I like to write about relationships and how you can improve them going forwards.
How to Work Out if Your Ex Is Pretending to Be Over You
This is a tricky one. As there are a lot of emotions involved and it is obvious that this is someone that care you for.
However, working out if they are still interested and that they are only pretending to be over you in a relationship is difficult to uncover. That said, there are a lot of patterns that basic human behaviour and they are indicators to pay attention to.
Below we are about to list 16 different signs that your ex is indeed not over you.
Here are sixteen signs your ex is pretending to be over you that you need to think back on and the more times you think 'yep' rather than 'nope', the stronger the chance that they are indeed still not over you. We are going to breakdown the following in detail:
- You're Still in Contact
- They Are Actively Trying to Make You Jealous
- Asking You if You Can Hang Out Together?
- Dating Other People?
- Have They Picked Up Their Stuff?
- Are They Participating in Self Improvement?
- Started Reminiscing Together
- Has Their Social Media Changed Much?
- Are They Talking To Your Close Friends?
- Would They Still Help You?
- Do You Hear From Their Friends?
- Hints of Jealousy?
- Are They Putting on an Act in Person?
- Getting Told That They Are Over You (without Prompt)... A Lot
- You've Been Blocked and Deleted
- They Wish You Happy Birthday
Now let's break down all the signs below. Remember though, just because your ex is not over you, does not mean that they potentially want to get back together.
One of the clearest signs that you should take that your ex is not quite over you is if you are still in regular contact. Sure, they might be playing some 'text games' with you where they are taking an overly long time to reply to you and might not be as responsive to you.
How you should respond to that is your take as every situation is unique, but generally you want to be inciting good emotions, try to make them laugh, be positive and match their length of time to respond, their depth of messages. If they ask a question, you ask a question too. It depends on your objective if you are trying to win them back or not.
However, if they were no longer interested somewhat, they are likely to tell you directly and practically cut off all communication.
So if you are still calling, texting, messaging through social media and there is some form of interaction there that's a positive note. Especially, if they are the ones do initiate conversation going forward.
One solid aspect to consider asking yourself is when a conversation ends or when it's the following few days, is it yourself who is getting touch? Or is it them? If they are sending you a text asking how you are? Or a family or friend?
That's a good sign that they are still interested in your life and can signal that they are still of course not quite over yet as they are still clinging on to what things are happening in your life.
This is a classic method and it can come in many forms. If you find yourself that you are getting jealous by the actions that your ex is taking - then chances are they are doing it on purpose. A classic case of reverse psychology where they are trying to incite a reaction out of you.
For instance, you find out through a close friend specifically that they are going on a date with someone close to you, even though you have barely broke up for a reasonable period of time. They change social media profile pictures to include someone that they are flirting with or being romantically involved with.
Believe it or not, these actually might be good signs.
Now, you of course, won't be thinking that right away. However, the reason they might be doing it, is to cause a reaction and basically get you to reveal your hand. If they start dating someone, you are upset by it, then you get in touch with them to let them know. You've just shown your ex partner a high level of interest.
But remember, the fact that they have gone out of their way initially to cause the reaction in the first place. So if you are made to feel jealous, it might be a 'reverse psychology' indicator that they are still interested.
If you do want to talk to your ex about it, make sure you do so in a calm and controlled manner.
If they are trying to make some excuses to hang out together 'even if it just as friends', know this, it's very rarely just ever as friends. Unless you have spent a long time apart and are genuinely at the stage.
If they are asking if you want to hang out, go watch a film together, grab a coffee and so on. It's because they want to spend time with you and see what you are up to and if that's the case, it means they are still interested.
It works the other way as well, if you are asking them to hang out together, even if it is under the provision that it is just 'as friends' and they accept. Again, it is a good indicator that they are still not really over you and the 'friends' aspect is just the pretending and acting on both parties to make yourselves feel better.
Plus, if you are trying to get back with your ex or you are wanting to know how they really feel, then meeting face to face in a neutral and relaxed environment is a great way to do that. You can read body language and aren't feeling threatened with it being their home or area.
