Emotionally Unavailable Men: 8 Signs (And How To Handle One)

couple breaking up

If you look back at the last few relationships you’ve been in, you can see a pattern: you seem to always be attracted to emotionally unavailable men. Despite your best efforts to get them to open up, you always end up hurt and frustrated that they never reciprocate the affection or love you feel for them.

So what can you do when every relationship you’re in seems to dead end emotionally?

First off, know you aren’t alone.  So many women like you have thrown their hands up when they were unable to change a man who just couldn’t open up to them the way they wanted. But here’s a common scenario: these women (and maybe you too) assume that the man will come around, that when he falls in love with them, he will then become emotionally vulnerable.

frustrated woman in car

Dating emotionally unavailable men is frustrating.

That rarely happens.

So why do emotionally unavailable men exist? Don’t we live in a society where men are now encouraged to express their feelings?

While yes, it’s now more acceptable for men to be emotional or vulnerable, today’s man may not have been raised that way. He may have been taught to stop crying and be a man, or encouraged to toughen up by his father. He may have experienced trauma that he bottled up over a lifetime, which can make being vulnerable again a challenge.

My point is: you don’t know why these emotionally unavailable men are the way they are. The best you can do is to look for signs that the man you’re in a relationship with or just starting to date may be one more on your long list of emotionally unavailable men.

And while I’ll address this in detail at the end, I want you to understand that if a man is emotionally unavailable, it in no way indicates that you are being needy or clingy. I know women are hard on themselves often, taking the blame when they shouldn’t. So don’t. This is entirely on him.

Sign #1 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: They Come Off Like Robots

This guy acts exactly the same whether he’s happy, furious, sad, or tired. You have trouble reading him; you never know what he’s thinking, but you don’t want to be one of those women who is always asking what are you thinking?

You joke to him that he’s like an android, but you’re really not far off. He may be great in a crisis, but when it comes to opening up about his feelings (even his disappointment of his football team losing the Super Bowl), this man seems incapable of emotional expression.

How to Address This: You may be fighting a losing battle, but you’ve at least got to make an attempt to get into this guy’s head and heart. When something happens that you believe should have a significant emotional reaction (his dog died, his brother ran over his foot with the car, his roommate drank his beer), prod him gently for a reaction.

Wow, that really would have pissed me off/upset me/sent me off the deep end. You’re handling it really well. But how are you really feeling about it?

He can (and likely will) defer the question, but at least you’re making an effort to engage in dialogue about his feelings.

Sign #2 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: They Can Be Self-Centered

You may have initially been attracted to this guy’s self-confidence, but over time it’s turned into something else. He constantly talks about his own concerns and rarely asks how you’re doing. It’s plain rude! What gives with that behavior?

I think the primary reason emotionally unavailable men can be self-centered is that they can control the conversation. And they don’t have to care about your shit if they control the dialogue. If this guy actually started asking about what’s going on with you, you might — gasp — emotionally vomit all over him or demand his emotional support…and he simply doesn’t want to give it.

Being self-centered is a defense mechanism. If he’s in control of the relationship, he doesn’t have to open up if he doesn’t choose to. He’s so focused on his own agenda and needs, that there is no room for him to let you into his head and heart. That’s not going to change.

As a side note, many men who are emotionally unavailable are often also narcissists. The two go hand-in-hand, and neither is a good partner for you.

How to Address This: Even if he’s not asking how your day went, volunteer the information anyway. Make a point to match anything he says about himself with something about what’s going on with you. If he doesn’t take the hint and start letting you in, it’s time to move on.

Sign #3 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: They’re Not Incredibly Nice to Other People

mean man

If he’s rude to others, will he treat you any better?

It’s one thing that he’s closed off with you. Maybe you haven’t been dating long enough to know if he’s actually an emotionally unavailable man or not. But how he treats others is a pretty good indicator of what you need to know about this guy.

When he sees a homeless woman asking for change at the stoplight, does he say, boy I wish the cops would clean up the homeless problem?

Is he rude to waiters at restaurants, always demanding things from them?

Would he kick a puppy?

Okay, maybe that’s taking things too far, but my point is: is he compassionate and empathetic to others? Or does he take a superior attitude, thinking he’s better than everyone else, and everyone else is doing things the wrong way?

In general, you want a partner who can empathize with others. I’m not saying he needs to buy that homeless lady a house, but maybe throw her a few coins and appreciate that she’s down on her luck. Don’t judge her.

He should realize that people make mistakes, and if his waiter gave him the wrong order, politeness would remedy the situation better than anger.

How to Address This: When you first start dating a man, pay attention to how he treats others. You’re looking for respect, politeness, and empathy. Anything else may be a red flag that he’s an emotionally unavailable man, so keep an eye out for these other signs as you get to know him better.

Sign #4 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: They Never Take the Blame

When you ask what happened in past relationships, why they ended, he always puts the blame on his ex. Sure, it’s entirely possible that every relationship he’s ever been in ended because of someone else…isn’t it??

Probably not. He’s lying to you and to himself on that count.

Look, relationships usually end because at least one party isn’t happy. But it’s rare that one person contributes zero to the demise of the relationship. And the likelihood of that happening again and again — no less to a man who clearly seems to be emotionally unavailable — is highly suspect.

What happens when you ask about past relationships? Does he clam up or get bitter talking about his exes? Or can he tell you objectively what went wrong, including his role in the situation? He might be angry about a recent relationship (that’s understandable), but if he talks the same about one that was years ago, you have to wonder why he’s holding on to that resentment.

