Being friends with your ex! I consider this to be my forte. Not like it's something to boast about, but it is something that I have tried and seen others around me try too. I remember the turmoil, the anxiety, and the frustration when friends gave me advice on my friendship with my ex-boyfriend. Well, sometimes it turns out to be a lousy idea and sometimes it's just the best thing to happen. So, who is to decide whether this is a good idea or not? The best judge of your past relationship is YOU! So if you have wondered about it or just want to know how to behave if you ever bump into him or her, then let's analyze a few things and then know of ways to be friends.
Being Friends with Your Ex-Girlfriend/ Boyfriend
So, it's been over for a while now, but it's difficult to avoid him because of the number of common acquaintances you have? Taking the high road is the best way. There are a few things to bear in mind when you hang out together. Since you are no more a couple, expectations have to take a back seat. Do not expect to get that special attention that you got initially. You cannot be in the same comfort zone you were in while you were dating. Make sure you treat him/her in the same manner as the rest of your mates. Do not go overboard with the casual approach and do not make it look like an effort. Do not ignore your ex completely and make him/her feel non existent. Remember to not pry into each others lives anymore. You cannot be bothered (or at least mustn't show that you are) by the new people in their lives anymore. Avoid the drunken revelry. Follow the simple rules of nonchalance and you will be on good terms with your ex. Never expect to be best friends after break up. Casual friendship is as far as it can get.
Being Friends with Your Ex-Wife/ Husband
This is an issue that has to be treated quite differently than you would with your boyfriend or girlfriend. A divorce can never be a pleasant affair. The legal proceedings are quite exhausting. A broken marriage is difficult to get over. The reasons to revive friendship with your ex-spouse are completely different. If there are children involved, there are all the more reasons for you to keep your cool. You don't want your children to go through any stress and trouble. See to it that the children always see you as friends. Don't get upset with the way he or she is, remember it is not your problem anymore.
When is it a Good Idea?
It probably won't be a very pleasant thing to do, but evaluating your relationship and the terms on which you ended it, will be the deciding factor. If you did end it on good terms (which is rarely the case), it is perfectly alright to be friends. There have been so many instances where friends started dating and later part ways as they weren't compatible, but still managed to share a good friendship again.
If it was a bitter breakup, where one of you was at fault, always be sure that you are now in a place where that mistake you or your ex made, does not have any significance. If you think forgiving and moving on is the best thing to do, then you probably are ready for a platonic relationship with your ex.
The toughest part when a long term relationship ends is getting over the breakup. If you have passed the stages of wallowing in self pity, aggression, revenge, and reached a stage of complete apathy towards the relationship, it is probably OK to think about a cordial relationship with your ex. Make sure your he/she is still not hung up on you. If the answer to this is in the affirmative, my suggestion would be, please stay away. This move of being friends might just raise hopes of getting back with you. If you are with someone else now, make sure you talk this out with them. If your partner is not happy with your friendship with your ex, then there is no point in jeopardizing what you have right now for something that is long gone unless you are getting back together with an ex. If you have a conniving, revenge seeking monster as your ex, well, I don't have to tell you what to do.
Well there are rules, strict ones, that need to be followed if you want to be friends with your ex. There are boundaries that can never be crossed anymore. Never flirt with your ex or with anyone else in their presence. You will just be inviting more trouble. Sometimes just letting go is the wise thing to do, Remember, "If he was stupid enough to walk away, be smart enough to let him go."