Do Emotionally Unavailable Men Miss You

Do Emotionally Unavailable Men Miss You

Photo by Mart Production

Yes, emotionally unavailable men do miss their partner.

But as you may know from your own experience, getting him to feel or admit that he misses you, can feel like an endless uphill struggle.

It’s something my fiancée Karolina used to complain about A LOT with me, especially during our breakups…

Because guess what?

I used to be an extremely emotionally unavailable man too.

That’s why I want to talk about this difficult topic with you, because whether it’s about discovering the traits of emotionally unavailable men, noticing the signs that he misses you or if he’ll ever wake up to what he’s lost…

All of these things matter to not only understanding your position and value in his life, but will also answer the question of how you fix emotional distance in a relationship.

(if that’s something you still want)

And that’s exactly what we’ll cover in this post, by sharing some of Karolina’s and my story with you and how you can apply the lessons we learned to your own life.

What Are the Traits of an Emotionally Unavailable Man?

You may think you’re alone with your emotionally unavailable guy, but us men are, unfortunately, not as original as you might think.

A lot of us carry very similar emotional baggage from our pasts that we’re too afraid to unpack and face.

And this has a DEEP negative impact on our relationships.

So let’s first start with identifying 5 signs of emotional detachment in men that you might recognize from your own relationship:

1. He Has a Hard Time Committing to You

Whether it’s about long-term future plans or the often dreaded ‘What are we?’ question.

Anything Karolina would say that would suggest commitment to our relationship would scare the living hell out of me!

Now, the exact reason behind that, is a longer conversation.

But in short, it’s driven by a deeply seated fear of abandonment.

So I would stay emotionally detached in an effort to AVOID the dreadful outcome of the relationship not working out.

And as you might have experienced yourself, his fear then creates the very outcome he’s TRYING TO AVOID.

Which in turn makes him think that having his emotional guard up is justified and reinforces it.

And It sucks!

For both of you.

2. He Gives You Mixed Messages

To make matters even more confusing for Karolina, after struggling with commitment, I would then say or do things that made her feel appreciated and that I was serious.

Like randomly texting her that I miss her…

So naturally she was all: “Which IS IT then????

These kinds of mixed messages tie back to the fact that I myself was unaware of my attachment towards her.

So if you’re wondering how to tell if a guy is confused about his feelings for you, it’s likely a sign that he’s just emotionally lost and unavailable.

3. He Often Judges Your Emotions as ‘Overreacting’

I was raised in an environment that vehemently shamed the expression of emotions or needs.

When this is your standard in your formative years, it becomes your ‘normal’.

And also plays a big part in what causes emotional detachment.

This means that when Karolina was emotional about something, the only way I could react to what she said was in the SAME WAY my parents treated me.

Which was to diminish, ignore and judge her expressing her emotions as ‘overreacting’.

So if your partner gets defensive when you tell him how you feel, consider it a trait of an emotionally reclusive man with an emotionally oppressed backstory.

4. He Regularly Withdraws or Goes Into Hiding

When there was too big of an emotional load on me and I didn’t know how to cope with it, the solution was simple:

Go hide.

If you know this behavior from your own relationship, then you’ll have seen him bury himself in work, binge the latest Netflix series, be on his phone for hours on end or any other form of withdrawal to escape the crushing load of scary emotions.

Karolina actually wrote a really helpful post on this: Why Men Pull Away and How to Get Them to Stop Doing It.

5. He Doesn’t Notice That He’s Emotionally Unavailable

Lastly, but no less important, is that he’s likely UNAWARE of the fact he is emotionally unavailable.

As mentioned, to me it was the standard (or lack thereof) that was set in my childhood, that led me to being blind to emotional needs.

In the same way, many people go through their own lives being taught that their emotions are invalid, non-existent, stupid, etc.

Overtime, these lies become ingrained, and you accept them as truths.

THIS is what causes emotional unavailability and is what you’ll experience as some traits, which put a giant wrench in the gears of what could otherwise be a happy relationship.

So these are 5 traits of emotionally unavailable men to help you know what you’re dealing with.

Next, let’s talk about the, often cryptic, ways in which he might be telling you that he misses you.

