What does it mean when he says he needs space? What should you do?

This can be very confusing. Especially if when you give him space, he’s still texting and communicating with you.

As hard as it is, you need to listen to his actions –  not his words. Most of the time, when a man says that he needs space, it’s because…

  • He’s done with the relationship but doesn’t want to feel like a bad guy.
  • He’s taking your temperature to see how far he can push the “I need space” thing (while still keeping you around, getting his needs met, not having to be committed to you in any way, and seeing what else is out there).
  • He genuinely needs space.

If you’re with a good guy who genuinely needs space right now but wants to be with you…

There won’t be any confusion. He will communicate with you and make it clear through his actions that he wants to remain with you, but is struggling with x,y, and z. Then, it will be up to you both to decide how you want to proceed. This is what happens in mutual relationships.

You don’t need to empathize to a detriment here. Your instinct knows when you are getting respected and it knows when you are not.

If he says he needs space but has no issue being ambiguous about it and keeping you in relational limbo…

Give him the space he wants and take it very literally.

If it’s space he wants, do the one thing that he will never be able to do and speak with your actions. Don’t talk to him, hook up with him, or allow him to have any of the benefits of being in a relationship (of any kind) with you. Cut him off. He can’t claim to need space from you and then expect to have access to you whenever he wants.

You have every right to be hurt. You can cry and you can be confused because yes this is bullish*t, but if you had healthier levels of self-esteem…

The second that he says he needs space and can’t give you anything other than more red flags and confusion, you would make a dignified exit. Why? Because you have your own back and always look out for the one person who you should never want (nor will you ever be able) to take any space from – yourself.

Live your life and stop making room for people who can be happy with “space” in between you both. Start gravitating toward the people who couldn’t imagine a day without you. If that’s just your family right now – that’s okay and if you don’t have a family, guess what? You have this community and you are never alone.

You’re worth so.much.more. and you know it.

x Natasha

If you need further and more personalized help with your breakup, please look into working with me here.

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90 comments

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OMFG THIS POST IS EVERYTHING NATASHA!!!!!! This is the exact thing I’ve been dealing with. I can’t thank you enough for this post and just for creating this amazing blog. And also I’m dying for your shoes and your whole outfit. Long hair looks gorgeous on you but I really like the shorter length too. So beautiful! Thank you again. I feel like I’m always thanking you because I feel like you’re reading my mind… lol! xo

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Best post, best blog, best girl 🙂 I love you and I loved this one. It’s so true! You are an old soul my dear. So good!

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Thank you! I needed that so badly! Such a great reminder of everything I should already know…but often forget.

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Hi Rachel! Thank you for reading and thanks for making me smile. I’m glad it served you 🙂 xx

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Hi Natasha,

In your experience, has a guy ever returned from ‘space’? I screwed up royally by turning batsh*t crazy and am now beginning to feel the burn when I agreed to give space – but it is driving me crazy… and its been 2 days since we emailed and a week since we saw each other last.

I love your blog as I am finally seeing sense in my own behaviour and am freaking out that I may have screwed things up for good!

B

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Hi Bonnie!

Thank you so much! 🙂 I’m happy that the blog has helped!

I would need more details/background info and don’t have the time to answer as extensively as I would want to in the comments section.

Thanks for your love, for reading and for your understanding.

I do offer one-on-one coaching if you’re interested and would be happy to help further ? The link to it is on the homepage.

All my love to you sister!

You’re not alone xo

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The guy that i have been seeing, announced yesterday that he wanted to give me my space, because i have been pulling him up on things he has been doing , like inviting me over to chill and watch a movie, but he is on his phone with his back to me WTF!!! and i ask him is he talking to other girls and he says no i have lots of friends and im just catching up, now i think about it now i should have got out of bed there and then and said well have fun fucking your phone and went home.
Im so over men useing me as a fuck tart, i just cant be botherd anymore and that just pisses and makes me more upset, men are dogs and i just really dont think i have time for them anymore…

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Thank you!

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🙂 xoxo

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This was the perfect article I needed to read right now. Described my exact situation and I feel a little more at peace about it now. Thank you for your words of wisdom

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Hi Rachel!

