As many of you know, I’ve been on this success story kick lately. Basically every week I’m trying to drip feed hour long success story interviews to my YouTube channel so I can get to the bottom of what’s actually working for my clients.

Not only has this practice been incredibly informative but I’ve even learned some new things.

Anyways, today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Samantha, a woman whose ex literally ghosted her while she was waiting for him to pick her up at the airport.

Buckle up, because this one is a long one.

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How Samantha Got An Ex Who Ghosted Her Back

Chris Seiter:
Okay, today we’re going to be talking to Samantha, who is a success story that we found in our Facebook group. We’re going to have just a real organic conversation with her to get to the bottom of what she did that actually worked. What I tend to like to do, Samantha, in these circumstances … I just like to give the floor over to you to explain how the breakup went down and just basically tell us your story.

Samantha:
Okay. Breakup was September last year, so almost a year ago.

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, a couple months short of a year.

Samantha:
Yeah, a couple months short of a year. I think the breakup was really, really terrible. Really, really bad.

Chris Seiter:
Define what makes it really, really bad.

Samantha:
Yeah. I was traveling abroad for work for a few months, and then when I came back to the States, my boyfriend just didn’t pick up the phone, so I had to figure out a ride from the airport to get home. Then I didn’t have my keys because-

Chris Seiter:
How long were you gone?

Samantha:
I was gone for two months.

Chris Seiter:
And so you come back to the United States and you don’t even have a ride from the airport? He just ghosted you at the airport?

Samantha:
Yeah. Well, we were messaging and texting each other up until then, and then … I guess he came to the airport an hour before my flight or something, and then when I actually got off the plane, he was not there and he just told me, “You need to figure out how to get back on your own.” I was like, “What? Okay.”

Chris Seiter:
So already, there’s kind of a bit of a red flag. Did you have any sense that … Was there friction between you guys before this moment?

Samantha:
Yeah, there was.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so it was maybe … Were you fighting before to make him do this?

Samantha:
We weren’t really fighting, but I think I was having a hard time abroad, and then also, he was having a hard time being alone, I guess. His job was really stressful as well. So maybe it’s [crosstalk 00:02:40]

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you get to the airport and you need a ride, so I’m assuming you find a ride or you call an Uber or something.

Samantha:
Yeah, I called a Uber to get back to my apartment and everything. Then I get back to my apartment. I don’t have my keys because I’m not going to carry my keys abroad in case I lose them. But what ended up happening was that he’s not even back in the apartment, and so I’m stuck outside of the apartment for like an hour or two until he comes back.

Chris Seiter:
So he’s got your keys?

Samantha:
Yes.

Chris Seiter:
Why didn’t he just … Okay, we’ll get to that in a minute. Does the talk come or something? Does he say, “We’re going to break up,” right there and then, or does it linger for a little while?

Samantha:
No, no. Basically, when he came back with the keys to let me in the apartment, he was like, “I want you to move out.”

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you’re sharing an apartment with him.

Samantha:
Yeah, yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So he basically just says, “Here, get your stuff, get out.”

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Well, that’s pretty bad. That’s pretty bad.

Samantha:
That’s pretty bad. And I was like-

Chris Seiter:
Did you ask why?

Samantha:
Yeah. I was like, “Wait, what? What’s happening?” Sorry, that was my dog barking just now.

Chris Seiter:
That’s all right. It’s all right.

Samantha:
Then I was like, “Wait, what’s happening? You didn’t tell me anything. What’s going on?” And yeah, it was just like … After he was talking or was like, “I want you to move out,” he was trying to say, “I wasn’t happy, I haven’t been happy, I still care about you, so you can stay here for a while until you find a new place, but I want you to move out.”

Chris Seiter:
Was it a two-bedroom apartment or a one-bedroom apartment?

Samantha:
It was a one-bedroom apartment and we were together-

Chris Seiter:
So you’d have to share a bed with him.

Samantha:
Yeah, yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Wow.

Samantha:
We were together for like six years.

Chris Seiter:
Wow, okay. So he wants a change, essentially, because … Did he give any more insight into other than, “I lost feelings for you,” type thing?

Samantha:
No. Not really.

Chris Seiter:
So for you, it was just out of left field.

Samantha:
Yeah. It was completely out of the blue.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so what happens next?

Samantha:
So-

Chris Seiter:
Also, awkward sleeping arrangements, by the way.

Samantha:
Yeah, super awkward. So then I just end up just being on the bed or on the couch. But for the next week or so, he wasn’t in the apartments for a few days-

Chris Seiter:
He didn’t sleep there? He just stayed with his parents?

Samantha:
He wasn’t sleeping there. No. Our families are out of state, and so-

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so where is he going?

Samantha:
Exactly. I wasn’t sure. So then I was like, “What’s going on?” At this point, I also want to say he didn’t say that he wanted to break up with me. He never said-

Chris Seiter:
So at this point, you’re holding onto that little thread of hope of, “Well, we’re still together. He just needs his space. He just needs his space.”

Samantha:
Yeah. “He just wants me to move out. Okay.”

Chris Seiter:
All right. You can see the logical progression, where it’s going to go now. So obviously, red flag, he’s not coming home for a week. Did he come to the apartment at all?

Samantha:
Yeah, to take out his dog and somewhat like that. But he would always go back when I wasn’t there or something like that.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So did you confront him at any point, like, “Where the heck are you going?”

Samantha:
Yeah. I didn’t confront him. But what ended up happening was I saw him one day and I noticed a hickey on his neck. I was like, “What the-”

Chris Seiter:
So he’s definitely got some other girl.

Samantha:
Yeah, exactly. And so then after I saw that, I confronted him and he was like, “Yeah. I’ve been staying over this other girl’s house.”

Chris Seiter:
Do you think that was going on while you were abroad?

Samantha:
I think so. I asked him about it after or whatever. I came back in September and he said he met her 4th of July and-

Chris Seiter:
Okay, I think that’s probably accurate.

