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Thinking Of Dating Your Friend’s Ex? Here’s Why You Should

todayJune 17, 2024 19

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Dating a friend’s ex is an immediate no-no and there are several reasons why. 

One of the biggest excuses to avoid entering a romantic relationship with a buddy’s one-time lover is its potential strain on the existing friendship. With most comraderies being built on trust, respect, and mutual understanding, amongst other things, pursuing a romantic relationship with a friend’s former partner can be seen as a betrayal of these foundational elements. During a write-up in Wingman Weekly, psychologist Dr. Pam Spurr offered advice on how to navigate dating such a forbidden person, though she strongly suggested avoiding it altogether. 

“If they were together a long/longish time, and your pal was hurt by their ex, it’s a complete no-no.  This is like slapping a big insult onto injury and would probably never be forgiven,” Dr. Spurr explained, adding, “Putting your friends first with ex-territory is a crucial part of a lasting friendship. Friends are for life (well, good ones are – but some come and go) and must be respected.”

Thinking Of Dating Your Friend's Ex? Here's Why You Should Never Do It

Several other experts agree with his notion, with Dr. Brandy Engler, Ph.D., highlighting another critical factor that should be considered when entertaining the idea of dating your bestie’s old boo.

“If your friend isn’t over it and is still actively requiring your support, it’s not very ethical to go in,” Brandy Engler, Ph.D., told Women’s Health in 2016. 

Suppose you do move forward with dating your friend’s ex. In that case, the emotional fallout can create an awkward and tense atmosphere, not just between the individuals directly involved but also within their broader social circle. These groups typically work as a delicate system, with everyone playing a part in its functionality. Therefore, introducing such a potentially controversial component can disrupt cohesion. Mutual pals may feel pressured to take sides or become entangled in the ensuing drama, leading to unnecessary division.

The best way to avoid such chaos is to maintain boundaries with individuals who once had romantic dealings with your buddies. Even if you’ve got their blessing to move forward with their ex, in the words of relationship expert Karabo Libate, “In most cases, the friend will lie.” Simply don’t go down that route. 

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