Dear Coleen – ‘I am disturbed that my husband is so friendly with his

Dear Coleen,

I met my husband five years ago when some mutual friends set us up. We were both divorced with 10-year-old daughters.

He said from the start that he got along great with his ex-wife. They got together when they were 15, but grew apart over the years.

She lives about 10 minutes away and they share custody of their daughter, so his ex is very much part of our lives.

To begin with, I didn’t mind. She’s really nice and friendly, and she’s lovely with my daughter.

If she buys her own daughter a new top, she’ll often buy my daughter the same, so she doesn’t feel left out.

‘She’s really nice and friendly…am I being unreasonable?’ (File image)
(Image: Getty)

She’s dating a man from her work, and they seem happy together, so I don’t think she still has feelings for my husband or vice versa.

However, he’s always at her beck and call. If something goes wrong in her house, she’ll text him, and he’ll go round on his way home from work or at the weekends to fix it.

Often when she drops her daughter off to stay with us, she’ll still be there an hour later having a cup of tea with my husband.

I’m certain there’s nothing going on between them. But it bothers me how close they are. They also share a lot of friends and a lot of history.

His ex gets on well with his parents and will often meet his mum for a coffee in town, which also bothers me.

Am I being unreasonable?

Dear Coleen

Coleen says…

You’re just being human. I think their friendship sounds lovely and if this woman is anything like me, then she doesn’t have any romantic feelings for her ex, she just enjoys the friendship and shared history. And she would probably be horrified if she knew how you felt.

You say yourself that you get along with her and she’s great to your daughter. It’s so nice for kids whose parents are divorced to grow up with them being friendly and on good terms. Arguing with each other, or not speaking, isn’t a great environment for kids, so try to look at the positives.

However, I do understand their behaviour must bother you. It’s a really difficult one. After I broke up with my first husband, when he met his next wife and they got married, I realised we couldn’t be quite as friendly any more. It’s like having a male friend who then meets somebody.

Sometimes, as his female friend, you have to back off slightly out of respect for his new girlfriend. It’s the same with exes. To be honest, if my ex met ­somebody, it would be unfair for me to ring him up and get him to come round and fix something at my house.

So I agree she does have to step back a little. So maybe have a quiet word with your husband and see if he can say something to her.

Nobody needs to fall out over this, but I think there’s a balance to be had.

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