This is a must-read in-depth analysis of how often to contact your ex based on their attachment style. Like most, you want to keep the lines of communication open; but you also don’t want to contact your ex too much; especially if your ex is an avoidant or not initiating contact.
How much contact and texting does each attachment style needs to get them back?
If you don’t know about attachment styles (find out your attachment style); you may assume that there is a standard amount o texting and contact that works for every ex. This is a huge mistake that might cost your chances of getting back your ex.
Attachment theory offers insights to how much contact and texting each attachment styles needs. For example, an ex with an anxious attachment needs more contact to feel close, loved, wanted, valued and cared for. If you don’t text them often, they get anxious, feel abandoned and act out. In fact most people with an anxious pre-occupied attachment style don’t mind if you text them everyday and several times a day. The more contact and connection, the better.
Dismissive avoidants need less texting, less contact and connection
Someone with a dismissive avoidant attachment style you to contact them less. The find frequent contact suffocating and infringing on their independence. This doesn’t mean they don’t want you to text them, it just means that they prefer more spacing between text messages. Even when you are in a relationship, a dismissive avoidant attachment may be comfortable with one text exchange a day.
Individuals with a secure attachment style and individuals with a fearful-avoidant attachment styles fall in between. Sometimes they want you to text them more often; and sometimes they want less texting. The reasons for needing more or less contact is different for someone with a secure attachment style and someone with a fearful-avoidant attachment style.
A break-up changes the dynamics of how much to contact or text your ex
When you breakup, let’s just say; things get more complicated especially in the initial stage of trying to get them back.
- Dismissive avoidants were comfortable with good morning and goodnight texts now barely responds at all.
- Fearful avoidants who were initiating most texts, arranging most of the dates and even needy at times, now wants “space” or no contact to focus on themselves.
- An anxious preoccupied ex who days following the break-up was blowing up your phone and begging you to come back; now wants no contact.
- Even an ex with a secure attachment style is taking longer to respond and initiating contact less and less because they don’t want to lead you on or want to take it slow.
Most of the time the “change” in contact seeking and contact avoiding behaviour is only temporary; a reaction to the break-up. With time, exes revert back to their core attachment styles.
Simple guide on how much contact and texting feels safe for each attachment style
This simple guide based on credible attachment styles research will help you know if your ex needs less or more contact; and adjust how often you contact your ex accordingly.
While how well you space or time your texts alone will not attract back your ex; an understanding of how much contact makes your ex feel safe enough to respond or initiate contact can make a big difference as to whether they engage in contact-seeking or contact-avoiding.
In addition to research, I have also found working with different attachment styles that:
1) Anxious Preoccupied want increased texting after the break-up
An with an anxious preoccupied attachment style is more likely to want increased contact just after the break-up regardless of the reasons for the break-up. If they don’t want to try things again, they will cut off contact or simply disappear over time. If they want to try things again, they will be comfortable with contact as if nothing has changed. But if they have had some serious self-reflection (and done self-work) they may initiate contact less but respond to almost every text, and even try to engage on social media.
2) Fearful avoidants want no contact after a break-up
A fearful avoidant ex will most likely initiate no contact immediately after a break-up as an avoidant coping strategy to deal with break-up emotions. This means that it will take longer for you to start contact. They are also most likely to take longer to bounce back. And because they have so much self-doubt, contact will be sporadic. Sometimes they need more and sometimes they need less.
3) Dismissive avoidants are indifferent after no contact
A dismissive avoidant does not need no contact to deal with break-up emotions; they simply shut down all emotions. This is why they are able to continue contact after a break-up; no feelings triggered. But it also means things move a lot slower, and contact is much spaced.
There are individual factors that may affect the amount of contact an ex is comfortable with
1) What else is happening in your exe’s life that may be a priority (new relationship, illness in the family, work or busy schedule etc.), and
2) Issues outside of their control (e.g. depression, long distance etc.).