Why the over 50s are more likely to reunite with an ex

Early final year, Anu – who runs Victim 2 Victor, serving to folks heal from the trauma of abuse – broached the topic of turning into a pair once more. “I had to be vulnerable, which was a big thing for me because I’ve always had barriers up. But I started to be honest with him and just say, ‘You know, I’ve been on dates and they’ve all been really rubbish. I haven’t felt that connection I feel with you, and that connection has never gone,’” she says. “He had his defence mechanisms up at first, which I totally understand, but I was feeling hurt because he wasn’t reciprocating. It took him a few months to open up.”

Rob, in the meantime, says that he was cautious as a result of he was “still confused and upset about the break-up”. “I didn’t want to go through all the pain again.”

By final summer time, they had been reunited, and are now anticipating their second baby in August whereas on the lookout for a second residence, a contemporary begin, in Hampshire. They’ve talked about remarrying ultimately and Anu is coveting the thought of heading to Greece for his or her second wedding ceremony. Anu says their partnership is all the more secure for the break up. “I wasn’t communicating before, but for any relationship to last you need to express how you feel and now I do it all the time. Any little thing that worries me, I’ll be on the phone immediately,” she says. “We were lost souls, but I’m not insecure anymore. Now we know what we really want in our lives. And if we hadn’t had that time together in lockdown, this might never have happened.”

Rob provides: “Lockdown helped us both to evaluate what’s important in life and to appreciate each other more.”

Relationship and divorce coach Maxine Clancy says that reflecting throughout the pandemic has been key to repairing damaged relationships. “Couples who broke up have had the space to re-evaluate what is most important to them,” she says. “And if those who decided to live together during the pandemic – putting the needs of their children above their own – still have a genuine love there, they can shift into seeing their partner differently again, reconnecting to their original attraction.”

Research by Ex Back Permanently, a useful resource for these hoping to reconcile, confirmed that 15 per cent of {couples} get again collectively inside 9 months of a break-up, and an extra 14 per cent get again collectively however break up once more. Emma Barnes*, 47, and her ex-husband Andrew*, 48, from Kent, are an instance of the latter. She determined to give her marriage one other go after two years aside as a result of “I looked at the dating landscape and it was absolutely appalling, so sometimes it’s better the devil you know,” says Emma. “Plus he provided financial security. We’d split up for many reasons, mostly over his issues with alcohol, plus we never had sex. But I’m very good at duping myself and I was excited at the thought of us getting back together. The cracks started to show straight away. He promised things would improve in the bedroom, but they didn’t, and I never felt comfortable having friends over. We just couldn’t socialise together.”

They break up once more, however Emma continues to be happy they reconciled. “I wanted to make sure I’d given it my all, so that I could say to my kids, who are 14 and 11, there was absolutely no way it could work out. Otherwise I’d always be wondering, ‘What if?’”

“Lots of people have gone through the pandemic reflecting on their values and how they spend their time,” explains medical psychologist Michaela Thomas, creator of The Lasting Connection. “This type of soul-searching can lead to upheaval, wanting to make changes for the better, but also a return to what is familiar. When the world around us is uncertain, we may be drawn towards what feels certain and controllable. One reason people get back together with an ex is the ‘mere exposure effect’. The human brain loves recognising patterns; it feels safe. Spending time with an ex you once loved may thus rekindle love and affection, as it feels safe and familiar.”

However, Michaela warns that this isn’t at all times a constructive. “The brain unfortunately also loves pattern recognition even if those patterns are unhelpful or destructive, because it knows what to expect, and it feels ‘safe’ even if it in reality is unsafe (such as a toxic or abusive relationship). Ask yourself whether you truly thrived together with this person, and if the reasons why you broke up in the first place are still there.”

Having youngsters collectively isn’t adequate to glue you collectively, both.

“Couples with children may reunite even after lots of time has passed, due to the bond of being parents. Some couples I’ve worked with found they functioned better as a separated parenting team. This can give a false sense of security – we are working so well together now, maybe we should try again to be romantically involved, too,” says Michaela.

People over 50 are by far the most profitable at reconciliation, in accordance to the Ex Back Permanently examine. “When we are older, we tend to have different, more realistic, expectations of our partners and that can help us be more accepting,” says Maxine. “Older couples who reunite are more likely to be self-reflective, have the ability to step back and observe their own reactions and be willing to do some work on themselves. Hopefully they have taken responsibility for how their behavioural traits impacted the other person and contributed to the breakdown of the relationship, healed any childhood wounds and moved to a deeper acceptance within themselves. Therefore, they can be more accepting of others.”

Julie Minter, 52, and her husband Martin, 60, from Bedfordshire, are testomony to how rekindling an outdated flame generally is a recipe for a really vivid future. They separated for 3 years and divorced when their careers in the company world, the place they each travelled for no less than six months of the year, acquired in the means of their relationship, however are now fortunately remarried. “We learned so much that has made us stronger. We now know how to compromise and realise what is most important – and it isn’t our careers. We are rock solid, so passionate and there’s nothing we wouldn’t do for each other,” says Julie, a communications marketing consultant. 

“Of course there were tough emotions to face during our break-up, but neither of us regret it. I don’t take marriage lightly but, at the time, we were in a downward spiral we had to get out of. It’s like we had to have a fire break to re-evaluate our lives, to realise what was important. I wouldn’t change it for the world.”

Have you ever rekindled a relationship with an ex? Let us know in the feedback under.

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