What Are the Rules for Dating Your Friend’s Exes?

As a general rule, we think it’s bad manners — not to mention bad taste — to date or sleep with a friend’s ex, a.k.a. “dating the floor model.” Why ruin a perfectly good friendship for a hook-up that, let’s face it, probably won’t last the season?

The ONLY way we think it’s acceptable to move in on a friend’s ex is to:

(a) wait until that friend has reached some kind of relationship closure;

(b) give the friend a heads up first so they’re not blindsided by the news; and

(c) only do this if you’re convinced that there’s some kind of deep love connection and that you’d be defying Cupid to ignore it.

Obviously the ex in question also bears the same responsibility, but whatever — we expect exes to act like assholes. That’s why they’re exes, after all.

By the way, before you swear up and down that this is Cupid-defying love: Make sure it’s not just a matter of the forbidden being all the more tempting, of obstacles standing in the way of love (or lust) –thereby making it all the more appealing?  We get it, we really do — that’s the nature of the beast. But there’s Romeo and Juliet, and then there’s Gossip Girl.

Remember, dating is hard enough on the heart when you and your friends have each other’s back. But when you don’t? It’s soul-destroying.

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  1. I take issue with this: “we expect exes to act like assholes. That’s why they’re exes, after all.”

    I think you guys are being tongue in cheek, but it reads as giving legitimacy to the really immature attitude a lot of so-called adults have toward relationships. Almost all of them end, one way or another. That’s just a fact, and it doesn’t make a person an asshole.

    Granted, some people, under the mistaken belief that a relationship is a failure if it doesn’t last for the rest of their life, manufacture some kind of blowup in order to get out, because they don’t want to admit that what they have on their hands is a dead shark. So maybe that’s what you are referring to? Those people who will start acting like a jerk instead of admitting that it’s time to move on? But the mere fact that you aren’t with that person anymore doesn’t automatically confer asshole status upon them.

    I realize I’m an outlier on this, as with a lot of other things to do with dating and sex. I’m on good terms with most of my exes. But I think we could all benefit from stepping away from the myth that a relationship that doesn’t last forever is a failure and anyone who doesn’t stay with another person until death do them part is an asshole. That’s just my two cents. 🙂

  2. I’ve done it- it was fine because she wasn’t a great friend to me (abandoning me on my own while I was out to cheat and kiss random guys)
    She only dated the guy because she knew I liked him.

    And like I said- she was the one who cheated on him, so I don’t think she should get an opinion on who he dates after that.

    That’s just my opinion.

  3. Oh animal manure. People don’t get “dibs” on other people. You’ve thrown him/her back into the dating pool.

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