Author: Paul R. Brian & Renée Shen
There's nothing worse than feeling disappointed or hurt by someone you've dreamed of building a life with.
I know it hurts, because it’s happened to me.
But now you have to focus on what's best for you.
Do you think he deserves a chance to have you back? Look for these signs he regrets hurting you.
(Why is this important? Because men and women perceive value very differently and you don’t want to be making mistakes that would cause quality men to dismiss, abandon or alienate you.)
You'll notice he's quieter than usual.
This is one of the most important signs he regrets hurting you.
It is understandable that after a breakup, the conversations between you decrease, but you will notice that he also posts less on social media and isn’t out and about with his friends.
That doesn't mean his social life has come to an end, but it could mean that:
If you reach out and ask why he doesn't seem to be having fun, he’ll likely provide some transparent excuses or blame sleep and other problems.
Chances are that guilt and regret are silently brewing inside him, and are keeping him from having fun.
If he is very guilt-ridden about hurting you, his online activity and socializing may undergo a noticeable decline.
However, at the same time he might be contacting you more than normal.
One of the key signs he regrets hurting you is that he reaches out to you to make sure you’re okay.
In the early stages of trying to make things up to you, he may not reach out to you directly, but he’ll often ask your friends for news about your life and how you’re doing.
He wants to find a way to talk with you to see how you are handling the situation.
This also indicates that at the very least, he still cares and is possibly still a little emotionally attached to you.
This is a fun sign to watch, but it can make you even more confused!
If you’re looking for signs he regrets hurting you, why would you be expecting one of the signs to be him partying it up and doing great?
Well, if you look closely here, you’ll see through his show.
He’s simply putting on an enthusiastic performance for everyone about how much he's loving being single again.
He may also post on social networks about his extraordinary happiness and will share posts and memes about the advantages of his new single life.
If you see him out somewhere he’ll smile at you and even talk to you normally as if nothing had happened.
If someone asks him about the breakup, he may talk about it for a few seconds and then change the subject to something happier, because he hasn't fully accepted the guilt and regret he feels for what happened.
He’s repressing his emotions and lying to himself and everyone else and you. But if you look closely, he’s trying just a little too hard.
Another thing to note about such bizarre behavior is that this is common conduct among people who have an avoidant attachment style.
Avoidants are notoriously bad at noticing and acknowledging any emotions within themselves and others.
They’re also bad at taking responsibility for hurting you.
This doesn’t mean he doesn’t actually love you, it just means that he has severe blockages to connecting with your pain.
Instead of facing reality, an avoidant might rather run far, far away and put up a facade.
I know. It makes you feel even worse, right? Well, that’s what avoidants can be like.
It doesn’t always mean he’s an avoidant, but it definitely can mean that.
(Why is this important? It is because your core attachment style largely dictates and influences what happens in your relationship. Thus it’s imperative you understand your core attachment style!)
Whether it's a mutual friend's party or a small event, he'll find a way to be there.
Suddenly, he becomes actively interested in your friends and will want to infiltrate any plans involving you.
This is especially likely if he’s a more outgoing guy who’s comfortable meeting new people and fitting in anywhere at the drop of a dime.
Sometimes he might even find you in your favorite places, such as in a neighborhood restaurant or a park.
He might even become a stalker and show up at your workplace or home.
It may seem like a strange coincidence, but he knows your routine and knows where to find you.
He clearly wants another chance, or at least to tell you he’s truly sorry and gutted about what he did wrong in your relationship.
He knows you from the inside out and as a result also knows ways to win you back.
If you’ve broken up or are going through a very rough patch in your relationship, he may promise to change.
He won't always be direct with big romantic gestures, but his actions will make it clear that he wants you back or wants to resolve the problems you’re having together.
Suddenly, you will notice that he is taking into account all your criticisms during the relationship and that he is now a completely different person.
Just make sure that he’s changing for real, and remember that talk is cheap.
If he regrets losing you or feels bad about problems you’re having, he will find creative ways to talk to you.
Despite trying to stay away from you, he is unable to control his impulses and cares a lot for you.
