By Chris Seiter

Updated on February 2nd, 2021

As human beings, we have this constant need to respond to others.

If your ex reaches out to you, you will definitely want to respond to him, and if you reach out, you’ll undoubtedly want him to respond back too.

But it’s not always a good idea to send a response.

In fact, no response is still a response and a pretty powerful one of that.

This article will take you through why the power of silence can be your greatest tool in the journey of getting your ex back.

The Power Of Silence Is Underrated

A lot of people who come to me want to get their exes back, and most of them are surprised when I introduce them to the no contact rule.

It seems counterintuitive to them to deliberately ignore their ex and stop all contact instead of trying to win them back actively.

If you really think about it, though, if your words had the power to bring your ex back, why didn’t they work to prevent your breakup?

Sometimes silence has much more impact than words ever could.

Let’s break this down even more.

Here’s something that might be difficult to hear –

Ordinary people do not like solitude. But solitude is often where you have epiphanies that help you grow spiritually and philosophically as a person.

Most people detest solitude because they don’t like being alone and don’t know what to do when that happens. That solitude is often the driving factor for people who make rash decisions like irrational apologies or immediate concessions to get their ex back.

You need to step out of that mindset. Solitude allows you to embrace yourself in a way you might not have done before by giving you the time to truly self-reflect on your place in the universe and how you want your life to go.

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The Power Of Self Reflection In Solitude

A lot of people today don’t spend enough time on self-reflection after a breakup even though it’s the most crucial thing to do.

Self-reflection shows you whether you actually need your ex back in your life or if you just want them to fill that void of loneliness you’ve had since they left.

People make the mistake of obsessing over getting their ex back so much that they forget to truly remove the blinders from their view and realize that their ex was just a small part of their overall life. If you spend this time self-reflecting, it gives you much more power and leverage when you go after your ex to get them back.

You’d be reading this all day if I actually shared all examples of how successful people have been when they used this solitude to their advantage. Most people waste time after a breakup lamenting over their thoughts and exaggerating their depression by moping around all day as opposed to thinking how they can make the best of this moment.

Here’s what I’ve noticed in my 30 years on this earth- human beings tend to want to put things forth when they’re not ready to be put forth.

What does that mean?

Well, we speak first without thinking while we really should be thinking first and speaking later.

Simply put, a breakup puts you at your most emotionally vulnerable state, and those emotions can confuse and cloud your sense of judgment.

Emotions make you say things in the heat of the moment that would probably have been best left unsaid.

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Perhaps your ex has done something like this before that deeply upset you. Hearing your loved one say something like “I never loved you” or “I hate you” can take a toll on you, and your heartbreak makes you take that at face value.

The Show Don’t Tell Mentality

You might not realize that it wasn’t true, and your ex loved you very dearly at one point; maybe he just doesn’t have those feelings anymore, or maybe he still does, but he is too angry to express himself clearly.

We, humans, are extremely fluid in our emotions, so we don’t feel the same thing throughout our entire lives. Then, don’t you owe yourself time to figure out your relationship with your ex after the initial shock of your breakup passes away?

We are all capable of change. In fact, it’s probably one of our greatest assets. Our feelings and circumstances can change, so if you just get wrapped up in what your ex said, it can be difficult to move forward. So, you respond by saying things back at them, and you just dig yourself deeper into a hole.

The biggest benefit of being silent is thus that it allows you time to self-reflect so that whenever you do have something to say to your ex, its impactful and well thought out.

This is also one of the greatest reasons for you to adopt a show don’t tell mentality. Most people, when they think they should say something to their ex, tell something to their ex. Personally, I think its way more impactful to SHOW something to your ex.

For example, let’s say that you lost a bunch of weight, and you’re extremely proud of that, so you naturally want to tell your ex about it when you start speaking to them again. You might want to shoot them a text that says something like, “Hey! I lost 20 pounds”.

Instead of doing that, it would be better and more impactful if you show them that by posting an amazing picture of yourself on social media for everyone, not just your ex, to see your incredible journey. This doesn’t just serve to alert your ex to your change, but it also boosts your confidence when your friends, family, and other potential lovers comment on it. It might even make your ex jealous and protective.

The internet is full of amazing quotes, but one of my favorite quotes of all times is by someone who chose to stay anonymous: “Maybe you sit there and view your silence as a weakness, but I view it as the opposite.”

After all, no response is essentially implementing the show don’t tell mentality.

