We recently asked people from the BuzzFeed Community who got back together with their ex after divorce to tell us what happened after. Here are the surprising results — which range from really good to really, really bad:
1. "My sister and brother-in-law got married when they were about 19 and 22. They divorced about two years later. They got back together around five years later and got remarried in 2014, almost 20 years after their initial divorce. They’re much happier together this time around, and after more life, experience, and communication they can enjoy the marriage!"
2. "I divorced my long-time partner after six years of a miserable marriage. I found out he was cheating. But then, we reconnected two years later. He told me he had changed. I believed him. So, we started dating again, and then, I come back to our apartment one night to see him making out on the couch with my mom!"
"Apparently my mom came over to the apartment to drop something off, and he was there. They started talking, and it just went from there. Now, they are engaged, and I moved to Alaska where I am now dating the love of my life, his brother. 😊"
3. "It's 40 years later. We split up before we even had a first anniversary. We both remarried and raised families with our new partners, and then got divorced again. We had stayed friendly as we had two cats and a dog together that lived to be 18 and 19 years old. I moved back to my home state to care for my mother. I didn't know anyone anymore. I had lunch with him maybe six times across five years, just for a quick break from caregiving."
"While my mother was in the hospital at the end of her life, he showed up at the hospital every day for eight days and sat with her so that I could go downstairs and get a hot meal in the cafeteria. After she passed, he started showing up and helping me clean out my mother's things. At some point, we realized that we were back in a relationship! It has been six years now. We are the same people we always were, only now we're grown-ups and know how to talk things out. It's been fun! All of our children like us and get along with each other, and we have a cat."
4. "After being emotionally separated for most my life, my parents finalized their divorce when I was 18. At 26, my mom took me to the Cheesecake Factory to tell me the divorce was the kids' fault (there are five of us), and now that we're all out of the picture, her and my dad can finally be happy. We'll, I'm 30 now, and they're second divorce just finalized. My dad (though highly imperfect) is crushed, and my narcissistic mother very obviously used him for benefits until she could get back on her feet."
"I jokingly threaten both of them that if they get married again, I'll make sure they share a room at the retirement home no matter the outcome."
5. "We were married for over 10 years with two children, but had some unhealthy communication patterns that were exasperated by horrible in-laws. His mother was passive-aggressive, incredibly insulting, and always treated me like dirt. One Christmas eve, she and my father-in-law committed to coming for a big dinner and then didn't show. As we sat in front of a full table with our young children, they didn't answer their phone until hours later. Then, they were at their daughter's instead, and they didn't think it was a big deal that they had told us they were coming over but didn't bother to come. This is just one of many incidents. After our divorce, we co-parented, worked on ourselves, and then became friends."
"After becoming friends, we had one evening that turned romantic and after a few months of romance, we decided to try counseling together. A year later, we remarried and have been together ever since. We've learned to keep our extended family's nonsense separate from our core family unit, and we keep good boundaries."
6. "This is actually a story about my younger brother. He has a big heart and is a wild romantic. The first time he and his wife were married, it was right out of high school. They moved to Seattle, and after about a year, they were divorced. I remember telling him, 'Whatever you do, don't marry her again!' Five years later, my husband and I were living in Massachusetts. My brother runs into his ex in their hometown, and one thing leads to another. Eventually, she claims to be pregnant."
"He marries her a second time, and eventually, they have a child. Flash-forward several years later, he had a private investigator follow her, and she was having numerous affairs with men she met online. They are now divorced a second time. I didn't tell him what I told him the last time they were divorced in fear that they would marry a THIRD time!"
7. "We got married really young. We were not ready to be married, and he was an alcoholic who was not ready to quit drinking. The divorce happened quickly, and it was as nasty as they come without police involvement. We didn’t speak for over five years. He contacted me because he had done a lot of personal work and wanted to apologize. I agreed to hear him out."
"He was a completely different person, and we agreed to try again. It’s been three years, and we are happier than ever."
8. "Years after our divorce, we met for drinks then had a one-night stand. After that, I finally felt like I had closure. We're on friendly terms now."
9. "Our agreement was that we would move back to my home state after the children finished school and were out of the house. When they were 22 and 25, I brought up our agreement, and he nonchalantly stated he had changed his mind. One year, later my father begged me to come home. After discussing it with my ex, we both agreed that I would move back to my home state. After a year apart — with neither one of us wanting to relocate — I filed for divorce (against his wishes). I saw no reason to remain married if living apart was the end result. Two months later, it was final. Eight months later, he visited for Christmas. We had a wonderful holiday as a family. Fourteen months after the divorce, he relocated to my home state, and we have been together since. He asked if I wanted to remarry, and I said no."
"We have a loving relationship, we laugh often, and are open with our thoughts, opinions and emotions. I don't want to imagine a life without him. I have zero regrets coming back home; I had the gift of spending the last two years of my father's life enjoying the loving moments that will serve me in loving memories. (Dad got sick two months before he passed. We still miss him dearly)."
10. "My parents were married for 12 years back in the early '80s to early '90s. They divorced because he cheated on her for YEARS. They remained friends and decided a few years ago to give marriage another try. The first few months were OK, but it has been a mess since then. He gets jealous and pouts over anything and everything; he will spend DAYS not talking to her but won't even explain why. They argue over everything, every day. He goes on trips for DAYS without her. She treats him AWFUL as well."
"She constantly belittles him, demands he buy her expensive gifts, insults him, and is basically cruel. They are toxic together, and I wish they never got remarried. My mom even said once, after a big fight over nothing of consequence, that she wished she had never remarried him."
