Case of the Ex: Should You Unfriend Your Ex On Facebook?

Are you friends with your ex on Facebook?


According to a new study in Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking we have a really hard time getting over exes – especially when we are friends with the ex on Facebook.  Tara Marshal of Brunel University in the U.K. followed more than 464 active Facebook users’ progress after a breakup. She evaluated their Facebook habits and the correlation between their emotional recovery and personal adjustment and found that even barring offline contact, the Facebook contact stunted their healing.

Divorce and Children

So, what does this mean for you, dear reader? Well, in short, if you are still friends with your ex on Facebook, according to this study you may still feel the desire to date that person or not feel closure over the relationship {feelings that might be different if you had no social media contact with that person}. Personally, I think it depends on the ex. I think most people have that ex that still gets to them, but I have a couple exes that our relationships ended on good terms and I can say definitely that looking at their pages doesn’t bother me. I also have a couple exes that I can no longer stand to even look at, let alone talk to on a daily basis {or even yearly, for that matter} and no, they are not on my friends list. That is not because I want them {or that I am afraid I might, given site of their faces, bleh}, it is quite the opposite.


As for the exes that still get to us – I think that most people want to “get along,” and perhaps throwing a Facebook friend request is like offering the proverbial olive branch. Having said that, I think the study is right. If you have an ex on Facebook that you still want and looking at their page tortures you, than yes, kick them off your page. Especially if it’s an ex that you KNOW that you can not have. I mean, it may seem rude {and even explain it to the ex if it makes you feel better} but is it worth it to suffer daily with the “what ifs” just to see someone’s status? Or their relationship status? It used to be that we only had to worry about running into former flames out in public. Now, we can see them all day long – online. Is it worth it? Why do that to yourself?

Are you friends with your ex on Facebook?

If so, does it bother you to look at their page? Are there any exes you specifically DO NOT friend? If so, why?

About Dawn McAlexander

Dawn is a full time travel and lifestyle blogger. Besides Cheap Is The New Classy, she also owns and writes for, an entertainment site. Her interests include traveling, home decor, DIY projects, organizing her home and enjoying a nice cup of coffee {or two}. She currently resides in North Carolina with her dog, Daisy.


  1. Emily Ploch says:

    I’m only friends with 2 of the people I ever dated. The rest I don’t talk to anymore.

  2. Being friends with people on facebook is something that too many people do carelessly. You are letting them in to your everyday life. Sometimes that’s not a good thing. lol

  3. Paula Schuck says:

    I recently had an ex look me up and his wife messages me. That was creepy. I didn’t even want to remember that guy. He was totally not worth my time when I was 16. Like seriously hardly even recalled his name. Crazy!

    • I have had a couple exes’ wives contact me. Both of those exes are ones that I have nothing to do with and their wives are people I don’t care to talk to either. One of them I didn’t even know – she just sent me a stupid email out of the blue. Hmmm, wonder who gave her the email address? People can be so weird.


  4. I am friends with an ex on Facebook, but we don’t even talk. I am also friends with his current girlfriend, so it’s not sneaky or anything!

  5. I am friends with two exes on Facebook. The relationships were long ago, and I would consider both of them to be friends now. I don’t talk to one much because we’ve just grown apart, but the other is one of my best friends now. The rest of my exes, no, I don’t want them on my Facebook because I don’t care to see their faces yearly either!

  6. That’s quite an interesting thought. I’m friends with just a few exs, but we had been broken up and retained a friendship for a few years before we ever became Facebook friends. But no, I don’t think I’d remain Facebook friends with an ex who was fresh and hadn’t figured out a new position for them in my life whether it be friend or never speak to again! THEN if after a long time and the healing complete then I’d re-evaluate.

  7. I think it is fine as long as your significant others knows about it and nothing is hidden.

  8. I am friends with my ex on facebook mainly so we can share pictures of kids–doesnt bother either one of us

  9. My husband and I are on the same page on that one luckily. If it is in your past, leave it there, if you want to contact it, leave me alone. Plain and simple. I believe it is too easy when you are in a committed relationship and things get a little hard to start thinking about the what if’s with another person, if there is history there, and you have kept in touch, then there is a stronger chance you will not work things out with the one you are with.

  10. Unless you ere friends after your breakup, I don’t see a reason to be in contact. It just leads to romanticizing.

  11. The only exes I’m friends with on Facebook are from high school. My ex-fiance I am NOT friends with because it would bother me even though I don’t miss him.. It would just bug me. I don’t have many of them on my list though.

  12. I was friends with my exe from high school, but he was a political fanatic, and I wound up removing him from my news feed!

  13. That’s very interesting!! I am friends with all my exes on FB!! I don’t want to date them though. =)

  14. I avoided facebook for so long because I didn’t feel like dealing with this very thing!

  15. Sarah Muennix says:

    I am friends with one serious ex and a couple guys I dated in Middle/High school – no drama and its all good. Its nice to be adults and be happy for each other!

  16. I have children with both my exes, so we go back and forth. If we have a special event we friend each other to easier share info and pics

  17. I’m not friends with any of my exes on FB, I had a couple of them on myspace, but it’s been years since I’ve used myspace!

  18. I was friends with an EX on Facebook, but it made my hubby uncomfortable just because he was the most recent one (as in 15 years ago lol) so I deleted him just to appease my hubby! It’s no biggie to me but then again we got married fairly young.

  19. Shayla Burks says:

    I have a few ex boyfriends on facebook, but I hardly see anything from them. My ex husband and I are friends on facebook still, but that’s only because we share kids. It’s dumb for us to try to avoid each other on social media, when we have a daughter together. I’m friends with his parents, sisters, aunts, and the same goes for him. We’re family, even if we are going through a divorce. Yes, it makes it a little harder, and I’m already bracing myself for the day when I read a relationship status message up on his wall. But it’s all information that I’d get anyway, through other friends and family, and probably need, since we have Daughter.

  20. I don’t have my ex on Facebook. It wasn’t healthy for me.

  21. I love the fair, I have not been since my oldest was younger. It always brings back great memories.

  22. I am not friends with any of my exes on FB. I believe that it was in my past and that is where I want it to stay. However, I am friends with my ex husbands mother and sister on FB but we never talk about him. Thank you for sharing this informative post.

    • Dawn McAlexander says:

      For me, it depends on who the ex is. Some I am friends with – some, no thanks. 😉

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