He’s not clear with his intentions, and it’s messing with your head.
You’re not sure what he wants, and you’re definitely unsure whether he wants a relationship or not.
You end up contemplating his behavior; how he doesn’t initiate anything, doesn’t put any effort, and calls you only when he needs something – which, by the way, is often sex only.
He said he doesn’t want a relationship but keeps you around. Despite its commonality in the dating world, this situation is no piece of cake to deal with.
So, what’s there to do? How do you know he doesn’t want a relationship in the first place?
Well, we’re tackling everything about this! Starting from the basic signs he doesn’t want a relationship with you:
1. He tells you he’s not interested in a relationship.
If he said he doesn’t want a relationship (right now, or anytime), trust his word and take it as it is.
Many try to find hidden meanings and reasoning behind something he tells directly.
When he says he doesn’t want a relationship it means that he doesn’t want a connection to which you both commit and call it a relationship.
Avoid misleading yourself into a fantasy that, unfortunately, will not be fulfilled.
When a guy says he doesn’t want a relationship, listen to him, and believe what he’s telling you.
2. He doesn’t put any effort into your connection.
Effort in a connection resembles commitment and a desire to form something deeper with the person we’re involved with.
Emotional investment in a relationship is one of the key elements and one of the fundamental values that characterize a romantic relationship.
In fact, it’s what makes it a romantic relationship, and a strong emotional connection: emotions and feelings.
If he doesn’t put any effort into your connection, especially in the emotional realm, he might not be wanting a relationship with you.
Or, he’s scared of it, to say the least. He
- is emotionally distant and restricted,
- doesn’t invest his time and emotions into the connection with you.
3. He doesn’t initiate.
Part of a relationship is consistent communication and initiation – initiation of dates, making plans, or plain communication (e.g. sending you a text).
Getting involved with a man who rarely initiates or doesn’t initiate at all often means you’re with a man who doesn’t want a relationship.
The attraction is a mix of powerful positive feelings for another, hence if he’d see potential in you two as a couple, he wouldn’t be able to resist for long.
He’d make a move.
He’d want to see you, spend time with you, and he wouldn’t be able to help but make the first move.
If you’re the one making plans, texting him first, and initiating things in the connection, you’re the one giving too much, and he might be the one not wanting a relationship.
4. Sex is the only aspect of the connection he commits to.
There is nothing wrong with wanting sex, loving it, or liking it ‘a bit too much’.
However, that’s a problem if sex is all that your connection is about when you’re wanting a relationship.
A relationship that revolves around sex is often called a hookup, Friends with Benefits, casual, etc.
You want a serious relationship, but if everything is revolving around sex, then you’re not in one.
We might be dealing with a man that doesn’t want a relationship if he only
- calls you for sexy times,
- calls or texts you when he’s feeling horny,
- goes out with you if he knows you’re going to have sex later.
5. He shows no interest in you or your presence.
A man who’d want a relationship would show interest in you and your presence.
He would be engaged in your conversations and be curious about what you have to say.
But, since he doesn’t want a relationship, he’s more likely to
- avoid questions about your life, day, or personality;
- not put any effort into complimenting your personality or character;
- not care much whether he spends time with you or not.
6. He doesn’t show much respect regarding your time.
Someone who wants to keep you around is often careful when it comes to showing respect.
Their behavior isn’t quite ruthless, because they’re aware that they might lose you due to their disrespect.
A man who doesn’t want a relationship often doesn’t mind about this. He
- changes plans last minute without warning,
- cancels plans,
- doesn’t put effort into having quality time with you regardless of your attempts to do so.
7. He withdraws when the connection becomes emotionally intimate.
A man who doesn’t want a relationship will back off the minute the connection heads in an emotional direction.
Emotional vulnerability is a fundamental pillar of a fulfilling relationship.
Since he doesn’t want a relationship, he’ll pull away the moment there’s potential for emotional intimacy between the two of you. In this case, he
- avoids emotionally deep conversations with you,
- is reluctant to spend ‘too much’ time with you,
- avoids sharing personal stories with you because he’s aware that can lead to emotional connection.