How to Address This: A man who is emotionally secure can talk about past relationships in a constructive way. He can share with you his insights without blaming or getting angry. If you feel uncomfortable with the level of ire he responds with when you bring up past relationships, realize that he’s going to talk about your relationship with him the same way one day. There’s no way to change that, but you can exit stage left sooner rather than later.

Sign #5 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: They Disengage from Their Relationships

man ignoring woman

He’ll go out of his way to avoid conflict.

Maybe when you first started dating, this man was all about you. He actively pursued you and did his best to woo you. As a result, you totally fell for him. Now, however, you’re feeling him disengaging from the relationship.

Why is he disengaging?

He may want to deliberately sabotage the relationship so you end it. He may disengage in a number of ways, including:

  • Working longer hours
  • Drinking heavily
  • Spending time away from home
  • Avoiding difficult conversations
  • Keeping secrets
  • Avoiding you

And the more he pulls away, the more you move toward him, trying to understand his change in behavior. You want communication and connection. He wants space and quiet. You feel rejected because he won’t address the problem head-on. He is frustrated because he feels like you’re backing him into a corner.

E. Mavis Hetherington, a pioneer explorer of family dynamics, calls this the Pursuer-Distancer Pattern. You pursue him as he distances himself from you. It’s a lose-lose situation.

In her study of 1,400 divorced individuals over 30 years, Hetherington found that couples who fell into this pattern were more likely to divorce or otherwise separate.

How to Address This: There is a fine line between a man needing some space to think about his relationship and a man completely disengaging. You’re going to have to rely on your gut instinct here. If he says he needs some space, ask how long he needs. If at the end of that period, he’s still disengaged, he’s hoping to avoid conflict altogether. It’s time to end things.

Sign #6 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: Sex Ranks High in Their Priorities

You feel like things are good in your relationship, but consider where they’re good. Are you spending quality time doing activities like eating out, sharing hobbies, and getting to know one another’s thoughts on various topics, or does the bulk of your good times together center around the bedroom?

Men and women get different things from sex. Women may become more emotionally attached to a man after sex, but if a man is emotionally unavailable, it’s likely going to be “just sex” for him. He may want it and initiate it with little regard to what you’re getting out of it on the other side.

He may prefer to have sex than to talk about his feelings, hoping to shut you up by giving you pleasure (or just getting pleasured himself. He probably doesn’t care if you orgasm or not.). He may use sex or withhold it in a power play to assert authority over you in your relationship.

How to Address This: Look, sex is an important component of any relationship, but at any point, if you feel like the bulk of your relationship consists of having sex rather than emotionally bonding in other ways, then this is one of those emotionally unavailable men you’ve been warned about. But if you’re not sure, suggest going out rather than staying in for a Netflix and chill session that will inevitably lead to getting naked. If he refuses time and time again, it’s time to move on.

Sign #6 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: They’re in Denial

man in denial

He’s in denial about the fact that he’s emotionally unavailable.

If you ask him how he feels after some occurrence that would make anyone else angry/sad/another strong emotion, and he responds I’m fine, you’ve got to raise an eyebrow. Sure, maybe he’s trying to come off as the macho man…or he could simply not want to acknowledge his feelings of vulnerability.

He may feel like being emotionally available or acknowledging feelings that make him “less of a man” in his own eyes can make him vulnerable in a way that makes him highly uncomfortable.

He may deny that he needs help with opening up his emotional unavailability. He may get defensive and say nothing’s the matter with him. He’s just never ever been in love or close to it because, well, it was always his partner’s fault that things didn’t work out.

Yea.

Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt.

How to Address This: If he’s unwilling to be honest with even himself, let alone you, about his feelings, then it’s not your job to try to change that. Because you will fail if you try to change a man. Trust me. Move on and make yourself available to a man who isn’t afraid to feel real feelings. That’s what makes a real man: he’s not masking emotions but rather facing them and owning them.

Sign #7 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: He’s Never Had a Long-Term Relationship

Sure, if the guy you’re dating is 25, it’s perfectly acceptable that he’s never been in a relationship longer than 6 months. But if you’re dating in your 40s, men in your age bracket should have had some solid relationship experience under their belts. If they haven’t, they may well be emotionally unavailable men, aka those who are afraid to commit.

There’s no rule about how long you want a man to have been in a relationship in his past, but if he’s been in at least one that was several years long, he should understand what a real relationship looks like. And it’s less likely that if he was in a longer relationship in the past that he would be emotionally unavailable today.

How to Address This: Root around in his past. Ask questions that help you understand his relationship history. What was his longest relationship? How old was he? What went wrong? Do your best to not make this an inquisition or make him defensive; share your own past so that you’re on equal footing.

Sign #8 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: He Has Some Past Trauma

man with trauma

His past may impact his ability to be emotionally open with you.

You may never know that your boyfriend was molested or abused as a child since emotionally unavailable men often deliberately keep quiet about trauma from their past. They don’t want to talk about it.

But in the event that you do know something about his past, such as the negative impact that his parents’ divorce had on his ability to emotionally connect, or any kind of abuse or neglect, understand that this will affect him, even though he’s an adult. If he never sought therapy, this issue has been buried under the years, but just like the Princess and the Pea story, it’s still there, affecting him every day and in every relationship he has.

How to Address This: I’m going to say this with love, Sexy Confident Lady, and I want you to hear me: you are not his therapist. If he has issues from his past, he has deliberately chosen not to confront them head-on up to this point. There is nothing you can do or say that will compel him to open that door into the painful past. I know you want to fix him, but you can’t. Let go. Walk away. Find a man who isn’t afraid to battle his demons to become a loving partner to you.

