Over at answerology, a reader asks “Do you think that emotionally unavailable really just equals he/she is just not that into you?” Truth be told, the answer isn’t a clear-cut ‘no’, but when you are faced with a Mr Unavailable’s behaviour, they act the way they do regardless of who you are. It’s not about you, it’s about him. The trouble with wanting an emotionally unavailable man is that it can cater to something within you which allows you to be drawn to someone who is emotionally ambivalent, which in turn makes you think that you need to work harder to win him over. He’s just not that into his emotions. He’s just not that into relationships. You could lay the world and yourself at his frigging feet and it wouldn’t make a blind bit of difference. He’s self absorbed, narcissistic and focused on the short term fringe benefits of being with you. He gets the sexual, the social, and the emotional benefits, with little or no concern for the impact on you in the short, medium, and long term.

If you persist in trying to be with an emotionally unavailable man, in spite of his behaviour, on some level it sends a message that you’re not happy either. Because the bulk of women that are attracted to and become involved with emotionally unavailable men are actually emotionally unavailable themselves and commitment-phobe’s (whether they know it or not), by sticking around, he realises that something can’t be right with you either. Deep inside he knows that you shouldn’t want him as he has nothing to offer but crumbs. But this is actually a very minor part of it…

Ultimately, emotionally unavailable doesn’t equal he (or she) is just not that into you. People can either tell you that they’re emotionally unavailable, not ready for a relationship, or not interested or they can show you, because actions speak louder than words. It all comes down to whether you want to hear the words/heed the signs. Human nature can have us putting ourselves at the centre of the reason when in actual fact, true emotional unavailability occurs independently of whoever they engage with. It was there before you became involved with them, it’ll be there when you become involved with them, and until they resolve their issue, it’ll still be there long after you’ve had the sense to make a run for it.
My new eBook Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl is now available to buy as an instant download. Find out more

Natalie Lue is the founder and writer of Baggage Reclaim and author of the books Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl, The Dreamer and the Fantasy Relationship and more. Learn more about her here and you can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter – @baggagereclaim .

Natalie (NML) – who has written posts on Baggage Reclaim by Natalie Lue.


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326 Responses to Does Emotionally Unavailable Equal He’s Just Not That Into You?

  1. anon says:

    I used to visit this site all the time. In fact, I apparently posted on Feb 19, 2008, about an EUM who infected my life for about two years.

    Well, when I say “used” to visit this site, I mean I got over it. I joined a bunch of groups and volunteered and such to keep myself busy so I would forget about him and the drama. I’m here today because my EUM has resurfaced again – 5 attempts at contact in the last two weeks. It’s ridiculous. But I’ve ignored them all (actually I didn’t even read the emails, but kept them as I don’t know what he’s capable of). Success!!!

    I cannot emphasize to all of you in an EUM situation to get out of it. Just forget about them. You’re just addicted to the drama – a habit. You don’t need negative people in your life! I’m so happy right now – I’m not dating anyone, and it doesn’t bother me, AND the best part is that there’s no drama in my life. I did try dating another guy after that, but as soon as I got a negative vibe from the situation I ended it! And then I forgot about him too! Keep the positive supportive people around you, and life will be amazing!

  2. NotCrazy says:

    Anon, so glad to hear that and I gotta say I just got back from a business trip in which I had the best time with a really cool guy, who was so open and frank that it was like a breath of fresh air. It was just casual fun but enjoyed it so much and I am totally sure that guys like my EUM are suuuuuuch a waste of time. I don’t miss him, heck, I don’t ven have the time to remember him/his absence. Can’t believe I fell for the drama, because that’s exactly what it was. Checking my email several times a day just in case today might be the day he wrote or something…imagining how he wants to be with me but something is restraining him..blah blah blah…ladies, just go out and try to be open to meeting new people, it’s the best remedy…:)

  3. NotCrazy says:

    Just one last update. I went out a couple of times with this new guy whom I totally didn’t expect to meet, and it certainly looks like it’s love or something. It’s incredible what a difference! He tells me things, he writes to me, he even sings them to me…beautiful things, no holding back but no smothering, it’s amazing..and we both agree we don’t know what will happen, but just having the guts to live the moment makes me forget all about the man I was “waiting” for for six months…soooo not worth it but I guess I had to go through this school as well. Hugs and good luck to you all…

