There are hundreds of complications and new hurdles that come with divorce, one of them being the matter of friendship with your ex after the divorce. Many people have strong opinions on the topic and have their own reasoning. However, when it comes to life post-divorce and the subject of friendship you need to make the decision on your own. Here are a few things to ponder before doing so:
To be friends:
If you decide to remain friend you firstly need to define what being ‘friends’ with your ex entails. Does this mean you are just cordial when in each other’s presence? Does it mean you are Facebook friends who occasionally ‘like’ each other’s statuses? Or does it mean you meet for coffee every now and then? Exes who decide to stay friends should have strict guidelines to follow; boundaries need to be set to prevent that friendship going sour. A good reason to remain friends is to reassure the kids. If you have children, acting as friends in front of them will help the process for them. Another reason to stay friendly is that people who choose to remain friends typically have an easier, more mutual divorce than those who didn’t.
Not to be friends:
It’s okay not to be friends. Nowhere does it say in the ‘Handbook of Divorce’ that you have to remain friends with your ex. There are plenty of reasons you don’t want or have to be friends with your ex. Those who to choose not to be friends choose it because it is easier just to cut everything off and move on. Keeping your ex as a friend could hinder the moving on process for either party. Sometimes it’s too painful to hang on to that person, it’s best to let go and move on.
The decision is ultimately your decision. You need to do what is best for you. To figure out what is best be honest with yourself and answer questions like these:
- Will this hurt or help me?
- Am I ready to be friends?
- What will happen when I date or if they date?
- What will my friendship mean?
- What will a non-friendship mean?
Once you have answered these questions and weighed your options, speak with your ex. Be sure that you agree what your friendship or non-friendship means. You both need to be on the same page and understand the boundaries. You are divorced because being married has proven not to be the best for you, do what will continue and strengthen you on that path.
Author Bio: Heather Smith is an ex-nanny. Passionate about thought leadership and writing, Heather regularly contributes to various career, social media, public relations, branding, and parenting blogs/websites. She also provides value to the become a nanny website by giving advice on site design as well as the features and functionality to provide more and more value to nannies and families across the U.S. and Canada. She can be available at H.firstname.lastname@example.org.