Ask V,  Love & Sex

Dr Venus : Should I Stay Friends with My Ex?

Dear Dr. Venus,

I dont know how to stay friends with my ex. At the same time, I really enjoy being around him and I know for sure he’s still in love with me. I know how they all say ex-couples should never stay friends, but i’m not ready to lose him forever either. What should I do?





Dear Naili,

The fact that your ex is still in love with you, yet you merely want to maintain friendship shows a mismatch in expectations. If he is still in love with you but you are not in love with him, do not lead him on. When he realizes that he cannot get you back, all hell will break loose and he would probably cut you off for good anyway. You should know by now that a man’s ego should not be bruised.

If you still feel the need to be around him, or you have the fear of losing him, perhaps what you may have needed was a time-out, rather than a break up. Better examine yourself to see if what you are feeling about him is just friendship or more. If you do still love him in that way too, you may want to explore going back to where you were before, assuming what had irked you then can be resolved. If he still loves you, there is a chance. However, he will not wait til eternity and the window does not stay open forever.

If you are certain that you have moved on, perhaps what you enjoy is being around him. This is mostly due to the familiarity of a settled routine when you were together. It appears that you didn’t have a bad breakup and you are currently in a “holding” zone, yes, that space in between breakups where ex lovers become a friend or try to become friends. As you seem to have moved on, it is not quite fair for you to keep him trailing along thinking that you may be interested in anything more than a friendship.

There is however much truth in what they say about ex-couples not staying friends, but I’d prefer to rephrase that to : “Ex-couples should not be friends for a while”. Both parties should take a proper break from each other and figure out what they truly want from each other or to settle themselves and learn to live without each other. It is selfish to have each other around for comfort’s sake or just because it is easier to carry on with life in a routine.

Once one party has resolved themselves and are ready to date someone else again, the “second breakup” may be even more painful than the first. It would feel like a betrayal, simply because of misplaced expectations of the other person.

You may need to face up to reality soon and deal with the possibility of moving on with or without him. You should let him know how you feel and try as much as possible to stay away from each other. You can see him occasionally but don’t run to him every time he calls. Keep your distance and once you feel he has also let you go, you can start being friends all over again. If he can accept that and still sticks around, you just received a bonus!

Dr. Venus

(Disclaimer : Dr. Venus is not a doctor nor a certified psychologist or counsellor. All love advice dispensed is purely from the depths of her heart.  Advice given is taken at your own risk, Dr. Venus and bears no responsibilities)

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