Friday, 13 November 2015

When He Doesn't Want A Girlfriend, But Acts Like Your Boyfriend

Picture the scene: you’re dating someone. The attraction is mutual. You have tonnes of chemistry. You enjoy spending time with each other. They seem decent and trustworthy. Things seem to be heading in the right direction.

Then BOOM! Outta nowhere, they drop the "I’m not really looking for a relationship right now..." (or similar) line.

An all too common predicament that those who are unlucky-in-love will be able to relate to:

It’s a confusing situation to be in, especially if it was they who initiated all the romantic interest. It’s like, why did you bother pursue in the first place?!

My cynical side concludes that people who date with no intention of a relationship are pretty much just looking for sex.

However, while it’s a dick-move, I don’t think everyone who drops that line is a callous asshole.

Are there guys who want to keep things "casual" so they can keep their options open and date multiple women?

Absolutely. And in a way, guys like that are easier to recognise and deal with.

However, you also get the other types of guys (the focus of this post) who aren’t all that bothered about dating multiple women. They actually like the company of one specific woman. Find her super attractive, even. But they still won’t commit to her.

That’s where it becomes confusing. Guys like this won’t be shy setting up frequent dates. You’ll hear from them consistently. They’ll be flirty and full of compliments. They hold your hand in public. They may even invite you to work or family dos. For the most part, they'll treat you well and do nice things for you: pick you up, drop you off, let you stay over, take you out to eat, contact you regularly.

But it’s an arrangement with very little emotional depth. Sure, they'll ask how your day's going. But do they actually care?

These types of guys are described as "the monogamous players". You won’t be able to call them up if you’re having a bad day. Feeling sick? You’re on your own. Don’t expect a card on your birthday, Christmas or Valentine’s Day either. And cute, coupley social media snaps? Forget it (although it’s always funny to watch a guy squirm when you jokingly mention it).

It’s ok for them to blow up your phone all day, everyday asking if you want to hang out all the time. But if you reciprocate, they get distant assuming you’re becoming too invested. They may even feel a need to hastily remind you that you guys are not in a relationship. Just in case you were getting ideas.  

Everything with these guys is fun, easy and light. Which is all well and good when you’re in the early stages of dating, but eventually that bubble is going to burst. It’s unreasonable to expect the person you’re dating to be happy and non-demanding all the time.

I understand that putting too much pressure on a budding relationship isn’t smart, but eventually you get tired of someone being so afraid of typical relationship milestones like growing intimacy, labels and saying "I love you".

If you’re looking for something more long-term, you need someone who isn't afraid to commit to you, whether that's in big or small ways. Someone who will stick around for the ups AND the downs.

So, why are some guys like this? It could be down to a variety of reasons: maybe they’re still hung-up on their ex, and part of them is still holding out for a reconciliation. As a result, they’re unable to completely commit to someone new.

I think timing is also very important for relationships. Perhaps they have a lot going on in their work or family life, and they don’t want the additional responsibility of a relationship. Sometimes people are going through periods in their life where they simply can't dedicate the time to a full-on relationship. However, they still get lonely and have romantic (physical and emotional) needs they want fulfilling.

They could also have lukewarm feelings towards you (bummer – but it happens to the best of us), so they want to wait and see if their feelings grow before calling you their girlfriend.

For guys who know a little bit about having "game", it’s a strategic move. They do the whole nonchalant "not looking for a relationship" routine, thinking that acting aloof is what attracts women.

Guys who have been burned in the past are also a fan of this approach, as they’re of the misguided belief that "nice guys finish last". They also don’t want to look desperate or clingy, so they go overboard trying to project the image that they are in fact, the opposite.

Regardless, you have to be honest with yourself about what you’re looking for in the love department. Me personally, I’m not submissive enough to let a guy set the pace and tone of a relationship, especially a casual one at that. I feel like two people should be on the same page and have an equal say on how the relationship progresses.

Also, I’ve had enough ambiguous romantic situations to last me a lifetime. Whilst it’s been good dating experience, I’m getting to that age and point in my life where I’d rather not waste my time.