8. He’s pocketing you.
If you’re unfamiliar with ‘pocketing’, it’s a dating trend that essentially depicts a partner that hides their partner from their friends and family.
When a man is interested in a relationship with you, he’ll at the very least mention you to his friends and family.
However, since he doesn’t want a relationship, he will pocket you away from his social circle. He
- won’t post you on his social media,
- won’t introduce you to his family and friends,
- is reluctant to go out in public spaces with you.
9. He avoids the talk of exclusivity and commitment.
Defining the relationship is a big moment in each relationship.
Sometimes that happens through a conscious conversation, and other times it happens naturally as both partners agree to exclusivity.
If you’ve been trying to introduce this topic on the table, you’ll notice he’s reluctant to talk about it. He’ll either avoid it or say that you’ll discuss it later. He
- doesn’t communicate his intentions,
- goes out with other people without letting you know about it,
- won’t mind if you go out with other people,
- has a player-like behavior within the connection.
10. His approach to your connection is casual.
A careless approach to a connection is often a sign of a lack of interest in a serious relationship.
If he doesn’t spend time with you, if he doesn’t make plans ( long-term or short-term plans), if he doesn’t participate in conversations that include emotional depth to them, then he might not want a relationship with you.
Or, he’s scared of it, to say the least.
- He hits you up only when he’s got nothing to do,
- He calls you at his place only,
- He avoids romantic date nights that resemble ‘couple-y’ activities.
11. The plans are only made for the short-term future (e.g. tomorrow).
Your conversations with him regarding plans tend to be short and avoid targeting a long-term future.
He doesn’t plan months ahead, he likes to keep it ‘short and simple’.
A man that would be interested in developing a serious relationship with you would have an easier time imagining a long-term future with you.
But, a man that doesn’t want a relationship will plan for ‘the tomorrows’ only. He won’t be capable of imagining a longer future with you.
12. He’s not forward with his intentions: he’s hot and cold.
When he doesn’t want a relationship, he also gives you mixed signals, giving you the clue that he doesn’t know what he wants.
Likely, you often hear him say he doesn’t know what he wants, or that he’s overwhelmed emotionally, that he doesn’t like to be involved with anyone, etc.
This confusion often happens when he likes you but he doesn’t feel ready or doesn’t want a relationship with you. He
- avoids talking about a possibility of a relationship with you,
- makes you feel confused regarding the connection with him.
13. He seems unreachable.
text you consistently when you’re away.
Consistent communication is yet another solid base for holding or even starting a relationship.
If he doesn’t initiate contact and doesn’t express the need or desire to be in your presence (virtual, or in real life), he’s very likely to not be wanting a relationship.
He looks like he
- doesn’t want to keep in touch with you frequently,
- is too far to reach emotionally,
- isn’t interested to listen to your concerns or ask about them.
14. The only time he reaches out is when he can get something from you.
This is yet another telltale sign that the man you’re with doesn’t want a relationship.
It’s you who has to initiate, otherwise, you don’t hear from him unless he needs something from you (which is often sex, unfortunately).
The time you spend together is only convenient for him, and he seems like he couldn’t care any less.
You don’t seem like a priority to him, you feel like you’re far from one in actuality. That’s because he
- won’t compromise his fun for your needs,
- won’t ever call you to just hear your voice or ask you about your day,
- doesn’t take the time to listen nor make you feel valued or appreciated.
What to do when he doesn’t want a relationship? – Should I wait for him?
Usually, in an ideal situation where you’re dating the right person, your intentions and expectations about the connection are aligned.
On the other hand, you can feel stuck in a situation when you’re aware that your expectations from your connection are very different from one another.
In this case, you want a relationship, but he doesn’t. You might feel stuck, or even confused about it.
You can sense he’s pulling away, but you’re not quite sure what to do about it.
Should you stop talking to him if he doesn’t want a relationship, or just keep it friendly and ‘go with the flow’?
Here’s what to do if he doesn’t want a relationship:
– Express your intentions and expectations about the connection with him (examples).
When it comes to romantic relationships and connections it’s very important to have your intentions and expectations communicated.
