Can I Remain Friends with My Ex?

Is it possible to remains friends with an ex? Sure, but it will require a careful and objective approach to the situation. Of course, being objective about a person with whom you used to share the most intimate parts of yourself can be a daunting task for some. This difficulty may be exacerbated if the relationship ended badly—in which case it may be impossible. However, if you truly feel that a friendship with your ex is worth the effort, then by all means go for it! Here are a few tips to get through the tightrope act of transitioning from girlfriend to friend.

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Rule 1: Give yourself a grace period. Creating a “no contact” period between the time you break things off with your former lover and the time you decide to embark on your quest for a friendship is necessary. Regardless of how cordial, mutual, or inevitable your breakup may have been, the fact of the matter is your ex was an important person in your life at some point and not having him there in that capacity can be jarring. You need this time to mourn and accept the end of the relationship.

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Rule 2: Assess your feelings. Once you’ve gone though the grace period and have concluded that you want to pursue a friendship with your ex, you have to ask yourself why you want this friendship?  Be honest about your intentions. Make sure you’re not pursing this with the dream of a potential reunion. He may never want to be in a relationship with you again, and you have to understand and accept this as fact.

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Rule 3: Assess his feelings. Reconsider if friendship with him is the right option if you know he still harbors strong feelings for you. Don’t give him a false sense of hope by stringing him along with a friendship when you know he yearns for more. This may sound counterproductive, but if you care enough to want him as your friend, then delay your friendship with him until you are completely sure that’s all he truly desires.

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Rule 4:  Keep is strictly platonic. Do not, I repeat, do not continue or maintain a sexual relationship with him. The idea of a “friends with benefits” situation is nearly impossible if it involves your ex. It’s hard enough to maintain a platonic relationship with an ex. Sex is always accompanied by feelings not matter how hard you try to avoid them. If rules 2 or 3 apply to either of you, then rule 4 must be followed as well.

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Rule 5: Keep outings to a minimum. So, you’ve followed rules 1 through 4 to a T, and you’re now deep in the infant stages of your friendship. Don’t ruin any progress by still engaging in activities that can be considered “couple-like.” Frequent dinner dates and hang out sessions may bring on the potential for mixed signals and compromising situations to occur. Sure you may be enjoying your ex’s company, but friendships come with far less expectations than relationships. Just because you’re doing well as friends doesn’t mean you will do well as a reconciled couple. Remember: there was a reason you two broke up in the first place.

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Rule 6: Create boundaries. Since this friendship has risen from the ashes of something that was once romantic, you have to recognize that this will not be your typical, run-of-the-mill friendship. Be careful not to discuss with your ex your newfound freedom and its accompanying love life. Neither of you may not have deep feelings for each other anymore, but even the tiniest of feelings may spawn jealousy which could lead to confused feelings and awkward conversations. This friendship is supposed to add value to your life, not create stress.  Do not assume you two are cool enough to discuss how well last night’s date went.

Just like in a relationship, a good friendship requires effort, trust, mutual respect and honesty. Following these rules won’t ensure that a friendship will happen between you and your ex. However, if you can keep these few tips in mind, there’s a strong change you’ll be able to turn your failed romantic relationship into a budding friendship that could last for many years to come.

Tamara Jenkins is a real Jersey girl. She’s independent, opinionated, and loves her sports. When she’s not watching her favorite teams, she’s reading, practicing yoga or working on a few books she hopes will get published one day. She also may or may not be training for a 5k race. With a belief that life is what you make of it, Tamara doesn’t merely want to survive life; she wants to live it.

5 Reasons Women Go Back to Their Exes

We’ve all had a bad breakup, or two, or fifty. We’ve heard our girlfriends (or ourselves) express hatred for the monstrous ex to anyone who will listen. Of course we hate him. He broke our heart!

But vehemently hating our ex, is a clue that we’re probably still in love.

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Ever noticed how once we get over it – the anger, the sadness – we no longer feel the urge to share how much we hate him? That’s because we’re over him, the anger, the fake hate, and over being in love.

During the process of “hating” him, we didn’t stop loving him and we know it. We know while we’re screaming that we hate him (and prefer him castrated for breaking our heart), we still love him, because you can’t just flip the turn-off-love button.

This isn’t a women’s-only thing, either. Men do it, too. The key is deciphering if we’re expressing anger by claiming to hate our ex, or if we’re just still in love.

Now, let’s go over three reasons women take their exes back

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1. There’s the obvious —  you still love him, despite the ugly breakup. So when he asks to see you, you hit your wardrobe like you’ve been invited to walk the red carpet.

Why? Because you’ve been suffering from Breakup-Syndrome for however long, and when you get an inkling that he’ll take you back, you’re ready to drop the suffering just to make that pain go away — which would mean taking him back – even if you know it’ll end badly again.

Taking the pain away and feeling happy again, even if for only a while sounds worth it to you. Hey, you can always go through the pain of breaking up again after you’ve been the happy reunited couple for a while. That’s called procrastination.

The good news is, if it ends badly again, it seems easier since you knew it was inevitable.

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2. Or perhaps the breakup left you two with unfinished business. You feel like you didn’t finish things the way you wanted to. We go into this with a mindset that we can either turn things around and make it work, or we have this subconscious desire to end it our way, on our own timing. Then, the process would be easier on us, so we think.

