So many things could go wrong in a new relationship that I could write a book about it.
But most of the time everything seems to be going just fine until suddenly, you and your guy are talking less.
Worse still, he seems to be more distant than your aunt’s cousin whom you haven’t seen for a decade.
A man distancing himself from a relationship may not seem like a big deal at first, but for us women, it is.
And in some cases, it’s a huge red flag we need to pay attention to.
Here are the main reasons why men pull away and a few things you can do about it to stay high value and keep your power.
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Whаt is the Mаin Rеason Men Pull Away?
All women who have dated a guy at least once in their life have probably heard the “It’s not you, it’s me” phrase, which kind of ended the relationship for them.
If you want to understand what is the main reason men pull away, there’s one thing you need to remember – a man pulling away is never about just one person.
That’s true even if he’s trying to shoulder all the blame for your relationship running cold.
Whether he’s triggered by something you’ve done or he’s simply not ready to commit to a long-term relationship, you need to know that even though there are common reasons why men pull away, your situation is still unique.
This means there’s always more than one reason why men pull away in relationships.
But if you want to hear the most common one – that would be fear.
Fear of what, you might be wondering?
Well, that list may be quite long, but for many guys, it’s the relationship itself and the whole package of responsibilities that comes along with it.
He might also fear committing to the wrong woman, as men only emotionally commit to the right woman.
Who is that right woman?
She’s what all men intuitively categorize as the “one and only”, not the “one of many”. To understand more about this concept and learn how you can always be any man’s “one and only”, watch this video from Renée.
Why dо Guys Pull Awаy Whеn Thеy Are Fаlling In Lоve?
As Sally Connolly writes for Mental Health, fear usually kicks in after the 2nd stage of the relationship.
This is when all the wild hormones dwindle down a little bit and suddenly everyone starts thinking more about ‘So, what’s next?’ rather than ‘How to make him/her like me more?’.
It’s a subtle transition, but as a woman you may notice it right away.
This is the time when both a man and a woman are trying to make more space for themselves to see where they stand in the relationship.
Is it just a fling or are things getting more serious with each passing day?
Women are usually more conscious about where the relationship is going than men are.
However for men, this stage can become an unexpected and scary revelation.
Suddenly, she’s spending half of the week at his place and they see each other almost every day.
Where do they go from here and is he really prepared to go further?
All these questions are likely to arise inside a man’s mind and, naturally, he’ll become more distant and less responsive.
Depending on the answers a man finds inside his heart, the relationship will or will not hit the 3rd stage, during which the couple decides to deepen their bond and go further down the relationship road.
The 8 Main Reasons Why Men Pull Away
Of course, fear isn’t the only reason that makes guys pull back from a relationship or even go for a full-on break-up.
There are also commitment and abandonment issues, anxiety, bad examples from past relationships or even exes that he can’t let go of.
Furthermore, there’s the simple reason that you’re not the right woman for him.
Remember we spoke above about the ‘one and only’?
Well, every man you meet will categorise you as being in his ‘one and only’ basket, or the ‘one of many’ basket.
As you can probably guess, if you’re in the one and only basket, you get a full emotional commitment from the man.
Simply no other woman can compare to you in his mind, and he will try to give you everything he has, even if he’s far from perfect.
However if you’re the one of many, you’ll find it harder to get him to commit fully.
So: there are many reasons why men pull away, and you probably have an inkling deep down inside, what reason applies to your relationship.
While each man has his very own set of individual traits and experiences, here are 7 of the most common reasons why men pull away even when they’re in love.
Vulnerability and the Fear of Emotional Intimacy
Most guys aren’t taught how to process their feelings and emotions when getting closer to a woman, so they just (try to) learn along the way.
This means that for some of them, all those feelings may be way too much!
Even if men aren’t suppressing all those emotions, whatever they may be, looking them in the eye requires quite a lot of strength and courage.
Yes, even when it’s love we’re talking about.
As two people grow closer to each other, they open up more with each stage of the relationship.
This makes men feel vulnerable and that’s not really something they’re used to or know how to deal with.
Some men pull away because they aren’t ready to face all those feelings or they just need more time to process them on their own.
But there’s another aspect to this, and that is the possibility of insecure attachment patterns, which is what we’re going to discuss in the next point.
Insecure Attachment Patterns
To put it simply, your man may be insecurely attached, and therefore be deeply avoidant (or repulsed by) emotional intimacy.
He may push you away or simply become overwhelmed with internal anxiety when the relationship starts to require more of his emotional investment.
Not to mention when you show signs of wanting to bond more deeply with him.
If you haven’t heard of attachment theory, it is a concept that describes each person’s typical patterns of relating (or not relating) when they get close to people.
- Secure attachment
- Anxious attachment
- Avoidant attachment; and
- Disorganized attachment
You develop your attachment style before you turn 1. It is your mother and father’s job to respond to all your cries and comfort you adequately 24/7.
So if this is not adequately accomplished, or your man’s mother was inconsistent in responding to him, he may have developed an insecure attachment style.
All I can say is:
If he’s avoidant or anxious, you will feel him pulling away a lot on the future!
By the way, would you like to discover your own core attachment style?
QUIZ TIME: Do I have secure or insecure attachment patterns? CLICK HERE to find out with our specially crafted women-specific 10 Question Quiz!
(Why is this important? It is because your core attachment style largely dictates and influences what happens in your relationship. Thus it’s imperative you understand your core attachment style!)
Past Relationship Failures
Our past influences the choices we make in the present and the way we experience life in general.
If a man had an unpleasant past experience, the memory of that may be tainting his current relationship with you.
It may be an unconscious thing, but it is pretty powerful for both men and women.
If his past relationship didn’t end well, he may be reluctant to go deeper into the new one, fearing that it will also be a failure and he will experience the same pain and disappointment as before.
In fact, I’d say that this is especially true for men as men tend to feel that feeling of failure deeply when they invest a lot in a woman and it ends poorly.
Men don’t want to feel incapable or like they’re failures.
They want to feel successful, valuable and capable.
So it’s totally natural that they would want to avoid investing so much in a new woman, just in case the past repeats itself.
One thing I recommend you do is figure out how commitment-friendly your particular man is.
If you discover that he’s not likely to commit, at least you’ll have some certainty and not waste precious time with the wrong man.
(A woman is on a specific timeline and you don’t want to waste years away!)
You can discover exactly how commitment-friendly your man is with our quick and easy quiz:
One of the main reasons why men pull away is the fear that’s as old as time itself: “Whаt if I’m nоt gоod enоugh for her?”.
This fеar is dеeply rооted in childhооd and the wаy his pаrents treated him as a young boy.
If your man grew up looking at an unhappy mother that was never satisfied with his father for some reason, he would subconsciously adopt the fear of becoming the same ‘failure’.
Thus, he would either try to please the woman he’s dating all the time or would simply give up half-way, never believing that things would work out between them.
If you’re curious about the signs a man has low self esteem, here are 5 signs He Has Crippling Low Self Esteem.
He Needs More Space
This is true for both men and women, but guys tend to pull away easily when they feel they’re being sucked in too deep, way too fast.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that he doesn’t want to be with you or that the relationship is doomed of course.
But some time alone or with friends may be needed for him to feel more relaxed about things, and to keep other relationships in his life alive.
We all have our individual lives filled with work, hobbies, friends, and families, so it’s natural that a man needs some space for all those things, too.
You’re Moving Too Quickly
Men tend to grow cold and pull back a bit when women become too clingy or needy.
If you are pushing forward with the relationship too much, for example, dreaming about a house, a car, and all the kids you would have together after dating for just a few months, he may not be able to meet you there.
It’s good to allow the relationship to unfold naturally at a pace that’s comfortable for both partners.
How do you do that?
You allow yourself to be responsive to his reactions.
If he’s feeling too stifled or you can sense he’s overwhelmed by the things you wish for, it’s time to give it a break and simply focus on the attraction and connection in the relationship.
Of course, it’s important to talk about your dreams and goals with him no matter how big or small they are, so you both understand each other.
However, remember this:
There’s no one rule saying that you have to get married after dating for a certain period of time.
You can keep on dating for as long as you want!
The same goes for moving into a house together or seeing each other more often.
You may want these thing at a certain time (namely, faster than he does), but that doesn’t mean you can’t acknowledge that he may not feel like he has what it takes to provide that yet.
Of course you don’t want to sit around waiting forever, because some guys will string you along for decades, only to leave you for the “one and only” woman whom they fall in love with.
So you need to make sure you’re the one and only. If you are, it’s all good you can relax.
Regardless, it’s always best to not stay completely quiet about something that you need, it’s it’s truly important to you.
Just hear what your man has to say about it – is he always evading taking responsibility for how you feel in the relationship?
Or is he willing to take care of you in the best way he can?
He’s Not Ready to Commit Yet
Whether it’s due to the fact that you’re in his “one of many” basket, past relationship trauma or unhealthy examples of relationships he experienced while growing up as a kid, committing to a relationship may be a difficult task for your man.
Sometimes it’s just a difference in his timeline versus yours.
Men can be extremely (and did I say extremely?) slow at committing in the specific ways you want at times, even if you’re the one and only.
He may be emotionally committed but unable to marry you, for example.
And some guys are simply at a stage of life where they aren’t looking for anything that requires a commitment.
And some guys harbour too much resentment to ever actually fall in love.
It takes a certain type of man with a certain type of emotional security, esteem and freedom to fall in love.
He’s Sabotaging The Relationship
Pulling away can sometimes be a knee-jerk response to the ‘danger’ that lies ahead.
While deeply falling in love and building a long-lasting relationship doesn’t sound life-threatening, a man’s psyche may feel otherwise.
