By Chris Seiter

Updated on March 8th, 2021

Today we’re going to be talking about, why your ex is so uncomfortable around you.

In fact, we’re going to give you the top five reasons that we have found exes are uncomfortable after breakups.

But first, we always want to do this for anyone who’s new to this podcast/website.

One of the most asked questions we get, almost on a day to day basis is,

“Hey, do I even have a chance of getting my ex back or should I be getting over my ex or trying to get them back?”

Well, luckily we put together a special quiz where we basically answer this exact question for you.

It’s a quiz, it’s free. It will take you only two minutes to complete.

And I highly recommend for anyone who hasn’t taken the quiz yet, to take it. Because at a starting point, it will just tell you whether or not you should be moving on, or trying to get your ex back in your specific situation.

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What Does An Ex Acting Uncomfortable Look Like? 

Okay. So, now that the prerequisite, sort of pitch is out of the way.

Let’s start talking about some of the five most popular reasons for why exes will become uncomfortable after a breakup.

But, I think before we started talking about that, we need to define what uncomfortable looks like. A lot of people don’t really understand what we mean when we’re saying, “Hey, your ex is acting uncomfortable.”

Well, it can mean a lot of different things.

Ultimately, it means that they’re acting strange. They’re showing off. They’re really uneasy around you or they’re acting awkward.

Now, what is an example of this?

Well, so sometimes this is something that we see a lot when you go through a breakup. Then a few weeks later you’re out at the mall and you run into your ex at the mall and he’s acting completely odd. He’s showing off or he’s acting strange or whatever.

I think we’ve all been there.

And I can give you even a personal example from my life. And the reason I used the mall thing was because, when I went through my very first breakup, I was probably like 19 or 20 years old. So I was just awkward to begin with.

So anyways, I dated a girl for about a year. And then we went through a really bad breakup. I wasn’t talking to her, she wasn’t talking to me. And then one day, I was out at the mall with my best friend. We were just walking around, having a good time, probably looking to pick up chicks. And my friend, he nudges me. He says, “Chris, look over there. It’s your ex.”

And all of a sudden I clammed up.

I didn’t know what to do.

I was super nervous.

I didn’t know if I should go up to her and say hi.

So I just ignored her. I literally, walked past her. Didn’t say a word, didn’t even acknowledge her.

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And I think ultimately, is because I felt super uncomfortable around her.

So, what I would like to do for you today is, help you understand why your ex may be acting uncomfortable around you. And it doesn’t always have to be an in person type of interaction where they’re acting uncomfortable.

It can also be over text messages. Sometimes you’ll notice they’re sending you text messages that are out of the norm or they’re not responding when they used to respond all the time. And this can help you understand why they’re acting that way.

The Top Five Reasons An Ex Will Act Uncomfortable Around You

Now, like I said at the beginning of this podcast episode, we’re going to be looking at the top five reasons that exes will be uncomfortable after a breakup.

So, what are those top five reasons?

  1. Guilt Of The Breakup
  2. Intimidated if You Are Too UG
  3. Has Another Woman (Feels Wrong)
  4. Doesn’t Want To Disappoint Friends Or Family
  5. No Social Protocol For Breakups

Let’s dive in starting from the top.

Reason #1: Guilt Due To The Breakup

Well, the first reason, is guilt.

They have a lot of guilt wrapped up into the breakup.

And for this, I’m going to tell you another story. And this is a story that’s rather recent.

A few weeks ago, I was on the phone with my brother. And weirdly enough, him and I usually never talk about relationship stuff, but for whatever reason, he had just gotten back from a date that day, and he was like really, really falling for this girl.

Anyways, so it sort of bridged the gap between us because he knows what I do for a living. And I started asking him questions about, “Hey, what are some of the other girls that you’ve dated?” And he told me all these really interesting stories.

But one thing really stuck out in particular, and that’s the fact that, there was one girl who he really liked but ended up breaking up with her.

