What does Ex mean?

Someone you used to date

When someone mentions their ‘Ex’, they’re generally referring to a previous romantic partner. This could be a past boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife, or a non-binary significant other.

While the prefix ‘ex-‘ can be used with most nouns to indicate a former role or relationship (like ex-mechanic, ex-daughter-in-law, ex-sailor), the term ‘ex’ alone is usually associated with a previous romantic relationship.

‘Ex’ is commonly used in the context of past marriages, referring to former husbands or wives. That being said, it’s not exclusive to those who were officially married. People who have been in long-term, committed relationships without marriage also use ‘ex’ to talk about their past partners.

Example for using ‘Ex’ in a conversation

Hey, do you remember my ex?

Yeah, the one you dated last summer?

Exactly! I bumped into them at the mall today.

Oh, really? How did it go?