Forget “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover!”

photo-261Can you stay friends with your Ex?? Some people might think there’s a word missing from that sentence. It’s supposed to say Ex-Smoker or an Ex-Sister-in-law or an Ex-Con, right?  Um, no.  Just plain Ex.  As in your Ex-Spouse or Ex-boy/girlfriend.  Well in that case – – the answer is obviously a resounding, “No!” Right?

Next blog, please!

But hold on just a minute.  I am here to suggest otherwise.  I am actually proof of otherwise.  Sort of.  You see with my first divorce, even though we have kids together – – we don’t speak except for the essentials. Arranging the Time for drop-off and pick-up, report cards, orthodontist bills, etc. Second divorce, I decided to do the exact opposite to see if it would lead to better results.  Not only would we stay civil, but we would stay good friends. Having done it both ways, I am now going to write the sequel to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  The Ex plays both parts.

When you stay Bitter Enemies you always know exactly where things stand!

First Ex:   Because of the holiday, the check was delayed in the mail.

Me:   Assuming you sent it.

First Ex:  F**K   You.

Me:  Jerk.

First Ex:  Goodbye Bitch.

So that pretty much followed the “expedient and effective ex-spouse communication” formula called:   “L.I.S.T.E.N”  =   Lemme Insinuate Something Terrible,  End Neatly.

But let’s see what things sound like when you’re “Good Friends.”

Second Ex:  Hi there!  What time is the birthday party tonight?

Me:  Silly me.  I thought I told you several times already.  6:30.  Looking forward to having you.  Oh, and you wrapped his present, right?

Second Ex:  No. I thought you would do that.  You’re so much better at it than I am.

Me:  How sweet of you to say, Dear-heart.  Okay, I’ll come pick it up so I’ll have time to get it ready beforehand.

Second Ex:  Great, give me an hour while I go out and find something.

Me:  Oh?  Are you saying you haven’t bought our son, who turned ten years old as of 8:20 this morning, his own birthday present yet?

Second Ex:  Thank you for reminding me of that pertinent information, Miss Organizational Queen.

Me:  You’re welcome.  Nothing ever changes.  I give you one simple assignment…

Second Ex:  Excuuuuse me!  Some people work all week long.

Me:  And what do you call cleaning, cooking, laundry, bathing, helping with homework, refereeing fights, carpooling. . .

Second Ex:  Watching soap operas and eating Bon-Bons  and. . . Hello?  Hello, are you still there??

What is a Bon-Bon anyhow??

What exactly do you think could be inside one of these things?

What exactly do you think could be inside one of these things?

So in case you’re wondering, the above conversation followed the “communication while staying friends with your Ex-Spouse” formula known as:   “P.O.L.I.T.E”  =  “Pretend obedience, Laser Insult, Then Eradicate!”

 But Now . . . It’s Party Time!

Me:  Hey everybody — – you remember my first husband?  He can’t stay.  He just came over to drop by a check that  was  (throat clearing sounds)  “lost” in the mail.

First Ex:   Do you have a pen?

Me:  Oh? You got over your anal phase and don’t carry one anymore?  Wait by the door please.

Second Ex: (striding confidently past first ex)  Hi everyone!  Sorry I’m late.  The shopping mall was packed.  Something smells wonderful!

Me:  You always did like my Meatloaf.

Second Ex:  Yes, your meatloaf inspired me.  To become a Vegetarian.

Me:  Oh my favorite Big Fat Comic, you!   So, from the looks of that wrapping paper, you got him a basketball?

Second Ex:  Still that Nosy Little Sleuth I love!

Me:  But he already has two.

Second Ex:  If you ever bothered to play basketball, you might know that when they’re old, they bounce crooked.

Me:  Of course.  You would be very familiar with being off-balanced.

Second Ex:  I also brought our pretty little hostess something.  The extraordinary mother of my wonderful children, who always sets the example of never showing up empty-handed.  Here’s another box of chocolate Bon-Bon’s for you.  I had the feeling you’re running low.

