What it REALLY means if you become a Gray Rock


Have you ever heard of the Gray Rock Method?

It refers to one’s inner attitude – a really effective way to protect yourself from the psychological attacks of your ex in everyday life after the breakup.

You are a rock. Motionless. Indestructible. Protected through and through. There is nothing soft about you (in dealing with the Ex). You can talk to stones, but they don’t answer. External influences simply bounce off.

Grey Rock also means saying goodbye to the idea that

  • your Ex will ever change
  • he will ever sincerely apologize to you for what he has done to you
  • you will trustfully discuss with him and find child-centered solutions and therefore there will never be
  • a good, loyal, open parenthood after marriage with him.

He has not changed so far, although he may have tearfully professed it now and then, and he will never change.

You have had this sorrowful experience enough in the last few years, haven’t you?

In practice, it means you just don’t respond anymore.

Invitation to the FeelBold Friday

Subscribe now to my free weekly newsletter

To the newsletter >>>

His hate mails will fade away and automatically go to the mail subfolder with his name.

If you haven’t already, you should create a separate email address just for him anyway, once you’re separated. Then you have these emails neatly separated from your other ones and won’t be triggered again and again when you check your inbox and stumble over his old emails when looking for something.

Normally, you shouldn’t have any contact with this tormentor at all. Especially if he has harassed you for years with his psychological terror, your soul urgently needs rest and time to regenerate.

However, due to the shared custody and the child visitation, you are forced to communicate.

And last but not least, even if your child’s heart is still quite attached to the father. If this is not the main reason to go through all this crap!

So if you have children, you have to do it differently. And there a very good option is the Grey Rock method.

A good method with limitations

When I tried this for the first time, a huge stone fell from my heart right away. What an incredible relief!

Just to have given myself permission to no longer have to put energy into fruitless and endless email discussions to question or straighten out some screwy argument was a fantastic feeling.

You clearly set the rules for your communication: No phone calls except in emergencies, no joint appointments. As few points of contact and encounter as necessary. To protect yourself.

If you have to write an email yourself, you do it mega matter-of-factly. This happens every now and then, when you have to tell him important information concerning the child.

The following applies:

  • Do not express any emotions in writing. I mean really none!
  • List the facts that you need to communicate
  • Formulate questions factually and clearly
  • Set a deadline (I need your answer by… at the latest, otherwise I will assume that I can handle it this way and that it is in your interest).
  • Rule of thumb: After you have finished, read your email again with the eyes of a judge. If it is factual and neutral, you can send it. Is there any sarcasm, irony or accusation between the lines or even clearly visible? Then it’s time to rephrase, please!

You are a rock, remember?

If there are no custody issues to deal with, get in the habit of not reading his emails right now. Why do you want to burden yourself with his written gaffes?

The limits of this method will become clear when you have to deal with him.

For one thing, he may be quite annoyed by your new way of doing things, and he may stop responding when you need an answer for some official place. Or a signature. Or just clarity so you can organize something.

With joint custody and his right of contact with the child, he still has many starting points to continue to bring you to the brink of bewilderment. From painful experience I can only tell you:

Don’t get involved!

The Grey Rock method offers a good approach to draw a picture of yourself, how you want to be inside towards him – just like a rock!

Do you want to feel confident about managing child hand-offs with your toxic ex?


This is also a matter of practice.

And practice opportunities will be plentiful: Situations will pop up from time to time where you could go off like a rocket.

He will probably not stick to agreements and contracts. He will blame you in the worst and most unfair ways if the child turns out differently than he imagines.

He will simply “forget” things that are very important to you or the child.

He will commit custody violations. He will not ask himself if he is hurting the child psychologically (how could he – without any sense of empathy?).

Grey Rock also means not acting on it in the extreme.

This is extremely difficult and really requires extraordinary control from us mothers.

Basically, it’s about not feeding negative energy into the cycle. If you’ve been reading along with me for a while, you know that this rule is elementary after breaking up with a narcissist, because

The only chance to cut this negative-energy lifeline between you is to stop providing him with energy.

And what happens next?

You are surely asking yourself now, if you have to swallow every madness without comment and reaction from now on.

That just depends.

The rule is: no direct contact with him. If at all, then discuss it with your lawyer or a good friend who is in a similar situation.

Always think carefully about what result you expect or hope for in the end. Think about your energy needs and proportionality.

If he always picks up and brings the child too late or too early, that is mega annoying, but to drag him to court to enforce a new access arrangement is certainly not proportionate and costs you too much energy and good mood.

But it is clear that you have to do something if the child’s contact with him is getting worse and worse and he does not want to see him anymore, but he still insists on it.

In case of imminent danger for the child, you must and should act without hesitation!

If it is “only” about you – and you feel that he is playing a game with you – then make one thing clear: With a narcissist there is no fair argument or fight.

So just deny him the pleasure of having found a teammate.


If you get into a fight, no one will win – even if you formally come out of a fight as the victor, the wounds he can punch into your soul with his unbridled hatred are infinitely greater. So better withdraw for your own protection and offer him as a gray rock no attack surface at all.

Congratulations – if you implement all this, you have created a stable foundation for dealing with your past!

Now you can move on to the future. Finally!

Are you coming?

Invitation to the FeelBold Friday

Subscribe now to my free weekly newsletter

To the newsletter >>>