Does your man seem to have “left the building” in your relationship? Maybe he’s asked for space in the relationship or just doesn’t pick up the phone as much any more.
If you know that he is into you and is capable of a committed, loving relationship, chances are that this space is a good thing. (If he seems like he has commitment issues and has been doing the hot then cold routine with you, it’s not a good thing and it’s time to say “adios.”)
When a man pulls back, sometimes it’s because he needs breathing room to objectively evaluate the relationship. Men are thinkers and are in their heads (it’s that masculine energy) and when they get too caught up in emotions, they step back to recoup and assess the situation.
The important thing is that you deal with his need for space in the right way. I often tell women to do one thing for the relationship in order not to feel totally out of control, such as write him a letter expressing her love and letting him know that she understands; however, I also tell women not to be too accommodating during this time.
When a man takes space and that space feels yucky to you, in a way, it’s bad behavior on his part. Don’t reward him for bad behavior. You don’t have to punish him either and please don’t, but just don’t give him tons of your energy and attention (good or bad) when he takes space.
Try To Find Your Safe Space Within The Relationship
While your man takes space to do what he has to do to take care of himself, I want you to do what you have to do to take care of yourself. You already know that leaning on him and seeking him out to ease your distress isn’t a viable option. So what can you do to help ease your anxiety?
You can focus your energy outside the relationship. You can give yourself plenty of space to feel your feelings without self-judgment (stop beating yourself up about having fears or labeling yourself needy and insecure.) You can keep a diary and write endless letters to him in the diary (just don’t send them because you need to honor his need for space). DO whatever you feel you have to do to get through the separation. Please try best you can to do things that soothe you instead of things that stir up more feelings of abandonment or rejection.
When He Comes Back
When he calls you, don’t run to him. Don’t accept him back right away or cry to him about how awful everything was without him. Just stay still and calm and let him come to you. Be inviting and welcoming but also be honest. Tell him that you were hurting, “I understand why you took space, but please understand that I felt uncertain and sad. I don’t want to feel this way again. Do you understand my feelings?”
Let him do the work to come back to you. You allowed him to have space, now it’s his turn to come toward you and make you feel safe again. This DOESN’T mean that you make him jump through hoops to “test out” and “earn you”, this simply means that you stay still and honor any reservations you may have about his disappearing act by speaking up and taking time to reincorporate him back into your life.
When you take the time to reincorporate him, you avoid the ‘ol “one foot on the gas, one on the brakes” routine. See, you miss him and really want to see him, but if you run back to him, there will be another part of you that will push him away with equal force because he hurt you and broke your trust. You’ll cry, pick fights, shut down and get brittle. It’s best to avoid this roller coaster of opposing emotions and simply takes things at a slower pace.
To learn how to set the pace of the relationship in a way that feels good to you and to him (bringing you both closer to each other at the same time), check out my eBook, Red Rose Woman: The Enchantress Inside You. It explains how women have to be vulnerable and soft while still being firm and direct. It will help you feel empowered and take his disappearing act less personally. Because his need for space in the relationship really isn’t about you, it’s about him and how he processes intimacy and closeness.