• Fri, Jan 22 2010

Hanging Out With Your Ex

I got asked a question recently about whether it’s okay to hang out with your ex. On the surface, my answer is “sure,” but with a few stipulations. If you’re considering hanging out with a brand new ex-boyfriend or girlfriend, here are some points to keep in mind.

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Timing Is Everything
The biggest mistake singles make when they first break up with someone is thinking they can immediately hang out with their ex and have everything be just fine. Of course, it takes some time to get over the break up. How much time? That depends on the couple, how long you’ve both been dating, and how serious your relationship. Some people can move on from relationships very quickly, while others need more time. If your ex is looking to instantly be friends, tell him or her that you’re up to it, but just want to take some time for yourself first.

What’s Different
What happens when one ex moves on before the other? It can cause the one left behind to be a bit clingy. Sometimes that comes in the form of friendship, where your ex says they just want to hang out with you. The truth may be, however, that they are nervous about your new relationship. If you do decide to hang out with an ex, be sure you are giving your new guy or girl the right amount of time and attention. You wouldn’t want to jeopardize something new (and potentially great) for a friendship based on love that didn’t work out.

The Old Standby
Sometimes partners rely on each other immediately after they break up. They are comfortable with each other, so instead of branching out and meeting new people, they decide to just hang out instead. This can sometimes lead to a situation where ex’s become best friends for a long time after they break up, and yet because of their close “friendship” neither can find the right person. If you rely too much on your ex rather than making new friends (and meeting new singles), it’s time to get some distance.

Image: sxc.hu

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  • Dustin Mayberg

    Hello there,
    here is my issue: 8 month ago I met a fantastic woman, we are in love with each other and have a great relationship. We share a lot of oddities in tastes and have similar principals with one exception: I have never hung out with former partners and have had many good relationships. My partner on the other hand, has had mainly dissapointing relationships and has told me when we met, that she was single for a long time. Yet, she steadily brings up anecdotes from the past involving exes which after a while started to annoy me. To top it, she still hangs out with with two of her ex-boyfriends, either via telephone and e-mails or via visits. When I pointed out to her that this is something that bothers me, she said that these friendships are purely platonic and that I should get over it. 3 months into the relationship, I discover that she actually had a sexual relationship with one of them for over 10 years and that she slept with him until very recently, 4 month before we met. Her reason for doing so was that she rather slept with somebody she knew, then having new men into her life, considering that she lives in a small town and has a high profile job. This kind of relationship with him was upsetting to me, so I asked her to stop communicating with him, which she promised she would. She assured me that the relationship with me is more important to her, then anything she has ever had before. She told me that she would tell him how she feels about me and to stop communication. I felt relieved.
    A few weeks later, I noticed that she brings him up a lot in conversation and this led to our first argument. I got angry and voiced it. She replied that there is nothing to worry for me and that she “cut all communication” with him. A month goes by, and now I find out that according to her, he is still in touch calling her and asks to visit. She said to me that she doesn’t know what to do anymore and when he leaves a message, she does not return his calls.
    What is going on?