How Do I Get My Commitment Phobic Ex Boyfriend Back?

"I Can't Believe I Actually Have a Chance of Getting Him Back!"

The first time I ever fell in love I hit the jackpot. Okay, maybe not exactly THE jackpot. I was 19 and I was in love, so, to me this guy could do no wrong.

He was skinny, and a little bit of a jerk to everyone we knew.

But not to me.

Okay, maybe a little bit. But I didn’t notice till years later.

I had watched Grease so many times I thought unrequited love was romantic or something.

Okay our love wasn’t quite unrequited, but he had this really strange allergy.

No…

Not to anything food-related or anything like that. Although I hear this affliction is quite common these days.

Anytime, I would even hint that I was even thinking about considering mentioning that we should make our relationship official or something this horrible thing would happen to him.

It wasn’t anything as horribly painful as hives or anything. But, he would have something very similar to a panic attack.

This would lead to him to break out in something I can only describe as disappearing for weeks, sometimes months, at a time.

It was like a Wile E. Coyote cartoon. He’d be there one second and then POOF! He was gone. Leaving nothing but trails of smoke behind him and a very very confused girl, infatuated with him, heartbroken.

It was awful. I didn’t know what to do. Usually, I would be distraught the entire time he was gone, which usually lasted a week sometimes longer.

My schoolwork and my health suffered tremendously. If we happened to turn up at the same place, he would almost magically escape before I could even say hi.

As you can imagine, I was devastated. However, his affliction had another symptom! As soon as I would turn my focus back to school and found ways to stop pining over him, his radar would go off.

I don’t know how it works exactly, but the second I wasn’t thinking about him his sickness would magically disappear, erasing all memory that it ever happened. Apparently, this amnesia was contagious, because, when he would waltz back into my life it was as if I didn’t remember it at all and the whole cycle would begin again.

It was all very impossible to explain. I’m shocked that Night-Line never did a special.

 

“This just in, Texas man mysteriously turns into smoke when even the faintest hint of commitment is in the air.”

Looking back, I realize he was just terrified of commitment.

Once he was so affected by his illness that he broke out with another girlfriend for a whole year. By then I had gotten so used to his song and dance that I didn’t even miss a beat.

I was done pining in about a week and found myself bartending to fill my time. I eventually found myself dating other people and having a good time. However, his commitment phobia must’ve been catching because I couldn’t get close to someone to save my life. I would come up with the most ridiculous reasons not to let someone get to know me for a very long time

I was almost completely convinced that the second I did they would leave. Or worse, if we did get serious, I was positive my phobic ex would show up and I’d drop this new guy as if it was nothing because I was still so hung up on guy number one.

It was a vicious cycle.

I didn’t properly date anyone until I’d graduated college.

However, after a year or so, his new girlfriend found herself hinting at marriage (what? Was she crazy?!) and he ditched her too.

Surprise surprise he wound up worming his way back into my life under the pretense of friendship.I had grown tired of unrequited love by this point and he found himself dealing with a very lonely existence.

There was nothing I could do.

I was just a kid but even I knew it was time to pull the plug and walk away, but I learned some incredibly useful information from the whole ordeal.

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How to Identify Commitment Phobia?

  1. His Past Relationships

This one is simple. If you look at all of the relationships he had before you, you’ll notice a pattern. They will all have been remarkably short-lived for whatever reason. Generally, at the first sight of any attempt to pin him down and take away his precious freedom. Perhaps she was monopolizing his time or dictating who he could and couldn’t be friends with.

Relationships are built on trust and the ability to live separate lives while also moving forward together.

  1. His Ability to Make Plans

Often, a commitment-phobe will avoid making plans for the distant future at all cost. For example, if all of your dates are spur-of-the-moment type things. Talking about things to do in the future creates the illusion that things will last that long. However, actually making plans that are set in stone with reservations or pre-purchased tickets are a rarity in the world of a commitment-phobe.

  1. His Speech Patterns

This falls in line with his ability to make plans. Instead of saying,

“I’ll be there at 6 o’clock,”

or

“I’ll get off work at 4:30,”

he’ll likely lean toward using modifiers, such as, probably, maybe, about, or my favorite I’ll try.

“I’ll try and be there around 6.”

“Maybe we’ll go to that concert in a few months.”

“I’ll be off around 4:30”

This way of speaking gives him what my grandmother called wiggle-room. A true commitment-phobe clings to uncertainty like a toddler clings to a security blanket. It’s his Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card in case he decides he doesn’t actually want to follow through.

  1. His Ability to Create Meaningful Bonds

It’s not just in dating that he won’t let people get close. This barricade extends to most, if not all, of his relationships. He might be out of communication with his parents or simply not have a close bond with them. Or, perhaps they are the ONLY people he seems to be close to. Regardless, he will have very few close relationships. If you found that some of his friends would turn to you to fill in the blanks when misunderstanding come up or your ex would act strangely, then it’s likely that they are also held at arms length.

  1. His Relationships Tend to Be Undefined

I have the advantage of always being able to make friends with everyone I meet. It’s a rare talent these days, I know. A year or so ago I dated this guy whose best friend was going through a breakup of his own. So, he would confide in and bounce ideas off of me when he was feeling conflicted, since I’m good with heloping tith that kind of thing. We became incredibly good friends because of it.

