Question: Yangki, doesn’t keeping in contact make your ex think that you’ll always be around? Isn’t it better to remove yourself from their life so they get a good taste of not having you around anymore and when she misses you she’ll come chasing for you?
Yangki’s Answer: You say “think that I’ll always be around” like it’s a bad thing. Maybe I am just too old, but there was a time when relationships flourished in the safety and confidence of knowing that the other person loved us enough and will not leave us. You know, when being a couple meant having your one human who will always be there for you when no one else is around.
Unfortunately you are not alone who thinks making someone miss you will make them want you more. I talk to so many people in on-and-off relationships where one person (or both people) are afraid of being taken for granted and acting in ways that make the other feel “I am not going to always be around”. But as I have said in many of my articles, keeping someone in fear of losing you only works with certain kind of people (insecure, afraid of rejection and/or abandonment). Even with someone who really loves you, there comes a time when the pain of staying (and living in fear) is far worse the pain of rejection and/or abandonment.
Here’s the thing, if you feel that “always being around” means that you will be taken for granted maybe you ought to rethink why you are with someone who could take you for granted, or want back someone who took you for granted.
Someone who genuinely loves you, cares about you, respects you and thinks the world of you:
1) Will not take you for granted because you are way too important to them.
2) Will do everything in their power to make sure you do not feel you are being taken for granted.
3) Will do whatever they can t make you feel emotionally safe including making you feel that they will always have your back.
It’s that simple.
All the “remove yourself from their life so they get a good taste of not having you around anymore” is you playing mind games with yourself. Deep inside you probably know your ex doesn’t love you as much as you want them to, and think that playing games will get them to love and want you more.
It may work that your ex is insecure, afraid of rejection and/or abandonment, and comes chasing after you, but once they have you back, end of the chase. The fear of rejection and/or abandonment is gone and you were just a drug of choice.
You may also “remove yourself from her life” and instead of missing you, she actually gets used to and even likes NOT having you around anymore.
Bottom line, it’s impossible to sustain a long term relationship based on “removing yourself from their life” to get someone to want you. Sometimes it’s best to be honest with yourself, cut your loses and start over with someone who you don’t have to “make miss you” or them to want you.
If you have to resort to mind games to keep someone around, you either NEVER HAD them to begin with or have ALREADY LOST them.
I love this article. I’m in a situation with my ex where I have accepted his offer for friendship because we both genuinely care for and enjoy each other, even though he doesn’t want a relationship. I believe that friendship and staying in each other’s lives will give me a better chance of getting back with him than removing myself from his life. Everyone says “cut off contact so he knows what it’s like to miss you”, and I hate that. I think it’s manipulative, just as you said. I appreciate you being one of the few relationship coaches who don’t advocate that.