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Why People Do or Appear to Do 180°s

Ever wonder why a friend, acquaintance, client, prospect, or business contact suddenly appears to flip on you. Phone calls are not returned as expected, emails get no reply, conversations seem strained. 

If you’re concerned that they may have turned on, against, or cold to you, for no apparent reason, consider the following before overreacting or coming to any conclusions.

If any of the following change your perspective regarding the dynamics of your relationship, be strong, try again. Call, email, visit. Whatever the case, chances are you’ll learn something from the experience.

10 Common Reasons

  1. They’ve had a bad day – spouse or boss yelled at them – child got sick – car broke down – told they need a root canal.
  2. They didn’t get your message for any number of reasons, technological or human error, e.g., phone off, battery dead, out of service area, Internet interruptions.
  3. They intended to get back to you but their schedule and priorities recently changed.
  4. They were in the middle of something, a favorite TV program for example, and simply forgot to call you back.
  5. They mistakenly believed the ball was in your court.
  6. They read something negative about you on Facebook or other social media.
  7. They heard something negative about you, directly from someone, that changed their characterization of your relationship.
  8. They heard you personally say something that negatively changed their opinion of you, something they considered racist, bigoted, sexist, classless, or insensitive.
  9. They heard you personally say something that suggested you’re not as rich, successful, influential, competent, or as religious as they originally thought you were. 
  10. They saw you behave in a way that showed another side of you that they didn’t like. For example, drunk or lost your temper.

20 More Possibilities

  1. They’ve had a bad day – spouse or boss yelled at them – child got sick – car broke down – told they need a root canal.
  2. They’ve had a “good day” and, feeling unusually confident, they no longer feel a pressing need for your support or approval.
  3. They’ve concluded you don’t emotionally feel about them the way they thought you did.
  4. They no longer need you, they’ve solved their problem.
  5. They’ve concluded you can’t help them and they can’t help you financially, politically, career or business-wise.
  6. They feel you unjustly criticized or judged them in a way that hurt their feelings, or they were hurt because you didn’t support them in a way they expected you to.
  7. They have opinions opposed to yours and don’t want a confrontation. Politics, for example.
  8. They have low self-esteem and are testing themselves, by ignoring you, to prove they don’t need you.
  9. They have low self-esteem and a need to prove you wrong in order for them to feel right. Unable to do so, they avoid contact.
  10. They’ve come to doubt the legitimacy of your motives or your ability to fulfill your promises.
  11. They want to be liked and didn’t want to say no to a request; they then regretted they didn’t say no in the first place and now blame you for the alienation.
  12. They have strict rules and expectations about correct relationship dynamics and have been collecting “stamps”—unexpressed emotional hurts or slights that they are now cashing in.
  13. They liked your ex-partner or your ex-spouse, but now with the breakup of your relationship, they don’t have any use for you.
  14. They find you’ve become depressing or repetitive. Not being uplifting, they don’t value your relationship.
  15. They lack the communication skills necessary to express anger or resentment and, having run out of words, their solution is withdrawal.
  16. They’re under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  17. They’re envious or jealous of your recent good fortune or recognition. Talking to you would make them feel insecure.
  18. They feel indebted to you, and having no way to repay you, they sever contact.
  19. They didn’t see you in the same light, when you first met, as you thought they did.
  20. They may not actually have done a 180. It may be learned later that the offending behavior was misread, or there was a simple misunderstanding.

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