Can We Still Be Friends?

blog post

Hello and happy Wednesday.

Earlier this week I was listening to Olivia Gatwood and Melissa Lozada-Oliva’s podcast Say More. Olivia and Melisa are both internationally renowned female writers and poets, and you can click on the link on their names to check out their respective incredible works. I was listening to the Anxiety & Ex-Girlfriends episode of the podcast and it got me thinking about the general preconceptions that new lovers have about ex-partners and vice versa, and about the ways in which our generation deals with those.

The Girl Code 101 secret guide book says that one must automatically hate both the new lover of our ex-partner and the ex-partner of our new lover. So to break that down, we don’t like the person that made it possible for us to have a new bae, and we don’t like when our old bae is happy with someone new, especially if we, at the time, are not. But why? Must we hate another person for finding happiness where we, perhaps, couldn’t? Is it then jealousy that makes us hesitant to accept the fact that not every relationship in life nor every person that crosses our paths are meant either for us, or to last?!

I’m lucky in that I have never A) had or had to deal with a “crazy ex” and B) had a new lover obsess over an ex partner of mine and vice versa, and on top of that I am proud to say that I am still friends with most of my ex-partners, even ones where the break up wasn’t particularly friendly. But I have witnessed first hand the anxiety that girls experience over these situations, and to be honest I find it hard to understand, but I do know that a lot of the time it has a lot to do with insecurities that we may feel for one reason or another.

We may think that the ex-bae of our new lover is prettier than us, more of an extrovert, more likable, funnier. Or that new bae’s family liked them more. Or that the family or your ex-bae likes their new lover more, or that they are better looking, funnier, more likable. It’s a viscous, never ending circle. And we would be so much happier and freer if we just concentrated our energies on us, our present and future, our relationships. Too often girls become involved in this toxic competition and battle against each other, complete with bitchy group chats and indirect and sometimes direct hate on social media, when really we should all stay in our lane and keep looking forward.

I like to think that every break up is a blessing in disguise. It is a lesson learned from life experience, regardless of whose fault the break up was, if you committed one mistake or many, you learn from them, and likewise, if your partner is the one who is at fault, you learn from their mistakes too. You become a better version of yourself, once you heal from the pain of a broken heart. I really believe that. I think this is a healthy way to look at and think of break ups, I used to be the girl that got absolutely consumed by the weight of a failed relationship, and the pain of a broken heart and I can’t tell you how much quicker my healing process has become since I’ve adopted these views.

I get it, people can be toxic, relationships can be toxic, they can end badly and you may never want to see that person again in your life. Someone can treat you so badly, that anyone who loves you automatically hates them. But I think that generally, as a rule, the Ex is stereotyped and placed into all these boxes that we are just trample on and kick around, instead of leaving them to one side, in the attic where they belong. I would love to hear others thoughts on these matters, so please if you have an opinion do share it down below. Have you had any bad experiences with ex partners? Maybe you’re friends with a lover’s ex? I’d love to hear about it.