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“Should I block my ex?” That’s the question that’s on your mind. And it’s a question that’s worth thinking carefully about.
One of the hardest parts of a breakup is learning to accept that a person who once took up so much of your life just isn’t there anymore.
It’s a daunting prospect to have to navigate a new life without someone, and having any type of connection to them can be a comforting reminder of a time you were familiar with and miss.
But ask yourself: how do you feel when you see them on social media? Are you happy? Or does it make you hurt and angry? Is still having that connection bringing anything positive to your life?
You shouldn’t try to erase an ex, and deleting anything that reminds you of them doesn’t mean you’re over them. It might even cost you a chance at reconciliation further down the line.
Don’t be hasty in your decisions, but reflect on why you’re keeping that door of communication open and if it’s really the best thing for you.
Here are some things to consider if you’re thinking about blocking your ex.
The 5 pros of blocking your ex.
The fact that you are reading an article on whether to block your ex is a good indicator that you feel it’s probably for the best. But if you want to be sure, here are 5 more pros to taking that decision.
1. It can stop you from becoming obsessive.
Social media is a portal into someone’s daily life. If you are missing your ex, following their platforms can trick you into feeling like you’re still a part of their life when you’re not.
You’ll start to analyze each post, checking to see if they’ve already moved on.
Your negative frame of mind will influence your perception and the more you obsess over social posts, the faster you’ll jump to unfounded conclusions.
You’ll start to wonder who that girl/guy is in a recent group picture or if s/he went home with someone after his/her night out.
Thoughts such as these will only hurt you more and make it harder to move on.
It’s easy to forget that a snapshot on social media is just that, a single moment in time. You have no idea how someone is really feeling from one picture.
Blocking your ex’s social media removes the temptation to wallow and obsess. You won’t be able to analyze every new notification if you stop getting them altogether.
2. It can prevent mind games.
Social media has become such an effective tool for influencing people that those making a full time career out of it are literally called ‘Influencers.’
It’s become a constant part of our lives, dictating how our time is spent via our newsfeed.
Keeping your ex on social media allows them to infiltrate your life every day, manipulating your thoughts with just one post.
This works both ways, and you can soon find yourself in a cryptic mind game of trying to outdo each other with your post-break up lives.
You’ll deliberately post pictures to make them jealous and wonder if they’re doing the same. It becomes a competition of who’s coping better with the breakup, when all you’re really doing is wasting your time.
You can’t heal yourself if you’re still concentrating on them. And a post on social media doesn’t prove anything, so don’t be dragged into playing manipulative games.
When you block your ex, you can focus your energy on yourself and remove their power of influence over you.
3. It forces you to move on.
After a breakup, one of the most difficult adjustments is getting used to a life without your ex around.
You have to begin training yourself out of the habits you developed when you were together, including not letting them occupy so much of your head space.
Sending the odd message or checking their social media might feel harmless at the time. But reminiscing about the past won’t help you build a future.
There has to be a point where you let go of what you had and start to embrace a life without them. Blocking them helps you to do that.
Use that extra space in your head to think about what makes you happy and indulge in some self-care.
Going cold turkey with your ex is a shock to the system, but it could be the finality you need to start looking forward not back.
4. It forces them to move on.
There are always two sides to a breakup. Although you might feel fine still having contact with your ex, have you ever considered if it’s the same for them?
This might be a path you’ve walked before, breaking up but keeping in touch until one of you reaches out to give it another go.
You might have to be the one who shows that things are finally over this time around.
Yes, blocking your ex will be hard and painful. They might not understand at first and you’ll wonder if you’ve done the right thing.
But deep down you’ll know that without each other, both of you now finally have the chance to move on and find happiness.
5. For the sake of a new relationship.
You might have reached the stage where you feel comfortable still having your ex on social media and have been able to move on, even find someone new.
You shouldn’t feel that you have to hide a past relationship from a new partner, but it’s worth considering how having a bridge into your ex’s life through their social media channels could affect your new relationship.
It’s not ok for your new partner to get unreasonably jealous over your ex’s social media or pressure you to delete their number. But consider how you would feel if you knew that your new boyfriend or girlfriend had daily reminders of their ex and could reach out to them at any time – would it bother you?
