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I Just Called To Tell You That I Found Someone New

December 16th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Then I CC’d every girl I’d see see ’round town

© – André 3000

I wasn’t cc’d or even sent a text message, at least my ex had the courtesy call and tell me she was going to have a baby. The only thing more shocking than the news itself was the call itself. We made a deal early in our breakup to cut off contact with one another and with the exception of a couple of missteps by yours truly, we both did a great job of holding up our ends of the bargain. So when I received a voicemail from her telling me to call her back, I was taken aback. When I finally did get back in touch with her and she shared the news with me, I was taken down.

For my long time readers, you know how the rest of the story goes, so I’ll refrain from divulging more details because today’s post isn’t about that specific phone call. Today’s post is about the phone call, or the email, or the text, or the instant message, or, in a very rare instance, the face-to-face news we receive from a past lover that they are moving on in some form or fashion with someone else. Why do they bother and more importantly why do we care?

I suppose I should preface this by saying I don’t know the exact answer to this question. I can’t speak for everyone who has ever done such a thing, but then again, I think most people who read this blog know I have no more answers to life’s questions than the next person does. All I know is what it’s like to be told by someone you once thought you were going to marry that they’re going to get married to someone else, or someone you with whom you thought you were going to have a family, is going to have a family with someone else.

Why did these women bother telling me such things when I never asked to know in the first place?

Well, they all gave me their reasons, and I could get into the specifics of those reasons, but why bother? It’s really never a good enough reason when we initially hear the news. It’s not like I ever woke up a day in my life hoping to hear from an ex who is saying she found the love of her life and her name is not mine. Besides, we’re moving on just the same, right? They don’t get a phone call from us saying, “Hey, guess what? I found someone new. Who is it? Oh, it’s me. Me. By myself. Yep, I’ve found myself and I’m loving myself more everyday and I’m so happy I’ve moved on without you.”

I don’t make a phone call like that because I do believe it would kind of be wrong. So what makes it right when they call me to basically say the same thing except instead of bragging about how they found themselves, they’re boasting about finding someone else?

This is the question I get mostly from my female readers. There was once a man in their life who said he was going to marry them or who they thought was the one to marry them. Then it doesn’t work out, and they move on, only to get the news from them that they have found someone else they’re going to marry or someone else with whom they’re going to have a baby. Their stories always lead to the same question, “Why did he call to tell me that?”

Well, let’s be clear that men get these calls from women too. As a matter of fact, there’s a part of me that believes when a woman finally does find a man who puts a ring on it they are salivating at the opportunity to share the news with all their past men. They can’t wait to say, “Hey, idiot, guess what I got? A ring. Oh and it comes with a man who wants to be with me for the rest of my life. Boom!”

But most of me believes the reason we really want to share the news about a future with someone else to a person from our past, is because we once thought the person from our past was going to be the person in our future. Sometimes we miss people who we are no longer with, and just because we found someone to be with for the rest of our lives, doesn’t mean we stop. As I used to tell my ex when we were going through our on again off again phase, you don’t have to be with me to love me. To this day I believe that to be true.

The second question, which I believe is the better question we have to ask ourselves is this: If we have moved on as much as we say we have, then why do we care so much when the person from our past calls to tell us they moved on?

I would be lying if I said ex-girlfriends who called to tell me they were engaged to be married or having a family with someone else sounded like my music to my ears. Like I said up top, those aren’t the phone calls I’m ever waiting for. But if I can guess one reason why I cared when they called, it’s probably the same reason they cared enough to call me. I, like her, thought that it was going to be me they were talking about on the other end of the phone, not someone else.

It turned out differently, way more differently than I thought it would, but if it’s one thing I’m relieved to know, it’s that no matter how differently it turned out to be, it all turned out to be okay.


The Process: Headed home today, wish me safe travels please.

