What Does It Mean When A Man Says He's "Confused"?
By: Carlos Cavallo
Have you ever had a guy tell you that he was "confused," and he "needed time to think"?
This is a common situation with men, and I'm going to explain EXACTLY why this happens. Not only so you understand, but so that you don't make a HUGE mistake!
If you're feeling that fear, embrace it - but don't let it run you over...
The first thing that happens to you when you hear a guy talk about feeling this way is:
- You Panic!
Big time... Because you feel like the rug has been pulled out from under you. And the one thing you thought was safe and sound - your relationship - has just turned into a very scary situation.
Especially if you thought you two were a hot item and the romance was just getting better.
You now worry that:
Maybe he doesn't love you the way you thought...
Maybe he's about to break up with you...
Maybe he's seeing someone else!
It's easy to descend into madness as a result of this shakeup, so I'm going to give you 3 steps to handle the situation - and not lose control.
The first step is:
STEP 1: Stay Calm!
Have a friend who can "talk you down from the ledge." You need to make sure you don't freak out and text him or put pressure on.
It's easy to do when your emotions are in this frantic state. It's a lot like being a junky and finding that you're no longer able to get your "drug".
If you give in to your panic and decide to text him right now, it's guaranteed it will lead to a certain breakup.
Because if he is saying that he's confused, the next step will be "I need space away from you." And the next step is disappearing completely.
But if you can keep your cool, you can weather the storm and come out of this just fine. And even better than before!
First of all, realize that it's not necessarily YOU that's the problem here. He may be confused about the relationship.
I'll tell you why he actually says these words in just a minute.
Remember: You were warned!
STEP 2: Back OFF!
Trust me when I tell you this: When a man feels pressure to be in a relationship, he will always rebel against that pressure and fight for his freedom.
This is how some men feel on the inside...
This doesn't mean he won't commit to you! In fact, most women make the mistake of thinking he doesn't want commitment based on how many times they've had a guy pull away from them.
But I will tell you this: A man won't commit to a woman who is pressuring him.
Ever tried to pick up a cat that didn't want to be held? That's what you're dealing with here.
Because a man's heart knows that a relationship with his True Love will not feel like it's a big obligation, attached to a set of handcuffs and leg irons. That's not what "LOVE" feels like to him.
As a matter of fact, any pressure actually creates the OPPOSITE of love in him. It will create feelings of repulsion and ... disgust.
I know that's a hard word to hear, but it's true. He'll associate your presence with imprisonment, no matter how much you try to convince him otherwise.
He has to give his commitment to you VOLUNTARILY for it to mean anything. If you get him to commit against his will, his feelings will start to turn on you.
Even if they're not visible on the surface! Which is why so many women are taken by surprise.
If you get a grip on yourself, you'll come out of this healthier, happier and wiser...
So your first step is to back off COMPLETELY. This means no conversations about "what does this mean?" or any kind of talk that tries to PULL him back to you.
Yes, I know I might be asking you to do the impossible - but the option is that if you push, you'll walk away with NOTHING.
His only option is to relieve the pressure any way possible - and that usually means break up with you FAST.
STEP 3: Be Cool!
You might be panicking because you're more afraid of losing him than you actually WANT the relationship.
This event will bring up that uncertainty in you. And it's a good idea to follow the questions you'll find yourself asking.
And as you explore this uncomfortable terrain, I want to give you a few things to do that will help:
- Journal - write down your thoughts and feelings as you experience them.
And dive into them to see where they lead you.
The strength you have as a woman is to be able to go into your deepest emotional states without the fear of getting lost. So let yourself explore them!
- If he contacts you or you come into contact, hide your feelings.
Yes, you heard that right. I'm sure some therapist will cry foul and tell you, "NO! Bad Girlfriend! Show your emotions! It's the way of love! It's unhealthy not to -"
Stick to the plan, and you'll see it through no matter the outcome...
Yeah yeah. Whatever.
Ask yourself how far that strategy has EVER gotten you with a man. Probably not far!
But I'm going to tell you that your emotional sharing is not going to help him resolve his emotional state. In fact, you're more likely to confuse him even more.
The new way of thinking in psychology these days seems to be validating emotional expression - and I agree that you should be able to talk about your feelings.
But right now?
NOT WITH HIM!
Go to a therapist, or psychologist. Or just hang out with a healthy, mature group of women you can talk to.
But don't burden him with your own feelings while he's working out his own. That's unfair, and selfish. And if he did the same to you, you'd agree.
- Give him WAY more space than he needs.
In fact, the best way I've seen to handle a man being "confused" is to un-confuse him by preemptively pulling away from him. Give him a taste of missing you. Let his emotions experience the withdrawal of your love for a while.
He'll feel it, trust me...
Because - it's the only way he will ever APPRECIATE that love!
As the saying goes, we don't know what we got 'til it's gone. Humans have to work HARD to feel grateful. And you can help him by letting him experience this.
You're not pulling away to the point of neglecting him or being purely self-centered, but to a healthy distance that lets you see things with PERSPECTIVE.
Not something you can do when you're deep in the trenches trying to desperately pull him back. And if you feel that you must, the relationship isn't the problem.
It's probably your self-esteem. (YOWCH! Carlos... you're brutal!)
And if you're worried that he won't come back after you pull away...
Well, then he never did love you that much to begin with! He would have left further down the road.
So be thankful he leaves now...and not after 10 years of marriage and 4 kids.
NOW you can find the guy that you know will be there for you.
Okay - so when a man is confused about what he wants, you will be thrown off by this. It's perfectly understandable.
Now, there are TWO reasons men say this:
REASON 1: He's genuinely confused. He's feeling the pressure of a relationship, and he needs to withdraw to reclaim his sense of masculinity.
Men don't feel like men when they're lost in the world of "the relationship." His identity is more important to him than the union you're trying to create.
This is a struggle that most men silently go through...
Which will also freak you out because the opposite is often true of many women. You might find the union more important than your sense of identity.
Hence, why so many women lose themselves in the relationship.
It's natural for a man to pull back from the relationship on occasion to gather his bearings and recharge. And he will come back even more committed than ever when he's allowed to do this.
Vulnerability can be scary, and he needs to take it at his own pace.
REASON 2: He's starting to feel attraction for another woman. OR... not.
Yes, it can mean that he's trying to gently ease his way out of the relationship. It can also mean that he's got a crush outside your relationship.
Are you freaking out now?
Look - I do what none of the other "dating gurus" out there will do. I tell you the cold stark TRUTH about what men think and feel.
Not so that you will lose all hope and fall into despair...
I tell you this because when you try to get him back out based on the wrong understanding, you'll probably fail and lose him. And I want you to succeed!
If I lie to you and tell you "Oh, don't worry! Everything will work out! It's all part of the plan...!"
Those are just empty platitudes. And most people say these things because they're afraid of the awkwardness of sitting there with someone who's about to freak out.
Sure, they're rooting for you, but it's uncomfortable as heck.
Men WILL commit.
Usually it's the women that don't get men and fail - blaming their situation on him or others - that say men won't commit.
The reality is that divorces are initiated 80% of the time by the WOMAN. Not the man.
Men will stay with the relationship and keep working at it much further than you realize. In fact, in study after study, the evidence piles up that men are actually MORE committed to the relationship after it's established.
Male commitment: Not a myth
They're just more hesitant at the start BECAUSE he knows about his total commitment and doesn't want to make a mistake with his heart.
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