He broke up with me last Monday after 1 year and 3 months, for me it was the happiest time of my life and we never fought and had a happy and loving relationship. Reading this has really helped me as I’m going into my second week of NC tomorrow. I genuinely think we both needed a break but I’m not going to sit here and believe that we’re gonna get back together I’m just going to do my 4 Week Detox, then go from there. Wish me luck . X
The rule here is that process always trumps content. When emotions heat up, the problem in the room is the emotions, not whatever you are arguing about. Unfortunately, when emotions kick in, we’re tempted to ramp up the content as a way of dealing with emotions – you want to get the other person to understand, damn it, and you’re likely tempted to fight to the death to make your point. Anything you say is like throwing gasoline on a fire – it's likely to be misheard, misinterpreted.
It’s that most of the time the one who cares the most in this situation somehow always turns out to be the villain, the one blamed, and the one getting hurt. When a guy pulls away women tend to make the horrible mistake of closing in and putting pressure on the situation, only to have him pull further away because of it. It seems the more you care and try to fix the relationship the more he distances himself from you.
This article was co-authored by Jessica Engle, MFT, RDT. Jessica Engle is a relationship coach and psychotherapist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She founded Bay Area Dating Coach in 2009, after receiving her Master's in Counseling Psychology. Jessica is also a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist and Registered Drama Therapist with over 10 years of experience.
Take time out – stop talking before you start to yell when you’re having a row and you’re becoming over-emotional with frustration, anger, hurt or sadness. You’ll only be digging yourself a bigger hole, having to not only deal with whatever you were arguing about but also with the fall-out of being in a very emotional state. For more information on this, read my article: When couples argue constantly.
If you are looking for a quick fix or some quick ideas for initiating contact via text, be sure to keep the language casual. Treat him like a friend that you just want to grab a quick bite or coffee with. Would you put so much pressure on wording a text to hang out? Give him the same lack of attention to detail. Keep it casual, cool. Maintain a good vibe and exude confidence in your indifference.
Hi Ray! Thank you very much for the male perspective. I am dating a man who is 11 years older, I’m 26 and he is 37. He works out in the ocean and a lot of times we have minimal conversation via text/call. But when we are together everything is great and we get along very well. When he doesn’t have to wake in the wee ours or work out of town, he is with me every single weekend. We have been together six months and I have met all his close friends and friends kids. I have done well so far in respecting his space. When he’s a weekend with his guy friends, I am understanding and just ask him to contact me once when he is back in town so he feels he is not missing out on what he loves. However, this past weekend he had a sailboat race on the weekend which he let me know in advance and we had plans for friday night. He reached out friday night saying that turns out he had to be at the venue in the wee hours so he would not be able to make our plans. I was emotionally unstable that weekend due to some work stress and family leaving so I needed him the most that friday. I did not think of my actions and instead of politely rescheduling for Monday, I blew him up – sent him various texts showing how I did not appreciate he canceled although it wasn’t his fault. I called numerous times in the weekend and texted many times while he was supposed to have time with his friends in the tournament. On Sunday I was so desperate that I passed by his house. His roomate was there and told me he hand’t come home yet. Since I blew him up friday, I have had no response to any of my texts nor has he answered any of my calls. I am very afraid that I scared him away and threatened his freedom. I also came out as desperate for going to his place. Today is Wednesday and I hadn’t reached out till Sunday. I sent him a very short/casual text apologizing for taking out my stress on him and for not letting him have his space, to which I got no response. I am going to wait a few days and hopefully he will come around, as our relationship has matured and he’s told me how much he cares for me. Did I blow this up completely since it has been 4 days with no response?
Hi, we work at same place and she sit just front of me so we see each other 100 times a day. Not able to apply no contact rule properly. Two months in no contact but not working as both are at same place. But whenever I text her in urgent no reply from her. In a month we will not be together, so should I wait to be apart when she will feel it or everything in her seems dead for me. I can’t take her rigid nature of not texting back or receive emergency call. What she want. I am not well and can’t focus on my personal life and career which is not good for me.
Another frequent error is wanting to talk constantly about the past in your messages. You have to stop focusing on your nostalgia and on what you’ve experienced together. You ex needs something else. It’s of course tempting to send a little message saying, “I miss you,” “I love you,” or “My feelings for you are still strong.” Truth be told, during this stage these types of things can damage your odds of success so refrain from sending them.
1. Think patterns, not people. When thinking about relationship problems it’s easy to think in terms of people, specifically who is right, who is wrong, who is screwed up, and who is really screwed up. This isn’t usually helpful and only leads to a blame game. Instead of people, think patterns. A does something, this triggers B, who in turn triggers A, then B. Some patterns are beneficial and help us stay sane and stable, others are neutral habits, and some are deadly and capable of damage. 
The longer the time has been between the breakup and point of contact, the more of a conversation you might owe him. Reach out to him to meet up to talk, and be explicit in that you want to talk to him. Show him how you’ve changed over the last year and how you have become a less reliant woman. Remind him of the stunning and self-assured you that he fell in love with in the first place.
