If you knew for sure that your ex still loved you, this breakup pain would be a little easier to manage.
On the other hand, if you knew for sure that your ex didn’t love you, it would make it a little bit easier for you to leave your ex behind and move on.
But the confusion that comes after the breakup makes it impossible to figure out the truth.
You start looking for signs that your ex loves you. Signs that they still have feelings for you. Signs that your ex boyfriend or your ex girlfriend still holds a place in their heart for you.
And the more you look, the more confusing things get. You start stalking them on Social Media and start asking mutual friends about them. You re-read all their messages to try to find something you missed before. You start overanalyzing their behavior.
In reality, overanalyzing your ex’s behavior is not going to help you get your ex back or move on. It’s just going to drive you crazy. How can it not when your ex sends so many mixed signals after the breakup?
They will like your status on Facebook and then Unfriend you.
They will text you when they are drunk but won’t pick up your calls the next day.
They will be sitting at your favorite coffee shop but won’t come and say hi to you.
They will start dating someone else but will get angry when they find out you started dating someone else.
The truth is your ex is hurt and probably confused about their feelings for you. Luckily, there are a few signs that will tell you whether or not your ex still loves you. But first let me make it clear that these signs do not mean that your ex wants to get back together. In fact, since you and your ex were in a meaningful relationship, I am sure that they still like you (or maybe even love you) and they still have strong feelings for you. But this does not mean that they want to get back together.
If you want to learn about your chances of getting back together, take this quiz (I’ve used my 12 years’ experience to design this quiz. It’s very accurate).
I am writing this article to help you remove the confusion and finally figure out if your ex still loves you. And in the process, give you some clarity about moving forward from this breakup.
Before we begin, I want you to take a moment to think about why you are reading this article.
Is it because you still love your ex and want to get him or her back?
If so, then I highly recommend you read some of the informative articles on our website. They are free to peruse and have helped millions of readers from across the globe.
How To Get Back Together With Your Ex – 5 Step Plan
How To Win Her Back – Game Plan in 5 Stages
And without any further delay, here are the signs that mean your ex still loves you ….
1. Your Ex Will Show Strong Emotions (The Good, The Bad and The Ugly)
Any kind of strong emotion from your ex is a sign that they have feelings for you. The stronger the emotion, the stronger the feeling. If your ex says they hate you, it’s probably because they have intense feelings for you.
If you think about it, hate is not the opposite of love, indifference is. If an ex shows any type of negative emotions for you (including anger and hatred), it’s because they are hurt. It’s because they had expectations that you didn’t meet. It’s because they are an emotional mess because of you.
But the truth is, they are only hurt because they love you. You broke their expectations because they have expectations from you. And the reason they are an emotional mess is because they still have feelings for you.
Think about it, why would someone spend so much time and energy into hating you or being angry at you? They broke up with you. Wouldn’t it be easier to just forget about you and move on? The reason they say they have these negative emotions for you is because they still have feelings for you. They just don’t want those feelings to be there, so they are confusing those feelings to be hatred or anger.
According to research done by Vivian Zayas, who is a professor at The department of psychology in University of Cornelle and Yuichi Shoda, Ph.D. who is a professor in the Department of Psychology in University of Washington, Bivalent-Priming is triggered by Significant Others. That means that your ex’s hatred towards you does not necessarily mean that they don’t love you.
Examples of your ex showing extreme emotions that is a sign that they still have strong feelings for you.
- Your ex saying things like they hate you, they wished they never met you or just being extremely mean.
- Saying things like they don’t care about you or that they don’t love you when they are angry.
- Screaming or shouting at you when you try to talk to them.
- Crying excessively during the breakup or when they speak to you on the phone after the breakup.
- Calling you when they are drunk confessing their love for you and talking about how much you have hurt them.
- Blocking you even though you have not been calling them.
- Telling your mutual friends how much they hate you or how much you have hurt them.
The hatred or the negative emotions your ex shows towards you is a sign that they still have feelings for you and probably still love you.
When Does an Ex Show These Extreme Emotions?