If you still have your ex’s number or follow their social channels out of habit, it might be a good time to delete them.
That way you can fully invest all your attention on your new relationship without interruptions from an old one.
The 4 cons of blocking your ex.
Perhaps you’re reading this article hoping to find a reason not to block your ex. If so, here are 4 downsides to cutting that digital connection once and for all.
1. You don’t get the closure you need.
During the trauma of a breakup, you’re going through a million emotions. Only after a few months, when the shock has worn off and you’ve begun to adjust to your new life, can you begin to understand how you feel toward an ex.
At this point, you might feel that there are things left unsaid that you want the chance to voice.
Now the initial shock has passed, you might want to say goodbye properly or just need to face them one last time to fully close the door on that relationship.
Whatever your reason, deleting their number and unfriending/unfollowing them on social media in a fit of pain or anger will stop you from ever getting the closure you need.
If you’re thinking about blocking your ex, don’t act impulsively. Try to make the decision in a calm frame of mind so you don’t make a choice that you later regret.
2. You can’t be friends.
So maybe your relationship didn’t work out, but after some time, you might reach a place where you can still appreciate your ex for the person they are.
You were attracted to them for a reason, and accepting that it didn’t work out romantically doesn’t always mean you have to lose them entirely from your life.
When you block an ex, there is a finality to it. There’s no going back.
If it was a clean breakup and things just didn’t work out, then you could still learn to live with each other in a new dynamic of mutual respect and friendship and be grateful that you kept a means of communication open.
It’s rare, but it happens – you just have to be realistic about whether it can happen for you.
3. It ends any chance you could get back together.
Many people cling to this hope after a breakup. Keeping a door open into the life of your ex gives you the glimmer of possibility that you could get in contact and make up. Blocking your ex shuts that door for good.
Maybe they are the right person but it was bad timing, or you both just needed some space. Keeping a channel of communication between you gives you the chance to come back to each other when the time is right.
But don’t delude yourself, if you’ve tried this before and it hasn’t worked out, don’t get caught in a vicious cycle of breaking up and getting back together over and over.
Equally, don’t torture yourself by hoping they’ll come back to you when you know deep down that just isn’t going to happen.
You broke up for a reason, and unless something has significantly changed, the issues in your relationship won’t have either.
4. You lose their friends and family too.
When you’ve been in a relationship with someone, it’s inevitable that you begin to get close to their family and friends.
Losing someone in a breakup is bad enough, but losing their friendship group and family can make it doubly painful.
Blocking your ex from social media can put mutual friends or family in a conflicting position. They may feel uncomfortable with the finality of the separation and feel a need to choose sides.
If you really have connected with them, you could try reaching out to friends and family members personally and establishing your own relationship with them away from your ex.
But, it’s more likely that you will have to learn to accept that your relationship with these people won’t ever be the same.
Even if you are able to keep in contact with a few of them and bring them along into your post-breakup life, they will always be a reminder of your past relationship and make it harder to fully move on.
Breakups are always going to be tough. Whether you’ve walked away or you’re the one left behind, you have to adjust to life without the person you always thought would be there.
It’s a process that is emotionally and mentally tough and you’ll have to be strong when you feel at your weakest. In the midst of all the emotions, you have to try to make the best decisions for the person you want to be, not who you are in that moment.
So, should you block your ex? That’s a question only you can answer. For many people, it is a good idea. For others, it’s not something they need to do.
Whether or not you permanently cut all ties from your ex, you need space from them to heal from your hurt.
Don’t torture yourself waiting for their call or keep checking for a new post, but try to explore and embrace who you are without them.
It might help to take a break from social media altogether – just a temporary one whilst you are dealing with the heightened emotions of the breakup. You can then rejoin when you are ready and be in a better place to decide whether or not to block your ex.
Just remember: if you put as much energy and love into yourself as you did to them, there’s no limit on how bright the future could be for you.
Still not sure whether or not you should block your ex? Chat online to a relationship expert from Relationship Hero who can help you figure things out. Simply click here to chat.
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