Some relationships end easily with the mutual decision to go separate ways and to remain friends. You meet for coffee every now an then and you support each other’s new relationships.
In a fantasy land all relationships would end this way.
But we don’t live in a fantasy land… sadly…
Some relationships definitely do NOT end that way.
These relationships end with anger, sadness and pain.
Maybe one person wronged the other
Perhaps there were fundamental differences in your religious beliefs
Maybe you just wanted to live in different places.
Relationships can end badly for many different reasons. Sometimes they aren’t always obvious. You are just left knowing that it ended badly and that you and your ex are on bad terms.
Can these relationships still be salvaged if things were left uncomfortable and not on good terms?
Why yes, yes, they can.
The most important thing to remember is that these things are going to take time. There is a time line for negative emotions in the EBR guidelines:
- Immediately After a Breakup = 9-10 (Very Bad Feelings)
- A Month After the Breakup = 5-6 (Moderately Bad Feelings)
- Two Months After a Breakup = 3-4 (Improved Feelings)
As soon as a relationship ends tensions and emotions are high and it is easy to want to shout how you are feeling from the rooftops.
Don’t do that.
If your emotions are high, then it is likely that they are high for your ex as well.
Looking at the timeline above you’ll notice that feelings start to improve after one month. The No Contact period just happens to fall perfectly into this.
If things ended badly for you and your ex then you are going to have to go through a longer No Contact than usual. Generally speaking 30-45 days is a pretty safe amount of time. However, every situation is different. The only thing that is certain is that throwing your emotions at an ex who already views you in a negative light is only going to set you back further.
During the No Contact period your ex will have time to forget all the negative emotions that came with the end of the relationship.
But time can’t do all the work for you.
So, what should you do during the time apart?
Work on the trifecta! We here ate ExBoyfriendRecovery call it The Holy Trinity.
If you are unfamiliar or new to EBR, let’s review.
The three areas of focus following a breakup (particularly a bad one) are:
After a breakup it’s easy to let yourself go. You might stop showering daily. The gym might not seem so appealing any more. Some people take comfort in the arms of the two most understanding men I have ever met: Ben and Jerry.
It’s all so easy and comforting, just giving in to being sad.
But, it’s not going to get you any closer to getting your ex back. In fact, it’s likely to do the opposite.
Look at it this way:
Would you want your ex back more if they gained a bunch of weight and smelled bad
Would you want them back if they started lifting more weights and smelled good all the time?
Wait, don’t answer yet.
Just picture it for a minute.
Do you have the image in your head?
Now picture yourself running into your ex on your way home from an ice cream run after not showering for four days.
Did you cringe a little bit?
Let’s not have this visual become a reality. Taking time to exercise and take care of yourself is going to not only make you feel better about yourself, it’s going to project a vibe that will draw people to you.
People like your ex.
The second aspect of the trifecta is wealth.
Having wealth does not only mean having money. It means having a means of continuing to have money…. In other words, it means having a job.
While people may say that money doesn’t matter or that it isn’t everything, they lie. Money does matter for several reasons.
- You’ll have independence. You’ll be able to support yourself which is not only a confidence booster, but it is attractive to potential suitors. If you relied a lot on your ex for money while you were together, showing them that you are bettering yourself financially will cause them to think twice and say “wow… she doesn’t need me?”
- Being able to support yourself will open you up for new opportunities. You’ll be able to buy a gym membership, new clothes, nice makeup. This is how health and wealth relate!
Maintaining solid relationships that aren’t your ex will help you to cope with the loss in a healthy way. Friends will be there to help you through the breakup and support you as you heal. Going out and experiencing things will help you to grow and develop on your own.
An added benefit of cultivating other relationships during a breakup is that your loved ones can help you see if this lost relationship is really what is best for you and what you truly want. Sometimes, it is easy to get blinded by the desire to be with someone and not realize that this person is not the one who is best for us.
Finally, going on dates with new men is another way of working the relationship part of the trifecta. Going on dates may seem scary but it will give you a sense of what you want in a relationship and what you deserve.
Added bonus you may just make your ex jealous! Is jealous good? It depends. If the reason for the break up is that you cheated, then no. Jealousy is a no go. However, in most other situations using a little bit of jealousy will make your ex question whether or not he is ready to give up what they had.
It’s Been Years Since We Broke Up
Now, what if the breakup was bad, but it has been awhile, as in longer than the original no contact period?
If you have already been working on yourself and feel like you are in a place where your health, wealth, and relationships have developed and that you are in a secure place then send ONE reach out text. You can refer to this article or the Texting Bible for help constructing the best reach out text ever.
However, understand that it is possible that while enough time has passed for you, it may not have been enough time for your ex.
Yes, even if it has been 2 years, 3 years, or eve 5 years. Sometimes it just takes longer for some people to get past things.