Extreme emotions are commonly seen immediately after a breakup. And as time goes by, the intensity of these emotions become less.
In a lot of cases, your ex will show extreme negative emotions when you start no contact. (Read about no contact rule here).
If your ex is showing extreme negative emotions even though it’s been a long time since the breakup (more than two months) and even after you have done no contact, then these extreme emotions are more than just a sign of your ex having feelings for you.
If it has been a few months and your ex is still showing extreme emotions, you should see it as a sign of your ex’s inability to process the breakup. If this is the case, it may be a good idea to try to understand why they have such extreme emotions towards you and help them process it.
What You Should Do?
If your ex is showing extreme emotions, the best thing to do is to give them some space and time to process it. There isn’t much you can do to help them calm down. Besides, if you are feeling needy or desperate to get your ex back, you can use some space and time yourself to heal and become more confident. I talk a lot about it in my article on getting your ex back. The best way to give your ex (and yourself) some space and time is to start the no contact rule.
If your ex is still showing extreme emotions even after you have given them some space and time, then it’s better to try to address the issue that’s causing them so much anger or hurt. You may have said or done something that your ex is finding it hard to let go. In such cases, I usually recommend my clients to try to understand what they did to hurt their ex and apologize for it the right way.
I have created a free report that lists some 5 common messages that have helped my clients break down the walls of an ex and get them to start talking again. Download the 5 Texts That May Help Your Ex Let Go of Extreme Emotions and Open Up To You.
2. Your Ex is Being Hot and Cold (Push/Pull Behavior from Your Ex)
If your ex is cold one minute and hot the other, then you can be sure they have feelings for you. They will pull away and won’t talk to you for weeks, and then suddenly push to spend time with you. They will ignore your calls and then start calling you every day. They will stop responding to your texts and then start texting you randomly. (Read more about texting an ex here.)
This behavior simply means that they are confused about their feelings for you. Their heart is still in love with you but they are trying to convince themselves that they should stay broken up. They miss you and want to spend time with you, but they are stopping themselves because they think you are not good for them.
Here are a few examples of your ex being hot and cold that mean your ex still has feelings for you
- Calling you all of a sudden after ignoring you for days.
- Being kind and understanding followed by being unreasonable and rude.
- Speaking about you with friends in a way that feels they respect you and still care about you. But later on, speaking about you in a way that feels like they don’t care about you and you didn’t mean anything to them.
- They reply to you immediately when you text them but then take days to reply you back
- When you pull back and stop contacting them, they start calling you. But when you are warm towards them, they start pulling back and ignoring you.
When To Expect Hot and Cold Behavior From an Ex?
This hot and cold behavior is common immediately after the breakup. But if your ex is exhibiting such hot and cold behavior even after weeks or months of the breakup, then it’s a strong sign that they still have feelings for you and probably love you.
Note that this hot and cold behavior is also common when your ex is dating someone else or is thinking about dating someone else. If there is another man or a woman in the picture, your ex will occasionally become hot and cold with you.
What To Do If Your Ex Is Being Hot and Cold?
If your ex is cold, be cool. If your ex is warm, be confident. The most important thing is to not let your ex’s hot and cold behavior get to you. Don’t let it turn you into a needy or desperate person. The fact is, hot and cold behavior from your ex can affect you mentally and emotionally. So if you feel it’s affecting you, you are not ready to speak to your ex and you should start no contact as soon as possible.
If you suspect that your ex’s hot and cold behavior is a result of them dating (or thinking about dating) someone else. Don’t fret. Their new relationship will most likely be a rebound. Read the following articles to understand rebound relationships and what to do about it.
Everything You Need To Know About Rebound Relationships
How To Get Your Ex Boyfriend Back From Another Woman
How To Get Your Ex Girlfriend Back From Her New Boyfriend
3. Your Ex Showing Off on Social Media
If you and your ex had any kind of meaningful relationship, then it is only reasonable that they will grieve the breakup and the end of the relationship.
If your ex is showing off on social media and it feels a bit unusual, then it’s a sign that they are hurting from the breakup. They are most likely doing it for you to see. And that means they are thinking about you.