Still haven’t recorded the new podcast, apologies, but will definitely do so either late tonight when I arrive home or early tomorrow, in the meantime, THE SIXTEENTH EDITION of the POPPIN’ QUESTIONS PODCAST! Listen here, please! Also, if you’d like to submit a question for consideration in the seventeenth edition of the Poppin’ Questions Podcast, click here.

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  • amy

    I think it’s better to receive the news from the ex then hearing about it in the streets. It’s a courtesy call. I think exes that call with news about new partners, engagements, etc. wants to be the first source you hear the news from. You may feel awkward hearing the news from an ex but the feeling is magnified when you found out via a secondary source.

  • Sstarquinn

    Wow is all I can say to this…I swore I wouldn’t be the type to always comment, but I feel like this touches so close to home. I was never the one to call someone and deliver such news, I’ve been on the receiving end or someone called me to see if I had in fact moved on (which I always found strange). What baffled me even more was when I received a call from someone I’d barely spent time with. Why call me to tell me your getting back with your ex when we only went on three dates? At any rate, those calls are somewhat painful. Who wants to be reminded that things didn’t go the way we thought they would? (I know I’m asking more questions than commenting). But I suppose it’s as you said, it bothered me, because I still cared. And yes, there are one or two from my past that although we are no longer together, I can say I still love. However, I know things turned out the way they were suppose to and I’m perfectly ok with that.

  • Miss. Riss

    OMG! I am soooo with you on this. I have never understood the need to call ex’s in general, let alone calling them to say ” hey, I’ve moved on “. What’s the point? Who cares? I can say, I’ve never gotten that call before and I’ve never made the call either, cause it simply doesn’t make any sense. I make it very clear during break ups, this is over. I will not call you, please do not call me. We’ll be fine, no need to call and say ” hey, how’ve you been?”

    Oddly enough, I believe if you called your ex to say, ” hey, have you moved on yet? “, they’d be thinking, ” why is that any of your business? “. If I can’t ask, why should you be in such a rush to tell me?

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  • Kayla

    Great post. Have a safe trip home.

  • Reecie

    I found out an ex had a baby and got married from secondary sources. I wasn’t offended because we hadn’t talked in a long time. I haven’t sent him any congratulations either because we still just haven’t had any reason to talk. But when/if we do, I will. not a big deal to me.

  • Reecie

    I found out an ex had a baby and got married from secondary sources. I wasn’t offended because we hadn’t talked in a long time. I haven’t sent him any congratulations either because we still just haven’t had any reason to talk. But when/if we do, I will. not a big deal to me.

  • Adrizamo

    “Hey, idiot, guess what I got? A ring. Oh and it comes with a man who wants to be with me for the rest of my life. Boom!”

    I love this line!

  • Oluslimye Adejackson

    Interesting post.

    I sat here for a moment and thought about the ex’s that I ended on both good and bad terms with. I honestly don’t keep in contact with any of them. And if we should bump into each other (in a clean way), the way the brief conversation goes is a reflection of how long ago we were together.

    I can’t imagine calling an ex to tell her I have a new girl and what’s going on with her. I also can’t fathom an ex doing the same to me unless we maintained a friendship afterwards…which usually isn’t the case regardless of how we closed the loop on our relationship. A lot of this has to do with cultivating a friendship and the desire to maintain it. That’s the only way I’d think to call someone. I’d still have to think of them as a friend. *shrugs*

  • maxfab

    I agree with amy that it’s a courtesy thing. I feel like if you once cared about someone, and you know that person will be affected by the news that you’ve married/had a child with someone else, the kind thing to do is to tell them yourself rather than letting them hear about it in the streets.

    I only have one ex who didn’t do this for me. He had a child with his girlfriend and actively hid it from me. I found out on Facebook, of course, and I was confused and crushed to find out that he lied to me. I don’t really know why it mattered so much, but it definitely did.

  • Cheekie

    Maybe another reason why an ex would so happen to contact you about news such as having a baby with someone else is that you two used to be good friends before dating and/or are still good friends to this day.

  • Anonymous

    I’ve never received a call telling me that they’ve moved on, but when my ex called me the day he was getting deployed it was odd. He was very awkward on the phone like he thought I was about to jump through the phone and strangle him. Of course the reasoning behind our break-up is probably why he was acting this way. He’s more interested in keeping in touch then I am. He seems to think that we should be friends after everything that happened, but I disagree. I’ve moved on, there’s no point in him being a major part of my life. He doesn’t understand that.

    Something about him asking about my personal life doesn’t sit right with me either. You have no right to know about the people I’m dating when you voluntarily removed yourself from my life.

  • Ne

    I love this statement and I’m letting you know now, I will be using it! “…you don’t have to be with me to love me.” (Jozen, 2010)

  • Ne

    p.s. When we were on good terms, my ex kept me vaguely informed about him moving and I was extra cool about it b/c I was truly happy he had moved on…Funny thing is when I finally moved on & vaguely told him about it, YUP you guessed it things went all down hill…Still laughing!

  • Evs

    Safe travels Jozen! And, this was beautifully put. It’s one of those things where maybe the other person, or one day maybe us, just feels the need to tell someone something. You were/are important to her, just as she is to you. She wanted to tell you, to share with you, to be the one you heard it from. Maybe she is scared too, or just as in shock that looking back, it isn’t you. Whatever the case may be, just know that your last line is absolutely correct.

    “no matter how differently, it all turned out to be ok”

  • Evs

    Safe travels Jozen! And, this was beautifully put. It’s one of those things where maybe the other person, or one day maybe us, just feels the need to tell someone something. You were/are important to her, just as she is to you. She wanted to tell you, to share with you, to be the one you heard it from. Maybe she is scared too, or just as in shock that looking back, it isn’t you. Whatever the case may be, just know that your last line is absolutely correct.

    “no matter how differently, it all turned out to be ok”

  • LivCakes

    Brilliant post. Moreso because I’ve been through it. It baffled me immensely, mainly because I too, thought it was unnecessary. Hurtful even. Turns out that it was merely a display for the next girl, to boost confidence in a relationship which probably lacks substance anyway. But I never thought that it may be because he thought of me as a friend. Or did it out of courtesy. I do believe that just because folks “move on” that it doesn’t mean they don’t miss you any less. I guess sometimes people have to say things out loud for them to believe it themselves. Oh well. Things happen as they should, to allow better things to take their place. And that makes it okay. Once again, good job.

  • RenRexx

    In a sense, I think it’s disrespectful to go ahead and call someone to let them know the big changes in your life, especially if there was a “cease and desist” order of communication from the both of you.

    I could understand if years later, you found yourselves talking again, and it was by mutual agreement to continue talking to each other; but to just up and receive a call from your ex out of the blue to let you know she’s getting married or having a kid? What’s the point in that? The only exception I’d see this situation as acceptable is if you had a child together, and the new addition to the family would impact your child’s. But other than that- WTF, really?

  • sugahoneyicedtea

    Safe travels sexy! And btw I hate those type of calls..

  • 2true2u

    I think people call their ex’s as their way of saying, “Hey….here’s your last chance. You better say something!”. If the other person doesn’t I think it provides a sense of closure for the person who is claiming to have moved on. IMO, the fact that you call to announce moving on is a clear sign that you haven’t.

  • Missvion01

    I got the “I’m having baby” call from my ex and try as I might, I started to cry at work. Love, love love my current BF and am ready for God to give us the okay but the thought of the man I once loved and dicussed raising family with actualy doing it with someone else was more than I could handle.

    Point is, I been there and it freaking sucks to still love your ex….

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  • Anonymous

    I had this conversation with my boy recently because he was debating whether to tell his most recent ex, with whom he was still friendly and still socialized with and when they were together attempted to have a baby together, that he had a 7 month old. I told him if you value her as a friend tell her because it would hurt her more coming from a someone else.

