While there is no definite answer to whether it is healthy to be friends with your ex or not, any sort of relationship with an ex can be a tricky one. If your ex has requested you to stay friends after the end of a relationship, you need to analyze the pros and cons of the situation carefully. While some couples remain friends after a breakup with ease, a majority of couples still end up suffering more when they decide to remain friends. Exes are also believed to ruin future relationships.
After spending days of exclusivity, commitment, and intimacy with each other, it can be really difficult to go back to being just friends. So you really need to think twice when your ex wants to be friends with you. It may be dicey but it is possible to tell an ex you don’t want to get back together. But before jumping to conclusions, it is essential that you consider why your ex keeps trying to be friends with you and whether it’s a good idea to be friends with them.
Why Does Your Ex Want To Be Friends?
Before we figure out how to respond when your ex wants to be friends, it is absolutely imperative that you ask yourself, “Why does my ex want to be friends so badly?” What are the reasons behind their insistence to continue a friendship with you? Why do they want to stay friends with you after the relationship is over? Their intentions behind wanting to be friends matter. An idea about this will help you decide whether it is wise to be friends with your ex or not. Here are a few possible reasons:
- For old time’s sake: One reason could be that your ex might want to bring back the friendship that they shared with you before you two became involved in a romantic relationship. They probably want to become friends with you for old time’s sake
- They still care and want to keep the peace: Even if you both decided to break up, your ex might still want to be there for you through good and bad times, at least as a friend. It’s also possible that they don’t want to keep any bitter feelings. They’re not interested in rekindling the relationship but they don’t want to harbor any hard feelings either
- Hoping for a second chance: In case you took the decision to part ways with your ex, then probably they might try to remain friends with you in order to get another chance with you. It’s also possible that they regret breaking up with you, which is why they’re reaching out hoping you would give them a second chance
- Still in love: Your ex might still be in love with you and, therefore, does not want to break the connection that they shared with you. It’s possible that they still want to be a part of your life because they have not been able to get over you or the relationship they once shared with you
- To get back at you: There might be hidden motives behind the proposal of friendship after breakup. For instance, if your ex has the potential to be vindictive, they might try to ruin your future relationships. They might do this because they want to ‘get back at you’ for breaking their heart. You know your ex best, if you think they have a tendency to do something like this, it’s best to turn them down
Breakups are always hard to deal with. They can have damaging effects on your overall wellbeing. We’re not saying it’s wrong to be friends with your ex but be careful too. It’s quite a tricky relationship to navigate. Ask yourself if you want them back in your life after all the toxic and unpleasant events that happened in the past when you were in a relationship with him. There could be several reasons why your ex wants to become friends with you. Let’s discuss why it may not be such a good idea.
Related Reading: 11 Practical Tips To Get Over Someone Fast
Why Being Friends With Your Ex Is Not A Good Idea?
When someone has been such an integral part of your life, it’s only natural that cutting them off completely is bound to hurt. That’s why most couples try to remain friends even after the relationship fizzles out. It’s a last-ditch effort to retain the familiarity of an old connection in whatever way or form possible. However, flogging a dead horse is never a good idea and being friends with your ex is just that.
Still not convinced? Consider these 5 solid reasons why being friends with your ex is not a good idea before we figure out how to say no to your ex:
1. It can spoil your memories of the relationship
You and your ex have shared some memorable moments with each other in the past, both good and bad. So it might be better to let those moments remain untouched by not being friends with your ex. You need ample time to get over your ex before you can even think about starting a friendship with them. It is a long arduous process that is not worth the effort in most cases.
2. Moving on becomes harder
Yes, they were important in your life and it’s hard to let go. But, at the end of the day, you need to move ahead with your life and accept that you cannot always have it all. You cannot move forward in life with one foot stuck in the past. Even if you’re completely over any romantic feelings for your ex, your attachment to them can make moving on that much harder.
How can you get them out of your mind and life when you meet and talk to each other regularly, even if your interactions are completely platonic. Therefore, you should know how to reject an ex who wants to be friends with you.
3. It can impact your future relationships
Your future relationships are likely to suffer because of your friendship with your ex. More often than not, one party gets jealous when the other starts dating or meeting someone new. It’s not easy to stand by and watch when a former partner gives the special place that was once yours to someone else. That’s when things get complicated. Also, not all partners are secure enough to be okay with their spouse being friends with an ex.