  4. Ann says:

    Wow, this is giving me quite an education. I have just figured out that my guy is and EUM, honestly until recently I did not even know the term, I thought there was something terribly wrong with me. At first, things were incredibly good. We have been seeing each other for over a year. He would go out of his way to do things to please me. Things that I never asked for. And we were intimate, kissing, cuddling, touching. About six months into it he starts to pull away. Like I am pulling teeth to get him to give me a hug and the sex is maybe every couple of weeks where at first it was much more frequent. Now on weekends I have been with him and he actually places a pillow between us (it helps his back in some fashion he says). He will not kiss me on the lips anymore which really makes me feel rejected. I do brush my teeth and use mouthwash. It causes me to feel like I have the plague or something. When I ask him why he just says “why what” and plays stupid. Avoid, avoid, avoid is his favorite serious subject. I try to have a serious conversation about where this relationship is going and he will change the subject. I have given him on at least three different occasions the opportunity to bale out by asking him if he wants to continue seeing me and he never says no, he will not take that final step. I figure that he should be the one to end the relationship if he wants because that is not what I have wanted. Now I am not so sure after reading all of these posts. We have so much in common and were drawn together almost like magnets, we still have fun doing things together but he has built a wall that I have not been able to tear down. And it is a shame because I do love him and I really thought we had a future with each other.

    Ann’s last blog post..Dark Sea Blob Stuns Alaskans

  5. em says:

    Ann (above) at least you got as far as sex.I was talkin to someone for two years.. we finally agreed to meet a few weeks ago.
    We got as far as a kiss, the first time we met.. and half hearted cuddle the second. We spent the day out together and all was ok, but when we made it back home, he sat over the other side of the room. When he left that night.. i had to ask for a hug good night. Since then hes been offish. He was ringing me now and then.. and replying to my texts.. his tone was different from it normally was. I asked him what was wrong.. and i wouldnt get a reply.. He said in a text this weekend hes ” had enough “.
    Its been two years of his blowing hot an cold.. not knowing where i stand.. He said he likes me.. but doesnt want to know me anymore.. im confused!!
    So, iv decided to go cold turkey. Iv deleted his phone number. I deleted all his pics and iv told myself.. its done and dusted. But i know sooner or later he’s going to get intouch again and its all gonna start again!!

  6. am says:

    I too have been fooled into believing that my EUM who I have dated 3 times in the last ten years would change. So many of you list the same traits of these men such as:

    pushing you away soon after the courting stage
    doesnt call or text daily
    doesnt ask about your life
    doesnt put a name on the status of the relationship or discuss future
    doesnt make plans ahead of time with you. but will with others.
    doesnt make holiday or vacation plans with you
    if they do go on a vacation, they dont enjoy as they are too busy pushing you away
    doesnt tell you how he feels about you
    makes you wait, by not making plans ahead
    is inconsiderate of your life
    does not try to make friends with your friends or family
    cannot emotionally invest in you
    pursues you only when you cut off contact or move on
    make promises they dont keep
    do not show empathy or care about your feelings
    are too busy with job, activities, etc to talk, spend time, etc.
    puts you on bottom of priority list

  7. am says:

    oh yeah, and i forgot;

    cuts you off sexually.

  8. Giver - not taker says:

    Ohhhhhhhh Gosh – and to think I’ve spent the last few days thinking it was me!
    I have known him for the past 2 yrs, but we have only been seeing each other since June this year. He has a chequered history of failed relationships – Anyone gets only get ONE CHANCE with him!

    Wife no 1 Same age as him, to whom he had a child Married for 5yrs- he divorced her after he was made redundant, the child was one year old and wife was pulling his esteem down constantly – so it was irritrievable breakdown. He has contact with the son who is now 20 once every 5 yrs!

    Wife no 2
    12yrs younger – she was pregnant at the time they started seeing each other, she had been abandoned by the baby’s father – she committed adultery with his younger brother. Married for 2 yrs

    Wife no 3 –
    12 yrs older – committed adultery with an old boyfriend Married for 2yrs

    Other relationships that were short term
    Then last one, prior to me
    Lived together for 4 yrs, but kept seperate houses – he says he didnt move in, was only visiting for 4 yrs?????!

    They split up last Christmas as he wants to retire, sell houses, buy a small flat and travel around Europe in a motorhome, the partner at the time bought a dog just before Christmas, he didnt want tying with a dog whilst travelling – so the dog is disposed of or that’s the end.
    Dog wasnt disposed of, partner was fed up of the atmosphere and told him to leave. No contact for 4 months, then started seeing each other at weekends at his house with the dog in kennels.

    June – Found out I had a thing for him for the past 2 yrs – I didnt act on it, kept quiet as I wouldnt make a play for someone already in a relationship – he ends the relationship with the partner and dog and we get together.
    I virtually move in to his house, spending the odd night at home, I was always being asked ‘ Do you enjoy visiting me, cos I enjoy having you here. It’s great coming home to you, I hate it when you’re not here”

    August we go on holiday, have a great time, things continue to progress, if I am at home he cant stop touching me, cuddling me and kissing me the day I get back to his house.
    He asks me if I would consider selling my house and go travelling with him in the next 2 yrs, I tell him, I will not sign up to a dream to made with someone else – that was the end of the discussion.

    September, we go on holiday again, somewhere hot and exotic – I pay for everything as he says he cant afford it, but then goes out and buys a new laptop and a set of specialist drills for work which cost over £200.
    I earn more than twice what he earns, it’s my birthday when we’re away, no present, just a card, cos he doent know what to buy me! He said anything over £20 was expensive!

    He is so mean with money you wouldnt believe, it’s more than just careful. I have bought all the food and the odd present for him, I have had nothing from him, bar a birthday card. But it’s not really about the money.

    We got back last Friday, had a great time, he’s only ever been abroad on a package once before – I have travelled all over the world to different places.

    I say I’m going home for a couple of days and leave on Sunday evening- we talk on the phone briefly when I get home and I send him a text to say ‘ I love you very much” No response from him – and return on Wednesday evening. No kiss at the door when he let me in – he had locked me out and left the key in.
    Makes coffee and says he wants to talk.
    He then tells me he’s had time to think about how he feels about me and he’s got his house back – I was smothering him with kindness, no-one has ever looked after him the way I do, he doesnt like the food I buy because it’s not supermarket cheap budget stuff and he has serious doubts about our relationship as I dont want to commit to selling my house at this point and travelling.

    At that point he wanted me to agree that we dont have much in common and it’s better that WE agree to end it – at that point I said nothing and got up and loaded up my car……….after that he said do you want coffee.
    I just said that it was all take on his side and no give, and that he was a selfish, ungrateful bastard and I was out of there.
    He then asked if I thought I was being a bit rash, no way was I staying so I could agree with him when I dont.

    His sister says that I’m better off out of it as although she loves him and it pains her to say, but she thinks he’s used me. Her husband says he’s done this before, he’s an idiot, but it’s like a switch goes off in his head and he bails out.
    He told his sister that I was too independent and too strong -willed for him……..she rang him yesterday to see what he had to say. As you can see, I am like one of the family and they all care very much for me!

    I am devastated, I cant stop crying and cant believe I let him in to my heart, I hadnt had a relationship for 5 yrs as was sick of the aggro and concentrated on my career. We are not kids, that’s what makes it even worse, both in our 40′s!

  9. jessie says:

    Wow, I came across this website after trying to anaylse what has just happened with a guy i had been seeing for 3 months that ended out of the blue and I think maybe he is emotionally unavailable..
    We met a long time ago and fell out because he was really into me and I got a boyfriend and he couldnt handle this and started to use sarcasm to wind me up, however, he came back into my life earlier in the year. We started to resume a friendship and did kiss one night (initiated by me) but at the time he had been seeing a girl for about five months who he said he didnt love and didnt feel suited too. We continued to randomly contact each other and when it ended with his girlfriend he started to pursue me, contacting a mutual friend and asking if she thought that he should give it a go with me and if I really liked him. After this he came to visit (he lives a few hours from me) and stayed for four days and we got on great from the get go, sitting up for hours talking, and because we were friends from way back it felt totally natural, he told me he had never been able to sit up all night with someone and talk and kiss like we did. This pattern continued with him coming to visit me (he had lost his job and was looking for a new one so had lots of time on his hands) and me going to visit him. Though we made jokes about ending up together and having babies, he started to text me and tell me over the phone how he wanted to make a go of things with me and that even though it would be long distance if we liked each other as much as we felt we both did that we could make it work. He text me often telling me that he missed me and that he wanted a cuddle from me to make him happy and kept saying how it felt like fate that we were together. I genuinely felt from the things he said that this was really going to be the start of something solid. My sister saw the two of us together and told us both how we seemed to “fit” and said that she could see how into me he was just by the way he acted around me and the way he looked at me. He told me one night that he wanted to go away with me, saying how he wanted to spend a week of bliss just with me, and we therefore proceeded to book a week in a cottage together, and the build up to this week we spoke and text of our excitment at going away. He told me that with any other girl he would be nervous at the thought of a week away but with me he was just excited as knew how great we got on. So, we went away and we had a lovely time, though thinking about it before we went he kept telling me how he was going to tell me what he thought of me when we were there, and yet when we were there we never spoke of anything regarding our emotions. On the last night we got very drunk and because I felt close to him I said that sometimes felt I loved him, and he replied “tell me when your sober and I might believe you”. We came home, and then the balance shifted… he started distancing himself from me. He hardly text and when he did it was sporadically, he hardly phoned. I questioned him and he said that he was just down about finding work but the behaviour continued though he asked me to go and visit him for the weekend, I did and it was strange, he seemed nervous when I first arrived, but we spent the day out walking and he put his arm around me and asked if I was pleased i had gone to see him, I still felt slightly uneasy though as it wasnt as comfortable as it had felt before. When I got home, the no texting and contact started again so i told him that i felt maybe we should leave me and him alone until he got himself sorted with work and from there it pretty much snowballed and ended with him saying his head was not in the right place to be with someone.
    We still havent spoken about whats happened as to be honest i pretty much backed off straight away as couldnt believe this after everything he had said though i did email him and he responsed saying that he is slowly realising he doesnt do relationships and that he is emotionally inept and just found it too hard to talk to me, but wants to be my friend and asked about meeting up in a couple of months when we both see mutual friends!
    I was so confused by this, but a friend called him and he totally turned everything. He said that we were never in a relationship, it was fun but because of the distance we knew it would never work (though later in the conversation kept conflicting this by saying we were in a relationship). Then he said that he doesnt love me, he has never been in love (though was with his ex previously for six years), and he is not sure he is capable of love. He blamed his lack of affection on his dad, as his dad has never shown him affection or told him he loved him and he said he cant show affection (though he cuddled me like i have never been cuddled).
    I havent had any contact since, though bizarrely last weekend he forwarded me a text joke!! I couldnt believe that.
    So, emotionally unavailable, what do you think? I am still just coming to terms with how someone can say so much and talk to me like we have a future and then just totally walk away x

  10. Michele says:

    Jessie,
    Your post is a mirror image of what I just went through. As I was reading it I thought we may have been in a relationship with the same guy. Ten months ago a guy came into my life. I did know him previously. He was a co-worker of my brother’s. He knew I had a crush on him, but at the time I let it be known he was in a relationship and I respected that. I had the idea in my head that in a million years nothing would come of it. In January after 1.5 years of letting my crush be known he contacted me. He was traveling through my city and wanted to stop by. We spent a great weekend together and off he went into the sunset. 3 days later he contacted me again about taking me to a show near my city. Keep in mind we live 1,500 miles away from each other. He was on leave for an injury so he had time to visit. He flew back and extended his visit from 4 days to 9 days. During that visit I found out that his ex broke up with him 5 months earlier and he was still in love with her. That was all I needed to hear to determine I was in a “threesome”. On day 6 I asked him to leave. After that he maintained contact with me. I would not initiate it, but would reply. Of course true to form it started out as only text messages and email. 3 months went by and then he started calling and talking for a long time. I took this to be a sign that he was making efforts toward a relationship and slowly participated in his conversations. He was training in another state for work and invited me to visit. I was just laid off from my job and his work was near a beach so I went. I made up my mind to have no expectations and just accept it as a visit. Things happened and we seemed to connect. After my visit he was very responsive and was calling me a couple times a day, every day. I thought we were moving in a forward direction, but I did ignore some red flags. I had noticed that if I kept the conversations peripheral and light that he would be more responsive. If I started to talk about things that were more serious he would supply canned responses. From there we went on a trip to Mexico and I felt like we had some breakthroughs. We got along great and it seemed so perfect. The whole time he was very, very affectionate and attentive and made me feel like I was the only one. We spent 18 days together and it seemed perfect. From there I had a trying month with being unemployed and was going through some personal crisis. A month after our trip to Mexico I went to visit him where he lives after he invited me. I was exploring a move closer to where he lives, but being near him was not my main reason for moving, although I have to admit since I thought our relationship was going to a new level it would just enhance it. We had a great time, but I started hearing more of what he was saying when I questioned him about where our relationship was heading. Words like “I’m still trying to figure it out”, “I’m just making sure you are not the rebound girl” “my friend is concerned because we are not in the same place” At the same time he is telling me he is so glad I’m visiting and that he will miss me when I go and that he doesn’t want me to leave. Also it was his suggestion that we visit the city I wanted to move to. After that trip I felt that he was beginning to distance himself from me. I called him on it and asked if my move was freaking him out. He said part of him was excited, but the other part of him was freaked out. I asked if it would be easier if we didn’t talk for a while. His response was “That would be sad and is this your impatient defensive mechanism?” I told him I was concerned not impatient. It came out that he was still in love with his ex after over a year. He didn’t want to be because she wanted nothing to do with him. They were in a long distance relationship for 6 years. Do you see the pattern? She was in school and doing her thing and he was doing his. He picks long distance relationships for reason. Long story short he wanted me to know that he considered me a friend and that I could call him anytime I wanted. I went into orbit when I heard that and told him he just minimized our relationship. From there he felt that I had too much going on in my life so he removed himself from it thinking it would make my life easier – HOW NOBLE OF HIM! A week later he had surgery on his shoulder and I never called him. It was a month ago and there has been no contact. I will NOT contact him.

