It seems counter intuitive and in many ways it is, but the answer to the question, “Can your ex break up with you but still be in love with you,” is, yes. It does happen and I’ve seen it happen many times.
Different people handle difficulty in different ways. Some people break up with someone only if they no longer feel “in love” with them. For other people, that is only one of many potential reasons for feeling a breakup is necessary.
What we can know is that your ex broke up with you because they didn’t feel that a future with you was possible based on the current situation and whether or not they thought that situation would improve in the future.
Most of the time, the reason they feel this is because the relationship has become boring, routine, stressful, unsafe, or one or both of you have changed. One of those things are often enough to cause a loss of romantic love and/or attraction which will usually lead to a breakup if the person who feels it doesn’t see it ever improving.
However, there are situations where breakups occur but none of those things are happening and there is no loss of love or attraction.
Some examples of how an ex can break up but still be in love are:
-A parent (or someone your ex greatly respects) did not think you were good for your ex (the list of possible reasons is massive). Over time, your ex started feeling worn down and considered that maybe the person of influence was correct. He/she then started to think that breaking up with you would hurt in the short term, but would be best for them in the long term. This is a case of mind or logic over feelings/heart.
-Your boyfriend or girlfriend comes to the conclusion themselves that the future looked bleak for the relationship and even though they were in love with you, broke up with you thinking that eventually they would get over it and be glad they did. Maybe you traveled a lot with work. Maybe you didn’t want to have children ever but he/she did. Maybe a jealous ex-spouse was causing trouble and would always be in the picture.
The bottom line is, just because this person broke up with you doesn’t mean it made them happy to do so or that they wanted to. Breaking up with you might have caused them great pain because they still loved you when they did it.
In some cases, this situation makes getting them back somewhat easier because they didn’t want to break up with you in the first place. But it depends on the person.
A person who has lived a life of delayed gratification and who has been in situations where they have suffered loss is more likely to endure and accept the pain of the breakup and not see the pain as a reason to get back together with you IF they believe it was the “right” thing to do for them.
This type of person will act, in many ways, like they, themselves, have been dumped/broken up with following them breaking up with you. They become depressed, say things on social media or to their friends almost as though they were the one who was dumped. As you might imagine, this can make things very confusing for the person who was actually dumped. It’s extremely confusing to the dumped person because getting back together would stop the pain, but the ex acts as though doing so is not even in the realm of their consideration.
This makes it difficult for the dumped person to know what to do to bring their ex back. The go-to No Contact Rule, that so many of us in the relationship-recovery industry harp on, is still a good thing to do in this situation, but this is one of the few situations where experience has shown that breaking no-contact after a period of time can be effective. A period of no-contact followed by a gentle re-establishment of contact and then a meeting often works wonders – and if you’ve read my other articles, you know that this is one of the only times I suggest breaking no contact after a break up.
There is not an exact formula because people are not ingredients to a cake or a math problem. But after a month or two of no contact (one month if the relationship was between three to nine months and one and a half to two months if longer), reach out by text with something simple like, “I went by that place we went to where (some interesting or humorous event happened while you two were there) and I thought of you and smiled. I hope you’re doing well.”
That is it. Don’t ask how he/she is doing. You want to seem as though you are not trying to force interaction or asking them to respond. That will remove the pressure for them to respond and they will feel safe to reply to your message and be more likely to do so.
If you reminded them of a pleasant memory, they will often respond with something positive. Often they are genuinely happy to hear from you since you have not been contacting them and, therefore, have been able to make your ex miss you. In some ways, a reset button has been pressed so to speak.
This is when you respond by saying, “Let’s meet for coffee to catch up. When are you free?”
If they respond positively and you meet up, it is crucial that you be casual and light hearted. Do not try to get back together with them on this first meetup unless they are pushing it. Tell them about interesting things that have happened to you. Something you are genuinely excited about. Be a patient and good listener.
A Good Lesson From This Type of Breakup
This particular break-up situation is a big reason to take heart after a breakup and to remember that it all doesn’t have to be fixed today or quickly.
Sometimes breathing room and space can be the best medicine and show the other person that you are a good listener in addition to being a mature person. That can go a long way in changing their mind, which is what you have to do in the situation described in this article.
To get my help with your specific situation and a tailored map to getting your ex back, schedule a coaching session with me.