The “No Contact” Rule for Leaving a Narcissist

The No Contact Rule for leaving a narcissist means exactly what it states: no contact. No emails, no texts, no late night dial and hang-ups, no drive-by’s, no contacting by proxy via friends, no Facebook or date site stalking, no leaving notes on his car or apartment door, no sending letters by mail……NO NOTHING. And it’s fucking hard! That said, it is definitely not impossible. 

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In my third book, Narcissist Free, I stress that No Contact also doesn’t apply only to when you leave the narcissist but also to when the narcissist leaves you which is more likely to happen in a Discard when you least expect it. When you’ve decided that enough is enough with his pathological relationship agenda…when you start daydreaming about being narcissist free of the anxiety…when you start doodling the words no contact all over the place….when you have all of these fine agendas in place but still can’t leave the narcissist and then he leaves you, you can still go no contact because you know he’ll be back someday – and when he does, you don’t have to be there. You can turn his silent treatment into no contact in the blink of an eye in your own mind – but you have to know the difference. In your mind, it has to be for good!

When normal relationships end, it isn’t always necessary to deliberately enforce a no contact rule. Typically, the relationship ends, and there is the usual heartbreak, maybe even some contact in between to tie up loose ends…but when a narcissist is involved, nothing is as it seems (because it was all smoke and mirrors anyway). Chances are you’ve always had that nagging, uncomfortable feeling anyway so it’s now time to erase him off the planet (hey, that sounds familiar – kinda like he does to you…yeah, that’s it!). The narcissist, as you know, will hoover or check back in periodically to make sure you’re still hanging around waiting to be his narcissistic supply again. He wants you to be suffering – that’s the whole point of the game.

The more you suffer, the more he knows you really care….the more alive he feels. Your misery is his lifeblood.

zari-ballard-consultNo contact allows us to breathe, to relax in our own skin, to realize that we are worthy individuals outside of the reality the narcissist creates for us. Even if he leaves you, that should mean for you no contact game on! And make sure the door hits him on the way out! Then, bolt down the hatches, put some compassionate girlfriends on speed dial, delete his email address, delete his phone number (he’ll probably be changing it anyway – my did it every single time!), and start the no contact agenda…one painful day at a time. Giving up the need for closure and cutting the asshole off at the knees is the only way to save the rest of your life. This is one situation where no pain, no gain is a truism!

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Zari Ballard, EzineArticles Basic Author



  • Taylor

    March 15, 2017 at 6:46 pm Reply

    I am mid way through your your book on NC. My ex is 100% a narcissist. He is a pro athlete who thinks he deserves everything rather than has to earn it (major self entitlement). The first year was truly a fairytale – the soulmate phase. Then he started pulling away saying he needed space. After I found out he cheated he still filled me with false future saying he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me when I asked for one reason why I should stay. I forgave him on the premis of how perfect our relationship truly felt, how perfect we felt for one another. I agree with everything in no contact; however I am concerned because he would actually have to be contacting me to worry about that. Just two weeks after he said he wanted to spend his life with me (let alone a year of hearing he was going to propose and talks of marriage), he left. That night was the last I’ve heard from him. I reached out twice, to wish him well (and to say that I hope the dog we had together was doing well), no answer. I sent a letter, no answer. It’s been over 2.5 months, and the last I heard from him was the night he left me. I’m all for no contact, but could he really be a narcissist if he hasn’t contacted me by now? I am wondering if I have to worry about hearing from him one day, and him turning my world upside down more than he has already. I hope at that point I am strong enough to not want him back. I am so confused and wonder if I lll never hear from him again.

    • Zari Ballard

      March 25, 2017 at 3:38 pm Reply

      Taylor wrote… I am wondering if I have to worry about hearing from him one day, and him turning my world upside down more than he has already. I hope at that point I am strong enough to not want him back.

      Hi Taylor,

      I hear a lot from partners or ex-partners of pro players. Like you said, the false sense of entitlement is crazy. Look, narcissism is not defined by whether a person comes back or not. Even in “normal” break-ups where people cheat (yes, not every cheater is a narcissist), a partner may return. You have to continue on as if he WON’T be back. The bottom line is that this guy is a complete asshole and you don’t need that in your life. A narcissistic pro player is a very busy guy with a world of supply so don’t worry about him returning any time soon, if he even does. Block him so he can’t contact you even if he wants to and you won’t be thinking about it as much. No contact is more for YOU than it is for him. You have to put space…create TIME…from the break-up so that you can heal. No contact means that you won’t be there when and if he EVER returns.