Implementing the no contact rule and serving silence incites certain feelings and fears that your ex has.

What People Think Vs. What Actually Happens 

Whenever I’m working with a client it almost feels inevitable for them to disagree with my no response is a response mentality. So, I figured what I’d do is show the four things that people often think when they engage in this mentality as opposed to what actually happens.

  1. People think their ex will completely forget about them if they don’t respond
  2. People think the no contact rule works differently for men than it does for women
  3. People believe that no contact should only be used to get over your ex
  4. People believe that if they use silence on their ex that they will just move on to someone else

Let’s address these major differences in what people think and what actually happens.

False Belief #1 – People Think Their Ex Will Forget About Them If They Use Silence

The opposite is actually true.

There’s this psychological theory called reactance that deals with behavioral freedoms. I actually talk about it in this video,

We all have certain behavioral freedoms, and we’re satisfied with our lives as long those freedoms are recognized.

However, the moment someone takes away one of those freedoms, our bodies and lives descend into chaos, and we desire those freedoms back.

So, when you actively choose not to respond to your ex, you’re taking away their behavioral freedom of being able to talk to you. Their mind makes them think about talking to you even more, and they will thus try to get you to talk to them again; however, they can.

That’s precisely the opposite of being forgetful if anything they probably remember the times they spent with you even more.

False Belief #2 – The No Contact Rule Works Differently For Men Than Women

Anyone saying this hasn’t done the proper research to support this claim because there is almost no difference in both gender’s reactions to the no contact rule.

What research have I done you ask.

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Well, I actually have two large websites.

This one, Ex Boyfriend Recovery which primary helps women through their breakups and my other one, Ex Girlfriend Recovery, which helps men get through their breakups.

We have a lot of data.

I will concede that women have slightly more power during the no contact rule, but overall, I’ve seen the no contact rule work just as well for men and women who are trying to get their exes back.

False Belief #3 – The No Contact Rule Is Only Something You Use To Get Over Your Ex

I think that can be true in certain situations, but we have several success stories of it working on getting your ex back.

The no contact rule shouldn’t be looked at in this straight and narrow way with blinders on.

I see this rule as a choose your adventure scenario where you could start the no contact period wanting your ex back, and midway through it, you could realize you’re much better off without them or vice-versa.

One of the benefits of using the no contact rule is that it gives you the time you need to make these difficult decisions, and often times when you’re making difficult decisions, you shouldn’t do it in a highly emotional state.

The no contact rule lets you level out that hyper-emotional state and use logic to decide whether getting your ex back is the best thing for your future.

False Belief #4 – If You Use Silence On Your Ex They Will Find Someone New

Here’s what I have to say about that: if you’re in a situation where your ex moved on to someone else, you have to look at how fast they moved onto someone else and how quickly you implemented a no contact rule.

I find that sometimes the timing correlation can be off.

The problem I find is that most people learn about the no contact rule much later after their breakup, so their ex has had the time to move on.

The most effective way to use the no contact rule is to implement it immediately after a breakup.

Often times in clients who do use the no contact rule immediately after a breakup, the opposite happens.

If their exes do immediately “move on,” it’s mostly a rebound relationship.


No response is not only a response but is sometimes the best response you could use.

Your silence not only has the power to push your ex to miss you, but it also gives you clarity about what you need in life.

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53 thoughts on “No Response Can Still Be A Response”

  1. Ava

    September 18, 2022 at 9:39 pm

    Hi, my boyfriend texted me 2 years after we stopped contacting each other (we were long distance after 4.5 months in person). He said he loves me more than anything…but has had a girlfriend for 10 months… he stopped texting me after a week saying he can’t because it’s wrong. He deleted this message, so he thought I didn’t see it. A month later he sent me two emails to talk on messenger. Is he being toxic? What does he want from me? I lost 4 lbs since he ghosted me last time, couldn’t eat or sleep. I loved him very much.

  2. Pawida

    September 10, 2022 at 4:37 pm

    This is the best article. Self reflection in solitude is the best. I’m on no contact rule and will be forever since in my case I never want my ex back. It was physically and emotionally abusive relationship. He reached out but I never respond to any texts and calls but did read everything tho. He is a full on narcissist. I found myself when he left and that is the best thing that ever happened to me.

    1. Coach Shaunna Nicol

      September 12, 2022 at 6:58 pm

      That’s great feedback thanks Pawida!

