After multiple months of dating, people generally know whether or not the person they’re seeing has serious relationship potential. If the guy you’ve been dating still hasn’t made things official with you, there could be various reasons why he’s hesitating to pull the proverbial trigger.
He’s seeing red or yellow flags. Even if you’re a great human and partner, everyone has different ideas of what constitutes problematic habits or behavior. The guy you’re dating might be unsure about making things official because he’s concerned about what he perceives as red flags. Maybe he thinks you’re a little too clingy (or a little too distant), or maybe he’s worried about the way you handled a disagreement with him. Whether it’s truly a personal fault of yours or him just being picky, it may be convincing him to hold back on taking that next big step.
He’s not over an ex. Some people think they’ve moved on but are still hung up on someone from their past. If you’ve heard him talking about his ex a lot (yes, even in an overwhelmingly negative way), it can very well mean she’s still on his mind. He might be trying to convince himself that he’s over her and by dating the same person for months on end, he probably believes that he’s succeeded. But that small part of him that still misses her might be the one thing keeping him from making things official with you.
He’s not sure if he can stay loyal. “Once a cheater, always a cheater” doesn’t apply to everyone. Serial cheaters do exist, though, and some of them thankfully have enough self-awareness to pump the brakes before they jump into a supposedly exclusive relationship. If the guy you’re dating has told you that he’s been unfaithful before, it doesn’t necessarily mean that he’d cheat on you too, but his lack of trust in himself may be stopping him from taking the next step and then breaking your heart later on.
He still wants to play the field. Maybe the reason he hasn’t asked you to be his girlfriend is that he doesn’t want a girlfriend right now. If you two are still “just dating,” it becomes easier in his eyes to take a step back and tell you that he doesn’t want anything exclusive right now. Once things become official, he has to straight-up ask for an open relationship or break up with you if he decides he wants to sleep with more than one person.
He’s a commitment-phobe. It’s not always a desire for someone else or a concern about you that keeps a guy from taking your relationship to the “official” stage — sometimes he’s just terrified of commitment in general. This fear doesn’t just manifest in romantic relationships, either. He might also hesitate to sign long-term leases or job contracts and he probably won’t have a pet that’s expected to live longer than a hamster. This doesn’t mean that he’ll never ask to make your relationship official. He just might need a bit more time to conquer his phobia.
He’s scarred from previous relationships. If you’ve ever had a particularly traumatic relationship or breakup, you can probably understand the emotional strength required to trust someone enough to enter a new relationship. Your guy may have gone through something similar and in that case, he deserves a bit of patience when it comes to taking this big step with you. Don’t feel like you have to wait around forever, though — your needs are important too, and if putting a label on your relationship is one of them, you two need to find a solution that works for both of you.
He doesn’t see the relationship lasting much longer. Sadly, sometimes a relationship runs its course before it officially has the chance to begin. Even if you see a future with this guy, he might be having doubts that this is what he really wants. Pay attention to the way he’s treating you. If he’s texting you less and finding excuses not to hang out as often, he might already have one foot out the door.
Relationships are a big deal for him. Everyone is different when it comes to relationship timelines. Some people are ready to make things official after just a few weeks of dating, but others need to move a lot slower. If a few months have gone by since you started seeing each other, it doesn’t hurt to check in with him and ask where he sees the relationship going. This conversation can give both of you a much clearer picture about what the other person is looking for, and it can help set your mind at ease knowing how much longer you’ll have to wait before you’re finally in an official relationship.
He’s hiding something. Unfortunately, some guys do have dirty secrets behind their hesitation. It may be something as simple as having a toxic family he doesn’t want to expose you to, or it could be as nefarious as you being the “other woman” in his life. Don’t jump to conclusions before ruling out all the other possibilities for why he’s holding off on making things official, but if you notice signs of him acting shady or secretive, don’t dismiss them right away, either.