When Does an Ex Start Missing You?

When will my ex start missing me after dumping me?

When does an ex start missing you? This pressing question often haunts those grappling with the aftermath of a breakup.

The answer frequently hinges on effectively implementing the no contact rule.

This method isn’t about manipulating or playing games; it’s about creating essential space for emotional reflection on both sides of the breakup.

It’s also about several other responses that this often brings in an ex who initiated the breakup.

Implementing No Contact

The essence of the no contact rule involves completely halting all forms of communication.

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That means no phone calls, no messages, no social media interactions, and no letters.

It’s a deliberate pause on all communications, designed not to punish, but to provide both parties the space needed to process the breakup independently.

The Purpose of No Contact

The no contact rule is not an exercise in immaturity but rather a mature response to a breakup.

Accepting the desire to end the relationship as per your ex’s decision and stepping back respectfully shows maturity and understanding.

It shows that you will bow out if you are no longer welcome or wanted rather than try to force your way in.

By not engaging in desperate pleas or continuous contact, you demonstrate respect for their decision and for yourself, which can paradoxically significantly increase your attractiveness in their eyes.

No contact is not about cutting communication as a form of punishment or manipulation; rather, it’s a mature approach to processing the end of a relationship.

When your ex decides to end things, continuously reaching out is extremely counterproductive.

By stepping back and respecting their decision, you’re not only showing maturity but also respect for their autonomy to make their own decisions.

This strategic silence does more than just demonstrate maturity.

It places the emotional burden back on your ex to deal with the breakup on their own terms.

It strips away the noise of constant pleading, the clutter of desperate messages, and the discomfort of forced interactions, which can often cloud judgment and emotions.

In the quiet that follows, your ex is given the space to miss the relationship’s positives—a space where nostalgia can play its natural role.

By implementing no contact, you make a clear statement: you are capable of living independently, without reliance on the relationship.

This independence is crucial because it challenges your ex’s perception of your resilience and desirability.

Often, this newfound perspective can lead to a significant shift in how they view the relationship and your role in their life.

This is often when your ex starts missing you.

Your ex usually begins to understand that you are not waiting on standby, and this realization can trigger a sense of loss and, subsequently, the desire to reconnect.

Furthermore, no contact is a practice of self-respect.

It shows that you are not willing to settle for less than what you deserve, which is mutual effort and respect in a relationship.

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It also prevents common post-breakup pitfalls like arguments, misunderstandings, and the potential for further heartache caused by seeing your ex in real-time through social media or other channels.

Ultimately, the purpose of no contact is to give both you and your ex the clarity needed to fully assess the relationship’s value without the influence of constant emotional turmoil.

It also prevents your ex from seeing a breakup as a way to manipulate you in the future when/should the two of you get back together.

Your ex will realize that if he/she breaks up with you again that all they will get from you is silence rather than validation about how much you want them and how much you are attracted to them.

This is often quite the wake-up-call that they won’t forget.

Psychological Benefits of No Contact

Removing yourself from your ex’s daily life creates a noticeable absence.

Don’t worry, your ex won’t forget about you during no contact.

This absence forces them to confront their feelings and memories associated with the relationship.

During this period, they usually begin to recall and miss the good times, the intimacy, and the companionship that characterized your relationship.

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Engaging in no contact after a breakup can have profound psychological benefits, central to which is the creation of a necessary emotional and mental space.

After all, your ex can’t start missing you if you don’t leave.

The very word “missing” implies that you aren’t there and actually can be missed.

Promoting Appreciation and Nostalgia: In your absence, your ex is more likely to reminisce about the positive aspects of the relationship.

This is when your ex starts missing you.

Humans have a tendency to remember good experiences more fondly once they’re in the past, a phenomenon known as ‘rosy retrospection.’

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This nostalgia can shift how your ex perceives the past relationship, often enhancing the good memories and softening the negatives.

Does that sound helpful to reuniting with your ex?

