Breaking the Cardinal Sin of Friendships


I cherish it. I honor it. I respect it.

Internally, I spazz if a friend tampers with it by: being disloyal or believing that I may have been disloyal. The latter actually upsets me most because I take the accusation as a personal assault on my character, and I lose it, like ape shhh lose it. I act like a made man in the mafioso when it comes to loyalty. Once you are apart of the power circle, sea bass included, then you receive platinum friendship; anything you need, I got it. However, a disloyal transgression reduces you immediately to silver status (or in severe cases, termination), with the possibility of attaining gold, but never platinum…never again. Now, I readily agree and admit that I am a not a great friend in terms of calling or texting, but not one of my friends, past or present, can ever claim that I was disloyal. Loyalty means too much to me.

With most friendships, there are few cardinal sins that generally lead to the end of the road relationship: two-faceness, overt neglect, unnecessary drama, and/or sleeping with a friend’s current partner (Am I missing any cardinal sins of friendship? If so, please add them in the comments section). Any of those indiscretions, especially when combined with others (and yes it is possible to be a two-faced [insert whichever derogatory word of your choice here] who slept with a friend’s partner, which created hella drama…I’ve seen it…well not literally, but you know what I mean) seriously challenges the core of any friendship, regardless of depth and time.

Another cardinal sin I have heard mentioned is: sleeping with a friend’s former partner. As always, my unconventional self disagrees somewhat with that statement. Hear me out; one should ever date or sleep with a friend’s former king or queen, someone with whom a friend had a serious, meaningful relationship. It is disrespectful to one’s friend. Simple. And the former partner should not want to date a former partner’s sidekick. Always the upgrade, boo.

However, dating a friend’s more causal fling (i.e. jumpoff, summer boo, etc.) can be ok IF AND ONLY IF one discusses it with one’s friend. As weird as this sounds, one’s friend has to sign off (aka give approval and/or blessings) on the potential date or fling. It’s only fair and necessary to avoid claims of being a Gemini or creating unnecessary drama.

Ask the homie, before you smash the homie’s ex.

For men in particular, we tend to mask our emotional connectedness to our former boo thangs, especially consistent side joints (sidenote: I honestly do not think that one can have sex over three or four times with someone and not feel something for them, even if that thing is minuscule. Being physically vulnerable, in my experience, leads to emotions after a few times). Maybe it’s our social training to show no emotions or maybe its our social fear of exposing any weakness by showing we care. Whatever it is, hidden feelings will get hurt if a discussion does not occur. The worst part about it, with men, is that we normally won’t confront the offending homeboy, but stealthily push him away because his lack of communication about sleeping with our ex was interpreted as a sign of disrespect. Let me clarify, men are not necessarily upset about the actual act of sex, but are more offended by the perceived disloyalty.

Additionally, men tend to be hyper-territorial with our former partners, even if we are no longer interested. As a comedian once joked, “we don’t want anyone else in our sandbox.” It is true. We do not want to hear that our former lover is sexing anyone else, even though we know that they will or has been since the breakup. If we do hear something about our fling’s love life, we do not want it to be with one of the homies. Unless…

Ask the homie, before you smash the homie’s ex.

I am not sure what the unwritten rules are for women, but I would think that with a conversation a non-serious former partner is fair game for one’s pack. I could also be completely wrong. Women, please inform me in the comments section.

Personally, I have been with a homie’s ex once or twice but always after a conversational heads up. But neither of those relationships turned serious. I can see myself with a friend’s former ex because everyone has a past. But I must admit that there are a few factor’s that I would take into consideration:

  • How close is the homie–if it’s one of my few aces (aka best friends) then nope I would really struggle with the relationship
  • How long ago was the relationship–if the relationship was recent then nope. However if it was years ago, then memory foam. We good to go.
  • How happy will the relationship make me–I am of the personal opinion that happiness weighs a ton, and if the relationship makes me happy then the other two questions are void and null. It’s not often that one finds a partner that genuinely makes one’s heart smile.

But as always, what do I know? I’m single.

What say you? Can you date one of your friend’s non-serious former partners? Have you? What was that like? Please share in the comments section.


4 thoughts on “Breaking the Cardinal Sin of Friendships

  1. What if we’re talking about a dude who’s your ace, would do anything for him and always there for one another, but you really don’t respect how he does women in his life? That duality can’t be rare. We separate relationships all the time, right?

    I’ve never done it. But I’ve caught myself thinking of rescue missions. Never with regard to suggesting infidelity, but being a voice of reason when the hers and my friends relationship is terminated.

    Back when MySpace was a thing, I caught myself receiving messages from my dude’s ex about her grief, but alerted him and ended the communication. He didn’t care and would hav been fine with it if I was her rebound.

    The main problem here is that I didn’t trust HER motives. His blessing was odd, not surprising since he was doing his thing anyway, but I was convinced that all she wanted was to use me to make him jealous. It wouldn’t have worked, but it’s a possibility I feared.

    Otherwise, it’s too awkward. Shit, I’ve found it weird to maintain contact with a friend’s ex’s mutual friends after the breakup, no matter how much fun we all had on a night out.

    • Angel, you bring up a good point; what do you do when you disagree with your homie’s way? Other than talking to him about it, there isn’t much one can do. As for that situation with the ex, you did the right thing and talked to your friend about it; her motives seemed suspect. Lastly, when your friend breaks up with a partner it only makes sense to break up with the friends as well…if not, awkward moments abound or loss of friends occurs.

      Thanks for the comment.

  2. personally, i dont date friends’ exes, no matter how long ago it was or if it was a one time thing or whatever, because it feels like im being chosen second lol. i know that may sound crazy. but even if i thought a guy was attractive and he comes to me after, even if it’s a long time later, i feel like, “well u should have liked me first then,” even if its just for a fling or whatever. now if its something where you and your friend’s ex become friends and gradually it grows into something more serious that you two cant fight…. i dont know, it’s never happened to me, but i would assume in that case, it would be different (as long as that person wasn’t seriously involved with a friend and that a lot of time has passed).

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