If you searched anything like “how to get my ex back,” you’ve probably come across a couple of these gurus, be that through a blog post, a youtube video, or a podcast.
These are people who pretend to be some big authority when they’re not. They’re the people who tell you they know the secrets to re-attraction when there are no secrets. They’re the people who charge 49$ for a 70-page ebooks, worth no more than 10$. They are people like Brad Browning, Clay Andrews, Chris Canwell, Chris Seiter, Dan Bacon, Alexandre Cormont (WMXA), Matthew Hussey, and Michael Fiore, to name a few.
What bugs me is that these “how to get your ex back” gurus — or, as I call them, fake gurus — are getting out of control. They keep dishing out false promises, false hope, false everything. Instead of solving problems, they keep preying on the vulnerabilities of brokenhearted people for profit. They keep charging way too much for their products and services — and are still increasing their exorbitant prices as I write this. And they keep giving the rest of us — legit breakup advice content creators — a bad rep.
At this point, someone really needs to call these people out on their bullshit. And it just so looks like that’s going to be me.
The BS behind The Gurus #1: The Marketing
There are lots of issues with the marketing fake gurus use. Below are just some of the most glaring issues that piss me off the most.
1. Content is just an ad in disguise
In the fake guru world, content is nothing but a traction engine. Its sole purpose is not to inform or provide valuable and honest information, but to convert someone from being a reader/viewer/listener into a customer.
And while there’s nothing wrong with conversion-driven articles — I have a lot of them too — it is wrong when they’re solely conversion-driven instead of value-driven.
Because at that point, they become unoriginal and lifeless, and, worst of all, sales pitches in them become more important than the quality of the content. Again, nothing wrong with trying to sell shit, but making that the focal focus of a piece of content irks me the wrong way every time.
2. Unrealistic product claims
You have to raise an eyebrow when looking at some of the claims fake gurus stick onto their product pages:
I’ll teach you how to tap into your ex’s primal instincts, fire up her sex drive, and mold the image of you that she has in the back of her mind. Her panties will be dripping wet before you can say, “snufalufagus. (1)
My program contains a copy-paste scientifically-proven method that will bypass your ex-girlfriends/boyfriends logical brain center and send their emotions into overdrive so they will begin to crave you instantly! And yes, you can perform this secret method from the comfort of the keyboard of your phone, and even if you think there’s no hope for reconciliation and EVEN if your ex told you they don’t want to get back together! (2)
There is a way to win back your ex, and it works 99 out of every 100 times. Follow the advice in this audiobook, and I guarantee you’ll have him back in your life and back in your heart within a month. (3)
These “2 texts” make your ex obsessed with getting back together overnight. “Even if he isn’t responding to your call and messages. (4)
I’m sure as shit that sales copy like this sells bucketloads, but, holy fucking Christ, is it unethical. The people who write this stuff should be ashamed of themselves, as well as the people who bought into it. Both parties need therapy.
3. spam emails galore
When you sign up for a guru’s newsletter, you don’t get valuable insights; you get spam. Lots and lots of spam, like this:
Instead of sending useful content, or even sales pitches promoting products worth purchasing, fake gurus barrage you with sales pitch after sales pitch of shoddy affiliate products.
4. Sales Copy That Insults your intelligence
One of the main ways fake gurus hook you into taking an interest in their service/product is by presenting you a story that:
- Paints a bleak picture of your current situation.
- Paints a cheerful picture of your desired one.
- Strategically plots their product in the middle, acting as a vehicle that gets you from current situation to the desired one.
This strategy, by itself, is perfectly reasonable. But it gets unreasonable when the current situation is exaggerated and presented as far more hopeless than it really is and the desired situation far more exciting and easy to achieve than it really is. Sadly, this is the path that most fake gurus opt in for.
Here’s an example to illustrate what I mean.
“If you want your ex-boyfriend to reach out to you and ask you to take him back, oftentimes even to the point of begging and pleading, then get my XYZ right away before it’s too late… Because with every tick of the clock, it’s more and more likely you will lose him forever…
… more likely he will replace you with another woman…
… more likely he will lose even more attraction for you…
…. more likely he will see you as a blurry and distant memory…
But it really doesn’t have to be that way! If you utilize the techniques I’m going to show you, he’ll be able to remember how amazing things were with you. He’ll remember how it was when you two kissed. How it felt to hold your hand. And he’ll remember when and why he only wanted to be with you.” (6)
5. The bullshit backstory
A bullshit backstory is a well-articulated yet fabricated rags to riches story fake gurus tell you to gain your trust and build rapport. Example:
“Listen, I know exactly what you’re going through. I’ve been through my share of bad breakups… I also felt shocked, sorrowful, betrayed, and anxious. But then I found this [insert fake miracle cure here], and I got my ex back. In fact, not only did I get them back, but we made it work and are now, as I write this, still together, happier than ever, with a new house, a dog, and two and a half kids.”
