The Luv Doc: Ex-Shtupping Girlfriends
Sometimes friends will let you down – sometimes in really big ways
Dear Luv Doc,
I am a loyal follower of your sage and insightful advice. I was dating a guy seriously for several years. When we broke up, a couple of my close friends proceeded to have sex with him. One even had an extended relationship. Further, my friends think it's OK to attend an annual Christmas party he throws that I'm blackballed from. And they have no problem continuing to connect and communicate with him via social media. Are they really my friends? Where is the loyalty? And the unspoken but known taboo about shtupping a friend's ex? Or am I being immature? Please give me guidance on this.
Aww, thanks! May you live a long and lovely life too! OK, there are so many variables here, Jessika, but the bottom line is that I would at least hope your close friends would check in with you before they "date your ex's brains out." Beyond being taboo, that is just common courtesy, even if your ex has sick game, which apparently he does. I know it's probably painful hearing that, but damn, he did have sex with not one but two of your close friends. Even if they're really shitty friends, that's got to be closing in on some sort of record. I bet it would even raise Wilt Chamberlain's eyebrows.
I am going to stop short of calling your friends' behavior abominable because I don't know all of the facts. For instance: You might have broken up with your boyfriend. I know that still doesn't excuse their behavior, but it is at least a bit of an extenuating circumstance. If you did break up with him, they may have assumed you don't care about him romantically – or sexually – anymore and gave themselves a pass. Still kinda skeezy, but there is at least some wiggle room. There is also just the simple fact that people are much more comfortable dating/shtupping someone they already know rather than someone they don't. It's a scary world out there. If you don't believe me, get on Tinder.
So, all that said, no, you're not being immature. You have every right to be upset with your close friends, to question their loyalty, to question whether you should even be friends with them at all, but here's the thing: Close friends are hard to come by, so before you write them off completely for (repeatedly) shtupping your ex-boyfriend, give it some serious thought. I agree that's messed up, but if friends have taught me anything over the years, it's that sometimes they will let you down – sometimes in really big ways.
Lastly, regarding the social media/Christmas party thing: It's one thing to have a reasonable expectation that your friends won't shtup your ex-boyfriend, but it's a completely different thing to expect them to not socialize with him at all. What happened between you and your ex was between you and your ex. You can't expect other people to hate him just because you do. For all I know, he is a really nice guy and you are "blackballed" from his Christmas party because seeing you – especially at that time of year – might be really painful for him. Or, he might just be a huge asshole who is trying to punish you – in which case you should definitely ditch your close friends because that shit is unacceptable.
So here's my guidance: Be very vulnerable (as you are allowed to be with close friends) and tell them that you were really hurt by their behavior with your ex. Tell them why it upsets you and how you hope they will behave going forward. They might laugh in your face, but at least you'll know you communicated very clearly how you feel, so you won't feel guilty about finding some new friends – and if you do, for God's sake, don't introduce them to your ex.