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Disagreeing on the big stuff

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You can have the most amazing chemistry with someone, but if you butt heads over the big stuff, there’s no future. Perhaps he wants children and you don’t, or one party wants to be married while the other sees it as a waste of time. Whatever the case, if you can’t find common ground on the important things, there’s no hope for a lasting relationship.

He wants to remain a bachelor

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Many men see taking the next big step as a hindrance, prohibiting them from living out their bachelor fantasies. He may think that getting into a serious relationship (or even getting married) will starve him of his freedom, tying him down to being with one woman for the rest of his life. If that’s his attitude, you’re better off without him.

He’s not over his ex

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Our past relationships can drastically affect our future connections. If your man recently went through a messy breakup, it’s likely that he’ll be hesitant when it comes to taking the next step with you. If he still harbors feelings for his past flame, it’ll take time for him to look towards the future. If you think it’s worth it, try to put trust in patience.

He doesn’t truly value you

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If a man is stringing you along with false promises, it’s clear that he doesn’t truly value you. He may see you as a great girlfriend, but he’ll never view you as his future wife. Don’t waste your energy trying to prove him wrong – you can be the smartest, kindest, prettiest woman in the world, yet his feelings will never change.

There’s too much pressure

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If there’s one thing men hate, it’s feeling pressured. They like to do things on their own time, in their own way. If you’re constantly nagging your boo to pop the question or do something else big, it’ll naturally make him take a step back. Relax, and let him come to the decision of his own accord.

He sees you as a friend

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The two of you may have made some great memories together and may have even forged a meaningful bond. Sometimes, however, that bond remains platonic. If he treats you as a friend, take his actions at face value – no amount of pining will get him to change his mind. If you think a certain answer will help you, try asking him for his specific feelings.

He’s immature

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It’s a known fact that women mature faster than men. A man can reach middle age and beyond and still not know what he truly wants in life, mainly because his emotional immaturity doesn’t allow him to access his deeper emotions. If he’s acting like a man-child, it’s best to jump ship.

Money woes

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Men are led by pride and ego. Therefore, they’re unlikely to want to take the next step in a relationship if they’re financially unstable. He may want to get his money in order before he commits to you, seeing himself as the provider in the relationship. You can try to discuss with him about how much this matters, but it may not always work.

He’s indecisive

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Some people are just naturally indecisive, making them incapable of making even the smallest of decisions. Taking the next step in a relationship is one of the biggest decisions you can ever make in life, so many men will naturally run in the opposite direction when it comes to commitment. If you can, try to instil some confidence in your partner.

He hasn’t dealt with his baggage

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If your other half hasn’t properly dealt with the things that have happened in his past, they’ll taint his future. Whether it’s a messy breakup, self-esteem issues, or childhood trauma; if your man doesn’t shine a light on his issues, it can result in an inability to look towards his future.

He has trust issues

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Trust is the most important aspect of any relationship. Once it’s shattered, it can be hard (or sometimes impossible) for it to be restored. Whether these trust issues were brought on by you or by a past lover, it can take a great deal of time and patience for those wounds to heal. If you’re dedicated to him, try to fix what bothers you.

He’s pretending he’s still young

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Usually, men grow out of their boyish habits by the time they reach 30. In some cases, however, they never change their ways at all, valuing material goods and immature behaviors over deep and meaningful connections. Some men see a commitment as signalling the end of their wild days, showing that they’re slipping into older territory – something they may not want to do.

Your communication is lacking

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Communication can make or break a connection. If your relationship has been plagued with communication issues, it’s unlikely that your man will want to take the next step with you. He’ll look back and remember all of your past arguments, not wanting to be locked into a future that’s littered with dramatics. If you can, try to look for ways to improve your communication.

There’s a lack of emotional connection

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Sometimes, people fall out of love as quickly as they fall in love. This can lead to the emotional connection being severed, leaving your man feeling trapped within the confines of your relationship. If he isn’t emotionally vulnerable with you, it’s unlikely that he’ll commit. Show him that he can trust you, and your connection should deepen.

He’s a player

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Some men can’t change their player ways. No matter how much they claim that they’re in love with you, if they’re playing the field, they’ll never want to lock you down. This will only lead to arguments, disagreements, and disappointment – leaving you frustrated at his inability to change. You have to show him that you’re worthwhile, but if he can’t see that then it’s futile.

He doesn’t want to compromise

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Compromise is a natural part of any relationship. If man is unwilling to sacrifice some of his own needs in order to fulfill yours, it shows a complete inability to move forward in a relationship. It may be painful in the moment, but you’ll be better off without him.

He doesn’t believe in monogamy

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Some men (and women) are polyamorous, unable to find fulfillment from just one relationship. This can result in many painful arguments later down the line if it isn’t addressed – leading to potential heartbreak. There’s nothing wrong with leading an unconventional lifestyle, so long as everyone involved is on the same page – you don’t want to accidently miscommunicate something.

He doesn’t want his life to change

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When things are going well, it can seem unnecessary to make any changes. Men in particular like to coast along, content to keep things as they are. Taking the next step, whether it’s an engagement or a wedding, can turn a man’s world upside down – something he may want to avoid at all costs. This is where compromises are important – you’re already making a change.

He’s scared

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Deciding to share your life with another person can be scary. Your man may seem uninterested in commitment, but it could just be his way of protecting himself. If he’s been hurt before, it’s likely that he’ll keep all future romantic prospects at arm’s length, protecting his heart at all costs. Again, trust is what’s important to get him to bring down his walls.

He likes some of you, but not all of you

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The intimacy the two of you have may be amazing, but your emotional connection may leave much to be desired. Or, perhaps he likes some of your personality, but not all of it. Whatever the case, if a man isn’t willing to accept you fully for who you are, you’re better off without him.

