Expert Blog Compelling advice, stories, and thought-provoking perspectives straight from YourTango's lineup of Experts to you

Can an On-Again, Off-Again Relationship End in the Real Deal?


Contributor
Love

Melanie Mar gives advice on whether or not an on-again, off-again relationship can end in marriage.

By Melanie Mar

Happy endings happen in all different ways. So, when someone asks me if a relationship has staying potential when it’s constantly on-again, off-again, the answer is “yes.” Contrary to popular belief, on-again, off-again relationships can be the real deal.

All relationships, at some point, go through turbulent and challenging times, which may result in a breakup or even breakups, plural. Even so, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t one day be walking down the aisle together. Case in point: Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake. If the reason for the split is not of an immoral, unethical or a very serious nature but instead due to timing, immaturity, financial stresses, etc., and the two of you have a deep, emotional and mental connection, there is a good chance that you will reconnect again physically.

If, however, the relationship is volatile and unstable with high-highs and low-lows, it’s not healthy. I wouldn’t recommend anybody committing to a long-term relationship of this type. If you have a steady, calm relationship that has gotten off track because of a small matter, then resolution may be achieved.

I understand you may be missing your ex and feel the need to contact him or her, but before you repeat previous behavior patterns, ask yourself these questions: What is the fundamental issue that is causing your breakup(s)? And what can you do to stop it from happening again? Maybe consider some outside assistance from a therapist. If you do make a plan to see each other again, come with a solid idea of what you’re willing to commit to with regards to establishing a solution moving forward.

Related Link: Can You Be Friends With an Ex?

Don’t call someone just to say, “I miss you.” This action will lead to you both falling back into a dysfunctional relationship and making the same mistakes.

Don’t jump into bed and have make-up sex either. It’s tempting to do when high chemistry is present but will only mask the underlying problems temporarily.

If your relationship is consistently on and off with someone who breaks up with you at his or her whim, then you will eventually have to up the ante. You cannot allow your ex to keep coming back into the relationship at the same level. You must stay strong and insist they commit to something deeper (i.e. from dating to girlfriend, girlfriend to fiancé, fiancé to wife). Otherwise, you have the potential to remain in this back-and-forth relationship for years with no intent of a full commitment from your partner.

Related Link: 10 Steps to a Remarkable Relationship

Ultimately, if the pull between the two of you keeps bringing you back together, there is a real reason for that. Finding someone with whom you have a deep connection is very difficult. Think about how many people you have been on one date with – even just a coffee – and the number is probably quite high. Now, think about how many people you have told you love, and it most likely drops dramatically. And now, think about how many people in your life who you have really been in love with, and my guess is maybe one or two.

So, with this thought in mind, if you have found a special someone that you have a true love connection with, iron out the kinks and commit 100 percent to the relationship. When two people are destined to be together, it will be, regardless of what obstacles get in your way.

Author
Contributor

Explore YourTango