    I agree with Jozen that there is no need to update an ex on these life changing events, especially if both of you no longer socialize or are friendly with each other. I don’t think I would mind necessarily because resonably life goes on, I do understand that feelings may be bruised but sometimes that other person may not be fully aware that their good news maynot be joyful to you. Or they maybe aware and just wanted to make certain to get that last hit in. Either way it is not going to kill you so buck up!!

  • Keith Reed

    I have a rule when it comes to exes that for the most part I haven’t broken: no communication. It’s counterproductive. The whole “we’re still friends” thing is bull, because it’s rare that most people who get into relationships were friends outside that relationship to begin with. Keeping in touch and pretending to be friends is usually just a way to keep someone close whom you don’t want to get too far away from you. Besides that, it’s disrespectful to the new person in your life to still be communicating with the old. And finally, if you were such good friends, there likely wouldn’t have been a reason for a breakup to begin with.

  • Not His Babymama

    i Just had this happen to me a couple days ago. I was with my ex on again off again almost 4 years. He call me the other day and says he got another girl pregnant at the beginning of the year and is now going through a custody battle. We havent been together since the end of last year and haven’t really communicated since then aside from occasional emails and texts begging to be back in my life again the whole year. I had No knowledge of the child, born in October, but I was thinking why should I care? Why am I even on the phone with you? Now that you’re at wits end you’re trying to get me to advise you on how to handle this situation with one of the hoodrats you were cheating with. In the end I gave him the best advise I could seeing as I’ve never had experience with that situation and I was very nice about it. I was so happy at the end of the call though because through the whole thing I kept thanking God it wasn’t me. Him calling me was just conformation I had done the right thing. Thank GOD for him calling. Thank GOD for letting me answer since I usually don’t. And Thank GOD it WASNT ME!

  • Cafe7202

    I’ve never received, nor made, a call like this. Mainly because either we remained friends and so it wasn’t “news”, or because we didn’t remain friends so they knew I didn’t care one way or the other.

    On the flip side, I have 2 kids and their father (who sees them every other weekend) hid the fact that he was married for years. I thought he lived with his gf and despite my efforts to reach out to her and develop some kind of relationship since she was caring for my children (very well from what they’ve said of her), I was always shut down. Then one day he called to change the drop off time for the kids….and put his phone in his pocket. It dialed me and I listened to him tell his coworker about the plans he had with his wife for the upcoming weekend. I called and told him I’d overheard. He apologized (like he would apologize for spilling milk) and started wearing his ring after that.

    So I guess my point is….I would have prefered a phone call telling me about his wedding. Especially considering he is my bd.

    Great post as usual Jozen.


  • PhlyyGirl

    I think the necessity of the phone call depends on who moved on and how they moved on.
    I had an ex and after almost 10 years, I gave up the ghost on us ever having a real relationship again. He didn’t. He would call and text from time to time, especially around the holidays when he knew I was coming home. The last time that he called me around thanksgiving, I finally had to break the news to him that I was seven months pregnant.
    That was the worst conversation of my life. I never wanted to hurt him and I probably should have called him and told him first, but I honestly thought a) it’s not really his business and b)we’re not together and not even really friends so it shouldn’t matter.
    Apparently, I was all the way wrong.
    Now will I call the rest of my significant exes and break the news to them? Probably not. At this point, I have other things to focus on, but at the same time, should I happen to encounter them physically, or in cyberspace, I will try to introduce the news in a fashion so that it’s not a surprise to them.

  • Holly Hedge

    I think my feelings and/reaction to this type of news would depend on if I still had love for the ex. There are some exes I would be truly happy for, just to know that they found happiness. I do have an ex that would crush me with this type of news, probably because he is my most recent ex and we were together for 3 years. I think the wounds haven’t quite healed. Even though I don’t want to be with him, I would be hurt to know that he moved on so quickly because I still have so much love for him. When someone you loved moves on, I think there is a period, however brief, that we tend to replay all the great moments we shared with them and down play the reasons the relationship didn’t work.

