Hello everyone, this is my first post.
Just for some background, my ex and I were together for just over 3 years. We lived together and loved each other deeply.
We split up just over a year ago (for anyone who has read up on attachment theory, he was avoidant and I am anxious, so you can guess how that went). I was older than him and wanted to get married, but he felt that he was too young.
We were both really upset when we split up, he cried as much as I did. We had to stay living together whilst I found somewhere else to live, so I saw him grieving too (eyeopening for me, I didn’t think men did that).
I was in so much pain that I asked him if we could unfriend each other and each other’s friends and family on social media, and not stay in contact at all, to make it easier to get over him. I asked him not to change his profile photo either (it was us when we were a couple, but when we split he changed it to him on his own, so I asked him to keep it as him on his own, and not change it if/when he met someone else). I knew he would move on, being a man, and I didn’t want to know anything about it, or accidentally see something about it online.
He kept these promises (despite the fact he had wanted to stay in touch with me) and we agreed to stop speaking. I had wanted us to stay friendly, but he became hostile and started arguments. He moved back to his home country, so I think we were never going to see each other again (despite his hints at visits).
A couple of months ago I was forced to contact him (to do with the bank), and inadvertently found out that he had a new girlfriend. As I was still heartbroken, this was devastating.
Last week I found out that he died in a crash - by one of our friends posting it in a group message (thanks mate). His family didn’t even think of contacting me.
His new girlfriend (he had been with her 3-4 months) started posting in our friends group, using his account.
This group is made up of friends I have known for years (none of them stayed in touch with him or have ever met/spoken to his new girlfriend), who watched us fall in love and knew us as a couple - it should be my safe space to grieve with our friends.
I posted in the group to thank everyone for their kind messages, and his new girlfriend lashed out at me, posting (using his account) 1 second later, using my exact words, but changing them from “I” to “Me and his friends and family”. I assume she was trying to mark ‘her’ territory, but I don’t know why she can’t just go away - she will be able to grieve with his friends and family, and will be front and centre at his funeral, whilst I weep in England all alone.
Every time she posts in my friends group it is like a knife through my heart.
It doesn’t help that some of my friends were insensitive enough to reply directly to her with their condolence messages, quote her etc.
Also, the thought of her reading all of the private messages between me and him makes me feel physically sick.
I keep panicking that she will do something even crueller, such as changing his profile picture to one of them together, or untagging him from my photos and posts (he had also promised not to delete our history).
My friend also pointed out it violates Data Protection and you’re not allowed to login to and use a dead person’s account, and told me to report it - however I don’t want to prevent his family from being able to access his account, it doesn’t seem fair to them, there is no ill will between them and me.
When I had found out he died, I messaged his sister to say how sorry I was, how much I still loved him and that I am grieving too, and I sent flowers and a card. She was very touched and said she had posted my message in their family group (I used to be in that group, but obviously left when we split up), and sent me a photo of the flowers, thanking me. When we split up, he told his family, and his mum and brother cried when he told them. We used to fly over regularly, and they used to visit us, so I knew his family and friends well, and had even met all his aunties, uncles, cousins etc. at large family events.
I have organised a memorial event for him with my friends, as the last act of love I can do for him, which makes me feel a bit better, but I’m still really struggling.
My friend had gifted us with a couples portrait for my birthday, he kept it when we were dividing our photos. I wish I had kept it, but I can’t ask for it back now, and I’m scared that if I did someone might have thrown it in the bin (I couldn’t stand it if he had thrown it away).
My friend asked how I was and I said that I wish I could talk to him and tell him how I felt about him. She said I should, as if he was in the room, but I can’t - I do believe in the afterlife, but I’m scared that he died hating me, or worse, feeling indifferent towards me, and that he wouldn’t want me to talk to him.
I hate it that we never smoothed things over and parted on a bad note - it’s killing me to think that maybe he hated me, or thought I hated him. I still loved him so much, and was struggling just with our breakup, I wasn’t even over him.
I have been bereaved before (my dad, grandparents, horses, cat and dog (I’m in my forties, in case that sounds like a lot)). I have always found comfort in thinking of them in heaven watching over with me with love.
But as I was cut out of my ex’s life and then replaced, I don’t have that comfort now. I worry the only message he would have for me would be “I hate you/don’t love you, leave me alone and stop crying over me”, which breaks my heart.
I tried googling my situation to find some comfort, but I could only find articles about people who had lost an ex years after splitting up, were completely over them, and had even moved on themselves,
Has anyone else been through this, or something similar?