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Shirley Strawberry Reads the Strawberry Letter

Subject: Is He Still In Love With His Ex?

Good Morning Steve and Shirley,

My boyfriend and I have been together on and off for two years. When we first got together, I was having issues in my relationship at the time and he was the shoulder to lean on. I admit that the 1st time he and I broke up it was my fault because I had unresolved trust issues at the time. About a year and a half passed and he reached out to me as a shoulder to lean on. I gave him advice as far as helping him with his relationship that he was in. At the time I had no intentions on getting back with him until one day he calls and says that he broke up with her because he realized that he wanted to be with me. Months passed and we got back together for the second time. At first, things started off great and MUCH BETTER than the last time. He told me that I was definitely the only one he wanted to spend the rest of his life with and his mom even introduces me as her “future daughter in law”. I recently talked to him and told him that I felt as though he does nothing for me anymore. No flowers, candy, massages, dates or anything at all to show how he feels for me. If it had not been for his friends reassurance of his affection for me, I wouldn’t have any proof that he still loves me. He then tells me that as of lately he just “hasn’t been in the mood (not talking about sexually, just in general)” or that I have unmotivated him to want to do things to show his affection for me by asking him to. He then goes on to say that in his previous relationship his ex would belittle him as a man whenever he tried to do anything for her. For example, if he took her on a nice date she would make a comments like “your lucky I’m here because I could have been” doing this or that or I could have gone out with this or that person instead. He says that hurt him (and I understand) and makes him not want to do anything else again because of her ungratefulness. I told him that this is interfering with what we have built but he has this “I don’t want to be bothered” mentality about the situation. Is he still in love with his ex? Should I stay and help him get passed this? If so, HOW? Should I give him space in form of breaking up and whatever happens happens? I love him I do and I want to spend the rest of my life with him, but not if I do everything for him and he does nothing for me or to help better us. I am tired of running into guys telling me “I know your man is dong this…” or “If I was him I would do this…” (as a form of getting with me). I just don’t know what to do. Please help me because this situation is hurting me and I feel like its beginning to effect my heart and feelings.