What to Do When Your Ex Boyfriend Wants to Be Friends

Well, it depends on what you want.

From my experience, most women who are asking this question still want their boyfriend back.

So this article will be focused on that.

 

This Is Not For Everyone!

Let’s face it. It is not easy to be friends with an ex.

This is a very painful situation to be in, especially if you still want him back.

Only those with a certain level of emotional strength and maturity can pull this off. You should only proceed if you know you can handle the emotional turmoil inside of you and you are absolutely sure that he is the one for you.

You must also accept the fact that even if you do everything right and tried your best, he may not want to come back.

Do you think you can handle that?

 

What If It Is Too Hard For You?

If you are still extremely emotional, forcing yourself to stay friends with your ex will probably do more harm than good.

If that is the case, it may be better for you to cut off contact for a while and allow yourself to heal from the breakup first.

In most cases, you don’t have to worry too much about rejecting the friendship. I am assuming that your ex boyfriend is a relatively reasonable and understanding guy.

If you just honestly tell him that you need a bit of time to heal from the breakup and can’t be friends with him for the time being, he should be able to understand.

It is not like if you say you can’t be friends with him, then you can’t contact him in one to two months time. So you don’t have to worry.

In fact, you don’t even have to say “can’t be friends with him”. Just say you need some space and he will understand.

However, once you are in control of your emotions and are ready to get in touch with him, you will have to accept the friendship if that is what he wants for the time being.

If you really want to get your boyfriend back, accepting the friendship will give you a chance to show him
that you have really changed and the relationship is going to be better.

Of course, proving to him that you are different is going to take time. You can’t just go up to your ex and tell him that you’ve changed or you are willing to change. I am pretty sure some of you have tried doing so without any success.

That is because action speaks louder than words. Your words don’t mean anything to him. He needs to see with his own eyes that you have really changed before he will even consider taking you back.

 

Anything That Is Worth Achieving Is Usually Not Easy

No pain no gain! I hope you don’t see it as I am trying to torture you.

I am just trying to be realistic here. Yes, not accepting the friendship is the easier thing to do. But very often, it doesn’t help you get back together with your ex boyfriend.

We shall look at an example here.

Let say your ex breaks up  with you because of cultural differences, how is no contact going to help you get him back?

Do you think he is going to change his mind suddenly just because you stop contacting him? He may miss you a little bit here and there but that doesn’t mean he wants you back.

Put it this way. There are successful cross cultural marriages in the world. If he tells you he doesn’t want to marry you because of cultural differences, it simply means he is not crazy enough about you to want to even consider cross cultural marriage.

But if for some reasons, you just feel that he is the one for you, staying friends with him might be your only hope to make him fall deeply in love with you again, such that cultural differences is no longer an issue.

answers

How To Get Your Ex Back If He Wants To Be Friends

When your ex just wants to be friends, it is not necessary a bad thing. The fact that your boyfriend still wants to be friends means he still wants you in his life.

If you play your cards right, it is possible to make him fall in love with you again. After all, he has loved you in the past. Therefore, he can love you again in the future.

The key to doing so is to get rid of the negative emotions between the two of you so that the love can flow again. In order to do that, you should accept the friendship.

 

Respect Your Ex’s Boundary

It is important to remember that you are just friends now. Therefore, it is important to respect the boundary of your ex.

Don’t expect him to meet up with you or contact you as often as when you were still together. If he does, good for you. If he doesn’t, be okay with that. That is why acceptance is important like what I mentioned in this article.

It is normal if he doesn’t want to meet you as often in the beginning. As long as you are able to make the best out of every meeting and improve your emotional connection with him, eventually he will want to meet you more often. Until then, be patient.

 

Important! Don’t Panic

I just want to mention this because I have received the same question so many times. Most probably, you will encounter the same situation too. So I thought it is a good idea to address the question here.

After being friends with your ex for a while and you are slowly starting to see progress, you will find your ex starting to take the initiative to contact you. Of course, when that happens, many women are very happy and full of hope.

Then suddenly, your ex stop contacting you. Many women will start to panic and lose hope when this happens.

“Oh no, what happen? I didn’t do anything wrong? I wasn’t needy or anything. Why did he stop calling?”

Hey ladies, I am here to tell you, “Don’t Worry!”

This is very normal. You have to remember this. You are not the only one who has emotions. Don’t forget that your ex is a human being too.

As much as you are anxious, he is probably as anxious as you. Maybe a part of him wants to get back together with you. Another part of him is not so sure because he is afraid to get back into the same old relationship.

That is why he is confused and anxious. Therefore, he stopped contacting you.

In fact, if you encounter this situation, you are probably in Stage 3 of getting your ex back. You can sign up for my newsletter below if you want to learn more about the various stages of getting your ex back.

You will receive this information on Day 11 of my newsletter. When you have a solid understanding of the various stages of getting your ex back, you will know what to do and what not to do during each stage. This will help you avoid a lot of unnecessary mistakes.

 

You Probably Did Nothing Wrong

Don’t automatically assume that you have done something wrong. Most probably, it has got to do with your ex’s emotional state, which you have no control over.

But you do have control over your own emotional state. So stay calm and don’t panic.

Of course, there is also the possibility that he just happen to be busy. That is why he stop contacting you for a while.

Remember, he is no longer your boyfriend at this moment. So he has no obligation to tell you what he is busy with.

Anyway, the main point I want to drive across to you is that your ex may suddenly stop contacting you for any number of reasons.

If there is one ability you need to cultivate in order to increase your chances of getting your ex back, it is the ability to look at things as they are without attaching your own meaning to them.

Don’t just let your negative thoughts take over and assume that you have done something wrong. Don’t just jump to conclusion.

 

Why It Is Important To Learn To Look At Things As They Are

First, let me explain what is looking at things as they are.

When your ex didn’t contact you, it simply means your ex didn’t contact you.

That is called looking at the situation as it is.

When you start to worry that you have done something wrong, that’s called attaching your own meaning to the situation.

Obviously, when you operate from that frame of mind, you are going to panic.

When you panic, you will not know what to do.

On the other hand, when you learn to look at the situation as it is, you can be more calm and relaxed.

When you are calm and relaxed, you can entertain more possibilities and thus come up with a better solution.

Instead of letting fear control you, now you are operating out of empathy and curiosity.

For example, when you are afraid that you have done something wrong, you are totally stuck. You don’t even dare to contact him if he doesn’t contact you again. Obviously, that is not going to help you get your ex back.

On the other hand, when you learn to look at the situation as it is, you are not hold back by fear or some arbitrary rules.

Say he contact you on Day 1 to Day 4 but didn’t do so on Day 5 to Day 7. Which rule say you can’t contact him on Day 8?

Maybe you can send a simple text message like, “Hey, I just watch Avengers. It’s a great movie. I believed you will like it too.” Then maybe he will reply you, both of you will start talking again and you will realize that your fear is unfounded.

 

Keep Your Emotions In Check

How well you manage your emotions during this period is going to determine your chances of getting your ex back.

I know this may sound a little bit counter intuitive to you but it is the truth. The more you can treat your ex like a friend, the more likely you are going to get him back.

In other words, you need to place his needs above yours. Respect his wish to be friends and put your desire to get him back on hold.

In a way, you can consider this as a form of true love. If you truly love and care about a person, you will not insist on getting back together when he isn’t emotionally ready to make the decision yet.

If every time you contact your ex boyfriend, your main focus is about how to get him back, without caring about how he really feels, he will be able to sense it and start resisting you.

Now, I am not going to lie to you and tell you that it is easy. Not everyone can do it. You really need to have a certain level of emotional maturity. More importantly, you need to truly care about the well being of your ex.

When you are able to do so, your ex will definitely appreciate it. Your friendship with your ex will deepen and there is a good chance that he will fall in love with you again.

 

Don’t Fall Into The Friend Zone

Yes, I mentioned above that the more you treat your ex boyfriend like a friend, the more likely you can win him back. However, that doesn’t mean you should let yourself fall into the friend zone.

For example, if you are simply meeting your ex for dinner every single time, then your relationship is unlikely to progress. Remember, you want to gradually make him fall in love with you again. Therefore, once both of you are comfortable with each other again, you might want to invite him for other activities such as hiking, having a roller coaster ride or even volunteer work at another country.

Sports or any activities that make you sweat provide great opportunities for you to rekindle the love with your ex. For example, when your ex is sweating, you can wipe the sweat off him, which is what couples often do. And don’t be afraid to flirt with him if the situation is right.

The keyword here is “gradually”. Obviously, you don’t try to plan an overseas trip for the first meeting after the breakup. You don’t try to flirt too much initially. You have an advantage here. You know your ex best if you have been dating him for at least a few months. You know what he enjoys doing. Therefore, you will know what activities to plan.

 

Learn To Have Fun and Enjoy Your Time With Your Ex

Being friends with your ex doesn’t always have to be a miserable experience, unless you decided to look at it that way.

It can be very fun and enjoyable as long as you are not too attached to the outcome of getting back together.

As much as you want to get your ex back, the more attached you are to the outcome, the less likely you are to be in the present moment. You will lose a lot of opportunities to connect with your ex on a deep emotional level which means you are less likely to get your ex back.

On the other hand, when you are not so attached to the outcome, you can be more present in your interaction with your ex because you are more relaxed.

Look at it this way. You are now dating your ex again. You are now getting to know your ex all over again. Maybe you will discover something new about your ex that you didn’t know in the past.

Shouldn’t that be an exciting and fun experience? When you can view being friends with your ex with this mindset, your ex will be influenced by you as well.

They are more likely to consider getting back together with you if they associate being together with you as “fun” and “exciting”.

You also have the chance to break old habits that caused your breakup in the first place and replace them with new, healthy habits.

This will ensure that you get back together on a solid foundation.

 

Know What You Are Getting Yourself Into

As much as possible, I try to be positive and encouraging because I understand how important hope is.

Without hope, people won’t even bother to try and get their ex back even if it is possible in the first place. Sometimes, all of us do need a little bit of encouragement.

That is why I always like to tell people that it is possible to get an ex back, which is true.

There are couples who do get back together in the most unlikely situation and become more loving than ever after resolving their differences.

There are also people who got their ex back even though their ex just want to be friends.

That is why if you are trying to get your ex back, you will do better if you approach it with an optimistic attitude.

It is also important to understand that it takes time.

It can take at least a few months to turn your ex from friends to lovers. I am not saying that everyone will take a few months. Some may do it faster while others will take longer.

But it is a good idea to be prepared so that you will not give up in the first few weeks.

I realized that a lot of people tend to give up too soon if they started with the wrong expectation, thinking that it will be easy.

Therefore, I would rather let you know what to expect so that you can be more patient and persistent.

 

When It Is Time To Move On

While it is good to be persistent, you should also know when to cut your losses.

Put it this way, if after one year, you are not seeing a progress in the relationship, it is probably time for you to move on.

Do take note. I am not telling you to try for one year. Ultimately, you are the one who decide how long you want to try. You will have to look at your own situation to decide.

I would say give it at least a few months. Of course, there are always exception. For example, if your ex makes it very clear to you that it is impossible between the two of you repeatedly, then it is a sign for you to move on.

The keyword here is “repeatedly”. Don’t just give up because he says it once or twice. You need to look at the situation.

Maybe the break up was really nasty and he is still very hurt. That is why he is very resistant to the idea of getting back together with you, at least for the time being.

Or maybe you haven’t really changed for the better and he noticed it. He hasn’t got the chance to see a better and improved version of you yet because you are still the same old you. That is why he is not considering taking you back anytime soon.

If that is the case, you should definitely start working on yourself. Start practising the skills I mentioned in this article today. The sooner you start, the sooner your ex boyfriend can see the changes in you and consider a relationship with you again.

