After a breakup, the majority of your friends will tell you to move on and find someone new.
But what if you just want to stay friends with your ex?
Well, there are some things you should know first…
1) Don’t rush the friendship
You both have just experienced a breakup, so everything is raw and freshly open.
You both need time to heal, and so rushing into a friendship can actually be detrimental to both of you.
Can I be honest with you?
If you feel the need to rush into friendship, you probably weren’t ready to be friends in the first place.
You both need time to heal and figure out who you are as individuals outside of the relationship.
No matter how great you think your ex is, give each other some time to process your feelings and heal.
That way, when you are ready to be friends, you’ll be able to be present for each other in healthy ways without being too attached to the past relationship.
The thing is, the people who rush right into a friendship usually end up either having a massive fight or hooking up again, both defeating the purpose of breaking up and moving on.
This might already answer your question about whether being friends with your ex can help you get over them: no, not really.
You see, when you aren’t over your ex, being friends with them will only hurt you.
Of course, after a few months of healing, being friends with them can be proof for yourself that you are over them, but if you know you still have feelings, I wouldn’t try to be friends.
The thing is, you have all your life to be friends with them if you want, so don’t rush this now.
2) Change is good
When you spend all of your time with your ex, you’re only surrounding yourself with reminders of the relationship.
You’ve probably heard the phrase “out of sight, out of mind,” right? Well, it’s true!
When you’re not around your ex, you’re not constantly thinking about them and what the relationship was like.
You can use this time to rediscover who you are outside of the relationship.
You don’t have to be the person you were in the relationship. You can change, explore new interests, and become a better, more authentic version of yourself.
It’s important to remember that the breakup occurred for a reason, and you need to learn from that and grow from it.
Change is necessary for growth, and you can use this time to strengthen yourself and become a better person.
You see, when you immediately spend all your time with your ex again, even if just as friends, you are not allowing yourself the opportunity to grow as a person.
You’re not giving yourself the time to heal, learn from the relationship, and become a stronger person.
You can’t be your best self if you are constantly reminded of all the things you did wrong in the relationship and all the things you wish you had done differently.
Instead of being your best self, you’ll be trying to be everything your ex wanted you to be.
You need time to redefine yourself in your own head and discover who you are without them.
Once you have done that and you feel like you and your ex are still compatible as friends, there is nothing standing in your way of being friends, but at first, change is good!
3) It’s important to know why the relationship ended
If you’ve ended the relationship, then there was a reason behind it.
If you don’t know why the relationship ended, then it’s hard to know what you should take away from it.
You need to know why the relationship ended so you can learn from it and use that to shape who you want to be moving forward.
If you don’t know why the relationship ended, you don’t have any information to take with you, leaving you open to repeating the same mistakes.
When you know why the relationship ended, you can use that to inform and shape who you want to be in the future.
You can use that information to grow and become a better version of yourself.
Now: if you want to be friends with your ex, being clear about why the relationship ended is crucial.
You need to be able to explain to your ex why you ended the relationship and what you learned from it.
If you can’t explain why the relationship ended, then it’s hard for your ex to understand that things just didn’t work out.
It’s important to have an honest conversation about the breakup and why it happened so that you can both learn from it and grow as people.
The same goes the other way around, if your ex was the one who broke up with you, you need to know exactly why things ended so that during your friendship, you aren’t getting your hopes up.
Of course, the end of a relationship also determines whether or not you can even be friends, to begin with.
Let’s say you split up amicably, you don’t have to be best friends, but you can still be friends.
Just because you’re no longer dating doesn’t mean you can’t be friends with your ex.
But if your ex is a jerk and you’ve broken up because they cheated and hurt you badly, then it’s hard to be friends with them.
Either way, both parties have to respect each other and not try to rekindle the relationship or make things awkward for each other.
4) Ask a relationship coach
While the points in this article will help you deal with being friends with an ex, it can be helpful to speak to a relationship coach about your situation.
