When your relationship has come to an end, with the pain of separation lingering in the corners of your heart, you can feel deeply out of place.
You might even feel trapped inside your head, second guessing if your ex is genuinely not interested in you anymore or just pretending to be over you.
Now you might question: is there still hope?
Is my ex still interested?
Does this sound like you?
Do you feel like you constantly receive mixed signals?
Are you deeply longing for the answers what to do with your ex?
Or that it should be better for you to stop the dreaming about them coming back once and for all?
You might have been through a major heartbreak and now you don’t know what to do. Should I let go or is there still hope?
These questions might pop up in your head and now you’re looking for direction. You’re in the right place.
In this blog we’ll be diving deeper into gaining clarity if your ex is truly over you or just pretending to be.
Do exes really pretend to be over someone?
Letting go of your ex-lover might be one of the hardest things that you ever have to face. Especially if you truly, deeply love this person. There are plenty of ways why people can pretend to be over someone.
This doesn’t always even have to be about you. They might have been triggered really deeply in their emotional trauma. They might find it hard to open up or even to be vulnerable inside the container of your love.
They might have never learned to take responsibility for their lives and rather withdraw or walk away. The list can go on and on. What truly matters is that they have their own reasons.
Besides, a big possibility might be that they genuinely aren’t interested in you anymore.
Even though this isn’t easy, it’s something that we need to take in account before we clearly state out the signs if your ex is pretending to be over you.
“Reality is constructed by your brain.” Neuroscience Stanford tells us here, that our brains are making up a “story” about reality.
Therefore it’s truly important to be curious and seek out the answers, how the reality in our heads might be different from the reality that is truly in front of us.
When you take off your coloured glasses and look with pure honesty to the signs explained below, you can more easily determine if your ex is pretending to be over you or not.
15+ Signs Your Ex Is Pretending to Be Over You
1. They are in a rebound relationship
Your relationship together just ended and within a short period of time it looks like they have “moved on”.
They pretend to have found the love of their life while at the same time, just recently, they were still deeply in love with you.
Is your ex still holding on to contact with you even though they have a new relationship? Gwendolyn Seidman (Ph.D) states in this research that if that’s the case, the current relationship might not be so serious as you believe it is.
Big chances are that they’re just burying the feelings away with having someone else. Nothing can distract us more from our true and honest feelings than a rebound relationship.
2. They go out of their way to fight with you
Let’s face it. When someone truly doesn’t care about you, they wouldn’t put all the time and energy into starting arguments or playing the blame-game all day long.
You only put in energy in the things that matter to you. If they’re still fighting with you and trying to get your attention related to matters of the past, they might still carry feelings for you.
3. They’re giving mixed signals
They’re looking just a little bit too long in your eyes. Their hand just lightly and too often touches your arm.
They’re still interested in how your day was or they keep liking all of your social media posts. They come close to you but still, they maintain enough space to keep you mixed inside.
If you don’t know where you stand with your ex after you thought you “closed the book together” and they still do some of these things, they’re not completely over you.
If you’re dealing with a lot of mixed signals, this research will give you clarity on whether the mixed signals in their behaviour are pointing into the direction of reuniting or just strangling you along.
4. They keep their old routine
I remember Julia, she was so in love with her ex-boyfriend who clearly stated that he didn’t want to be with her anymore. They broke up.
However, she kept going to the same places where they used to hang out. She kept sitting in the same bench where they used to have their lunch together.
She wasn’t able to let go of the routines that kept her connected to her past lover. If your ex is still doing this, this is also a clear sign, he or she, isn’t over you.
In the end, if you truly cut the chords with someone, would you still go to the same old places that reminds you of them and your past?
5. They try to make you feel jealous
Normally they don’t do anything with social media, but suddenly they’re overusing it. They’re showing their “amazing life”, while deep inside, you know something feels off.
Where they at first were completely heartbroken, they now suddenly seem to have it all together. Posting photo’s with other people, posting photo’s of going out or any type of behaviour that feels far different from how they used to behave.
