However, for most relationships, once a bit of time has passed and the dust has settled, the breakup may not seem justified and you begin wondering if you should reach out. Or perhaps a late night and a few drinks have prompted an episode of memory which beckons you to send a quick hello text message just to see if you receive a response.
Reasons you’re tempted to text an ex:
- Familiar hookup?– Many relationships end and both parties remain single for some time. In these cases, it can be common for one or both parties to be tempted to text their ex for a casual yet familiar hookup. This can be a bad idea, leading to emotional discourse and turmoil that has already been experienced.
- Regrets– Are you doing something that you will regret in the future? Your text could be the thing that ends a new relationship. It could also be something that becomes a daily habit and may force you to face emotions you haven’t let go. If you are tempted to text the ex, you may not be considering what that could do. Opening the line of communication may be something you come to regret.
- Rehashing the past– For some relationships, once they are dead, it’s best to leave them dead. While the idea of remaining friends seems like good enough reason to reach out, often this becomes just a friendship where casual putdowns and jokes about insecurities become a common occurrence. You may ‘accidentally’ rehash the past just to seek your own validation. If you send that text, you might be subjecting yourself to nothing but an endless stream of beating a dead horse, so to speak.
- Seeking Validation– You didn’t delete his/her number because you hoped eventually, they would say they are wrong. Now you’re tempted to text because you want them to admit you were right. If you’re texting your ex to get your last word in on what happened before, it might be a better idea to focus your energy on something more productive. Maybe consider kickboxing?
- Only the good– For many people, once a relationship has ended, they begin to forget the bad things that happened in the relationship. If some time has passed since your breakup and you’re tempted to text the ex, think about why you want to speak with them. Are you only focusing on the good aspects of your former lover? It is very likely that you are forgetting all the negative things that happened along the way.
- Spiteful– Sometimes only the best hurts feel like they can do justice. Sending nasty messages can be one of the ways in which you believe or feel that you are getting the justice you deserve. Maybe she cheated on you and sending a text allows you to be mean in a “harmless way”. Maybe your ex has moved on and sending a message will tempt them or disrupt their new relationship. If you’re tempted to text your ex out of spitefulness, it might be time to move on.
How to stop yourself from texting the ex
Consider the Consequences– Some time may have passed since the last exchange between you and your ex. They may have moved on or they may be secretly pining for you. Sending a text to your ex can be like opening Pandora’s box. You never know what the consequences may be. You could be introducing damage to a new relationship, or opening the door for endless chatting with your ex. Before hitting send, consider if this text will open the gates of heaven or hell in your own life.
Delete the trash– Many people participate in Spring cleaning because of the personal sense of satisfaction that comes with cleaning out the junk in our lives. Deleting old phone numbers can be such a refreshing feeling. It can feel like lifting the emotional weight of 10 years from your shoulders. Deleting an ex’s number not only feels good in the moment but can prevent you from making a bad decision later on.
A new phone, who’s this? – Deleting your ex’s phone number helps to ensure that you can’t text or call them, but what about preventing them from calling you? Getting a new phone number will allow you to ask who someone is and avoid any and all communications for those you don’t want to speak with. Getting a new phone number permanently and forever prevents your ex from being able to call or text.
Social media block– Much like deleting their number and getting a new phone, removing all trace of your relationship on social media, including blocking them from your profiles, ensures that you are not able to be contacted. (Blocking can be undone by the user in the event the relationship status changes).
Purge– Many relationships come with some material accumulation, much like the apartment you’ve since outgrown. Shared tee shirts, coffee mugs, and memorabilia can clutter up your home and provide you with an ever-present prompt to text the ex. Purge your life and your home of all of these unnecessary reminders. Box up all the sentimental sweet gifts, memory-laden ticket stubs, and depressingly adorable photos and put them in a dark closet or toss them. Getting rid of these little items will not only help you declutter your life but also remove an unwanted inspiration of the fondness you once shared.
Despite the temptation to text your ex, the overall experience could present you with a plethora of problems you did not anticipate. From becoming a source of distraction in their new relationship to opening an endless wound from constant communication, texting an ex can result in unpleasant consequences.