No contact when you work together

Hey Jesse,
I love your website and have started to really get into the reading. I am coming out of a 7 year relationship and it is truly horrible. I have a particular problem, we work together. We own a company together. I know if I could cut off all contact for 6 months I would heal and move on. But that is not really possible with our business.

What advice do you have?



Sometimes no contact does not apply: when you have children together, when you’re living together, or in your case – when you have a business together.

There are two points I’d like to make.

First, beware of what you label impossible, for it might just become impossible by virtue of you thinking it. From what it sounds like, it’s not impossible to go no contact. In your case it might mean neglecting your business for 6 months, which in turn might mean its demise. You might not want that – which is understandable – but don’t label it impossible.

Viewing something as impossible closes all doors and leaves no room for creativity. The goal here is to move on, not no contact in and of itself. No contact just happens to be an effective means of moving towards that goal.

It really depends on the details of your situation and your business, but maybe you and your ex can take turns running the business by yourselves for 3 months on end while the other takes a sabbatical. That would require some coordination and wouldn’t strictly be no contact, but you could get pretty close. Perhaps both have a friend or relative fill in during your 3 month shift, thereby allowing each other the room to heal and move on.

Maybe the relationship soured and its time to move on emotionally as well as professionally. Maybe this is the perfect moment to close down the business which is the last tie holding you guys together. Maybe this is your opportunity to finally start out for yourself.

In any case, this is not an impossible situation where you cannot remove yourself from a situation where you see your ex on a daily basis. You have to ask yourself: “How important is getting over this for me?”. Because if it’s not that important, you just keep doing what you’re doing.

That brings me to my second point: contact minimization. If you cannot disengage completely and stick to no contact, you must minimize contact as much as possible. Those moments that you are required to see your ex and interact with her, you make sure you behave your absolute best. No being depressed, no resentment and no small talk. Be civil, professional and courteous. We’re taking the high road here. Not for her, but for you. So you can look back and be proud of how you handled yourself. Save the emotions for later.

At the same time, don’t pretend you’re happy if you’re not. The key here is behaving how your best self would behave. When in doubt, ask yourself that very question: How would my best self behave? It will tend to give you an answer, which when followed, you will not regret later on.

So, in summary. Be creative in your recovery. Don’t limit yourself by labeling things impossible. Minimize contact if you cannot eradicate it, but always, always remain civil. You will want to give in to the sadness, the resentment, the disbelief. But trust me, you will feel so much better if you don’t and pull through.

Good luck my man!

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I’ve been helping guys recover from their breakups since 2012. Work with me to fast-track your recovery.

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