Thanks 🙂 I’m so glad that the post was helpful xoxo

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Hi I have recently dated a guy who has liked me since 2009 we finally got together and have been talking every day for the past few months.. We had a great first date where he told me he could get used to spending a lot of time with me.. Then he decided things were moving to fast and wanted to slow it down which I agreed so we continued talking every day and slowly it picked back up again where we admitted feelings and he said I was the only woman he would consider dating.. Anyway last weekend he invited me over to watch a film and he cooked dinner, it was lovely and relaxed and it felt so right, we ended up spending the night together and the sex was amazing, we spent the day in bed again great sex, I spent the evening and he cooked dinner again and I stayed another night.. The next day he was very affectionate and it was Valentine’s Day he made me pancakes, got me a card and dedicated a song to me in the radio it was perfect…
I went home later that day and I got home to a text from him saying happy Valentine’s Day and love hearts… The communication didn’t stop from him, he carried on texting but something changed where as before he was flirty and we had great banter his texts were dull and uninterested as if he was a different person almost like a stranger… Then that night he said he could smell me in his bed and missed his snuggle buddy and I thought this was lovely but the next morning he went back to being cold, there was nothing affectionate about his texts or anything mushy like before.. I let it go on for a couple of days and then sent him a text saying ‘thinking of our night together and how amazing it was’ and when he text me back he didn’t even acknowledge what I had written but asked something really random and mundane… Where as prior to this weekend he would of responded with a flirty message back but now nothing…
Now I’m not normally insecure but I really liked this guy and I had told him that I wouldn’t sleep with him unless he was dating me so it’s not rocket science for me to want things to remain the same in how he’s being with me.. So my gut was telling me something was off so I called him on it and I said something has changed!! What’s going on? I’m getting a feeling here?
His response to this was “oh I’m sorry I didn’t realise it was making a mountain out of a mole hill day!!!”
Well I was gobsmacked here is had this really sweet caring attentive guy who had liked me for years and the first time I question something.. Even if it was in my head (but completely believe I was right) he had suddenly changed and become disrespectful..
So I messaged and said that was hurtful and unnecessary and of course I’m going to question him because he’s behaving different and that’s not making. Mountain out of a mole hill it’s called being human…
His response to this was ” congratulations for making something out of nothing and he didn’t need this and needs to take a break from this and I needed to respect that!!!”
So I have… As far as I’m concerned he can take as much space as he needs… Sink into a black hole of space for all I care… Because it wasn’t the space that was the issue as I can understand that relationships are scary etc and sometimes we need to re evaluate but for me how he dealt with my fear by being disrespectful is why he will never have another chance.. For me a big red flag wasn’t the wanting or asking for space but diminishing my feelings as if they are nothing esp as he claimed to be my friend and care about me… The one thing I am learning is that if I do not respect my boundaries then no one else will either and rightly or wrongly this guy did that… I’m not saying he’s bad or wrong as its how he deals with things but he is bad and wrong for me and I respect myself to much to have a guy think it’s ok to talk to me like that and not be sorry or explain a valid reason why….

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Emma!

YES! I am so proud of you. You are acting in light of the love and respect that you have for yourself. You communicated openly and remained the kind, classy lady that you are. You go girl 🙂 xxx

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So- I basically had the “shit or get off the pot” “move forward or let me move on” conversation and he initially let me go…. He apologized his process was torturing me (my words) and that he loves me so much but the fact that his actions were hurting me he saw no choice but to end it and he says he knows he will probably regret it and it will be too late- THEN we speak 45 minutes later and he says he feels awful cause the same issue keeps coming up (about if I can be a stay at home mom if we get married- he’s afraid of being sole provider, I’m traditional and want to raise my kids). Anyhow- he says “let me take the rest of today and think and take you on a date tomorrow”….. Date goes great then in the evening he says, “I don’t want to break up with you.” I say,”me neither.” Lots of I love you- loads of affection (no sex!) and just deep breathing after this super stressful weekend.

We see each other Tuesday and have an amazing time!

Come Thursday he says, “I didn’t sleep last night thinking about everything we talked about last weekend, I still don’t have resolve, I think I need time/space to gain my perspective. I am out of town for work this week, hopefully we can connect when I get home. I love you. Xoxo”

And that was 6 days ago.

I am of course in anguish- I love this man and I we are so good together- this is our very first issue and we’ve been together almost a year!!! And this is a major life issue: do our future goals line up?

So- I guess what I’m asking is: does it make me a push over to listen and be respectful for the week? Or is that love is patient?
I have said if I don’t hear from him his weekend I’m done- but one week is understandable given that we’re later in life and want kids and this is a very serious topic that I crossed my arms and stomped my foot and said is it a deal breaker for you or not? And he needs to think about it…..

And back story: this is a hyper intellectual over thinker male- with extreme over achiever attitude so he over analyzes everything! Even something as simple as what brand of socks to buy…. So I believe this is a hard mind provoking question for him and all his actions before This were of total 100% love.

Help- I don’t want to be a push over. But in sure every girl says that-

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What ever happened? I’m in the throes of a very similar situation & I’m very curious if this “space” was bullshit or if it made the relationship better?

