Many of us women have experienced being with a great guy who seems to meet all of our criteria, except for one thing: he can’t seem to commit. When we are in this situation, we tend to ride it out, either truly understanding or trying to understand where he is coming from and why he is behaving this way. While it may be helpful for us to understand his WHY, it is also important for us to make sure that we are setting our own expectations and boundaries for how we will allow someone to treat us and what we expect of another person in their treatment and behavior toward us.
Before you read some potential reasons below for WHY he is having trouble committing to you, keep this idea in mind: the WHY is less important than what you are willing to put up with. If you can understand why and help him to overcome that reason, great. But, keep in mind that you may not be able to and if his WHY is something that has nothing to do with you, you may need to consider walking away.
Top 6 Reasons Why Men Pull Away Before They Commit
Fear of the past
As we go through our relationships and have our hearts broken, we have to consciously work on healing. Since men are notorious (sorry for the cliché, but it wouldn’t be a cliché if it wasn’t true) for masking their emotions, there is a good chance that he experienced some hurt in the past that he hasn’t faced. Bring it back to the present and he may be afraid of being hurt again himself. If this is the case, there’s some hope because you may be able to have a conversation with him to give him some space to identify if this is true for him and to work on healing himself before pursuing something with you. On the hopeful side, he can take some space to do this and pursue a relationship with you. On the other side, he may still not be ready in which case you do not want to have to deal with that baggage anyway.
Fear of the future
It is normal for people to be afraid of the future, especially when things start to get serious. Do not take this personally. The chances are that you have your own fears. Each person has their individual fears and thoughts on this topic, as well as various degrees of severity. This is another hopeful place to be because you can have conversations showing your support and understanding (for each other) if this is the case.
You’re just an option
There is the possibility that this guy has other options that he is considering, or that he is thinking that there may be a time when other options arise and he does not want to be locked down in a committed relationship. If you are in this position, it is very important to try to understand if this is the driving force behind his lack of commitment.
You must remind yourself that you are a quality person who deserves for someone to CHOOSE you. If you are not acting that way, make sure you start. Set standards for how you deserve to be treated and treat yourself the way you want someone else to treat you. If he sees that you are a confident, independent, well-rounded woman who adds value to her own life and the life of others then he will look less at his other options and more at you. Being in a relationship and committing to someone is a CHOICE and if he is not choosing you or if he is not choosing JUST you, you need to consider walking away.
He’s not ready to settle down
There may be other things that he wants to do in life before settling down in a relationship. There is a good chance that he has career goals that he wants to achieve before investing in a serious romantic relationship.
Additionally, typically men are financially driven, so he may not feel that he is at the financial status that he would like to be. He also may have other goals and aspirations that he feels he needs to “check off” his list before committing to a serious relationship such as travel plans, new hobbies to take on, hobbies he already has (like improving his golfing skills or enjoying his poker time with his buddies), fitness goals, and so forth. He may feel like he has other things he wants to do before establishing a relationship that will require his time and effort.
See also: 4 powerful steps to get him back
He’s too immature
This could be because he is young or because he has just simply not matured yet for a variety of reasons – stemming from how he was raised and responsibilities (or lack thereof) to chemical makeup. He may just be immature and/or emotionally unavailable. If this is his reasoning, it’s best for you to walk away.
He feels like you may not be the one
Similarly to keeping his options open, he may only have eyes on you, but may just feel intuitive that there is “something off”. Just like women, men have a checklist too of what they are seeking in a partner (if they are thinking in that way) and it is quite possible that you simply are not what he is looking for, or he is unsure of what he is looking for.
If you feel that you are in a position where one of the reasons above provide some level of “hope”, I would encourage you to try to have a conversation about it to see where this man stands and to see if there is a possibility of a commitment now or in the very near future. However, in some of the other less hopeful situations, it may be in your best interest to cut your losses and choose to be on your own (for now) than to be with someone who is simply not choosing to be with you.
Suzanne is a certified counselor with 6 years of experience working with individuals of diverse backgrounds and age groups. In addition to working full time as a School Counselor servicing students ages K-12, Suzanne began a side business in 2014 geared toward providing relationship and individual counseling services for adult clientele. She has worked with an extensive range of individuals helping them gain insight, foster changes, and continue to grow. She has acquired a wealth of information about relationships through her professional and personal endeavors and finds great value in sharing what she has learned.