Should I Stay Friends with My Ex?

Should I Stay Friends with My Ex?

We are going to explore all the good and the bad reasons for you to stay friends with your ex. It does require a bit of soul-searching to make the right decision, but this will surely guide you in the right direction!

If You Are Considering It, Don’t Rush the Decision

Unless you have thoroughly explored your options before the breakup happened, you should take your time to sort your feelings before deciding what would be better for both of you. Depending on the type of relationship and the personalities of the people involved, there can be pros and cons to staying friends. Though for most people there are only cons.

Likewise, if you wish to ask your ex how they feel about the idea of being friends, you should give them enough time to think it out. Their feelings, after all, are also important. Someone who doesn’t care about their ex’s feelings anymore are no friends of theirs, and they should not try to act like one.

It Could Impede Your Recovery

Usually, the best way to recover from a breakup is to separate yourself from what hurts you. If you have any feelings left for the other person, it is very likely that if you were to spend time with them again, your brain would do an amazing job of reminding you of all the great things you two used to do together, that you can’t anymore. And if you were to accidentally forget what is not allowed anymore, the results wouldn’t exactly be any better.

In some rare cases, your ex might still allow you to do romantic things with them… which will only serve to confuse you more. They might allow it because of the good old times, feel bad for you, or simply because they don’t actually need to feel romantic love to get intimate with someone. You’ll be pondering if they still love you; meanwhile they show no interest of starting a new relationship with you. If you do still feel love for them and this happens to you, run away — fast. You will not be getting anything positive from the experience, trust me.

The Selfishness of Begging Someone to Stay Friends

It’s one thing to wish to stay friends with someone despite their obviously still existing romantic feelings, but it’s another to toss those feelings directly into the garbage can, claiming that one’s desires for a friendship is oh-so-much stronger and so much more important than all the emotional suffering the other is going through. Making such a request is selfish and shows a complete lack of empathy. You have no need of someone in your life, even as a friend, who thinks they can just stomp all over your feelings.

Manipulators will try to guilt their partners into staying in a relationship, come back into one, or, if all else fails, stay friends. The reason they do this is, of course, for their own benefit while completely disregarding how you feel. If you agree to put up with more of their crap, they will definitely take advantage of the uncertainty in your heart. They believe that because they are happy, you also must be!

False Hopes of a Renewed Relationship

Date — Break up — Date — Break up. Rinse and repeat. You get the gist of it. One of the best ways to repeatedly date and break up with someone is to stay friends with them after a break up. Rarely, if not very rarely, is there a chance of a relationship working if it didn’t work the first time. Unless you have very strong reasons to believe that it could work the next time, I implore you, please don’t hurt yourself and them any more. If your goal is to use every moment of your “friendship” to try to entice them into a new relationship, stop now. That’s not what a friendship is.

Both Have to Desire It for It to Work

If either one of you does not desire a friendship (whatever the reason is), those wishes have to be respected. No attempt should ever be made to try to influence the other into a friendship they do not desire deep down. No “please”, “I beg you”, or anything. The relationship is over: your heart is back to being yours, and their heart is theirs once again.

Both parties can only heartfully agree to this new friendship if:

  • It is something that both parties desire
  • New limits and non-limits have been thoroughly discussed
  • No tears of sadness were shed at the moment of the agreement

When the Relationship Was a Mistake, but the Friendship Wasn’t

It only takes one person in a friendship to push the idea of a relationship. Confused feelings, societal standards such as, “men and women can’t be friends” and fear of losing a friendship that is very dear to them can all push people into a romantic relationship they aren’t necessarily committed to. If you feel like you had a fantastic friendship and things only started going wrong once the relationship started, and that it felt wrong for both of you, it might be worth considering reverting back to being simply friends.

Was it really romantic love that you felt towards each other, or was it simply enjoying the time you spent together? This is important, as if there is something you enjoyed doing with your ex on a romantic level and that you feel you might miss, then it could be painful to spend time with them, knowing that you cannot spend your time with them that way anymore. The gate’s been closed.

Dating Again While Being Friends with Your Ex

Be wary that if you date again, your partner might feel insecure about you still being friends with your ex. If that is the case, be sure to thoroughly explain the situation to them in order to not have them be constantly on edge, thinking the relationship could be under constant threat. And if you want to make both your ex and your current date really uncomfortable, try going out with both of them at once! You really shouldn’t be doing this unless the three of you are completely comfortable with the idea.

You should also avoid dating again while being friends with your ex if you think there is any possibility for you to fall in love with your ex again or to develop any desire to resume the relationship with them. That would just be juggling with their hearts — one day you won’t catch both.

If You Wish to Disconnect, Your Feelings Matter the Most

It’s that simple. If you wish to have some time alone to sort your feelings, your ex has no word in it. If your ex still respects you as a human being, they will let you have that time for yourself. Since the relationship is over, they’re not looking out for you anymore; only you are. Your recovery should always be your priority.

Disclaimer: This might not be an option for everyone, as other people, such as children, might have priority over your own feelings.

Categories: Compatibility, Dating Advice, Relationship Advice

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