Why Men Pull Away and How to Deal with it

Why Men Pull Away and How to Deal with it

Why Do Men Pull Away From You & The Relationship?

Men withdraw from the relationship; they pull away. It’s what happens.

Women do it sometimes, too – but with men; usually, they are only either going deeper in to the relationship with you; or they’re moving away; to do things that make them feel like men.

And, when he pulls away; to you – it hurts. You get angry. Sad. You feel unloved. You no longer feel like that princess or that goddess that perhaps he once treated you as. (Click to download my “Goddess Report”) 

So, why do men pull away in relationships and what to do when men pull away?

What is intuitive to a man in a relationship is not what is intuitive to a woman

The problem here is that men and women are hardwired completely differently. As women, we tend to think, value and believe certain things that are different to what a man would tend to think, value and believe.

See, what’s intuitive to us women, can be completely foreign to men. I was speaking to my fiancee David the other week, and he brought something up that was like an absolute “Ah-HAH” or a breakthrough for him, but to me as a woman, that breakthrough that he had was …almost commonsense. It was something that was obviously intuitive for me, but it wasn’t for him.

I was all like ‘have you been living under a rock?’ and he was like: ‘what are you talking about?’

Yet, if I was to go to my girlfriends and bring that particular thing up; they’d get it. in a heartbeat.

And the reverse is also true, what is intuitive to a man, can be completely foreign to us as women.

See my post Understanding Men: 5 Insights Into Men to Ease Your Worries

How to get a man to commit more of his time, attention and exclusivity and marriage

So if you want a man to commit more of his time, presence, attention and love, or even exclusivity and marriage, then make sure you tune in to the knowledge and action steps I’m about to give you.

If you don’t learn the concepts and ideas that I will share with you, then your man may just take you for granted even more, you won’t feel very special in your relationship if you have one, and you’ll really struggle to get his attention.

I know that most of us women have wondered: ‘why does a man withdraw?!’

‘Why does he just seem to disappear like that?!’

‘Why hasn’t he called for so long?’

‘What, am I invisible now?’

‘What’s going on?’

‘Is it me? Is it my body? Have I done something to upset him?’

And most women have struggled with this problem. In fact, it’s most likely ALL women. And it seems like a phenomenon that is impossible to understand, and it may be causing you a lot of suffering, but here’s the key:

It doesn’t have to.

A man withdrawing from the relationship doesn’t have to cause you suffering.

From my experience working with women, I have discovered that most women really fail to have the deep connection, passion and love they really want with their man because of the lack of understanding about why men withdraw, and the meaning they give it when their man withdraws.

But all of your problems really come from a lack of understanding of men.

So today, I’m going to give you the understanding to be able to deal with a man withdrawing. If you don’t understand it, and you DON’T know how to deal with it, it could lead to your man withdrawing even more, it could lead to your man resenting you, and of course, in the worst case scenario, it could lead to break up or divorce.
If you know how to deal with it, your relationship will run much more smoothly for you, and even better – you’ll be able to inspire your man to commit even more of his attention and time to you. You’ll be able to achieve true happiness in your relationship, and have your man adore you at a level most women only dream of.

See my post on how to talk to a man so he won’t pull away or go cold.

Quiz: Am I dating a commitment friendly man? Find out here.

So, Why do Men Pull Away from the Relationship?

To help you understand why, let me ask you a few questions:

How would you feel if you were around a man who was highly emotional? For example: he was able to cry at the drop of a hat, and feel all “lovey-dovey” with you almost every day? He is so emotional that he melts like butter. Imagine him being incredibly relaxed and wanting to talk and connect with you all the time.

How would you feel around a man like this?

You may think ‘oh my goodness – I would LOVE if my man would do this!’

Yes, you may – for a couple of days at best. But eventually, whether you like it or not – you would start to feel a little uneasy, a little uncomfortable, and you’ll start to lose attraction for him. And sometimes you may even be a bit confused or disgusted by him.

You don’t want a man who’s more emotional than you, now do you?

He’s Not a Woman!!!

Why do you think you lose attraction for him?

It’s because you no longer feel polarized by him…

It’s because you won’t be feeling his masculine energy. So as a result, you may feel like you’re in a relationship with one of your girlfriends! You don’t want your man to be like one of your girlfriends!

In fact, the reason you were attracted to a man in the first place was largely to do with the masculine energy he gave out. His presence, his strength, intelligence, his sense of humor, his potential to be a good provider, etc….this is all happening naturally, sometimes without you being aware of it.

