Should I Contact My Ex Who Dumped Me? (Spoiler: Hell No!)
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Should I Contact My Ex Who Dumped Me? (Spoiler: Hell No!)

By Max Jancar | Published: May 30, 2024 | 11 Minute Read | Ex-Back

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It’s tough to resist the temptation to contact your ex when you want them back. You may think reaching out will somehow change their mind about returning or at least get them to miss you a little.

I hate to take a dump in your stew, but this is rarely the case. Contacting an ex will probably push them further away, especially when they dumped you.

Unconvinced? I’m not surprised.

You don’t want to hear this; you want to believe that contacting your ex will change everything. I get it. I was in your shoes once, too. But let me present my case here.

Below, I’ll list eight reasons why reaching out to your ex is a bad idea, explain why experts advise you to do it anyway, and reveal what I would do instead.

Side note #1: this article presupposes you have already expressed your feelings to your ex and/or told them you want to get back together but were met with rejection, silence, or an unreciprocated response. If you haven’t done so yet, express your feelings first and then proceed with withholding contact.

Side note #2: this article also presupposes that the contact you’re attempting to make isn’t tied to logistics or shared responsibilities like kids, pets, mutual friends, living arrangements, etc. The type of contact discussed is strictly tied to convincing, cajoling, or simply getting your ex to give you another chance.

Why You Should Not Contact An Ex Who Dumped You

While there are many reasons to avoid reaching out to your ex, here are the most important ones to my knowledge.

1. Contacting An Ex Diverts Your Focus For The Worse

I don’t care how much you love your ex; contacting them to get them back should be the last thing on your mind after being dumped.

Instead, you should focus on distancing yourself from them, reflecting on what went wrong in the relationship, what you can do better next time, and self-improvement. This way, if you ever get back with your ex, you won’t suddenly repeat the same mistakes that initially led you to part ways.

Generally speaking, the more you hone in on whether or not to contact them, the more panicky and needy you’ll feel. And the more panicky and needy you feel, the less you’ll focus on personal growth (the whole point of cutting contact with an ex!), and the likelier it is you’ll reach out to your ex before they’re ready to resume contact, pushing them away as a result.

2. Contacting An Ex Can Hinder Your Healing Process

After a breakup, the most crucial step is to focus on healing and moving forward, be that with your ex or without them.

Now contacting your ex disrupts this process by reopening emotional wounds that you are trying to heal. Each message or call you make can easily pull you back into the emotional turmoil of the breakup, preventing you from finding closure and peace.

So instead of progressing, you remain stuck in the past, stagnating.

3. Contacting An Ex Can Lead To Emotional Dependency

When you keep reaching out to your ex, there’s a chance you develop an emotional dependency on them for validation and comfort.

And this dependency can then prevent you from developing healthy coping mechanisms and achieving emotional independence. Put another way, it lowers your self-reliance — arguably the most important trait for breakup recovery.

In contrast, avoiding contact gives you the chance to grow emotionally and learn to rely on yourself for support and validation. Put differently, it enhances your self-reliance.

4. Contacting An Ex Comes Across As Pathetic

Contacting your ex after they dumped you is, simply put, annoying and predictable, especially when you do it more than once in a row.

It generates no curiosity, no seperation anxiety. And if your ex can’t feel those, they won’t ever be interested in rekindling things.

Reaching out also implies you see them on a pedestal and have low self-respect or none to begin with. Otherwise, why would you reach out to someone who pushed you away in the first place?

To add insult to injury, contacting an ex usually makes them think as though you have nothing better going on in your life. And that’s… well, that’s just sad. No one wants to be with a low-life (except other low-lives).

5. Contacting An Ex Is Selfish And Disrespectful

When an ex dumps you, they’re implying your relationship wasn’t working and that they want space away from you.

And when you reach out and try to get them back despite the fact that they want space, you’re not only disrespecting their decision to leave; you’re also sub-communicating, “Fuck what you want, I want you back at my pace.”

It’s hard to notice this stuff going on, but by reaching out prematurely, you’re making everything about yourself and are entirely invalidating your ex’s internal world.

And well… that’s as attractive as smiling right after munching on a hot and sweaty cow turd.

6. Contacting An Ex Can Lead To Miscommunication

When emotions run high, and communication channels are strained, the likelihood of miscommunication increases significantly. Especially through text, where jokes, wit, or sarcasm just don’t land well.

And when miscommunication hits, unnecessary conflicts likely ensue, further complicating an already delicate situation. You don’t want this, believe me.

So don’t risk reaching out to your ex. Minimize the risk of miscommunication and maintain a respectful distance.

7. Contacting An Ex Too Much Was Likely The Problem All Along

About 80% of the people who read this blog broke up with their ex due to excessive chasing. And guess what contacting an ex who dumped you is? Yep, it’s chasing.

