I’m thinking of pulling away for that reason. The words of affirmation just aren’t there at all. And what’s more upsetting is he told me a story about how he expressed his feelings to his ex girlfriend almost instantly, really quickly into them meeting each other. They ended up breaking up because she was not as into him. So now I feel like I have to disappear just to see if he actually likes me.
I can see exactly where i have pushed when he’s clearly been pulling away, but i wonder if I’ve pushed too hard and now blown my chances , or if he just wasn’t that into me and didn’t want to let me down? It’s been 9 days since i replied to him and have decided to take this advice, give him some space and look into other options, i hope he will be back in touch, but im trying to be realistic about the fact it’s a bit of a lost cause.
I have found that it is when I had children with my husband that he started to become extremely responsive and didn’t pull away as much – not directly as a result of loving me more, but because his masculine brain perceives that we need to communicate very often, for the purpose of responding to our kids, working out logistics, proper organisation between us, and doing the right thing by me and our kids.
Why don’t you advise sending the man a brief text that recognizes he needs space and give him the time and space he needs? The guy I’ve been seeing for almost a year got fairly emotional one night and finally made a commitment to me. I think did, anyway. Lol But the very next day he became a bit cold and distant. I’d get brief replies to my texts, but that was it. I also know he’s dealing with some personal things as well. I texted him, told him I felt he was going through a few things and needed space. He replied with a Thanks! which confirmed my thoughts. A few days later, I texted him again, told him I missed him, (shows I’m not upset) but I understood he needed space and told him to take all the time and space he needs. (Shows understanding and willingness to allow him to do his thing) I also told him that if he ever wanted to know how was feeling or how I felt about him to listen to a specific song and ended the text with some sweet words. (To reassure him and to hopefully give him an earworm to keep him thinking about me and make him miss me.) Then nothing more. No texts. No calls. Nothing. My plan is to keep busy and let him contact me.
So, get this. I’ve been seeing this guy for almost 3 months now, so not long. We have taken things pretty casually, I don’t know his past & haven’t asked. When it comes to ‘feelings’ I can tell he is not safe talking about it. We are completely compatible, and honestly I feel as if he’s my person. When we first started talking, we discussed about meeting the parents in general, and he expressed how he doesn’t bring just anyone home to his family & he wants to be sure they will be around for a while before doing so. So, I let him make the call as to when that would happen, if it would. A few weeks ago, he told me to reserve a specific date open for going home to meet his family. Which was just a week ago. Of course, it was the perfect weekend. Introduced me to his whole family, classmates, and family friends, and stayed an extra day than planned. 3 days later, I sent him a nice text- did not say the L word, but was pretty strong feeling. He replied with not feeling the same as me, and didn’t want to waste my time. I have tried calling him one time to get an explanation and he has not responded. Haven’t bugged him since the phone call. It’s so frustrating where 48 hrs prior to the text I was with him at his parents and seen absolutely no red flags. What should I do? What does this mean? I have never had a guy ‘pull away’ before.
This man is clearly into you, romantically, emotionally, physically, and intellectually. He’s making that clear with his words and actions. He is making an effort to connect, to spend time with you, and is public with his interest and affection. I think you are getting in your own way. It sounds like you need to re-evaluate your expectations of what love/attraction/romance should look like . You say:

It is best to look at response time as a gauge of how interested the other party is in what you are saying (just like word count.) For example, in my book, I give an example where I was texting a girl and I responded to her texts every few hours. Based on that you can assume that I am not very interested in what she is saying. However, if I was texting a girl that I was very interested in and I responded to her texts every few minutes then I am definitely engaged in what she is saying.
We broke up so sudden. I said one thing he didn’t like and it was like a switch. He had flipped just like that. Then all of a sudden all these problems he’s been thinking about has came up. I’m still trying to understand them. I’m still trying to understand which reasonings he said are actually true and which aren’t. It’s been 4 days, ive texted him once. No reply. I havent tried again, and I refuse to. I would hate to push him away further.

