Here’s How You Can Be “Just Friends” Again After Crossing The Line

September 3, 2019  |  

Smiling young couple walking on sidewalk in city

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Most people are taught to be friends before lovers, but what happens when you want to depart from intimacy and desire to walk your way back into the friend-zone? This transition can happen for folks post-breakup or for friends who tried to be “more than friends” and discovered that they weren’t compatible.

And the process of trying to restore a friendship after crossing the line can be tricky. Some pairs don’t make it through the rough spots and cease all contact period after a failed love affair. But some connections are too good to lose–and they may be worth the work to restore them to a relationship stage that both people are comfortable with.

“Whether or not two people can go from a romantic relationship to a friendship is a tough question to answer,” Grant H. Brenner, MD, psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and co-author of Irrelationship told Elite Daily.

“It varies a lot from couple to couple, and individual to individual. Oftentimes, the fantasy of being friends is appealing, but the reality is less optimistic.”

Take an inventory of the entire scope of the relationship to gauge if you and your former lover have potential “beyond.” Brenner says that both parties “need to look very closely at their own desires and motivations to see if trying for friendship is even possible.”

It’s also important to take your time and not try to force a friendship right after a breakup.

“When people try to rush friendship after a breakup, it’s an indicator that it won’t work,” Brenner said.

“For most, friendship after love takes time to develop, and romantic feelings and the aftermath of being together, take time to get past.”

Continuing,  “Don’t push friendship. Be aware of any residual issues from the relationship, lingering sexual or romantic feelings, wishes to get back together, feelings of jealousy, and so on, which will interfere with friendship.”


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