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I met this guy a month ago..and we met outside..he thought I was attractive and we exchanged numbers. He came onto me really strong, would call me, text me..tell me he misses me all after two weeks. He seemed really sweet..would make me food, gave me a purse, drive me to my college, etc. I thought he was interested..however..he suddenly stopped texting me “good morning” and in general..also calling me too. I texted him last Friday asking if he was okay and where he has been..his response was “I been stressed and I just need sometime to myself..that’s all..nothing against you though”..I haven’t been texting him cause I respect his space, but I am so confused how he was so consistent and then just stopped.

Any advice?

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Love this blog! I’ve been in an ldr for 11months with a great guy. Everything was doing well with us. He kept on adoring me, calling me on facetime, telling me how much he loves me = perfect ldr! But last week all of a sudden, he asked for space! I was in shock! I overreacted and cried a lot. He told me im the mos amazing girl ever and nobody even compares to me. He said that he really loves me but ldr is just too hard for him ? He keeps on telling me that he still wants a second chance but maybe when we’re already closer.. And there, i gave him his much needed space.

Thanks for this blog, i learned to just give him space freely and to focus on myself first ?

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You go girl. Focus on yourself and keep having your own back 🙂 Thanks so much for the love and support Katy XOXO

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I so needed this.

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XOXO

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Thanks so much. You will have to be my family for now as I feeling so alone. As beautiful and smart as I am I was in love with a NA narcissistic ass. I chose the one guy from the pack who didn’t find me incredibly desirable that he needed space. Well he has all the space he wants now. I have once again focused on me, upped my nutrition and fitness. The confident me is back with a few lapses or days where I use the f#ck word a lot and I don’t even swear? You make me smile on days when I don’t feel like smiling. Thanks again

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You have a family here Vi and are far from alone. We believe in you and I’m proud of you. You’re doing the right thing sister 🙂 xo

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Best post I have read right now! Thank you!

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Thanks Bee! Glad it helped! 🙂 x

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My fiance of 3 years gave me the “space” line yesterday. I haven’t looked back once. Although I would love some clarification and closure, I am finding it much easier to just bask in my “badassness” ( I am in LOVE with that word) and not take a trip to crazy town today.

Not sure how tomorrow might go. I will deal with it when I get there.

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YES! You go girl 🙂 xoxo

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I acted crazy, and now he needs space. I know he loves me. I’ve known him for 19 years. I want him back in my life desperately. I’ve done all I can and am now giving him space. I’m only praying he realizes our love is real and returns to me.

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Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I have been dating a guy for a month and then completely screwed it up. He needs space and honestly doesn’t know how he feels about still dating me. He was hurt, broken, numb and every other bad feeling from my words than cut him to the core and basically I questioned his walk with God, duty as a man, ect. I later fully apologized and said I didn’t mean what I said. I wish I could take it back, but we all know words are extremely powerful and sometimes they are too bad to forgive and want to still stay with someone. Heck, I would run if the situation were reversed! He still needs space and I am going crazy after 3 days of the dreaded ‘not knowing’ which way things will go. I turned to Google and came across your blog. I hate to see other girls going through the same sh### thing I am going through, but it helps to know I’m not the only one.

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You are loved, supported, backed, believed in and never alone. Happy it helped! Thank YOU L 🙂 xo

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Hi I have been married for 5 years my husband and I have a 4 year old daughter and both work full time. We bought our first house 4 months ago. We have been going to church and bible study. He went out of town with work for less than 2 days and came back distant no affection and texting his female co worker all the time and talking about her all the time. She is separated from her abusive husband and they have 3 young children together. She is 28 and i am about to turn 38. My husband is 33. A text that I sent to a friend telling her that he has been distant and has been texting this coworker alot. I asked her if I could talk to her fiance and see what his thought was on the two because he works with them. It got back to my husband that I was tripping and thought he was cheating with her. His bosses heard about it and now they are under investigation for fratinization. He seemed to start to forgive me started being playful again and things started to feel better. It turns out his co workers reported him because he was calling her babe at work. Tuesday night I decided to turn to him in bed and say I love you. He said I know you do and that crushed me. That morning I asked if we talk sometime and he said talk about what? I said us and said what about us? He said all this in a happy tone. Anyway plan was we were going to talk when our daughter went to bed that night. When I came home he was cold and upset all over again I had no idea why so I asked if he was ok and he said no and said it was because of me. We went downstairs to talk and he said he needs space he wants my daughter and I to stay at my moms for 7 days. If I didnt do it he would make a rash decision and divorce me. I am hurting and trying to give him space but I miss my home and our family and my mom is driving me crazy HELP

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Hi Pam!