This behaviour can be offline or online. If you have a gut feeling that something is suddenly off, it might be them trying to make you jealous and secretly hoping to get your attention.
6. They keep wanting to talk over the reasons for your breakup
Your ex keeps bringing up ghosts from the past. They keep talking and fishing into your waters to understand why you had to move away from them.
No matter what you do or say, they can’t seem to accept that the break up really happened and they keep looking for ways to understand why the two of you had to seperate.
In the head and heart of your ex, you haven’t faded away and they can’t seem to convince themselves that the break up is real.
If they can’t find acceptance and keep trying to find a weak spot inside you, that might lead to reconciliation, you can clearly see, that they haven’t find peace in the separation.
7. They haven’t “publicly” acknowledged the breakup
If they haven’t openly talked about the break up, if they haven’t made it real to their family or their friends, it’s because they don’t want it to be real.
Let’s be honest. When your ex isn’t talking about the break up to the people around them, the stakes are high that he is hoping for another reality together.
8. Drunk or emotional phone calls late at night
I believe you might have had an experience (one or two) with alcohol, where you can feel that the drinking is making you loosen up more.
If you have an ex that is constantly calling you while he is drunk or even emotional at night, you’re more on their mind than you believe you are.
In this article, research even says that when you drink, it can allow you to expand your communicative freedoms by overriding your typical self-protective defence mechanisms.
They might feel in control during the day time, but when the night falls, the reality of what they truly feel, comes to light.
9. They ask you questions
They are overly invested in you by asking questions constantly. Questions that might even feel controlling to you. Questions like:
• Who you were with or who you went out with recently…
• Whether you are seeing anyone…
• Asking if anyone has been in the house (if you both used to live together)…
• Checking where you had been too recently…
• Asking to check your phone…
• Asking anything that is sensitive relating to your relationship…
If this sounds like your ex, they’re trying to pull information from you to see where your head is at and if they still can get a chance with you.
10. They’re sabotaging you
When someone can’t have you, the “beautiful words” can fast turn into harsh comments, or critical behaviour that isn’t supporting your growth.
I still remember the story I had with one of my exes, Marco (not his real name), who was my most intense ex to say. He could be the sweetest guy, the one who would step up for me.
He would go left or right for me, until we separated. After the break up he was so full of jealousy when I talked with other men (we lived in the same village), that he could completely lose it.
He regularly just approached me and talked down on me with harsh comments whenever he had the chance. He started to expose things that my mother, my sister or even my friends “said” about me.
He made up stories about what the people in my village were saying. He did all this to just talk me down because he lost his sense of control over me. People can make weird moves when they feel out of control.
If your ex isn’t supporting your growth, if your ex is constantly making harsh comments to you, it’s fair enough to question if you should leave the gates for contact still open.
Do you really want someone in your life who isn’t coming from an authentic, honest and loving place, have access to your precious heart and mind?
11. They look out for reasons to bump into you
We all might know or have experiences with that “creepy ex” that just shows up to be everywhere where you are too.
You might even witness your friends ex just showing up on every party, every café, every place. When someone is obsessively in love with you, all they see is “you”.
This is also what Researcher Patrick Cavanagh explains here: “Our brains unconsciously bend our perception of reality to meet our desires or expectations. And they fill in gaps using our past experiences.”
When your ex is full of love for you and show up in every corner, they’re doing everything to maximise the chances to get to see you.
If your ex always seems a little bit “too close”, even though you don’t have the same group of friends, they’re still interested in you.
12. They’re reaching out to your circle to know what you’re doing
Another way of behaving that can include that they’re just still head over heels about you, is that they’re still trying to gather information about you through your (closest) friends.
This might seem innocent, but chances are high, the love is still there.
Do you really think someone would still be interested to know about your day to day throughout your friends or closest circle, if they didn’t care at all?
13. Your ex responds positively to you contacting them
There is a difference between being kind and being too open and inviting. There is a thin line between those two.
