Signs Your Ex Wants You Back

It is always tempting, after a breakup, to wonder if you and your ex made a mistake. Should you have stayed together? Depending on whether it’s been a short time or a long time since you split up, you may be feeling emotionally raw or simply intellectually curious. This is all perfectly normal. Nearly everyone wonders “what if” they had done something different, chosen another course. How differently might their life have turned out? Would they be happier, unhappier, or about the same?

Most of these questions are impossible to answer, given the linear nature of time. Nevertheless, it is possible to expend an awful lot of energy and time thinking about them. Like I said, it is normal to wonder sometimes, but if wondering becomes a constant obsession, that’s a bad thing.

But let’s just say, for the sake of argument, that you’re wondering whether you made a mistake and you wonder if maybe your ex wonders the same thing. Now, let’s be clear – there’s a big difference between wondering if you made a mistake and wanting to get back together with your ex. Don’t make the error of supposing those two things are the same. Everybody wonders about relationships that have passed on, but few people actually want to go back and relive those experiences. The odds that you two will ever end up together again are low.

After all, the two of you broke up – your relationship failed. No matter how hard you both tried, or how much you loved each other, the problems were simply too great to overcome. One or both of you decided that it was simply too painful or difficult to go on. If it was just one of you – your ex most likely, given this scenario – who ended the relationship, they had pretty good reasons. It will take a lot for them to make a 180-degree turn and decide to restart a failed relationship. If it was both of you, a mutual decision, then both of you would have to change your minds in order to get back together. That’s even less likely.

But it does sometimes happen that couples break up and then give it another go. I’d suggest you think long and hard, though, before reentering a failed relationship. A lot of things have to have changed for you two to have a better chance that you had the previous time. If there are serious personality differences between you, or if one of you simply doesn’t love the other one anymore, the odds against you are long indeed.

Perhaps you are sure you want to get back together with your ex. You’ve thought long and hard about it, you’ve worked on yourself, you’ve changed, you’ve improved those flaws in yourself that led to the original breakup. Now you want to figure out if your ex is interested in getting back together with you. How can you tell?

Well, unless your life is some kind of soap opera, the Number 1 sign that your ex wants to get back together with you is them saying, “I want to get back together with you.” The Number 2 sign that your ex wants to get back together with you is you asking them, “Do you think we should get back together?” and them answering “Yes.”

Those are the only two signs that really mean anything. Other things can be meaningful, but you will never know for sure until you have a direct, grown up conversation.

What are some other signs that might indicate your ex is still interested?

They’re still single. Depending on how long it has been since you broke up, the fact that they haven’t gotten into a new relationship could be a positive sign for you. But it could also mean that they are so traumatized by your breakup that they don’t want to have any kind of relationship with anybody for a while. So be careful.

They like to hang out with you. Being friends is an important foundation for a love relationship, to be sure. Most couples that break up either quit talking to each other completely, or they try to keep a friendly connection but end up drifting apart over time. If it’s been a while since you broke up and you and your ex are still good friends, if you go out and spend a lot of time together, that is a positive sign. You need to be friends if you have any chance of a more intense, serious relationship. But again, this is not a sure sign. Your ex may have decided that the two of you were a disaster as lovers, but that you will make good friends, or at least you have a chance of salvaging a friendship out of the wreckage of your relationship.

Physical contact and touching. When you are together with your ex, the way they interact with you can be very revealing. Physical contact, touching, hugging and so on can indicate that there’s still some level of attraction and passion there. If they touch your arm or hand while talking to you, or put their arm around you while you two are walking along, that’s a sign of affection. However, though this is a good sign, it isn’t a certain one, and there’s always a risk of confusion. Because you’ve been intimate in the past, your natural and normal barriers against physical touching are different than with other people. So the touching and hugging may just be leftovers from your past close connection.

Kissing and sex. You might think having sex with your ex, or making out with them, is a fantastic sign that they want to rekindle your relationship. But this may be the trickiest and most treacherous sign of all. After a breakup, everyone is emotionally devastated and uncertain. Often, due to the emotional roller coaster that follows a breakup, couples do have sex again, or kiss each other and do other things beyond regular friendship. But although sex is an important part of a relationship, it isn’t the only part, and it isn’t the most important part. So beware of making the mistake so many people have made – thinking that just because your ex went to bed with you again means they want to be a couple again.


All these signs can help you get some idea whether your ex is interested in you. But remember, they are not dependable signs, and they are no substitute for a direct, honest conversation about what both of you want. You don’t have to wonder and read the tea leaves and look for hidden signals. You can just ask.

About Jessica Raymond

Jessica Raymond, BSc, RCC, is LoveLearnings senior editor. As a relationship counselor, Jessica has helped hundreds of men and women achieve their relationship dreams. Whether it’s finding your one true love or simply charming someone on a date, Jessica's got your back! In her articles, she reveals little-known, psychological tips that will make even the coldest person chase you around like a little puppy.
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