What To Do When You Regret Breaking Up With Your Ex

Five steps to figure out how to undo what you did — and if you should try to fix it at all.

Woman trying to make up with boyfriend after mid-argument breakup perfectwave | Canva

You don't know why you said it, but you did. It was a stupid argument and you can't even remember how the conflict started or what it was really about. What you won't ever forget is how frustrated and angry you were, and the stunned look on your partner's face when you uttered these words: “It’s over! I’m leaving you!” 

You didn't want to or intend to break up with your partner, in that moment and especially now. You spoke without thinking because you were so upset and just wanted to somehow express the intensity of your displeasure with your partner. You can't un-speak the breakup, but you can undo the damage and put your relationship back together again.


Five steps to take when you regret breaking up with your ex

1. Ask why

First, you need to understand why you said what you did. Something is "off" in your relationship and there are troublesome dynamics between you and your partner that had to have been bothering you. Otherwise, you wouldn't have felt upset enough to tell your partner you are leaving the relationship.

If everything was amazing between the two of you, those words would not have come out of your mouth.

2. Ask if

Be honest with yourself and ask yourself whether or not it is healthy for you to be in this relationship. Are the challenges you two are having fixable and have you seen any signs (within yourself or in your partner's behavior) that indicate a willingness to make lasting changes?


Spend some time on this question. If you're not convinced it's a good idea for you and your partner to be together, it's going to be nearly impossible to convince them and put these suggestions into practice.

RELATED: 3 Ways To Get Out Of The Doghouse When You've Really Screwed Up

3. Own it 

You must put your pride aside and take full responsibility for the "argument breakup." If you get defensive or try to deflect blame on your partner (and whatever he or she said or did), your apology is not going anywhere. Focus on the words you said that you regret and then, genuinely and from the heart, say "I'm sorry."

She walks away from and regrets breaking up NDAB Creativity via Shutterstock


4. Face it

Ask your partner to talk with you about the situation, which may be a recurring one. The more you can leave out the blame the better; get curious about how each of you perceives what's happening and what sort of resolution is acceptable. Facing up is all about looking at the bigger picture. This is about more than one argument where you broke up and stormed out. This is about recognizing how you both play a role in whatever is causing conflict and tearing you apart and learning from it.

RELATED: 4 Ways To Respond When Your Partner Puts You Down

5. Strategize about it

As a team, brainstorm options about the situation or issue you two are struggling with. This might mean that you consider things you've rejected in the past. Write down all options you can think of and then talk about the benefits of each. Choose one you both feel is doable and will take you closer to where you want to be in your relationship.

You can also strategize with your partner about how to ease communication in your relationship. Talk about specific words or actions that help you both calm down and return to clarity to use when an argument heats up.

Agree to take a "time out" at the first signs of a fight or make a request that you'll each pause, take deep breaths, say "I love you" to each other, and consciously return to what's most important: finding a solution you both can be happy with.


RELATED: 4 Tiny Ways To Show Someone You've Really Changed

Susie and Otto Collins are Certified Transformative Coaches who help awaken love and possibilities in your life.