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.
A lot of clients ask me… should I call or text my ex? Personally, I believe texting is a much safer way to communicate with your ex. It doesn’t require you to have a full-blown, face-to-face conversation and it’s extremely non-invasive. Your ex is free to reply to you whenever he or she wants, and you’re able to reply to your ex’s text whenever you want too. This sort of dynamic allows you time to think about what to say before you actually say it.
Renee’s, we’ve had no interaction since he responded to confirm he’s dealing with some things and would explain when he could and apologized for pulling away. That was two months ago. It’s been total silence since then.I reached out to give him encouragement and let him know I’m still here for him and loved him and am very proud of the man he is. I asked if he needed more time, no reply yet. That was a week ago. Up until this stage, he’s been a truly reliable, mature, stand up guy. He’s been broken from previous relationships but with… Read more »
You should investigate whether he is not being loving or interested, or if he’s just not doing that in the way that you expect or are used to. You may have unspoken expectations or fantasies of what a relationship should look like, and your projections are getting in the way of appreciating the good relationship you actually have. It sounds like you might have different love languages as well, where you need a lot of verbal affirmation and maybe that’s not his strong suit. That is something you can discuss with him and ask for more of. You can tell him what’s working for you and what’s not, or that you’re unsure whether he’s into you romantically despite all the evidence, and try to hear and understand where he is coming from.
Before I can start getting into the tactics that you can use to help move the reconnection process along there are a few things I need to teach you about text messages. I entitled this section “the basics of text conversations” because I feel there is a lot you need to understand about the basics of this process before you take any major steps like text messaging your ex.
Hopefully, these tips give you something to work with, and you will find something that can help you approach your relationship problems in a different way. You don't have to be Freud, you don't have to do it all at once; instead, see which of these ideas catch your attention. Then pick a situation, a pattern, a problem, and map out a different approach, a concrete behavior that you can put into place. Start small. Focus on you. One change will lead to another.
i successfully completed my no contact rule.after that i sent my first text.he was so excited to respond and he was responding like crazy.i tried to end up the conversation many times bt he was keeping on texting.atlast i managed to say goodnight by saying i was sleepy.as chris told i decided to put a gap for 3 days after first text.bt the very next day of first text itself he texted me asking something.should i reply or do i have to wait for the completion of third day?

Even if a man is completely in love – it’s natural for him to drift away at times. There may be something he’s going through that you don’t know about, or he may be having a difficult time at work. The point is, you dont know, and there is more going on in the world than just you. If you feel it in your gut that you guys are still close, give it the benefit of the doubt.

He was so sweet, romantic, a gentleman, fun, funny. He made my heart flutter. He tried to recreate my pose in the photo of me he had made his desk top photo. (I had made his photo my screen saver on my cell too. lol) He was doing things to keep my comfortable and told me he didn’t come all this way for sex and proved he wanted more. We were like best friends. So compatible.
We bought my fave food nd we stayed in his condo and watched movies. We were like friends. No malice. And we were not sweet like how we were on text. But he’s sorrt that our first date is as simple as that only. And he even said that next time, he will do better. Then we slept on diffrent bed. But he came to me and slept beside me. I dont know what came to my mind and i hugged him. He hugged me back. All night, we just cuddled. We didnt kiss or had sex (well i wont allow him if he forced me) . the next morning, we didnt talk about it like it never happened. He walked me to the bus station.
Talking about your previous relationship with your ex girlfriend can be pretty tricky because it is bound to bring up old memories and not all of those old memories are going to be very good. On top of the “bad memories” things get can get really emotional and if you don’t know how to handle those emotions the conversation is going to eat you alive.
So my ex broke up with me a week ago (we had only been dating for two months but apparently it was his longest relationship in awhile) and we’ve been in contact almost every day for the past week just talking as friends so that we don’t lose our snapchat streak (I know that’s a stupid reason to keep in contact with someone). He already drunk texted me saying that he made a mistake but when I confronted him about it the next day he remembered what he said just fine but said he couldn’t get back together because he “needed to work on himself first”. I feel awful starting the “4 week no contact rule” since we’ve been chatting for so long but I really want him back. What do I do?

I’ve been with my ex for 4 years. My first love and vice versa, and we intently spoke about marriage. We broke up a year and a half ago because I was too stubborn to listen to him. He told me I needed to open up more, to communicate better but being an introvert this was extremely difficult for me…so he left. I’ve been trying really hard since and got better at it.