A few examples of your ex showing off and being competitive on social media
- Your ex posting more pictures/videos on Instagram, Facebook or Snapchat than they usually do.
- They post quotes that may seem like they are indirectly talking about you.
- They post photos with people that they know will make you jealous.
- It seems like they are making an effort to look happier than they actually are on social media.
If your ex was the one who initiated the breakup and you see your ex being all happy on social media only a couple of days after the breakup, then your mind may just jump to the conclusion that your ex no longer loves you and they are already over you.
You may even start thinking that your ex never really loved you because they seem extremely happy on their social media. But just because they seem happy on social media doesn’t necessarily mean they are.
In fact, the opposite is more likely to be true. According to Dr. Ali Jazayeri, associate professor of clinical psychology at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology’s L.A. Campus, the world that you see on social media is not true, it’s a creation of people. “Some people use this social media to create something they are not”, he says.
Your ex may just be creating an image on social media that he or she wants to portray to you. Perhaps they are doing it to get a reaction out of you or perhaps they are doing it because they want to escape from the breakup grief.
You should not let your ex’s social media activity fool you into thinking that your ex has moved on and that they no longer have feelings for you.
If your ex’s social media activity feels unusual or if it feels like they are doing it to make you jealous, then it’s a sign that your ex is still thinking about you and probably still loves you.
When Is This Sign Most Commonly Seen?
This sign is most common seen when you start no contact with an ex. If you have been contacting your ex and you suddenly stop contacting them, your ex may start posting things on social media to get a reaction out of you.
If you see some unusual activity on your ex’s social media after you start no contact, it’s most likely a sign that your ex misses you and still has feelings for you.
But this does not mean that they want to get back together or that you should end no contact and reach out to them.
What Should You Do?
It’s very important that you continue no contact and focus on your own healing and growth. If you’ve read my plan on getting an ex back, the only way to have a healthy and a long-lasting relationship is to grow as a person and reach out to them when you are ready.
4. Your Ex Is Trying to Make You Jealous.
An obvious sign that means your ex still loves you is when they are trying to make you jealous. If an ex is trying to make you jealous, it means that they still care a lot about how you feel, and they hope to get a reaction out of you.
Here are a few examples of an ex trying to make you jealous.
- They suddenly start posting pictures with the opposite sex on social media.
- They post pictures with someone they know you are jealous of. This could be girl that your ex boyfriend knew you didn’t like. OR the guy at work your ex girlfriend always knew you were insecure about.
- If they notice you are around, they start flirting with people so you can see.
- If you are on talking terms with your ex, they may talk to you about their dating life as if it’s not a big deal.
In most cases, an ex trying to make you jealous is a sign that they still have feelings for you (aside from being immature).
According to research done by Weinstein, J. L. and colleagues, most people choose emotional cheating as a strategy to induce jealousy in their partners. Keeping this in mind, if your ex is still in love with you, and they are trying to make you jealous, they probably won’t get physical with the person they are using to make you jealous.
When Should You Expect This Sign?
An ex will most likely try to make you jealous when they are expecting you to chase them but you don’t. If they are expecting you to call them or do something needy or desperate; but you don’t do any of those things, they may do or say things to make you jealous.
In a lot of cases, people tend to be needy or clingy towards their ex after an unwanted breakup. And a lot of times, your ex may get used to that neediness or desperation from you. But when you pull away, they feel a vacuum in their life. They feel the pain that comes with a breakup. And they may resort to trying to make you jealous to get a reaction out of you. To make you needy or desperate again. Just so they can say to themselves, “Yeah, I can still have my ex if I want.”
According to research done by Amy A. Fleischmann and colleagues, some people try to make their partners jealous to “engage in compensatory behavior to enhance the relationship.” In other words, people intentionally try to make their partners jealous so their partners take some action that will make them feel secure about their relationship.
When an ex intentionally tries to induce jealous, it’s for a similar reason. They want you to do something so they feel secure in knowing that you still have feelings for them.