Conclusion:

Probably by now, you’re going, dang Adam. You just described my last five relationships.

It sucks to keep dating emotionally unavailable men. But you’re here because you’re ready to break that cycle and open up to finding a man (the man) who isn’t afraid of his feelings for you, who is communicative, and ready to enter a loving relationship with you.

He’s out there.

So if you’ve been berating yourself about how you’re so needy and demanding too much from this man…

Stop that.

This isn’t about you.

He’s got issues that you are completely unaware of. He wanted female attention and companionship, but as he’s likely done in his past relationships when it reached a point where you wanted more than he could give, he began to pull away.

You were doing what you should have been doing: opening up to a partner over time, trusting him, and maybe falling in love.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Unfortunately, you did it with a man who couldn’t reciprocate.

Now that you are aware of the signs of emotionally unavailable men, you can watch out for them in the early days of dating so that you don’t end up investing too much time and energy into them before you realize you’ll never get what you want. You’re now going to be a ninja at stealthily observing these guys to pick out the ones who can’t commit and run the other way from them.

So congratulate yourself. You now know what to avoid so that you steer clear of men who will never open up to you emotionally, and that puts you on the right path to love.

Leave a comment below if you’ve ever dated emotionally unavailable men, and how you dealt with them.

I know men can seem confusing, but in reality, we’re not. I created the Male Mind Map to help you navigate the murky waters of the male mind. Download it today to better understand the man you’re with or the man you want to find!

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Adam LoDolce

Love Strategist

My true passion in life is transforming your love life by giving you specific tools and techniques that you can use to attract long lasting love. I got started when...Read Adam's Story

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2 years ago

I’m really confused by the guy I’m going out with . He used to work away from home and we saw each other every 6 weeks and it was really nice. He’s retired a couple months ago and we barely see each other but he still Texas me every morning nights if not to drunk.. Really nice romantic messages . I’ve meet his family. Had dinner at his daughters house and his sister has said I was first girl he has introduced to family .. But he’s keeping me as a distance. When I question him he says I’m bossy… Read more »

Gina
2 years ago
Reply to  Betty

He may or may not have a drinking problem, and if he does, I can guarantee you that nothing but pain will come of your relationship. Sounds like you may be a good candidate for Alanon, in all sincerity. Good luck.

Norma Perkins
1 year ago
Reply to  Betty

He definitely belongs to the above described (emotionally unavailable) category. I wouldn’t try to peruse him further. Obviously your feelings are involved but it sounds like his are probably not on the same level. There’s no need in prioritizing someone who isn’t willing to reciprocate. It hurts, I know because I’ve searched high and low for every excuse to keep persuing my sons dad when at the end of the day if I put in 100% he is only willing to give 50%. Over time that will steal your joy and sadly some people get used to it when they… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Norma Perkins

Good Advice Norma, Thanks for sharing that. I have had one relationship which I suspected from the beginning but did not cut it off. He love bombed me hard, and literally found ways to financially sequester and then trap me, once I was ready to leave. It was just as you described I gave 100% and he gave between 10-50%. Exhausting and it was a huge mess leaving, although I am glad I did and wish I had sooner. I have familiarity with Texas men (although I think Betty meant Txt) of a different era and it was expected to… Read more »

2 years ago

Sign #8 of Emotionally Unavailable Men: He Has Some Past Trauma

That’s about me. Because of two failed relationships before, now I have this trauma and I think that she’s going to do the same shit other girls did to me. I know I have this problem and I’m fixing it, but sometimes I just can’t shut my mouth and I’m saying annoying things to my current gf and it’s clear that it gets her mad.

Jennifer
2 years ago

Adam Adam Adam…….thank you isn’t enough…..You are a Gift to many of us.

kay
2 years ago
Reply to  Jennifer

thank you, Adam!!!!

Lori
2 years ago

I have a doozy. been with this man for 6 tears, on and off. I love him and have for a long time. he does have emotional trauma thst is always in his head, that being, his 3rd wife committed suicide with his gun and he was the one to find her. I feel bad if I say you need to get over it already. in the honeymoon stage, he was so loving, caring, gentle, I felt like he loved me. he after about 8 months bought me a ring. (I call it my “keep me off the market ring”… Read more »

Monkeyazz68
1 year ago
Reply to  Lori

I so feel you about this. Have been off an on with one a little over 2 years. When we first started talking, a real gentle man, opening doors, moved me in 3 times moved me out 3 times. Didn’t talk about any thing that really needed to be depth with, if was home don’t bother him he was always busyh pushing me away no matter what issue was. If at work , tiring make living busting his butt pay bills, he’s say. Leave me alone when I gather I struck a nerve, at times I would ask question you… Read more »

Sally Jones
1 year ago
Reply to  Lori

I have been dating a guy for 5 years, I am frustrated, lonely, and very sad. He works a lot of hours, and everyone and everything is higher on his priority than I am. He is in his 60’s and never been in a relationship before, ever. Which I thought was strange, but got emotionally involved, and now I am unwilling to break up with him, I have tried but get back together within one week. I have a bad history with broken marriages, so I thought him being so emotionally cold would be good for me, because I thought… Read more »

Sally Sue
5 months ago
Reply to  Sally Jones

Sally, I’m not sure what brought me to you…well yeah I do… I googled “He doesn’t reciprocate my affectionate passes… and as I come across your post, I’m moved to respond. In my very own opinions, I suggest you consider just how precious and short life really is. We, as women, hold on to emotional attachments much more stronger than men, longing for the match in our desires. Finding security in their expressions of affection and Love. Sometimes, eventually, with the loyalty, patience, and nourishment we give (Mothering), they open up and sometimes they don’t. Most times, they need to… Read more »

Catherine
2 years ago

My first long term relationship just ended with a guy who was just acknowledging he was emotionally unavailable, and he wasn’t aware of this until the end when he backed off and distanced himself to the point of detachment from emotional attraction for me. Everything you said was right on target for me and him. I can see it is not my fault he hasn’t dealt with his issues and I can see that I don’t have to make the same mistake again! Thanks!