If you send them a message and they seem to keep the conversation flowing by asking you personal questions, using emoticons, slowly opening more doors, chances are very high they’re still interested.
However, this can also indicate that they’re open for friendship and truly are being kind.
Let’s face the facts. “When someone doesn’t care, they wouldn’t have asked.” As in this article, Berit Brogaard, D.M.Sci., Ph.D, clearly states this according to her research.
The only way to know this, is to trust your gut feeling and the time, as the passing of time will most likely reveal the truth.
14. You’ve caught them looking at you
One of the biggest signs to know if your ex is still not over you, is to watch out for a couple of signs according to body language.
According to research, it is shown that one of the major signs to know if someone is attracted to you, is eye contact. When someone is genuinely interested in you, they will be looking more deeply into your eyes and holding your gaze.
Besides this, other indicators in body language that are signs of attraction according to this research are:
– They lean in
– They tilt their head as you speak (a sign of engagement)
– They smile at you
– They make eye contact with you
– They reach out and touch your arm, hand, back or leg
Do you recognise one of these signs with your ex?
15. They haven’t taken back their belongings
Can you go back to a time that you had a break up (if any) with someone that you didn’t love anymore? Or maybe even the break up of a (close) friend that comes to mind?
One of the first things that you do, when you seperate from someone you choose to seperate from, is to slowly (or fast) collect what is yours so that you can start to move on with life.
You don’t want to let it linger around. You see it as a closed chapter. Isn’t this true?
If your ex is still not taking back their belongings, the chances are high they still have a deep hope that there is a chance of getting back together.
16. Your ex still keeps your things and gifts
We tend to hold onto things because we find it hard to let them go. If your ex is still having all the gifts and things that connected the two of you together, they might have a hard time with letting go.
The separation truly becomes real when we say goodbye to the last things that still connect us to our ex-partner.
If your partner isn’t letting go of these things, they might still love you more than you think.
What to do if my ex is pretending to be over me?
First of all, the most important questions to ask yourself is: do you really want to be with someone who is pretending to not like you? Or someone who genuinely doesn’t want to be with you?
Do you really want to keep looking back to someone who isn’t ready to step up for you and give you what you deserve?
Someone who isn’t willing to choose you fully and possibly even pretending that you don’t count?
You can’t force people to show what they feel, especially not your ex. They might have their own reasons, their own protection mechanisms, to not let you come close.
This might be because of their fears, insecurities or even self-doubt. It also might be because they just don’t want to be with you anymore, which can be a very hard pill to swallow.
Whatever it is, you can’t change people and you can’t force people.
If you didn’t check off most of the boxes of the signs above, the chances are big your ex is genuinely not interested in you anymore. This is something that is beyond your control.
The only thing that is within your control is you. Only you can decide how you deal with the situation.
The only way through this, is to not wait until your ex chooses you and to not let it hold you back. Choose to make yourself your first priority and let the world around you change with you.
How to Move on?
Instead of placing all the attention on your ex, take your power back by focusing on you.
I know how hard this can be, especially when you’re still hoping for them to come back or when the signs are saying differently.
The universe has a plan for every one of us. Sometimes that doesn’t feel like it, but in the end, you should have trust and hope that the universe is inspiring in your favour. It’s working for you, not against you.
When people get pulled away or choose to step away from your life, it’s okay to be sad. It’s okay to wonder back to what could’ve been.
However, them leaving can be the greatest invitation for you to pull back to the first and last person that you will ever love you.
Make yourself full. Put the power back into your own hands. If your ex tries to pull away or pretend, he or she doesn’t care, know that you will be fine either way. In the end, every rejection is a redirection.
So open yourself for everyone who is willing to put in the work and stand beside you. Not someone who is playing games or acts of behaviour that feel untrue or inauthentic to you.
In the end, only you know the answer to what is right for you regarding to your ex.
Choose that. Choose for what is right for you. Keep trusting in your path and never give up hope for a greater love.
You got you. Never forget that.