8 signs that signal he wants out of the relationship

You have been in a relationship for over a year and though it has its ups and downs, you feel content most of the time. After all, no relationship is perfect, right? Yet there are times you sense a storm brewing far away on the horizon, distant, but inching closer. You hint to your boyfriend about your concerns, saying things like "you would be lost without me," then getting no enlightening reply back from him. You want reassurance, but don't want to rock the boat--yet you know if something is wrong, you should be aware of it now so you won't be blindsided later.

The following are telltale signs that a guy may want out. If you see one or more of these in your relationship, it is time to address the situation head on or risk being dumped later without warning.

He is more irritable and moody

A change in mood can signal depression, stress, and/or health issues--it is also a classic sign of changing feelings towards a partner and relationship. Taken alone without other signs, you should encourage him to seek help from an MD. and possibly a counselor. However if you see this along with one or more of the signs below, it signals relationship trouble.

His interest in sex has greatly decreased as has his passion

He just isn't as interested in you, turned on by you, and as into you in general as he once was. He has not experienced any changes in his physical/mental health and he is not dealing with grief due to a recent loss or setback. You have tried numerous ways to initiate sex, have offered more affection and given him more attention, but he continues to keep his distance. It's clear he is slowly checking out of the relationship.

He no longer consults you about decisions

In the past when things came up in his work or his personal life outside of your relationship, he turned to you for support and feedback. He never would have made a big decision without consulting you first, and often expressed that this was because it would impact you as well. Now you hear about his decisions in passing, after they have been made. When you have brought this up, he kind of shrugs and says it really didn't have anything to do with you or wasn't something you needed to be involved in. It feels like the "we" is being replaced by the "I" in your relationship.

He forgets plans you have made and/or significant dates

One of the things you always loved about him is that he remembered the anniversary of the day you met, your birthday, and any significant day you had told him was coming up for you. He was also reliable regarding any plans you made regarding a weekend event, or special time together or with friends. Now you hear "Sorry, I just forgot," more often than not. When you express annoyance or hurt, he gets irritable and defensive, basically telling you to get over it that it wasn't that big a deal.

He always needs to work late, be out late

Once upon a time you both made an effort to get home as soon as possible every day, so you could spend time together. You would call or text one another, making plans for dinner or an evening out. Being together was a priority that you shared, and you can't remember when this began to change. Now he is rarely home in time to eat dinner with you, often doesn't get your texts at work due to being too busy or tied up, and has way too much work to get done during normal hours. So he has to stay late all the time and never lets you know when he is heading home. You have also found out by accident that he has had time for some happy hours after work or dinner with a friend.

His friends seem distant towards you

It was always a plus that you got along with his friends and they seemed to like and accept you right from the start. Now you feel a distance when you see them and conversation is strained and halting. What happened to the easy and open relationship you shared with them? You wonder if you said or did something to offend someone, but you also think it might be something they are hearing from your significant other who is their friend, first and foremost.

You often walk on eggshells around him

He picks fights over little things, gets defensive, and is overly critical of even benign things you say and do. He was never like this in the past, in fact you always felt his unconditional support and acceptance of who you are and how you feel. Now the atmosphere is charged with negativity and you feel relief when he comes home late and you don't end up in a dispute over nothing.

He tells you that you deserve better than him

This is a variation of the "it's not you, it's me." In fact it is about him--he is no longer content with your relationship. So the real problem is both of you together--your union is not meeting his needs anymore--and if you are honest with yourself, it's not meeting yours either. When he says this, he's hinting that he is not the one, just not being open and direct about why. He may also be trying to push you away and get you to take the first step towards breaking up. When you hear this, you can be sure it is him all right--he's just not that into you anymore.


Toni Coleman, LCSW
Phone: 703-847-1768


Copyright 2008 Antoinette Coleman. All rights reserved.

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