Recovering Your Relationship When Your Ex Wants a "Break"
Sometimes it's even worse than a breakup. Your boyfriend or girlfriend sits you down, looks you right in the eye, and solemnly tells you:
"I think we should take a break for a little while"
When the shock wears off and you wander away, questions seem to sprout up everywhere. Are you totally broken up now, or are you just "on a break"?
What does it mean? Where do you stand? When will the break be over, and can you still talk to your ex in the meantime?
Even worse, is your ex planning to see other people? Should you do the same thing, or would that ruin the chances of fixing the relationship and getting back together again? How exactly does your boyfriend or girlfriend expect you to react in this type of very strange and awkward situation?
Many people try to take a 'break' from their romance, thinking it will somehow help make things better. Or at least, that's what your ex will tell you. He or she will try and sell you on the break by saying "the space will do us good", or "it will make us appreciate each other again".
All of these lines however, are just that: lines. They're lines given to you by a partner who obviously has another agenda... one that he or she would like to pursue while you sit at home doing nothing.
Because you see, that's the real trick here. Push aside all the smoke and mirrors, and the real truth of the matter becomes a lot more obvious: your boyfriend or girlfriend wants to play at the single life again. They want to see new people, do new things, and possibly even move on into another relationship... all while you sit there motionless and wait comfortingly around for them to come back.
The Difference Between Being on a Break, and a Breakup
There's a lot of common ground when it comes to breaking up or going "on a break". In both cases, the end goal is the same: the person who initiates the break is looking to see someone else, or at least, to have the potential to date others. This is a type of freedom they can't have in a committed, monogamous relationship.
Oh, what's that you say? Your ex doesn't want to see other people? All he or she really wants is some "time alone", or some "space to themselves" or some "room to breathe"?
Sorry, but that's just total bullshit.
No one suggests taking a break in order to perform some introspective outside analysis of their relationship. They do it because they want the possibility of something else. And the sooner you accept this more honest angle on things, the better off you'll be.
The difference between a break and a breakup however, is that when your ex asks for some time apart, he or she still wants you to stick around. Your boyfriend or girlfriend is absolutely sure they want to see what else is out there, but they're NOT 100% sure they want to break up with you. The result? Stringing you along in some pseudo-relationship half-assed limbo known only as "on a break".
Snapping this cycle is crucial. You need to learn reversal techniques geared toward putting the decision-making back in your hands, and the ball back in your court.
What To Do When Your Girlfriend or Boyfriend Wants To Take a Break
When your partner tells you he or she wants a break from your current relationship, it's easy to feel powerless. It's not like they're really asking you what you think; in fact, they're pretty much just telling you how it is.
Here's where you sullenly 'accept' their decision, although you make sure they know you don't really like it. But at the same time, what other choice do you have?
Actually, you have a really BIG alternative to accepting your ex's decision to put your relationship on hold. Instead of agreeing to take time apart, like most people do, you can outright refuse to have anything to do with it.
Think of it this way: your lover already knows what he or she wants. They want you to hang around like a lovesick chump while they jump on over to see if the grass really is greener on the other side of the fence.
And if you stick around and wait for them? You are that chump. You're getting exactly what you deserve to get.
Essentially, you're giving away all of the power you once held in your relationship. You're losing control over what happens next, and your ex is going to lose all respect for you... even though you're doing exactly what they want.
Most people bow down and submit to the break out of plain old fear. They're afraid that if they don't accept the new terms of the 'break' relationship, they're going to lose their ex entirely.
But what these people don't know is that just the opposite is true. Because by adapting a hard stance and refusing to have their relationship placed on the back burner? You're actually making your ex afraid. He or she will suddenly have to face the possibility of losing you, if they want to continue down the "let's take a break" road.
So what do you tell someone who wants to put your relationship on hold? You simply say:
"Sorry, I'm not going to take a 'break' from our relationship. I'm not sure
how this has worked for you in the past, but I don't DO 'breaks'"
Your boyfriend or girlfriend will be pretty confused by this, so it's time to clarify:
"I love you and I want to be with you. If you want to be with me, fine.
But if not? Then we break up, and we both do our own thing.
I'm sure not going to stick around in some broken half-relationship limbo,
hoping and waiting for the day you finally come around"
Either your boyfriend or girlfriend dates you, or they don't. Either they have you, or they have nothing. This is a choice you MUST force your ex to make, if you want any chance of getting back with them.
By refusing to demote your relationship down to some weird and obscure level, you're placing a lot more of a value on it. And by taking a stance against the whole 'break' idea, you're showing strength, independence, and most important of all, maintaining your partner's respect.
How Can You Get Back Together if You're Already on a Break?
If you're reading this right now and you've already agreed or submitted to taking a break? The road ahead of you is an uphill climb. You'll need to regain your ex's interest AND respect, as well as make sure they know you're no longer sitting around hoping they'll come back.
The good news is that it can be done. Especially if you've still had contact after the break, meaning that your ex is relying upon that contact in order to keep the breakup going for as long as they want.
In short, the more comfortable your ex feels that you're still hanging around for them? The longer they'll stay out looking for that someone else. So by the same token, the quicker you can shake that confidence by letting them know you're no longer going to stick around? The faster your ex will come running back to you.
Getting your ex back from a break is a multi-stage process that starts with your withdrawal. You need to announce to your ex that you're finished hanging around, and let them know in no uncertain terms that you're going to immediately start doing your own thing.
Check this resource for some really great ideas on how you can make your ex not only want you back, but actually need you more than they did before.
Finally, remember: even if you're on a break, the emotional bonds and feelings your ex boyfriend or girlfriend once had for you are all still there. Just because they've chosen to ignore them for the time being doesn't mean the ties your ex once had to you have been severed for good.