Whether you had a clean break or a messy split, getting back with your ex-spouse isn’t the most absurd idea in the world. It’s actually far from it. After all, lots of people come to realize they’re not really over their ex. And the good news is your relationship may still be salvageable, even after the marriage has been legally dissolved.
If you think divorce was a mistake, now’s your chance. Here are eight reasons to consider getting back together with your ex.
1. You’re still in love
First of all, it’s imperative we mention the most important reason for getting back together with your ex-spouse: love. This, of course, should be a basic prerequisite for any person looking to return to a past relationship.
So, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, we can say this: Despite what The Beatles preached, love really isn’t all you need. For that reason, you need to make sure you’re truly ready to dip your toes back into those marital waters. Maybe one, or several, of the following reasons below will speak to you.
2. The problems were only occasional
You and your spouse decided to split for (at least) one reason or another. When you look back, were your problems fleeting or never-ending? CafeMom’s The Stir recommends questioning whether the root of the problem is chronic. If not, there’s still hope. Maybe it’s time to have an honest discussion with your ex about how you’re feeling, and whether or not there’s any chance of reconciling. People do sometimes change, after all.
3. You regained your individuality during your time apart
It’s not uncommon for a relationship to fall apart after feeling like you’ve lost your sense of self. And when dealing with post-divorce messiness, there’s no need to bottle up your emotions. In fact, doing so could actually harm your emotional well-being in the long run. In a study that examined people who’d recently gone through a breakup, those who’d honestly faced their emotional strife head-on were more likely to heal emotionally.
Here’s what else the study had to say
Before trying for round two, make sure you’ve allowed yourself time to grieve, and, in turn, regain your sense of self.
In a press release about the research, study author Grace Larson said the participants who reflected on their relationships were able to “build a stronger sense of who they were as single people.” Additionally, the press release discussed the importance of a process researchers described as “‘self-concept reorganization,’ the process of seeing and defining yourself separate from your ex and from the relationship.” This really is a necessary step to take before entering another relationship with your ex.
4. You realized you had an overly strict timeline
Lots of people have some sort of timeline in place — be it an end date for finishing business school or an age at which you want to have children. But the reality is life doesn’t always go according to plan. Actually, it can often feel more like it’s going full-speed in the other direction when you’re busy color-coordinating your Google calendar for the next five years. But then, you have a moment of clarity.
And you realize it wasn’t a good enough reason to end things
Maybe you left your spouse because you were hell-bent on getting pregnant your first year of marriage. Your spouse, however, was not. After you went through with the divorce, reality set in, and you quickly realized you’d rather toss your self-imposed timeline out the window than live without the love of your life.
Well, don’t give up hope just yet. Dating coach Laurel House told Self, “Perhaps you had a timeframe with certain critical, self-imposed, time-sensitive components in place, like proposal, marriage, and kids.” So, if you left simply because you weren’t moving at the same speed, it may be time to reconsider.
5. Both you and your ex want to nurture a new relationship
Naturally, you’ll need to have a candid conversation with your ex, so be prepared to fully disclose your true feelings. And remember that it’s not just up to you to make it happen. You both have to want a new kind of relationship, one that will work this time around. Caroline Choi writes in the HuffPost, “Reconciliation also requires effort by both parties to nurture this new relationship.” It takes two to tango, after all.
6. Your feelings aren’t fleeting
You break up, yet your desire to go running back can be unbearable. So, how can you tell the difference between fleeting lust and real love?
Women’s Health cautions not to get caught up in the moment. If your ex surprises you with a candle-lit dinner, tread lightly. Even though you may be giddy with delight, don’t let those feelings dictate your next move. There’s no need to declare you’re ready to get back together if, deep down, you’re not. Feelings that aren’t fleeting, on the other hand, certainly warrant reconsideration. See if your feelings last, and go from there.
7. You want to resolve petty issues for the sake of your children
It’s not uncommon for married couples to stay together for the sake of their kids. So, who’s to say the same reason couldn’t bring ex-spouses back together after a divorce?
LoveToKnow writer Marcelina Hardy said that “with the continued connection between ex-spouses because of their children, some couples find they still do have feelings for each other after the turmoil from the separation subsides.” Having kids with someone is quite the bond, so it’s no wonder this reason made our list.
8. You’re miserable without each other
Maybe you couldn’t stand to be in the same room as your spouse while you were married. But it turns out, now that you’re divorced, you’re even more miserable without them. As time’s gone by, you’ve gained more clarity. As Bustle says, the grass isn’t always greener. Don’t let your pride cloud your judgment; if you’re miserable without your ex, be straight about it. It just may pay off.