I am a huge proponent of the no contact rule and have thousands of successful client stories about it, but I’ve never addressed one specific type of no contact rule – the indefinite no contact rule.

This kind of no contact rule situation is actually fairly common, so today, I’m going to walk you through it.

By the end of this article, you’ll know about the three types of no contact rules and which one you should be using according to your specific situation.

Let’s dive in!

To understand the indefinite no contact rule, you must first know about the different types of no contact rules.

The Three Types Of No Contact Rules

In general, there are three main types of no contact rules that you may be considering using on your ex:

  1. Standard no contact rule
  2. Limited no contact rule
  3. Indefinite no contact rule

Each type of no contact rule has certain modifications for specific situations because every breakup is different, so there’s no one perfect formula that applies to them all.

Let’s get into some more details about the no contact rules and why you should use each of them.

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The Standard No Contact Rule

This is the basic standard no contact rule that you use if you want to get your ex back.

It simply entails ignoring your ex, no matter what happens, for 21-45 days.

By the end of that period, you’re trying to attain two goals: getting your ex to miss you and trying to reshape your life in the way that you want it to be shaped, so you’re the number one priority.

Think about it – this time of self-reflection and self-love makes it so when you talk to your ex after that period, he sees you as a completely new person, potentially even someone he wants to get back with.

The Limited No Contact Rule

Here’s where things get a little complicated.

There aren’t many differences between this and the standard no contact rule because the purpose of both is to make your ex miss you and give you time to restructure and cultivate a better life for yourself.

There’s one caveat with the limited no contact rule though – everyone can’t cut their ex out from their life entirely, so that’s where the limited no contact rule shines best.

Imagine a situation of having children with your ex or seeing them at work every day or even at home.

The limited no contact rule, therefore, allows you to break the rule for specific moments when it’s absolutely unavoidable. You’re still human, after all, and might need to keep cordial relations with your ex based on your circumstances.

For example, let’s say you and your ex shared a child together, and your child gets injured on the playground, and you have to rush them to the hospital. That’s definitely a situation where you’re socially and morally obligated to tell your ex what happened. As a parent, they need to know what’s happening in their child’s life.

But beware because some people can take advantage of this so do not be that person.

Don’t try to look for excuses to break the no contact rule where there are none.

So, to repeat: you are only allowed to break the no contact rule in UNAVOIDABLE circumstances.

The Indefinite No Contact Rule

After letting this concept stew in my mind for a bit since I’d never tried defining it formally, I came to the ultimate description based on the dictionary definition of indefinite.

The dictionary defines indefinite as lasting for an unknown or unstated length of time.

Here’s where things get interested in your standard no contact rule. Imagine you’re enacting a 30-day standard no contact rule, and on day 21, you realize you’re living your best life and are really beginning to enjoy your time in the no contact rule.

So, the thirty days go by and you find yourself feeling great emotionally and physically so you might not even want to approach your ex again just yet.

What do you do then?

When the time to break your no contact rule arrives, you just let it go for an indefinite amount of time.

You don’t know when your rule will end. The ball is in your court now.

You can decide if and when you talk to your ex again. In fact, most people who take the no contact rule seriously find themselves enjoying it so much that they don’t even speak to their ex at all!

Let’s dig deeper into this.

What Are The Rules To Know That You’re Read For Indefinite No Contact?

There are actually two things you need to do if you’re going to do an indefinite no contact rule:

1. You start off with a standard or limited no contact rule, and you see it perfectly to the very end without faltering.

Your mind changes throughout the no contact rule, so you need to let it take its course and tell you what it needs next. During the no contact rule, you will have moments where you want to text your ex urgently, and you’ll also have moments where you forget about their existence. Such mood swings are exactly why you need to let the no contact period finish so your mind can strike a balance between them.

2. Before you make the decision to extend your no contact period, you MUST be in a better place emotionally.

Ever heard the saying that when emotions run high logic runs low? That’s the case during a no-contact period. You need to think with logic and not emotions while making this decision.

