wants to continue talking, establishing this sort of boundary will change everything for you.
The person with the calmer approach always follows through on ending the conversation.
7. Explain To Him What Bothers You And Why
I often hear women requesting that their boyfriends establish boundaries with their ex-wives.
“You need to set boundaries with her,” they say.
what does that really mean?
Various people may have different definitions of what boundaries are. It is a pretty abstract term.
You must describe your concerns in detail, along with the causes of your discomfort and how they make you feel.
Your boyfriend can’t read your thoughts. He cannot possibly understand your emotions unless you tell him.
8. Communicate To Understand
We often communicate to make our partner agree to our point of view.
But the goal of communication isn’t to agree but to understand.
It shouldn’t just be about you and what you want.
Please spend some time figuring out WHY your partner reacts as he does. He probably has a reason, and it might even be a good one.
9. Come To Terms
You have to accept the truth that this person—your boyfriend’s ex-wife —will always be a part of your life. She’s not leaving.
This is the harsh reality you must face.
Always remember that the main objective is finding a healthy stress management strategy that works for everyone.
There will need to be some mutual concessions. You’re going to have to put effort into it constantly.
There is no “to do” list item for setting boundaries. Life can be difficult. Boundaries also can.
10. He May Have Guilt And Loyalty Issues.
Setting boundaries with boyfriend’s ex-wife isn’t black and white.
We must remember that this woman is the mother of your boyfriend’s children.
And your partner’s response could be influenced by feelings of remorse or loyalty.
If you were in his shoes, you’d probably do the same.
Some women view this negatively. But it isn’t.
It simply demonstrates his loyalty and empathy.
11. Ask For Some Empathy.
Most likely, your partner doesn’t correctly understand your feelings. That’s alright.
I often tell women to say something along the line of,
“Dear, you don’t have to understand or concur with how I feel. I simply need you to know that ‘this is how I am experiencing things right now.”
This sentence is priceless when it comes to resolving conflicts in a relationship.
12. Identify The Problem
First off, you have to hear him out.
Keep in mind that if you want him to respect your views, you must do the same for him.
Some of the women I coach confessed that there had been moments when they didn’t understand why their boyfriends reacted in a certain way to problems related to their ex-wives.
They felt their boyfriends ought to have responded entirely differently, which made it so irritating.
We sometimes neglect to see the other views because we are preoccupied with our experiences.
Discuss the aspects of his co-parenting relationships that require improvement.
Which areas require more boundaries?
Consider the past and pinpoint the tension-provoking situations.
Even better, consider making a list. The simple act of putting thoughts on paper can be therapeutic.
13. Plan What You’ll Do When Boundaries Are Crossed
It is clear that your current approach is ineffective.
You wouldn’t be having this conversation if that weren’t the case.
Clarifying your boundaries is the most excellent approach to establishing them.
Make a strategy for what you’ll do if it happens again.
What would you do, for instance, the next time your boyfriend’s ex-wife calls and tries to intimidate you? Or barged in unannounced?
How are you going to react?
What will your boyfriend say the next time she insults you or uses derogatory language?
Make a plan.
14. Be Proactive
There will be times when you must react quickly, but there are other circumstances in which you can take the initiative.
Having your partner notify his ex-wife of the changes via email would be worthwhile.
Sending his ex-wife an email informing her that, going forward, he’ll only be responding to concerns involving the children to reduce conflict may be worthwhile.
REMEMBER: How you say something matters more than what you say.
Communicate in the least intimidating, direct, and empathic way possible. Conflict should be avoided at all costs, not increased.
And yea, you have to be patient with your partner.
It’s a process. One talk won’t be enough to resolve it. Old habits are difficult to break.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Unhealthy Boundaries With Ex-Wife?
When your personal space is infringed, this is a typical illustration of potentially dysfunctional boundaries with your ex-wife.
Thus, she might unexpectedly show up at your home or, even worse, let herself in using the keys.
All keys must be returned, or locks changed and boundaries with the ex-wife must be clearly stated.
How Do I Deal With My Boyfriend’s Toxic Ex-Wife?
1. Do not get directly involved in their issue. I’m aware that this is challenging.
2. Do not let your connection with your partner suffer because of his ex-wife.
3. Be There for Your Partner
4. Your partner needs to establish boundaries.
5. Remember that your partner is your teammate not the enemy
How Do I Protect Myself From A Crazy Ex-Wife?
Honestly, some ex-wives can be bitchy and crazy.
Here’s what you can do to protect yourself from crazy ex-wife
1. Don’t interfere
2. Ask your boyfriend to install a home security camera
3. Call the police
4. Ask friends for help
5. Get a restraining order
Why Doesn’t My Boyfriend Tell His Ex To Respect Boundaries?
Maybe he enjoys the attention he gets or her drama.
Find out his thoughts by asking him how he would feel if you had a boyfriend that did not respect boundaries.
Sometimes others won’t understand your problems unless they are in your position.
Is It Normal For Your Boyfriend To Contact His Ex Just To Know How She Is?
I wouldn’t describe that as “normal,” no. However, everyone’s views on what is acceptable and what isn’t vary.
I wouldn’t think that was normal if I were in that situation.
Keep in mind that there’s no harm contacting an ex once in a blue moon to check up on them and know how they’re doing.
But if your boyfriend reaches his ex every time, something’s up.
I Want My Boyfriend To Stop Talking To His Ex-Girlfriend. How Can I Do That?
Except there are kids involved, your boyfriend shouldn’t constantly be speaking to his ex. There is no reason for him to act this way if no kids are involved.
Anyone who claims to be best friends with an ex should have two fingers pointed in their face to set the record straight.
NO ONE CAN BE FRIENDS WITH EXES! Period
For him to stop, ask him to set healthy boundaries between them.
My Boyfriend Still Messages His Ex Almost Every Day, And He Says They’re Just Friends. How Do I Deal With The Insecurities I’m Having Right Now?
Sincerely, you should address anything that makes you feel insecure.
A person should not message their ex daily if they don’t have anything going on.
Do not be with him if he still values his relationship with his ex more than your feelings.