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3. It could be my last chance for love! I must fix things or else I may never find “love” again. Besides, it’s better than being alone forever, right?

Don’t fool yourself and fall into  thinking you’ll never find love again. It isn’t too late. No, you aren’t getting too old for love. You aren’t running out of time. While this is a top reason we go back to exes, it shouldn’t  be enough of a reason to go back. Instead of thinking it’s your last chance at love, try imagining that taking your  ex back could cause you to lose out on your actual “soul-mate.”

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4. Security. Whether it’s financial or you just don’t feel safe and secure being alone. It’s hard to break because fear such as this is often deeply ingrained within us. If you have an on-again- off-again relationship that’s damaging, you’ll feel like a brand new woman when you’re ready and free enough to break the shackles that bond you so tightly to another person.

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5. You don’t want to be lonely. You can’t stand it. It’s so scary it hurts, that old enemy, being alone.  So getting back with him is much better than being alone, you think. Being in an unhealthy relationship is damaging you more than the feeling of being alone and lonesome does. So, the key would be to choose your sanity and health, and instead of continuing a bad relationship just to avoid being alone, work on channeling that energy into your health and well-being. That is when you’ll stumble onto an equally healthy person who you could possibly have a relationship with – one that isn’t damaging.

Written by: Kendra Richards is a writer, pet lover, aloe vera-eater and a woman of many talents. If she isn’t passionately typing away, she’s more than likely spending time with her family, pets, boyfriend or attempting to sew something. It’s also possible that she’s buried deep in some type of activism work. Writing anything and everything from beauty, health, fashion product reviews to informational articles, she loves variety when it comes to reading and  writing. A people and animal lover, she believes cats are super heroes in disguise.

I Still Love My Ex

I still love him

The sound of his voice, look of his face, thought of his name – I smile. It’s been a while since we’ve talked, even longer since we’ve been together but my heart still skips a beat for him. How many of you know how it feels to still be in love with the man you let go? No matter how hurt you were, how many times you said, “I hate you,” your soul is still connected?

I was beginning to think he didn’t care since I hadn’t heard from him. Hand on the dial, I wanted to call but I just didn’t know what to say. Finally I did, but the was no answer. I guess I was right, “he really is over me.”

It was surprising when his name came across my touch screen, my heart stopped. Maybe I was wrong, did he still care?

This conversation was different from our last – no sarcasm, no arguments. Time flew by as we updated each other on new beginnings and the ups and downs of our lives. We celebrated our feats and encouraged each other through our trials. For once we had a normal conversation and it felt great.

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So what do you do when your love for the one you lost is still strong? Accept it. I couldn’t fight it anymore so I surrendered. Yes I still love him, and that’s okay. It doesn’t change our past, and it doesn’t mean we have to be together – who knows what the future holds? Acceptance gives me the space to feel what I feel and cope with it.

Too often we have feelings and think we have to do something about it. There may be times when you love someone, miss them, even wish you could be with them but you are not and will not be together. Sometimes love just is.

The beauty of accepting my feelings for him is that I don’t have to shut them off. I don’t have to hide them. Despite all that we have been through, is empowering. It’s a step forward in the healing process because I am no longer in denial. Even more beautiful is that fact that despite how much we both hurt over our relationship woes, a year later we can still have a pleasant conversation, share our life stories and genuinely be happy for each other. It’s been a long time coming, but I think I have finally entered that phase where I can acknowledge that I’m not quite over it. I can say, yes I still love him, and that’s okay.

All too often we try to rush through the healing process. In reality, if you truly loved someone that love doesn’t easily fade – it takes time. You may continue to have feelings for an old flame for sometime. Give yourself the time and space you need to heal. Accept how you feel each step of the way.

When Your Ex Is In Love With Someone Else

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Perhaps the most feared part of any break-up– is when your ex gets a new beau. So what do you do when your ex moves on but you’re still in love with him? I used to chant Beyonce’s “Ring the alarm. I’ve been through this too long and I’ll be damned if I see another chick on his arm.” Comical perhaps, but I’d venture to say, many of us have shares these sentiments. How can you put your heart and soul into this failed relationship only to have another woman reap the benefits? I’ve been there. It sucks, it hurts, and will push you out of character if you let it, but remember you are better than that.

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So what’s an alternative solution? Dare I say it– let him love her. I know it stings but just sit with it for a moment. Sure you could hold on and actively fight for the relationship but you risk alienation or being perceived as the “crazy” ex-girlfriend. In the end that reputation may do more damage than good. One of the most difficult parts of a breakup is loving someone and not being able to be with them– even worse, watching him love someone else. As much as it pains me to say this, there comes a time when you just can’t fight anymore. You have to let him go.

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So I say it again. With confidence and grace– let him love her. Only one of two things can happen– in the end you will either be with him or you won’t– If it’s the former, perhaps he needed to be with someone else in order for him to see just how special you are. If it’s the later, despite how much you love him he may not be “the one.” The beauty in karma is that if you put good vibes out, good things are bound to come to you. It may have taken his relationship with you to prepare him for who he is really meant to be with. In the same way he maybe preparing you for the real love of your life– and at the same time someone else is preparing your true “Mr. Right” for you.

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