Things to Say to Your Ex When He Says He Misses You (31 Perfect Responses)

Last updated on February 12, 2024 by Michelle Devani

Has your ex told you that he misses you?

Are you wondering what is the right thing to say in this situation? Well, the truth is... that depends on how you feel. 

Our guide is here to help though. It features 31 ideas for things to say to your ex when he says he misses you. This will help get the conversation on a suitable path for you. 

However, before we begin exploring these suggestions, I have a quick story that I think you’ll find very interesting.

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Once you’ve input their details into this tool, it can show you: 

  • who they have been getting in contact with most frequently;
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This tool could clarify how your ex actually feels about you when they get back in contact. Sadly, it’s common for them to be dishonest about their feelings and intentions in this situation. 

It’s 100% completely and utterly discreet, so there’s no way of him finding out he’s being tracked. It could be the key to patching things up, if that’s what you want. 

Anyway, with that said, let’s get on with my list of things to say when your ex says he misses you.


31 Things to Say to Your Ex When He Says He Misses You

The thing with exes is they will never let you move on if you leave it up to them. What does one say when someone you are still working on putting behind you hits you with an I miss you text? Even worse if you are still in love with them.

A single text from an ex-boyfriend can send you into a spiral with questions like what does he want, does he want me back? Is he trying to gloat? Do I want to go down this road again? What do I say? 

The answers depend on factors like how you left things, how long it’s been since the breakup, how you currently feel, whether you want them back, among others.

While I leave the feelings part to you, I have a couple of ideas on responses that might work, whether you still love your ex or can’t stand their guts. 

1. “I miss you too.”

i miss you too

The heart wants what it wants, right? If your ex has been on your mind too, and he sends you a text like that, you can opt to tell him the truth. It’s a simple admission of your reality, and the guy took the first step, so you don’t have to worry about breaking the ice.

Be careful not to get too carried away by his response, though. If he wants you back, he may see that as an entry to start trying again. If that’s not something you want or you are already in a new relationship, do what you can to end the conversation there.

2. “I miss you too. How have you been?”

If you’ve been wanting to get your ex back and he sends you an “I miss you” text, you can seize the opportunity to get a conversation going. Ask how he’s been. Hopefully, you can tell if he really does miss you or is just bored or something from his response and your history.

You don’t want your ex to get the wrong idea, so only take the conversation further to the welfare check, if you still love him or at least care about him. I wouldn’t recommend this course of action if your relationship with the guy was toxic and you’ve been doing better since the breakup than you were with him.

3. “Took you long enough!”

If you want to get your ex back but have been waiting for him to realize he misses you first, this one is perfect. It doesn’t come on too strong, and you can still steer the conversation in any direction if it turns out he doesn’t want to get back together or was just kidding. Some guys are crazy like that.

If he gives you reasons to believe it’s a prank, or he has motivations other than what you have in mind, turn it into a joke. And if not, then you can make your real feelings known, eventually.

4. “You don’t have to.”

Here is a bold one for the ex-girlfriend who is still in love (yes, you.) Perfect if you think there’s something left to explore between you two. Maybe the relationship ended for reasons beyond the two of you, or you had to break up with him because he wouldn’t act right.

So, replying to his “I miss you” message with this is basically you leaving the door open and telling him there’s still a chance to reconnect. Then maybe ask him for coffee or some other open place where you can catch up if he doesn’t beat you to the punch.

5. “And I, you. But feelings were never enough for us now, were they?”

Some breakups you just can’t come back from just like that, even when you still love your ex-boyfriend. If this sounds like your situation, this response might be great for you. I know that text might tug at your heartstrings, and so does your ex if he is aware of your lingering feelings.

Rather than deny the fact that you miss him too, tell him the truth. But follow it up with the most crucial part of the message, which is probably what led to the breakup in the first place. If emotions were enough, he wouldn’t have to miss you.

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6. “Appreciate that. Sorry, we didn’t work out.”

A polite one for the relationship that ended amicably. If you don’t have any reason to be mean to your ex but don’t necessarily miss him back when he says he does, then just be nice. It may not have been easy to put himself out there like that, so you can acknowledge that if you want.

