Is He Still In Love With His Ex? 8 Signs He Is NOT Over Her

Is He Still In Love With His Ex? 8 Signs He Is NOT Over Her

Signs He Is Still In Love With His Ex

In this article you will learn:

  • The clear answer to your question, “Is he still in love with his ex?
  • Evident signs that he misses his ex-wife or ex-girlfriend, and how to deal with it.
  • Why your man might still be thinking about his ex and how this can be something positive.
  • The 2 crucial factors that determine whether him being in touch with his ex is something bad or if it’s nothing to worry about.
  • The 8 red flags that tell you if your boyfriend or husband has not let go of his ex-girlfriend or ex-wife yet.

How to find out if he still has feelings for his ex – even if he doesn’t want to admit it

Signs He is NOT Over his exI recently received a question to which I, unfortunately, had to give a very simple answer. One woman asked me:

“I’m right now in a relationship with a man. We began seeing each other after he broke up with his ex-girlfriend only three months earlier. I’m wondering, Is he still thinking about his ex?”

And like I said, I had to give a simple answer:

“Yeah, he’s still thinking about his ex.”

And to clarify my answer a little bit…

Does he still love his ex-girlfriend or ex-wife?”


That’s something you need to understand, and I think you’ll realize it when you look at the situation yourself.

Because here’s the thing. When you’ve had a long relationship with someone, and the relationship suddenly ends… Of course, your feelings for that person don’t suddenly just go away after a couple of months.

Even though he might say things like:

  • “I hate her.”
  • “I don’t have any feelings for her anymore.”
  • Or my personal favorite “Yeah… well…  the relationship wasn’t working for a long time anyway, so I’m long over it.”

This is something he says purely to keep you from feeling insecure.

He knows that you love to hear this, so that’s why he says it.

But going back to the question:

Yeah, he’s still thinking about his ex. And yes, he probably loves her, too.

But the fact that he still thinks about her, and that he still loves his ex, does NOT mean that he does not love you or that he doesn’t want a relationship with you.

And it DOES NOT mean that he wants to go back together with her either.

Because as a human being, you can’t forget someone you’ve loved just like 1…2…3.

And somewhere I doubt whether that was actually the question she meant to ask.

So perhaps I’m going to do something very manly and stupid: answering a question that hasn’t been asked to me at all.

I think the woman who e-mailed me actually meant to ask the following:

  • Is he over his ex yet? And if he still misses and loves his ex, what do I do?
  • What if my boyfriend or husband still loves his ex-girlfriend or ex-wife, but loves me too? Wouldn’t he rather be with her?
  • Does he still think of her, and does he find her more important than me?

In other words…

“How can you tell if a man is really over his ex? Or that a guy still has one foot in the old relationship and one foot in the new relationship?”

Here are the 8 signs that he’s still in love with his ex

1. He hasn’t cleaned up her stuff yet

He hasn't cleaned up her stuff yet

Suppose her stuff is stacked in boxes in the aisle. That’s not such a big deal and nothing to worry about.

But if there are still things from her laying around, that’s often because he hasn’t fully processed the whole breakup situation yet.

If that’s a bad thing? No, not necessarily.

A break-up is very similar to the mourning process: someone ‘loses’ a loved one or a lover.

And you can see that people who lose a loved one, usually leave their belongings in the house, so it feels like that person is still there.

This is human and often part of someone’s grieving process.

Therefore, if your boyfriend or partner still has some stuff from his ex laying around here and there, it’s a clear sign that he misses his ex-wife or ex-girlfriend.

It can also be that he still has photos together with her up on his social media account.

Once you are in a relationship with a new person, still having photos of your ex is a big red flag.

2. He’s revisiting old memories

He's revisiting old memories

I hope this isn’t the case with you, but perhaps he keeps bringing up things like:

“I remember when  (name of his ex) and I were in Paris. First, we went here, and then we did this… “

Well, this could happen occasionally, by mistake.

(Which doesn’t change the fact that it’s super uncomfortable for you.)

