The Mystery of Wanting Your Ex Back

April 28, 2015

One of the great mysteries is why two people end a relationship, go through the trauma of severing ties, dividing their assets, changing their bank accounts, their beneficiaries, and their insurance policies, and then look for ways to get back with their ex.

With so much bitterness, anger, and hurt behind them, it seems somewhat masochistic to want to dive back into the relationship that they cited as the cause of their unhappiness. And yet, so many people want to do exactly that.

Romance novels are filled with the premise of couples meeting again after the dust has settled, usually after a divorce or after one of them has run away, or one of them has kicked the other out.

In the fictionalized version when they meet again, they realize that the chemistry is still there and that the anger and hurt have been the result of a misunderstanding, and this leaves the door open to reconciliation. In real life, it doesn’t happen quite that way, nor does it go as smoothly as it does in a book.

The underlying causes that bring two people together are seldom examined in romance novels, although they do try to delineate what eventually pushes the couple to end their relationship.

Their plots usually allow us to see the initial powerful attraction of the two main characters and/or their intense dislike that gives off sparks that are hot enough to singe the two of them. Then we are made aware of the obstacles that are getting in the way of their happiness, including the possibility of ending the relationship and eventually coming together again, and then we have the final resolution. These books are known for their happily-ever-after conclusions.

Real life doesn’t come with a happily-ever-after script and more often than not, the same problems that existed in their original complaints about each other, will rear their ugly heads once again after the reunion gets underway.

All too often, when a relationship ends, there is so much acrimony because both parties are dealing with past and present pain. Therefore, the words that need to be said are often locked up inside them, while the words that are better left unsaid, come spewing out with total disregard for the damage being caused.

In real life, when the two of them meet again, the past can merge with the present. Good memories can be superimposed on their current conversation and references to the past may not be quite as painful as when they parted. Into this pleasant stroll down memory lane, they may decide to get back together.

It’s too bad that couples don’t have professional writers scripting their arguments. Perhaps if they did, all the “second chance” reunions would end with “and they all lived happily ever after.”

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