How Much Contact With An Ex Is Too Much Contact?

Although every break-up is unique, all relationship breakups share a set of common challenges.

More often than not, what happens just prior to the break-up sets the stage for how both people cope with the break-up and how they renegotiate the dynamics between them post break-up.

Some exes will want you to contact them several times a day and get hurt and upset if you don’t respond immediately while others feel ‘pressured’ if you contact them once a day or even three times a week.

Attachment styles provides a framework for understanding how people cope with a break-up and how they manage the transition of a break-up.

Our attachment style influences how we seek connection, how much closeness we need and how we respond or react to the end of a valued relationship. For example, someone with a preoccupied attachment style needs more closeness and more contact to feel the relationship is working for them. When the relationship ends, they seek more contact and may text, email or call non-stop. Someone with a preoccupied attachment style is also more likely to play mind games just to have some form of contact with an ex, even to the point of stalking.

Someone with dismissive-avoidant style on the other hand needs more me-space and less contact to feel that the relationship is working for them. When the relationship ends, dismissives are more likely to cut off all contact or stop responding. Someone with a dismissive-avoidant style is also more likely to end a relationship by text or just drop off the face of the earth without so much as a word.

When trying to get back together, being able to understand, accept and appreciate the fact that some exes need more contact to feel connected and to fall in love, while others need you to contact them less to avoid feeling overwhelmed and triggering a flight response can be the difference between getting back together, and not.

The table below is a basic summary of how much contact each attachment style needs.

A more detailed examination of how contact plays out for each attachment style can be found in Avoidant Ex- How to Attract Back An Avoidant

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