Ask A Guy: When a Guy Gives Mixed Messages post image

Ask A Guy: When a Guy Gives Mixed Messages


There’s this guy I met online, through a dating website. We have seen each other 3 times and based on his body language, he seems to be interested. He also suggests future dates.

The problem is, he never says when and he hardly calls me or initiates contact in between dates. What’s going on? Does he even like me or is remotely interested. Maybe he’s treating me as his friend and is playing the field? I do know for a fact that he likes to take it slow, is that it? Please HELP!!!

Read our guy’s response after the jump!

(Note: This Ask a Guy was more of a dialogue – it went on for several e-mails and over a couple of months.  As a result, I didn’t post it until now.  Enjoy.)

eric charles:

My bet is that your intuition/instinct is right that he does like you. What I bet is happening is that he wants you to reach out to him, initiate contact, etc. because it makes him feel good and secure that you like him. He could be really busy or just a little insecure and may want some reassurance.

If you like him, I would say reach out to him a bit but don’t pressure him to commit or talk about his feelings toward you at this point. Just try to show that you like him without bending over backwards or selling yourself out. If he likes you, he’ll start to show more initiation. If he doesn’t, well then maybe he’s not that into you.

Either way, doesn’t hurt to give him a little reassurance and see where it goes.

Reader question (cont’d):

What is your stance on dating websites? My friend is having some trouble with the guy she’s been interacting with online and her depressing story just makes me very upset. She manages to put me into a depressing mood as well because I feel like internet dating is such a taboo that it’s too good to be true if I do find someone.

Remember the guy I was telling you about, well it seems more obvious now that he likes me, but he really is taking things too slow, no kissing or holding hands as of yet, and we’ve been on four dates already. AND! We really don’t talk much other than when we meet up, like no MSN, no phone calls, just texts here and there. I know he’s super busy, because he just got promoted, but if he’s that busy and if he takes his job as his top priority, I can’t imagine what kind of a boyfriend he’ll make.

Should I just drop him or should I keep waiting? Or maybe he’s dating other girls and shopping around? And really, do you believe something good can come out of internet dating?


eric charles:

I believe that you can have a successful relationship with someone you met online. In fact, I know many people who are in relationships with people they met online.

But you have to remember that when you meet someone online and then meet them in real life, you’re really only meeting them for the first time when you meet in real life. Sure, you may have read his profile, exchanged some pithy e-mails, chatted with him online, but the real life meeting is the real meeting because that’s when you see the whole picture.

To cut to the point, if this is how he’s acting in the beginning of the relationship, then this is most likely where the relationship is headed. The reason doesn’t really matter – if it’s not how you want it to be now, it’s a waste of time to wait around for his personality and behavior to miraculously change.

I think there’s a lot to be said for choosing a person that very closely fits what you’re looking for. If you don’t want a guy who’s acting like that… bad match! Choose another… this is the beginning stage of getting to know someone – this is where you need to make your decision as to whether or not they are a good fit for your life. If  not, keep looking. It’s a mistake to think you can meet a guy and change him into something else… I don’t recommend it.

Reader question (cont’d):

So last night I asked online guy if he was free to do something today and he told me that he is going to be super busy for the rest of the month and possibly for the next month. I didn’t know if this was his way of rejecting me so I decided to text him to try and get a straightforward answer.

I basically said I do like you a lot, but I don’t know how you feel about me, I am willing to wait until you’re less busy, but I need to know what you think about me so I’ll know what to do. Two months of not seeing each other after 4 dates is a bit wishy washy and I just need to know how he feels about me, because I honestly don’t know. What’s your take on this?

eric charles:

Yeah, I hate to break it to you, but that’s him basically cutting it off. I’ve seen both girls and guys do it… Pretty much he doesn’t want to hurt you, but he does not want to pursue it any further… It could be for any number of reasons and it is most likely that he is just not in the place in his life that he can give you what you deserve. My bet is that it really has everything to do with where he is in his life, not with anything you did or anything like that.

I am basing this on the fact that he basically said that he’s not going to be available for a long period of time and did not give any type of reassurance that after that period of time you would be together or something along those lines.

He doesn’t sound like a bad guy, but I would say you should make the decision to keep looking and let this one go. Hate to give news that you might not necessarily like, but that’s my take on this situation.

Reader question (cont’d)

He called two nights and said he wants to keep seeing me, so we’re gonna go out in June or so.

eric charles:

Well, that’s more promising then…

If he’s the one prividing a definite time or time frame then things look more promising. Based on that information, I would say that it’s not a lost cause. Hopefully he’ll continue moving in this direction and will be more clear about when he can see you rather than leaving it open-ended. In the meantime, don’t sweat it.

Good luck. :)

Epilogue:

I followed up a couple months later on this one to see how it panned out.  The guy never called.

– eric charles

{ 19 comments… add one }

Leave Your Comment Now…

Susan- Craiglist Roomie ?

Hi Eric and Sabrina,
Not really sure where to post a question, so here goes.

I was looking for a roomie and went and checked out this guys place. He had posted a room on craigslist. I went to look at it and meet him and he seemed normal. We decided to go surfing together to get a feel for each other so that I would be more comfortable moving in with a stranger. This was his idea because I was reticent about moving in with someone from Craiglslist. So we went had a great time and really got along. He was attractive and smart and we exchanged some sarcastic humor and lightly flirted. After that interaction I decided that since I was attracted to him it probably wasn’t a good idea to live with him. I sent him an email and just told him that I had decided that I decided not to live with a guy, that it was one thing if he was gay, or unattractive, but that I thought it would just be better for me to live with a girl. I apologized for bailing and told him he could keep the deposit I had put down to hold the room until I could move in. He replied saying that he had been having doubts about living with me as well because he found himself attracted to me after we went surfing. I joked back to him that it must have been my awkward surfing skills that attracted him and he responded with that it was when I accidentally caught a wave that sparked his interest. Blah blah blah.. Then he said that if my tennis game was any better than my surfing game than we should give that shot someday. I just responded back with , “Yep lets do it, if you don’t mind being beat by a girl of course :) Just give me a call when you want to go hit. ”

I have not gotten a call or an email back and I guess it is no big deal and my ego will get over it, but I just didn’t want to get involved with in-depth texting or emailing back and forth. What are either of your thoughts on this? Was he just “shooting the shit” with me so to speak and didn’t actually want to play tennis?

Reply October 13, 2014, 3:09 pm

sara

iv a comment / questions and really could do with some HELP please !!!!,
i recently was on a night out their was a band playing it was a very posh do lots of security, one of the band members i thought was looking at me most of the night starring at me smiling now and then and id smile back well it was a seated show and dim lighting but it definatly looked to me he was starring at me i asked my friend to check in case i was imiganing it and she aggreed !.
afterwards he came down of the stage close to wear i was ans was standing their a while my friend kept telling me ot go over ot him but he was so handsome and i really liked him i was so shy incase id ruin the moment mess it up and say the wrong thing ! so i didnt next thing she went over and security told her to back of ! next thign we left and so did he afterwards i felt awful i missed a wounderful chance at a possibly wounderful guy, i found him online friended him he accepted and thanked him he said thanks for adding me ! and i felt then that it was the opening for a conversation possibly so i told him who i was and about that night he never answered !! ? so then i wrote back that i had worked in the same thing he did and that i messaged him because i wanted to not cos of his career, he replied thats very sweet !. then after he liked a pic of me
a few days went by and i really wanted to at least be friends with him more so than anything else , so i asked him how he was later id seen he saw the message but didnt reply and i felt awful maybe id said something wrong or was he just not interested cos im not the most beautiful person in the world but still i couldnt help think of that night so i left it until recently he posted a few messages online which i seen and decided to break the ice by commenitng on , he didnt answer me but he did rite a reply similar to what i had said to his post for example i said be happy for what you have your blessed and he wrote im very happy lately and know i am blessed the have all that i do….. and a lot of other things and i know its probably in my head but i kindof felt like he was answering me in a different way like he dosent want to get too close with me cos im a stranger and because of both our circumstances we live in different states, and personal things are different . i could be wrong and be blowing this totally out of proportion but i have an intuition that he could be the one from what i found out about him were a lot a like but im afraid he feels the same and is afraid in case people will judge him for being with a younger woman (hes well known ) not a celeb not that that matters at all to me
i do like him but i havent messaged him , if he posts something public i guess im intitled to respond … its public after all .. but id like him to at least open up to me a little all i wanted from the beginning was to be friends and see where if anywere it would lead ,,, but im afraid in case im barking up a dead tree here … but id still love if anyone would give me their adivce :(

Reply August 4, 2014, 8:57 pm

Katherine

Hi, I also have a question and it’s super long, sorry:

I was friends with a guy last year at our summer intern job. He would invite me to lunch and we hung out and grabbed drinks with a mutual friend of ours. He took the time to send me links to things I thought were funny, or helpful to improve my photography skills; he told me I was cute on a few occasions, we had some semi-sexual innuendos in a lot of conversations, and he said we should hang out when we get back to school (we go to the same out of town university). Before we went back he said he was glad to meet me, that he thought I was a good person and wished we could have hung out more at the beginning of the summer. And when we got back to school we kept making plans at the beginning of September, and they all fell through – we both got busy, but he basically disappeared. He would text every now and again (maybe once a month) or send something via Facebook but that was about it. We got back this summer and he started acting buddy-buddy again; he got upset when I left work without him, he would send me things via email, and invited me out (again, we just never made the plans). It was different this year, though, in that he stopped inviting me to lunch. We sometimes would talk when we ran into each other in the break room, and the emails became far and few between. I got sufficiently confused about this “friendship” so I shot him an email asking what had happened and he seemed to be genuinely confused thinking that we were still of course friends. He tried to be in touch with me frequently over the next few days, but that stopped again. So, again, I shot him an email saying in detail why I thought we weren’t really friends – having been close to totally ignored for eight months, and we don’t hang out, etc – and he explained he was too busy during the year with school, preparing his thesis, and studying for important exams. He told me to talk to our friend about going to lunch one day because he doesn’t “arrange this shit these days”. Things were okay, we would act jokingly and such. And then I took a turn for the absolute worst. Since I had given up on us ever being an item LONG AGO, but I’m still attracted to him, I vaguely suggested via text that we have a casual relationship. He ignored it. Not long after I explained to him why I had been acting crazy: I had feelings for him last year, those feelings are unresolved considering my constant confusion about where I stand with him, he’s a great guy and I didn’t mean to hurt him in any way with things I may have said. He came back saying his feelings were in tact, he is indifferent to the whole situation, but that he’s had enough of it. He told me: “For future reference you should probably tell someone your feelings earlier rather than later instead of leading your self on. Instead you decide to all of a sudden have courage after you’ve shown how bat shit crazy you are lol…. If you want something aggressively go after it, ” if internet explorer is brave enough to ask you to be your default browser you’re totally brave enough to do tons of other shit”.” My friend’s mother does tarot cards and she told me that he has a broken heart and that I was the one the who did it when, last year, I mentioned there was a guy I had been interested – past tense – and, later when I thought he and I were going to be friends, asked for guy advice. Now my friend is convinced that I broke his heart again. He really does not seem to care to me.

I’m curious as to WHY his attitude changed so dramatically at the end of last summer. I’m not sure how to change any of this, if I can at all. It’s upsetting because we were close last year, and we bonded. Please help.

Reply July 15, 2014, 9:31 am

Jeanette

Hi, I’ve been dating a man for 4 months. Every time we are together it’s a nice time. A lot of chemistry. I’ve met his kids, he’s met mine. Recently we had a family day. All the kids (4) and the two of us. It was super fun in my opinion and everything I had wanted. Now he is acting strange. He Went an entire day without texting me and now seems to have pulled away. What should I do? I figure I should back off. But is he freaked out?

Reply July 2, 2014, 4:24 pm

Jenny

Hi Eric, I felt in love with a man boy.

He is 30, aisan, comes from a good family and knows good manners. He works a high tech job. We started dating 3.5 months ago. We have similar family education and cultural backgrounds, personalities and wits. On top of that, we both are crazily attracted to each other’s looks and bodies. So we felt the “pull” right from the start.

But after the honeymoon phase of about 1 month, we kept running into problems. First, he found out he had commitment phobe. He went 2weeks no contact, then showed up again confessing he was scared and confused.

I took him back. But then he started showing his true self – a man boy. He acts like a kid sometimes and he plays victim when he doesn’t get things in his way with me. Sometimes he thinks I display attitude or ego (which I do, because I am insecure too.) We both had been hurt badly before so our approach to relationship are pessmistic.

He opens up his feelings several times when we talk. I find out he is super insecure. To cover his insecurity he becomes mean. He is always friendly and kind to others, but he kind of shows a different side to me. Being a very low profile person, I think he is for the first time letting someone like me who he knew for quite a short time enter into his world, becoz he thinks I see him through. But it seems he needs my reassurance quite often. So we often repeat this circle: He wants sth, I display attitude becoz I am insecure. He freaks out becoz he takes my attitude personal. Then we communicate and open up to each other and reassure each other.

I learnt from your dating advice that I need to be calm and not too emtional when it comes to men. So each time he got freaked out my attitude calmed him down. Then over time, I find that he is unconsciously copying my way of speaking or handling things. If I am calm, he is calm. If I am confident he is confident. If I am insecure and play games, he freaks out.

So now I feel we are very unsettled. Neither he nor I wanna break up. So we just cant leave each other. But, we don’t quite know what we want out of life and where this is heading to either. So, both of us are blowing hot and cold to the other person. I know he needs encouragement and he says he wants me to take charge. But I don’t want to and I am not good at it.. what should I do if I wanna try my best to make it work?

Sincerely thanks

Reply April 15, 2014, 3:33 am

DCL

He’s not sending mixed signals, you’re reading into what he is sending. He doesn’t want to date you. Period. Any man that wants to date doesn’t just suggest, he makes firm plans, and follows through. There’s nothing here but games. Move on.

Reply May 21, 2013, 1:03 pm

bootyboot

That guy just sounds like a nerd with no social skills. It’s so easy to drop someone online, he was just being a pansy about it. He should have just been honest. She gave him an out, and he was being a tool about it.

Reply March 1, 2012, 1:33 am

Bre

So me and this guy met about a month ago and started dating. And in two weeks we were obsessed with each other and were perfect, but then he told me that we
moved to fast and that i shouldnt be so clingy, so i backed off and he went back to his ex for like four days. And now hes wanting to hangout again and stuff but yet doesnt know
What he wants and says hes having mixed feelings. I like him alot alot alot. And i want him to find me irrisistible and to want me as his girlfriend what do i do!

Reply August 10, 2011, 11:16 am

Joy

I lived with a guy for a year and one day he decided he needed space and got his own apartment. I was crushed but he said he still wanted to see me just wanted his own place he said a place of our own because I had kids at home still. I got upset and told him if your gonna break our commitiment we have now how can I be with you. we didn’t talk for three months then started texting and talking a little. He asked me to dinner and told me he will always love me and everything seemed to be back to us. Until later I asked him can I stay with you tonight he told me no sorry baby. So we still are talking daily but not like we used to he doesnt respond often, but gets upset if I don’t answer when he calls. I asked him if he was seeing anyone else he said yes. nothing more to that conversation but he calls at least once a day or sends a text. He knows I love him and I feel like he’s keeping me on the back burner!

Help Advice.. I’m torn what to do.

Reply May 11, 2011, 12:02 pm

Smart Payment Plan

Conversely, being too busy can be a turn off to men too. i’ve had many guys tell me i didnt really need them and they went off and found an available, willing and able woman. So its good to be somewhere in the middle of needy and independent.

Reply October 19, 2010, 8:16 pm

Ve

Noo, don’t contact him, everything is so familiar to the word of ”game” here…look for the right one, not the player who knows what to do and what reactions will pick up from you, these ones are really so many, but to continue this dodgy road is useless for you into an end. The best thing is to not jump over the ones who want you to do so. Take care , all the best.

Reply July 18, 2010, 7:09 pm

Mary

What Kimberly went through sounds so familiar. Met this guy about 6 months ago. We knew each other in high school. Have had a long-distance relationship going on (which was perfect for me and I thought for him). Saw each other for an intense weekend after 1 month; then again for a great New Year’s weekend. Hours on the phone at night a few times a week — this seemingly amazing connection. He’s saying that we are boyfriend/girlfriend. He’s saying ‘People can tell when people are falling in love’. He and I both call New Year’s weekend perfect. Then return home after New Year’s — no phone calls from him, no response to text or emails. I call him a few times those first two weeks and the conversations are as great as ever – but it’s me doing all the calling. One night he asks what my friends think about me having a boyfriend. Then a few days later – I call and ask him what’s going on – are we on different pages? Since he hadn’t called once in the 2 weeks since New Year’s and since he wasn’t responding to texts/emails (and I’m not talking a million — I’m talking like 4 emails in two weeks and a few texts). He says “yes we are on different pages – you are more into me than i am into you”. And somewhere in his head he had the idea that I was calling him to tell him that I was going to quit my job, move to his town and move in with him. I was floored. I told him I was calling to talk about breaking up. He got a little huffy about women’s lib and why couldn’t i be doing the calling, etc.. Anyway – that was the last time we talked (a month ago). I kept hoping he would call but he hasn’t. I did write him a letter explaining my confusion and what I had been expecting out of the relationship (talking on the phone a few times a week and seeing each other every few weeks) – because there was no way I could call him after he said I was more into him than he was into me. I didn’t think the tone of the letter closed the door completely on my end (I ended it with “I do and will miss you”) — but anyway here it is a month later and I’m still struggling and even though my brain tells me he’s a jerk in a lot of ways – I still like the guy. (This is the first guy I’ve dated in 8 years — since my divorce from a 19 year marriage — which is part of my problem). Anyway – just not sure if he was playing me or if he just panicked. And now I’m going to the same town on a business trip in a few weeks and my heart says i should contact him but my head says NO WAY.