What does it mean to be in a better emotional place, though?

Well, first off, use the no contact rule well. Sulking around and doing nothing isn’t the best way to spend your time. The point is to have an active no contact rule where YOU are the number one priority, so you need to let your focus shift back onto yourself.

Here are some things you want to have accomplished during your no contact period before you’re ready for an indefinite no contact rule.

Find a safe space to let your emotions out.

We all have a lot of pent up emotions after a breakup, and those make us volatile and might even preemptively pish us back to your ex. So, you need to find somewhere to channel those. Think close friends and family, but if you feel uncomfortable with those, our Facebook page is a great resource in this step too!

Take control of areas of your life that you haven’t been able to

This could be something as little as going to see a horror movie in theaters because you couldn’t do it with your ex.

It could also be something major like your choice in clothing in case your ex was always trying to tell you what’s okay to wear and what isn’t.

Treat yourself right

A big part of putting yourself first is treating yourself in the best way. Take a spa day if that helps you do this or just take a long drive that lets you reconnect with yourself.

Eat and sleep properly

Physical well-being is a huge part of emotional well-being, so you need to truly nurture your body to allow your mind some emotional peace too.

Conclusion

The decision to enact an indefinite no contact rule should not be made lightly, so let’s recap how to tell if you’re ready for it.

  • First off, you need to have completed the standard or limited no contact rule without making any unnecessary exemptions.
  • You need to allow your brain to process your emotions and calm down, and that requires strict adherence to the no contact rule throughout the process.
  • You must also make sure that you’re in a good place emotionally before you make the decision. If you haven’t been able to prioritize yourself during the no contact rule, then you should work on that first.

Only after accomplishing these two things can you decide whether you want to speak to your ex and end the no contact rule or if you want to keep it going as long as you wish.

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16 thoughts on “The Indefinite No Contact Rule”

  1. Avatar

    Anna

    July 22, 2020 at 2:43 pm

    My ex (18 month relationship) dumped me out of the 2 months ago. I’d been having a really hard time with some family issues and had become very anxious, which was causing disagreements in our relationship as I was saying I felt he wasn’t trying hard enough. After a few days I messaged him hi and we chatted for a little bit, then spoke more the following weekend when I was having a hard time with my parents. A week later we spoke on the phone for an hour for the same reason. I sent him a letter after about two and a half weeks explaining how my parents issues had affected my mental health and that barely being able to see him because of lockdown had made me act in a way I wasn’t proud of. I apologised and asked to be friends. During this time he had found a job 200 miles away and was preparing to move (so he broke up with me and within a month had found a job and moved away). Before he left we went for a two and a half hour walk where we chatted and got on just fine. There was no dramas following the initial break up, every time we saw each other or spoke it was friendly. He said he wanted space to get over feelings, and I asked about what he had said about still wanting to Be there for me with my family issues. He said he still wanted that but that with the friendly chatting it felt like nothing had changed so didn’t want that. I told him I wasn’t going to reach out if he wasn’t going to ask how I was doing. I’ve been no contact for nearly 30 days now and he hasn’t contacted me. He does still watch my Facebook stories so I’m going to stop posting them so he can’t keep a check on me. I’ve deleted him from snap chat and Instagram. When he broke up with me he said he still loved me but couldn’t take the mood swings, I asked him to give us another try and he said yes twice and then flipped back to no. How long should I maintain no contact?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      August 9, 2020 at 12:04 pm

      Hey Anna I would suggest that you follow the 30 day No Contact, you have not mentioned your age here, but if your relationship continues to be strained and you are old enough to move out I would suggest that would help you mentally and emotionally for any future relationships you have with others.

