He Pursued Me, Then Disappeared! Understanding Men

He pursued me then disappeared – What does that mean? Why would a guy act so into me then stop and ghost me? Here are five possible reasons he pulled away.

he pursued me then disappeared7 Reasons Why a Guy Acts Interested Then Backs Off

I’m guessing if you are reading this post, some guy did this to you. He came on strong and seemed so into you. Then suddenly he just vanished. Poof! Gone.

This is one of the most aggravating things about dating. Things are going great. You enjoy each other’s company and look forward to seeing him.

He seems to get you, which feels great. While getting to know each other, you are having so much fun!

Then he pulls away and you are left wondering what the heck happened. You examine every conversation looking for something you said or did wrong.

You blame yourself even if you can’t find anything to point to that would cause this.

His Disappearance Is Maddening

You’re upset and find the whole thing disconcert! Your world just got turned upside down. How could this be? Everything was going so smoothly.

You know he liked you too. Now what? You wonder if there is anything you can or should do to get him back.

Why do men do this kind of thing? You keep asking yourself, “How can this be – He pursued me then disappeared?”

There are as many reasons for this behavior as there are men who do it. But I’m going to share seven of the biggest reasons with you below.

1. Busy with Work or Study

A man who is very busy proving himself in his career or loving his work, that’s his first priority. The same thing is true for studying to get his degree.

Which automatically means you are NOT his top priority. So you come after everything about work or school that needs his attention first. If that doesn’t appeal to you, then you know he’s not the right guy.

2. Dating Other Women

When you first start seeing a guy and you’ve only had a few dates, assume he’s seeing other women. This could be exactly why he disappeared – he got interested in or distracted by someone else.

If you’ve only had a few dates it can be a disappointment, but not that big a deal.

Don’t let yourself get too invested in a man you’ve seen just 2-4 times. Hopefully, you know how to avoid premature attachment to men you are still vetting over 6-10 weeks.

3. Not Happy with Himself

When a man is not happy with himself, his life or his career, he just can’t make you his main priority. Being unsettled creates a feeling of not being a good “provider” which gets in the way of building a strong relationship for men.

Unfortunately, this is not something you can help a man get through. He has to find his way and this is definitely a reason why a man might disappear.

4. Doesn’t Want a Relationship

Some guys know they do not want a relationship. They don’t want ties, the expectations or the responsibility of being attached to a woman.

It could feel like a giant weight hanging around his neck, holding him back from what he knows he needs to do.

Don’t feel offended – this is not about you. It’s all him baby.

5. Needs Healing after Divorce or Breakup

You may think that you’ve met a great guy that needs help getting over his ex. DON’T GET SUCKED IN!

You might actually help him recover, but then 99.99% of men will skip out and move on to the next relationship. Happens all the time.

This is because you remind him of a painful time when he was weak and needed help and so he wants to give himself as much space from that AND you as possible.

That’s the thanks you’ll get for helping him. Don’t try to trade your nurturing for his love because you will not be rewarded.

6. Prefers to Keep It Casual

He pursued me then disappearedAll men are not relationship ready. Some don’t want to get serious so they keep things casual.

It’s easier and they avoid getting entangled in something demanding or restricting. When you are in a relationship you have to consider the other person’s feelings, wants and desires.

On the other hand, when casual – anything goes. There are no rules.

Some guys catch on that you want something more serious, so they disappear. If you are still asking why he pursued me then disappeared – this is a likely reason.

Men often do this thinking it’s nicer and less confrontational than some ugly emotional scene when you realize he’s not going to stick around.

7. Not Sure How He Feels

If you’ve been seeing a guy for several weeks and everything is going beautifully, then he suddenly disappears, there’s one more possible reason.

He’s not sure how he feels about you. A lot of men need space to figure out emotional issues. This is where talk of the ‘Man Cave’ comes in. They retreat to gain strength.

Now if he comes back in a week, that’s good news. He may have decided to move forward with you and your relationship.

However, longer than 7 – 10 days doesn’t bode well. He’s withdrawn because he’s out and is no longer interested.

Countless articles have been written by experts promising ways to get your ex back. For the vast majority of situations, there’s NO WAY to get him back.

It’s a harsh truth, but the only way a man returns to the relationship is IF HE WANTS TO.

When He Disappears Let Him Go

Most women think if they could just understand what went wrong and talk to him, they could make things work. Nothing is further from the truth.

Yet, the first reaction is to text, call, text, email. You might feel driven to reach out non-stop to get a hold of him and find out what happened.

Sadly, pushing to talk does not work. You know this is true because if he wanted to talk, he’d respond or reach out. He knows how to communicate, but he is CHOOSING NOT TO.

