How To Figure Out What He’s Thinking When He Stops Communicating

There’s no manual out there that will help you read a guy’s mind at any given time. Typically, that’s a skill saved for someone you really know well, but even that’s not foolproof. However, it’s important to know how to navigate through a situation where communication stops. Don’t immediately assume it’s because of something you did or said. What is he thinking? Go through these steps to find out.

  1. Take a look at your last text. Is it too forward? Is it sexual when your relationship hasn’t necessarily reached that level yet? There’s a possibility your last text might have taken it too far and he doesn’t really know how to respond. Give it a day and re-evaluate it. Chances are, this isn’t the case, but if you think you did go overboard, a “Yikes, just realized that was a bit too forward — sorry if you were uncomfortable” will go a long way.
  2. Try to figure out his work schedule. You don’t want to openly stalk him and try to claim his hours, but if he typically works 50 hours a week, then that’s a great reason as to why he’s not answering you back. Some guys can’t multitask as well as women can. While we can hold 30 different conversations across five different platforms, men are very focused on their task at hand. If he’s working, he’s busy. Don’t take it personally unless he actually tells you he’ll text you that day.
  3. Figure out if he lost his phone. If he also isn’t updating on social media and isn’t appearing online whatsoever, then you can definitely cross out the assumption that it’s because of you. The best-case scenario is that he’s taking a full-on technology break, although he could have let you know that. The second conclusion is that he lost his phone or can’t find a charger. The worst-case scenario is that he got hurt or sick. If it’s been more than a week of silence all around and it’s uncommon for him to be completely unplugged, you might want to ask a mutual friend if everything’s okay.
  4. Look back and see if his texts sound a little depressing. This has been a really hard year for all of us. Sometimes, guys especially don’t know if they can openly tell you about what’s wrong and that might be causing the silence. He wants to talk to you but doesn’t want to scare you off. If you want to try and form an emotional connection, you can reach out. Or, send him a small present as a pick-me-up. Little gestures matter, and it’s important to always check up on each other’s mental health.
  5. Figure out if the spark died. If you’ve been recycling through the same two conversations, then it’s possible the relationship has run its course. Ask yourself if you’re still interested in this guy or just curious about why he stopped talking to you. Are you feeling fulfilled? Ghosting is never okay, but maybe this guy actually did you a big favor.
  6. See if the conversation is balanced. Are you talking about yourself? Ask him questions. Learn more about him. Conversations need to be balanced and you can’t hog the spotlight, especially if you’re just getting to know him. If he’s still staying at home, ask him who he’s quarantining with. Or, ask him what his dream quarantine situation would be. What celebrities would he want to hang out with? Questions like this can be great ice breakers, and can really get a conversation flowing again.
  7. Figure out if you’ve been subtly declining him. Guys have difficulty asking women out sometimes, just as women get nervous with asking guys out. It’s possible that he gave you a “we should hang out sometime” message that you missed or disregarded since, in the context, you didn’t realize he was looking for a date. It sounds crazy but it’s very common. If most of your chats happen by text, there are bound to be a few that get a little misconstrued. Even with emojis helping pave the way, sometimes it’s hard to figure out someone’s intent. It’s possible he just thinks you’re not really interested in him on a romantic level.
  8. Step back from it to re-evaluate later. This is really hard to do but sometimes, when you really like someone, you need to back away for a little bit. Otherwise, your mind gets too wrapped up in the situation and you start a mental montage of worst-case scenarios. You don’t want to scare him by acting too forward. Maybe he just needs a brief break, or perhaps he didn’t see your last message come through. Take a deep breath and shut off your phone for a few hours.
Karen Belz is a New Jersey native who is currently living in Maryland. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communication with a focus in Broadcasting and Print Media Studies from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. Since graduating, she has written for sites like LittleThings, HelloGiggles, and Scary Mommy and is currently an e-commerce editor at Bustle.

When she's not writing, she enjoys making her phone run out of memory after taking too many photos of her dog. You can find her on Twitter @karenebelz or on Instagram @karenbelz.