I wish that I could answer but I have too much to say to type it all out and not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details. This is why I cannot give direct advice in the comments section.

Thank you for your love, for reading, and for your understanding. Other readers are here to support you and I do offer one-on-one coaching if you are interested. Link to it is on the home page.

All my love to you sister.

You are not alone xx

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I literally clapped after reading this. It’s exactly what I needed right now. Onward!

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YES!! 🙂 xo

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Thank you! I really needed this!

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🙂 xoxo

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I wish I would have found this article before I went crazy when he delivered me the “I need space” line a few days ago. I went crazy the next day. Can I recover? By just giving him ample space can I still hold my head high? We had an abortion together and I’m emotionally distraught from it. Will things be okay if I just give him lots of space?

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Hi Sara!

I wish that I could help, but I have too much to say to type it all out and not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I also do not know the details. This is why I cannot give specific advice in the comments.

Thanks for the love, for reading and for your understanding.

You’re not alone XOXO

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This post is EVERYTHING!

Though my guy asked for some space (we agreed to me staying at his house every other weekend instead of every weekend like I’ve been doing for these past six months of our relationship), I don’t think bailing is the right choice for me. It was tense in our relationship for a bit because we BOTH needed to centre ourselves and not get lost in one another and didn’t want to admit it. I’ve got my own back though, making plans with others and keeping busy.

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So happy it helped! 🙂 Thanks RiRi!! xo

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I am going through this right now. Playing it cool…being nice. I needed this. Thank you. Bless you.

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So happy that it helped! Just keep coming back here to the blog and know that you are loved, understood, supported, believed in and never, ever alone. xx

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On point, thank you so much, you’re helping a lot of us.

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Thank YOU for the love and support Mash. It’s my honor and pleasure to help. XOXO

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Thank you so much for this article. This is just what I needed to read and even though I’m emotionally hurting right now after hearing this, I feel better because of your words. Xoxo

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I’m so happy that it helped! Thanks Ara 🙂 You are loved, supported, understood and never, ever alone. XO

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Natasha, your blog is my bible these days. Thank you from the deepest ends of my soul! It has been a month since my ex boyfriend said the EXACT SAME words your friend’s at-the-time bf said. My heart has never hurt so much, but luckily i found your blog along the way. You and this tribe are helping me heal and find my own again. THANK YOU!! This post especially was so necessary!! THANK YOUU!!!

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Hi Aviva! I’m so happy to have helped! 🙂 Thank YOU for the love, sisterhood and support! x

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This article really hit home for me right now. I recently had the talk with my boyfriend where he asked for space because of a lot of things going on in his life and he recognized that I wasn’t being proactive with my next steps in my life because we had fallen into being so serious so fast. The connection we have was so real and intense right off the bat that we allowed it to become more serious than I think either of us were ready for. He cried while telling me he thought we should take some time. Asked me “just to give him some time” i cried too. The one part of your article that really hits me though is as much as it was a mutual respect and a very much caring about each other space and time parting we didn’t make a plan. It’s been a week now and I’m realizing I didn’t even think to make a plan- a time to get together and talk again and reevaluate if this was a break or a breakup. So now I’m struggling with wanting to text him and asking to set that plan for a future date. But I’m worried to because I don’t want to seem needy and I’m supposed to be giving him and myself space. BUt it’s kind of eating me up. What should I do? Should I wait and ask to get together later or should I make the mutual plan with him so I know we are both thinking about it? We haven’t had a single interaction in a week besides him watching my instagram stories. I’m nervous to be the first person to text but in hopes of this being a healthy saveable thing I feel like I need to know we have at least some sort of plan to talk about everything deeper and see if we can hit a restart button and intentionally and slowly work out way into being serious. Any advice? Wait to text or don’t wait.

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Hi Karen!

I wish that I could advise and answer your questions, but I have too much to say to type it all out not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details. This is why I cannot give specific advice/answers in the comments.

Thanks for your love, for reading and for your understanding. Keep coming back here to the blog.

I do offer one-on-one coaching if you’re interested and would be happy to help further 🙂

All my love to you soul sister.

You’re not alone xx

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Hi Karen, I am in the exact same situation now. How did yours work out?

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I know that this comment was posted a while back, but I’m hoping you see this. I am currently in the same situation. Would love to talk to you and see what eventually happened. I’m really scared and I miss him dearly. Please email me: sleung2@uh.edu. Thank you!

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hmmm…I recently told a guy I was very interested in that I needed space though. And, tables turned, it wasn’t because I didn’t take him or his time seriously.

