A Fearful Avoidant Stopped Responding And Won’t Talk To Me

Question: Yangki, I need help with a fearful avoidant who was responding but has stopped and gone silent. I reached out 3 times as per your advice, and on the 3rd text she responded. She was cold at first and then she warmed up a little. Our conversations were mostly pleasant. We talked everyday things, no talk about the breakup and it felt like old times. She was responding within minutes and even reached out and everything seemed really good. Then I made the mistake of asking her if she wanted to get back together not right away but in the future. She said she wants to be single for a while. I told her we could be just friend as long as there is a change we’ll get  back together in the future. She said she felt pressured and I could see that she was upset. She has since stopped responding to my texts. A couple of days ago, I sent a text telling I was sorry for putting pressure on her and I want to take things slow but she did not respond. It’s been complete silence for 8 days.

I don’t want to go no contact. I feel that if we keep in contact we will figure out how to fix things. In your experience with a fearful avoidant attachment who has gone silent, will she start responding again? How do I get things back to how they were? Your advice was working and I wished I had not gone ahead of myself, please help.

Yangki’s Answer: I don’t know if this helps but a fearful avoidant who was responding then stops responding is common. This is the nature of an avoidant attachment. Avoidants pull back and go silent if they feel overwhelmed or in this case pressured.

You are right, by keeping in contact you can work out most of your problems. The reason the first conversations went great is because you were just two single people who enjoy talking to each other. And from your question, you also realize that you should have kept things at that level for some time. The mistake you made was “over think” what those great conversations meant causing you to rush into a premature conversation about getting back together. Asking a fearful avoidant ex (or ex with any attachment style for that matter) to get back together when you have not given them reason to expect a better relationship is a mistake many people make.

The second mistake you made and that causes most avoidants to go silent is make contact conditional. When you said ” as long as you agree to…” you scared her away. A fearful avoidant or not, if you are not in a relationship, conditions just push someone further away. That is because you are giving someone no option and forcing them to choose what they’d probably would not have chosen without pressure. She’s not responding because if she does, it’ll mean she’s thinking about getting back together, which she might not be at this time. It doesn’t mean she won’t ever, it just means right now, she’s not.

Sit down with yourself and work out a plan of action. If you don’t have a plan of action, you are winging it and that’s a HUGE mistake. When you have a plan of action, contact her and apologize for putting that kind of pressure on her. Tell her you understand why she reacted by withdrawing. It is too premature to even be thinking of getting back together. Then explain to her you have things about you that you should be working on and need time to work on them before you can be in a relationship with anyone.  If you want, mention that “pushing hard when you don’t get your way” as one of them. Then tell her how much you enjoy talking to her and hope that the two of you can stay in contact but it’s completely up to her.

There is no guarantee that she’ll respond but you at least clear the air and give her ac clear picture of what to expect if she decides to respond. If she responds, start things as if you were meeting a new woman and wanting to get to know her and eventually date her. You have a better chance dating your ex than trying to recover or fix a broken relationship.

RELATED:

How A Fearful Avoidant Ex Comes Back – A Detailed Analysis

Attract Back An Avoidant Ex Pt. 7 – An Avoidant Isn’t Texting Back

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11 Comments

  1. says: Daveed

    After 2 months of NC I felt emotionally strong and reached out, “Hi, I’ve been thinking of you and today I passed by xxxx and it reminded me of you. If you’re up to it, I’d like to catch up sometime.” I tried to stir positive memories of our fav hangout but also not put pressure on her to respond. I didn’t hear back for 3 days, she responded “I’m glad xxxx reminded you of me but I don’t understand why you texted me now”. I replied, “I needed time to get my head straight and I’m now in a good place”. She texted back, “Honestly, I’m happy for you but did you think I was going to wait around for you”. I tried to stay calm and texted back “No. I didn’t expect you to wait around, no one should. I really just needed a bit of time and space to heal.” She hasn’t responded and it’s over 3 weeks since our last contact.