So here’s some food for thought: why would your ex want to return if you keep displaying the same annoying behaviors that pushed them away in the first place? They want less of you, so they try to keep you away. You want more of them, so you try to get closer. Do you see the problem here?

Until you give your ex sufficient space where they can start to want you back as well, you’re not mending any relationship. You’re only making a fool out of yourself and setting yourself up for rejection.

8. Contacting An Ex Usually Just Upsets Them

Let’s do a little experiment: Don’t think of a pink elephant wearing a sombrero and riding a unicycle.

You’ve thought about him, didn’t you? Of course, you did. It’s a natural human tendency to visualize whatever we’re thinking about. What about the emotions tied to the elephant; what were they? Probably positive.

Now here’s the kicker: your ex goes through this exact process when you contact them. They visualize you and form a response based on that image.

But since your breakup brought about plenty of hurt, instead of eliciting a positive response, your reach-out typically elicits a negative one. As you’d expect, this only makes your ex put up their barriers, protecting them from getting close to you emotionally.

Why Experts Tell You To Contact An Ex Who Dumped You

In short, it’s because it’s what people want to hear, and it’s what sells more ex-back products.

Let me unpack this idea.

Ex-back advice is dealing with people whose unbridled emotions run the show. And these people don’t want to hear what they need to hear.

You probably won’t get back with their ex. Reheating leftovers seldom works out in the long term. You don’t have ex-back problems to resolve — you have emotional and self-esteem problems to resolve.

These things, although valid, are uncomfortable as fuck to hear. They also don’t sell. So experts tell you the opposite: what feels good and what sells better.

Reach out to your ex in 30 days. Fight for your relationship. Strike while the iron is hot! Here, use this happy reminder text template — quick!

Still, recognize that not all expert advice is purely cash-money motivated. Different experts may give varying perspectives based on their experiences and research. Some, for example, believe that in certain situations, reaching out can be beneficial, like if there has been significant time for both parties to reflect and grow.

That said, approach such advice with a critical mind. Consider if it truly applies to your situation and why a certain expert would give such advice in the first place.

Think about their intentions: is it really because they understand your situation, or do they just see dollar signs and try to pander to the lowest common denominator through their messaging?

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What To Do Instead Of Contacting An Ex Who Dumped You

In my uncomfortable and humble opinion, walk away and never look back. Work on yourself, and live your life as though your ex will never re-enter it. The only time you should give them another chance is when your paths cross organically.

For instance, when your ex reaches out first. When you’re already in regular contact. Or when you randomly bump into each other, spark a conversation, and can sense interest.

In each of these cases, the main thing on your mind should be to set up a date as early on in your interactions as possible. And then you can escalate from there.

If you’re one of the lucky people who came to this point, read this article next. It teaches you exactly how to set up a date with your ex and what to do if they’re undecided about going out with you or if they flat-out reject you.

Bottom line: if your ex reached out, their reach-out isn’t tied to logistics or shared responsibilities, you can sense you have a chance, and you shoot your shot by inviting them out, be prepared for an uphill battle. This is a battle you can certainly win, but there will be blood, sweat, and tears involved.

Alas, such as the gripes of rekindling a failed relationship. It’s part of the process. Expect turbulence. Prepare yourself mentally for it. Getting an ex back ain’t easy or quick. But that’s what you signed up for.

Good luck.

(Optional) Top Questions About Contacting An Ex Who Dumped You

1. Should I Contact My Ex Who Dumped Me Ever?

The only time I might make an exception is if you actually must stay in contact when you, for example, work or live together or share kids, or if need to grab something you left at your ex’s place. Pro tip: get a friend to pick it up for you. This way, you avoid any unnecessary drama or temptation to rehash old arguments.

2. What does contacting your ex do to you that’s so unhealthy?

It makes you start obsessing over your ex. And the more you obsess about them, the worst you’ll feel, and the more likely it is that you’ll start showing needy behaviors. On top of that, contacting an ex numerous times in a row can put many people in a depressive spell or dunk them in debilitation anxiety. Or both.

3. How long should you wait to contact your ex?

As long as it takes for them to reach out. But note that you shouldn’t exactly wait for them. You should move on, start dating other people, and act like your ex is never coming back. (Also, don’t bother with the X-day no-contact rules. As I wrote before, they’re a scam.)

4. How do I know if my ex has moved on?

If it’s been months since you spoke to or seen your ex and they haven’t reached out yet (social media likes and comments don’t count), they’ve probably moved on.

5. Does contacting my ex (who dumped me) lower my status?

Yes, but status is not the point. You don’t want to forgo contacting your ex to be perceived as someone with higher status — as someone supposedly more attractive. That’s a performance behavior — it’s playing dumb mind games. And these are always unattractive and bad for your and your ex’s mental and emotional health.

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