What A Guy Really Means When He Wants To 'Take A Break' In A Relationship

He needs a break. This doesn't make sense.

Last updated on Dec 17, 2023

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Have you ever been in a relationship where you thought things were going great, then out of the blue, the guy said six words that caused your whole world to come crumbling down?

There’s a good chance you’ve had a man (or two) say these words to you, "I want to take a break".

The moment he said these words, it might have felt like someone reached into your chest, grabbed your heart, and squeezed all of the life out of it.


As soon as those six words landed in your ear and made their way to your brain for processing, everything took a turn for the worse, right?

How could a guy tell you he needed a break? It doesn't make sense.

RELATED: The Only Thing You Should Do If He Wants To Take A Break

Here's what a guy means when he wants to 'take a break' in a relationship:

1. He’s getting ready to commit, and he’s scared.

On the surface, this doesn’t sound good. If a guy is getting ready to commit, he should be excited and sure about the future.

But that’s not always the case.

For some guys, the thought of spending the rest of their lives with one person is a scary thing, especially if they grew up in an environment where they experienced the adverse effects of divorce or dysfunctional relationships.


What often happens is the guy needs to take a break so he can figure things out and know for sure he's making the right decision.

Once he realizes the importance of your role in his life, he returns, often with an engagement ring and the confidence he is with the right person to share his life with.

RELATED: What 'Taking A Break' Really Means For Your Relationship

2. He doesn’t want to be in a committed relationship with you.

This reason is often hard to digest. It would be easier if the guy was 100 percent honest and told you why he wanted a break.

Unfortunately, a lot of guys lack skills when it comes to communication.

Instead of telling you the truth by saying, "Look, I originally wanted to be with you, but I now realize you’re not the person I want to spend the rest of my life with," it’s simply easier for him to say, "I want to take a break."


In his mind, instead of being upfront and ending the relationship, he tries to ease his transition out of the relationship by using the break as an excuse to get away.



3. He doesn’t want to hurt you.

It’s best to tell someone the truth, even if it might hurt them in the short term.

I believe that you hurt someone more by not being honest and upfront. It’s what I learned by growing up in a direct and brutally honest Italian family.


But not everyone thinks the same way.

Some guys think it’s easier to tell you what you want to hear instead of telling you the truth.

What they don’t realize is that not telling you the truth is hurting you more.

As difficult as it may be for you to understand this, there's always a reason for anything a person does.

RELATED: 28 Ways To Fix A Relationship That's About To Break

When a man wants to "take a break" in a relationship, it can be confusing and shocking.

Taking a break would have been a different story if you were fighting and not getting along. But, if you’ve given him your heart and he tells you he needs to take a break, it crushes your soul.


I get it. It doesn’t make sense because you would never tell someone you were in love with that you wanted to take a break, right?

Well, that’s part of the problem. You’re seeing his behavior through your viewpoint.

When a man says he wants to take a break, there's a reason — there's always a reason! And not understanding that reason causes you to swim in the pool of the confused and broken-hearted.

But now you have more clarity and peace of mind anytime a guy says, "I want to take a break."

RELATED: 5 Tips For Taking A Break In A Relationship — And Does It Ever Work?

Joe Amoia is the founder and creator of GPS For Love. He is an International Dating and Relationship Expert who specializes in helping single women navigate the complex world of men, dating, and relationships.