When your ex wants you back: how to make the right decision for you

For two years, I made excuse after excuse for my ex's lack of support, commitment and empathy. The minute I found my voice and tried to set boundaries for my own wellbeing, he left. And when he eventually came back, I made the hardest decision of my life: I chose to walk away. I chose to ignore the ache in my chest and the voice in my head convincing me to believe his promises. I chose a future free from suffering and heartbreak. I chose myself. And I'm so glad that I did.

When we’re hurting after a breakup, often we’ll do anything to put a stop to the seemingly endless pain. We fantasise about getting back together with our exes because it seems like the only way out. But the reality is, there’s no quick fix for heartbreak.

If we take the time to really heal ourselves instead of looking for happiness at the source of our pain, we'll be able to see that our exes aren't the answer - we are.

So if you're thinking of giving your ex another chance, ask yourself why. Is it because your ex actually adds value to your life, or is it because you're scared/bored/lonely/unhappy? Because as long as we're approaching our relationships from a place of pain or fear, we're only going to allow ourselves to accept less than we deserve. And we all deserve to be with someone who isn't going to bail at the first sign of trouble. I know that if I was happy and secure in myself when I met my ex, I would never have let myself fall for someone who so clearly couldn't give me what I needed.

"Sometimes walking away has nothing to do with weakness, and everything to do with strength. We walk away not because we want others to realise our value and worth, but because we finally realise our own." - Unknown

Sure, you and your ex might still love each other. But just because you love someone doesn't mean that you should be together. It takes more than love to make a relationship work and if your ex wasn't willing to put in the effort in the first place, what makes you think it would be any different the next time around? The right person wouldn't need to break up with you to know that they want to be with you. The right person would be committed from the start. And if your ex was capable of commitment, you probably wouldn't be reading this right now.

Your ex might be telling you everything you want to hear, but no amount of dramatic gestures, declarations or promises can mask the fact that they're still only thinking of themselves. Because if your ex really loved you, they would want what's best for you. They wouldn't try to keep you around on their terms. They wouldn't try to manipulate you, guilt-trip you or give you an ultimatum. They wouldn't try to carry on taking from you without giving anything in return.

"When you like a flower, you just pluck it. But when you love a flower, you water it daily." - Buddha

It's not your job to be there for your ex, to fix them, to make them feel better about themselves or to give them the attention that they can't find elsewhere. Because when someone decides that they no longer want you in their life, they no longer get the gift of having you in their life. And you are a gift. So don't feel guilty. You can choose to forgive your ex and simultaneously choose to walk away. And when you show the universe that you're ready to put yourself first, you can trust that what is coming your way is going to be so much more aligned with what you need.

The truth is, you'll never really know if your ex can change unless you give them another chance. But you can't put your life on hold while you wait for something that might - and probably will - never happen. And if things don't work out, you could easily find yourself in the same situation a few months or even years down the line.

By taking your ex back, not only are you giving them the power to hurt you again, but you're putting your heart in the hands of the person who has already proved that they can't be trusted with it. 

So ask yourself: how many times does your heart need to broken before you can say enough is enough? No relationship is a waste of time, but lessons are repeated until learned. And it's time to learn the lesson.

Peace and love x

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