5 Signs An Emotionally Unavailable Man Misses You

The problem with emotionally detached men is that they make it INCREDIBLY DIFFICULT to read them and know what’s going on inside their heads and hearts.

So if your relationship is going through a tumultuous time or you guys broke up and there’s little contact, here are signs to help you know that he actually misses you.

1. He’s Let You Into His Life

Even though Karolina and I hit some big roadblocks in our relationship due to me being emotionally distant…

I did actually involve and let her into my life.

So if your (ex)partner has introduced you to his friends, his family or made you feel at home when you were at his place, then these are ways in which he’s talking through his actions rather than words.

(Because words might involve scary emotions.)

A man who does this, has placed enough trust and value in his partner to let her into his life this much, which makes you someone he definitely cares about and misses.

2. He Helps You Where He Can

Despite his emotional limitations, he’ll do what he can to help with things he actually CAN DO.

I may have been emotionally unavailable, but I often made gestures that clearly communicated that I was interested in Karolina and wanted her in my life.

Even after our breakups.

Whether it was helping out with an assignment, checking in on her when she was sick or the classic, carrying heavy things for her.

So distant men find OTHER WAYS to communicate that they value and miss you, typically by helping where they can.

3. He Makes Some Effort to Change

Despite all the exhausting and heartbreaking arguments we had about emotional distance, I always TRIED.

I made conscious efforts to be more available and talk about my past and why I struggled with emotional attachments.

One of the ways to tell if an emotionally unavailable man loves you, is if he has made these kinds of efforts (as small as they may be!) know that this is a definite sign he’ll miss you!

4. He’s Been Vulnerable With You

As we talked about, the reason many men are emotionally unavailable is that they are terrified of being abandoned and rejected again.

They’ve been taught that their emotions are not valid and don’t exist.

So if he’s been vulnerable with you, by showing his ‘softer side’ through words, texts or even just facial expressions, then it’s another sign he’ll miss you terribly.

Because no emotionally unavailable man willingly displays vulnerability unless you’ve successfully earned his trust.

5. He Calls or Texts You

When men are having second thoughts or are trying to move on, they’ll resist contacting you.

So if he makes an effort to text or call you, maybe ‘Just wanted to see how you’re doing?’ or ask something like ‘What’s new?

Then he most certainly is thinking about you and misses you.

There are of course additional ways in which a man will express that he loves you, which you don’t want to miss.

Will He Ever Realize What He Lost?

If you and your man broke up, then you can be left with many doubts and questions.

One of which is whether emotionally unavailable men ever regret losing you and if it’s possible that he will come back?

I’ll tell you from my own experience and understanding that I have today…

…that I deeply regret the breakups with Karolina.

And that I honestly wouldn’t know what I would have done without her, if she’d moved on at the time.

But the sad truth is that because of being conditioned to be emotionally detached, we often DON’T EVEN realize we’re feeling all these things!

And puts both you and him in a painful situation…

It’s like you want to share all the love you have for each other, but there’s a BIG stupid glass wall keeping you apart!

So you might be wondering, what are the signs he will come back? Or how do you make him realize what he lost?

The cold, hard fact is that an emotionally unavailable man often doesn’t realize he’s made a mistake until it’s too late…

The wake-up call doesn’t HIT THEM until you’ve truly moved on.

And some unfortunately chose to remain emotionally isolated their entire lives…

BUT I don’t want you to lose hope just yet!

Let’s talk about how you can try to CONNECT with him.

How Do You Connect With an Emotionally Unavailable Man?

We’ve talked about the 5 traits of emotionally unavailable men, the 5 signs that he misses you, and whether he’ll realize what he’s lost.

So how do you win an emotionally unavailable man?

I won’t lie to you, it’s difficult!

Karolina can attest to how nerve wracking it was with me, (but I also might just be particularly stubborn!)

But it IS DOABLE.

So in case you’re wondering whether emotional detachment is permanent, no IT IS NOT!

But in order to get through to him, you need to equip yourself with a couple of things:

Patience

Yeah, I know, cliché isn’t it?

But it’s true!