Samantha:
Yeah, they met 4th of July and he said that they didn’t really actually hang out or do anything until a week before I came back.

Chris Seiter:
That’s probably true. I think that’s true.

Samantha:
I think that’s true.

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, I mean, that even can explain he’s like, “You need to move out.” Okay, so at this point, you have to be reeling. I mean, anyone in their right mind would be reeling.

Samantha:
Yeah, exactly. I was so upset and actually pissed off and devastated. It was really, really terrible. And so I remember the date, actually, when I figured out all of this stuff. It was September 13th.

Chris Seiter:
So it’s seared in your memory. You know.

Samantha:
Yeah, it’s seared there. Then after we had this conversation, he was just angry with me and just left the apartment, probably just to go see the girl.

Chris Seiter:
The ironic part is he’s angry at you when he’s done all this stuff. But that’s a consistent behavior I’ve noticed in breakups, especially when there’s the victim mentality. But at a certain point, you’re going to … At what point do you start … Because I’m assuming you found me or the program through YouTube or through Google. At some point, you’re going to search for advice. When does that start happening? Does that start happening after you move out of the apartment, or how does that come about?

Samantha:
Oh. I remember September 13th was when all of this had happened and he left, so I was alone for two days by myself.

Chris Seiter:
Right. So September 13th to September 15th.

Samantha:
Yeah. But actually, I found your program … When he left, I was just obsessively thinking, “Oh no. This is not happening right now.” And so I went through Google and found your website, Ex Boyfriend Recovery, literally two, three hours after he left.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. Were you consistently coming back and reading articles?

Samantha:
Yeah. I spent probably the entire first day reading through all the articles and I was like, “Dude, this all makes complete sense. I know this is all going to work.” And so I just went out and bought it right away.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you got the program. At the point you buy the program, has he already moved out or have you already moved out?

Samantha:
No.

Chris Seiter:
Or is that still happening in the September 13th to 15th timeframe we’re talking about?

Samantha:
Yeah, that’s still happening. Or I’m still there because-

Chris Seiter:
So obviously a big part of the program is the no contact rule. How do you manage that?

Samantha:
Well, he didn’t come back September 13th to 15th, but then for him, he ended up needing to go abroad to go to a friend’s wedding, and so I ended up having a week to myself in the apartment alone. So it was kind of convenient that way, so I just did no contact from that.

Chris Seiter:
So you started the week in the apartment alone, you just started the no contact rule.

Samantha:
Right away.

Chris Seiter:
Are you at this point looking for other apartments to go live in?

Samantha:
Yep.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you had to have found one, I’m assuming.

Samantha:
Yeah, I did.

Chris Seiter:
All right, so how fast did it take you to find the apartment and were you still in no contact when you found it? Did you just move out and when he comes back, the place is empty?

Samantha:
I didn’t, actually. I found an apartment and then what ended up happening was things fell through and I had to find another one. So by the time I actually moved, it was maybe 16 days after, so maybe beginning of October by then.

Chris Seiter:
So it started out as a pure no contact, and then when he comes back, was it like a limited no contact type situation you found yourself in?

Samantha:
Yeah. Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
And then when you do move out, do you go right back into regular no contact?

Samantha:
No.

Chris Seiter:
What is your no contact strategy, I guess is the point I’m trying to get at?

Samantha:
Oh, yeah. So when he was abroad and I was looking for apartments, I did absolutely no contact. No messaging, no limited no contact. I didn’t talk to him at all.

Chris Seiter:
Right, right. Got it.

Samantha:
But when he came back and my apartment things couldn’t come through, or whatever, I had to talk to him again really briefly. People would say that’s limited contact, but I just saw that as, like, “Oh, I had to break no contact because-”

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you just broke it, even though it’s technically limited no contact. And then do you just start over when you move out from the beginning?

Samantha:
Yes. Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. That’s interesting.

Samantha:
I just started all over.

Chris Seiter:
Started all over from the get go.

Samantha:
Yep.

Chris Seiter:
And the no contact period, what was the time frame you had decided on?

Samantha:
I did 45 days because it was …

Chris Seiter:
45 days, because the other one-

Samantha:
… super dramatic and I was like, “This is terrible.”

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so 45 days. That’s the longest period of no contact that we tend to recommend. What events occurred during that time from his side? Because most of the time, from what I’m understanding, it’s not so much what he does, but it’s more about what you do during no contact. But most of the people who are interested in no contact want to do it because they think it’ll make their ex miss them. So did he contact you at all during any of those 45 days, or was he pretty silent himself?

Samantha:
The first time I did it, so-

Chris Seiter:
So the week of no breaking it.

Samantha:
Yeah, the week of not breaking it, he did message me a lot, and then he wrote a little letter also saying, “I still love you. I still care about you.” And then he said, “Maybe when I get back from the wedding or traveling, we can try and work things out.”

Chris Seiter:
Even though you caught him with a hickey from some other girl.

Samantha:
Yeah. Oh my God. That’s another thing. I found out about this when I was in my 45-day no contact, was that he brought the other girl to …

Chris Seiter:
To the wedding.

Samantha:
… his friend’s wedding and she wore my dress.

Chris Seiter:
What?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, all right, that’s pretty big. So he is literally writing you this letter while he goes abroad, saying he still loves you, and yet he brought some other girl to the wedding and she’s wearing your dress.

Samantha:
Yeah. I was livid. I was like, “What are you doing? That is-”

Chris Seiter:
You have every right to be. Okay, so 45 days. Does he contact you at all during that timeframe?

Samantha:
The second part, no. Not-

Chris Seiter:
So radio silent, essentially.

Samantha:
Yes.

Chris Seiter:
Completely silent. All right, so what do you do during that time? Because a lot of the success stories that I’m interviewing, I’m noticing that they use that time super wisely. Do you feel like you did that as well, or do you feel like when you came out of the 45 days, you were sort of changed in a way? Or what was your experience, is I guess what I’m getting at?

