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10 False Beliefs About No Contact - Part 1

Part of the reason why you're doing this course is because you either want to start No Contact or because you've been previously unsuccessful at it, but really want to be. I can tell you from personal experience and the stories of many readers over the years, that the biggest thing you have to manage in this whole NC process isn't actually the other party, but what can be your irrational fears and beliefs that often provide the trigger for you to act upon them and either break NC or decide that there's no point in starting it.

I've put together a list of the ten most common beliefs held by people struggling with NC. What you learn from these beliefs and your subsequent actions that result from them, is that you often misguidedly end up believing that you're 'preventing' something, not realising that your belief is not accurate or absolute, so your actions are like a false economy, which in turn keep you on the hamster wheel. Most of these beliefs are also like a blanket way of convincing yourself that you can 'handle it', when really you can't.

1. If I cut contact, it will make them realise what they've lost.

If they have to lose you to value you, they weren't worth being with in the first place, not least because you shouldn't have to be like the umbrella that someone keeps misplacing and damaging, for them to notice the absence of you from their life. When you cut contact in an attempt to basically manipulate them into the position that you want, it's an attempt to prevent them from not realising your value by messing with supply and demand. On the flip side, when you're the person who cuts people off to make them want you more, you're believing that the way to prevent your relationship from ending is to end it, only then you have to keep ending it or at least threatening it, to generate the demand, which if you've tried this is exhausting work. It's also important to point out that unavailable people respond to loss of control by chasing you...and get back in control by pulling back and managing down your expectations and/or exiting.

The lesson: Breaking up whether it's done via the traditional route or you have to do NC, is to end a relationship. Breaking up should not be used as a way of forcing people to do what you want.

2. If I'm eliciting responses / crumbs of attention it means they're thinking about me.

This is how you end up chasing them for crumb 'top-ups' and being chained to your phone checking for texts and emails. Avoiding NC and holding this belief is like having this idea that what can often amount to feeble amounts of effort from their end is keeping you front and centre. People who require NC often engage in this low level contact and dribbling crumbs of attention with about as much effort as ordering a pizza. They're very of the moment and what you actually want is for someone to act like they want you by being in a relationship with you and treating you with love, care, trust, and respect.

The lesson: Having a full on relationship instead of trying to stay in someone's mind is always the better option, something you're not going to discover in a new relationship if you keep chasing crumbs. Also there are better ways to be remembered than emails and texts - someone doesn't have to forget about you if they're IN the relationship WITH you.

3. Cutting them off will make them change or trigger remorse, which will in turn make them give me the relationship I want / that they promised me.

It might make them give it to you for a short period of time, but it's important to remember that the type of person that requires NC equates desiring you with feeling out of control of you. Next thing you know, you're getting hearts, flowers, and violins and a sudden change in behaviour and think "Oh, they really get my pain this time…", and you get back together and then shazam, it's a matter of hours, days, or weeks before the rot starts to set in again. NC is to end a relationship not to force someone into giving what people in even moderately healthy relationships give without coercion.

The lesson: If the only way you think that you get them to feel remorse or change is to end it, this person is not worthy of your time. They are not a child - stop trying to raise an adult from the ground up.

4. Once I feel a bit better, we'll be able to be friends again.

This 'ole chestnut is the fastest way to send one of those lazy texts or emails to reach out, only to find yourself being burnt again. How much better you feel is subjective and the idea of grieving a relationship isn't actually for you to make way for their friendship - it's for you to make way for yourself so that you can move on. Far too much emphasis is put on finding a way to be friends again. Friendship is organic! If you're going to be friends, it will happen without being forced and when you're both back in neutral territory. That said, if there are very shady reasons for why you have to cut them off in the first place, I wouldn't exactly break your neck to be friends. Be your own friend first. Focus on you. If you try to be friends before you are enough of the way along in the healing process to be too impacted if they don't behave as you'd like, you will reopen your wound. If you've got friendship on your mind, it's likely a sign that you need to focus your energy.

The lesson: Friendship is what happens 1) when you're over them and 2) they have shown themselves to be friend worthy, neither of which the object of NC is at this time.

5. They don't realise how much I was affected and how inappropriate their behaviour was/is.

Yes they do. They might claim not to realise it on a conscious level, but fact is, only someone who is incredibly emotionally immature and a responsibility dodger, would have no clue about how 1) inappropriate their behaviour was / is, or 2) how affected you are. If you genuinely believe that they don't recognise this, you have no business trying to have an adult relationship with them. As humans, we cannot bumble through life as if our actions have no impact on others - it's called integrity, empathy, compassion, awareness, responsibility, and accountability. Let me assure you that if you mistreated them, you'd soon know all about it! They know! Stop treating them like a child!

The lesson: If they can't empathise without you dragging them like a horse to water, you can't have a relationship with them. NC is the way of communicating that the relationship is over and that their behaviour has affected you, but it doesn't mean that they're going to do anything with the realisation. If you're making excuses for them, you're absolving them of responsibility, which also deals a fatal blow to any ideas you have for a relationship with them.