7 Signs You are Wasting Your Time Trying to Get Your Ex Back

There might be affiliate links on this page, which means we get a small commission of anything you buy. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Please do your own research before making any online purchase.

Share this:

It’s a lunch date with a dear friend and it’s gone horribly wrong. She’s in tears about her ex, bawling that she wants him back.

They had broken up before, but this time, it was different. I couldn’t help but point out “You have missed the signs you are wasting your time trying to get your ex back.

In my many years of working in the psychology and dating niche, I have seen countless “suddenly-singled” individuals pine over their exes, failing to understand there is a point where it’s never going to work out, and you won’t get back together. 

Knowing when that point has been reached is about seeing the signs that the relationship isn’t going to work

Are you wasting your time trying to get your ex back? Let’s find out.  

Why Did You Break Up in the First Place?

Before you cry more about your ex, consider why you broke up in the first place.

Was it a serious issue? Has that issue been resolved? If not, then you shouldn’t get back together, no matter how badly you may feel like you want them back now. You did break up – for a reason. 

Consider the why of your breakup. Did your ex leave you? Did they cheat on you, lie to you, or did you leave them? 

It’s all too easy to focus on fond memories when you start feeling emotionally needy and lonely. Instead, look at the actual events that caused the breakup and consider whether you really want your ex back at all. 

Firmly fix the reason for the breakup in your mind, and then consider it like you’d evaluate things when you are buying a used car. Answer these questions before you even think of texting or calling your ex:

  • Will this (relationship) serve you?
  • Are there better models on the market that may work better?
  • Is there too much work needed to keep it (the relationship) running?
  • What are the chances of it quitting (again) and leaving you stranded on the highway of life?
  • Would you be tempted to trade up when it gets old or a bit banged up?

When you consider the reasons for the breakup, it will inform you whether it’s a good idea to try and get back together with your ex. 

Why Do You Want Your Ex Back?

Next, it’s vital that you consider the why of wanting your ex back. You’ve weighed up the why of the breakup, but why would you want to be with them again

You may want them back because you fear being alone, or you are so used to them, you can’t cope without them, but these aren’t good reasons to want an ex back.

Other bad reasons to want to reunite with your ex include:

  • Fear of being judged for being dumped (or breaking yet another heart) 
  • Missing the relationship’s security
  • Needing their financial support
  • Wanting to get back at them (and dump them as punishment)
  • Believing (without evidence) that this time will be different
  • Struggling to let go
  • Not believing you’ll find someone better
  • Being unable to spend time by yourself and be self-partnered (single)
  • Being desperate (for any company, even your ex’s) 

Of course, there are a few good reasons that actually support unifying with your ex and giving your relationship another go. Here are a few good reasons to consider getting back together with your ex:

  • You’ve realized you broke up because of a misunderstanding.
  • You’ve gone through counseling and realize you were wrong in how you treated them.
  • They’ve finally divorced and want to give a relationship with you a real go.
  • Circumstances have changed and obstacles to your relationship have been removed (such as your ex moving closer to you).
  • One or both of you have given up an addictive behavior like drinking or doing drugs, which makes you safe to be in a relationship now.

How Do You Feel Now That You Are Apart?

Before you jump back into old patterns of behavior or try to kiss and make up with your ex, it’s vital to consider how you feel now you are no longer together.

Do you really miss them? Is your instinct to try and get your ex back really about loving them or is there something else behind it? 

Sometimes, we are so ashamed of admitting we actually feel free once they leave us that we’ll try to get back with our ex just to keep the people around us happy.

move on | forget your ex | signs you are wasting your time trying to get your ex back
You may want them back because you fear being alone, or you are so used to them, you can’t cope without them, but these aren’t good reasons to want an ex back.

Maybe you have begun to realize you are better without them, but you’re just not ready to admit that to yourself yet. 

Feelings can be complicated, and emotions don’t always present in a clear format. Hanging in there and giving feelings time to fully manifest may help you decide whether your ex is worth going back to or if you should tough it out alone for a while. 

Remember, there are always other fish in the sea, or you can try and have a whale of a time on your own too. 

7 Signs You’re Wasting Your Time Trying to Get Back with Your Ex

If you still feel like you should go back to your ex, that you should get them back, you have to consider there may be signs you are really barking up the wrong relationship tree

Perhaps the universe (or common sense) is telling you not to open that door again. Here are some valuable signs that it’s not meant to be. 

1. What They Say and Do Finally Align

When we really want something, our words and actions track. Your body, mind, voice, and thoughts all point in the same direction. Your ex may have always softened the blow when you broke up in the past. 

Perhaps they said they needed time or that they were going through stuff when they broke up with you. You got the whole “it’s me, not you” speech, right? However, this time is different, and they have told you bluntly that it’s not working, that they’re over you, and you should go

The process of breaking up with you now matches their words, and they mean it. Nothing you say or do will change their minds or make them give you another chance, so don’t crawl back.

