The no-contact rule definitely helps if you’re trying to move on from a nasty breakup or the damaging on-again-off-again dynamic. While it works differently with every individual, the no-contact rule male psychology does tend to have components that you can look into, if you’re trying to figure out just what he’s going through.
The male mind during no contact, just like anyone else’s, will be a mess of emotions he’s going to have a hard time dealing with. How exactly it all unfolds doesn’t have to be a mystery, however.
With the help of psychotherapist Dr. Aman Bhonsle (Ph.D., MBA, PGDTA), who specializes in relationship counseling and Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, we take a deep dive into how men respond to no contact and all you need to know about it.
The Male Mind During No Contact
The no-contact rule is a post-breakup period where you cut off all contact with your ex, in hopes of trying to move on or even to get them back into your life. If ‘how does the no-contact rule affect a man?’ has been on your mind, you might be left racking your brain, tempted to contact him to figure out what he’s thinking.
But since that would literally defeat the purpose of the no-contact rule, we’re here to help you out by telling you what might be going through your (ex) man’s mind during this period of no communication.
Speaking on the subject, Dr. Bhonsle says, “While experiencing the no-contact rule, the man might go through anger, humiliation, and fear, sometimes all at once. Depending on the time of day, the man could feel any of these individual emotions or all of them together.”
The stages of no contact for a man are not far off from how anyone would handle being cast aside like a bad habit. No-contact rule male psychology can’t just be covered in a summarizing text, however. To get into a bit more detail, we list the components below.
No-Contact Rule Male Psychology – 7 Things To Know
Much like the five stages of grief, there are multiple stages of no contact for a man. These emotions, often destructive or harmful, may arise altogether or individually, in no particular order. After all, surviving a heartbreak isn’t too easy.
To put your mind at ease about how does the no-contact rule affect a man, the following 7 components should tell you all you need to know. Keep in mind, while every guy reacts differently, these are emotions they most likely will go through at some stage during the process.
Related Reading: 8 Things To Do When An Ex Contacts You Years Later
1) The humiliation of being cut out
The humiliation men feel when ignored/cut off might be a bit exaggerated than what women feel. Among the initial responses, it’s quite possible for him to be shocked and feel humiliated immediately.
Dr. Bhonsle sheds light on the topic, “What essentially happens is a state of humiliation ensues. He feels like he’s been cast aside, like a bad habit, as if there’s something about him that’s repugnant and repulsive to her. Regardless of what he may or may not have done, no one likes to be treated poorly. Hence, the humiliation of being cut off can hit hard,” he says.
No-contact rule male psychology often revolves around his pride. When it is challenged, he may just put on a hard exterior and appear as though he is on board with your decision and is okay with it.
2) The bargaining stage
One of the stages of no contact for a man is the bargaining stage, where, in a desperate attempt to make amends, he may say whatever the female wants to hear at the moment. Some men may not be able to deal with the sudden scarcity of communication and may resort to desperate tactics in an attempt to get what they now realize they long for. If you want to see if the no-contact rule is working, the degree of his bargaining stage will be a good indicator.
Dr. Bhonsle says, “Immediately after humiliation, some bargaining may ensue in an attempt to crawl back into her life. He may even try to beg his way back into her life by upselling to her and saying things like ‘I’ll be a changed man’, or ‘I’ll do better’ or ‘I will change for you’. This, in turn, leads to more humiliation, since ‘change’ isn’t that easy to come by.”
3) Anger and establishing stereotypes
Just like everyone else, men start generalizing and putting women into a certain category in their minds after a rough breakup. They’ll start to display worrisome signs of trust issues by saying things like “no woman is trustworthy”. The degree of anger depends on each individual, but the feeling of anger is something almost every man will experience.
Dr. Bhonsle says, “Being at the receiving end of the no-contact rule can also lead to anger and resentment. In the long run, anger can lead to building stereotypes, which will lead to biases. If in the future a new relationship becomes possible, the man may enter into it with biases based on the fact that he was rejected.”
