Is it okay to stay friends after breaking up? There are many different opinions on this. Nobody seems to know the right answer and it works differently for every individual. As for me, I spent a lot of time thinking about this, and eventually realized that I will never be friends with my exes.
Breakups never fail to hurt you. It doesn’t matter how deep or how long your relationship lasted, it’s always painful. Staying friends after that might seem like such a good idea at first. Why not? You know each other well and you’ve been through a lot together.
It might be true to some extent. It’s nice to stay on good terms, greet each other on the street, or wish each other a happy birthday. However, there are many potential problems I figured out while thinking about whether or not my ex and I should stay in contact.
Unless you have a business or kids together, there’s no logical reason for the two of you to stay friends. You have other people in your life who love and care about you. Hang out with them instead. You had a life before your exes, and you have your own life after them.
Let me start with the most obvious one: Your ex-partner might still be in love with you.
You may be sure about your feelings, but you can never know how the other person truly feels. They might say that everything is fine with what happened between the two of you, but actually feel devastated.
Maybe they still like you, but when you confidently said that it’s time for you to go your separate ways, it seemed pointless to beg you to stay. It appeared as if it was a mutual breakup. And now, when they’ve lost you in the romantic sense, they can still fight to keep you in their life, at least as a friend.
Let’s say you’ve gone out for a coffee and you do something your ex might find cute. It would probably make them feel sad because they can’t hug or kiss you. They can’t, because friends never do that.
It could work for some time, but not for long. As soon it starts becoming obvious that you’ve moved on and started dating someone new, it will be very difficult for your ex-partner to get over you. It will feel like you’ve broken up twice.
So if you want a smooth separation, it’s best to make one clean cut.
By staying in contact, you’re also building a great foundation for an on-and-off relationship. There’s a huge chance that you’ll get back together. Then you’ll break up again… it’s possible that it will happen even multiple times.
These kinds of relationships are definitely not a healthy choice! If someone truly likes and wants you, breaking up would never be an option. On-and-off relationships are just proof that either one or both partners aren’t sure whether they want to stay together or not. The only truth is, they should go their separate ways for good.
Another potential problem is that you’d still be giving them power over you.
The two of you are both hurt, so you want to respect each other and make things easier. But if you’re trying to stay friends, you might unconsciously limit yourself.
How? It’s easy. You’ll try to lead a life that won’t hurt the other person, but the fact of the matter is, you’re not together anymore. There’s no need to adjust your life according to what might or might not be hurtful to your ex-partner.
I know you’d probably think it’s bad to go out every weekend, post stories with friends, enjoy new places, or try new hobbies. And it would be difficult to get rid of that nagging feeling, especially if you feel like you’re the only one who’s moving on with their life.
So, this is just another example of why it’s not a good idea to stay friends with the person you once loved. You can’t lose all the feelings at once, and you’ll still care about how your actions may affect them.
After some time, you will find a new love interest. And that’s how a new problem arises. There’s a huge possibility that your new partner won’t be happy that you’re friends with your ex. It would make them very uncomfortable. So why would you risk wrecking your new relationship?
If you can’t see why this might be a problem, try putting yourself in their shoes. Imagine you’re out with your partner and they decide to introduce you to their ex. Since they share many memories, it’s likely that the past will come up as a topic.
They might talk about the people they used to hang out with and the fun times spent together. Because if they decided to stay friends with their ex, they probably agreed to ignore most of the negative sides of their romantic relationship.
Listening to these stories will be hurtful to your new partner, whether they’re willing to admit it or not.
And finally, there’s a thin line between love and hate. Always be careful. If everything was good between the two of you, you would’ve still been together. Therefore, there must be some bad blood in your relationship.
Stay aware of the fact that your ex might not always want what’s best for you. The fact that you’re able to lead a happy life without them might trigger some jealousy in them.
So take their advice with a big pinch of salt. People change when their feelings get hurt, and your ex is not the same person you were once with. Just as some parts of you changed when you separated, it’s likely your former partner experienced the same.
These points helped me realize what I want to do with my life, and who the people I need to keep close to myself are. I’ve been living by the “not staying friends with your exes” rule for a long time. Now, I can promise you that I’ve never regretted my decision.