If you are still in touch, no matter really the tonality, that's a good indicator and there is likely to be a lot of acting and pretending going on. Another one, potential sign to look out for that is going to set to trigger you is if they themselves mention that they are dating someone new or one of their close friends lets you know directly.
This is quite an extreme length to go to at this stage, but if you have found, it is only because they have wanted you to find out. It's less of a sign if they have indeed been dating and you haven't found out.
Ultimately, again they want you to react and cause some tension for you to come out and give them some attention. Plus, you have to think about the relative timelines. Don't you think it is a bit odd that only a week or a few that they are already dating someone else after you have decided to put things on stop? Especially if you have been in a long relationship with that person.
Emotions are no doubt running high and it is hard to think logically when you are the person this is happening to, but try and step back and think about the situation logically. As if it was happening to one of your friends, what would you think of that. Better still, get one of your friends to give you an objective opinion.
This is one that happened to myself personally. There was some stuff of theirs that was kept at my house and we were going through a bit of a rough patch at the time. Then they asked to grab their stuff before any major incidents and have it taken back to their car to keep at their parents.
That was a red flag that things were about to end. They were already preparing for the fall out. However, if you have some of their stuff at your house or vice versa and they are making excuses for why you can't pick it up or they can't pick theirs quite yet.
This is actually another positive sign to note that they are still indeed interested and anything that they are texting or saying might just be pretend. Remember that their is a lot of sub-communication humans speak with other than words such as actions and behavior.
So if they are making excuses, it is because they might see the collecting of each other's stuff, another aspect of closure between the two of you and don't want it to come to that. Even if it is something quite trivial like a hoodie, pair of sunglasses and so on.
This is a great sign that they aren't quite over you. If you have 'broken' up and are on a 'break' then you find out that your ex is suddenly going to the gym or started some sort of self improvement activity - that they weren't doing before you - then that might well be a positive indicator.
See, two potential aspects could be going on here.
Firstly, they are replacing you with their new hobby. So they aren't as distracted about potentially thinking about you, they are going to go on a run or head out to do a workout to take their mind of it and concentrate on something new.
Secondly, they are trying to show you that they can improve and that they are willing to be a better partner going forwards. That they have changed.
Both are good aspects and indicators that they are still interested in you. Quite likely, if they are no longer thinking about you, their life style will likely have unchanged much.
Of course, everyone is individual but if you notice something a bit out of character, that is an active self improvement tactic then this is a positive sign to note down that they are trying to make you take notice.
If they are getting to you reminisce about the good times, that is a good sign that your ex is pretending to be over you, as no matter what they are actually saying such as "I'm over you", "I've moved on and so should you" and "we shouldn't talk" - if they are bringing up old 'good' memories. This of course means they still think about you.
However, not only that but they want you to be thinking about them too. Bringing up old memories that you enjoyed together is a great way of you both start thinking about each in other a positive light. Then you get talking about it too, which starts a bonding process.
It's interesting to see if they initiate it first as that's a sign they are still interested in you, however, it would be good for you to follow up with another fond memory that you share together and see what their reaction is too. If it is again positive, that's a good sign they are still thinking about you.
And are in a state of pretending if they are saying that they no longer think about you and have 'officially' moved on.
Now this is a really common one and there are a lot of ways this can go, but after a break up has happened your ex is likely to change their social media. A lot of things can occur here.
They might delete all the photos that you're featured in, change their status to single and post images of them essentially having a good time. All of which are solid indicators of Sign #2 that we mentioned before.
Getting you to be jealous and essentially a little bit hurt by their actions.
Of course, they will be doing it to try and help themselves get over you as well. If they see a picture of you it is likely to invoke negative reactions. However, what should be more of a concern is if their social media doesn't change at all, as that might indicate they don't actually care at all.
See, it's quote a bit of effort to go through and make all these changes on their social media with the specific thought to 'show you' that they don't care. Where in reality, the fact they have gone to all this effort, shows you that they indeed might do.