Stephanie
1 year ago
Reply to  Catherine

I have been dating this man for 2 monthes. I knew there was something off from the beginning. I felt like everything he was saying or doing was studied. He was sooo sweet at the very beginning. Telling me he loved me a day after dating. I knew better but had just lost my soulmate of 20 years to septic in Jan. I just wanted love. Anyway 2 monthes have gone by and I’m like a buddy to him, he stares at other women in front of me and if I say anything I’m to jealous and he can’t deal… Read more »

Heidi
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephanie

Wow that sounds terrible, it seems like he’s really affected your happiness and confidence in yourself. I had a similar experience with a guy where he started off intense and very interested but now he’s distant and shies away from any emotion i show that isn’t happy and playful. One of the biggest clues for me was that after a few days i felt more confident and lighter when the guy wasn’t around. Other friends noticed the difference in me as well. I’ve got to know other guys since then i realised its not normal to be interested in a… Read more »

Angelica
10 months ago
Reply to  Heidi

Wow….this is why it’s good to get the opinion of a real man sometimes. LOL! The first month, this man was point on. Showed major interest, had a desire to see me…now 2 months in…nothing. The good thing is it’s still early but after being intimate I got emotionally attached. Recently, I’ve had every sign make it’s way to me telling me to move on. And I know now, after reading this amazing article, that I must move on and know that I will be OK. I will move on, I will find love, better yet, maybe it will find… Read more »

AJW
2 years ago

Wow! Wow! and Wow! I had never dated an emotional unavailible man before. I didn’t know what happened! he is all 8 of these senerios! he persued me and was absolutley wonderful! a very attentive & loving kind of person, or so I thought. I started to notice as long as he was in control of the situation, and I was doing everything when and the way he liked it we were cool. Then I started to notice, as I begin to draw closer to him, a slight pull back. He did’nt like to talk about anything that envolved us… Read more »

Lrc
2 years ago
Reply to  AJW

You just described my relationship to a T. I do feel completely rejected as at one time I was the most important thing in his life and one day I asked him one too many questions, to try and get close to him and he closed me out. One day he was just gone. My anxiety is so high because I don’t know what to do. One day he was there, the next day nothing. Totally discarded

Kelley
1 year ago
Reply to  Lrc

OMGosh yes!!
We were together four years. I finally got up the nerve to ask him to love me. Not just say, I love you, but show it! He bolted.
I guess I knew all along he would do it, that’s why I avoided it. How stupid am I? I still love him!!

2 years ago
Reply to  AJW

You definetely deserve better. Congratulations for the brave step forward. I have very similar scenario. Sweet and promising beginning, even marriage plans in house together.But signs were there- moody,controling,mean to others,even kids. I thought he might been angry as well stressed. He is in police. Always tryed to justify and understand him.Till he started to sabotage when I tryed to explain i need his emotional and moral support. He was annoyed and avoidant to my pain. Most of the time. There wasnt reciprocated love,it become obvious. All my hopes with him shattered. I was decieved and even blamed for being… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  AJW

Exactly!!!
Sorry you went through this.
I have as well. In my case ten years tied up in a Narcissist’s fantasy.

Luz
1 year ago
Reply to  AJW

After reading your comment, I just about fell off my chair. I was with my boyfriend for 3 1/2 years. He was so charming in the beginning and pursued me like no other. He works in other states so our relationship was a long distance one. He was always texting me porn photos and never any ‘I miss you’, ‘I love you’, NEVER! I never knew where I stood. I finally asked him what his feelings were for me and he became upset. He started generalizing how all women want to know this and he just became argumentative. I let… Read more »

Anon
2 years ago

It’s week 3 after the breakup and he is still trying to reach to me, on top of that he has some serious anger problems I don’t want to deal with anymore…
It seems like he blames himself after always pointing fingers at me but it could be also a lie…

I had enough

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Anon

Stay Strong! Get through this with self-care (baths, taking care of your skin and hair, favorite food or music or movies) friends. It shouldn’t be so tumultuous and unhappy to be in a relationship. Best of Luck!

2 years ago

Many so-called detached and aloof men ponder a change in their personal environment which many feel very comfortable with. Impending more serious relationships obviously are going to change all that. This is a problem for many. They want a relationship but aren’t convinced the changes that occur as a result are worth following through with it. They will analyze until the point of analysis paralysis then start to back away before it gets too complicated. They aren’t good at explaining this as it’s a private mental struggle they don’t see as something to be shared with a significant, or in… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr_Majestik

Mr_Majestic, you described My Parents. They were married for 24 years. But while my Father proposed to my much younger than him Mother, married her, they bought a house together, she convinced him to have a family and he consented prior to them trying, they had two children… and even so… my father still would tell me as a young child that deciding to marry my Mother was one of the hardest decisions he had to make and he still wasn’t sure he made the right choice. So while he sucked up the emotional and societal benefits (and paid for… Read more »

Marnie
2 years ago

I married an emotional available man, married for 24 years and boom! Most of this is him now. I see the man I married peek out once in awhile and then he must feel it too and right back to the emotional unavailable again.

