Forever Friends?

Is it simply refusing to let go or is remaining friends with the ex the height of maturity?

Does it secretly mean one or both of you are hoping to rekindle the romance? Or possibly just keeping a one timelover on the back burner for the inevitable sex drought ahead? Or am I just a cynic to even think such a thing?

I recently broached this subject with my boyfriend. Neither of us are friends with our exes and so it was an entirely hypothetical discussion, where we took entirely different viewpoints. I found it regretful and sad whereas he thought it was just a normal part of life – moving on and letting go of the past. I said I would have no problem with him befriending and ex and he hinted that he might struggle with it… And so that was that.

Are men just less emotionally attached? Or am I just a soppy fool – destined to cling to the coat tails of love?

It seems that remaining close to an ex is a rarity. In fact, with the exception of those having had children together, Facebook ‘friends’ is as far as exes get on the friendship charter – at least in my circles!

I fail to understand why.

Often people have spent years together. Entwining and integrating their lives fully. Sharing intimacies, almost belonging to one another and even vowing to remain that way forever. Is it not unnatural that just because one facet of the relationship (the romantic love) has gone, that everything else must follow suit and cease.

Of course sometimes relationships end so badly that nothing can be resolved, but amongst those I have discussed this with it is seldom the case. It just seems that like a dog after he has done his business, people wish to move on quickly from failed relationships, often banishing all traces of their lost loves from their lives – at least to the onlooker.

How dispiriting…

When you’re in a relationship – a happy relationship – it is very hard to imagine not having or wanting that person close to you in times ahead. To envisage one day not speaking or having a desire to speak to one another is just sorrowful. That you will have moved on, met other people and have no place in your life for the person who once shared so much of it. This fills me up empty.

And yet the general consensus seems to be that it is just part of a normal, healthy and balanced approach to love. That it comes and it goes and with that people change and no longer want or need the friendship of partners past.

My feeling is that we usually never want rid of family and great friends so why should ex partners be any different? Maybe it’s just too painful a reminder of the shattered hopes and dreams you shared? In any case I cannot imagine not wanting to pick up the phone to my boyfriend, whether the romance dies or not… Maybe I am incredibly naive or just blinded by love right now.

I should get over it though, as I know if the time comes he will  feel differently…

I should face facts that if this goes sour he’ll be changing his number in a shot, moving on and seeking happiness elsewhere.

Maybe if that happens I will grow up and realise that it is just a part of life. For now whether it is insecurity induced or naivety in the extreme, I am happy to believe that one time ‘significant others’ should always be far more significant than the occasional post on a social networking web-site wall, lost alongside hurling virtual sheep and tedious quizzes.

Once significant. Always significant. Friends Forever? Hopefully.