Why do gay men like to be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and keep them in their lives?

  • Brock700xChar...

    Posts: 387

    May 29, 2016 3:56 AM GMT
    I think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.
  • mcbrion

    Posts: 305

    May 29, 2016 5:51 AM GMT
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    That's unfortunate. Part of seeing maturity in a person is how well he/she gets along with an ex. When I hear about bad endings, I usually find they lacked a truly healthy beginning (mutual interest/reciprocity, respect, emotional availability). Throwing someone out of one's life as though they're only temporary fixtures doesn't say anything good about the person doing it. It says the person is insecure, jealous or else it says the person never had an authentic attachment (doesn't bond). Caring for someone can't be turned on and off like a light switch, and of the many guys I saw doing this in San Francisco, quite a few of them were not that well balanced emotionally.
    Sorry, but I cannot fathom dismissing someone I - at one time - professed to have feeling for simply because the relationship changed. That would be depressing. If your scenario was followed, particularly in San Francisco back in the 70s/80s/90s, none of us who lived in San Francisco in the '70s and then had to take care of friends, ex-boyfriends and ex-lovers, could have helped them survive AIDS. Most of the guys I knew took care of their (HIV positive) ex-boyfriends/lovers (whom they had remained friends with, incidentally). I certainly stayed closed to - and took care of my EX when he developed AIDS. I would've considered deserting him cowardly. And I would have considered that, given how much we liked each other as people, it would be pretty fucked up not to be there for him. For that matter, to put aside someone who had been my best friend. You don't get that many TRUE friends in your life, despite the stupidity people spout. You get 2 or 3 true friends in your life. And one might be an ex-lover. Besides, given how nasty many families were about finding out their child/brother/cousin was gay AND that he'd come down with HIV, if it weren't for the ex-lovers that remained closed to each other, some of these guys would have had no one to care for them. And that was San Francisco! The rest of the world (aside from New York and LA) was pretty fucked in their attitudes for caring for HIV positive men.
    Is your attitude unique among Aussie guys? I didn't find it so when I stayed there for an extended time. Is this a new thing?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 29, 2016 4:15 PM GMT
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.
  • tnlifter

    Posts: 76

    May 29, 2016 5:46 PM GMT
    Brock, you're 100% right on the money on this one. You couldn't be more right if you tried. Here's why:

    1. Anyone who's still 'friends' is not honest. They're there trying to hang onto something that, while it may have been nice, is dead now. They're not honest with each other or with themselves.

    2. Being 'friends' with an ex is a major red flag that they've not left the relationship. It continues in a weird, limping along fashion. It's a sign that the relationship has not ended.

    3. Since the relationship has not ended, they cannot go on and have a new, healthy, stable relationship. You can't be in two or three (or more) relationships at a time.

    4. Not being able to let go means they are CODEPENDENT. That Iwill ultimately sabotage any future relationship(s).

    It's sad, it's awful, and it's hard to move on when something so good (or that seemed so good) didn't work out, but it is a sign of maturity to move on even when it is heartbreaking.

    No offense to anyone, but staying in a codependent relationship with someone who has betrayed you by claiming to be 'friends' is the ultimate sign of immaturity.

    You're worth it - hold out for the best!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 29, 2016 6:43 PM GMT
    The problem with being friends with an ex is that your future boyfriends will wonder if you're really over them. It adds unnecessary tension and doubt. In the straight world it would be dubious if a guy's wife was still friends with a boyfriend she had before they married.
  • Iakona

    Posts: 367

    May 29, 2016 7:15 PM GMT
    Usually when you have an ex and you have been with them a long time, it means that you loved them at one point or another. That love never really goes away, it just transfers from one type of love to another. I am friends with most of my exes and my husband is friends with most of his. If you are mature enough to handle it, it's not a big deal, and you end up having very close friends if not best friends (because they know you so well).

    At least that's what I think.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 29, 2016 7:18 PM GMT
    (Addendum to my previous post.)
    I'm thinking that eb925guy and mcbrion are thinking about the ideal world where everything is smooth sailing. But relationships aren't always smooth sailing. If your relationship hits a rough spot it would be natural for your boyfriend to cry on the shoulder of one of his friends. If that friend happened to be one of his former boyfriends I doubt that that would help the situation. You need to also think about the worst case scenarios.
  • badbug

    Posts: 800

    May 29, 2016 9:18 PM GMT

    I see both points of view.

    I've had relationships with people who were super close with their exes and it didn't bother me. I think it depends on the person and the situation and what you think your relationship is based on. If it's more of a sexual thing, i could see being jealous and insecure on some level even if you aren't overly aware of it.

    If you have more of an old married couple thing going, you're less likely i think to be overly concerned about exes. Sometimes exes can help shoulder some of the emotional burden or do the shit you don't want to like trips to shitty places you don't want to go or lunches at crowded restaurants with other friends you don't really like.