Me:  How thoughtful.  Now Get Out.  This is MY house now.  Leave this instant!  You passive-aggressive, rude…

Second Ex:  Fine.  I’ll just take MY ball and go home.  And that’s MY big-screen television.  I’ll just go into the garage and get MY toolkit to remove it from the wall.

First Ex:  Lemme give you a hand with that.

Second Ex:  Hey, thanks.   You ever shoot hoops?

First Ex:  Always time for a little One-on-One.

Second Ex:  Excellent.  Grab us some beers and we’ll play on our court in back.

“I’ve seen more action than anyone in this house!”

First Ex:  You mean on MY court.  I  poured that concrete and installed that net when I was married to her.

Second Ex:  And you have my sympathies for lasting as long as you did, Man.

Now Dear Reader, please excuse me whilst I change the title of this blog from “Can You Stay Friends With An Ex?”  to  “Can Your EXes Be Friends With Each Other? And if you don’t mind, I will not be answering that insane, ludicrous question at the moment.

What do you think?  Should you stay friends with an Ex?  Please tell me in the comments.

61 thoughts on “Forget “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover!”

    • Aww Hi there! I would never say “welcome to divorce” but I do want you to know that I think of it as sort of entering a tube. You go inside, it’s dark, narrow and restrictive but you do emerge as a changed human being to what appears to be a whole new world. Cue Aladdin song? Seriously hang in there and talk to me ANYTIME. Thanks for reading/commenting.


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  3. Hahaha… Goodness! That’s hilarious. Thanks for sharing. Yes, I’m still friends with the exes.. not the married ones, the-almost-married. Although I should have actually kicked their butts for the cheating and lying. Guess I like to be out of all those dramas. So, yes!


  4. Dear Stephanie,

    I’m afraid I don’t have any experience with these kinds of things, but the way you write about it – I mean no disrespect – does make me laugh. This just does not make me want to get a divorce, which in turn does not make me want to get married. Maybe by the time I get to the right age marriage is outdated and old-fashioned (I am keeping my hopes up for this).
    So … what about writing a book? I think this would be a great subject and I think lots of people out there could use a book like this. Maybe I would want to read it after my first breakup (I’m praying this won’t happen).

    Kindest of regards,



    • Hi Arthur – – I must be behind on notifications because I’m just getting this comment of yours now. Be prepared Arthur – – everyone has a first break-up. And most likely a 2nd and a 3rd. Just know that going in and you won’t be blind-sided devastated. Is that a “cup half empty” way of looking at life? I’m not sure but I think it’s just self-protection. Write a book. You! Or should we do one together?


      • Dear Stephanie,

        I was afraid for that. At least I am kind of prepared that some things just don’t last forever. Thought, I’ll probably be heartbroken when time has come to break up. On the upside … that won’t last forever either.
        Maybe it was just half a cup, but completely full. So … what kind of book shall we write?

        Kindest of regards,



        • Arthur–I think we should co-author a book about LIFE: as seen through the eyes of a 15 year old, brilliant, optimistic English boy and the 50 year old disgruntled, Quirky American woman he met while blogging. (Back and forth perspectives!)


          • That might be a very nice concept. Though I wouldn’t call you disgruntled, nor myself optimistic. I think the optimistic part is just me being naive. Different views on life. Well, let’s get it started.


  5. Hilarious post! Refreshing to read something like that at he end of a tired day, but cannot answer your question due to lack of proper experience in that sphere! 😉 Yet, by the sounds of it, hell no!


