Oh Burn: You Got Engaged and Your Ex Freaked Out

Illustration for article titled Oh Burn: You Got Engaged and Your Ex Freaked Out

This week we asked if your ex freaked out when you got engaged. And, oh yes, yes they did.

And of course, some among you played the role of the ex doing the freaking out. Let’s not waste any time getting to your stories. I deliberately tried to keep things light by picking the funnier ones, and leaving the scarier tales out of the round-up, but if you’re looking to be spooked head on back to the original post for some truly out-there behavior.


Facebook meltdowns, it will surprise you not, were quite common, like this story from AlaceTheWhatever:

My ex just made some passive-aggressive vague posts on Facebook. “So happy to have the support of my REAL friends,” “Life doesn’t make sense sometimes, but I know now that moving on is the best solution,” and the like. That almost irritated me more than an actual meltdown, just because he has this victim mentality that won’t ever go away. I mean, we broke up three years ago and I got engaged two years after that.

I did get a text from him on the day of the wedding though: “Congratulations. I’m sorry that for some reason you decided not to invite me, despite us spending so many good times together. Sad face.”

Here’s another Facebook melter from Gemtastic:

My husband’s ex wrote him a Facebook message the day we announced our engagement saying “So happy for you!!!!! :) :) :)“ but then like twenty minutes later she posted a video of her singing a mash up of a bunch of Taylor Swift songs, including “You Belong With Me” and “Speak Now” the one where Taylor just straight up ruins a wedding. So...just a coincidence, right?


Email was another common media for exes to throw a nutter. Bonus points to Rattie Mattie for having a Dragon Con wedding that further incited her husband’s ex’s ire:

None of my exes did, but my husband? Wooooaaaah boy.

So we are in the midst of wedding planning when he gets this email from her. It is LONG. I mean gives-you-carpal-tunnel-syndrome-scrolling long. And it is craaaaaaaaaazy. A bit of backstory here: my husband spent all of his life thinking he never wanted to marry, till he met me. So years and years of relationships where the commitment was “I love you, but no marriage.” So a HUGE portion of this letter is about how he must have been lying to her all this time, and or she must not have been worthy of marriage, (but mostly him lying to her). ALSO we had planned our wedding at Dragon Con, Labor Day weekend, cause it was a costumed wedding and all my friends would be there, and we loved the con; and his crazy ex was ALSO getting married and had planned her wedding for November. Crazy Ex got the idea in her head that we had planned our wedding early, and all fancy-like so as to upstage her (I’d not met the woman, nor did either one of us know about her beau or wedding plans till this email showed up.)

Not only that, but there was a bunch of paragraphs about how she had seen me on Facebook and that it wasn’t fair cause I could draw/sew/do all the nerdy things and she could never compete (Keep in mind, they hadn’t been together for years...) and my husband was a Liar McLiarpants who was probably cheating on her the whole time, and they had dated for years and years and years, but he wanted to marry me after what, 2 years? There was some threatening stuff about me as well.

It was the most astonishing thing either one of us had read. A perfect storm of crazy, served with a side of bewilderment. We wound up talking about Crazy Ex for hours, and my husband started realizing what a toxic relationship they had had. Almost abusive, in many ways. It pissed my husband off so much, he went back to the computer and deleted the email without replying, and deleted all her contact info. He went from thinking she was an Ex (who was a friend) to Crazy Ex (whom we never want to run into.)

Most all of my exes came to our wedding and got roaring drunk and we had a great time.


How about some old-fashioned landline action? Here’s a great one from the fittingly named eyerolldeep:

Before we went public with our engagement, my husband called to give his ex the news himself rather than having her hear it secondhand (they had a very lengthy history, we have lots of mutual friends, and we were living in the same city as her, so we agreed it was the polite thing to do — even though she’s the one who had ended their relationship, and they’d been apart for almost four years). When he told her, she immediately burst into tears and shouted, “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU’RE DOING THIS TO ME IN MY BIRTHDAY WEEK!!!” and hung up. We found out later that she actually left work early that day because she was so distraught.


Not to be outdone, some of you admitted to losing it a little when you got the news that an ex was to be wed, like doit2julia:

I found out my ex was engaged when he dropped me an insistent FB message asking for my mailing address so he could send a wedding invitation.

He and I had been together for years and had been engaged until he’d dumped me unceremoniously in the midst of a destructive streak, only to turn around a month later and marry a girl he’d known for 24 hours. She turned out to have... er... mental problems, and the relationship blew up in his face pretty quickly. He came crawling back to me, I told him where to go, and we eventually became as cordial as is possible after something like that. So I wasn’t exactly excited at the prospect of flying half way across the country and shelling out a grand, just to grace his reception with my inevitable passive-aggressive en vino veritas.

