Your romantic connection seemed strong and it seemed like you had a ton of chemistry, and you thought he felt the same. He said he did… until suddenly he didn’t. Now, a few weeks or even months down the line, he’s decided that you’re better off as buds than boyfriend and girlfriend. How are you supposed to deal with that? Here’s what to do when a guy just wants to be friends after dating (and sleeping with) you.
Are guys ever really sincere about this?
In a way, it seems like a cop-out. Instead of ghosting you (too harsh) or breaking up with you properly (too awkward), they can suggest that you’re better off as friends. It softens the blow, in many ways — or so they think. However, if you’ve heard this line before, you’re naturally going to think a guy who says it is fake as hell.
However, that might not be the case. It could be that the more time you’ve spent together, the more you’ve been exposed to one another’s lifestyles. If they’re vastly different, a long-term romantic relationship probably won’t work. However, if he really likes you and wants you in his life, he might say that he just wants to be friends even after dating you. He doesn’t want to lose you entirely, he just doesn’t want to be with you in that way, if that makes sense.
Whether or not he’s sincere or simply being a coward by not cutting you off completely depends on the circumstances. That’s down to you to figure out.
What to do when a guy just wants to be friends after dating
Ask him what changed. This takes some serious balls but it’s well worth doing. If he was gung ho about your romantic connection but changed his mind seemingly overnight, you have a right to know what changed. Be direct and confront him about it. If he respects you at all, the least he can do is be honest and upfront.
Remove all girlfriend privileges immediately. If you were doing things for him that normally are reserved for men you’re in a relationship with, stop now. It’s totally within his rights to say when he just wants to be friends after dating you for a while. It’s also within your rights (and important for self-preservation) if you start treating him accordingly.
Resist the urge to fight him or try to convince him otherwise. Keep your dignity intact here. If he doesn’t want to be with you romantically, no amount of pleading or bargaining is going to change that. Don’t ingratiate yourself in this way or make yourself appear desperate. You’re not. You’re worth so much more than that anyway.
Don’t fool yourself into thinking he’ll change his mind. In addition to taking his decision at face value, don’t wait for him. He’s not going to suddenly come around and realize that he made a major mistake. And, if he does, you shouldn’t be available and willing to run right back to him. It’s not meant to be.
Keep being yourself — don’t change. It’s tempting to think that he made his decision because you were in some way undesirable, but that’s not true. When a guy just wants to be friends with you after dating, it can really knock your self-confidence, but it doesn’t have to. Keep being yourself and realize that there are plenty of guys out there who will see all you have to offer.
How to shift your feelings for him from romantic to platonic
Focus on the negatives. This doesn’t mean performing full-on character assassination on him, by any means. He obviously has some great qualities, which is why you were dating him in the first place. However, when he says he just wants to be friends rather than continue dating you, there must be a reason. If you’re honest with yourself, you might notice little (or big) things that would make you unhappy if you were together romantically. Focusing on the reasons it wouldn’t work will make it sting a little bit less.
Then, think of the positives. What would it be like to have this guy as a friend? Assuming he’s serious about wanting to stay in your life, albeit platonically, think about why that would be great. Maybe he has a killer sense of humor or he gives great advice. Focus on what he’d add to your life and social circle rather than what you’re missing out on by not being his girlfriend.
Take a step back for a while. This is a vital part of gaining some perspective on difficult situations. In order to shift your mindset, you’ll probably need a little bit of time to get your head around it. If he cares about you as much as he claims to, he won’t fight you on it. Instead, he’ll happily give you your space while you work things out.
Date around a bit. Obviously, if you had serious feelings for this guy, don’t immediately go out and get with someone else to dull the pain. It might feel good in the moment, but it always backfires in the end. That being said, there’s nothing wrong with keeping your options open and having a look around at the available options out there. You’ll suddenly realize that this guy wasn’t the only fish in the sea, as they say.
If it’s too hard to be friends, go no contact. Only you know if a friendship with this guy is something you can handle or not. If it isn’t, and your feelings are just too strong, protect yourself by removing yourself from the situation. That doesn’t mean you can never be friends in the future. For now, it’s just not the right time.