By Chris Seiter

Updated on February 23rd, 2021

Today we’re going to be talking about a situation that one of my podcast listeners, Denise has been struggling with.

She has acted completely desperate after her breakup, and she’s a little confused as to how she should approach her situation and what she should do next. And I wanted to feature her particular situation, because I feel like it’s a situation that most of you probably are in.

You’ve either acted desperate after your breakup, and you don’t know what to do next.

Well today, that’s what we’re going to be talking about.

And if you read this article to its end we are also going to cover the following topics.

  1. Defining What Desperate Looks Like
  2. Why Is Desperate Behavior So Bad?
  3. If You Need To Start Over From Square One After Your Breakup
  4. The Role No Contact has In Resetting Things To Square One
  5. The Four Pillars Of Attraction

But before we actually start hearing from Denise, I first want to reiterate that if you haven’t  taken our Ex Recovery Chances Quiz, which is a free two minute quiz that we’ve designed, to help you understand what kind of chance you have of getting your ex back, you should stop everything you’re doing take that quiz.

It’s a free two minute quiz. And it’s perfect for anyone who’s a newbie, anyone who’s starting out and doesn’t know what they should do, whether that’s getting over their ex boyfriend, or moving on from their ex boyfriend, or even trying to get their ex boyfriend back.

Once you understand what kind of chance you have, it’ll give you a little bit of an idea of what route you should be taking. And more than that, we actually give you personalized results or personalized next steps on what you should be doing next, based on your quiz answers.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

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Denise Has Been Acting Extremely Desperate After Her Breakup

Okay, so now that that’s out of the way, let’s hear from Denise.

Hi Chris, my name is Denise. My boyfriend and I actually broke up October 17. We got into a really big fight and then I popped up by his house, and then we just got into a really big fight and then we broke up. Ever since the breakup, I’ve been calling, calling, calling. I even popped up at his house a couple of times. I’ve been texting him every day. And then I actually ended up running into him one day while I was out. And I was talking to him or at least trying to make him smile, but he just wasn’t budging I guess.

So now, it’s Saturday, December 14th, and I started the no contact rule December 1st, but I feel like every day is getting harder and harder. So what do I do after my no contact rule is over? Please help, I really miss him a lot and I really, really want him back.

Okay, so before I get started, and there’s a lot to talk about here, I’d like to give a quick rundown of Denise’s situation just so that I make sure that I’m having it straight before I get started. Because a lot of times, I just sort of end up organically riffing off of what I hear in the moment.

Okay. So Denise has broke up with her ex in October, I believe. And the two of them got into a massive fight. What’s interesting is she keeps showing up at his house, which is kind of a big no-no. If you listened to any of my other podcast episodes or read any of my articles, or even gone to our YouTube channel, you’ll know that I’m not a big believer in doing desperate kind of weird things like that.

A Quick Recap Of Her Situation

  • She’s been calling him nonstop again, going to his house
  • Texting him like crazy.
  • She actually ran into him while he was out and he seemed completely uncomfortable during that interaction.
  • She’s trying the no contact rule out for the first time, which she should’ve just done originally.
  • So I guess she’s sitting there and wondering, “Well, what do I do next? Now that I’m doing the no contact rule, what happens after it’s over?
  • What am I supposed to do?”

Let’s Define What Desperate Behavior Looks Like After A Breakup

Okay, so the first thing I’d like to start off with, is this concept of defining what desperate is.

So I think we can all agree that Denise has acted a little bit desperate when it came to interacting with her ex after the breakup. They’ve gotten into multiple fights, she’s showing up at his house unannounced, she’s been calling him, texting him like crazy, blowing up his phone.

These are all very desperate behaviors, but there’s more desperate behaviors that I guess I want to cover.

Because, this is something that we see with our coaching clients all the time, right? So not only do they gnat …

Now gnat, if you aren’t familiar with The Ex Boyfriend Recovery way of going about things, gnatting is G-N-A-T, going nuts at texting.

So Denise seems kind of like a gnatter, right?

