Being a novice “screenwriter” getting ready to write my next script, I have begun to think about themes. Here is one that I have been thinking about –
Can exes remain friends?
“When Harry Met Sally” explored if men and women can be friends without sex. It should be easier for exes to remain friends if sex is no longer an issue, shouldn’t it? [that is of course assuming they want to – which is a whole different matter.]
So, I examined my past. I am a serial monogomist that has had 3 significant long term relationships [well, to be truthful, there was some overlapping going on but that is just “transition”]. The last of the 3 is my husband, so he is not an ex.
That leaves 2 examples.
#1 – We dated for 1 1/2 years – and for half of that time – I was in NY in college and he was in graduate school in California. He cheated [hey a 21 year old 3000 miles away has a hard time keeping it in his pants], I dumped him, he came crawling back three months later – but I had moved on to #2. We did stay friends though. And every year he sent me a birthday card. He and #2 actually met a couple of times, and all was very friendly indeed. And then, about 6 years later, the “Goodbye I am getting married” call came. Never heard from him again.
#2 – Well this was the 7 year living together so basically married relationship. I cannot encapsulate this one, save for the fact that after 7 years together and not having a truly rancorous break-up [he helped me move], we stayed friends for quite some time after – [yes it got muddy sometimes in the sex area during “transition” but that passed.] He and #3 [heck, the husband] met and became friends. #2 did renovation work on #3’s apartment. We went to each others’ weddings – he married a friend of mine – well more like a friend of a friend. I caught the bouquet at their wedding. We had mutual friends [still do]. All appears fine, right?
One day, after I had moved, with my husband, away from NY, I found myself calling #2. I had been on assignment in NYC for 2 weeks, and had 3 more weeks to go. I told husband I was going to try to meet #2 for dinner one night. Husband didn’t care. #2 said, sure, let’s meet, you’ve been in NYC for 2 weeks and you are first calling me now? I’ll get back to you on details.
I never heard from him again. [I did hear from the mutual friends that #2’s wife hit the roof.]
[Footnote – We saw #2 and the wife at a party last year and everyone was friendly – but that was an aberration I think]
So here is my theory –
You can remain friends with your ex until they marry [or remarry].
What do you think?