With a professional relationship coach, you can get advice tailored to the specific issues you’re facing in your love life.
Relationship Hero is a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people navigate complex and difficult love situations, like being friends with an ex.
They’re popular because they genuinely help people solve problems.
Why do I recommend them?
Well, after going through difficulties in my own love life, I reached out to them a few months ago.
After feeling helpless for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship, including practical advice on how to overcome the issues I was facing.
I was blown away by how genuine, understanding, and professional they were.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice specific to your situation.
5) Utilize this time to grow
As you start to build your friendship and move on from your ex, you can utilize this time to grow and explore new interests.
Start to think about things you always wanted to do but never had the time or energy for while you were in your relationship.
You can also use this time to work on the things you weren’t happy with in the relationship.
It can be helpful to view the relationship like a science experiment — what worked, what could be improved?
Using this time to grow as an individual outside of the relationship can be very helpful for you.
It can help you come out of the breakup stronger and more confident.
It can help you learn from your mistakes, and it can help you become a better friend once you’re ready to start being friends with your ex again.
You see, if you immediately jump from relationship to friendship, you’re not giving yourself room to breathe and grow.
You’re not giving yourself the time to heal and to decide on what you truly want.
It’s like you’re being asked to get back into a relationship right after you’ve been broken up with — it’s too soon.
So – give yourself a little bit of time to heal and grow before even considering being friends with your ex.
This is an exciting time, there is so much you can learn and do.
And I think you’ll enjoy it.
So to summarize:
It’s best to wait at least a few months before becoming friends with your ex again, if not longer.
But don’t feel like you have to wait forever.
You can start the friendship earlier if you’re ready, or you can wait later if that’s what feels right for you.
6) You might feel too vulnerable to be friends right away
Some people are ready to be friends immediately after their breakup.
They’ve processed their feelings and know where they stand in the relationship.
They know what they want from the friendship, and they don’t feel too vulnerable to start building that friendship.
This is usually the case if the relationship ended mutually or if they were ready to break up long before they actually went through with it.
Some people might need to take a little bit of time before they’re ready to be friends with their ex.
They might need to process their feelings, accept the breakup, and know what they want from the friendship.
It’s important to know that you don’t have to be friends right away if you don’t want to be. You can take as much time as you need before you’re ready to be friends with your ex.
Being friends with your ex can make you feel extremely vulnerable. After all, this is the person you were in a relationship with.
This is the person you shared a lot of intimate details with.
And now there’s a chance that you might want to be friends with them again.
That’s not an easy thing to do.
But it’s an important step.
It can help you realize that you’re ready to be friends with your ex, and it can help you decide if being friends with your ex is something that makes sense for you at this moment in time.
You don’t have to jump into being friends right away, but don’t feel like it’s not worth trying.
If you still feel too vulnerable, there are probably some things you need to work through before you’re ready to be friends with your ex.
If you’re having a hard time processing the breakup, for example, there are probably some feelings you need to work through before you can be friends with your ex.
It might help to talk about your feelings with someone you trust, and it might help to think about what you want from the friendship.
If that doesn’t help, then there is probably something else going on that needs to be worked through before being friends with your ex feels safe.
7) Your friendship with your ex is more than just a Band-Aid
Some people think that being friends with their ex is just a Band-Aid — that it’s just a way of coping with the breakup.
It’s true that being friends is a helpful coping mechanism because you don’t have to say goodbye to this person, but it’s more than that.
You see, when you use this friendship as a band-aid, nothing good is gonna come of it.
You’re not going to be able to heal and move forward in your life.
And that’s not good because healing and moving forward are what you have to do.
So the friendship is more than just a Band-Aid. It’s a way of healing and moving forward.
Being friends with your ex is a way of honoring the past relationship and the time you spent with each other.
It’s a way of showing your ex that you respect the past relationship and want to keep your ex in your life.
Being friends with your ex can also be a way of processing the breakup.
It can be helpful to spend time with your ex in ways that you did before you were in a romantic relationship with them.