Gaby V
2 years ago

If I meet another man that only sees me during the night and he can’t spend time with me because he is so busy (laundry, cleaning, driving to other peoples houses, spending time with friends and family) I may explode. Things go “well” for a few days…then…crickets. I in the meantime help him with laundry, cleaning, basics that stress him out to attempt to give him more time to maybe spend time with me and he disappears for days. I then send a long worded text about how he is on/off and he doesnt know what I am talking about.… Read more »

2 years ago
Reply to  Gaby V

They don’t want to matter to anybody. This guy is a stranger and will remain a stranger forever, if not longer. An emotionally unavailable man builds walls around himself which you will never break through. This is why you will never be asked to meet families, never be invited to family dinners like Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. and never be included in his circle of friends. His nature is to shelter his secure personal environment to which you are not, nor ever will be fully included. You’re an outsider and probably will stay an outsider. You will never fully gain any… Read more »

FP
2 years ago
Reply to  Mr_Majestik

thank you for this, i’m “involved” with an emotionally unavailable man at the moment. He’s such a contradiction. He’s affectionate and brings up conversations about “us” and asks if I am happy how we are, but he also talks a lot about an ex from years ago who he apparently still loves, but then other times he’ll tell me what a horrible person she was and how I am so nice to him he doesn’t know how to deal with it! Talk about mixed signals. Luckily i’m also quite detached but even still I have to bring myself back from… Read more »

Nic
2 years ago
Reply to  Mr_Majestik

Wow!! Spot on description of my current situation! Almost two years and we are no further along than day one. He knows he’s emotionally unavailable and tries to explain when I prompt enough that he’s afraid of getting to close just to have it end. I am a fearful avoidant so I am comfortable with the distance and space and the fact that he doesn’t demand too much of me and call me out for not being in as responsive as some most people like. So it’s mostly comfortable. I want a relationship without the engulfment. Our biggest problem is… Read more »

2 years ago
Reply to  Nic

You definetely deserve better. Congratulations for the brave step forward. I have very similar scenario. Sweet and promising beginning, even marriage plans in house together.But signs were there- moody,controling,mean to others,even kids. I thought he might been angry as well stressed. He is in police. Always tryed to justify and understand him.Till he started to sabotage when I tryed to explain i need his emotional and moral support. He was annoyed and avoidant to my pain. Most of the time. There wasnt reciprocated love,it become obvious. All my hopes with him shattered. I was decieved and even blamed for being… Read more »

Helen
1 year ago
Reply to  Nic

This was such a touching and insightful post that described my situation as well. I hope you have moved on.

Pallavi
1 year ago
Reply to  Nic

Thank you for this post. It describes exactly what i am going through !

Pallavi
1 year ago
Reply to  Nic

Nic, I am on the last stage you have described here. I see a year ago almost. How are you now ? :-s

Angelica
10 months ago
Reply to  Mr_Majestik

My Lord…thank you for clarity and honesty!

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Gaby V

Gaby V. He is gaslighting you. Look up on youtube if you don’t know what it means. Your feelings are valid, they are 1/2 the relationship. If he cannot acknowledge them (some guys will put you off, until they can deal with it better than come back and address what you said.. but if he never addresses what you said and just keeps doing it again again.) that is abuse. Over time if you care about him, you will feel less and less confident about life until you are literally crying in the shower. I suggest you leave as soon… Read more »

Kristen
2 years ago

Emotionally unavailable men are also usually narcissists.. please RUN dont walk,away from him!.

Susie
2 years ago

I just wanted to say thank you. I have been abandoned yet again by another emotionally unavailable man whom I suspect might also be a covert narc. I know that I cannot fix him, that if I go back he’ll just abandon me again in due time. He is very self-centred and I was a low priority, and over time I noticed him detaching and pulling away. Thankfully I wasn’t quite in love with him yet, although feelings were brewing, so it’s difficult right now but I know that in time I will be okay. Since he has ghosted me,… Read more »

Angelica
10 months ago
Reply to  Susie

Yes….wonderfully written and yes it sounds like u are going to be just fine. You sound like a strong women and I’m so proud of you. I too have decided to pull away, after only 2 months. At first, I thght it was me, but it’s not. How can you be in a relationship and the man NOT talk to you for 2 days!? Why? There isn’t that much work in the world! You mean to tell me between point A and Point B, I didnt come to ur mind, not even a txt? Or you no show for 3… Read more »

JAMLANE
2 years ago

Ive been hooking up with a married man for over a year. Didn’t know he was married for 4 months, when he finally admitted it. We’ve never gone out, he is 2 years into his second marriage and totally emotionally unavailable. He tells me he wishes his wife would just leave and the only reason he got married was bc he was forced to. I am obsessed with him bc he is so detached. It’s a mind-mystery I want to solve. I’ve never met anybody like him – the unavailable part. We are both 48. I have broken it off… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  JAMLANE

JAMLANE Appreciate your honesty. That is the first step to solving your own mind-mystery. I think your standards are too low and when you are tested, you lower them. I would work on raising your own self-esteem, so you can get what you truly want. Not just a taste or a proxy with your eyes closed. Why would a 46 year old man be forced to marry someone? Do you mean he got her pregnant? Accepting this behavior, you are the rare skank who will make excuses for him, of course he will come back for sex. No judgement from… Read more »

Lucy
2 years ago

I’ve been with my husband for 22 years, and I’ve often joked with him about him acting just like a robot. I’ve never heard him laugh, not one single time, the entire time we’ve been together. The only emotions he seems capablenof are anger and irritation, which are mostly in response to the things our kids do or pretty much any time I open my mouth to speak. He gets angry when I ask him to do simple things like take out the garbage. The rest of the time, he’s ignoring the kids and me. He spends most of his… Read more »

Kerry
1 year ago
Reply to  Lucy

Good for you!!!!!!!! You’ve suffered for long enough. It’s time to move on.