    I think it really depends on what type of person you are dealing with and how that intersects with what type of person you are. I don't think there really is a right answer as both have pros and cons and it really depends how all parties are partying so to speak.


    So i don't really have a hard and fast rule. I kind of just see what is going on, personally i never am able to make friendships last with any exes.

  • Corby

    Posts: 78

    May 29, 2016 10:47 PM GMT
    In my case I would say it is wrong assumption! I can not say that I have a lot of "ex" but not maintain contact with them and no desire to do it! Past is Past!
  • Brock700xChar...

    Posts: 387

    May 30, 2016 4:29 AM GMT
    eb925guy said
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.


    It's very wrong, and abnormal to have your ex's in your life when you are in a relationship. Gay men seem to think this is normal, but it's wrong all the way. I know gay men have weird relationships, but having your ex's as friends is wrong, and bizarre, and makes Gay men seem less normal than straight guys. You don't see straight people having their ex's in their lives, because they know it's not normal to be friends with your ex while still in a relationship. When you enter a new relationship, all of those ex-boyfriends have to go, Being in a relationship, all of your ex- boyfriends, and anyone that has had sex with you should be cut off from your life, or end the relationship.
  • confusedbi

    Posts: 9

    May 30, 2016 6:40 AM GMT
    Brock700 said
    eb925guy said
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.


    It's very wrong, and abnormal to have your ex's in your life when you are in a relationship. Gay men seem to think this is normal, but it's wrong all the way. I know gay men have weird relationships, but having your ex's as friends is wrong, and bizarre, and makes Gay men seem less normal than straight guys. You don't see straight people having their ex's in their lives, because they know it's not normal to be friends with your ex while still in a relationship. When you enter a new relationship, all of those ex-boyfriends have to go, Being in a relationship, all of your ex- boyfriends, and anyone that has had sex with you should be cut off from your life, or end the relationship.


    So it's ok to be friends with your ex if you're not in a relationship? And then drop him again when you move onto the next one? Is that a real friendship?
  • Allen

    Posts: 341

    May 30, 2016 8:38 AM GMT
    eb925guy said
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.


    ^^ This. And well said.

    I once dated a guy who not only was still friends with his ex, they still shared an apartment! I was initially suspicious of this arrangement until I got to know both the guy I was dating and his ex better. I learned that they had a deep friendship and respect for one another even though their romantic interest in each other fizzled. And they were so compatible as friends, they decided to become roommates after they ended their relationship. I was secure enough to not let it bother me.

    And ironically, this guy was one of the most loyal guys I ever dated.
  • Brock700xChar...

    Posts: 387

    May 30, 2016 8:48 AM GMT
    confusedbi said
    Brock700 said
    eb925guy said
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.


    It's very wrong, and abnormal to have your ex's in your life when you are in a relationship. Gay men seem to think this is normal, but it's wrong all the way. I know gay men have weird relationships, but having your ex's as friends is wrong, and bizarre, and makes Gay men seem less normal than straight guys. You don't see straight people having their ex's in their lives, because they know it's not normal to be friends with your ex while still in a relationship. When you enter a new relationship, all of those ex-boyfriends have to go, Being in a relationship, all of your ex- boyfriends, and anyone that has had sex with you should be cut off from your life, or end the relationship.


    So it's ok to be friends with your ex if you're not in a relationship? And then drop him again when you move onto the next one? Is that a real friendship?

    Relationships are way more important than friendships. When you get boyfriends they become more important than all of your friends.
  • mar0302

    Posts: 273

    May 30, 2016 10:32 AM GMT
    eb925guy said

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.



    I agree with this. Sometimes you learn that you're not meant to be a couple - that you're not as physically attracted to each other or compatible as you may have once thought you were. For me, in relationships that person becomes my best friend over time (if they don't start that way). When there's a break-up, it's often that we will maintain some kind of friendship. It will certainly not be sexual, but if you have a lot of history it's good to stay friends.
  • NursePractiti...

    Posts: 232

    May 30, 2016 12:39 PM GMT
    I'm still friends with some of my ex's. And none of us regret it. The relationships didn't get toxic, we just realized that as couples we made better friends than lovers. We still talk, hang out and have fun together. Not everyone's relationship is the same. And I might add I don't have sex with them after.
  • Brock700xChar...

    Posts: 387

    May 30, 2016 1:45 PM GMT
    All of you prove that gay guys have weird, liberal, and different mentalities from straight people, you don't hear heterosexuals keeping their ex's in their lives as friends do you? The fast that more gay people like to keep their ex's in their lives than straight people do prove that gay men have more abnormal, and liberal mentalities which is a horrible thing.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 30, 2016 1:47 PM GMT
    no place for x lovers
    a breakup would not be taken lightly. It is not like we didnt put maxim effort into the relationship the first time around. A lot of shit has to take place before i would consider breaking up. Once the line is crossed tho no looking back.

