The Most Important Thing to Do Before Going Back to an Ex


So you’ve found your man. He’s incredible. You’re both equally crazy about one another. He’s what you’ve wanted since the day that you knew what that was, or perhaps you’ve wanted him since your eyes met, when they intensely penetrated your soul. He’s the one. So things should go smoothly, right? I mean, after all, he’s the one. Isn’t that what we’ve just established? Red flags? What red flags! He’s amazing, and in every possible way. But there is, just this one little thing… maybe two.

He’s someone who you’ve dated in the past. You had some issues together. He had some issues, you had some issues, he had more issues than you… but who’s keeping track. Ultimately, he wasn’t ready for you, despite that you were ready for him. He broke your heart and took a piece of it with him the day he left. He’s let you down over and over, and in countless ways. You’ve tried to fill in that missing piece, but as we all know, that’s a lot easier said than done. 

But now, and after so long, he wants you back. And this time, he says, it’s for good.

Well, for starters, they never said that love was easy. At least, not that good kinda love. That passionate, intense, oh my G-d kind of love. And as we all know, or at least, as we all should know, good things don’t come easy and without hard work. But why does it have to be so damn hard, right? Ukh, I hear you. May G-d give us strength to deal with these types of relationships.

There are many reasons why you should be optimistic, despite the fact that you’ve been let down before. However, just because you should be optimistic and happy about him coming back, doesn’t mean that you should go all in on an emotional level, or on any level for that matter. Proceed with caution. Love yourself enough to know that history tends to repeat itself, unless something has changed. What changed from then until now? How do you know he won’t let you down again? These are things that you need to find out. Have a conversation with him and ask him directly. And then, pursue the situation if his answers are satisfactory. But again, do so with caution.

It’s important to know what went wrong the first time, to talk openly about it with each other, and to feel comfortable doing so. Don’t sweep the past or any issues under the rug, and despite the fact that you’re looking at this promising situation as a beautiful new beginning. Whether you’re exploring a situation with someone from your past or a situation with someone new, promising situations should be given a genuine chance and a clean slate. However, when you’re considering exploring a situation with an ex, you need to talk about what went wrong the first time.

If you don’t talk about what has changed from when you were let down (in whatever ways) the first time around, then what’s to say that you won’t be let down once again. Think about it, because the last thing that you or anyone probably wants, is to break up, make up, and repeat the unhealthy and unstable pattern. Therefore, make sure that you communicate with your man (or woman) and express your concerns.

Love yourself enough not to go into a situation blindfolded or with all of your trust. That is, when someone has a track record of hurting you. Love yourself  enough to be cautious with your heart and with the extent that you open up. Be open to love, and be trusting, but not all the way. At least, not until your instinct says that it’s safe to do so. Not everyone deserves a second chance. That’s really up to you and for you to decide. However, sometimes, going back to an ex isn’t necessarily going backwards, despite that one might generally feel that way. Second or even third and fourth chances aren’t always bad, if and I repeat, “if” the things that were issues in the past are completely resolved, and now, going forward, things will be differently.

If this man who has come back into your life is truly serious about you, and things that were issues in the past for you and him as a couple are no longer issues, then he should be willing to openly communicate with you. As well, he should also be willing to give you emotional security and reassurance, so that you know he’s ready and serious this time around. If this man isn’t willing to talk about the past, discuss what went wrong, and reassure you that things have changed and improved, then he’s likely no more ready than he was back then, or he might possibly even have ulterior motives than what he says. Don’t waste your time. At the end of the day, just remember to stay optimistic, but to proceed with caution until you feel secure and sure about his intentions, and about exploring a relationship with him again.

Last but not least, I just wanted to reiterate one final thing that’s so imperative, and that is, to have an open heart. You must have an open heart if you want to fall in love. You must risk getting hurt. You can’t expect to love someone else or for them to truly and genuinely love you on a deeper level, and for all of the right reasons if your heart is closed up with a protective emotional wall or barrier. Let the past stay in the past. But if you want to explore an old situation with someone from your past, communicate together, resolve the issues, make sure things have changed for the better, and pursue. But remember, the past is dead and gone. Therefore, once past issues have been talked about and resolved, forgive, let go, and don’t keep bringing them up, don’t be scared (be cautious), don’t start walking on eggshells, and give your partner a clean slate.

Anne Cohen
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