Should I Text My Ex? (10 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t)
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Should I Text My Ex? (10 Reasons Against & Possible Exceptions)

By Max Jancar | Published: March 16, 2022 | 11 Minute Read | Ex-Back

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If you suddenly feel the temptation to send that text, stop for a damn second and think, “Should I text my ex?” Really think about it. Should you actually do it? Or should you rather just go and eat something instead? Or maybe hurl your phone across the room? Or perhaps take a shot of tequila?

Here’s a hot-take: don’t fucking do it. No, not the tequila. Drink that shit up (granted, you’re not an alcoholic). I’m referring to the texting. Personally, I believe texting your ex is rarely a good idea. It may work for a few (more on this later), but it’s the equivalent of shooting an arm off for the majority.

The instant you hit send, you’ll be caught up in a whole new web of regrets and anxiety. And your self-worth and esteem will often suffer for it. So, in many ways, it’s just not worth it. And here’s why, specifically.

Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Text Your Ex

If you honestly think about whether or not to text your ex — to send them that one message you feel can change everything, think twice. Or better yet, read through this list of top reasons you shouldn’t text them.

1. You Need To Take Your Time To Heal

Getting over a breakup, is a pain in the ass. And it takes a lot of time. It’s completely normal to have this impulsive need to talk to your ex during this period because you feel out of control and miss them. But before spiraling, you need to give yourself the time to heal. Not texting your ex will enable you to borrow that time.

And while self-control can be incredibly challenging, if you do it well, you will emerge more resilient than ever. Eventually, and with repetition, you won’t even be thinking about texting your ex anymore.

2. If You’re Expecting Closure, Forget It

While you may expect that texting your ex will bring you some sort of closure, this just isn’t true. Nothing they say or do will make you feel any better. Besides, they probably don’t even know what to say or do. They’re likely just as confused as you are. And if they apologize after you make the first move, they probably aren’t genuine anyways.

You might even feel that by talking, you’ll be able to pinpoint what you lacked in your relationship so you can somehow “fix” yourself and get back together with them. Bullshit. You should never let your self-worth be attached to someone else this way. This sort of mindset will only make you go bonkers.

3. Don’t Give Your Ex The Satisfaction of Thinking You Aren’t Over Them

If you haven’t been talking to your ex, it’s natural that both of you may wonder if you have moved on or not. The moment you break no contact and text your ex, they may feel rather smug about themselves.

Because to them, this is all the confirmation they need to know that you aren’t over them yet. Don’t give them that satisfaction. Focus on yourself.

4. You’ve Already Said Enough; Save Your Breath

Let’s say you text your ex. What do you expect to get out of it? What will you even say?

There is probably nothing you can say that you already haven’t said before. If you feel that you had to push to communicate with your ex when you were dating, which was likely draining and toxic for you, don’t expect it to be any different now.

If they made no effort to communicate at that time, what makes you think they will do it now? You have said enough; it’s time to save your breath and precious energy. Redirect it to more fruitful goals instead.

5. You May Feel Relieved for Two Solid Minutes Before You Realize What You’ve Done

“It may feel good to text your ex.”

No, let’s make this more realistic.

“It will feel good to text your ex … for a minute or two.”

But right after reality sets in and you realize what you’ve done, you will regret it. Plus, you may have to think of the worst-case scenario. What if you text them while they are with someone? What if they flaunt your text in your social circle as an indication that you want to get back together with them? Some toxic exes relish that little ego boost. So, even if you feel nice for a bit, it’s not worth it long term.

6. Texting Your Ex Will Come Off As Needy

In many ways, when you text your ex, you’ll come off as needy and desperate. And if your goal is getting your ex back, your chances for reconciliation will likely plummet for it.

So don’t risk it. It’s not worth it — 9 times out of 10, you’ll do more harm than good. Sometimes you may even turn your ex off to a point where they will start to feel relieved they left.

7. Don’t Let Your Ex Think You Have No Other Options

If you haven’t texted your ex for a long time, they may think you’ve moved on. The instant they get a message from you, they may settle with a new delusion that somehow they’re the best you can do or the only thing you have going on in your life.

This is a big turn-off. But thankfully, one you can easily avoid. Just don’t reach out!

8. Your Ex May Ignore You

When you hit send, you will be glued to your phone like a hawk waiting for a reply. You may very well wait the entire day for a reply. But once you realize they have no intention of texting you back, you may feel hurt, idiotic even.

Save yourself the pain and embarrassment of going down that path and overcome the impulse to text them.

9. It’s Probably Time to Move On

If you’re feeling lonely or reminiscing over old times, don’t let it drive you to the extent that you text your ex. It’s time that you move on. You have no reason to waste your time and energy on something of the past.