    Gay men stay friends because the dating pool is small. We are not the 10% they told us we were.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 30, 2016 3:56 PM GMT
    I don't stay in touch with any ex. The reason I dumped them was because I discovered incompatibility or some personality disorder common among the gay men. Either way, deal breakers fro me mean complete loss of contact, forever. It's worked out perfectly every time too.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 30, 2016 5:52 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]eb925guy said

    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.[/quote]

    I totally agree here. When my first partner and I split there were some bumpy times but we eventually re-established our core friendship. This happens in straight AND gay relationships and is appropriate if there was a meaningful loving connection present in the first place. If there wasn't that connection, you are a fool to have spent that much time with the other person!
  • confusedbi

    Posts: 9

    May 30, 2016 7:52 PM GMT
    Brock700 said
    confusedbi said
    Brock700 said
    eb925guy said
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.


    It's very wrong, and abnormal to have your ex's in your life when you are in a relationship. Gay men seem to think this is normal, but it's wrong all the way. I know gay men have weird relationships, but having your ex's as friends is wrong, and bizarre, and makes Gay men seem less normal than straight guys. You don't see straight people having their ex's in their lives, because they know it's not normal to be friends with your ex while still in a relationship. When you enter a new relationship, all of those ex-boyfriends have to go, Being in a relationship, all of your ex- boyfriends, and anyone that has had sex with you should be cut off from your life, or end the relationship.


    So it's ok to be friends with your ex if you're not in a relationship? And then drop him again when you move onto the next one? Is that a real friendship?

    Relationships are way more important than friendships. When you get boyfriends they become more important than all of your friends.


    Yes they are more important, but it doesn't mean you can drop your friends like a fly, whenever it's convenient for you. I'm also puzzled as to why you keep on comparing what straight men do vs gay men. Abnormal and liberal mentalities are horrible things, you say. Would it be better if everyone just live the same way? Wear the same clothes, get brainwashed at the same school, do the same work? Let's all live like the 1600s!
  • Brock700xChar...

    Posts: 387

    May 30, 2016 8:10 PM GMT
    confusedbi said
    Brock700 said
    confusedbi said
    Brock700 said
    eb925guy said
    Brock700 saidI think it's really strange and wrong how a lot of gay men like to still be friends with their ex-boyfriends, and have them in their lives. When you break up with someone they should be immediately gone out of your life, not be friends with them, and still talk to them. I've noticed more gay men like to have their ex's in their life more than straight men do. If I'm dating a guy then all of his ex-boyfriends, and anyone he's had sex with before has to go.


    Well, I must say that tells a lot about you. Ending a relationship with someone does not equate to hating them. Many relationships don't work out but maintaining a friendship with someone you've gotten to know on a very personal level reflects the maturity and ability to take the high road and NOT throw away a friendship just because things did not work out.

    Not every relationship will end this way as some are toxic and should end completely but for many of us, we've accepted that we're not meant to be a couple despite our love of friendship for each other. Showing that you can distinguish between an ended relationship and hatred is a very attractive quality in a guy. Resentfulness, bitterness and hate only contribute to understanding why the other guy did the right thing by walking away.


    It's very wrong, and abnormal to have your ex's in your life when you are in a relationship. Gay men seem to think this is normal, but it's wrong all the way. I know gay men have weird relationships, but having your ex's as friends is wrong, and bizarre, and makes Gay men seem less normal than straight guys. You don't see straight people having their ex's in their lives, because they know it's not normal to be friends with your ex while still in a relationship. When you enter a new relationship, all of those ex-boyfriends have to go, Being in a relationship, all of your ex- boyfriends, and anyone that has had sex with you should be cut off from your life, or end the relationship.


    So it's ok to be friends with your ex if you're not in a relationship? And then drop him again when you move onto the next one? Is that a real friendship?

    Relationships are way more important than friendships. When you get boyfriends they become more important than all of your friends.


    Yes they are more important, but it doesn't mean you can drop your friends like a fly, whenever it's convenient for you. I'm also puzzled as to why you keep on comparing what straight men do vs gay men. Abnormal and liberal mentalities are horrible things, you say. Would it be better if everyone just live the same way? Wear the same clothes, get brainwashed at the same school, do the same work? Let's all live like the 1600s!


    The 1600's was a great time to be alive.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 30, 2016 9:46 PM GMT
    Brock700 said
    The 1600's was a great time to be alive.
    no anti biodic drugs
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 31, 2016 1:38 AM GMT
    Funny you should say
    tnlifter said

    4. Not being able to let go means they are CODEPENDENT. That Iwill ultimately sabotage any future relationship(s).


    You're worth it - hold out for the best!