It was almost like I took it too seriously and I was scared. I wasn’t sure if he was reliable, so I backed off….A significant part of me hoped he’d eventually prove me wrong. Another part of me wanted to make sure being with him was what I truly wanted before we both invested further; I suppose these two aspects go hand-in-hand.

I can’t help but think guys may need space for the same reasons…Or just flat out needs more physical space in general, and it’s as simple as that.

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Thanks for the input Allie! xoxo

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Please help! The guy that I’ve been dating for the past 10 months has recently said to me that he has been really stressed with work, family and been struggling with us. He said that he wasn’t sure his heart was in the right place and that he wasn’t sure he could give me the forever that her promised. He said that he needs time to be on his own to think about what he wants and needs. Does this translate into a break up, a freak out moment? Afraid that things were going so well that he isn’t sure he’s ready for the next steps? We didn’t have a fight, we had normal conversation all week, even on the day that he sent this to me. I’m going crazy here trying to figure it all out in my mind. Any insight would be great. I did respond to him and just said that I would give him the space that he’s asking for right now but hope to be able to meet up in the next few weeks to discuss face to face to which he said ok.

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Hi Melissa!

I wish that I could answer but I have too much to say to type it all out and not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details. This is why I cannot give direct advice in the comments section.

Thank you for your support, for reading, and for your understanding. Other readers are here to support you and I do offer one-on-one coaching if you are interested. Link to it is on the home page.

All my love to you.

You are not alone xx

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THANK YOU for this amazing article!! My (ex)bf gave me the “I’m overwhelmed and need space” line three weeks ago out of nowhere. I’ve been in limbo and was making all kinds of excuses for him, torturing myself with why this happened and respecting his wishes by not contacting him in any way. I deleted his ass on social media but still had all this anxiety because of what he may think of me… foolishness!!

After reading your article I felt so EMPOWERED, snapped back to reality and actually saw what HIS ACTIONS really meant. We are ? s and we should never forget that!!

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YES! Thanks soul sister 🙂 So glad it helped!! xo

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My guy said he was stressed and needed to get his head straight (he admittedly has a shit ton going on. His divorced is being finalized and his whole life is changing) and that he was sorry for being distant. He never specifically asked for space but he stopped responding to messages. We had blended our families and met each others parents. We were a team. I was really upset and probably overreacted. So I took a breath and wrote him one last message and told him that i loved him and that I wanted to support his need for space as long as I am able. It’s only been a few days.
I love him, I loved what we had built but I don’t want anybody who isn’t all in. My kids, and his, deserve more than that. If he is the man I believe him to be, he will break the silence. In the mean time, I am focused on me and healing. If after 30 days, I still haven’t heard. I will address it. By then, I will have given my heart time to heal and my head time to process.
We are still listed as a couple on social media, he was given the opportunity to end it-he didn’t, and so I still have some hope but my heart has to be focused on me and my kids.

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Sending you lots of love and support Kerri <3 xo

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Kerri, What happened with this? I’m in the same boat. It’s been 25 days since I’ve heard anything.

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Thank you for this blog.

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🙂 XOXO

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Word.

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XOXO

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So question… my bf was incredible and loving … a little selfish and self absorbed yes lol… but he showed me he loved me everyday. I have inherent trust issues… and I compete in bikini competitions… I was on a death diet pretty much lol and my coach put me on some hormone therapy (my first time ever) …… needless to say I turned into a nutcase. Something happened where trust wasn’t broken. But I took a bad situation and made it 100xs worse. I went insane and drove him nuts… for almost a month (not proud… for the record I stopped taking all therapies lol).. the first two weeks (maybe three even) of this ordeal he still put effort in tried to talk to me (would occasionally get angry) but then would try to rationalize with me. On top of this he’s looking for work and is stressed for money. So he went home to NJ to visit the family. I broke up with him a week prior to him leaving (I was still on therapies) and he called/txt me when he got there telling me he loved me and we couldn’t break up. When he got back we would figure things out. The next day, however, he tells me he can’t be in constant contact (which I never expect anyhow) and needs his space and time. He said he loves me more than anything and his intention isn’t to hurt me but he needs that and we will be better for it. He says to trust him. I worry though bc usually he calls and texts me (I actually rarely ever reach out) but now he doesn’t… we have talked on the phone twice (not including that first reconciliatory convo) in 5 days and he has pretty much only txt me once a day… once to just tell me he was Alive… am I overreacting? I hate feeling unsure.

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Hi Meenah!

Thank you so much for sharing.

I wish that I could elaborate further, advise and answer your questions, but I have too much to say to type it all out not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details.

Thanks for your love, for reading and for your understanding. Keep coming back here to the blog.

