Many thanks to Irma, the author of today’s post, who writes about a topic many of us can relate to.
Have you ever wondered how separated parents or friends of yours keep it together and put on a good show of their shattered relationship? Here’s the secret to a happy ex-relationship – it’s not as hard as you might think.
Think logically about removing the other person from your life. Whether you’ve been living in cohabitation or just have a few things at each other’s houses, it’s a good idea to get started on clearing things out fairly soon. Ask for support from family or friends if it’s too overwhelming, and you can’t bear to face your ex. Arrange to leave his stuff with another family member or neighbor instead.
Take a time out
Everyone needs a time out after a relationship breaks down, so always be aware that both parties will need some breathing space before you can see each other and start to talk about the next stage. If you try to go from relationship straight to friendship it simply will not work. This is because your brain needs time to adjust to the new set up and process the fact that you are not together anymore.
Take it slowly
If you’ve decided you want to make a go of a friendship with your ex then take things slowly. Arrange to meet up for the first time in a neutral place like a café or park, but be careful not to choose somewhere that means anything to you two when you were a couple or you might stir up old feelings. Have a “get out” clause if things start to go wrong, like a phone call from a friend, or a generic reason to make a move. You don’t want to linger too long or start to dwell on the past.
If you’ve been together for a while then you’ll likely have shared groups of friends and even shared activities that you enjoy together. Now that the relationship has come to an end you have to come to terms with the fact that there will be a lot less socialising for a while. Equally important is ensuring your ex doesn’t feel awkward about meeting up with friends you shared.
Don’t talk ill of your ex
If you’re thinking of maintaining a friendship then this should be fairly obvious, but no matter what happens between you and your ex, and even if you just want to be civil towards each other, you have to make sure you are not talking about him behind his back in a negative way.
It’s never easy trying to maintain a relationship with your ex when feelings are raw, but give it some time, stay focused on the goal, and you’ll get there.