We've all been there. No matter how much we try to forget about them, our ex is calling, texting, and generally doing everything they can to remind us they still exist. It might make you ponder the age-old, irritating question, should I let my ex back in my life?
Well, it's usually not as simple as a yes or no answer. Actually, it's never as simple as yes or no. And this is precisely why it's irritating.
Every relationship is different, as is every reason for a breakup. Sometimes, space and time apart are exactly what a couple needs to grow into better versions of themselves. In these situations, getting back together could be wonderful. Other times, though, it's just two lonely people circling back around to each other for no good reason.
To find out if letting your ex back in your life is a good idea, remember to ask yourself these questions first.
1. Why Did We Break Up?
Why did the two of you break up in the first place? Was it that you were naturally growing apart, or was it something more abrupt? Did one of you cheat? Did one of you simply ghost the other after a few months together?
The circumstances under which you broke up matter a lot. Something emotionally jarring like cheating or ghosting isn't likely to be a good indicator of things to come if you take your ex back.
If, however, natural life events simply tore you apart, like a new job, a move, or anything that didn't have much to do with the two of you directly, letting them back in might not be a bad idea.
2. Has Anything Changed?
Have any of the circumstances that initially led to your breakup changed? For example, if the two of you grew apart because of life stress, have you learned to handle it better? If someone had a traveling job that made it impossible to see each other, have their travels slowed down a bit?
If you are at all considering letting your ex back in your life, you should think about whether or not anything will be different this time around. If absolutely nothing has changed, what makes you think keeping in contact is a good idea now, when it wasn't before?
However, if things have started to shift and the circumstances are now more favorable for the two of you to try again, go ahead and give it a shot.
3. Am I Just Lonely?
Loneliness can definitely make people look more attractive. Could you possibly just be lonely and imagining that life with your ex was better than it actually was?
Before you consider letting your ex back in your life, stop and assess whether you might just be aching for some company. If you are just lonely and looking for a warm body to fill your time, there's nothing wrong with that, but you might be better off finding someone new than going back to a relationship with lots of history and baggage bringing you down.
4. Am I Resentful?
If your ex did anything really terrible while the two of you were together, are you resentful because of that?
If you and your ex had problems, but worked through them in a generally healthy and loving manner, you may be good candidates to let each other back in. If, however, your ex was constantly doing crappy things to you, and you are resentful AF for this behavior, it's likely you'll carry that resentment into any sort of relationship the two of you try to have in the future.
5. Could We Ever Be Good Together?
This is a hard question and one that will require you to be really honest with yourself: Could you and your ex actually ever be really good together? Answering this will involve looking into the future to imagine a long-term relationship between the two of you, instead of just in the here and now, when you may be so taken with emotions that you are ready to jump right in again.
If you're looking ahead and seeing the same problems resurfacing between you and your ex over and over again, it's better not to let them back in your life.
6. Are My Expectations Realistic?
Are you expecting your ex to come back a totally changed person because the time away from you has made them so miserable?
Unfortunately, this isn't a '90s rom com. The truth is that your ex is still going to be exactly who they were before you broke up. They may have missed you, sure, and they may be willing to make some compromises now that they weren't before, but they aren't going to dramatically change their entire personality just because you two were apart for a while.
If you find instead that you have realistic expectations for a possible relationship, and you know who your ex is and that you already liked them before, this could be a good chance for the two of you to try to start things fresh.
7. Is My Ex On The Same Page As I Am?
The most important question of all when trying to decide whether to let your ex back in is questioning if they feel the same way about things as you do?
Any of the questions on this list could apply to your ex, just as they apply to you. Maybe your ex is the one who is just lonely. If so, being in a relationship with them is probably not going to be very fulfilling. Maybe they are resentful, and even though they love you, they don't think they can get past certain incidents from when the two of you were together before.
If you want to try letting your ex back into your life in any sort of way, you need to make sure the two of you are on the exact same page about moving forward. Otherwise, you'll just end up disappointed again.
Deciding whether or not to let your ex back in is a complicated thing. There's likely a lot of love there, but love won't make things work perfectly in the future if it didn't in the past. To help figure out what the right move is, ask yourself these questions to get a sense of where your head and your heart are at.
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