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What Are The Stages of Getting Back Together with an Ex

What Are The Stages of Getting Back Together with an Ex

Updated on Sep 25, 2023

Reviewed by Julianne Cantarella, MSW, LSW , Certified Relationship Coach

What Are The Stages of Getting Back Together with an Ex

It is usual for someone to feel sad and overwhelmed after breaking up with their partner. The good news is there are several stages of getting back together with an ex.

Go through the stages for reintegrating your life with your partner once again.

Let us get going and see what lies ahead for you –

Stages of Getting Back Together with an Ex

Breakups are common occurrences while dating. Still, even after moving on, there are instances when you feel the need to get back together with your ex for a long-term relationship.

This process can be daunting, particularly when you have just begun your relationship with a new partner. Every single stage of the process of reconciliation is not easy. Still, it can be positive if you keep persisting with the same.

Let us now discuss several stages that you will go through with your partner if you are looking to get back together with an ex –

1. Apprehension

If you try to look at the stages of getting back together with your ex after a breakup, it starts with apprehensions in your mind. Several questions will consume your mind. The uncertainties and insecurities concerning the present situation make a lot of people doubt each aspect of the ex and relationship.

There is a belief that self-doubt can hurt a relationship and stall the possibility of one’s personal growth as well. These questions make you feel as if you have got stuck and suffer from anxiousness rather than assist you out of problems.

It is necessary to examine your motives. No need to dwell on several questions but only follow whatever your mind tells you.

2. Process the Reason Behind Your Breakup

It is not possible for you to successfully get back to your ex without processing the exact reason for the split. There are minor and major issues that result in breakups.

Lack of respect and unfaithfulness might be challenging for you. Contemplate the main reason and other factors that contributed to the fallout.

While going through the different stages of getting back together with your ex, try focusing on the positive and negative moments. It will make you adopt a holistic approach. Contemplate all the options on offer. Always remember that it is for the good of you and your partner.

3. Lack of Surety

Even after going through your reasons and doubts about the split, you would still become reluctant to take a concrete step. It is perfectly alright. No individual would like to get hurt twice. As a human being, you can put up a shield around yourself, while going through different stages of getting back together with your ex.

There is always apprehension working inside your mind. Do you feel what would happen if your ex breaks your trust once again? It is tough to tell, even if they promise you, they will not.

What you can do is take things slowly within yourself. Expression of emotions and physical intimacy might still be quite challenging. Hence, take sufficient time to become vulnerable once again.

4. Finding Reasons to Get Back

It is a critical stage in understanding how to get back together with you ex after a breakup in a successful manner. Think of reasons you would want to reconcile and resume the relationship with your ex again. It will enable you to not land up in a similar situation as before anytime in the future.

If you feel you have learned your lessons and can build a healthy relationship, go ahead to reignite it. On the contrary, if you miss their presence or suffer from the fear of loneliness, they might not be enough for you to get back with your ex.

5. Undergoing a Reality Check

Accept your new normal after going through all the sentiments and doubts. Enjoy the freedom with one another and enjoy the brand-new experience. There is a firm belief that accepting reality impacts relationships positively. Hence, it is a critical part while going through the stages of getting back together with an ex.

As you already know why you two had separated earlier, do not allow that to intervene and cause problems in your relationship again. It is better not to expect much from your relationship or your partner. Live in the moment and enjoy it to the fullest.

6. Acceptance of Responsibility

We have already mentioned how important it is to enjoy your time without setting rules and restrictions. Still, you must know the kind of responsibility you want from your partner.

You will have new experiences with your partner. There is a possibility that some of those might not comply with your beliefs and principles. Hence, the adjustment will be crucial.

In the process of going through this stage of getting back together with an ex, let them know about it immediately and do not keep them within yourself.

7. Try to Understand If Your Ex Wants You Back in Their Life

Look to set up a meeting as early as possible during this stage of getting back together with your ex. Let the person know your thoughts and intentions. It is necessary to ensure that you are on the same page with your ex while working through all the stages of getting back with them.

