Some men meet the right woman and then go and fuck the whole thing up and spend the rest of their lives pining after said woman. Here's how you can tell if that's the case:
1. He refriended you on social media after the dust settled.
There are a lot of reasons to stay away from an ex after a breakup. For one, that way you have fewer ways to drunkenly contact them... or see how their life has been post-you... or just generally get reminded that they still exist. If he's still friends with you, it means one of two things: the breakup was pretty amicable and he really doesn't care, OR the pain and suffering is all worth it because he would rather always remember you no matter how much it stings. Do you think that's beautiful or pathetic? If you think it's beautiful, you probably still have feelings for him, too. If you think it's sad, you most definitely don't.
2. You hear through friends of friends that he always asks about you.
That's his way of saying, "I'm too much of a gentleman (or a coward) to just text you outright." He knows it'll get back to you, and he wouldn't ask if he A) didn't care, and B) didn't want you to know he cares.
3. He's never had a serious relationship since you.
He could just be choosy, or to channel the late Prince, this could be a "Nothing Compares 2 U" situation. Instead, he's just drifting aimlessly, finding something wrong with every potential partner because they aren't you. Maybe he even had a few serious relationships that fizzled out because he was still carrying a torch for you. Or maybe he's careful not to commit himself to anything too serious, so he's available if there's ever another window of opportunity to get back together. He's worried if he were to get a serious girlfriend, you won't consider him as an "option."
4. He's definitely drunk texted you (and then denied it).
If he owns up to booty-texting you, it's probably just because he really was drunk. If he tries some lame-ass, "Oh, that was my friend" excuse, then he's hiding deeper feelings. Or he actually does have some pretty obnoxious friends, but the odds of that being true are in the single-digits.
5. He still flirts with you.
This is an obvious sign, but it can mean multiple things. For one, it implies he'd definitely have sex with you again, but where there's smoke, there's fire. It could also mean he's hoping that flirting will lead to sex, and sex could lead to re-kindling the relationship.
6. He still keeps in touch with your family.
Come on, this one is sort of weird. I don't care if you "had one of those relationships" or that "not everyone would get it." This pretty much sounds like both he and your parents are still holding out hope that you'll wind up marrying him one day.
7. He still texts you "happy birthday."
Remembering your birthday is hard enough. Remembering it after a breakup is his way of saying, "I'm still thinking of you but not in a weird way or anything, don't get freaked out." It's a subtle reminder to you that he cares.
8. He's excited when he runs into you at parties.
Most people would run when they see their ex, or at least just grit their teeth through the appropriate amount of small talk and then bail. But if he runs up to you and gives you a hug like you never used to have sex and isn't that awkward... he's gotta still feel pretty great about you.
9. He still has all of your old gifts.
Listen, if he kept a shirt or a nice watch, that probably doesn't mean much other than the fact that they were pretty nice gifts. But if he kept all the sweet hand-written birthday cards, or the hoodie you got him with his favorite team on it, then there might be something there.
10. He never untagged all your old photos together.
Sure, this might just be because he's lazy or forgot (especially if he doesn't give a shit about Facebook). But keeping all your digital memories perfectly preserved without removal or untagging is further proof that what you had was special enough to warrant saving. And maybe worth saving in real life, too.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.