  2. Avatar

    Tiffany

    July 20, 2020 at 1:56 am

    Hi! Me again….so he asked for the Bible back when we were on the phone yesterday when he broke up with me, but kinda left it as “if you’re going to read it I don’t mind you holding onto it for now, but if not I’d like to have it back.”
    I plan to give it a few weeks & if he reaches out I’ll drop it by but if not then I’ll do things on my own terms & wait to bring it by his place when I know I‘m ready & can see him & do this without getting any bit emotional & dropping it with him & leaving.

  3. Avatar

    Tiffany

    July 19, 2020 at 7:09 pm

    Hi. My ex of almost a year & a half broke up with me yesterday over the phone saying with everything going on in his life he doesn’t feel like he can take the next step (marriage) in our relationship & doesn’t know if he’ll ever be there. This came as a complete shock & out of nowhere. He said it doesn’t change how he feels & still wants to keep in touch & be there for each other & be friendly if we see each other out. I didn’t say much to that, but I was very calm & collected/understanding on the phone. No tears or any emotions were thrown at him & he was grateful for how well I took everything. We left it as is & got off the phone. He texted me today a nice message saying that he left my stuff on my front porch & wasn’t sure if I was home but saw my stepdad outside & said he was sure he’d bring it in. He said he hoped I have a great & productive day & that my first clinical back in the hospital since Covid goes well tomorrow. I replied short with “thank you for bringing my stuff”

    I have one thing of his I need to bring by his place (a bible he lent me) but it’s not urgent. Do I bring him the Bible & get one last thing back from him that I know is still at his place sometime this week or do I start the no contact & get those things later?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      July 19, 2020 at 7:35 pm

      Hi Tiffany, if he has not asked for the bible then you do not need to give it to him. You need to go into a No Contact and work on yourself during that time before you speak with him again

  4. Avatar

    J

    May 26, 2020 at 10:33 am

    Hi there,
    My ex and I (6 month relationship), are in the same class at uni. We have been doing online study so this hasn’t been an issue. Our relationship has been a gradual fade over the last few months – though we have had considerable pressures to contend with. He officially called quits a week ago. I started the no contact rule then and am trying to maintain it (so far so good), but we have a uni assessment for which the teacher has put us in the same small group. We will have to have a small group (5 people) skype/zoom to go through and peer mark the assignment for over an hour. This will will be at about the half way point of 30 days.
    What should I do?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      June 9, 2020 at 5:18 pm

      Hi J, so you can do this by using the limited no contact, you are not to speak to your ex about anything other than the work that has been assigned. This would be easier as you are in a group chat. Be sure that you do not allow yourself to be left online with just the two of you at the end of the zoom meetings etc.

  5. Avatar

    Emily

    May 4, 2020 at 12:07 pm

    Hi,
    My ex split with me 3 months ago but I’ve been compulsively texting him since because I thought that would give me a reaction from him even though it’s always been a bad reaction of him asking me to stop but I just couldn’t stop sending a message, it’s just lead him to telling me he’ll never want anything with me again and to just leave him alone, should I start a 30 days NC now? Or have I pushed him away too much? Thanks 🙂

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      May 6, 2020 at 8:33 pm