Samantha:
Oh, because your book says to make a trinity calendar and all this stuff, and I basically had … I had the audiobook of your book also, and so whenever I was doing work or anything like that, I would just listen to all of the no contact things so I’m just absorbing it. Then I also, literally every day, I had a trinity calendar that would hit my wealth, my relationships, and-

Chris Seiter:
Health.

Samantha:
Health, yeah. I would go to the gym, listen to your podcast. It was just really therapeutic for me to be-

Chris Seiter:
So you used the program during the no contact rule to kind of prepare, I guess, and you really stuck to that holy trinity ideal.

Samantha:
Yes.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. By doing those things, do you feel more confident after the 45 days is over, or … I guess I’m just trying to get you to elaborate a little bit on your internal mindset as you do these things. Do you think they made a difference for you, or was it something else that made a difference?

Samantha:
Oh, I definitely think it made a difference. I guess the other thing that I added to the trinity calendar was social media also.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, social media. So what kind of things are you posting on social media?

Samantha:
Yeah, exactly. I think for me, I was extremely scientific about it. I would basically log everything that I did. So I would post at this time, I posted this thing, did he watch it? No, okay, then I’ll post another thing. And then he watched that. So for me, the biggest thing was with Instagram where you can have Stories and your posts, so you can see who-

Chris Seiter:
So you can see who watches.

Samantha:
Yeah, who watches it. And what I ended up finding out … It was like if I just posted a Story, he wouldn’t really watch it right away. But if I made a post, like an actual post that’s on the page and then made a Story, he would watch it.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you only can find that out since you charted.

Samantha:
Yeah, I charted it.

Chris Seiter:
So in your opinion, you felt like charting was one of the best things that you ended up doing.

Samantha:
Yeah. I think so.

Chris Seiter:
Do you mind if I ask a question about that?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Because a lot of people don’t look at it that way, and I’m constantly telling people in the Facebook group to chart their progress and everything like that. You start to notice this pattern eventually, right? Like, “Okay, I’m posting these posts and he seems to watch that or read that.” When you notice the pattern and you keep doing that type of technique, did he ever once fall off of that pattern? Or was it consistently every time you would do this one thing, he would watch?

Samantha:
It was pretty consistent. If he didn’t do it, it was really rare. But even if he didn’t watch it, I was not really fazed about it because I was really focused on making myself feel better with the trinity, too.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. Did you become part of … Obviously, I know you’re in the Facebook group, but what I don’t know is did you get assigned to the Battle Buddy program, or did you-

Samantha:
Yeah, I did.

Chris Seiter:
So did you utilize any of the resources that we have from the community?

Samantha:
Yes. I ended up having … I think my original Battle Buddy decided that she didn’t want her ex back, and then … I think I had a total of maybe seven Battle Buddies.

Chris Seiter:
All right, so you basically just got as many people’s opinions as possible to help you throughout your scenario.

Samantha:
Yeah. I thought that was really useful. And everyone in the group that I talked to was really, really nice. I think when I was going through no contact and I was freaking out with my ex being with this other girl, they were able to really just calm me down and share their experiences, too.

Chris Seiter:
I’m curious. You mention the other woman being involved in your situation. At any point as you’re going through no contact do you start to have second thoughts about trying to get him back? Do you let the anger take over and you’re just kind of like, “I don’t care about him anymore”? Does that ever happen? Or do you remain pretty stalwart about wanting to get him back the consistent way through?

Samantha:
There are definitely a few moments where I think, like, “Oh, is this even worth it?” or anything. But then I would just journal all of this out in my thoughts and write out what I would think and all the anger that I was having. Then I realized, “But there’s so many good things about our relationship. Yeah, maybe he’s wronged me a lot, like a ton,” but I still kind of believed that it would be better if we were together.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so that was kind of your North Star consistently. One thing that I’d like to ask you about before we move on specifically about the approach and what happens after your no contact period is I’ve notice that as I’ve been interviewing more and more of these success stories, all of them talk about this concept of … I’m kind of likening it to a devil-may-care attitude where they get to this point where they just feel so confident, they understand, “Okay, if I don’t have my ex anymore, I don’t care.” Did you ever get to a point like that, or were you pretty consistent, like, “I really want him back,” the entire time?

Samantha:
Oh, no. I definitely thought I didn’t care as much.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So what did it take for you to get that? Because at first, when you’re searching Google to get to the website, you’re obsessively about trying to get him back or trying to solve a problem or head off a problem before a breakup actually occurs. So at what point do you start to have that kind of internal confidence in yourself?

Samantha:
I think definitely talking to the Battle Buddies helped a lot. I also think that because I was doing so many different things for trinity, I realized that before in the relationship, I was just holding myself back from being my true self or something. I-

Chris Seiter:
It was like you’re not meeting your maximum potential. You’re complacent, maybe.

Samantha:
Yeah. Yeah. And I realized that … Well, for me, my wealth was getting really good at that time.

Chris Seiter:
So that helps. That helps, for sure.

Samantha:
Yeah, that helped a lot. Then I was really happy with all of my friends that I was making and the coworkers I was getting friends with, I guess. And so I realized that, “Wow, a lot of people actually like me and it’s okay. I could totally keep doing this forever.”

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you were at a point where you were just like, “If I get him back, I get him back. If I don’t, I don’t.”

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so that’s been a-

Samantha:
But I still-

Chris Seiter:
Sorry, go ahead.

Samantha:
I still also thought it would be really great if I got him back, but-

Chris Seiter:
Yeah. So, I mean, you’re leaning still towards getting him back, but you have that swagger enough to know, like, “If I don’t get him back, it’ll be all right. It’ll hurt a little bit, but I’ll be okay.”

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so that’s a consistent theme I’ve found among every single success story. Every single one. Which is important for anyone listening. But we haven’t really gotten to the tactical stuff because he’s still got the other woman, you’re still on the 45-day no contact. So how do you handle that delicate situation, especially this other woman who wore your dress?

