Psychological insights on relationships: rejections, breakups, making relationships happy, unhealthy dynamics, and general psychology.

How To Get Your Ex Back After Hurting Them

These seven steps serve to maximize your chances to get your ex back after hurting them, even when there seems to be no way back.

Couple breaking up

The good news is that partners usually return to their exes, even when they’re angry or when their partner has done something ugly.

We have mechanisms within us that make us reluctant to give up; we don’t want something of ours to belong to someone else. It’s hard for us to let go of people who love us. We find it harder to lose something old than to rejoice in gaining something new.

There’s also a whole science behind people’s short memory for unpleasant things because it preserves a healthy mental state.

In both cases, what I will suggest below is the best way to win back ex partner you lost because you hurt them.

  • Of course, all this may not succeed if you’ve done something very difficult or ugly or if your ex-partner is of such a character that forgiveness is difficult. Read more about this here.

So, what you can do to get your ex back after hurting them:

1. Writing a lengthy email explaining yourself

Man writing letter

In that email, you must explain why you made that mistake. Your mistake comes from some need that you should discover and understand, whatever it may be.

Ways to understand yourself:

Let’s say you flirted with someone, and it hurt your ex-partner. What is your underlying need behind that? To get validation from others that you’re attractive? To have fun? Something else? And then, what is the need behind realizing that? Perhaps you’re not confident in yourself and your beauty?

Of course, this can go in other directions, too. For example, you don’t respect your ex. The interesting question is why you don’t respect them. But it’s much more important to understand that you’re trying to win back a person you don’t normally respect. A conversation with a therapist or consultant can help you resolve why you are doing that.

But after you discover what was happening within you when you were hurting your partner, you can write it all to them in an email.

Email structure:

  • It’s good to write an email because it’s something your ex-partner can read multiple times. It’s much better than a face-to-face conversation.
  • Explain yourself and what was going on within you when it happened.
  • Be truthful. The closer you are to the truth, the greater the chances that your ex-partner will believe what you’ve said is accurate. Also, if they have this knowledge about you, it can help you work on them.
  • I know some things will be challenging to write because you might hurt your ex-partner or say things about yourself that you don’t want to know. However, only the truth is the way to resolve things. 
  • Don’t dwell too much on your wrongdoing in that email. It’s neither the focus nor the goal to reopen wounds for your ex-partner or remind them of what you did.
  • It’s absolutely forbidden to claim in any way that your partner is responsible for what you did. You can do it, but you won’t get the desired results.
  • If you truly feel that your ex-partner is in some way responsible for what you did, that is a separate topic that needs to be discussed separately from trying to get the relationship back on track. You can’t do those two things at the same time. And bring the partner back and accuse them.
  • End the email with a sentence like: I am aware of how much I’ve messed up, and I would like you to give me a chance to discuss what I can do so you can forgive me. You don’t have to rush it, but whenever you’re ready, I’ll be here.

Don’t rush back into the relationship. To begin, it is enough for your ex partner to give you a chance – to tell you – what you need to do – to get a chance to return to a relationship.

How To Make Your Ex Regret Leaving You

2. Go to therapy or for consultation

Couples therapy

After you understand yourself and your reasons for doing “that something,” it’s a good idea to go to therapy or counseling. The next step is to understand why you chose that partner and, of course, find ways to stop making mistakes. In therapy, you will certainly learn that you are participating in a joint dynamic and that maybe/probably not everything is entirely your responsibility.

After such discussions, you’ll better know if you even want to get back with your ex. You’d be surprised at how much other people trigger certain behaviors in us and why we choose specific individuals as partners.

You might want to go to couples therapy (mostly to be close to that person or maybe even discover their faults, complain to someone, have a mediator on your side, etc.), but I recommend that both partners first have individual sessions with a therapist. Only after that should they attempt joint therapy or counseling. Because joint treatment is meant to find techniques for functioning together, it rarely heals deeper problems.

3. Making amends for what you’ve done.

This is always an option. To offer that person compensation for what you’ve done to them.

