Why Does My Ex Keep Talking Bad About Me (11 MUST-KNOWS!)

Breakups are hard enough as it is, but when you have to deal with an ex bad-mouthing you, they can be even worse!

It might take time for word to get back to you that your ex is talking bad about you, but either way, it is so unfair for them to be spreading how they feel to others, and trying to ruin your reputation as they go.

What does it mean when an ex talks bad about you?

It could mean a few different things when your ex keeps talking bad about you. It could mean that they are spiteful over how the relationship ended, they are lashing out because they do not know how to handle their feelings, or they are trying to ruin your reputation.

Having someone out there spreading lies, speaking bad about you, and possibly even revealing personal information, is not an easy situation to deal with. Keep reading to find out why it happens, and how you should react.

Why An Ex Would Bad-Mouth You

sad girl

It isn’t easy to say why an ex would talk bad behind your back, without looking at your relationship and how it ended.

Here are some of the most common reasons why an ex would keep talking bad about you:

They Are Spiteful

The relationship might not have ended the way they wanted, and they are now acting spiteful and trying to hurt you.

Maybe you outgrew them, or maybe you caught them out doing something that ended the relationship, and because they don’t want to accept blame, they are instead feeling anger and spite towards you.

They might feel that the easiest way to get back at you is to talk bad behind your back, so they feel as though they have some control.

They Are Lashing Out

Some people just do not know how to handle their emotions, and when they feel overwhelmed with their feelings, they lash out in the only way they know how, and that is by hurting others.

In some twisted way, your ex talking bad about you could stem from their heartbreak and from them missing you. They feel as though they cannot have you, and that it isn’t fair, and this causes the anger they are displaying.

They Are Trying To Hurt You

Your ex might hold quite a bit of anger and resentment towards you after the breakup, and if you have cut contact and are not speaking to them, they could be looking for other ways to hurt you. 

Speaking badly about you to others is such a cruel way to hurt you, as you really don’t have much control over it. It is malicious and it is not fair, so for them, it is the perfect way to get back at you.

Your ex might even stoop so low as to reveal personal information to others, things that only a partner would know. This really is so worrying, as you wouldn’t the world to know your intimate details, and this is why it would hurt so much.

They Are Trying To Ruin Your Reputation

If they can’t have you, then they will make sure that nobody can. They will try to bring your reputation down and make you seem ‘unattractive’ to others. They could also use this to try and change the way people think of you, which can have some far-reaching consequences.

Even if nothing they say is true, it can leave a mark on the people they speak to. Hopefully, those around you know you better and don’t believe what your ex is saying.

They Want A Reaction

If you have cut contact with your ex and are not engaging in conversation, they might be spreading rumors about you just to get a reaction. They know that you will hear about it, and they might be hoping that you confront them about it.

High conflict individuals will do this to get a reaction from you, and you need to do your best to not give them exactly what they want. Keep your no-contact rule in place!

They Need To Feel Superior

Your ex might not feel particularly good about themselves after the breakup, and in order to feel better about himself, he could try to put you down.

His insecurities about himself and the relationship, as well as the breakup, could make him feel like he needs to try and make himself seem better not only to himself but to others as well.

Speaking badly about others really is not a healthy way to boost your self-confidence, but for emotionally immature people, it might give them an immediate superiority boost, and make them feel just a tiny bit better about themselves.

Self-worth comes from within, and not from bringing others down, and hopefully, this is a lesson your ex will learn sooner rather than later.

How To React When Your Ex Keeps Talking Bad About You

Upset girl crying outside

It can be maddening knowing your ex is going around talking bad about you, especially if you feel helpless in the situation, and as if you can’t do anything to stop it.

You need to keep a level head and know to not meet them at their level and to keep your dignity the best way you know how.

Here are some tips on how to react when your ex keeps talking bad about you to others:

Don’t Confront Them

It can be so difficult to resist – but you need to try not to confront them. This will only add fuel to their plans and you will be giving them the reaction they want.

This type of person will also not be open to listening to reason, and they will most likely just gaslight you or keep putting you down when you confront them. You will also likely be met with them acting like the victim too!

What they are saying about you behind your back can be so hurtful, but you need to try and remember that what they say about you isn’t true, and what they think about you doesn’t change who you really are.

Keep The No Contact Rule

If you have decided to go no contact with your ex, stick to this. Engaging in confrontation is likely not going to change his behavior, and it will just become a bargaining tool he uses to get your attention in the future.

Hopefully, he loses interest once he can tell you are not going to give in, and he moves on. You just need to be resolute about not contacting him and not bringing back his negativity into your life.

Don’t Match His Actions

You might be tempted to go out into the world and tell everyone how terrible of a person he is, but you need to try your best to avoid this.

Do not stoop down to his level, and do not fight fire with fire. This will get you nowhere, and it will only drag the situation on for much longer than it ever needs to last.

It will also not make you look any better than him, and you might find that he turns around and pulls the victim card and you end up looking like the bad one in the end.

Keep A Support System

Even though you might have cut contact and been trying your best to ignore their attempts to ruin your reputation, it can still be a hurtful and stressful situation to be in.

To help you through, keep your friends and family close by. A support system is crucial to remaining strong through it all. They will know you for who you are, and they will not fall for what your ex is saying.

Open up to others that you trust about what you are going through, and let them help you. Surrounding yourself with positive people will be essential to moving on from the situation.

Feel Proud About Yourself

As hard as it can be at times, you need to remember that what your ex is saying about you is more of a reflection on them than it is of you and that their words do not equal your reality.

You need to keep your head up and act in a manner that makes you proud. It is much easier to feel better about yourself and to be sure that their words are nonsense when you behave in a way that makes you feel good about yourself.

Keeping your head up is the best response to their negativity, and showing them that their spitefulness will not bring you down!

What To Do When An Ex Keeps Talking Bad About You

The best thing you could do when an ex is talking bad about you is to ignore it. This is so difficult, but giving them a reaction will be feeding into their plan and what they want out of the situation.

Do not give them the satisfaction of getting a rise out of you, and rather focus on surrounding yourself with people who really know who you are and who support you, and act in a way that makes you proud of yourself.

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