Is it possible to stay friends with your ex within a week from break up when you are both in love?

One of my best friend's in college was of the opposite sex and we ended up spending a lot of time together and eventually decided to embark on a "friends with benefits" situation. I had real feelings for him so needless to say it was a bumpy ride and an emotional rollercoaster. At some point he confessed to feelings as well and we started dating officially. We were just getting used to it when we had a blow-out fight because I didn't feel that he loved me the way I loved him and I left angry saying we should just be friends - he seemed to accept and agree without argument, confirming his indifference. Through hearsay and coincidental occurrences, he got it in his head that the reason I ended it was to sleep with a different friend (not true). He got everyone in our friend group aligned against me and I had to do some serious damage control before he finally decided to talk to me directly. He was totally convinced of my evil intentions and out poured the impassioned expression of love that I had been looking for and he had been suppressing. He blamed me for breaking his heart, but the truth was that I didn't even know it was mine.

The point of this long and rambling story is that we are in fact, friends today. In fact we are very good friends despite the geographical distance that separates us. We did make up after the worst week of my freshman year, and left for summer on a happy note. When we returned in the fall, however, he was as distant as could be. He created space between us that enraged me to no end. He effectively broke my heart and as it healed in his absence, I got over him and moved on. We were taking a class together and had some casual contact. I was no longer interested in avoiding him, but I was no longer charmed by him either. This must have come across as I failed to be amused by one of his anecdotes, because he smiled and asked me out for coffee.

And that was the day we started over. We hung out once or twice a week, worked on many assignments together, and once in a blue moon got drunk and had some fun. This did not interfere with any other romantic relationship and is a friendship we have maintained through the years even though we now live across the country from each other. I am now in a healthy and happy relationship and about once a month I spend an hour or so on the phone with a true friend I am so happy to still have in my life.

Bottom line: creating space to break the old relationship, heal, and then start over is the key to a successful friendship after a romantic relationship did not work out.
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