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“Insightful, practical, heartfully and psychologically sound, The Pathway to Love provides the steppingstones to creating genuine love in your life.  It is a must-read for those who value honesty, authentic commitment to self and other, and appreciate relationship as a vehicle to self-actualization.”

—Michael Bernard Beckwith, author of Spiritual Liberation~Fulfilling Your Soul’s Potential


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You will wonder at times how she knew about you and a particular significant other because she seems to describe you and the relationship to a T. And, when you read the last page you will wish you had read it years and a number of relationships earlier.

Irene Conlan

I have read other books on this topic which spoke to me... This book, which I got in the Kindle version, pulled it all together for me--the biology, personal values, self identity, the human quest for belonging and intimacy. The book... brought to me great understanding. I wish I had ordered the paper version with the workbook. I ended up going back and ordering it.

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« Parenting: When to hold on and when to let go | Main | Do I Stay or Do I Leave? When to Call it Quits »

Desperate to Win Back Your Ex? What Are You Really Desperate For?

I get tons of emails from people asking me how to win their boyfriend, girlfriend, wife, husband, you name it, back. They are in pain and desperate. They regret breaking up with their significant other or worse, regret causing the breakup in the first place—or so it seems.

As people struggle with the transition from being a ‘we’ to an ‘I’, it is normal to want a do-over—to go back and make things right. I find this to be true regardless if you were the one who made the decision to break up or not. What's even more interesting, is that this phenomenon occurs even when the relationship and/or the "ex" was less than desirable—people will ignore all the reasons the relationship ended in the first place. During this painful time of detaching and feeling like there is no solid ground beneath you, one's memory of the relationship becomes distorted. All of a sudden, all the horrible things your ex did or the fact that you wanted a serious relationship and your ex did not, goes to the way side.  All you can think about is how to get him or her back. The ‘getting back’ becomes paramount regardless of the circumstances. You can't seem to stop and consider if you got what you wanted, would you want what you got?

Having said this, there are those situations when someone sabotaged a relationship or ran from one out of fear who later discovered that their fears were not nearly as important or relevant as being with the person they grew to love. Under these circumstances, it makes sense to revisit the relationship with a new appreciation and understanding of what really matters to you and what you're willing to do to win your love back and make it work. However, these individuals typically do not exhibit any desperate energy. They choose to contact their ex and have an open and honest conversation about what their past behaviors were all about and what they'd like to create from here on out. Sometimes it's too late and sometimes it's not. They accept whatever verdict ensues.

But for those of you that feel desperate, as if your life cannot go on without your ex, here are some things for you to consider before you go about trying to cajole and manipulate anyone back. Ask yourself the following:

  1. What is it about your ex that you really miss? Is it her personality, character, and the wonderful way she treated you? What is it about your ex that you don't miss? Is it his personality, character and the horrible way he treated you?  Get a clear, realistic and accurate picture on what was good, bad and indifferent about your ex and your relationship. From this perspective, see if your ex and the relationship met your needs and basic well-being. Also be honest with yourself about your behaviors and if the relationship met your ex's needs and basic well-being.
  2. What was the real reason the relationship ended? Is it something that had to do with the relationship itself? Is it something that had to do with an irreconcilable difference? Was it fear on the part of you or your ex or both? Get honest with what was truly responsible for the breakup and then see if there is anything that's different. If so, then maybe it's worth revisiting. If not, then it's in your best interest to let go and move on.
  3. What are you really desperate for? Are you wanting to avoid the feeling of loss, emptiness, separation, loneliness, failure, and being alone? Are you grappling with wanting to regain a sense of control, power, self-esteem, attractiveness, desirability, and success? Your change of heart may have nothing to do with your ex and the relationship and everything to do with your ego and need for power and control. Better to deal with the real issues at hand rather than avoiding them by focusing on a relationship that didn't work then and won't work now.

Breakups are hard. It takes time to process a loss, regain your balance, and begin anew. But remember, you deserve to have the relationship you desire. You deserve to have one based on mutual respect, love and kindness. As hard as it may be to accept, your ex may have simply "not been the one." Allowing yourself to fully let go creates the space for the right person to come into your life. And while it may not feel this way at the moment, I promise this will not be your last chance at love.

I also want you to remember that your relationships serve as mirrors onto yourself. Take advantage of the opportunity to learn something new about yourself so that you go into your next relationship with greater self-awareness and courage. Your past relationship may just be the one that provides the learning that enables you to create your best relationship.

If you need help in how to move forward, I am here to help. I work via phone or Skype for those who are not in the Los Angeles area. You can reach me via email or call 1-888-99PATHS and schedule a coaching session.

You may also want to check out The Pathway to Love at-home program. It’s a powerful way to understand the nature of relationships, what went wrong in your past relationships, how your relationships mirror what you need to see about yourself, and prepares you for creating a healthy and intimate relationship.  You can find this at www.JulieOrlov.com/24-hour-relationship-help.

As always, I’m here to help and support you in creating strong and successful relationships.

Be well,


P.S. And don't forget to catch my radio/TV show Pathways to Love w'Julie Orlov LIVE every Sunday 1:30pm PST on LATalkLive!

Julie Orlov, psychotherapist, speaker, and author of The Pathway to Love: Create Intimacy and Transform Your Relationships through Self-Discovery

Retrieve Your FREE Relationship Assessment Quiz and see if YOUR Relationship is on track at www.julieorlov.com/quiz

Create Relationships in Your Life That Work — learn more at www.julieorlov.com

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