Remaining friends with an ex can ultimately work. Only if you know the reason you want to be friends still and you do not have intentions of being more than friends. Both of you must be on the same page about the friendship. If neither of you have ulterior motives and it doesn’t interfere with any of your current relationships, than it will work out very well. Although, you need to make sure you are being honest with yourself about what your true intentions are. To make the friendship work, it is important to not have benefits. Michael J. Salas LPC-S therapist at vantage point counseling services in Dallas says, “I usually recommend three months to let things settle before beginning a new relationship as friends. Hang out in neutral areas with friends to prevent doing things more than friends. Make sure you are in a healthy place to start over and you have to be capable of discussing past mistakes in the relationship and why you broke up. You have to know why you want to be friends. If you genuinely love spending time together and have a bunch of shared hobbies, interests, and mutual friends then it’s valid.” Starting a friendship with an ex requires patience and work, but if you are willing to put those into it, than your friendship will most definitely succeed.
Trying to be friends with an ex puts you on thin ice. I’m sure there are some relationships that could transition into a healthy friendship but I believe those are outliers. Continuing to be friends with your ex will make it easy to fall into the trap of an on and off again relationship. If you are clinging to your ex it will shut you off on chances to meet and open up to new people. You need to separate yourself from your ex and be your own person. If you are trying to reconnect with an ex you need to ask yourself why. You may have ulterior motives and not even know it or likewise for them. A study from 2000 shows that “on average exes tend to have lower-quality friendships than opposite-sex friends who were never romantically involved. They are less emotionally supportive, less helpful, less trusting, and less concerned about the other person’s happiness ” (Psychology Today). And if your breakup was messy or not mutual you bet that’s going to affect the “friendship” you’re trying to have with them. In short, try to hang out with friends outside of your ex’s circle. Especially if you had a bad breakup you need to take time away from that person to heal and move on. Having a friendship with someone you just got out of a relationship with should not be used as a way to move on: you need a break from them. Overall, so many things could go wrong from having a friendship with an ex, so why risk it?