The bullshit backstory story has to communicate how the guru explaining it was at some point in their ideal client’s shoes, facing the same problem, (they also had a breakup and wanted their ex back in our case) and then they must communicate how they solved that problem and reached a conclusion the ideal client (again, in our case, to get back with an ex) with the help of whatever “miracle cure” they’re selling.
As a side note, it’s not always the case that a guru will insert themselves in their bullshit backstory. Sometimes they make up a character who was in your shoes and then found the fake miracle cure that solved all of their problems.
6. Bonus stacks
Bonus stacks is another sleazy marketing trick plenty of fake gurus use. It essentially refers to adding extra bonuses when you’re buying their primary, which they then say are worth some stupefyingly high amount.
Here’s what I mean:
As enticing as these bonuses look, what a lot of people don’t tell you about them is that a) they’re most of the time cheaply put together or stolen PDF files with no groundbreaking information, and b) the crazy prices next to them are made up.
7. Fake scarcity
What is scarce is always perceived as more valuable than what is abundant. It’s a general law in human psychology. And fake gurus love to abuse it. That’s why they plaster their sales pages with phrases like:
- This video may be taken down soon – do NOT miss the end.
- The offer is limited.
- Spots are limited
- Buy now! This is a flash sale and will end shortly.
There’s nothing wrong with using scarcity if you’re honest about it — if something is genuinely time or quantity limited. But as soon as you’re dishonest about it, you’re being an asshole.
Here. Let’s do something fun. Below are two pictures from the famous Matthew Hussey’s offer. One is recent; the other is about three years old. Can you spot the fake scarcity?
Hint: Focus on the phase “This video may be taken down soon” just above the actual video.
For those interested in how I got the old website data, check out TheWayBackMachine. It’s a website that stores most previous versions of other websites and makes them accessible to the general public. It’s free.
8. Bought And Forged Reviews
Never trust online product reviews, whether it’s about getting your ex back, making money online, cleaning your swimming pool, or crocheting. Most of the time, they’re either bought or forged.
Take a look at this website, for instance: MyLoveBack.org. A simple reverse image search will show you that all the pictures of the people who supposedly uploaded a testimonial are stock photos that anyone can buy. In other words, they’re not from real people who bought the digital product MyLoveBack.org is selling.
If you’re looking for genuine reviews and facts, whether a certain digital product is legit or not, always look up the actual stats and feedback of the business on the Better Business Bureau, and have a look at the discussions going on about it in relevant niche forums and subreddits.
9. Bough credibility
You’ve probably seen the label “As seen on: [insert fancy publication] ” on my homepage. Well, I worked hard for it to be there. And there’s proof I was actually in those publications. Just type in my name and the publication name in Google to find out.
However, I can’t say the same for everyone, especially not fake gurus who are notorious for buying these labels and faking their appearances. It’s actually easier than you’d think.
For example, you can literally buy your own Forbes article for 1000-1500$. In fact, there’s a whole industry built on selling counterfeit credentials — all from testimonials, comments, subscribers, “as seen on,” and “best-selling author” labels.
For example, google Clint Arthur. He’s one of the biggest scammers in this field. He mainly sells fake Harvard speeches. Basically, you pay Clint a few grand, and you can record yourself giving a fake speech, to a fake audience, on a fake Harvard stage, next to sellout celebrities who were paid to be there with your money for boosting your clout.
The BS behind The Gurus #2: The Things They Teach
Like with guru marketing, there are also a lot of issues with guru education. Below are some of the sleaziest, most toxic, unethical, and ineffective pieces of advice fake gurus teach.
Pre-prepared text messages
Let’s look at three of the most popular ones:
1. The Happy Memory/Best Of Text
The purpose of the “happy memory/best of” texts is twofold. On the one hand, you’re reminding your ex of a good memory you had together. On the other, you’re using it as an excuse to break the silence between you.