Worse still, if there was any hope of him ever returning, you’ve just put the last nail in the coffin, killing that possibility by appearing weak and desperate.

He Pursued Me Then Disappeared! What Can I Do?

There are things you can do when a man disappears:

  • Leave him alone
  • Do not contact him
  • Text him or call him
  • Don’t think that if you could talk to him, you could make things right
  • Move on with your life and leave him totally alone
  • Time apart might make him miss you and that alone could bring him back

So if you’re wondering “why he pursued me then disappeared,” now you have seven reasons. Take note – none of them are about YOU.

Not how you weren’t good enough, pretty enough, smart enough or successful enough. Nope, all seven reasons are about HIM.

Don’t blame yourself for his disappearance. Most likely, the reason he pulled away was not your fault. Take time to heal and get over him.

Then move on to find a better man. A man who is relationship ready and knows you are the one for him. He IS out there, so do not give up! It’s never too late for love.

If you want to know how to smarten up about dating, get my free book 7 Dire Dating Mistakes that Keep You Single.

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.

131 thoughts on “He Pursued Me, Then Disappeared! Understanding Men”

  1. Thank you for writing this article. I am new to dating and was completely baffled when the gentleman I was dating for 6 months just disappeared.
    I reached out and he eventually responded saying he was dealing with family “issues” and apologized for being distant. But that was it. I know I should be ok with that response but he really pursued me and got me used to being treated with a lot of attention. We took our time with the relationship. I question if his confessions of love for me were ever real. I mean, how could a man who can’t go a few hours without contacting me to not even being a thought in his mind. I am going to try to “flush” and move on. It’s just a shame because he is a really good guy!

    • Hi Nancy, Yeah that is a bit baffling. I’m wondering what his family issue was – maybe he was still married and got caught cheating? That would explain things in a way. But who knows? I agree, put this behind you and move on. There’s a better man waiting for you!

  2. Thanks for writing this article Ronnie, it helped. I met a guy online last month who was kind, gentlemanly, and we had a ton in common. He called me after talking online for 2 days and we talked for an hour, then again a week later we talked for 2 hours! So we met and had two very wonderful dates. He was clearly attracted to me. Admittedly we moved a bit fast, but I saw no reason not to for how well we were getting along.

    He pursued me and initiating everything. But instead of an invitation for a 3rd date, we ended up having an honest conversation. We both want a long-term relationship, but he admitted that he felt it was impossible to plan for one with covid and quarantine lockdowns. He’s stressed out by work and has a pattern of meeting and liking women, but not having strong enough feelings for them. He had strong enough feelings when we hung out

    He ended things and is taking a step back from dating to focus on himself and his goals. We parted very amicably. I guess I am confused if he just genuinely wasn’t that into me, and was letting me down kindly? Or if he really did like me, and maybe someday he’ll be back? Your article helped me see that it wasn’t because of me or anything I did that he left though, so thank you for that.

    • Hi Abbey, I’m glad the article helped you see you did nothing to push him away. Now I want to help you read between the lines of this situation. I’m so sorry to tell you this man did whatever he thought it would take to get into your pants and once he did that he decided to be “honest”. That’s his way of moving on. No doubt he’s sadly played this game often to get some female companionship and his needs met on his terms only. He lies when he says he wants a long-term relationship, but he knows that’s what women want. The one place where he was honest was owning up to his “habit”.

      Now keep in mind I’m not saying he didn’t like you. I’m sure he really did enjoy your company. what I’m explaining is how he had a different agenda than yours. His is very short-term and you want the real thing long-term.

      I have no judgment about when women want to sleep with a guy – that’s a personal decision. However, my dating advice is to hold out for 5-6 dates (over several weeks) because that way you weed out men like this. Since he just wants a roll in the hay, he most likely wouldn’t put that kind of time in. This gives you the chance to stay objective and get to know a man a bit better before the hormones kick in. It’s not fool proof but it’s a pretty good strategy to guard your heart.

      Try again! I’m sure you can find the love you want and deserve. Every man you meet brings you one man closer to the love you dream of.

  3. Hi, I recently started dating an ex again who I broke off with over 5 years ago. It started as casual, with him asking me to hangout every once in a while. We’d have sex, spend the night together and the next day as well. I didn’t see it as much until he started texting me daily. He took me out one night and intentionally called it a date 6 times ( I do not exaggerate ). After that we hung out every 3 days and weekends. I joined parties at his house. He was always so sweet, calling me babe, rubbing my feet, cuddling and kissing me. It turned to hanging out regularly and texting all most every day over two months. This past weekend he had a pool party and left for work in the morning (as normal.) I texted that night and he replied. Then the next day when I called he didn’t answer, call me back or even text. I texted to swing by to get my swimsuit and he didn’t reply to that either. I’m confused and annoyed, as I was only reciprocating the level of effort and attention he was giving me Now all of a sudden he stopped. I don’t know if I’m reading into it or if he has all of a sudden lost interest? I don’t understand why and I’m really confused about it all.