While your ex trying to make you jealous can be seen as a sign that they still have feelings for you, it’s more of a sign that your ex wants you to have felings for them. It doesn’t necessary mean that they want to get back together.
What Should You Do?
If you feel your ex trying to make you jealous, I recommend you don’t respond to it at all. Instead, just keep focusing on yourself and do no contact (if you haven’t been doing it already). Your mind may panic because of your ex’s actions but it’s okay.
You should try to be mindful about your thoughts and the feelings that arise within you and remind yourself that your ex trying to make you panic does not really mean they will move on. In fact, it most likely means that they are having a hard time moving on.
5. Immature Behavior from Your Ex
Is your ex trying to make you jealous? Do they post pictures on Facebook specifically to push your buttons? Are they going out of their way so that you know that they are dating someone new? Do they become extra flirtatious with other people when you are around? Then congratulations, your ex is probably still in love with you (aside from being a little immature).
If your ex says or does things that are quite obviously immature, then it’s a sign that they are not over you and are perhaps not in a healthy state of mind.
This is, of course, assuming that your ex wasn’t immature from the beginning. If your ex has a history of being immature, then them being immature after the breakup doesn’t really mean anything.
But if your ex has been a relatively reasonable person and they suddenly start acting immature after the breakup, then it’s a sign that they are not over you and that they probably still have strong feelings for you.
The previous two signs (trying to make you jealous and showing off on social media) are an example of your ex acting immature. But there could be many more things that fall under this category of signs.
Some of the immature behavior that your ex shows (that means they still love you) may include,
- Being competitive. For example, trying to show that they have moved on before you or that they started dating someone else before you.
- Showing off their new (possibly rebound) relationship or the fact that they are going out on dates.
- Getting angry at little things you say or do.
- Holding grudges even after you have apologized for your mistakes.
- Communicating through friends or work colleagues in a way that feels childish or unreasonable.
- Playing mind games to try and get a reaction out of you.
When to Expect Immature Behavior from Your Ex?
Your ex may seem very reasonable and mature at the time of breakup but become immature and unreasonable as time goes by. This usually happens when you start no contact or when they start feeling like you will move on from them.
Your ex may suddenly become unreasonable when you apologize to them for any mistakes you made. Or your ex may become immature when they find out you went on a date with someone.
In a lot of cases, your ex may do things that seem immature or childish when you stop contacting them.
In most cases, your ex’s immature behavior means that they still love you and they still have feelings for you. But it doesn’t necessarily mean that they want to get back together.
It’s also important to note that just because your ex is acting immature after the breakup does not necessarily mean they are an immature person. A lot of people act childish or in an immature manner when they face feelings that they are not used to, or they are not expecting.
However, if your ex continues this immature behavior for a very long time, or if you realize that they have always been immature, then you should seriously reconsider your desire to get back with them.
What To Do If Your Ex is Being Immature?
The best way to handle immaturity is to be mature yourself. But it’s going to be very hard if you are still hurting from the breakup and can’t think straight. So as always, I recommend that you take some time and space away from your ex and focus on healing from the breakup.
If your ex’s immature behavior is making it difficult to focus and heal from the breakup, it’s best to cut them off from everywhere. That means remove them social media, stop picking up their calls, asking mutual friends to stop talking about them and making sure you don’t run into them at places you both visit.
If you are past that stage (that means you have done no contact and are in a better emotional state), and you are in contact with your ex, but still find their immature behavior hard to deal with, here are a few tips that will help you.
Set clear boundaries – Immature behavior from your ex may have an adverse effect on your mental or emotional health if you don’t set clear and healthy boundaries with them. You may be hesitant to set clear boundaries with your ex if you are trying to get them back. But remember that healthy relationships have healthy boundaries.
Communicate Clearly and Honestly – Clear and Honest Communication is one of the keys to a healthy relationship. And if you want to get back with your ex, you should strive to get back in a healthy relationship.
If your ex is being immature, you should try your best to communicate with them clearly and honestly. You should explain your intentions honestly without being needy or desperate. If you are calm and honest consistently, your ex may realize they are being immature and try to communicate honestly as well.