    It's the abuser in a codependent relationship who tries to isolate his partner. When friends and family can't see what's going on he has more control.

    "Individuals can also assume they are in a codependent relationship if people around them have given them feedback that they are too dependent on their partner or if they have a desire, at times, for more independence but feel an even stronger conflict when they attempt to separate in any way,"

    "How to Know You're in a Codependent Relationship

    Watch out for these signs that you might be in a codependent relationship:

    Are you unable to find satisfaction in your life outside of a specific person?
    Do you recognize unhealthy behaviors in your partner but stay with him or her in spite of them?
    Are you giving support to your partner at the cost of your own mental, emotional, and physical health?"

    If you or Brock insist that a lover doesn't see or talk to an ex.....or ANY other person, you are manipulating them. If you think you are "the best" you are doing it at their expense. THAT is sick behavior.
  • tnlifter

    Posts: 76

    May 31, 2016 3:12 AM GMT
    TIMinPS saidFunny you should say
    tnlifter said

    4. Not being able to let go means they are CODEPENDENT. That Iwill ultimately sabotage any future relationship(s).


    You're worth it - hold out for the best!


    It's the abuser in a codependent relationship who tries to isolate his partner. When friends and family can't see what's going on he has more control.

    "Individuals can also assume they are in a codependent relationship if people around them have given them feedback that they are too dependent on their partner or if they have a desire, at times, for more independence but feel an even stronger conflict when they attempt to separate in any way,"

    "How to Know You're in a Codependent Relationship

    Watch out for these signs that you might be in a codependent relationship:

    Are you unable to find satisfaction in your life outside of a specific person?
    Do you recognize unhealthy behaviors in your partner but stay with him or her in spite of them?
    Are you giving support to your partner at the cost of your own mental, emotional, and physical health?"

    If you or Brock insist that a lover doesn't see or talk to an ex.....or ANY other person, you are manipulating them. If you think you are "the best" you are doing it at their expense. THAT is sick behavior.


    I've never told anyone that they couldn't remain involved in each others' lives if that is their wish. If that is with an ex however, then I just duck quickly out the door. No one can (or should) compete with the idealized past relationship they are holding onto. What is SICK BEHAVIOUR is insisting that the inability to move on from a relationship is healthy in any way. It just is not a foundation for a good future relationship.

    "Are you unable to find satisfaction in your life outside of a specific person?" sounds like a warning to move on from a bad relationship to me.


    BROCK - STICK TO YOUR GUNS!
  • mcbrion

    Posts: 305

    May 31, 2016 3:53 AM GMT
    Lumpyoatmeal said(Addendum to my previous post.)
    I'm thinking that eb925guy and mcbrion are thinking about the ideal world where everything is smooth sailing. But relationships aren't always smooth sailing. If your relationship hits a rough spot it would be natural for your boyfriend to cry on the shoulder of one of his friends. If that friend happened to be one of his former boyfriends I doubt that that would help the situation. You need to also think about the worst case scenarios.


    I don't think I'm thinking about an "ideal world." I lived in San Francisco for 30 years - many of those years, PRE-AID. I saw the gamut of post break-up relationships. And I found that guys who had the most vitriol for their ex were perpetually angry, depressed guys ,who had some social anxiety issues.
    Any relationship depends on how mentally healthy you are. The less you lean towards being mentally healthy, the harder it is to sustain a good relationship after a breakup. Around 20 years ago, I had one former boyfriend who turned positively nasty in very passive-aggressive ways. I withdrew from contact with him. He eventually apologized, but he wouldn't be someone I could stay close to. He didn't like himself. That makes it hard to be close to anyone, not just "ex-boyfriends."
    Friendship is a mutually beneficial relationship. Those who do not recognize the "mutually beneficial" part are likely to be co-dependent in many of their relationships, including those with parents and siblings. There is no idealizing here. Just a hell of a lot of experience - and even more observing people and how they behaved even while dating each other. I saw acquaintances of mine jump into relationships, and they may have had the hots for each other, but they were never friends with each other, evidenced by how much vitriol they spewed once they were no longer together. The relationship looked pretty unhealthy to me at the time, but I stayed out of it. I still see people do this. There's a book called, "Are You the One for Me? Knowing Who's Right and Avoiding Who's Wrong." I'd recommend it if you're just guessing about how to tell if you are picking someone consciously or unconsciously (i.e., picking someone who resembles one of your parents with whom you have significant unresolved issues. This is extremely common, in both gay and straight culture.) For my part, I recognize pretty quickly a dating scenario where someone merely wants me, rather than wanting to know me and be my friend, as well as my lover.
    Not sure why this feel 'idealized to you.' Care to share?