Round Two with the One Who Got Away
So should you ever contact the “one who got away” with the hope of rekindling your romance? If you do happen to get back with an ex, here are five key Dating with Dignity tips to help you improve your odds of making the relationship work this time around.
1. Take it slow. If you do find yourself re-coupled with an ex, you don’t want to rush it. Contrary to popular belief, your relationship doesn’t pick up where you left off. Take the time to get to know your partner a second time around…and perhaps even be so fresh in your approach that you notice things about him you didn’t see before. Either way, you must make sure you collect data to see if he’s the man who meets your non-negotiable deal-breakers 100 percent.
2. Low pressure and low expectations are key. There’s a high likelihood one of you is more into the “getting back together” idea than the other; if it’s you, make sure you keep the pressure on low. Don’t expect your ex to immediately profess his love for you and wonder why you even broke up in the first place. Keeping your expectations low will ensure you don’t find yourself disappointed, so remaining “cautiously optimistic” is the best mindset when reconnecting with an ex.
3. Keep your communication open and all issues on the table. You’ll need to accept responsibility for whatever part you played in the breakup. In most relationships it’s often 50% his fault AND 50% your fault…so make sure you don’t focus on whether or not he’s being “good” in the re-invention of your love story. Instead, take stock of where you went wrong in the relationship the first time around and then take time to regularly check in regarding how things are progressing. We recommend regularly scheduled “couch time” at least once per week to have an open conversation about how your relationship is evolving. Being open, honest and direct will guarantee that this time around the uglies don’t merely get swept under the rug.
4. With that said, leave the past in the past. If you continue to hold only your ex accountable or consistently bring up issues you had the first time around, the relationship won’t be much fun for either of you. While you can remember why you broke up, you should focus on the reasons you got back together! During this phase of your reconnection it’s important that you practice “Data Dating,” which involves collecting data about him, your compatibility, and the relationship overall. Share new experiences. Try not to fall back too quickly into ordering in Chinese and watching your favorite reality show together. Get out, date, and have fun.
The key is to figure out if you can hold new ground consistently — over time — with the understanding that there will be bumps along the way. Remember that when you get back with an ex, it’s very important to tread carefully as you decide if you want to make it a long-lasting partnership.
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