Break up confusion; will he come back?

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Today’s question:

Dear Guys,

He kept telling me that he wasn’t sure that he was making the right decision and that he was afraid that he might regret this. I didn’t cry, I just kinda remained stoic; and he kept saying, “Don’t act like this. Don’t act like this is not a big deal. This is a big deal. This is not easy for me.” He said that he wants to be everything to me. He said that he wants to be the guy that I want to marry, but he’s just not sure how he feels. Confusing, right?

I guess my question is, is he really unsure or is he trying to make me feel better? Is there any hope that we can get back together? Just some more info, about a month ago, he started telling me that he feels like I’m not in love with him anymore, that something felt off. Nothing was off with me, but I was just going through personal problems. I asked him if he felt that way and was just deflecting, but he said no way. That he knew exactly how he felt for me. And that he was absolutely in love.

What makes a guy be so in love one minute and then just change the next? What the heck happened? Do you think he’ll come back?


Dear LoriAnn,

It’s obvious he cares about you. And he’s probably really bummed that he doesn’t feel sure about you. But to us it seems like he’s deflecting and trying to put it on you. In general, actions speak louder than words, and he’s choosing to break up with you instead of trying to work things out with you. That is a pretty powerful message.

Guys do get scared about commitment, but if they really are into a woman, they keep that fear to themselves or share it with their buds. They don’t usually break up with a woman, saying they’re not sure how they feel. We’re not usually that stupid.

So to answer your question whether or not he will come back, we can’t really answer that, only ask you whether or not you’ll want him back if and when he decides to come back? And do you really want someone who is so unsure about you and the relationship? (We know he said he’s sure, but then why is he breaking up with you? We doubt it’s because he’s unsure whether or not you love him.) And if that truly is the reason, then you might be dealing with someone a bit too insecure for you.

We know you care for this man, but there are men out there who are certain of what they want and willing to work at the relationship in order to have it.

Good luck and keep us posted.


15 Comments on Break up confusion; will he come back?

  1. The issue is apparently that he was felt unable to communicate to me what he needed in the relationship. He was feeling overwhelmed and stressed and decided to not say anything. He wanted a little space and expressed that to mutual friends at the end of November and then again in April. They told him that he needed to talk to me but didn’t tell me what was going on and then he never did. Now he is wondering (the day after the break up) if he made a mistake. And his friends told me that they are planning on talking to him about this. So, for him, this wasn’t out of the blue. But during the break up, he mentioned that he thought he was throwing this away and that he was scared and that he was wondering if he was making a mistake (it was such a mix). It’s been so contrary to how he has been throughout the relationship. But, how could I adjust my behavior or expectations if I didn’t know? Honestly, it’s all up in the air. I am not sure what any of your thoughts are on this. It’s extremely painful for me, because I wasn’t given a choice. And, he’s also taken a stance of “knowing that I won’t change” and that he is really just “protecting himself.”

  2. @the guys I thought I answered the question but didn’t … He was back and forth the decision the month we were getting to know one another before we started dating. This is because he knew he’d be leaving in 3 months for school. To clarify, he was moving very fast after that month, and then pushed hard for the long distance. The issue is that he wanted space and to not have to talk every day. But he had established that pattern and then never communicated it to meat all. I found out through a mutual friend that he didn’t want to upset me by telling me. But, I’m not a mind reader. 2 almost 3 days NC (with me being emotional the first two days…break up happened Monday). I’m just looking for advice on what to do. He said he thinks he’s making a mistake. But he’s scared

  3. @Mary……We know this is really difficult for you, and that’s why we hesitate to comment too much because it’s hard to say what he’s thinking or feeling. What we will say is that when a relationship requires so much “thinking” and “wondering” and “mind-sorting” it sometimes means that someone is fighting their gut. We can’t read his mind or look into his heart but clearly he’s having an internal disagreement. We’re sorry. If he was 100% into this we don’t think he’d be constantly questioning and second-guessing himself. Does that make sense? Does that help at all? You take care. ps. We hope you’ll share our site with friends. Thanks.

  4. My 3 year boyfriend told me he needed time after he had some personal issues and fights with me. I gave him the time and we spoke every day but didnt saw each other. 2 months passed and I told him we had to resolve this. He just avoided me & the problem, we stopped talking for two weeks and ran into each other in a concert we were supposed to go together. That day after so much coldness the past weeks, he treated me like he still loved me, until I hugged him & cried & he became cold and sad and asked me to leave. I texted him & the only response was “sorry, im being sensitive since, dont know what to say” Later I found that he told his friends we broke up a time ago & I didnt know we broke up. After that I just answered to his “dont know what to say” messages, that it was ok because apparently we were over a long time ago and I was the last to know, but I still loved him and didnt judge him. Last time we spoke was for my bday a month ago where he apologized for the missunderstanding. His best friend tells me that he never speaks about me, that their friends told him he will regret it and that he was emotionally unstable. We wanted to get married, we loved each other. What do you think?. Thank you

  5. @Ana…..We’re sorry. But it’s hard to give you any feedback without knowing any details. What personal issues was he having? What was your fight about? How old is he? You? (If you’re not comfortable sharing details—this is a public forum—then you might think about choosing the Ask a Private Question option. (But there is a fee.) Your choice. Take care.

  6. Hey Guys,
    My now ex always planned a long term solo trip, which was essential for him as an individual due to previous family history and trauma. We were together 3 years, and it was always known he would be travelling at some point. It happened earlier this year, after 6 weeks of him being away he said we should break up while he travels, that he wants to travel for a year or more. So we are now broken up, even though he says he is still in love with me and visualises a future for us, once he has travelled as an individual and learnt more about himself outside the relationship.
    Our relationship was amazing. We lived together, had a healthy relationship, travelled together, had the usual ocassional disagreements. He said himself he was so happy, he said he knew he wanted to marry me some day, and this has nothing to do with me or us, and how hard this has been for him. I think he wants to experience complete freedom and not have the responsibility of a relationship to maintain. He wants to keep in contact, and messages me almost daily..

