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NO CONTACT: What Does it Mean? By LynnS
No Contact - What does it mean?
From our Board Founder…LynnS
No contact includes every single form of contact: mail/email, phone, fax, his websites, IM, texts - EVERYTHING. This also includes...do NOT ask friends/family about him/her and do NOT let friends/family tell you about him/her. I will get rid of every item that reminds me of him.
Some common misconceptions:
"If I don't respond to the emails/texts/IM's he's sending me, I've gone No Contact."
That's not No Contact. That's only, 'I didn't respond.'
"N Dipping (including a final email, a check into his Facebook account, a conversation with a mutual acquaintance about his latest activities) is harmless and just helps me detach and reminds me of who he is."
That's a temporary fix at best. It exacerbates the length of time it takes to move on. I think that what many people are really doing when they N Dip is searching for some semblance of the person they thought they once knew. It's replacing him with obsessing about him. He's left a hole and you're in part filling it with more of 'him' or 'her'. Nothing more, nothing less. You're likely either afraid that 'good guy' is who he really is and will be with somebody else, or you want to see it for yourself so that you can hang onto hope.
If you are telling yourself, 'I just need to know for sure,'...no you don't. You already have plenty of information to decide that he's toxic in your life. Or perhaps you still have that niggling feeling that 'it was you.' You'll never see it another way or get those answers from the N. Any news of his comings and goings has no purpose at all except perhaps to give him NS should he become aware that you're still invested in what he does. That makes you recyclable supply to an N. You're inviting contact from him at some point when you N dip because if he knows he can still get a reaction out of you (and that's what he wants to know, if not for any immediate purpose, then someday when he needs a fix) he'll probably act on it.
No Contact is a state of mind. It's not a punishment for the N or a way to get them to 'wake up'. It's not about them at all. Think of it as putting a "No Trespassing" sign on your peace and sanity. You do it for yourself. It's a way of not allowing him or her to intrude upon your life or thoughts in any visceral way. It is removing the N from your consciousness in every tangible way possible. This must be done as the first step toward truly moving on.
I think this is why it is sometimes difficult. NC is coming to terms with the fact that this chapter in your life is over. The book is closed. You must put it on the shelf, never to be retrieved, read, or skimmed again and put up blocks so that it cannot possibly suddenly 'pop off the shelf' and into your lap. It requires a decision to be done, even if you don't feel ready to make it just yet. You have to decide it's over EVERY SINGLE DAY for awhile and stick with it until it's true.
No Contact means that you have taken the first, most practical steps toward removing the Narcissist in your life from your life and ultimately, your consciousness, in order to make room for your own thoughts, your own chapter, and your own book. It's a much more interesting read. The N's book will always end the same. You have better things to do than to read the same story over and over again. So, I would encourage everybody when you're tempted to break contact or N Dip...choose something that fills you up instead of something that will deplete you and make you feel worse than you already do.
And to all, please know that this post is really about definition, not judgment. Everybody probably knows by now that I don't do the 'scolding' thing. We do understand that NC is something that upon occasion takes time and not everybody gets there immediately, though of course we wish we could wave a wand and make that happen.
It has been said that NC can take an average of 4 to 7 times before it takes hold. I have always said that we can't 'make' anybody do anything at all and that the best we can do is witness how it worked for us. This isn't an excuse for you to continue the dance with the N, just a fact that might help you understand that your difficulties in letting go if you've had them are normal.
So, please take this post in the spirit in which it is intended. It's a definition. And for those of you who are still dipping or in contact, know this: the message here is that there IS another way. And when you get to the point where you look in the mirror and say to yourself, 'There's got to be a better way than this', NC is that way. It works. It saves lives, hearts, and minds.
You may go there willingly or you may go there kicking and screaming, but it is the way to true North, the place where you'll find the serenity you seek.
Sep/21/2012, 5:45 pm
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