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Can You Ever Go Back To Just Being Friends?

posted 8/28/2010 6:37:16 PM |
1 kudogive kudos what's this?
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tagged: friends, women, men, relationships, dating

This seems to be an all or nothing question. When I’ve asked this question in different social circles…the most popular answer is a resounding NO…you cannot go back to just being friends.

I’ve always tried to be one of those people who views life in a positive manner…so my response is usually…Why? Why does the answer have to be all or nothing? Of course there has to be clear boundaries when the relationship status changes…but it just seems so ridiculous to have to write someone out of your life just because you used to date…or have a long-term relationship with them.

Now...I do understand the situations where the relationship ends badly and then of course…I completely get why the parties involved would never want to speak with each other again…let alone have a friendship. But what if the relationship ends amicably? Are we simply supposed to follow everyone else’s lead and never speak to each other again? If you've talked with some of my friends…their answer would be a definite yes.

So how about it peeps…

When your relationship ends…can you ever go back to just being friends?

Me? I feel it completely depends on the quality of the relationship the people involved had...and how the relationship ended. For instance…if your relationship lacked sparks and you ended up being more friends than anything else…why couldn’t this part of your relationship continue after the breakup? And yes…I have stayed in contact with a few guys after I’ve broke things off with them. However…some of the guys were not worthy of a friendship after we parted ways…and there is no way I was going to waste my time on them.

When I asked my son this very question a few weeks ago…his response was very blunt and direct. "I have plenty of friends Mom. We watch sports…hang out…and play poker together. Girls are for dating and relationships. If I want another friend…I’ll ask another guy to join our poker game." Ah yes…life according to a 23-year-old seems very crystal clear.

Hmmm…maybe I should start taking relationship cues from my 23-year-old son.

Your turn...

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Aug 28 @ 7:21PM  
My ex and I are friendly. If either one needs anything, the other will do it. Her husband isn't too keen on it though.

I have quite a few friends that I have dated but it didn't matriculate into being an LTR, just dating initially. But I guess your were talking about the heavy duty SO stuff. Most of those just evaporated except the ex-wife.

Aug 28 @ 7:24PM  
I have always remained friends with all my ex's. Not in my nature to end it badly and to totally part ways. I have a little bit of them and what I took from the relationship in me today.

Aug 28 @ 7:45PM  
An ex of mine, he and I had been buddies since the 1st grade. In our late teens/early 20's, we got together for a couple of years, and it was wonderful. When we was on good terms and we remained best friends till the day he was killed. The woman he was engaged to when he died, she knew of our past, and yet, she and I were very good friends. To this day, she and I still occasionally see each other and hang out and talk.

Of course, other ex's...better off left in the past.

Aug 28 @ 9:37PM  
Well....this is always kind of a weird ex of 10 plus yrs ago (we were together for 5)...he and I had the most awful was absolutely the worst breakup I think I have ever experienced....I NEVER imagined in my wildest dreams that we would ever be able to be we are the dearest of friends and I am thrilled that we are able to laugh about our past and leave it where it is. We laugh about the good things and the bad...and we both are different people now too. But it took probably 3yrs or so before we were able to arrive they say "time heals all wounds" and I believe that is true for many. I truely love and cherish his friendship and am so greatful for it and him!

Now my last ex on the other hand...we have been apart for just over a year and he still won't speak to me. That ended ugly too and it has been just these last few months that I have been e-mailing him asking him what I should do with all of his shit. Clothes, tools, files, pictures, legal documents etc...and he will not respond. I'm not sure where to go with it, so that tells me that maybe a little more time needs to pass. Do I think we too can be friends? Probably....I have no desire to hang onto the hurt. It does me no good to harbor resentment....

So at the end of the day, I think if we are willing to forgive ourselves as well as the other person..and they are big enough to do the same, I think it IS possible. I would like to believe we all have it in us....I just don't think some of us are able to exercise that option....there is a reason why it is called the PAST.....but for all things ugly, something beautiful can come!

Aug 29 @ 12:40AM  
My X Wife is my best friend!
Most other Women from a break up..are like,...... If you talk to them... YOU Want them"!!! WTH?

Aug 29 @ 12:47AM  
Wow... Tuffy..
I can honestly say that I've never been able to friends with someone that I had a serious relationship with. On the other hand there have been girls that I slept with the first time we met and we became FWB. I really think it depends on how and why the relationship ended.

Aug 29 @ 11:28AM  

Aug 29 @ 12:16PM  
Over the course of time, often all that you can be, even in a minor role, for a brief point in time, is a positive asterisk in another's life. A bit of a smile when they need one, some memorable times or words. Maybe some of this will last. Perhaps, a distant, oblique memory is all that comes forth.

But it is the brief time when your paths cross, in that what you were remains a positive memory in a small space in time that emerges at given moments. A cameo appearance, if you will, within the big picture at a pivotal time. One may not not know when their appearance has significance to another. But at the crux of the crossroads, you or they mattered.

Life is made up of small components in many ways once we get beyond the major events and major players. They are spaces in time that are integral parts of the movie of our life. They contribute much more to our our lives than we recognize.

Aug 29 @ 3:57PM  
Um, first of all, KKat, you do not look even OLD enough to have a 23 year old son! Man, that blew my mind! LOL
Secondly, to answer your blog question, I have NEVER been able to remain friends after a relationship breakup. I have mulled this over time and time again, and I'm convinced the reason I couldn't be friends is because I settled in the first place- I knew the guys weren't good for me but I was lonely and wanted someone to hang out I dated them. By the time I pulled the wool out of my own eyes and the breakup loomed, I was usually so pissed off that there was NO way I could have remained friends with the guy! It's not that I didn't try to be friendly after the breakup. I mean, yeah, I was torqued off by him enough to end it, but once I got over the anger (and this never took too long) if he contacted me I was polite. The ex was the one who couldn't be nice, and after having a few emails full of insults and nastiness, I'd just block him and move on.
The last relationship I had ended in August of 2007. Yep. Three whole years ago! That one didn't end well, either, although, so far, he was the best of all my dates.
Anyway, I'm not sure if it's good to be friends. Obviously something wasn't right while we were dating. Whether it be personality conflicts or belief/culture conflicts, and what not....I'm just not sure I'd want to be friends with an ex for fear all those old feelings would be drudged up every time we talked.
This was a good topic, Kat, thanks for bringing it up!

Sep 7 @ 11:35AM  
I've been in three relationships. The first was literally insane. She wound up being committed during the course of our relationship. That didn't end well.

The second just needed some time to work her life out, etc. But she had a lot of growing up to do. It didn't end well. But, surprisingly, I managed to forgive and forget, and now we're friends again.

The third was just like the first, except worse.
I had quit smoking right after I met her. I had quit drinking long before that. I had quit smokin' up even longer before that. She didn't know a thing about it, but I was doing all three starting about a month before that relationship ended. Even worse, she left me for another man because I wouldn't marry her and get her pregnant right afterward when neither one of us had a job or a place of our own.

In short: Out of the three women I've been in a relationship with, there's only one I'm capable of still talking to, and I do.

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Can You Ever Go Back To Just Being Friends?