Is Taking Your Ex Back a Good Idea?

Society has a lot of rules based on the overall experience of the collective. When that experience is generally bad or poor based on individual stories, the general feeling becomes that we should never do whatever that thing is. Conversely, if the experience is mostly positive, the rule becomes that we should all do that thing.

Marriage has been looked at as generally positive and so everybody needs to get married. I certainly grew up with that expectation.

Divorce is bad so we should never do that.

Taking your ex back is bad so we should never do that.

If our partner does this certain thing we should keep them forever, and if they do this other thing we should never talk to them again.

Always and never create rules that don’t have exceptions. These rules attempt to put everybody in the same box and assume everyone’s journey is the same. However, we know that not everyone has the same journey or the same desire. Not everyone wants the same things and not everybody’s experience with a given event is the same, whether good or bad.

First and foremost in this conversation is the idea that there are no hard and fast rules. Everybody is entitled to their own experience. Your decision is up to you based on your experience and your circumstances.

Secondly, taking your ex back isn’t always good and it isn’t always bad. It’s unique for everybody. What I’d like to do is give you some perspective to help you make your own decisions if your ex should come calling. Remember, set your boundaries, make your choice, get okay with that decision, and then hold your ground if you get pushback from the people around you.

There are exceptions in all situations and scenarios. That’s my focus below. We all know what society says the rules are supposed to be, but what are the exceptions and how do we recognize them?

  1. Let go of the sense of victimization and blame. Take responsibility for your own behaviour within the relationship. If you’re still blaming, you’re not there yet. You have to be able to let your partner fully off the hook and forgive them completely. Until you can do that, it’s likely you’ll repeat the pattern of the old relationship again.
  2. Now, look at what happened in the relationship, all of it. Since we can’t change the other person, we have to look at it from our side only. If we were better able to handle and understand what they were doing, would the relationship have been different? Would you be able to be okay with them as they were when you broke up if you did your own work first?
  3. Have they done their own work? This can take time to figure out unless you’ve maintained contact or have intuitive guidance to suggest they’ve done the work. If you wouldn’t be okay with them the way they were and you don’t think they’ve changed, then it’s done. That’s not a bad thing, it just needs to be recognized. We can’t make people change and we shouldn’t try to do so. That’s a recipe for disaster or at least a repeated cycle.
  4. Take off the rose-coloured glasses. We have to be willing to see the other person as they are, not how we want them to be. It’s wonderful to want to believe they have changed and there will be cases where they have. Let them show you they are different and observe, carefully, without attachment, what they do. Make sure you’re seeing the truth and not just filtering out what you want to see.
  5. Have you outgrown them? This happens, especially when one of you is on the “path” and the other isn’t. You may just not be in their space energetically anymore and that’s okay. Just admit it and move on.
  6. Abuse is abuse. I would never encourage anybody to go back to an abusive partner. There will be exceptions here as well, though. Somebody will do the therapy for years and make massive changes to themselves. Somebody will heal and the relationship will be recoverable. It is very definitely the exception to what typically happens, but it does happen. Even if only one person in the history of the human race changed their behaviour in this regard, it makes “never” no longer true. Change is possible, it’s just rare. If you’re unsure, walk away.
    This is one of those places where it’s easy just to say never do that because the opportunity for somebody to make a mistake is high. However, exceptions are possible, no matter how rare they may be.
  7. Did they cheat on you? Again, we can allow for exceptions because they happen. Every scenario is different. Make choices based on your own needs and wants. Don’t put yourself back into scenarios where you will likely just get hurt again. It’s not worth it.

We can only see things from our own level of perception. What that means is that we’re usually missing something. We can’t feel what others feel all the time. We don’t know every tiny little detail of the situation. Our judgement will always be skewed in one direction or the other based on our own experience. There is nothing wrong with that. Guiding other people using that judgment means we can limit the experience of another and unintentionally hurt them.

Should you take your ex back? That’s entirely up to you and depends solely on your experience of the relationship, the level of healing of both of you, and what you want in your life. Whether you do or you don’t, make sure you don’t let others stop you. Make decisions that make sense for you, because that’s really all that matters.

Lots of love.


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