  • Artrinity

    Damn jozen…damn is cool to type right. In mean its not really cursing. Lol. Anyway. It never ceases to amaze me with how many people have been in this same situation. Just when you think you are the only one. Wow.

    As for this post loved it. I guess I just didnt get why the ex feels the need to say anything like that to you. I mean I can see if you ended things mutually as friends, but when its a messy break up and you know that other person still loves the other…that is sooo shady. And down right hurtful. I know that we shouldnt care belut we do. Why…because deep down we still wanted it to be us.

  • Thegumdrop

    Very refreshing to read this. I got a call from an ex telling me he was having a baby with a girl he barely knows… and I asked myself why? Why call me to tell me this..and more importantly, why am I momentarily crushed over this news. Everything comes and passes, it will only encourage You to want more in your future relationships. I wish them the best, I guess….

  • CourtyJ

    One word: Closure.

    Men & women have a hard time with “burning the bridge” or completely letting go of their exes. Until it’s something serious, they never feel they really have to. We like access.

    Men, want access to a woman from their past mainly to have the option to have sex with her again.
    Women, the fools we are, want access to the men of our past to possibly be with them/love them… and THEN have sex with them again. (lol).

    These phone calls are about closure. If he is marrying someone, he’s trying to move on clean and clear and by not telling you (his ex) about her (his fiance’) he feels a sort of “guilt” or “weight”. For a man… any woman in his past is still a possibility to him and so when getting married he has to cut off those lingering options to feel really stand up about his decision. Yes ladies, it’s in his head that he could have actually gotten it again… but that’s the point. This is about what he thinks he needs to move on.

    Women call for some of the same reasons but I think we more-so call because it’s our way of letting our exes know: We know you think you can still come get this… but you can’t. I’ve got someone new, someone I am loving more than I love you. Yes, I still love you… that’s why I’m being considerate and calling. But now… I love him more. Don’t call me and get me in trouble and don’t text me and say anything stupid when your drunk, because I’ve moved on.

    The expecting a baby/had a baby thing I won’t touch on because I don’t have children and don’t know the reasons why. Unless they got married, which would have merited a phone call already, I think they are calling out of guilt or looking for sympathy. But again… let me leave that alone.

    Great post Jozen!

  • Jolie

    You’re awesome Jozen but you already knew that. Thank you.

  • SDot

    Wow…thanks for this post. I got my first and only one of these calls about 2 weeks ago and yes, I was crushed. I’ve learned of other exes moving on and it never hurt like that before. I think, as someone upstream suggested, it’s because in the back of my mind I thought one day we’d get back together and live happily ever after. I wondered why he called and I guess your explanation makes as much sense as any. After allowing the devastation to wear off, I’m able to move on emotionally in a much easier way than I’ve been able to in the year since we actually broke up. While I didn’t appreciate the call, I definitely needed to learn about it and since we live in different cities, it’s probably the only way I ever would.

    Happy holidays Jozen.

  • La Eve!

    “you don’t have to be with me to love me.” Is the best line from this post Jozen!

  • Ceci

    all i could think while reading this was: “aint that the damn truth!!!!”

  • Anonymous

    Hey, I actually am up late and have been pissed off about this exact thing.  I have an ex who we both just decided 6 months ago that we could no longer be friends since I am married and he has a serious GF and there were still lingering feelings.  So we decided (he primarily) on the NC rule and said we will just wonder what each other is up to.  I already told him congrats on the upcoming engagement (He was going to propose soon and his GF was getting ancy).  Anyway, I have a missed call from him today and am not calling him back.  I know that is why he is calling me and I refuse to give him the satisfaction of getting a reaction from me.  I think it is extremely selfish of people to call their exes like that.  All they generally want is an ego post and someone to say “Oh, no, I still love you.”  If that person is no longer part of your life than it should stay that way.