Here are a few resources that talk more about dealing with immature people and setting boundaries.
Why it’s important to set healthy boundaries and how to do it – Healthline.
How to Deal With Emotionaly Immature People – WebMD
Consider Cutting them off if things don’t change – In some cases, your ex may continue being immature or unreasonable even after you have set clear boundaries and communicated honestly. They may continue to cross your boundaries or continue to play mind games with you. If that’s the case, you should consider cutting them off completely because continuing speaking to them may not be a healthy decision for you. If you are not sure that cutting your ex off is the right decision for you, consider speaking to a therapist or hiring a coach from Ex Back Permanently.
6. Their New Relationship Isn’t great
One of the signs that mean your ex still loves you could be the quality of their new relationship. After a breakup, some people get into a rebound to try to fill the vacuum that is created in their life because of the breakup. An ex may think that getting into a new relationship will ease up the pain of the breakup.
But a lot of rebound relationships end because your ex simply isn’t ready for a new relationship. In a lot of cases, rebound relationships aren’t very healthy and they end sooner or later.
You can gauge your ex’s feeling for you based on their new relationship. Here are a few signs that mean your ex still loves you based on their new relationship.
- They get into a rebound relationship too fast.
- They post a lot of photos and status messages about their new girlfriend or new boyfriend on social media.
- It’s obvious that your ex wants you to know about their new relationship.
- It seems that your ex is trying to make you jealous by showing off their new boyfriend or new girlfriend.
- You hear from mutual friends that your ex is not happy in their new relationship.
- They start contacting you once the honeymoon phase of their new relationship dies down.
When To Expect These Signs?
Signs such as your ex trying to make you jealous or them showing off their new relationship are also a sign of immaturity and there is a good chance you will notice these signs soon after the breakup or when you start no contact with your ex.
But the signs that are more straightforward, such as your ex contacting you even while being in a new relationship or you finding out about your ex not being happy from mutual friends, will only reveal themselves once the honeymoon phase of the rebound relationship is over.
What to do When You See These Signs from Your Ex?
If your ex is in a rebound relationship and they are being immature about it, it’s best to just ignore their immaturity, start no contact and focus on healing from the breakup.
But if your ex is showing signs that they still love you once the honeymoon phase of their new relationship is over, then it may be a good idea to speak to them honestly and openly about your feelings. However, don’t just declare your love to them without thinking it through. Here are a few articles to help you figure out what to do.
Rebound Relationships – Everything You Need To Know About Them
How To Get Your Ex Girlfriend Back If She Is Dating Someone Else
How To Get Your Ex Boyfriend If He is in a Rebound Relationship
Remember, it’s never a good idea to get back in a relationship with your ex unless they have broken up with their new boyfriend or girlfriend. If you are getting back with your ex, make sure the new relationship is built on a solid foundation.
7. Your Ex Continues Tradition/Habits With You
There may be certain traditions or habits that your ex may maintain even after the breakup. The fact that your ex refuses to let go of these traditions or habits mean that they still have strong feelings for you.
Here are a few examples of your ex maintaining traditions/habits that probably mean they still have feelings for you.
- Saying goodnight every night without fail.
- Maintaining a streak on Snapchat.
- Continue playing an online game with you even though they have no reason to.
- Keeping you updated on certain aspects of their life (such as their career or personal relationships) even after breakup.
- Reaching out to you whenever they need emotional support.
When to Expect This Sign?
Your ex may continue such traditions/habits immediately after the breakup because it’s hard to change such habits easily. But if they are doing it even though it has been more than two weeks of the breakup, it means that they still have strong feelings for you.
What Should You Do?
If you are in constant contact with your ex because you have been following some tradition/habit that you followed during your relationship, then you are still holding on to your ex and the hope that you will eventually get back together. You are not really doing no contact if you are in touch with your ex constantly, even if it’s just a streak on Snapchat.