Hi Lauren, this couldn't have come at a more perfect time for me. My boyfriend of 7 years, broke up with me a week ago. I have read most of the Mars Venus books and am currently reading Mars and Venus: Starting Over. I'm not ready to give up on the relationship, he is my everything. He claims, he's afraid of commitment and that I can't make him happy for the rest of his life, but also claimed I'm perfect and don't need to change at all. Gave me the "it's not you, it's me" thing. I still have hope that if I give him his space he will change his mind and I'm not to the point where I can think about him not changing his mind, that is too hard. I have broken down and texted him a few times and told him how I was feeling. I stopped talking to him over the weekend and on day 4, I woke up to a text from him. It wasn't anything about us, just a video of a silly dog. I guess I'm just trying to figure out if he still cares? Is it just the friendship he misses? He claims I'm still his best friend. I can't be friends with him, I'm still in love with him. I know every situation is different and you ultimately can't tell he what he is thinking, but I guess do you think if I give him his space, he might come back? ...
So an update, my boyfriend came back. It was a mix of everything that had piled up slowly in the last 6months that he didn’t deal with effectively. This isn’t such a surprise as he spoke about it a week before such as physical and mental long work hours, debts and family issues which he felt affected the quality of our relationship. He retreated to become calm and gain clarity. Mind you, this was a 2 week retreat with only 2 ‘I’ll contact you soon’ texts so I kept my distance. When he came back I was supportive and he opened up to me. So now he just needs some support and a clear path. The last thing I’d ever do is blame him for his absence while he is going through a vulnerable time.

I really love him. I just want to hear from him. Some of the reasonings we broke up include he felt unappreciated, he wasn’t “getting” happy, he’s bored with the relationship because all we do is sit around, which I immediately told him that’s not fair and I always try to get him to do things and said I know. But a few more reasons he’s told me, he wants to be around someone positive, and I’ll admit I haven’t been in the best shape lately. I lost my job, I’ve been going through family issues, and friend issues. I always am first to tell him everything. I can understand why this is what could push him away. He is a very easy go free kind of guy. He also told me “I’m not what he wants in a girlfriend” of course all these words hurt. I think about everything he’s said and it hurts. Do I believe them? Slightly.
You have spent a month not contacting your ex. You spent that entire time working on yourself becoming more and more confident as the days past. Everything seemed to be going fine until you hit your first road block with a negative response. Make no mistake about it, negative responses are never good. However, they don’t EVER mean that you should give up right away. It just means you have to be smarter about how you approach things. Lets take a look at a negative response example (from my past) this is a true story.
This article was co-authored by Jessica Engle, MFT, RDT. Jessica Engle is a relationship coach and psychotherapist based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She founded Bay Area Dating Coach in 2009, after receiving her Master's in Counseling Psychology. Jessica is also a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist and Registered Drama Therapist with over 10 years of experience.
Just a heads up as this is an extremely important section. Remember when we talked abut how you are going to implement the no contact rule for about a month (30 days?) Yes, well you are not going to just sit on your butt and twiddle your thumbs during this time. No, you are going to work towards your goal of a new and better relationship by focusing on the one thing you can control, yourself!

However, before we hit the ground running I feel it is important to mention a few things. The game plan outlined above is not set in stone. Every single relationship is unique and may require unique steps that I haven’t outlined. Knowing what to do can sometimes depend on your gut. So, if your gut is telling you that a particular tactic I have outlined won’t work for you I would definitely trust it. The main takeaway here is that you are going to have to get creative and sometimes even skip entire skips depending on how fast you are moving.