Well, let me just say this. Having an intense conversation with your ex right after a breakup is not a good idea. In fact, I think it is one of the dumbest ideas there is. Now, I do realize that logically you may realize that this is the case but when you are actually in a situation that you have so much invested in it is hard to take a step back and think logically.
One day I went to a boys house. He had come from Florida and it was a meet up. Lasting for 25 minutes, no longer. We were sitting on separate couches and he was playing a video game. Out of no where he kissed me and I pushed him off and left his house. His friend was outside and I just walked out and left. I volunteer at a nursing home and over the summer their was another volunteer working their as well. We went to IHOP together but as co workers. We even payed for our own food. When we were done eating he went his way because his aunt was going to pick him up and I went my way. We watched Planes 2, his cousins wanted to see the movie and I paid for my own ticket while he bought for him and his cousins. We waited and I told him to call, his cousins said no so what were we supposed to do with 5 tickets? We watched the movie. I sat in the last row because I like to sit in the back and he sat in the middle. When it finished he went his way and I went mine. I normally leave the nursing home at 5-6. I had to leave early one day and we sat in the park and talked as usual about the nursing home. Things like how long we worked their or what old people we were close to. My boyfriends friend saw us but nothing was happening. He walked his way because again, his aunt was picking him up and I took my bus home. After those times I haven’t seen or talked to either of them. My boyfriend has screenshots and I told him I was loyal and nothing had happened. I only took long to tell him. How do I prove something that I did not do? Please help us, 

This process is often referred to as the “rubber band,” where a man alternates between being close to his partner and pulling away, like a rubber band. The key is not to move towards your man when he is withdrawing, because it creates slack in the rubber band. You want to give him his space and keep the tension in the rubber band so that he eventually snaps back and becomes close to you again.
I’m thinking of pulling away for that reason. The words of affirmation just aren’t there at all. And what’s more upsetting is he told me a story about how he expressed his feelings to his ex girlfriend almost instantly, really quickly into them meeting each other. They ended up breaking up because she was not as into him. So now I feel like I have to disappear just to see if he actually likes me.
Here;s an interesting one and maybe I am being a brat but I'm going to ask anyway. Late October I started seeing this guy. I did everything wrong one the first date, but I din't care one bit because I honestly didn't find him to be great looking. Super nice, great dresser, good body, but different than I expected. Anyway, we went out again because if a guy seems to have most of the qualities I like, if I think he's super nice and cool, I'll give it a try. We sleep together on date 2 and again, I DON'T CARE that I probably should not have. He still wants to see me though. After date four, I decide I'm just trying to like the guy so I tell him I can't see him anymore. I don't say exactly why but that something is not there.He starts to ask why and then backs off (smart) and takes it like a gentleman.That was after like 2 weeks. The next day or two all I do is tell my friends about this and it occurs to me I'm thinking about him nonstop. So I text him and BAM! Back together, dating and having the best sex I have EVER had in my life. We text a lot, he intiates, I don'tact needy at all... It's nice, it's warm, it's sexy, it's just great. THEN... his mom dies. He has to leave town but he just keeps on texting me the whole time. Before that he even invited me into his own world at a ceremony he had to attend. Up to this point he says thing like when you meet so and so and things like that. While out of town, everything is still great and he says he doesn't want to dwell on his mom.I respect that so I don't push at all. Before he gets back he he says he needs to take me to his home town (a popular vacation destination). When he gets back I meet him but his flight was delayed so it's pretty late (not normal for us to do late night stuff like that). I even said if it's too late let's reschedule. He says no so I go. The next day is fine... texting blah blah blah, but the following day he seems to be distant. I do nothing. The next day, today, I text him first. He says he had a headache the day before but it's probably stress over deciding to leave an old job for a new one and a lawsuit he's in. He then tells me about it. But.... he definitely seems more distant than when his mom died, so I'm thinking am I just being a complete brat here or is he actually losing interest. It seems really obvious to me but I have recently decided I don't make excuses for a man's behaviour any more. If they want you, no matter the circumstances, you know it. what's your take? Feel free to completely call me out, if I am just being a big baby here. At this point, I actually do really like the guy. I wish he would say something like "I'm cray about you" or something but his actions up to this point have been great so saying words may be a bit much to expect less than 2 months in anyway. Either way, I just want to know if I should completely bail at this point because I hate this feeling!
Being friends with benefits makes it easy for him to get what he wants and often results in men pulling away. Maintaining a real friendship without an attachment of the desired outcome can give him the opportunity to see you in a different light when he is ready. It’s important to keep your options open and not focus all of your energy on one person if you know what I mean. 😉

You begin interacting with the thoughts in your head rather than with the person in front of you. Rather than trying to learn who he is and what he’s about, you look at his behavior and the things he says as a means to measure how he feels about you… and whether you’re getting closer or further away from your goal of having a relationship with him.