Anyways, we went on a date. Which snowballed into many dates and nights spent together. I was falling in love hard and fast. It seemed so mutual, until my birthday. I suggested we spend it together to which he replied he’d take me out for dinner! (Days beforehand we changed the dinner date to the day *after* my bday & spent my actual bday in bed watching movies.)
Hi Ray! Thank you very much for the male perspective. I am dating a man who is 11 years older, I’m 26 and he is 37. He works out in the ocean and a lot of times we have minimal conversation via text/call. But when we are together everything is great and we get along very well. When he doesn’t have to wake in the wee ours or work out of town, he is with me every single weekend. We have been together six months and I have met all his close friends and friends kids. I have done well so far in respecting his space. When he’s a weekend with his guy friends, I am understanding and just ask him to contact me once when he is back in town so he feels he is not missing out on what he loves. However, this past weekend he had a sailboat race on the weekend which he let me know in advance and we had plans for friday night. He reached out friday night saying that turns out he had to be at the venue in the wee hours so he would not be able to make our plans. I was emotionally unstable that weekend due to some work stress and family leaving so I needed him the most that friday. I did not think of my actions and instead of politely rescheduling for Monday, I blew him up – sent him various texts showing how I did not appreciate he canceled although it wasn’t his fault. I called numerous times in the weekend and texted many times while he was supposed to have time with his friends in the tournament. On Sunday I was so desperate that I passed by his house. His roomate was there and told me he hand’t come home yet. Since I blew him up friday, I have had no response to any of my texts nor has he answered any of my calls. I am very afraid that I scared him away and threatened his freedom. I also came out as desperate for going to his place. Today is Wednesday and I hadn’t reached out till Sunday. I sent him a very short/casual text apologizing for taking out my stress on him and for not letting him have his space, to which I got no response. I am going to wait a few days and hopefully he will come around, as our relationship has matured and he’s told me how much he cares for me. Did I blow this up completely since it has been 4 days with no response?
I lost the love of my life over something stupid that I did. Long story short, I lied about my age. Although she didn’t care about my real age, it was the lie I carried on for a year that was part of the reason we broke up. She came from an emotionally abusive marriage and had baggage from that. And two kids who I came to love dearly – and who got along very well with mine. I know that she had issues stemming from childhood, specifically trust. But she’s an awesome girl – the love of my life, my parallel. But I messed up – I lied. Honestly, the lie started because I was afraid that she would be turned off when we first met (she’s 28 and I’m 48)…so I told her I was 44. Every time she brought up age stuff, I steered the conversation away. I wanted to tell her so many times but I knew that if I did that would end things. So I let it go and my heart is breaking because of it. It was her abusive ex-husband who cued her in and she defended me to him until I admitted it. Now, she won’t have anything to do with me. The breakup ended VERY BADLY. Probably the worst I’ve ever experience. Yelling/screaming/crying/etc. She said she can’t believe a word I said and felt like I used her for sex. She said that if I ever contacted her again that I’d be sorry. So I haven’t. At first after the breakup I did what everyone does – texted/called/emailed. I didn’t know of these steps. At any rate, she won’t talk and the last time we did I was met with extreme hostility. I know this one is done. Had I followed this advice there might have been a chance. But I doubt even that. Lessons learned the hardest of all ways. I wanted to marry her. It would have been my second and her third. I love her with all my heart and soul – she his my parallel. The yin to my yang.
What I am going to share with you now is the most common reasons being men’s disappearing acts! As you read through this article, it’s essential that you understand that men are natural born hunters who enjoy the chase. If he is interested in having you as his girlfriend, he will show you this with his actions. Be careful to never settle for a man that isn’t giving you 100% with his actions but is saying everything with his words. This is where a lot of women run into trouble in their search for a good man. Pay attention to his actions more than his words.
Hi Appollonia thank you for the article I thought it was great. I started dating a guy back in June 2018, it was like a whirl wind romance we were seeing each other at least 3/4 times a week, he asked me to meet his mum after about a week i said no its to soon, then within a month I had met his mum, best friend, sister, female friends, Aunty, cousins. He was bringing me to family events, buying me shoes, cooking for me, spontaneously turning up with flowers and breakfast, coming to my family events, staying with me for a whole week. For 2 months I spoke to him every single day. Then after 2 months he bought us tickets for a festival and at the event we had an argument whereby I had apparently reprimanded like a child. From that point everything changed, he became distant and we were constantly arguing. So I broke up with him in September, but he came back saying he wanted to reconcile. In October we talked and got back together, but he continued to be distant and make little effort, not returning my calls and messages for 24/48, telling me we're meeting up but never making a plan to do so. Always saying he's busy working as an excuse as to why we are not meeting. In December I broke it off again. We were at the same event in January and again he said he wanted to try again, saying we should go away for the weekend and spend quality time rebuilding our relationship this of course never materialised and 3 weeks later I blocked him on phone calls, whats app, and social media. It's now been 2 months since I blocked him and he hasn't tried to contact me by other means. I still love him and want him, but I have been working on myself and will not settle for less than I deserve. However I still don't understand why he changed and why we he became all talk and no action.
