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  • Rita Györfi

Rekindle an old romance, Yes or No ?


Rekindling a romance is not something without precedent. Why not to take a second chance.


The real question however is:


Which relationships are worth to rekindle and what are the attention points to increase your chances to succeed? What are the make or brake moments when getting back with a former love or date? This article is giving some insights to help navigate through the process.


Certain connections never fade away; no time or physical place can alter them. It’s largely unexplainable what makes two people tick and it’s not so straightforward what a connection exactly is. Sometimes it is referred to as 'the chemicals'. Connection doesn't equal and isn’t limited to pure physical or emotional attraction, and it is rather challenging to give it a good enough definition. For me, connection is a seemingly effortless, deep understanding between two people which takes place at a secondary level, often in a very subtle way. Outsiders can’t always easily guess why it works for a couple and why not for another.


No doubt, the look catches the eyes first. However, if a connection is bound to be, something much stronger, meaningful, and powerful is going on too. We don’t necessarily have to notice it at the very first moment. It might seem like any new romance, beautiful and exciting. We feel full of energy and motivation. Life has suddenly a meaning. However, as the feeling of infatuation shrinks over time, connection (if there is) will take over its place. Later on, attraction and connection keep reinforcing each other mutually as the relationship matures and for the relationship to mature. It’s like feeling tired of standing, so we start switching between the left and right leg to keep ourselves up in that position.


Despite experiencing a true connection with someone, it can happen that we stop dating them or the relationship fails, and we break up. This can be the result of various considerable factors such as geographical distance, unaligned goals, different life-stages or personality traits, incompatible values, priorities, beliefs or being committed to someone else.

We part ways and become ex-es. Still, whenever we think of them, we know that it was something special.


A thought comes to our mind time-to-time, a regret of having given it up. Could we try again? Trying doesn’t mean of course that one will triumph too. But it’s about presenting this connection another chance, ensuring a space for it to thrive.


How to know if it is worth to rekindle the romance with someone?

Did a real, mutual connection never exist between two people, I would not encourage renewing the romance.

Why?

A profound, nurturing connection is the stronghold of any fulfilling relationship. It is like a flower bed for the roots to get a foothold without which the relationship will struggle to stand storms. Life is never easy, relational, familial, health or financials issues are all part of it. Extraordinary difficulties might come about too and sometimes all we are left with is the connection to our partner. That is the moment when it takes up an increasingly important role in the life of a couple. Our connection might become superior to the number of years we spent together, to the experiences we shared and to the fact that we have got mutual children. Although it is a unique experience to watch the kids grow or travel the world together, but it may not be enough for the relationship to hold, assuming we want a fulfilling life.

A meaningful connection prompts a couple to deal with (any) hardships together. It reminds them to always move toward one another instead of pulling away. I have seen families in demanding life scenarios, including one who have had disabled children that are in adult age now. It feels so comforting to observe this couple interact, conversate or laugh together while knowing, even if only a fraction of it, what they have been through.


Relationships can be worked out. Connections rarely.


The big pro for reviving a previous relationship is the feeling of familiarity and the existence of good memories. We don’t start from scratch as we know this person already to some extent. Having a clue to what to expect gives us a sense of relief and solace. We want things to go easier and are sure that this time we will do so much better. It is ’home territory’ after all.


However, it matters a lot how the rekindling of the earlier love takes place. As Heraclitus said: „You cannot step into the same river twice, for other waters are continually flowing on” (different versions of the same exists). And we had better not because that would imply that we are carried away by the water. Going back simply to the same old relationship which wasn’t functioning properly might feel very awkward and smell fusty. We may get cold feet and want to leave right away. Ouch.


Instead, how can you revive a previous romance so that it brings satisfaction and happiness?


Relighting an old flame requires being open for the new.


(1)

First of all, we have to cultivate an ability to forgive another for what happened and move past our sorrow tied to this person or the relationship (I’m not speaking about cases of aggression or abuse!). Best is to pack the unpleasant memories into a fictitious box and put them away so that we can start with a clean sheet.


(2)

Once we have done that – both of us, it is now the time to decide whether we are willing to give each other another chance. We must imagine that just like fresh water is always pouring down the river, a new person is standing now in front of us. We are giving a chance to this new person and not to the old relationship! This requires a particular mindset since we need to be able to see the same from a different perspective and let our eyes notice new shades.


(3)

As a next step, we need to carefully examine if an alignment of the unmatched goals, life-stage or a reconciliation of values, beliefs and priorities can realistically be achieved this time. This process, leading to a conclusion in the end, involves a considerate and focused conversation. It requires putting genuine compromise proposals onto the table and measuring it against love. Such questions will ideally come up: Is this worth for me? What do I want? What are my priorities? Till what point am I ready to go? Can I give this up? What do I want from love? Etc. The conversation must absolutely take place before the final decision is made to go ahead and try. Don’t sweep anything under the rug. Open up about your pre-requisites for happiness. Otherwise, there is a high risk getting very hurt again. All the lifestyle issues that were in the past subject to clashes need to be revisited - for instance how to spend money, the way of conducting a mutual social life or discrepancies in biological functioning such as a significant difference in energy levels or availability.

If the attempts to align on such crucial factors fail, I would advise to put a final closure to the relationship even if it is painful to do so.


Would you feel anxious along the process because things are not heading into the direction you wanted and you are not sure how to continue, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. Every situation is unique with its own challenges and a personal as well as tailored accompanying may be beneficial and yield the desired results.


You can reach us here.

Györfi Communication Advisory


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