Perhaps your actions and thoughts don’t track when you say you want them back. You may say you want a do-over, but you hesitate, or you struggle with making the call or sending them that emotional text message.

Either way, your thoughts and actions don’t match, so you don’t want them back either (and you’re wasting your time trying). 

2. You Both Haven’t Changed

Let’s face it, something made your relationship end, and if nothing has changed, then nothing will change. Your relationship won’t suddenly work out if you try again when you’re both the same people as before. 

stop wasting time trying to get your ex back | When is time to give up on getting your ex back and move on? | moving on from your ex
If you are in a good space on your own, you shouldn’t revert to a previously bad situation. 

The issues that broke you apart are still there, and no amount of holidays away, make-up sex, or promises that “things will be different” can somehow fix your relationship.  

3. There’s a Third Party

If your ex has a spouse or another partner on the side (in addition to you), then it’s a HUGE sign that your relationship isn’t meant to be.

Setting yourself up in a relationship where you have to prove yourself better than another person is a recipe for disaster and heartache. 

If your ex couldn’t previously choose you over these people, they won’t suddenly choose you now. Playing second fiddle to another person in your ex’s life isn’t how you should live your life, nor will it bring you happiness.

The risk of them choosing others over you is still there, so don’t go back to that misery. 

In another sense, the third party can also be a priority that they hold over you when you are with them.

Perhaps your ex put their job first and you always came last. In this case, if they still have the same job as before, they will still assign full responsibility and focus to their work, leaving you hanging.  

4. What They Did Was Unforgivable

While you may want to forgive an ex and give them a second (or tenth) chance, there are some boundaries that are just not forgivable when broken.

If they did something that you just can’t let go of, you will carry the resentment and judgment of that act with you into your future relationship. No relationship can be built on that kind of foundation. 

Perhaps your ex broke the law, hit you, slept with your best friend, or stole from you. Whatever they did, if it’s something you can’t forgive, your future with them is doomed. So rather let it go by letting them go.  

5. It’s Not the First Time They’ve Dumped You

Being strung along like a used and tangled string of Christmas lights isn’t fun, nor will it make you happy.

If your partner has a history of leaving you hanging and constantly plays tag with your heart, then they aren’t serious about the relationship and probably never were to begin with. 

A pattern of being dumped, reclaimed, and then thrown aside again will turn you into a cheap commodity, and that’s sure to affect your self-worth. Such a destructive relationship pattern isn’t worth returning to as it’s a form of emotional abuse.   

6. You’re in a Good Space Now

Having a breakup is often an opportunity to self-discover and engage in personal growth, and while the path is difficult, it shouldn’t mean you’ll jump back on the relationship wagon immediately.

If you are in a good space on your own, you shouldn’t revert to a previously bad situation. 

When is time to give up on getting your ex back and move on? | moving on from your ex | stop wasting time trying to get your ex back
If you have been seeing other people or have your eye on someone else, you shouldn’t go back to your ex just to confirm you no longer want them. It’s not healthy to be so indecisive. 

You are worth investing in, and if you feel better without your ex, then you certainly won’t do well by returning to them. Even if you are in a better mental space and want to help or reconcile with your ex, you can’t do this by diving back into the frying pan. 

Feeling better without your ex is a sure sign that the breakup was the best thing that could have happened to you. It’s a gift, so don’t waste it.  

7. There’s Someone Else in Your Court

If you have been seeing other people or have your eye on someone else, you shouldn’t go back to your ex just to confirm you no longer want them (or to make the new person jealous). It’s not healthy to be so indecisive. 

Hooking up with your ex because you’re not sure about your current date is not how mature relationships work.

It also means you enter the relationship with one foot already out the door. This is a sure warning sign that things won’t work out, and worse, it’s not fair to the other person you are interested in. 

If you are already seeing someone else, it means you’re ready to move on, so move on.

Final Thoughts on Signs You’re Wasting Your Time Trying to Get Your Ex Back

If, like my friend, you also have doubts about your ex and whether you should want them back or not, then consider whether you’re ready to move on, why you want them back, and what caused the breakup in the first place.

Unfortunately, we are often the makers of our own madness, and we get ourselves caught in cycles of destructive behavior, such as dating the wrong person again and again. 

Take the time to look for the signs that you are actually wasting your time trying to get your ex back.

Either they have moved on, you have, or the relationship is doomed.  You can find peace and happiness after a breakup. Here’s our guide with 9 steps to be happy after a painful breakup.

And if you want more resources on building healthy relationships or recovering from a bad one, check out these blog posts:

signs you are wasting your time trying to get your ex back | get your ex back | signs you have no chance getting your ex back
Share this: