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Robin Thicke and why you can't "win" your ex back with an audience

Robin Thicke performed an awkward plea to get his wife back at the BET Awards Sunday June, 29, 2014
Robin Thicke performed an awkward plea to get his wife back at the BET Awards Sunday June, 29, 2014

This past Sunday, singer/songwriter Robin Thicke appeared on one more stage in hopes of getting his girl back. On the BET Awards, Thicke crooned his latest single, aptly titled "Get Her Back", as a part of public campaign for forgiveness from his future ex, actress Paula Patton. The two are going through a pretty embarrassing divorce. It's being drawn out partly due to Thicke's incessant musical begging. The thing that Robin Thicke doesn't realize (and likely doesn't care about) is getting back with your ex only happens when she sees some form of corrective action.

When men go through a break up, we typically throw ourselves into something that won't remind us of what we messed up. Some of us party harder and spend more time around the fellas. Some of us become a regular at the gym. Some of us dive head first into 16 hour work-days. Whatever our escape is, we keep busy until we have that moment of impact. That impact being realizing that we may have really messed up beyond repair. In some relationships, especially those that last along as Thicke and Patton's had, you get comfortable. You convince yourself that because you're all she knows, she'll never leave. That rude awakening happens to every man. And we start to come up with these elaborate plans to win her back. The problem with that is you can't really win back a woman once she's decided that she's done. Once a scorned woman has made up her mind about who the man is that hurt her, it's extremely difficult to change her mind. But if you're going to change her mind, it's not because your wrote an album about her and how you can't live without her.

You can't really fault Robin Thicke for using his strongest talent to get Patton's attention. If you've listened to his music over the years, she's his muse. How he feels about her and their love is what makes people love his music. Throughout his career, Patton has always been the love interest or featured "model" in his videos. And why not? Guys like looking at her and women like to see happy couples outwardly expressive about their love. But him begging and pleading in such a public way almost feels like he's making a mockery of their most recent relationship issues. Guys often take the stance of "remember the good times. Remember when we were happy". There's nothing wrong with that. However, when you've messed up, allegedly as bad as Thicke has, those happier times seem so distant.

There are many people who feel and strongly believe this is all an elaborate publicity stunt. His album, Paula, is being released today. Would all of this controversy or his over-the-top, syrupy performances help move units? One can't say for sure. What can be measured is that continuing to publicly embarrass your ex isn't going to make her forgiving you more likely. In fact, it may push her that much further way because grandiose efforts may come across as self-serving.

Everyone has one ex that they thought they couldn't live without. If you took a poll, I'm sure you'd find anecdotes of extreme groveling and borderline scary/creepy occurrences of men trying to get that old thing back. It's something that's not cool to admit, especially if it didn't work. We don't always give women the credit that they want in the sense of many of them don't need grand gestures. In relationships, actions are the great equalizer. You can say sorry, buy her diamonds, take her on a lavish trip. But if the behavior that drove her away isn't corrected or changed altogether, none of your efforts will matter.

Relationships are meant to stay private. The same thing applies to relationship problems. Thicke isn't necessarily wrong to be showing his feelings over their divorce. Hey, pain always makes for really great music. But nobody needs to know that. Plus, Thicke is really making things uncomfortable for fans. They've become like a child listening to their parents argue through the walls. It's just...awkward. The problem with being in relationships with creative types is that your life isn't your own. Every process that you go through is experienced for public consumption. So this is no different. Except it is.

No matter what you and your heart wants, there are some instances where your ex needs to stay an ex. Familiarity and fear of moving on can have you making a complete jerk of yourself. As men, we have much of the control over where the relationship goes. Women tend to try to establish their equality by having rules or standards that they want us to abide by. Although in reality, our significant others respond based on what we do and say to them. You can't expect a recent ex to take you seriously when you haven't maintained steadiness in the relationship. Additionally, when you've made such an egregious mistake as Robin Thicke allegedly has, it's not going to be easy or quick to forgive and forget the things that lead up to that. Breakups are seldom based on isolated events.

Whether you're trying to win back an ex that was the one that got away back in college or an ex within the last few months, understand that winning your woman back isn't about you. It's not about what impressive stunts you can pull or how you're not afraid to show her how crazy in love you are with her. It's about you repairing the trust you fractured and showing her that it won't happen again. Apologies are always a good start. Ultimately getting a second chance with your ex is centered around her believing that you're mature enough to take accountability and set aside your pride.

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