Here’s an example: “Hey, I just saw a really cool movie that reminded me of the time we went out to the cinema for the first time to watch that crappy Adam Sandler movie. Remember how much we laughed back then?”
And another example: “Remember the time we jumped in that golf cart and rode it down the pavement, just a few steps from your parent’s house? I remember how scared we both were and laughed uncontrollably when we hit bottom and realized we were safe. That look you gave me was priceless.”
2. The Jealousy Text
The purpose of the jealousy text is, as the name implies, to spark jealousy in your ex.
It’s when you text, “Hey, mind reminding me where that lovely restaurant we went on our third date is? I invited a friend to come with me, but I forgot the exact address?”
Or when you text, “A friend and I just went to the cinema and saw Crazy, Stupid, Love. Great movie. Pretty romantic, even. Try watching it. I think you’ll like it.”
3. The Stressful Situation Text
The stressful situation text is used as a form of faux support when you know your ex is going through a difficult period in their life. It’s basically emotional manipulation at its finest — primarily because the intention when sending a text like this is to come up with an excuse to talk to your ex, and not really not connect with them as a person.
Here’s an example: “I know you’re probably feeling stressed right now, with the finals coming and all. But I’m sure you’ll do great! You got this. I just wanted to let you know that I was thinking of you…”
The Pre-Prepared Letters
If the above text message examples made you nauseous, look at these cheesy examples of handwritten letters certain fake gurus recommend you send to your ex to get them back.
1. The Last Resort Letter
The Last Resort Letter is meant to gauge your ex’s interest and help you find out whether or not they still like you. Depending on how they respond, or if they don’t respond at all, you’ll know where you stand.
In this letter, you’re instructed to write to your ex about how you already moved on from them and found someone new but would still love to “stay in contact” because they mean oh-so much to you. Basically, just lie to your ex to get them back. Cool.
Here’s an example from Brad Browning’s infamous X-Factor Guide:
“This is a letter you probably would never expect from me since we haven’t spoken in forever… but I’d like to thank you for being in my life. Much has changed since we’ve broken up. I found somebody new, and everything has been fantastic. I know it sounds weird, but being with you has helped me realize everything I’ve been missing…but I completely valued the time we were together.
I just want you to know that I’m completely over us…and although I’m glad it’s over between us, I think it would be a shame if we just never spoke to each other again. You make such a great friend!
If you feel inclined to reach out to me, you know how to contact me.”
2. The Love/Apology Letter
In this letter, you’re instructed to write your ex a sappy apology where you point out all the ways you’ve acted disrespectfully, explain how you learned from those actions, and ask them if they ever want to see you again. Basically, act like a desperate little bitch.
Here’s an example of this letter from Alexandre Cormont’s 49$ pamphlet, 70 Pro Tips To Get Her Back:
“Sadly, I understood this all far too late. Worst of all, I thought it was your fault. I know some of my words and actions hurt you, and I’m sorry for that, but I think you know me well enough to know that was never my intention. I acted this way because I was unable to control my emotions and think about the consequences of my actions. At first, I didn’t want to write this letter, mainly because of pride, but also because I respect your decision.
Even more so since I know how difficult of a decision this was to make. But I have been telling myself to let go of pride and act. And this is the first step. You know (Her name), I never choose to be attracted to you, but you attracted me. You are a loving, fearless woman with an enormous amount of courage and worth. This is a fact, a reality that I understand when I think back on when we first met or on any point in our relationship really.”
Reverse psychology and playing hard to get
Reverse psychology is a technique that involves getting someone to engage in a desired action or response by suggesting the opposite. And, it’s one of the most common techniques in a fake guru’s repertoire.
It’s when you’re instructed to tell your ex stuff like, “I think our breakup up was a good idea. I wish you well,” when, in reality, you don’t believe it was a good idea and are just lying to make them feel guilty so they take you back.
As sad as it sounds, reverse psychology actually works occasionally. It’s just not a fun or fulfilling achievement to get an ex back with it, nor does it lead to a healthy relationship.
Tangentially with reverse psychology, there’s also playing hard to get. It’s a mentality where you always say or do something you normally would not say or do to get your ex to like you more.
A few examples of playing hard to get that spring to mind:
- Ending the conversations with your ex on purpose, so you leave them wanting more of it.
- Acting indifferent when you’re actually a fucking emotional mess.