  11. jessie says:

    Michele,

    Your story is so similar and I feel sad for you too that you have had to go through exactly what I have gone through. I think the hardest part is just not understanding how someone can spend this time with you and act the way they do then distance themselves once you have dropped your guard. I have been in longer relationships that have ended in the past but I dont think I have ever been left with such a sense of “what” or “why”. I dont know if my ex was still in love with his ex. He had been in a relationship for six years and bought a house with this girlfriend, but funnily enough admitted to me that he knew the relationship had run its course at least two years before they bought the house and yet he still went along with this! He then catapulted into another relationship as soon as this one ended with the girl he was seeing when he met me. This girl he told me he liked but that she was not right for him as a person. I too should have seen the red flags, I was his third relationship within a year and I suppose stupidly because we were initially friends and he liked me way back I thought that I would be different. I dont think my ex is still in love with either of these girls, as in his own admission, he doesnt even think he has ever been in love, but he did talk about them both often and I feel he had never really gotten over both break ups and spent that time to recover from them and look and learn his own part in both of them. Unfortunately I had to text him last night as he owes me money for the holiday that we went on, he responded and because he is still not working said that he will give this to me but that he hasnt got this at the moment… to be honest, I was saddened that in his text he could never even say sorry to me. Sorry for leading me on, and sorry for the hurt he has caused, but I am not sure he even knows what he has done. I think although we have been hurt we both need to be glad that we didnt spend even longer with these guys, who I believe would have hurt us at some point down the line. My ex was thinking of moving to another part of the UK to look for work and kept talking about us both going, now I am glad this wont happen as feel I would have upped sticks and gone and the inevitable would have happened at some point, and I would have moved my world for it to be turned upside down.
    Following my text last night, my ex did respond with another text, using sarcasm to try and be funny and I told him I think he is a waste of space and treats girls badly, I know in some ways I shouldnt have reacted but I couldnt help myself, and you know I feel better for that!. The one thing I can be smug about is that I dont want him as a friend and I want him to know my dislike of him as both of his other exs he has remained in contact with as think this helps to relieve his guilt. I know he wont like it that he cant have that same control over me and that he doesnt like not to be liked. Its great to have some control of my own. You are doing the best thing by having no contact with your ex, stay strong and let me know how your getting on x

  12. Michele says:

    Jessie and all others on this site,

    Thank you for helping me understand the dynamics of EUM. I had an idea of what it was all about, but I think part of me was in denial about it and making excuses for my relationship with an EUM. Jessie, as you so eloquently put it …”I have been in longer relationships that have ended in the past but I dont think I have ever been left with such a sense of “what” or “why”. That is exactly how this person has left me.

    It has been suggested to me that I may be attracted to these type of men because they feel safe for some reason, but I am still trying to figure that part out.

    As Aphrogirl said: “I am starting to see that I need to work hard to get my old vibrant, positive, competent self back from wherever I went.” His indecision about our relationship was a decision and I think I am seeing things more clearly now. The confusion comes in when he says the warm, affectionate things that make you believe that maybe he is capable of a deeper self and a relationship; however I think he was his way of managing me down to his comfort level and keeping me at bay.

    It has been 6 weeks of NC and I know I can keep on going. It will get easier and I thank everyone here for their words and advice.

