Can You REALLY be Friends with Your Ex?

I think that many can agree that they have close friends of the opposite sex, and that the friendship is solely based on the concept of being JUST friends. In fact, many can find beauty, joys, and headaches of being friends with someone of the opposite sex.

I have my “bros” that I treat more like my girlfriends with beards. With my best buds, I can be unapoletically me without a thought of turning them off…because..honestly, I don’t care for them be turned on in the first place.

Well….About a week ago I had this crazy dream about an ex-boyfriend who I considered to be a “just a friend.” Legit friend, without benefits. Well in the dream, I received an uninvited visit from my ex while I was entertaining my “dream man”.  When I say “dream man” I literally mean my DREAM MAN. I mean this guy was EVERYTHING that I want in a guy – caring, considerate, affectionate, honest, attentive, and trustworthy….and gorgeously handsome.

Now, the old flame was just a little too much for me in this dream. He blatantly told me he was not interested in any relationship with me, but he proceeded to share with all of his friends via social media how he showed up at my home only to find out that I was seeing someone new, as if we had a “thing” going on.  As you can imagine, my dream boyfriend DUMPED ME!

……COLD…..!

I woke up in a panic, and asked myself…. What does this mean?

For me, it meant one thing…. you REALLY can’t be friends with your ex. As much as I believe that men and women of the opposite sex can be just friends, I think it’s a different ballgame when it comes to exes.

In particular, I question the respect for boundaries that you or your ex will have for each other, especially as you transition into new relationships. I mean do you actually tell your ex that you are dating someone new and chat about how head over heels you are for a new man or woman in your life?

…..YEAH…AWKWARD….!

Or how about when you and your new love are not doing so hot. Do you actually share this with your ex? Would you be concerned that they would be opportunistic and try to take advantage of a vulnerable or weak you?

….UMM….SET UP….!

The other thing my dream taught me about being friends with exes is that keeping your exes around as friends is like carrying baggage or the reminders of your old relationship.  In my opinion, you set yourself up for the possibility of having your old feelings or your old flame “creep” into your new relationship.  Again, it makes me question your (or your exes) intention with maintaining such a close or ongoing relationship.

Lastly, my dream taught me that in order to truly enter into a new relationship with someone else, you cannot have the threat of someone else waiting around. When it is over with your ex, keep your space and distance. Again, establish those clear boundaries with him or her.  And be prepared to drop your ex if he can’t respect you. You don’t have to tell him or her everything about your life, but they should not just be dropping by unannounced..definitely not uninvited…and they should not be invading your personal life with 50-11 questions like “who are you dating?”

AND that goes for your child’s co-parent too! While you can maintain friendship as parents….there are BOUNDARIES. But, that’s a conversation for another day.

To my followers, what are your thoughts? Can you be/are you friends with your exes?