He Doesn’t Like You, He Likes The Idea Of You—9 Red Flags To Look Out For

It’s really easy to fall into the trap of admiring someone from afar with no intention of building something real. Many guys are guilty of this, so if you have to consistently ask yourself if he likes you or not, here are some signs that he’s probably only infatuated with the concept of you.

  1. He’s an egomaniac. The first and most obvious sign of a guy who only interested in the idea of you but not actually dating you is narcissism. He’s probably extremely into himself, knows he’s attractive and has had his fair share of lady friends. I’m all for self-love, but a guy who adores himself too much usually is incapable of loving another person equally. He likes to have his groupies on hand to ensure that his pride is regularly being caressed by girls who don’t know any better. If you see this red flag, run for the hills.
  2. He showers you with compliments. When you’re with him, he can’t praise you enough. He genuinely makes you feel like you’re the only girl who can satisfy his needs and ultimately make him happy. This is a ploy to crush your free-spirited, single girl persona and have you fall for him. Once he senses you’re all about him, his internal d-bag radar will send signals quicker than the speed of light. He’ll fall back the second he recognizes your feelings and leave you hanging for the mere reason that he knows he likes you but doesn’t want things to move to the next level.
  3. He’s sporadic with contacting you. You literally will not hear from this guy for six weeks and then as soon as you decide to forget about him, he’ll come crashing into your inbox in a Kool-Aid Man-like fashion. This isn’t because he’s thinking about you, it’s because he knows you stopped thinking about him. Since he’s practically feeding off of your adoration at this point, having you lose interest is an absolute no-no. He wants to make sure you’re still around so he has someone there for backup when the going gets rough.
  4. He still hovers around. If you have a hunch that he’s keeping tabs on you, he probably is. Every time you post a story on Snapchat, he’s the first to view it. Whenever you share a cute selfie on Instagram you bet your ass he’s liking it. Everyone once and a while he might tag you in a meme or send you some BS emoji as a reply to your post. Once you give in and respond to him with the reply he was anticipating, he’ll keep his answers short, end the conversation outright, or ignore you altogether. You might think he’s genuinely interested in what you’re up to, but all he’s doing is throwing you a bone so you receive just enough of his attention to keep you sticking around.
  5. He talks about future plans but doesn’t make an effort to initiate them. He talks about making plans in an attempt to make you believe there is a future between the two of you. This would be taken as a good sign if he actually followed through with his word. He’ll keep details vague, push back dates, or even blow you off completely when the time actually rolls around. He’ll make some dumb excuse about how he had to work late or fell asleep and you’ll believe him because you truly believe that he likes you enough to respect your time, right? Wrong.
  6. Everything is on his terms. Whenever you’re the first person to initiate any kind of meeting, he’ll figure out every way possible to weasel out of seeing you. He’ll lengthen his answer time between texts, claim he’s busy or not around, or bail last minute. This is clearly a pride issue that most men suffering from a toxic masculinity complex can’t overcome. In his mind, it’s only OK to see you when it’s on his time and his terms. He doesn’t want to seem like he’s at your beck and call so he’ll avoid the situation whenever possible. However, he knows you’ll always be around if he decides to reach out to you and is pretty pleased with the idea of having a girl who never says no.
  7. He only talks to you when he’s bored. The only time he ever really makes an effort to start a conversation with you is when he’s not busy lollygagging around town with his boys or straining his eyes on Xbox. He’ll shoot you a text late on a weeknight when there’s nothing to do and he has no one to talk to. You’re basically acting as his filler when he feels lonely and needs someone to kill time with when he’s in-between plans. As soon as something better comes up, you can guarantee you won’t hear from him for a while.
  8. He acts jealous over other guys. These types of guys are the absolute worst because they want their cake and to eat it too. They expect your entire life to revolve around them without having to put in any actual work. The kicker here is that they have the nerve to become infuriated by the fact that you’re seeing other people. This tactic is actually a lot more hurtful than the typical ghosting since playing the jealous card gives you a glimmer of hope that he might actually care. The only thing he cares about his ego and how quickly it’s going to bruise when you stop giving him the time of day.
  9. The more you ignore him, the more persistent he gets. You’ll actively take the steps needed to remove this person from your life, but the more you say no the more relentless he becomes. Unanswered texts only prompt him to reach out more often, hesitant replies cause him to be pushier, and silence on social media makes him throw you the L more than ever. He knows you’re slowly slipping away and is trying to rope you back in before you disappear from his life. Don’t let this behavior cause you to backtrack in your progress, once he has you right back where he wants you he’ll go back to his old ways.