Grieving after a breakup comes in different forms and no one has the same reaction to it.
Thus, your ex, maybe the same as you, goes through a rollercoaster of emotions.
They are angry, doubt themselves or their decisions, are angry at you, long your relationship, or are scared to move on.
All this emotional baggage impacts them to come and go out of your life frequently.
Therefore, their erratic behavior and unclear intentions will leave you confused, hurt, and unable to move on.
To help you ease the confusion, we provide you with 16 signs that your ex wants you back but won’t admit it:
1. They might behave as if nothing happened and you’re on good terms
A typical behavior of an ex who wants you back but won’t admit it’s gaslighting.
When they come back, they will try to make it feel like nothing happened before.
- In this case, your ex will avoid talking to you about the breakup.
- Also, they won’t even communicate about their feelings or how you’re feeling post-breakup.
- They will try to twist old situations when you argued or even fought with one another.
- They might try to play the victim and blame you indirectly or directly for the breakup.
Since their intentions are not clear, you might end up confused, hurt again, and unable to move on.
2. They are passive-aggressive and give mixed signals
An ex will use their passive-aggressive behavior as a form of preventing direct communication.
Based on my experience, an ex who wants you back but won’t admit it will give you mixed signals.
“My ex used to reach out to me and check up on me but when I tried to communicate with him, he would go stone cold.
Indeed, I couldn’t understand what was going on at the moment.
Yet, then when I was dealing more with social science, I noticed that they go passive-aggressive because can’t accept reality.
As this research conducts, not being able to utter your emotions harm a relationship a lot.
He couldn’t embrace and put his emotions into words although he was sure he wanted me back.
This gave me nothing but confusion and whenever I tried to talk with him about this, he went on autopilot.
3. They act like they’re still in a relationship with you
As mentioned earlier decoding an ex’s behavior when they want you back but won’t admit it will take a lot of effort and attention.
They can be warm and cozy, and you can feel like you’re starting a healthy relationship once again.
On the contrary, if he refuses to talk about the past or show you development, his intentions are not clear yet.
They might want you back but still, he didn’t process the end of the relationship or the breakup.
- 1. Now, they try to control you or prevent you from dating anyone.
- 2. If that plan doesn’t work, they will try to make you jealous by constantly dragging their new partner into your life.
In this situation, it is better to let them know about your boundaries and expectations.
4. They try so hard to give you a good impression of them
If your ex is trying to show off in front of you and get your attention, that means that they are still interested in you.
When they are persistent to show you how they have changed for good then your ex is trying to win you back.
Hence, they are not at that point when they can admit it.
So, if your ex is doing everything they have in hand to impact you positively, then they are trying slowly to come back to your life.
Yet, you should be careful and slowly get to know if their intentions are genuine by communicating more with them.
- To make a good impression, they might try to get more affectionate, understanding, loving, and supportive.
5. They didn’t delete the pictures of you yet on social media
When an ex doesn’t delete the pictures of you on social media after a few months or a year, this means that they can’t let you go.
Yet, you should pay attention to whether they approach you or stay silent during this time.
If they don’t reach out to you and didn’t delete the pictures, that means that they’re still dealing with the breakup.
If you still have feelings for your ex or want closure, try to reach out to them.
Ask them specific questions about the breakup and what would be the reasons to get back to you.
Only when you reach out to them, you might understand what lies behind his actions.
6. They need your attention and validation
When an ex wants you back but won’t admit it will constantly seek your attention and validation.
Especially, if they have a greater ego then that means that they might be holding on to the past pain.
This might be one of the reasons why they can’t admit that they want you back.
Yet, be careful because your ex might need your attention just because they might feel incomplete after the breakup.
If your ex wants you back, they will ask for your advice and attention, they will try to give you their attention back.
So their effort would be mutual.
7. They still keep in touch with your family and mutual friends
An indirect way or hidden sign that your ex wants you back but won’t admit it is when your ex still hangs out with your entourage.
Yet, during this time they keep a neutral approach to you and don’t make any type of action to confuse you.
To be more specific, they try to figure things out on their own but without losing contact.
Based on this scientific research has stated that when an ex keeps in touch with your entourage that means that they want to stay in contact with you.
This happens mostly when the two of you were good friends or ended up on good terms.
8. They inform you about their dating life
Your ex will be honest with you about their dating life if they want you back in their life but still won’t admit it.
They want to let you know indirectly that they still care about your opinion about them and that they have still feelings for you.
Hence, you should be careful what type of information they share with you regarding their dating life.
If they share intimate details and how they love their ex, they are just trying to get you jealous.
They can do it for various reasons maybe for revenge or to hinder your healing process and keep you away from dating other people.
9. They do anything to get your attention
An ex that goes through dumpers remorse and wants you back, will do anything to be in your presence.
If you have already blocked them, you will encounter them at your favorite club, restaurant, or coffee shop.
Yet, you will notice a change in their behavior, they will look like someone you never met before.
Because, they will be breaking their pattern, to attract you to changes.
