By Chris Seiter

Updated on May 24th, 2021

Life, or the ex boyfriend recovery process, in particular, would be a WHOLE lot easier if your ex would just let you know they want you back, right?

However, that doesn’t always happen.

Today I’m going to take you through the factors that go behind an ex expressing a desire to get back with you.

I will also tell you about the 4 events that MUST occur for them to actually tell you that they want you back, so keep reading or if you’re not really into that then watch this…

So, the big question: Will an ex tell you they want you back?

Generally speaking, no.

I know that’s probably not the answer you wanted to hear, but for an ex to tell you they want you back, the relationship has to reach a critical mass.

And a critical mass can’t be achieved unless a specific confluence of event occurs.

Do “critical mass” and “confluence of events” just sound like big words that mean nothing?

Don’t worry… I have an analogy to help you see what I’m getting at.

Have you ever been introduced to a book or movie or TV show that you absolutely LOVED, but then you put it down for years?

Eventually, after enough time goes by, you pick up that book or rewatch that movie just to remember you used to feel when you experienced it.

That’s exactly the “critical mass” moment when your ex misses you and thinks of you.

Here’s the most crucial part though- they have to reminisce about the time you spent together in a positive way. They must revisit all those important first moments that you shared together that sparked your relationship.

If they’re obsessing about the good times, then there’s a high chance they’ll start talking to you again just to get a closer glimpse of those days.

But before they reach out to you a particular confluence of events must occur and here are those four crucial events:

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

Event #1: Time MUST Pass.

As the great Greek philosopher, Epictetus, once said,

“nothing great happens suddenly,”

And this rings especially true today when we all expect instant gratification and get disappointed when that doesn’t happen.

Often times, we even give up or quit just because we did not get instant results. This is a luxury Epictetus did not have.

In the olden days, people had to persevere and power through obstacles until they overcame them.

So yeah, you have to learn how to be patient and give your ex time to miss you before they can tell you they want you back.

At the risk of using another philosophical cliché- the whole “Rome wasn’t built in a day” statement holds incredible true in this situation.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

So, persevere and have patience because that’s when great things happen.

Event # 2: Change Must Occur Within Both Parties.

Event 1 was all about time and patience, but event 2 is about what actually happens during that time and patience.

Albert Einstein once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

Something HAS to change for an ex to want you back. There was probably a reason you broke up, and it’s only natural for them to want to see a change in you (and have made a change in themselves) to prevent the same mistakes from happening all over again.

There needs to be a positive change in him AND you.

We, humans, are basically just stories… that’s all that’s left of us when we are gone. Stories of what we were like and how we treated other people.

An absolute storytelling classic is the idea of a character arc. We all want to see character development, so the people we knew at the beginning of the story are different, better people by the end because they learned some valuable lessons.

To get to a character arc, every character starts with knowing what they want. Here’s the kicker though- what they want is not what they NEED. The character arch is realized when they see that their wants and needs are not the same things. They then finish their arc by focusing on what they need.

We could get technical about this because some people reject their need and hang onto their want because it’s what they know best. However, the point of this example is to help you understand that your ex needs to see you as something they NEED instead of something they just want.

Your ex needs to have the character arch of realizing that they NEED you while they’re away from you.

This is precisely why we advocate for the no contact rule because it gives your ex that natural time of separation to realize what they’re missing out on.

It’s not just about your ex, though. YOU need to experience personal growth too. Your time of reflection might even make you realize that your ex is what you want but not necessarily what you need.

So, let me ask you – do you absolutely NEED your ex in your life?

If your answer is anything less than a resounding yes, then maybe it’s time to rethink if you even want to get them back!

Event #3: Your Ex Needs To See You As A Great Loss

The concept of loss as it relates to people’s biggest regrets on their deathbed are missed opportunities.

The opportunity to be with someone they really wanted to be with but were too afraid to ask out.

Does your ex view you that way? Because if not, you’ve got another problem on your hands.

But more importantly- what are you doing to make them view you in that way?

