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Down with Dara: ex-F.W.Bs. Why burn bridges?

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By Bahoz Dara

I’ve been known to be an advocate for abandoning the past. I have always been one to learn from prior mistakes by strictly focusing on the future; a concept that applies to a majority of my experiences, and those of my sex-life are no exception.

For the some-odd years I have been sexually active I had never been able to maintain friendships with past partners. I always assumed that once the sexual interactions ceased, there was no option but to gather up the newfound knowledge and move on.

Those “friends” who once provided me “benefits” could no longer be a part of my life. I felt like if I stuck around I would just be lingering, and prolonging an experience that was already over.  My ideology has taken me pretty far, but yet for a reason unknown to myself, my no-longer friends with benefits could not usually comprehend this end-all method of operation.

Despite having success with this system in the past, it has recently come to my attention that perhaps this isn’t my most mature, or intelligent action. In light of recent experiences, I have come to the conclusion that in most circumstances you can manage to continue the post-sex friendship if both parties are willing to put in a minimal amount of effort.

The first step in salvaging any trace of a bond is evaluating the situation. Was the end mutual and calm, thereby coming to a natural stopping point?  Most of the time the cause for a casual sex relationship ending is a neutral outside factor, such as scheduling conflicts, or seeing other people.

From what I’ve experienced, there are seldom grounds to end what could be a supportive, and mutually favorable companionship. Unless the other half has completely disrespected you and defiled your trust, there is hope for a platonic future.

Next, one must consider if the counter-partner actually acquires desirable traits that go beyond the bedroom. There is a possibility that this person is actually the human equivalent to carbon paper, but with better pelvic movements. It is also quite plausible that your used-to-be fuck buddy is a scholar who would be lovely to converse with. You’ll never really know until you give them a chance, and overlook their sex-related abilities in terms of their value.

The last, and possibly most crucial aspect is to attempt to remove your personal insecurities from the equation. Such an intimate act can cause even the most confident of people to become highly vulnerable, which can later formulate emotional turmoil if things don’t play out accordingly. As difficult as it may be, it’s critical that one observes the situation from a third-person perspective and identifies that a bruised ego is not worth diminishing comradery.

Ending a sexual relationship with someone doesn’t directly mean that one must eradicate all emotional intimacy. I can now admit that there is no sense in burning bridges when there has been no wrongdoing. Mind you, there are a fair amount of scenarios in which all memories should be completely destroyed, whilst cutting every tie possible. But ceasing sex and continuing on as acquaintances is not world-ending, as most of us make it out to be.

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