- Intentionally sending text messages of smaller size than those of your ex to avoid looking needy.
- Trying to keep your conversation unfolding around “safe topics” and never risking being vulnerable.
- Purposefully acting mysterious and answering your ex’s questions with vague and shallow answers.
- Contacting your ex and then ignoring them to raise their attraction — a.k.a., playing hot and cold.
No Contact As Manipulation
According to the fake guru definition (not to be mistaken for my definition), no-contact is a technique where you ignore your ex for a set time. Usually somewhere between 21 to 90 days, depending on the guru you’re learning from.
There are exceptions to this rule for when you live with your ex, have kids, or work together, but more or less, the goal is always the same: ignore them as much as possible, so they start missing you.
To pull a quote from Chris Seiter’s No Contact Rule Book:
The No Contact Rule: A period of time in which you ignore your Ex, DELIBERATELY, in an attempt to make them miss you more and ultimately allow them time to erase any bad feelings they have towards you; while simultaneously providing yourself an avenue to emotionally recover and grow as an individual.
Now, I won’t comment how stupid you must be to believe you’ll “erase” your ex’s bad feelings (spoiler: you can’t) by ignoring them or how dysfunctional and self-disrespecting this type of advice is — primarily because I already took a stab at the critique in this article. But I will say that this sadly is the overarching definition of the no contact rule across most “get your ex back” websites.
Why Conventional guru techniques don’t work
I won’t go too deep into why the guru techniques usually just lower your chances of getting back with your ex because I’ve already made my point in a handful of previous articles that you can read here, here, here, and here.
But I will say this: If your ex doesn’t want to see you or doesn’t want to get back together with you, it doesn’t matter what technique you use. You won’t change their mind.
Any advancement you make, be that in the form of a text, a letter, a phone call, or a real life encounter, will be regarded as inappropriate and needy, thus unattractive.
And this feeling of repulsion will only get only more intense when the things you’re doing are manipulative, inauthentic, and incongruent with your true values, or used under dishonest intentions.
But let’s pretend that you actually did get your ex back through the scammy “get your ex back” advice. What do you think would happen? Well, you’d just break up again.
That’s because the core reasons your relationship failed in the first place — be that neediness, shitty boundaries, insecurity, lack of self-esteem, incompatibility, lack of trust, etc. — will still be there, never uncovered, never addressed.
All you did was cover up the real issues why your relationship fell apart — the emotional issues — with techniques, strategies, lines, and tricks. You always pay the price for that — the price being another heartbreak. Or, even worse, a reformed relationship that grows toxic.
The BS behind The Gurus #3: The False Hope
There are a lot of lies out there about the chances of getting an ex back. Most fake gurus tackle this issue by making the whole feat seem easy peasy, turd-in-a-toilet-bowl easy.
Chris Seiter promises a 70% success rate at getting an ex back if you buy and follow his program. Dan Bacon promises an 80% success rate. Brad Browning, 90%. And Chris Canwell, arguably the biggest charlatan of them all, promises 96%. And then there are hundreds of other gurus, hidden in some shady and obscure corner of the Internet, preaching even loftier success rates. (7)(8)(9)(10)
Look, all those percentages right, those happy hippo chances of yours? They are complete fabrications. I’m talking absolute hogwash. Utter lies pulled straight from the depths of egotistical, greedy, and morally corrupt assholes. The only reason gurus tell you that there’s some exceptionally high chance you’ll get your ex back is because it sells better.
But here’s the reality: most exes don’t come back. And even if they do, keeping them after you got back together is even less likely to happen.
Don’t believe me? Here, I’ll prove it to you.
Below I’ll show the real numbers and facts behind three studies on how often exes come back that I see plastered across every “get your ex back” website, and reveal how fake gurus distort and misrepresent them.