If he hasn’t verbally told you that he doesn’t want a relationship, then this is the first step you want to make.
Have the “what are we” conversation in a respectful way.
You don’t have to pose the question “What are we?” to know his intentions. Let’s upgrade this a little!
Being upfront about your intentions is sexy, confident, and empowering (if he sees it as a turn-off, you might be dating the wrong person).
All it takes to let him know about your intentions or expectations from the connection with him is a simple line of words such as
|“John, I like you a lot, and I’d like to be upfront with you about this. I expect this connection to be more than just sex or partying now and then.”|
|“You’re very dear to me, and I’d like this to be more than a casual/random connection. I don’t want to pressure you on anything, I just thought I’d share my expectations and give you room to share yours.”|
|“I expect our connection to be more than casual hookups now and then. I do understand if you don’t feel the same, and I’d like you to let me know what your thoughts on this are. No pressure x”|
This will help you both have an adult conversation and will help you both clarify and manage your expectations avoiding heartbreak and tears.
– Give him space to respond, and think about what you expressed to him.
Pressuring him isn’t going to allow him to be clear with his response to your message (whether you conveyed it in person or through text).
Give him room to respond, let him have his time to think about it.
This not only lets him think things through but also gives you a chance to reflect on his response.
You then can tell part of his maturity through the time he takes to respond, and the approach he has to your expression.
So, don’t rush or pressure him into giving you a response as soon as possible.
Give him time to respond, and allow him to properly perceive the message you wanted to convey.
– Make a decision by which you’ll stand by, even if it is to move on and cut him off.
You’re fair to express your intentions directly and respectfully. You’ve got his response, now it’s time to make a decision.
Of course, if his response to your expression is positive, then you can go ahead and enjoy a connection with a very good start (open communication).
But if he says he doesn’t want a relationship right now, then that is when you are put in a position to make a decision.
We don’t want to be with a person if our values aren’t aligned. It can end up very hurtful.
If you are aware that you won’t be capable of a connection with him any longer, and if the connection with him would hurt you – in some way – then it’s best for you to leave it there.
Friendships or FWB relationships where one of the two involved has feelings for the other are very difficult to maintain.
And despite your decision to keep it that and nothing more, you’ll eventually face heartbreaks that perhaps you didn’t foresee.
Since the relationship is out of the picture with you, he could move on to other relationships or “casual connections” which potentially lead you to feel heartbroken.
In some cases, he might tell you he doesn’t want a relationship but wants to be friends, and if you decide to go along with it, chances are it won’t end well.
Essentially, you’ll be seeing someone you want a relationship with and dating another person.
In this case, to avoid illusionary hope that someday he might change his mind, and to avoid potential heartbreaks, it would be best to stop talking to him.
Cut him off if you feel like his presence in your life would bring more negative things than positive ones.
– Communicate your decision to him: avoid ghosting him.
When/If you decide to cut him off (to stop talking to him) it’s only fair that you communicate this decision to him.
This is normal, especially when you want different things from the same connection.
Since you already let him know about your intentions and expectations, and he let you know about his, this will be time to let him know about your decision.
Ghosting is cruel. Any line of goodbye can work when compared to ghosting.
If you decided to get out of this connection, let him know.
If he says he doesn’t want a relationship, will he change his mind?
If he says he doesn’t want a relationship, he might change his mind later on.
He might come back after pulling away, minds and situations change throughout time.
However, you’ll be making a huge mistake if you think that it’s your job or duty to change his mind in this aspect, or even wait for him until he changes his mind.
Some of us make absolute decisions based on the momentary situation, emotional state, preferences, the flow of thoughts, and logic.
Those factors might change along the way due to time and experiences.
You might want a relationship with him now, but that doesn’t mean you’ll want a relationship with him after a year of not seeing him or hearing from him.
It’s the same for him as well. He might not want a relationship with you now, but he might want one after a year, more, or less than that.
He might not change his mind at all too.
This doesn’t mean you should sit and wait around for each other until “enough time” or “enough experience” has passed for you to become right for each other.
Your happiness and joy matter. Prioritize them!