With Valentine’s Day creeping around the corner, it’s inevitable that many of us might catch a case of the cold, nasty, ex-lover blues. Despite the loneliness and despair that singles face during this season, running back to your ex may only provide a Band-Aid solution to a much larger problem.
We’ve all been there — you face long, lonely nights of dread and can’t help but think back to a time when you once had someone to binge-watch Netflix with, along with the comfort of another person supporting and understanding you inside and out.
However, many of us need a reality check. I don’t pretend to be the love doctor here, but chances are that if you broke up, the circumstances of your separation indicate that the two of you were not meant to be.
By saying this, I’m placing a lot of emphasis on circumstance. Many couples have reconciled their relationships after breaking up. For example, if you broke up because of long distance or other external reasons, a huge barrier in dating was a result of factors out of your control.
But for the most part, a break-up signifies that there were flaws in your relationship that would hinder both you and your partner’s happiness in the long run.
Sometimes relationships reach a stalemate where they can’t be fixed — whether it’s your personality, goals or other predicaments that get in the way, you need to be honest with both yourself and each other to determine if a break-up is for the best.
Whether the break-up was mutual or one-sided, a relationship requires effort, dedication and honesty from both parties. You might terribly regret breaking up with your ex, but chances are if you followed your gut feeling, you were making the right decision for the both of you.
It’s perfectly normal to think about your ex and miss them, or maybe to cry a little bit when your song comes on the radio. At this point, it’s more than tempting to pick up the phone and give your ex a phone call of desperation — in an attempt to rekindle what you once had.
My advice: don’t do it. Although I can’t speak on behalf of all relationships, realize that the two of you broke up for a valid reason.
Remember that this is someone you care about. You wouldn’t break up just for the sake of breaking up, because such a decision takes careful thought and deliberation.
We get back together with our exes out of impulse, typically due to the dreaded apathy we face when we’re alone. Chances are, you don’t miss your ex, but you miss the idea of being with them. You miss the positive aspects of your relationship, while tending to sideline the reasons that led to your break-up in the first place.
We manifest false hope and make excuses to ourselves. “Things will change for sure this time” or “I promise I will or won’t (insert lie here)” are ways that we try to justify getting back together with our exes. It can often lead to a vicious cycle of breaking up and then getting back together, creating a toxic and unhealthy relationship for both parties.
I can’t generalize all cases of breaking up and getting back together, but from my experience, it has failed every single time. Arguably, both sides end up more hurt in the end when they desperately try to hold on to what is no longer there.
Be honest with yourself and realize that you are important and your happiness matters. Do what you need to do in order to heal and move on.
Whether that entails doing yoga with your cat or hitting up a pub-crawl with some friends, focus on yourself, surround yourself with positive people and work on improving yourself, not your crumbled relationship.