When someone is indecisive about you, they're on the fence instead of being in the relationship with both feet firmly planted in.

If you’ve ever been with someone who blows hot and cold by one day professing their love for you and talking about the future to the next day getting cold feet and saying “I don’t want to hurt you” or even ‘going dark’, you’ll know that being on the end of someone’s indecision isn’t good for your soul or your self-esteem.

A friend was excited when her boyfriend said that he was taking her away and that he was going to buy “a ring” all without any prompting from her. On the day that they were due to fly off, he showed up weeping and saying “I can’t do this”. Somehow she forgave him and then he flipped and flapped for another few years until she ran out of patience and sympathy and made up his mind for him by removing herself out of the equation.

When someone is indecisive about being with you, it’s not sexy or acceptable.

Being vulnerable is something that the great majority of people have some degree of fear about but it’s a necessity for something as basic as feeling our own feelings and taking in reality as well as being a fundamental component of our relationships. None or limited vulnerability equals intimacy issues equals commitment issues equals balance, progression and consistency issues equals you dealing with someone who isn’t available for an available relationship.

They’re on the fence instead of being in the relationship with both feet firmly planted in.

Indecisive people have commitment issues. They appear to make decisions and then afterwards start to panic and backtrack to relieve their fears. Then when they feel calm again based on the change in decision, they then worry if they made the wrong decision. And round and round they go.

You can end up falling into the trap of trying to help them make up their minds and even attempting to allay their fears and in the meantime, you end up forgetting your own needs and cross into over-empathising instead of recognising what indecision means in the bigger picture. You can also end up internalising their anxiety. Maybe I should I have doubts too?

Indecision is actually a decision in itself and to be on the receiving end of it can be torture. Someone who truly cares for you and is empathetic will recognise that it’s not acceptable and will not continue the flip-flapping or take advantage of your own decisiveness about them.

When someone then starts telling you that they’re being indecisive because they don’t want to hurt you, it raises the question of which crystal ball they’re using? It’s more like self-knowledge and experience. They may be afraid of being honest and assertive or they just lack the self-knowledge to understand their own needs which would in turn help them make a decision that reflected not only who they are but also had some respect and consideration for you. If they don’t understand their own needs or feelings, they’re certainly not going to be able to empathise either. They tend to be reactive and will reel you in on a whim and then flush you back out of their hot attention with a bump back to earth.

It’s not ‘bad’ to have a wobble or to be a little afraid of stepping forward. I think it comes with the territory with relationships. The difference though between the person who’s indecisive and the person who has both feet in is that the latter knows that vulnerability is needed and weighs evidence against their fears and proceeds based on the feedback.

Both of you may be afraid but you’re taking the leap of faith together.

The person that’s indecisive keeps wobbling and after a while, you can end up being uneasy because you’re trained and attuned to expect a wobble. You end up feeling distrusted. You end up feeling like you’ve got to campaign for you and make them feel better about the last person that they were with. It’s not your job to help someone get over their previous relationships and trauma. You can be empathetic and sympathetic but if these issues are getting in the way of them being able to differentiate between past and present and forge a mutual relationship with you and they’re not making it a priority to resolve the issue, you have to step away.

The biggest problem with this whole indecision malarkey is this expectation whether it’s communicated directly or not, that it’s you that’s got to do something to relieve that indecision when actually, the indecision is about them, even if they try to put it on you. The next biggest problem is this inherent assumption by them that you’re supposed to be ‘OK’ with this indecision (like a show of your commitment to their uncommitted selves) and if you respect what they’re saying and don’t want to participate, you’re ‘pressuring’ them. NO, you’re respecting what they’ve said instead of letting them have it both ways.

This is how so many people get downgraded to casual. “OK I’ll let you test drive me in casual mode until you’re over your wobble.”

Relationships require a leap of faith. You don’t want to be taking that leap and then being dragged back or left hanging and pleading for the other person to join you. It takes the joy and the fun out of the relationship and after a while, it’ll begin to erode at your sense of self because it’s human nature to wonder what you’ve ‘done’ and that’s just not fair.

I’ve learned this the hard way that if you’re faced with someone who’s indecisive about you or the possibility of a relationship, let them make up their minds on their own time, not yours.

Don’t see it as a challenge and an opportunity for validation – see it as great big red warning that whatever it is that you thought you both have had going on, they aren’t on the same page as you and have their own issues. If you blame you for their indecision, you’ll miss some very vital feedback about this person and your relationship. If they come back, they return decided and if they then start to passive aggressively roll it back after a time or flake out again, cut ‘em loose.

