By Chris Seiter

Published on November 4th, 2023

Finding oneself in a cycle of repeated breakups with the same person can feel like being stuck on a relationship treadmill. It’s a pattern that can wreak havoc on your emotional well-being and should be navigated with care.

Here’s a guide with 10 steps to address the problem of being in an on-again, off-again relationship, followed by 12 frequently asked questions with detailed answers.

The Revolving Door of Breakups: 10 Steps You Can Take When Someone Keeps Breaking Up With You

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Step 1: Self-Reflection Take some time to reflect on the relationship. Understand what brings you back, what causes the breakups, and how this cycle is affecting your emotional health. Are there unresolved issues that lead to repeated breakups?

Step 2: Evaluate the Relationship’s Health Assess the relationship objectively. Consider if the good times outweigh the bad, or if the instability is causing you more harm than happiness. Are there patterns of behavior that are toxic or damaging?

Step 3: Open Communication Talk to your partner openly about the pattern you’re both stuck in. It’s important to communicate your feelings and concerns clearly and listen to their perspective.

Step 4: Seek Professional Help If both of you are committed to the relationship, consider couples therapy. A professional can help you both understand the underlying issues and provide tools to address them.

Step 5: Set Boundaries Decide what you are and aren’t willing to tolerate. Boundaries are essential for any healthy relationship. Make these clear to your partner and ensure they are respected.

Step 6: Take a Break Sometimes, taking a break can provide the clarity needed to make a decision. Use this time apart to consider what life without this relationship would look like.

Step 7: Re-evaluate Your Compatibility Sometimes love isn’t enough to make a relationship work. Assess your compatibility in terms of values, life goals, and relationship expectations.

Step 8: Develop a Support System Lean on friends and family for support. They can offer a fresh perspective and emotional comfort when you’re dealing with relationship uncertainty.

Step 9: Consider the Finality of Separation Think about the implications of a final breakup. Are you holding onto the relationship out of habit, fear of loneliness, or genuine love and commitment?

Step 10: Make a Decision Ultimately, decide whether this relationship is genuinely worth the repeated emotional investment, or if it’s time to walk away for good.

12 Frequently Asked Questions For Those Facing the Off and On of Multiple Breakup

Q1: Why do we keep breaking up and getting back together?

A1: This pattern often arises from unresolved issues within the relationship, fear of being alone, comfort in the familiar, or an imbalanced dynamic where one person is more committed than the other.

Q2: Is it normal to break up multiple times?

A2: While it can happen, it’s not necessarily healthy. Constantly breaking up can indicate fundamental issues that need addressing or that the relationship isn’t sustainable.

Q3: How can we stop the cycle of breaking up and making up?

A3: By addressing underlying issues, communicating effectively, and perhaps with the help of a relationship counselor, you can work towards breaking the cycle.

Q4: What are the long-term effects of on-again, off-again relationships?

A4: Such relationships can lead to increased emotional distress, anxiety about the relationship’s stability, and could impact your ability to trust in future relationships.

Q5: Should I keep trying if I love them?

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A5: Love alone isn’t always enough for a healthy relationship. Consider if the relationship is mutually beneficial and supportive.

Q6: How do I know when it’s finally time to end things?

A6: If the relationship causes more pain than happiness, your boundaries are continuously disrespected, or if the same issues recur without resolution, it may be time to end things.

Q7: Can an on-again, off-again relationship ever become stable?

A7: It’s possible if both partners are willing to put in the work to understand and resolve the issues causing the breakups.

Q8: How do I deal with the emotional toll of repeated breakups?

A8: Seek support from loved ones or a professional, engage in self-care practices, and take time to heal between breakups.

Q9: What if my partner wants to get back together but I don’t?

A9: Be honest with your partner about your feelings. It’s important not to resume the relationship out of guilt or pressure.

Q10: How can we rebuild trust after multiple breakups?

A10: Rebuilding trust requires consistent effort, transparency, and a period of stability without the threat of another breakup looming.

Q11: Is there a pattern to why we break up?

A11: Reflect on the reasons behind each breakup. Common causes include communication issues, unmet needs, or external stressors.

Q12: How can I break the cycle if I’m the one who always initiates the breakup?

A12: Examine the reasons why you feel compelled to leave. Is it a matter of compatibility, personal issues, or something else? Understanding your motivations can help break the cycle.


In conclusion, the tumultuous cycle of repeated breakups is a challenge that can be deeply taxing, both emotionally and psychologically. It’s a situation that tests one’s resilience, clarity of thought, and decision-making abilities. While the steps outlined provide a road-map for navigating this complicated terrain, the journey can sometimes be too overwhelming to undertake alone. In such times, seeking personalized coaching assistance can be invaluable.

A relationship coach offers more than just advice; they provide a tailored approach to your unique situation. They help you to uncover deeper insights into your relationship patterns, guide you in developing practical strategies to break the cycle, and support you in building the emotional strength to either rebuild your relationship on healthier grounds or walk away with confidence.

Coaching offers an objective perspective that friends or family may not be able to provide. A coach can challenge you to look beyond the immediate pain and focus on long-term well-being, equipping you with tools to navigate not just the present dilemma but also to foster healthier relationships in the future. With professional support, you can gain the courage to make decisions that are in your best interest.

Remember, it’s crucial to prioritize your emotional health and peace of mind. If the cycle of breaking up and making up is a wave that keeps pulling you under, consider reaching out for coaching assistance. It could be the lifeline you need to finally stem the tide and move towards calmer, more stable shores.	

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