Most of us have had a disappointing relationship in our lives when we felt the guy simply came up short in an area or two. Maybe he sucked at taking you places, never brought you around his friends, communicating or commitment. Then you break up and suddenly he’s the perfect boyfriend to his new girlfriend.
Why the hell couldn’t your ex have done those things for you? And more importantly, why is he doing them for her!?
Suddenly you’re stuck in the past, wondering what you did wrong, wondering what she’s doing right. While I highly doubt he’s the perfect boyfriend, maybe he has made some improvements and despite what you may think—it’s not because she’s doing something you didn’t.
5 Possible Reasons Your Ex is Better Because of You
You Nagged a Lot
Ever repeat yourself so much you got sick of hearing your own voice? Ever wonder why your message never sunk in?
It sunk in all right, just after the fact. No one likes being nagged, and I’m a firm believer that most of us hate nagging. Yet when we fall into a routine with someone it’s inevitable that something we’re asking is going to be ignored. Repeatedly. So we’re going to nag.
Sometimes the person being nagged is just lazy, while other times they might just not want to give the nagger the satisfaction of doing what they ask. A very passive aggressive situation can ensue.
You Cried a Lot
Sometimes we get involved with someone and hurt them. Then we hurt them again. And then we continue to hurt them. We hate ourselves for hurting them, and yet it’s like we can’t stop hurting them.
While hurting others isn’t excusable, some people can get into patterns of sabotage. Unfortunately, they might have been eyeballs deep in this perpetual cycle, with you at the center. Your ex may have hurt you so bad that he doesn’t want to hurt anyone else that way ever again.
You Were Awful
If you’re honest with yourself, you weren’t the best girlfriend either. Maybe you both simply brought out the worst in each other. It’s not a pleasant thought, but some couples are just horrible for each other and still insist on torturing themselves with the relationship. If things were toxic, he’s probably better now because he’s away from you.
On a positive note, you’re most likely better off without your ex, too.
You Taught Them
You can lead a man to water, but you can’t make him drink. It’s easy to feel like lessons are lost on another person, but learning something and possessing the ability to apply it are two completely different things. You may have tried to show him what you needed. You may have laid it out. And maybe you even did most of the work to make it easy on your ex. But if he wasn’t ready there’s not much more you could have done.
You Led by Example
A lot like learning a lesson, when someone is an example to us, we may not possess the ability to apply it immediately. Much like a role model, we admire the person because we want to be like them…someday. But we know we aren’t currently there yet. We can appreciate another person for their ability to love, communicate, respect and consider, without being able to do those things ourselves.
Everyone Loves a Clean Slate
You may still be asking yourself, “but why didn’t all of that happen when he was with me?”
There are always a number of reasons, but the most likely one is that everyone loves a clean slate. When you’re in the thick of it, in the midst of the drama, the highs and the lows, change is hard.
Change, in general, is hard.
For most people, change has to be inspired. Whether we like it or not, going through a break up can change us. We reflect, we learn what we’re made of, we spend time alone, and we become really destructive or really healthy. A break up tends to inspire a shift in all of us, no matter who is the one doing the breaking.
Every person we’re with, every person we allow to be a part of our lives, has the ability to shape us. We learn things from them. We discover our own likes and dislikes. We shed our old skins and welcome the new.
So don’t take it personally if the man you loved (or still love) is doing everything for her that you wish he had done for you. At the end of the day, you were a big part of shaping his life and making him a better man.
Making other people better, however it may have happened, is certainly something to be proud of.
Looking back on past relationships, can you see how you may have made your ex a better guy?
Image credit: Shutterstock
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