The unfortunate thing is that your chances of getting back after a breakup are less, especially if your ex has moved on with their life. There is no need to blame them for not waiting for a long time, as each human being is differently built.

8. Experiencing Familiar Situations Together

One of the critical stages of getting back together with your ex is to experience the same level of comfort as before with them. While doing so, it is normal for you to find some familiar situations based on which the relationship worked till breaking apart. It might make you feel like déjà vu.

For example, attending dates, watching cinemas in theaters, and enjoying your time together in the pool may take you back to the time that has passed. There are two ways of looking at these. They can be helpful as well as dangerous at times. Therefore, when you go through the process of getting back together with an ex, your focus should be on creating new memories.

9. You Might Feel a Little Off-Color

While undergoing the stages of getting back together with your ex and reigniting the relationship, you might feel a little off-color. You need to understand that it is normal to feel this way. It is ideal not to assume things are not working in your favor.

Always remember that both of you are coming back after some time. Even then, the problems from the last relationship will not die down. Do not see the rekindled relationship as something free from troubles because it is not. You should face your problems and resolve them as early as possible to enjoy freedom with one another.

10. Know the Personality of Your Partner Once Again

Are you at the end of all the stages of getting back together with an ex? Now, what next? Go back and continue where you left off. It is one of the critical stages of reconnecting with your ex.

Currently, you find yourself in a new situation. Even though it might seem as if you are dealing with the same individual, you are not. Both of you have learned your lessons. Now, work around them to build a healthy bond.

Apart from these, you are entering their lives with fresh experiences. They could be different from your earlier ones. Rather than assuming you already know them, allow them to introduce themselves once again while you reciprocate the same thing. It is a necessary element that can fulfil the purpose of these stages of getting back together with an ex.

How to Slowly Get Back Together with an Ex

If you are trying to get back to your ex after some time since the separation, it is necessary to take things slowly.

Following are the five steps you should follow in the process –

1. Reignite Their Feelings

Your ex may have been trying hard to distance themselves from all sorts of feelings they had for you at one point. When they do that, it gets easier for them to move on and open their mind to fall in love with another individual.

Now, it is not something you want. You desperately want to get your ex-girlfriend back in your life. The best way to do so is to rekindle her feelings of attraction and respect toward you. If you are successful in your attempt, she will easily be open to getting back with you again.

Take one step at a time and offer your partner the requisite space to gather their emotions. In this respect, you should not take more than a week to do the needful. Otherwise, she might move on with her life and feel alright without you. She even starts believing you do not care about her welfare as you are not trying to get back.

2. See One Another Whenever Both of You Like It

As a woman, you might not reach a stage to get back together with your ex straightaway. She could have thoughts going on in her mind, referring to her doubts if she should see one another again or if she should rush things.

All these are normal. A woman will never want to make things easy for a man to get her back in his life, even if she has feelings toward him. It happens because most women do not want to look desperate in front of their ex-boyfriends to meet them. Hence, they will play around to make things difficult for him to get her back in their life.

Now, from the point of view of a guy, the situation is a little different. Your ex may not be very eager and open to meeting with you. Do not worry about the same. You need to assert yourself and arrange a meetup with your girl.

3. Make Sure to Meet Her Within Five Days

There are instances in your stage of getting back together with your ex, when you might feel that you and your ex have decided to take things slowly. Therefore, they will see each other whenever both feel good about it.

It might result in the guy waiting for weeks to hear something from his ex again after their last meeting. Unfortunately, that will not work. The same is applicable to a woman.

Due to this reason, irrespective of how slow you and your girl decide to take things, do not go beyond five days without seeing one another. Stay active and allow them to develop feelings for you again.

4. Ensure That Sex is Better Than Before

One of the main reasons why a relationship tends to fizzle out at times is because the level of intensity dies down. Sex and relationships go hand in hand. Unfortunately, when sex becomes a regular feature, it slowly tends to get monotonous. 

Therefore, whenever you and your ex sexually hook up again, it is necessary to ensure that sex is better than before. Avoid making some mistakes while having sex. Try not to take permission before kissing or touching. It is a huge turn-off for most women as this tendency shows that the guy lacks confidence.