  3. Jennene

    August 1, 2022 at 5:34 pm

    Hi so 2 times me and my ex broke up for a few days and in those days he was talking to his his and stuff but 2x contacted me then ignored her bc we was back together well I did also notice inbetween the 1st and 2nd breakup he contacted her asking to hang out on his lunch bc he was in the area she lived. I told him I saw the message its been 3 months and 2 weeks since then and 3 months since our 2nd breakup with only a few days then we got back together. Now we are broken up again bc i mentioned i saw him contact her while we werent broke up. Well now he says im starting stuff and we doesnt want me anymore since I cant quit bringing up him talking to her all the time. But the thing is i tell him if he would just have a conversation with me about it i would quit bringing it up and wouldnt be so insecure. We broke up today im still at his house until he gets home from work to bring me somewhere. I feel as if he has already contacted her. What should I do? To make him not make me go. I really do love him and I believe he is honest when he says he loves me we’ve kbown each other our whole lives.

    1. Coach Shaunna Nicol

      September 2, 2022 at 8:39 pm

      Hi Jennene, I think your ex / boyfriend is more upset that you are checking up on his phone and not trusting him. If you cannot trust him then there is no relationship as that is a kay factor, love is not enough to make a relationship work.

  4. Jody

    September 7, 2021 at 9:26 am

    My ex broke up with me two weeks ago. I was devastated. It was out of the blue. I messaged twice later in the day as I was so floored and then two days later to talk. Didn’t acknowledge either message. Since then I have left alone. I unfollowed him on FB but didn’t delete. I noticed two days ago he liked a photo I posted that day (I’ve kept my social media to a minimum) this has thrown me. Part of me thinks why would you do this or is it a “pity” like? ie don’t want to be with you but nothing against you

  5. Danielle

    July 25, 2021 at 12:56 am

    I received a text from my ex during no contact because he received a gift in the mail that I had actually ordered when we were together. He texted saying thank u and he appreciates me and so on, do I ignore the text or respond?

  6. Kendra

    May 11, 2021 at 11:22 pm

    Hello me & my Ex Boyfriend has been on & off for 10 years. Usually when he breaks up with me he jumps right into a relationship. This time is different. He hasn’t blocked me on social media and he still contacts me everyday or ever other . At first I was talking to him but I just started no contact yesterday. He has called today 3 times. But I don’t want him to think I moved on . What should I do. It’s like he’s confused and is not sure if he wants me back. But still trying to see what I’m up to.

  7. Kylie

    March 30, 2021 at 1:19 pm

    Hey, we broke up in september and he texted me that he was sorry in december. I showed him I wasn’t interested. Then we started talking by the end of the month and in january I agreed to meet up. Things were great and he absolutely wanted to see me again. But shortly after, he started with his usual excuses and finally when we set up a date, he cancelled it right before. I didn’t mind and at the time I was going through a lot, so I sent him a voice note on snapchat talking about my problems. He didn’t respond. I was pretty upset but hasn’t contacted him since then. This was a little more than a month ago. Now like more than a week ago he sent me a text saying “how it’s going?”. I ignored his text but I want him to come back. What should I do? Will my silence get him to text me again?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 21, 2021 at 8:38 pm

      Hi Kylie, it could but I would suggest that you make him work much harder for your time and attention this time around – you need to allow him to work for your attention. Do not give in easily. Make him work for it.

  8. Sam

    December 30, 2020 at 6:46 pm

    So what if after 34days your ex girlfriend gets in touch all positive chat then she disappears after reading your last msge! Do I reach out or wait for her to get back in touch? It’s been over 30days since we last spoke to..

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      December 30, 2020 at 7:55 pm

      Hi Sam, if you had a positive conversation then you can reach out but make sure that you stick to the types of conversations that Chris suggests in his aritcles

  9. Laura

    December 22, 2020 at 8:50 am

    Now that it is Christmas period, I am sure my ex will say Merry Christmas to me at some point. I have been in no contact for 30 days now (since we broke up, he initiated). Second breakup. I feel like I should no answer him as in the previous breakup he always contacted me whenever he wanted and I replied, so he needs to feel what he has lost now. Any recommendation?
    Thank you in advance!

