When one of your friends’ ex boyfriend starts to make a move on you, would you go for it or turn it down to stay true to what they call the girl code? If you feel a certain attraction for your friend’s former flame, don’t feel bad about it says licensed clinical psychologist specializing in relationships Brandy Engler, Ph.D., “Finding yourself attracted to a friend’s ex doesn’t mean you’re a villain.”
She also said that best friends tend to have the same taste in everything–including men, “We’re often authentic around our friends' boyfriends because we see them as off limits and we’re not trying to impress them. But that authenticity helps with attraction—it’s the foundation of real connection.”
So is it considered rude and disrespectful if you decide to go out with a guy from your friend’s past? Engler states that it’s risky to date a friend’s ex but if you decide to pursue a relationship with the guy, you must do so with total caution. Here are the things you should do before crossing the line:
Talk to your friend about it.
It’s important that you let her know that you and a guy from her past are getting to know each other. Being honest about it is the key to maintaining a possible relationship and your friendship with your BFF–it’s a win-win situation. Once you have her blessing, go for it girl!
Make sure your friend has seriously moved on.
If your friend still has feelings for the guy, then it’s obviously not yet okay to date him–unless she’s really not your friend at all. It’s not just about girl codes now, but it’s about delicadeza. It would be a mean move if you started “hanging out” with a man she’s not over yet.
Respect boundaries without making assumptions.
Once you’ve talked to her, let her set the ground rules. If you and your friend are going to a party, make sure she’s comfortable with you bringing her ex (and your present) to the party. This way, there won’t be any bad blood between the three of you.
This story originally appeared on Femalenetwork.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.