Remain on the lookout to try something new and exciting. If you had sex in certain positions, don’t be afraid to change now. Spice up your sex life by doing something that will make her crave more.

5. Provide Her with an Improved Experience of Attraction

Whenever a woman breaks up with a man, she has a good idea for doing so. It is because, somewhere in the relationship, she had to crave her partner’s attention, causing her feelings to fade for him.

If you genuinely wish to convince your ex-girlfriend to give you another opportunity and attain the stage of getting back together, improve on the drawbacks for which she broke up with him. It will ensure that whenever you interact with her, you can manage to attract her the way she always wanted.

A man can sometimes commit a blunder. He might only pay attention to getting his ex-girlfriend back in her life. In the process, he will not focus on making necessary adjustments to his personality that will impress her and attract her to come back.

Five Ways to Know if You Should Get Back to an Ex

Just having the option to get back together with an ex does not mean it is the right decision. One needs to weigh different factors for deciding whether one should return to the old relationship.

Following are the five ways to determine if you should get back to an ex –

1. Try to Understand How Your Family and Friends Feel About Your Ex

All those people who offer support and encouragement in your life perhaps carry strong opinions about your ex. Whether you were the one who got left behind or the one who broke up, your friends will always have some opinion to express regarding the situation.

Your loved ones are always in a better position to judge a person’s character than you do. They might see qualities that your ex could possess, which are easier for you to ignore. Your friends and family members can make you realize the ways through which you changed during the relationship.

You can pick three people from your life you trust. Then go ahead to ask each of them the best and the worst thing about you when you were with your ex. Ask them to give their honest feedback and prepare yourself for their answers.

2. Can You Confidently Say That You Are Not Settling Down to Avoid Loneliness?

You must be knowing various aspects of your ex, their likes, and dislikes better than any other person in their life. Now, with that level of understanding, it is not a surprise that you miss them a lot.

When you try to deal with the breakup, it can make you feel as if you are going through a roller coaster ride of emotional fluctuations. There are days when you feel alright, while on other occasions, you cannot stop shedding tears.

If you want to give this relationship another chance, and reach the stage of getting back together with your ex, make sure that you are not feeling desperate. When that happens, you will settle down with your ex so that you do not have to feel lonely. You could even feel that it is better to have someone than no one beside you. Unfortunately, it will be a blunder.

3. Prepare a List of Advantages and Disadvantages

If making decisions is not hard enough, looking to decide on ways through which you can get back in or stay aloof from your ex might be a tough one. Your head might be telling you what you must do, which could be to stay away from your ex, but your heart is pushing you to give it one more try.

As you are going through disagreements between your head and heart, it can be quite challenging to make the correct decision. This is the reason why; it can be helpful for you to prepare a list of advantages and disadvantages. When you write down your answers, it will help you adopt a rational approach while making decisions.

4. Think If It Makes Sense to Get Back Just Because You Love Your Ex

If you feel that love toward your ex is sufficient to sustain a relationship, then you will keep feeling the pain. Only being in love with your ex is not enough to maintain a healthy relationship. It is easy to feel love but quite difficult to display the same through actions.

You must prevent your physical needs from getting the best of you. Every individual loves to maintain a good physical connection, but was that the only thing, which had kept the relationship going? If that is the case, then rest assured it will not be enough to sustain the relationship even in the second go.

No matter even if there is intense sex, it is not sufficient to keep healthy relationships. Therefore, you must not ignore your emotional requirements. Review some of your ex’s earlier actions. It will automatically force you to consider a logical viewpoint in all possible matters of concern.

5. Question Yourself If Your Life is Better with or Without Your Ex

It can be quite a tricky question to address when you are hurting inside and lonely. You need to ask yourself if there were more good times than bad when you two were together.

Try to be honest while finding the answer to the question, did the presence of your ex in your life help improve your personality or make things worse? A healthy relationship is when two people commit to improving each other’s personality and bringing out the best versions of themselves.

You can try making two columns on a sheet of paper. On one hand, you can make a list of things that you have done to improve your life. While on the other side, list out those things which have made your life tough. Be truthful to yourself if you do not want problems back into your relationship.