- They will have different styles, hang out with different people, and eat different things. They will adapt themselves to tremendous changes just to catch your eye.
10. They give you hints of how the future together would look like
One of the sure signs that an ex wants you back but won’t admit it will try to discuss the future with you.
They will let you know about their dreams and plans that will include you there.
In the meantime, they will recon and reminisce on old memories. They will try to connect the past with the present.
For example, if you went on your first date to a museum and had the best time, now they will want to try it once again.
Their words might be something like “Remember when we went to the museum and you thought that painting was staring into your soul and we roamed around? I think we should try to do it once again soon.”
11. Accuses you of not fighting more about the relationship
Usually, a narcissist will want you back in their life and because of their ego and pride, they will try to play the victim.
Especially, when they do not have your attention and you are avoiding contact with them, they will blame you.
In this case, they need your presence and crave your attention to fulfill themselves or feel better after the breakup.
- Technically, they might not want you back for good so you need to block them on any platform.
- Try to focus more on yourself and try to talk with a therapist to heal your emotional wounds.
12. They let you know about their feelings but turn it into a joke
This sign is quite confusing because they will immediately give a different tone to their confession.
If you’re still hanging out together or you still interacting with them on social media, they will let you know about their feelings in their way.
This means that they might tell you how much they miss you or that it would be lovely to hang out with you this weekend.
Yet, they might immediately follow up these sentences with something like – “I am just kidding because that would be impossible, right?”
13. They are trying to convince everyone of their “Perfect” life
When an ex is feeling rejected and insecure but wants you back in their life, they will try to make you jealous.
In this situation, they will try to make you jealous about everything: their life, partner, or even themselves.
Yet, deep down they are feeling hollow and confused.
In this case, your ex will try to give every detail about their life and how their partner is better and making them happy.
They will do it by putting too many photos on social media, talking a lot about it to your mutual friends, or telling you straightforwardly.
14. They flirt with you in person or on social media
Have you been confused about why your ex is acting all lovey-dovey toward you recently?
Well, that might mean that they want you back but it could also mean that they are just bored.
So, to make the difference is to take a closer look at their behavior.
If they want you back, their flirting will progress slowly.
Also, they will give you random reasons why they want to be back or what has changed.
- They will like your posts and reply to your stories.
- Yet, their comments will be subtle compliments and nothing extraordinary.
15. They are there for you in the most difficult situations
They are trying to connect with you on an emotional level.
This means that they still have feelings for you but are dwelling on the past and working on their feelings.
They are trying to impact you positively and at the same time, they want to reflect on past mistakes.
Shortly, your ex tries to be your biggest support by asking about your day and showing up at your most important events.
They try to be present in your life without crossing your boundaries and respecting you.
16. They might ask other mutual friends to stay closer to you
This might not sound or look like something healthy and appropriate, yet some exes try this method to tell that they want you back.
I am aware that encountering them might be casual and not planned, but if this happens constantly then your ex is behind it.
If you don’t feel comfortable being in their presence and being “monitored”, you should let them and your ex know.
As dating expert Arica Angelo states, being with yourself after the breakup helps you to understand what type of people you need in your life.
So, to reach that point, you need to change your entourage or places where you hang out for a bit.
What to do if your ex wants you back but won’t admit it?
When an ex won’t admit that they want you back the first thing to do is to set your boundaries.
1. Be open with them and try to communicate what you’re feeling and what types of signals you’re taking from them.
If they don’t value or see the situation from the same angle as you then it is better to step back.
Because the moment that you’re aware of the situation and you let them know about it, they will try to take it more seriously.
On the other hand, if you don’t express what you’re feeling or thinking about this situation, they will take it for granted.
2. If you’re not sure yet about your feelings then you should take your time to reflect.
If you haven’t healed from the breakup yet and you’re not still sure how you feel about your ex, try to focus on yourself.
Once you focus on yourself, you will get in touch with what’s keeping you back and whether you want to reconcile with them or not.
You can only achieve it if you try to spend time doing alone activities, so you can understand what you truly like and what moves you.
3. If you still have feelings for your ex then it’s better to distance yourself and give him some time to reflect.
Even if they want to get back, that little percent that is holding them back to admit it won’t collaborate with pressure.
So, instead of pressuring him into making a final decision, give him some extra time.
4. Sometimes doing this on your own isn’t easy. In this case, you might consider the help of a counselor or a therapist.
It is helpful to talk to a professional about your feelings because they will help you decode the feelings that are keeping you in the past.
5. In the end, if he constantly keeps stringing you along or wanting to stay friends and you don’t feel like it, it’s better to cut contact.
I am not advising you to do it immediately without thinking clearly.
Yet, I want you to take your time and put your needs first.
The Bottom Line
One of the most fundamental signs that your ex wants you back but won’t admit it is when they show progress but aren’t direct with you.
If they want to make the relationship work, they will admit their mistakes or flaws and show that they are working on them.
Unless your ex is persistent and you notice positive changes in his behavior or attitude, avoid falling into the trap of confusion.
I believe that you can continue to work on yourself and be neutral.