But don't assume she doesn't want an invite if you haven't asked!In general, allow your friend and your sweetheart to decide how much contact they want with each other, and don't push them to associate if they're not into it.No matter what his answer is, it's going to make things weird.Besides, comparing yourself to anybody — even if you come out ahead — is going to lead to feeling crappy, because basing your self-esteem on where you stand relative to someone else is Not Healthy.Queer communities are often small and insular, and once you've found one, you tend to hold on to it for dear life.It's difficult to meet people you're romantically interested in beyond an already-defined circle, and outside of your city's queer scene, most people you run into are likely to be straight.Whether you're gay, straight, bi, or not into labels, dating a friend's ex can absolutely be done without sacrificing your friendship — you just have to follow a few simple guidelines.1. It's common to assume that anything shared with you is by default shared with your partner as well; however, your friend might be much less comfortable speaking to you in confidence if she thought the details of her personal life were going to be relayed to someone who used to share her toothbrush.(I'm going to use female pronouns for your friend, and male pronouns for your sweetie, for the sake of simplicity; however, every rule here applies no matter the genders of the participants.) Keep your friend's secrets.
What I've noticed, though, is that every person I've heard espouse this worldview was straight.If they choose to share details with you, that's fine — you don't need to stick your fingers in your ears, unless an overt comparison is being made (see No. Your relationship and theirs are separate things, and you don't need to know anything they don't care to tell you. If someone seriously mistreated your friend (we're talking emotional or physical abuse, infidelity, lying, stealing, etc.), don't date him, no matter how awesome his butt looks in jeans.This has nothing to do with some kind of Eternal Dibs situation, and everything to do with the fact that, by choosing to build a relationship with someone who treated her horribly, you're telling your friend you don't think what he did to her was all that bad. There are lots of people out there who are just as good in bed and haven't traumatized anyone you care about.So don't seek out comparisons, and if your dude brings up the topic, tell him you're not interested in hearing it.You and your friend are not in competition, except when you're actually playing Scrabble.5. Don't try to keep your boyfriend and your bud from associating because you're afraid they still have feelings for each other, and don't constantly seek reassurance that that's not the case.Set aside time for each of them and honor it — don't drag your lover along on girls' night out (not even if your lover is a lady; queer chicks are 4. Don't ask your man if you're prettier/smarter/better at Scrabble than his last girlfriend.Don't do this ever, but especially not if his last girlfriend is the person you're going rock climbing with Sunday.Trust that your dude is with you because he likes you and you're awesome, not because he's biding his time until your friend takes him back.Trust that your friend is happy you've found someone you dig, not plotting to sabotage your love.Likewise, don't grill your boyfriend on what went wrong or insist that he account for his behavior throughout the entire time they dated.Their relationship is between them; it's not your cautionary tale or your soap opera. It's easier, of course, to have hard-line rules — "exes are never OK" versus "exes are totally fine" — but that's not the world we live in.