And yes, waiting sucks, especially if you’ve already been waiting for SO LONG!

But if you lose too much patience and push him, he’ll only use it as evidence to justify keeping himself emotionally hostage.

So do what you can, to remain understanding of his internal struggle with feelings and support him on his journey to gradually opening up.

We like to emphasize that every relationship problem has layers (yes, just like an onion) and you need to patiently peel away at them, one at a time, to get to the root cause.

And if you’re at your patience limit, take a break and give him space the right way, so there is no distance being created.

Earn His Trust

If he’s ever going to get over his emotional unavailability, he’s going to need someone who he knows to count on.

If you’re the brave soul willing to go on this trip with him, you’ve already earned my respect.

And one of the best ways to bring him closer, is to build trust with him.

Again, just like with an onion, there are many layers of trust you can build, so don’t think of it as a one off, but as an ongoing process.

And the more you earn his trust, the more he’ll finally become emotionally available.

Learn His Story

Just like I’ve shared some of my story and journey with you, your partner will have his own story to tell.

It’s likely buried in a lot of shame and past secrets that he himself might not even properly remember!

But an important part of his healing process to become emotionally available for you will come from gradually trusting you with his story.

In his story, the root cause that’s driving his emotional detachment will become apparent and can be resolved.

This is actually something we talk a lot about in our Rebuild Your Relationship course.

In it, we explain why relationship problems, like emotional unavailability, happen and go into detail about how to connect with him in a way that opens him up, instead of triggering his defenses.

This way he can feel safe to trust you with his feelings and you can finally have emotional intimacy you deserve. 

If that sounds like something that might help you, you can click here to check out Rebuild Your Relationship.

Karolina and I have also written plenty of blog posts you guys can check out, including a post you might find helpful: How to Get an Emotionally Unavailable Man to Open Up

I hope this article gave you some clarity and insight.

If you have any thoughts or questions you’d like to share, just leave them in the comments section, and I’ll get back to you.

Gabriel

How To Tell Him You Love Him – 50 Heartfelt Ways

How To Tell Him You Love Him – 50 Heartfelt Ways

Photo by Olya Kobruseva

Expressing your love and appreciation for your boyfriend or husband is far more important than you think!

When you’re in a relationship with someone, people tend to assume that their partner knows what they are thinking or feeling.

But this mostly could not be further from the truth!

Deep down, we’re all insecure and riddled with self-doubt…

That’s why it’s so important to tell him how much you love him!

It will make your boyfriend or husband feel valued and appreciated. It will also encourage him to return the gesture and express his feelings for you, which in turn will make you feel more secure in the relationship.

When Should You Tell Your Boyfriend You Love Him?

The answer to this question is very simple: you should tell your boyfriend you love him whenever you feel like it.

In case it’s not possible because one of you is busy or currently unavailable, it’s best to wait for the moment when you can be sure you have his attention and that he will be able to receive what you’re trying to communicate to him.

Alternatively, you can always send him a text or leave him a little note he can open and read whenever he is ready.

This way, you don’t have to worry about the timing being right.

When to Tell Your Boyfriend You Love Him for the First Time

Telling your boyfriend you love him for the first time can be very vulnerable. That’s why it’s important not to rush it and to only do it when it feels right.

For example, I told my boyfriend (now fiancée) that I loved him while we were snuggling in bed.

It was a very special moment, a memory of which gives me warm fuzzy feelings up until this day…

I did it about three months into our relationship.

But there are no fixed rules here…

On average, research has found that men wait about three months to say ‘I love you’ for the first time, while women tend to need five months before their first love confession.

What to Do if You Want to Tell Him You Love Him, but You’re Scared

If you want to tell your boyfriend that you love him, but you’re scared, then maybe you’re simply not ready to do it yet.

After all, it takes time to build trust in a new relationship.

So don’t be hard on yourself and don’t let yourself be pressured by societal norms and imposed deadlines!

But if you feel like your fears send you into a spiral of doubt and overthinking, it might be helpful to try to sit down and figure out what exactly are you so scared of.

Also, in my experience, sometimes you just have to take the leap and say the scary thing anyway!

It often ends up being much less of a big deal in retrospect.