If you don’t get a response or if the response you get is negative, don’t panic. Simply take it in stride and respect that they need more time. Continue to work on yourself and try again after some time has passed. The Texting Bible lays out exactly how to hand negative and no responses depending on your situation.
We Broke Up Because Of A Big Fight
The opposite end of the spectrum is that your ex ended things abruptly. If this is the situation take a deep breath.
Have you ever, in a fit of rage, said things that you didn’t actually mean?
Well, sometimes this happens, and couples break up out of the blue even when it isn’t what either one them truly wants. If your relationship ended in a heat of an argument just lay low and give it time.
More often than not, your ex will approach you after tensions have cooled.
We Didn’t Really Have a Good Reason For Breaking Up
If the relationship ended and there were no new signs that it was coming and no major blow out, then that is a little different.
You should still enter into no contact and begin to work on yourself but also look back on the relationship and try to figure out where things went wrong.
Yeah. I know. You are probably already doing that. But try to look for things you actually have control over correcting. Don’t just try and figure out who was at fault and try and find fuel for a pity party.
We Are Still Living Together
We have already covered how a little space and a little time can help resolve issues. But what if things ended badly and you just can’t get any space? What if you live together?
I haven’t always written for EBR. Before I started doling out the advice, I came here to receive it.
My boyfriend and I lived together and had an UGLY breakup. And I mean UGLY. There was cheating, and verbal abuse and we were both to blame. However, we could not afford to get our own places and had no family living in the area to stay with.
We lived together as Exes for ONE ENTIRE YEAR… down to the month!!!
During that time, I used limited no contact twice and (before finding EBR) broke down and asked him to take me back on multiple occasions. Every time that I asked it went nowhere and I only ended up hurt.
Then one month before our one year break up anniversary, he went away for a military training. By the time he got back I had left for my own training.
This gave us about six weeks of actual No Contact. And guess what happened about five weeks into this no contact? HE ASKED FOR ME BACK! Woo!
Why am I telling you this story?
To make a point…. or two…
First, that living together as exes makes it incredibly difficult to make your ex miss you and want you back. The only way to truly do that is to be physically absent for a significant amount of time.
If you are unable to get out of living with your ex, then the second-best thing to do is to is get out of the house as much as possible.
Pick up new hobbies, make new friends, go on dates.
Make him feel like they are missing out on good times that they could have been sharing with you.
Differences in Our Core Beliefs
The last topic that is going to be covered in this article is what to do if the breakup was the result of core differences in your beliefs.
This is a very delicate area of discussion so specific topics are not going to be discussed in detail.
What might these areas of difference be?
- Sexual Orientation
- Gender Identities
- Geographical Locations to live in
- Political Beliefs
If you broke up because you and your Ex had differing opinions on any of these topics you need to consider how important your feelings on the matter are. I mean generally our religious and political beliefs, sexual and gender identities, and physical location aren’t pretty unwavering.
Here is a video that Chris put together regarding what you should do if you are struggling with having different values than your ex…
If your ex is asking you to give up your spiritual belief systems is that something that you could live with down the road? Would you ever even consider it otherwise? If not, then you may have to accept that it is not going to work out.
However, if you are both willing to compromise on these topics then you may be able to salvage the relationship.
Go through the full ExBoyfriendRecovery Pro System before approaching these heavy topics though.
Let me give you another example: My Ex’s family lives in North Carolina and my family lives in New Hampshire. It’s about a sixteen-hour drive between the two. For a long time, we were unable to come up with any viable solutions about where to live without making one person resent the other.
When we decided to start talking seriously again it was still a hot topic, but we have been considering Philadelphia which would be right in the middle of our two families. From time to time we both still are not satisfied with this solution but it’s a work in progress and we both know that we are flexible on the issue… To a point.
If you and your Ex are unable to find your Philly-compromise, then there is always going to be a little bit of animosity and resentment from one or both parties.
It’s important to remember to stay true to yourself. Similarly, you are going to want to be with a man who stays true to themselves as well.
To wrap things up a little bit it is certainly possible to get your ex back if your relationship ended badly.
I mean, I did, you can too!
But, the key to it is giving both you and your ex enough time and space to recover from whatever negative situation that occurred.
If you were the one who hurt them then give them enough time to deal with their pain and let them process. If you were the one who got hurt then make sure that you process your emotions thoroughly. Entering back into a relationship that you have not healed from will result in further problems down the road.
So, now that you are all filled in let’s talk about your particular situation. In the comments below tell me about it. Here’s what I need to know:
- Tell me the details of your breakup. How long were you together before it happened? What do you think the reason for it was?
- What have you done since the breakup?
- What do you think your best course of action is?
Once we have all the info, our experts will help you determine what your next course of action should be.