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My girlfriend can’t measure up to my ex

Hi Achokis.

I have been in a relationship for the last one year. I have even discussed with my girlfriend the plans of moving our relationship to the next level. But my worry is that I keep finding myself comparing her with my ex-girlfriend. My ex was a good cook and social with my friends and relatives. My present girlfriend is a nice and intelligent person. But the problem is, she is not so much into cooking and doing household chores. She’s also a bit aloof when dealing with my family members and close friends. I’ve tried hinting to her as much, but each time I bring these things up, we get into a conflict. She accuses me of putting too much pressure on her, but yet to me those things are important? What should I do?

Our take

From the issues you raised, it seems that a woman being a good cook, good with household chores and being close to your family members is important to you. On those things your present girlfriend scores lowly and that may be why you are now comparing your girlfriend with your ex. But are there other things that your present girlfriend is good at? Could it be that you find her not good in the areas mentioned simply because you are comparing her with your ex?

You see, it is human nature to always want to focus on what we don’t have, forgetting our good side. In relationships such as yours, the tendency is to now take for granted what once attracted you to the other person because you have gotten used to it and start focusing on those other things that you now wish you had. One thing that we have learned from our experience as relationship counsellors is you can never find all the qualities you want in a mate in one person. No one is perfect. You will have a lot of what you want in this person and some of what you admire in another. The question is, what is so important to you that you cannot compromise? Once you identify that, then be content with it and accept it as your lot in life.

What made you break up with your ex? Is it that she too didn’t have certain qualities that you wanted in a partner that your present girlfriend could be having? Or is it that she is the one who left you and you have never quite gotten over her? So, you moved into this relationship with her and have never been able to bring closure to the old relationship and this is what is affecting your current relationship. It may just help to deal with any unresolved issues within you and to let go of your ex, otherwise you will never get someone who will satisfy you.

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