Is Dating Your Friend’s Ex Ever Acceptable?

August 13, 2013

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The news about Simon Cowell getting it on with his good friend’s wife — or estranged wife, depending on who you talk to — has sparked a great debate once again. Under what circumstance is it acceptable to pursue your friend’s former love interest? I would say never… because I just don’t see why of all the people in this world you need to choose to put yourself in such a complicated situation. But that’s just me. Read on for Fox News Magazine editor Meghan Sharp’s guest blog about this very subject:

is it ok to date my friends ex 300x150 Is Dating Your Friends Ex Ever Acceptable?Simon Cowell recently sparked some scandalous headlines when it emerged that he is set to become a father — with the wife of his close friend. Some reports indicate the relationship between the married couple was already over by the time Cowell moved in. Others claim the opposite was true.

While many details remain unknown, this revelation raises a question: Is your friend’s ex always off-limits?

“If your friend is totally over his ex, has no romantic feelings for her, and wouldn’t mind being around the two of you socially, that could work,” muses Nina Atwood, author of “Temptations of the Single Girl.” “But look at all the conditions that have to be met! The reality is that it’s just too weird and uncomfortable for most people to want to deal with.”

Therapist Karen Sherman agrees. “The only time it might be okay is if your friend has moved on to another relationship,” she says. “Even if the two of them have split, emotions take a while to heal, so it’s unlikely that the friend is going to be okay with it.”

But not all relationship experts see it this way. “It’s ok to move in if they are estranged and no longer in love and divorcing,” says matchmaker Marla Martenson. “You never know where you will find love. It could be right under your nose, and circumstances have to shift for things to evolve.” As Martenson points out, “It’s a delicate situation, but why let a potential love match get away? If it’s a great match, it’s a great match.”

Still, it’s best to proceed with caution. Martenson advises “letting things dissipate a bit” before making your move. If you do decide to pursue a friends’ ex, be prepared for the potential for some major fall-out. “You should avoid this whole scenario unless you feel very strongly that your friend’s ex is your ultimate soul mate,” says Atwood. “If you decide to pursue the ex, you should be prepared to lose the friendship. “Most people are highly uncomfortable with these situations, so it’s best to look for love somewhere else,” she adds.

We would love to know what you think: Have you ever been down this dating road? Is it ever a acceptable to date a friend’s ex?

 

More at Fox News Magazine:

Three Common Marriage Mistakes that Lead to Divorce

Does Sexting Count as Cheating?

The Darker Side of Being a Night Owl

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