Samantha:
Oh, God. I’m still angry about it, but …

Chris Seiter:
Yeah. Sorry, I don’t mean to rip open an old scab.

Samantha:
No, no, no. It’s okay. I think at this point, I’m angry but I also can joke about it.

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, yeah. Okay, so what do you do? Seriously, because this is a tough situation you’re in. There’s another woman involved. How do you handle that?

Samantha:
Yeah. I knew there was another woman, but when we went to … Are we going into texting phase now? Is that [crosstalk 00:24:52]

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, I mean, that’s the natural next progression. So no contact’s over, you go into texting phase, you know there’s another woman still. What happens?

Samantha:
Yeah. Actually, the thing is, he never confirmed if they were dating or not, like officially dating.

Chris Seiter:
So for you, it just seems like they’re a fling.

Samantha:
Yeah. To me, it seems like a fling and I never addressed it in texting phase. I just went through his interests and I had an entire chart, all of my texting, too.

Chris Seiter:
So you really charted it. Like better than no contact, you charted the texting as well. Did you notice any kind of interesting trends about what was working in texts?

Samantha:
Yeah. My first text was about computers. He’s really into computers and things like that, so my first text was, “Hey, I need your advice.” Anything with gadgets. I figured out that any time I texted about gadgets or things like that, he would text really quickly.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So the, “I need your advice,” type thing, do you liken that to a damsel in distress type thing?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
So he really responded well to the damsel in distress when you put his interests in it.

Samantha:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Chris Seiter:
Okay. Was that a consistent thing no matter what, even to this day that would still hold true?

Samantha:
Yes.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So it never ended.

Samantha:
Yeah, it didn’t end.

Chris Seiter:
How many times did you use that?

Samantha:
Oh, not that often, actually. I only used it maybe twice in texting.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, twice. So what were some of the … So you’re using other things as well. What else do you notice is working?

Samantha:
Let me actually just pull up my texting calendar.

Chris Seiter:
There we go, a texting calendar.

Samantha:
Well, yeah. It’s kind of a calendar because I logged the dates and how many days in between I paused, too, type thing.

Chris Seiter:
That’s beautiful to know for everyone listening who’s struggling with how to space out their texts. Samantha’s about to give us the goods.

Samantha:
Yeah. I mean, also, I think what helped me a lot was the Facebook group kept talking about Tide Theory. When I was first getting into texting, I was really confused on, okay, is it the number of texts? Because in the book, it says number of texts. And then in the Facebook group, they talk about length of time periods in between. And so I think asking the group all these questions really helped me a lot, too.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, and obviously sometimes when you ask the group, you get differing answers. I’ve found that always just choosing what feels right to you tends to be the better approach. What was your conclusion when you would ask the group and they’d give you these differing answers?

Samantha:
I think what I ended up doing was focusing more on the days in between my texts.

Chris Seiter:
So they days you wouldn’t be texting, when you would pull back.

Samantha:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Chris Seiter:
And he was pretty responsive, I’m assuming, in the text messages?

Samantha:
Yes.

Chris Seiter:
Do you have any tips for someone who’s going through the program but is having a hard time getting their ex to respond?

Samantha:
Oh. I think what helped me was that I wrote all of his top interests, like what topics I could talk about, and then if he’s taking too long, then I would try and change the subject. I guess for me, I’m a pretty slow texter, also.

Chris Seiter:
So you’re patient by nature.

Samantha:
Yeah, I’m patient by nature.

Chris Seiter:
So give me an example of what that patient looks like for you.

Samantha:
So-

Chris Seiter:
Give me a mock text scenario.

Samantha:
Yeah. I guess if I am texting someone or if I text my ex or something and it’s a question … But for me, if it’s a super urgent question for my friends, I would just call. But for my ex, it’s not a huge emergency ever when I’m doing texting phase, and so I would send the message and then I would immediately have an activity that I had to do where I wouldn’t be looking at my phone. So sometimes I would go out shopping or something like that, or I’ll go to the gym or something. And so then I wouldn’t look at my phone for the next four hours or something.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, that’s great advice. Seriously. So you would pre-plan an activity before you would send a text?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Did your text messages always seem pretty flowy in the fact that there would be a lot of back and forth, or was there a lot of space in between when he would send a text and you would send a text back? How did that work out?

Samantha:
I guess it was never super flowy in my opinion. I would send a text and then if he responded immediately, I would still wait maybe 30 minutes, but that’s just me being sure.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so what were the contents of his text messages like? Because when you first start, it can be a little hard to get that momentum rolling. But once momentum starts rolling, what kind of topics were you talking about? Did he ever bring up the breakup, and how did you handle that scenario?

Samantha:
Oh, he never brought up the breakup.

Chris Seiter:
So it was just sort of like the Mexican standoff type thing where whoever fires first, that’s when we’ll talk about it.

Samantha:
Yeah. I was also super cautious about any topics that could bring that up, because I didn’t want to mess up texting and have a text war or anything like that.

Chris Seiter:
Yeah. So what kind of topics would you guys get into?

Samantha:
I think what we talked about was gadgets, like computers, and then also his favorite show is Mad Men, and so I would talk about Mad Men. He’s also into skateboarding, and so there was … This ended up being really cool. I found a house on one of my random jogs or bike riding things. I saw a house with a skate park driveway.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, did you take a picture of it?

Samantha:
Yeah, I took a picture and I sent it-

Chris Seiter:
And you sent that to him.

Samantha:
I sent it. I was like, “What do you think about this?” He was like, “Whoa, that’s awesome. Where is this?” I found out later that that was during the time where he was also looking for houses.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, wow. So a happy coincidence there. Did he end up buying that house?

Samantha:
No. I think someone was living in it.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, that’s a shame. The conversations you would have, would they be kind of in that realm when you’re building rapport and it’s a fun, lighthearted conversation? Or at any point, do you get into a little heavier topics? Not necessarily emotional, “I love you,” type topics, but little heavier type things when both of you are opening up emotionally? Or does that happen later?

