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Establishing Boundaries Coping Emotionally Maintaining the Friendship Community Q&A A breakup can be heartbreaking and the inclination to stay friends is understandable. Manage your emotions by reminding yourself the relationship is over.

When someone was important to you romantically, it's natural to want to hold on to that connection. As you move forward, remember to keep your emotions in check to sustain the relationship long term.

A wiser, God-honoring approach involves first establishing the groundwork of friendship, which allows opportunity to explore each other’s character, commonalities, background, and spiritual commitment.

This article offers a number of practical suggestions to help set proper patterns for relating, building friendship, dating, and embarking on commitment that leads to marriage.

These suggestions are as follows: drop that “faux spouse” who refuses to commit to you; follow the Golden Rule of dating (treating the person you’re dating as you would want someone else to treat your future spouse); don’t date until you are at a place in life where friendship can naturally develop into a flourishing, exclusive relationship; don’t kiss until you’re engaged—or even the day of the wedding; set patterns of faithfulness and self-control that will guide you through dating and marital life; observe how the friend in whom you are interested resolves disagreements, shows forgiveness, and handles disappointments and frustrations; before engagement, address general concerns about previous sexual experience. While “enjoying” the seeming benefits of emotional attachments, unmarried couples— though friends—may be avoiding the hard work of deepened commitment, but to their own harm.

A guy and a girl who aren’t officially dating may send texts to each other during the wee hours of the night, “chat” extensively over Facebook, or “hang out” with each other on their i Phones or i Pads.

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I recommend reassuring your partner once a week for the first three months that you want this relationship.

This arrangement would generally be called a friend with benefits, or a fuck buddy, or a romantic friendship, or perhaps even a relationship—with “no strings attached.” But let’s be real: There are always strings, aren’t there?

It was while planning this vacation that it hit me: The two longest relationships of my life have both been with men who I was never officially dating.

Or at least, without getting super-jealous and –esque?

Some assume that one of the “buddies” is always being strung along, secretly hoping that the fucking leads to something more serious.

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