    • Thank you so much for such a nice comment. I’m sorry I didn’t respond sooner but I was stuck at Disneyland all day and night (my next post!) and just saw it now. See that, neither of my ex’s will do the Disneyland thing, so that falls on me too! 😉


  6. Whew, now I understand why these fine gentleman have “ex” as their prefixes. I truly admire you for treating them with such civility, as I certainly wouldn’t have the patience to do so. I think I’d definitely be more apt to use the L.I.S.T.E.N. formula than the P.O.L.I.T.E. one. Though, I suppose you also have to modify your behavior as to not get your son caught up in the ugliness. Such an enlightening piece, and I look forward to any future formulas, as they are all ingenious. By any chance, do you know of one that might solve the conundrum of a husband whose idea of helping out around the house ends at putting his dishes in the sink? My pencil is ready! 🙂


    • And once again – – I am late on getting notification for this funny comment of yours, Adelie. But your husband GETS the dishes into the sink?? Progressive guy! And regarding your first sentence. Ex #2 really would give anyone the shirt of his back. He’s a super nice person – – we just could NOT exist in the same abode. As usual, I embellished things here. I probably owe him an apology but because I’m a fictional writer at heart, he’s not gettin’ one! Thanks for reading and staying patiently poised with pencil – – sorry that I don’t have any formulas or advice on the male housework dilemma! But can he cook??


      • Whew, I was worried you fell off the face of the earth for a while- you know, being the OCD gal I am! I’ve had trouble receiving some notifications as well, so I apologize for my delayed response. To answer your question, Yes, my husband does cook. His specialties are Spaghettios, Pasta Roni, and Digorno Pizza. He insists that this is, in fact, culinary art. I have other opinions but….


  7. LOL. I don’t have an ex husbands since I’ve never been married but I can imagine it can get complicated. Good point that it takes conscious work to make sure there is friendship at the end… and with their family I’d imagine. I know a woman who calls her ex-sister-in-law her now sister outlaw and they are still close. Also am a big fan of the show Trophy Wife- the title doesn’t do justice to how awesome the lead character and her hubby’s two ex-wives are and the kind of Modern Family they make up. Can’t even call watching the show a guilty pleasure because it just is a pleasure.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. My Ex-Spouse: P.O., then L.I.S.T. and L.I.T.E.
    Me: E.N.

    Can My EXes Be Friends With Each Other? Oh! That is too funny! Can I think of anything that they have in common? Navy officer vs. ready-to-swim-to-Canada to escape a draft. Road Kill Special vs. vegan dinners. Organic gardener vs. certified pesticide applicator. Penny pincher vs. no savings account. NASCAR Jeff Gordon fan vs. “Slow Down! You’re going 54 in a 55 zone!!!” Software Engineer vs. still using a Commodore. SitComs vs. Self Help videos. They might enjoy scuba diving together, but one has his head in the clouds, and another has a lead foot.

    Thanks for bringing this issue to people’s attention. It really does deserve serious consideration. The picture at the top breaks my heart.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Are these ex husbands or one is an ex boyfriend? If both spouses then it sounds like you married the antithesis of each of them? I love the reasons that scuba diving wouldn’t work out for their shared activity. LOL! Lead foot. You’re such a natural born comic, Grace.


      • Artistic License: You may use a conglomeration of characters, or any rearrangement thereof, to adorn existing characters, or to create entirely new ones. 🙂

        This is a conglomeration of 2 husbands and 2 boyfriends. I chose my pronouns carefully to avoid complete deception 😉

        Stephanie, I was never so funny until I met you. If I was natural born, then you are my plant food, and I’m not saying that you’re full of s**t. Love you!


        • I have been waiting days for a funny response to come to me for this comment of yours. Especially the plant food reference – – and believe me I tried, oh how I tried. I thought of chlorophyll comebacks and roots and leaves puns but in the end, I bow down to your comment capers. They are the BEST, Grace. And should often times be the final word.
          much love,


          • Thanks for letting me know that I failed. My job is to keep you writing, to inspire you, not to muzzle you. I owe you one.

            I like your chlorophyll comebacks. I root for your roots. Don’t ever be a tree and leaf.

            Now, you need a hot soak in the tub (or do you do cold dips in the ocean?) to recover from the Disney Day so you can publish your next post here before we all worry about you. In the meantime,

            Much love,

            P.S. Was your comment an April Fool’s joke? I’ll have to admit, I was suckered.


