Breaking up is one of the most difficult things you can do. It is a difficult reality both for yourself and your partner (or ex-partner) to come to terms with.
However, sometimes taking a break can actually lead to a stronger relationship. This is especially true if the man in the relationship chooses to return to his ex.
It’s not uncommon for men to return to a relationship with their exes.
Depending on the reason behind the breakup, men might return to their ex in order to restart the relationship or even just to receive closure.
However, just because the possibility of rekindling a romance exists, this doesn’t mean it’s the right move.
After a breakup, men and women react in different ways.
For instance, a study conducted by researchers at Binghamton University and the University College London found that men will not experience as much physical or emotional pain as women.
However, this doesn’t mean that they won’t suffer from a breakup.
In fact, this same study also showed that men are more likely to experience a slow burn after the relationship, realizing what they lost on a deeper level. Why does this happen?
For starters, it’s important to understand the biology between men and women. Women will typically have children once they find a suitable mate.
This leads to a pregnancy lasting 9 months, followed by raising a child into adulthood. Men, on the other hand, will not have to endure pregnancy.
In today’s modern court system, a man might need to pay child support and be involved in a child’s life for the next 18 years.
However, men sticking around isn’t necessary for the child’s survival.
Due to this stark contrast in childbearing and child-rearing, it’s no wonder women feel more pain after a breakup.
Women have more invested in a relationship, so when a breakup does occur, they feel negative emotions and pain more so than men do.
Fortunately, there is good news for women that find themselves in the midst of a painful breakup.
A study published in the clinical research journal Assessment found that women do eventually get over their breakup.
In fact, women were found to be more extroverted and outgoing even after their divorce and into their middle-aged years!
Men, on the other hand, never seemed to get over their breakup or viewed their ex as “the one that got away.”
It’s important to understand these differences in order to help you process your breakup.
It can be overwhelming to get through breaking up with your partner. You might also be desperately waiting for your ex to come back.
First and foremost, as a woman, understand that this is normal. Even if he doesn’t come back, take this as a lesson in true love.
If your partner doesn’t want to come back to you, don’t fight it. Putting additional pressure on a man to return is never a good idea.
Similarly, it’s never a good idea to break up with a man in order to “test” what they will do. This is manipulative behavior.
Sadly, there’s also the possibility that a man returns to a relationship if he is abusive. This is also known as stalking, and it can be incredibly dangerous.
Some abusers might stalk their exes in order to gain closure, try to initiate the abuse again, or even win back their trust.
This is what is known as the abuse cycle. This cycle consists of various phases, including:
- Tension build-up
- Act of abuse (physical, emotional, mental)
- Reconciliation (Also known as the honeymoon period. This is when you are at a greater risk of having your partner return and try to be on your good side again.)
- Period of calm with no abuse
- Tension build-up (again)
If these cycles of abuse seem familiar to you, then you might already have been the victim of an abusive relationship.
There is no telling what your ex will do once you break up with him (or her). Chances are they might just react angrily, but they could resort to stalking and even violence.
Never take back an ex that has been abusing you physically and emotionally. During the period after a breakup, an abusive ex might start:
- Calling you incessantly
- Trying to make it up with dates
- Promising to change
- Giving you lavish gifts
- Threatening you or any children you may have
- Calling your family or friends
- Showing up at your place of work or school
These should not be mistaken for signs of flattery. Even in a healthy relationship that experiences a breakup, behaviors that cross boundaries are never ok.
It’s important to note the difference. If a man is trying to get in a relationship with you again, he shouldn’t pop up unexpectedly at random locations or call you incessantly.
Instead, he should ask your permission and ask if meeting, texting, or calling you is okay.
People in abusive relationships are at greater risk of developing codependency.
Codependency can make it difficult to break away from a relationship, see the signs of abuse, and validate yourself as a person.
You might also find yourself waiting for your abuser and even convincing yourself that the abuse was normal. Some other signs of codependency include:
- Not validating your own emotions
- Feeling unworthy unless you’re caring for someone else
- Difficulty communicating
- Lack of self-esteem or self-worth
- One-sided relationships where you provide all the affection
To summarize, a man might come back into a relationship if he is an abuser.
If this is the case, get the help of family, friends, or your local authorities to help you during this difficult time.
You should also report any instances of harassment or stalking to your local authorities immediately.
This is especially true if direct threats were made against you! For more information, don’t hesitate to call the (US) domestic violence hotline at 800-799-7233.
Yes, some men might end up being abusive and try to wiggle into a relationship with you again after a breakup.
On the other hand, some men might naturally want to restart a relationship with you in a healthy manner.
Some studies that show men think more fondly of their ex after a breakup than a woman does.
As a woman, it’s important to understand this so that you know why your ex wants to get back with you when you don’t want anything to do with them!
Fortunately, not all hope is lost with getting back with your ex. Even if you despise your ex now, there might be a chance of reconciliation in the future.
In fact, taking a break can lead to a better relationship down the road.
How can that be?
Taking a break (or breaking up with someone) can make it easier for you and your partner to work out your issues separately.
For instance, if you’ve been neglecting your friends, family, and relationships outside of your boyfriend, this can weigh heavily on you.
It’s always a good idea to handle these issues first and foremost before beginning your relationship again.
Taking a break can also be a good way to allow tension and resentment to dissipate. This is especially true if you combine the break with the help of a couples therapist.
During couples therapy, you might find yourself communicating with your partner more effectively than you have in years.
This can lead you to, ultimately, have a stronger relationship in the long run.
If you and your partner decide to break up but then get together later on, this can strengthen your relationship and allow you two to be stronger than ever after a breakup.
However, this is assuming there is no resentment or any other issues caused on your partner’s behalf. Case in point: cheating.
If your ex had an affair, this might be a big reason why they might come back into the relationship afterward.
In fact, 80% of people who get a divorce after an affair regret it! Why does this happen? For a couple of reasons.
People cheat due to pre-existing issues in a relationship that they just can’t seem to communicate on.
It can be anything from communication issues to someone working too much, someone not paying enough attention, the list goes on and on!
Sadly, although an affair might make a man feel validated and even stir feelings of passion, this flame is soon to die out once he must work on making a new relationship again.
This, of course, takes effort, which your ex will realize later. During this stage, they might be more prone to calling and missing you.
Other times, you might break up with your ex due to issues such as not paying enough attention to you, working long hours, not listening to you, etc.
If the deterioration of a relationship is truly only their “fault” (which it rarely is), then it’s important for you to evaluate whether you want to take your ex back or not.
This decision is entirely up to you. However, it’s best to get the help of a couples’ therapist beforehand.
It’s also never a good idea to accept a man back into a relationship only to constantly fight with him about the past.
If you are unable to let go of past mistakes before a relationship, simply let the relationship go.
There are many reasons a man might return to a relationship after a breakup.
From toxic stalking and abusive behavior to missing you and thinking fondly of you, and even just to work things out again.
It’s never a good idea to go back to an ex that was abusive.
However, if your relationship was healthy with typical problems that could benefit from a break, you might just find yourself in the best relationship of your life after your breakup!