How to Get Your Girlfriend Back
Saturday, 20 April 2013
A little over a year and a half ago, I wrote an article on here called "The Ultimate Guide on How to Get a Girl Back." It fairly quickly became one of the more popular articles on the site, as getting girls back whose interest you've lost tends to be a common thing a great many men are all trying to figure out.
That piece also led to me getting a relatively constant stream of emails and comments and requests to write the post I'd promised, provided there was enough interest, at the end of it - a post on how to get your girlfriend back.
Here's the latest request, from longerjt on the article about using scarcity:
So yesterday I layed it out and challenged a girlfriend to get in or out and she slammed me. I said I needed to know where she stood and that I was ready to move on and bam! She said take a hike. Guess I misplayed it.
Hence, can you do the post you promised some time ago, "how to get your girlfriend back" in "how to get a girl back"? I could use it now.
Thanks for the great stuff!
If you've been reading this site a while, you may have thought I was
asleep at the wheel, or that I didn't care to address this question. A
lot of people have asked about it.
But in fact, over the past 19 months or so, I've probably written a half dozen versions of this article. It's not that it's technically difficult to write... it's that there are certain moral implications in taking a girlfriend back, under certain conditions, that I feel it's important for men to understand, and it's also that I find most men trying to get their ex-girlfriends back are more concerned with what they want than with what their former girlfriends want (and need).
I think I'm in a place now where I can communicate this right.
So today, let's discuss how to get a girlfriend back - and who you need to be and what you need to be willing to do if you're going to pull this off.
It isn't always hard. Plenty of people get back together every day.
But I'll be writing this for the hard cases - the ones where she isn't
already knocking down your door for another try. So I'll be giving you
some stuff that's tried and tested, that I've used myself multiple
times, and that I've watched friends and students and mentees use
effectively again and again.
But believe you me, if I find out you've used this irresponsibly and hurt some girl by being selfish, I will come to where you live and demolish you.
That out of the way, let's get on with it.
First things first: why aren't you and her together anymore?
If you're the one who did the breaking up, you already know the answer:
- You became bored dating her
- You wanted to see what else was out there
- You were moving somewhere else or she was
If you broke up with her because she cheated on you or just stopped coming to see you, this doesn't count; she's still the one who left... you merely made it official.
So if you broke up for any other reason than you simply couldn't be together location-wise, or you just didn't have the same emotions for her anymore, you must read this section.
Because you won't have a flying chance in heck of getting a girlfriend back without it (unless she's REALLY desperate).
Why Your Girlfriend Left You
There are three (3) core reasons women leave:
Their current man is not sexy, dominant, and attractive enough
Their current man makes them feel too unstable and insecure
Progress in the relationship has stalled out
All other reasons are secondary to these. For instance:
She met some really sexy guy and ran off with him? You weren't attractive enough, or progress in your relationship had stalled out
She told you she needed someone more serious, more willing to commit? You made her feel too unstable/insecure, or progress in your relationship had stalled out
She faded you out and disappeared, or grew cold and stopped talking to you? You made her feel too unstable/insecure, or progress in your relationship had stalled out
She told you it just wasn't working out and she wanted to take a break? You weren't attractive enough, or progress in the relationship had stalled out
There's a common belief among the (inexperienced and unempathetic) men and women of the world that people of the opposite sex "don't make sense" or "are irrational."
But all these behaviors we exhibit in our relationships are the product of eons natural selection. Everything we do makes perfect sense, and is perfectly rational. It only seems irrational if you don't understand the ultimate aim of it... that is to say, if your mental model of the thing is flawed.
Men and women do the things they do because the things they do move them closer to their romantic and sexual objectives. And understanding where the differences lie in those objectives can allow you to see why the behavior differs between the sexes.
Differences in Objectives Between the Sexes
You're familiar of course with the usual clichés, like that men want sex and women want relationships, and men want freedom and woman want closeness and intimacy. As you doubtless realize, it's not as simple as this; men want relationships and women want sex too, and women want freedom and men want closeness and intimacy as well.
