We have all asked this question when an old ex resurfaces in our lives. It may just even come from the reminder of them or a shared memory or place you used to visit together that their name comes to mind. Sometimes it is just a coincidence. Other times it may be our higher selves trying to put together what should have gone right the first time but didn't. When people come back into our lives for whatever reason we need to be more curious about it. What does it mean, if anything? The answers are there for us if only we ask the right questions of them and ourselves.
Are you reaching out to him, or is he reaching out to you? If he is reaching out to you that may be a sign he is interested in rekindling things for you or, at least, seeing the possibilities. He may not be sure, but if he is contacting you that is a sign he has hopes of bringing you back into his life. If you are reaching out to him, it may not be reciprocal, even if he is polite. Step back and see if he will initiate contact with you instead of you doing it.
Does he share about his life, or do you have to ask him? When you're talking, does he talk about his life, or do you have to ask him? If you have to ask, then that could mean a few things. He may not want you back in his life in a more meaningful way, or it may mean that he's not willing to share details at this time. He could also be hiding something from you, in which case, you need to be mindful of what he doesn't say as much as he does. If he talks openly about his life and everything in it, then that is a significant sign that he is interested in you. People don't casually share details about their life with just anyone. Being vulnerable and open about your life's status shows that he is emotionally available to you at this time.
Are you connected on social media, and do you interact in front of everyone? Social media has done wonders to help us keep in touch with people, but can have its plus and minus side. If you are friends with an ex on social media, it may not mean they want you back in their life romantically. It can mean that you share connections, and they don't want to sever the link you have online for social reasons. If they choose to interact with you on your posts and their posts regularly, that is a good sign that there is a promising relationship still there. Just be mindful of how they communicate with others on social media to determine if they are treating you like everyone else or someone more special.
When you are talking to him, does he rehash the past, or do you? On the times you've spoken together, if you find you are bringing up memories, it can mean many things. Sometimes it can reveal unfinished business between you, and bringing it up helps with loose ends. It can also be an unraveling of sorts and lead to a rekindling. Make sure it isn't about grievances because going back to a relationship where there are still grudges will not unfold the way you might think it will. One thing to be mindful of is that nostalgia can be overwhelmingly powerful when we are vulnerable. We tend to look at the past with dreamy eyes, but that often lets go of everyday life's reality. More often than not, it's the little things that make or break a relationship, and you and your ex may not remember them as quickly as you do the good times.
Do you come up with excuses to talk, or does he? If he's coming up with excuses to talk to you, then he's interested in rebuilding the relationship with you. This is an obvious indication that he wants something but may be uncertain of himself or what he wants from you. He also may not be sure about where you are at in your life, and that may create hesitation on his part. When you're doing it to him, take note if he is reciprocal and friendly. If he gives you short answers and isn't engaging with you, then it's a clear sign he's not interested.
Do you talk about who you are dating? Does he ask, or do you ask him? This can create complications but can also build a stronger relationship. If you are talking about your dating life, then there is solid trust and friendship between you. An important note is that your relationship may no longer be romantic, and that may be the way it is. One way to bring this up without putting too much pressure is to discuss what you hope to have in a long-term relationship and see their answer. Please don't imply that it's with them, but with a romantic partner in general. You will gain insights and understanding, and you may decide you don't want the same things after all and with no hard feelings.