7 Things To Do When Your Ex Cuts Off All Contact And Won’t Respond

Your ex cuts off all contact, unfriends you, blocks you, and won’t respond to texts or take your calls. It’s like they’ve suddenly disappeared off the face of the earth. No warning. No explanation. What do you do?

Granted, different people deal with break-ups differently. But this is someone who said they loved you, and even promised to love you forever. Someone who, called you “babe”, introduced you to friends and family as “my…” and had you in their future. Your person.

What do you do when you ex cuts off all contact, unfriends you and/or blocks you?

1. Ask yourself why your ex cut you off 

It’s possible that you were being overly emotional, unreasonable, needy or threatening, and your ex (rightfully) feels that cutting off all contact is the only way to get you to stop; and for your ex to protect themselves from you. You can’t fault someone for trying to protect themselves from drama, unreasonable behaviour or being harassed with texts and calls.

RELATED: Dismissive Avoidant Ex: You Want Me But Maybe I Don’t Want You

2.  Assume they want nothing to do with you

If you go to the house of a friend you had a falling out with. They see you coming and lock all the doors, windows and drew down the blinds. It is reasonable to conclude that they don’t want you there. They want you to leave. Similarly, when your ex cuts off all contact and blocks all access for you to contact them, assume they want you gone. The only self-respecting thing to do is leave them alone. Don’t keep trying to contact someone who is sending you a clear message. You lose their respect.

RELATED: 3 Ways ‘No Contact’ Hurts Your Chances (Attachment Styles)

3. See it for what it is, manipulation

If withholding attention, affection or love (silent treatment or cold shoulder), or trying to make you feel anxious, jealous, clingy or desperate is something your ex has a habit of doing or has done in the past, “no contact” is just more of the same.

You know what they say: “You teach people how they treat you.” If you take back someone who thinks it’s okay to punish you for ending a relationship that didn’t meet your needs, was deeply troubled (too many arguments and fights) or that was simply moving too fast for the level of commitment you were ready for; you are only re-confirming to them that withholding attention, affection or love works.

If refusing to continue a dysfunctional dynamic does not make your ex want to change; you know that the behaviour will continue if you get back together.  You can’t change someone else. The only person you can change is you. Saying “NO!” to emotional manipulation and/or abuse is taking care of your own emotional health, and cleaning up your emotional energy. You will be more ready for a relationship where you will be treated with the respect, affection and love you deserve.

RELATED: 5 Game-Changing Things To Do When Your Ex Is Playing Mind Games

4. Give your ex a chance to change their mind about cutting you off

If you still have feelings for your ex and can find a way to somehow reach out to your ex even if they cut you off.

My advice is reach out at least 3 times depending how you feel. The first time you reach out, tell them that you understand if they need space or a clean break to move on. But if there’s any hope of any kind of relationship in the future, cutting you off is not helping. The message it sends is that they do not want anything to do with you. If that is the message they’re sending, you get it. Sometimes no response is a response in itself. But if that’s not the message they’re trying to send, you want to hear directly from them.

If your ex doesn’t respond, take it for that it is. No response is a response. It’s best that you both move on.

5. Let your ex be the one to reach out first

Many people doing ‘no contact’ actually want contact, they just want you to contact them first. This makes them feel that you miss them and still want them. If you want your ex to know you miss them and want them back, reach out first. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter who reached out first. What matters is that you have a secure, healthy, and lasting relationship.

But if you try to reach out more than 2 times and your ex completely ignores you, and doesn’t even respond to tell you they want space, or don’t want you to contact them, avoidant or not, that’s downright disrespectful.
Stop contacting them. Leave them to contact you first. The more you keep contacting them, the more they feel ignoring you is what makes you want them. If they want you back, let them reach out first. You’ve done your part, the ball is now in their court.

RELATED: 7 Reasons Why Fearful Avoidants Do ‘No Contact’

6. Respect your ex’s request not to contact them

If your ex directly and clearly says they do not want you to contact them; respect their request and don’t keep contacting them. If they say they want ‘space or time”, ask them if that means they do not want you to contact them. If they say yes. Respect their boundary, and not contact them.

Not everyone ex who cuts you off all contact is doing it to get you to miss them or manipulate your feelings. Some people believe “no contact” is the best way for them to heal from the pain and move on. You may not like that this is how they choose to move on, but respect their wish. Some day you’ll want someone else to respect yours too.

REATED: Is It ‘No Contact’ If My Ex Asked Me Not To Contact Them?

7. Move on

Your ex cutting you off and ignoring you may actually be a good thing in that it allows you to move on.

It is time to start the process of moving on yourself.

Fair? Probably not. Heartbreaking? Yes. Healthy? YES! This is what someone with a secure attachment style would do. They try what is within their power to change, but if they’ve done their best and an ex is still won’t respond; they move on.

Availability and responsiveness are key to a secure relationship. If someone can’t even do that, the relationship is unsafe.

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309 Comments

  1. says: Salissa

    I broke NC after more than 4 months and reached out to my ex. He responded with no emotion and didn’t seem to have missed me or care at all. It felt like I was taking to an ultimate stranger. After catching up I asked where we go from here and he said he is in a relationship and is not good for us in have contact. He wants to respect her and work on their relationship. I feel worse than the breakup, crushed and alone. He did say he wanted us to maintain contact after the breakup and I went NC. Do you think if we had remained in contact we would still have a chance?

    1. says: Love Doctor Yangki Akiteng

      No contact for 4 months did not help for sure, but there is no way of telling for sure if you had remained in contact you would still have a chance. A lot depends on why you broke up in the first place.

  2. says: Patra

    Unlike most others asking questions here I don’t want to get back together with my ex. He cheated two times and things like that aren’t forgotten easily. I don’t feel guilty at all about ignoring him and at this point I don’t think we can be friends either.

  3. says: Diego

    Yangki, thank you I needed to read this. My ex and I went from talking every day to not talking. Today will be 42 days. I never acted needy or angry after the breakup and we both agreed we played a part in the breakup. I don’t know why she initiated no contact and it really hurts mainly because I never thought of her as someone who wouldn’t care. She was always a kind soul and we both cared for each other and even when we had our couple’s fights we were always kind to each other. I miss her so much but is she’s fine without contact, I should be fine with it too. I just don’t know if and when she reaches out I will want to talk to her. I don’t know if I can accept this side of her.

  4. says: Radhruin

    It’s strange that you framed the no-contact rule as emotional abuse.
    Did it occur to you that a man resorting to not contacting his ex may sometimes not be doing it to abuse anyone, but simply protecing himself from the unavoidable pitfalls of maintaining contact with a person you were in love with in the first stages after they dump you?

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      You are late to the party, Radhruin

      That point has been argued on this site 1000 times. Read the discussion on this article and others about ‘no contact’. Warning: You won’t like it very much. This site is not for “NC” users, or advocates.

      I think you’ll find this interesting: Does Someone Doing “No Contact” Love You?

  5. says: Austin

    We have had no contact since January as per her request. The hard part for me is to accept that someone I shared 3 years with doesn’t want anything to do with me. How can she forget everything we went through just like that? I suppose there is no hope of us getting back together and I need to move on.

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      Accepting that it may be really over is hard for most people, even when it’s clear it is over.

      That said, I don’t think people easily forget a 3 year relationship. They just make a conscious decision to move on from it. Without contact, it’s hard to tell whether there is hope or not. You are left in a vacuum. Personally I don’t think that’s fair, but again, a lot of things about break-ups aren’t always fair.

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