      Hi Emily no you would need to do a 45 day No Contact at this point

  6. Avatar

    Hannah

    March 31, 2020 at 5:06 am

    Hi! My ex and I were best friends for 2 years before we hooked up then started dating. He had a crush on me for the whole year leading up to our first hookup. He has OCD and because I already cared about him as a friend, I never really played the hard to get game with him just because I did not want to hurt him. Anyways, we dated in college for a year then I moved home and he stayed at school for another semester and I tried to break it off but we ended up trying long distance and it made our relationship better. After that semester he moved home for the summer and everything was still great. He had always been more in love with me and it was a known thing. He ended up taking a job in NYC and I encouraged him tp move somewhere and not stay home because of me, even though I was definitely butthurt. We ended up going to Asia for a month before he moved and I happened to see his entire instagram feed was of instagram models and we got in an argument about it and he claimed it was because he was so upset about our breakup that he had been trying to get himself ready for other girls. I had also made it clear that we would probably breakup when he moved to nyc, which I realize was a mistake on my part. Anyways, the first week he was in NYC he begged me to visit him and bought me a plane ticket so i came. Then he started hanging with friends and he treated me terribly the whole time I was there. He kept making plans without me and acting like I was a random friend visiting. I cried and told him that I just wanted to go home and he cried and said he didnt want me to leave and break up with him and that he would do better. Then he broke up with me after i got home. After he broke up with me i didnt talk to him for the week then he called a week later begging for me back and I made him wait a month until I made it official again. We still talked throughout the month but he was not the same boyfriend. Since he had been in new york, he had changed. He had gotten cockier and it seemed like he needed me but didnt want me. I broke up with him when he came home for thanksgiving then I saw him out a few days later and he asked that we have a month where we dont hookup with other people but we dont talk either. After a week he reached out and said it was too hard and he wanted to get back together. We dated for a few months after that then he was assigned to puerto rico for work where he knew nobody and worked until 1am everynight. He begged me to visit and I did and we had a great time. He was in PR for a month and the weekend he moved back to NYC, he started texting me less and I felt weird about it. II had a plan to move to Aspen, co thinking this would be good for our relationship because I wouldnt be insecure about him in NYC anymore. He broke up with me a few days after he got back to NYC which was a few days before I moved to NYC. He called our mutual best guy friend crying saying this was the worst he ever felt and then called the next day saying he would get therapy and he was so insecure. I told him to get therapy but for now we cannot talk and he understood. I then texted him the day I left saying time and distance shouldnt matter if were meant to be and he said he appreciated the text and that he was going to focus on himself and come out ready to be a better boyfriend, no matter how hard this next month is. Then I spoke with him a few days after moving and he didnt seem serious about the therapist anymore (keep in mind he’s OCD) and seemed offended that I was so persistent about it. I told him we cant talk anymore until he sees his therapist and then I didnt talk with him for a few days. 4 days later he calls and says he wants to breakup for good and that he was acting based on emotions but logically we couldnt work because of distance and I told him I was disgusted with him. I was pretty harsh saying I’ll find someone better and plan on getting completely over him. I also said i hope he gets therapy so his next girlfriend doesnt have to go through this. Now we have spoken in 2 weeks and I have no idea how he is. None of my mutual friends will tell me and I know its because they want us broken up for good. I know that the no contact rule works, but during this COVID quarantine period, does it still work? I’m nervous that if he hasnt reached out now and hasnt had a chance to go back to his normal routine, he won’t miss me for a while, if ever. How does quarantining effect the NC period? Also I was his first love and he thinks he was mine but i think mine may have been a different guy i never dated. Will he call? Sorry for the earful and thank you in adance for any help!!

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 9, 2020 at 11:38 pm

      Hi Hannah, so the program is not planned to change you still need to stick to the same No Contact rules of at least 30 days. Working on your Holy Trinity as best you can during your isolation