What it means if he talks about his ex wife/girlfriend a lot

When a guy talks about his ex to you, it sometimes just means that he was clumsy and made a mistake. Men most of the time don’t do it on purpose.

But if constantly brings up old memories of him and his ex, that’s a very bad sign.


In sign #6 I’ll explain how you can prevent him from saying these kinds of things in the future.

3. He systematically does all the right things

He systematically does all the right things
A man who systematically does all the right things has likely done the exact same thing with other women in the past.

For the third sign, I need a little bit of your female intuition. But I know that as a woman, you can often assess this very well.

Let’s suppose you just entered into a relationship with a guy who seems to be doing all the right things, such as:

  • He’s sweet and caring
  • He says all the nice things that you want to hear
  • He’s fully focused on you when you’re intimate

It’s as if he ‘routinely’ does all the right things.

Almost like he’s playing some kind of role where he’s doing everything right

And in the meantime, you can tell that he’s not one hundred percent there.

It’s like he treats you as if you were his girlfriend, but you can tell that he’s not one hundred percent present in the situation.

If a guy does this to you, it’s not a good sign. Because then chances are that he is using you as a replacement for his ex-girlfriend or ex-wife.

Is he doing everything he used to with his ex… with you?

  • He probably takes you to the same restaurants
  • Takes you on the same walks or venues for dates
  • Gives you the same compliments
  • And so on…

So he does everything exactly the way it was but he’s only replaced the woman.

And that’s, of course, a very painful realization.

But unfortunately, it’s something that happens more often than you think, as I’ve heard a lot of men and women describe similar situations.

Anyway, if you feel that he’s doing this to you, it’s a very clear sign that he’s not completely over his ex.

4. He gets upset when his ex is dating someone new

He gets upset when his ex is dating someone new

I got an e-mail the other day from a woman who said:

“I’ve been with a man for six months now. He just got out of a two-year marriage and I was single for a while.

At the beginning of the relationship, this caused a lot of hassle. He still had feelings for his ex. Well, I thought it was heading in the right direction, but lately, he’s been very depressed. Why I don’t know exactly. He did tell me the other day that his ex was dating someone new, and that he was happy for her.

Could it be that this has something to do with it? I think my boyfriend still has feelings for his ex”

Let’s cut to the chase:

“Yeah, this certainly has something to do with it.”

When a guy feels depressed the minute his ex is dating someone else, I guarantee that’s one hundred percent a sign that he’s not over her yet.

This is a typical case of jealousy

But as you may know, men are just like children when it comes to jealousy: it doesn’t take much to make them jealous.

So the fact that he’s depressed that his ex is dating someone else, doesn’t really mean that much yet.

But how long he’s being depressed is much more important.

If a guy is sad for a day, it’s not a big deal. But what if it goes on for a week or more? Yeah, then it’s obvious he’s still not over her.

And it’s something to pay attention to.

Another red flag and question you should ask yourself is: Why is he still following her on social media?

Most likely because he still wants to be part of her life somehow, in some way. Even just stalking her and checking her photos  or stories once in a while.

5. He’s still talking to his ex

He's still talking to his ex

Before you assume the worst: if he still talks to his ex-girlfriend or ex-wife, that’s not necessarily bad.

Contact is a broad concept.

A message on Facebook? That’s contact. Weekly meetings? That’s contact.

All right. You get the point.

At which point is him talking to his ex too much?

To figure out if he’s not over his ex, there are two things you should consider:

  1. Why is he still in touch with her?
  2. How much contact does he have with her, and in what way?

These two things are crucial.

Suppose he has children with her. He sends her a daily message (one type of contact) to ask how the children are doing (why).

Well, then you can’t blame him.

In this case, you should be happy that he’s being a good father.

But suppose their relationship ended one year ago. You live in one city and she lives in another. But they still text each other often (he won’t block her) and occasionally meet with each other (she won’t leave him alone?).