      Zari xo

  • Kevin

    March 14, 2017 at 9:19 am Reply

    Is it just me, or is it narcissitic in nature to imply in these readings that it’s always a “male” issue? As a male that is getting away from a narcissistic female, I think it’s time these articles address it as an individual rather than a singular sex.

    • Zari Ballard

      March 14, 2017 at 2:56 pm Reply

      Hi Kevin,

      You can imply that, I suppose, if you just read one article. This blog is very open to men who are victims of female narcissists as this article clearly states. If you read the stories in the comment section under that article, you will see many just like your own. Also, I have written a book just for the men about the female narc called When Evil Is a Pretty Face. Because this blog is written from my own experiences and I am a female (who had a narcissistic boyfriend), it only makes sense that I write it from my own perspective. To continually refer to narcs as he/she, her/him etc., doesn’t make for a very good read and takes away from the flow of the article. Other than that, I’m the biggest female advocate for the guys that you’ll find on the internet.


  • Tired & drained

    February 14, 2017 at 7:12 pm Reply

    I wonder what to do when they don’t respect the ‘no contact’. My narcissistic parents are constantly contacting me via email, even though I broke contact years ago due to them starting to extend the abuse toward my children. Now they are very old & insisting they are entitled to personal information about me & the kids, including pictures! My father is saying he needs to meet with my husband because he is ‘concerned’ about my ‘well-being’. This is a tactic of course; my husband knows the truth & there will be no such meeting. But my father is acting as if I’m the sick one & it seems this is never going to end. I am constantly worrying about what they’ll pull next as the attempts are becoming more & more desperate. I’m tired & drained.

    • Zari Ballard

      February 19, 2017 at 3:34 pm Reply

      Hi Tired & Drained,

      I’m sorry that you are going through this but I can tell that you’ve made your peace with this a long time ago. I give you a lot of credit for not completely cutting them off. I know it is so difficult but you are being so strong. The only thing you can do here is either stop responding or, if you don’t respond, block their email so that all messages go to spam or to a folder that yo don’t have to look at. You could possibly write them a letter and send it snail mail, stating that this is the last straw and you do not want to have to cut them off completely but you will if they don’t stop. I wouldn’t normally say that because narcs, as a rule, do not even deserve an explanation for the cut-off. These are, however, your parents and I don’t know how you feel about doing that. No matter what you do, I agree that it all must end. YOU are NOT the problem.

      Let us know what you decide. Children of narcs come to me all the time seeking support and I admit that the issues that spawn from having narcissistic parents are not discussed as much as they should be here or at other sites. We would all appreciate your input and to hear how you handle the situation going forward.

      Stay strong, sister!

      Zari xo

  • lilybean08*

    February 6, 2017 at 9:59 am Reply

    Hi Zari
    I dated a younger man casually for a few months before discovering he is a classic covert narcissist. He attempted to destroy me with a brutal devalue and discard that included social networking harassment and attempts to humiliate me via social media. I have since blocked him and have maintained 30 days no contact. I believe he felt rejected and angered by my strong boundaries, lack of jealousy and lack of interest in exclusivity. My concern is that he seemed to be quite obsessed with me during the relationship – was always checking my social media and spent all of NYE trying to upset me with constant social media posts, snap chat stories, etc, that were obviously aimed at me ( I refused to respond and stopped watching them after the first post). He has not attempted any overt hoovering. I am hoping he is really done with me as he was younger, we dated briefly, and I maintained strong boundaries. My one concern is that since he is a covert narc, he is socially awkward, odd, and has erectile dsyfunction so I am not sure it is easy for him to obtain supply. Do covert narcs hoover covertly? I think I may have met some flying monkeys he sent my way, but I am not sure. Can I breathe again? Thank you!

    • Zari Ballard

      February 13, 2017 at 5:36 pm Reply

      Hi Lilybean,

      Yes, he may be done with you although hoovering by proxy does happen…if it does or you are suspecting it, just ignore it. You have to continue on “as if” he is NEVER going to contact you again. If you want him to be “done” with you, then he is…that’s all there is to it. He can’t have anything to do with you if you don’t allow it. Luckily, narcs are really not motivated people and will not go out of their way to contact you if you block them all around. As long as you ceased looking at posts, you won’t be kept up to date on what he’s doing. Never respond to smear campaigns…they soon fade like everything else.