He wants to be single

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Quite simply, your man may be a womanizer. He may want the label of being in a relationship without the actual commitment, instead wanting to flirt with every woman who crosses his path. If you can show him the worth of what he’s already got, great. But if he acts like he’s single, then treat him like he’s single.

He wants to take things slow

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Just because he isn’t committing now, it doesn’t mean he never will. What may seem like cold feet to you may actually be a desire for him to take things slowly, allowing him to slowly let his guard down as time goes by. Don’t rush him – if it’s meant to be, it will be.

He doesn’t see a future

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Quite simply, a man may be getting cold feet about your relationship because he just doesn’t see a future with you. If he doesn’t want you by his side, he won’t actively take the steps to ensure that you’re in his life. Take his inaction at face value – if he wanted you, he’d show it.

He can’t process his emotions

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If your significant other is unable to process his emotions, there’s no hope for a future. If he can’t examine his own inner world, how can he even begin to bring another person into the picture? Try not to take it personally – it’s his stunted emotions that are the problem, not you. If you’re patient, he might be able to resolve his issues.

The relationship doesn’t fulfill him

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If your other half isn’t feeling fulfilled in the relationship, there’s little reason for him to want to stay with you. Therefore, he’ll remain vague about the future, stringing you along while he makes up his mind as to whether he wants to stay or go. Try to discuss with him what he thinks would make it more fulfilling, and take it from there.

He values his freedom more than he values you

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It’s a naïve view, but it’s all too common – men see being in a committed relationship as a hindrance to their freedom. While you may see it as the beginning of the rest of your life, he’ll view it as an end to his younger years. Instead, try to show him that the relationship can provide him with a new type of freedom.

Most of his friends are single

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Men think in packs. Often, they’ll mimic what their closest pals do. If his group of boys are all living the single, bachelor lifestyle, it can be difficult for your man to break off and act of his own accord. This is a sign of a boy, not a man – the right guy will fight tooth and nail to enter a committed relationship with you.

The timing isn’t right

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Your partner may want to be with you long term, but he’s just not ready to make the commitment – yet. He may be in the process of dealing with past trauma or tying up any loose ends before he takes the plunge, wishing to give you only the best version of himself. This is a good thing, so try to be patient.

He has other priorities

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Your boo may just have too much on his plate to be able to give all of himself to you. This could be a negative thing – showing that he’s prioritizing things like his work above your relationship. Equally, it could be a positive, as your man may want to have all of his affairs in order before he takes the next step with you.

He compares you to his ex

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Past relationships can interfere with future commitments. If your man is forever comparing you to his ex (whether verbally or mentally) it’ll make it difficult for him to let go of the past and look towards the future. Don’t live in someone else’s shadow – you deserve a man that loves you exactly as you are.

He takes you for granted

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A man will never commit to a woman that he takes for granted. If he views you as an option – and not a purposeful choice – he’ll never step up to the plate and take the next step, no matter how hard you try to prove your worth. If you can, try to notice these signs early so that you don’t waste each other’s time.

He’s happy with how things are

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In a man’s mind, if everything is going swimmingly, why rock the boat? He may want to stick to the status quo, finding joy and fulfillment in your relationship as it is. This doesn’t mean to say that he’ll never, ever commit to you – just that he’s enjoying living in the present moment. Try to see the positives in this as it plays out.

He’s keeping his options open

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Just because he’s with you, it doesn’t mean that he views you as his end goal. He may be treating you as his interim partner, using you to avoid loneliness while he waits for the woman he truly wants to marry. You should never be treated as someone’s backup plan – you always deserve to be treated as a priority.

You devalue yourself

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How do you present yourself in your relationship? Do you allow your other half to walk all over you, taking him back every single time he does something unforgivable? If so, it’s unlikely he’ll commit to you. He knows he can treat you however he pleases, so there’s little reason for him to up his game. Don’t fall into the trap of undervaluing yourself.

He’s using you

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It might be hard to hear, but it’s a cold truth – if a man refuses to commit, he may just be using you. He may be afraid to be lonely, instead choosing to string you along purely for comfort’s sake. Essentially, he wants to have his cake and eat it too – all while refusing to acknowledge how it affects you.

He’s in the closet

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Some men live their entire lives hiding their truth. If your man is struggling to come to terms with his sexuality, it’s clear that he’ll be unable to take the next step until he figures out his own issues. He may be using your relationship as a ruse, preventing anyone from discovering his secret. If you suspect this, let him come to you about it.

He’s worried it won’t work out

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Committing to a relationship can bring up all kinds of anxiety. What if the relationship changes? What if it doesn’t work out? What if we fall out of love? All of these questions can keep a man up at night, ultimately resulting in him refusing to take the next step. If you can, try to give him answers for peace of mind.

He comes from a broken family

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The things we experience as a child can manifest into our adult lives. If your man witnessed a turbulent relationship between his parents, for example, it’s likely that he’ll subconsciously recreate these patterns throughout his life – unless he purposely tries to unlearn these behaviors. The best thing for you to do is encourage him to take the first steps towards this.

There’s someone else

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Try as you might, you may not be able to shake the feeling that someone else is in the picture. If your other half is exhibiting shady behaviors (not texting back, staying out late, acting distant), it could be that someone else has caught his eye, spelling out the beginning of the end for your relationship. In this situation, try to get some honesty.

He just doesn’t think you’re the one

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Sometimes, the most obvious answer is the most accurate – your man may have cold feet about taking the next step because he doesn’t think that you’re his soulmate. He may have stayed in the relationship while he waits for his true love to appear, knowing that there’s no chance of the two of you ever taking the next step.