Some people are able to stay friends with their exes without any issues. But there are right reasons to stay friends with your ex as well as wrong reasons. If you’ve left a relationship but want to maintain the relationship, make sure you’re not doing it for any of these reasons.
If you find yourself staying friends with your ex for any of these reasons, it may be good to take a step back and reflect.
1. You feel sorry for them.
In the immediate aftermath of a breakup, it’s pretty likely that you both will be reeling emotionally. If your ex partner is taking it extra hard, you may feel sorry for them and want to stick with them in a platonic capacity to help them through it.
This is a lousy reason to stay friends with them, especially for your ex. If they’re still feeling bad about the breakup, even if they don’t realize it, the best thing for them is space from you. Don’t be friends again until you’ve worked through the breakup.
2. You’re feeling jealous.
Another reason people stay friends with an ex is because they find themselves feeling jealous of their ex partner. They want to keep tabs on them, know who they’re with, maybe even block them from rebounding or pursuing someone new. This cannot be your reason for staying friends with them. Get over your feelings of jealousy before you try to be friends again.
3. You miss them.
Nope. Don’t stay friends with your ex just because you miss them. If you’re missing them and still hanging around them all the time, you’re not giving yourself the space that you need in order to get over the feelings you have.
4. You want them to change for you.
Once a relationship has ended, your involvement in their personal life in that capacity is over. If you wanted them to change while you were together and they didn’t, then they sure as hell aren’t going to change for you now.
If they want to change something about themselves, that change will come from within. Don’t hang out waiting in the wings for them to be the person you want. Move on.
5. You want to keep them in the back pocket.
Breakups can be extremely traumatic life events. They are not to be executed on lightly. Don’t break up with someone and then keep them around in case you can’t find anyone else. That’s not how it works. Either be with them or cut them loose, but don’t drag them along.
6. You think they still love you.
If you think that your ex partner still loves you, don’t foster those emotions with a continuing friendship. It’ll tear them apart. Do the right thing for them and give them space to get over you.
7. You still love them.
If you are still in love with your ex partner, don’t foster those emotions with a continuing friendship. It’ll tear you apart. Do the right thing for yourself and create the space needed for you to get over it. (See what I did there?)
8. You aren’t sure of your decision.
Our final point goes hand in hand with #5. If you aren’t sure of your decision, you need to figure it out and fast. Breakups don’t happen on a whim and can’t be treated in such a cavalier way. If you can’t figure it out, do the right thing for them and just move on.
There are a lot of good reasons to stay friends with your ex. You still have a strong friendship, you have plenty of shared interests, and so on. But don’t stay friends if you’re doing it for any of the reasons listed above.\