Getting into contact with an ex can be risky business. All the progress you’ve made to move on can be undone with a single ping when your ex texts you out of the blue. I’m a firm believer that, especially if the demise of the relationship was destructive, you should do your best to stay away.
When it comes to the topic of exes, there is no black and white. You may want closure from them, you might want nothing at all. But when that text comes through, it may feel like the moment you have fantasised over for months is becoming reality. Just beware, things don’t always go to plan and your perfectly rehearsed speech may fall on deaf ears.
Just because a friend has told you a vague story about how their uncle’s colleague’s son got back together with someone and lived happily ever after, it doesn’t mean that will happen to you. I don’t want to shut your hopes down but it’s necessary to be realistic. What friend wouldn’t tell you their honest opinion?
He wants you back
Even though you might desperately want this to be the answer, it doesn’t mean you should jump to conclusions. In certain cases, an ex texting you is a reason to get excited but it’s down to you to make sure his intentions are pure. If you feel the same way, progress with caution and take things slowly. See it as an opportunity to get to know each other again. If this is unwelcome news then cut it off with no room for him to work with – for example “I’m not interested, please leave me alone”.
You’re familiar territory to him
To be honest, I sympathise with this predicament in a way. Your ex may have realised that the specific bond you had was something that is not easily found with others. He may be trying to chase the same banter you had or the same intimacy. This is often what makes it hard to move on. People are replaceable, but personalities are not. You spent a lot of time together and got to know each other beyond the façade, which is difficult to forget. Having said that, don’t make yourself a comfort blanket. You’re better than that.
Something reminded him of you
This is seemingly innocent but can also be deemed selfish. Was it necessary for him to reach out because he saw a dog that looked like one you pointed out a year ago? Often times, the “saw something that reminded me of you” text is used as a segue to open up the conversation. If you guys have agreed to try to be friends, maybe they’re just testing the waters to see if that offer is still open. This type of message is too vague to draw a real conclusion so if you feel like it, text back and see what direction the conversation flows to.
He wants you as a backup option
He messages you just enough to keep you at bay in case he wants to start hooking up again. Leaving the door open to possibility is a dangerous game and people’s feelings get hurt. It’s better to cut off all ties or establish a proper friendship rather than allowing yourself to be someone’s safety net. You deserve better than that. If getting back together to him just means continuing the physical relationship and ditching the emotional aspect of things, you have your answer.
He heard you moved on
A bruised ego will lead to him getting into contact. The same would apply if he’s seen you looking fabulous while out and about or on social media. Typically, men and women deal with break ups very differently – when you’re in the stages of acceptance and moving on, it’s dawning on him that the two of you are over for good. Men are visual creatures, and that new hair cut may have caught more than one pair of eyes. For the record, this is not an excuse to get back together with someone. If he wanted you back, he would have taken action before he found out you were dating in the first place.
He wants to get under your skin
So maybe you were the one who did the dumping and they’re feeling bitter about it? I will give you a clue if this is the case: if you’re left feeling upset, jealous, bitter or offended by the contents of the message, they’re probably trying to get to you. I know it’s easier said than done but in some instances you just have to laugh it off and get the hell out of there. I guarantee that getting angry and lashing out will make you feel annoyed at yourself for showing that you were bothered. Egotists thrive on attention so cut it off at the source.
If your ex texts you out of the blue, there is no obligation to return the favour. Sometimes, getting into contact can stir up old emotions; it can even ruin your day. The initial feeling you have when your phone goes off is your raw and natural reaction – that’s something that shouldn’t be ignored. If you do decide to reply however, give it some time before you respond. You want to make sure that if you’re starting over, you’re doing so with your best foot forward. If you want to cut to the chase then just be honest and ask what the deal is, something like: “why are you texting me after all this time?”. I’m assuming the last thing you want is to play games, especially when your emotions are involved. Whatever you’re looking for, I hope it works out. And if not, you’ve got plenty of opportunities to make memories with somebody completely brand spanking new.