This can help you process your feelings, move on, and even strengthen your friendship.
However, for this step, you really need to be far into your healing journey.
8) Some relationships are meant to be just friendships
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, you just aren’t meant to be in a romantic relationship with your ex. Being friends is an ideal outcome for some relationships.
You can use this time to get to know each other as friends.
You can learn about each other’s interests, what makes each other tick, and have a stronger friendship than you ever did in a romantic relationship.
If you feel that the relationship is meant to be just a friendship, then it’s important to be patient with yourself and the friendship.
Being friends with your ex is a process, and it might take some time before you really start to feel like friends.
Even though your relationship might be better off as being friends, it might still not be an easy transition, and that’s okay.
You see, going from lovers to friends is not an easy transition.
However, the transition is a good thing because now you don’t have to put so much effort into the relationship to try and make it work.
Your relationship with your ex can now be more relaxed and easier to enjoy.
And the best part?
You might have a new best friend without the drama and incompatibilities of the relationship!
9) It can help you heal
Being friends with your ex can help you heal.
It can be a productive way of processing your feelings and moving on from the relationship.
Being friends with your ex and interacting with them regularly can help you process your feelings, and it can help you move on and heal from the breakup.
If you don’t want to be in a serious, long-term relationship, being friends with your ex can help you heal.
You can still spend time with your ex and have fun, but it won’t be as emotionally consuming as a romantic relationship can be.
Being friends with your ex can be a helpful way to heal from the breakup. It can help you process your feelings, and it can help you move on.
Now: if you are freshly broken up, though, it might do the exact opposite.
In that case, it might not help you heal, but will actually prevent you from healing.
Think about it: if you don’t get a chance to detach from your ex emotionally, moving on will be really difficult.
So, in order to heal, you must detach from your ex emotionally, and being friends with them will prevent you from doing that.
Spend at least a few weeks or months by yourself before considering a friendship with your ex.
10. It’s not as uncommon as you think
You might think that being friends with your ex is an uncommon thing.
After all, you hear about a lot of people who end up dating their exes or never speaking to them again.
You might think that it’s an unusual thing to do, but it’s actually not.
Friendships between ex-partners are fairly common.
You may not hear about it as often since most people don’t discuss their breakups and how they’ve handled them to the public.
It’s something that many people do. You can learn from the experiences of others and see that it is possible to be friends with your ex and move on.
You see, you are not weird for wanting to be friends with your ex, and there is a good chance that it can actually work out, but only if you take the right approach.
As I mentioned a few times already, make sure that you are ready to be in a friendship with your ex and that you don’t still have feelings for them.
11. Be honest about where you stand: Don’t lead your ex on
Exes need to know where you stand when you are ready to become friends.
Being honest about your feelings and your expectations for the friendship can go a long way in easing some anxiety for your ex.
However, this doesn’t mean you have to be brutally honest and tell your ex you don’t want to be in a relationship with them ever again.
You can be honest and say something like, “I’m not ready to date again yet, but I would love to be friends if you’d like to.”
Being open and honest about your feelings and expectations can help both of you relax a little bit.
Your ex will feel more comfortable knowing where you stand, and you won’t have to worry about leading them on.
The thing is a lot of the times when two exes become friends, at least one of them has ulterior motives and wants to get back together.
Now: in order to avoid that and to be on the same page, make it very clear where you both stand when you feel ready to be friends with your ex.
The last thing you want is for your ex to get jealous or upset and try to bring up the relationship again.
You see, if you can’t be honest and open about that yet, it might be too early for the friendship in my opinion.
If the relationship wounds are still fresh enough to cause you to become triggered, it might be best to wait a bit before you even consider being friends.
What should you do?
I think this article made it pretty clear, but being friends with your ex will not help you move on from them, especially if you still have feelings.
The good news?
It is absolutely possible for you to be friends with your ex, just give yourself and them a little time first, to figure out your emotions!
Once you do that, you will be good to go – there is nothing standing in the way of your friendship!