Yeah, then it’s too much

And even if he says: ”We’re just friends”, you have every right to let him choose between you and her.

At least if it bothers you.

Then ask yourself why they’re still in touch, and find out how often and in what way they have contact.
And if you don’t like this for whatever reason, it’s a very bad sign.

If he talks to his ex behind your back

There are two types of instances that would be aggravating factors. If you find out that he’s doing any of these two, it means that he’s definitely not over her.

  1. He’s lying about it
  2. He’s texting or contacting her behind your back.

If you notice any of these, then you can be sure that he still likely has feelings for her, and might even consider getting back together with her.

6. He compares you to her

He compares you to her“Oh, but… (name of his ex)… did it like this.”

It’s never cool when a man compares you to another woman, especially when that woman is his ex-girlfriend or ex-wife.

That’s just painful.

But it’s good to know that men often don’t do this on purpose. No sane man wants to make his girlfriend insecure.

Then why is he doing this?

You’re not gonna like the answer to that question…

He compares you to his, because he’s still thinking of her.

The fact that he’s talking about her simply means that she’s on his mind.

It’s as simple as one plus one equals two. Every time he talks about her, he thinks about her.

In short, he hasn’t fully processed the whole situation yet.

Bonus tip: Describe how you feel about this

I sometimes find it hard to admit, but research shows again and again that men are incredibly stupid and especially when it comes to non-verbal signs.

So suppose that he compares you to his ex, and he doesn’t realize that he’s hurting you? Then tell him!

Let him know how you feel, the moment he does it.

Because I sincerely believe that he’s got your best interests at heart. However, men rarely understand the impact of certain actions, that’s why they sometimes send you mixed signals.

And it’s up to you to make him aware of this 😉

7. He hasn’t yet introduced you to his family and friends

He hasn't yet introduced you to his family and friends

And I don’t mean after the first two months. But if you’re a year down the line and he still hasn’t introduced you to his friends and family?

Yeah, then there’s really something going on. He might be afraid to commit.

In which case, you can read here how to best deal with that.

After all, it’s when a man introduces his new girlfriend to his closest ones that he ‘officially’ replaces his ex.

So if he doesn’t do this, it means:

  1. He’s not one hundred percent committed to the relationship.
  2. It’s also true that within his social circle, he now keeps the door open to get back with his ex.

He can now go to a family birthday, without the situation becoming uncomfortable since he hasn’t introduced them to anyone else in the meantime.

So if he’s not willing to introduce you yet, it really means that he’s not ready to replace her yet. And that he’s actually having some kind of backup, so he can get back with his ex.

Disclaimer: Given that you’ve been dating for longer than a few months. 

8. He is distant when he’s with you

He’s distant because you’re different than you were in the beginning

This one you should probably have noticed.

Because he can hang out with you and be there in person, but you can somehow feel that he is not there mentally.

He is sort of drifting away.

Sometimes that can mean that he’s thinking about his past and his ex.

It can of course mean other things too, such as he’s dealing with something personal or stressed over work.

But if you notice that he is often thinking about other things and doesn’t seem to listen to you when you’re talking, then I’d recommend that you bring this up him and ask him what’s wrong.

Questions and Answers

How can I get him to think of me instead of his ex?

Just try to be the best girlfriend you could possibly be.

Such as:

  • Be upbeat and positive when you’re with him
  • Make him feel appreciated and relaxed
  • Go and do fun and exciting activities with him
  • Give him space

Whatever you do don’t become negative or complain about things. That will make him think of his ex even more and only about the good/positive times with her.

Can he love me too if he still loves his ex?

Yes, depending on the depth and length of his previous relationship. It might take him a very long time to completely let go of his ex. He might love her forever as a person, because he thinks that she is an outstanding and amazing person. But still NEVER  be interested in her as a romantic partner again.

How do I know when he’s ready for a new relationship?

You’ll know that when he’s 100% focused on you.

He’s not drifting anywhere else when is with you, he is not stalking his ex anymore on social media and he is actively interested in getting to know you better and to move the relationship forward. Instead of passively participating in it.