Last friday we had our last fight, and he broke up with me the morning after. He said that it was too much for him, that he was not cut out for this. And he added that he doesnt feel the same way as he used to, he is exhausted, he never has time to think about himself cause our communication problems and my anxiety are always in his head. He said he still loves me but that its not the same, its broken. And that he wont change his mind, even though a part of him wishes that we could work again in the future. We broke up over the phone but he invited me to his place after, and of course I came to try and reason with him. We had sex, and it was hard. But we didnt fight, and he insisted on being friends.
Hi Lauren, I've been wrestling with this with family and friends and thought maybe someone else online could help.Here's my situation. I have known my fiance for over a year, we met online and have visited each other many times. I've flown over to ireland three to four times for weeks at a time and she had visited the US for six weeks to try it out in february and for the fiance visa for six weeks in July-Sept. We would talk everyday for four to five hours a night while we were apart. She is very close to her family and loves her country. She believes Ireland is the best thing since refried beans. My plan was for her to Move to the US and we could live there while she could visit ireland for two to three months every year with the future kids for summer and christmas and then we'd move to ireland for good when I retired since I'm the bread winner and my specified job is in america (I'm a petroleum Engineer). However she back peddled and said she doesn't think what we had is strong enough to leave her family. So she came up with a five year plan. When she moved to the US for five years then we have to move back to ireland and find work there. I really loved her to i agreed to the promise. Well while she was over in the US for the fiance visa she started getting really homesick. A week or so before the wedding she said she realized why she had doubts about the marriage and that was that she loved me but wasn't "in love with me" and that I should treat her more like a lover instead of a friend. But to not worry about it and we can work on it. The next night she popped the question. "If i wanted to go back to ireland in a year will you go with me?" I said no. "what about after five years to raise our kids?" I sighed and just said no. She called off the wedding and cried alot. I should have said something other than no. Like, yes that's our plan. Or we'll do what's best for our fam...

Be calm and confident in yourself and what you think you can contribute to her life. In the time you've taken to improve yourself, hopefully you will have evidence of that change. If the cause of your breakup was that you did not have enough time for her, show that you've altered your work schedule and made time to volunteer or pick up that sailing hobby you've always dreamed about. That will show you're willing to make time for things that matter to you. See where I'm going with this?
Similarly, it’s not uncommon for a person to wonder what a text from an ex actually means. Is there a deeper meaning…? When it comes to serious matters, texts are often too short and impersonal to act is proper indicators of the entire situation. It’s also not unusual for someone to show a text from an ex to a friend to get their opinion, and as each person’s opinion and perception of things is very different, they might even say, “Don’t text ur ex back,” when in reality it might be a good call to actually open conversation. If you’re unsure of what to do, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
Furthermore, I want to mention something else that is aligned to this. I have seen several woman date a man and then come back and say “He was so into me in the beginning, he courted me and showered me with gifts, said all the right things, and was so eager to make me his.” But then once this man gets what he wants he moves on, and his actions start to change slowly. I call this type of man “the snake.” Men like this tend to be very narcissistic but also tend to get what they want often. They have a thrill of the chase, and they see a significant reward for their ego when they have won their prize. I always tell women to be VERY careful of a man who is too forward in the beginning. Take your time, and challenge someone who may be extremely forward. So many women fall for a man like this because we are hopeless romantics and you are pretty amazing! So, when you a see a man showing you so much affection and attention it starts to get you to think, “wow he is so different!” Right? Then you play this emotional mind game in your head stating “I would be stupid if I let this go.” I am going to explain further as you read on.

Advice from a male perspective anyone? 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 and he respects mine also. When he’s a weekend away 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 made 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 roommate 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 today 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?

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