Facebook is a wonderful tool for communication. It lets us share our lives with 500 of our closest friends and family. It also has a dark side in the immediate nature that we can access people’s profiles and see some of the most intimate details of their life.
It is a blessing and a curse.
What starts out as an innocent ten-minute break from work can quickly turn into a 45-minute creep of your ex’s sister’s mother-in-law’s wedding pictures. And before you know it, you’re neglecting your “no contact rule” during your breakup.
This is when you begin to question whether or not you should delete your ex on Facebook. And I’m here to help you answer that question, and the answer is no.
No, you should not delete your ex off of Facebook, especially if you have any hope of getting back together in the future.
For a refresher, if you’re not familiar with my work—The Ex Factor Guide—I specialize in break ups and advocate for the No Contact period after a break up. That is a 30-day period where you have no contact with your ex. Zip, zero, nada. No contact via e-mail, text, phone call, message in a bottle, Facebook message. This includes not liking their photos and creeping their page.
Purpose of No Contact
The purpose of this strategy is to allow you the time to reset and recharge yourself. Breakups can be very emotionally draining, and it is important to spend some time with yourself figuring out exactly what it is you want to come from this relationship. Whether that means you need to move on and start the healing process, or whether you want to try and get back together with your ex.
This period also allows your ex to see what life is like without you. And, if you hope to get back together, this is the most important step in getting them back. Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
Remember, the no contact period is time for you to work through your break up and decide what you really want out of it. Do you want to get back together? Or do you just need closure? Whatever it is you want to come from this breakup, it is important that you take some time for yourself to heal and to not always let your heart guide your head.
In a breakup, we have a tendency to operate out of our emotions, which can neglect reason. So use this time not as a time to inflict pain on your ex, and don’t make rash emotional decisions like deleting your ex after he posts a photo out partying when you’ve been home crying.
Don’t Delete Your Ex
Your solution to not delete your ex on Facebook and not to feed the hurt by seeing their pictures and status updates is to hide them from your news feed. You can manage your notifications in settings so you no longer see what they post on your main page.
And a big thing to remember is DO NOT CREEP THEIR PROFILE. Exercise some self-control. Spending your No Contact time on their profile just feeds your hurt even more.
Plus, when your ex updates their status and/or photos, you might be reading too much into their posts, which has the potential to upset you even more and can cause you to lash out at them, ruining your chances of getting them back.
Facebook isn’t always used with the best of intentions. It can be a key vehicle to incite some jealousy in exes and or a way to show that they have moved on without you and have never been happier, even if it’s not the truth.
Therefore, deleting your ex can seem rash, jealous, and or petty. And lets them know that their avid posting worked to make you jealous. And, sometimes, this is regardless of who broke up with whom.
During your relationship, if your ex wasn’t an avid Facebook poster, and once you broke up, they started updating their page more and more, chances are they are trying to get your attention and or just trying to project a false happiness that they have moved on.
I know this might seem contradictory not to contact your ex and keep them as a friend on Facebook. It is opposite to out of sight out of mind, but if you want to get back together with your ex, this is the best way to keep that door open. And it gives you a more casual way to approach them later.
On the contrary, if you are trying to move on, it is important to distinguish what you still need from that relationship, and if you need closure or not. But if you hope to have an amicable breakup, keeping them as a friend on Facebook is a good place to start.
Exceptions to Deleting Your Ex
With that said, there are circumstances in which deleting your ex is necessary–if they were emotionally or physically abusive. Then there is definite ground to delete them, especially if they are still trying to contact you via Facebook.
All in all, if your objective is to rekindle things with your ex, deleting them has the potential to burn a bridge and lets them know that their updates affect you to the point where you had to delete them.
On the other hand, if your breakup is final, deleting them could cause some tension and animosity in the relationship and is also not the best way to leave things.