It’s not enough to make your ex think he needs you; you also need to make him believe that breaking up with you is the biggest regret of his life.

That doesn’t automatically happen, though. You need to make yourself worth regretting. You have to do something so unimaginable and amazing without them; they start thinking, “hmm…maybe I made a mistake with that girl.”

Event # 4. He Must Fear To Lose You, And You Must Not Fear To Lose Him

I always say that the woman who is willing to lose the guy is often the women who will get the guy. There are two elements to this – getting an ex to fear to lose you and how to not care about losing him.

Let’s get to your ex first. How do you instill a fear of losing you?

Simple. Add someone else into the equation.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

In my experience, whenever you end a long term relationship with someone, they start to develop a god complex thinking that you’ll never find anyone like them. The best thing to do in this situation is to burst their bubble by inserting the threat of someone taking over their place.

What about the other element, though? It’s not enough to make your ex fear to lose you. You must also show that you don’t care if you lose him because that’s what will get him really worried!

How do you create a situation to show your ex you don’t care? You’re reading this right now, so you obviously do care.

This goes back to the needs vs. wants situation. You need to train yourself to believe that you might want your ex right now, but you do not need him. Your life is MUCH more than just this relationship with him.

You have to knock him down in your head from that pedestal you put him on because he did not have you at that same level. He needs to be at the same level you are, so the playing field is even.

Most women give men an elevated status, and that does nothing but stroke their ego and fuel their self-importance. He is NOT all that. Your life should not end and be devoid of meaning just because of your ex.

Your ex is just a man with flaws like the rest of us. Treat him that way.


So yeah, maybe your ex doesn’t like you right now, but you can live your life in a way that makes him want to run back to you.

That is what you should be aspiring towards if you want him back. He needs to miss you and realize his loss before he can fully accept that he wants you back.

So, there is absolutely NO reason to put your life on hold for your ex. Instead, you should live your life to the fullest, so he can see what he’s missing out on!

Here’s a quick recap of the four events that must happen before your ex tells you that he wants you back:

  1. Time needs to pass.
  2. Both parties need to change.
  3. Your ex needs to see you as a loss.
  4. Your ex must fear to lose you, but you must not care about that.

Have any questions?

Leave a comment and my team and I may answer!

What to Read Next

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

21 thoughts on “Do Exes Ever Tell You That They Want You Back?”

  1. Xta

    September 20, 2020 at 8:52 am

    Hello sir,
    These tips are really profound. I’d have a bit of challenges myself. I was in a distance relationship with a guy some years back and we broke up because of side talks from his family about me that aren’t true.
    Just recently, he started communicating with me, stating how much of a mistake he made by listening to his folks. Now he’s back in the same country with me and we’ve met but I noticed he has changed completely from the person I once knew (although in a good way) but am scared.
    How do you reckon I act? Cos yes, I truly love him.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      September 25, 2020 at 8:59 pm

      Hi Xtra it really depends if you want to get back together or not. If you do then start spending more time with him and show interest. But do not sleep with him unless you are in a committed relationship again

  2. Natalie

    May 1, 2020 at 9:34 pm

    Hey Chris!
    I need help. I am in this situation where i do not know what to do.
    So I was dating my ex for over 3 years. We were about to get engaged but it kept getting postponed. I know that His mother has not been very keen and i somehow feel she is postponing the engagement on purpose. In January when it was supposed to happen, it again got postponed. I had an open conversation with him and told him i feel his mother is not keen. He promised me that she is convinced and happy and that in March we will be engaged for sure. In March again it didnt happen and then i decided to move on. I cant keep waiting without any commitment. I broke up with him and blocked him. A few days after this, the Covid-19 lockdown started. A week later, he called me on my landline(since he was blocked otherwise). He told me that he really wants to be with me and loves me. Also told me that the marriage dates will be finalized as soon as the lockdown is lifted. He will come see me after the lockdown is lifted as he wants to meet and talk. I refused to meet him and told him there is no need of any further discussions. He convinced me that this time it is very important for him to meet me. So i agreed and hung up.