  13. Jane says:

    Wow, what an education I have gotten. Took me hours to read through every single post on here. I’ve been in the same spot with my EUM for over a year and a half. The only difference is that he has always been honest with me about his inability to commit. He has serious issues due to three major relationships in his life where in the end each woman left him. For seven years or so now he has just been a dater….don’t get attached to anyone…don’t let anyone ruin his life, don’t let anyone into his inner world. It all reached a boiling point last fall and I left. However, we do work together so I had to find some way to deal with the unbelievable pain I felt. Was a very long and difficult winter for me. But time went on, I began to just “be” around him if you know what I mean…not analyzing words, actions…just being and not expecting…knowing it was over and finally getting beyond the deep desire I had for him and the deep pain that existed without him. We did become friends and work became pleasant again. Laughing, having fun…we really do get along great and have so much in common. This past spring something changed…we just kind of started hanging out, going to ball games, getting some drinks after work and of course the sex…we are both drawn to each other physically and attracted to each other deeply. His son lives with him, my daughter lives with me….they go to the same school and we actually spent a great portion of our summer donig stuff together and with our kids. He NEVER does that stuff…has been single and just a non committed dater, no relationship guy for seven years!!! He’s got a lot of walls around him, and seriously has deep rooted issues. Not affectionate in public, not generous with compliments and hates receiving compliments from me (doesn’t feel worthy.) Anyway, one of the biggest problems I had in the past was him being on a dating site when we were dating. So I checked…there he was. I bolted…ran for daylight. But he pulled it off and went to great lengths to keep me around. I couldn’t believe it!! I stayed and we continued to have fun. But curiosity killed this cat and I checked a few weeks later and there was his profile again. I left…no contact…I even switched the nights we would work together so I didn’t have to see him. I mean it was brutal, for both of us. He kept contacting, kept trying but my wall was up that that was that because we just kept coming back to the same thing…we wanted to be togther but he couldn’t commit to just me and I couldn’t have that. No words can describe the pain. I love him with everything I am but had to be no contact for me to stand any kind of chance to get myself together again. I went through the phases…depression, anger, etc. Mid October comes and somehow I was ready to face him…please keep in mind we live in a very small city and only live 5 blocks apart. We have many friends in common, I mean my goodness, his sister is one of my best friends now! I was ready I guess to just face him because I do have to co exist. Unbelievably he started opeing up to me…knows he has problems, wants to fix them. Was beating himself down so he can rebuild a better person. Wants on one hand to be unslefish and let me go because he knows I can do so much better, but something has always kept him attachted. That I did everything good. Admitted I was right when I suggested he no longer wanted to be the guy with the steel walls, was ready to face his fears and realized that after I left he really and truly does care about me. Huge step!!! I was startled and surprised and never expected it. Baby steps…for both of us cause I became very cautious and guarded too!! All was great, easy going…more talking and communication than ever and he was so attentive and really and honestly trying. I was not pushing anything…all contact started wtih him, because I know he needed time and space and no pressures. About two weeks ago…coming off of some great times and a night of mind blowing sex I stopped hearing from him so much. Ok…so I gave him time and just casually asked if everything was ok. “Sure, why?” “Just because I usually hear from you and haven’t…just checking, that’s all.” A few days went by and he did come visit me at work and texted me and all but it just seemed a bit distant. He said he was dealing with some personal issues…not to worry that just because he backed way for a few days does not mean it’s me because it wasn’t at all. Ok…whatever…I let it go but just felt uneasy….uneasy to the point that I checked to see if he once again had his profile posted on the dating site and he did. That was enough for me. I truly believe in some way he just does that to feel he has control and it helps him back off when he’s feeling too much. I mean when we are together he doesn’t date anyone else…I know this. He has ALWAYS been honest with me. I know he cares very much, there is no question in my mind. The guy is just flat out messed up and being 40-something he is just set in his ways and a victim of his fears. I thought all along it was me and it really never was. In the past he would say it isn’t me…wouldn’t matter who it is he just is who he is and can’t give anymore. He’s afraid. I asked him two days ago if he ultimately did want to push me away and he said no. Of course this all feels so wrong to me but after all this time I know how he works, we’ve become close and I am also aware of how I respond and react…real crappy and unstable at first but I know I must keep moving forward and must keep believing in myself. Maybe one day we will get it right. Maybe we won’t. I’m done worrying or festering over it. I’m done letting someone else control my feelings. I’m done being available, both physically and emotionally. Done looking at my phone to see if he texted me. I’m gonna keep moving forward and stop saying no to the other men that have asked me out. I do feel empowered and that goes back to the progress I made during no contact time. I do know I am a good person. I do know he is losing out and I also know he knows that but after all the time, energy, anguish, tears, dark hours, days, weeks I know I gave it my all. I’m not going to change him, I just have to be me and stay happy, confident and healthy for both me and my daughter.

