There can never be enough said when it comes to relationships. When you’re in a relationship it can be one of the greatest euphoric experiences you’ve ever had or it can be a horrific nightmare that you wish you’d just wake up from. Regardless of which group your past relationships fall into the reality is that at some point you cared deeply for your significant other. When a relationship comes to an end the hope is that you learned something from the experience and maybe at some point you and your ex can be friends.
Getting to the friendship stage takes a certain level of maturity and an understanding by both parties that the “romantic relationship” is over. Some people , however, use the idea of becoming “friends” with their ex as a way to rekindle the romantic spark the two once shared. This can be dangerous because almost always you can end up getting hurt if your ex truly just wants to be friends. Conversely, there are others who can become “friends” and remain just “friends”.
But what happens with that “friendship” when you find out that your ex has a new love interest? And what happens when you realize that the new boo is someone who you know? Does the dynamic of the friendship change? Can you sit there and listen to them rave and go on about how great their new love interest is? Can you listen to them say how great their new partner is in bed? Is it really possible to stay cool or maintain a true friendship with an ex? I’m not quite sure. I think that if enough time has passed maybe, but I’m inclined to think that some details of the new relationship are better left unsaid.
When I was in high school I dated this guy on and off for about 4 years. Throughout the time we dated I grew to care for him deeply and vice versa. We spent a lot of time around each other’s families. His mom and I became friends. His little sister was like my little sister so when we broke up it felt like I was breaking up with his family too. Our relationship didn’t end on bad terms and in fact I always thought that he was going to be the guy that I ended up. Obviously that didn’t happen because what did happen was that he ended up having a baby with someone else and ultimately that was what really ended it for us.
Despite our romantic relationship not working out, him and I were able to maintain a strong platonic relationship. Our friendship lasted for a while but for some reason he and I stopped communicating. It may have been because of his new relationship and baby, I really don’t remember the reason. But a year or two later I ran into him at a restaurant with his new “boo” (not his bm but another chick). The minute I spotted “them” it felt awkward. Awkward because 1) I hadn’t seen or spoken to him in years and 2) the new girl in his life was someone who had went to high school with us.
What made it more awkward was the entire time him and I were dating he told he that this girl was his “best friend”. So as I’m standing there chit chatting with them I’m wondering “Did this chick like him the entire time I was with him? Did she have her eye on him back then?”As I continued to make small talk you could feel the tension and awkwardness in the air. I wanted to get out of there immediately and I wasn’t sure why. It wasn’t like I still had any romantic feelings for him but for some reason I felt really uncomfortable.
This encounter happened many years ago and as I think about it now I realize why I felt so uncomfortable. I realized that here was this other woman, someone who I used to associate with, who was now dating my ex. I was angry on some level because I kind of felt betrayed by him that he would date someone who when him and I were dating, told me was just a friend. I started having doubts about whether they had truly been “just friends” back then.
Furthermore, I think that the mere fact that we knew each other at all just added to the tension. It felt awkward because it was unexpected and it caught me off guard. Had I known prior to seeing them that they were dating I probably wouldn’t have felt so uncomfortable but because I had no clue it made me feel a little uneasy.
Has this situation ever happened to you? How would you feel if you found out that your ex was dating someone you knew?