And I thought, “Oh this is perfect. I can actually ask him, what he was thinking and what he was feeling during this period of time.” And so what he said to me was that, he knew for about two weeks beforehand that he was going to break up with her. And I asked him, “But why did you wait that long? Why not just sort of rip the bandaid off? It’s easier for everyone. May be painful, but at least she’s not wasting her time in a relationship that you already know is doomed.”

And he said something fascinating.

He said, “I felt really guilty about the fact that I was going to break up with her. And I was also really worried or scared of hurting her feelings.”

So oftentimes, one of the reasons an ex can act uncomfortable after a breakup is they feel a lot of guilt wrapped up into the breakup itself.

They feel like they hurt you, and they feel like they’re in the wrong and they don’t like that conflict. Some people like conflict, but most people don’t like conflict. And so, an ex who’s acting uncomfortable, who they’re acting strange, they’re uneasy, they’re awkward around you, it’s oftentimes because they’re feeling guilty or they’re feeling like, “I hurt you and she must hate me.”

So that’s the first of the five reasons for why exes will act extremely uncomfortable after a breakup.

Reason #2: They Are Intimidated When You Are Too Ungettable

The second one, is a different type of situation.

That’s where they become intimidated, if you’re too ungettable.

So, if you don’t already know, I’m really famous around the internet, I guess, for coining this term called, ungettable or rather the ungettable girl.

And it’s essentially this idealized version of a woman that almost all men want, but no man can have, which makes them want her even more and they can chilly chase her, and she’s ungettable.

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And, it’s a really, really good terminology I guess.

But what’s interesting is, a lot of women take the ungettable idea and they add to it. And it’s evolved into something I would have never even imagined. And even to prove that point, a few months ago, I ran a poll, in our Facebook group.

And ultimately what we were looking to do, was trying to understand, what are the different ways in which you can be termed ungettable? And I want to read to you. And I actually wrote this in a book, so give me a second. I’m going to actually need to pull the book here. But I want to read to you, what some of the terminology that people would come up with was.

So, here’s everything that an ungettable girl is.

  • She’s confident.
  • She loves herself.
  • She’s treated with respect.
  • She’s not ever a second choice.
  • She’s really great at setting goals and obtaining them.
  • Somehow the song can touch this plate in my mind.
  • Being confident in every choice that you make.
  • Living your best life. Being cooled in any situation.
  • Being positive no matter what life throws your way.
  • Being true to yourself.
  • Being other people’s… Actually I read that wrong. Blowing other people’s expectations of you out of the water.
  • Being the best version of yourself.
  • Being independent.
  • Upgrading your life in all areas.
  • Being happy and doing things for you.
  • Finding inner peace.
  • Being okay, doing things alone. Which is not an easy thing to do, by the way.
  • Not easily caught
  • Playing hard to get.

Finding joy in life no matter what every thought and action of mine or just celebrating the fact, that I am freaking amazing.

So let’s say you obtained this ungettable status. It is entirely possible, that when you obtain this ungettable status… It doesn’t happen overnight by any means. But it’s entirely possible that your ex sees how powerful and how attractive you have become, and they grow intimidated, and they don’t know what to do.

Reason #3: Your Ex Has Another Woman (And It Feels Wrong)

The third reason, an ex will act uncomfortable after a breakup, is when they have another woman.

They’ve moved on, and they know, it’s wrong and it will hurt you. And it feels like they’re going to be flaunting it in your face.

So this actually kind of goes back into that story I told of my brother about hurting that girl’s feelings. Well, it’s entirely possible for them to know that they moved on to this new person. And they don’t want to flaunt it in your face.

So they act extremely awkward.

Because they know, deep down, they did you wrong. And they feel wrong about the whole situation.

Again, most the times you’re going to find that a lot of the reasons that people act uncomfortable, after a breakup is because, they really don’t like conflict. So they do things to avoid conflict at any chance or any costs they can.

