13 Weird Reasons Why Guys Act Distant When They Like You

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woman looking at guy acting distant talking on the phone

Ever wonder why guys act distant when they like you?

Like... it makes no sense. It’s counterproductive. It’s also frustrating to no end. And with dating and relationships already being confusing, why must guys add this on top?

Guys are weird and we are constantly trying to understand them. They do odd things and express themselves in weird ways.

For example, some experts will tell you it's common for men to pull back from a woman they are really interested in. But what is that about?

We can't always know why someone else does what they do without asking them directly, but a few experts weighed in on why guys start acting distant when they like you.

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Here are 13 odd reasons why guys act distant when they like you.

1. He might not be looking for anything serious.

If a guy is into you and is avoiding you, it could be that he doesn’t want anything serious but he knows you aren’t that type of girl. So to be fair to you, he is removing himself front the equation until he has his emotions under control.

This is actually a pretty nice reason for him to become distant. Of course, he could tell you, but then that can lead to fantasizing, leaving for a messy situation.

Also, he could totally be dealing with commitment issues.

2. He may already be in a committed relationship.

It’s respectable if a guy gets distant when he realizes that not only do you like him, but he's catching feelings for you as well when he is already involved with someone.

Though he may seem like the bad guy to you, he’s actually being a good guy.

3. He may think you are dating someone else.

What’s going through his head is that you are too awesome to be single and he doesn’t want to put you in an uncomfortable situation.

In his head, you are already dating a guy so you are off the market and he needs to get rid of his feelings fast. The best way to do so? Get some distance.

This can also be a confidence issue, as in he doesn’t think he’s worth enough to fight for you.

RELATED: 3 Main Reasons Men Lose Interest — And How To Get It Back

4. He may be shy.

A shy man will get distant because being around you puts him on edge. Don’t get me wrong, he wants to be around you, but he’s too shy to do what he really wants (which is to ask you out), which frustrates him.

5. He may be scared.

“When a guy likes you, he often will seem emotionally distant yet stay in physical proximity to you," Life and Relationship Coach Ann Papayotisays. "Let’s face it, he is likely scared — scared he isn’t good enough for you, scared of professing how he is feeling and being rejected by you, and possibly even scared of you liking him back and what that could mean.”

Falling in love can be terrifying for a guy.

Papayoti continues, “This is ultimately a fear of success. All of this fear steals his confidence and holds him back from being openly communicative with you and taking a chance on love.”

6. He may feel you are out of his league.

That whole saying has a lot of problematic tendencies. For one, there is no such thing as leagues. That is a social hierarchy we have made that makes people feel bad about themselves. If you like someone then go for it.

Therefore, this reason is another confidence issue with your guy. He doesn’t think he’s worth your love. This isn’t true and you should reassure him that he deserves love… yours specifically, especially if you like him back.

7. He may think you aren’t into him.

Yeah, guys don’t like rejection or if they can they’ll avoid it. If he thinks you don’t like him then he’ll probably not be around you too often, even if he likes you.

Image Credit: codenamerahul via Canva

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8. His life may be getting busy.

Life happens, and sometimes it’s not great at timing. If a guy who likes you becomes distant all of a sudden it could literally have nothing to do with you. Some stuff may have come up in his life that he needs to deal with or sort out. A family emergency could have happened or something at his work went up in flames.

This is most likely the reason if you haven’t seen him in a long time. He just got busy with life. You may still be on his mind, but other things could have priority right now. Try not to take it personally.

9. He may be waiting for you to want him more.

He doesn’t think you like him enough to seize the opportunity. He‘s waiting for you to grow feelings towards him so that when he does approach you, it’s a sure thing and he doesn’t have to worry about rejection.

Guys hate rejection so if they wait until they know for certain you’ll say yes, they’ll do just that.

10. He may have been hurt in the past.

If he’s acting distant, he may have been hurt in his previous relationships. He’s still healing and even though he caught feelings for you, he isn’t sure or ready to jump back into the dating game.

11. He may need to think things over.

This guy could be going through a lot. Most of the time women never know what was going on in their partner’s lives until they entered it.

Maybe he doesn’t like long-term relationships. Maybe he’s trying to move on. Maybe he’s in an unhappy relationship. Maybe he’s on the hunt for a rebound.

You don’t know and he could be starting to figure out what he wants.

12. He may not want other people to know.

When a guy begins to grow feelings for someone he may not want other people to know that just yet, which is a reason why he’ll act distant around you.

His friends may be immature and tease him about being a simp or something along those lines. He doesn’t want that and thus won’t want them to know he likes you.

13. He may be weighing his options.

One pretty big reason he’s acting distant is that he’s weighing his options. You may not be the only person he’s digging right now and is trying to decide which one of you he wants to pursue. It’s a sucky feeling to be an option but in the dating game that’s how it goes sometimes.

RELATED: What Men Need From Women Before They'll Put In Any Effort

So how do you know if a guy is being distant is because he likes you?

There are a few signs to look for.

1. He’s around but not directly on top of you.

Clinical Hypnotherapist and Relationship Coach, Keya Murthy says, “You can tell a guy is being distant because he likes you if he’s always around you just nearby so you can see him but he doesn’t get too close.”

He’ll spend more time with you but it won’t feel like it because he keeps himself at a distance when he does.

2. He looks at you often.

Murthy further explains that he will look at you but, “never too directly” or in a “slightly coy” way. He wants to create some sort of a mystery because he likes you but doesn’t quite understand it or know how to deal with it.

He may be watching you to see how you express similar feelings or seeing how you react to certain things. You intrigue him so he’ll want to soak in all the knowledge he can about you before approaching.

3. He respects you.

If a guy is into you and truly likes you, he’ll respect you. Even if he is being distant, he won’t treat you horribly because he likes you — those elementary school days are gone.

He’ll stick up for you. He’ll try to understand you. So, if you notice him doing these things while acting distant it’s a clear sign he caught some feelings.

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Here’s what to do when a man is acting distant.

If you like him back:

If you like the guy back, just approach him and get the whole game and mystery out of the way before he loses interest.

This is the era of equality. Ask him out first for coffee or to go for a walk. This makes for a low-pressure date where he can try to get more comfortable with his feelings for you.

“Because guys assess relationships in how they make them feel about themselves, the best thing you can do if you want to bring him closer is to let him know how you feel. Make it safe, and take it slow,” says Papayoti.

Murthy gives an alternative option. “If you have seen a guy around more than three times and you like him — physically or find yourself intrigued and you are an introvert, get your extroverted friend along and approach his friend or him.”

The commonality between these two is to simply approach the guy or a friend of his and begin a dialogue.

If you don't like him back:

Again, approach him. The best way to put things out in the open is to talk about them. Have an honest conversation with him. Tell him that you, unfortunately, do not feel the same but that you still wish to be friends.

You can do this in person or by calling or texting him. If he can handle that great, if not, well… maybe he wasn’t a friend in the first place.

Plus, it’s always better to be honest than to string a guy along making them think you feel the same. That’s just awful.

He may need some time to get his feelings under control and for the initial hurt and disappointment to dissolve, but time heals all wounds.

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Deauna Nunes is an assistant editor who covers pop culture and news and entertainment for YourTango. She has been published by Emerson College's literary magazine Generic.

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