    Now Its been 30 days since this call. There is no text or call from him again and the lockdown is still going on. Even i havent called or texted him. I am not sure what i should do. I love him and want to be with him.
    Should i contact him? Or should i wait for the lockdown to be lifted as He had said he will come meet me after lockdown?

    Pls suggest

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      May 9, 2020 at 5:14 pm

      Hey Natalie if you want to get him back then you need to come out of No Contact soon and use one of Chris’ texts that he suggests in his articles and videos

  3. Dianne

    March 5, 2020 at 5:30 am

    Been together with my boyfriend nearly four years and everyone thought we were it, going to get married. I lived at home with his family for two and half years! I started uni in September (Monday to Friday) and working the weekend long hours .. we talked about it and he was happy to support me. I always supported him through his crazy hours at work doing 6 days a week… I thought NU would support me. He broke up with me because he didn’t feel the same anyone and things started to change roughly after I started uni. He Had been acting weird for a couple of weeks and last week said the spark was gone and we didn’t have time to see eachother to make it better. He didn’t have the same feelings anymore. We want different things, I want is settle down and he is young and wants to have fun. I said what makes you think you can’t have fun whilst being with me and he was like we don’t see eachother much (we lived together) saw eachother every evening and I thought after 4 years relationships start to change people have their life’s and everything you just make a little bit of time for eachother even if it’s whilst having dinner. It really hurt me that he said that. He never mentioned it when it first started. we always talked about the future and we were always on the same page. We were looking at flats to buy before Christmas and even booked a amazing holiday for August for when I finish my first year at uni. I feel so hurt and upset that he didn’t tell me all this and didn’t try to let us fix it. what do I do? I got so close with his whole family. Everyone thought we were it. But I felt like he hadn’t supported me through this. One. Blip and he has just given up. A month ago he told me I was the love of his life and he realises he was taking me for granted and that was going to stop and he was going to do better but nothing.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 18, 2020 at 1:44 am

      Hi Dianne, so you can go into a No contact and decide what you want to do going forward. If you want to get back with your ex then reach out after 30 days if not then stick with your NC indefinitely

  4. Jess

    March 4, 2020 at 2:12 am

    Hello…I have a very complicated and intertwined ex relationship happening. My ex and I have known each other for almost 19 years. 13 of those years have consisted us dating, living together and sharing Bill’s together. This time last year he moved in with me due to the house he was renting got sold and he had no place to go. Our plan was for him to stay 6 months and then leave and find his own place. We do not do well living together and need our individual space. However I was diagnosed with cancer 2 months after moving in and he felt he had to stay to make sure I was ok. He eventually moved out in October after radiation and he said he needed time and space. He felt it was a mistake moving in and staying as long as he did. By December however he had told me we were done that he felt that us dating is not a good idea…that he will always love me and wants to stay in my life but that he cannot and does not see us dating. Obviously I’m upset…my life is chaotic to begin with. We both tried to not text each other but because of my health he gets concerned for me and we end up texting. All of January it was texting only no calls. But late February we’ve started talking on the phone, him asking if he can call b4 calling. He’ll use my health status as the precursor to call but then we talk bout us and our families. Hes always telling me that we wont get back together and IF he was to date someone they’d have to accept our connection as part of the deal. If I text him to talk he sometimes is short with replies or that he knows I want to talk but apologizes he can’t
    I sometimes think hes afraid to tell me he might want to reconcile but I also know we’ve been in each other’s lives for so long and my current health he would never walk completely away. He knows he has my heart and we are to the age I know I wont date someone else. Sorry you just know sometimes and I know. I would love to reconcile but I am getting mixed messages. I give him his space and time but he’ll text me in a couple of days.
    I cant afford one on one coaching…but can you help me decipher some of these signals? Is there an inclination of reconciling or is it a case of concern for me?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 7, 2020 at 8:41 pm

      Hi Jess it sounds as if your ex cares for you but isn’t feeling the “love” you do in a relationship with someone. You can follow the steps of ERP starting with No contact if you want to, and feel that you can stick to the No Contact. If he is willing to be your friend during your recovery then I would accept that for now and focus on yourself. This is the time for you to be selfish and make sure that you are looking after you, put yourself first all times. I hope you heal soon