4. Unresolved issues
You and your ex might have unresolved issues, which will ultimately ruin your friendship. These issues are bound to surface again, sooner or later. When that happens, the same cycle of bickering, fights and emotional drama will be set into motion. Friendships between exes usually bring a lot more pain and resentment. Why complicate life more than it already is? That’s why you should know how to turn down an ex who wants to be friends.
5. On-again-off-again dynamics
When you and your ex are still a part of each other’s life after breaking up, the likelihood of any residual feelings trapping you in a cycle of an on-again-off-again relationship is high. Or worse, you may end up sleeping together to process those feelings. Either way, this is bound to leave you both confused and complicate your equation further. Not to mention, the chances of breaking free from this toxic loop and turning over a new leaf in life will become near impossible for you both.
Related Reading: The Right Way To Use Power Of Silence After A Breakup
15 Ways To Turn Down An Ex Who Wants To Be Friends
Being friends with your ex can be tricky, especially if you are trying to move on or have already moved on with someone else. Rekindling a friendship after a romantic alliance has died down essentially requires a lot of commitment from both sides. It would mean that they are in your life in some respect, and it may be hard to manage the relationship dynamics as such. If you’re caught in the “my ex wants to be friends but I don’t” situation, then stick to this decision and take inspiration from these clever ways to turn him down expediently.
If you’re wondering “I don’t want to be friends with my ex but how do I tell them this?”, know that there are ways to tell your ex that you don’t want to be friends with him. There are several clever ways on how to tell your ex you don’t want to talk. You can do that politely, nicely and with minimum to zero conflict. Here’s how you should tell your ex you don’t want to be friends with them after a breakup:
1. Have a conclusive conversation with your ex
For your mental peace and happiness, it is essential that you have a straightforward conversation with your ex and let them know that there is no logic in being friends. Simply tell them that you do not like the idea of friendship after the breakup and that it is something that is not going to work for you.
If you’re wondering how to politely tell an ex to stop contacting you, know that there is no point in beating about the bush on this matter. The more straightforward and clear you are, the better it’ll be for the both of you. It may seem blunt when you say it but don’t ever feel guilty about turning down your ex. You will be doing them a favor as well. Talking to an ex is not exactly the most wide thing to do.
2. Block your ex on all social media accounts
Is blocking an ex a good idea? Most definitely, yes! Especially if your ex wants to be friends even after you have told them that you don’t want to. If they keep messaging you on your social media, block them right away.
That way they will not be able to contact you in any way whatsoever and will not be able to keep tabs on your life. They are bound to get a definite sign that you want to block them from your life as well. Besides, you won’t have to be bothered by thoughts like “how do you tell an ex you don’t want to meet up”.
3. Sever all kinds of communication links with them
If you’re asking yourself, “My ex wants to be friends but I don’t. What should I do?”, then know that there are ways to tell an ex you don’t want to get back together. One way is to snap all communication chords in order to make sure that they don’t get their hopes up. Do not receive their calls, do not reply to their text messages and so on. If possible, block their number as well. It is one of the best ways to say that you do not want to be friends with them anymore. Be firm and turn down your ex.
4. Avoid visiting places where your ex might show up
Even if you block and follow the no contact rule, they might hang around the places you frequent just to run into you and get a chance to talk to you. The chances of that happening is more at the places that you both visited often. So, the best move on your part would be to avoid going to those places altogether, at least until your ex gets over the idea of wanting to be friends. This is another effective tip on how to respond when your ex wants to be friends.
Related Reading: Unfriending on Social Media: 6 Tips on How To Do It Politely
5. Keep yourself busy
Instead of sitting at home and wondering, “Why does my ex want to be friends so badly?” or “Why is it that my ex keeps trying to be friends with me?”, it’s better to keep yourself busy and push these thoughts away. Work on your personal and professional life in order to heal yourself and become a better person. The busier you get, the easier it will be for you to avoid your ex.
6. Move out of the apartment/city/country
This is a very extreme measure that you can take if you’re afraid that your ex has stalker-like tendencies. If your ex lives in the same apartment building, city or country as you, then moving out would be a good way to let them know that you are not interested in being friends. Make sure to call for help if things spiral out of control.
This is one of the bigger steps you can take if you feel like your security is at stake. It’ll help you get rid of your stalker ex and be safe, especially if your ex wants to be friends after no contact for a prolonged duration and pops back into your life completely out of the blue.