50 Heartfelt Ways To Tell Him You Love Him

Here are some paragraphs you can use to express your appreciation and love for your boyfriend or husband. They can be used in person as well as for calls or over text.

I’ll start off with some general ideas that can be used almost on any occasion:

1. I feel happy when I’m with you

2. The time we spend together is really special to me. You make me feel alive.

3. I love to see you smile. It makes me happy when you’re happy.

4. You are my favorite person.

5. I can never have enough of you.

6. Being with you can never be boring.

7. I’m so happy to have met you.

8. You are simply the best.

9. You are my best friend.

And last but not least:

10. I love you!

Another great way to tell your boyfriend you love him is by appreciating something they said or did:

11. I really appreciate the efforts you’ve been making to impress me.

12. Thank you for being so loving and generous!

13. I had so much fun last weekend! Thank you for the wonderful time we spent together!

14. Thank you for being there for me. I really appreciate how helpful and thoughtful you are!

15. I really love how caring and generous you’ve been towards me.

16. Thank you for checking in on me. It’s so thoughtful of you to always remember to ask me how my day was.

17. I love how relaxed you are. You really help me calm down and chill out after a hard week. I really value this about you.

18. Thank you for being so patient and understanding towards me. I know I can be difficult at times…

19. Everything you do makes me fall more and more in love with you.

20. My life is so much better now, since you’re a part of it!

The next way you can tell your boyfriend you love him is by complimenting him on something you genuinely value about him.

Here are some examples for you:

21. I love how alive and energetic you are. It’s a great motivator and I have so much fun when we’re together.

22. You’re simply the best looking man in the world. I can’t keep my hands off of you!

23. I had a great time on our last date. Our conversation was so interesting! I really appreciate how smart and informed you are.

24. You looked so good last time we saw each other. I love your style!

25. I love how bold you are! You can really get me out of my comfort zone and let me experience things I wouldn’t dare try on my own!

26. You’re so passionate about things! I really love that about you. You are amazing. Never doubt that!

27. I love your taste in music. You made me discover so many awesome tracks!

28. I love how serious you can get about topics you care about. It makes me feel safe to be with a man who has a strong sense of direction!

29. You always take your responsibilities seriously. I really value that about you! I feel like I can count on you to always keep your word when it matters.

30. You’re always so calm and level-headed. You’re like a stable rock in my life, I can always lean on whenever I need you. Thank you for being there for me!

Flirting is yet another great and playful way to express your love for him. Giving him little hints that want him is bound to make him want you more…

Here are flirty paragraphs to tell your boyfriend you’re crazy about him:

31. Whenever I’m lying on your chest, I feel like I’m in the safest place in the world. I wish I could just stay there 24/7.

32. I love the shape of your lips… Can I trace it with my fingers?

33. Your hands are so big and strong. I love the way they feel on my body.

34. I had a dream about you last night. Guess what happened again…

35. It’s impossible to get any work done today because I can’t stop thinking about you.

36. I miss the feeling of having your strong arms wrapped around me.

37. I was thinking about last night all day today. Can’t wait to do it again.

38. I love the way you kiss me.

39. You make my dreams come true. In particular, a certain type of dream…

40. I’m so lucky to have found a guy who is smart, funny and insanely hot!

It’s also possible to show your boyfriend just how much you love him without using words. You can simply do things that will make him feel loved and appreciated.

Here are some examples of what I mean:

41. Give him a long hug out of the blue

42. Give him a heartfelt kiss

43. Play his favorite video game with him

44. Suggest watching a movie you know he loves

45. Give him a massage

46. Snuggle up to him

47. Take his hand and hold it while walking

48. Ask him questions about something you know he is really into

49. Give him a hand massage

50. Ask him what he wants to do and then go do that thing

Hope you liked my paragraphs to tell your boyfriend you love him.

If you want to know how to better inspire him to return your gesture, be sure to check out my other post: These 10 Little Things Will Make Your Partner Love You More

Expressing feelings comes naturally to some people, while others struggle with it. I used to have a much harder time expressing my appreciation too, so I get how scary it can feel to show vulnerability and put yourself out there in this way!