What it means if you notice a couple of these signs

If you recognize some of these signs, and you’ve only been dating for a few months, then there isn’t much cause for concern.

Just give it some time.

It doesn’t necessarily mean anything bad.

It’s stupid that people often think rebound relationships (you know, when someone moves quickly from one relationship to the next) are bad by definition.

Scientific research shows that it makes NO difference at all

You can read all about it here if you don’t believe me.

So don’t take it so hard if he’s not quite over his ex yet. You just started dating.

It would be more worrying if he would instantly forget about her.

Because those men are much more dangerous. Those guys can distance themselves from a woman without giving a damn.

So again, just give it some time. But do not settle for a friends with benefits (FWB) relationship with him.


PS: If you want to make sure you are not making any mistakes that scare him away (back to his ex), I recommend you download a small report called “The 5 most common texting mistakes that women make that scare guys away.” Click here to receive it now for free.


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21 thoughts on “Is He Still In Love With His Ex? 8 Signs He Is NOT Over Her”

  1. Christine burgin

    So wot if I said that I now ur doing some think with ur ex he turns round and says it irrelevant to me as he’s smirking is that a red flag

    1. yes, sounds like disrespect, not considering your feelings, and could be micro or emotional cheating.

      therapy !

  2. i was with a man he was only married four years has been divorced 12 when i met him i lived with him for two years he hide all his contact with ex wife from me lie right to my face that he does not talk to her or text it was only her texting and calling him but he would talk to her when i was not home or when he was on the train coming home from work i would ask him nicely and he would tell me she only textes me about his kids she lived out of state his kids are young adults now he still thinks they are babys i quess but i have never heard a man to have such a close relationship with a ex who left him he would go on family vacation share a hotel room when i was with him weird he would stay at her house when he would go to see his kids and the real thing that i did not think about this man had no relationship since his divorce to me i think him and his ex still treat each other as husband and wife im sure they sleeped together when he went to her house we went out for sereral years after high school so i quess he used me and only loved his ex wife he gives her anything she wants money and he has alot of money i think he is only seperated from her i brought up marriage he did not want to marry me his ex wife is secretly on his benifits everything else and he would tell his friends i was his soulmate and before i left him he would tell me he has to get away from her to me this man is to broken to fix its one thing to be friendly to a ex but i think he was little too much its been a year now im still a little hurt that someone can make the whole relationship all lies

  3. Is that normal with your boyfriend and his ex wife still go hang out with his ex wife.
    He said it’s normal because of his son that’s why he need to communicate..

  4. He has custudy of his kids but eveytine he sees her he gets into his feelings and barelly talk to me just text me if im ik what do i do?

  5. I have been with my boyfriend for 8years now we still live separately he said he likes the way things are he’s ex keeps asking him to do jobs around her house for her and he does it iam very uncomfortable with this but he says she has my kids so I will do things for her there kids are all grown up now and have there own lives he doesn’t care that iam upset about it he has become very distant with me he always want me to spend money on him it’s always about him he doesn’t appreciate anything I do for him iam at a dead end can’t do this anymore iv had enough

  6. So I’m dating this guy who is still best-friend with his ex-gf. Well his excuse they have a business together and he said they end up relationship with a good terms, I sometimes feel compared to her, I heard so many stories about her… otherwise he actually introduce me to his family, friends … everyone and still don’t want to Lebel us. It is almost a year and I come up to conclusion where I need to find my life and go away… I love this person and I know he loves me back… but I think he is not over his ex and he doesn’t want to talk about .

