9 clear signs your ex is pretending to be happy (but is secretly miserable without you)

There are many factors as to why someone (this time, your ex) would pretend to be happy and the main reason is often that they want the other person back in their life.

Hence, there are some clear signs that they’re not over you, and may even still want you.

Here’s a list of 9 things that indicate your ex is faking their happiness and is actually miserable without you in their life.

Take a look!

1) That ex of yours is ALWAYS on social media.

Have you noticed their presence in their social media accounts is noticeably different from before?

If you’ve finally broken up with your ex and he or she is constantly posting pictures of their awesomeness on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter – basically everywhere – it might be because they want YOU to notice and realize the fact that they’re happy without you.

Remember when you were still together, they were not that active on their social media, their posts are only every now and then.

But when you’ve broken up, they suddenly have the time to post a few times in a day on all of their social media accounts. Weird for them to instantly change, right?

They will also post something that might remind you of when you were still in each other’s arms:

  • a catchy song you’ve listened together
  • an upcoming concert of an artist or band you’ve both liked
  • a place that once (or a few times) you’ve hung out
  • a food or snack that you liked
  • a funny video you’ve watched and laughed at together

Don’t be deceived by this: it’s a sign that he or she is using social media as a tool to make you feel bad about yourself hoping that you will trip back into their camp!

This is their way to conceal that they’d take you back in a heartbeat – that their life was so much better and happier with you in it.

2) Your ex is hanging out with your mutual friends without inviting you around.

This is a major sign that they’re not over you.

Most often, exes don’t instantly cut ties with your mutual friends after the breakup, and it can be especially difficult if they’ve become strong friendships.

Your ex is still in contact with them and would invite them to hang out, of course, without inviting you. Trust me, your ex is hoping you will hear this from your friends and desires for you to think that they’re happy, but in reality, they are just pretending.

Hence, your ex is hoping that you will come crawling back to them for a second chance.

If you’re suspicious that it might be a tactic to make you jealous, ask them if you can tag along on their next hang out.

They will surely hesitate at first, you know… you might discover their poor acts of being happy in life and give in to the fact that they want you back.

Well, if your ex declines, then it’s a clear sign that he or she is probably not as happy as they would like to appear.

3) They have a new love interest.

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Your ex might talk about their new love interest all the time, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re actually over you.

If your ex is trying to convince you (and even themselves) that they’re happy without you, then it’s just another way for them to get your attention by talking about someone else in their life.

Get this: they will come to realize how good you were together through their new love interest. They will see that your time together is incomparable. They will feel that they were really happy with you.

Truth be told, their new love interest is only a rebound: another person to be in their life that your ex can have fun with.

If your ex has decided to date someone new, chances are that you will feel like an outsider. Most likely, you will experience jealousy (which they hope you would feel!) and jealousy is a really powerful emotion.

Your ex may even betray you by referring to their new love interest by name.

To avoid this, never ask them about their new love interest and the possible damage this might cause to your relationship.

Here’s the thing:

Your ex will always try to start a new relationship, whether it’s with someone new or someone they had dated before. It’s their way of testing the waters, and which will make them realize “what they had with you”.

As I have mentioned, don’t fall for this act that they are dating someone else – they certainly just want to hide how miserable they are without you.

4) They’re taking time to learn about themselves and fix things in life.

All these pretending to be happy might result in something useful, don’t you think?

Your ex has finally realized what steps they should take to be genuinely happy.

If your ex is continuously making changes in their lives, or has changed something about themselves that was non-negotiable for them pre-split, then this might be a sign that they are in it for the better.

For example: If they were a big night owl and they had no intentions of changing their schedule before the break-up, but then noticed that this was hurting their productivity or making them feel miserable, then this could mean that your ex is now ready for another chance.

You see, they might not be thinking about getting back together too soon, but they want to show you that they are now ready to commit.

You might not see it from their perspective, but give them some time.

They are working hard on themselves, so don’t worry about them too much and just focus on making yourself better as well.

How is this possible?

If you’re struggling to work on yourself all alone, maybe professional advice from a certified relationship coach might help.

I’m telling you this because that’s something I tried when I felt that I needed to focus on myself and fix things in my life.

I found a website called Relationship Hero online which claimed that coaches there don’t just talk but also provide practical solutions.

I decided to give them a try and guess what? I got very in-depth, specific, and practical advice about addressing the problems in my relationship and learned the ways to focus on myself.

So, if you’re also facing a challenging time and want someone to help you look at things objectively, I would suggest receiving their help.

Click here to check them out.

5) Your ex still has some of your things.

The truth is that an ex-lover will always have things of yours, no matter what they tell you or hide these things from you. They have your

  • sweaters
  • pair of socks
  • delicates
  • books
  • glasses
  • bathroom essentials
  • key holders…

… and so on.

The truth is that they are taking these things from you, and storing them somewhere else in the hope that one day you’ll feel better about them or the relationship you had and come to get them back.

Do you know what this means? This means that your ex still has feelings for you, but has decided to keep these feelings under wraps. They want to know that you’re thinking about them, but don’t want to admit it.

They keep these items as a souvenir of their love affair with you so that they will remember the good times together, and think about you more often.