Weekend. I was very forward with him, both through texts and talking, and he knew how awful my marriage had been and that I hadn’t been intimate in 7+ years! We had an AMAZING weekend and I know he likes me..but don’t know to what extent. I know I probably moves too fast and have expectations that probably won’t be met..I have been so depressed. So hard for me not to text him daily..I try to wait for him to initiate. I want to ask if he sees this going anywhere..but I am scared of the answer. It is also just very hard since it’s the firat time I felt wanted in about 15 years!! How do i get over this?? What do i do?? I can’t stop thinking about him.
It is best to look at response time as a gauge of how interested the other party is in what you are saying (just like word count.) For example, in my book, I give an example where I was texting a girl and I responded to her texts every few hours. Based on that you can assume that I am not very interested in what she is saying. However, if I was texting a girl that I was very interested in and I responded to her texts every few minutes then I am definitely engaged in what she is saying.
You see, even though the prospect of grieving is overwhelming, your body is smart. It’s not here to let you fall into the depths of hell forever. It will help you balance out the pain with pleasure if you let it, if you grieve naturally. Remember, there is a lot to grieve in this life – even if you and I would prefer to conserve energy by blocking out the grieving process for seemingly ‘not grieve worthy’ stuff, like a man pulling away.
Make sure to abide by the ever-important No Contact Rule. In this case, ignore your instincts (because they usually act like impulses and read as impulsive behavior). Make sure you take time needed for yourself to feel strong and confident on your own while you give him space. Make sure you do not, I repeat do not show any signs of codependency or clinginess when he does reach back out to you.
Hey I am currently dealing with this with my boyfriend I just came across these tips I don’t think its too late to try. My boyfriend and I have been together for 7 years and we have conceived two children within our relationship a 4year old girl and 2year old boy. Lately my boyfriend has been under tremendous stress and I haven’t acknowledged that so I was adding on to his stress by arguing and nagging I ended up pushing him away now and I think for good this morning before he left he said hes done for good because I kept forcing to fix the problem. I’m struggling on giving him his space because we live together in a studio its hard to walk past him everyday and just not talk to him. How do I give him his space and just have distance I am a stay at home mom so I don’t work and I don’t leave the house I’m home with my kids. Any tips on how to enforce the space so he can clear hos mind I know he loves me dearly hes just very stressed out and wants to clear his mind on his own he said so himself.
Right now is your time.  While your instincts are to obsess over your ex boyfriend and run through your mind over and over again as to what you did wrong, you have to stop thinking this way.  So what I want you to do is start writing down your vision of the future and what you want.  Don’t think so much about what happened in the past, but focus on what you are going to do to start healing.
I have refused to be in the types of relationships you mentioned where you have better to leave your boyfriend. The result is being single for almost all my life up to this day. I don’t regret losing those relationships, and none of those guys are married today. Just jumping from a relationship to another. One of them took a girlfriend only to have someone around and guess what? He decided to leave the country without informing her! On the other hand, there have been guys I tried my best to be open with. It felt good, but they didn’t… Read more »
Wow I can’t believe how much I have written. I just checked and this is getting close to 10,000 words. Ok, we are very close to the end here. This section is all about taking a big risk. More specifically, setting up a date with your ex boyfriend for the first time since your break up. All the experts have a different view of how this should be done. The truth of the matter is that if you played pretty close to the game plan I laid out for you, your ex boyfriend will probably have suggested to meet up IN PERSON by now. However, if he didn’t don’t worry, I have a plan for you!
I am delighted that you have heeded my advice. I have read the list you have constructed and I am pleased to tell you that I agree with it. Communication helps a relationship grow stronger. Along with that, it is very important to spend time with each other. I highly appreciate your gesture of talking to me about the list. With it, you and your boyfriend will be able to go a very long way. As for the matter of a relationship consisting of two people I greatly admire the last line you have written. It is vital to keep certain issues and matters amongst yourselves. My best wishes to you both.
Where did I come up with this? Actually this really happened to me. I was dating a girl and after we broke up I happened to run into her at a Starbucks and even though we had a short friendly conversation I couldn’t take my eyes off of her because she just looked so gorgeous. She looked so good in fact that all I could think was “how in the hell did I let her get away?”
Here;s an interesting one and maybe I am being a brat but I'm going to ask anyway. Late October I started seeing this guy. I did everything wrong one the first date, but I din't care one bit because I honestly didn't find him to be great looking. Super nice, great dresser, good body, but different than I expected. Anyway, we went out again because if a guy seems to have most of the qualities I like, if I think he's super nice and cool, I'll give it a try. We sleep together on date 2 and again, I DON'T CARE that I probably should not have. He still wants to see me though. After date four, I decide I'm just trying to like the guy so I tell him I can't see him anymore. I don't say exactly why but that something is not there.He starts to ask why and then backs off (smart) and takes it like a gentleman.That was after like 2 weeks. The next day or two all I do is tell my friends about this and it occurs to me I'm thinking about him nonstop. So I text him and BAM! Back together, dating and having the best sex I have EVER had in my life. We text a lot, he intiates, I don'tact needy at all... It's nice, it's warm, it's sexy, it's just great. THEN... his mom dies. He has to leave town but he just keeps on texting me the whole time. Before that he even invited me into his own world at a ceremony he had to attend. Up to this point he says thing like when you meet so and so and things like that. While out of town, everything is still great and he says he doesn't want to dwell on his mom.I respect that so I don't push at all. Before he gets back he he says he needs to take me to his home town (a popular vacation destination). When he gets back I meet him but his flight was delayed so it's pretty late (not normal for us to do late night stuff like that). I even said if it's too late let's reschedule. He says no so I go. The next day is fine... texting blah blah blah, but the following day he seems to be distant. I do nothing. The next day, today, I text him first. He says he had a headache the day before but it's probably stress over deciding to leave an old job for a new one and a lawsuit he's in. He then tells me about it. But.... he definitely seems more distant than when his mom died, so I'm thinking am I just being a complete brat here or is he actually losing interest. It seems really obvious to me but I have recently decided I don't make excuses for a man's behaviour any more. If they want you, no matter the circumstances, you know it. what's your take? Feel free to completely call me out, if I am just being a big baby here. At this point, I actually do really like the guy. I wish he would say something like "I'm cray about you" or something but his actions up to this point have been great so saying words may be a bit much to expect less than 2 months in anyway. Either way, I just want to know if I should completely bail at this point because I hate this feeling!

