Reconciliation with an ex – is it a good idea?

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There are some couples who seem to break up and get back together all the time, but for a lot of people once a relationship is over they don’t go back to it – the break up was evidence that they were incompatible and they move on without a backwards glance.

There are situations where couples break up but neither of them move on or find new partners and the old relationship is given a second chance. The break up may actually make the relationship stronger but on the other hand reconciliation with someone who hurt you can leave you regretting having made the same mistake twice. If you are considering getting back with an ex here are some things to bear in mind while deciding if it is a good idea.

Good reasons for wanting to get back together:

Change: Often relationships end because of the habits or behaviours of one or both partners. It comes to a point where the other person can’t live with it any more and has given up believing that things will ever change. If the break up of the relationship has acted as a wake up call and they have finally made the change – e.g. quit drinking, gambling or got help with health or emotional problems – then you may be tempted to give it another go with them.

While it is great to give someone a second chance if they are making a serious attempt to change you need to be sure that they are doing it for themselves and not just to win you back.

Reunion: Sometimes couples can’t be together because of circumstances beyond their control. Maybe one of them has to move away or there is family opposition to the match. If the reasons that they couldn’t be together changes, and they find themselves in a position where they can be reunited, then the separation often makes the relationship stronger and more committed because they have experienced what life was like apart.

Closure: If a relationship ends abruptly, or in anger, it can often leave one, or both, parties feeling like it didn’t end properly, or ended too soon. If the decision was made in haste and when feelings have calmed down you both want to give it another shot then it is important that you work through whatever it was that caused the separation in the first place.

Getting back together because neither of you feel the relationship was complete can be the beginning of a new chapter or the important confirmation that you needed that the relationship wasn’t right for you. Either way at least you won’t be left wondering if it could have worked out if you had given it another go.

Bad reasons for wanting them back:

Loneliness: it is all too easy to drift back into a relationship that wasn’t ideal simply because no-one else is around that either of you is interested in. It is unfair on both of you to do this. If you get back with someone who really wants to be with you again then they will most likely be hurt when they realise you are using them. If they don’t really want to be with you, and are just drifting back with you because there is no-one else on the scene, then you may end up feeling used and hurt even if at the time you think it is better than nothing.

It is better to learn to be happy on your own than to be unhappy with someone else.

So no-one else can have them: to get back into a relationship with someone simply because you can’t bear the idea of them being with anyone else is unfair on both of you. The strength of your feelings might feel like love but it is more likely to be jealousy and control that is driving you on and it would be better for you both to let them go and find happiness elsewhere.

Is it a good idea?

Only you can know if it is really a good idea to get back with an ex. The important question to ask yourself is have you really let go of whatever it was that caused you to break up in the first place? If you have then don’t get back together and try to recreate how things were before because they won’t ever be the same. Look forward and create something new and hopefully stronger.


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