Going back with your ex, a good idea?

Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck have fallen in love again. After igniting social media last summer as they exchanged a kiss, the couple got engaged for the second time in early April. Is it a good idea to get back together with your ex years after ending a relationship? Specialists answer us.

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Olivia Levy

Olivia Levy
The press

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez met in 2002 on the set of Gigli. The couple, who quickly became iconic, are nicknamed Bennifer. The lovers were to get married in 2003, but divorced in 2004 … then they will meet again in the summer of 2021. The years have passed. Ben Affleck has three children, Jennifer Lopez has two, and they are a mixed family together. In addition to the Hollywood side of the couple, it’s a good idea to get together with your ex … 17 years later?

“It depends on many things,” says psychologist François St Père, who specializes in couples therapy. “It all depends on how the separation went, because sometimes it can be hurtful, even traumatic and for a long time. It also depends on how the partners have developed on their own. Over time, we may become more compatible on certain issues that were conflicting, such as educating children, questions about money, and division of tasks. »

For coach marriage Valérie Sentenne, you have to ask yourself if you are going to live a new relationship with the same person or if you want to find the same problems. “Am I aware of the causes of the rupture? Have I learned over the years? Have I worked on myself to experience something new?”


Valerie Sentenne, coach marital

You must have learned from version 1.0 of the relationship to move to version 2.0, which will be more interesting and improved!

Valerie Sentenne, coach marital

A new version of a relationship may also correspond to another phase of his life. “We have grown older, our children have grown up or may have left the nest, our careers take less time, we have less responsibility. There is a rediscovered freedom,” it indicates. coach marital.

The situation that François St Père most often encounters is couples with children who have separated, who have lived in mixed families, and who have faced many difficulties … perhaps more than they had imagined. “Some people tell themselves that in the end, their ex was not perfect, but life was easier! A few years later, they find a romantic feeling for each other.”

The psychologist also evokes the fascinating world of singles and dating applications, which can be very difficult. “After a separation, we become single, we meet (or not), we are in the seduction market, we expose ourselves to rejection, and often it hurts. Over the years, we become more understanding, less rigid in relation to certain things. Time allows us to forget the tensions and makes us realize how important our ex is in our lives, ”he notes.

But why return with his ex after so many years? “One has to assess the causes. Does he really represent what I want as a life partner? Do we have a good bond? Or is it the fear of being alone? asks Valérie Sentenne.

She feels there is a difference between getting back with her ex a few months after the relationship ended or five, ten or seventeen years later, as is the case with 52-year-old Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, who is 49 years old . . “We find the emotions attached to the memories we have with this person, which also means finding a part of ourselves because it takes us back to when we were 25 or 30 years old,” emphasizes coach marital.


Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck at a special screening of the film Marry me in Los Angeles on February 8, 2022

A love of life

The fascination for the couple formed by Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck is explained: Many people think there would be a love of life, a love stronger than anything else, a bit like adventure. “They loved each other, separated, had children with other spouses, lived and experienced everything,” analyzes François St Père. And they came together again because they did not find anyone comparable to their love! True and great love that surpasses all. That’s why it fascinates us so much! »


François St Père, psychologist specializing in couples therapy

Valérie Sentenne shares this view. “There is this utopia that there is THE right person for us! And when we see Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, we get carried away by this idea of ​​an almighty love. There is confirmation that a soulmate exists … It’s a fantasy, hence the fascination. ”

But back to earth. The couple requires constant work. “If it were simple, there would not be so high a separation rate!” It is not easy to be happy as a couple, it requires effort, ”remembers Valérie Sentenne. In a society where couples do not hold, this couple, who reform 17 years later, offer hope. “There’s something reassuring. Being able to count on someone who is dear to us and who loves us so much, it’s beautiful … It still has to last …”, concludes François St Père.

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