Marleying: The dating trend that sees exes appearing out of the blue at Christmas

If it hasn't happened to you, you've probably done it

Rachel Hosie
Wednesday 20 December 2017 11:28
Comments

“Let me say, without hope or agenda, just because it’s Christmas and at Christmas you tell the truth, do you want to get together again even though we broke up years ago?”

Sound familiar?

The chances are something along those lines might.

New figures have revealed that one in ten singles will be contacted by exes looking for a fling this Christmas.

The trend is known as ‘Marleying’, named after Ebenezer Scrooge's ghost business partner Jacob Marley who appears out of nowhere on Christmas Eve after being gone for years.

The research was conducted by eHarmony, who say the trend is driven by people heading back to hometowns for the holidays or feeling lonely over the festive season.

11 per cent of singles say they’ve been Marleyed, the study of 4,054 adults across the UK revealed.

Despite your ex having been firmly out of the picture for months or even years, what is it about Christmas that prompts them to get in touch? Or perhaps prompts you to Marley an ex?

It often comes down to nostalgia.

“The end of the year is always a time for reflection, and that inevitably leads to some thoughts about past relationships,” 31-year-old Joseph Fairweather* told The Independent.

“With social media it’s so easy to indulge these curiosities, and it can often lead to taking that extra step and actually making contact. I’ve been contacted by exes who’ve wanted to meet for drinks on trips back to my hometown from London, and I’ve also done it myself.”

Sometimes the Marleyers want a hook-up, sometimes they want to rekindle the relationship, and sometimes they just want to catch-up for old time’s sake.

When everyone is back home for the holidays, it’s the perfect set-up for the magic of Christmas to take over and old flames to reconnect.

The study found that Marleying is more common in certain places of the UK, with London and Wales taking the top two spots.

In the capital, you’re most likely to hear from an ex on Christmas Eve - four per cent of people have received a message or call from a former flame on the 24th.

For some singles though, Christmas is just a lonely time of the year - recent eHarmony research found one in 10 single people dread the Christmas period.

Rachael Lloyd from eHarmony says: “Just because you are at home visiting your old haunts, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should feel compelled to haunt a former partner.

“Though some people are happy to reconnect with an ex over Christmas, it’s important to ensure you are both on the same page to avoid confusion or hurt.

“Often relationships end for valid reasons such as a lack of compatibility. If this sounds familiar, rather than revisiting a relationship where the same issues could arise all over again, we would suggest spending time with family and friends and enjoying a well-earned break. Going backwards only decreases the odds of finding a new, long-lasting relationship.”

Keep your ghosts of Christmases past in the past.

*Name has been changed

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in