Sex & Dating

Is Being Friends With an Ex a Dating Red Flag? An Expert Weighs In

Tune in as we unpack the controversial question.

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Finding out a potential or current beau is friends with their ex can be off putting. Especially as unconventional lifestyles like polyamory become more common, the usual boundaries of love can feel out of touch. According to dating experts, exes are a very layered topic. Here’s everything we know, courtesy of the pros.

Friendship in most societies is thought of as platonic, without any overlapping. So, when a lover reveals their friends with their ex, the first thought is usually along the lines of yeah right. However, according to relationship expert David Bennett, being friends with an ex “can be positive under the right circumstances,” he told Bustle. As for those “right” circumstances, one quality will make all the difference.

The key:

Boundaries are key. It’s important that your partner can have relationships with people they care about, without feeling like they’re hurting you. But the only way to ensure this is by communicating your boundaries and trusting your partner to uphold them when engaging with exes. For example, preferring that your relationship issues are not discussed with the ex. If boundaries are crossed repeatedly, it’s a clear sign your partner is not prioritizing your relationship and is still stuck in the past. In that case — let them TF go.

As British journalist and co-author of the 2018 book “Slay In Your Lane” Yomi Adegoke shared, “staying friends with an ex isn’t psychopathic,” it has the power to be “wonderful,” if you remove fear and continue to choose mature people.

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