It’s important to let go of your ex and cut them off for a while so you can focus on yourself and fully accept the breakup. It may sound counterintuitive if you want to get your ex back, but this is the best way to heal from the breakup. And in my experience, it’s important to accept the breakup and heal from it before you make a decision to get back with your ex.
Recommended Reading: Should I Get Back With My Ex – 6 Steps To Find Out
8. Things Between You and Your Ex Get Progressively Better with Time
One of the best signs that can tell if your ex still loves you, is time. As time goes by, people move on from their breakups and the past relationship.
But if your relationship with your ex was truly special, if the connection you both shared was very strong, if the physical attraction you had for each other was very intense; then time won’t be able to erase your ex’s feelings for you easily.
In fact, as time goes by, your ex will realize that the connection they had with you was special and they may start doing things that will make it very obvious that they still have feelings for you.
Here are some examples of things getting progressively better with time that is a sign that your ex still loves you.
- Your ex not wanting to speak to you at all >>> Speaking with you occasionally >>> Speaking with you regularly.
- Your ex not replying to your texts for days >>> Your ex replying to your texts almost immediately >>> Your ex initiating texts with you regularly
- Your ex unfollowing you on social media sites such as Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook etc. >>> Your Ex following you again on Social Media >>> Your Ex starting to like your posts regularly
- Your ex refusing to meet up with you >>> Your ex agreeing to meetup with you for a group activity >>> Your ex agreeing to meetup with you as friends >>> Your ex agreeing to go on a date.
- Your ex not initiating contact with you unless you initiate >>> Your ex initiating contact occasionally >>> Your ex asking you to meetup or come over to their house.
When To Expect This Sign?
The only way to interpret this sign is to be patient and notice your ex’s behavior over time. The key here is to be patient. It’s important not to obsess over this. Remember, your emotional and mental health is more important than any sign of your ex loving you.
These signs will become clear as you do no contact and focus on yourself. They will become even more clear when you start speaking to your ex after no contact.
What Should You Do?
In a lot of cases, you will have to make the right moves to help progress your relationship with your ex. For example, your ex may never reach out to you if you are doing no contact and you keep waiting for them.
This is why I recommend you reach out to your ex whenever you think you are ready to speak to them. If they are comfortable speaking with you, start speaking more often and eventually ask them out.
If your ex still has feelings for you, they will be receptive of your advances. If not, they will become cold or aloof.
Progress with your ex may be slow, but as long as there is progress, you still have a chance of getting them back. It’s important to not be heavily invested in getting your ex back because the slow progress may take a toll on your mental health.
Your ex may not give you obvious signs that they still have feelings for you, but it’s possible to interpret how they feel by taking a step back and analyzing their behavior from a neutral perspective.
But even if your ex loves you, it doesn’t necessarily mean they want you back or that they will eventually come back. In fact, there is a good chance your ex will have feelings for you for months following the breakup. If you and your ex had a meaningful relationships, those feelings don’t just go away soon.
If you want your ex back, it’s a good idea to proactive about it rather than just hoping that your ex has feelings for you or that they will eventually come back. Reading the in-depth articles on our website will give you a clear path to follow as you try to navigate this painful breakup.
1. Zayas V, Shoda Y. Love You? Hate You? Maybe It’s Both: Evidence That Significant Others Trigger Bivalent-Priming. Social Psychological and Personality Science. 2015;6(1):56-64. doi:10.1177/1948550614541297
3. Weinstein, J. & Wade, T. (2011). Jealousy Induction Methods, Sex, and the Big-5 Personality Dimensions. Psychology, 2, 517-521. doi: 10.4236/psych.2011.25080.
4. Fleischmann AA, Spitzberg BH, Andersen PA, Roesch SC. Tickling the monster: Jealousy induction in relationships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. 2005;22(1):49-73. doi:10.1177/0265407505049321
5. https://www.healthline.com/health/benefits-of-therapy – Alex Klein, PsyD
6. https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/set-boundaries – Timothy J. Legg, PhD, PsyD and Jennifer Chesak
7. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/what-is-a-emotional-immaturity – Dan Brennan, MD