My boyfriend of four years and I - both early-20s -recently moved in together. However, his ex-girlfriend keeps intruding.
They dated for two years in late-teens, his first relationship. She's tried relentlessly to stay in contact. My boyfriend says they didn't get along very well; she used him for money then cheated on him... so he broke up with her. He soon met me.
He doesn't want to speak to her, and generally ignores her. Initially, it was random text messages, saying things such as her new boyfriend's abusing her and asking him for help. Then it was weird voicemails in the middle of the night at his parents' house.
Next, she made at least five Facebook identities (varying versions of her name) and sends messages to us. We both block them. She's made fake ones of men whom I've apparently slept with (false), who then message him saying that I cheated.
I've never met her but she dragged me into this. Some messages are hurtful, some polite. Recently, they're apologetic.
He's clearly expressed that he wants nothing to do with her. What should we do?
Her behaviour for this long, and despite clear messages of disinterest, amounts to stalking. If you know a lawyer who'll do this inexpensively, send a lawyer's letter telling her to stop, and the consequences of stalking.
If that doesn't work, consider telling the police that she's harassing you.
If you feel uneasy going this route - especially if because your boyfriend thinks she could become dangerous - keep ignoring her, and see over the next six months if she backs off when there are no responses whatsoever. If not, use the lawyer option.
My sister-in-law and I have always been friendly, though we live in different cities. Recently, my husband (her brother) and I had a major, awful, blow out while she was spending the weekend.
I said some very inappropriate things about him to her - like how he'd cheated on me and I was considering divorce, among others. True, but I know I shouldn't have gotten her involved.
My husband and I have since patched things up - a big struggle for us. I've contacted my sister-in-law, apologizing and taking responsibility for my behaviour, and putting her in a bad spot.
She very coldly responded by simply acknowledging she got my email. I let her cool off for a bit and recently learned she'd been having a hard time in her relationship. I reached out to her, telling her I was available to her anytime to talk. I've heard nothing back.
How do I mend fences? She's not a big part of my life, we see each other every few months, but it would be nice to clear the air. We will be seeing each other over Christmas and I have no idea how to handle things.
A lot of emotion got stirred up that day, more than you knew, since it clearly resonated with her own situation. You've done the right thing by apologizing; it was good of you to offer support later. Now, back off.
She's dealing with her own stuff, and your open blow-up wasn't exactly a great role model, so she's likely avoiding getting too close.
At Christmas, give her a warm greeting, a nice but modest personal gift - if you exchange them - and don't mention the incident or her situation. If she's still cool, just be pleasant in return. Hopefully, this'll pass naturally.
Years back, I was harassed by my boss. He'd ask inappropriate questions about my love life and make rude comments about my boyfriend. We had a staff Christmas party with "no spouses allowed." The company paid for our hotel rooms.
My boyfriend met me at the hotel after the party was over. We were at the elevators to go to my room and my boss, drunk, fired me on the spot.
I was shocked and angry. I thought the "no spouse" rule was for the party, not our rooms. My boss later invited me to lunch to discuss things, and asked if I wanted to come back.
I said yes, needing the money, but became so anxious about my decision that I left him a message saying I just couldn't work for him again, and I was uncomfortable. Was I wrong?
No. He'd likely have thought you "accepted" his drunkenness and his harassment.
Tip of the day:
Stalking is no less a crime if it's by an ex.