One day he expressed his concern as to whether my guy was going to treat me like he did his exes. He said I was different from them, but it was kind of my ex’s nature to treat women like they were disposable. It was clear to me then that he had never even actually dated any of them… and had no intention of dating me.He would go out of his way to keep things as unofficial as possible. He nearly had a panic attack when someone called me his girlfriend.

Needless to say, that didn’t last long.

So, if your guy avoided titles or suddenly became very pale any time anyone hinted that he was your boyfriend, then it’s quite possible that he was avoiding commitment all-together.

  1. His Unpredictable Responses

His mood regarding you might have seemed to be carefully balanced on the edge of a knife, meaning it could go either way at any moment.

One day he would be incredibly sweet, treating you as if you were the only girl he’d ever look at lovingly. Other girls didn’t exist. Then, overnight it was like he forgot all of that and there was this immense ocean between the two of you. At the time, it may have seemed as though it was hard to explain and may have caused even more issues between the two of you.

This sudden change of heart, or more aptly, flip-flopping of the heart was caused by his sudden realization that he had let down his guard and over-compensated by putting it back up ten-fold.

  1. His Fear of the Future

If you ever mentioned to him that you were considering getting more serious, then you may have found him a little less than receptive. Meeting the parents or mention of moving in together, things like this will have sent him into panic mode. He may have even picked a fight with you over something trivial and used that as an excuse to become severely distant or worse break up. Basically, any discussion of getting serious would send him into a tail-spin.

 

What are Common Causes of Commitment Phobia?

There are two theories from Carl Rusbult regarding relationships, Interdependence Theory and Social Exchange Theory. When combined, the two theories basically boil down to three things.

Fulfillment – Costs verses Benefits. Man, that sounds like the introduction to an economics class. Well, it’s very similar. The costs and rewards get broken down into four sub-groups.

Emotional – This one is fairly simple. It falls into the positive and negative feelings regarding the relationship.

Instrumental – The instrumental costs are the things you start doing during the relationship that are things you wouldn’t normally do and don’t actually like to do. Kind of like the cons in a pros and cons list. Then there are the rewards, i.e. the pros, which would be the things that you didn’t neccesarily like doing that you don’t have to anymore. For example, you might see emptying the trash more often, because your boyfriend was over a lot adding to the trash, as a cost. But having someone around to cook for you and splitting the chorses would be a reward.

Opportunity – Now, THIS ONE is actually from Economics 101. An opportunity cost is anything you have to give up in order to have something else, like if you gave up on your dream and moved to be with him. Basically, it’s a trade-off. The rewards would be things like if you moving meant you get to split bills and possibly get to live some place new which means adventure which is a plus usually.

 

It’s so simple right? Then it all breaks down into more specific basic costs and rewards, each of which I’ve laid out here:

Social – Most of the research refers to a partner’s social status and proficiency. But I think that the social costs might extend to losing touch with friends or maybe having to pretend to like a few people you aren’t exactly fond of. But on the upside, you might get to meet some really great people and he may even have some contacts that will be good for you in business, as well.

Options – Like all women know, a few options are good but unlimited will bring you to a standstill. Just walk into any shoe store and you will understand this. It is very similar to walking into the heel department and instantly finding twenty shoes that you seem to pick a favorite. If a man finds himself faced with several women he considers viable options, then it is likely that he will have an issue picking one to be his favorite.

In order to stand out in a sea of BCBG slingbacks, you should be Louboutins. Be undeniably you… the very best version of you. Insert some inspirational quote here involving a crowd and going against it or something. Just remember… be Louboutins!! Block out all other options.

Investments – When you have invested a lot into the relationship, then you are less likely to set it aside or notice other options.

So everything is related. When you have made investments and are feeling fulfilled, you don’t notice other options. This increases the likeliness that you are going to feel more committed.

Someone who is afraid of commitment would be likely to run away if he feels like he’s suddenly too invested or feeling too happy with the way things are going. They are also more likely to notice other options when they realize that they are traveling towards possible commitment.

 

There are Fundamental reasons that lead people to see the world this way, always expecting the worst to come from letting their guard down.

Here are a few examples:

  1. Fear of Losing Independence

It’s like couples merge when they get together these days. All individuality is pooled into some type of sole persona. A lot of times men avoid commitment simply because they fear that they’ll no longer be allowed to be themselves.

  1. Fear Being Used

Another common thread in stories about relationships these days is a nightmare for most men, women dating men, getting pregnant on purpose and the roping them into 18 years of child support and limited access to his child.

  1. Fear of Rejection

He may be fully aware of your current desire to be with him, but he doesn’t know if there’s something you haven’t told him. You might have reasoning to change your mind. You might decide that there is someone else better for you. You might decide that he’s not good enough.

This spurs from low self esteem and self-doubt, which could go back as far as his upbringing.

  1. Idealized Expectations

Generally, it’s women who imagine the perfect man and hold out for “prince-charming.” But men occasionally find themselves creating impossible checkpoints for the women they’d like to end up with. Often times both sexes see themselves with someone who lacks faults, leaving them seeing everyone they even briefly consider dating as less-than.