She’s showing up at his house unannounced, she’s texting him, blowing up his phone with text messages.

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These are all very desperate type of behaviors, and she didn’t specify, but one of the most desperate types of behaviors that we see is begging, right?

So it’s not enough just to blow up his phone, showing up unannounced. It’s also the types of conversations you’re having with your ex. Anything that can be construed as desperate, which often is begging for them back. “I want you back. I made a mistake,” that whole spiel.

Why Is Desperate Behavior Such A Bad Thing?

So, why is being desperate … because desperate is such a normal part of the breakup process.

Why is it such a bad thing?

Because this is something that I don’t think anyone really talks about. It’s just universally looked at as this bad type of behavior. Well, there’s a reason why people think being desperate is not a good idea.

After a breakup. You see, if you act desperate, if you beg, you gnat, you show up at his house unannounced, you actually reinforce their decision to remove you from their life.

At every point of a relationship, whether the breakup was mutual, or where the breakup was one sided, at some point, deep down, the man is having this internal conversation like, “Okay, I’m removing her from my life.”

You shared so much together, some of the most intimate moments you’ve maybe you’ve had together, and he’s making a decision to remove you from his life. Every time you show up unannounced, every time you text him, every time you blow up his phone begging for him back, you reinforce his decision to remove you from his life. And it makes him validated.

It makes him think, “Ah, yeah, it was a good decision to remove her from my life.”

Is There Such A Thing As Starting From Zero Or Square One?

And there’s another concept that I feel like a lot of my peers don’t really talk about this, this idea of starting from zero.

So whether you realize it or not, getting an ex back simply boils down to one simple concept. And that’s this idea of leveraging the best moments of your relationship together and minimizing the worst moments of your relationship together.

So, oftentimes when you beg, you act desperate or you’re reinforcing their decision to remove you from their life, you’re finding ways to actually reinforce or leverage the worst moments of the relationship. Because fighting, arguments, maybe you have trust issues, all of these things coincide with acting desperate. And it creates this perfect storm where an ex is looking at you like, “Yeah, I don’t want to get into that situation again.”

But what do I mean? Because I feel like I’m getting off topic here. What do I mean by when I say starting from zero?

Well, a lot of women have this really, really wrong notion about getting an ex back. So a lot of women go into the process thinking, “Okay, well it’s just like I’m starting from zero again. Right? If I get to level 10, that means I’ll have gotten him back.” You break up, so you’re starting back at square one, but it really doesn’t work that way.

You see, last week I was asked a question by someone in our private Facebook group, privately.

She asked me, she said, “Chris, what would you rather have? Someone who’s just meeting a guy for the first time and is trying to make that guy her boyfriend? Or someone who is trying to get her ex back after they’ve shared a three month long relationship together?

And after a while I thought about it and said, “Well, I actually think it’s easier to teach someone to get a boyfriend for the first time, than it is to get an ex back.”


Well, so the person who’s never met this boyfriend for the first time, they’re just trying to convince this guy to be in a relationship with them, is truly starting from square one; they’re starting at zero, rather. That’s not the case with a lot of the guys and girls listening to this podcast.

You’re trying to get your ex back. That means you’re not starting at square one or square zero, you’re starting at square negative one.

You see what you have going against you, are all the negative moments of your relationship. This idea of, you have to find a way to not reinforce your ex’s decision to break up with you. Because most of you, at least from studies we’ve done from people who are actually visiting our website, Ex Boyfriend Recovery, 80% of you are coming in, and you’re the ones that have been broken up with.

That means you’re starting from negative one, because not only do you have to re-convince an ex to be re-attracted to you again, but you actually have to overcome the mistakes of the first relationship, the trust issues, all of the things, these internal conversations your ex will be having in his head. He’ll be sitting back and thinking, “You know what, I don’t want to get back with her, because.”

It’s always a little bit more difficult.

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Now don’t want that deter you away from trying. I’m just telling you how it is. And actually it’s interesting, because this is why no contact rule is such an important aspect of getting your ex back. The no contact rule is meant to get you closer to that square one or square zero mark. It’s to get you out of the negative and back on neutral ground by using time.