7. Meet mutual friends only in their absence
Over the years, you tend to make a lot of mutual friends. You can’t let go of these friends just because you broke up. So it’s best that you meet and hang out with them only in the absence of your ex. Tell your mutual friends that you want to avoid meeting your ex and you are not interested in plans that include them. This is another tip on how to tell your ex you don’t want to talk that you can follow.
8. Break connections with their family
It is possible that during your relationship, you developed a special bond with your ex’s family . But since you both have parted ways, there is no need for you to keep in touch with his family. Break connections with their parents or siblings so that they can get a clear idea that you do not want to be a part of their life any more.
You are clear that you don’t want to be friends with your ex. If you are still thinking of how to reject an ex who wants to be friends, then this is an important step in the process.
9. Take a short trip somewhere
If possible, you should take a short trip somewhere to avoid them completely. Go visit your friend or relative who lives in another city or country. Better still, travel solo. The trip will give you time to get over your ex. Since your ex will not be able to get in touch with you, they might stop pushing you to be friends. It’s an effective way to tell an ex that you don’t want to get back together.
10. Let them know that you have someone new in your life
Still wondering how to politely tell an ex to stop contacting you? Well, this is one way. You might find someone new in your life after the breakup. Even if you have not found someone, you can just tell them that you are dating someone now and that person does not like the idea of you being friends with your ex. The bluff can help dissuade your ex from pressuring you into friendship.
11. Always be surrounded by lots of people
Whenever possible, surround yourself with lots of people like your relatives, friends or colleagues. When your ex sees you with people, they will probably avoid approaching you and convincing you to remain friends with them. This is a conversation that is private in nature and cannot take place with people around. So, make sure you have someone with you especially when you go to places where you are likely to run into your ex.
Related Reading: How Does A Guy Behave After A Breakup? 11 Things You Didn’t Know
12. Avoid revisiting old memories and habits
At all costs, avoid revisiting old memories and habits that were a part of the relationship. For instance, doing something that you both did together on a weekend or visiting a particular restaurant on a particular day of the week. If your ex notices that you are doing these things, then they might think you still want something to do with them.
13. Return any souvenirs or belongings of your ex
This is one of the best tips on how to say no to your ex. If you have souvenirs from your relationship that remind you of your ex, or even some of his belongings, pack and return them to him. This simple gesture is enough to make it clear that you are not interested in having to do anything with them, even if your ex wants to be friends. Your “I don’t want to be friends with my ex” dilemma sorted?
14. Do not get involved in their matters
It is obvious that you will not be able to get over the bond that you shared with them immediately. You might feel tempted to get involved in their matters and help them sort out their life problems like you always did. But you have to avoid this at all costs to make it clear you do not want to be friends with your ex anymore.
15. Stay strong
After the breakup, it will be very difficult for you to move on and get on with your life without your ex by your side. More than missing your ex, you miss being in love. However, you have to stay strong and become independent so that you can show your ex that you do not need them even as a friend. We know it’s easier said than done but you will have to try. It might take a while but, with a little bit of effort and determination, you will be able to emerge stronger than before.
Dealing with an ex is never easy. Past memories can come back to haunt you and throw you in a cycle of hurt and pain all over again. But you need to make sure that it doesn’t happen, which is why it is imperative that you keep your ex out of your life. We hope these ways can help you drive away your ex, who wants to be friends with you desperately, and give you the opportunity to explore your love life once again peacefully.
To politely turn down an ex you need to have a direct and clear conversation telling them that while the part of your life you shared with them will always be special to you, you see no sense in continuing being friends. This way you can convey your intent to not be friends without hurting them.
If you have tried telling your ex that you don’t want to be friends or stay in touch but they’re just not getting it, it’s a good idea to block your ex. In addition to this, blocking an ex can also be helpful if you think you’re susceptible to drunk calling/texting or stalking them on social media.
There is no need to beat around the bush if your ex wants to meet up and you’re not interested. Just tell them so, politely but firmly. You don’t have to explain, justify or defend your decision to not want to meet them. Just tell them that you appreciate that they reached out to you but you’ve moved on in life.
An ex may want to be friends for the sake of old times or because they still care about you and haven’t been able to get over you. If you have the potential to be vindictive, this could also be a ploy to get back at you.