  1. Childhood Trauma

Being a child of divorce or separation would lead to aversion of commitment as an adult, along with being on the receiving end of abusive parenting. I mean, watching the people around you, parent, friends, or family, go through painful separations can make anyone go out of there way to avoid going through that themselves.

  1. Fear of Failure

Having low self esteem doesn’t simply mean he think you’ll wake up one day and decide that he isn’t good enough or that someone else is better. He might actually think that he isn’t good enough for you or that he doesn’t deserve to be happy. This can be a reflection of his childhood, as well. If he tried his best throughout his younger years only to be met with criticism and disappointment, he may simply anticipate letting you down if he commits.

  1. Other Relationship Traumas

If he was previously in a relationship that ended in divorce, then he may just not be sure what caused it. He may just fear it happening again.

Or in some relationships the two people get so involved with each other that their friendships fall to the wayside.

The main thing you need to know about commitment-phobes, or at least most commitment-phobes, is that they enjoy the chase and the beginning of the relationship. It’s all about the excitement and the lack of seriousness. Once the fun and excitement disappears, the fear and thoughts of running appear.

How to Reestablish Interest with Your Ex

This is where your traditional ExBoyfriend Recovery tactics come in. I’ll be linking over to several other articles that you might want to check out when the time comes so I’m not merely repeating information you may have already read.

The first, and in my opinion  most important, tactic is No Contact. There is nothing less interesting than someone jumping up and down in front of you going “Pay attention to Me!” This is how you take that epic step back and make him realize that he might just be losing you. (It doesn’t have to be true, you just want that idea to appear in the back of his mind and then grow exponentially with every day that you aren’t chasing him and begging for him to “Just talk to you please.”

Look at the article about No Contact and decide how long of a No Contact Period will work for you. Then stick to it. There is nothing harder than cutting someone off and sticking to it, especially when you care about that person. I understand. You will feel the urge to make excuses as to why you should be allowed to break no contact. You might even convince yourself completely. However Chris covered what reasons are legitimate and what reasons aren’t in another article. So, when  you get to that point when you are trying to reason yourself into being able to break no contact early, and it WILL happen, go read the article on when is it okay to break No Contact.

While you are doing no contact, you need to unfollow him on as many fronts as possible. This will help cut down on the urge to reach out to him. Don’t un friend him, just unfollow him or hide his posts so you won’t see them. The idea here is that he can see you, but you can’t see him. This gives you an invisible power of sorts. You can control what he sees.

 

Start working on bettering your life while simultaneously looking at the way you went about the relationship with your ex. First ask yourself some questions to figure out what responsibility you contributed to this situation.

  • Did you stop going to the gym and taking care of yourself?
  • Were you inserting yourself into his children’s’ lives too quickly or aggressively or undermining him as a parent?
  • Have you been ignoring what he wants while staying focused on your wants?
  • Did you respect him and his boundaries?
  • Are you responsible with your finances?
  • Did you have similar goals, either long-term or short-term?
  • Did you push for too much too soon?

You see, by asking yourself these questions and answering them for yourself, you can narrow down some changes that you need to make. I emphasize ASK YOURSELF and ANSWER THEM YOURSELF, because so many people feel like they need to us this step as an excuse to reach out to their ex and batter them with questions.

Don’t do it! Besides, no ex will ever give a clear answer anyways, because they either don’t want to hurt your feelings or are deadest on hurting your feelings. You are better off diciding what mistakes you made in the relationship and what things you let slide during the relationship and putting effort into fixing any of them that you can.

I always suggest hitting a gym, because that is a change that takes almost no interaction to notice.

You want to become that woman you’ve always wanted to be on as many fronts as possible.

If you did manage to set it up so that you are still friends with your ex on social media, while also making it so you don’t have to see his posts constantly, I suggest taking pics of a few milestones as you hit them,like if you decide to take up kick boxing or something. This will peak his interest because clearly your life didn’t stop without him. It’ll have him eating out of your hands eventually if you do it correctly.

My one bit of advice on this front is to keep the same posting pace that you had before. If you were only posting once or twice a week, then you don’t want to suddenly be posting 800 updates a day. Trust me, your ex will know exactly what you are doing. However, if you go about it consciously and limit your posts to important milestones and announcements, then he’ll truly wonder what is going on with you. No one needs to know that you made yet another trip to the coffee shop unless you happened to meet and hang out with George Clooney there.

How Not to Scare Him Away

After you get him back, and I stress AFTER, you need to continue working on yourself and your situation.  I’m just going to progress with this section ASSUMING that you understand that this is AFTER you get him back.

First of all, you don’t want to just work on your side of things and then quit once you get what you get him back. Eventually, he’ll realize what happened (it wouldn’t take a rocket scientist) and he’ll just walk away again, maybe this time for good.

So, don’t abandon your self improvement just because you got the guy back. Stick to it. Keep improving. There is nothing more motivating than watching the people close to you move forward. Simply for lack of not wanting to be left behind, your (no longer) ex boyfriend will have to do a little growing up to keep up.

