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Queer communities are often small and insular, and once you've found one, you tend to hold on to it for dear life.It's difficult to meet people you're romantically interested in beyond an already-defined circle, and outside of your city's queer scene, most people you run into are likely to be straight.You and your friend are not in competition, except when you're actually playing Scrabble. Trust that your dude is with you because he likes you and you're awesome, not because he's biding his time until your friend takes him back.Trust that your friend is happy you've found someone you dig, not plotting to sabotage your love.Even if you meet someone to whom you think you have no previous connection, a 10-minute conversation almost always reveals that she went to high school with your college roommate, used to be on a volleyball team with that girl from your book club, and had a six-month stand with your favorite barista.
This goes for friends and partners who haven't dated, too, now that I think of it. Don't ask your man if you're prettier/smarter/better at Scrabble than his last girlfriend.
This has nothing to do with some kind of Eternal Dibs situation, and everything to do with the fact that, by choosing to build a relationship with someone who treated her horribly, you're telling your friend you don't think what he did to her was all that bad. There are lots of people out there who are just as good in bed and haven't traumatized anyone you care about.
Set the precedent that people who are awful to your friends are people who don't get to see you naked, and your life will be the better because of it.
But is dating a friend’s ex always the backstabbing and thoughtless move we make it out to be?
“Finding yourself attracted to a friend’s ex doesn’t mean you’re a villain,” says Brandy Engler, Ph. “We’re often authentic around our friends' boyfriends because we see them as off limits and we’re not trying to impress them.Their relationship is between them; it's not your cautionary tale or your soap opera. It's easier, of course, to have hard-line rules — "exes are never OK" versus "exes are totally fine" — but that's not the world we live in.