When it comes to breaking up, your relationship with your significant other often isn't the only one that takes a hit. No matter how amicable the split, the aftermath can get messy. People take sides, and sometimes you lose friends along the way. Social media doesn't help the situation, either. You can block, mute, de-friend, or unfollow your ex, but what about their friends? Should you unfollow your ex's friends on Instagram after a breakup? Well, it depends.
There are a few questions you should ask yourself if you're considering unfollowing your ex's friends on Instagram. Ultimately you need to do what's best for you. If they're more your acquaintances than your friends, pressing "Unfollow" shouldn't be a big deal. Sometimes, though, your ex's friends can become your friends over the course of the relationship. It might be tough to cut those people out of your life, especially since you've recently ended one relationship.
If you're not sure whether or not you need to unfollow your ex's friends on Instagram, try to answer the following questions honestly. Evaluate how much their friendship means to you, weigh the pros and cons, and look out for any red flags that you're remaining friends with these people for the wrong reasons.
Were you friends with them outside of your relationship with your ex?
If you had a relationship with your ex's friends that didn't involve your ex, those friendships could be worth preserving. Did you hang out with them one-on-one? Did your conversations involve things other than the fact that you were dating their friend? If you think you can keep spending time with this person and not have to think about your ex too much, then you might want to keep them around on Instagram.
How have they treated you since the breakup?
Pay attention to how the friends in question respond to you immediately after the split. If they make an effort to check up on you and ask how you're doing, that's a good sign. But if your ex's friends choose their side without hesitation, or make you feel like the breakup is your fault, you should unfollow them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.
Are you trying to make your ex jealous?
Next, consider your rationale for wanting to stay connected to your ex's friends. Deep down, could you be trying to "win" the breakup or make your ex jealous by staying a part of their social circle? Don't keep following your ex's friends on Instagram for petty reasons. Seeing their posts will just be another reminder of your ex, and that can be painful.
Could you be using them to keep tabs on your ex?
If you're only following your ex's friends so that you can stay in the know, do yourself a favor and hit unfollow. Yes, it feels good to be in the loop, but seeing pictures of your ex — possibly with another girl — will only upset you. You'll end up obsessively checking their friends' pages, which definitely won't help you get over the breakup or move on to someone new.
Unfollowing your ex's friends on Instagram can aid in the healing process. If you know reminders of your ex will upset you, don't set yourself up to get hurt. Unless you genuinely want to stay friends with your ex's friends, it's probably best to remove them from your social (media) life.
Check out the entire Gen Why series and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.
Check out the “Best of Elite Daily” stream in the Bustle App for more stories just like this!