Taking into account the types of issues we discussed earlier regarding the causes of fear of commitment is incredibly important when deciding how to move forward with things now that you’ve got your ex back. Like I said earlier though, Commitment-Phobes are all about the fun and exciting parts of the relationship. The best way to deal with this dilemma is to sprinkle the seriousness in every now and again amongst the casual and exciting stuff. Do your best not to be pushy or overwhelming. Talk about things as they come up, but keep a reign on how aggressive you get. With a partner that doesn’t have an issue with commitment, you might be tempted to push your luck. Definitely avoid this at all costs with a sommitment-phobe or he’ll disappear faster than the road runner.

February 1, 2017

"I Can't Believe I Actually Have a Chance of Getting Him Back!"

With over 7 million women just like you coming to this site ever year, I’ve seen about every situation you could imagine. Most of the time, I can just ask a few questions about your situation and know in seconds the chances that you have of getting back together with him. I’ve compressed all of that wisdom into a single calculator What Are Your Chances of Getting Your ExBoyfriend Back.

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What Do You Think? (61)

  1. Astrid - 0

    Astrid

    I’m so confused. I did indifferent and no contact and I dropped the crazy. We reconnected (I got a little verbally anxious right off the bat still trying to reign it in but it’s difficult with our past). He’s got me in casual dating zone now ffs. He says he wants to see how it goes. I thought great… let’s just live in the moment and enjoy each other. Come to find out he is going to be camping all summer (weekends) with mutual friends and I can’t come because he daughter doesn’t want him to date anyone yet (ridiculous I think she did say it but I also think it is an excuse) and he doesn’t want anyone to mention me around her etc. Wtf is going on here. We have been through hell and back for seven years. He’s been awful I’ve been crazy. This article is him to a tee right down to childhood trauma and a abandonment issues his Mum gave him up at age 4. I love this man. We cannot stay away from each other and I cam never stop running my mouth with anxiety shit I ruin every interaction but I am afraid. He just wants me to chill out and enjoy it but all I can think about is the impending loss of him. What should I be doing here??? I don’t feel like a priority but when I leave he wants me back. I don’t think he knows the damn answers to this. I’m so frustrated!! And dating other guys I just sit there and wish it were him.. Ugh. Should I just chill and enjoy it? Shut the hell up about commitment?? He drives me nuts and he says the same about me!! But we’re perfect when together. Perfect. I’m so frustrated!! Lol

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      then play it right… be casual with him too.. don’t invest more than what he invests

    • Anna - 0

      Anna

      Hello Astrid!

      I am dealing with the same issues and its driving me nuts! I have never dealt with anything like this before. My problem is I love him and we always seem to come back together. I can’t keep dealing with this emotional roller coaster cause it hurts to bad. I would enjoy to chit chat with you if you are interested?!

  2. Taryn - 0

    Taryn

    I met my significant other online, he was always afraid of commitment and doesn’t like using labels, he just said we are dating. At first I was content with just dating exclusively and then I fell in love with him. I have met his family and we do almost everything together. I love him and he has said it to me once and then took it back, telling me that he really cares for me and even cried to me a few times about how he isn’t ready for a committed relationship, but he loves me in a different way. Thursday he made me upset because he decided to go to the ale house while I was waiting on his laundry, but of course he didn’t tell me until I called him. Then his demeanor changed and he said that he just wanted to go by himself and when we finally got to his house he was like I just want to be single. He can never tell me these things unless he has liquid courage and he said that he doesn’t want to lose me either because we have a lot in common and he enjoys our time together. Then he asks me to stay over and I was so hurt that I said friends don’t have sleepovers and I grabbed all my things out of his room and left. He called me the next day at work and apologized and said that we should talk when he hasn’t been drinking. I responded with I didn’t want to discuss things while I was at work. My gf from work had a very similar situation and did the 30 day no contact rule and said they are better than ever. Do you think I should implement the no contact rule?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Yep, you should try it.

  3. Brooke - 0

    Brooke

    Hi! My boyfriend and I have been dating on and off for 7 years now. About a month ago he came back after trying to be with someone else, telling me he doesn’t feel a connection with her like he does with me and that he feels he will never feel that connection with anyone else. We were doing great and he started calling me his girlfriend and telling everyone about me. We had a few arguments and after the last one, which we both agreed was dumb, he shut down and started pushing me away. On Sunday, he told me he feels he’s not ready for a relationship and that he can’t give me what I need right now. He told me he doesn’t like being on his phone (we live an hour away so a lot of our relationship is over the phone) and he doesn’t know when he can make time for me. He said that when he’s with me all he wants to do is hug me and love me and call me his girlfriend, but when we’re not he doesn’t know how to act cause he’s not ready to compromise and communicate. He wants to be friends and as he said, “take a step back and take things slow”, he cried and told me he hates hurting me but doesn’t know what to do. Please help me. I’m lost on how to handle this.

    Reply
  4. Leeanne - 0

    Leeanne

    Hi. I was with a guy for 1 year. He pursued me intensly at the beginning and when I backed off he continued until he eventually won me over. His last relationship of 1 year ended because she wanted matriage and kids he couldn’t give her straight answer so it ended and they remained friends. Years before that he went through a bad divorce and admits he gets scared when he gets close. I ended it few months back because the way he was was making me anxious and his uncertainty was driving me mad but I instantly regretted it and the chase from him stopped. We got back together about a few weeks later because sane issues kept coming up. I begged, texted a billion times, my anxiety soared, I had personal issues going on too and everything got too much. He has been working away for 2 months bur I’ve bombarded him with texts no calls just texts, sometimes replies sometimes doesn’t. He tells me he cannot give me what I want. I’m on day 3 of no contact. I’ve been on a date and I’m gradually feeling like my old self. What should I do? Move on??