I do offer one-on-one coaching if you’re interested and would be happy to help further ? The link to it is on the homepage.

All my love to you soul sister.

You’re not alone xo

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My boyfriend of almost 3 years told me a few nights ago that he’s frustrated with me and he’s not sure he’s into “it” anymore but he’s just not sure and wanted a couple of days to think about it and to not talk to me during that time. He had a list of complaints about me, some of which I’m honestly guilty of (I am on an out of town work assignment for a half a year otherwise we normally live together). They are nothing of the “serious” (cheating or anything like that) variety and instead are that I haven’t given him the time that he wants to talk and I’ve seemed a bit distant, some of which is true, but not because I don’t love him and not because I was even considering ending our relationship, but because he likes to call late at night and talk for hours when I have to get up early and times when he’s called right before I have to go to sleep I have gotten off the phone quickly he is a little irritated (he has a job that he works weird hours so he’s often up late). That and the fact that my sex drive has been non-existent (due to medication I’m taking – which I’m working on alternative medications because I hate the way it makes me feel) and he feels more like a “friend” than my boyfriend. I didn’t really understand the meds were the problem until recently and I had taken steps to fix it but I hadn’t shared that with him – which was stupid and admittedly my fault but I have a really hard time talking about that kind of stuff (and yes, I am way to old to have difficulties expressing myself, but sometimes I still do).

Basically, what I’m saying is that his complaints are justified for the most part but they aren’t things that can’t be easily resolved by a talk about them as I do care about him deeply – and he hadn’t really shared his frustrations with me and his feelings of distance and loneliness even though I’d asked because in his words “he hoped they would go away.” We had a long distance relationship before the 2 1/2 years so it’s not just that we’re not used to living apart.

All that being said I sent him a message commenting that he seemed frustrated and that I wanted to make sure everything was okay and we talked later that day and about 5 minutes into the conversation he tells me he’s not sure that he’s interested in continuing our relationship and that he needs a “few days” to think about it and doesn’t want to talk to me until then, and then he won’t say much else but he encouraged me to talk, which ultimately led to my sobbing – not begging or pleading, just crying because I was so blindsided. He was VERY cold, and while he said he loved me leading into his I don’t know if I want to do this anymore talk, he seemed irritated that I was so sad and later said “I already told you I love you” (I wasn’t asking him if he did when he said that) and then said we would talk in a few days.

I’m trying to figure out if I’m being ridiculous when he’s asking for this time to think. What is there to think about – either you want to fix the problems or you don’t, right? Either you want to move forward with someone or you don’t. Ive been pissed and frustrated before with someone (him even) but I know I don’t want it to be over so we talk it out and try to resolve it. I’ve also been frustrated with someone who I know I am done with and we talk that out too and end it. Iv’e never been in the “I don’t know if I want to be with you” land and I don’t understand it at all. It seems to me that saying I just want time away from you right now is a crappy thing to do to someone you supposedly care about, and then cutting them off, leaving them to wonder for days on end is just cruel. It’s like I will have to start day 1 of the whole grieving process all over again when the break up is “official” and I find myself alternating between being totally shattered and really pissed off.

I don’t know if I should tell him just to not contact me or to actually wait and find out what he wants. It seems like the worst thing you can do to someone you supposedly love.

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Hi Jen!

Thank you so much for sharing. I completely understand what you’re going through.

I wish that I could elaborate further and answer your questions, but I have too much to say to type it all out not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details. This is why I cannot give advice in the comments section.

Thanks for your love, for reading and for your understanding. Keep coming back here to the blog; it WILL get better.

I do offer one-on-one coaching if you’re interested and would be happy to help further ? The link to it is on the homepage.

All my love to you.

You’re not alone xo

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Hi Natasha,

Thank you so much for your article. I’ve been trying so hard to find comfort during this time, and make sense of this.

Prior to this my boyfriend and I had a great relationship. We were very happy emotionally, mentally, sexually. We have been together for over a year and a half and previously knew each other in 7th and 8th grade, we both have kids, and we’re both divorced.

A week ago an argument (which rarely happens), caused by me, spurred the whole break situation we are in currently. The topic of the argument is irrelevant. I know my boyfriend has many stresses in his life currently related to financial responsibilities and children. He told me we should take some time away because he feels mentally full and the argument made him uncomfortable because he should be able to handle an argument, but just can’t right now. He said he loves me and nothing could change his feelings for me, this is not my fault, and this is not a break up.
I feel like I took it well, let him know that it made me sad and upset, but I would respect his request. I said I’d wait for him to let me know when he’d like to see me. I had to play cool after starting an argument even though I was dying inside.

