Have you ever noticed that after a break-up occurs, it’s usually not the last time you hear from that person? Months, or maybe even years later, you receive a random phone call, text, e-mail—or if your Ex is really balls-y—an unwelcome visit to your job or home. Of course, this oh-so-conveniently happens immediately after (you tell yourself) you have moved on with your life.
When your Ex makes an unannounced appearance in your life, it means one of three things: First, there is some sort of life lesson to learn from him or her. Second, the Universe is “testing” you to see if you actually did in fact reach your threshold and have indeed moved on—based on what you have proclaimed as, “I’m totally 100% over my Ex,” to yourself, your friends, and your family. Third, due to the consumption of a fair amount of alcohol, your Ex is delusional in thinking that he or she genuinely misses you. Conveniently, your Ex begins to miss you just as soon as he or she is dumped by whoever became their rebound after you. Either way, your Ex thinks the best solution is to reach out and contact you—a call you have obviously not been sitting around, waiting, and holding your breath for.
So, what does your Ex’s communication look like? It’s typically very simple: “Hi, how are you?” “Hey, long time no talk…what’s new these days?” “Hi! Just ran into our mutual friend ____, she said you’re doing well!” Oh. Please. Anyway, if you have deleted their information from your phone, the response back might be just as simple: “Who is this?” Depending on the demise of the relationship, the Ex’s ego might be slightly crushed knowing that their number is no longer stored in your phone (the agony!). With any luck, they may take the “hint” and not respond back. But if their number is still in your phone, the ball is in your court if you decide to respond back.
First, ask yourself, “Will this benefit my life by responding back?” If you talk yourself into believing that it would be nice to hear this Ex’s voice again or see them, ask yourself a much more important question, before making any hasty decisions: “Why did we break up to begin with?” Ah, yes. This would be the perfect time to pull out your journal or notebook, where hopefully you have listed (as a reminder) why the relationship didn’t work. It’s mandatory to have a list like this after you experience a break up. If you have never done this, please start! Having a good dose of why the relationship ended is always beneficial—it solidifies that you have been given the chance to meet someone new…someone better.
It’s so easy to forget all of the things that cause pain. Who wants to remember the painful memories? In life, we do this all the time. For example, mothers have babies and talk about how excruciatingly painful it is to give birth, and then one year later they are ready to do it all over again. Why? Because the joy of having a child dissolves the pain of giving birth. A Race Car driver crashes and ends up in the hospital barely surviving, and as soon as he heals, he is ready to race again because the passion of racing erases the painful drama.
Getting your heart broken is not entirely different; it seems to be the one memory you want to forget. However, I believe that time heals all wounds…and as time progresses, you usually do forget most of the pain. When your Ex reaches out, whatever depression you felt during the break up can suddenly become non-existent—especially when there is NOT a significant other in your life. If your Ex happens to look good, really good since the last time you saw him or her, that could easily persuade you to re-think why you broke up in the first place. Like any addiction, you find yourself needing your Ex…and no one else will suffice.
At the end of the day, the only one who knows what’s right for you, is you—as long as you are thinking with a clear and uninhibited mind. However, I advise to not make important decisions on a whim! If you think rationally now, you won’t regret your decision later.
If—and only if—you thoroughly miss your Ex, wait a few days before responding to his or her call (or text). In other words, reply cautiously! First, pause to see if your Ex contacts you again after a few days. If he or she has really missed you and truly wants to work things out, he or she will be persistent. During this this time, it’s important for you to decide if reverting backwards is truly the best decision. Second, remember an Ex is an Ex for a reason. If you decide to continue moving forward without your Ex, you need to define new direct boundaries with them and remove his or her number from your phone. Keep the memories in your heart and put the relationship in your past! Otherwise, it’ll seem like Ex-treme desperation by taking them back without hesitation.