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Finish no first..keep healing and improving..and then slowly build rapport after. If it doesn’t work, move on..

  5. Martha - 0

    Martha

    Hi, I got my ex back using the no contact.
    We got back together and we were great for a while, then the ups and downs again.
    I have a small child, so my time is limited woth doing my things that I was doing in NC. I felt it was very hard to get a balance and either way the relationship would end of suffering.
    He is a commitment phobe. So after reading this I am thinking he is gone for good.
    Can I do ND again? I’ve read the article about on/off relationships. I am happy to do 45 days Nc. But just wanted you opinion and maybe some advise specifically for my situation as I’ve already done your game plan with the NC, txts, phone calls, dates, recovery.
    Also, it’s hard to “keep it fun” when you have a child and limited time to see each other
    Thanks

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Martha,

      do it one last time if you will, if it doesn’t work out, it would be better to move on than to tire yourself to keep trying.

  6. Sammy j - 0

    Sammy j

    Hi,
    Thanks but we already have, hence confronting our previous issues, my problem is moving on from that now as a commitment phobic. Everything he ever said was a lie, I dont believe anything he says now so how do I get past this? Even with anyone new I will have the same trust and commitment issues. Do I break nc & how? What is there left to say? Is there any point? This has got to be the most unfixable exbf recovery yet?!

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      You know yourself. You just have to be clear and take ownership. Ask yourself why, list it down and I think you need to have a personal professional counselor. Because in that way, it would be easier for you and your doctor to figure stuff about you that you can’t understand or don’t know how to understand. We can help you, but not as effectively as someone who really talks to you personally.

  7. Sammy j - 0

    Sammy j

    I am now the commitment phobe. Sadly made awful mistakes in our marriage, we got divorced. He has been living a double life, lying and cheating since, yet our relationship changed- for the better having to confront our issues, he is desperate to move forward and do everything different, proper this time, but I don’t trust him or believe him, I pick fights and disapear, I told him to leave me alone and I’m now 25 days nc. Is it worth breaking? I don’t Do any social media. I have dated other guys for my benefit only and have no other interest on them, i simply don’t want them like I want him. True to his word he has stayed away. I can’t think of how, why or what to say to break nc, we are what we have done to each other, if we move onto new relationships then these are our rebounds, my trust and lack of commitment issues ensue again therefore failure will arise yet again?! Is it ever posible to repair and recover from so much hurt? I swore I’d never get divorced- no one in my family has remained married to the same person, my ex husband was traumatised and now I can’t imagine ever wanting to get married again, I told him I can’t see past tomorrow or making plans for next weekend, just talking about a holiday for next year had me running away again! I just can’t let anyone get that close to hurt me so badly again.

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Sammy j,

      why don’t you both go to counseling?

  8. Jenna - 0

    Jenna

    Hi Amor
    I sent a reply… it said waiting for moderation and now it’d gone

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Jenna,

      I’m not sure why it disappeared but I didnt erase your comment.. I’ll paste my latest reply there here..

      because he will notice the pattern..he’ll think you’ll go back after some silence because that’s what always happens and feelings fade over time too..
      be active in improving yourself, make him regret through your improvements. So, be active in posting in social media.. If he doesn’t like confrontations, that means you have to talk to him calmly with every disagreement..but after nc, you can’t fight with him because you’re trying to build rapport..

  9. Jenna - 0

    Jenna

    Hi
    We have been semi living together for almost 4 years…I still keep my own place…every 2-3 months he gets mad at some stupid thing and says get out go.. home… does the ignoring thing..I will usually be the 1 to come crawling back….. this time I broke up with him…and have 0 contact for 3 weeks… my question…..is I’ve done the NC before….things go right back to the way they were..should I do a longer NC

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Jenna,

      the more you do nc, the less it can help but yes, that means you have to do a longer one this time..

    • Jenna - 0

      Jenna

      Hi Amor
      Can you explain.. why that is. He is always the one that ignores me. Not sure what to do..This time I broke up with him. I told him not to contact me. Which is what he usually does over nothing. He thinks people should never argue or disagree. He ignored his mother and several friends for years over nothing.What should I do.

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      because he will notice the pattern..he’ll think you’ll go back after some silence because that’s what always happens and feelings fade over time too..
      be active in improving yourself, make him regret through your improvements. So, be active in posting in social media.. If he doesn’t like confrontations, that means you have to talk to him calmly with every disagreement..but after nc, you can’t fight with him because you’re trying to build rapport..

