Originally posted on May 4, 2011.
I'm a 24-year-old mostly straight girl with a great GGG boyfriend. My problem is with an ex-boyfriend. We met when I was on a break from school. A few months after we got together, I went back to finish my degree in a different state. He was wary about a long- distance thing, but I wanted to try it, and I made promises about our future that I probably shouldn't have. Then the day after we broke up, one of my ex-boyfriends died. I was a total mess for months and completely incapable of dealing with the breakup, which was hard for the guy I'd just broken up with. We wound up ending things on a really bad note.
But it's still not over. He hasn't ever gotten over our relationship, and every few months he calls or e-mails with some new issue or wanting to talk. He's been verbally abusive, and I often want to cut off contact, but because of the death of my other ex-boyfriend, I'm really scared about losing contact with exes. He told me he almost killed himself a couple of years ago; I don't know if it's true, but I can believe it. He accused me of raping him—saying that he'd consented to sex with the understanding that we'd be together forever, and when we broke up, I violated the terms of the agreement under which he had consented to have sex with me. Now he's demanding that I admit to having raped him and threatening to post that I raped him on my Facebook wall.
I don't know what to do. I have no interest in getting back together, but I know I hurt him and I feel responsible. I'd do a lot of things differently in hindsight, but I don't think I'm a rapist. I know this sounds like a typical crazy-ex story, and I should probably just cut him off, but that feels wrong and I'm worried about him.
Freaked Out Feeling Stuck
My response after the jump...
Everyone you've ever dated—including the boy you're with now—is fated to die. (You, too, FOFS.) Which means that, as the years grind on, you will eventually lose contact with each and every one of your ex-boyfriends, should you be fortunate enough to outlive them all. You will also one day lose contact with your current boyfriend, if you stay together, or he will one day lose contact with you if you precede him in dropping dead. It might help you cope with the coming inevitable losses, FOFS, if you cut your crazy ex out of your life now, while he's still alive. Think of it as an exercise in letting go.
Stop taking his calls, stop returning his e-mails, and block him on Facebook. You can urge him—in one final e-mail—to move the fuck on already, to get help, and to get a grip. Tell him that you're both too young to waste the rest of your lives processing a failed relationship, and you can add, perhaps in a P.S., that consensual sex in the early stages of a relationship—the stage at which dreamy, ill-advised discussions about a shared future are most common—does not retroactively become rape should that relationship end.
Finally, FOFS, while your ex sounds nutty and vindictive, your reasons for staying in touch with him are slightly batshit. People lose contact with exes all the time. Get over it. If you've convinced yourself that hashing shit out with your manipulative ex is the compassionate, loving thing to do, you're wrong—it's not helping him and it's making you miserable. Or so you say. The longer you go on helping your ex pick at his scabs, the more you look like the kind of controlling, vindictive ex who doesn't really want her exes to get over her.