 

Don’t Be Friends With Benefits

This is worth mentioning.

It is one thing to be friends with your ex but it is an entirely different matter when it comes to friends with benefits.

Being friends with benefits is not going to help you get your ex back and may even make the situation worse. So just don’t do it!

In fact, I have written an article about why it is not a good idea to sleep with your ex here.

And don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter below. I am going to share with you my best information on how to get your ex back there.

If you want to successfully turn your ex boyfriend from friend to boyfriend again, you will definitely need the information that I am going to share with you in my newsletter.

161 thoughts on “What to Do When Your Ex Boyfriend Wants to Be Friends

  1. To be honest even though he finished with me he has still been there 100% through out everything with me continued to come to all appointments and was there through the birth of our baby and his came near enough every day to see the kids I know he left me wrong time and I have been through a lot of pain but still whenever he walks into the room I look at him and my heart just melts I just fall in love with him every time I see him because we get on so well and have such a good bond together we never argued always have a laugh when were together.

    • That probably makes him a responsible father but not a good partner.

      Put it this way. I am not sure whether your baby is a daughter. But imagine now, it is your daughter who is going through the same situation. What advice will you give your daughter? You will probably ask her to leave the guy.

      I know it is not easy. You are still in love with the guy you meet when he was 15. The 15 year old guy who were still in love with you. But he is no longer the guy who is still in love with you.

      Of course, if you still want him back, then you have to let him go before he will even consider coming back. He is probably not mature enough to be in a long term relationship. I know he is 20+ years old, still young and want to experience how it is like to be with other girls.

      If you want to have a chance to get him back, then you need to be in limited contact with him, only about the kids. When you see him, just be business like, just like how you treat an acquaintance. As long as you are always available, he is never going to come back.

      • We did have a daughter and to be honest I don’t know because it would be her own life and upto her what she wanted to do I would just stand by her.

        Ok then I will go really low contact see how it goes because it did get to him when I only spoke about the kids with him he started saying to me that we shouldn’t stop talking after 8years and his told me twice been thinking about suicide because of this whole mess he feels like his lost his childhood and he misses me if don’t txt him. I do really want him back But we went out to his family members last night and he flirted with me most of the night and kept catching him taking little looks at me when his like that it’s so hard not to go with it. I do get he probably does want to go being with other girls cuz I’m only one his ever been in a relationship with me and he isn’t mature enough yet to be a father and partner yet.

        I think I’ve gone and done something stupid though I went with the advice of accepting being friends but being honest to him and telling him how I feel and hoping can be something in future for us again before I read your reply to my last comment.
        How do I get my way out of that one.

        • Don’t worry too much about that. It is not going to make a big difference with regards to whether he will come back.

          Being friends mean being friends. You can talk to him, listen to him and show him care and concern.

          You just don’t do things that cross the boundary. You don’t let him cuddle you and you don’t let him kiss you. Most importantly, you don’t sleep with him.

          You need to protect your heart. If he wants to kiss you, cuddle you or sleep with you, he needs to earn the rights to do so. He needs to commit to you.

          It is important to make a stand for yourself. Only then will he respect you. After all, he is the one who let you down when you were pregnant. He will never come back if you let him have the cake and eat it too.

        • Ok then thankyou I think I will have to just distance from him and go back to low contact just about the kids as while I’m being friends with him I’m getting so many mixed signals from him catching him looking at me now and again when his visiting and flirting with me and even his cousin has noticed.
          When I did hardly any contact before it really got to him but since I offered to be friends he seems happy and still seeing this other girl but still wanting me around to be there for him.
          He wants to be friends with me yet I’m the one who’s always making the effort to ask how he is and make convo with him so i thought about the friends thing I don’t think it will work while his acting the way his acting.
          He knows how much I care about him and love him but I feel like Me and the kids are just there for when he feels like it.

        • Being friends with an ex means you accept it when he offers the friendship. You shouldn’t be the one offering the friendship. That is a big mistake. For your situation, you shouldn’t even be friends with him.

          Anyway, since you have already offered the friendship, don’t worry too much about it. As mentioned, I don’t think it is going to make a big difference for your situation. He is obviously taking advantage of you. I know you still can’t let go of him and want him back. But you should really consider whether it is a good idea.

  2. Hi Mark.
    Did you write about your last part of this very enlightening article!? About “Don’t be friends with benefits”?
    I’m somewhere close to it and I’m miserable.

  3. Hi, first of all I am not quite sure if you will be interested to reply me as I am a man and would like to get my ex-girl friend back. As far as I can see, you advise girls to get back their ex-boyfriends. I would be grateful if you could advise me.

  4. hello mark,so men and my boyfriend being 14 month I broke up with him many times cause of my insecurity I don’t know why? but I am in love with him and I told him I wanna fix my relationship now he is telling me he doesn’t want to be serious relationship with me he don’t want to hear I said I wish things different … and he told me we can start a as friend and he ask me to go breakfast with him,i love him so much,i don’t know what to do get him back please help me:(

    • Hi Emma,

      You need to work on your insecurity first before you try to get him back again. Otherwise, it doesn’t matter what tips or tricks you use to get him back. He is still going to leave if the insecurity is still there.

      Also, you can visit my site again around 1st Jan 2015. I will try to get some new articles up and hopefully those articles will address your question. Meanwhile, you might want to practice this mediation exercise every day.

  5. Hi there,

    My boyfriend of 1.5 years had broken up with me a little over a month ago. He had told me it was because I was just too clingy and needy all the time and complained a lot which I understand I was. We didn’t stay in contact for a few weeks and we had just started talking again 2 weeks ago. I asked him if he said there was a chance to get back together and he said depends on a lot. Now the second time we discussed it, he told me he does still love me and regrets breaking up with me but he said it was for the best. Lately I have started reverting back to my old ways of texting him too much which I am working on to stop but he just wants to remain friends. Is there still possibly a chance to get him back or ilam I going to be stuck in the friend zone ? I am going to mention we “hooked up” 3 times since the breakup but it is not happening anymore.

