7 Toxic Situations When Getting Back With An Ex Is A Terrible Idea

Don't settle for being miserable with someone who's bad for you.

serious woman thinking Veronika Zelenina / Shutterstock

Lots of stories of people getting back with an ex after they've broken up go something like this:

“My ex is trying to get me back, but they lied, disappeared, and/or cheated on me but they’re still contacting me every day. Why are they doing this? Do I still have a chance with them? Even though they did a lot of terrible things, I still want them back.”

I am astonished that so many people go through really similar situations after a breakup or the temporary end of a relationship.


But just because your ex is trying to get back together with you, should you actually get back together with someone you left a relationship with?

Since so many people obviously struggle with missing their ex and wondering, "Should I get back with my ex?" it's a situation that doesn't have a simple answer.

You might still love them, but even if you got them back, it’s not necessarily true that you'd be happy if you succeeded.

Why is getting back together with an ex so common?

It's because a breakup causes you to reel. You want back what you lost when things were good. Even in spite of your ex’s major transgressions. So you cling to the hope, any shred of contact, any sign that they might be still interested.


Even when it would be terrible for you in the long run if you actually did succeed in rekindling your romance.

So when should you cut off your efforts to get your ex back and focus on getting over them?

RELATED: If You & Your Ex Broke Up For Any Of These 11 Reasons, Getting Back Together May Be The Best Thing You Ever Do

Here are seven toxic situations in which getting back with an ex is a terrible idea:

1. Your ex betrayed you

Whether this was cheating or some other issue, your ex took your trust in them and broke it.


2. Your ex lied to you

Not the little white lies meant to spare your feelings. They lied to you about something significant that damaged your relationship with them.

RELATED: If Your Ex Comes Crawling Back, It's For One Of These 4 Reasons

3. Your ex ghosted you

They took the coward’s way out and disappeared on you without telling you the relationship was over. This is not someone you want to get tangled up with again, even if they're still showing signs of trying to win you back later on.

RELATED: 13 Rare Reasons To Take Back Your Ex

4. Your ex has serious problems with something inherent about you

Or you have an issue with them that can't be corrected. Maybe they're a gambler, or maybe they hate your family that you're quite close with. Either way, this won't work.


5. You have seriously differing life goals

He wants kids, you don't. If you want to get married, he won't even watch movies about marriage.

You want to travel. He doesn't want to leave the city he was born in.

Your goals don't line up, and this is going to end poorly.

RELATED: 10 Secrets Guaranteed To Help You Immediately Get Over An Ex

6. Your ex is abusive

If you've been abused, do not get back together.

7. You have a lack of mutual respect for each other

If you can't respect one another, you won't last as a couple, in dating or marriage.

What do you do if you see yourself on this list and can’t shake the urge to keep striving to get them back?

Raise your standards, gain perspective, and realize that love has limitations.


RELATED: An Expert Explains Why You Should (Pretty Much) Never Call Your Ex

Create boundaries to avoid repeating mistakes

If you take the time to create actual boundaries and guidelines about what you want in your life, you’ll elevate yourself above dealing with the same bad situations over and over.

You’ll avoid selling yourself short and feeling taken advantage of. You’ll cut out the B.S. that keeps you stuck and miserable. You’ll call it a day on bad relationships sooner. You’ll even end up with nicer furniture.

But this can only happen if you decide what you will and won’t allow, then relentlessly cut out the wrong people and bad situations to kick off the process.


When it comes to your ex, this means that the seven situations above are total deal-breakers.

That means that when one of these things happens and violates your standards, it’s over. 

They've shown you who they are and what your relationship means to them and now it’s time to show them the door.

RELATED: 17 Signs You're Still Mooning Over An Ex

Keep your options open

There are several billion — yes billion, people out there who you could try a relationship with. Some of them might even be great.

This particular person who sawed through your heart like a crazed lumberjack on a meth bender might not be the last man or woman on Earth.

You probably love them dearly though and I don’t discount that. It hurts like hell, I know.


By trying to win them back when they’re wrong for you, you’re staying stuck on this one particular opportunity instead of exploring your options.

There is no reason to keep putting all of your eggs in this particular rotten, leaky basket.

RELATED: 10 Signs Your Ex Is Testing You (And What You Can Do)


Analyze the facts with cold logic

You should never, ever use the fact that you have the most tender feelings in the world for someone to whitewash the cold, hard facts about your relationship.

If your relationship is bad news, it doesn’t matter if you think this was the greatest, most special love the world has ever known, you should still stay away from them.

And if you stay away long enough, you’ll gain perspective, remember your value, and realize that even though you might love them, you two just aren’t meant to continue your journey together.

“But I love them,” makes me cringe.

To this I say, “So what?”

Lots of people love pizza, but that isn’t exactly healthy, either.


Your effort would be better spent gaining confidence, moving on, and finding someone else. You might really love your ex but you'll fall in love with someone else.

Only if you raise your standards, stop selling yourself short, and move on from any situation or person who can’t or won’t treat you the way you deserve to be treated.

RELATED: 10 Things A Good Guy Won't Do To The Woman He Loves

Elizabeth Stone is an author, dating coach, and personal development coach who helps women restore themselves in order to improve their relationships.