  5. Natasha Simmons

    February 24, 2020 at 11:53 pm

    My ex recently got back in contact with me. And he apologized for how he just up and disappeared on me. He says he knows he has to prove himself to me. But he also tells me still loves and misses me. We have spent time together and he is very loving and attentive when we are together . But he says he doesn’t want to put a label on us right now. But he also says he wants to build a Future with me. So can you help me I am so confused.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      February 26, 2020 at 10:08 pm

      Hi Natasha, so I would set your boundaries straight and not sleep with him until you are “official” as you do not want to end up in a friends with benefits situation. I would date him and not put your self in situations where sex could happen. That way you are not going to ruin your new relationship with him. If he is serious about building a future with you he will be willing to commit to you

  6. Kelse Breedlove

    February 23, 2020 at 7:21 pm

    My girlfriend of 6 years broke up with me 6 months ago. She currently is in a rebound relationship with one of our friends. 3 weeks ago she wanted to talk and brought up the break up and admitted her faults. She basically broke up with me because of stress. She told me she feels like the things she has done has put a nail in our relationship and if we try again she feels it will be the same. I’m so confused because shes still in a rebound relationship but tells me that??

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      February 26, 2020 at 10:53 pm

      Hi Kelse, so it sounds as if she is trying to justify why she has ended the relationship especially if you are all in the same group of friends. If you want her back then you need to read about the being there method and assure that you do not bring up anything from the past relationship, the new relationship with your friend or the mistakes that were made.

  7. Amanda

    February 21, 2020 at 4:19 am

    My ex broke up with me on Christmas this year in the middle of our vacation. He said he has been planning to do this for a while yet he was planning to ask my dad for my hand the week before. His parents came from India and he was constantly being told to ignore me. He was treating me badly all of a sudden and I felt unwanted. I told him I’m hurt constantly and he said his family isn’t okay with him giving me attention. One morning I woke up and he didn’t kiss me and I realised something was wrong. He told me he wanted to break up and there is nothing I can do to change his mind. He told him he was telling me how badly he wanted it to work and he was the one convincing me to not give up on us. But he didn’t care. I begged him to stay and give me another chance but he said he needed to find himself. He said he doesn’t feel the relationship will ever work and he needs to work on himself. He said he can’t even stay friends and doesn’t want me in his life. I kept crying and asking where this was coming from. He said I’m no longer his responsibility and he doesn’t care about me. He said some stuff and I got so upset with him that I said really harsh words too. I called him spineless and worse. I told my parents what him and his parents did to me and they gave him more shit. 2months later I tried to talk to him to clear out misunderstandings but he said I am manipulative and hates the site of me and will never see me again. He told another friend that he misses me but we can’t be together ever again because he feels we are toxic. I tried telling him he has me wrong and we have been together for 2.5 years don’t I deserve a chance to explain myself. He threw me a surprise birthday less than a month before our break up but he said he did that because he had to and was trying to be a good boyfriend. I tried to arrange a meeting but he said he never wants to see me again. I felt really bad. The man I I love threw me out of his life in an hr an never looked back. I don’t get why he won’t meet me. Why he won’t let me explain. He also message my mum and sister when they tried to contact him – said really harsh stuff to them because of what happened. I admit my parents were angry but he knew them for 4 years and they loved him and treated him like a son and he ditched me in the middle of a trip and didn’t even give me an explanation. Please help me understand what happened.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 2, 2020 at 6:08 pm

      Hi Amanda, so it sounds as if his family was so set against your relationship they have forced his hand that you will not be accepted. As hurtful as that is to hear, sometimes there is nothing more you can do because by the sounds of things you didnt do anything wrong other than not meet his families expectations which is unfair. In some families though it means more that people get their parents approval of who they are in a relationship with. I suggest that you work on the Ungettable girl information we have on this website and apply this to your life and through friends he will hear how amazing you are doing in life without him and it would make him wonder why you’ve switched so suddenly

