10 Sneaky Signs Your Ex Is Manipulating You

I have written so much about how “no contact” as a strategy to get an ex back is often a desperate and sneaky attempt to play on their vulnerabilities, fears, pain or goodness of heart to and get them back into a relationship that they walked away from.

Here are a few more signs your ex is desperate  and trying to manipulate you and play on your emotions.

1. Despite you telling your ex that you’re no longer together, they act like the relationship never ended or as if nothing has changed.

2. Your ex is telling you that no one will love you more than they love you, is predicting all kinds of doom for you without them in your life and tells you they know you better than you know yourself, and says and does things that imply they think very little of you or your ability to think for yourself, or know what you want in life.

3. Your ex is promising you a “too good to be true” relationship if you take them back (e.g. be more open, spend more time with you, take you to romantic getaways, make dramatic life changes, and even proposes to you). If it’s too good to be true or if it feels like your ex is trying a little too hard to show you they have changed, see it it for what it is

4. Your ex apologizes a little too much, and when they don’t not get the response they hoped for, they act out angrily or tell you to “get over it” and take them back.

5. Your ex acts like they had an epiphany and overnight woke up a whole new (changed) man or woman.

6. Your ex’s so called “changes” are conditional on you taking them back, and they make sure you know how much they’re “sacrificing” to make those changes FOR YOU!

7. Your ex creates some kind of drama to make you contact them e.g. send you a text, email or call saying they have something important to tell you, they’re going through something and need you (for emotional support).

8. You ex makes contact to say they want to return your stuff that they have, then disappear for weeks, or contact you about something of theirs that you have or to repay money you owe them (stuff or money they really don’t even want back). One day it’s I want “my stuff” back, the next they want you to keep it, and then back to them wanting it back.

9. Your ex avoids making direct contact because they want to make it look like you’re the one who is pursuing them. He/she communicates to you through social media, friends or relatives but not directly.

10. Your ex is threatening to “move on” if you do not make up your mind and take them back.

Manipulators have an agenda when they deal with others and take advantage of those who are inexperienced to see through their games.

You have the upper hand here– and the opportunity to take the relationship the direction you want it to, so don’t fall for the manipulation. Falling for your ex’s mind games only gives your ex a heightened sense of superiority and a license to do it again, and again.

If your ex’s attempts at manipulation is something out of character, that is, they were never manipulative or controlling in the relationship, or generally not a drama queen or someone who is addicted to emotional stress, then they’re just acting that way out of hurt or desperation. If you still care about them and believe that there could be a future for the two of you, then make them work to prove themselves over a period of time. If they act consistently in ways that show you they truly have changed, and that the change is permanent, then give them a chance.

But if your ex’s attitude, words, actions and behaviour are just a continuation of their manipulative and  controlling nature, it’s probably best to walk away now than later. You only have yourself to blame if you go back to the same exact relationship that you walked away from.

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  • This is probably the most spot on and insightful writing I have ever read on a manipulative ex (in my case girlfriend). Thank you for this – genius! The sad thing about this is for me, even though I see it so clearly now, there’s still a part of me that loves her and that really believed I was special when I was just like everybody else … lol.

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  • It took me a long time for me to admit – even with my wise friends’ warnings and upon reading this article – that my ex has been one such person. I only have myself to blame for giving him a license to take advantage of giving him – multiple – 2nd chances. Now I have come closer to knowing just what kind of self-respect I need to attract the right man, but most importantly, being aware of how to better myself to be the right partner. Your blog has been such a blessing when getting through my hard times!

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