Instead, I got drunk with my best friend and then sent him a reply, explaining my schedule wouldn’t allow it and added, “Hope this one works out!”


sharkopalypse shared what is probably a pretty common thing to have happen:

Was anyone else embarrassed to find YOU were upset when an ex got engaged? This happened to me a few months ago... one of my exes, who happens to be the ONLY ex I’d seriously discussed marriage with, got engaged, and finding out (via Facebook, ugh) completely knocked me down for a couple days. Mind you, this ex and I were horrible at communicating with each other when we dated, had completely misaligned life goals, had a horrible break-up, and he’s been totally passive-aggressive to me in the years since. I’ve long since realized how terribly matched we were, but he’s still the only dude I’ve been deeply in love with, and I guess to find out he’s moved on and found another woman he feels that way about already — it’s like, “daaaamn, how was that so EASY for you?”

And then I have to backpedal and remind myself happiness is not zero-sum, I’m in no rush to get married anyway, blah blah blah.

Emotions, man. That shit’s cray.


Bah, on rereading this comment, I sound so bitter! For what it’s worth, after a couple days, the panicked “why haven’t I found someone yet?!” feelings quickly subsided. I haven’t said anything to the ex — I was thinking about sending a congratulatory note, but he’s had a tendency to read into any messages I send him, so I figure it’s safest just to let it go. I hope things work out for him, though. He seems to be in a much better place than he was when we were together.


TwiterTwouble went out and found herself a new drinking buddy when she found out her ex was engaged. (Little bummed this story contains no mention of Sluggo.)

I don’t know about him, but I totally flipped when my ex got engaged to a mutual friend of ours. I went to a bar and ended up drinking with red neck comedian Ron White that night.

They’re divorced now and I still drank with a nasty comedian, who came out on top Danny?!!??


If, after reading these stories, you’re still questioning whether or not you should tell an ex that you’re engaged, this thread, in which people shared their thoughts and experiences, is a good place to start.

Before we wrap things up for today, let’s declare a winner for most creative way you told your ex you were getting married, from PrincessMonsterTruck:

I accidentally emailed my ex - who has the same first name as my husband - the venue contract for our wedding. Surprise!


Contact the author at jolie@deadspin.com.

Image via Shutterstock.

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When I saw this, I thought I should share my story but didn’t because it’s so fucked up it’s almost unbelievable.

I dated my now husband through high school and for being that young we had a fairly drama free and loving relationship. Mind you this was in the early 2000’s and Facebook had yet to exist. After graduation he left for the military and we agreed to stay together as a couple because we really felt like we belonged together. About two years went by before we decided to take a break. We had only seen each other twice in those years, he lived thousands of miles away and was meeting a lot of people. I too was meeting people at college and my new job so I thought it would be a good time for a break. We left it at “when the time is right, in a couple years, we’ll see how we feel.” So he dated a couple girls and I went on a couple dates. The last guy I went on a date with was pretty nice and kind of intense and I agreed to go on a couple more dates. Things got intense fast and he was obviously more into me than I was into him. He wanted me to meet his parents and bought me gifts that were way too expensive/sentimental for a three week relationship. My high school boyfriend was coming back into town for leave so I attempted to create space between myself and Mr. Intense, I wasn’t that concerned since it had only been a couple weeks. He wasn’t getting the hint. So I kind of ignored him for a week and when my high school boyfriend came back, we both knew we wanted to be together and there was really one one way to do that since he was in the military. We needed to get married. And so we did. On a Tuesday afternoon. And when Mr. Intense wouldn’t stop calling me I told him I got married and he could kindly buzz off.

Here’s where it gets really fucked up: he wouldn’t stop calling me, like 40 calls in one day. I felt kinda bad because I could have tried to make it more clear that I wasn’t interested in him that way. I tried to be nice and asked him if he would like to meet me so he could get the gifts back that he’d given me and he agreed. He showed up and was sobbing. When I told him I was moving to be with my new husband, he screamed in anguish. He left that night and he never tried to contact me again. But his sister, who I’d never met, did. A couple days later she called me to tell me that he had killed himself and it was my fault. I was devastated. I was such a shitty person, I made someone kill themselves. It was awful. I felt so terrible for his family, sent them flowers, I tried to call them to say whatever words 20 year old me could possibly come up with to explain how sorry I was but nobody would answer my calls. My first few months of marriage were awful because guilt ate me up. I got pregnant pretty quickly after and life went on. I still thought about Mr. Intense almost everyday and even thought about what I could do to honor his memory.

Fast forward two and a half years, I went home for my best friend’s wedding. Her bachelorette party was at a bar and I fucking SEE him. He’s at the fucking bar! Not only is he alive, he’s drinking his little heart out with a group of his friends. I confronted him and he blew me off with, “yeah I was pissed off, so I had my sister call you and lie.” I didn’t have words, no words would come from my mouth. So after I said nothing more to him, he left with “I’m glad having that baby didn’t make you fat.”