    • Jenna - 0

      Jenna

      Hi Amor
      He is not on any social media.
      Do you have any other suggestions. I also need help with what to say in my first text

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      that’s ok.. once he gets curious he’ll check your account, and he has to see posts there because that’s your indirect way of showing you’re not moping around, just waiting for him. check this:
      Handling The First Time You Talk To Your Ex After The No Contact Rule (Live Coaching Session)

  10. Ella - 0

    Ella

    I started dating a good friend of mine recently, and things were going great. I’ve known him a long time and dating just felt like a natural progression. After nearly a month, he stayed over and things got more intimate (but no sex). We had made plans to sleep together the following week. 3 days later he broke up with me out of nowhere, saying he didn’t want to commit to a relationship and that he thought we should end things before they went further, and then he was surprised when I was upset. He wanted to go right back to our friendship, but they’re so awkward now it’s just not possible. I sat him down and explained how I was hurt and how I would be keeping him at a distance from now on to protect myself. I miss him and aside from his phobia of commitment we’re very well suited. Can I get him back and how?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      HI Ella,

      I think he just thought things were moving too fast. It’s too early to say he’s a commitment phobe.. But right now, if you’re going to do nc, just do 3 weeks.

    • Ella - 0

      Ella

      Well when we talked last week (been 3 weeks since the breakup) , he said he made the right choice to stay single as his last relationship ended badly. We haven’t talked since, but is there any way to show him that dating me was not a bad idea? He wavered several times before we started datingbut I assumed that he had gotten over it since we actually dated after that, but now I don’t now how to get him back.

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      but how much did you improve and how active were you in posting in social media? If he thinks it’s too fast, then he has to be interested again and see that you have your own life..

    • Ella - 0

      Ella

      The thing is, I saw him last week (been 3 weeks since the breakup) and he said he made the right decision to stay single and that he just really wants to keep me as a close friend. We haven’t talked since. But how do I get him to change his mind? His last relationship ended very badly and he keeps bringing that up as a reason to not date.

    • Ella - 0

      Ella

      He knows I have my own life and my social media is the same as always-I’ve gone on a few trips and done some fun things etc. He says he doesn’t want any relationship right now but he was the one who initiated dating so I think he’s freaked out about committing.

    • Ella - 0

      Ella

      He knows I have my own life and my social media is the same as always-I’ve gone on a few trips and done some fun things etc. He says he doesn’t want any relationship right now but he was the one who initiated dating so I think he’s freaked out about committing, but I can’t just be friends anymore

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      that’s not a good.. that was just a week ago.. it’s a very small chance I admit and I think you need to extend nc or restart and do one last 30 days. Because he just said he doesn’t want a relationship, it’s like he doesn’t want you to expect, so he’s getting it out of the way now. You can’t control him so, the best step is to make him regret by improving yourself more, date others too. It’s not a guarantee but that’s only way that can help you avoid being friendzoned now and to at least not look like you’re chasing him.

  11. JHS - 0

    JHS

    Hi Chris,

    I have been in a weird relationship for a really long time. It was on-off like Ross and Rachel. We know each other since school so almost 12 years. and we dated for almost 4 years. The sad part is that it was always long distance. He is USA since 4 years and I live in India. He used to visit India to meet his parents and friends for one month every year. that is when we meet and spend some time together. We indeed kiss and get intimate. He was never 100% sure about his future with me. But he respects me a lot and appreciates my progress in career. Compliments me sometimes for my looks. According to him I am just perfect. There was a time when he cheated on me for 2 months. He soon broke up with her. I figured this out after 8 months. I was really upset and started to believe that he would have cheated on me millions of times since he is too far. I blocked him everywhere honestly. He sent me emails to convince me to forgive him. Called me every other day. He realised how important I was for him. He asked me to marry him but i was so upset that I would hardly reply to him or answer his calls. He then visited India and I broke in front of him. I forgave him and asked him what’s next now. He said he shall talk to his parents now. He told me they will surely accept me and we’ll get engaged soon. But they did not. He is very tall 6′ feet and I am just 5’2. In India parents choose the bride. He tried to convince them even after he went back. I met his family just so they could judge me if I am fit to be in their family. They simply didn’t like me. Maybe they are against love marriage. He tried to make them understand that i am important for him, but then had to give up against his father’s emotions. Throughout this year, we fought a lot and I tried NC lot of times. i have blocked him everywhere. But he will call me or email me whenever he wants to talk. I told him I am going to be available for him whenever he wants. He is back in Inida. We meet, we kiss, we get intimate. He says he loves me. But he is seeing other girls for an arrange marriage. He asked me to move on. He said we can be nothing more than friends and you need to accept this. He also said that I need you in my life in any form. If love did not materialise into marriage, it is okay. But honestly for me it is not okay. He will be leaving back in 10 days. I want him to change his decision. If he gets engaged in next 10 days. I will have no option but to move on. But if he doesn’t (which he said he won’t) what should I do to win him back? Please help me.

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi JHS,

      you need to stop allowing other people treat you in the way you dont want to. If he’s going to marry someone else, move on.. If not,.make him work for you. If he still seeing other women while seeing you, move on.. because what you allow will happen. If he can see you’re ok with what he’s doing, of course he knows you don’t like it, but you’re still present in his life, so why change right?