Top Misrepresented Studies On How Often Exes Come Back
Our first study comes from The Journal of Adolescent Research. It encompasses 792 test subjects — men and women between the ages of 17 and 24 and reports the following:
“44% of emerging adults who had been in a romantic relationship in the past two years had experienced at least one reconciliation with an ex romantic partner and 53% of those who reported reconciliations also reported having sex with their ex.” (11)
Our second study comes from The Journal of Social Psychology. This one works with a sample of 274 loud and raging fist-in-the-air undergraduate students and reports this:
“In some studies, breaking up and renewing with the same partner were reported by as many as 40% of the samples. A recent study focusing on on-again/off-again relationships found that over 60% of young adult respondents had experienced a relationship that broke up and renewed at least once, with 75% of those reporting at least two renewals with the same partner.” (12)
Our third and last study sprang all the way from The Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. It dissects a hulking 1075 couples — 323 of which are cohabiting, that is, living together, and the other 752 married. Here’s what it reports:
“One-third of cohabiters and one-fifth of spouses have experienced a breakup and renewal in their current relationship. However, partners who have experienced cycling (breaking up and getting back together) are at greater risk for further cycling and experiencing greater constraints to permanently ending the relationship, greater uncertainty in their relationship’s future, and lower satisfaction. ” (13)
If you glance at these three studies, you’d conclude the chances of getting your ex back are somewhere between 30-50%. Not bad, right? Well, there’s only one problem… You’re focusing on the wrong studies.
If you examine them thoroughly, you’ll find pieces of information that essentially make each of them irrelevant to the odds of getting your ex back. Here’s what I mean.
1. Studies Are Only Applicable To On/off Relationships
None of the three studies you see plastered on every “get your ex-back” website consider reconciliations in the context of healthy romantic relationships. On the contrary, they consider exclusively those in the context of toxic on-off relationships.
Why is this important? Because couples in on-off relationships are inherently more inclined to breaking up and getting back together. In fact, those couples break up and make up almost as frequently as I change my underwear. So when discussing your average, healthy, non-on-off relationship, the chances of reconciliation are way lower than our studies suggest.
2. The consequences of getting back with an ex aren’t positive
According to our previous study — the one with 1075 participants — getting back with an ex is, in general, a horrible idea, and for good reasons:
“Unfortunately, partners in renewed relationships have been found to be at greater risk for relationship distress. Although researchers have yet to determine causal ordering, compared to stably together relationships (relationships that have been continually maintained), relationship cycling is associated with lower commitment and satisfaction, poorer communication, greater uncertainty, and higher levels of verbal abuse and physical violence.” (14)
There’s even a study published in the journal Personal Relationships that reports the other side of the coin.
“Analyses of open‐ended responses about relationship experiences showed on‐off partners were less likely to report positives (e.g., love and understanding from partners) and more likely to report negatives (e.g., communication problems, uncertainty) than partners who had not broken up and renewed. Also, a greater number of renewals, the greater the negatives and the fewer the positives. (15)
In non-science speak: people who stayed broken up gained more clarity, satisfaction, happiness, and peace in their lives than those who hooked up or rekindled things with an ex. In fact, the latter had significantly worse moods and, on average, a greater number of painful experiences in their future love life.
3. Even The Author Of The Largest Reconciliation Study Argues Against Reconciliation
Look. It’s fine if you don’t want to listen to me. I mean, I’m just a guy with a keyboard and a somewhat stable internet connection. But at least listen to Amber Vellum, an actual expert on reconciliation, breakups, and on/of relationships.
Here’s what she had to say about getting back with an ex. And no, her comment does not apply solely to on-off relationships but all relationships in general.
“Don’t get back together. Study after study shows that when our relationships are poor, we don’t function well. If it seems necessary to get back together, make sure the decision is carefully considered by both people and that specific efforts are made to establish clarity.” — Amber Vellum (16)
Looking At The Bright Side Of The Turd
I’m not one to cancel someone because I don’t like what they’re saying. But I am all about spreading awareness. And that was the whole point of this article: not to cancel the infamous fake gurus, but to help you become more aware of them and their bullshit.
But let’s change the pace a bit. Let’s end this article on a high note.
As you’ve noticed, there are a lot of conmen in the “get your ex back” space. Yet, there are also a lot of ethical and genuine people in it who give healthy advice — people I look up to. People like Craig Kenneth, Corey Wayne, The Dating Guy, Rory from The Love Chat, and Jack from Men’sBreakup. These are the people you should be learning from. Not the Chris Seiters and Brad Brownings of the world.
Note: This article is under fair use. Copyright Disclaimer under section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, education and research. Also, this article is an opinion and in no way should be construed as statements of fact. Scams, bad business, and fake gurus are subjective terms that mean different things to different people.
If you need more help getting your ex back, check out my Radical Re-Attraction Course. With over 8h of video, 300 pages of writing, and personalized 1-on-1 coaching, I'll walk you through every step of the re-attraction process from start to finish.
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