    There is so much to say…so many things not in here. Just too many stories to share about this man and not a way to properly summarize. Anyway, I hope some of it made some sort of sense to someone out there!

  14. Wendy says:

    READ THE BOOK “He’s Just Not That Into You” bcuz the movie has a happy Hollywood crap ending which is NOT real life.
    That book is like my personal bible. It helped me set boundaries right off the hop and made things so simple.

    Even tho I dabbled with an EUM recently and let slide some of my wisdom i got from that book, ultimately it proved to be correct.

    One key thing is that even if he IS “into you”…if he’s behaving badly, it ends up FEELING the same as he’s just not that “into you” and really what more do you need to know.

    The longer you let it go on the worse it hurts to end it.

  15. susie jay says:

    Well ladies how very true this site is about EUM. I have been with a guy for 3 years and he pampered me, bought me lots of jewellery, clothes, took me to places i had never been held my hand everywhere both inside the house and outside, often cuddled me and then i told him i was beginning to love him. I didnt know, of course, he was an EUM at that time. He asked me what love was even though he had been married and was then a widower. I was stunned as i presumed that he had loved his wife! He and me were so compatible and our sex was unbelievable, he used to say it was fantastic, superb, intense etc etc and then suddenly he stopped getting physical with me and i asked if he had a problem. No, he said i think i would really like you as a friend and not a lover as i have a lot of issues to resolve inside my head!! – Hello…..i thought whats going on here then? But after reading these letters, he is the exact replica of an EUM. I didnt want to be his friend and so i am getting on with my life without him. I miss him every day, i really loved him and its going to take a long time for me to get over him, but i cannot live as a ‘friend’ i need love and affection too. I cannot believe someone could change so suddenly from a loving, attentive partner into what seems to be like a total stranger. He even has a different look on his face i have never seen before, a sort of stony faced one which isnt like him at all. And i do suspect him of having someone else other than myself – whether that is for his self-esteem im not sure but there is no way, if true, i am into sharing a man with one other. So i go onward with my life and will keep my memories of the fantastic times we shared etc.

    • Over It says:

      Wow Susie Jay,
      I’m always curious when there is a new comment on an old post because it’s usually someone new to this site.

      There was a comment the other day, and now yours, that I am so impressed by,

      I can’t believe how strong you are from the get-go, and how ready you are to cut the ties and move forward. When I first broke off with my EUM, I was a train wreck. Almost a year later, I still have crappy days if something reminds me of him — or the wonderful man he pretended to be, at least.

      Anyway, your note is an inspiration, and a nice kick in the pants as I have been feeling rather low lately. So thanks.

      Best of luck to you — though it hardly sounds like you’ll need it!
      Over It

  16. DJ says:

    I have just “fallen” on to your website. I say fallen because this morning I asked God to help me see a way out today. Its mind blowing that your site popped up. I don’t no how old these post’s are, but I’d like to see if any one out there has ever had the story I’m about to tell happen to them. It eats at me, I would like to come to some kind of peace with it. I have been married to a EUM for 30 years, I think. The first 23 years were kindof good, we have 3 children. He would always refuse sex, I was always asking for hugs or why we never kiss or cuddle. His response was ” theres more to a relationship than sex” so I thought, well yeah, butttt. He was always, always, checking other women out. Always trying to sit by some gal or chat with someother gal, never, never, wanting to have fun with me. Like holding hands and laughing telling jokes, that kind of thing. I honestly always felt like I was his Mom, not a wife or a girl friend to have fun with. Gee I write this and it sure does’nt look the those 23 years were all that great huh ? Still we would have great talks and built 7 house’s together. We both really enjoyed that. I guess that was our greatest interest together. Then our kids started graduating from high school. Internet became thee big thing. Well I started finding porn sites, then dating sites, then subscriptions to those sites. He was moving out for months, geez on & on it went. But I’m leaving now and at peace with that. My question to any one out there is, Why his turning me down for sex, but goes out looking for sex from other women. I just don’t understand..

    • Fearless says:

      DJ
      I don’t know, but I’m guessing at this:

      “I honestly always felt like I was his Mom, not a wife or a girl friend”

      I think some people do end up not being able to see their partners/spouses in a sexual way; I’ve noticed it’s not unusual for people to say stuff like ‘he/she’s like a brother/sister to me’ when talking about their partner.

