The Dos And Don’ts Of Staying In Touch With Your Ex
If you’re reading this article, chances are you’ve been through a breakup recently. Really, there’s no other way around it – it sucks. It may feel like you’re slowly dying in the hamster wheel called life – colours are muted and you haven’t smiled in days.
Okay, I’m over-exaggerating, but possibly one of the worst parts of the breakup is feeling a bit isolated and lonely. It’s especially difficult now, with your ex’s location and who they’re with blasted all over your socials.
Don’t be so quick to dial – hear us out with these Do’s and Don’ts of staying in touch with your ex.
DO: What you need to do
If you think it’s best for you to take a break from communication with your old flame, it probably is – so do it. This can be rough, but filling a void with something that is unattainable is only a short-term fix, you’ll thank yourself if you stick it out.
For those of us with not much willpower, you have some options. You could always block them from social media: it only has to be temporary, so just think of it as a detox. Or if you still don’t trust yourself, find a friend to keep a 24/7 watch on you. An extreme measure, but give them rein over your phone to keep you in line, even if just for a day or two.
DON’T: Be weird
Mate, if they’re not taking your calls or haven’t replied to your texts, don’t be weird about it, they probably just don’t want to talk to you, and they’re allowed to feel that way.
Everyone handles a breakup differently, and it’s important to respect each other during the cooling-off period. Don’t be weird and send follow up messages if yours aren’t copping any replies – let it be.
DO: Listen to your body
Within reason – don’t listen to it when you’re wanting to give them a buzz at 3am, but keep an ear out for other stuff.
When we’re down in the dumps, it can affect our daily routine. This is OK, but only for a hot minute – listen to your body, it might just tell you exactly what you need.
Whether it’s a day in bed with the two things that’ll never leave you – pizza and dumb comedies – or just a run until your legs collapse, do it. If you don’t even know where to start with looking after yourself, we’ve got some tips on self care.
Remember, nobody is expecting you to bounce straight back into the swing of things. And if you’re going to be spending some time by yourself, avoid using your phone.
DON’T: Stalk their socials
Taking a trip back through ol’ mems lane can be a blast, but not right now – so why are you currently 112 weeks deep in your ex’s Insta feed? Stalking socials can be dangerous: it doesn’t always take much to find something that might upset you.
It could be something as simple as a picture of them with an unknown friend, who you’ve now convinced yourself is their new boyfriend. Now you’re finding yourself on the brink of nervous breakdown. Breathe in, out, and back up away from that phone, you crazy person.
DO: Try and stay mates
It’s common belief that you can’t be mates with your ex: I call BS. This mightn’t be attainable straight away, obviously, but if you can pull it off the end results can be pretty great.
Think of it this way – you guys were more than likely pals prior to all this, know a whole lot about each other and obviously get along – why not try and salvage the friendship?
Just know, it isn’t an overnight process; first you must go through the whole process of getting over someone. It’s a blast.
DON’T: Call after midnight
Ooft. Have you ever woken up to realise you tried to call your ex the night before without even knowing it? Yeah nah, me neither…
Don’t put yourself in this situation, it’s probably the biggest mistake you could make, with the easiest preventative measure – if the clock says past 12, just don’t dial. Alternatively, just intentionally mistype your passcode so many times your phone gets disabled for such a lengthy time it’s deemed useless.
DO: Check in with them
Depending on the circumstances, it’s nice to check in and see how they’re doing. You will often find comfort in talking through some stuff post-breakup with your ex, because chances are they are going through the exact same stuff.
Do this in a non-intrusive way. Don’t call them, or put them under any pressure – maybe just send a quick text letting them know you’re there for them, if they want.
Keeping in contact with your ex might feel like an impossible mission, but it doesn’t have to be. Just trust your gut, and if you’re ever suspicious, or second guessing yourself, it doesn’t hurt to get a second opinion.
Bradley is a writer from Newcastle who enjoys travel, Tina Fey and is a connoisseur of cheap red wine.