What we women really want deep down is to be in a relationship with a MAN – but because of the society we live in – none of us are taught how to understand the opposite sex! We want to be in a relationship with a man, but when a man acts differently than we do, we get all hurt, confused and worried.

But here’s the truth of why men withdraw: It’s because they want to feel like, and be a man.

How interesting! :)

When a man is engaged with you emotionally, he may truly enjoy it and see it as a beautiful gift, but after some time (usually a shorter period than us women would like), he has to withdraw back in to his own space.

The reason men seem to pull away is because the emotional attachment feels like a burden to them. At least when that attachment is consuming energy that he could otherwise put towards his purpose and his mission or to feeling the freedom that makes him feel like a man.

By all means – most men are happy to be in a loved-up world with us for a time, but they have to get out of it also, in order to accomplish their mission.

A lot of women assume that men feel the same kind of feelings that we do – men do have emotions too of course, and they feel emotions in the same intensity as women, but they don’t feel them in the same exact way that we do.

Us women drawing men in to the world of emotionality can sometimes cause them to feel like they’re losing their freedom, making a man unable to work, to focus, and to experience his masculine energy.

As women, we are used to the chaos that is life – we have emotional roller-coasters, mood swings, and we get down or overly happy for periods of time.

This kind of emotionality, I mean the kind of emotions that us women feel on a day-today basis just feel very unnatural to a man.

The Science Behind why a Man Withdraws…

In fact there’s a lot of research and a lot of scientific evidence behind this idea that when men get too attached, they feel uncomfortable and uneasy.

You see as men bond with women, this increases a hormone called Oxytocin. Oxytocin is a hormone that lowers a woman’s stress levels, but in men, it actually has the effect of lowering his testosterone, which can actually RAISE his stress levels. So, too much bonding causes men to start feeling uncomfortable.

Think about when you’re in a relationship and you feel kind of suffocated…That’s the stress levels going up from too much closeness.
This too much closeness happens much sooner for men than for women when it comes to emotional bonding.

What happens is, as men get closer, things are going well, the Oxytocin levels go up, they start bonding…. Then men will tend to want to pull away in order to rebuild their testosterone levels.

At that point this creates a lot of confusion for women, where they often will say things like, “why are you pulling away? Why didn’t you call? What’s going on?”

“Do you not LOVE me anymore?”

See my post on why he pulls away…

What Men Really Want from You

See what men want to experience most is freedom. Often, if a man is telling you that he’s not ready to commit, what he’s really saying is that he’s afraid of being drawn in to you – he’s attracted by you – but he feels like it’s going to put restraints on his freedom or make him feel like he’s not able to have his own life.

So, with this understanding now, I want you to go away, and the next time you feel him withdrawing, just stop. Instead of feeling like his withdrawal from you is something to fear, think of his need for freedom as a gift to you. Because he is being a man. And that is one of the reasons you were attracted to him in the first place.

It’s time you realized (as counter-intuitive as it is to us women) that a man’s need for freedom is only a threat to us IF we don’t WANT him to have his freedom.
The more you fear his need for freedom, the more I want you to remember that this is your chance to bring you and your man closer, to make your man more attracted to you, and more committed to you.

Next time he withdraws, here’s what you can do.

1)       Leave him alone. Let him be. Don’t question him. However, before you do this, I want you to remember that the point is not to just leave him and let him be. The point is to give him his freedom whilst still loving him and being open to him. He still needs your care and love, but give him the space of being a man. After all you wouldn’t like it very much if he wasn’t much of a man!

2)      And when he does comes back to the relationship, receive him openly with love. This doesn’t make you a loser, it doesn’t make you’re a woman who is being used by her man. It means you care about him enough to give him his freedom, and at the same time, not withdraw your love.

Disclaimer: receiving a man openly with love doesn’t mean you have to pretend to be happy or pretend that you are NOT hurt. It just means that you aren’t ‘closed off’ to him, punishing him for his pulling away. You can tell him you feel hurt, and this could still be loving him because you are open to him.

On the other hand – there are men who are simply selfish. Most men, when they are in a relationship, DO care – they just don’t understand how their actions hurt YOU. And if you simply PUNISH him rather than at least remain open to him; he’s not going to get the “hint” even thought you’re trying to give him the hint.

So, whether a man is selfish or simply being a male is a whole other topic, which is perhaps for a separate article in itself.

