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Do you happen to be in a situation where the man in your life happens to be commitment-phobic? Do you ever wonder if your partner cares as much about the relationship as you do? Does he reciprocate your gestures of love and affection? Is he willing to go all the way and make things work, just as you are? Is he running away from marriage, or a long time serious relationship, at the least? Does he eye other women when you’re not looking?
If your boyfriend happens to be commitment phobic, there will be signs- clear signs with which he will signal his intentions. He may not say anything directly, but he will try to subtly tell you to back off and not expect much from him. Here are some ‘signs’ of commitment-phobia to watch out for:
- In the initial days of your relationship, your man will gush over you, display physical affection and say all gooey, mushy romantic stuff about your looks and personality. But then, as the relationship starts to progress and become more serious, and you both start getting attached, he may start backing off.
- He may freak out at any talk of marriage or ‘long-term relationship’. Even though he may be into you, if he isn’t sure he’s in for life, he will withdraw into a cocoon the moment you even mention getting serious.
- He may cancel, forget or change plans for dates or outings at the eleventh hour.
- He may be aloof and hold back on expressing affection and romantic behavior- like giving small gifts or flowers etc.
- He may spend more time with his friends or colleagues than with you- even if you have plans to be together.
- He may not reciprocate on romantic gestures. You may go all the way to do candlelight dinners and erotic bedroom stuff later on, but he may not respond in kind.
- He may not tell you what he wants from the relationship, or expects from a life partner in a shared relationship.
- He may not let you into his inner circle. He may not introduce you to his friends, colleagues and family. That part of his life will be a complete mystery to you.
- He may act like he wants to keep his personal life completely separate from yours. He may not want to stay overnight at your place, and if you ask him to, he may take it as an obligation, rather than something he wants to do. He may say he wants his ‘space’.
- If you show affection or ask questions about his life and he feels like he’s trapped, he may say you’re smothering him.
The tricky part is, how do we women deal with such situations? We might end up falling in love with exactly such a guy- and it’s not easy to let go of them. A break-up might be the easiest way out. After all, if you want to commit and your partner doesn’t, why should you invest so much time and energy on them when all they’ll do is break your heart in the end? But before we think of ending, let’s take a shot at making things work and turning their mentality around. Let’s try to ease them into committing of their own volition. Some pointers:
- Take things slowly. Broach the topics of marriage, or getting serious, very carefully, so as to not freak your partner out.
- Try to know why he’s commitment-phobic. Has he had a heartbreak before, which has made him skeptical of long-term relations? Is he a child of divorce, and therefore, insecure about marriage?
- Do not expect him to show affection, respond to your gestures of affection or to be let into his ‘inner circle’ at first. Bear a little with his aloofness and reticence till he feels more comfortable opening up and getting attached to you.
- Show understanding. Tell him that you understand his need for space, and will give him the space he needs. Let him know that there’s no pressure from your side until he’s ready to get serious.
If all this doesn’t work out, and your man is still not ready to commit, then the only wise thing to do is to let go. You deserve someone who will reciprocate your love and commitment, and who deserves your time, energy and affection.