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Lucy

Lucy,
Sorry to hear about that, it sounds devastating. You still have your life to live and this man is cheating you of a genuine experience to be happy.

1 year ago
Reply to  Lucy

He won’t care about your decision to divorce him. He may appear angry over it, but it won’t be because of you. It will be because you’ve caused him situations where he might be given divorce settlements which favor you and the kids, he’s going to have to sign papers and/or legal documents, he may be forced to move and mostly likely have to hire and meet with an attorney and it will cause a lot of activity on his part that he simply doesn’t want to be bothered with. He’d most likely rather see you just disappear but not… Read more »

Shez
2 years ago

Thank you so very much for the information. I just learnt a lot. I made up my mind to move on because of this issue. Your explanation is on point and I am very happy I finally decided to let go and move on. I just can’t stay any longer because I felt it’s an emotional torture. I can’t continue to write very lengthy message explaining my side of the story and how a normal relationship should look like and in return you get a reply like I just got home, I just finished from work etc. I am my… Read more »

2 years ago

You’ve pretty much described a psycho to a T. On a serious note emotional detachment is often something the person is unaware of himself. It’s like genetically coded into some people. But it’s definitely no fun being in a relationship with someone who is aloof and only opens himself up on rare occasions.

John
2 years ago

These articles about emotionally unavailable men really crack me up. The women are always “confused” and wondering why he won’t change for them [rolls my eyes] … Why are you even in these relationships? And why do the guys allow you in? I am a completely emotionally unavailable guy. But I don’t afflict women with my presence. I don’t date, I don’t approach women, I don’t talk to them, and I definitely would never get into a relationship with one. I’m not interested in casual sex, and you won’t be getting any affection from me. You see, I’m honest. I… Read more »

Michaela Holmes
1 year ago
Reply to  John

Love your comments. Spot on!!

1 year ago
Reply to  John

I’m also emotionally unavailable. I haven’t dated for a number of years, haven’t had any sexual relationships for as long as I can remember and don’t really want one. This complicates things immensely. Which reminds me of a funny incident. A group of guys were talking about their first time they had sex. They asked me if I remembered. I said, “the first time? It’s been so long I can’t even remember the last time!” 🙂 To be honest, at times you do wish you had a significant other but these are fleeting feelings, In the long run I’d rather… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Mr_Majestik

Thanks for sharing your first hand insight. I know many guys like you. They are friends and they even try to cock block me when I meet new guys, so in that way, they are a liability even as “a friend” Maybe “activity partners” is a better term to use. And no, I don’t mean anything sexual. I know they aren’t capable of a relationship with me. How do I know that? In some cases they flat out told me. In others it just became apparent. It’s pretty sad actually. The older ones are lonely and at times have contemplated… Read more »

Agata
2 years ago

Hi there, I am just finishing my one year relationship with this kind of guy. I would only add one thing up – they very often avoid making phone calls. I have been with this guy for one year (long-distance relationship but with lots of time together) and we spoke on the phone THREE times. Even though, I met his family and his friends on number of occassions he would never ever post a picture with me on WhatsApp status – come on I have no need to be in the frontline, but…(and believe me there is nothing to be… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Agata

Wow! Agata! You sound amazing!!! I’d love to be friends with you (I am a woman). He knows he found a winner, but yes he is playing a game. Your comment is so perceptive and well stated. I am glad you figured this out before investing more time/effort in a black hole that drains you. I speak from experience. Having had many birthdays and holidays ruined in this way, feeling sad and more lonely than I ever felt before. Maybe he is trying his best, but his response of basically ignoring it is a very poor sign. Wishing you all… Read more »

1 year ago

Thank you for your wisdom…I have made plenty of poor choices over the corse of my 50+ years on this earth. I was raised “old school” respect your elders, clean your plate, school work and chores before play, don’t speak unless spoken to and do unto others as you would have done to you…so being blind to how cruel this world really is I trust everyone until given a reason not to…I have discussed the approach I take with several people, the majority of them say that an individual has to earn trust. I am going to try to implement… Read more »

Gerard Butler
1 year ago

Having control over one’s emotions is seen as an asset in many ‘male’ circles. It can be at times a useful trait. Emotional unavailability is something that can happen out of a socialized habit, as a result of trauma, or also by choice. I hear a lot of women complain about emotional unavailability in men. I sincerely have been asking every woman I can about what that is and what that looks like. Then I asked about these specific men in their lives, who they were, how their relationships went, and how that manifested. Sometimes emotional unavailability, really, is when… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Gerard Butler

Gerald, Very thoughtful post, I completely agree. You make valid points. It just depends on the individuals involved. I think what you are describing is sort of border-line Emotionally Unavailable like garden variety engineers lol! (Sorry for the stereotype but I say it because it’s true in my family). They are busy with work and never really felt super confident with women, so yeah settle quickly and with the wrong person. And it gets worse because it is the wrong person for them or just disrespect over time even for someone they really cared about at one time. You bring… Read more »

Misty Riportella
1 year ago

I agree with the post above. Sometimes the guy/girl has trauma sometimes its convenience/laziness/just doesn’t care/your easy. Stand up for yourself and if you don’t like the situation fix it or move on! I was in of those one sided relationships since 10/2018, I tried, it didn’t help/ I took a break processed his worth vs mine, now we hook up casually when I say we will

Feels great!