The No Contact Rule Can Help Reset Things Back To Square One

Now we’ve talked a lot about this concept of the no contact rule over the years, and how there’s many different psychological ramifications for it. It utilizes a psychology, a psychological concept called reactants, by removing a behavioral freedom from your ex, you’re making them more likely to want to respond or reach out or get that freedom back. It’s letting you have time to cool down, letting your ex have time to cool down, putting some distance between you and those negative memories that he’s having of you.

The no contact rule won’t get you fully back to square zero or square one, however you define that.

But it’s going to get you closer, and that’s an important thing. Because what happens after the no contact rule, is almost definitely, I would say, just as important as the no contact rule itself.

So we’ve gone back and forth. Everyone has their different ways of recommending what people should be doing when it comes to, okay … Because Denise, the last question she asked in her voicemail was, “What do I do after the no contact rule is over?”

The question she should have been asking is, “How do I get through the no contact rule without any hiccups?” But let’s actually answer her original question.

What do you do after the no contact rule is over?

The Role The Four Pillars Of Attraction Plays

Everyone has their different concepts or different ideas of what they should do. Some people recommend going and seeing your ex right away in person. Other people recommend a strong texting, rigid idea, game plan, whatever you call it.

Well we employ something called the Socratic Method.

So what we do, is we come up with what we think is the best sort of approach, and then we basically let people go out and they report back to us, and we find out if that approach was the best.

So we kind of look at it like this ever evolving science.

So I’m not going to say this is the quintessential way that you should be going about it, but from what we’ve learned so far, in all of the strategies that we’ve recommended, this is the best way to go about it.

So how do you handle what you should be doing after the no contact rule? So we utilized two concepts called a value ladder and a value chain, right? So what are these two concepts?

Well, it’s important, because these are relatively new concepts, and a lot of people haven’t been indoctrinated into this idea of what they are.

What Is A Value Ladder?

But a value ladder is simply where you are climbing this ladder and adding value every time you climb the ladder. So after the no contact rule, the first rung of this ladder is considered this text messaging phase where you text message your ex, get back on good terms with them, build some attraction, build value. Bam, you’re climbing up one rung of the ladder.

The next rung in the ladder is phone conversations, video conversations, whatever you utilize, building attraction there. Bam, moving more value up. You’re on the second rung of the ladder. Third rung of the ladder. Okay. Now that you’ve texted so far, you built value on the phone, you will be moving up to the in person interaction phase. That’s where you see your ex for a non-romantic meetup. Build attraction there, build value there. Bam, you’re on the third rung of the ladder almost to the top.

The fourth rung of the ladder is the romantic dates, the romantic dates. You’re building value and attraction there. Bam, you’re at the top of the ladder. By then, you should be at a phase where your ex either asked for you back or you’re in a position where you can insinuate the ask quote unquote. But that’s just a value ladder. That’s just sort of the methods of communication that we recommend that you have in an organic way.

What Is The Value Chain?

The value chain is something that pairs with the value ladder, it’s the types of conversations that you have. By chaining together specific types of conversations, you can actually move up the value ladder. Because ultimately, when we looked at it, there’s five types of conversations that you’re going to be having. Each conversation becomes more and more intimate as you get through the chain.

  1. So the first type of conversation we want you to have is small talk.
  2. The second one is sharing stories.
  3. The third one, sharing opinions.
  4. Fourth, we have virgin ground.
  5. Then we have the fifth aspect of the value chain. That’s where you share your feelings.

So you pair a value chain and value ladder together and we have this organic way of approaching it. Now it’s a lot more complicated than a simple 20 minute podcast then can detail. That’s why we’ve actually created The Ex Recovery Program, to actually explain this delicate concept of how this is supposed to go. But what we found, just from a bird’s eye view, is that’s what works best.

And why?

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Because it utilizes the four pillars of attraction.

