If you still love your ex and there is a possibility that you might get back together, my advice is to do everything within your power to get back your ex.
This is not an easy task, and those trying to get their ex back know that it’s a dance of two steps forward and one step back. In these times, persistence and having a good plan pays off big time.
But how long do you persist before giving up? How do you know your ex is over you and it’s time to move on? How do you even know if your ex wants you back or not?
Each relationship is different, and should be looked at on case by case basis. But there are some very obvious signs that say you are wasting your time, or making a fool of yourself.
1. Your ex wants nothing to do with you
In many of my articles and in my book, I advice people trying to get their ex back not to give up on first contact. There are many reasons why an ex may not respond to your first or even second contact.
- They may not have received your message.
- They may be busy.
- They may be wondering why you contacted them (especially if you haven’t been in contact for while) and taking their time to respond.
- They may also be waiting to see if you will contact them again as proof that you are “serious”.
But if your ex has told you in clear words that they don’t want contact, or refuses to respond to your texts, messages, emails, phone calls, your ex wants you to leave them alone. Continuing to contact them just proves you are needy, pushy, disrespectful and annoying.
2. Your ex insists it’s them — and not you
Sometimes it’s really your ex and not you. But if your ex despite all your suspicions that there may be other reasons they ended the relationship insists that this is the only reason they’re breaking up with you, and refuses to explore any other “reasons”, they’re intentionally denying you any opportunity to try and fix things. If someone says “the problem is with me”, what can you do about it? Nothing.
Your ex knows that if they give you a “reason”, you may try to change their mind, or do everything to try to make the relationship work — something they don’t want you to do.
3. Your ex is mean to you (and/or angry at you) most of the time
Break-ups can bring out the “mean” in even the sweetest of us. But if after two months, your ex still calls you names, talks down to you, publicly ignores you or treats you insensitively, you might want to ask yourself if it’s worth the pain and humiliation.
If you cheated or did something really bad, an extended period of being “mean” to you may be justified. But if it’s nothing to do with cheating, lies or any other kind of betrayal, constant mean treatment is not an encouraging sign.
I’ve heard men and women desperately in love say it is better to be yelled at than be totally ignored; that it means that there is still some “feelings” there, and they are right. Even abusive and toxic relationships have “feelings” that mimic passionate love.
Feelings of anger and/or resentment only create more toxicity. Your ex has invested interest in keeping things toxic for as long as possible, and one of those interests is to keep you and what he/she considers your “toxicity” at bay.
4. Your ex says they will never trust you again
Trust once broken is one of the hardest things to rebuild. But by showing your ex that you can be trusted again, trust can be rebuild over a period of time.
But if in every other conversation your ex brings up trust issues, or directly tells you the reason they not think you will get back together is because they can not trust you, you are not just doing a bad job at rebuilding trust, and your ex’s mind about “who you are” is made up that they can never take you back.
5. Your only form of contact is through social media
In the initial stages of contact, most exes want to keep some distance. Texts only, social media, messaging or some other “remote” mode of communications may be the only way you can have any conversations with them. But this should only be in the initial stages, 1 – 2 months maximum. If after 3 – 4 months, you are still unable to get your ex to a more “intimate” form of contact (phone call, video chats, face-to-face meetings), or get them to want to communicate more than a few texts here and there, chances are your ex is just stringing you along for their entertainment or revenge.
Someone who wants a real relationship with you gets tired of the cat-and-mouse game very quickly, and will want more intimate communication.
6. Your ex responds but is just being polite
There are exes who respond because they feel that not responding is rude, and/or don’t want to hurt you more than they already have. Most will respond but in a non-engaged way.
If all of of your exes responses are one-word answers (‘yes’, ‘no, ‘okay’, etc) even to questions that require a longer response, they are telling you, they’d rather you do not talk to them.
Someone who wants to talk to you, will make an effort in some way or the other. They may not ask you questions about yourself but will at least try to answer the questions you ask them. They’ll also respond to a text or call you back even if it’s days after. They will at least respond because they care to keep you in their lives.
7. Your ex says you’re now ‘just friends” but will not agree to meet up/hang out
Friends make effort to be a friend. That’s what a friendship is about. But if your ‘friend’ (ex) is avoiding seeing you or spending any significant time in your presence, cancels plans they agreed every time, you are not ‘friends’, even if they say you are.
Granted, you are not in a relationship, there is no obligation to meet up or follow through on agreed plans, but someone if is intentionally avoiding you, it is because they do not want to give you ‘ideas’ or create false hope.
8. Your ex is in “a relationship” with someone else
This one is a tricky one, since your ex being with someone else doesn’t necessarily mean you have no chance. The relationship may be a rebound or they’re just exploring their options.
But if your ex has been with the same person for over a year, or your ex has been in at least two rebound relationships and none of them is with you, it’s obvious that getting back with you is not on top of your ex’s “to do” list.
9. Your ex keeps telling you to move on
Most exes when they end a relationship think they are moving on and will tell you to move on too. That’s normal and expected.
At the time, they don’t believe the two of you can get back together and moving on is the right course of action. In cases where your ex is still leaving the door open, or not yet decided whether they want you back or not, talk about moving on stops after a few weeks or months.
But if weeks or months later, or if in every other conversation your ex feels the need to tell you they want to move on or that you should move on, and even gets upset that you are not moving on, they are serious that they do not want you back.
10. You’ve been trying to get your ex back for a long-long time
There is no time limit on how long it takes to get your ex back. I’ve worked with men and women who got their ex back in a week and others in 2 years. The real tell-tale sign that there is hope is if your “relationship” continues to grow (you are getting closer) over time.
Sometimes an ex who enjoys the attention you are giving them and the confidence boost from knowing you are not “over” them will give you just enough rope to keep your hopes up, but things never move beyond a certain point. When you start to move away, they come after you, but when you turn towards them, they draw the line on how far you can come. This can go on for years, if you don’t stop it!
Knowing when to persist and when to give up is an emotional competency skill. If you spend most of your time feeling and thinking that it is better to give up than continue with the hurt, pain and humiliation, chances are that you are right. There is a part of you that knows there is no hope, it’s time to give up, and move on, but it’s just hard for you to let go.
If in doubt read: Understanding Your Avoidant Ex