Question: How do I handle contact with my ex I see everyday? We work for the same company and I’m worried that she can’t miss me; and it will affect my chances of getting her back. Also she and I were best friends before we became romantic and we are still each other’s best friend. We broke up because things fell into a routine and she said we were more best friends than lovers. She says she still loves me just not IN love with me. We send each other “good morning” and wish each other “good night” just like before. We also send texts throughout the day and hangout two to three times a week. I want her back but I have no idea what to do. Should I go no contact for sometime to give her space?
Yangki’s Answer: It’s hard to adjust to not talking to your ex like you did when you were together. It’s even harder to handle contact with an ex you see everyday; not because you want to but because you have to.
I’ve worked with men and women (e.g. those who worked in the same place or lived together after breaking up) and were in daily contact with their ex; and ended up getting back together. I’ve also worked with men and women who had daily contact with their ex; and ended up pushing their ex further away. It all depends on how much of their time the other person is willing to give to you, and how close to you they want to be.
The main problem I have seen with everyday contact with an ex very early on in the process is that you run the risk of continuing with the old relationship; and falling back into the same pattern/issues that caused the relationship to end in the first place.
I wouldn’t be surprised if the reason she fell out of love is because you transitioned from friends to lovers and nothing really changed. And now that you are broken up, nothing seems to have changed. Familiarity breeds contempt, and in this case boredom too (hence the not feeling IN love).
Two things you can do to help both of you start over.
1. Cut down on the frequency of your texts and time together so that there is a clear BEFORE and AFTER the break-up. Then start gradually building up the number of texts, conversations and time you send together as you get closer again. The frequency should reflect your progress towards getting back together.
The word here is “cut down” or reduce frequency; not cut off contact or stop initiating contact. You have too good a thing to risk it with “no contact”. Besides, things will get really weird trying to avoid each other.
2. Create some emotional distance between the old relationship and the new one. It’s important to note that ’emotional space’ is not the same as distancing yourself (what many call “giving space”). “Emotionally space” is taking a break from the emotions of the break-up or old relationship by:
- Not talking about the old relationship or discussing the break-up for some time. You can’t distance yourselves from the old relationship if you are still dragging back all the emotions from the past.
- Creating new memories to replace the old memories. When you’ve created better memories, you can talk about the old relationship and all it’s problems and it won’t matter because what you have now is so much better.