    • Hi Confused, I don’t blame you for feeling confused! This makes no sense and his behavior is rude. But this is different than dating a new guy. With your history, you can be direct and ask him, “Why aren’t you responding? I need my swimsuit and will be by tonight to pick it up.” Then see what he says and does. If still nothing, I’m afraid something is up and your togetherness is likely over. I don’t know why you broke up with him last time, but perhaps he is not honest with what is going on with him, even if he’s sweet to you. Be strong – you survived ditching him once, so you’ll get through it again. This is why I often recommend not dating an ex again – its like watching reruns on TV – you likely know what is going to happen since you’ve seen it all before.

  4. Hi Ronnie!
    I’m so confused. I met a guy October 2018 through a work event and he persistently pursued me. Constantly messaging me on Instagram, commenting on pictures, reaching out. I didn’t give him my number up until recently because I wasn’t interested. I started becoming interested later in 2019 and we spent some time together (work and just fun). All for him to tell me that he just wants a “f buddy.” I was so disappointed after a year of constant persuasion, that’s ALL he wanted from me. I was heartbroken because I had hopes he was genuinely interested. As a woman, I would never pursue a man for over a year just to sleep with him. He did tell me he was in a 7 year relationship and he’s been single for a couple of years enjoying life…. so I’m actually not upset with him because I’ve never been in that long of a relationship, so maybe it really hurt him. I just don’t understand why he pursued me for so long just to tell me he wants to fool around. Haven’t heard from him in a couple weeks. I think he ghosted me. Is this something common that men do? Why pursue a woman for so long for nothing?

    • Hi Abbey, Sorry to hear this happened. I know it’s hard to understand this from a woman’s perspective. You have to think like a man. He enjoyed the challenge of winning you over. That was fun and boosted his ego. After a year he probably didn’t think you’d go for it so he had to come clean. Yes, men often flirt with and pursue women just for the challenge. (Plenty of women have dubious motives too.) At least he fessed up rather than stringing you along any further.

      By the way, don’t get sucked into men’s excuses based on their romantic history. Feeling sorry for a man never made him come around or love you the want you want. Watch out for that kind of thing with the men you meet. You can’t see everything ahead or know for sure at first. But I will say is this – give a man space to prove himself.

      If he consistently wants to spend time with you (one or more times a week) but isn’t rushing you (every single night) that’s a good sign. Avoid the rush – it usually burns itself out. I always recommend slowing things down. And, if a man is inconsistent – not weekly dates, then he’s simply not serious or relationship ready. That will help a lot as you meet new men and look for one who wants a relationship with you.

    • Hi, Im married and met this guy who was so great . (Never were intimate) he wanted me to leave my husband and marry him, he got depressed because he couldn’t have me and begged me many times to be with him, i loved him but not enough to leave my husband..his parents were pushing him to get married since hes a muslim and being a doctor and 30 years old he was supposedly ready, they introduced him many girls he didn’t want , he only wanted me, but he realized i was never gonna be with him, he got married with one of those girls really quick and said the day i wanna be with him for real, he will be mine, blocked me and doesn’t even wanna be friends. I miss him like crazy and think of him 24/7. i just don’t understand why i feel so bad about losing him and how can i forget about him knowing its the best thing to do , i feel like since it was my fault i would never get over it

    • Jennifeer – You are focusing on what you lost – anyone feels badly when they do that. Instead find ways to be grateful for what you do have and what is working in your life. Gratitude changes everything and can give you a positive outlook when things feel the bleakest. Also, sometimes its easier to look at what you lost then think about what’s going on currently in your life – it can be a great distraction. Only you know if that is true or not but ti all makes me wonder what is happening within your marriage.

  5. hey ! we live in the same city that I was saying it was strange to be like that when you first talked to them and never even met in person yet … thank you I knew something not right or is off

  6. I have met a guy from a dating app talked for two days now have FaceTime each other and text he was so pursued into me when he first talked to me , he was saying all the things a lady wanna hear, he was saying ‘ I hope I can be the right guy for you “” I care about you “” you’re my queen but then he disappeared after.. what could I done? or is just him … it was strange that a guy says that when they first meet you . im confused someone help ?

    • Hi Jennifer – This is called “Scamming!” How can he hope to be the one for you when he’s never met you? How can you be his queen? This is nonsense! He wants to text and video and feel loved. And more likely he wants cybersex. Whatever it is, it won’t be true love I guarantee it. Block him and look for love locally. You want to date real men locally to avoid this long-distance, heartbreaking, virtual dating.

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