I remember sitting in my car one afternoon by myself and this feeling of loneliness or an emptiness consumed my gut and it made me think, should I get back with my ex?
If I was still in love with her and the reason why we broke up was no longer a problem, then getting back with my ex wasn’t a bad idea. However, if the reason I asked this question was because I just felt lonely or couldn’t find happiness within myself, then getting back with my ex would not solve the larger underlying problem in my life.
What I later realized is that the void I felt was not an empty space belonging to my ex.
On the contrary, it was a feeling caused by a lack of self-fulfillment. For me, relationships were an escape from the aimless life I was living.
Without a purpose in life, that empty feeling will never truly disappear.
I needed to find happiness within myself before I could even broach the subject of making up with an ex or finding a new relationship.
Before I get into the journey that led me to personal fulfillment, I’d like to share the questions I asked myself to figure out whether I should get back with my ex or not.
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1. Do I still love my ex?
Of all the questions you could ask yourself, this is by far the most important.
Without love, you honestly have nothing.
You’d be cheating yourself of a really beautiful relationship just to escape loneliness and sadness for the sake of comfort.
Many people, including myself, are tempted by comfort.
An ex represents a time when we were comfortable in our lives. I have always been deathly afraid of being single because I was in a constant state of war with myself.
Relationships became an escape from my own battle with being aimless and lost.
When I realized that my main reason for asking myself if I should get back with my ex stemmed from a fear of being alone with my own thoughts and lack of direction.
I wanted to be comfortable and that is ultimately why I never got back with my ex.
You really have to be honest with yourself here.
If you’re actually happy by yourself and single but still feel a strong desire to be with your ex, this may be a sign that you’re still in love with him or her.
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2. Am I the same person I was back then?
Life is all about growth. And the relationships we have in life often facilitate this objective.
The problem some couples run into is that they stop growing together.
When one or both of you outgrow the other, irrespective of how much you love each other, the relationship just doesn’t fulfill you like it should.
You’ll feel a sense of disconnect from your partner or ex and that is difficult to fix.
I truly believe that breakups facilitate some of the most pivotal learning lessons in life.
You grow and change as a person.
Look at yourself in the mirror and consider whether you are the same person you were back then. If not, then you need to figure out whether this version of you is still capable of being happy and content with your ex.
3. Does my ex fulfill me?
When we lose things, one of two things happens. We end up realizing it’s true worth or we romanticize the idea of it unrealistically.
This happened to me. I placed my ex on a pedestal after the end of our relationship.
Only when I had an honest conversation with myself and those who were closest to me did I snap back into reality and remember all the things about my ex that didn’t fulfill me.
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4. Is the reason why we broke up still a problem?
Building on the above-mentioned points, it’s challenging to be objective when you are subjectively motivated.
Put simply, the emotional turmoil you’re experiencing can often blind you to the flaws and problems that still exist.
If the reason for your split hasn’t changed or been fixed, it will be a problem again if you get back with your ex.
For example, a long-distance couple who breaks up because of the distance will eventually break up again if they haven’t found a solution for the distance.
History repeats itself.
It really does unless you have taken the necessary steps to learn from the past and fix the mistakes or issues.
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5. Does my ex really love me?
Perhaps your ex has been chasing after you and doing everything they can to convince you of taking them back.
They may talk about loving you and wanting a chance to do things differently but you have to consider whether your ex is going through the normal stages of grief.
Denial and negotiating are often signs of someone who is dealing with the loss of someone.
6. What are the chances of this relationship lasting?
One of the hardest pills to swallow is that most of the relationships in your life will not last. I’m not even talking about death.
The majority of your romantic relationships will end, even with people you genuinely love.
That’s just the way life works. You can never truly predict who will be a part of your journey throughout life.
And that’s okay. It’s not something you have to change.
The only thing we can control is who we choose to make an effort to be with. And that brings you to a very difficult question because this could entail going against how you feel.
If this relationship doesn’t have a chance of lasting indefinitely, then is it worth it? That’s something you will have to decide for yourself.
Reasons to get back together with your ex
Reconciling with an ex is a big deal because you’ve already been through a difficult time since the breakup.
Personally, the last thing I want to ever do is reconcile with an ex prematurely only to break up all over again.
Most of the time, getting back with an ex doesn’t last.
The majority of people break up again. So, if you’re going to do it, I would advise you to consider the following few reasons to be the only scenarios when you should genuinely consider getting back with your ex.
Reason 1 – You both are still in love with each other
Love is a strong foundation to build a relationship on. It provides the incentive and strength required to fix a broken relationship.
And I think two people who genuinely love each other won’t play games or be manipulative.
Because from my understanding of love, it is about empowering others.
Love encourages us to be kind and caring about someone outside of ourselves. Love enables us to sacrifice momentary pleasure for the betterment of our relationship and lives.
Two people who realize that they are madly in love should try their best before giving up on a relationship.
I would be foolish not to point out how my generation and gen Z give up on relationships and love too soon.
Long lasting relationships require work.
Reason 2 – You’ve forgiven each other
Forgiveness can be very elusive especially when the trust was broken between two lovers.
When I think about infidelity or abuse, I struggle with the idea of being able to totally forgive someone to the point of wanting them in my life.
The two of you need to have an honest conversation with each other.
If there’s any resentment or unresolved negative feelings that prevent you from truly forgiving each other, then it might not work.
On the flip side, if you have found it within your heart to completely forgive and being around each other stimulates the best feelings one could ask for, then go ahead and get back with your ex.
Reason 3 – Circumstances have changed
Whatever reason led to the breakup, if it really isn’t a problem anymore and the two of you have done enough to grow as individuals, getting back together isn’t a bad idea.
I feel like getting back with an ex who wasn’t unfaithful, abusive or manipulative is a logical, rational and sensible thing to do.
Some couples are perfect for each other but are forced to break up because of external forces.
I don’t think it’s fair to eliminate the possibility of getting back together because of that.
Have a plan of action
If you’re an emotionally driven person like myself and you have a habit of being impulsive, I would recommend taking some time to devise a plan of action with your ex on how to deal with problematic situations.
If there’s an external issue that could affect the two of you, figure out ways to work around it or through it before getting back together.
Good communication will do wonders for you, especially within a relationship.
If your ex and yourself can come to common terms and an agreement on what to do differently this time around, it could actually be the deciding factor in whether you two stay together this time or break up forever.
It may be a long and difficult road but it could turn out to be worth it.
Just be sure to prioritize your happiness and well being for a change.
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