|Think of his friendly ex as being similar to an STD. (Picture: Alamy)|
Very little can dampen the thrills of the honeymoon period – unless of course, you meet someone who has something in his life which lurks deep and attacks unexpectedly.
No, I’m not talking about a six monthly outbreak of herpes, this affliction is far more subtle yet equally as damaging – the ‘friendly’ ex.
The friendly ex is more dangerous than the psycho variety of ex-girlfriend.
Rather than just being a bloody nutter who unashamedly tries to ruin your relationship and who, as a consequence, your boyfriend hates, is someone who has created a situation where she can speak/see your boyfriend as and when she pleases – regardless of your thoughts on the subject.
There are a number of ways to spot a friendly (read: poisonous) ex.
She is a constant presence in his life – staying in contact with mutual friends (aka his friends she has now adopted as her own) appearing coincidently at parties you go to, staying matey with his sister and dropping in on his mother because she ‘was passing’.
She wasn’t passing – she wants to have sex with your boyfriend.
She will always be thrilled to see you both, regularly using expressions like ‘It’s so great we can all get on!’ ‘I’m totally cool with him having met someone!’ and ‘I’m really enjoying being single!’
She hates being single, she hates you and she wants to have sex with your boyfriend.
In-between her over-enthusiasm for your relationship with her ex-boyfriend she will also regularly bring up the old days.
Peppering her nostalgia with private jokes and intimacies that you have absolutely no knowledge of.
‘You don’t know David likes Monty Python? I can’t believe he hasn’t told you that!?? We used to watch it together all the time. I didn’t think there was a person in the world who didn’t know that!!!’
What can you do if caught in the net of the ‘friendly ex’?
Frustratingly, it is often the case that men are slightly naive to the complexities of the poisonous ex.
In his mind their relationship is a closed box and there is no harm in friendship.
Doing anything but smiling sweetly will only lead to you looking paranoid and tightening the proverbial rope with which to hang yourself.
Instead of being frustrated about the fact that you are the only person to see through the charade of coincidences, mutual friends, memories and Monty Python, think of his friendly ex as being similar to an STD.
The initial outbreaks are the worst, but in time, if treated appropriately, will eventually subside – at worst reappearing bi-annually to bother you slightly at best disappear altogether.
Either that or have it out with your boyfriend.
Tell him that Boxing Day dinner with his ex-girlfriend isn’t appropriate and dump him for someone who’s actually got the balls to burn his bridges.
There is only one type of threesome you should consider being in – this isn’t it.