General Question

tennesseejac's avatar

How possible is it to keep an "ex" as a friend (not with sexual benefits) after you have broken up?

Asked by tennesseejac (3778points) January 9th, 2009

I think you have to consider honesty and jealousy in this complex equation, but I wish it were possible because I lost a great friend that got married to a guy who can’t handle it.

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15 Answers

basp's avatar

Yes, it is possible.

laureth's avatar

It’s possible – but what helps this along more than anything else is to let a lot of time elapse. Possibly years.

It took me a lot of time to realize that many people don’t go away forever. People have a way of coming back into your life, sometimes many years down the road. Let go for now. Live life apart. And if it’s meant to be a friendship, it’ll bubble back up again when you are both ready.

cage's avatar

I’ve stayed friends with all my ex girlfriends.
You just have to forgive the reasons on why you may break up. You’re still similar people, who at one time, really liked each other.
I’ve always found it very easy to stay friends with ex girlfriends, and lovers.

cdwccrn's avatar

It’s possible, though has its challenges. Things will never be the same. You can’t go back.

cage's avatar

Sure you can go back… why not!?

Snoopy's avatar

Its absolutely possible! In my case, our families (including our children) have socialized. His wife is great. They live out of state and we have stayed in their home when visiting in their area…

We were great friends who tried to date….and it was kinda like dating my brother. (ick)

cdwccrn's avatar

@cage: just the process of a breakup changes people. So, even if there is a reconciliation and the relationship is restored, it will be different. And if the relationship becomes platonic, it will be very different.

nocountry2's avatar

It is very possible, and possibly rewarding. I think in order for it to work, you must be very honest with yourself about WHY you want to continue the friendship (is there a sliver of hope of reconciliation in the background? If so, the already-jealous partner will probably pick up on that). It also depends on the strength of trust in her relationship – if it’s very upsetting to her partner, she will probably not be as receptive to friendship in order to not hurt him.

cage's avatar

Not that I’m saying it’s the best option, but that only applies if you allow it to become platonic.
My point was simply it seems a negative view to say it will never be the same again, ever.

erin's avatar

I’m good friends with all of my exs without any sexual connection whatsoever, but I’ve found in the past that it’s best to give it a waiting period after the breakup for both parties to accept the end of the relationship and adjust to not being together. Otherwise it’s far too easy to slip back into old habits. For me, the magic number always seems to be 6 months. And yes, I’ve had to deal with my ex’s new girlfriends being nervous about me. I’ve usually gotten over than by respecting their boundaries and trying to include their new girlfriends and my new boyfriend when we do hang out. It’s not as awkward as you might think!

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

I think it’s very hard, unless you can become a friend of the couple. Can you be best friends? Never again. She married (or should have married) her opposite sex best friend. If her husband has problems with her having a relationship with you, then perhaps one of you puts out “unfinished business” vibes.

90s_kid's avatar

Jack White, from White Stripes (and Raconteurs) married that lady of the group. (They were a duo and I forget her name). They then broke up, but are still good friends. They say that they are ‘brother and sister’ to keep away from being bothered by the media.

Blondesjon's avatar

It is possible, with a partner like Mr. Peanut. He knows why.

TitsMcGhee's avatar

I think it’s possible, but you need to give it some time. You need to consider the circumstances of the breakup and how serious the relationship was in the first places. I have avoided staying friends with exes who I was in bad relationships or have had bad breakups with. However, my most recent ex and I did not break up amiably, but after a few months, I realized that he was a great friend as well as a boyfriend, and that I wanted to maintain some kind of contact so I could have that other wonderful friend on my side. He’s a great person to talk to, but I do have to remind myself that I’m not going to be able to act the same way as when we were dating. The key is taking it slow and realizing that there were possibly feelings hurt that will need to be considered. But long story short, it is possible, but it takes work.

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