André Anthony Moore, LMFT

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (New York State License: 001435)

Ketamine and Psychedelic Assisted Therapist certified by The Integrative Psychiatry Institute Practitioner of Eye Movement, Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)

Use Nonverbal Sensorimotor Techniques to deepen Emotionally Focused Therapy

Should You Be Friends With an Ex?

People are divided on whether staying friends with an ex is a good idea. They were once an important part of your life, maybe for a significant amount of time, but staying friends after a breakup can either be a positive or painful experience. For every person who wants to hold onto a past relationship, there is another who would rather move on and never look back. Here are common reasons why some people continue being friends with an ex.

You feel sad and lonely

If you are feeling sad and lonely, it is more comfortable to ask your ex over for company rather than go out and meet new people. But this can lead to an unhealthy on-again-off-again relationship roller coaster.

You have the same circle of friends

Some couples stay friends after a breakup to maintain social harmony. You do not want to put your mutual friends in a situation where they have to choose who to hang out with. Even if you are fine running into the ex from time to time, you do not have to be friends. You should be able to spend time with your friends without the ex as well as decline invitations to meetings where the ex is there.

You feel pity

If you broke up with someone and found out that they are not taking it well, maybe you are inclined to stay friends just because you feel sorry for them. However, it is not your responsibility to get them through their heartache. Your presence might even make them feel worse and prevent them from moving on.

You want to know who they are dating

A lot of people habitually peek into their ex’s Facebook page to find out who they are currently dating. Stalking your ex on Facebook will only result in jealousy and anxiety. If you cannot resist checking on them, maybe it is a good idea to disconnect from them on social media.

You are still hoping that they will change

Maybe you broke up because your ex was unfaithful, spent too much time with friends too much, or had a short temper. Staying friends with an ex allows you to keep them in your life while waiting for them to finally change. It may or may not happen.

You could not say no

For some people, it can be very difficult to let go. If you do not want to remain friends, but your ex would not leave you alone, do not hesitate to call the police if your safety is at risk. A relationship that was abusive, manipulative, or toxic should not turn into friendship.

Why and How to Stay Friends with an Ex

Do you have any ulterior motive like the ones listed above? Does being friends with an ex interfere with your or their current relationship? If your answer is no, then, by all means, continue hanging out with your former partner. Some people are comfortable having their current partner and an ex together, and that could work.

It can be a good idea to stay friends with an ex under the following circumstances:

  • A couple has kids together
  • A couple dated when they were young
  • A couple was friends first before they dated
  • A couple only dated casually
  • A couple only stayed together for a short time

By far the best reason that ex-lovers should be friends is that they genuinely care about each other, even if they can’t be romantic and sexual together. Some exess are able to have dinners together, introduce each other to their current lovers, invite each other to their weddings, their kids’ birthdays, double date, etc.

If you decide to remain friends with an ex, it’s crucial to be in touch with how the friendship makes you feel.

If you are on the fence, Marriage Couples Counseling in New York City may be of use to you. Our licensed therapists and life coaches have decades of experience helping people who have broken up but still wish to keep the best of their past relationships. Gives us a call today at (212) 673 4618.

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  • NAP Details:

    Marriage Couples Counseling & Life Coaching
    160 Bleecker Street, 9C East, New York, NY 10012
    (212) 673 4618