3)      Part 2 (above) is going to prove to be the hardest of all. It’s not in a woman’s DNA to form a connection and then go empty from that connection for days…..we tend to feel hurt, mistrustful and insecure.

So IF step 2 is stressing you out, remember this important step (no.3). ask yourself:

“do I really want to be in a relationship with another woman? Or do I want to be in a relationship with a MAN?”

Because as much as him withdrawing drives you crazy – he simply doesn’t feel and interpret the withdrawal the way YOU do. To him, he’s just doing his thing. It’s no different than him grabbing a drink of water when he’s thirsty. And would you stop loving him if he was to grab a drink of water? I think not.

So when he withdraws, and then comes back, and you act all snooty and withdraw your love, he’ll be thinking: ‘what?! What have I done?! I did nothing!’ – and it’s not because he doesn’t care. It’s because he’s a man. And what’s intuitive to him is not what’s intuitive to you as a woman. Remember that.


Most Women Out there Simply Don’t Give Freedom to Their Men.

In fact, not only that, most women don’t understand what mistakes the are making on a daily basis that are actually pushing a man further and further away.

Look, here’s the thing. If you want your man to fully commit his attention and time to you, whether that’s in the form of love, time presence, resources or even exclusivity and marriage, you must help him feel like a man rather than constantly stripping that feeling and freedom away from him.

You see, once a man has the gift of feeling like a man, then he’s going to truly come back to the relationship stronger with more to offer you.

And if you want to get more of an understanding of men and inspire him to commit fully (and emotionally) to you, first complete our short quiz on “Am I dating a commitment friendly man?”

And also take some time and register for our free Commitment Masterclass. Click here for the registration page. 

Alright, please leave a comment below and share with us your personal experiences and what you’ve learned. :)




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  • Clair

    Reply Reply March 18, 2015

    It’s funny really isn’t it. I’ve been having these exact thoughts. ‘Why has he pulled away? Where was my good morning text? Why isn’t he texting me as much as he used to?’ It’s been half a day Clair! You’re so right though, I was dating a guy who was fully available, soppy, sweet and text me constantly- totally wasn’t interested in him as much as this guy. The thing is, we’re programmed to think this is the way to feel loved when we’re showered with attention and affection when in actual fact, it’s good he has a life. If I spent less time worrying why he hadn’t text, I too could have a life.

    He text as I was reading this article.

  • Jess

    Reply Reply March 18, 2015

    Thank you for this blog, it has helped a lot and makes me realize where i truly went wrong. Even though it hurts when he pulls away, if its something he needs then it is something we as women should be able to do for the men we love. For me, i may be too late…he recently told me that he does not want a relationship and he just wants to be single and focus on his life. I felt him pull away and I feel this is where I went wrong, I didn’t realize that there could be a reason why he was pulling away so I held on tighter and possibly even suffocated him, even though I would like to think that I didnt do that. Is there anything I can do to show him that I understand and maybe lead to him giving it another shot? Im 21 years old and have never been in a relationship before, so I would love any advice anyone may have, Thank You

  • deadlock

    Reply Reply March 12, 2015

    As a man I completely agree with this article. Can you imagine a soldier not going to his mission and saying “OK darling, I’ll help you with the cakes instead”? In that very moment he’d betray both his masculinity and your trust in him being a man. It just doesn’t work like that. A man needs a sense of purpose in life and freedom to exercise this purpose. There are men, however, who withdraw for very different reasons – players or narcissists who prey on insecure or naive women etc. It’s best not to confuse these two categories. I’d go even as far as to say that it’s not the actual emotional bond that causes men to withdraw – it’s often that women project their own insecurities and engage in controlling behavior. I’m quite sure this can be said even with the roles reversed.

  • B

    Reply Reply March 10, 2015

    I’ve been single for 10 years. I recently started seeing someone it’s been going on for a month. He has pulled away. I thought he was wonderful and caring. This pulling away has really upset me. I’m also wondering if I really want to date again. I feel so hurt and wondering what I did wrong.

  • Kevin

    Reply Reply February 25, 2015

    Ladies , Nagging and / or blaming the man for every ill in the world ( normally both !! ) will result in this , followed by him dumping you in most cases. You MUST give a man his space , you are sowing a minefield for yourselves if you keep on at him with constant yapping & nagging. Too many women do this , only a small minority don’t.