Samantha:
Oh, that happens much later. I think-

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so what has to occur to get that kind of conversation to open up for you? Was it just a medium change of going from texting to a phone call or FaceTime or something like that?

Samantha:
Yeah. I was probably in texting phase for like a month and he-

Chris Seiter:
Do you know if he’s still with the other woman?

Samantha:
I don’t, actually. I-

Chris Seiter:
So essentially, you just pretend she doesn’t exist. That was your approach.

Samantha:
Yes. Pretended she didn’t exist because he didn’t bring it up and I’m not going to bring it up, definitely not.

Chris Seiter:
And you are aware of the Being There method that we talk about in that situation, right?

Samantha:
Yeah. Definitely aware.

Chris Seiter:
So pretending she doesn’t exist, you were kind of just being there.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you’re going to get on the phone eventually. How does that work out?

Samantha:
Oh. During one of my … This was last year. I went out to go see a show and when I’m out getting in line or going to the venue, my ex is right there on the same street. I was like, “Oh no, I’m only in texting phase. I don’t want to jump the value chain or anything.” So I literally turned around to walk the other way, but at that time, he already saw me and he started to follow me.

Chris Seiter:
When I write the articles for talking about accidentally running into your ex, I always try to look for … There’s this GIF of Seinfeld where … You know Seinfeld, right? The show?

Samantha:
Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Where Kramer finds someone he doesn’t want to see and he does the thing you’re doing where he’s like … and he just decides to walk off.

Samantha:
Yeah, that’s basically-

Chris Seiter:
That’s exactly what you did.

Samantha:
That’s exactly what I did.

Chris Seiter:
But he saw you, so you can’t run away.

Samantha:
Yeah. Well, I still tried to run away. I turned around.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, that’s funny. That is so funny. But he catches you?

Samantha:
Yeah, he catches me. He grabs my arm. But luckily, I looked great that night. He grabbed me and was like, “Hey, how are you? Wow. I wanted to talk. Do you want to go somewhere?” I’m like, “Oh, I have a show to go to.” And he was like, “Please,” begging me to just talk. And so I was like, “Okay, fine.” So we went to this nearby little park-ish like thing. It’s behind a winery thing. It’s a little cozy … there’s a little fire pit and then there are chairs.

Chris Seiter:
Ooh, it’s kind of romantic.

Samantha:
Yeah. I was like, “I should probably be going away.”

Chris Seiter:
You were really jumping the value chain.

Samantha:
Yeah, I know. And I was like, “Okay, we can talk for a little bit.” Then when he did that, we just sat down and he was just crying to me and apologizing-

Chris Seiter:
Crying? Oh wow.

Samantha:
And he’s like, “I messed up so bad,” and telling me, “Wow, you’re doing so great.” And I’m like, “Yeah, I am doing great.”

Chris Seiter:
“Yeah, I am.”

Samantha:
“Yeah, I am doing great.” And so we had a talk like that. It was maybe 30 minutes, and I remember because this was definitely jumping the value chain and everything-

Chris Seiter:
And you leave first.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
You had a built in excuse with your-

Samantha:
Yeah, I had a built in excuse to my show. So I kind of showed that I had some compassion. I just put my hand on his arm, because his love language is physical touch, so I tried to comfort him. Then I just let him say all his things and then I was like, “Okay. I still have to go.” But he was like, “No, I don’t want you to go. I still want to talk,” and things like that. And so eventually, after all his crying session and … Also, at this point, in my head I’m freaking out. I was like, “Oh my God. This is bad. I’m going to mess things up. This is the value chain skipping and everything.” In my head, I’m freaking out, but outside, I was very stoic. I was super calm. I think if I was looking at myself outside, it would be like I was like a robot or something.

Chris Seiter:
I don’t know, so you’re kind of cold a little bit?

Samantha:
Yeah, a little cold.

Chris Seiter:
And you end basically the entire interaction by having the built in excuse with the going to the show, and I’m assuming you go to that show.

Samantha:
Actually, after that, I didn’t feel like going to the show so I just went-

Chris Seiter:
You just went home?

Samantha:
I just went home.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. Okay. Yeah, all right.

Samantha:
I called a Lyft or an Uber and just went home.

Chris Seiter:
So you didn’t go to the show, but do you start … Because I notice that sometimes when these interactions go really well, other areas open up, like texting becomes a different level, you start talking on the phone. Did you notice that start happening? Did he reach out to you pretty quickly after that?

Samantha:
Yeah, he did, actually. Not super fast. I still initiated the next three texts or something, things like that. But eventually, he would contact me more. He actually called me randomly one day. So that was like, “Okay, I guess I’m having call number one right now.” But that was-

Chris Seiter:
All right, so how does that go?

Samantha:
So that was maybe a week after [crosstalk 00:38:50]

Chris Seiter:
The interaction?

Samantha:
Yeah, yeah. And the call was very short. I think it was just 15 minutes and he just wanted to see what my holiday plans were, actually.

Chris Seiter:
That was his excuse to call?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
So he’s fishing around for a date, essentially.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. I think he’s just … For me, he’s just feeling out whether or not you’re even interested in going on a date with him. How do you handle that in the moment? Because it’s out of the blue and it catches you off guard. What do you say?

Samantha:
I just told him what my plans were and didn’t include him in the plans.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, all right. So you told him what your plans were. Does he get cowardly after that and leave?

Samantha:
No.

Chris Seiter:
So he actually pushes and like, “Hey, do you want to do this with me?”

Samantha:
Yeah, he did.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So you-

Samantha:
I think it was because I was just kind of not being super engaged with it.

Chris Seiter:
What did you say? How did you respond when he says, like, “Hey, Samantha, I want to do this with you”?