      One of my young female cousin’s recent marriage, which was a big expensive white wedding, lasted less than a year (they had lived together for a long time prior) for similar reasons. Prior to the split she had insisted on a marriage counsellor. Apparently my cousin’s husband said he loved her very much but as a brother (she said she had three brothers already and didn’t need another) and that was that. Over. It was dreadful for her and her family.

      • Teddie says:

        I second this. There is some research I’ve seen that beside the getting too used to each other, this is what is behind the going off sex in long-term couples: they start to feel as blood relatives and unconscious incest taboos come into play.
        Having said this, DJ, you’re not saying your ex changed over time, he’d been like that all along, so there must be something else going on.

  17. Awakened says:

    Hi DJ. It sounds like He may not be sexually attracted to you. He may have just held on to the marriage so to speak but he has already “Left”. No man on this God green earth would be turning down “the cookie” from his wife. You say you have already saw evidence of porn sites; other memberships etc. He’s seeking sexual fulfillment from other sources. I could be wrong but from reading your posting it’s really not that hard to figure out. He’s not happy with you atlease “sexually”. Good luck.

    • grace says:

      DJ
      It could be a way of throwing up a wall so the two of you don’t get close (even if you’re married). Or he has some madonna-whore thing going on when he can only shag women he doesn’t respect.
      How long has he been refusing sex? If it’s been from the very beginning (which is what I’m getting from your comment) then the bigger question is why you settled for that? Not to beat yourself over the head with it, but you may be missing something that could help your future. And if it’s been from the begnning I don’t buy that he’s just not into you. Why marry you then? That’s effed up!
      On the plus side, you have your children, you had some good times together and you are ready to move onto the next stage of your life. Onwards and upwards!

  18. dancingqueen says:

    Hi DJ,

    I just want to clarify that even if what awakened said is true, don’t let this make you feel “less than”. People all the time shut off and it has nothing to do with how attractive their partner is. A few months ago I was dating someone and for whatever reason, the chemistry no longer was there for me. He was an attractive guy, just as attractive as when I first met him, but for whatever reason, something shut off. It sounds like you both have moved apart and what you need to ask yourself now is “What do I want? What kind of relationship with myself and also, a future lover, do I want? How can I move to becoming someone who is willing to let a bad relationship go, and move to the light?”

    He did not take any chances away from you, by leaving emotionally and physically, in fact, he gave you chances. Use those. Good lucj!

  19. billy says:

    It strikes me that some of you ladies need to investigate Attachment Styles to discover exactly what is going on with some of your relationships. There are known Psychological Disorders and descriptions for them. Avoidant is the main one you should investigate.

    • Fearless says:

      Billy

      yep. It helped me to understand my own relationship behaviour and that of my now ex EUM when I looked up and read all about adult attachment theory. And you are right; active avoidant attachment style is the hallmark of the EUM. I “used to be” passive avoidant! I’m working on avoiding being avoidant! But I’m not yet convinced that we can change who we are – these are deep rooted impulses. We can understand it; recognise when it’s in action, which helps to avoid unhealthy relationships, but I’m not sure I can actually *feel* what is against my ‘instinctive’ feelings in order to put myself into a healthy relationship. I can now avoid the bad ones, I hope, but not the same as being able to have a good one! Can we really change our attachment style? Or in order to have a healthy relationship do we need to bury our true feelings/instincts (which defeats the purpose!);would that mean we would always feel we had ‘settled for’?

  20. billy says:

    However it works both ways and some men are just bastards and only want one thing!!!!

  21. Clara. says:

    Hi,
    Hoping someone can help me. Im in 14 years of a relationship (both divorced) where we live in our own homes, I did hope that the situation would change as both our children grew up and have all more or less flown the nests but this is not going to happen. I went back to college 2 years ago and his says that has put a spanner in the works regarding out relationship. I cant see or understand why. I have been told to lighten up and to stop being emotional, once or twice I have brought up the subject but it will be turned into an argument about something else. There have been long silences and nothing ever gets resolved. Is this an EUM. I probably not making a lot of sense but really feel at sea about our relationship if it deserves to be call that. I have suggested counselling and this was shot down completely and I also suggested that we should have a break which he says he does not want. Yesterday we met up after nearly a fortnight of no contact and arranged to meet later to go for a drink, which did not happen,I received late phone call. He said he would ring me this morning, my response was ‘yeah whatever’. No phone call yet, would this be a good time to start NC,Any advice or suggestions would be welcome.

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