5 Tips for Getting Back Together with Your Ex

Tell your best friend you’re thinking of getting back with an on-again, off-again ex, and she’ll likely have a million reasons for why that’s a Very Bad Idea. But according to new research, it’s not only possible to have a serious future with an old flame—it’s actually surprisingly common. More than a third of co-habitating couples and a fourth of now-married couples have actually broken up at some point in the past, per a recent Kansas State University study.

For the study, researchers polled a nationally representative sample of 323 cohabitating and 752 married couples about their relationship histories—specifically, whether they had experienced “cycling,” or splitting up only to get back together later. Participants were also asked to rate their relationships in terms of commitment, relationship uncertainty, and overall levels of satisfaction. “We found that past cycling is a common occurrence among both cohabitating and married couples, who were able to make things work long-term despite relationship roadblocks,” says study author Amber Vennum, Ph.D., assistant professor at Kansas State University.

But the study presents a double-edged sword for cyclers: Though many couples were able to sustain serious relationships after having previously calling it quits, those who had histories of cycling were also more likely to cycle again in the future. And even worse, second-chance couples also reported feeling less satisfied and more uncertain about their romantic bonds than couples who had never broken up before.

So if there’s one thing this research re-affirms, it’s that rekindling things with an old flame can be tricky business—but that doesn’t mean it’s totally irrational or out of the picture. If you’re considering giving your ex another shot, Vennum recommends giving yourself a few pre-relationship gut-checks first to prevent history from repeating itself: 

Be Brutally Honest with Yourself It’s natural to miss the positive stuff about your ex. But before making any moves to seriously reconnect, Vennum says you have to be 100 percent sure why you’re doing it—and you have to be willing to call yourself out if you’re not in it for the long-term. Do you really miss him, or do you just miss having an automatic date every Friday night? Is he someone you could settle down with, or are you just falling back into old patterns? If it’s between spending the occasional evening solo and being stuck in a relationship you aren’t digging a few months down the road, you’re better off being bored.

Make Sure You Can Be Friends First Friendship is at the core of every relationship, says Vennum. With a breakup comes messiness and feelings of resentment—obstacles you have to be able to move past, and not while under the influence of hormones. Before plunging back into full-on couple-territory, plan a few platonic hangouts, like grabbing lunch or happy hour drinks. That’ll give you both a chance to assess the post-fallout situation and determine if things are still too raw to proceed—or if you’re ready to move on together.

Lay Everything Out on the Table You broke up for certain reasons—and you need to discuss those reasons openly and honestly to avoid falling into the same toxic patterns. For example, if constant bickering led to your split, make an effort to identify your triggers, and make a pact to really try avoiding setting each other off. “Be really clear which things you can work on letting go and which are deal-breakers,” says Vennum, “and come to some reasonable agreement about how to hold each other accountable going forward.” Because if you just repeat the same mistakes you made together the first time around, the odds of things working during round two are slim to zilch.

Go Slooooooooow It’ll be tempting to immediately jump back into the “I love you’s” and weeklong sleepovers. But not only is it unrealistic to assume you can pick up right where you left off, Vennum says it’s important to remember that you’ve both probably changed during your time apart. Rather than viewing your relationship as a reboot, which can also make it easy to fall into old pitfalls and frustrations, act as if you’re dating a guy you just met. Don’t assume you know everything about him already—instead, make an effort to learn his likes, dislikes and habits all over again. That way you can start things off with a clean slate.

Be Willing to Walk Away In giving things another chance, you’re definitely taking a leap of faith. But with more cyclical couples reporting lower levels of satisfaction and higher levels of relationship uncertainty, Vennum says it’s important to know from the get-go that things may not be as great the second time around. The further you go down the relationship path with an ex, the trickier it can be to break it off. Of course you want things to work out—but it’s important to be mentally prepared to walk away if it turns out the relationship just isn’t what you expected.

By Kelly Thore

The fantasy of ever getting back together is officially over

Deep down inside, you might have had this weird fantasy that you and your ex would get back together one day.

You might have starred in your own epic romance novel inside of your head, subconsciously convincing yourself that maybe, just maybe, those drunken hook-ups and late-night conversations meant the two of you were holding out for each other in the name of a grand love story.

All of that was crushed when it became clear your ex wasn’t holding out for you at all.