So there’s not really much to unpack there. It’s pretty obvious. If your ex has moved on to another woman, they’ll feel uncomfortable or act awkward around you or be little uneasy around you because, they know it’s wrong to flaunt the other woman in front of you.

Reason #4: They Don’t Want To Disappoint Their Friends Or Family

The fourth reason that exes will act uncomfortable after a breakup, is they don’t want to disappoint their friends or family.

I see this actually more often than you would think. It’s not the most prevalent situation, but it’s a lot more… It happens more often than you think. And that’s the situation where, an ex literally has introduced you to their friends and family.

And their friends and family absolutely love you.


But then they break up with you, and they catch a lot of flack from their friends and family.

“Hey, what happened to so-and-so? What happened?” And then he’s going to say something along the lines of, “Well, I broke up with her.”

And they’re going to say something along the lines of,

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“How could you do that? She was perfect for you.”

Oftentimes I talk about this concept of the sphere of influence.

It’s basically the people that your ex surrounds himself with, whose opinions that he cares about.

Oftentimes, this is really strong family members, really strong friends, best friends.

If you have those people on your side, and they’re basically berating him for breaking up with you, it can make him feel really uncomfortable around you after the breakup.

Because, he knows that he disappointed friends and family. Again, this is another tie in to that conflict aspect.

Where they’re trying to avoid conflict and they know that they created conflict, with their actions, with their friends and family, with their sphere of influence. So that’s the fourth sort of big reason that an ex will feel uncomfortable, or act uncomfortable after a breakup.

Reason #5: There Is No Social Protocol For Breakups

The fifth one, is a new one.

And it’s something that I think every person can relate to. Because they know it’s true. And that’s the fact that there’s no social protocol for breakups.

We go to school and we’re almost taught how to do a lot of different things, but one of the things teachers never teach us is, how to handle a breakup with grace. Most of the time, I see people who handle breakups without any grace. They get angry. They get depressed.

They don’t really know what the social protocol is. They don’t know if it’s okay to see their ex after the breakup.

They don’t know whether it’s okay to talk about it. They don’t really know. And usually the people who know, have gone through so many breakups in their life that it’s almost become second nature on how they should respond to certain type of things.

And usually those are the kind of people, that you should stay away from. Because there’s a reason why they’re going through so many breakups.

They’re maybe not mature enough to handle a longterm relationship.

But overall, there’s really no social protocol for a breakup.

  • How do you act?
  • What do you do?
  • What do you say?

In fact, I think that’s the whole reason this podcast has taken off. Why we get almost 3000 listeners a day.

People want to know, “How do I handle a situation in this particular situation?” And that’s what this podcast is for. But what’s interesting, is that, how you handle a breakup if you’re trying to get an ex back, is different than how you handle a breakup if you’re not trying to get an ex back. So, there’s even more intricacies to these social customs that revolve around breakups.

Ultimately, this can create a lot of awkwardness or uncomfortableness around your ex because he doesn’t know what to do.

He doesn’t know what to say. And so he’s acting in a way that avoids that conflict. And that’s an important thing for you to also understand, to sometimes be patient and cut a guy a little bit of a break.

Give him a little bit of a break because he doesn’t know, and he thinks that it’s going to be really conflict heavy.

This is something for you to really… This is a podcast episode that, for those of you who are in the no contact rule, can really take to heart. Because, if you think about it, a lot of the times that your ex will act awkward to you when you try to get back in touch with them after the no contact rule, stems around this conflict thing. So it’s up to you to kind of dispel some of these things.

Now you don’t come out and say like, “Hey, don’t worry.

You moved on to another girl. I’m cool. Completely fine.” You don’t say things like that. But, you make it as nonconfrontational and as easy going, as possible. And I think that alone is enough to set your ex and make them calm. Because what’s really interesting is if you take an ex who’s extremely uncomfortable, they’re uneasy around you, they’re acting strange, they’re awkward, and you actually just get into a well-meaning conversation with them, you’ll start to notice they’ll start to return to their old selves.

