You've broken up with the person who has seen you cry/pee/spew/drunk poo/do it etc etc. They've seen you in your worst moods, the moods you would never dream of revealing to friends, but somehow it was ok for your partner to take regular peeps at your monster within. Now you're no longer lovers. Technically you're nothing much. But the memories of all that stuff you've done, seen and shared together remain and you've really seen the most fucked up sides of each other's personalities.
So then, to be expected to make nice with that person after a break up and go on like it's all cool is a joke. I talk from personal experience(s). Ofcourse, if you're lucky enough to want to be friends with an ex, I guess that means it didn't end so horribley that you just want to die. But maybe you're thinking you should be friends, because you've met a few cute people who talk about how they're currently great friends with all their exes (''I don't know how you couldn't be!'') and it would make you a better person to try and be friends. Maybe on a practical level you're thinking it would make bumping in to them less awkward if that's likely to happy, and maybe you just think it's the 'right' thing to do, you know, being an adult and all.
Well, forget all that. I'm here to tell you it's completely fine not to want to be friends with any of your exes, I would actually encourage you not to. For the serious bit...I know everyone is different and some people just do manage to be friends after they've split up. If this is you, reader, do tell me how.
But for the sake of my point, I'd like to tell you about a couple of attempts I've made at staying friends with exes. I've done this twice in the past when I used to be a positive, naive kid. I'm now older and wiser and cynical. I'm a realist, man.
My first long term boyfriend. I was too young to be in a relationship of this nature, which started when I was only 14. Three years in and I'd cheated on him numerous times, too young to take on the responsibility of a serious relationship, I just wanted fun. So, when things finally ended we both had a clean break and didn't see each other for a year or more. Great.
But then I must have thought it would be good idea to contact him and see how he was getting on. Bearing in mind I'd never broken up with anyone before, so it was like a sick experiment. We ended up meeting in a kitsch, 1970's themed cafe and afterwards going on to a pub (WHY!!) I remember I was really nervous and the whole thing was unpleasent and awkward. Yet we continued to meet up over the next few months all in the name of friendship. Eventually, and I think completely inevitabley he tried to sleep with me when we ended up sleeping in the same bed after a drunken night out. I've no idea why I let it go so far and allowed myself to get in to such a stupid predicament - let's call it youthful naivety. Needless to say I never saw him again. To this day it still makes me feel sick thinking about the prospect that I nearly 'went there' again when it was so clear that the break up was right, just because I was seeking a friendship that could never have been
The next serious relationship I had only lasted a year, but boy did I fall for this one. If the last relationship had been a testing ground, this was the one where I fell in love. It was a bad break up (see previous post, my top five break up songs). He cheated on me, he accused me of cheating on him, no one knew what was going on. But ultimately I maintain the feeling that I loved him and he broke my heart. He treated me badly at the end. He was neglectful, untrustworthy, and unreliable. However this didn't stop me! Low and behold a few months after our unsavioury break up one of us got back in touch and we decided to meet. We chose a pub (I learnt nothing from last time), and proceeded to get drunk and then fight about our now long ago finished relationship, which resulted in me telling him 'I'll never see you again, I hope you miss me!'' So sassy! Despite this we stayed in touch as 'friends' and continued to see each other and sleep with each other. Now I know what you're thinking...we weren't friends, we were still lovers and so this doesn't count. But believe me, I had every intention of just being friends. It was all too safe, easy and familiar to let it lie
Moral of the story - If there's even the tiniest bit of lust left there, you can't be friends. If you're kind of repulsed by your ex, you can't be friends. Even if you're kind of ok with them, you have other friends who haven't witnessed the things your ex has, so why not just hang out with them instead? Put this friends with your ex fantasy to bed. I think there will always be a competitive nature to your 'friendship' with an ex, i.e. who gets a new partner first, who seems happier, who is over the other one first. This will NOT bring happiness. Your friends are meant to love you whole heartedly, want the best for you and always be there for you, within reason, no matter what. Could an ex lover really be that person for you? I truly don't believe so.
What do you think?