It leads to a vicious cycle of humiliation and rejection, says Dr. Bhonsle about the dangers of the stereotypical mentality men can resort to. “He might be putting himself into a loop. The next woman might say, ‘He’s a bitter, angry and frustrated individual’, which, in turn, leads to more rejection or even experiencing no contact again. Since dealing with rejection isn’t easy, It then becomes a vicious cycle of suffering.”
Related Reading: How to Move On Without Closure? 8 Ways To Help You Heal
4) A feeling that he has to “prove” his love
No-contact rule male psychology can also often be shaped by what he has seen around him growing up. When on the big screen, the chronicles of depressed, alcoholic, and heartbroken men have been romanticized since forever, some men may also be led to believe that that’s something they must go through to prove their love.
Dr. Bhonsle says, “A lot of movies show men putting themselves through turmoil because of a woman. So, a lot of men may start believing that going through turmoil is a part of the process of being a man as if it’s a way to prove how authentic their love is.”
Explaining how this flawed philosophy almost never works, he adds, “It’s actually quite pathetic to grovel and not move on because you believe that’s what you need to go through. Just because it’s in the movies doesn’t legitimize it, it just popularizes a damaging notion. Your chances of recovery are hurt by that kind of destructive and self-pity-filled behavior.”
5) The fear of loneliness and losing love
Once the bargaining doesn’t work and the realization sets in that the no-contact rule isn’t a gimmick employed by you for a couple of days, a sudden panic along the lines of “Why am I still single? I’m going to die alone” may take hold.
“Once the fear kicks in, it can lead to some pretty bad decision making in terms of self-respect. By giving a person what they want only to withdraw its availability, a scarcity mindset will kick in and they’ll start acting in desperation,” says Dr Bhonsle.
6) Experiencing depression
Understandably, men respond to no contact by going through a mourning period as well. As one of the five stages of grief, this is to be expected from someone when they’ve been hurt very unexpectedly.
“You can distance yourself from someone without being disrespectful,” says Dr. Bhonsle, arguing that the use of the no-contact rule can be disrespectful and hurtful. “The ideal way to do it is to not ghost the person and disappear in the wind. You could say ‘I’m no longer interested in continuing our association and I want to move on’. The more direct you are, the easier it is for the man to also lick his wounds and move on. However long that takes,” he adds.
So if you’re wondering how does the no-contact rule affect a man, know that there definitely comes a stage when he’s wallowing in self-pity, depressed about the whole thing. Thus, no-contact rule male psychology isn’t really the hardest thing in the world to crack.
Related Reading: The Right Way To Use Power Of Silence After A Breakup
7) Moving on and turning the tables
In his stubbornness, a man might just end up using the no-contact rule himself. This might be due to multiple reasons. Perhaps he has moved on and does not wish to communicate with you further, or he has come to the conclusion that you’re not a good fit for him.
Dr. Bhonsle says, “We disassociate with someone because we deem them to be a threat to our way of life. Perhaps he realized that she was bad-mouthing him, manipulating him, gaslighting, or just being nasty.”
In the psychology of no contact on a male dumper, you might often see him using this tactic. Once he’s made his mind up, the no contact from your end will be retaliated by no contact from his end as well. A game of cat and mouse, so to speak.
The no-contact rule male psychology can be a complex assembly of emotions that even the man will have a hard time understanding. The lack of closure is what really gets to most since it’s troubling to not know the reasons behind the sudden discontinuation of contact. Now that you have a better idea of how men respond to no contact, hopefully, you have put to rest any questions that were on your mind.
While making a man move on is definitely one of the components of male psychology during no contact, there are also plenty of other steps/emotions he will feel and most likely get fixated upon. Chances are, the hurt and confusion you cause him by suddenly disappearing will stunt his moving on process.
A stubborn man may be harder to crack, and he may initially put up a nonchalant display as though your absence doesn’t bother him, there will come a time when it eventually will. How he chooses to act on those feelings/display them is entirely up to him.
If your ex has completely lost feelings for you the chances of the no-contact rule working are slimmer than its usual high success rate. To make sure, you can keep an eye out if the no-contact rule is working or not. However, if the no-contact rule does not work in this scenario, it’s a sign you need to move on with your life as well.