  7. Avatar

    Rachel

    March 20, 2020 at 4:07 am

    Good day.my ex broke up with me a 3 and half weeks ago.We have been in love since college ,10 years ago and were ‘friends’ but never got into a relationship because we were both shy and never really opened up to each other.After graduating he moved to another country,we would talk by email as friends telling each other that we love each other but took it jokingly.Only last year thats when we really opened up to each other and we suddenly started dating.it was beautiful.we would spend the whole night talking,about anything,joking laughing.We believed we had a soulmate connection.then I lied to him twice about a few months into the relationship.i confessed and apologized but he couldnt take it because he said I knew you had lied to me so confessions don’t work for me.i have been apologising since last year but he is still angry .He is a very principled person and he can’t stand being lied to.He is very intelligent and says I reduced him to irrelevant arguments and a simple lie.He also complains that I am vengeful,I am not patient ,I lashed out at him sometime.I admit that I lied and I really feel bad about it. I lied about a family incident that happened and I did not open up to him because I was shaken and upset and just said to him it’s a work issue.during that period of being shaken I lashed out at him because the issue was too much for my family so I was not in my senses and when I finally told him the truth about what had happened in my family he got angry and said I lied to him I tried to explain that I was upset by the family issue and didn’t want to talk about it.The other lie was on a text that I had sent to him without giving much attention to it.it was not a good text but I never thought he would take it seriously.i only realised that it was really bad after he reacted and I tried to deny the contents of the text because I was so scared.he was really angry.i didn’t want to upset him further I just wanted the issue to end.I opened up a few days later and told him the truth about the text but he already knew that I had been trying to deny and it got him mad that I was lying to him about the text and denying the truth.those are the two lies that led to our break up. he has tried to forgive me and told me he wanted to forgive me but he failed.we tried to make it work in November last year by talking intimately but he got upset after a misunderstanding and said I applied it.we would chat he and there since last year and he would initiate contact sometimes and I would.But since November when he got upset again he had really changed and was not warming up to my texts.he would say hie sometimes after a week.I sent him a message a few weeks ago asking if we could give it a try and responded saying he is not interested in pursuing a relationship with me other than what we have right now.he said he has tried to forgive me but she failed and has stopped trying and is moving on.He says he loves me and has not lost interest and says that maybe it was not meant to be now.He said he will keep all our chats,photos videos that we used to share and also he will not delete my contact .The next day he sent me a message saying he thinks I was not ready for the relationship,maybe another time.i tried to talk to him on the phone and not on text a few days after and he tried to call back but the connection was bad he said let’s text but I didn’t want to text , because we have been trying to resolve our issues through text for all these months and never spoke on the phone so I said I will call back but he said he is busy and will be available in 2 weeks.i have never tried to call back,.I just decided to go into no contact and its now 3 weeks.i see him online but we don’t talk.Our relationship was long distance.during the time of our fighting,all our communication was on text.we never called each other to try and resolve the issue on the phone and I felt that a number of times we misunderstood each other on talking and he would say I’m lashing out ,im not respectful.i tried to explain and request that maybe if we avoid text when resolving issues and talk more about our issues on the phone it will be better but he said in a long distance you make do with what’s there.i don’t know how to really handle this.i am in pain.i hurt him,I regret it.

  8. Avatar

    Amy

    March 18, 2020 at 12:06 pm

    Hi,
    I haven’t been with my boyfriend for 3 months now but the longest we haven’t spoken is about a week. He broke up with me and I’ve sent him so many messages to try and get him back, all he says is that he loves me but thinks we don’t work together.
    I will see him on nights out and we end up together all night.
    On Sunday I text him again to say let’s try and make this work and he just says he’s confused.
    I decided from then to start my no contact which I’ve never done before.
    He text me last night and when I didn’t reply he said ‘why are you ignoring me’ then another saying ‘ you must be on a date’
    Should I reply today or keep on the no contact?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 19, 2020 at 11:39 am

      Hey Amy, so if you want your ex back you need to go into a No Contact for 30 days. Begging and pleading him to be with you is not going to work, this has been proven many many times before now. The fact that he has assumed you are on a date shows he still cares so use that to stick with your NC!

  9. Avatar

    shh

    March 15, 2020 at 2:51 pm

    hi so i broke up with him almost 2 month ago, because he didn’t commite i ended things politely and it came as a surprise to him because i’m not needy at all and in no circumstances i push anything, after 4 weeks of no contact my grandfather died and he reaches out for condelance he said really nice things and wanted to talk i answered politely and didn’t continue the concersation much, so now 3 weeks past by and no contact again!! what shoud i do? do i have a chance ? i love him and want him back

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 17, 2020 at 8:45 pm

      Hi there, so you need to get yourself working on the texting phase so that you can start re-attracting your ex working on yourself to be the best version of yourself.