Staying Friends With Your Ex Is A Recipe For Disaster (Don’t Ever Do This)


Breakups are miserable; for lack of better terms, they suck.

I’m going to assume the majority, if not everyone reading this, has experienced some sort of break up, whether you were getting kicked to the curb or doing the kicking yourself.

Regardless of our role in the break-up, they aren’t fun. We endure the anxiety leading up, a heart aching conversation of all things we supposedly did wrong, confusion, anger, tears, and then of course the, “but babe, we can still be friends.”

This seems like a decent idea, a win-win; maybe it will even end up being better this way, we often rationalize. “We won’t have the pressure and issues that came along with dating, but we can still be in each other’s lives.”

Yeah, no.

I am not bitter and am not trying to be rude, but coming from someone with way too much experience in this department, there is no way in hell we can or should be friends with an ex.

“But, we’re so close and he knows me better than I know myself” – we all silently object.

I’ve said those words so many times that I started to believe them but, as time went on and was wasted, I finally realized that it truly isn’t possible. It is actually ridiculous to think someone else knows us better; no they don’t – we are the only ones who truly know who we are.

I struggled for years with an ex because he genuinely was my person, therapist, soul mate, and best friend. He knew what each tone in my voice meant, he knew when I said one thing, I really meant another, and he was there through a lot of my toughest and darkest times. We had a mental connection that flourished in our relationship and I was convinced that meant it was real and we were the best. LOL no, it just meant we spent way too much time together.

It wasn’t long until we both agreed that dating wasn’t working due to reasons and disagreements that all blur together now but, one thing we did agree on was that we still “needed” each other. We went back and forth for two years between each option we had:

Not speaking/texting a single syllable to each other – I’m talking to the extreme, like forget I exist ordeal.  If we saw each other, it was dart in the other direction and groan to my girlfriends about how much of a joke my life was.

Being friends, actual friends – we would have sleepovers and not hook up, I would call him on the verge of breakdowns, and we would text every day and talk about what happened. We were in a relationship but weren’t hooking up (that didn’t last long).

Dating…again – LOL

Friends with benefits – we were together but didn’t have the title.

Each and every one of these caused a multitude of issues but the ones that involved staying friends created the worst:

  1. Jealousies evolved, or still existed
  2. “friends” but sex would complicate things
  3. He wasn’t moving on and neither was I
  4. I felt guilty hanging out with other guys
  5. I began comparing the new guys to my ex
  6. I became insecure

Why on earth would anyone sign up for that?

I was terrified to cut him out completely because every day I had so much I wanted to run and tell him. A song I demanded he love would play or I resolved an issue we had discussed and I would convince myself I couldn’t live without having him to talk to. I’m sure some, if not all, of you have been in a similar situation with similar anxieties but, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD I WAS SO DRAMATIC; all of that does in fact go away.

It’s only natural when a void and emptiness is created due to the removal of such an influence that we immediately feel the need to find someone or something else to fill it. I became exceptionally close to someone else and she is now my best friend who knows more than he ever did or ever will. We joke about being gf/bf but, true life: I’m in a relationship with my best friend. The anxiety and hurt and longing fade, so it is futile to hold on to something that is no longer ours to keep.

It isn’t fair to drag along an ex especially if both parties still have feelings, and odds are we do. This keeps both of us in the past thus, becoming stuck and unable to create new relationships, ever heard of “emotionally unavailable”?

“But, I still love him, I can’t bear to see him with someone else” – another objection.

That’s great, I know it hurts in the most unimaginable ways to see our exs with someone new and actually being happy and I recognize we want to be their friend to keep them close, but that is controlling. If they’re hanging out with us then they aren’t with someone else, right? I get it but, that is not healthy. I love my ex too, more than words could describe, but f*** him.

That was rude; if you’re reading this, my bad.

Sure, love makes you do crazy and desperate things but since I’m being candid here, we probably just confused our sexual chemistry for love anyways so; it’s time to move on.

If we’re not going to marry them, then we need to let the poor bastards go. We need them out in order to heal and grow and get over them and that will never happen if we see and talk to them every day and act like it was all a dream. We need men to be rude and tell us they don’t care so we can hate them and have time to become an individual again and I know it’s scary being vulnerable and broken and lost again but, it’s okay because we all are in our own ways.

Don’t forget, once they have seen us naked, there is no return.

So, if you’re currently “friends” with your ex, I strongly urge you to stop that. There may be a time, far from now, when we can actually be friends with someone we dated; but for now, time apart is imperative.

If we’re trying to eat healthier, we don’t cuddle with Oreos and chips all night long, we throw that sh*t away – out of sight, out of mind. So practice some self-control and throw that sh*t away, cut ties, it’s empowering and worth it. We’ll be surprised at what we learn about ourselves.