The ‘sorry’ isn’t necessary, but if you felt you could have done something differently, or you dumped him and feel bad about it, then, by all means, add it. But don’t feel like you have to add anything else you are not feeling just because he says he misses you.

7. “Good to know, but I’m not sure my new boyfriend would appreciate you saying things like that.”

If you don’t mind letting your ex know you are in a relationship with someone else or wouldn’t mind rubbing it in a little, go with this. With one swift response, you get to tell him that not only does his message not have that kind of effect on you anymore, but you are also actually someone else’s girlfriend now.

Who doesn’t like a chance to make their ex jealous now and then? This way, you are making it known that the times have changed while simultaneously doing right by your new guy. You go, girl!

8. “That’s sweet, but the feeling is not mutual. I have moved on, you should too.”

Maybe your ex has been trying to get your attention for a minute now. Several messages in as many days all saying the same thing: he misses you. You don’t want to respond, but it doesn’t look like he’ll give up any time soon.

Hit him with a reply that won’t just make your feelings (or lack thereof) known, but one that also tells him off all in a single sentence. Nothing like good advice from an ex-girlfriend that no longer cares, am I right?

9. “Huh… thanks?”

Of course, even the most eloquent of us run out of words at times. If you are still in the process of deciding whether you want to get your ex back or put the whole relationship behind you, this might work.

If he says he misses you during a phone call or as a text out of the blue, you don’t want to say anything definitive. So while the words form, you can just say “huh… thanks.” Or some variant of it. Also works if you don’t want him to know what you are thinking, and you just want him to stew for a bit.

10. “You are just saying that because you’re lonely.”

you are just saying that because you're lonely

Loneliness is arguably the most common reason people say they miss their ex. Despite what you might want to believe, that “I miss you” text from your ex probably had very little to do with love and more to do with a moment of need.

Men like to do this, especially when they know you still love them. If you don’t believe your ex is being genuine, reply to him with something like this, and perhaps other ideas that might help if you care that much.

11. “Sorry, but I can’t with you right now.”

Some exes make you relive your breakup and the entire relationship over and over again because they won’t stop coming and going. If you ask me, those are the very worst of the bunch. And I miss you is usually one of their favorite anthems, too.

If you currently have one of those on your hands and he pops up again, as per usual, it’s okay not to humor him for another precious minute of your life. He can take his inconsistent ass away from you or hold on to his drama for another day.

12. “Sorry, not sorry.”

Pull a Demi Lovato on your ex, and tell him sorry, not sorry. Particularly if he did you wrong while you two were in a relationship and is now showing signs he wants you back. Let him know he’s totally alone in that feeling, and he can do whatever he likes with himself and whatever lingering feelings he thinks he has.

Or just save yourself the stress if you’re feeling petty and send him a link to the song, so he gets the vibe.

13. “Why? Your new girlfriend broke up with you?”

Valid question, if I do say so myself. This is a perfect response if your ex left you for someone else, or you still follow up close enough to know he’s already in another relationship. I don’t think it’s too much to ask about his new woman if he’s going around missing his old one, do you?

I’d still tread carefully, though, regardless of his response. If he did break up with her, he might just be trying to use you to get over her. And if they are still together, then it goes to show that he still can’t be trusted. 

15. “Of course, you miss me. It was only a matter of time.”

You can take your ex’s statement as an opportunity to display some casual bravado, you know, flex on him. If he shares your sense of humor, that’s one non-awkward way to break the ice and get talking again, if that’s something you want.

Of course, where there’s smoke, there’s a fire. Humor is one of my favorite ways of passing a message across. That your response might make him chuckle doesn’t mean it isn’t true. 

16. “What else is new?”

Some people might get a text message from their ex saying he misses them and be completely blown away. Maybe because the breakup was their fault, they were more loved-up in the relationship, or it was just completely unexpected.

But if that isn’t you, and you’ve somehow always known this moment would come, then say exactly that. When you know what you bring to the table, it shouldn’t come as a surprise when a man finally comes to his senses in your absence anyway.

17. “I know. Doesn’t feel great, does it?”

You know when a relationship ends, and it feels like your entire world turned upside down, but from what you can gather, your ex seems to be doing okay? There’s a science behind it. Experts say it may take men longer to get over a breakup, even though it typically hits women faster. 