By providing these psychological benefits, no contact acts not just as a strategy for potentially reigniting a relationship but as a crucial period for personal empowerment and emotional maturity.

Phases of Missing Someone After a Breakup

Initially, there might be a sense of relief on your ex’s part, especially if the relationship ended on a tumultuous note.

However, as time progresses and the immediate relief subsides, they move into a phase of curiosity and eventually, reevaluation:

Relief: Immediate feelings of resolution post-breakup.

Curiosity: They begin to wonder about your well-being and life without them.

Concern and Reevaluation: They reflect on the relationship and question whether ending it was the right choice.

All it takes is a little bit of doubt to get the ball rolling and each day that you continue to stay away magnifies their doubt, concern, curiosity, and reevaluation.

Sustaining No Contact

The real challenge often lies in maintaining no contact.

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You must resist the urge to reach out, even when you intensely feel the need to reconnect.

Keeping this boundary intact is crucial for allowing your ex to genuinely start missing you.

It shifts their perception from seeing you as ever-available to recognizing your self-respect and independence.

Maintaining the discipline of no contact is crucial for creating a scenario where your ex can start to miss you.

It’s about holding the line, even when emotions run high, to allow a natural process of reattraction to begin from your ex’s side.

Reinforcing Boundaries: No contact serves as a clear signal of your boundaries. By steadfastly sticking to no contact, you communicate that you respect yourself and the breakup decision.

This firm boundary is essential because it teaches your ex that you are not available at their convenience, which can shift their perception of your value and desirability.

Creating an Aura of Mystery: With the absence of contact, your ex is left without updates on your life, your feelings, or your emotional state.

This lack of information creates a mystery around your current life and well-being.

The human mind is naturally curious, and this gap in knowledge can lead your ex to think about you more often, wondering how you are handling the breakup, who you might be with now, and what new experiences you are having.

They can also wonder if you will EVER reach out or not.

This curiosity can spark a desire to reconnect and also shows them that the ball is strictly in their court.

Allowing Time for Emotional Contrast: Over time, your absence enforced by no contact can lead your ex to contrast how they feel without you to how they felt with you.

If the relationship was fundamentally positive, the good memories can start to overshadow the reasons for the breakup.

This emotional contrast is often what shifts an ex from feeling confident in their decision to questioning whether they might be better off with you…or not.

Heightening the Impact of Nostalgia: As days turn into weeks, nostalgia for the relationship can begin to set in.

Nostalgia, particularly for the positive aspects of the relationship, can be a powerful force.

It often allows your ex to remember past experiences positively, making your ex remember the best times you had together, which can intensify their feelings of missing you.

Testing Their Emotional Resilience: No contact also tests your ex’s emotional resilience and independence.

As they navigate life without your support and companionship, they may begin to feel a void that wasn’t apparent in the immediacy of the breakup.

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This realization can lead to a reevaluation of the breakup and open up the possibility of reconciliation.

You staying in contact, however, most likely will not.

Sustaining no contact is about more than merely waiting out a period of separation.

It’s an active process of allowing your ex to experience life without you in a way that can lead to genuine feelings of loss and a renewed appreciation for the relationship.

By committing to no contact, you set the stage for possible reattraction, where your ex can come to miss you sincerely and perhaps decide to rekindle the relationship.


No contact is a powerful tool for personal growth and emotional processing following a breakup.

It’s not just about getting an ex to miss you—it’s about giving both of you the space to possibly come back together.

Patience and respect for the boundaries set by no contact can lead to a variety of outcomes, potentially and often including reconciliation.

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Coach Lee answers the question, "When does an ex start missing you?"

About Coach Lee

Coach Lee, Master of Marriage & Family Counseling, helps people save relationships. He developed the Emergency Breakup Kit, a powerful guide to winning back an ex. Get information on the Kit by Clicking Here! If your MARRIAGE is struggling, get his free mini-course on saving a marriage.

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