  8. No Contact with Depression?

    February 18, 2020 at 12:37 am

    Hi there –

    Quick question – I’m currently taking some time apart from my boyfriend. The connection I have with him is unlike anything I’ve felt. We make each other laugh so much, get along great, and the attraction is through the roof. The problem is that some things happened outside of him and me that began to cause a severe depression in him. The past 2 months I’ve tried holding on and being supportive but at the cost of my own sanity. I began to spiral and lose my self and anxiety went through the roof. He felt so guilty but nothing changed. I don’t doubt the feelings between us. We both care a lot. But the present situation wasn’t doing either one of us any good. I told him he needed to take time and space to work on himself and in the meantime I needed to get back to myself as well. I told him the door was open, I cared a lot about him and I support him to no end. We said we’d talk once a week so we were still in each other’s lives. He’s surprised me so far and has texted every single day. I keep it short and take time to respond. I know everyone says no contact is the way to go, but is that really the best thing when you’re dealing with depression? I don’t want to have him think I abandoned him or that I’m better off without him (what his bad thoughts say). I dunno what to do. I care about him so much and want to be with him but don’t know how to move forward. Thank you!

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      February 22, 2020 at 5:58 pm

      Hi, so yes still go into a no contact, knowing they are depressed helps when you are in the texting phase as you know if they are having a bad day more than normal or have erratic changes to their attitude that you know it has nothing to do with you its how they are feeling at that time. The No Contact is important if you want to get your ex back. As for the depression they have to be willing to work themselves through their depression themselves, you can not do it for them.

  9. Cindy

    February 11, 2020 at 4:13 am

    I don’t have it on me to purposely make her jealous about someone else, and certainly not even thinking of getting myself back out there! So how can you substitute that? Mine is a lesbian relationship!

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      February 11, 2020 at 11:03 pm

      Hey Cindy, as long as you are social with friends and are spending time with other people that is good enough for now. If you are not ready to date then don’t force yourself but do not put your life on hold. The point of becoming Ungettable is to live your life the way it will make you happy, with or without your ex in it

  10. Amanda

    February 10, 2020 at 4:16 pm

    Dating for thirteen months, with one disagreement in that time. We got on so well.

    Now my man and I are on a break. (so he says)
    One misunderstood text and he said he wouldn’t be coming to see me that weekend.
    I wanted my key back and he said that would be final. I didn’t get my key back. That was 11 days ago. He has rang twice since then. Just asking how I am and the other day we had bad weather, so he rang to ask if I was okay. He said he’d keep in touch. I’ve seen him once since then and I was a mess so was he. I rang him four days ago. I will not be calling or texting him again.

    I can now see from this article and the many other articles on the internet that I need to get my key back (he can post it to me) and be done with him.

    Reading articles like this makes me feel better. I will text him my P.O. Box number tomorrow and move on. I value myself too much to be treated in this way.

  11. K

    February 8, 2020 at 8:58 pm

    How much time have to pass and what if my ex is in a rebound relationship? I feel that the only way he will want me back is if his rebound fails. Before the breakup he always told me how much it meant to him that I was always positive and always given him unconditional support. He was going through a divorce and I was there for him. He said that went a long ways. The reason I believe we broke up has to do with distance and he wanted to spend more time with me. He put more effort than me. I got comfortable and neglected his needs. The breakup was a wake up call. He started seeing someone else right after ended things with me. He’s the the type of guy who needs someone in his life to get over someone else. But it’s been 7 months and he’s still with her so does that make her still a rebound? He did reach out to me last month for the first time asking me how I was doing. Maybe he is having problems with the rebound and reach out to me. I believe he’s still with her though. I still love him and miss him everyday. I haven’t heard back from him since then.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      February 17, 2020 at 9:45 am

      Hi K, so the average rebound is 5-8 months. But that is average. If you want to try and get him back then you need to read about the being there method and start applying that to your situation. If he has reached out to you then it shows he is open to talking to you even if he is with the new woman