When your relationship ends, cutting ties altogether might be your best bet.
A big, looming question after the breakup seems to be, "Can we still be friends?" Unfortunately the answer is probably no. There are several reasons for this, but first and foremost is that even after the most amicable breakup, the people involved need some time so they can work through their feelings and sift through the ruins of the relationship. Even if it was not an emotional high-wire act, as many breakups are, there needs to be time apart to break the bond of "the couple." The No Drama Break Up
Each person needs to separate and go back to being an individual and lose the "couple" identity. Each person needs to do their work and become an individual once again. Each needs to deal with the breakup in their own way, apart from the scrutiny of the person they just broke up with. Most people cannot remain friends after a breakup but if it ever is to be, it will be later ... much later. The atmosphere immediately following a breakup is too emotionally charged for it to happen right away, if at all.
Sometimes both people are "okay" with the breakup and try to be friends too early. I know one couple who had dinner every now and again after they broke up. They told everyone they were "friends" and liked to check in now and again. One night, about 2 months after the breakup, the dinner turned into a teary shouting match.
Neither was prepared for it but both were moving onto other people and the revelation at dinner brought up all kinds of emotions that neither knew were there. If you're going to be friends, ever, the first 6 months is probably not the time, no matter how amicable it seems on the surface. 3 Signs You're Not Over Your Ex
The person who pushes to "be friends" is usually the one who has unfinished business but doesn't want to own that or doesn't want the responsibility of the relationship, but is unwilling to completely relinquish the ex. That is a selfish motive and not fair to the other person. Do your work and let the other person do their work and heal. It is not fair to string someone along as a "friend" because you can't deal with the pain of having them out of your life completely.
As with any post-breakup dealings with the ex: examine your motives. A coworker recently said to me, "I want to be friends after the breakup and she doesn't. She's a terrific person and I don't want her out of my life." 5 Definitive Reasons Not To Get Back With Your Ex
If you're the one who is asking to be friends, again: examine your motives. Are you trying to avoid your grief? Are you playing a game? Are you unwilling to really break all ties but don't want the relationship either? Do you want benefits without responsibility? Do you want to hurt someone else because you don't want to be in a relationship but you don't want to do either? If so, that's dysfunctional and wrong.
More Juicy Content From YourTango: