Staying friends with an ex...?

  • Fable

    Posts: 3866

    Dec 11, 2012 3:47 PM GMT
    Recently (this weekend) I split up with my boy of 2 years. He said he wants to stay friends... and the situation was amicable. What I'm asking is how do I make that transition from lovers to friends, I mean it's not like I have an off switch for my love for him.

    Any advice would be appreciated.
  • GS27_USC

    Posts: 31

    Dec 11, 2012 5:09 PM GMT
    Just went thru this (and still am to some degree):

    It's normal to still want to be friends, after all you still love him, despite the fact it didn't work for whatever reason. However, you're right. You can't just turn off those feelings. You're priority here is you. Not him. You have to heal from the hurt and disappointment and move on, and if you're anything like me, that will be very hard to do if you still communicate and see your ex. My ex contacted me several times and asked to go to a movie. As much as it hurt to say no, I had to. He just asked me a month or so ago, and we've been broken up for 8 months.

    Every relationship is different. I have no idea the dynamics between you two. But based on your post, you still have feelings. Staying in contact and communication will continue to feed those feelings. You can still be 'friends', but set some expectations. Tell him you need time and space and don't expect for you to want to hang out and communicate frequently. He has to find his way, and you have to find yours. You're doing you both a favor by setting this boundary in the post-relationship phase of your 'friendship'.

    If it's meant to be for you two to really be genuine friends, it will happen. Could be years down the road, or soon, who knows. In my case, I'm learning that the idea of still wanting to be friends certainly shows you have good intentions. But the fact of the matter is, yeh, we were in a relationship, but we were also friends. Best friends. The relationship was broken and therefore the friendship was broken, and just because you're not in a relationship doesn't mean the friendship part is fixed.

    If you both are mature adults and can talk about what went wrong and both take your responsibility for it, then its' possible you both can learn from the experience and mend the friendship. Just don't try to force it right now.

    In my case, my ex isn't mature enough. He hasn't taken any responsibility for why it didn't work.
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    Dec 11, 2012 5:41 PM GMT
    the fella above gave some good advice.

    I'm still friends with my ex and by friends I mean we are actually friends, we talk regularly and even talk about guys we are seeing.

    After ten years together though I don't think I would handle not having him in my life at all very well. I still see all the good things in him I found when I first met him. He's still that kind hearted highly intelligent guy but we both don't want a relationship with each other.

    It really comes down to how did it end and was it mutual.

    Cause the guy after him well he didn't want it to end and he still doesn't and having a friendship with him was difficult eventually we just stopped talking.. who knows if a friendship will spark back up again.

    The last guy it just wont happen.. to much bad blood there
  • GS27_USC

    Posts: 31

    Dec 11, 2012 6:55 PM GMT
    Agreed. If it's not mutual it will be harder. My ex says he still wants to be friends, even tho he didnt want to break up. I said I still want to be friends (and I do, although I felt stronger about it when we first broke up) but I also needed time and space to get past the feelings. I truly and deeply loved him, and still do. Once I love someone, it really never goes away. I just have to learn how to let go of the emotional ties. It's a process.

    But until he can take some responsibility for his role, that is going to keep a genuine friendship from happening. Until then, all I can be is 'friendly'. I still keep out hope that one day we can be genuine friends.
  • PR_GMR

    Posts: 3831

    Dec 11, 2012 7:30 PM GMT
    The advice I can give is that you must go thru a period of hard separation before building a friendship. 2 months or so. This way you both can get over the relationship and start as friends.
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    Dec 11, 2012 8:50 PM GMT
    PR_GMR saidThe advice I can give is that you must go thru a period of hard separation before building a friendship. 2 months or so. This way you both can get over the relationship and start as friends.


    This. No contact is a good thing. It's not meant to be spiteful; it's just a tool to help YOURSELF to move past those feelings where you transition back to a solo person. If he really wants to be friends, he will understand