  • cheryl

    Reply Reply February 25, 2015

    i have gotten involved with this man that is well known in my home town and surrounding states he is an auctioneer , his auctions seem to take alot of his time. we weregoing to see each other and were forming a relationship but then he told me that he had been thinking that due to an unresolved marriage that he wants to be friends until his divorce is final. which i agreed to we still chat on facebook and he will call me when he getsthis new auction together in an other state and we will go out as friends. ok what is your advice to me?

  • P

    Reply Reply February 25, 2015

    This man I saw a few times disappeared suddenly with no communication at all. I didn’t think he would be back, therefore I didn’t look for him either. A month passed, he popped out and claimed he would want to marry me and never leave me again. He claimed it was his job deployment caused his none communication and promised it would never happen again. So we met, went out and here he disappeared again.

    Two months later he emailed me to say his phone was stolen in New Orleans due to thief broke into his car. I blocked him. He showed up on my door but I locked it. He was begging my forgiveness but I don’t think I will ever trust a man who withdraw that long from my life again.

  • Anita

    Reply Reply February 22, 2015

    Unbelievable..this has saved me a lot of time trying to understand my boyfriend. This has explained every detail about what he is going through. Going to gym and building his testosterone in order for him to feel masculine again. This is a new relationship for us and he fell in love with me within a matter of weeks and then began to withdraw after we were spending so much time together not to mention he is 2 hours away.

  • Colleen

    Reply Reply January 30, 2015

    Thanks Renee. This blog is so timely, for me anyway. Just what I’ve been dealing with. Even though we can understand their need to withdraw intellectually, it still hurts like hell. And we have to remind ourselves about the man himself and the good moments with him. In the midst of all that hurt and resentment, we are just angry and we forget that we still love and care deeply for him. I like that you asked the question: Do you admire him? That’s what changed my mind and keeps me hanging in there. He’s so worth it!
    You are amazing Renee and you were very much missed in these last couple of weeks. Glad to see you back!


  • manu

    Reply Reply January 15, 2015

    Mine he is not texting me anymore only if I send him msg he reply but he is cold then I tried to be nice and understanding so he said that he is going through hard time and he has a lot in his head and he ask me to forgive him ….it hurt a lot because I don’t know what I do.. he is not the same he use to text me send me his picture now even if i tell him nicely that I miss his face and ask for pic he ignore or he just send a kiss..Please what I do are he still into me or what?

  • Karen

    Reply Reply January 14, 2015

    I actually think it’s great for a man to withdraw. This time also gives me time to think and miss him. I have a lot I need to do and want to do anyway. So, I think it’s great!!!

  • edwige

    Reply Reply January 13, 2015

    The thing is hè is just not that into you. And a woman better make a straight run for her freedom. Because when you give a man a ok for toelating you like dirt and you are still nice they wont mind. As their friends will say that is a perfect situation. Doing w g at you want and still getting it. Wom as n should not Take that. Instead woman should say nothing but close communication. Because only then men Will understand and feel what they feeling and have time to miss you triggering their Hunter instinct. The hardst think to do but the best respect for yourself there is. If he runs away he was not worth your love. You ll find better.

  • sarah

    Reply Reply January 4, 2015

    I wish men understood the pain they cause by withdrawing, I’ve just started dating 10 months after a bad relationship , and I’ve grown really close to someone , he has withdrawn for the first time and it brings every insecurity I have to the forefront. I’ve reached out to him letting him know I will be there when he’s ready. but it hurts , it feels like I’m being punished for something I haven’t done. leaving me wondering if I can do this again.

    • ashley

      Reply Reply January 24, 2015

      Ugh I’m so sorry! I know exactly how that feels cause I’m going thru the exact same thing! Its been nearly 2 years since ive dated, started seeing a man from work for the last three months and he has recently pulled away saying he needs space. It hurts like hell and sometimes I wish I just stayed single.

    • AC

      Reply Reply February 12, 2015

      Make that three, Sarah and Ashley! I just started dating again after a rough breakup (involving a lying, cheating ex), and after 2.5 months of great, communicative dating with a guy he’s totally retreated. I feel so vulnerable as I wait it out, just hoping he will bounce back (and right around Valentine’s Day too, yuck!). The thought of another disappointment is overwhelming, but I guess that’s the risk we all have to take on the quest for love. It’s so tough to stay positive about this relationship and future relationships given my history, but it’s helpful to know I’m not alone.

      I see your posts are a few weeks old now, so I hope everything worked out for both of you :)

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