The toughest part about a breakup is the aftermath. Yes, there may have been some pain during the breakup, but the actual breaking up part doesn't usually take long. It is the ensuing months, weeks, or whatever it takes that is the real challenge.
Well, now that you just spilled all your emotions out onto the table-- now what? Is this it, cold turkey, or are you going to go back-and-forth for a couple of months? Are you going to regrettably text them late at night when you’re drunk af, snap them occasionally and like their IG posts every once in awhile in a strategic manner? Are you going to hit them up to hang out? Are you going to pretend like this never happened for 3 months and continue to secretly hook up all to have it crash and burn and be cut like Dean from the Bachelorette?
We all are faced with two paths when we have a breakup. Either you cut ties and go your separate ways into the sunset living your best life OR you decide to “be friends”. (pause while my eyes instinctively roll) What exactly does “be friends” mean after you have been a constant fixture in someone’s life? After you have seen their bare body and emotions and they have seen yours? After you have shared intimate nights, dark secrets, and fond memories? Just because you miss them, does that mean you should stay friends with them? Unclear.
Cutting ties is never easy, trust me. Whether you were in a relationship for 3 months or 3 years, not talking to someone who was once a constant, is a struggle. Who the hell are you going to talk to about your favorite show or the fact that there are frozen margs at chipotle now? I’ll tell you who--your friends, family, or co-workers. We hold onto constants because it’s a comfort that we are used to and can rely on (for the most part). In most cases, your ex has only been a constant in your life for probably not even half of it. Who the heck got you through life the other half? Rely on those comforts to motive you.
If you decide to be friends with an ex, god bless you and LMK if that works. According to #RaeChowData aka friends of friends and their experiences this can be successful but is super rare. Staying friends with an ex can work if you are civil, respectful, and have suppressed all attraction. If you both aren’t on the same page, someone is def gonna get blue balls.
But, on a bigger note, ask yourself why you even want this friendship? Do you have kids, pets, or friends in common? Do you just want to hook-up with someone and also somehow have zero-to-no emotional attachment? Also is that previous comment even possible? Friendships take time to evolve and cannot be forced. If both parties of this new friendship have a common understanding of what is expected then it could possibly work.
If you are able to maintain a friendship built on maturity with clear boundaries, intentions and understanding, go for it. Typically the key to building this new type of relationship with your old fling will take time. Don’t expect to be scheduling non-cuddling movie dates right after you break up. Be sure to take time to heal, let go of any aggression and find yourself as an individual again. Getting out of couple mentality takes time to get used to. Your brain interpreted life for two and now you get to focus on numero uno, yourself. ( The best in my opinion). Cherish being independent (and even being a little selfish with your time), as this will only strengthen you as a person, your future relationships and your chances of “being friends” with your ex. Or at least being civil.