So far it’s only been a week. I’m so confused, uncertain, and very anxious because space feels like a break up to me. I’m so unfamiliar with what is going on.

I’m wondering how much time is too much time? When would it be ok to contact him? Is he avoiding an actual break up? Does this mean he’s with other women? Is he waiting for me to contact him even though I said otherwise? I’m trying my hardest to wait for him to come to me, and I’m not sure how much longer I can wait before I break down.

Any advice is appreciated

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Hi Terri!

I’m happy that the post helped 🙂

I wish that I could elaborate further and answer your questions, but I have too much to say to type it all out (I can’t minimize my answer to a sentence or 2), and not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details. This is why I cannot give any advice in the comments section.

Thanks for your love, support, for reading and for your understanding.

I do offer one-on-one coaching if you’re interested and would be happy to help further ? The link to it is on the homepage.

All my love to you.

You’re not alone xo

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Dear Natasha!
I’m currently recovering from my first heartbreak ever. A week ago my bf of two years called to me from a party, completely drunk, and told me that he needed a break. I was ABSOLUTELY SHOCKED. Nothing could have prepared me for such a turn of events – we’ve been in a ldr but it was a perfect one. We’ve met regularly, never argued, told each other about every little secret, helped each other with everything and so on. He always treated me like a princess – he often talked about how lucky he was to be with someone as perfect as me, that one day we’re going to live together, have a beautiful house and kids, that he’s going to love me till his last days. We had our traditions and a very specific, personal kind of humour – as I said, a perfect relationship. His message about taking a break left me absolutely crushed – suddenly I couldn’t find my place in the world anymore. We continued messaging for the whole week after his call to see how it would go but I could feel he was more distanced then before. We met this weekend to talk it all throught. He couldn’t even state ONE reason why he needed a break besides “I need to be alone for a while again”. He kept on telling me how sorry he was, how he still loves me and believes we still have a mutual future ahead of us. He also kept on calling me pet names and was generally affectionate – he would stroke my hair or leg while we talk, kiss my head and so on. He seemed quite devastated by the whole situation himself, but I don’t think anything could compare to the way Iwas feeling at the moment. I had this weird mixture of anger and sadness going on – I didn’t want to hear any promise of his because in my head they all seemed to be lies: if he loves me that much, why does he even need a break? I deleted all of our pictures from my phone, all the songs he has sent me in the past, everything that was at lest a little bit connected to him. I told him that we won’t be having any break but a fullblown break-up and that he’ll never hear or see from me again. I stated that I hated him and that if he’ll ever message me again, I won’t even bother responding. I think I may have gotten a bit overemotional back there, crying and shouting. It was devastating for both of us. He kept on telling me how sure he is that he’ll regret it all and beg me for forgiveness one day. I cried myself to sleep and he kept on hugging me. He had to go the next morning. I was still mad and hateful towards him – he just told me something like: “I know how stuipid it sounds right now but I really do love you. I’m also not quite sure if I’m saying this to feel better about the whole situation but I really do believe that we’ll meet again one day and come back to each other”. I didn’t even bother responding. He gave me a kiss on the forehead and headed towards his train.

I’m still learning how to live without messaging each other everyday and how to fall out of love. I’m shifting between missing and hating him but I slowly learn how to be confident on my own again. I don’t care if he’ll ever miss me – I’m sure he won’t since he has what he wanted now: his beloved freedom. I’m gonna find myself someone better – someone who won’t need any breaks from me.

This whole situation made me realize something – EVERY FRIEND OF MINE HAD THE SAME PROBLEM WITH THEIR BFS AT SOME POINT. As they say, it’s all fun and games till he suddenly wants a break. That’s how I found this post – thank you very much for writing it! Made me feel better and less alone. I know I’m gonna get better.

Greeting,

Rose

P.S. I’m really sorry if my message is chaotic – English is not my native language

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Hi Rose! You are my hero. What you did takes such strength. I know it’s hard. Keep coming back here to the blog and just know that you’re loved, understood, backed, believed in and never, ever alone. xxxx

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Hiiii..
I should say that this website has helped me in so many ways….It’s helped me point out the red flags early…Now all I have to do is listen to my gut and make an faster exit….(a work in progress)….Recently my ex got back in contact with me…after 10 years…I honestly thought he changed not only was he making future plans but his actions were a match…I have come to learn that he is very spoiled and selfish and always wants to “keep the peace”….he does not handle emotions well at all… A few days ago I blew up with tears and emotions; I know I should not have given him that much power but that was my first response. Im really trying to become an emotional Guru and always remain in control (still a work in progress)…Needless to say he was turned off and says that he is going to back off for awhile (which wasn’t my plan)….I jus told him how I felt about our relationship because it means alot to me….he didnt reapond and even though I feel good because I remained true to me…I feel silly beccause I was fighting for someone who was not fighting for me… And its like he did this to me for the 3rd time…I wasnt chosen again…it’s kind of a ball buster.

