Can you fall in love again with an ex and have it work out the second time around?
As long as partners are able to identify and accept what went wrong the first time, experts say yes.
The love never died.
If you’re pulled toward an old relationship, there’s a reason, says psychotherapist Ken Page. “Be sure you are clear on what that reason is. It may mean that one or both of you have grown and are willing to try again as more mature people.”
As we grow, we often come to realize how important love is. “Sometimes we realize that perhaps we didn’t give love a chance in the past, and now we want to change that,” says Page.
Sex therapist Beatty Cohen agrees, saying it takes close to one year, not a few weeks or months, to discover who your partner is and isn’t.
But, whatever caused the initial breakup, partners must be willing to resolve any past issues to move forward with the relationship in the present. After all, an ex is an ex for a reason.
“It isn’t about blaming, it’s about clarifying things so that you will both be able to begin your new relationship without having one foot in the past,” says Cohen.
Don’t be fooled by the lust.
Missing is a sign of a deep bond. If both people have dated others and realized that no one compares to their ex, they will come back to one another, says relationship expertMaya Ezratti.
However, falling back in love with someone requires a certain dialogue that goes beyond sexual chemistry between two people, she adds. “You can have intense sexual chemistry with someone. But [this person] is still the same guy or girl you broke up with, or that ended it with you.”
Changing personality traits is not an easy thing. Even if one or both of you claim to have changed, assume the same problems will come up again. This time, be ready with a plan of action as to how you’ll handle it differently, says Page.
Save yourself time and emotional suffering by assessing if there were any deal-breakers in the past, like abusive behavior, addiction, cheating or lying. The odds are overwhelmingly strong that the relationship will fail again.
If they come back and you decide to give love one last try, tread lightly.
Just because an ex agrees to play catch-up doesn’t mean that everything will be hunky-dory again, says Ezratti. “The key is to pace it like you did when you first started dating.
“Give each other space to get comfortable again.”