If you wanted to catch up with your ex and see how they are doing, it is actually a common behavior many people do. Recently, a lot of social science researchers have studied romantic relationships and the reasons why people want to remain friends with their exes. One particular study conducted by professors of psychology Lisa Welling and Justin Mogilski, has shown that the people who want to become friends with their exes have dark, manipulative and exploitative personalities.
There are two main reasons for this behavior – sexual and pragmatic. In order to examine this matter, the psychologists conducted a study involving 350 people who are friends with their former lovers. Based on the answers from these people, the psychologists classified 150 factors which were separated into several categories such as pragmatic and/or sexual reasons, sentiments and reliance on each other, romance and children.
Some of the reasons for keeping in touch with exes were common among many people. For example, the reason “My partner is a good listener” is listed in the sentimental category. However, there are other more common reasons such as relying on them financially which is in the pragmatic category or sexual desire which is listen in the sexual category.
Then, the participants took two more tests that asked them to:
-Rate the 150 reasons they were given to stay in touch with their ex
-Answer questions that can reveal their dark personality and their levels of modesty and honesty
Both tests revealed very interesting results. The people who had dark personality wanted to be friends with their ex because of pragmatic reasons. These needs have practical nature. Others who showed honesty and low humility had high sexual needs, which reveals these people put their sexual desires in front of true friendship.
The study has also discovered 5 more reasons why ex-lovers say in touch:
1. Too many benefits
A lot of people want to exploit their ex whether it is getting financial support or just the attention. By acting as a friend, they will try to withdraw money from their ex in order to fulfill their pragmatic needs.
2. They are attracted by control and power
People with narcissism and dark personalities were listed as dominating and controlling people. They want to be with people who have submissive nature, particularly with a former lover who left them without power which they want to regain now. They will want to stay in touch just in order to reclaim their position as the dominating person.
3. They don’t want their ex to move on
A lot of people move on quickly after a break up, but they are too bitter that they don’t want their ex to find love again. This is definitely not a sign of honest friendship. However, people who want to remain friends with their ex might also want to sabotage all of their chances of starting a new relationship by requesting emotional attention.
4. They want to exploit their ex’s generosity
Many people want to stay in touch with their ex because of their kindness and generosity which they can exploit. Some people are too innocent to notice when someone is using them, and pretending to be their friend can easily make their ex fall into their trap.
People who had their heart broken by their ex will seek revenge very often. They will try to become friends with them just to hide their motives of getting back at them and to get their sadistic pleasure by hurting them.