The Four Pillars of Attraction

So I was watching this really interesting Netflix limited series a couple of weeks ago. It was all about sex, basically all aspects of sex you can imagine. So things like sexual preferences, what we find attractive in another partner, childbirth, birth control, everything you can imagine.

Well anyways, I kind of naturally gravitated towards the attraction aspect, because not only did I think it would help me in writing an article or filming a podcast, but I’m always game for learning new things.

What’s interesting, and this is something that I’ve seen and have already talked about many times before, but they talked about when it came to attractions, scientists universally agree that there’s these four main pillars.

These four main pillars are going to be what makes you attracted to another person and vice versa. And what’s beautiful about the way we’ve structured the value chain and the value ladder, is they actually utilize these four pillars, they’re just embedded within it.

So what are these four pillars?

Pillar #1: Physical Appearance

Well, the first pillar is the most superficial and obvious one and that’s physical appearance.

We are obviously going to be attracted to someone who we believe is beautiful, who we look at. And what’s interesting, is beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

They did all of these really interesting studies when it came to men.

Specifically, they showed men all of these really different and diverse body types of women.

And they just basically said, “All right, pick your ideal match.”

Okay, so you would obviously be thinking kind of the skinny sort of really, really attractive woman would be what they picked. And it was at first. Then they went to a different area. I think it was like Africa where AIDS is a big, big issue there. And they asked that the men there, “Pick your ideal body type.” And the men picked the larger sort of a big boned woman. Why? Why could it be that different? Is it beauty’s in the eye of the beholder?

Well, it’s thought of that a super skinny woman in Africa might have AIDS, and that obviously is unattractive towards men in Africa. So they wanted bigger, more fleshed out women.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

And I’m not saying this to insert myself into the … Ah, I don’t even have great words. You always want to say the right things, so you’re not offending anyone. I’m just telling you what the documentary said. But it kind of creates a seamless transition into the next pillar, and that’s geography, right? So the first pillar is physical appearance. Obviously we’re going to be attracted to someone who we think is pretty.

Pillar #2: Geography

Next is geography. We’re going to be attracted to someone who’s closer to us as opposed to who’s farther away. This further proves what I always say about long distance relationships, in that every single long distance relationship is doomed to fail. So your number one goal when you get into a long distance relationship should always be to find a way to close the distance, so that geography is close together.

So what can we expand on here?

Well, not much to be honest with you, because physical appearance, we expanded there, beauty’s in the eye of the beholder. Every man is different with the preferences he has of physical appearance.

Geography, there’s not a ton to expand on, other than the closer together you are to a potential mate, the more attractive you’re going to find that person.

So any of you who are in long distance relationships, I’ve been saying this for years, if you’re in a long distance relationship, realize that that relationship is doomed to fail unless you have a plan to close the distance.

Pillar #3: Similarity

So those are the first two pillars of attraction. The third one is similarity. The old adage of opposites attract is simply untrue, and I’ve been saying this for years as well. From what we’ve found, if you have two people and their personalities are completely opposites, they are not going to be drawn together. And it makes sense.

Have you ever been out and about in a group setting, and you have that one sort of very, very uncouth friend maybe? And maybe you like them for their outward bursts of energy, but deep down, you know you would never get into a relationship with them, because they’re a little too much. They’re too dissimilar to you.

And I’ve had this multiple times, where men will come up to me and they’ll say, “Oh man, look at that girl. She’s so attractive.”

And I’ll think to myself, “I don’t find her attractive at all, just because her personality is maybe a little too much for me.” And sometimes what’s interesting, is I think as you look at these four pillars, and I know we haven’t gotten to the fourth pillar yet, but each man has a different way of weighing which ones means more to him. For some, it’s physical appearance. For others, it’s similarity.

I like to think that I’m sort of even a with most of them. Geographies out, because I’m married, so I obviously live with my wife, so I don’t really have that one. But the other ones, I feel like I need them all.

But similarity is an important thing to talk about, because if you and your ex don’t share any interests, that’s a problem.

