How many of us have been tempted to give a failed relationship another chance? Definitely a lot of us. The more we cared, the more we found ourselves overanalyzing and wondering what went wrong and how we could fix it this time. Maybe if you acted like this, the relationship might work? Maybe if they started being open about their feelings you wouldn’t have to deal with issues you two had?
But no matter how much we want everything to get back to how it was, the truth is, no matter what we do, giving a relationship a second chance won’t take us back to that happy honeymoon phase.
Accepting it’s over is hard and moving on after a breakup is even harder, but it is the right thing to do. Here are 12 reasons why getting back with an ex never works.
1. If It Was Supposed to Work, It Would Have
No matter how hard you tried to keep it going, how much time, dedication and energy you invested in the relationship, the breakup happened. Sometimes, people are just not compatible enough to begin with, and no matter how fiercely they wanted the relationship and how much love they had for each other, it just didn’t work.
2. There Was a Good Reason You Broke Up
Ending a relationship, no matter how long it lasted, never happens without a valid reason. Maybe your personalities didn’t match well or your communicating styles were at odds and it created constant friction. Maybe your ex was possessive and manipulative, deceitful, overly jealous and inconsiderate to your needs or maybe your lifestyles just didn’t match.
Whatever the reason, whatever problems you dealt with in the past – everything will probably still be there if you give the relationship a second chance. You will find yourself living the same relationship you had all over again.
3. Living in the Past Won’t Get You Anywhere
It’s ok to have feelings for your ex and it’s ok to cherish all the good memories you had. But clinging to the past doesn’t really help you embrace the present or future. Romanticizing all the good times you two had together won’t turn back the clock or make it all work again.
It’s important to be brave and face all the emotions you are experiencing, instead of trying to find the right glue to repair what is already broken.
4. No, You Can’t Change Them
Change is a personal choice. Your ex partner is an individual as much as you are and there is nothing you can or should change about them, even if that means helping them and making their life better. Just like you, they are responsible for their own thoughts and actions.
The thing is, no matter how hurtful it may sound, nobody is going to change for you, no matter how much they love you. Accepting someone as they are is the first step of acknowledging the real nature of the relationship you two had, and accepting you can do nothing to change someone is even more important, because the only person you can really change for the better is – you.
5. …and Changing Yourself for Them Won’t Make It Better This Time Either
Over analyzing is something we all go through after a breakup, and it is when we are especially judgmental of our own actions, criticizing all the behavior we believed caused a breakup.
Even if you want to be a better partner, a relationship is not a one-sided thing and the other partner must be equally ready to change themselves, but most of the time that’s more of a dream than a reality. You already did your best for that relationship. It is time to move on.
6. Nothing Can Be The Same Once You Go Your Separate Ways
When breakup happens, moving on can be difficult for both parties. It sometimes takes a tremendous personal effort and emotional strength to cope with sadness and loss, and both partners are urged to find the best way to deal with all of it.
7. You Don’t Want Them, You Want Love and Companionship
Sometimes negative emotions take their toll and pull us towards self-defeating thoughts. We fear we might not find someone like our ex, we fear loneliness and everything we have to deal with now that we are single again.
The truth is, you don’t need your ex – you just need the genuine love and companionship that you are used to, and your ex was someone who provided you with that.
This is why it is not them you really need, so don’t get tricked by your own mind and don’t be scared of change. Love will come to you, but getting back to your old source of love will not help you find what you are looking for and you might end up feeling even lonelier.
8. Never Go Back to an Ex Boyfriend Just Because They are Your Comfort Zone
What might attract you back to them, even if some time ago you decided it was over for good, is the feeling of familiarity. We just tend to cling to whatever we are familiar with, because it’s where we feel safe as we know the territory well.
One of the hardest things we deal with after a breakup is feeling off balance and being aware that we lost a solid foundation we relied on so much, but getting back to your ex is just an attempt to return to this comfort zone. They are just something you are used to.
9. By Getting Back with Them, You Pause Personal Growth
The decision to put an end to a relationship is a courageous thing to do, and it is always backed up with lack of satisfaction felt by one or both partners. Almost every breakup brings with it important lessons we need to learn, and many of them are about us, what we need, who we are and who we want to become.
There was something that didn’t work between you two and there are things within yourself that need to be worked on, such as personal satisfaction or self-realisation. Whatever the area of your desired growth is now, getting back with your ex will just delay it, because you will have to put so much effort into building what was once broken, instead of healing your wounds and growing as an individual. By getting back with them you will only postpone dealing with pain, fear, anger and internal blockages, which is inevitable because you will have to face it sooner or later.
10. Finding Support Will Be Harder This Time
Your friends and family are always there to offer you support, whether you are happily in love or dealing with painful post-breakup emotions. When you break up for the first time, they will try to offer as much consideration and love as they can, maybe offer you advice and a shoulder to cry on.
They know this relationship started as something beautiful and didn’t end so well for many reasons, and they know how much you cared. But when you decide to go back with your ex, you put your initial decision to break up under a question mark. Your closest ones, if they care enough about you, which they do, will question your actions too. Many of them will tell you to never take back an ex who dumped you, and they are probably right.
While breakup was painful and happened for a good reason, getting back with your ex is your decision to possibly re-engage in a non-functional relationship again. Your friends will support your decision no matter what, but they will have in mind that this time it is your decision to go back to a place you left because it didn’t feel right.
11. Abusers Always Stay Abusers, No Matter How Much Love You Give Them
We all have different priorities when it comes to romantic relationships. Some care more about dedication and loyalty, for some it’s about romance and others approach it with a free spirit, but no matter what our approach is, if what we sacrifice for love is our sense of self-worth, emotional health or physical wellbeing, than getting back with someone who made us feel so low is never ever a good idea.
If you were emotionally or physically abused, manipulated and lied to, you should never go back to the person who did those things to you. You know what? You deserve the best, you deserve love and hope and you are not going to find that in the same place where you questioned whether love and hope even exist. If this is what you’ve experienced in your previous relationship, you can heal yourself by talking to someone who understands you and supports you, or turn to a therapist to make the journey of getting over an abusive ex less painful. This is important. You are important.
12. Being in Love is Not Enough – People Need to Be Compatible
In the end, love is the most powerful emotion that draws two people together, but in reality, it takes much more for a successful relationship than just love. You can love someone who is not good for you. You can love someone who you are not compatible with.
So, no matter how much you miss the good times you had, no matter how powerful your love for them is, don’t get back with your ex. Yes, love is the moving force; it can work wonders and help people overcome many obstacles they face in a relationship, but if that same love wasn’t enough the first time, nothing will change if you try to give it a second chance.