Most of us have dated at least one dude who pulls the “I’m afraid of commitment” line when you want to take things to the next level. How do you know if he really has that fear or he’s just making up an excuse because he doesn’t want to commit? Look for these signs.
He’s probably afraid of commitment if his past relationships have followed similar paths.
Does he have a string of women that he’s left behind after he didn’t commit to them? Then he’s probably freaked out by the term “exclusive.” While he’s likely telling the truth about his aversion to commitment, the bigger question is whether you want to be next in line. On the flip side, if he has only long-term, monogamous relationships in his past? He’s obviously full of it.
He was lying if he immediately commits to the next person he dates.
Unfortunately, the answer to the question of whether or not he’s telling the truth can sometimes only be answered by what he does after you. If his relationship status is immediately upgraded to “in a relationship” the week after you split, then he was obviously lying to you. It sucks that you had to find out this way, but at least now you know. He didn’t have the maturity or decency to tell you the truth, so you’re better off without him anyway.
He is likely telling you the truth if he has troubled family dynamics.
Has your guy opened up to you about why he feels scared of commitment? Has he told you about his parents’ messy divorce or some other childhood trauma? If he has solid reasoning that he’s actually explained to you, he’s probably telling the truth. But regardless if his commitment-phobic ways are valid, you still have to determine if you want to stay and wait it out. If you do, be patient. If not, that’s OK too.
He’s probably telling the truth if he has a terrible past heartbreak.
I’m talking about a big, horrible heartbreak, as in he was engaged and she left him for another man or his last girlfriend died. Maybe just had a long string of failed relationships that ended in heartbreak. If he’s experienced major trauma in a relationship, it stands to reason that he’s afraid of getting his heart broken again. Go easy on him.
It’s probably an excuse if you think he has other women in the background.
If he’s still getting texts and calls from other women, he’s probably using the fear of commitment as an excuse. The truth is, he isn’t ready to settle down and give up dating other people. He’s not sure if he’s met “The One” or maybe just enjoys playing the field.
It’s probably an excuse if you feel like you’re replaceable.
A lot of times, if you’re in a placeholder relationship, you might convince yourself (or he might convince you) that he’s afraid of commitment when in reality, he just doesn’t want to commit to you. If you’re not sure if you’re in a placeholder relationship, you can read more about them here.
It’s not an excuse if he’s pushing 40 and still single.
If the guy you’re into is getting older but has been single for several years, he’s probably telling you the truth—he isn’t into commitment. Believe him. And even though it’s not an excuse, if he’s that stuck in his ways, he’s not likely to change any time soon and you probably shouldn’t hold out hope that it could be anything more. If you’re cool with things the way they are, great, but if you’re hoping this could turn into a relationship, you may be better off breaking things off now before you get really hurt.
It’s an excuse if he’s playing games.
If he’s hot and then cold or he seems like he’s playing games (or maybe has a reputation as a game-player) then he’s probably just not that into you, unfortunately. It’s more likely that he’s just comfortable with where he’s at (read: single) and he likes your companionship (and the sex). Again, if you’re into that situation, great. If you’re not, it’s probably time to break things off.
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