Instead, think of this as a chance to meet new people, connect with old friends or just spend time with yourself. Day by day, you’ll get through it and find yourself naturally moving on.

10. Think of the Past You, the Future You, And Respect Them

Before you text your ex, think about the past you. Think of the difficult times you went through before the downfall of your relationship. It’s rarely fair or healthy to try and reconnect with your ex after all that. Chances are, you won’t just be disrespecting your past self; but also your future self.

Now’s the time to create a future for yourself. Invest in the things that make you a better person (purpose, values, self-care, lifestyle, etc). By texting your ex, you’ll only re-open your wounds of the past and perhaps jeopardize your future as well.

When Texting Your Ex Is Appropriate And When It’s Absolutely Not

Generally speaking, you shouldn’t text an ex. But there are some situations where it’s appropriate and where you technically could text them. Here’s a list of these special cases.

  1. When you share responsibilities like children, pets, work, bills, or you live together.
  2. When you need to grab something that’s yours from their place (pro tip: get a friend to pick up whatever you’re after).
  3. When you’re friends (caveat: but there’s not a shred of emotional baggage or the desire of getting back together present on either side).

On the other hand, while there are situations when texting your ex is appropriate, there are also situations where texting them is not only inappropriate but also plain stupid. Here they are.

  1. When you were in an abusive relationship, emotionally or physically.
  2. When your ex is trying to get revenge and harm you or your reputation.
  3. When you’re just desperate and needy and want to get your ex back at all costs.
  4. When you want to make your ex jealous.
  5. When they’ve clearly moved on.
  6. When you’re drunk.
  7. When you just want to stop feeling grief and other uncomfortable feelings.
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Final Thoughts On Why You Shouldn’t Text Your Ex

You know that itch you get, the one that whispers, “Just text them, what’s the worst that could happen?” Yeah, that little bastard lies. As you know by now, the fleeting satisfaction of sending your ex a text is usually far outweighed by the long-term repercussions.

Texting your ex, especially in moments of loneliness or nostalgia, may seem like a good idea — a quick fix to fill your emotional void. However, it’s a temporary solution that doesn’t address the underlying need for healing and personal growth. Not to mention that if you want your ex back, texting them will usually just push them away — especially if you’re the dumpee.

So please, don’t be a hasty idiot. If ever in doubt, it’s probably better to err on the side of silence than to going for that text. And besides, from a growth perspective, every moment spent looking back, engaging with your ex, is a moment stolen from your future.

So instead of staying chained to the past, embrace the opportunities that await in the future. Yes, there’s more of them — lots more. Think about it in this way: life is filled with chapters, and while some are meant to end, others are just waiting to be written.

(Optional) Top Questions About Texting An Ex

Should I Text My Ex Happy Birthday?

No, you should not text your ex happy birthday. Especially not if you want to leverage their special day to start a conversation with them that you hope will lead to a date and, by extension, a rekindled relationship. Your ex will be able to smell these needy intentions from a mile away and they will be repelled by them.

Should I Text My Ex Who Dumped Me?

If your ex was the one who called quits, you don’t need to text them. You’ll likely just end up annoying them and turning them off. They may even go around and spread the word that you’re a needy person who won’t let your past relationship go. Instead, wait for them to reach out, and when they do, set up a date with them. If they ever feel like they made the wrong decision, they will be the ones to contact you first. And if they don’t, they’re probably content with their decision.

What Can I Do If I Feel The Urge To Text My Ex?

Stop yourself if you ever get hit with a strong impulse to text your ex. Think about why you want to reconnect with someone from your past. If you feel like you may cave, try doing something to distract yourself. Go for a walk, take a bath, watch a movie, anything that feels good to you, do it. Doing something that requires you to use your hands is a good idea since that can occupy your mind as well. While doing this all, try to keep your phone out of easy reach so you don’t act on your impulses with haste.

What Do I Do If My Ex Messages Me First?

If you just want to move on, feel free to ignore or ghost them. Or, if you’re of the more polite sort, engage in a short conversation, and then say, “Nice hearing from you, but I’ve got to go. Take care.” If your ex wants to talk logistics like pets, kids, living or work arrangements — have the conversation but end it as soon as you come to some mutually beneficial solution or once you solve whatever problem you’re dealing with. If you want your ex back, I’d engage, like I wrote prior, in a short conversation and then invite them out on a date.

How Long Should I Wait To Text My Ex?

Waiting is not the point. If you have some logistical stuff to sort out, text your ex as you’re available and sort it out. If you want them back however, I’d strongly suggest not waiting a certain period of time before texting. Instead, if they don’t know you want them back, text them about it right away. And if they’re receptive, invite them on a date. But if they already know you want them back, only start communicating with them if they reach out first (and with it, give the green light for further re-attraction).

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