If they aren't communicating with you directly either over social media or texting etc. then your ex might be trying to get to know what you up to through friends of friends and going through that route. They might well be asking their friend to ask your friend, how you are and what you are doing.
Of course, this is quite a difficult one to determine exactly, but don't you think that seems like a fair bit of effort from someone who is not meant to care about you anymore? This is a great sign that your ex is pretending to get over you.
What you want to be potentially looking out for or trying to determine if one of your close friends who is a close friends with one of their close friends is asking about you more than usual and whether they are prodding to find out more. If this is the case then it is unlikely to have come out of no where.
Instead, it is very much likely to be have been provoked. Your ex might well have specifically asked their close friend to get in touch with your close friends, as they are friends anyway. Certainly a subtle sign to look out for.
Do you think? If it came down to it, would they be there to support you and offer you help for any particular reason? Whether that is emotional or physical help, if you think the answer is 'yes', then of course, they do still care about you to some extent.
Whereas if you think the answer is 'no', then that indeed could potentially be a sign that they are no longer pretending and that they are over you.
However, you need to make sure that you don't confuse someone who genuinely wants to help as well as someone who just cares about you. It's a difficult one but in turn you can offer help with them on something if they wanted and if they accept that's a good indicator.
Likewise, if you ask them for help on a certain task that you want some aid with and they are actually willing to do so. Then again, that's a great indicator that they are interested and still care about you.
Are what their friends telling you opposite to what you are hearing? It could well be the case that potentially, although you are being told directly that they are no longer interested or your ex is simply blanking you.
If you are then hearing through their friends that they are missing you and they speak about you in a positive light, then it could well be the fact that what they are saying to you might just be a bit of pretending in order to not sure any emotional and vulnerable side.
Now, the only point here that you have to clarify is the source of information, is it their best friend and they have reached out to you. Are you apart of the same friend circle group? Ultimately, you want to try and work out if it is misinformation or not and then go from there.
It's always worth asking your friends to talk to their friends to really find out what the situation is, as people will be more willing to speak to others who aren't directly in the mix. At the same time, you don't want a case of Chinese whispers and he said, she said game with a lot of people knowing your personal business.
Now we have mentioned quite a few signs that they might carry out to make you jealous and see if you react. However, have you laid out any particular aspects to in turn make them jealous. This is not something I particularly advocate, however, we are human and you might have done it inadvertently.
For instance, you might have happened to go to a birthday party or hung out with a few friends that you would have done anyway, then as a result they might have taken it the wrong way (remember though you can equally take something they might have done since you put a hold in the relationship in the wrong way too).
However, the interesting part here is how have they reacted to that situation. If they start to come out in a jealous manner and let you know that they aren't very happy. Well, firstly you should know that they are clearly in a state where they still care about you (otherwise they wouldn't have reacted at all) despite it being angry. Equally, they might also be pretending to simply not care but 'they do' mention it.
This is a tricky one to gauge and it will come down the individuals personality (as with all the signs mentioned here).
It could the case that you have agreed to meet up afterwards and talk about the situation. This is a good opportunity to understand how they are actually feeling by observing their body language as well as listening to what they are saying.
Firstly, if they are being affectionate with you in terms of body language, holding your hand etc. but they are telling you something different than what that indicates, this could be a clear sign that they are acting and pretending to be something they aren't.
Likewise, the opposite could be true, if they are acting overly casual for the situation given that you have just broken up, again they might be trying to put on a front to hide their emotions from being revealed. Where they could be trying to stay strong and to save face in front of you.
The best thing to try approach your ex with is just an honesty situation of how you are feeling and how they are feeling and where you want to go from there. Can you get passed the problems that caused the break up in the first place with a practical as well as an emotional manner?
This is a classic sign to look out for. If unprompted, where you are not asking them about the relationship and how it is going and they are coming out with excessive communication with language such as
- "I Have Moved On!"