11. "My now husband and I were not ready back then. He was 25, and I was 18. I had loved him since I was 6 years old. Our families grew up across the street. I had our son when I was 18, and we were not ready AT ALL! We broke up for a couple of years and then tried again, and I had our second son eight years later. In between that time, he had a baby with someone else. We broke up for good when our youngest was 2. We rekindled when our kids were 8 and 16. We got married in 2021."
"We both had a lot of growing up to do (him more than me!) because the responsibility of our kids fell mostly on me, and he wasn't a good person for a few years. He realized what he wanted and made a lot of changes. Our relationship isn't perfect, but it is a complete change from what it used to be."
—39, South Carolina
12. "My partner and I were high school sweethearts. We got married when we were 19, had two kids, and after a challenging, 10-year marriage full of ups and downs, we got divorced. During our time apart, we were great co-parents, we both dated other people, and after two years apart…life sorta just brought us back together. We started doing more things together with our kids, enjoying each other’s company, and one day, he asked me to be his date for his best friend’s wedding. We’ve been together since."
"We’ve been back together for three years now, and this relationship is completely different — BETTER!!! Although this second time around hasn’t been perfect by any means, we’ve both grown a lot, and our time apart definitely gave us perspective. We’ve been working hard on our relationship and are happier than ever now. We both agree that although going through divorce sucked, it was also very necessary, and we wouldn’t be who we are today — both as individuals and as a couple — if we hadn’t gone through it. So, we call the divorce our 'blip,' and to this day, we laugh at people’s shocked and confused reactions when we tell them we’re actually divorced."
13. "Not me, but my coworker. They divorced but ended up getting back together after a few years and even remarrying. He spoke about how it was just the easier option for them both since they were older in age, etc. They're only in their 50s, so I don't get it. He never really complimented her, but he never said anything bad about her. Both of them have very successful finance careers. I had the displeasure of meeting her a few months ago at a business dinner. She was extremely attention-seeking and downright rude, especially to the waitstaff. Total Karen. She kept emasculating my coworker/her husband during the entire evening. It was nothing short of mortifying."
"You could tell he was so used to it, he didn't even notice it. He carried on like it was normal. It was so sad to witness, but I guess it works for them."
14. "Eight years after our divorce, I was waiting at the airport to pick up our kids who had spent Christmas vacation with him. The flight was delayed and I called him. Out of the blue, I asked if he wanted to get back together. He did. He sold his property and moved to my state and we've been together ever since (2002). We even remarried and neither of us can understand why we divorced in the first place."
15. "My parents separated in 2002 and got back together in 2003. January 2004, my mom was pregnant with my youngest sibling. May 2004, they were separated and in the worst condition. Turns out, my father was a womanizer and that was the cause for the first separation, but by May 2004, my mother found out he had an entire home and family with his mistress."
"There were four kids to be exact — his youngest from that side was 3 in 2004. My mother couldn't look back, and they officially divorced in August 2004. Baby brother was born in September 2004, and it took my mother 15 YEARS to speak to my father again."
16. "My husband and I divorced in 2017. Last year, we got engaged again and are planning a small wedding. We had a whirlwind romance the first time around. We lived together from day one (he just was my roommate's brother at first), got engaged four months later, and married three months after that. We were young and made a lot of dumb decisions."
"I have no doubt in my mind that he's my person though, and he was worth every bit of the wait. We always say it'll make for a good story to tell our grandkids someday!"
17. "I got back together with my ex 10 years after divorcing him. I thought he had grown up — he kind of did. He went from being just a casual drinker to a verbally and emotionally abusive alcoholic. The one good thing that came from it was my daughter."
"It took 10 years, but I did leave him — for good this time. I have no idea if he ever quit drinking. He remarried, I did not. I had enough of that BS."
18. "My uncle was married to a woman before I was born. They had two children together but divorced when the youngest was five or so. They each met someone new and got remarried. My aunt moved to a new province and started a new life with a new man, and they married. My uncle remarried and had two more children with his new wife. My uncle and his new wife ended up divorcing as well when the kids were also very young. My uncle then married for the third time. No children involved in this marriage, and they were together for 10 years or so, and then they divorced. I don't really know how or why, but my uncle and his first wife reconnected and started texting each other."
"She was still married to the man she met after they had divorced. She ended up leaving her husband for my uncle, divorced him, and she and my uncle just got remarried in 2023 — about 40 years after they divorced the first time. They genuinely seem very happy together now. Is it weird at family events? Sure, is it weird for their children to have their parents back together after 40 years apart? Absolutely."
19. "We met in 2008, dated for eight years, and broke up. He married nine months after our breakup. We reconnected March of 2020 during the beginning of COVID (his marriage lasted two years). After four years apart, we got back together after his divorce was finalized."
"We've been married now for three years. We needed the break and some time apart to grow up."
20. "We were married for 23 years, divorced for 14, and married for three months before he passed away from stage 4 lung cancer."
"Love sometimes never really dies."
—Anonymous, New York
21. "We got married at 19 and divorced by 20. Hadn’t seen each other in 20 years or knew anything of each other. Twenty years later, we run into each other at a concert in a different state from where we were married. He was engaged to someone else, and I was dating someone. We talked and hung out after the concert. A year later, we were both single and started dating. Two years after, we started dating again we got married. Nine years later, we’re still married and have moved back to the state where we first met when we were 19."
"In the 20 years we were apart, he got married and had two kids. I moved around a lot and traveled the world. It was nice to have a 20-year break and finally be ready for each other for the next chapters in our lives."
Have you — or someone you know — gotten back with an ex after a divorce? What happened after? Tell us your story in the comments below, or if you prefer to remain anonymous, feel free to use this Google form.
Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.