However, there are some very distinct differences in the mating goals of the sexes that lead to conflict, disharmony, and discord, and when you have trouble in your relationships it almost boils down to one of these mismatches between the relationship objective desired and the reality of the relationship situation:
Women lack time for ongoing non-commitment. This is more a subconscious program running in girls' heads than it is a conscious awareness. It doesn't start becoming conscious until somewhere around age 30 in the modern West; the more conservative she is the earlier it does, and the more liberal she is, the later it does. Regardless of her degree of consciousness of it or not, all women - even teenage girls - are operating on a relationship deadline. A relationship that doesn't produce children and/or commitment within just a couple of years almost invariably falls prey to the 2 year drop, and things change and women make increasingly more demands and, if these aren't met, leave.
Women need commitment for social acceptance. Even in the West, where women have made so many gains in removing old social norms, women still feel social pressure to get commitment out of long-term partners. The longer a relationship progresses without commitment, the more jittery a woman tends to become, as she starts to feel more and more like she "hasn't got it" or that her man "isn't committed to her enough," and as family, peers, and the media begin to pressure her to get her man to commit - or find one who will.
Women need commitment for support. One of the things that happens with long-term relationships is that, much of the time, eventually, children happen. Aside from the biological urges pushing her down that path, a woman also asks herself logical questions, like, "If we have an accident and I get pregnant, is he going to support me or not?" If she starts feeling like the answer is or might be "no," that's a major problem for a relationship.
What it really comes down to is women need men to take care of them and deliver them the kind of relationship progress they require.
This is not the issue for some categories of breakups, which we'll
discuss more in detail in just a moment. However, these are the
differences contributing to the type of breakup where women leave in
frustration at not being able to achieve relationship goals - and you
need to understand them.
Forget "female empowerment" or "women's liberation" or any of that other talk. That's 20-something girl talk and spinster talk. Most women outside the blogosphere aren't talking that way. Most women today ultimately still want the same thing their mothers and grandmothers and great-grandmothers wanted: a happy, stable, committed relationship, with a strong, attractive man to call their own.
And if a girl starts feeling like she can't get that with you, she leaves.
Of course, there are a few other reasons she may leave, as well.
A girl's going to have one of three (3) very distinct emotion classes post-breakup with you:
- Screw you, jerk!
- I'm free! or
- It's too soon!
For our purposes here (getting her back), #1 and #3 are vastly, vastly, overwhelmingly more desirable.
In the case of #1, the emotion she's experiencing is large scale auto-rejection, and she wanted what she couldn't have (you). That means the breakup happened not because she wanted it to, but because she simply reached the limit of her abilities to tolerate not being able to get what she needed from you, and left in anger, frustration, defeat, and disgust.
In the case of #2 - the most difficult of the emotion classes for you to come back from - her emotion is relief, because she was bored / unchallenged / uninterested, and now at last she's free to go do what she wants without a boring / clingy / needy ball-and-chain around her ankle to hold her back and drag her down.
In #3 - significantly rarer than #s 1 or 2 - some life circumstance intervened to interrupt your relationship before it had run its course yet, and she looks back on it fondly wondering, "What if?" She wonders what might have been - had circumstances outside of either of your control not stepped in to nip your romance in the bud.
Here's all that in image form:
In #s 1 and 3, she WANTS to be with you... but feels like she CAN'T be. In #1,
she sees this as being your
fault. In #3, she sees this as being outside either of your control.
Meanwhile in #2, she DOESN'T want to be with you... and is thrilled to at last be free.
You can get girlfriends back in any case... but you're going to have far more of an uphill battle to fight if it's #2. It's going to take longer, you're going to break your back to do it, and you may even find that by the time she wants you back, you no longer want her back.
But before we start talking about what precisely you'll be doing, let's talk first about what she's feeling a little more in-depth in each of these scenarios.
#1: Screw You, Jerk!
This is the classic case of auto-rejection... and it is, to-date, the one that all of my own personal experience getting girlfriends back stems from. You get this one when she wanted to be with you, but felt that she could not be because you would not give her what she wanted from you.
