12.19.2011

girlfriends, loyalty and the ex-factor


girls are (generally) pretty loyal to their species...
i've definitely deflected a man's attention when one of my gals have previously expressed interest in that gentleman....

but why?

just because my gal feels a twitter about a certain male--even when he doesn't return her affection,  should i keep myself from a possible love connection just because that man is spoken for?

on the flip side,

i once entertained a gentleman. he was beyond lovely, but i didn't feel a spark. we hung out a lot, but kissed only one time and i set the record straight.
i DID, however, have stomach fireworks with his roommate.... and he returned the affection but wouldn't step on the toes of man #1  and didn't....for YEARS. i felt it was horribly unfair to brand me especially when his friends were so terribly eligible and date-worthy.

but there does need to be some loyalty, no?

after my annulment, i found solace in a girlfriend who didn't know my former husband. she was a great shoulder to cry on and helped me in many a time in need.
six months later, when i was doing a west side story in chicago, she went radio silent. a few months later, she called me and told me she'd been dating my former husband- in fact, she had sought him out- and asked me advice on how to get him back after he had learned we were friends and didn't feel good about dating a close friend of mine (good guy!).  initially, i tried to be the bigger person- i mean, who am i to stand in the way of a great love? but really? of all of the men in the world, you'd seek out my former husband who lives across the country?! i was crushed but thankful that he took the high road.

so let's define this, shall we?

if all really is fair in love and war, are there boundaries? should we be loyal? i'd certainly rather have a great partner in love than a mediocre friend.....

and as we all know, some besties are life long and some are circumstantial...

but here's how i see it:

if you are my good friend/ sister, don't you DARE think about going after my big ex's... don't touch mister, v, my ex husb, or really any major ex i've had in the last 10 years......

if you are my good friend and are interested in dating a fringe boy (who never made it to the big boyfriend show), just throw me a heads up and i'll be a-ok.

how do feel about it?
have you been down this road before?

15 comments:

kelly : pinetothepacific said...

i SO agree. every girl should be allowed a short list of "untouchables" - whether or not they are exes or just life-long crushes. i haven't experienced it personally, but i've seen other friends completely sever ties with longtime girlfriends after they pounced on an ex. so bad!

Barb said...

Totally agreed. I was so grateful that my friends and I had such different taste in guys for this very reason- it just made everything simpler.

The Shabby Princess said...

I agree wholeheartedly! I had a bestie who was super friendly with my very serious boyfriend, which was greaynbecause she hated the former boy. Although, when we broke up and she MOVED IN WITH HIM "as friends" (they later dated), it just crossed some unspoken line of girlfriend behavior. To me, at least.

Sandi said...

Natalie, you're right on this one. The not major relationships, it's all good. But an ex spouse is crossing a HUUUUUUGE line.
P.S. good for you for just rocking life in general :)

Jordan said...

Best post ever!

Rae said...

I guess I'm in the minority. I think there definitely needs to be some sort of healing period, and some serious sensitivity (both of which are undefinable and different for everyone) but I feel like, if one of my best friends could potentially marry one of my exes (who are mostly amazing guys), why would I stand in the way?? I especially feel this way in regards to the very small LDS singles bubble. There's not millions of us out there, so it's very likely we might date someone who's dating someone we we're friends with.
It's very tricky, as I do think people can be incredibly selfish to jump so quickly into a relationship with someone while their friend is still not over them, so it's hard to say how long one needs to wait. But I just don't believe in saying never. If I'm not going to marry that boy, and he really is that great, why should no one else?
That being said, I'm totally with you on thinking what your gf did with your exhusband is wrong. The fact that she didn't know him, and then sought him out....that's just LOOKING for ways to stir things up. But if an ex and a friend already knew each other and had real potential? Go for it. I'm not talking flings, I'm talking a real substantial relationship.
And no, I have not been in the position of having a friend date a serious ex, nor have I ever dated a good friend's ex. I completely admit opinions can change when you're the one in the situation.

LCFrohm said...

question:
my sister has a girl friend who was engaged with a guy (who was my sister's friend before he got engaged to the girl). They broke off the engagement.
My sister has continued the close friendship with her guy friend (with approval from the girl) to support and keep him social.
Would it be acceptable to cross the friendship line with the guy? I mean who's to say the ex-fiance girl friend will stay in my sister's life forever? should she pass up something great for a girl friend who has already started dating someone else?

Brittany said...

Couldn't agree more. "Girl code" is such a joke when it encompasses every man your ladies have talked to. Ever. I've found that the girls who are normally good friends innately understand the boundaries.

Leighana said...

I've dealt with this recently. I'm honestly still unsure where the line should be exactly. I don't think it should be the traditional "no ex's ever" because obviously some were flings and same as you, i'd like to just have the girl just let me know first. However, a very close bestie of mine started hunting down every boy i was even slightly interested in after I became friends with the boy she liked. I made it clear to her that we were just friends, and we were all in the same circle of friends so it should not have been a big deal. After sabotaging every fling I wanted to pursue, it was too much and I couldn't be her friend anymore. The new friendship I had discovered with the boy she liked (although this sounds bad..) was a greater friendship than i'd had with her. I started to realize how many times she'd lied to me and purposely caused me pain and said enough. It was a hard break, but it was for the best. She wasn't a lifetime bestie i guess!

Lexi and Robert said...

I have 3 guys on my no list. If you are truley my friend stay away from them. I was crushed after I spent a year leaning on a friend in my divorce process only to find out that as soon as I left she tried to be available for him.

Amber said...

Maybe this is the point in my life where I am thankful that I never had close enough girl friends to worry about this.

But I agree, it's not fair at all to do date your friends sloppy seconds...but why would you want to?

Jesse&Amber said...

Maybe this is the point in my life where I am thankful that I never had close enough girl friends to worry about this.

But I agree, it's not fair at all to do date your friends sloppy seconds...but why would you want to?

Jenny Johnson said...

If they're truly your friend I don't think it would even be an issue. It's a no go zone. NO matter what. Women have to back each other up.

Natasha and Jesse said...

I agree with you 100%.

Cortney said...

I heartily co-sign Rae. It seems a bit petty I guess to try and deny another person's happiness with someone just because that someone didn't want happiness with you. There should be a healing period, there should be tact and all that, but honestly if one of my friends and one of my ex's fell in love- even if it was a "major" ex- it would seem unfair of me to try and draw some territorial line in the sand. I've had some major heartbreaks, and almost because of that I would never want to deny one of my friends/family members love. And, honestly, I find it to be a signal of some kind of emotional issue if, say, I were to be married with kids, yet I couldn't handle one of my girlfriends dating, say, my ex-husband, or someone I was serious with. If I truly love where I am/who I'm with, why should it matter?

At the very least, I agree that we need to get rid of the girl code that says "I went on one date with him, he is untouchable!"