In other words, he wants to be close but knows he isn’t the type to be a good partner, so he preemptively pushes you away.
Alternatively stated, he sabotages the relationship. He ruins the future of what you two could be by prematurely exiting the relationship.
This kind of runs into the concept of insecure attachment patterns because securely attached men will not sabotage a relationship, but insecurely attached men certainly would.
To prevent being abandoned, on the subconscious level, a man sometimes chooses to avoid the whole experience altogether, whether it is good or bad.
If he has had previous bad relationship experiences, he is more likely to get anxious and try to pull away.
This way he won’t have to get hurt all over again.
But he doesn’t realize that he’s also pulling away from the things that could make him very happy.
It’s Happening Right Now. What Should I Do?
First of all, don’t panic.
We are all human beings and it’s natural to have doubts and concerns about things, especially the ones that we care about the most.
The next best thing you could do is give him some time and space.
Above all, stay high value.
Don’t take this chance when he’s pulling away to criticize him or make him wrong, because it will work against you.
(And if you go to this behavior, it could also be a sign that you’re sabotaging the relationship by pushing him away rather than bringing him closer).
Here’s an inconvenient truth:
If you’re in some kind of a relationship with a man, it could be the case that he needs you the most when he’s pulling away!
A lot of women forget that, or don’t realize that at all.
This is why it’s important to not react through your fears and panic.
There are specific steps you can take to stay high value when he pulls away, and this course will show you exactly what to do in all the contexts of when a man pulls away.
(The promise of this course is for you to learn the secret to showing up & staying as a high value woman when your man pulls away, so that he can come back to you with more interest, more desire & more appreciation for you.)
Other than that, you should always take care of yourself first by managing your emotions.
Because when you’re feeling calm and centered, you can work things through with your partner.
How about taking more time for yourself?
- Take your mind off things
- Do some yoga
- Go get a new haircut
- Enjoy your hobby; or
- Have a night out with your girlfriends
Life goes on no matter what and when you’re healthy and happy, things start naturally falling into place.
How to manage your emotional state when a guy starts pulling away?
- If you’re feeling stressed – exercise and rest more
- If you need counselling – get a therapy session or write to your diary (or a best friend if they’re ready to listen to your ranting)
- If you need time to yourself – go on a short trip; and
- If your mind is constantly restless – take some time to meditate, dance, enjoy a massage and relax your body.
Remember that your self-esteem doesn’t depend on what your man does.
The mаin rеlаtionship yоu hаve in yоur life is with yоursеlf!
Do you know the dark art of “High Value Banter” that helps you quickly weed out the wrong types of men and create emotional attraction with the “BEST of MEN”? CLICK HERE to learn how in this free class.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why dо guys pull аwаy whеn thеy are fаlling in lоve?
The deeper the bond you are sharing, the more you open up to each other.
Some men get overwhelmed with feelings they can’t handle or start questioning themselves, doubting whether they even deserve this relationship.
What is the main reasоn men pull аwаy?
While there are many reasons why men pull away, the main one has to do with fear one way or another.
Subconsciously guys fear many things – failure, getting hurt, being not enough, being abandoned, etc.
Looking all those fears in the eye requires time, patience, and space, that’s why many guys choose to distance themselves from their partner.
What tо dо if a guy stаrts pulling аwаy?
Be high value, keep calm and focus on your reactions, feelings, and emotions.
Usually, giving some time and space to a man works wonders for the relationship.
If you’re in an established relationship, then talking things through is also a must, but that may not happen immediately.
Be understanding and supportive of your man, but without sacrificing your health and happiness.
Take care of yourself first!
What to say when he pulls away?
You can always carefully ask about what’s going on in his life right now.
Ask him how he’s doing.
Say: “how are you?” And mean it.
If you’re really close to him already, then there may be merit in asking what made him feel so distant.
But again, whether you should do that or not depends on the level of intimacy you’re sharing.
It’s best not to be paranoid or too pushy, demanding answers right away.
Give him a few days of silence or even a week and see what happens next.
Of course, you will need some clarity, but begging or forcing him to talk to you would definitely not work.
You may write or talk about your feelings with him, letting him know that his behaviour hurts you in a respectful way that won’t risk sacrificing his or your happiness.
Finally, if your guy has pulled away before and you’re truly fed up, hurt and exhausted by it, then there is one specific phrase you can say that will capture his attention, trigger his curiosity, and make him hang onto every word you say! CLICK to discover this one phrase.
David is the founder of Commitment Triggers & co-founder of Shen Wade Media where we teach women how to show up as a high value high status woman whom easily inspires a deep sense of emotional commitment from her chosen man. Together with his wife Renee at The Feminine Woman, they have positively influenced the lives of over 15 million women through their free articles and videos as well as 10’s of thousands through paid programs through the Shen Wade Media platform.
Connect deeper with his work through the social media links below.