Last month I wrote a post on “Being Friends the Ex” where I decided that generally, staying friends with the ex wasn’t such a good idea. Well, staying friends with MY exes hasn’t always worked out for the best so I guess I am biased. Just because it didn’t work out too well for me, it doesn’t mean it can’t work well for others.
After writing the post, I have received lots of feedback from you ( and thank you!). It’s always really good to hear your views which, in this case were pretty different to my own. It seems many of you have remained great friends with exes so I thought I’d take the time to approach the topic from a different angle.
Let’s not kid ourselves, staying friends with an ex is not always easy. From your feedback it seems that the way to do it successfully is to be completely honest about your feelings for one another. If you still feel more for them then you need to decide whether this will affect your friendship. From your input it’s pretty clear that whatever happens, being “besties” straight away isn’t going to happen. Both of you will probably need time beforehand to come to terms with the split and deal with any unresolved feelings.
It seems many of you have managed to overcome this and remained friends. One reader made a really interesting point. He told me that after a long-term relationship and getting to know each other so well it’s a “shame to just throw it all away” and I would definitely have to agree with him. I think it’s so hard to just wave goodbye to the person you spent so much time with, knows you inside out and have so many memories with. It’s so final. If you can work things out after a split and have a stress free friendship for the both of you then, ideal. It’s just getting to this point that can be problematic. As one reader told me, staying friends “depends a lot on the circumstances of the split.” If someone cheats or treats the other badly then at some point in the future, the animosity may kick in ( if it hasn’t already) and just end up getting messy. However, if the split is amicable then friendship may come pretty naturally. One of our Twitter friends recently told me that she has remained great friends with her ex and that “he even baby sits my son which isn’t his and likewise me for his daughter!”
I think it can be tough but given time, if you really want it to work it is possible to salvage a friendship after a break-up providing both parties are honest and upfront with each other from the beginning.
Thoughts? Drop us a line below…
Break ups are hard- everyone knows this. When a relationship comes to an end it’s often incomprehensible to think that that’s it. It’s just so final. You go from spending so much time together, perhaps even living together to nothing. A world without them seems unimaginable. Rather than cutting all communication, remaining friends sometimes seems like an appealing option.
But can it ever work?
I think it depends on whether the split was mutual. If you don’t see each other in “that” way anymore then fine, remaining friends shouldn’t be too strenuous and will come reasonably easy. Perhaps you were only supposed to be friends in the first place?!
However, for most it’s not that easy. Usually one person will end up liking the other a little more which makes the “friendship” very stressful indeed. The huge change in dynamic means that hanging out together will be entirely different. Lunch won’t end with a kiss and hand holding won’t be complimenting the afternoon walk any more, making things hard and often, quite upsetting. Often, the best way to move on is to make a clean break. As hard as this may sound, if one of you still has feelings for the other it’s the kindest thing for you to do for the other person or even for yourself.
I also think remaining friends with your ex will be likely to cause problems in the long-run. Put yourself in the position of a future partner; would you be OK with them meeting up for coffee or lunch with their ex? How would it make you feel? Would you run the risk of putting your future relationships in jeopardy just because you want to remain pals with your ex?
My opinion is – it’s better to look to the future and not live in the past. After all, there’s plenty more fish in the sea!
What are you’re thoughts? Are any of you still good friends with your exes? Or, has staying friends with an ex caused problems?
Eagerly awaiting your opinions…Jen x