    Thanks.

  6. Is it still possible to get back with an ex, even if he has currently moved on with another woman? My ex broke up with me, when we were living in different countries. I feel that he has forgotten the chemistry between us and forgot what it is like when we are together. Despite the break up, he has expressed a desire to keep me in his life. This has been hard for me to let go, as i am still very much in love with him. He too has said that he “loves me” (although not “in love”). He is due to come and visit me in 6 weeks. Should I keep our friendship alive and wait to see what happens when we are reunited?

    • Depends on many factors.

      1. Whether he has really moved on like you said. You didn’t tell me how long ago he broke up with you. Since you said “he has currently moved on”, I assume the break up was quite some time ago. Maybe you are right. Maybe you are wrong. Just because the break up was a long time ago doesn’t necessary mean he has moved on from you.

      2. Whether he is happy with his current relationship.

      3. Whether you are better person compared to the time he broke up with you.

      I don’t think you need to worry too much about the friendship thing. You don’t have to say you want to be friends with him. You also don’t have to say you don’t want to be friends with him.

      Don’t be the one who offer friendship as a backdoor to getting him back. On the other hand, if he is the one who offers to be friends, you can accept it. You can say something like although you still have feelings for him, you respect his decision to be friends.

      If he doesn’t say anything about friendship, you don’t have to mention it as well.

      • Thanks for the reply. As for your question- we broke up at the start of September 2014, and he started dating another woman in November which progressed into a relationship in December. We were together for 14 months.

        • If you want to improve your chances of getting him back, the only way is to work on yourself.

          Focus on things that really matters such as communication, awareness and acceptance.

          I have written an article about awareness and acceptance here. I will also be updating the article on 22nd Jan to include communication. So you can check again later.

  7. My ex and I lived together for 3 years. We had a horrible break up. It’s been really hard for me and he went extremely cold and cut contact. We are now talking but we have agreed to be friends. We have spoken a lot in these last few days. Even about a girl he had felt heart sore about as he really liked her but she didn’t return the feelings. We have flirted smoke about our past sexual relationship. Today we spoke about not sleep if together as he is worried about feelings coming back. He keeps mentioning on my side or give me the wrong idea. I said tho he means himself. He says he does not want to go back to how it was and things with his family is very complicated. He is even scared if someone sees us together. That’s how bad our break up was but I get this sense he can’t help but talk to me. We have mentioned how conversation flows and how hard it is to find a connection with someone. We been deep. Flirty. Fun . When he told me he just wants to be friends I told him that’s fine cos I don’t think I could trust him again. But in truth I would like us to work things out. He meant the world to me. The other day he told me he spent many nights crying about our break up but also could not deal with the guilt again. He didn’t cheat on me. He said he fell out of love with me. I changed and I don’t get on well with his family. What is your advice. Sorry we been apart for 4 months

    • Focus on internal changes that is real and lasting. This will make you a very attractive woman. You will also be able to connect with your ex better and form a deep emotional connection with him. Once he noticed the changes in you, he may start falling in love with you again. You can read my new article for more information.

  8. Hi mark, hope you had a good holiday, I am having a little bit of confusion , my ex came back into my life after 6 months (we dated for 4 years) he broke up due to our fighting , cause of stress and a few whites lies, and I hate liars. I always has a hard time of him being a bit selfish as he’s only child , we were in love , we fought for eachother through the good and the bad , he broke up with me this past June after our one last fight and he dissapeared but kept contact with my family to explain his reasons (it seemed he was confused ) 4 months after June in October (my bday month) he emailed me a day after my bday and said happy birthday and wishing me all the best and I deserve it and take care , I replied with an email back how hurt I am and thankyou for the email and how much I loved him regardless of our stupid fights , he still replied saying I’m not here starting conversation but to wish you the best and happy birthday , and now 3 weeks ago , he called me out of nowhere with his new number to talk , we met up and he explained why he left and it was poisonous and a vicious cycle , but left it to gods hands and if it’s meant to be and he wants to be friends and no plan or promises , but he calls me everyday and msgs me every every day , he calls and is so honest about so much and how he doesent want anyone else or wants to date , he gets asks me what I will be saying to my dates now and I tell him I’ll just tell them I’m not ready for a relationship (cause I have started to move on and feel better again ) and now I’m just taking day by day , but I love him so much and worried I will get hurt , I’m 34 years old and have no time for games or him hurting me again, but I am being patient and just my happy self again with him , cause it’s who I am . What are his intentions ? He said he wants to get his place soon and we joke me going there and staying there , we joke about other things (physical ) too, but it’s not about that at all . We don’t talk or meet about that. He was very sincere when he met me and explained why he left and 2 weeks doesn’t help people change in a relationship that was arguments . I just need your help and how do I take all this , he hasn’t called me in 2 days but msgd me and I haven’t replied and he msgd again after an hour helloooo? How do exes be friends so fast and he’s msging me like this only after 6 months of breakup from a 4 year relationship ? What does he want from me , he has friends he doesent need me as a friend . Plus need to add one more thing while we were broken up he said he met someone and he went on dates with her but he said he stopped and said the grass Isn’t greener on the other side . Thanks mark ..

