Can you be friends with your exes?

I find myself asking this a descent amount. Can we actually be friends with our exes? For privacy reasons I will now refer to my long term ex as “A”. A and I were together for almost 7 years. He was the love of my life, and I’m still in love with him. Sadly we were on and off a lot in college because I went through some serious ups and downs. I would break up with him one minute then apologize the next, always knowing he would be expecting me to come back to him. Then one day I realized that I was a shitty girlfriend. How could I treat someone I love like that? That was a big lesson and breaking up with A was one of the most selfless things I ever did. My life with him was pretty amazing but I slowly realized that he deserved better. So I decided I needed to leave him despite how badly I wanted to be with him. I packed my jeep and moved to California to start fresh.

For almost two years now I have been trying to keep in touch with A here and there. I’ll send him a text once in a while, just checking in. A rare phone call. But over time, I’ve realized that hurts him too. My roommate C pointed something out interesting the other day when we were talking about my ex. I had sent him a gift basket because I fucking love surprises and he didn’t seem to care all that much. All he did was send a text “thanks, that’s big”. Your damn right it’s big I spent like $80 on that bitch. Ugh. Anyways, C pointed out that me doing that was a nice gesture but it probably hurts him more than anything. Because it’s reminding him of me, and how I left him. That made me sad. But it also makes a lot of sense. How can you take 7 years and try and mold a friendship when one party wanted to make things work and the other party left it all behind. I think the only way you can be friends with your exes is if you only were together for a brief stint of time and both felt the break up was mutual.

Example: my ex out here in California and I are friends. But we had a mutual break up. He was always gone and I wanted attention and eventually it just wasn’t worth it. But we can be friends because we felt the same about the situation and we are both happier this way.

It’s a weird thought. Maybe there isn’t a “yes” or “no” answer to this question. Maybe it’s just never answered and you’re always in limbo. Maybe I’m rambling. K bye.



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