It's natural to feel a twinge of envy for people who, after a
break-up, miraculously maintain a friendship with their ex-boyfriends
or ex-girlfriends. Isn't that the healthiest, most emotionally
rewarding outcome? Not according to Tom Bartlett
of the Chronicle of Higher Education, who writes that people who end up
despising and belittling their exes end up feeling, well, better.
Citing a study in the academic journal Cognition and Emotion, Bartlett writes:
The paper's less-surprising conclusion, however, draws a scoff from Bartlett. The scientists couch some commonsense relationship advice in science's tepidly cautious, impersonal tone:
Given the importance of negative evaluations in post-break-up adjustment, future work should explore whether friends and family members might help people adjust to a recent break-up by drawing attention to the negative aspects of the former relationship.Bartlett deadpans: "I think this falls neatly into the category of 'Things We Kind of Already Knew But It's Nice that Science Has Confirmed Them.'"