Dear Tita Pacita: On Ex Lovers
I adore how your letter sounds so romantic and poetic, like a love note. (BTW, for non-Filipino readers, her question was basically on getting back together with an ex-lover, whom she still loves despite both parties having wronged each other and having "spent time" with other people, too). It was lovely to hear from you and I hope I am not too late with this response.
However, I have to admit it was quite difficult to answer you question, as you have not disclosed what you or your lover's faults were. I also have no idea on the time frame of your love story, and this matters because whether everything happened in a span of a week or three years can make all the difference. And as I am not one who jumps to conclusions, what I did instead is try to envision two options, which you shall see below.
IT'S A YES.
I believe the only reason for ex-lovers to get back together is if the breakup was caused by immaturity or a lack of experience and understanding from both ends. If you and your lover began a relationship in elementary and both your parents were against it and you broke up, then perhaps it's still acceptable to try again in your thirties.
That in mind, my advice is to only proceed with pursuing the relationship if you know in your heart that you are already fully-formed adults. By this I mean no unhealthy clinging on to each other. Remember always that it never should be for the sake of "completing each other" because that's simply ridiculous.
Also, make sure that the "faults" you have committed upon each other are small and forgivable, and aren't the types that will arise in the future and cause major trouble, e.g. crimes punishable by law, shameless cheating, the same annoying habits you know you can never live with forever, et cetera. You must have your own bible of relationship non-negotiables.
Now with all that out of the way, and you're decided to give it a go, another thing I'd like to propose are contract agreements.
I'm serious! I know this might surprise you, but it's worth considering. I got the idea from this K-drama called Because This Life Is Our First, which I love for the ~balanced~ character mix of women and men with different perspectives on relationships—flings, living in, long-term relationships, marriage. And the best part is, the characters are also kind of obsessed with relationship contracts. It sounds absurd, but to be honest, I feel it's all a fair game. Let me explain.
By contract, I don't necessarily mean a loveless union bound by a lowly piece of paper. It simply means laying down the rules for both parties to understand fully and agree to. I mean, think of it this way, don't you always agree to random "Terms & Conditions" on a regular basis, e.g. with signing up for apps and such?
I say this with the realization that relationship rules, which have been created by society (and drilled into our heads, too!) don't really work like a flawless formula for every couple. Only the participating parties can really determine what kind of partnership you and your lover would like your it to become. I suggest a thorough discussion on expectations, limitations, and even consequences, and have everything written down on paper.
NO, NOT EVER.
On the other hand, forget getting back with your ex if you feel you're in a vulnerable state at the moment, and are longing, nostalgic, or are in dire need of warmth, physical or otherwise. Chances are, you may only be missing or fantasizing the good times you both had together. And conveniently forgetting the bad times.
I would rather that you take your time and allow fate to unfold, instead of jumping into the situation, led by your fluttering emotions. Because in the end, it may only cause you greater regret, and the last thing you want is you and your ex lover hurting each other even more than the first time.
On a personal note, since you have mentioned having committed "faults" and both parties having dated others, I would say that I'd be more inclined towards new men (or women, if you may) and new beginnings—but that's just me! Having laid down the two options, do think it through with a clear head and a full stomach. I wish you well.
Original drama stills from the ever reliable K-drama review source, Dramabeans.