Usually, this means you become "the one that got away"... once her emotions cool off and she no longer views you angrily and resentfully, you become the one she ends up looking back on the most often with rose-colored glasses.
You were the man who stole a little piece of her heart, and never really gave it back.
The emotional phase following these relationships follow this arc:
The Rebound Phase: this is the phase in which your ex-girlfriend's damaged psyche and sense of self-esteem needs to heal itself by seeing her immersed in male attention and new lovers. Party girls party harder, girls who aren't usually party girls find themselves in party mode, and women go to bed with new men who can make them feel good about themselves more quickly here than at any other phase of any of their relationship cycles.
This phase generally lasts anywhere from one quarter to one half of the length of time of your relationship, though can be longer in particularly short-but-impassioned relationships, or shorter in the case of relationships where she really does feel like she was "better" than you.
The Cool Off Phase: this is when she starts to mellow out and become a bit more reflective on you and your past relationship. She becomes able to see your advantages again, and isn't completely othering you as inhuman and unrelatable. Black and white thinking subsides, and she begins to remember what she liked about you. This is, actually, the worst phase of a category #1 girl to try and get her back during, because her emotions for you here are not very "hot" in any direction.
The Longing Phase: once she's fully cooled off from hating your guts and partly forgotten you for a while, she often starts to think of you wistfully again and long for you - especially if she hasn't met anyone in the meantime who has a more powerful emotional impact on her than you did, and sometimes even if she moves on and starts dating someone else, only to find that what she has with him doesn't measure up to what she had with you (or what she remembers having with you... the mind is a tricky thing). This is when she's most ripe for getting back together with you - it's when she's wishing the two of you had never parted ways, and realizing that, compared to all these other men, you're actually a hell of a catch.
You can get a former girlfriend back in any of these phases. I've historically taken girls back (when I used to do such things... I don't get back together with exes any longer) in the rebound phase.
But it's often not pretty before stage #3.
Much better to wait for the longing phase to kick in, if you want best results here... and provided you're okay with waiting, and are comfortable taking your chances that she won't find someone else and end up paired off more or less for good before then.
But then again, few men wanting their girlfriends back are prepared
to wait and want to leave as little to chance as possible, even if on
average it produces the best results... so this point might be a moot
#2: I'm Free!
Your dimmest prospects for getting a girlfriend back are here - when she's happy, relieved, and feeling free to be rid of you, and off in search of some new and exciting men elsewhere.
Your ex-girlfriend in this case is unlikely to spend much time reflecting on you or her relationship where boredom reigned supreme and she felt smothered and like the more dominant party - she's just glad she's free to seek a more appealing man now.
The range of emotions she'll go through following the breakup are:
The Relief Phase: ahh, it's good to be free! She's finally unattached from that boring old ball-and-chain of a partner - the guy who really didn't do it for her anymore. Now she can do whatever she want! Girls will have a minor rebound phase here, but it's nothing like what the girl in the #1 case goes through. In the relief phase, she may hook up with a new guy or two (usually more exciting, manly men, whereas girls on the rebound often end up with nicer, sweeter guys who can tend to their emotional wounds), but she may just as well have girls' nights out with her friends and drink, relax, and let her hair down instead.
The Move On Phase: her thoughts about you don't linger long, and she's back in the dating pool, looking for Mr. Exciting. She soon finds herself in a relationship - casual or otherwise - with a guy who gets her blood pumping a lot more than you used to. Now we're having fun!, she thinks.
The Reflection Phase: if the series of partners and relationships she has following you fails to present any long-term candidates (or, the long-term candidates she wants fail to stick around and put her through the experiences of a #1 category girl), she may begin to reflect on you, and how nice, stable, safe, and reliable things were with you. Sure, you didn't exactly get her juices flowing... but doesn't every gal need a companion? Wounded by her lack of ability to rope the really exciting guys into committed relationships, she begins to realize that maybe, just maybe, you just might've been the guy for her.
Women won't always make it to stage 3 here - they may well meet the man of their dreams along the way during or after stage 2. But if they do make it to stage 3, this is when you usually have your best shot at winning them back.
