Ex’s & Zed’s

Ex’s & Zed’s
The Tale of…
The Rusty Nail
30ml Whisky
30ml Drambuie
On ice
My theory about “exs” is that they should be called “zeds”.
X- it’s a letter we see all the time. It’s the letter we use on a daily basis to represent kisses, a sign of caring, or to just appear friendly and nice.  Living in a virtual world and getting abuse when not putting enough of them at the end of a text message (surprisingly I’m talking about my best female friends who shout at me for this apparent ‘lack of affection’ on text!) So it should come as a shock that it is the same letter we use to refer to the people that are no longer a part of our lives, and if they are- does that mean they are not as ex and over as they need to be?
Can you be friends with an ex?
Like so many things in the world of dating and relationships, it depends on the circumstances, and the situation between the two of you. Despite being friends with a number of my exes, there are those few examples of people you cannot be good friends with, many of them can and will only remain acquaintances.
Talking to a friend of mine, we discussed why it is that the ex seems to come up in conversation so much these days. When getting to know someone new, you share facts about yourself, you share stories of the things you have done and places you have been. And while sharing these stories you are probably constructing your new ones at the very same time so it does so happen that the stories that have got you this far, involve the people who perhaps are no longer a part of your life. And so, instead of lying and saying “I was with a friend” you tell them who it was you were really with, and so brings the ex into the picture.
In her current relationship, she said how she avoided the topic of exes at all costs. Of course brief mention had occurred, so they knew the basic facts of who they were, where they were and why it didn’t work. She wanted to try and make it through the relationship without going to into the details of her past for once; he didn’t need to know about them. And he seemed to be doing the same as he had made no mention of his.
She was optimistic that for once she wouldn’t have to talk about the person who hurt her or the bad break up she had had etc. But of course, living in the ‘small world’ we do, one by one, they started to bump into the exes. When one of them turned up at a quiet gathering in a local pub, it became evident to her that she wasn’t going to get away with never having to mention him. As her friends pulled faces of awkwardness towards her, her boyfriend of course noticed. And so came explaining who he was.
They seem to pop up all over the place and at times you really wish they would just stay away from. A romantic night out, and suddenly you’re in the middle of conversation about that trip you took that had some of the most hilarious moments of your life… p.s. it was with your ex.
It is a fact that in relationships, if you are able to talk to your partner, you end up talking about things that can come onto the subject of past experiences, “have you ever been cheated on?” “have you ever cheated?”, the list goes on… Despite the fact we are all screaming at ourselves “shut up shut up, you don’t want to know!” I would be surprised if someone could honestly tell me they had never found themselves asking these questions, or something to that effect.
You also tend to drop in all the things you hated about your ex just so your current partner knows not to do any of those things. You know “he was really jealous every time I went out”- loosely translated- “don’t get jealous every time I go out!”
To spin this right on its head, not talking about them can actually be just as bad as talking about them. A friend told me that her guy would just not talk about his ex at all. Any time something of relevance came up he would suddenly look uncomfortable and change the conversation as quickly as possible. She said that this actually worried her more, thinking that there was some unfinished business he wasn’t telling her, or maybe that it had ended so badly he actually had some awful thirst for revenge against anything female. So, maybe it is a good thing to have “the talk” about exes.
Sex with an Ex
We all know it gives a certain level of unexplained excitement, most likely from the fact that you know you shouldn’t be doing it. But this excitement comes from that one stupid night, the break up sex or that meeting a few months later where you just get caught up in your catch up! But the question of being able to actually be “fuck buddies” with an ex or able to have sex without it meaning anything I stand by being absolute crap. And if you disagree, I respect that, but are you by any chance sleeping with your ex?
The fact is, with an ex, you know each other and you know you both care for one another. But, usually they are really just getting what they want from you, without you having any form of control or say on the way they behave the rest of the time, and hence they are probably sleeping with a lot of other people. And when those other people are not available, there you are. It is familiar and that makes you feel safe, but this situation rarely comes without baggage. And that baggage is usually weighted on one side because for one of you, it means that little bit more.  It’s only a matter of time until the case breaks and your feelings are spilling everywhere…
It would be a cliché for me to state that you shouldn’t stand to be treated as a second choice or just another option. But really, don’t you want to be the only option?
So when does sex with an ex really work? The truth- never. It feels good. And depending on the circumstances can have more or less of an aftermath. I asked a friend if he thought it was a good idea, he said “of course not. We know we shouldn’t do it, but everyone does it anyway”… Is that not like most things in life? It’s human intuition, we love what is bad for us, want what we can’t have, and if someone tells us not to touch something or not to do something, the one thing we want to do is the exact opposite. It seems we are the weakest beings on the planet and our will to resist temptation is nearly non existent…
I read in American Cosmo the other day a bunch of quotes about from guys about their exes. One being “she grunted like a gorilla in bed”.  It is a common fear, that those pictures you sent to your boyfriend in the relationship will end up on some cheap porn pop-up ad, or that night when you didn’t have time to shave your legs will pave the way for you to become the girl who had “hairy legs”. The fact is if your ex did that, they are not worth a second of your thoughts or a drop of your tears. We know that we bitch about our exes and perhaps stretch the truth on occasion to make yourself feel better, for example that time in the changing rooms when he asked if you wanted the bigger or smaller size- he probably wasn’t calling you fat. But as a recently single person, you are allowed and excused this right, to an extent…
When asking a group of friends (male and female) what is the best way to get over someone, the unanimous “get under someone else!” was the first reaction. After some discussion they came to admit that actually this doesn’t get you over someone, but it helps make you feel better for a while. I still stand by the thing I feel is the only solution… time. Time is the greatest healer, and for relationships, the only one. Whether you are the one that ended it, or the one happy to be out the relationship, there is always a certain time period where you are attached in some way, whether that is being bothered by seeing them with someone else and not quite understanding why, or them to creep up in your mind at an unexpected moment. But after some time, and the time can differ greatly, you will move on and suddenly realise, they do not have a hold on you anymore.
So unless anyone wishes to join me in my quest to change the name of “Ex” to “Zed” and hope that with the less common letter they will perhaps appear less in your life, it is unfortunately inevitable that they will come up in conversation. And at the end of the day the people in your life are the people who make you who you are, even the ones that come and go. The thing you have to make sure is that there are only two people in your relationship. Once an ex’s name is being heard more times than yours or your partner’s, you have a problem…