The rules for this are:

  • Give them whatever they want. Of course, within the bounds of reason. If they want you to deposit $100k into their account and that’s not within your financial means, then that’s not reasonable. 
  • Don’t negotiate about their desires because you’re trying to win them back. Also, you made the mistake; how will you make amends if you push them aside again?
  • The greater and heavier your partner’s need, and if you manage to fulfill it, the more convincing you’ll be that you want to compensate for the pain you caused them. This compensation should serve precisely to “cover up” your wrongdoing.
  • After this compensation (or several of them happening at this moment), there are no more reproaches or requests for further compensation. Because there will be no end to it, this must stop, and that’s the only thing you’ll insist on: “I want to make it up to you, but let that be it.”

Why Break Up Is So Hard To Bear: Real Reasons

4. Organize additional, good, and pleasant things for that person.

Make an effort to do many good things for them. By doing good things, you can create a communication path to that person and suppress the bad things you’ve done to them.

An elderly couple

What you’ve done, unfortunately, is irreversible. The only thing you can actually do is do many good things for that person that will make them focus less on your mistake.

Remember what that person wants, and do it for them. You may not like it, but this is the way to get your ex back after hurting them.

5. Subsequent discussion about the same problem

If the person lets you back into their life, let’s say in a month, bring up the topic of your mistake again. The point of this is for your partner to realize that you’re thinking about your mistake. This adds credibility to the whole project of getting back into the relationship. Then you can propose again to do something nice for that person.

  • As you can see, you’re changing too.

How To Maintain Good Relationship

6. Persistence

An elderly couple

Of course, you won’t stalk the person, but if you genuinely care about that person, you won’t give up on them, no matter how long it takes to win them back.

Persistence means combining item number 4, doing nice things for that person, with periodic but persistent contact. For example, sending flowers or coffee, sending funny memes, and occasionally reaching out with something nice.

Here, we’re counting on the fact that, over time, the person will push aside what happened between you and begin to rekindle positive feelings toward you. We cannot hold onto negative emotions for too long because they cause too much stress.

Therefore, you need to be relatively persistent to hit the moment when that your ex partner is more open and positive towards you. You need to be consistent since you can’t know when that moment is.

I emphasize that what you’re doing shouldn’t be:

  • Expensive. Unless that’s how you usually operate and if the person appreciates only expensive things,
  • Frequent. Because you’ll become annoying. For example, once every week to ten days is optimal.
  • Pathetic. No one gets excited about pathos.
  • Threatening or ultimatum-like, blackmailing, etc. Don’t instill negative feelings in that person.

You should:

  • Elicit positive emotions—laughter, fun, clarity.
  • Be favorable to that person.
  • Occasionally, ask for a meeting.
  • You can talk about your changes (achieved with a therapist, for example), progress in other areas of life, and plans.
  • Ask the person if they would like to be involved in your plans.

Can a Person Who Rejected You Change Their Mind

7. Patience

A man and a woman are sitting next to each other

Even if the person doesn’t want to take you back and they’re worth it, you can dedicate everything to the intention of getting them back.

The difference in persistence is that this is a less aggressive way, more like the ball is in their court.

Your patience may last a very long time, months, or even years.

You also need to be patient with the person’s actions. They may want to find someone new or travel to the other side of the world. You must be patient if you believe that person is the best for you.

From my experience, many partners return to their previous partners after something they had been working on fails. A relationship or other plans.

Often, in life, we get a new chance with previous partners, but it takes them time to do what’s necessary.

And I know you don’t like this idea, but neither did they like what you did. This may be the compensation they needed—for you to live without them for a while and try what that’s like. And for you to witness them doing something you don’t want and that may hurt you (dating someone else).

Man and woman in love

People want things to go the way they want. However, they often can’t get that. Many times in life, we have to adapt to circumstances and try to act accordingly.

Rushing, pressuring, and insisting are sometimes good ways to go, but sometimes they’re just another nail in the coffin of your relationship. So, be thoughtful and follow these steps.

Why do I want someone who doesn’t want me?

The essence is that if you want that person, how you get them isn’t so important. What’s important is that you get them, no matter how much time and effort it takes.

But I know that time changes things, and sometimes it will be your best friend. Good luck.


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