I’m an advocate for peaceful breakups. In my last article I talked about how to be friends with your ex after a breakup. I would like to provide a preface to that article here and talk about the importance of ending things with your ex on good terms.
I know what’s going through your head: “Why on earth would I want to breakup with my ex on good terms? I mean, we’re breaking up. We’re not going to be together. Isn’t that the point?” Well, yes and no. A romantic separation is the end you and your ex wish to achieve. This may not be possible for some people as many relationships end in chaos and turmoil. However, if you’ve had a healthy relationship and you are both on the same page about the breakup, there is no reason to throw away the friendship you have built together.
“He’s my best friend.” That’s what you said when you were together. And it was true. You two were inseparable. There was more than romance, there was true human connection. Whether you were aware of it or not, you forged a song platonic bond with your ex that could be more fulfilling and longer lasting than romance.
That bond is about the world you’ve built together. The mutual friends, the relationships you’ve forged with family members, doing those interesting things that you two mutually loved so much. Ending with your ex on good terms is not only healthy, but in your best interest.
And I know you’ve got the question in your head: “But a breakup is a breakup. How can I possibly end it on good terms?”
Here are five points to go by during and after a breakup with your ex. They will surely put you on the path to reconnecting at some point in the future:
Communication is the most important part of any decision a couple could make. Clear and mature communication during a breakup is critical. Both of you need to be on the same page. Neither can be left wondering about the future. Have a solid talk and be real about your current feelings and your desire not to lose the friendship.
I strongly advise a period of no contact after your breakup. Yes, this is part of ending on good terms. You will need this time to regroup; to focus on yourself. As time goes by you’ll become less emotionally attached to him and the idea of being with him. This will put you in a position to be emotionally prepared to rekindle the friendship.
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Knowing yourself is paramount. You must be able to look inside and read your own feelings in an objective way. This is critical in re-establishing contact with your ex as it will help determine your timeline for becoming friends again. When you are in the process of talking again, you should be able to spot any left over romantic feelings or feelings of hurt or anger from the relationship.
4. Willingness To Let Go.
Of course there were things that hurt you in the relationship. The breakup happened for a reason. You must be willing to let go of those old feelings. If you still experience negative emotions, it is not a good time to start talking again. If you have a strong level of self-knowledge you will be able to search out and deal with these feelings appropriately.
5. Don’t Take Things So Seriously.
Sure you were in a relationship with your ex, but that’s over now and hopefully you’ve moved on. Focus on the positive aspects of re-connecting with your ex. Try to laugh and use humor to guide your interactions. Joke about the past. Tell new funny stories. Go out and do something fun!
This may seem like a fantasy scenario considering the nature of most breakups. It is, however, possible if both partners’ possess a strong level of emotional maturity and self-knowledge. You CAN be friends again! Keep your mind on the friendship and the positive things that you liked about your ex. With a little time and effort you two should be back in friendship mode and ready to have a blast.