  7. I’ve been with my boyfriend little over a year and a half. His ex wife bought the house next door. He was unhappy she didn’t say anything. So I started talking to him about it and he said he doesn’t want me to talk about her anymore. They have children together . But it’s been very weird lately with how his son been acting towards me. And how he runs to her pic . He’s never done that before. I told my bf he told me he misses his mom. I’ve never had a problem before until she doughty the house next door. Now everything we drive by her house he stares. And if she out side he looks in his side mirror. He doesn’t need his side mirror to get out of our area. One night we had some drinks . I didn’t want any. I went to bed. He said he ordered for and will wake me for it. I said no I’m good. But he did! Food arrived and he came and got me. I ate a little wasn’t really hungry. He said he put stuff away and come to bed. He didn’t he went over to his ex house and told me I pushed him in to do it. Because I kept talking about his ex. He said he only stayed for a half a smoke. And he literally talked about me the whole time. I was mad! He said he felt bad for doing it. I smoke in the garage . I hear his ex talking sometimes. I’ll tell my bf. Then I don’t hear anything anymore. Idk but deep down I know there something going on. I talk to friends about it and they all have there thoughts of the matter. But they all different!!

  8. rather not say

    he started dating me when he still liked her/had a thing for her. he also told me that he would have dreams about her every night and would think about her 24/7 and still cry about her when we began to go out w each other. we’ve been dating for just about 5 months now and he talks to her sometimes and brings her up from time to time knowing it bothers me. he said he loved her but does this mean he still does? what should I do? help!

  9. He has new girl on his Facebook but he said dont mean nothing he call me still because he care for me…tell me he trying get married I ask him too who he says I need figure it out why is he calling me still.

  10. me and my bf are almost 3 years together it feels like he’s not over hes ex he even made an fake Instagram account just to follow her he likes all her pics and who know he might have message her ?because he has done it in the past
    I just found out that he talked to hes mom about her and that she blocked him witch means their were in contacted
    I live with hes mom and I don’t know what to do

  11. So the guy I’ve been with we’ve been together on and off for about seven years and it didn’t start so well I was separated from my husband and he was separated from his wife and well we moved a little bit too quickly and things got complicated and we had a kid and I was still going through a divorce he was already divorced at that moment but the drugs got in the way and I couldn’t do it anymore when I found out I was pregnant I love them I moved to a different state with my family he wanted me to come back and did I mention he tried to go back to his ex-wife who he was with for 26 years and she didn’t want them she was moving to be with somebody else she’s now married and we’ve tried to make it work but their relationship their friendship has always been in the way of us progressing for my insecurities and him going back-and-forth with her in the past so I’ve lost a little bit of trust and I’ve tried it’s hard for me to be a woman of understanding when he talks to her likeA friend and we’ve had is just so many problems that we’ve lost that because of all the trust issues and betrayal in the past and I for gave him but it’s just been really hard to forget and it’s really affected our family with my daughter and now he says he can’t do it anymore and while we were hardly talk I don’t know how to fix it and I don’t know where to begin because we’ve been through this so many times I think it’s time to go our separate ways but I really want to try for my daughter and I just don’t know how to let go Yes I forgot to mention that they have kids together no younger than 13 and 24 and our daughter is 3

  12. Thanks Tim for this, i was going to roast my boyfriend tonight and probably even break up but after this article i think i might give him more time. we have been dating for just a little over a month.

