I get it.
You feel your ex’s absence like fingernails down a chalkboard and you want to feel their presence again in any way possible.
You’ve been trying the no contact rule and so far you have heard nothing from your ex. Apparently no contact is not working. Maybe your ex has forgotten about you during no contact. Why not just reach out? Maybe they’ll feel something for you again.
What do you have to lose?
I’ve pretty much summed up what’s going on in your head, right? Like I said, I get it. It makes sense for you to ask if you should break no contact.
But before you do, you need to consider what you WILL lose by breaking no contact.
Why Breaking No Contact Erases Progress That Has Been Gained
No contact is not always an instant fix. Though I am thrilled when I estimate that 40% of my coaching clients hear from their ex within only a week or less of no contact, the majority take longer. Which is frustrating.
Here’s the deal:
Time works on different people in different ways. Some begin missing their ex almost immediately and regret their decision to break up. Others take longer to feel that separation anxiety.
Another percentage miss their ex terribly and regret the breakup, but take longer before they reach out.
These are the tricky and frustrating ones because no contact is doing its job in it has been able to make your miss you and want you back. But the intensity of them missing you and regretting their decision to break up with you has not reached the point to where they feel they must reach out.
I know you want to believe that this is the case with your ex boyfriend or ex girlfriend. It might be, but even if that is the case, you still must not reach out to them.
It’s More Meaningful, Powerful, and Likely To Be Long Term If They Reach Out To You
It’s also possible and highly likely that if you break no contact you will push them away. It relieves their itch of curiosity, erases the fear of loss, and allows them to think that you will always be waiting for them.
That will likely cause them to see you only as a backup plan. If you are permanently waiting on them, they can take their time by seeing all the other people they want to and if they ever decide they want you back, you’ll be there.
Does that sound like what you want?
Trust me, it’s not! It’s a sure recipe for them to move on and lose all feelings of intimacy and attraction for you.
You give your ex relief and quench their curiosity. You take away any sense of urgency to them getting back together with you. So while you’ll continue to feel the breakup second by second, they won’t feel any pressure at all because they know that there’s no danger of losing you. Also see my article, “What Is My Ex Thinking During No Contact?”
Should You Ever Break No Contact?
Some dating coaches who deal more in the theoretical insist that no contact should never, ever be broken by the person who has been dumped under any circumstances.
I have seen too much of the real world and disagree and though I am a dating coach, my specialty is in getting an ex back after a breakup.
I’m known for the main focus of my strategy being to make the breakup easy for the person who has dumped you. I’m serious! By backing away, refusing to show anger, leaving them alone instead of awkwardly being around them, and by giving them complete space you have the best chance of them coming back to you.
Why? Because you prevent your breakup response from being a hurdle to them getting back together with you.
Here’s the deal:
If the breakup is difficult, awkward, and stressful, and then at some point they consider getting back together with you, they might not do it simply because they don’t want to risk it not working out and them having to go through the awkward breakup again.
So I have seen no contact work again and again, with extremely high consistency, to cause an ex to miss you and reach out to you. But there are some rare instances when no contact does not work. Though it is very successful, it’s not a magic bullet.
In these situations, I still usually recommend no contact. The reason is because if someone breaks up with you and doesn’t come back, any effort by you would be chasing.
It would be attempting to impose yourself into someone’s life who doesn’t want you there which would make you look pathetic, needy, weak, and even selfish because you are seeking what you want rather than to respect what the other person wants.
Hear me on this:
I get that it doesn’t feel that way. It doesn’t feel selfish, but it will seem that way to your ex. It might even seem ridiculous to them because you are trying to talk them into something that can’t be the result of a conversation.
That being said, there are times when you have nothing to lose. There are times when reaching out after a solid amount of time has passed can be effective because the time apart and the silence has pressed a reset button.
Most People Don’t Allow Enough Time Before Reaching Out
If you read my articles, you’ll learn pretty quickly that I do not believe in reaching out to your ex after a breakup.
They have got to experience the breakup to realize that they don’t want it. And they have got to be without you in order to miss you.
But as I’ve said in this article, there are times when reaching out to and breaking no contact with your ex makes sense because there is nothing to lose and because sometimes the person who broke up doesn’t know how to repair the breakup – even if they want to!
But most people either don’t allow nearly enough time or won’t stay silent during what should be a time of no contact. When someone who hasn’t waited long enough reaches out to their ex, there was no reset, so their ex still feels exhaustion and anxiety at the thought of being around them. If this is the case with you, your ex will not be receptive to you. So when you break no contact is key if you ever break it.
Here’s the deal:
I hesitated writing this article in the first place because I didn’t want someone who has been dumped to read it and then reach out to their ex. That’s not my intent and reaching out normally pushes your ex even further away and makes you feel even worse.
But if you’ve been dating someone for three months or more, waiting a month of no contact is sometimes enough. You have to determine if they are the type of person who might want to get back together with you but doesn’t know how to go about presenting that to you. Most of the time, if the relationship was good, someone would have no problem doing reaching out and asking you to get back together. So be extremely skeptical of your ex having this reason for not reaching out.
Usually the answer is that you should not break no contact and you need to wait longer so that no contact can work on your ex more.
If you’ve been dating more than three months, waiting a month and a half before even considering contact is ideal. But again, many times it’s just that no contact has not had enough time to fully work. You want them to be in the position of asking you to get back together. You want them to have to be the one to hope that you’ll take them back.
That’s the ideal situation because it means that they value you and the relationship enough at this point, since they’ve been without it. If they don’t reach out to you, it means that they haven’t reached a level of appreciation for what they had and don’t yet have enough regret for tossing it aside.
The odds are that you should continue to be in no contact and that you should not reach out. You can click here to schedule a coaching call with me and, together, we can come up with a plan tailored to your situation to get your ex back!