      So, yes, breathe all you want!!

      Zari xo

  • Donna

    February 5, 2017 at 5:13 am Reply

    Your Articles are so helpful Zara. Thank you for helping me through this time of anger and hurt.

  • Alisa

    August 5, 2016 at 12:03 pm Reply

    Even though we broke up and he moved out over a year ago , he stayed in contact with me for the last year . Even reeling me back in in the past 6 months , even though he has a new girlfriend . I didn’t realize he was a narcissist until reading your blog . It’s so true ; I’ve been dealing w a narcissistic selfish man w a drinking problem . After another round of fighting w him 2 months ago on the phone , calling him out for leading me on and lying , I have had no contact since then . He did reach out one week after our fight via text and then 4 days later via face time . But he has since given up . I Think he realizes I have no need to ever speak to him again . The no contact rule is definitely helpful . He has zapped my self esteem enough , broken my heart and we have no reason to speak . I think hE may actually leave me alone bc he’s in a relationship w a young woman who believes his bullshit and she has no kids so they can’t fight over their blended family as we did . But he moved only one mile away from our home and the convenience of his son’s school . I suppose time will tell . In ththe meantime , I need to be alone and heal . This man has messed up my head and I thank you for your wise words . At least I’ve learned how to deal w this personality .

  • Cindy Ellen Glass

    June 10, 2016 at 2:37 am Reply


    Does no contact mean the children he abused too? I took a step-mother role with them and they have been left with an eating disorder, panic disorder and addictions.

    • Zari Ballard

      June 12, 2016 at 5:15 pm Reply

      Hi Cindy,

      Unfortunately, a narcissist can no more be a good parent than he can be a good partner and children inevitably suffer. However, what can you do about that? The choice to make no contact include the children as well has to come from the other parent, if there is one, and even then that could become a legal issue. So, I guess my answer to your question is it should mean the children that he abused too but that unfortunately isn’t always possible. In that case, it would be up to the other parent to run interference as best as possible to ensure that the children get the help that they need.

      Zari xo

  • Louise Wood

    March 31, 2016 at 1:07 pm Reply

    I am married to a N and have reached the point, after 13 years together (2 years married) that I can no longer remain in the relationship- I am on day 2 of NC and finding the atmosphere in the house unbearable – when we lived apart, the silent treatment (frequent) would drive me demented and I wished he lived under the same roof as me so at least I would know where he was and be able to see or approach him as he would shut me out for days on end – now I do live with him it is my greatest regret as the tension and atmosphere is unbearable and he won’t move out of my house so I don’t feel I can be free of him. For the first time ever I resent his disrespectful treatment of me and recognise I am worth so much more – I just wish he would leave but we bought a dog together so that will keep him tied to me as I can’t give the dog up because my daughter loves him and it would break her heart – he hasn’t spoken to my daughter for 3 months either

  • Brad;ley

    November 28, 2015 at 8:15 am Reply

    Zari….your posts (and attitude) continue to motivate me. Day 37 of NC…real NC….and was struggling this morning. When I read your words:

    “Even if he leaves you, that should mean for you no contact game on! And make sure the door hits him on the way out! ” …followed by ” cut the asshole off at the knees”….it gave me the motivation I needed.

    I did slam the door on her ass…by shutting down all means of communication, especially work instant messaging. And changing my schedule to not see her at work over the last 41 days.
    My ” little win” today is that despite never ever going TWO DAYS in the last four years without contact……when she disappeared, so did I. 37 days ago. And from work calls we have attended (one yesterday), she knows I got a promotion, knows everyone made me the centre of attention on the call (which she would hate) and knows that when I had to talk for 15 minutes, I sounded powerful, happy, confident and energetic. This is NOT the person that was a bundle of anxiety, insecurity, confusion, uncertainty and pain…just 37 days ago. I’m coming back…I’m finding me again.

    Thanks for your support.
    Stay strong everyone…….be happy.

    • Zari Ballard

      December 2, 2015 at 2:34 pm Reply

      Hi Bradley,

      Well, it’s posts like THAT that keep ME motivated to keep the mission going strong! Congrats on your promotion and what a sweet, amazing REVENGE if there ever was one. Let your happy speech and you as the center of attention be the last thing that bitch remembers as she staggers through her miserable life. Rock on, brother!

      Zari xo

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