Samantha:
I was like, “I’m busy that day, but maybe another day,” so I would reschedule.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you’re making him jump through a hoop. Did he reschedule with you?

Samantha:
Not right away. Sometimes he would figure out a better day or come up with a better activity.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. And so your first activity ends up being what?

Samantha:
This was around December or something, and actually my first activity wasn’t until January. So I’d been dodging him for a while.

Chris Seiter:
It seems like he also kind of dragged his feet a little bit, which I understand because he doesn’t want to get hurt emotionally. But you see him in January, and what is the first activity?

Samantha:
It’s running, actually, because I-

Chris Seiter:
All that for running? I thought it was going to be something much more romantic.

Samantha:
No, it wasn’t. It was just-

Chris Seiter:
Running.

Samantha:
I was particularly busy with all of my trinity work, and I kept saying I was too busy to do whatever he wanted. And so I think he ended up doing a low-risk activity where I said, “Oh, I’m going to be running today at this time.”

Chris Seiter:
So we tend to recommend that low-risk activity to begin with for a lot of the people who are at that dating or in-person interaction stage for the very reason of not … Because sometimes, it overwhelms both parties if you go right to a romantic environment as you’re first building that rapport.

Samantha:
Exactly.

Chris Seiter:
And you essentially just follow that step naturally, it seems like.

Samantha:
Yeah. I think it fell pretty naturally. So I said that, “I’m going to be running here,” and he was like, “Can I join?” I’m like, “Yeah, sure.” But-

Chris Seiter:
Is he a runner at all?

Samantha:
No, he is not.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. There you go. So that’s a good sign.

Samantha:
Yeah. He’s not a runner. What ended up happening was we were just running around a lake and I’m much faster than him so he’s literally chasing after me to keep up.

Chris Seiter:
That’s great. That’s a great story. Do you end up having to stop for him?

Samantha:
Oh yeah, sometimes I would slow down just so he could catch up.

Chris Seiter:
All right. So the running ends. I’m sure you talk a little after the running ends.

Samantha:
Yeah. And then I was like, “All right, I’ll see you later.” And then I went home.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, okay. So no talk. You just basically did the run, “See you later.” You’ve literally got him chasing after you.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, what is the next interaction? How does that come about?

Samantha:
Oh, and then we text a little bit more frequently.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. It seems like every in-person interaction you have, you’re texting more and more back and forth.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. This is just a typical progression, it seems like.

Samantha:
Yeah. It seemed really weird to me because I didn’t expect it to be so exactly like your program.

Chris Seiter:
Most of the time it’s not. What I’m finding out with these … I’ve just been doing the latest batches of success stories because I know it’s been a while since I interviewed a lot of them. But I’m noticing a lot of them follow the strategy, but eventually they get in a situation where they have to make a choice on whether to jump the value chain or do this thing and adapt. And a lot of them make the right choices to adapt when it’s right. Usually, the progression is sort of there as a roadmap, but yours seems to just … You’ll notice yours didn’t follow perfectly because you accidentally ran into him and you did jump the value chain. But I actually think that helped you more than hurt you. But I don’t think that helps you unless you’re texting the right way and doing the social media stuff and having the mindset you have. Which if you just hadn’t found the program, you’re just going through a breakup and you might just be angry when you see him or something like that, or not have taken some of the steps you had taken.

Samantha:
Yeah. I-

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so … Sorry, go ahead.

Samantha:
Oh, no. I also think that running into him sped things up because I was going to be in texting phase for a while.

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, it seems like, though, it was working for you pretty well. I think when I look at your success … and we’re not even to the end yet, but I think the big thing for me is how you approached texting. You didn’t grow impatient with it, which is a huge problem I notice in the group. Women obsessing, checking their phone every five minutes to see if he’ll respond. I like the activity idea you had. So I’m assuming that kind of ideal kind of trickles down to all areas of your life when you’re going through this, the struggle.

Samantha:
Yeah. I think what helped me a lot, too, was that a lot of my other Battle Buddies would ask help for texting, too. So I had a lot of practice coming up with new ways to say things all the time.

Chris Seiter:
Well, that’s an underrated aspect, too, because if you have a Battle Buddy … and you said you got partnered up with seven … you can even witness what text messages they’re using that is working and not working on their exes and take bits and pieces for your own situation. But okay, let’s get back to the progression. So you’ve gotten the chasing date, we’ll call it, because he was literally chasing you. And he’s not a runner, which that should pretty much tell you where he’s at emotionally.

Samantha:
Yeah. Really wanted to hang out.

Chris Seiter:
So what happens next?

Samantha:
Oh, we went on more runs like that, and then I-

Chris Seiter:
So that became a normal thing, then?

Samantha:
Yeah, that became a normal thing. And actually-

Chris Seiter:
Did he get in better shape at any point?

Samantha:
Did he?

Chris Seiter:
Yeah. Was he able to keep up? Or was he still chasing every single time?

Samantha:
I think I slowed down for him.

Chris Seiter:
Oh, okay.

Samantha:
But one of our texting or calls … I forget which one it was … ended up being talk about how I’m doing a half marathon in February. He was like, “Oh, I want to do it.” And so he randomly also signed up for this half marathon that I’d been training for a while to do.

Chris Seiter:
And he’s not been training all for.

Samantha:
Yeah, he’s not been training at all. He maybe had two, three weeks of training.

Chris Seiter:
I’ve run a half marathon before. They are not easy.

Samantha:
No. So what we ended up doing was that … I think we had maybe a few running dates like that, and then we just met up on a Sunday for the half marathon and we ran together for the half marathon.

Chris Seiter:
So you purposely weren’t trying to go fast. You were just staying back to make sure he didn’t pass out? Is that what happened? Or did he walk?

Samantha:
For our practice ones, I would slow down for him. But definitely for the half marathon, I went my normal fast pace, basically. So he had to really try and stay with me.

Chris Seiter:
I’m assuming he didn’t stay with you.

Samantha:
No, he was trailing behind for a while.

