For every reason you can come up with to send a risky text, there’s always another reason (or several) for why you shouldn’t. I not talking about nervously reaching out to new friends to hang out or shooting your shot with a cutie you’ve been talking to; I’m talking about the temptation to crawl back to an ex. I use the terms “ex” and “relationship” loosely, in the age of casual hookups. In this context, I am talking about any type of consistent relationship which has had a recognizable ending.
At the end of the day, it is helpful to remember that no matter how the relationship ended, it ended for a reason. This is true whether you were abruptly dumped or had a mutual breakup. To accept, try to remember the feelings you had around the end of the relationship. If they broke up with you, try to remember how it felt angerly explaining what happened to your friends or family. If you called it quits after the relationship fizzling out, think about the times you realized your significant other stopped putting work into the relationship. However, it’s still hard to resist the lure of starting a conversation after your inhibitions have been lowered. So, to spare you of the regret you feel the morning after, I’ve compiled some tricks to dissuade you.
1. Identify someone else you can rely on
Find a friend who will be your first point of contact before you message your ex. You can’t text your ex until you’ve texted this friend. For this to be successful, this person must say exactly what is on their mind without sugar coating. If they know what’s good for you, their response will be to profusely tell you what a bad idea it is. Even if you have trouble believing them, the conversation will be a good distraction.
2. Give your phone to a friend or leave it at home
Ditching your phone for the night is very liberating. However, if you feel safer having it nearby, have your friend carry it for you. Not only does this reduce the chances of sending embarrassing messages, but will also help you enjoy your surrounding more. This brings me to my next point…
3. Try to live in the moment
A common reason people want to reach out to someone from the past is that they don’t feel engaged with where they are. Try focusing on the music playing in the room and the friends around you to ground yourself. Try finding an activity to do or someone to talk to.
These are just a few ideas to keep in mind until the desire to reach out to your ex goes away. If you slip up, it’s not the end of the world, we’ve all been there. Ultimately, to heal fully you need to give yourself time. Until you move on, you’ll just get to collect embarrassing stories you laugh at someday – or at least that’s what I’m telling myself!