No Contact: Should You Tell Your Ex?

Should you tell your ex you are going no-contact on them? Allow me to clear the air for you: unless your ex left you because you were avoidant, no, you don’t need to tell them. I’ll explain more below, but basically “no contact” is not an event you need to announce to the world. It’s an inward decision. A boundary you’re setting so you can deal with healing and taking care of yourself.

💡 Relatedly, you’ve heard that actions speak louder than words, right? Declaring your intentions ~dilutes~ your power.

My experience? I’ve been helping individuals navigate the breakup waters for a dozen+ years. It’s more effective to just do what you plan to do rather than discuss it.

🚨 Of course, you must not be rude or disrespectful. Neither should you stop using your head to ~think~ about possible exceptions. Context is key. For example, if the main reason your ex left you was because you were avoidant and withdrawn, it is smarter to TELL them you’ll be out of the picture for a while. You know, flip the script, do the opposite to what they expect so you don’t further their negative view of you. In this exception, you might say: “Hey, I’m stepping back to clear my mind, so if I’m silent for a while, that’s why.” No big deal. You’re just being smart here.

Remember Why You’re Doing This

While cutting contact can be an empowering decision, it’s normal to feel hesitant about cutting ties so abruptly. You’ll be tempted to give your ex a heads up, offer an explanation, or end things on a positive note. I get it. But unless you have a good specific reason, don’t bother. It could backfire on you. Your ex could see it as a snub or “game playing.” Or it’ll start an argument that leaves you both worse.

Remember why you’re doing this —to make a clean break.

Now, if you live together, you’re going to need to coordinate moving out logistics in a matter-of-fact way. You know, the returning of belongings. Dividing up the things you share. You get the idea. And sure, you might choose to unfriend or unfollow your ex on social media so you’re not tempted to check in. But you still don’t need to announce your plans.

Also, ask mutual friends not to pass along updates. It’s cleaner this way, trust me.

The idea here is to quietly create space for healing. Not loudly. So you can put your energy in self-care. As relief will come once you fully commit to investing in yourself.

Going silent allows that process to begin.

In a nutshell, the “no contact rule” can be a vital tool in your recovery toolkit, whether you’re looking to reconcile or move on. It offers you the space and time to heal and rediscover your strength.

But, unless your ex accused you of avoiding them, you should just get on with it. The only person who 100% needs to know about this decision is you!

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About the author: i’m a relationship coach specialising in breakup recovery. i’ve been doing this for 12+ years helping thousands worldwide. i created the Breakup Dojo, a popular program with over 1,000 members. i’ve authored several in-demand breakup recovery products, drawing from my deep fascination with psychology. i also publish the “ex-communication” newsletter that’s packed with actionable advice to over 10,000 subscribers worldwide.