And a lot of times… The best analogy I can think of. And it’s maybe not one that you guys can connect with. But, who knows, maybe. Is, if you ever felt the pressure of a sporting event, where you’re required to perform. Where like let’s say you’re like the best soccer player on your team, right?

And the whole team is relying on you. Well before you actually go into the soccer match, you’re extremely nervous. And you kind of like let it get to you a little bit. You start thinking about all the negative things that could happen.

But once you actually start playing soccer, the nerves kind of go away because you’re doing something physical. It’s a little bit like that. The uneasiness and the awkwardness and the uncomfortableness will go away, if you can get your ex into a conversation, where there’s no conflict. And you’re just having fun. I think that’s an important thing or an important lesson, for you to take home.

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6 thoughts on “Why Is My Ex So Uncomfortable Around Me?”

  1. Lost

    May 3, 2020 at 7:45 pm

    Should I tell him how I feel (more or less) before going NC? He’s in a greener grass situation (maybe rebound, because it is a super serious relationship in less than a month since he met her) and he “dumped” me when we were closer than ever to give us the chance.
    I know that I won’t get anything inmediately since he’s in the honeymoon period but he tends to feel guilty for everything. I wouldn’t use the guilt for this, but maybe if I can kinda touch his emotions with my “last” text, maybe if the honeymoon period ends, he’ll remember the way I love him.
    I would not beg, I’d just say that he doesn’t have to have contact with me, since the last times it felt like he was “forcing” himself (even if he enjoyed), that I don’t want to be an “obligation” and that I’d have loved that things were different but it doesn’t depend on me. I’d finish saying that my door is open only if he wants, but that I don’t want to “impose” my presence, so he can come only if he wanted.

    Too bad idea?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      May 7, 2020 at 6:00 pm

      Hey there, no you should not tell him how you feel before going into NC you just stop speaking. Vanish. If he has the grass is greener syndrome then it wont make a difference what you say to him right now, he needs to realise his choices are wrong by himself. Sending a text to make him feel guilt is NOT going to get the reaction you want him to have it is just going to disappoint you and leave you more upset. Also you do not want someone to be with you out of guilt!

  2. Brida

    May 1, 2020 at 11:40 am

    What happens when he starts a new relationship and he spends all day and all night talking to her, the 99% of his interactions in social media are with her, stopped doing things with friends (and stopped talking to me) and, to sum up, everything is about her? Less than a month since this started.
    He has been desperatly in love with another person in the past, almost obsessed with her, and he didn’t do this! He is a super extroverted guy with tons of hobbies and friends, and now he is 100% focused on this girl. I can barely recognize him.
    Have I lost him forever?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      May 9, 2020 at 5:05 pm

      Hi Brida, so this stage he is at at the moment is the honeymoon phase where he is just surrounded by her, but it will die down it takes time. Plus if he has moved on quickly from your relationship to her there is a chance he is trying to convince himself that he feels the way he does. He will eventually start being himself again soon with friends and hobbies. Be sure to complete a 45 day No Contact before you start your being there method, this gives you time to re enter his life when he is passed the honeymoon phase

  3. Jill

    April 25, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    What if they just seem the same. I work with my ex and did the whole limited NC, that was awkward and i feel like he was upset initially with that but now we are back talking at work like normal. Im trying to be normal and upbeat but I havent the courage to contact outside of work because i feel like he is indifferent to me. The indifference is deflating.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 25, 2020 at 12:05 pm

      Hi Jill so when you are in work you are only supposed to speak to your ex where you HAVE to. Working with your ex does not mean be around each other all day, move else where so that you can give you both space. When you have followed a limited NC reach out with a text to star your conversation naturally using the guides that Chris has suggested in his articles and videos