Must Follow Rules for Getting Back Together with an Ex

It is never easy to get back together with an ex if you are desperate about the same. A person can be sure that things will not end up just how you want. You might have the urge to return, but so is the chance for the resurgence of drama.

People show a lack of interest in knowing someone new. It is so because they are not aware of how that person would be. Hence, they feel it is better to stay away than build a relationship with a new partner. 

Let us now briefly discuss some of the rules that one must follow to get back together with an ex –

1. Take Things Slow

You must not rush into exchanging text messages, going on dinner dates, and having sex as soon as your get back to your ex. These things will do more harm than good. There is no set formula regarding the pace at which you should go.

There is a belief among people, who have been there and done it, that it is very helpful to slow down and take one step at a time before putting labels on different aspects of your relationship once again.

2. Figure Out What You Truly Want from That Relationship

It is an opportunity to lay down your expectations on the table. Therefore, do not restrict yourself from expressing your desires right from the bottom of your heart regarding all those things that will make you happy in a relationship.

Family members and friends who offer relationship advice or guidance, recommend that you look within and have a clear picture regarding the qualities you are looking for in your ex. Was something missing in your partner’s personality earlier, which you would dearly want them to fulfill? You must answer this with a clear mind before the process of reconciliation begins.

3. Look at it as a New Beginning in an Old Relationship

You already know how your ex is, what things they like, and dislike, and how they react under different circumstances. Still, time changes individuals. Therefore, when you reach the stage of getting back together with your ex, you must get to know your partner once again, and ask relevant questions to gauge their thoughts and feelings. 

Thus, follow the rule of separating facts from fiction and the past from the current situation. It is extremely important to ask yourself if some of the opinions you carry about your ex are based on statements and behavioral patterns they are displaying now as against the person they were when you had started dating them and everything was rosy.

4. Discuss the Activities You Indulged in While You Were Apart

It is now time to speak up if you had gotten in touch with someone special while the two of you had broken up. You need not get into the details. A simple statement of acceptance regarding dating someone during the period is good enough.

Things might become a little tricky if that someone was your ex’s co-worker, best friend, or anyone else, which could trigger jealousy. At least, you can mention who was the person to ensure that there are no surprises in store during the time.

If your guy or girl is upset about you dating someone else, talk about it in detail with them. It will help address fears, if any, and move on with life.

5. Reasons for Getting Back Together

You might have left your ex for a few reasons which were becoming difficult for you to tolerate. Do you feel that a healthy and positive change has come through, due to which you can start pursuing them once again?

If you indeed feel the change would not allow those reasons to recur, for which you had separated earlier, experts suggest you can go for it.

Still, they have a word of caution for you. It is better to stay careful and watch your ex’s actions and behavioral patterns for some time before patching up. Find enough credible reasons for getting back together, or else you will settle down just for the sake of it.

6. Listen to Your Gut Feeling

According to relationship expert, Dr. Terri Orbuch, if you had ignored some critical issues while being together with your partner before breaking up, you mustn’t let the same thing happen this time. Perhaps, earlier you had not paid attention to some red flags, as you felt things would become fine all by themselves.

There was also a possibility that you lacked belief in yourself or were unsure about what you wanted out of the relationship. Now, if you are giving a second chance to this relationship, make sure that you follow your instincts if things start to become slippery once again.

7. Take Care of Old Issues

It is very much like the old problems are going to crop up once again in your life. Therefore, staying prepared is the key, so that you are always one step ahead in the race. You need not recreate your moments of fights and arguments but you can discuss any problem to avoid such mishaps from taking place in the future.

Talk about these things when both of you are at peace. It is when you are most likely to listen to one another’s viewpoints and find ways to spend time peacefully. The important aspect is to validate feelings even if the other individual doesn’t necessarily agree with them.

8. Engage in Honest Communication

Just because both of you have a past, likely, the trust factor between you two is not in place. There are several relationships where breakups occur because either one or both partners have betrayed one other. Mind you, once the trust is broken, rebuilding the same takes a hell of a lot of work from your end.

