When Should I Be Friends With My Ex? (Modified No Contact)

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Sometimes there are extenuating circumstances where I feel like the strict No Contact rule is not the best option for the relationship. In those situations I recommend Minimal Contact, or Modified No Contact. The hard part is always going to be to figure out if you are in one of those situations, this form of contacting should also let you know which you are for sure.

So what makes you this special circumstance?

1. You have a child together/there is currently a pregnancy


2. You were not dumped for an event or something lacking in your relationship. Maybe they had no time for you, maybe family disapproved, maybe you wanted to get married right now and they didn’t.

So you’ve just been dumped, what do you do?

-Step one: Try not to say things you don’t mean. If you have, message them, and tell them you’re sorry. Ask them if you can meet for closure.

-Step two: Closure. Don’t act sad. Don’t cry. Don’t point fingers. Be genuinely nice. You’re going to want to AGREE with them about the break up. You’re going to want to tell them that you did some thinking, and you know your relationship had problems and you needed to break up. (The key to this is to do some reflection beforehand, on what you both could have done better. Be honest with yourself). Be genuinely happy, and don’t stay long.

TO SOME EXTENT FOR THIS TO WORK YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THAT BREAKING UP WAS NOT A MISTAKE. If the other person was unhappy, it was the right move. Furthermore, if you’re faking that you’re happy, they will be able to tell. If you really can’t find any fuel to be happy, know that this is going to mess with their head. Know that this will have them re-evaluate their decision themselves. Why? Because they expected you to try to persuade them to stay. They expected you to cry, to be upset. They were probably dreading this meeting, thinking it would be uncomfortable and emotional for you. Instead, you acted like you’re at a Birthday Party. (But don’t be too over the top). Also, don’t stay long. Say you’re busy later. Stay no more than an hour. They may ask you if you want to hang out and watch a movie, play video games, something. Say no. Why? It may just be them trying to be nice. If they extend an offer of friendship, say something along the lines of, “Sure, just hit me up if you want to hang out.”

-Step three: Wait. If you think you’re a “2,” you will know here. You do NOT have my permission to text them for any reason. If you’re a “1″ you can let them know if you have a doctors appointment, or a birthday party. But only the essentials.

-Step four: They make contact. You can text back and talk. You cannot be the one to initiate meeting up in person, that has to come from them. And when it does, you can meet up.

YOU’RE NOW BECOMING FRIENDS WITH YOUR EX. Once they have initiated meeting up, it’s okay for you to start the texting conversations as long as it is less than half the time. You can suggest meeting up about every third time. Have this continue until you are really friends with the person, and no longer have feelings of getting back together with them.

“1’s” this really is your goal, to keep them in your life enough to be there for the child. If this helps you rekindle; GREAT!

“2’s” if this becomes an actual friendship with no hope of rekindling it’s up to you if you want to stick around, or slowly fade out.


1. Do you really want them in your life? Do you really want a friendship?

2. Are you going to bail when they start dating? (You can, that’s my plan).

3. Is this going to be too hard/ too painful? This is much harder than No Contact.

So... what do you think? Please leave me a comment or give me a


  • Sigi: I think when there is a child involved people have to in contact for the sake of the child they had together, painful as it might be.
  • LyssaBugg: It really is important.
    If you have a child together you should be able to be civil with the other parent.
  • phillip swift: One word of caution to anyone thinking about this is that unless you really are over your ex and in a place where you can honestly just be "friends" then you’re heading into emotional hell.
    I went through probably the worst breakup and time of my life about 3 years ago and my girlfriend wanted to breakup but really wanted to stay friends. I went along with it, pretended I was ok with it because I thought I could get her back and couldn’t handle it. I would eventually say something to her and it causes a lot more problems and everytime this would happen I felt like I’d gone through the breakup all over again and it killed me.
    If I’d walked away as soon as she said she was unsure and been totally honest with her and myself it would have saved a lot of heartache and I would have gotten over her a lot quicker.
    Funnily enough I’m in a simmilar situation again and at the first sign of her being a bit unsure I decided to step away and say that I need to give her space. Over the last 3 weeks she’s been initiating contact on text and e-mail and I’m replying but not initiating it. we’re due to meet for the first time on Tuesday and I’m encouraged by the fact she wants to keep in contact but I need to establish where she’s at.
    If she is open to the idea of us going on a few dates to see how it goes then great but if she’s only thinking of me as a friend then I think for the time being I will have to walk away.
    The most important thing is to be honest with myself and her. We’re both a bit older and past the types of mind games that may have worked when we were teenagers. Honestly is the key I think.
  • LyssaBugg: That’s why, for this, I make it clear that while you’re "friends" you can’t be initiating contact. I also think once the other person starts dating, there should be no contact at all. If the other person wants you back, they’ll make it clear.
  • ohio girl: I agree- that when they start dating- NO Contact- you disappear! that is exactly why I was upset that my ex didn’t tell me when he was dating when we were friends- I respect his girlfriend enough that I don’t fraternize with other peoples boyfriends. And if he wants to date someone else- then he has to let me go. He always seemed to want me and his cake too. It doesn’t work that way- they make decisions. And his girlfriends deserve better And YOU deserve better,

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