  12. Lisa - 0

    Lisa

    Hi Chris and Amor,
    Please help me! I’m so bummed right now:/ I am the same Lisa who commented on this post a few days ago . So I sent my first contact message on Saturday (2 days ago) and after a few hours received a positive response from him . I then waited a little and replied by ending the convo. The first day was a success ( at least I thought ). Yesterday on day 2 I gave it a break As per PRO’s guidelines . Today day 3 I sent another text and it’s going on 5 hours with no response ! I’m so bummed I really thought things were going smooth so why no response when he responded positively to my first text after no contact :/ I know you have to follow ABI ( always be interesting ) and I really feel I was ! Here’s what I sent :
    How about that overtime ?! Making super bowl history what what ! Then sent a bitmoji that said touchdown with a football Bc we always sent bitmojis to each other …..Where in the world did I go wrong ??? I thought that was a pretty good text Bc I know he was so excited about the super bowls outcome ( based on looking at his fb through my friends page). So what happened ???!!! Is it possible that he only responded positively to the first contact messssge Bc he thought I was just trying to be friendly but now that I sent another one he caught on to what’s going on and doesn’t want to reply ?? What’s my next course of action ?? Please help

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Lisa,

      wait 5 days or a week before initiating again..maybe he is thinking..during the week, go back to being active in posting

    • Lisa - 0

      Lisa

      Thanks for the reply! Have you ever seen a situation like this where he replies positively after first contact then the second time he doesn’t respond at all? It seems strange to me and is making me lose hope 🙁 also , after I wait a week and initiate again should I use the format of first contact text message with only sending 2 texts or can I skip to second contact message with 3 texts since he already responded to my first contact message not my second ? Please help !

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      you’re welcome! yes, there are..usually the guy is not sure if the girl has really moved on..use the first contact format

    • Lisa - 0

      Lisa

      Hi ,
      Sorry to bother you again I promise this is my last message I really appreciate all your help ! So his moms birthday is tomorrow and I was just thinking about sending a general “happy birthday to your mom ” and nothing else text and then after that wait a week before trying another first contact text . Now I know if I was still in no contact I wouldn’t be able to do this but since I’m technically not in no contact am I able to do this ? Or do you think it’s better if I just don’t ? Thanks so much promise this is my last one !

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      It’s ok you can ask as many as you want! 🙂 Yeah, I think it’s ok to do that.

    • Lisa - 0

      Lisa

      Hi ,
      So I am going to wait a week and try again . I sent him a text saying happy birthday to your mom and he didn’t even respond to that . It’s just so weird how he responded so positively to the first contact message after no contact and then nothing after that ! I would love if Chris could also chime in himself too would be nice to get both perspectives . Just stinks Bc after seeing such a positive reply it really got my hopes up but now I’m feeling like there’s no hope . So I’m going to follow what u said amor and wait a week to try another first contact text message but what happens after that if he doesn’t reply? How will I know when to really just move on ?

    • Lisa - 0

      Lisa

      Hi ,
      So In a week im going to try again to initiate a first contact text message . He responded to my first contact text message but then he didn’t respond to the second message I sent and yesterday I sent a simple happy birthday to your mom and no response. I’m beginning to lose all hope . Once he responded to my first contact text I was thinking positively and now I’m not . But anyway , what if he still doesn’t respond after I Text him again in a week ? How will I know when it’s time to move on?

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Sure, I’ll forward this to Chris but I can’t promise he can answer immediately. Usually, when you’ve gotten three negative or answered texts, that’s when you should really move on.

  13. Anna - 0

    Anna

    This article describes my ex so well. Every time he would tell me he loved me he would disappear for a week and then come back like nothing had happened. I gave him an ultimatum and he broke up with me, that was 5 months ago now and I haven’t heard from him since. He was following all my social media accounts (until I blocked him) and reads all my messages but won’t reply. I deleted him on facebook. Should I add him again? do commitment phobes always come back?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Anna,

      not always always but you should definitely unblock him

    • Anna - 0

      Anna

      Should I re-add him on facebook?

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      nope..just unblock him..re add him later when you’ve already built rapport

    • Anna - 0

      Anna

      I found that he started seeing someone right after we broke up. Should I confront him about it? If I send him an angry message telling him I don’t wish to see him again, will this push him away for good or make him want to come back?

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      don’t, confronting and being angry will probably push him away..

  14. Steven - 0

    Steven

    Texted after 30 days and she got a new phone and asked who it was…
    Here’s the text.
    Me-“you will not believe what I saw yesterday…
    Her- I got a new phone, who’s this
    Me- Steve
    Long pause- Me- I’m sorry I didn’t mean any harm.
    Her- why are you texting me.
    Me- I was at my friend’s house and they have an iguana named Magnum and it made me miss you.

    I know I should not have finished but I’ll give her another week or two before trying to make my 2/3 attempt. Feeling sad but by that time I will be moved from this city I despise.

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Steven,

      go back to being active in social media after that.. be active in posting your activities, because that’s your indirect way of showing you have a life, and that you’re not always thinking about her

  15. Lisa - 0

    Lisa

    Hi , I sent my first contact message this is what I sent:

    You’re not going to believe what I just heard from a friend . I heard they are opening up a snowboard and ski shop locally . It made me think of you . I know how much you like snowboarding and skiing . Hope you’re doing well and hope your dad is also doing well .

    He responded a couple hours later :
    That’s awesome! Thanks for letting me know and thank you. My family is doing great. I hope all is well.