Ultimately there’s something so not right about you being decided on a person and a relationship that the other party isn’t. You think you’re copilotting when the other person is trying to make an emergency exit. If they’re on the fence and you’re waiting on them, you get put on the fence too. In the end, you’ll have to do for the both of you what they clearly can’t do – make the decision that puts an end to all of this indecision and leaves you with your sense of self intact as well as being available for an available relationship with someone who isn’t resisting you with their indecision.

Your thoughts?

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328 Responses to Indecision About You Isn’t Sexy Or Acceptable

  1. MsT says:

    I needed to read this, he has kept me stringing along for two years. I feel so stupid to have trusted him in any way but I guess it’s a lesson learnt.

    It’s been a few days now and I feel much better – this blog is written gold.

    • Brenda says:

      Don’t feel bad, some of us have been strung along even longer than that. Not all these guys are bad people either, they have issues as people do, and are not ready to tackle those, and you can be a model, you can be intelligent and more and they will still not be ready.

      Just take it as a lesson to move on faster next time, the pain from him and the memories from him will let you do that.

      We read too much of how pretty or smart enough someone is and should not be single, But we do not get to read enuogh how all of those qulities cannot change another person either into being relationship material, then blame these other qualities on them, that is what society does it seems.

      You can have all of the best qualities and still end up with someone that is not ready ow wanting the same things, plain and simple.

  2. lynette says:

    a while back i commented on this post and tried to explain when indecision is a good thing. and then two weeks ago, the EXACT scenario depicted here played out for me. what a freaking confusing game play it is! red flags, right? big time?

    i know i should just walk away. i think. any help appreciated…. i am in a really vulnerable place and having a hard time finding my inner strong woman.

    http://lynetteb.wordpress.com/2012/12/26/in-fours/

  3. grace says:

    Lynette
    Run my dear. A man who gets all angst ridden about not being ready for a relationship and then starts with the touchy feely is not a good prospect. He,s getting off on the drama, so are you somewhat. However, this is not equal, you are the one who is going to get hurt if you pursue this. He is not treating you right. He messed you about before and steps it up when you are feeling especially vulnerable.
    I am so sorry to hear about the grief you are going through, this man is not the answer. I know you like him. I like handbags that cost thousands, I,d like to lie in and be two hours late for work every morning, i,d like to eat sweets every day. but some things are just not worth the consequences.
    Feel what you need to feel and don,t let this man distract you from that. Make a good decision for yourself, it will pay off. It did for me.at the time it was the hardest thing I ever did but completely worth it. You,re worth the right choice.

    • lynette says:

      Grace, thank you for reading and for your comments. I think I am caught up in the feelings — interesting to think I may be somewhat caught up in the drama. I’ll have to give that some thought — I actually don’t like drama but I will admit that instead of running away from it, I tend to try to fix it. Maybe not the best approach.

      The advice of a few is to go ahead and contact him to ask him to clarify the things I cannot remember. Somehow, I cannot bring myself to do that, and I am afraid I am losing something important. But maybe that is the right instinct?

      And thank you for the kind words :) This is such a hard time, I do agree he is no answer here.

      • grace says:

        Lynette
        Your instinct is correct. I find it usually is. Friends often have their own questionable relationship beliefs or they love you and think any man would. Doesn’t always work out that way!
        it,s not about right or wrong. you,re not married or even his girlfriend. It,s only about what you decide to do. it,s your decision.

        • lynette says:

          So I did email. And he emailed back. So at least I know it’s decisive. Kind of. But I am trying to find a way to see it as decisive. He’s not completely into me anyway, and that’s a dealbreaker, right? Because I do know that even when someone is in a rough patch or in a transitional place, if they are into you, they are into you. And that is not the message I am getting. Sigh. It’s so painful on top of everything else.

  4. Drama No thanks says:

    It is hard when someone is indecisive because of their past experiences. But as this article states they are not ready…so if they are not and you are , time to move on. I have been in this hot/cold relationship for a year now. At first it was fine when I wasn’t ready for any thing either. But the sudden distance when things go well, is torture. The only time he comes around is when he feels me pulling away or when I tell him he needs to go…there’s the drama part. And this causes more frustration and distance, like he expects me to be ok with the distance. It is way too much energy and work than it is worth. People who are not ready will not change any time soon, until they are ready to deal with their fears as to why they won’t commit in the first place. A “relationship” like this leaves you feeling hurt and exhausted.

My Book - Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl

Stop believing that you did something to make them unavailable or that their inadequacies are down to your inadequacies - it is not about you; they are unavailable!

My Book - Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl

Stop believing that you did something to make them unavailable or that their inadequacies are down to your inadequacies - it is not about you; they are unavailable!