  13. i met my boyfriend 5 years ago with 6 months in the relationship i found a face book account with me block .his friend said i met u b4 when i never met him . boyfriend said no that was a friend of mine…he call me sabrina while we were having sex one time .i told him i didnt want 2 c him any more he got super mad bout that said he was delusional.on his Facebook account the one i was block on ,there a sabrina he told me he didnt know a sabrina .so i broke it off , i felt he been cheating but didnt have all the facts yet . then my best friend came acrooss a picture on face book with him and a nother younger girl my son age took 2gether on her post in a relationship.. he ended up in jail i found out by texting a comment 2 her from a statement she posted bout him not coming home , she reply bak ur so stupid he in jail . so i wrote him sent him my fone numbrrhe call me he telling me how he was gonna send someone 2 get my address he wanted 2 get intouch with me. so happy 2 herre from me he also told me he love me . when he first told me in bout 4 month we were going 2gether but he only pretended later i have it in a text he trick me 4 me 2 fall in love with him and that he was sorry later on. i told him ill help hom get throu he wanted me 2 b at his sentences hearing 2 b a creatable witness on his b half say something good bout him it help knock down his time basically he wanted me 2 lie 2 the judge . cuz he broke my heart . well got a 7 year sentence but knock down to 4 yrs with my testimony. i said wen u get out lets just b friends take it sliw he said no i know wat i want that u we wrote phone calls in all his letter he tell me how much he loves me i brought him out of darkness he has big dreams 4 us hell never change bout how he feels 4 me b in love well wen he got out he told me that he only want 2 b a friend he moving 8 months 2 his mom his ex he talk so bad about got there son taken away 2 state wen he got out he got him bak now his ex rehab has her personal b longing in his closet she doesnt want someone steal her stuff while in rehab.. he sys she didnt put her things in her son cliset his cliset her ex .. that told me they still having sex she over there wen the boy not surpise 2 b round his mom he lets his son c her not let the case worker know plz give me ur advice anyone . why did he pretend again 2 love me wen i was already in love wat was his gain from hurting me not once but twice bout be onlove with me he never share same feelings as i he mislead me again why all i did love him real live and furnish his apartment 2 bedroom and his son room

  14. Phyllis Overstreet

    I was dumped after 47yrs of marrige and said he never loved me plus he still wants his ex from 1969
    who can help me

  15. Married for 2 years and I find my husband at a jobsite about to leave but saw me driving up rund inside and I see a female who turned out to be his ex. They lock the door. Wouldn’t answer my call or text. I found his car key I took off with it but came back to find him coming outside. He took off walking. She stayed in. I told him to explain and he wouldnt. He said I wouldn’t understand. He kept walking. After a while he said he wanted to give her closure. I don’t buy it. And he said see I told you , you wouldn’t understand. I told him to take me to her and let’s all talk he said no. I got ahold of her she tells me one thing and he sticks to the same little story that he was giving her closure because she wouldnt stop calling…. I believe if she wouldn’t stop calling then something was going on between them. Why after all this time she gonna start calling him up. She told me he was the one looking for her. And that they had something going on longer than I thought. I can’t trust no one. He says I’m an overthinker. Nothing happened. But why would he have her alone with him and hide it?

  16. My Fiancee who got married to another woman he impregnated when we were dating and also got married to her is right at my door. He wouldn’t leave until I accept him back, He has divorced her.

  17. I’m a widow. My late husband and I were married for 28 years. It was wonderful. He died unexpectedly. When I decided I was ready to date again, I was as careful as I could be. I assumed I’d marry a widower. Then I met my current husband. He’s been divorced twice. The first marriage was 20 years and two grown kids. The second was 7 years, no kids together. She cheated on him and belittled him. I foolishly figured that meant he would toss her to the curb for good. I recently found out that he met her for lunch, and even told a friend he was thinking about his life with her and missed it. Needless to say, I am devastated. He has since told me that all those thoughts were mistakes and he wants to spend the rest of his life with me. But I just can’t let go of how hurt I feel! He has expressed jealousy over my late husband, who obviously poses no threat to our marriage. I even strive to severely limit speaking about him. That’s not easy to do, but I do so for my new husband. I don’t see him as a replacement for my late husband, but I feel like I’m just a replacement for his ex wife. He has taken me to the same places and uses the same love names. I just wonder if I made a mistake. My heart is shattered. He wants me to forget about it, but I can’t seem to. I know we need counseling. I guess I just needed to vent.

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About Tim &

Tim Veninga is a dating coach, relationship coach and social psychology bestseller author from the Netherlands.  He has been featured in media like Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Marie Claire & Elle.

Hi, I’m Tim Veninga. Since 2008 I’ve been coaching men and women to archieve succes and happiness in their love lives.

For years I’ve only been writing in Dutch, but in 2019 I started writing in English as well after many women asked for it.

If you want to get started learning the best of my advice, I recommend you download the 5 texting mistakes most women make.

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