Hurt-and-rescue cycles explain why narcissistic abuse victims experience cravings and obsessive thoughts once No Contact has been executed. According to an experiment inspired by Langer, Blank, and Chanowitz (1978), and recently conducted by Dolinski and Nawrat**, when the event that provokes and justifies one’s experience of fear is suddenly removed (i.e., No Contact with the Narcissist), we may experience a short-lasting state of disorientation. The action produced by fear is no longer functional in the new circumstances (your removal of the silent treatment due to implementing No Contact), and a new program has not yet been instigated. Their assumption is that during this period of disorientation, people function automatically and mindlessly, engaging in automatic, pre-programmed actions.
In other words, even when we’ve gone No Contact, we tend to engage in the same obsessive thoughts and behaviors as when we were still with the Narcissist and endured the Silent Treatment because our subconscious minds cannot tell the difference.