Can you get an ex-girlfriend back in stage 1 if she's relieved to be rid of you? Possibly... but you're going to need to pull one hell of a reversal (and it's unlikely you will, in all fairness). We'll discuss your options a little later on down in this article, in case despite the odds you're ready to take on this rather daunting task.
#3: It's Too Soon!
Girls in this case are the easiest of all to get back - assuming you have a good reason for not being parted with them any longer (and it doesn't look like you're chasing them down or flip-flopping upon a decision you made earlier).
That's because girls in scenario #3 never really go through "stages" - instead, they simply lose a man they wanted to be with, wonder how things would've gone, and remain open to picking up things where they left off - if, that is, the stars align to bring the two of you back together again, of course.
I'd imagine you know which of the three categories of emotion your relationship with your ex-girlfriend falls into above.
If not, here's the guide:
If she was very emotional with you and pushed for commitment and you said, "No," she's #1
If she was not very emotional with you and broke up in a largely calm (though sometimes annoyed) manner by telling you things weren't working out or she needed to think things over or needed some space or wanted to take a break or she just wasn't feeling "chemistry" or "a spark," she's #2
If the only reason the two of you broke up was because you were going to be apart for an extended period of time and you both agreed it wouldn't work that way, she's #3
#3 must be mutual.
#2 is almost always her call, while you say, "Wait, we can work it out!"
#1 can be either person's call, but it's chock full of angsty, negative emotions and cold, disgusted death stares / storming out / displays of feeling.
I assume if you weren't sure before, you know pretty well now which
of the categories you fall into.
And now that you know that, let's talk about how to get your girlfriend back.
As we will see, each of the three categories has a corresponding solution, in terms of one specific thing you must give your ex that she was lacking from you before:
The answer to an unanswered question.
How to Get Your Girlfriend Back When She Hates Your Guts
When a girl hates your guts and thinks you're a jerk, it's because she wanted to be with you, but eventually figured she could not be.
That's not to say you wouldn't have "stuck around"... it is to say you wouldn't have stuck around in the capacity she needed you to stick around in.
You may well have been perfectly happy having things stay the way they were.
But she wasn't.
She needed more. More from you.
And eventually she decided you couldn't or wouldn't deliver, and left.
The keys to getting her back are thus:
You must engage with her in the rebound or longing phases. Her emotions for you are still running high in the rebound phase, and you can swing them back in your direction if you hit the right note. And in the longing phase, she already wants to be back together with you again anyway. Steer clear of the cool off phase though - she thinks well of you, but almost in a matronly, maternal way... not the same as sexual or romantic desire. That will return when she moves into longing, though, if she's already in cool off.
You must stress your desire to commit. And you need to stress that this was your intention all along, and you just hadn't told her yet. Important: DO NOT DO THIS IF YOU DO NOT MEAN IT. It will be bad for you, and worse for her. If you don't want to offer her commitment, don't try to get back a girl who wants commitment with you. Instead, let her go - and find a girl more in line with your own goals. I'm warning you (from unfortunate experience) - this is ugly for both of you if you do it from the wrong place in your heart (fear of loss rather than desire to give her the progress or commitment she wants). Be honest with yourself and her about what you want - only pursue if both of your goals are in alignment. If they aren't, don't deepen the wound by getting her back only to have her leave again.
You must continue to be the strong man she loved. Just because you're going to give her progress in the relationship, and probably pass a commitment point, that doesn't mean you become a big softie or a clingy emotional guy. Leave that aside and be a strong man - just with a touch more grudging openness to settling down. And, there are ways to do marriage in a strong, productive way - I have a post on it (having been married myself) on the discussion boards here.
The best recommendation for communicating what you need to communicate in this instance, assuming you don't run into her much socially, is writing a "farewell for now" style email to explain your position, to tell her:
You hadn't told her, but you'd been planning to get serious / commit / ask her to move in, whatever was the next logical step (don't say unless you mean it, though, because if you do get her back, it's put up or shut up time)
You're sorry things didn't work out
You know she's going to find someone absolutely fantastic, and you will always be her friend
The tone of the email is tragic, like a love lost. The objective is to show her that she was just about to get what she wanted when she gave up, threw the towel in, and stormed off (or you let her go).
Don't be overly melodramatic in the email... it's sad, it's a tragedy that we can't be together, but don't chase after her in it either, and say, "You can have this if we get back together"; instead, the tone is, "We were almost there... but it just didn't last."
The emotion you want her feeling is if she'd just held out a little longer, she would've had you. The emotion you're trying to inspire is the one you'd feel as if you'd been holding a stock for a couple of years, hoping it would go up a lot in value and you'd make a lot of money, and decided to give up on it and sell it at a loss... and then a few days later, the stock exploded in value and you realized if you'd only waited, you'd have had that fortune you'd been hoping for so long to get and gave up on in the eleventh hour.
The emotion is oh CRAP I'm an idiot!
Take your time to write and rewrite this... wording is key here.
Word it wrong, and it sounds faked, or, worse, like you're pleading and
offering her something only now that she's already left. It must be
worded perfectly. I advise writing it, saving it, walking away, and
then coming back and reading it again later and seeing what you think
of it before sending it.
The reason you're going this route is because she left for want of being able to get what she wanted with you... and now you need to tell her she can have what she wants.
A written note is the best way for you to get everything you want to say out at once without her stopping you or breaking the mood (as she may in person or over the phone). However, if you're much better at speaking than you are at writing, you may do this in person as well.
I once planned out and spent an entire day to take a former partner
of mine who'd parted ways with me and thoroughly detested me through my
entire thought processes, why I was who I was, and why I couldn't give
her what she wanted, and how I'd always cared about her but never
wanted to hurt her, because I didn't want her to think ill of me or to
have her powerful sense of self damaged from spending so long trying to
get commitment out of me and failing. The result of this (very long)
day of explanation of the fact that I did
care about her, I simply had to do the things I had to do in life and
that made it impossible for me to be the kind of man most women expect
men to be in relationships, led to her warming right back up to me
again (and her getting me back a week later, which was not my intention
at all... I made my partings with exes a lot less dramatic after this
to stop ex-girlfriends from trying too hard to get back together with
Again, and I can't say it enough, don't do this unless you mean what you're saying.
Otherwise, you and her both are going to end up very unhappy (and you'll be to blame).
How to Get Your Girlfriend Back When She Thinks You're a Bore
Now here's the opposite problem - what do you do when she finds you uninspiring and unexciting?
Most guys who lose a girl this way chase their women down and do things all wrong.
They figure if they just promise her commitment, she'll stick around.
But that's not it. She finds them boring and constricting. The last thing she wants is to be trapped with them for a lifetime.
The solution here is not promising progress and your undying love, as it is for the man whose woman's in auto-rejection. Instead, the solution is providing that element she was missing from her life with you all along: excitement.
Of course, that's easier said than done. The keys are:
Get your fundamentals handled. Same thing you'll see everywhere else on this site: movement speed, posture, body language, walk, eye contact, facial expressions, facial hair, fashion, effort expenditure. General sexiness, a sexy vibe, and your "x-factor." Be smooth, be edgy, acquire some Byronic vulnerabilities and flaws, and create sexual tension. Become the man she dreamed about meeting when she left you. Will this take time? Yes. Is it necessary for getting her back in anything other than full-on stage 3 reflection (which she may never reach if another man scoops her up first)? Yes. The sooner you start turning yourself into the man she wants, the sooner you can be the man she wants - and get her back.
Get preselection. She left because she doesn't think you're all that desirable or stimulating. But women are social creatures, and they care very much about the opinions of others... and as soon as she sees you with attractive new women, she'll start wondering if perhaps she was wrong. This one's incredibly important - you don't want to rub it in her face, but rather find ways for her to notice it completely on her own - you've just moved on, and beautiful women want you and are with you... and she's obviously passed up on something every other girl wants. Whoops. If you're on social media (e.g., Facebook), this is one of the times that medium comes in handy... suddenly pictures of you with beautiful women are going up, and she just can't help cyber stalking you, wondering who those girls are, and what their relation to you is.
Let her see you as a new man. Whenever you find yourself in front of her or around her (assuming you have some social circle ties to her), you must let her see you as completely different from how she knew you before - the opposite, in many ways. Take anything she may have seen as "weak" about you and reverse it. If she was bored with you, constantly be doing exciting new things and pushing your boundaries (e.g., taking surfing / snowboarding / martial arts / skydiving / etc. lessons). If she thought you were too clingy, be completely nonchalant around her and don't care what she's doing or thinking or saying - not in a dismissive way, just in a polite, "Oh, that's nice," kind of way. You want her to see that you've reinvented yourself - and that she misjudged you the first time around.
Be aloof and seem not to need her or care. Building on that last, you cannot chase! Your instinct may be to crawl on your knees, plead, and beg, but you will not get her back that way. Chances are, you were too clingy the first time around... it's a part of why she left in the first place. You don't get her back by giving her more of the same - you must communicate that things have changed with you.
What specifically do you do to show her you've changed?
I recommend giving her a little radio silence for a while, so that she doesn't get the feeling that you're chasing after her. Then, reemerge - as a completely different man.
Start inviting her to group activities where you're doing something
fun and exciting - ideally, sometimes things she specifically mentioned
liking herself, though not always. And make them with groups. Invite
her as you would any other friend - no lovey-dovey language or special
treatment. Treat her like a guy.
If you can stomach it, even tell her you want to introduce her to a friend of yours, and try to set her up with someone (you probably don't want to make it anyone close to you, just in case they do get together... no sense damaging a friendship of yours, too).
And make absolutely certain she sees you with other women.
The object here is not to care. To virtually be pushing her away
from you... in the most friendly sort of way.
Don't talk much with her in person when you see her. Don't give her any satisfaction into HOW or WHY you've so radically transformed. Building a mystery around yourself is what you need most here - it's one of the things she was missing with you.
Make it so that the ONLY way she can think of to find out what's going on with you and what's brought about this change and whether or not it's for real is by asking you to lunch or dinner and asking to spend time with you alone, one-on-one. And even if you agree, and even if you meet up with her, still you must not give her too much satisfaction.
Make her chase you.
What if things haven't actually changed with you? Can you fake it until you make it?
I've advised too-nice / unexciting / clingy friends on getting back mates who've left them before - both male and female friends of mine, in fact. And I always caution them that these new changes you make MUST be FOREVER. You cannot think you're going to get left because your mate was too bored and turned off by the clinginess... and then you're just going to ACT exciting and carefree for a while, and get him or her back... and then, once you have your old partner back, things go right back to like they were before.
There must be a new paradigm. You must ACTUALLY BE more attractive, more exciting, more desirable, a new person, and genuinely less needy.
Otherwise, as soon as the sheen wears off and you go back to being the you of yore, she'll go back to doing what she did last time, too - and get bored and leave.
If you want to get her back and keep her, you must meet her needs.
No two ways about it.
So, either forget about this girl who doesn't find you satisfactory for her and find a new girl whose needs match who you already are and what you've already got... or turn yourself into the man of your ex-girlfriend's dreams.
The choice is yours. But you must choose.
And who knows... even if you choose reinvention, you may just meet
another girl along the way you hit it off with even better.
How to Get a Girlfriend Back When Life Intervened
If the both of you left each other sadly but mutually, agreeing that the relationship could not continue on because life had intervened, it'll be relatively straightforward to get back together again, provided two things are the case:
The situation has naturally resolved or she's resolved it, and
She isn't otherwise engaged in a relationship she wants to remain in
The rules are:
You can't resolve the situation just to be with her. If, for instance, the two of you went away to different universities after high school, or you took a job in London while she stayed in New York (a la The Family Man), it's too much for you to suddenly switch jobs or schools to be with her. Even if you claim that isn't the reason... it's still transparent. And it looks weak and changeable - you decided something before, then completely uprooted your life after changing your mind to go be with her. You must not do this, even if you start thinking that maybe it'd have been better had the two of you stayed on. Women don't respect men who flip-flop. Ever.