    Im torn between waiting for the love of my life, and calling myself out for being naive. What if he’s just trying to let me down gently and be nice?
    My instincts tell me he is genuine, its hurtful but I can understand his reasons for needing to do this. But am I just believing what I want to be true? Would he really do this and jeopardise everything if he loved me? I know life isn’t black and white.

  7. @Ange…..We’ll do our best to provide some feedback here. Although the comments probably aren’t the best forum for this in-depth a question. (Ask a Private Question would be best because we can really dig in and have a conversation.) That said, if you want to continue here that’s fine too. Questions: How old is he? You? You know Ange, lots of people have plans upon entering a relationship, but often those plans change when life changes. We are a bit concerned that he’s so adamant about sticking to his original plan of traveling for a year with you in the picture. It seems selfish quite honestly. What we mean is, by all means he should take his trip. But why for so long? How about a month? Or two max? And why the need to break up? Obviously those are the exact questions you’re asking yourself. Seems like he believes that he can have his cake and eat it too. Will you resent him for this even if he comes back?

  8. We are both mid 20’s. He worries that if he doesn’t do this, later on in life he will regret it and it could destroy our relationship… ironic huh.

    It is selfish, I agree.

    I am asking myself all of those and more.

    Wondering if we are going to be an exception to the rule, or if this is just another classic case of he’s just not that into you, and didnt have the guts to be honest/didnt understand himself.

    I dont know whether or not I would resent him.. I think about that over and over. Finding it hard to know without being in the position.

    Idealistically I think no, and for us to have an entire future together, wouldn’t forgiveness and moving forward together be worth it?

    Then I just think I sound delusional.

  9. @Ange……You’re not being delusional BECAUSE you’re asking yourself all the right questions. If you weren’t asking these questions, then maybe you’d be delusional. Make sense? Here’s the thing. You love this guy. If you breakup prematurely you’re probably going to regret it. So the question is: How can you have a productive and fun year even if your guy goes on his trip? Thoughts?

  10. Hi guys, I’m dating a man- in our 30’s – and things were going great-until he apparently ghosted. From the moment we met it was different. He was always first to express it – first to say I love you (I have yet to say it back, I feel it, but didn’t feel the need to rush), initiated conversations about what we both want i.e. family, lifestyle etc. In August we both had to travel, but we kept up the contact sending loving texts, flirting and so on. Once he got back though, I’d asked him to call, he didn’t, promised to call the following day, didn’t. The texts were still sweet but he wasn’t being open. I figured he doesn’t feel like speaking and is not being open, so I have since stopped trying to call or text and it has been radio silence from him for close to 3 weeks now. I can’t reconcile this behavior with the loving, open, honest man I got to know who expressed frequently how he couldn’t believe he’d finally found me. In fairness, the last time we saw each other he expressed some severe stresses in his professional and personal life; work stress being the worst he ever experienced. I feel like this silence has less to do with me and more to do with something going on with him and maybe he feels he can’t do a relationship right now. Under that assumption, I also feel it’s a matter of time before I hear from him. Am I doing the right thing by not reaching out again? How can a man who thinks he’s found “the one” go radio silence no explanation?

  11. @Julia……How long did you date before you both traveled in August? Did anything else come up besides his work stress? (Before he left.) And how many times have you tried to communicate with him since his return? (Please explain more.) Hang in there.

  12. Hi!
    A little over 2 months, seeing each other twice a week or so. During that conversation nothing else came up, just that it was one issue after another with his biz and that it had never been this bad and that I had caught him at a really bad time. There is some family stuff in the background I know about, but it wasn’t anything new. The only thing that set off a bit of a flag for me was a few weeks earlier when he drunk dialed and went on to list all my qualities and how he felt about me, but that he wasn’t sure he wanted to like me this much. In vino veritas, as they say – that was a bit of a flag for me. After he came back I had asked if he was around for the weekend which he wasn’t. I then asked him to call me which he said he would and later texted to say he couldn’t but promised to call the next day, which he never did. I replied to some news in those texts, he replied and I thought all was fine as he was using my pet name. A few days later I texted again, he replied, I tried to call later and got a text saying he was at a dinner. I replied to say enjoy and chat later and that I missed him. Never got a reply and that was almost 3 weeks ago.

  13. @Julia…..Sometimes we don’t get people. You deserve much better treatment than this, especially from someone purported to care about you. We’d continue with your current approach. Don’t contact him anymore. Focus on yourself. Try to do some fun things. Surround yourself with people you enjoy and who care about you. Hopefully he’ll surface soon, and for no other reason than to give you some sort of explanation for his erratic and insensitive behavior. Take care.

  14. Thanks very much! I think it’s rare to have that kind of connection, so obv I miss him. Occasionally I think maybe I should reach out, especially as he has said he’s a bad communicator (so true), but then I think “nah, if you want to talk to me, you come to me, I’m not going to chase”. I have to draw a line between my feelings for him and my self respect. Just want to check, from a male perspective, that I’m taking the right action. Men have a tendency to resurface and my view is that if his feelings are genuine, he’ll work out his baggage and make a reappearance with an explanation. Thanks so much for your reply 🙂

  15. @Julia…..You’re welcome. Last thing…..If he does reappear, make sure it’s genuine. You’re right, guys have a tendency to reappear, but often it’s because they’re quite lonely OR horny. Just sayin’

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