He probably thinks that talking to you will make you feel better and this in turn will make him feel better.
You will notice that he is very active on his cellphone and often initiates long conversations with you.
He'll also often reply to your messages in seconds, which is weird for a guy who just broke up with you or is having a big fight with you.
He'll call you or text you for anything and want your advice – whether it's about what to order for food today or what series to watch.
This is his way of saying that even after the breakup or despite the issues you’re having, you're important to him and he misses you.
Just because your relationship didn't work out and you may have broken up for some reason doesn't mean he stopped caring about you.
He knows that you are very hurt because of the separation and all he can think about is bringing back the joy of his life.
You will see him struggling to bring you back to a cheerful and happy state.
This can include talking about nostalgic past moments of the two of you together.
The way he decides to communicate his mistakes and how he apologizes is also important.
A heartfelt apology needs a tone of remorse and real plans to make amends, not just casual words.
When you hear him take responsibility for where he went wrong, and he has a plan of action to make amends and show visible signs of remorse, it's one of the best signs he regrets hurting you.
A truly repentant man will take responsibility for his actions and will not blame you or try to justify and contextualize his actions.
He did what he did, it hurt you, and he’s sorry. That’s it.
He's sorry for hurting your feelings and harming your life plans.
Eventually, if he really means it, he will open up to you and share his true feelings for you.
He's going to apologize for hurting you and breaking your heart.
Some men may apologize right away when they feel guilty about something, but if you check in with your gut, you can tell whether it’s truly genuine and heartfelt or not.
If it’s real, then he's going to tell you what he's been thinking and feeling since the breakup and he's going to ask for your forgiveness.
Forgive him or not, it's your decision.
Case study: Learn how Kristin went from being completely burnt out with online dating, sick of getting ghosted and completely exhausted from giving her heart and soul with nothing in return… To having high value men begging for her attention & having the most “electric” date of her entire life. (…All by changing one simple strategy.)
Remember that he needs to regain your trust.
This means taking responsibility for his mistakes.
If he cheated on you, he owns up to it. If he was verbally abusive to you, he apologizes genuinely for that.
It will be visible through the efforts he makes, that he’s serious about doing it right this time and recovering from past wrongs.
Remember that realizing and appreciating his efforts can be one way you also do your part to make this work the second time around.
When he realizes his mistakes and is truly sorry for it, he will be much more conscious of you in the relationship going forward.
In general, he will make much more of a point of including you in his plans.
So if you suddenly get more invitations to his office parties or if he makes new travel plans thinking of you, these are signs that he regrets his actions and wants to rebuild the relationship with you by his side.
Another of the definite signs he regrets hurting you is that friends notice he’s really changed.
Mutual friends and those you trust barely recognize him from the man you were with before.
He’s acting differently, living life on another level and dedicating himself to rebuilding what he had with you in a real and genuine way.
Those who know him best will notice the difference.
An ex who regrets having broken up with you will feel sorry for his own actions and want another chance.
This will often include him wanting to get back together with you.
If he’s truly sorry and you still feel the love connection, this could be worth it.
Just remember to never sell yourself short and have boundaries that you don’t cross when it comes to the treatment you accept from others.
Lastly, let’s establish that the most important thing here is that you see loyalty in this man.
And if he hasn’t ever displayed much loyalty even until this day (after hurting you), then you could be arriving at a dead end.
If he didn’t understand how to be loyal before, then at least now he should be on a path where he’s indicating to you that he understands what it means to be loyal to you.
Without loyalty, you really have no relationship, because you have no trust.
And that is, he needs to be able to show you that he’s more loyal to you than he is loyal to:
What’s the most important thing? Loyalty.
Without it, there’s no future for you both.
Paul R. Brian
Paul Rowan Brian is a freelance journalist, author and writer from Canada. He's written for Ideapod, Hack Spirit and Love Connection and is focused on culture, relationships and self-development. You can follow him on Twitter @paulrbrian.
Author & Editor For National Council for Research on Women. Founder of the popular women's dating & relationship advice website, The Feminine Woman.
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