Why He Doesn’t Seem Interested (Even Though He Is)

by Kate Rose

Men go hot for what they want right? Not always, and its this contradiction that seems to frustrate many women who don’t understand why he doesn’t seem that interested even though at times it feels like he is.

Relationships start differently now than they did a decade ago.

Most of us text in the beginning, to see if we feel any sparks or interest towards a new partner, and rarely does it seem that anyone is dating, at least in the traditional sense anymore.

We’re hanging out, getting together and getting ourselves into some complicated situations. Sometimes we become confused, because a guy that we’re interested in doesn’t seem that interested in us, but he also still sticks around.

We often forget that men go through some difficult emotional situations as women do, and that they are not exempt from getting hurt, being afraid or even having baggage that prevents them from moving on in a new relationship. Men are still to this day not expected to show their emotions as freely as women do. Even when as women we say that we are looking for the divine masculine, rarely do we stop to consider that person might feel things as deeply as we do.

Sometimes men are afraid of getting hurt again, and so they create emotional distance to unconsciously or consciously feel safe. They can do this by communicating infrequently or even planning dates sporadically. Often with men such as this, there is a break or space after seeing one another, or having a particularly great time together. When we experience these breaks we often take it as the man we are engaging with isn’t interested, but the truth is sometimes men need to step back and breathe. They need to go slow as women do and while they may not always communicate it, distance from a man doesn’t always mean he’s not interested.

Another aspect that we sometimes forget to consider is if we even have room in our lives for love. I don’t know how many times I’ve talked to women and they spend an hour saying everything a particular man needs to do. The man has to step up to the proverbial plate, but then when I turn the tables on them, very often I hear that they aren’t even in the place to have a committed romantic relationship.

Sometimes men can sense our readiness, or ability to open up depending on where we are in our journey, and if we are sending out a particular vibe men will often distance themselves. They don’t always act like they’re not interested because they aren’t, sometimes it’s because men don’t think we’re looking for the same thing, or even that we are ready for what they want from a partner. While healthy communication is an essential ingredient for any relationship, especially a new one, it is something that you can’t force.

In solid relationships, it’s the goal to be able to tell our partners when we are triggered and what we were feeling or thinking, but in a new relationship especially with a man who seems half out the door, casualness is often the best bet. This isn’t about lying or being someone other than who we are, but often the more pressure a man feels in the beginning, the less he will engage with a particular woman.

Sometimes space or the disinterest from a man, is because he is overwhelmed by our interest and he’s unsure how to process it. He can’t say that it’s not what he wants, but he also leaves us guessing about if he does either. He seems to enjoy the time together, but then also backs away at times. There are many reasons why a man can come across as being uninterested when he is.

Regardless of if it’s because of his past hurts, baggage, fears, having room in our lives for love or even if we are coming on too strong the most important message is to remember it’s not because we have done anything wrong. Men sometimes need to start relationships slowly and have space, especially in the beginning. It doesn’t mean that he isn’t interested or that you are turning him off. At times it’s because slow is the only the speed they know. It’s the only way to move through what is happening without pushing it away altogether.

The important aspect of relationships and love, is that the success of the relationship has nothing to do with anything you do or don’t do. This means that while we become anxious or doubt ourselves, the important thing to remember is to be ourselves without censoring anything that we would say or do and also not making ourselves do something that feels unnatural.

If the relationship is going to work, it will, regardless of anything that occurs and if he falls in love with you. It won’t be for anything in particular that you did. One of my favorite words of advice for women is that there is nothing you can do to make a man love you, but that there also isn’t anything you can do to stop that from happening either.

Relationships only work out because two people are in the same place at the same time who both decided to choose to do the work necessary. They occur because both people are ready, and they decide to communicate their fears instead of running from them.

While it’s easy in some ways to say he isn’t that interested, call him a fool and move on, the reality is that may not be what you should do. If we approach relationships with the idea that they are for growth instead of looking at what he is doing, stop to consider what his behavior is trying to show or teach you about yourself.

Because often it’s the best relationships that start slow.

The top 10 relationship tips nobody is talking about: Get the workbook
Kate Rose

about the author

Kate Rose

Kate Rose is an artist, free thinker, lover, writer, passionate yogi, teacher, and mother. She wakes each morning with the excitement of a new day waiting to unfold at her feet. She believes the best is yet to come and waits, with bated breath, to see what it may hold. 

Gabrielle SAYS:

Just curious because this article is very relevant to me at the moment: would you encourage confronting him about it then? Calmly and with an open mind. Would it be forcing it to speak to him about where he sees this going? Or should I wait for him to be more engaged? Mind, it’s been several months and the lack of engagement is sort of recent.
As a fairly emotionally inexperienced 22 year old, I’d appreciate the advice. ????

Peggie Vasquez SAYS:

This was fantastically written and so easy to grasp the simplicity of what you were trying to relay. Just this one article I feel, put my mind at ease. It just makes so much sense. Thank you!

Ophelia Parke SAYS:

To whom it may concern,

I thank you for this article I met a really nice guy who says he needs and loves me but then takes steps back once we go forward. Not sure what I did for him to feel this way. However the article also summarized behaviors I sometimes posses which may trigger his reluctance.


That was a very good observation on men..I’ve dated a lot of guys but this last is by far the hardest to understand..two steps forward..1 step back……I will be patient with this one..he makes me smile..

Chrissy SAYS:

What if it’s your ex doing the above?

Kelly SAYS:

Yasss! It’s so tough to not only develop an understanding of what connection means to each individual, but to recognize one another’s needs and compromise even in the event that giving a man space fills your whole body with fear that you’re losing them (as it does for me). Love, compromise and a willingness to grow as individuals and a couple is crucial. I’m still trying to find that balance of loving myself and loving my partner.

Sara SAYS:

This is exactly what I needed to hear with my new relationship! It’s been about 4 months almost 5, and this exact action is happening. So, thank you for sharing!

M Jagger SAYS:

Just an observation – men are viewing (correctly) dating as a contract more and more these days. With any business proposition, the negatives have to be outweighed by the positives for us to be able to engage in said behavior. Nowadays, with womens’ unrealistic expectations and divorce courts usually siding with the women (even though ~80% of divorces are ENGAGED BY THE WOMEN), dating just isn’t worth it anymore. Especially when getting laid is so much easier than ever before.

Leave a Comment


Got a question and want some advice?
All questions will remain anonymous.
Sign up for our weekly newsletter to see if your question is answered.

win a free book

Enter our monthly giveaway to win your choice of any book from our TLC Library!