Did I Scare Him Off? Understanding How Men Think

Have you ever worried, “Did I scare him off?” It’s possible. Find out if you’ve made one of these common mistakes with a new man.

Did I scare him off Don’t Scare Him Away!

Halloween is about the fun of scary things and ghoulish stories. But the last thing you want to do is scare off a new man in your life. Here are four ways you might inadvertently frighten your date away and how to avoid them.


1) Staunchly Independent

You are an independent woman who can take care of yourself so you don’t NEED a man. I get it. You might really enjoy your independence or perhaps you fought hard to win it. However, communicating this to a man does not portray as positively as you might imagine.

Most people, including men want to feel needed. They want to help with your car, fix stuff, carry heavy things or open jars.

A staunchly independent woman who is proud of her status can be off putting because that guy your dating doesn’t want to feel unnecessary in your life. You wouldn’t like that either.

Your independence is fabulous! Just don’t flaunt it in your new man’s face. Let him open the door for you, order the wine, pick up the check. Let him have the traditional role and “be the man.”

If you want to be an irresistible woman, be warm and receptive, be easy to please and be appreciative of his efforts whenever you can.

But don’t brag about how you can totally take care of yourself. If you do, you might wonder, “Did I scare him off?” and chances are the answer will be, “Yes”.

2) Talking about the Future

When you meet a wonderful man, it’s hard not to get caught up in the excitement. That’s the fun part of dating. However, if you start doodling your name with his to see how it sounds after a few dates, that’s another matter – and definitely living in the future.

Please don’t plan your future so early on. Stay in the present moment and emotionally what I refer to as “Positively Neutral”. You are positive about the future and the present, but you remain detached or neutral.

This keeps you from getting heartbroken while you avoid freaking your new guy out. If you do cross this line, and you worry about, “Did I scare him off?” sadly it’s all too possible

Anything can happen to move the relationship forward or to cut it short. Your positive, yet neutral outlook keeps you balanced.

When you lean into the future, you’ll appear anxious or needy – Oh no! That sets off HUGE warning bells and starts the downhill slide for a man. So, avoid over thinking the future. Stay present, keep your eyes open and know that it will all unfold with time. Don’t rush a man if you want him to stick around.

3) Fixing Him Up

Let me tell you straight out – you cannot change a man. You cannot change anyone, except yourself and event that’s not so easy. There are only two things you can change about a man: 1) his clothing and 2) his hair if you’re lucky. But that’s it.

He is who he is. Your attempts to improve him could be taken as a lack of appreciation for who he is right now. That’s won’t bode well for your budding relationship. Pushing him to change is a great way to push him away.

Yet, women make this mistake all the time! I remember thinking about a guy and wishing I could just mix together a good part of someone else with the new guy’s qualities to have the perfect partner. We all have done this from time to time. But it[‘s NOT possible!

So refrain from fixing him. Appreciate who he is right now and if you cannot do that, he’s probably not the right man for you.

4) Invading His Space

I’m sure you’ve heard about the man cave. So wen you are first seeing a new man, he’s going to frequently return to the man cave because he feels really comfortable there. You may be tempted to reach out to him, especially if you haven’t heard from him. DON’T DO IT! You’ll be invading his private territory.

That means, no matter how much you want to, don’t call him, text him or initiate contact. Let him come to you with his own sense of timing. If you don’t hold back, and think how men and women are equals and this is silly not to connect, you will likely pay the price.

For the first 4-6 dates, let him initiate and lead. Don’t crowd him, get in his space or take over pursuit. This never works. If he’s fallen away, his lack of communication tells you he’s not so interested. His actions and efforts to connect are the only thing that matters, not his words. Don’t take over no matter how tempting, because chances are you’ll soon be asking, “Did I scare him off?”

How to Enjoy the Magic

There are many more chilling things women do to chase men away, like not returning phone calls, talking about your ex, complaining that all men stink, going on and on about your kids, etc. So, if you’re dating someone who seems to be a good match, smile at him, praise his efforts, give him a warm reception and enjoy the magic that is falling in love.

Happy Halloween!


Single for too long, Ronnie wanted to find love. So, she made a few tweaks and then dated 30 men in 15 months to meet her adorable husband Paul. Discovering the keys to midlife dating, she founded It’s Never Too Late for Love to help other smart, successful women find love too! Her mission is to share her proven dating advice  and keen insights about men with women everywhere who are serious about finding love with the right man. Ronnie Ann Ryan, MBA, CCC is a Certified Coach who has helped 1,000’s of midlife women with her Love & Dating Coach services. She’s been featured on BBC’s 5 Live Radio, NBC, ABC, and Fox News, NPR, eHarmony, MSN.com, MORE.com, Connecticut Magazine among others around the world. An established author, you can find her 6 books on Amazon.

5 thoughts on “Did I Scare Him Off? Understanding How Men Think”

  1. I find guys who won’t commit, what am I doing wrong? We text then meet up, have a great time.( just hang out, no sex) Then they tell me that they only want a fwb. Why can’t I find a guy who wants to be more?

    • Hey Awe, There’s a mix of men out there. Plenty don’t want a commitment- but some do. Just keep going. You might not be doing anything wrong. The only thing that comes to mind from the little bit you told me is that “hanging out” could be the problem. Often men who are casual or want FWB hang out. Read this post. Perhaps men who want a relationship take you on dates – they try harder to win you over.

    • Hi Suzan, Doesn’t sound like he treats you very well. If you can’t count on him, he doesn’t keep his word and he’s jealous, is he the right man for you? You can’t change him – after 6 years you should know this is who he is so maybe you deserve a better man.

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