You must, then, prompt or let her resolve things, or wait for things to resolve naturally. If you had to leave town to go to school or work overseas, then return back home later on and she's still there, that's a natural resolution. Or, if you start talking to her via phone or email, and the feel is good and she starts talking about moving to where you are, tell her to come, and let her come to you. Or if she suddenly tells you she's moving to where you are, take that as a clear indication she's (probably) in pursuit - and be there to welcome her to town.
You must be curious about starting back up with her. When the two of you explore getting together again, be thoughtful and warm but relatively nonplussed about it. Treat like a "good idea," and one that you like, but don't gush... gushing is not especially attractive in men. Give her just enough that she feels excited about moving ahead with things, but not so much that she starts to wonder if you "got desperate" while apart.
The way you want things to progress here is "natural life obstacle naturally resolved, and two partners curious about being together again calmly but curiously starting up once more." Once you're back together with her, of course, you can give her some passionate nights in bed, but stay calm afterward. Once the effect of being back together again wears off, you'll be glad you didn't lose your head earlier on.
The one case where you need to be extremely certain and extremely careful - and the one I'm telling you you'd better not take lightly and you'd better act responsibly with - is the case of girl #1: the girl who thinks you're a jerk.
It's not easy for a woman to leave a man she has powerful emotions for, and it's usually a very painful process. If you've already put her through that once, DO NOT take her back unless you're certain you will not put her through it again. Don't waste more of her time unless you're prepared to give her exactly what she wants - which, almost without fail, is some combination of commitment, marriage, and/or kids.
If it's scenarios #2 or #3, you don't have these same kinds of
emotions riding on things, and can take it a little easier. In fact, if
you don't even want a serious relationship at all with a girl #2, I
think you're fine to skip it. She was bored when she left you, and
thinks you're exciting and is getting back with you - she isn't
commitment just yet. You want "commitment" to be the furthest thing she
thinks you want, actually. Let her
chase for a change.
The Final Consideration
There's one other consideration to think on aside from your effects on her life and mental and emotional health by getting back together with her, however.
And that consideration is the effects on you of this.
Do you really want an ex-girlfriend back?
I'm not asking whether or not you "need" her; when you're emotionally distraught and you feel like women are scarce resources and you think your one girl is the only special girl in the world like her, of course you feel like you need her.
But if you're thinking that way, your thinking is flawed, clouded by emotion and focused on the short-term and the details, instead of the long-term and the big picture.
And the big picture in the long-term is, by reinventing yourself - as you'll need to do for most of these - you become more attractive to other women, and better able to get both greater quantities and better qualities of women in your life.
You become able to not chase, but replace.
When you get your girlfriend back, it's never the same as the first time around, because there is always a sense that she has left you to find something better, and not found it. She's back with you again because she's settling for the best she can get - you.
You're Mr. Right no longer - now merely Mr. Good Enough.
And that might be fine for you. You might not need more than that.
But I challenge you to do better. I challenge you to move on, forget about your ex-girlfriend, and start upgrading your skills with women in general.
That will take some time. And you'll likely spend a while going through a series of women who don't seem to measure up to your ex while you refine your abilities.
But someday, if you keep at it, in the not so distant future, you will reach a point where you realize that you can pretty consistently bring a caliber of women into your life that meet or exceed the caliber of your ex you're wishing back... and best of all, these girls aren't "settling" to be with you.
They're with you because you're what they want. You're still "Mr. Right" for them.
Before you begin constructing your elaborate scheme to get your ex-girlfriend back, take a moment and think on whether that might not be time better spent on turning yourself into a man who can get and hang onto women just like her on command instead.
Whichever path you choose, though, do it well, and stick to the plan, and I dare say you'll almost certainly be fine in the end - whether you end up back with her, or you end up with somebody better.
Oh, and don't go getting back girlfriends you can't deliver the
goods for - there are too many other women out there who'll be happy
being with you without commitment for you to go derailing some poor
girl's life out of fear of loss or blind neediness. If you really care
about a girl you can't give what's desired to, let her be free to live her life
and chase down her dreams. You'll be doing her better than almost any
other man in her life will ever be willing to do.
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