  2. says: Sammy

    My DA ex and I have been getting along, but 2 weeks ago we had a disagreement in which we were both triggered and said some awful things to each other. I noticed she pulled back, and I have not contacted her for 10 days. Last night she sent a text wishing me good luck on my job interview, and last week she also sent a text saying she understand we both said some things and may need time and space to recompose. I have not responded to her texts. Do you think that she’s reaching out because I am not responding and she is missing me? How long does it take a DA to miss you and how long should I wait before contacting her?

    1. says: Love Doctor Yangki Akiteng

      I don’t think she’s reaching out because you have not responded to her texts, she’s reaching out because you have an interview coming and she cares enough to wish you luck.

      Reading from what she wrote, she thinks you need space and time to calm down and get your emotions in check. If she’s thinking she’s being punished by not giving her any attention, I don’t think it bothers her as much as it would bother you (preoccupied-anxious). It’s not something she’s obsessively thinking about.

      You on the other hand are playing your game all by yourself. Ignoring someone whatever their attachment style repeatedly causes permanent damage long term. Stop doing what you are doing and respond to someone who cares about you.

  3. says: Sabagoy

    I have recently started contact since our breakup and all exchanges have been very positive but what if she asks me “what am i trying to accomplish texting her”? I am in contact with her with the goal to eventually get back together with her and following your advice on not talking about getting back together too soon. But in this situation should I be honest that i want to be with her still? Your advice has been a tremendous help and following it has given me hope again!

    1. says: Love Doctor, Yangki Akiteng

      YES. Truthful and honest is always best, but be smart about it.

      Something like, “I’d be lying if I said I don’t want you back but I have to be real with myself. I’m still working on making myself a better person. I’ve made so many mistakes in the past and look where it got me. So if you are okay with us just talking for now, it’d mean a lot to me. If it leads to something more, that’d be great. If it doesn’t, I’ll accept it. Let’s just see where things go without trying to make anything happen…” (make sure you rephrase it in better english… 😉

      That’s the easy part. The hard part is walking the talk.

  4. says: onajourney

    I recently contacted my ex after 7 weeks of no contact. I read your blog and decided I’d reach out to him. I didn’t get a response. I contacted him once a week for 3 weeks and still no response. I’ve never tried to reach out to an ex before, although I still had feelings for him. It didn’t work out for me this time, but I feel good about myself just for trying.

    1. You indeed are on a journey… (:

      Feeling good about ourselves is the reward we get for choosing the path that helps our growth. Some day you are going to look back at this and be very glad you learned to reach out even when your ego is fighting you.

      Walk well…

  5. says: pelouffe

    Sorry if it came across that way. I DO understand what he’s going through as I lost my brother a few years ago. I know the loss and devastation that he is feeling right now. I guess I just wanted an opinion as to whether or not it is a common reaction to shut out the person you love and have had a connection/relationship with for as long as we had. People who know him tell me that he deals with things by walling himself off. I just feel helpless. I want to be there for him but I can’t and my heart is breaking for him.

    1. That’s certainly a different tone from ” Why do some people do this?”… (:

      Each person is different… I don’t think there is a “standard” way of reacting to bad news. This is his way and it seems those who know him have pretty much told you that’s who he is. If you love him and care for him as much as you say you do… LET HIM BE. Let him deal with this his own way. That’s what it means to love someone and what “being there for them” means. It’s about them and not about you… or your breaking heart.

  6. says: pelouffe

    My boyfriend of almost 2 years just stopped calling one day & hasn’t called me or taken my calls for 4 months now. The last day we spoke, things were normal. He had a call come in and told me he’d call me right back. He didn’t. I found out that he got news about his sister who was terminal that she had not much time left and I thought that maybe this affected him to the point of shutting down. His dad told me that he said he just wanted to be on his own. Why do some people do this? We were so close and getting closer and now nothing.

    1. I don’t know why people do the things they do… but I believe everyone has a good reason (at least good as far as they are concerned) for doing what they do. Finding out that someone close to you has terminal illness is HUGE. Many people naturally shut down and want to be on their own.

      Personally, I don’t think I’d want to call someone who doesn’t understand what I’m going through — and is only thinking of themselves (which is how your comment comes across).

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