Or maybe you didn’t even realize you were holding on to the fantasy until the moment your ex actually got with someone new.

Maybe you moved on, but an unexpected wave of nausea still washed over you when you saw your ex tagged in a photo with that new person on Facebook, which made you feel betrayed.

Whether you were aware of the fantasy or not, there’s no hope of it becoming a reality.

Your ex is with someone else now. The fantasy must remain a fantasy.
You once thought there could never be anyone else, but now there is

At one point in your relationship, you and your ex were convinced there was nobody else either of you wanted to be with.

You guys came as a package. Your ex was your everything, your partner in crime, your number one person.

A world in which you and your ex weren’t the yin to each other’s yang made no sense to you.

But now, your ex has a new everything. A new partner in crime. A new number one person.

You know how deeply connected you once were with your ex, so knowing your ex is feeling that deep of a connection with someone else confirms the fact that you are no longer relevant.

Despite what you thought previously, your connection really could be replaced. And that’s what hurts the most.



You’re Never Officially Single Until You See Your Ex With Someone Else

When it comes to dating, we’re notoriously reluctant to label anything.

We call ourselves a “thing,” not boyfriend and girlfriend (or boyfriend and boyfriend, or girlfriend and girlfriend). We say we’re “talking,” not dating.

We don’t know if one, three or six dates signal the beginning of a relationship — if it even signals a relationship at all — and we never know if we’re exclusive or if we should actually continue seeing other people.

Most of all, we perpetuate this constant state of questioning ourselves and not knowing where we stand because we’re too afraid to confront anyone about our feelings.

And in a world in which we never know when things start, it makes sense that we never really know when they end, either — except, well, if our ex starts dating someone else.

Now that’s how you know a relationship is really, truly over.

The definition of “breakup” might have been unclear, but now it’s not

Whenever you ask newly single friends when they and their exes broke up, it’s normal to hear them chuckle and say “officially or unofficially?”

Even though you might “officially” end a relationship, you probably don’t cut your ex off right away.

You probably still follow him or her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, so you still feel like you’re a big part of his or her life.

And because of this, you can easily text, message, tweet, like his or her Instagram picture or include him or her in a mass Snapchat to your friends.

Before you know it, the supposed “official end” of a relationship has no meaning.

Eventually, you start talking to your ex more frequently. You might start drunk texting each other and flirting, which might lead to meeting up late at night and having the infamous, you-swore-you’d-never-do-it breakup sex.

For some couples, this could continue for months and months after the official breakup — until someone else comes into the picture.

That’s when your ex’s focus shifts away from you and to another person.

That’s when the definition of “breakup” is no longer unclear. If you weren’t broken up before, you sure as hell are now.

You now have new-found boundaries you didn’t have before

During your post-breakup period, it was easy to push your limits with your ex, whether it was with those drunken hookups, calling him or her late at night “just to talk,” laughing together at parties or joking about the silly or embarrassing things that happened in your relationship.

When your ex starts seeing someone else, however, you know it’s time to back off.

It’s not only unfair to you and your ex, but it’s unfair to that new person to continue keeping, um, in touch like you were before. You don’t want to make anyone feel uncomfortable.

You also don’t want the new person getting suspicious of you, so you just act like another person your ex knows (even though this won’t work because the new person has probably stalked you to death and knows everything about you anyway — but that’s another story).

You wave from afar, minimize giggling and refrain from having casual texting conversations.

You maintain levels of platonic friendship that you guys had never done before.

These newfound boundaries prove that not only is the relationship really over, but the post-breakup attention you were used to is really over, too.

Every single aspect of the relationship is coming to an end.

By Alexia LaFata
Source: /Alexia-LaFata

16 Painful Struggles Of Getting Back Together With Your Ex-Boyfriend

Getting back with an ex is never an easy feat.

Sure, the two of you have made this decision and have concluded that you care more about each other than the past.

The two of you are committed to giving this thing another go, and you’re excited, if not a little weary.

Yet getting back together after a rough breakup comes with its own group of challenges.

No one in your support group is going to be ecstatic you’ve forgone his or her advice and are taking back a guy he or she watched you cry over.

Your mind will still be battling with the demons of the past that lead to the breakup in the first place.

Is this the right decision? Why do I feel this is worth saving? Is he the one for me or am I just terrified of ending up alone?

