Seeing an Ex Boyfriend After a Breakup

How to deal with seeing your ex-boyfriend for the first time after a painful or awkward break up, without feeling bad about yourself.

Breakups are horrible. I don’t believe anyone who says their breakup was smooth, and that they are friends with their ex, and that everything is fine. There must have been a point when the world collapsed around them, metaphorically speaking of course. That is the feeling you get, isn’t it?

Breakups are never ‘pleasant’, even if you are putting on a front, there is a part of you who has to let go, and that part of you is indignant or scared; or there a part of you that is going to feel awkward or bad about letting him down if you are the one ending it.

People deal with breakups in their own ways. Some of us need to cut off contact completely in order to move on – out of sight out of mind. Others need to achieve some level of emotional detachment before they can accept an ex as part of their world again.

Some of us are complete drama queens, whereas others are cool, collected and in control. There’s no right or wrong way to do it. You will find that your methods of dealing with breakups change and evolve as you get older and different things become more important to you.

The thing is there will probably come a time when you think you have gotten over your breakup, and because the world is such a small place, you will inevitably cross paths with your ex somewhere down the line. It may be accidentally at a party or in the street, or you may arrange to meet up for a coffee to see how calm the waters are.

Either way, here are some tips to make sure it is the best experience you can expect…

Be Realistic

beautiful blonde girl portrait

Every breakup has its reasons, and whatever they may be you have to find a way to feel good about the decision, whether it was your decision or not. In order to do this you must be realistic, which means putting your rational and objective head on, being non-judgmental, and believing that it simply wasn’t meant to be, because you couldn’t make each other happy.

Being realistic about the situation was probably how you came to terms with the breakup in the end anyway, so there is no need to change the way you think now, just because you are seeing your ex. Feeling may come flooding back but there is no need to panic or forget about everything that you have achieved for yourself since the breakup.

Remember: Feelings are irrelevant if it didn’t work out, and you just have to accept that even though it didn’t work out, it won’t necessarily mean your feelings won’t still be present when you see him again. The chances are you are going to see everything attractive in him that attracted you in the first place, because those things probably haven’t changed. It’s not your feelings being questioned, its just compatibility and perhaps different needs.

Maybe you are afraid that your ex hasn’t moved on and you feel bad about hurting him again. If this is the case then just make sure that you don’t give mixed messages and that you are clear about why you broke up with him, in case it pops up in conversation. Besides why feel bad? If it wasn’t working for you, you have done him a favour by setting him free so that he will eventually have the opportunity to meet someone he can be happy with!

Feel Good About Yourself

Moving on from a breakup often means re-discovering yourself and finding the confidence to start again. this can all take a lot of time and effort. Just because you bump into your ex, or arrange to meet up, it does not mean that you have anything to prove, or that any of that hard work will be undone. You have to remember who you are as a separate entity from a relationships, and why that is important to you.

If you know you are going to go to an event and he is going to be there it’s important to establish why you want to feel good about yourself or look good when you go. If you find that your reasons are to impress him or make him wish that he’d made more of an effort to make it work with you, then you are just fooling yourself. You know full well that your breakup had nothing to do with whether you scrub up well in a dress!

Make sure that you are making the effort for yourself. There is nothing wrong with looking good to boost your own confidence and reassure yourself that you’re doing good and moving on. Be true to yourself and if you feel weak inside, acknowledge it to yourself rather than pretend you are okay. Nobody else has to know but if you are in denial, those feelings are going to catch up with you when you are least prepared. So face them head on and be in control.

Seeing Your Ex with Another Woman

happy couple at the bar enjoying the cocktail party

This is a painful one, and it will creep up on you and stab you in the gut, whether you are over him or not. It’s always going to hurt to see a man you were once intimate with with anoter woman. It’s natural to feel something, but don’t freak out, because it doesn’t necessarily mean you are not over him.

All you have to do is not be afraid to acknowledge how you feel, to yourself or your girl friends. If you need to shed a few tears go for it – its not a sign of weakness, and you will always feel stronger after you have released the emotion.

Dealing with Social Networking During a Breakup

It’s easy to stumble across unwanted information nowadays because of all our social networking platforms. You can save yourself a lot of stress if you limit the amount of access you have to this stream of info. It’s not petty or selfish to take control of your own social network accounts rather than letting them control you.

Check out Facebook settings and see what you can do to minimise seeing his status updates. If you find yourself paying an unhealthy interest sometimes it’s just easier to delete his account, even if only for a while. Depending on what kind of terms you are on, you can even talk to him about it first so that there are no hard feelings. Evaluate for yourself just how necessary it is for him to be connected to all of your social networking accounts.

Remember: There is nothing wrong with wanting privacy, and there is nothing wrong with wanting a peaceful mind. Do what’s right for you. help yourself.

When you do see your ex boyfriend with another woman, try feeling happy for him. Many women opt for feeling sorry for her! But I find that a more positive approach makes you feel in more emotional control by rising above the petty feelings of love and jealousy, and it brings better karma your way.

Remember: It’s not a competition. It’s only a competition to those who are insecure about themselves. you don’t need to rush out and get yourself a new man to prove you’ve moved on. Have faith in yourself and the universe, and focus on the things around that are important to you. Family, friends, work and your personal interests. Love will find you when your ready and when you least expect it.

In the meantime don’t dread seeing your ex boyfriend after a breakup – see it as a positive challenge to overcome, because once it’s done, it’s done!

About the author

Scarlett Robinson

I am inspired by the ways people interact. Human behaviour and emotions are wonderfully complex, and I want to dig deeper and understand more. This is why I explore intimate relationships in my writing. (I’m also ever so slightly kinky.)

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