How to Spot Toxic Ex Behavior

Everyone who's been through a breakup—whether they were the dumper or the dumpee—has one thing in common—they all have an ex.

Exes come in all forms, from the friendly ex who you don't mind running into to the one your family loved so much they won't stop asking about them. But there's a particular type that everyone needs to look out for, and this would be the toxic ex. Whether you think you might have a toxic ex or you just need to know how to look out for one for future reference, it's a good thing to know for a few reasons. First of all, you can spot the behavior easily and know when action might need to be taken to back off from this person, and second, you'll know how to avoid becoming a toxic ex yourself. So, let's dive into some tips on how to spot toxic ex behavior.

1. They Won't Leave You Alone

Relationships end. It's normal. And, when you think about it, it's probably a good thing—after all, in today's world, most of us wouldn't want to be with the first person we ever dated forever anyway. But if the person you broke up with or who broke up with you can't seem to accept that things are as over as they are, that's when it becomes a problem.

Shutterstock: Two young girls sitting on the stairs. One is cheering up her friend

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Also Read About: Reasons Not To Jump Into Your Next Relationship After a Breakup


2. They Try to Remain a Part of Your Life

In the same vein, a recent ex should not be trying to be a huge part of your life anymore. It keeps both of you from being able to heal and move on from the relationship properly, especially as it can look a little off to any potential new partners if your ex is still such a big part of your life. Sure, some exes can remain friends afterward without it being too weird, but if it feels off to you that your ex is still texting you about things they see that remind them of you or they start following your friends on social media all of a sudden, this is a clear sign of toxic ex behavior. They're crossing the boundaries you set by breaking up in the first place, and it only leaves you both losing in the end.


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Also read about: Questions We All Ask Ourselves While Going Through an Ex's Social Media


3. They Spread Rumors About You

Just like a toxic friend gossips about you behind your back, a toxic ex can, too. Whether it's a lie about the breakup itself, a characteristic of yours or something that the two of you did (or did not) do together, rumors of any kind should not be spread by an ex. It prevents you from being able to leave the relationship at a healthy cut-off point and has you needing to clear up potentially nasty half-truths or flat-out lies, and no one deserves to have to do that.


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Also Read About: 5 Signs You Might Actually Be the Toxic Friend


4. They Try to Shove New Relationships In Your Face or Do What They Can to Get Back at You

Sure, some (okay, most) of us will post a nice little selfie or pic of ourselves in the form of a so-called "thirst trap" after a breakup to show that we're doing great. But posting clearly targeted content if you still follow one another or taking specific actions to get even or "back at you" after a breakup is downright toxic. It's a manipulative tactic that, to the mind of a toxic individual, they think will make you jealous and/or want to come crawling back to them. In reality, though, it's embarrassing behavior that could even be triggering for you depending on how bad the breakup was, and it surely stops you from wanting to get back together with this person if that was ever an idea, to begin with.


All in all, breakups are hard, but having a toxic ex to deal with afterward makes it all even harder than it has to be. If you're going through your first big breakup and need some advice, we can help—just click HERE for our tips.