How Do I Tell My Ex I Still Love Him?

Medically reviewed by Arianna Williams, LPC, CCTP
Updated April 30, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

If you want to tell your ex you still love them, it can be wise to talk to a therapist about the situation before taking action. They may help you decide whether reaching out is a good choice, develop a plan for the conversation, and prepare for potential outcomes. If you rekindle your relationship with your ex, the two of you may benefit from couples therapy, as it may help you avoid repeating any difficulties that led to your initial breakup.

Note: Although this article may use the pronouns “he” and “him” to refer to an ex-partner, the information presented here can apply to people of all genders.

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Navigating romantic relationships can be challenging

How to tell your ex you still love them

Before you jump into contacting your ex, it can be beneficial to speak with a licensed mental health professional beforehand. A therapist can help you determine whether resuming contact with your ex may be the right choice. Mental health professionals can provide support and help you see things from a different perspective, potentially considering the best and worst-case scenarios. Talking to a therapist can also give you the opportunity to address any mental health concerns you may be experiencing, like anxiety or depression, for instance.

Therapy can provide you with the opportunity to work through the memories you have with your ex that may be leading you to hold on to them. You may be able to work through the troubles that occurred and learn how to avoid the same pitfalls in a future relationship, whether it is with your ex or a new partner. This may help you eliminate problematic patterns, such as grandiose thinking about your ex, and place you on a fresh track to start your dating life again.
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Determine a plan

If you decide that you are going to reach out to your ex, you may wish to formulate a plan for how and where you want to tell your ex that you still love them. Think of what you want to say and what the benefits of reuniting with this person may be. If there are things that will need to change for your relationship to work this time around, be sure to make that clear. This can be your chance to express what you want and how you feel. While it’s possible that your feelings may be returned, and a healthier, happier relationship may rise from the ashes, you may also need to prepare yourself for other outcomes.

If you are going to reach out by text, you will generally want to make sure your text message comes across the way that you want it to. Since written messages can be easily misunderstood, you may need to reread the message and consider including emojis to emphasize your feelings and clarify your tone. You may want to avoid starting out with an array of emotions until you have an idea of how your ex will respond. Instead, consider starting the conversation casually by asking how they are doing.

Calling your ex might be a good alternative to texting. Consider whether you are prepared to talk to your ex on the phone. This could be the quickest and most direct way to avoid miscommunications. 

You may also need to be ready for the possibility that your ex won't return your feelings or just wants to be friends. Preparing for the best- and worst-case scenarios may be a wise course of action. Think about how you might feel if you are rejected by your ex. What do you think your reaction might be? 

Rejection may not mean that your ex will never talk to you again. It could just be that it’s too soon after the relationship has ended. Many emotions can arise when a relationship ends, and your ex may still be experiencing hurt or disappointment regarding the loss. If your ex is not willing to return your text or phone calls, you may want to process this with your therapist rather than obsessing over the rejection or developing symptoms of depression

Reach out

After you have spoken with friends and family or a therapist and come up with a solid plan, you may be prepared to reach out to your ex to arrange a meeting (assuming you aren't going to tell them that you still love them over the phone). Be prepared for the possibility that, even though they could be excited for another chance to make things right, there may also be a chance they do not feel the same way.

If they agree to meet up, consider your approach. Remember the important points you want to make and try to take it slow before jumping headfirst into something that didn't work out the first time. If they feel comfortable with the idea, couples therapy may be another tool to use when trying to mend a relationship or starting over again.

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Navigating romantic relationships can be challenging

How online therapy can help

It can prove challenging to reach out to a therapist in person to talk about your love life, especially if you’re still having feelings for an ex. You may feel embarrassed about your lingering feelings, or you may be hesitant to reveal intimate details of your life to a stranger. Online therapy may make therapy more comfortable for you. Some people report feeling more at ease behind a screen than in a clinical environment, such as a therapist’s office. This type of therapy can also be more convenient since it can be done from home at a time that fits your schedule.

Online therapy has been thoroughly researched with generally promising results. A recent study found that couples receiving therapy via video-conferencing technology usually felt more comfortable and in control of the process, which helped them express their emotions during sessions. Therapy can be similarly effective for individuals as well.

Takeaway

Talking to someone you know and trust about the urge to tell your ex you still love them can offer clarity. If you want to talk to someone more impartial, a licensed therapist can be a great resource. You may wish to determine whether reaching out to your ex is a good idea, and if you decide to move forward with it, it can be helpful to create a plan and prepare for any possible outcome. If you and your ex decide to get back together, couples therapy may benefit your relationship and improve your chances of making things work in the long term.
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