    What do you think ? Would this be considered a positive response ? Is it normal that he didn’t say anything in his response to keep the convo going?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi lisa,

      yes that’s a positive response and yes it’s common that they don’t initiate a topic at first contact

  16. Sandra - 0

    Sandra

    I’ve been casually dating a commitmentphobe for 6 months (we were seeing each other once a week). He’s a classic case, blows hot and cold. I feel like he’s definitely in love with me but whenever he feels close he pulls back. Also throw into the mix– he is super successful and about to become astronomically successful and I think his head is swelling. I’m a brainiac like he is and have my own interesting thing going on– and am as hot as the dumb girls that populate my city– so I definitely qualify as ungettable. We didn’t have any break up but he started pulling away more– I suspected he was dating other women (we never had a talk) so I pulled way back let it subtley implied I might be dating others. His reaction to that seems to be to hookup even more using the apps– like multiple women a week I hear. I don’t think he’s going to easily find a connection like we have and if this is a phase so be it but I’m not sure what to do– I’ve been doing NC for a week (no attempt made on his part either). Is there any hood of resuscitating? Or in casual situations will the guy with lots of options simply easily forget and move on?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Sandra,

      there’s a high chance that he will just move on especially if you have been doing this for a long time that he had already viewed you as somebody who is just there whenever he wants to. That’s very good that you’re an ungettable girl but if he thinks you’re just threatening him that you’re going to date others then that explains why he just opts to match your “threats”.. It’s hard with those kind of guys but I really believe it’s only when a person feels he will really lose someone great because they know they dont meet the standards of that person, will they start to value or change…because other than that, if they are not willing to change, they will just accept and let go and then regret later on

  17. Nana - 0

    Nana

    Chinese new year. No particular reason for ignoring, probably because he doesn’t really celebrate it (added to the fact that he’s really not the type to reply a lot unless excited or important, even to his bros or friends.) I just popped him a quick message a while ago asking if he’s not busy (supposedly for a quick favor online in a site) but he was out so he wasn’t able to help me in that small thing. It’s been 9 hours and he hasn’t messaged back to ask what it was or whatever so I might have to do no contact unless something happens… is that the appropriate thing to do immediately?

    There’s a major event on March anyway where the both of us have to communicate so I guess a no contact during this time is appropriate (cuz I’ve become busy too these days.) After the no contact, I’ll just carry on right? Just be my normal “quality” self and not apologize for disappearing for 30 days?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      if you’re going to do nc, that means you can only talk to him if you need to exchange important stuff or other very important matters that cannot wait and only talk about that. no, social media stalking too.. just focus in improving yourself and be active in posting too.. but other than that, ignore him.. after nc, continue improving yourself while building rapport with him..

  18. Cara - 0

    Cara

    This article resonated with me tremendously and is hands down one of the best articles on guys who are commitment phobes, whereas other articles online tend to demonize them and just chalk it up to them being “players’ or men who will never change. I think it hit on a very important real life issue and that is….Anxiety , it’s a real disorder that requires therapy and yes men can have Anxiety related to commitment. I think it’s like bungee rope jumping for some people…..really scary and they feel like they are losing control.
    For me, I have been in no contact with my commitment phobe for over 4 months and he has come back and got scared away a few times. (Not intentionally on my part) This time he’s not even trying to text me occassionally, or I knew he was still somewhat in the game when he’d “like” a facebook picture. So I’m not sure there’s much else I can do besides keep improving myself and act like I’m not into him. I feel like it’s hopeless at this point. I think he correlates my being on Facebook often as me checking up on him, so I’m trying to figure out how to stay off and make my friends communicate with me in other ways. But I know he monitors my FB .
    Anyhow, very awesome and insightful article. Thanks Ashley!!

    Reply
  19. Nana - 0

    Nana

    Me and a guy (we aren’t in a relationship but we’re casually dating and sort of exclusive) had a day of being a little more emotionally intimate (not sexual, only involved him giving me a gift and me showing appreciation and got the both of us really mushy and happy). Our casual dating involves things more on hobbies than anything super romantic. But we do have some sparkly moments and sweet moments because we’re attracted to each other. We didn’t speak for a few days and I greeted him about a yearly celebration (my culture, not his. But I greeted anyway) He hasn’t responded to that for a week. Valentine’s coming up and I wanted to give him a light, simple non-intimate greeting. Is this a bad idea? Given that he hasn’t responded to my previous greeting e-card? I want to greet him on Valentine’s but I do not want him to feel like I’m clingy or he might want his space. But I could be overthinking this because he may have forgotten to reply for important reasons. I was thinking of waiting until the last minute of Valentine’s before I greet him in case he decides to greet, but he’s the shy type who really isn’t very invested in replying/responding to people unless he deems it important or necessary. What does EBR think? What high value behavior can I do?

    Reply
    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      Hi Nana,

      how long have you been cAsually dating and how old are you both?

    • Nana - 0

      Nana

      around 3-4 months though we have known/are acquainted with each other longer. Just got closer recently. I am 26 and he is 23

    • EBR Team Member: Ashley - 4

      EBR Team Member: Amor

      what yearly occasion is that? why did he ignore you after it? if you’re going to do the no contact rule, that means you can’t send him valentine measages

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