How Long After A Break-Up Will It Take To Get My Ex Back?

Whenever I’m asked, “How long does it take to get my ex back?”, my heart sinks. Why?

Because every time we try to make love work in a specific way, at a specific time, in a specific sequence, it’s almost always certain that it’ll backfire on us — and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen it backfire on so many men and women.

You can not make love work on a schedule. You just can’t. You can create conditions and learn experience-enhancing skills, habits, traits or other behaviors that make love most likely to happen faster, but when love happens is ultimately out of your control.

This can be hard to swallow especially if you are so used to doing things at the pace you choose and at the times you choose for the results you want. Because you’ve always, by will power, hard work and determination made things happen, you can’t help but try to somehow force love to work on your schedule and do what you want it to do.

Occasionally you may succeed in manipulating a few things to work in your favour, but as you will soon find out, only temporarily. The harder you try to force love to work on your schedule and do what you want it to do the more stress, frustration and unhappiness you experience. In most case, all you end up doing is coming across as pushy, manipulative, controlling, desperate and needy.

Trying to force love to work on a schedule is what sometimes makes some people think that things are not working out even when everything is really working out the way it is supposed to. Many get discouraged and begin to lose hope, and others give up because it’s taking so long. Some give up just when they were closer than they were ever before.

Others take the drastic step of breaking up and cutting off all contact. On the onset this seems like regaining that sense of control because it somehow stops them from feeling the frustration with their current situation. But instead of feeling in control they find themselves thinking over and over about situations they have control over, and losing hours of sleep in search of that much needed but illusive “closure”.

And here is the tragic part. The way that you act and behave when things don’t go your way or when you don’t get what you want tells the other person what kind of person you will be like to live with (for the rest of their lives).  And since the greatest natural relationship killer is the fear of regret — something your behavior may already be causing — the other person will most likely want nothing to do with you after seeing you act pushy,  manipulative, controlling and/ or running away to hide instead of calmly facing the situation.

Let me say it again: You can not make love work on a schedule. The sooner you accept this simple truth the more likely that you’ll not only be able to salvage your relationship, but make it last for a very long time.

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  1. says: AlexK

    Thanks, Yangki. Lately I’ve tried to take a bit of a step back and let the contact happen more on his schedule, but your comment about how just ‘hanging in there’ can make things worse has me worried.

    So far I’ve tried to focus on making myself better, keeping the connection alive, having fun together and trying to have more open communication, but maybe that’s not enough? How do I find a balance between being hopeful for a future with him but also being at peace with the possibility that it may not happen?

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      I didn’t mean to worry you, just being realistic.

      I think you are doing fine. In addition to what you are already doing, see if you can go beyond fun and open communication to making that emotional connection that builds “emotional safety” and makes him feel that elusive “feeling” of being in love again. Also make sure you communicate the changes you’ve made. At the end of the day, it’s emotional connection, emotional safety, feeling of being in love again and seeing that you made enough changes to make the relationship work better that will get him back. If you can do these effectively, it will not take very long… 🙂

  2. says: Sophie

    I think I have already driven him away. He wants nothing to do with me. Says he can’t give me what I want. My regret is that I wish I had been a little patient.

  3. says: Mika

    My ex says he wants to be close friends and says he still cares about me. When I contact him he seems to be interested in what I’m doing on a daily basis. But he also says he does not want to have close contact because it’ll make it harder for each of us to move on. Its been almost a year of trying to get him back. What’s going on?

    1. He obviously still cares about you, but a year of trying to get him back and he’s still talking about moving on is not a good sign. Three things may be going on

      1. Things were really over a long time ago, and the two of you have just been dragging it.

      2. You’ve been playing too safe (or playing mind games) because you are afraid that letting him know how you truly feel will drive him away, and now you’ve been friendzoned.

      3. He’s not seeing the “change” that’ll convince him that the relationship is worth another try.

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      I don’t think that it’ll make him feel any less pressure. It might make him feel even more pressure.

      Imagine trying to make a decision and someone is telling you, “No pressure. Take your time”, and you know too well that they are waiting for you to make THE decision. You will pressured.

  4. says: Aiden

    Yangki, I’m so appreciative of your work. I feel that I have made a lot of progress since starting to follow your advice. My ex went from saying we will never get back together to lets see where things go. We spend lots of time together and I can see from how he looks at me that he still loves me. But for the past week I sense him pulling away. I sensed this after we had a conversation about our future plans, a conversation btw he brought up. I asked him if he saw us being a couple again, and he said yes but felt pressured. We still talk several times a day, but it’s just not the same. Is the push-pull dynamic you talk about in your book?

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      The push-pull dynamic usually happens when it feels like you are back together and yet really not back together. This seems to be what is happening.

      Most people react with pulling away when they feel pressured to do something that they were going to do. The pressure often causes them to rethink or change their minds. Continue what you’ve been doing, but take off the pressure from pushing for getting back together until he is ready.

  5. says: Cheri

    I have progressed massively since starting to use your advice. At first it was hard, he ignored most of my texts, took days to reply and was very distant when he replied. But things have been getting better. We communicate better and he has gone from initially telling me he has moved on to initiating contact. But there is one problem. He says he’s afraid it will not work out because we have been broken up for almost 2 years. How do I deal with my situation?

    1. His fears are a “normal” part of the process. It just means you still have some work to do in terms of showing him that because you’ve changed, the relationship has a better chance of working.

      In other words, don’t let it discourage you. As long as you see progress, you are doing okay. When it starts to feel like whatever you do things remain the same for weeks or months, that’s when you get worried.

      All the best!… 🙂