  9. Hell to the NO – the only reason I speak with my ex is because we have a son. If we hadn’t had our boy I would have preferred passing razor blades while vomiting ninja stars than communicating with him. So now not only do I have to speak with him I need to be polite since he has no qualms throwing our son into the middle of arguments if I’m not properly appreciative of his fabulous self. Oh well doesn’t stop wishing all sorts of nifty vile accidents that could occur with only the teeniest of assistance.


  10. Another genius post!
    I tend to adopt the P.O.L.I.T.E. approach with my non-ex husband. Does this mean we are doomed to be exes (doomed does seem pessimistic – ‘destined for liberation’ might be more appropriate?) And if so, does that mean we’ll stay/re-become friends? I suppose it depends if I bury him under the patio or not.


  11. For some reason I find passive-aggressive dialogue w/humorous but casually insulting dialogue lightly entertaining. I blame romantic comedies about people in their 40s.

    So, so interesting. Being young & not yet married, my answer to this post’s question would be a big fat NOOOO. What’s done is done. Lear the lesson and keep it moving. (The concept of your exes being friends w/each other & comparing notes is especially messy to me.) But I get that marriage creates a past and bigger reasons to need stay stay at least civil. Knowing a few with those situations, I’d say being civil sounds for the sake of a family and such sounds like at least the reasonable “mean” with not as much frustration as being passive-aggressive friends or bitter enemies, which would be the “extreme” on either end.
    Or so I would gather.
    I’m far from experienced on this, but I like that it made me think about how I would handle it. Thanks for that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I love that – – my brilliant Movie Reviewer is blaming rom/coms! So yes…it will be interesting to see if another ten years changes your opinion on the scope of this question. As always, I value your comments and the time you give to careful readings. Thank you so much.


  12. “L.I.S.T.E.N” = Lemme Insinuate Something Terrible, End Neatly.”
    “P.O.L.I.T.E” = “Pretend obedience, Laser Insult, Then Eradicate!”

    God, so, so, so funny. I’m laughing because I have a daughter with my first husband, so we’ve had to stay in touch. Luckily, we did actually end up good friends, but there are times when we’re both human, you know.

    I am deeply curious about what inspired this post. And are you friends with any of their exes? Or currents? I really like my ex-husband’s new girlfriend. I’ve already told her if they don’t work out she and I will still be friends. Is that funny or mean? ‘Cause I meant it to be funny, but now that I’ve typed it I’m wondering . . . I’m sorry, what was I saying, ADD appears to have reared its ugly head once again . . .

    Love, LOVE this post. Truly!



    • Hello Jessica! What inspired this post is my truth. I am NOT friends with my first ex-husband BUT I am friends with my second. And that is by design. What inspired this post to be written TODAY was the stark realization that we are friends with the uncanny ability to know which buttons to push in the other that immediately set off the “Get out of my house now!” response. And then the next day, whoosh – – back to friends again. For everyone’s sake. It’s an interesting merry-go-round. Roller-coaster? Thank you for singling out my acronyms. I spent the longest on making those up and it’s nice they get appreciated!
      Here’s to a better week, yes?

      Liked by 1 person

      • “Thank you for singling out my acronyms. I spent the longest on making those up and it’s nice they get appreciated!”

        1) They are super funny and 2) I couldn’t come up with something that clever if I thought about it for a really, really, really, really, really, really long time.



  13. My husband has an ex-wife. They can’t speak to one another for more than a few minutes without starting in on the snide remarks. I’m usually the mediator. I don’t love her, but we get on quite well. They’re so much alike, I don’t know how the hell they were ever married, lol!

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is truly fascinating that YOU are their mediator! That’s a test of allegiance vs. impartiality, hmmm? Thank you so much for reading and taking the time to comment. I am very glad to have a writer of your caliber here chiming in!
      take care,


  14. Laughing . . . certainly adds a bit of levity to a situation that by know means has a clean and neat answer. Certainly pros and cons to both which may require some navigation along the way. For now I am just amused by your fabulous humor.


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