When I’ve recently been presented with a similar situation, I could have risked it; taken things slowly and seen what happened. But from personal experience, I know it rarely ends well. It essentially gives that person an "out" for any bad behaviour in the relationship…you can’t complain if your needs aren’t being met because you aren’t girlfriend status and hey, they told you from the start it wasn’t anything serious.

Nah, far better to thank them for their honesty and bow-out early before you become more emotionally attached. Life's too short to try and force a relationship with someone who doesn’t want one. I mean, look at what happened to poor Tom in (500) Days of Summer:

Who knows, walking away because you have enough self-respect to not settle for a casual arrangement, combined with your sudden absence, may make a guy rethink his whole stance on commitment. Men only get away with as much as you allow.

They may come back, having been reminded not to take you for granted. Of course, you may no longer want them…


  1. In my opinion, if he won't put a label on it but you're pretty much together then you're just letting him have his cake and eat it - he wants to be able to turn round and say "but we're not together" but he wants all the perks of it. Or, he sees you as a suitable stop off point until he finds someone "better". Never give them the satisfaction and never settle! x

    Sophie Elizabeth

    1. Absolutely! I've heard stories of guys/girls who have done a 180 after making that statement. Regardless, you have to put your foot down and be willing to walk away from people like that if they're not giving you the commitment you want. It'll save a lot of heartache in the long run!

      Thanks for dropping by :)

      - Lubna

    2. I cannot agree enough with this comment. It's a confusing, complicated situation that I don't ever want to be part of again.

      Hannie Arden from Missing Wanderer.

    3. Hi Hannie, ahh sorry to hear you've experienced something similar. I think unfortunately, these types of non-committal men are very common these days. Defo a "no-go" when you've experienced that disappointment before.

      - Lubna xx

  2. Just discovered your blog and am loving it hun. Loved this post, you say so much that a lot of people don't talk about about. I couldn't agree with this anymore; for me, if he wants the perks of being your bf but won't commit to the label... he's literally just in it for the perks! Such a horrible situation but the girl is always worth so much better than that.


  3. Hey thanks a lot! Glad you enjoyed the read :) Likewise, I'm so glad I found your blog, stunning design and pics and really interesting lifestyle topics, will defo be an avid follower!

    Haha I should probably keep my observations to myself sometimes, but I know other people can relate to similar situations... Very true, I think we as women need to learn how and when to tell these would-be players where to go!

    I sometimes wish these non-committal people would all move to an island somewhere so they could play their games with each other and leave us relationship-oriented people in peace :D

    - Lubna xx

  4. If the guy doesn't want to put a label on it, he doesn't want to commit and he surely doesn't care as much of you as maybe you do. Screw these type of guys! Don't waste your time. I am either 100% in or out. There shouldn't be any in between in relationships.

    -Leta | The Nerdy Me

    1. I'm an all or nothing type of person too... There's just no point continuing in a situation when someone has already pretty much chosen to opt-out. You hear so many stories of guys who didn't commit for years, just to be married to someone else within months :-/ It's not worth the potential heartache.

      - Lubna

  5. Replies
    1. Haha they certainly do sometimes :) xx

  6. Picture the scene? I lived the scene! I lived in at least a couple times, unfortunately. But now I know it's best to just cut it off, as much as it might hurt. If someone doesn't want to take the leap make a commitment with you then they are not worth the trouble. Wishing you a happy weekend!! :]

    // ▲ ▲

    1. Oh no, sorry you're able to relate! It's never an ideal situation to be in but defo best to walk away than to continue-on in a situation that's not going to go anywhere.

      Thanks for dropping by :]

      - Lubna

  7. You deserve a guy that isn't going to do a 180 out of nowhere! I dated a guy that was like that once and it really messes with your head and your confidence. You are amazing and he's the one with the issues!

    Amy | Dervish Darling

    1. It SO does mess with your confidence, I think that's the most infuriating thing especially if it was them who pursued you! It's defo important to remember that it's more their issue than a reflection of you, and the best thing to do is cut these types of people off!

      - Lubna xx