Chris Seiter:
Did he walk at any point during this half marathon?

Samantha:
No. He was a really good trooper [crosstalk 00:48:10]

Chris Seiter:
Wow. That’s pretty good. That half marathon, did you go out afterwards to a restaurant or something?

Samantha:
Yeah, we got some breakfast and we had some waffles and just talked for a while. Yeah, it was pretty fun.

Chris Seiter:
Are we to a point where you start talking about your feelings yet?

Samantha:
I think he is much more open about his feelings. He would tell me like, “Oh, that was so hard. I feel so tired,” and everything like that. But not really any feelings of romantic feelings yet. I think we just started-

Chris Seiter:
When did that come? Because you’re seeing him in person pretty consistently, even though they’re kind of mechanical running dates. The activity, I would assume, bonds the two of you closer together. So what happens to make the feelings come out from either party?

Samantha:
I think it happened after the half marathon, because after that, he got really sick. I think the flu or something.

Chris Seiter:
So the half marathon ruined his immune system and he caught a flu.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Hopefully not the coronavirus.

Samantha:
I don’t think it was. It was in early February. Maybe it’s not. I think it was just the flu. And so then I was like, “Okay, I’m going to take a little bit more of a risk,” and came and brought him some soup and kind of took care of him for a few hours. It was like, “Oh, how are you? Are you doing okay?” So kind of showing this caring side of myself, and I think-

Chris Seiter:
You say it like it’s nothing, “Just showing this caring side of myself.” Okay. I’m assuming that makes him feel really good and he’s stuck with the flu. Does he start blabbing about his feelings with the flu during this meetup?

Samantha:
He says, “Oh, thank you so much. I love you so much,” things like that. It’s like, “Yes, I got him.”

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, right. It just took a flu and a half marathon. That’s pretty great. Okay, so when I was prepping for this interview, I went to go look through the Facebook group to kind of understand how you guys got back together, and I read you guys … The last post I could see on the Facebook group that you had made was something along the lines of him basically treating you like a girlfriend but not officially giving you a title. What makes him eventually officially give you that title?

Samantha:
I think time, actually.

Chris Seiter:
So how much time goes by from the moment of the flu … which when he says, “I love you,” that’s big. Totally, even if he’s got the flu, right?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
It’s kind of like being drunk. It doesn’t make you say things you don’t mean. It just to help make the truth be a little bit more blabby. How much time has to go by before he is willing to make the commitment?

Samantha:
The half marathon was beginning of February, and so end of February, that’s when he got a promotion at his job and he wanted … He didn’t tell me he had a promotion at the time. He was like, “Oh, I have some really big news I want to share with you.” And so we went to this bar … a rooftop bar, actually … and we went into this cozy little place, really romantic … kind of like another fire pit thing overlooking the city on this roof. And he tells me that he’s got promoted and all this good news, and he thinks, “Oh, it kind of means that I want to focus on other aspects of my life, like family or like relationships and things.” And so then I asked sneakily … not really, but I was like, “Oh, do you mean with me?” And he was like, “Yes, with you.”

Chris Seiter:
So he beat around the bush a little bit and you just took the first risk, really. To me, it just seems like he’s feeling because he doesn’t want to get hurt. But I noticed even after that, you were asking in the group, “How do I get him to say we’re boyfriend and girlfriend?” That happens eventually, I’m assuming, right?

Samantha:
Yeah, yeah.

Chris Seiter:
How much time goes by before that happens to break him down?

Samantha:
After that, we were kind of just doing our normal dates and talking and he would just call me every night. And so-

Chris Seiter:
So you’re acting like you’re together.

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
Are you guys intimate at this point?

Samantha:
Yeah, actually.

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you were essentially a girlfriend without the title. But it may be one of those situations where he’s too afraid to ask and you’re too afraid to ask, and so you’re just sort of dancing around it.

Samantha:
Yeah, I think so. So that was end of February. So beginning of March, I guess, that’s when I was asking in the group about things. And so I just thought that, “He just needs more time to understand that we’re really great together.” I actually saw it as, “Okay, I just got to be patient about it and keep doing my fun, lighthearted message and showing more consistency to him.”

Chris Seiter:
Even though there’s no “title” with this yet, is there kind of self-imposed boundaries for both of you where you both aren’t going to be dating other people? Did you have a talk about that, or is it just assumed?

Samantha:
Well, I asked him, actually. I asked him, “Are we just dating? What is this?” I asked him maybe around March or something. I asked him, “So, are we dating right now?” He was like, “Yeah.” And then he says, “I’m not seeing anyone else. I’m just seeing you.” And then, “Okay, this is great.”

Chris Seiter:
So that’s sort of how it happens. You just ended up having to ask, “What is this?”

Samantha:
Yeah. I didn’t ask, “What is this?” [crosstalk 00:55:14]

Chris Seiter:
You had your own phrase, but essentially that’s the sentiment you’re trying to get through.

Samantha:
Yeah, yeah. I definitely was really careful about my word choices, to not … I felt like I didn’t want to scare him away.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So he’s like a scared little puppy or something. It’s always interesting when couples get back together, because you can kind of get the inside scoop of what the other person was thinking. Did you at any point quiz him about what he was thinking when he broke up with you? Even thought the breakup was kind of odd and about the other woman? Did you understand his mindset at all?

Samantha:
I did not, actually.

Chris Seiter:
You’re just like, “Leave well enough alone.”

Samantha:
Yeah. I-

Chris Seiter:
Okay, that’s an interesting approach to it. I noticed in March was the last time you posted in the Facebook group. How long have you guys been back together?

Samantha:
I think for two months now. [crosstalk 00:56:18]

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so two months. So the two months you’ve had, how has that approach worked for you, the not talking about the breakup at all? Just kind of pretending it never happened?

Samantha:
I think it’s working okay. Eventually, I do want to ask about it and process everything properly. But I don’t want to do that until I go into couples therapy or something to kind of-

Chris Seiter:
Is that something he’s agreed to?

