There are so many stigmas that come with a breakup.
You can't be friends, you have to burn all their belongings or items they gave you, you can't utter their name and if you ever see them in public you either a) try to make them jealous or b) run the opposite direction as fast as you can.
In reality, if you go with option A, you just make yourself look like a desperate idiot. There is nothing that makes an ex look more ridiculous than seeing them grab the nearest breathing individual to their left and playing a quick game of tonsil hockey. It is just embarrassing, especially when you were the person to their right just a few days earlier.
Personally, I don't believe in any of the stigmas. Actually, I believe in one.
Yes, you have every right to be angry and upset after a breakup. Sometimes, depending on how you deal with things, burning some of their belongings or photos is a way of grieving. But after that process is over, I do believe you could be friends with your ex, or you can at least be civil.
So, what is the one thing you should do if you run into your ex after a bad breakup? Not option A or B, but option C, which is be civil and crack a shy smile. And if you are feeling extra courageous, maybe even just say hello.
A small wave or saying, "Hey, hope you are doing well" really doesn't hurt, either. If anything, it will honestly make you feel a lot better at the end of the day.
Here is the thing: I don't see how you could spend a significant amount of time being someone's everything to then just being their absolute nothing.
How can you go from being madly in love to having a pool of bad blood surrounding you? I'm not saying if you see your ex in public you should run up to them, take a few shots together and start dancing like old times, but why does there have to be all these bad vibes?
Not only does it make the situation uncomfortable for you, but it also makes the situation super awkward for the people around you.
Think about how many of your exes shared the same friends as you. This tends to happen because while you are spending a lot of time with your significant other, you want to include your friends into the mix in some way, too.
So, your two groups combine. Suddenly, your significant other's best friends are your friends, and your best friends are your significant other's friends as well. It becomes so natural, and then after the breakup, it all comes to a big, awkward end.
But, it really doesn't need to be that way.
At the end of the day, we are all survivors. You will get through this nasty breakup.
And when you reach the point where you are confident again, don't you think it will bring a big damper on your day if you see your ex in public, and your only options are A or B?
Making yourself look like an idiot isn't going to boost your confidence, and neither is having to run out of the bar through the back emergency exit in order to avoid a run-in.
So, opt for option C. Just crack a smile and say hello.
There's never any harm in showing kindness, especially in a world of dating that always seems so cold.