  9. hi mark,
    i had a boyfriend for almost 6 years we were ok and we didn’t fight or anything then one day he suddenly gone without any reason, i was so depress because i didn’t do anything to him.i try to call him text him email him and also i went to their house but i was so embarrassed because he didn’t even talked to as if i am not existed.. it’s hard for me to moved on because he didn’t even told me that it is over and what is the reason why he is avoiding me .. all i want is to tell me that we are already done. but time passes i stop contacting him i also unfriended him on facebook because i always seen his picture with his friends having fun.. while i’m grieving he is happy he don’t even care about my feelings. until i saw that he has a new girl and they are dating and telling they love each other through facebook.. it’s hard for me because we don’t have a closure then having a new girl is so cruel. i love him so much, i never try to see other all i want is him.. after 9 months.. i was shocked because he send me a friend request, me? i accepted it then message him just to know why he add me . he only ask why i unfriended him . because i discovered that he already had a new girl.. then he answers that he does not have a gf. i know that he is lying no matter what i said he always insisted that he doesnt have a girlfriend. maybe they broke up.

    he is always the first one sends me a message then i always reply then suddenly he says wait and then he will never reply again .. then another day he will chat again .. its not good for me because everytime he contacts me my feelings for him growing . and my hope also .. i feel like i want him in my life ..but i am afraid to dumped me again as what he did before.. what should i do.. ? i feel like his playing with my feelings..
    he texts me once every other day then dissappears.. i dont know what to do. can you advice me what to do?

    Thank you and i will very grateful if you will notice me and reply to my message.

    • Don’t try to seek any closure. You are the only one who can give yourself closure.

      He seems to be playing mind games on you. So you can just cut him off. Be willing to let him go.

      You can read this article. Hopefully, this article can help you make a firm decision.

      Also, try the EFT exercise in this article to release your emotions.

      • Thank you mark for your reply..

        we’re friends now he just chat me sometimes and we also hang up twice. but i didn’t open any topics about our relationship before… i just don’t get it that he want’s to be friends with me after he dumped me ten months ago..
        i don’t want to be friends with him because i still love him . but it seems that i cant let him go that is why i accept the friendship even i’m hurting ..

  10. My ex boyfriend just told me he want to be friends. He is addicted to the dating site where I met him. Also he wants me to stay in his life. He said I can keep the key to his place and keep a few of my night clothes there as well. I am confused cause he is 49 years old went through a bad divorce three years ago and still bothered by it. We have been dating for three years. He knows I am a loyal woman to him. So why take a chance on losing me for good?

    • Is the answer to this question really that important?

      Maybe you want to ask other questions instead?

      Are you getting what you need from this relationship?

      Does he have the emotional capacity to give you what you need?

      After all, it has been 3 years and he is still not over the divorce. How much longer are you willing to wait?

      Maybe you want to read this article?

  11. Hi there,
    I know this guy for about 5 months online via FB and we inbox for 2 months and texted each other for remaining months. I know he likes me (because he initiated me to text him) and we really clicked well not only emotionally, mentally and spiritually. we always respect and knowing how to get along with each other.
    I know him when he was broke up with his ex of 3 years and he mentioned to me there was a on-off relationship and he doesn’t want to take it seriously. But he is in confused what is my feeling toward him. Frankly, I taken aback and just keep it as friendship. Because I don’t want to be his option/rebound relationship but I did tell him I like him. He actually confessed this feeling of him on last November.
    However on 31/12 which a few days ago, I decided to unfriend him from my FB due to he posted a pic with his ex then I realize they are getting back again. My thought: Well I respect your decision, just let go and move on. However, I didn’t expect he texted me the next day (01/01) with lovey texts, I ignore them. Then, I blocked him in my WhatsApp. I thought now all cut off. However, he inbox my FB (03/01) and asked why my WhatsApp texts no reply? He has texted me with other texts with I didn’t receive because I blocked him. Why I am no longer his FB friend? I ignore. Next day (04/01) He inbox me with my nickname in CAPITAL followed by 30 question marks. I think OK he is really frustrated and anxious now. I replied I will write you something today. I promised. On Sunday night, I decided to sort it out. I know he is waiting for me to reply on WhatsApp. So I did. I asked him are you in relationship with someone. Then he tried to bluff away again. I insisted with open minded, it alright to just talked about it and get it right. Then he confessed he is seeing this girl that he called her ‘best friend’ and working thing out. And she is currently studied abroad in other country. At this moment, we can’t be in any romantic relationship as he is in this situation. I am happy with this outcome and all I wanted is his need to realize what he wants. He wants me to stay cool and remain as friend and don’t cut him off. I didn’t reply, I don’t need to. I told him to stay well and move on. Just focus what God wants us to do and surrender all to Him.
    I unblocked him from my WhatsApp because my conscience is clear and I feel release. Let it be. However, I know I hurt his feeling by turning him down and I know he is stalking my WhatsApp online last seen. I don’t care.
    I just confused why did he reacted in such a manner when I ignore his texts and unfriend him if he just want to remain as friend with me. I don’t understand what is in his mind? Could you please offer a few views of you after read this words?
    Btw, this is a LDR. We are in different countries.
    Many thanks and grateful for reading this lengthy messages.

      • Hi Mark,
        Thank you for replying my messages. I decided to let it be as what I truly learnt in this whole incident, The Moment you want to make a decision to let go or holding on is the toughest struggle. Once you made up your mind and done it. The burden just lifted away. :)
        No we are not meeting in person yet. I believe respect and leave room for a guy to really think what is in .his heart. Never chase after a guy if he is not ready be it wrong timing, wrong situation or whatever. You will have the gut feeling. Sometimes letting go could be a redirection to breed a new beginning either for yourself or him. If he comes back later, that’s good. He should approached you with a right attitude. Otherwise you deserve a man that loves you truly and committed to you.
        Wishing you a very blessed New Year.

        • Thank you Mark! If you truly love someone’s, Letting Go is the highest form of love. You want he/she to have a happy life. At the end of the day, if you both meant to be, will be at the right time and right situation with both are prepared not only emotionally, mentality and psychologically. It is not so bad, isn’t it! :) Just a different way of thought.

  12. I’ve been with my ex boyfriend 19 months. Last 6 months he’s been pulling away from me, coming back, pulling away so I confronted him and it all ended very badly with him just wanting to be my friend. He doesn’t want to not see me, he doesn’t want a relationship with me or anyone. I want him back don’t nowhat to do we still say good night to one another. Should I stop this saying good Nite and let him hang.