I have not been with many girls before her and to be honest this was my longest relationship, and I am her first real boyfriend. I think at times I got too concerned with things she said or not trusting her and getting upset for no reason simply because I wanted to “win” or try to have her give in and admit I was right in an argument, and this selfish feeling got so bad that I almost broke up with her twice.. I never truly intended to leave her, I just wanted her to admit I was right.. and that was such a terrible and stupid thing to do I know out of anger and arrogance. But through all those words I never stopped loving her, my love never wavered. but lately after the second time we almost broke up she has been drifting away from me, we barely talk at home and in public she seems more happy with friends or makes no effort to go out with me. when I tried to speak to her about it we both apologized for everything but she still said her love has been growing weaker ever since i almost broke up with her and that her heart is closing. One day i tried to speak to hear and she started breaking up with me over a phone message while crying saying she doesn’t know if there is anything left. she kept saying she doesn’t want to leave me but she is tired of relationships at the same time and both of those feelings are equal for her. I apologized once more and begged her to give it another try for at least a month and told her i would change my attitude to let her do as she pleases and accept and love all her flaws like the first month we were together and she accepted, a bit unwillingly i must admit, saying part of her doesn’t want to leave me. but those words of hers are so strong and i am afraid she will not regain her former love for me after the month or a while and she will end up leaving me for good. i am confused and unsure what i should do now.

Guys don’t know exactly what it is, but suddenly their instincts are telling them to get away. This usually occurs at the point where the woman could no longer keep the act up. Maybe she’s trying to appear cool and go-with-the-flow, but in her mind she’s already thinking of ways to turn a relationship that’s really nothing at this point into something. From that point forward, it’s not easygoing and natural, it’s her measuring if she is getting closer or further from her goal.
In an effort to resuscitate an already dysfunctional relationship, women will frequently make the fatal error of bluffing. Your girlfriend will repeatedly threaten to break up with you in order to scare you into changing (for the record I wholeheartedly disagree with this method, but that discussion is for another article), hoping you will prove your love by doing anything to make her happy. It never works, and you rarely take her threats seriously. So you break up.
I remember when my husband and I moved in together, after about a month he pulled away for a bit. He wasn’t really rude about it but i think he just needed some space. I think he was just getting tired of me, like it was romance overload. I ended up burying myself in my own hobbies for a while and I think he ultimately appreciated me for giving him space. I think it’s hard in the moment but if the girl enjoys some time to pursue her own interests for a bit and waits for the man to resume… Read more »
Similar situation, Charlotte. I’ve been going through some rough anxiety and depression and have been moody a lot and he decided it is not right for him. We had planned a life together. We were so sure we were meant for each other. I am trying so hard to get back to myself with a change of medication. It’s difficult because we do work together. I’m devastated and lost.

We spent that summer together inseperable after that. At the end of the summer he told me he loves me. In that moment I truly forgave him and saw that he had made the mistake out of fear, and open wounds from his last (and only) real relationship… I realized the poor guy had never even experienced true partnership and love… I was excited to show him how a real partnership can be, and how lovable he is.
It takes a lot of courage and strength for your loved one to confess about something that they feel may be bad or hurtful. When you judge your partner, you make them feel worse, and you also psychologically affect them and make them shut themselves up. And once your partner feels uncomfortable sharing their dark secrets with you, they’d prefer to hide their secrets or talk to another friend rather than tell you what they really feel. And that’s never going to help your relationship. In fact, it could be one of the worst things that can happen to your relationship.

My girlfriend and I have been together for 15 months and we are facing a major problem. I just want to start off with saying that she’s the one that recommended me to ask you for advice because right now, I am pretty much confused to do at this point. My girlfriend has told you about what she did when she went over to that guys house and about another guy who is a co-volunteer that volunteers at the nursing home as she does. I have gotten numerous screenshots about she herself committing to what she have done, which is cheating. I also have her best friends claiming those that she did do those things. When i confronted her for the first time she only told me one third of it. Again i find there’s more to the story from her friends. Again i try confronting her and now she told me 2/3. You know where I’m going with this. Anyway now that everything has been cleared out, i asked her why. She told me “i just said all those things because out of anger”. But then i asked her why would she say that. She was angry at me at the time when this occurred so i would understand that she could be saying this out of anger but why not clear this out with her friends? Plus this been hidden for 6 months so why this long? Also one of my friends saw her but they said nothing was happening, just her and this guy in the park talking. I let that go. Then another friend who is currently dating one of her ex-best friends told me that she told him about her cheating. I asked him why would she say that and he said that she was claiming to hurt me by the way is not because she kept it hidden. I asked her about that too and she claims the something, it was out of anger she said all those things to hurt me. This situation happened throughout last summer. I admit that i did not reply to her text for 2 days and keep making her feel bad but i always made sure to make up for that. Now we are trying to work things out but I’m still something sort of confused what to do, so that’s why i writing to you for some advise.
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