- "I'm Getting On With My Life and Over You"
- "I'm Done With This Relationship"
And you are getting it repeatedly, it could be more a case that they are trying to convince themselves rather than reaffirming it to you. In which case, they are repeatedly trying to pretend that they are over you by making those statements.
Again, though, it can't be where you have asked them what is going on with you two. Carry on having positive conversations with them and see where it is going, usually, this will come in the form of texts and phone calls, however it can happen face to face as well.
It's best to simply acknowledge what they have said and try to move the conversation on to a more positive and into the future subject. This can work whether you are trying to maintain a positive friendship or try and pursue a relationship and make things work again.
It's important that you do listen and understand what they are saying though.
This is very like to happen, you have probably had your phone number deleted from their contacts, blocked on social media and they have essentially stopped you from all communication. They have put themselves on the no contact rule, which is a fair thing to do, in order to try and get over someone and restart their lives.
However, they will still care about you which is just human nature.
And in doing so you might perceive it as being cold and that they no longer care about you, which could be part of their intention too, but in doing so your ex will be pretending that they are over you when they aren't really.
It's a difficult one because you might get frustrated too that you can't get hold over them but you have to respect their wishes and it might come to a case where you can get proper closure at a later date. If they haven't blocked or unfriended you and they still aren't talking or if so rather minimally that's probably a worse sign, as it could show that they are over you and they just don't care enough to actively block you as they are over you.
This is a circumstance that has happened to me more than once. There was a relationship where we broke up around two months before my birthday.
We then went silent on each other for a good while, living our lives in between that period. Pretty much living out the 30 day no contact rule and doing it to good effect on both parties. Then when my birthday come up, I got a WhatsApp message wishing me a happy birthday.
In response, I thanked her and asking how she was getting on with her life. The conversation was short and sweet but it was the first point of re-communication.
Again, not something I was expecting. Then later down the line we bumped into each other on an evening out and we got talking. Then she came to admit that during that time I was blocked, removed from social media and some of the signs above that the ex was pretending to get over me.
She admitted that it was used as a good and rather conveniently timed excuse to reconnect with one another. So sure they might just be being nice if they wish you happy birthday or merry Christmas, but there's a chance that it lines up as a good excuse to talk again too.
Relationships are tough, especially when they might becoming to an end. However, realise that most people go through this and although you can't see it right now.
If you're unable to rekindle the relationship, chances are you're going to be much better in the future. You will know this if you have had a break up previously, think about how far you have come from then.
This will be exactly the same.
That said, if you think your ex is showing some signs of the above, it could well be an indicator that there is a chance to have another go at the relationship. Just understand their wishes ultimately and respect them.
If there isn't a chance of getting back together you don't want to keep bothering them by remaining in touch, it's not doing yourself or them any good. The best way of handling it? Cut contact, until you're in a better place.
Get on with living the best life you can, and don't escalate an issue further than it needs to go. There is plenty of great material out there such as the video below on how to properly get over an ex. That said, if it looks like they are just pretending as detailed with the signs above and you're happy to get back into a relationship.
It might well be a good sign to try and talk things out properly and see whether you are on the same page with the relationship going forward. Sometimes you just need to give things space, let your ex think it out and they might realise what they've missed now you're gone.
Of course, if you know of and additional signs your ex is pretending to be over you or you would like to expand more upon any of the signs above (do you agree or disagree?) then please don't hesitate to get involved in the comments. It will be beneficial for future readers to hear your thoughts and for you to read your advice.
Likewise, if you have any potential questions, then please don't hesitate to let us know in the questions and answers section just below and we will be more than happy to assist you.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Bradley Morrison
dashingscorpio from Chicago on April 10, 2020:
An ex is an ex for a reason!
In order for your (ex) to have been "the one" (she/he) would have had to see (you) as being "the one". At the very least a "soulmate" is someone who actually wants to be with you!
"Some people come into our life as blessings and some people come into your life as lessons." - Mother Teresa
Don't look back!
Every ending is a new beginning!
Your future lies ahead of you and not behind you.