Friends With Exes

I have had this discussion with a handful of friends and I decided to write about it. If you have had the discussion with me, then you would know that I think being friends with an ex is a very completely unnecessary something. While I am guilty of this, I still firmly stand with the stance that it is completely unnecessary. For some reason, every time I say this people seem to think I have said that you should treat them like dirt and be completely mean to them. Nope, definitely not what I mean.

Most times when I make this statement, almost always the response from women is "doesn't it depend how the break up was?" fair enough, true but how many breakups were oh so pleasant? Not saying they don't exist just saying it is not the case in most cases. Look at it both ways, if the fault was yours or the fault was his and he treated you like crap. What is the need to be friends with this person that hurt you so much or that you hurt so much? I've always been fascinated by how we women are able to romanticize any situation and gloss over grimy stuff because that is the only reason why we probably believe that someone who didn't care about our emotions before has suddenly transformed to this wonderful friend that we can't do without. Flip the script and let it be a female friend who showed you who they are, the forgiveness doesn't come as quickly as it does for an ex. (this is probably where sex comes in)

While people get older and mature and could be genuinely sorry for their past behavior, most times I tend to notice that women are the ones who make a much bigger deal about how this friendship was so deep and was a connection; while men acknowledge yes we were friends and it's a shame how it went down and move on with their lives. Another reason I find it unnecessary is almost always when a woman decides to be friends with her ex, chances are high they will end up in the sack together again. Ending up in the sack again, brings up those rosy dreams and story lines again, satisfied that yes we truly had a different kind of connection while the man is thinking hey we have an understanding and we've moved past the murk while living their lives like its golden.

Alright. Now, take away the exes that get back together. In the long run, I often wonder what the point of being friends in when if one person moves on, not sure their significant others would be happy about this friendship. Out of respect for them, they might cut you off or drastically reduce contact so basically, the friendship has a shelf life.

Overall honestly, while I think it's nice, I think we need to get over the hang up of feeling like not being friends with an ex signifies something more like say, it means you are an awful person or you are doing something wrong. Being civil with someone and not being all buddy buddy doesn't mean you don't wish them well, its more self preservation. One of the friends I spoke with said "but it's not easy to just remove someone you've known for a long time just like that" and that is true but some things that are right for us are not easy but we do it to better ourselves. Also, in some cases some exes don't speak for a while and rekindle it. If you were able to survive during that time you weren't speaking, pretty sure you'll both be okay if it isn't rekindled.

Funny enough, I ran across this article that says that only narcissists and psychopaths love to stay friends with their exes and it gave me a chuckle. To cover all my bases - I am not saying it's the cases in all situations. I based this on my observations and personal experiences. I have written from a female perspective as I am one.

Would love to hear your thoughts on this. Have a great weekend!


chykie said…
Staying friends with exes is a complicated and sometimes rewarding situation. But it's obviously a selfish this is a no no and maybe something good may come out of it but it's never worth the risk. The risk is that you are in a position to undermine your current relationship...subconsciously. Focus on your relationship don’t do too much
Berry Dakara said…
You're right in that it seems to be the women who mainly hold on to the idea of how close they were and want to hold on to friendships, whereas the men are like "eya, it ended, ok-bye."
Sankofa said…
This is an incredibly tough one and I think you made some good points. However, I think it all depends on the ex. I've managed to stay great friends with people long after we stopped being involved and there are some that I wouldn't spit on if they were on fire. I take them on a case by case basis.
LadyNgo said…
I've never understood people who find fault with those who don't want to remain friends with their exes. If there was a reason to be friends still, then they wouldn't be an ex (with a few exceptions here and there).
Toinlicious said…
Oh i can so relate. In my case, i find that my exes (2 of them) ALWAYS try to force the friendship and i am def not here for it. I can be civil but we don't have to talk everyday and hang out all the darn time. I should probably do a post on this seeing as i have been the reason for some fights with the ex and current gf
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