Do We Have to Stay Friends with Our Ex?

Are there friendly separations? Yes, you can mutually decide that it is time to go your separate ways. Yes, you can do this in a polite and civilized way. You can even remain friends. But this comes after a period in which the two former partners process their feelings and embark on a journey to rebuild their lives without each other.

The truth is, even if you can get over a breakup, the end of a relationship always sucks. It involves a bombardment of emotions that trigger various mechanisms and physiological responses in our brain that can affect decision-making and rational thinking.

This happy island, where calmness, mutual respect, love and support reign, as Instagram celebrities want us to believe, is not just about hearts and love words. The “friendly separation” arising from the perception of perfectionism created in today’s world is not something everyone has to accept.

Romeo Beckham and Mia Regan: They lived friendly and happily ever after

With these words and an Instagram story, Romeo Beckham said, “Mooch and I parted ways after 5 years of love. We still have great love and respect for each other. We still have a strong friendship and always will.” said. It was the end of his love story with Mia “Mooch” Regan, which started when he was sixteen and lasted 5 years. Regan, on the other hand, struck a positive tone and even managed to joke, saying: “We have grown up together since we were 16! Love takes different forms and paths as we mature. But we share so much love for each other. After 5 years, we became friends with each other.” These are things that happen, you might say. Teenage romances often end. People grow up and want different things. It’s a good thing that Romeo and Mia decided to stay friends, but is it really that easy? Is it mandatory to stay in touch with your ex? Is this a sudden transition or an emotional crutch that limits our evolution and the construction of a single life? So what if this is just a PR move? Think about it: Many celebrities use phrases like “We’ve made the difficult decision to part ways. We continue to love and respect each other as friends” when announcing their separation.

The myth of the “amicable parting”

At the beginning of the saga, there were actually Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin. The beginning of the amicable separation can be traced back to 2014. Announcing their decision to divorce followed by sudden outbursts of anger, public accusations, ridicule, and venting all dissatisfaction and sense of failure in TV interviews is starting to seem unfashionable among separating couples in Hollywood. At the time, Paltrow wrote on the website goop, “We love each other very much, but we will remain apart… We have always conducted our relationship in a special way, and we hope that by consciously separating and co-parenting, we can continue the same way.” Reflecting on the term almost a decade later, Paltrow admitted that the term sounded “a little pretentious” but noted that she was proud that it had “permeated breakup culture.”

He added: “I don’t think people ask me anymore, ‘Why did you say that?’ rather than ‘How do you achieve this?’ “They’re approaching.” The original intention was preserved. He and the Coldplay singer have formed a strong friendship; they often shared moments not only with their children, but also with their new partners Brad Falchuk and Dakota Johnson.

The same was true, to a lesser or greater extent, for Demi Moore and Bruce Willis, they managed to stay close even in the toughest of times. Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux sat at the same table on Thanksgiving; Katy Perry, Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr also prove that it is possible to be friends with an ex-partner.

Even among Italian celebrities, some continue to see their former partners and show friendship to them, like Michelle Hunziker and Eros Ramazzotti or Belén Rodríguez and Andrea Iannone. Recently, Belén commented on a post by Iannone’s new partner Elodie on Instagram; “You don’t know how happy I am! Perseverance and a good heart always win! You are a wonderful couple.”

Are we supposed to be happy and positive when we break up, or just pretend to be?

It’s nice, even comforting, to see these examples of “amicable separation” by celebrities; especially when kids are involved… However, if this positive view of separation offered by celebrities on Instagram leaves us with a feeling of failure if we cannot display feelings of joy and friendship towards someone who cheated on us or broke our heart; This fuels the culture of comparison.

On the one hand, there are films like Legally Blonde and 500 Days of Summer; Post-breakup tears, used tissues, dozens of chocolate boxes, going out in pajamas, and the days of hiding under the bed to hide from the world… On the other hand, there are the pastel colors and cotton candy of polite breakup statements on Instagram.

We’re not even talking about the “Don’t take it personally, take it all” approach in the vein of The First Wives Club, or documentaries where all the betrayals and slights of the ex are clearly laid out (Ilary-Totti, ring a bell?)…

So what is the correct behavior? Everyone’s correct behavior is unique. Breakups are stressful, cause pain, feelings of failure, and often shake our self-esteem. Of course, we all hope to behave with dignity and courtesy. But sometimes getting to this point requires a journey of awareness, acceptance, and reconstruction. There is no magic wand for this. It’s not guaranteed that we have to smile and dance with the ex-partner’s new love, as it was for Gwyneth. The friendly separation has become Instagram’s last resort in the pursuit of perfection. But no one is perfect. We are just people who hope to improve every day.

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