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Hi Ashley <3 Im so happy that the posts have helped. You are loved, supported, understood, backed, believed in and never, ever alone. Sending you big love. XO

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Thank yo so much for this article! So true!

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Happy that it served you 🙂 Thanks Natasha! xox

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“•Doesn’t want to feel like a bad guy. Emotionally unavailable guys are ALL about their image and how they’re perceived because, since they have no emotions or empathy to tap into, they’re completely ego driven” ……Let the church say AMEN!

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I am going through this currently and your article/blog totally helped. Thank you, thank YOU!!

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Happy it helped!! 🙂 Thanks K.M.

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I totally agree with everything you said in this blog post! It was well executed!!
However, I could use a little reassurance or advice. Someone whom I was seeing for 4 months told me he needed space to think of how he felt about me and what he wants because he feels confused and emotional. It’s been 5 days and I’m heading out of town for the weekend for some fun with a gal pal. However, I’d love some clarity so I can move on and heal.
He sent me a text 2 days ago saying he wasn’t intentionally ignoring me and is working on stuff/clearing his head.
Should I text him and let him know I’ll be out of town and hope to connect when I get back? Thoughts?

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Hi H.S! Thank you! 🙂

I wish that I could answer but I have too much to say to type it all out and not enough hands to type or hours in the day. I would also need more details surrounding this. This is why I cannot give direct advice in the comments section.

Thank you for your love, for reading, and for your understanding. Other readers are here to support you and I do offer one-on-one coaching if you are interested. Link to it is on the home page.

All my love to you.

You are not alone xx

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Thank you for this blog. I am currently in this situation where my boyfriend of a year hit me with that SPACE BS. We have been fighting more then usual and i basically told him early on in the relationship i don’t do SPACE. I feel space is usually a time a man wants to venture away from the relationship. I should be more secure with myself? Absolutely, but unfortunately im not. I basically turned the situation into an uncomfortable one, its awkward and uneasy the last few days we have talked. I decided on my own after i make him take back the space comment i will give him the space he need by staying busy, keeping conversations short, and not bugging him. Its a tough thing giving someone space that you just want to love endlessly. Oddly he has been still reaching out to me first, but i am trying to keep the conversation lite and moving on to busy things in my life which are happening since i graduate in 10 days. I was just about to give in and text him a needy response until i read this blog that saved me. I instantly deleted the characters in my message box. I am so glad i read this page it is empowering to see how often this happens and how this can help me continue on my space journey. Its a rough path, but im worth the trouble. I need to remember my worth, remember who i am, because i feel ive lost her. But i know i can change that. Wish me luck!

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Hi Kellie! I’m so happy that the blog has helped 🙂 You are supported, believed in, understood, appreciated, and never alone in this or ever.

Thanks for being a part of this tribe. Sending you big love – you got this! xx

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Wish I had read this a few weeks ago, I handled it all wrong. Oh well, it’s never too late to shut the door before he returns (and they ALWAYS return)

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Always haha. And AGREED 🙂 it’s NEVER too late. You go girl. XOXO

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Natasha, I’ve been spending my weekend reading your archives on here and bawling my little heart out at the truths I am reading. The one thing I don’t know how to do is “make a dignified exit.” Have you written anything on that because I need to read it.
Thank you a million times over for using your experiences to share with and help all the rest of us. Just knowing that other people have been through this before is huge.

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I have just stumbled across this at a time when I needed it. I had a big blow up with my boyfriend a few days ago, acted crazy (he definitely pushed my buttons, too) and now he is taking space and has said that we will have a conversation but needs a few days to get his thoughts together. I feel like I am stuck in relationship limbo and don’t know what to do. It’s been hard but stumbling across this has made me feel better. I will stop texting him now.

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I am so happy it helped! 🙂 Thank you for sharing Carol and for being a part of this tribe 🙂 You are loved and supported. Remember to always have your own back first. All my love to you. xoxo

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Oh my gosh! This is amazing!!! Very well said and right on point. LADIES, walk if he says he needs space! Do not exist in limbo. You deserve and will meet a man who never makes you question his want to be around you. Kick em to the curb if they act like this – emotionally unavailable men are major trouble.

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Happy it helped! 🙂 Thanks Laura! AGREED!! This applies for both men AND women. Thanks for being a part of this tribe. XOX

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