You’re still going to have doubts in the back of your mind. It’s natural.

The only thing to do is resolve to stand by the commitment you’ve made and to give it your all.

You have to accept people do grow and change. We’re all just trying to get by and find love.

Without further adieu, here are 16 struggles of getting back together with your ex boyfriend:
1. You have to tell everyone you’re back together.

It’s definitely difficult to break this kind of news to every single person you know (and some you’re just barely acquainted with).
It’s a bit harsh on the pallet to inform your social circle the devil incarnate, the man you f*cking despise is now your BAE again.
2. You have to re-add each other on social media.

It may have seemed in your best interest to delete every photo off of Facebook and to unfollow him on Twitter and Instagram upon your breakup, but now that you’re back together, you have to do the dreaded “re-add” dance. Ugh, when your friends see the notifications online…
3. You have to try and mend your mother’s opinion of him.

You’ve already talked so much sh*t about him to mom. She was already skeptical in the first place.

How do you even come back from that? She doesn’t want grandkids that badly.
4. … And your friends’ opinion of him.

You now have to tiptoe around your friends. You cringe at the thought of a haughty, “Don’t say I didn’t tell you so when you break up again.” You just avoid the topic of BAE at all cost.
5. You have alienated a significant portion of your friends.

They no longer trust your judgment. They are never going to get behind this decision because they know it is probably the worst decision you could be making.

They will all claim they won’t be there when you come running for a second time. That is f*cking scary.
6. You have to ask yourself if you want him or if you just want a boyfriend.

You have to think about why this is happening in the first place. You question your motives for the reconciliation.

Is it because you want to be with him, or is it because you don’t want to be alone?
7. You both say you’ll change, but only time will tell.

Getting back together will throw you right back into the honeymoon phase. Everything feels so perfect and so different from the last time.

You have to be wary and skeptical. These changes may only be temporary.
8. You have to work really hard to treat it like a new relationship.

It’s easy to get caught up in the wishy, washy whirlwind of the past.

You have to make the conscious effort to start over and treat this like something new. Otherwise, you’re doomed to repeat past mistakes.
9. You have to get over all the stuff you said to each other.

When you were breaking up, you both said a lot of awful, hurtful, terrible things to each other. Some of those things can never be unsaid.

The only way is to let go and never try to use those moments as ammo in future arguments.
10. You have to try to get back on his friends’ good side.

You’re now known as the “unstable,” “crazy” ex-girlfriend. It was hard enough to make them like you in the first place.

Now that you went all “Carrie” on their friend, you have a lot of damage control to do.
11. You have to deal with the sh*t that happened between the first breakup and now.

The period between then and now is the most awkward to breach.

It’s a struggle between wanting to know everything he did when you weren’t together and not wanting to know anything at all.
12. You wonder if you’re settling.

You can’t help but wonder if this is really the best relationship you could have. Are you back with your ex because you’re afraid something better won’t come along or are you getting back together because you made a mistake?
13. The validity of breaking up has lost its weight.

Now that you’ve broken up, it’s like breaking up doesn’t even mean anything anymore.

If you get into a massive fight and break up, you could easily just get back together again. After all, you’ve done it before.
14. You have to really let go of the past.

You can’t just SAY you’re finished with the past; you have to really let it go.

That time you spent apart is the strangest gray area a couple can encounter and those blackened memories of your previous love affair are burned into your memory. If you can’t let go, you can’t move on.
15. You’re very aware of how ugly things can get.

There is none of that silvery, lovey dovey film of romance over your eyes. You’ve seen what can happen.

You’ve seen how terrible and painful and hideous things can become. You don’t have to imagine what it would be like to break up; you’ve lived it.
16. In the end, you realize you’d rather be with him than face life without him.

What it all comes down to is the two of you are very important to each other. You’re willing to put up with all of the bullsh*t if it means getting to be together.

You’d rather deal with an endless hailstorm of rude remarks from your friends and memories from the past if it means you don’t have to live without him.

In the end, you know this is a thing worth saving.


Written by: Gigi Engle
“Gigi Engle is a Staff Writer for Elite Daily. Gigi earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and English from Fordham University. She’s completely crazy, but in a good way. Follow her on Facebook, Insta and Twitter @GigiEngle “