Read This Before You Reply To That Text From Your Ex

Your relationship may not have ended on the worst terms, but it’s definitely over and you’ve moved on. However, you can’t lie and say you don’t think about him from time to time, so when you do hear from him out of the blue, you might be tempted to reply to his text ASAP. Before you do that, read this.

  1. Remove your rose-tinted glasses. It’s really easy to see your previous relationship from behind rose-tinted glasses when it’s over and you’ve had some distance from the drama. But try to remember all that was wrong with the relationship and your ex before you start communicating again.
  2. Don’t reply right away. It’s good to take some time to figure out why your ex could be contacting you. He might just be looking for a quick convo before moving on and never texting you again, but his text might also be the start of a new friendship… or more. Are you ready for that? Don’t be hasty about texting the ex because you might be opening a whole can of worms that you’re really better off leaving closed.
  3. Analyze your feelings. Do you still have feelings for your ex? Come on, be honest with yourself. Do you still feel wounded about the breakup? Do you hate his freaking guts? You have to hash out your feelings so you know what you want from this guy, if anything, and if texting him would be good for your soul.
  4. Have you really moved on? You should never chat to your ex unless you’ve moved on from what happened. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t text him back if you still have romantic feelings, but if that’s the case, there are some important things to bear in mind.
  5. Take it slow. If you do have feelings for him, you’ll probably want to reply to his text. But proceed with caution! Your ex might not be texting you because he wants a relationship do-over. That’s why it’s good to keep a cool head and only text him if you’re cool with keeping things casual – at least until you know where he’s at and what he wants.
  6. Avoid texting if you’re lonely. Ditto if you’re bored. You don’t want your ex to start to fill a gap in your life that you can fill yourself! That’s just texting him for all the wrong reasons.
  7. Avoid texting if he’s got someone else. If you’re still into your ex and you know for a fact that he’s dating someone else, avoid putting yourself in an awkward and potentially heartbreaking situation. You deserve better than that.
  8. Is he sorry? Go ahead and text him if you’re cool with doing so, but make sure there are no hard feelings related to your previous relationship. Is he remorseful? Does he feel bad about what happened, even if he wasn’t at fault for the relationship coming to an end? You don’t want to waste your time chatting to someone who pins all the blame on you or plays the role of the victim/martyr. It can pull up old wounds you don’t need to deal with.
  9. Text him if you just want to chat. Feel like a bit of a catch up with your ex? Curious to know how he’s been doing, without an ulterior motive (like trying to show him that you’re doing so much better than he is)? Then go ahead and text him. When done in this spirit, it’s never a bad thing.
  10. Wait a while after the breakup. If you’ve recently broken up and you told yourself you needed a few weeks or months of no contact with your ex before you would consider chatting/seeing him again, stick to your rule! If he’s breaking it by getting in touch, that’s pretty selfish. You shouldn’t text him out of guilt or because you think you can handle chatting to him. It’ll just set you back.
  11. Think about him platonically. If you weren’t still into him, would you text your ex? Would you want him in your life as nothing more than a platonic friend? It’s important to ask yourself these questions. The last thing you want to do is text him just because you have a romantic motive. If that doesn’t work out the way you planned, you could end up regretting your decision and feeling like you’re going through the breakup feelings all over again. Ugh. Who needs that?
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.