  13. Hi, Mark. I am really confused. after a year, all of a sudden my ex’s family is messaging me, (we went out without my ex) after a week I saw my ex at my workplace (we didnt not talk) then after 3wks he then followed me in instagram. His mother told he is still checking me once in a while thru social medias. He once called me several times at the middle of the night. but I didnt answer. Why is he doing this? it’s almost 2 years, i dont want to talk to him because i know my weaknesses. I am better without him. though yea i miss the OLD us. the break up by the way is really bad. I hope you respond, Mark. Thank you!! n

    • I think he probably wants you back and his family members are aware of it. So maybe his family members are trying to help him get back together with you. Of course, I am just guessing.

      Anyway, I suppose that is not the main question you want to ask me. Are you trying to ask me whether you should get back together with him?

  14. Hi mark, i feeling confused why my ex boyfriend doesn’t delete me on facebook and skype , he said to me were still friends after breaking up , after a days he has a new girlfriend .. What should i do ?? Im not yet move on.

  15. Hi Mark!
    I dated my ex for 2 years, and we were pretty happy until about 3 months before our breakup.
    I had felt VERY neglected, as we were seeing each other once a week at most, and he was turning me down to hang out with friends, or forgetting to invite me to large group gatherings. He became super emotionally distant and stopped showing any form of affection.
    I know he was going through a tough time in his life, he wasn’t sure about his major anymore, what friends would still be there for him if he wanted to leave school, and not really sure what he wanted at all in life. He said he didn’t know if he was still “in love” with me, although he really appreciated me and loved me.
    It eventually came to a head, and we broke up, somewhat mutually. I wanted a break until he figured out what he wanted from life, and he felt that that is the kiss of death in a relationship, so he thought it would be best if we ended it.
    He was very adamant about remaining friends. He also made a bit of effort to talk to me, calling me the next day and so forth.
    After a few weeks I started going through a no contact period because I felt like my hopes kept getting up and crushed when we talked and I wanted some time to heal.
    However, 3 weeks after our breakup, we are working together. At first he seemed to refuse to acknowledge my existence, we would be working on a project together and he wouldn’t even make eye contact or say hello.
    I initiated contact (probably a big no-no since I felt like I was chasing HIM in the relationship more than he was chasing me at the time of the break), and he was very eager to converse. We really hit it off. Unfortunately, we work together for 8 hours a day, so we didn’t STOP talking. We lacked moderation.
    Now just after that, like a day later, he’d be playing games on his phone when we ate lunch together and planning outings with friends infront of me (which is basically my biggest pet peeve). I felt like the other day he was very excited and we picked up on a good note, and then a day later he was being very apathetic.
    I’m very confused as to how he’s feeling and what’s going on in his mind, and if he’s over me or not.
    I have a tendency to overanalyze behaviors, so I’m hoping this apathetic response was just that he was tired or something, and I’m also trying to work on this, because I know that it can be a very negative thing and lets me jump to conclusions.
    I’m also not sure how to gradually communicate with him, since we spend 8 hours a day, 7 days a week together. I could really use guidance on this whole thing because I am very confused.

    • Don’t try to get him back until you are emotionally ready to do so. Since you have no choice but to meet him everyday, just keep the conversation professional, basically only about the project. Meanwhile, work on the skills mentioned in this article.

  16. Hi Mark

    I dated my ex for 6 months. We hit it off from the get go. It was a whirlwind. We fell in love immediately and within 72 hours he professed his love (he was sincere). He always answered my calls, always available for me, always informed me about his plans and when he was with me he was always present. Problems started when I began to fear everything was too good to be true. You don’t really expect love at first sight in real life and the relationship itself was so Mills & Boon. He’s strong, supportive, dependable, thoughtful, respectful, laid-back, ambitious, not girl crazy or a party animal. So I became neurotic thinking “reality” is gonna hit soon and when something did happen I jumped to conclusions and thought AHA! I was so hurt and angry I dumped him in a 1500 word text (he counted). He was hurt and angry, he called, we fought and made up some weeks later but he never really forgave me. I tried to make it up to him but he eventually dumped me. He said after that text his love for me was crushed but he still cared but he just didn’t want to be with me. He also told me he’ll always be there for me and will protect me (I was assaulted during the breakup). He said the next guy to hurt me will not be as lucky as the one who had assaulted me. He was adamant he still wants me in his life but as friends. I was completely shattered but I took it with grace. He used to call me everyday after that to make sure I’m okay until I told him to stop and that I couldn’t be friends with him as it hurt and keeping contact wasn’t helping me to heal. He panicked and didn’t want to cut ties but eventually said he understood. That lasted all of 9 days because I missed him too much. He told me that during those 3 weeks he tried dating other women but they didn’t make him feel the way he feels when he is around me and he has realised I’m the only woman who brings those feelings and that he wants me back. We lasted a day. I found out he lied about something, got really upset and we had a fight that resulted in him walking out. For a month we were on and off which frustrated me greatly we had another huge fight and we broke up for good. We didn’t speak for 4 months then out of the blue after New Years day he texted me. I was so happy because I didn’t like the way things ended and I still have feelings for him. I’m now in an emotionally secure place and I realize my mistakes (although the breakdown wasn’t solely mine). We chat once a week now, the conversations are friendly and nice with a little bit of teasing but I don’t allow them to carry on for too long. I would love for us to try again as I’m in a better space to handle our relationship but I’m happy to be friends with him if that’s all he wants because I want him to be happy and I’d much rather get along with him and have him in my life. Yesterday he brought up the past for the first time and told me he misses the good times. I took this as a good sign and a step forward. He also called me dear and sweety but today when I texted him about something I promised him he replied “thanks my friend, I really appreciate it”. What gives? In your opinion is he confused about what he wants or does he see me only as a friend and meant those endearments in a friendly way? During our relationship we never called each other dear or sweety only bae or babe.

    • You know I always tell people not to over analyze things when they are trying to get their ex back. So I am also going to tell you the same thing.

