What Does It Mean When He Says He Wants Space But Then Keeps Texting You?

Things were going great with the guy you’ve been dating… until he suddenly dropped a bomb on you and said he “needed space.” You were crushed, thinking that was guy code for “I want to break up,” but then he started texting you all the time. WTF?

He’s confused.

Yup, the guy really has no idea what he’s doing or what he wants. He told you he needs to “think things through” and you’re not sure if that means he’s unsure about you or just dealing with his own stuff. So basically now his confusion is making you confused. Ugh. FYI: you should never be with a guy who has to think about whether or not he wants to be with you—he should automatically know that he does.

He wants the best of both worlds.

He wants to have you around to text and chat to when he’s bored or lonely but then he wants his single man lifestyle where he can date other women if he wants, spend Saturday nights drinking with his buddies, and not have to worry about things like commitment. Great.

He’s testing the waters.

He might be texting you because he’s not quite ready to cut all contact with you and break up, so he’s fizzling you out to test how it feels. If he’s OK without going on dates and calling you his girlfriend, he might want to see how he does with just texting you, and then how he manages when he doesn’t text you as often… See what’s happening? He’s slowly moving out of the relationship until he feels comfortable with a clean break.

He wants less.

When he gets in touch even though he claimed to want space, you might think that things are going to get back on track, but they’re probably not. He could very well be downgrading your relationship from “committed” to “casual.” He wants less from you instead of more, which means fewer expectations and less of a relationship to suit his needs.

He doesn’t want to be the bad guy.

He really doesn’t want to be seen as the villain in all this even though he kinda is, so he’s trying to be the friendly guy who still wants to check in and see how you’re doing every now and then. Ugh, no thanks.

He’s keeping you as an option.

He might want to see you again in future so he doesn’t want to break up right now. He’d rather float around in case he’s lonely or bored and there’s no one else to fill that void in his life. Meanwhile, you’re putting your love life on hold in the hope of getting back together with this guy!

He wants to see you but not date you.

Here’s where things get even more confusing. He might text you, asking you to dinner, which naturally makes you think that he’s keen to start dating again, meanwhile he just wants to hang out. He’s giving you mixed messages here and making things more complicated. The guy needs to grow some balls to either move on from you or commit to you—he can’t do both.

He misses you.

Again, don’t get too excited thinking that a relationship sequel is about to happen. He might be texting you because he genuinely misses you, but sadly, a chat is probably all he’s looking for. He might even be making contact so he can feel better about the situation by realizing that you’re still there in his life. Ugh. Don’t make yourself too available. He doesn’t deserve to have you at his beck and call.

He doesn’t actually want to move on.

He’s fine with hanging around in this relationship purgatory because he doesn’t actually want to move on and be single. He’s hoping you’ll also be fine with this relaxed, casual dating setup. If you’re not, better speak up now!

He’s loaded with issues.

 They’re taking up all his headspace and he just can’t deal with relationship demands, but you know what? Even if that’s the case and he’s open with you about what his personal issues are, he still shouldn’t leave you hanging like this. What kind of relationship would it be if he checked out of it every time he needed to deal with his issues? If your relationship was important enough to him, it would be something that he valued and drew support from during difficult times—not pushed into a far corner.

He’s got someone else. 

Of course, there’s always the chance that he’s got someone else on the horizon and he needs to see what could happen with her. He obviously won’t tell you about this because he knows you’d break up with him right away, and he wants you to be an option if things with the other woman don’t work out. So shady! If you think there could be someone else, cut him loose. If he wants space, give him a whole bunch of it.

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