Try to ask if you could have your things back, your ex might say yes, only to conceal their true feelings about you. If they say no, then this is yet another way for them to show how miserable they are without you.

On the other hand, you might still have some of your ex’s stuff, and when you reached out to them asking when you can give their things back, they will try to show that they really don’t care.

But in reality, this pains them so much they would want you to keep them in the hopes to remember the times you have spent together.

6) They have a new hobby or interest.

I have met so many exes in my life who have got a new hobby or interest.

If you really want to get your ex back and build a better relationship, you need to understand that an ex is always going to enjoy something new in their life, whether it’s with you or not.

But here’s the thing: your ex might just resort to this so they can somehow forget about you, even just for a few hours.

In other words, they might be crazy about something new and spend hours a day on it. No matter how convincing this is in their mind, through this way, it will make you feel that they are finally over you, but in reality, that is absolutely not the case.

This is just another symbol of how miserable they are without you.

Their new hobby and interests should not spell a bad sign for you, and I don’t want you to get upset about it – instead, I want to show you that your ex will always spend some of their free time doing something new.

If they are into something new, then this is not a bad thing. The best way to get back together is by knowing each other even better than before.

7) You bumped into them and they’re extra friendly.

One of the most obvious signs that your ex might still have some feelings for you is a big coincidence whenever you go out and “bump” into them.

As funny as this might sound, it is an actual sign that your ex is trying to forget how miserable they are without you.

Bumping into them in a place where they know you might be in is possibly a big coincidence, but we cannot erase the fact that it might not be accidental at all.

You know what? They are in places that you might be in at a particular hour in the hopes of seeing you.

They have been trying to orchestrate a chance meetup, show you how happy they are with their life, and try to forget that they are miserable without you.

For example: if they come across you at the grocery store, and they start being extra friendly or making small talk with you, then this is a sure sign that they are trying to reconnect with you.

It’s their way of showing you that they want to get back together.

Try to act surprised, ok?

8) They want to relive memories.

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If your ex keeps mentioning certain memories or events from your past that happened when you were together, then this could be another indication that life’s a monochrome without you.

Have you noticed they suddenly start reminiscing about something from your past?

This could be a sign that they still have some feelings for you, yet they don’t want to admit it.

For example: if your ex starts mentioning old memories of how happy you two were together, this could show them that they really want to get back together.

Although most people would find this behavior strange and unusual, they may think this is their way of trying to be friends with you again without admitting the fact that they still have feelings for you.

However, before you jump to conclusions, try to understand this differently. It might not be because they want to get back together with you.

You see, people respond to being hurt differently – some of them felt so much pain that they are scared to feel it again. For these people, they usually want to forget the pain and what caused it.

Getting back together won’t be on their plan but at the moment, they are just trying to hold on to the memory.

9) They want to be friends with you again, but don’t know how to ask.

If your ex says that they don’t want a romantic relationship with you but their actions show otherwise, this is a signal that they still want to spend time together.

They are planning how to get you into that friendship route again, so the road to romance is a more difficult step for them to take.

Try to interpret this as a sign that your ex wants to build a stronger relationship with you, but doesn’t want to be seen as the “loser” or the “opportunist”.

They know how awkward it can be, so they want to make it easier for you by giving you the opportunity.

If this is the case, then you need to understand that there is a big chance that your ex still has feelings for you.

So ask yourself this: Do you want to be friends with them again?

It’s not really a difficult question, is it?

When you make the choice, remember that you can choose to accept this as a sign that they still have feelings for you or not.

Your choice is your decision and will only bring happiness to both of you.

When is it finally over for them?

The moment they come up with the realization that they need to move on and get over you.

Your ex will get tired of pretending one day, and they will either realize that they cannot get over you or that there is someone else who needs their love and attention.

Once they realize they cannot forget you, trust me, they will be clearer with their feelings and intentions. They will find ways to show that they want another chance with you.

On the other hand, it’s not impossible that they will realize they have to let you go and find a new love interest. When this happens, it is unlikely that they will be able to remain strong for long.

If you just can’t wait for them to pull themselves up, then try to make a move on your own. It’s not fun when you come second.

So move on now, or get over the pain sooner than later and make room for a new chance of love in your life.


As I have mentioned, people take breakups differently.

Some of us accept the end result of the relationship and try to move on. Some of us are in denial, pretend things are fine, and try to fake our way to happiness.

Not everyone can accept the fact that their ex has moved on, especially if they are still in love with the person.

If you’ve seen the signs above of your ex pretending to be happy, then you could be their last chance at finding their happiness.

Remember, they have already accepted the fact that they don’t have a chance with you anymore. This is why they are not trying to win you back (for now).

Just know that they’re miserable without you in their life, and they want to make it right.

In the end, you are the only one who can decide if you want to give them a chance at being happy again.

Their decision highly depends on how you will react to them. If you decide to put them in the “just friends” territory, then they will respect your decision and move on as well.

But if you give them a chance, then they will take that chance and might be willing to try again.

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Picture of Tina Fey

Tina Fey

I've ridden the rails, gone off track and lost my train of thought. I'm writing for Ideapod to try and find it again. Hope you enjoy the journey with me.

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