So, if you’ve felt this way at one point or the other since the breakup, now is your chance to rub it in your ex-boyfriend’s face. You’ve missed him for the longest bit, science says his turn will come, and now that it has, what better thing to say than been there, done that?

18. “No Bueno, I’m on my period.”

Besides loneliness and boredom, I can think of at least one more reason why an ex would tell you he misses you, and it doesn’t necessarily have to do with love. If there’s no bad blood between you and your ex-boyfriend, he might try to reach out to you when he’s feeling horned up.

I get the sense that if you dated that kind of person, you’d have some idea of what he’s up to, even if you haven’t talked in a while. So, hitting him back with a text that says you’re riding the crimson wave that week before he even gets the chance to sweet talk you would be spot-on. Not to mention funny.

19. “I will pray for you.”

This one just cracks me up because it brings at least a dozen funny memes to mind. Also, because it works in so many scenarios. Are you both religious people, and you think he’s lying and doesn’t really miss you? God save his soul. 

You think he does miss you, but only because he has no friends and is lonely as hell? May the angels be with him through this difficult time. What better gift to give him at this point than prayers? And it’s just as funny if neither of you is religious because he knows you’re not actually going to pray for him.

20. “LMAO!”

This one works if you are trying to communicate how incredulous him saying he misses you makes you feel. Like you can’t believe the audacity that would push him to tell you something like that after what he’s put you through or something.

It also goes if you couldn’t be more sure that you do not want your ex back, or you two made a bet on who would crack first, and he did. Basically, go with this if your first reaction to his “confession” is to laugh your ass out, whether that’s angry, sad, happy, or wtf laugh.

21. “Lol! How drunk are you?”

lol! how drunk are you?

The time your ex tells you he misses you can also help you choose how to respond. E.g., if his text comes in late at night or around dawn on the weekend, you can assume he’s been drinking if it matches the lifestyle you’ve known him to lead.

Rather than engage in futile conversation with his high self, you can just dismiss the message altogether and tell him to go to sleep. Or ask how drunk he is, so he knows in the morning that you were aware it was some liquid courage talking and not him.

22. “I’m sorry, who is this?”

Since you two are not in a relationship anymore, you can always pretend you don’t know who the message is from if he sends it as a text. Especially if he hasn’t made any attempt to stay friends since you parted ways.

So, you act like you would when an unknown random number leaves you a message and reply with a “who is this?” If he responds, you can ask him more questions like how he got your number and what he hoped to achieve by sending you such a text. No rule says you have to make it easy on them even if you still love and intend to get your ex back.

23. “Wrong number.”

Similar to the above but with much fewer words and no follow-up messages. This one works best when you are absolutely certain you don’t want your ex back or hate his gut so much you can’t even stand a civil conversation with him. Not one that comes from such an emotional angle anyway.

Letting him know he’s reached a wrong number tells him you are obviously not pining after him anymore and have moved on with your own life. And if he somehow has a way of knowing you still have his contact saved, that should tell him you’re in no mood for his shenanigans at that moment, at least.

24. “If you don’t mind, I’d like you to stop trying.”

If you’re looking for a polite way to ask your ex to f**k off, this is it. Reserve this one for those people who just don’t know when to stop. Like if you’ve tried subtler ways to tell him to back off and he still keeps telling you he misses you, then just come right out and ask him to stop trying.

If, after this, he still refuses to respect your wishes and himself, then you would be totally justified to take whatever actions are necessary to get him to stop. Even if that means involving the authorities.

25. “We broke up for a reason.”

Another fitting response to your ex telling you he misses you is to remind him that there is a reason you are not still together. Sometimes, when it’s been a while since you’ve broken up with someone, you tend to remember mostly the good times and subconsciously suppress the others.

It can also work in reverse, but if he’s texting you that he misses you, then it’s not likely that that is your case. Anyway, whether it's selective amnesia in play here or something has changed on his part that’s making him consider rekindling the relationship, jogging his memories this way might be best for everyone.

26. “You had your chance.”

What’s that phrase, a leopard never changes its spots? You and your ex may not be best of friends right now, but you were close enough to have called yourselves lovers at some point. If drawing from that history, you believe he’s only telling you he misses you now because he wants you back, and you don’t, then thwarts that attempt with the quickness.