I’m not saying you should give up on trying to get your ex back, but I’m saying this is a huge problem I see with women when they actually have a conversation with their ex for the first time after the no contact rule. They often talk about things that interest themselves and not things that will interest their ex.

So I’m often saying, think about a conversation from his point of view. When you’re entering into a conversation with him, you want to make sure that you’re talking about a topic that he’s going to hook into, that both of you maybe like, that’s the middle ground that you’re shooting for.

Because the more similar you are, the more likely you are to connect and have that organic rapport that we’re looking for.

Pillar #4: Reciprocation

So what is the fourth and final pillar of attraction? It is simply reciprocation. There’s nothing worse … Okay, I did this with my wife in the car. I was telling her about these four pillars of attraction. And so I went through physical appearance. She was like, “Obviously.” Geography, she was like, “Obviously.” Similarity, she was like, “Obviously.” And then we went to reciprocation, and she’s like, “Can you explain that to me?” And I said, “Okay, here’s how it works. When when you say I love you to me, what do you expect me to say back? I love you too, right? That’s reciprocation.”

So we liked that when we hug someone, we want them to reciprocate and hug us back. Sometimes, we see this a lot with couples who are married, who are having trouble in their sex lives. One person is initiating, the other person doesn’t want anything to do with it. That makes that one person initiating feel bad, because they’re not getting any type of reciprocation back. So think back to your relationship. Were there any moments … And this could be something that’s different for each person, because maybe you’re the one that was initiating and you’re not getting enough reciprocation, and that makes you feel bad.

What’s interesting though, is every man has a different way in which they reciprocate love. That’s also why we tell our clients to go through those five love languages, that famous quiz. And take it and pretend that you’re your ex. Because then, maybe you need words of affirmation, that’s your way of getting reciprocation. But maybe your ex needs more physical touch for reciprocation in some way. Keep these things in mind.

So here’s the beautiful thing. When we talk about the value chain and value ladder, these four pillars of attraction are naturally built into them, specifically when it comes to physical appearance and similarity. Because one thing we talk about when it comes to physical appearance during the no contact rule, we want you going out and posting things on social media, that make you look like a total badass. That’s what we want, because we understand that your ex will be paying attention. We want him to pay attention to the best version of you.

Similarity, this is something that really comes into play when you’re having conversations with your ex in the texting phase or the phone call phase. Reciprocation is something that comes into play when you’re in that in person interaction phase. So Denise, back to the original question. What should you do after the no contact rule? Everything that I’m saying here, from the value chain to the value ladder, all the way to the four pillars of attraction. These are all the things that you want to do. Ultimately, where I think you’re making a mistake, is you are reinforcing all of the poor aspects of your original relationship. We need to get rid of that, and move on to the new exciting aspects of a new relationship with your ex.

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6 thoughts on “What To Do If You Act Completely Desperate After A Breakup?”

  1. Anon

    June 29, 2020 at 6:29 pm

    What are the chances of getting back together with an ex if he strung you along for approx. 3 months? We started talking almost immediately after the breakup when he said: he missed me, he thought about me all the time, he regretted the breakup, he thinks we will find our way back, etc. He would always say he “wanted to talk about us in person” but never made actual plans to.
    After about a month and a half, I tried to go full no contact but he begged to talk things out because he “didn’t want our future to be ruined”. We mutually agreed to work on things and he even asked that we not talk to other people. Over the course of one month, we hung out twice, we started saying I love you again, he told me his family wanted to see me and he said he wanted to talk about being able to come see my family too. He even invited me on a trip. However, he was still very flaky, only texted me sporadically, would blow me off at times, and not put in any real effort. Long story short he became incredibly distant recently so I broke things off for good because I didn’t want to be treated like an option. He didn’t really seem phased and said he doesn’t know what he wants. It’s only been a few days but I am committed to doing No Contact.
    I feel like he didn’t value me because I made myself too available for all this time, so I guess I want to know: How much has this affected our chances of getting back together? Is there any hope or is he already over me for good? What should I do?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      July 19, 2020 at 7:26 pm