      Don’t over analyze his text messages. It is going to drive you crazy and it doesn’t achieve anything useful.

      So he calls you dear and sweety, what does it mean? Well, it simply means he call you dear and sweety.
      So he calls you friend, what does it mean? Well, it simply means he call you friend.
      That’s all you need to know for now. Don’t try to attach your own meaning to it.

      Sure, he can have his own meanings. But I can assure you, those are not important when it comes to really getting your ex back. What will really help you get your ex back is to focus on internal transformation like what I mentioned in this article.

      For example, from your comment, I noticed there are a number of occasions where you just react on autopilot. Things happen, you react, you argue with him and he got pushed away.

      That is because of a lack of awareness and to a certain extent, communication skills. When you are able to cultivate awareness to a certain level, you will be able to catch yourself in the act before you react. So this is an area that you definitely need to work on. Otherwise, there is no point getting back together with him. It will just lead to another break up.

      The more times you break up with him, the harder it is for you to win him back because he will find it harder and harder to trust you. So please make sure you really go through real internal transformation before you even try to get him back again. Otherwise, it will just lead to another breakup when the same pattern repeats itself again and again. I am sure this is not what you want.

      If you are still worried about the “friend” part, please don’t worry. I noticed you have subscribed to my newsletter. In my 5th email, I addressed this issue. I am not sure which day you are at in my newsletter, but you should receive that email a few days later.

  17. I’ve been into 3years relationship with this guy,in 3 years time we come see wach other every weekend ,he come and visit me to my country,and as i do as well.. we are both happy all this years.. there are times in 3 years i used to stay with him for the whole month..but after that i found out that he was cheating on me lately.. then suddenly he told me that he’s feelings for me had been change he still love me,but he told me love has different faces.. so now he wanted just to be friends.. but after that day happen,we didnt lose contact infact that makes us more closer cos he fetch me and bring him to his place and stayed with him for one month for 7months now.. but according to him we are just friend,but the way he act sometimes just a friend,sometimes a lover.. so as i can see we are in-between relationship.. when i tried to talk to him again,he told me.tje same he want us to be friends.,he wanted us to be friends so what is that means..he wven told me that i need to get married too with the right guy…
    pls i need help,i trully love him so much.. and i want him back so i stay with him,but he doesnt want to put label on our relationship now..

    • Staying with him just to try and get him back is not going to work. From your comment, I can sense that you are going through a lot of pain by staying with him. It will probably be better if you leave him for a while and use this time to heal yourself first and act on the advice in this article. Only after you have developed the skills mentioned in the article do you try and get him back.

  18. Hi.

    I’ve been with my boyfriend for almost 3 years now. We broke up abt 4 months back but he came back aft 2 weeks. It’s been 3 months since we got back together and everything’s been well until the past 2 weeks where we’ve been fighting about rediculous things like whatsapp background photos and all.

    He gave up on us because of these stupid fights as he feels like we dont understand each other where i feel it’s more or less a conflict of emotions. We took a time out last week but we still talk abit. Je wanted us to be friends. When we met with a bunch of friends, it started out to be awkward at first then he started to be his “bf” self with me. Friends told me to just run with it and i did, in a slightly friend-ish way. After that day we talked almost everyday with him initiating but recently he has problems and we don’t talk much. I don’t know what else to do. I keep falling for him but now i’m starting to feel hurt eventhough i keep telling myself to put my wall up. I have friends even telling me to leave. Help. What should i do?

    • You may want to consider no contact for a while. For 2 purposes. First, to get your emotions under control. Second, to reflect on what went wrong. Otherwise, even if you manage to get back together, it will probably end up in another breakup again.

  19. Hi Mark,

    so after a huge tiff and some prolong issues, my ex of 7 months wants to move on. he said he preferred us to keep in contact which i refused from the start when we had this talk on ‘what if things didnt work out’. yes i still do love him and sent him a text a day, to tell him i remember him, though he never did reply. he called me in two weeks to break the silence and asked what do i want by keeping contact – to get back together or to be friends? of course he chose the latter. he explained he didnt want me to harbor hopes so he chose not to reply to my texts and i address my concern that if he wants us to keep in contact, that would only make me harbor hopes. he said we should keep in contact because we have mutual friends and he didnt want to create a big issue out of it (which i dont understand, people will know sooner or later). he wants to know that i will be there for him when i need him and he refused to try to work things out now cause some fights are still lingering in his mind (i understand this because i’m working on healing myself too). he said we never know what will happen in the future, maybe things will work out, cause who knows what the future holds.
    you know Mark, he confuses me, at one point he said he do not want me to harbor hopes and at another talking about the future. anyway i agree to learn his way of being friends and remain in contact.

    • Being friends with your ex doesn’t mean you have to contact him everyday. You shouldn’t be sending him a text message everyday telling him that you remember him or love him. Doing so doesn’t create any emotional connection, which is what really matters when it comes to getting your ex back.

      Right now, you shouldn’t be contacting him so often because you haven’t done enough healing and don’t have the emotional strength. I will suggest that you focus on working on yourself by following the steps in this article.

      Only start to contact him when you have developed the skills I recommend in that article so that you are more likely to connect with him emotionally.

  20. Hi Mark,

    Hopefully you are able to give me a good advise. My ex and I just broke up about 3 weeks ago basically it was first for a misunderstanding we had and he broke it off, we known each other for 8 months but dated officially for 4 months. After a week i reached out to him and told him i did miss him and the connection we had. He had previously told me that he felt that he wasnt ready for a relationship that maybe he rushed in to it however the week that i reach out to him he told me that we can slowly build back up and see where it goes. Since than he has text me and we had some what short conversations but sometimes I feel like when I try to start a conversation he makes me feel like maybe he’s not interested in talking. Its been a rollercoaster of emotions I believe that his previous relationship he was hurt and maybe got scare. We never had a big fight or anything until this time that he thought i wasn’t happy with him but that wasnt the case. Should i give him more space since it’s been only 3 weeks?