Samantha:
I asked him and he’s like, “Yeah. I’d be okay with it.” And I still just have to find the appropriate counselor to … I basically have to do all the work to set it up because he’s not going to do it.

Chris Seiter:
Well, yeah. Also, there’s kind of that negative stigma that’s attached to it. Sometimes people think there’s a problem if you go in. One of the first success stories I interviewed was in a similar situation, but the reason her ex broke up with her is because she suggested going to couples counseling and he was just like-

Samantha:
Oh yeah. I remember that.

Chris Seiter:
But she had a really good analogy. She just said, “Hey, it’s like going to the dentist. You go to the dentist to make sure your teeth are protected. The same thing with the couples counseling.” So that might be an interesting way to put it to him so that he doesn’t feel threatened. And also make it clear that this isn’t because there’s a problem. It’s just you want to safeguard the relationship and protect it. You can kind of make it cutesy like that, I’m sure. But overall, I mean, I can totally understand how you would have to do all the work for that, because there’s such a negative stigma behind it.

Samantha:
Yeah, totally. So we haven’t really addressed the breakup or anything yet.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So, I mean, it’s just kind of like it didn’t happen. It was just kind of like a blip. Is there any kind of resentment you still feel towards how … Because the breakup, I would agree, it’s a bad breakup. Not so much words being said, but just the action of not picking you up at the airport and just sort of him being with some other woman. Is that something that you’ve gotten over, or something that you’ve kind of pushed to the side?

Samantha:
I’m still kind of angry about it, but I also see all of the effort he’s doing now.

Chris Seiter:
Yeah, I mean, he ran a half marathon. I mean, that kind of makes you feel better, too, because he jumped through a lot of hoops to get back with you.

Samantha:
Yeah, a lot. And I can actually tell that he’s trying to be better about things.

Chris Seiter:
When you look back at how everything came, what do you feel … Because you are in one of the rare situations where your ex moved onto another woman and then I don’t know how that went down. Maybe they were never defined as being together. But you structure it in a way to where somehow he has to win you back, where most of the clients we deal with are not. They’re trying desperately to win their exes back. So what do you feel was instrumental in getting that positioning?

Samantha:
Good question. I think being less available for him. I wouldn’t drop evidence that I would do-

Chris Seiter:
Would you say you were super available for him during the relationship?

Samantha:
Yeah, definitely.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. So you would drop everything, like you would drop work or something if he needed something?

Samantha:
Yeah. I did a lot of work and I realize that, okay, if we’re getting back together, I don’t want to do this. It’s [crosstalk 01:00:15]

Chris Seiter:
Did you ever talk to him about those kind of boundaries, or is that just one of those things he innately senses?

Samantha:
I think he just innately sensed it, that I wasn’t going to do all of the same stuff.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. What do you think was instrumental in achieving that mindset for you?

Samantha:
I guess realizing that I need to put myself as a priority, too. A lot of times in the past relationship, I put him kind of on a pedestal a little bit, that, “His needs are important. It’s okay if I’m uncomfortable right now.” But then with no contact and through texting, I realized, “No, I want to do this. I want to do this.” Or, “If I want ice cream, I’m going to buy myself ice cream,” or something.

Chris Seiter:
Would it be accurate to say that now you’re looked at as his equal, whereas maybe before, he looked down, like he could take advantage of you potentially?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
He grew very, very comfortable in the relationship to the point where he knows he can get away with things. But now he’s putting the effort in because he looks at you like you’re equals.

Samantha:
Yeah. I think so. And also, I think when he just came up to me that random time, I was probably better. I think I was better than him in that [crosstalk 01:01:49]

Chris Seiter:
Okay, so you were doing better after the breakup than he was. So it was one of those … You know that famous meme where it’s like, “How girls process breakups and how guys process breakups,” and the girls are super sad at first, the guys are partying, and then it kind of shifts as they go?

Samantha:
Yeah.

Chris Seiter:
That seems like that was a true circumstance, because he has the new girl after the breakup, he seems like he’s doing well. You’re not doing well, obviously. You’re hurt, you’re devastated, but as time went on, you kind of rebuilt yourself and made yourself into … You kind of achieved more of the potential that you had and he sort of was like, “What did I do?”

Samantha:
Yeah. I think so.

Chris Seiter:
That’s great. You have one of the more interesting success stories, especially your approach to the other woman. I actually kind of like that. When you’re dealing with a situation where another woman’s involved, were you constantly obsessing about her, or did you at a certain point recognize, “That’s unhealthy. I just need to pretend she doesn’t exist”?

Samantha:
I mean, there were definitely times where I was curious about her, but I ultimately knew that if I obsess over her, she’s winning right now, and so I have to put that away and concentrate. It’s just me. It’s me doing my little slow rapport building now and then, and then if I just leave her alone, she’s going to just implode on herself with the whatever they’re doing with my ex, I guess.

Chris Seiter:
Well, I like-

Samantha:
Yeah. Completely ignore her.

Chris Seiter:
I like your approach. It’s a healthy one, because it seems like you’re really good at focusing on the factors you have control over and forgetting about the factors you don’t have control over.

Samantha:
Yeah. I think that was really important on me, I guess. I think the reason why I figured out not to … or pretend that the other woman doesn’t exist at all was actually because I asked a question on a Facebook live, and that was the answer I got and I liked it.

Chris Seiter:
Okay. All right. Before we end the interview, someone who is struggling throughout this process, what would be the one piece of advice you would give them? If there was one thing they would take away from this interview, what would that be?

Samantha:
I think really charting all of your texts and charting your social media game. I think that for sure helped me just look at this entire process as kind of like a very systematic thing that people have to do. You can put all your emotions in it, but then you might lose control out of all of that. So if you just look at this entire process as kind of like ticks almost, like a check mark list, then it’s a little bit easier.

Chris Seiter:
That’s perfect.

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