Draw yourself away from him… Act like you’re moving on and having a better time without him. He loves and wants you but is somewhat testing you in a way. If you do these 2 things he’ll come back. I know I do all the time. He couldn’t bare to see you with other guys, you’re his woman and he’s your man… It’s hard to draw away, but he’ll start panicking.


We texted incessantly for a month and went on our first date to an ice cream festival called The Scooper Bowl. I missed the train, and we kissed. We began a summer fling where we’d walk around Boston holding hands, eating pizza, and watching TV cuddled up on her couch. She made that summer in Boston perfect. It was only two months, but it was unfiltered romance.
You have spent a month not contacting your ex. You spent that entire time working on yourself becoming more and more confident as the days past. Everything seemed to be going fine until you hit your first road block with a negative response. Make no mistake about it, negative responses are never good. However, they don’t EVER mean that you should give up right away. It just means you have to be smarter about how you approach things. Lets take a look at a negative response example (from my past) this is a true story.
1. Start out by heading down the road of healing past wounds. As you talk about the upsetting interactions that have distressed you in the past, look back on these upsetting incidents to find what you yourself can learn from each. When thinking about how to fix a relationship, mistakes are for learning. Share what you experienced, and think aloud about what you would do differently next time. If your partner joins you and does the same, convert past upsets to valuable learning moments in your life journey together.
Hi Appollonia thank you for the article I thought it was great. I started dating a guy back in June 2018, it was like a whirl wind romance we were seeing each other at least 3/4 times a week, he asked me to meet his mum after about a week i said no its to soon, then within a month I had met his mum, best friend, sister, female friends, Aunty, cousins. He was bringing me to family events, buying me shoes, cooking for me, spontaneously turning up with flowers and breakfast, coming to my family events, staying with me for a whole week. For 2 months I spoke to him every single day. Then after 2 months he bought us tickets for a festival and at the event we had an argument whereby I had apparently reprimanded like a child. From that point everything changed, he became distant and we were constantly arguing. So I broke up with him in September, but he came back saying he wanted to reconcile. In October we talked and got back together, but he continued to be distant and make little effort, not returning my calls and messages for 24/48, telling me we're meeting up but never making a plan to do so. Always saying he's busy working as an excuse as to why we are not meeting. In December I broke it off again. We were at the same event in January and again he said he wanted to try again, saying we should go away for the weekend and spend quality time rebuilding our relationship this of course never materialised and 3 weeks later I blocked him on phone calls, whats app, and social media. It's now been 2 months since I blocked him and he hasn't tried to contact me by other means. I still love him and want him, but I have been working on myself and will not settle for less than I deserve. However I still don't understand why he changed and why we he became all talk and no action.
This man is clearly into you, romantically, emotionally, physically, and intellectually. He’s making that clear with his words and actions. He is making an effort to connect, to spend time with you, and is public with his interest and affection. I think you are getting in your own way. It sounds like you need to re-evaluate your expectations of what love/attraction/romance should look like . You say:

My girlfriend has accused me of neglecting her over recent months, I admit i have taken my eye off the ball because of the stress of studying and probably not payed her the attention she deserves. Also she has questioned why we are not married and do not have children, there is no reason, i would like to marry her but I guess i’ve taken for granted we could do this anytime.
I know.  You are thinking to yourself, “look, I came here to find out the fastest way possible to get my ex boyfriend back where he belongs.  I have to have him back”.  But trust me, things are probably pretty crazy right now if you are just coming out of the breakup, so don’t make it worse by rushing through things, being overly impulsive , and doing or saying something you will regret later.
This article is completely speaking to my current situation. It definitely seems like my guy is pulling away a little bit, still answering texts and things but very barely, not making plans to see me this weekend, etc., but all of the signs up until this point were that he was very into me. I tried reaching out to him a little more than I usually have been in response, but I’m going to pull back a little bit and give him the space he needs and let him come to me as this article says.
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