Breaking up is hard to do. Especially when it doesn't seem to stay that way. If you and your ex seem to be stuck in a never-ending makeup-then-breakup cycle, you may not understand why. These five reasons make you come back for more, even when feelings have faded:
1. The happy ending
Everyone wants their happily ever after. So even when things are in a downward spiral you keep pushing for that dream ending - it would be a shame to waste all the time and energy spent on trying to keep your love afloat all for nothing, right? This "sunk cost fallacy" can push exes back together to alleviate the regretful feelings that come from putting in all that work for nothing.
2. For the kids
Keeping your family together is a huge motivator for off-and-on relationships. When you have children together, it's heartbreaking to split up kids from their parents, and siblings from each other. You don't want them to grow up never knowing when one parent or the other will be around, so you toy around with remaining together for good ... and separating ... and trying to maintain a routine. But living in limbo ends up hurting more than helping.
3. For the convenience
Some couples find living life without their partner is much harder than they bargained for. You may think you can make it on your own but quickly realize things are much easier with someone by your side.
So even if you and your partner are incompatible, you may decide to try to make it work. Staying together is often easier because you've become accustomed to relying on each other and can share the load. But if you don't agree on how things should be done, can't communicate effectively or don't truly want to be together, you'll find yourself longing to be single again in no time.
4. Can't stay single
You may also be so accustomed to being in a relationship that the thought of staying single for a while terrifies you. It can be uncomfortable for some people to be alone, and you may be tempted to hitch your wagon to anyone just to stave off those feelings of isolation. The problem is if you can't find a suitable new partner you can easily slip back into the arms of the old one.
5. Dance the dance
Unfortunately, for some couples constantly breaking up and reconciling becomes a part of their relationship. Separating can become a function of how your love is defined; fiery but eternal. When walking away becomes a part of the routine you and your partner never learn to effectively discuss or acknowledge your feelings. Your communications skills don't get a chance to fully develop . And you learn to solve all of your problems by leaving instead of sticking around to resolve an issue.
You may be over an old flame but that doesn't mean you're done with the relationship. Going back them again and again may mean something has been left unresolved. But that may not have anything to do with the other person - it often means you haven't come to terms with your decision to leave and are justifying your reasons to return.
When love has run its course you'll find that it's OK to let go. You can finally move forward into the future and find a love that will last.