Understanding Men in a Long Distance Relationship

This woman’s question is about understanding men, long distance relationships, and what to do about a man who has become less available. Discover my dating advice on how to handle the gap in his attention.

understanding menIs He Pulling Away and What Can I Do about It?

“Dear Ronnie The Dating Coach for Women,

I met this great guy online and we’ve been ‘dating’ long distance for 7 months. I live in California and he lives in the U.K. – but the moment we started chatting, we hit it off, and now we play an online game together, just so we can stay in touch and Skype as much as we can. We talk or message every day, are very attracted to each other and have already exchanged I love you’s.

Recently, I went to finally meet him and we had an absolutely blissful two weeks of bonding together. Of course, we were eventually intimate (6 months of physically longing for each other is a long time!) and the sex was fantastic. It was difficult to leave him after spending every waking moment together and he even introduced me to his parents and I spent time with his 3 year old son.

But now, being back for almost a week, I must admit to feeling some anxiety. Maybe it’s separation anxiety? We’ve skyped only a few times this week and he’s had visitors for the 3 days so I haven’t ‘seen’ him. He has messaged me, told me he loves me, but other than that, hasn’t initiated contact in a day or so.

Maybe I’m over thinking this, but could it be that he’s pulling away from me? It feels like I have more of a need to see and talk to him than he does for me. It’s not that he’s cold, it’s that he’s become unavailable.

I knew, going into this, that a long distance relationship (LDR) would be hard, but it’s also difficult to know what to do or how to act, when he isn’t physically here. Should I call or message him when he’s not initiating contact himself? What’s the protocol in a LDR? I have read with great interest your stand on women ‘pursuing’ men (don’t do it) but I hate to think that he and I haven’t already established an open line of communication by now.

He hasn’t indicated any level of annoyance when I have gone a bit overboard with trying to reach him but I don’t want to push him away by appearing desperate or needy, though. (Even though I feel like I am!) So I wonder: Is it necessary to give someone ‘space’ when there is already an abundance of geographical space?? Is Skyping everyday and chatting while we play an online game together too much? I am really into this man and am hopeful about a future together.

Please help me with some of your amazing insight,
California Dreamer

Hi Dreamer,

You could be over thinking this.  But, admitting that you’ve already gone overboard trying to reach him let’s me know you’re probably more into him than he is into you. Your intuition is likely telling you something.

While I agree, you’ve been connecting for seven months, you haven’t been in a true relationship. Skyping and gaming are not the same as a relationship with face-to-face dates. Regardless, even if he lived near by I would give the same advice which is to pull away. You have already seen pushing to reach him is not working, so it’s time to back off.

When you pull away, one of two things could happen:

1) He’ll come to you as you leave space for him to miss you
2) You won’t hear from him which is your biggest fear

However, either one of these options is BETTER than pursuing him further. If he is just busy with visitors, you’ll look extremely  unappealing and desperate. When it comes to understanding men, know that a relationship is often like a dance, even as years get invested. Sometimes you simply have to pull back, give a man space and let him come to you. Otherwise he can feel cornered and withdraw further which is not the reaction you are seeking.

I could be completely off base, but I have heard this kind of story before. You think you are “dating” for months. The fantasy was romantic and fun for both of you. Then you meet and have an amazing time. Sadly, this has nothing to do with building a future or his being serious about you.

I encourage you to let go and see if he comes to you. If he doesn’t, you have your answer. That means he is no longer interested. You might as well find out now rather than waste several more months on a fantasy relationship with a man who doesn’t want what you want – true love. Understanding men in terms of their interest is a whole lot easier when you don’t ask why he’s doing something and instead judge his interest by his lack of action.

127 responses on “Understanding Men in a Long Distance Relationship

  1. Ronnie Ann Ryan Post author

    Hi Ali, Honestly I don’t understand your arrangement. Why stay married if you are not together? You let his mother intimidate you enough that you left him? He could be secretive because he has another woman at this point. My only suggestion is that if you want to feel secure move back to be with him. Sorry I can’t be of more help.

  2. Ali

    I want some answers about my 6 year long distance marriage. We got married in his country and lived in his house with his mum. I left bcoz I sensed his mum is not ok with our marriage. At first, it was still very nice as he always wanted to come visit me even though I feel he doesn’t like me being away. We now have a child, but he’s become distant and secretive. Every time I discuss it with him, he says nothing’s wrong, just busy with life. But it bothers me no as it wasn’t like this before. He says he loves me and our baby but why am I not feeling secure? I’m just afraid I will also get tired of this kind of way. pls help

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *