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Woman considers breaking up with BF over conversation about his late wife. AITA?

Woman considers breaking up with BF over conversation about his late wife. AITA?


"AITAH? I (33F) asserted to my widowed boyfriend (35M) that he should 'choose' me over his late wife and now he is acting distant."


My (33F) boyfriend (35M) and I are in a relationship for over 3 years. He was married before and is widowed, while my ex husband cheated on me with his friend.

While snuggling on the couch, we watched a movie where the female protagonist's first husband was presumed dead, and she had a new life with her current husband. When her first husband returns, she chooses her current life. This shifted the tone of our date.

The next day during dinner, he brought up a conversation I thought we shouldn't have about who we would choose if a late spouse returned. I feel it's not my place to comment on this. During our early dating phase, I read books on dating a widower and focused on my own relationship needs.

This included assessing if he prioritized me, handling her photos and stories, burial arrangements, and celebrations. Before anyone comments, it's essential to share our history. Since my divorce, I've been cautious about dating widowers, not wanting to sign up to feel like a substitute or second choice.

Deal breakers became more crucial after my ex cheated on me. Initially, I didn't want to date my current boyfriend, but he insisted I be more open-minded, and now we have a great life together.

I made him aware of my discomfort with his late wife's past and shenanigans before we got serious, giving him the choice not to date me if he wasn't ready leave his past relationship in the past and focus on the present and future with me. He gave the vibe that I felt like I “won” somehow based on how protagonist chose for herself.

I NEVER initiated that discussion. He asked me 'Do you think what the girl chose was morally right?' I never wanted to comment on it because it can get emotionally messy, but he pushed and cornered me until I gave him a response. Since he had the cheek to 'test' me and put me in such a difficult position, I told him what I thought:

“Even if you won’t concede to the fact that you will chose the present and future with me over your late wife should she come back, the truth is, based on how much time you’ve spent with me and gotten to know me, you ARE more compatible with me now.

Your late wife didn’t support you through your career phase like I did, she didn't introduce you to things and activities that I did. You had a whole life with her but now you have a whole life with me, and you should know what you prefer. Your late wife’s memory is always going to hold some sentimental value, but it’s me who you actively love now and choose”.

I’ve always been very vocal about my attitudes and beliefs and I think this rubbed him the wrong way. He KNEW all about this when he first agreed to date me seriously and now he’s been pouting and acting weird.

If he was gonna call into question something that makes EVERY person dating a widowed person uncomfortable, I sure as HELL would assert my own worth. It was almost as if he was seeking MY approval on whether he should choose his late wife over me, should she come back and I would have NONE OF THAT BS.

My statement to him was in no way a comparison to her. She was her own person, and they had a whole life together. But now, he has a whole life with me. He had something with her he doesn’t have with me, true.

But it’s also true that he has something beautiful with me that he couldn’t have with her. I try to be mature about my take and focus on how I can make more memories and beautiful experiences with him, without his late wife as a reference point for the kind of relationships he experiences in his life.

In a way, my relationship with him is unique in its own right and I was happy and content with that, until he got to confront this physical and material reality himself through my words.

I don’t know what to do with these childish things he’s been doing. He is acting very cold and distant, looking at her pictures at night instead of being intimate with me. Is he really so petty that he regrets to think he might choose me after all? I’m honestly thinking of breaking up with him over this.

I don’t think we see eye to eye with how human relationships work. I try to create a happiness with him and only him, in its own unique way. However, I am starting to feel he wants his relationship with his late wife to set the tone for OUR relationship. AITAH for considering breaking up with him?

I stood up for myself, telling him that based on our time together, he should know he's more compatible with me now and that he actively loves and chooses me. He's been acting weird and petty since then, and I'm considering breaking up with him over his behavior.

Here were the top rated comments from readers:


You should consider breaking up, he needs grief counseling. I left a guy I was with for similar circumstances.


I would like to hear the flip side to the story.


I want OP to clarify how assessing if he prioritized her included his late wife's burial arrangements. It reads as though they were already dating at this stage which doesn't quite compute.


Yeah something smells fishy here. Once I hit 'looking at her pictures instead of being intimate with me,' I bailed out. That just seems like such an implausible response it made the rest lose credibility.


Please clarify his late wife’s “past and shenanigans”.

So, do you think the OP is being unfair to her boyfriend by trying to make him hypothetically choose between her and his diseased wife?

Sources: Reddit
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