      Hey there, you have done the right thing to end things at they were at this point. Stick with a no contact and work on the program and yourself during this time. I think if your ex sees you doing well and appearing to be moving on this will make him take action on if he does or does not want to be with you. You did make yourself too available so when you get in touch with him again be sure that you are reading and following the texting articles to help you understand how to get him working more than you

  2. Ashley

    March 11, 2020 at 3:04 pm

    Hey Chris!
    I have been with this guy for almost two years. We started off dating in the same city we lived in but I had move to a different city due to college but I continued visiting him in every couple of months or so. It was a very good relationship for around a year, then the real trouble started when I started having trust issues with him. I really believe the trust issues were mostly because of the fact that we were in different cities. We started having fights almost every day for the next 7-8 months- I know that is long, but we still had our good moments as well and he still showed that he really loved me, I could feel it whenever I used to meet him.
    Fast forward to last January, I met him at his place for a couple of days, hung out with his cousin and friends and we truly had a great stay together, and I didn’t fight at all during the stay because I was really trying from my end to sort things out cuz I wanted to save us. In fact, he acknowledged this effort too and said I have improved my behavior a lot.
    But sadly, when I got back to my place, I had a huge fight yet again on call where we both said a lot of bad things to each other.
    The following day, he said that he doesn’t think that he can continue with me anymore. I tried apologizing and convincing to which he said I need to give him some time off.
    After his time off he suddenly tells me that he has not done anything solid about his career ( the career thing used to come often before as well). He said he can’t really stay in the relationship right now because, first, he feels he is falling out of love with me due to the constant fights that we had, and second, that he really needs to focus on his career and he can’t focus on the relationship right now.
    We anyway had tried to work things out after a week’s break, but after a fortnight, he said he still thinks that he is falling out of the relationship because he is mostly stressed about the career.
    I must say, I seemed really clingy but I let him go that time because I felt selfish to hold him back when he doesn’t feel the same love anymore.
    I also tried to convince him to meet me one last time just because I wanted to see him one last time but he outright said he doesn’t have the courage to see me after the break up.

    I have decided to work on myself and focus on my last semester here in college but I don’t want to lose him altogether. He said that he won’t be dating anyone after me because I was the person in his life who is irreplaceable. He says he will only focus on his career and told me to focus on mine.
    Apart from this, he suggested one day that if it feels right, we can continue with the sex part because we both were really compatible when it comes to sex and he added that he can not think of having it with anyone else after me because he won’t be comfortable with anyone else. I didn’t really say yes to it but haven’t said no to it as well.

    My concern here is, I feel there is little love left for me inside his heart and I don’t want that love to go away as well. We are still on talking terms but of course he mostly ignores my texts and replies back after a lot of time.

    My concern here is, should I initiate no contact with him? I feel there is little love for me left In his heart and I don’t want to mess it up more by acting desperate. Having no contact here in this situation will help me? And what should be the number of days I should totally cut off from him? Your help will really save my relationship here.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 18, 2020 at 3:28 am

      Hey Ashley, yes go into a No Contact and start working on yourself int hat time before reaching out with a text

  3. Carie

    March 4, 2020 at 7:30 pm

    My bf and I have been together for a year! I have two joys and am divorced. He has a daughter from a previous relationship. Our relationship has been amazing. Best relationship either of us has had. Lately though I pick fights over silly things he’s always chafing after me to talk it out. I’ve never had that I’m use to getting mad and walking away or just getting quiet. So I got mad and left his house he says I ended us because I left. He says he can’t trust me. I don’t get it I just left to cool off and it’s like a switch went off he’s done. He’s turned cold hearted and won’t even talk to me. What do I do??? I love him and want a future. He had his house for sale too to move in w me and he took it off the market

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      March 7, 2020 at 8:13 pm

      Hi Carie, it sounds as if he’s spent enough time chasing you and cant do it anymore when you’re upset. Stick to a No Contact giving him enough time to cool down and then reach out again trying to re-attract him