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Why Holding Out For Your Ex Will Never Make Them Come Back

We have all been there. A breakup happens but we don’t really want it to. Your partner makes a decision and we have no other choice but to comply—heartbroken.

What follows are days and weeks of grief and desperation during which you nervously try to find a way to get them back.

“Maybe if we have one more last talk, they will realize that I’m the right one for them. Maybe if they come over and see that I’m happy and cheerful, they will remember how much fun we had. Maybe if they hear me cry and regret my actions, they will have compassion and reconsider it.”

We keep their clothes in case they want to pick them up. We remain friends on Instagram, in case they want to slide into our dm’s. We keep the door just a crack open, in case they want to come back.

We do whatever it takes to hold on to them, but no matter how much you cling, beg or plead, it won’t make them come back.

The thing that makes a person want to be with you is not your dependence on them, but your love for life regardless of their presence or not.

There is nothing wrong with showing vulnerability while you are in a healthy relationship, but it becomes a problem when your love and affection is wrapped by neediness. Your insecurity and dependence only turns them off more and they start to wonder why they wanted to be with you in the first place.

Why is that?

You make them the center of your life and that scares them

If your identity is dependent on them and you validate your self-worth based on how much they love you, they feel the pressure. A pressure to carry the load, not just of their happiness but of yours too. No one wants to feel like your life will fall apart if they mess up.

You don’t give them space to reflect on the relationship

After a breakup, most people’s natural stress behavior is to retreat and be alone so that they have time to reflect and think about the relationship. After all, they decided to break up for a reason. If you cling to them in this time and don’t allow them space to figure out what they want for their life, you are adding to their stress level and will ultimately push them away further.

You pressure them to choose you

The fact is, even though you two have been exclusively dating, they are allowed to break up with you. And if they did it respectably, you cannot be mad about it either. Not every relationship ends in marriage and more importantly not every relationship gets it right the first time. Don’t pressure them to be with you, because you are worried about losing them forever. If you are always around, they won’t have the chance to determine whether they prefer life with or without you.

Understand that if they decided to break up, all you can do is accept their decision and start focusing on yourself. Work on your self-esteem and anxiety around relationships, so that you are more confident in the next one.

People with more self-confidence don’t cling to others as a way of validating themselves. You can practice positive thinking and self-love by repeating affirmations every morning and every night. That will help you increase your sense of self-worth and keep you from clinging to an ex in the future.

About the author
Certified Dating and Relationship Coach. Follow Justine on Instagram or read more articles from Justine on Thought Catalog.

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