Reply February 14, 2010, 9:34 am

Sabrina Alexis

Oh let me clarify, in boy world, ‘needy’ has a whole different definition. For guys, something as innocent as “why didn’t you call me back” can be interpreted as needy. To illustrate my point, let me transcribe a convo I had with my brother the other day.

Brother: Ugh, my girlfriend is SO needy!
Me: Why?
Brother: Well I was at the library and she kept calling and calling but I was busy so I didn’t call her back until a few hours later. Then she got mad at me and said I should have texted her saying I was busy. She’s so crazy!
Me: That’s not crazy at all, it takes 2 seconds to text.
Brother: I was BUSY, she should have realized I was probably doing something.
Me: Well if you see that your girlfriend is calling you, the right thing to do is at least text saying you’re busy and will call her back.
Brother: That’s ridiculous! Why do I need to text her with an update on my life every 2 seconds?

You get the point!

Reply January 27, 2010, 8:40 am

Kimberly

Thanks Sabrina for the awesome advice! I definitely need to get over this guy, but whats crazy is that i dont think i was even acting needy! :( but o well… & thanks one again! yall are awesome!

Reply January 22, 2010, 8:09 pm

Sabrina Alexis

I definitely agree with Eric and Dee. To take is further, in the beginning stages of a relationship guys are very fragile and even the slightest indication of neediness can cause them to crumble and panic, i’ve been there more than a few times and never understood why it was happening until my guy friends broke it down for me. Anyway, that’s a little bit of info as to why he disappeared. A guy friend once told me that if you ever have to ask a guy “why didn’t you call me?” it’s a sign that the relationship is on the decline.

I have been in your situation SO many times and getting over it can be tough but trust me, another one will come along. There are so many guys out there, so just get back on that horse, meet people, date, have fun. Definitely do not dwell over this loser who didn’t appreciate you and ran away like a scared little girl when things started to get semi-serious. You will get over this, and then you’ll probably laugh about it and dish out advice to your gal pals when some jerk pulls the same move on them.

Hope this helps!

Reply January 21, 2010, 9:06 pm

Kimberly

Thanks Eric & Dee for your honest advice, i really appreciate it! Well its been a month & i never heard from that guy again.. i still feel pretty down and dissapointed, i cant understand why he would get my hopes and feeling up and just disappear…:( however, i have another question…any tips on how to let this go and move on and quit thinking about him??

Reply January 21, 2010, 12:41 pm

Eric Charles

Hey Kimberly,

I have to agree with Dee on this one… it sounds like he’s not into you anymore. A guy wouldn’t leave you hanging like that for that long if he cared. Hate to be so blunt about it but I would say you should drop him and move on.

Reply January 9, 2010, 6:51 pm

dee

Hey girl i hate to be the bearer of bad news but it looks like the guy is just not that into you anymore. If a guy is really interested in you he will make time to text back no matter how busy he is. Don’t waste anymore time on this guy move on and find someone will appreciate how fabulous you are. I

Reply January 6, 2010, 3:29 am

Kimberly

Eric i have a question….. Iv known this guy for over 6 months, everything was great the first couple of months, we had many awesome dates, but about 2 months ago he has become very distant, he dosent call or text, and i have to initiate contact, and if i text him he hardly textes back. He said he has been pretty busy. 2 weeks ago i asked him via text if were gonna hang out again sometime and he never replied. I havent heard from him in over two weeks. Christmas came and i sent him a little merry christmas text and he never replied back. Im very confused, should i just drop him and move on? sometimes i feel like maybe he dosent want to talk to me but doesnt want to be straight forward and tell me. I really like him, but im getting tired of waiting. Is it also possible that he will come around later or that he will noticed im not texting him anymore? please help! i feel pretty down. :(

Reply January 5, 2010, 8:15 pm

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