Amanda
1 year ago

Oh my goodness – that description was my ex-husband exactly ! After 5 years of a one-sided relationship I told him to either shape-up or I would ‘ship out’. His response was to start an affair. When I found out I divorced him and he eventually married his affair partner after an on/off relationship of 4 years. Now she’s getting what I got and I can only feel sorry for her. Me? I got myself into some therapy to find out why I would be attracted to such a guy, took time out from relationships to adjust my viewpoint and… Read more »

Kira Marcel
1 year ago

The sad part is i fell in love with my friends with benefits whom i thought i could change by being more than his friend. That never happened, he is still the same guy who is constantly seeking sex from girls who are not so easy to get. I used to be one of those as well but then after i crossed that friends line that was the only thing that interested him in me. We have put an end to the benefits part but he still occasionally flirts with me in the hope of getting me in bed, and… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Kira Marcel

Good for you for standing up for yourself and standing for what you want. A lover who is committed to you and loving you. It sounds like you have a connection, but he isn’t manning up to own that. Please date other men and look for someone worthy. He may suddenly man up when he realizes he could lose you. And if not, you will meet another great guy! It seems like men really got screwed up in the last generation or so. From bossy man-hating female teachers to lack of strong emotional connection to fathers’ (overworked fathers, or single… Read more »

Claudia
1 year ago

Dear Adam, I was wondering, all comments mentioned to run away once you meet this type of men or if you happen to be in a relationship with emotionally unavailable men you need to stop seeing him and move on. But then, there are plenty of victims who were/are in a relationship with these type of guys, unconsciously. If they are that bad, and come in large numbers, the result would be no one will love them, they will keep on being a jerk, and end up alone forever. Aren’t there any ways to fix them? I mean yes, we,… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Claudia

Reality check: he has already walked away. It sounds like he didn’t want to be your project or field your nagging. Get yourself a life, you will be much happier.

Niharika
1 year ago

I just broke up with a guy who was emotionally unavailable. He used to blame me for expecting more and that I live in a fairy land when all I asked is if there’s a possibility of us ending up together after 2 years of relationship. He constantly avoided sorting out the problems in person by saying he doesn’t have any problems. He gave reasons whenever I asked to go on a trip. And he is a perfection seeker and spends most of his time studying.

Morgan
1 year ago

This article is helping me a lot to understand what for the last 6 months I was not able to. I met this guy at my university. He approached me and he started flirting and asking me out, while I was not even considering a new relationship. He showed himself as a cool, open-minded, full-of-initiative guy, always asking me to do things together. So I fell for him. I started making more and more time for us, putting effort and investing energy into this relationship. I opened up to him. I am a really patient person so I was never… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Morgan

Morgan, you didn’t do anything wrong. Other than putting him above your own happiness, and valuable time with your friends. You should make plans for your weekend and if he shows up late and a dollar short, tell him you already had plans. But yea, he clearly has an EU steak going. The not texting for days in an exclusive relationship, I only wish you would have dumped him sooner and not spent so much time on him. I have made the same mistakes, caring sweet women always do.. when they are dealing with with players of EU guy who… Read more »

Annette
1 year ago

I am a little confused about a relationship I have been in for the past 1 1/2 years. I am 56, he is 62. We hit it off great and spent hours talking getting to know one another. It was nice to finally meet someone with my same values in life. He told me that ultimately he was looking for a life partner and in the long-run I am too but I am not going to jump into anything. We were seeing each other 3 days a week and then he switched jobs and when he did he went to… Read more »

1 year ago

Wow, this article arrived like magic at a time where I’ve needed to call it with a guy ive been seeing for the past 4 months. Again, the kind of dynamic where you start to question yourself and your own sanity. Where everything else in their universe takes priority over you and you are left chasing plans. Interestingly enough, they also dont ignore or leave you alone. Ghosting might have been a clearer sign even. All I know right now is that I am EXTREMELY GRATEFUL to have read this post and the comments. Even more so that I can… Read more »

SassaPea
1 year ago
Reply to  Carmen

Carmen, You put it perfectly!

Tina
1 year ago

My husband is emotionally unavailable. His family is beyond toxic and are extreme narcissists. I don’t think my husband is a narcissist. But he is very self absorbed in many ways. He has never been allowed growing up to share his feelings. Both of his parents are incredibly selfish. His parents present this perfect front to people and have money. Being married to a man who never shows emotion or laughs is hell. On top of that, my husband can’t talk about deeply emotionally things. Especially his parents. I have confronted him over and over about his toxic family and… Read more »

Ninah
1 year ago

I’m an aspy (EUF) woman, and it takes a long time for me to connect emotionally, which is either seen as being cold or “teasing”. I’m up front with the issue, but the men I meet seem to only want what they want now (date 3). I work hard on connecting, and sometimes get taken advantage of by being blamed. Into a relationship . Should I continue or to look for love through friendship

GENEVA ALVARADO
1 year ago

Wow!! all of this is so true!!! this was a great time to have read this , everything I read this guy was the exact way!!! so glad I got rid of him.

1 year ago

I agreed, I did get involved recently with an emotionally uninvolved man. I love him and know he fits all the criteria. I ended it due to this revelation. I am confident in my decision yet if course would have liked to “fix” him. I won’t though. I am moving on.