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      December 22, 2020 at 5:25 pm

      Hi Laura, I would suggest that you either extend your No Contact or reach out before Christmas day so that you can follow the program

  10. Gabs

    July 22, 2020 at 11:34 am


    I have been single for 2 years now. He moved on pretty much straight away after a month and never give me a second chance,because of my insecurities at the time I have worked on my self done the no contact rule, tried to move on myself I’ve tried everything to get over him and it’s just still not happening. any tips? I do still love him there is no denying this I just wish he would respond at least once how can I show him I’v changed?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      August 8, 2020 at 10:42 pm

      Hey Gabs as you have been broken up for some time now you need to just reach out and get to know each other again as “new” people. I would suggest that you not reach out via texts, use social media to up your presence in his life again and let him see the new you, like a few of his posts or photos. The odd comment now and again and then just let it grow naturally as if it was a person you only just met

  11. Brianna

    May 21, 2020 at 2:36 am


    My ex and I dated for a few months. This is the second time we broke up and he initiated it.

    It was a super intense relationship I was very involved with his family. It’s been a week since NC. I caught him looking at my Instagram stories the other day but he stopped.

    Do I do a full 21 day?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      May 29, 2020 at 10:33 pm

      Hi Brianna, I would suggest that you complete a 30 day No Contact and work your Holy Trinity

  12. Daisy

    May 11, 2020 at 7:56 pm

    Update, my ex contacted me on day 28 of No Contact. We have had a few nice conversations since so working on building rapport and I’m willing to take things slow. Funny thing is I was feeling so much better the last 10 days or so because I had worked on improving myself the entire time in no contact. I had gained perspective of what went wrong and what I could do to improve things.

  13. Daisy

    April 28, 2020 at 3:10 pm

    Dated for 11 months. He is recently divorced for almost a year. I’m in the process of a divorce. I was the first serious person he dated after his divorce. I had dated someone else prior to him but it wasn’t serious. Very little arguing in the relationship and truly enjoyed one another’s companionship. He said I was different from other women. Loved and adored me as I felt the same for him. No issues at all with intimacy. Broke up once for a few weeks (he initiated that break up) after a silly fight and then got back together when I reached out a week later and he said he had really missed me. I had to reach out as he is very stubborn. This recent break up was initiated by me (a month ago). I was expressing that I wasn’t getting enough time and attention from him. He works a lot. I knew I had made a mistake when I woke up the next day. He ignored me for days even though I said I had made a mistake and wanted to get back together. He then said he was done and I deserve better since he doesn’t deserve someone as good as me in his life right now. He also expressed that maybe he was better off being single at the moment. After that message he stopped responding to me again after I tried to reach out a few times. It’s been 15 days since I last tried to reach out. I’m trying to give him space. No contact from both of us. I really love this person. I don’t know if timing was just off for us but I miss his company and support so much. I was planning on trying to reach out after 30 days or is it better that I don’t reach out and see if he comes back around on his own?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      May 5, 2020 at 10:16 pm

      Hi Daisy, if you want to get him back then I would suggest that you reach out at the end of your 30 days and follow this process

  14. SUE

    April 13, 2020 at 8:35 pm


    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 14, 2020 at 8:32 am

      Hi Sue, as it states in the many articles NC can be 21 days, 30 days, or 45 days. Depending on your situation, length of relationship and how much you begged and gnatted after the break up happened.

  15. Jay

    April 12, 2020 at 4:54 am

    Hi, mine is pretty lengthy and I’m going to try to be as open as I can and provide copy paste, hopefully. So I was dating this girl for 2 months and we talked every single day for hours. On Thursday she broke up with me saying that she doesn’t have time for a relationship and need her space and personal things she threw on me. She asked could we remain friends and I said no instantly but the next day I was open to the idea and she wasn’t, she said she was respecting my wishes and she is okay with that. I explained that I spoke out of a hurt place because it happened so fast and I didn’t mean that. Saturday edible arrangements were sent to her that I ordered during the beginning of the week and she assumed I got them that day so she said that I was acting out in childhood trauma and trying to manipulate conversation and that this is toxic and unhealthy and this communication is toxic and unhealthy. I also purchased her a gift in late March (international gift) and she knew about it and it’s suppose to reach her and I feel embarrassed enough about all of this. She told me I don’t respect her boundaries and I apologized for making her feel that way and she proceeded to tell me my manipulative communication will continue to push people away, I told her how I felt and that despite the feelings I have for her I won’t bother her and that I care enough about her to release her and communication stopped. I’m so hurt and distraught because we connected instantly and just this week she called me her twin and now it’s as if things took a left turn. She went from telling me she was scared of being hurt and that she has strong feelings for me and ashamed of how she felt to talking to me in a very cold manner as if she was scolding a child and I was a serious problem and an annoyance. What should I do? Would NC rule work in this regard even though I sent that message and she didn’t respond?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 22, 2020 at 12:26 am

