How To Stay Broken Up | Center for Growth Therapy

How To Stay Broken Up

How To Stay Broken Up: Relationship Counseling In Philadelphia, Ocean City, Mechanicsville, Santa Fe.

Breakups are hard, painful, and often messy. Wanting to avoid that makes sense, which is why so many couples struggle to stay broken up. At the same time, going back to your ex can also bring pain in the long run. If you are unsure whether your ex should stay an ex, or if you simply need more assurance, this article is for you. Specifically, you will learn how to stay broken up.



Remembering The Initial Breakup: How To Stay Broken Up: Relationship Counseling

When trying to stay broken up, it is important to remember why the initial breakup happened in the first place. What were the specific reasons? Was there long-distance, infidelity, incompatibility, miscommunication? Furthermore, reflect on the emotions that you felt, as well as the reasons behind them. Were you angry during the breakup, or perhaps morose? What fueled those emotions? Was the partner insensitive to your needs? Did you feel ignored? By asking yourself these questions, you’re also asking yourself if getting back together is healthy or even feasible. This is especially the case regarding threats to safety.

Sometimes, a person ends a relationship in order to protect themselves from abuse or trauma, whether it’s emotional, physical, or sexual. If that were the reason for the breakup, reconnecting with the ex could jeopardize the person’s safety. Not all breakups are the same, which is why it’s so important to reflect on why they occurred. If safety is not a concern regarding your breakup, ask yourself other questions, such as the probability of change.

Reality Testing: How To Stay Broken Up: Relationship Counseling:

Use reality testing to ask yourself one question, “Will things change this time around?” Reality testing is the utilization of objective evidence to assess a situation. Therefore, what are the facts that support or challenge your answer to the earlier question? Here’s a quick example.

Answer: “Things will be different this time around.”

Evidence That Supports

Evidence That Challenges

We love each other.

This is our third time getting back together.

The core issue hasn’t changed (i.e., sex outside the relationship)

We haven’t done anything new, like going to couples therapy.


Based on the example, it doesn’t seem as though things would actually be different if the person got back with their ex. Do this activity for yourself and see what answers come up for you. If you find that getting back with your ex would be unhealthy, here are some ways to reduce your chance of going back to them.

Accessibility and Limiting Contact:How To Stay Broken Up: Relationship Counseling

Take a moment to reflect on how you tend to contact your ex. For instance, if you were to try to reach out to them right now, how would you do so? Whichever method you chose, think about whether you could incorporate barriers to that mode of communication. If it’s through texting and phone calls, delete and/or block their number. If it’s through social media, unfriend or unfollow them. Speaking of electronic communication, try “unplugging” from your ex’s accounts. Remove their Netflix from your devices, disconnect from their Google Calendar, and free yourself from any opportunity to do online spying. It’s the 21st century, so you have to separate yourself physically and electronically from your ex. Don’t be afraid to enlist help from your friends and family. Not only can they help you uphold your boundaries, but they can also be healthier alternatives for support.

Create A Healthier Environment: How To Stay Broken Up: Relationship Counseling


Being in a relationship can satisfy several needs, or at least give the illusion of doing so. Therefore, one way to stay broken up is to get your needs met in a healthier way. here is a short list of needs that people try to satisfy through dating.


  • Companionship

  • Excitement

  • External validation

  • Lust

  • Skin hunger

  • Support


While being in a relationship can definitely help satiate some of these needs, it isn’t the only way to satisfy them. Many people believe that one’s romantic partner should provide everything that they need. Not only is it unfair, it is also untrue. Friends, family, and platonic loved ones can be great resources in helping you get what you deserve. Here’s another list that can help with satiating some of your needs independent of your ex.


  • Game night with friends

  • Joining an adult learning class

  • Spending the weekend at a friend’s place

  • If religious, engaging in the community

  • Renting an Airbnb with family

  • Inviting a friend over for dinner

  • Dog or cat sit for a friend to help with skin hunger


This list is not exhaustive, and won’t fully replace a romantic relationship. However, that isn’t your goal. You’re simply trying to stay broken up with your ex. Creating a healthy environment is one step in achieving that goal.

Overall, not going back to your ex can be very difficult. There’s familiarity and a history of positive moments. At the same time, there is likely a reason why this person is your ex. To keep them that way, reflect on why the breakup happened, engage in reality testing, reduce accessibility to them, and create a healthy alternative to being with them. If you still struggle after doing those interventions, individual therapy might be necessary. Talk to one of our relationship counselors about individual counseling.


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