Due to this reason, relationship expert, Dr. Terri Orbuch recommends that couples who wish to rekindle their relationship must engage in honest communication. It is where they should discuss why it is important to trust one another even when circumstances do not permit them to do so. They must make a list of realistic expectations, and answer the meaning of infidelity in their lives as they move ahead in resuming their relationship.

During the discussion, each partner must decide on the proper definition of commitment. These are the questions you must address in any relationship and more so when you are getting back together with an ex.

9. Be Prepared to Forgive

Consider the fact that your ex had cheated on you either emotionally or physically. Now, in this situation, you need to be truly willing to give them another opportunity to prove their worth. Otherwise, you will blame them for their mistake whenever you get upset.

Suppose they do not remember calling you back, you will keep pondering over things that your ex might be indulging themselves into. Then, when they finally get back and ask the reason behind your grumpy nature, you would hit them back with all their mistakes that had happened earlier.

It is quite normal to have old wounds. You need to talk about them with your ex and avoid any unwanted cycle of accusations. Understand that there is a process behind forgiveness. If you are unable to move ahead with it while you and your ex are together, you would surely want to hold back for some time.

10. Gather Your Thoughts Before Sharing Them with Your Partner

The ghosts of your previous relationship keep popping up from time to time. It is ideal for you not to talk about them as and when they appear inside your head. You must discuss the same with your close friend till you manage to gather your thoughts to indulge in a constructive discussion with your partner.

When you have the clarity to express your thoughts in an organized manner, it will provide you with the ideal reaction you are looking for from your partner. You must speak up about whatever you feel, but need to understand the importance of knowing what and how to say for creating the maximum impact on the person.

11. Do Not Expect Everyone to Support Your Decision

You have decided to get back to your ex, good but do not expect support from your family members and friends. They will remember all those things, which had gone wrong during the relationship. 

Therefore, they will surely bring those points up when you tell them about your intention to get back together once again. Under this situation, do not forget that your loved ones will always carry your best interests at heart. 

Make them understand the things that have changed in the personality of your ex. Tell your family members that you have already had a detailed discussion with your former partner. Hence, you plan to resume your relationship, but you will keep them in the loop.

12. You Will Reconcile with The Same Person You Broke Up

People indeed change over time, but certain things remain the same even after years have passed. Do not expect things to become different once you are through the stage of knowing your ex once again.

Once you begin to engage with one another like before, you will realize earlier patterns are coming into your life. Gradually, you will become frustrated with having to handle irritating stuff again.

Therefore, try to see that the whole process is worth your time and effort. You only get to lead your life once. Make sure to spend the same on those who do not steal your happiness and peace of mind. 


Let us briefly discuss some of the questions that couples, who are trying to get back together with their exes frequently ask experts from time to time.

1. Does Getting Back Together with an Ex Ever Work?

It rarely works out. A study suggests that a mere 15% of couples continue with their relationship after mending all their past issues. Therefore, if you truly wish to belong to this small group of people, follow the no-contact rule and refrain from contacting your ex over the phone or social media, invest your time into self-esteem and look back at what made you break up with your partner in the first place.

2. Is It Possible to Get Back with an Ex After One Year?

The reality is that if things must work out between you and your ex after the breakup, it must happen within three months. If you do not manage to talk to your ex, convince them to go on a date during this period, then rest assured it is all over between the two of you. You cannot do anything else to get things back on track.

3. How to Get Back Together After Breaking Up?

When you are serious about getting back together after breaking up, focus on changing your mindset. The change is for the reason why you want your ex back. You should convince them of a change in your attitude that has come through after a breakup and that you will not repeat the same mistakes you had committed earlier.

Final Words

We have discussed how you can go through various stages of getting back together with an ex and reignite the spark in your relationship, which had died down from breaking up.

Even though you have moved on from the relationship, the love you shared earlier with your ex keeps lingering inside your heart. Hence these stages will help you to determine if you should get back together. 

Are you interested to know more about ‘Things to Know Before Moving in With Your Boyfriend’ then click here?