  21. Hi Mark,

    I need your advise. My boyfriend of 4 months broke up with me about 3 weeks ago. we had a sort of argument and i told him that certain actions he did hurt my feelings so some how he believed that i wasnt happy after i explain to him that this was a miscommunication he told me that he needed time so after a week i reached out to him he told me that it’s best to be friends that he felt that he rushed into a relationship (we known each other prior to making it official 4 months) after about 4 days i text him again telling him i missed him, missed what we had and that i wish we can work on it that i would want to keep the lines of communication open and reestablish our friendship he replied and said he would like to slowly rebuild things and see what happens after that we had text back and forth for a few days however on monday when i wanted to start a conversation he did replied but i sense he wasnt interested in talking so i left him alone it’s been 3 days now and i havent heard from him… Do you think is possible this can be worked on and work slowly by me giving him space too?

  22. Hi my boyfriend for 4 years broke up with me last 3 weeks ago. He said he wanted time and space for himself.I tried not to contact him but then once in awhile he keeps on messaging me on FB saying hi but then I ignored his message. He just wanted us to be friends. It’s really hard to friend your ex most especially if you are still hoping that everything will be ok.What should I do?

  23. Hello Mark, my LDR boyfriend broke up with my after 9 months of relationship. Althought we meet twice last year, now he said the cant handle the distance and how to survive the relation. He was very rude with me, all ended in less than 5 minutes, and via facebook, no phone call. He said that I need to understand his point of view. We are apart 5,000 miles, but we were making plans for next meeting. I still love him, and miss him a lot. He also said he offered me his friendship, so I am not deleting him from Facebook. What should I do? I want him back…

  24. Hi Mark. I know you said that it is better to be honest about my feeling with my ex. But when is a good time to tell him that I still have feeling for him since it wouldn’t be an appropriate time to discuss about my feeling during the “wall of reactance” or “Test Drive”?

    • I am assuming that you are still in “wall of reactance” or “test drive” phase. Unless he actually asks you whether you still have feelings for him, there is no need for you to confess your feelings now. I understand you probably have the urge to tell him how much you love him. But please resist the urge to do so now. Wait till phase 5.

      • Thx Mark. I m still in the no contact stage. My ex wants to be friend with me, but I still have feeling for him. You said if that’s the case, it s better to be upfront and honest about my feelings to avoid distrust. If I tell him when we start hanging out after no contact (stage 2?), I assume that will hurt my chances to get back together with him because I don’t just want to be friends. So in this case, when is the “right” time?

        • So your situation now is your ex boyfriend has just told you that he wants to be friends with you a few days ago.

          However, you have not replied him yet. Is that so?

          If that is the case, then you can just let the conversation go. Don’t worry too much about it.

          Because it will be very weird. Say 30 days later you meet up with him again and you suddenly tell him you agree to be friends with him but you still have feelings for him.

          It is already 30 days, maybe he has even forgotten about the “friends” conversation in the first place.

          Alternatively, you can just reply him through text saying that although you still have feelings for him, but if friends is what he wants for now, you will respect his decision.

  25. Hi Mark, it’s me again…my bf and I recently broke up and finally decided to have a no contact period a couple days ago to calm down, properly heal, and think through things. We’ve decided to be friends, but I obviously need to heal fully from the breakup before we can go about building a friendship. We’re only on day 2 of no contact though, and I may be thinking a bit too far ahead here, but once I am fully healed from the break up and I’m ready to contact him again, how do i go about doing that? We’ve both always preferred to text, so I’d like to text him but I’m not sure what to say?
    Also, should I ask him if he would like to meet for coffee or something during our first conversation after our NC period is over? Or should I wait until the a few days of texting has passed to ask him to meet? I also know it is going to take time for him to start initiating contact with me depending on how our meetups go (which I’m hoping goes well), so after our NC period is over how often should I initiate contact? And how often should I ask to meet up? I obviously know I can’t message him everyday nor can’t I ask him to meet 3-4 times per week right after NC, so I’m just wondering how often I should do both? I know I have a long way to go, and obviously first I need to heal properly, but I really want to make things work with him, so I am determined to message him after NC & I’m wondering how I go about doing that once I get to that stage. I’m just afraid of repeating past mistakes that may make him feel pressured or send off the wrong message to him. Because the last thing I want to do is give him the impression that nothing has changed. I want to bring a new me after fully healing, because I want a fresh start with him.

      • Hi Mark, i watched the video, but I’m wondering if a text message as simple as “hey how are you” work? When my ex and i talked about having NC he told me he felt happy i talked to him about it because he felt as though he was the only one trying to figure things out while I sat at home waiting for him to come to a decision. So he said he was happy i talked to him about it because he also wants me to get on with my life and told me to take however long i need, as long as I’m feeling much better and emotionally ready when I’m done. So I told him I will text him when I am ready and he said “yes that’s fine”….this might seem like a stupid question but prior to discovering your articles I’ve read so many others, and they all advised to stay away from messages like “hey what’s up” or “how are you doing” etc when texting an ex for the first time after NC… I don’t really understand why because it just seems like a simple text that would not add much pressure on my ex.

        • Because “hey how are you” is too commonly used in society. Too cliche.

          For example, if you meet an acquaintance you haven’t seen for a long time, you will probably say it. Does it mean you are really interested to know what is happening in their life? Maybe but most probably not. You are just being polite, that’s all.

          So “how are you” is unlikely to get a good response. Your ex will probably just reply with a “I’m fine”. Basically, cliche question get you cliche response.

          That is why it is better to start with a message that is at least of interest to your ex. For example, you can send a message such as “Hey, I pass by that place the other day and happen to saw a poster about your favorite band coming to town in December. Just informing you in case you are not aware of that.”

          Of course, if you really don’t know what to say, then “how are you” may work as well. However, you are more likely to get a better response if you can put in some thoughts in your text. After all, you have known him for a while. So you probably know what he is interested in.

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