PiscesSunflower
1 year ago

Shocking. This is my male BFF to a tee! He and I have had an off and on affair for 12 years now. Because of child hood trauma he is very secretive and “shut down” at times. I have seen him open up and he does trust me. He never used to be an introvert , but things have changed since he moved 2 hours away. He hardly texts, refuses to answer questions about us meeting up, and if he does come back to town for a night to see his guy friends he doesn’t tell me. But, he has… Read more »

PJ19
1 year ago

My best friend and I hooked up a couple of years ago while he was home on break. We have known each other for many years and he has not been happy with his GF. They have a home together and he has said how he regrets moving in with her. I have met her and she truly is cold and mean. Anyways the night I saw him he has been drinking – he always admits to things and opens up when he drinks. Well he got emotional saying how he misses my parents and he’s so sorry if he… Read more »

1 year ago

Most here really need to read between the lines. All the stories are identical in most respects. You’re not going to alter an unavailable man’s nature, you’re not going to change or reform him and if you ask too many questions about his lack of genuine emotion, put pressure on him to explain or commit or cause any actions he perceives as problems he will have to address, he will disappear. You probably won’t fully understand this and will end up hurt by it. For him, he couldn’t care less because he doesn’t really want to be fully involved. The… Read more »

D
1 year ago

This doesn’t just apply to monogamous relationships. I’ve been attracted to and in relationships with men who are loving and emotionally available, and those who are emotionally reserved and distant as is the case now in which one partner reciprocates fully and the other one keeps me at arms length. At some point, which for me is today, I have to love myself more than the partner who can’t reciprocate and let him go. It’s definitely painful, but so is knowing that no matter how much effort I put in to it, he isn’t going to or even able to… Read more »

Rebecka
1 year ago

Oh my word, yes! All of my relationships have been with emotional unavailable men, more or less. Im so happy Ive finally reached a point where I no longer accept this behaviour. So I met this guy very recently, and it only took me 3 dates to figure out just how wounded and unavailable he is. This article just confirms it so well. Thanks!

1 year ago
Reply to  Rebecka

I’m not sure “wounded” is a good term. Everybody is different and unavailable men are what they are. It’s their personality, it’s simply not a type of personality that you feel is acceptable. As with anything else, if you view it as substandard such as a restaurant with poor service or poor food quality, a vehicle which doesn’t meet your needs or causes you issues, the list could go on and on, simply don’t patronize, use or buy it anymore and don’t waste time trying to fix it what you can’t fix. It seems very simple to me, the moment… Read more »

Amy
8 months ago
Reply to  Mr_Majestik

The person she described as “wounded” may very well have been wounded. You are good at explaining your personal view, where you have told us throughout your comments of being a lifelong “loner” personality type, but some of these EU men became that way due to wounds inflicted on them which never healed. Her wounded reference, in that regard, is perfectly appropriate.

4 months ago
Reply to  Amy

There is a big difference in men who feel socially/sexually/emotionally inadequate with women, those who truly have been wounded by a bad relationship experience and are therefore hesitant about opening up for fear of being hurt/ rejected again and then there’s the true emotionally unavailable man. The truly emotionally unavailable man knows exactly what he’s doing. There’s a big difference. You’ll never know for sure, you might think you do but you’ll never be able to read his mind or true emotions because he will never allow that to happen. I’ll have to explain this in much greater detail later… Read more »

Laura
1 year ago

This is such a good read. So I have been dating my boyfriend on and off for about 5 years and back then he was a real gentleman would listen to me when we talked and he was the nicest guy ever but recently he’s been busy with work alot and we can barely have conversations without him drifting off thinking about ‘work ‘. I tried to talk about how much he’s changed but he never admits that he’s emotionally unavailable almost like the man I fell in love with years ago and the man I am with now are… Read more »

Karen E
1 year ago

45 years with one. Now in retirement the day to day silence and avoidance drives me out of the house. Im financially stuck or I would leave him. All the signs were there in date phase but coming from a home where my parents were emotionally unavailable I saw nothing wrong. Having never been loved I didnot know what it should feel like.

Erin
11 months ago

My situation is I’ve been married to a man (that was emotionally unavailable) for 20 years but didn’t realize just how bad it was. He left me two months ago after finding out he had an affair . I was unfaithful in the beginning of our marriage but was just plain selfish and admitted this to him after finding out about his infidelity. He told me our marriage was a lie and he hasn’t loved me for years. He is staying with family for now but left me in this limbo state and only texts me 2-3x/week about random topics… Read more »

Rachita
7 months ago

I’m married to one and I don’t know what to do now. I’ve done my best. Started to blame my self him and his family call me needy and demanding. I’m pregnant and all he does is go to his fathers buisness a few hours a day and plays video games for the rest of the day before bed. Unless he is feeling sexually frustrated. I’m so scared. I have one life I don’t want to live it without love and affection .

John
6 months ago

Wow this is one-sided. Why do you insist on knowing everything about him? In my experience, women do this so they can find things they can use against you later. Why do insist on using him as your emotional tampon? Isn’t that self-centered? You are responsible for taking care of your own problems, not him. Why do you need his help with your problems, when you’d never lift a finger to help him, even if (unlikely) he asked you to? And why do you keep seeing him if he makes you so miserable? Just dump him already. I am emotionally… Read more »

jea
5 months ago

That’s my ex Tim. It got so bad in the way he treated me and talked to me and alwAys being snecmy and cheating, lying and never see his own fault but would hang on 1 mistake more then 10 years ago and use it over and I over to cront9l or hid his other life that he claims did t ha e but did the entire time. It’s been very very had after 20 years of “being in the same house as them” because I was the only one loyal and committed. To him, from what I heard, we… Read more »

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