This would slap even better if you made an attempt of your own in the past to get your ex back, and he made light of it. He had his chance, he blew it, now it’s your turn to rub it in his face.

27. “Get a life, John.”

Another one in the curt category, handy in situations when you can’t be bothered to be friendly or gentle. Pull this one out when your ex has been so persistent he’s starting to near pathetic territory, like if he refuses to move on despite all indications that you have.

Frustration aside, you can also ask your ex to get a life if you think he is only telling you he misses you because of the material benefits that came with dating you.

28. “No, you don’t. You miss the idea of me.”

Speaking of benefits, here’s another good one. If no one else has been able to successfully fill the shoes you left behind in your ex’s life, he might mistake missing that for missing you. When thinking back to the memories you made together and having someone who would go above and beyond for him, he might get emotional and send you a long text.

If this is likely to be his motivation for trying to get back into your good graces, then simply saying no, he doesn’t, might let him know you are onto him.

29. “Honestly? I don’t care. Stop texting me.”

Remember what we said about being true to your feelings? Yeah, it doesn't only work when that helps his cause. If he's used up all his empathy points with you, then don't hesitate to lay it on him as you feel it.

Sometimes people act obtuse on purpose, and the only thing they will respond to is to straight-up get blunt with them.

30. “Now’s not a good time. Try never.”

Say this if “I miss you” fits your ex’s usual M.O. of working his way back into people’s lives. You know, if you entertain that, the next thing he will try to do is convince you to meet up because he knows that’s where his real strength lies.

Why put yourself in a position where a momentary lapse in judgment can drag you back into a hole that probably took you so long to crawl out of? If you are sure you never want to have anything to do with him again, then feel free to use this response. 

31. “Not today, Satan.”

not today satan

This is for those ex-boyfriends who seem to have you on their radar and targets the time you’re getting your life together to hit you up. They will be nowhere to be found when you’re sad and lonely, ghost you when you need attention, but let a semblance of normalcy return to your life, and voila, there they are.

And it’s always the ones that are built like sin too. Those men who have a way of undoing your resolve with as little as eye contact. Whether or not you are over this one, as long as you know deep down that he is not good for you, tell him, “not today, Satan!”

32. “Ignore him.”

Finally, you can choose to say nothing. If you two weren’t on talking terms before your ex makes the comment and you want nothing to do with him anymore, then simply do not respond. Remember, no response is a response too.

If he keeps on blowing up your phone with text messages and calls, block him. If he pesters you to the point that you can no longer ignore, please do what you can to ensure your safety, like taking legal actions or involving the authorities.


What does it mean when your ex tells you he misses you?

If your ex says he misses you, it might mean that he’s come to realize letting you go was a mistake, and he wants to get back together. But then, it can also mean that he’s bored or lonely, or he just wants to see if you feel the same.

What do you reply to I miss you?

It depends on who makes the statement and how you feel about them. The best thing is to just be honest. If you miss the person back, say as much, and if not, tell them you appreciate it and keep it moving.

What should I reply when my ex texts me?

If you don’t know what to reply when your ex texts you, the safest thing is not to respond at all. If you must, stay true to your feelings and try to be as straight to the point as possible while keeping in mind why you broke up in the first place. Then again, there are no rules with these things, so just do whatever feels right to you at the moment.

How do you know if a man misses you?

A man who misses you will try to reach out. If he can’t see you in person, he will attempt to make contact in some other way. He might text or call a lot more than usual or keep in touch with your friends if he no longer has a direct line to you.

How do you know if your ex still cares about you?

An ex that still cares about you will hold on to the positive memories you shared and often try to remind you of them. They will pay attention to you like you two are still together and get jealous if they see you moving on with someone else.

To Conclude

Things to say to your ex when he says he misses you? I tried to make this list inclusive, so I hope you find at least one that works for you on here. Remember not to respond out of emotions alone. As much as you want to be honest, you also want to consider the other stuff, like why you had to break up in the first place.

Don’t forget to leave your thoughts on the list in the comments and share the article with your friends if you liked it.

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Michelle Devani
My name is Michelle Devani, and I've been helping people with their relationships since 2003. In 2017 I decided it was about time I started a blog on the topic, and since then more than 2 million people worldwide have read my relationship advice. Drop me a comment below to let me know what you think.

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