No Contact Zone: Why Talking To Your Ex Will Keep You Both From Moving On
Anyone who has experienced a dreadful breakup hopes to be “over it” as soon as possible. To be over it means many things, but it definitely includes not caring what your ex is doing and whom he is talking to. It also means that years later, if you happened to stumble across his 96-page wedding album on Facebook, you could view it in its entirety without flinching or shedding a single tear.
I can imagine it's a refreshing feeling and is a great accomplishment when the time actually comes. I would like to think I'm not the only woman on Earth who has an ex that has yet to escape her mind in the zero f*cks given way discussed above. Although we have been broken up forever, I would be absolutely devastated to learn he got engaged or moved on in any sort of serious nature. I would love to think I'm totally over him, but the fact that I would care if he moved on speaks louder than my denial does.
In my angst over said ex, it is important to note that if I found out he is not over it, I would be completely shocked. I'm absolutely certain he is at a place described in my first paragraph. However, annoyingly so, he pops back into my life unexpectedly at times.
I know that he and I are not the only two idiots post-breakup that have gone on a long road of back and forths, ups and downs and ins and outs of each others lives. During the times that we were out of each others lives, I mostly hoped and wished to hear from him.
I would constantly have to check myself and stop myself from dialing his number or looking up his Instagram account. During the times we chose to be apart, it was always for at least one good reason, and I kept myself from sliding back into the grips of this failed romance by maintaining absolutely no contact, no social media stalking, nothing.
In the “off” periods, it was hard to maintain zero contact. But as days turned to weeks and weeks to months, it got easier to not be tempted to reach out. As time went on, my hopes of hearing from him greatly dissipated. This made it a hell of a lot easier to stow thoughts of him deep in the back of my mind, and it actually allowed my heart to start the healing process.
The world has a very comical sense of humor in these situations because when it finally seems like you're in a state of peace about "that one ex," that is the exact moment that person will come back in some way, shape or form. This recently happened to me one unsuspecting Sunday when I glanced at my lit-up iPhone screen. I saw an iMessage from a 10 digit number I am all too familiar with, and for the first time upon seeing those digits, I got a pit in my stomach instead of feeling elated.
So, why now? Why have I not felt like this before, and why did I just now wish that I heard nothing? Well, for starters, I felt like I was just starting to be over it. But, hearing from an ex you still care for will no doubt send anyone in a tailspin of anxiety, questioning and heartbreak all over again. In addition to that, it's hard to be blind to history after a while.
Every time this has happened previously, sparking the questions of “Why now?” “Is it different this time?” and, most importantly, the emotion of hope for us, it ended in heartbreak on my end. More often than not, when it comes to exes, it never is different. After a while, you have to actually listen to the loud cries of the examples from the past, and you want to scream at your ex to leave you alone, not hope to hear from him or her.
In my case, my relationship history post-breakup tells me that absolutely nothing would be different this time, either. When it comes to on-again, off-again relationships, it seems the rule of all or nothing should be a fair basis for any communication between both parties.
If — and only if — an ex ever wants anything serious from his or her former counterpart should you reach out to that person. If not, leave your ex the hell alone. Having zero contact with your former flame is the only way a broken heart can fully heal.
Although, it is hard to deny the glaring sadness we feel toward the people we once loved and shared something beautiful with who are no longer in our lives. However, as someone who still cares and loves the other without having the feelings reciprocated, what choice is there? Having an ex be in your life only in half of the way (at best) is unfair to you.
That is why no matter how beautiful the relationship was and how many lingering feelings exist, no contact is the only fair option. If both people are not in the same, zero f*cks given stage of the post-breakup timeline, contact hinders the healing for the one poor heart who has yet to make it there.
Using the “all or nothing” mentality is the only safe way to protect a heart of someone you once loved. If someone still loves you, spare him or her the heartache of the post-breakup saga, and most importantly, save that person from the hope that comes along with communication. Either come back to take it all and take it for good, or leave your ex alone.