“I Thought I Had Moved On Until…” How to Avoid a Relationship Relapse

So, it has come to an end. What used to be sweet memories are now those memories you try to avoid because they drive you crazy. After pep talk sessions with your friends, it’s up to you to adjust your life and get used to being without him.

After drinking out with friends, crying your heart out, bashing him secretly (or not), meditating, seeking advice from the more experienced, getting healthier, and getting involved in new hobbies… finally, finally, you’re moving on. You’re so into the zone. You can do this after all. You can now live for a day without expecting a message or call from him. You no longer stalk his Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even that blog that he doesn’t really use, and you have finally accepted that it is over!

Except, as irony would have it, he suddenly creeps into your life again–just when you were already graduating from BA Moving On with honors. Why did he have to show up now that you’re already happy? I mean, seriously, why? Is this some kind of test, when you’ve finally moved on?

Screencap from One More Chance courtesy of Star Cinema

Screencap from One More Chance courtesy of Star Cinema

If you’ve ever found yourself in a similar situation (or know a friend who always says ayaw ko na talaga sa kanya, last na), this is called a relationship relapse. It may sound stupid to get back together with someone whom you have tried to move on from for months, but a lot of women still fall into this trap. Some things deserve second chances, but you’ve got to know your limits, girl.

Now, I know how this feels. I also know that, if this happens, you basically have two options: you either let your guard down and fall into pieces once again OR you hold your head up high and play it cool. Here’s how you can do the latter:

1. Remember why you broke up to begin with.

There must be something that triggered the breakup. Why didn’t the relationship work? Why won’t it ever work? This may sound harsh, but remembering the bad times–all of the problems and the fights–can help you truly move on. All that you have to do is focus on the reason why you broke up.

2. Think about yourself for a change.

Are you happier now? Stress-free? Can you do things now that you couldn’t do when you were with him? How does it feel now that you have slashed a burden that you had always carried in the past? If you are a better person without him, then that is a clear sign that you should stay without him.

3. Know your worth.

Don’t get back together with someone who does not deserve you. Not to feel entitled, but you really shouldn’t settle for someone who is just okay. Why settle for less when you can go all out? Choose a man who appreciates your entire being! Know your worth and keep your self-respect, no matter what. Got that? Let’s say it together: self-worth and self-respect.

4. Think about whether it is worth it.

Say you want to give the relationship a second, third, or fourth chance now. Are you being too generous? Be honest with yourself. If you know that the relationship is already at the edge and has very few chances of surviving, ‘wag nang ipilit, ‘teh! It’s hard to be honest with yourself, especially if you’ve invested so much in the relationship, but relationships are meant to be learning experiences and you aren’t required to pass them all the time. Failed relationships are normal; they’re just a part of life.

5. Look at how far you’ve already come.

Think about this: if this does not work out for the nth time, are you willing to go through the pain of moving on again? Some women might say it will be easier to move on the next time and that it’s best to at least give the relationship a second shot. However, other women might say that trying to move on the second time around will be more challenging because you kept trying and failing. As the saying goes, “fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” Ouch!

It’s always going to be a tedious task to move on from someone you like/love. Temptations to see or talk to that person will always pop up from time to time, even as you move on. Loneliness and nostalgia will haunt you, yes, and you might think it’s best to stick around with the ex because it’s harder to establish trust with someone new. But try to look at the bigger picture and remember that you’re not together right now for a reason.

Say no to relationship relapses! Embrace the lessons that come with falling apart. Know what’s good and bad for you and love yourself a little more. Look around and appreciate what and who you got; your happiness should not depend on a single person, even more so on an ex. 🙂

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