      Hi Jay, if you want to get your ex back you need to give it a full 45 NC before you reach out again and in that time you need to have appeared that you have moved on in some way so that she is going to be more open to talking to you through text, and working up the value chain

  16. Tracey Francis

    April 10, 2020 at 11:25 pm

    I pursued my ex for 6 months via email, messages, letters. Absolute love of my life. He threatened to contact the police if I tried to make contact again. I wish I’d read this sooner. Will be me being no contact forever. I know that’s what I have to do….and I’ll never hear from him ever again. I’m devastated. 41 and begging someone to love me. And be with me. I’m so ashamed of myself. Just feel so heart broken.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 12, 2020 at 7:13 pm

      Hi Tracey, I am so sorry you feel this way it is one of the hardest things we can go through losing someone we love and them not returning the feeling. However if you have got to the point where he is threatening police action I do suggest that spend some time on your emotional control, and focus on your self esteem. We can get our heart broken at 14 or 41 even in our 70s so dont be ashamed of hurting, take some time to heal and think about yourself. Then re assess what is going to truly make you happy

  17. Ryan

    April 9, 2020 at 4:58 pm

    My ex and I were together for 6 years. I initiated the break up but then it became more mutual but now I am regretting breaking up. We broke up about a month and a half ago. He told me he wanted to be friends and we see each other once a week. Lately I’ve been texting him like crazy and he stopped responding. Is it too late to do the NC?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 9, 2020 at 9:16 pm

      Hi Ryan no it is not too late to start your NC but it is essential that you stick to it and work your Holy Trinity

  18. Nathalie

    April 9, 2020 at 1:18 am

    My ex and I broke up 3 weeks ago after 9 months of dating. I sent him a msg saying that I miss him. He replied I hope all is good. I replied back. I haven’t heard a thing from him and it’s been 6 days. Would the NC work in this situation? Is there any hope?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 10, 2020 at 12:12 am

      Hi Nathalie yes go into a NC and stick to it for 30 days solid

  19. Kelly

    April 8, 2020 at 1:00 pm

    I know how you feel about cheating. My ex of four years was married for 25. He cheated on his wife the entire time, either physically or emotionally. He now has custody of the five kids, she cheated on him, left all of them and married the new guy. My ex brought all this into my life when we started dating. I didn’t find out about the seven women he cheated on me with until 3 years into ours, 3 of whom he had sex with, the others he had emotional relationships with. I left a after a year of attempting to reconcile recover and heal together in all of this.
    I had a question about no contact; but then I read what I just wrote to you and ask myself why would I even care…..?
    If you have time I’d love your thoughts
    Thank you stay safe and healthy

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 8, 2020 at 4:15 pm

      Hi Kelly, so when someone repeatedly cheats like this clearly there is an issue with that person. It could be a number of things but clearly he can not be faithful. I would take some time following the No Contact rules and look at your life – do you want to be treated this way for another four years?

      Work on the Holy Trinity, and also start casually dating too just to get yourself out there and see that not all men are jerks! I am sorry this happened to you, but yes I would also ask why would you want to be with someone who has treated you this way. I always say, imagine this was being done to someone you loved. Daughter / mother / sister etc. You would not allow them to accept this so don’t accept it for yourself

  20. Jordan O

    April 8, 2020 at 3:09 am

    I really need a podcast/article on dealing with a breakup in quarantine! My partner and I do not live together but he ended our 3 year relationship just a week ago because he felt bored and wanted space to figure things out and be single. I don’t know how to get him back if I’m not living my life being with friends, work, gym, clubs etc. I have listened to over half the podcasts but being in quarantine makes every explained scenario different. My ex is considered an essential worker in these times. He still goes to work, is able to physically socialize and has a gym in his home but I am stuck home with nothing to do but overthink and be caught up with emotions!

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 9, 2020 at 10:04 pm

      Hi Jordan I understand how difficult this quarantine is to deal with alone never mind a break up too, but you need to work on your Holy Trinity in the areas you can right now. You can still work out at home, you can read, do things that are going to interest you and use social media to show you are dealing with our global situation with a positive mindset

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