If you feel like you could do with some support when it comes to this kind of struggle, you might find the help you need in a coaching call.

Here we will listen to you about your fears and blocks, and give you strategies on how to approach them and what to do to overcome them.

We will also give you tips on how to be more confident and doubt yourself less.

Click here to check out Coaching Calls.

If you have any questions about this article or about our coaching, leave me a comment and I’ll get back to you!

Karolina

9 Signs Your Ex Is Waiting for You and Secretly Wants You Back

9 Signs Your Ex Is Waiting for You and Secretly Wants You Back

Photo by Chermiti Mohamed

Breakups almost never feel like a definite end of a relationship.

When you’re together with someone, you inevitably become attached and develop a connection and that’s something that can’t just vanish from one moment onto the next.

If your boyfriend recently broke up with you, or you were the one to break up but regret it, know that this feeling you likely have: that things are not over yet, is right!

It takes months if not years to truly let go and move on. And through all that time a window of opportunity for reconciliation and fixing things often remains open.

My boyfriend and co-author of this blog broke up with me three times in the first years of our relationship. After every one of these breakups we ended up getting back together in about a month. And I know from all of you guys just how common these kinds of situations are!

Couples break up but things don’t end there. They keep on texting, seeing each other and either things fizzle out slowly or they end up getting back together.

Of course, to make a relationship work after a breakup, both sides need to want it and this is not always the case.

That’s why I’ve compiled a list of signs to help you know if your ex secretly wants you back and is waiting for you to make the next move.

1. He Left His Things at Your Place and Isn’t in a Hurry to Pick Them Up

When a guy breaks up, women generally expect that he really means it. That’s why they are then often baffled when he then leaves many of his things at their place for weeks or even months after the breakup.

Sometimes this can even include really important personal items like documents, spare keys etc. But it can also be smaller, less important stuff like clothes or electric toothbrushes…

So if you still have your ex’s stuff lying around at your place know it’s not because he just forgot about it.

He is leaving it there on purpose because it gives him a sense of ‘emotional security’ to have things still connecting you two, as though you were still together in some way.

It’s a definite sign that he isn’t over you yet and is waiting for you to see where you really stand and what you’ll do.

2. He Still Has Your Things at His Place and Isn’t Trying to Give Them Back

Much like in the case of him leaving his stuff at your place, him keeping your things isn’t accidental.

It’s not that he just forgot about them or just doesn’t care to arrange to give them all back.

To him, keeping your stuff is even more of a ‘security’! Not only does it give him the feeling of having a connection with you, but it’s also a guarantee that he’ll get to see you at least once again.

Him holding onto your stuff is a sure sign that he is waiting for you and secretly wants you back but wont straight up admit it!

3. He Keeps on Texting or Calling You as Though You Were Still Together

This is another classic behaviour so many of you have told me about: a guy breaks up with you but then continues acting as though you were still together.

This might mean regular texting and phone calls or even arranging to see you or go on dates with you.

This was actually the case with Gabriel and me too! The third time he broke up with me on a Sunday and then on Monday afternoon I received a text from him saying: “Wanna meet up for a coffee?

Men can be extremely confusing! Their reasons for pulling away often make next to no sense.

If your ex continues to reach out to you regularly after breaking up with you, know this is a sign he clearly misses you a lot.

Chances are, he is testing you to see if you’ll give up on him or not and waiting for you to make him come back.

4. He Replies Right Away

The speed at which someone replies to your text can actually give you a lot of insight into where they are really at and whether they are interested in talking to you or not.

When a guy takes hours to reply or worse yet, keeps on leaving you on read, be careful, it’s an indicator that he is either not serious or no longer into you.

But when you text your ex and he replies within the same minute, it’s a sure sign your ex has been thinking of you, missing you and waiting for you to reach out to him.

Also he is clearly really eager to keep the conversation going.

5. He Keeps You Updated on What’s New in His Life

Being together with someone means having a person to share all the important moments in life with. All the small and big victories as well as defeats.

Most people who break up don’t actually understand the consequences of it when they are doing it.

They’re blind to abandonment and rejection they themselves are inflicting and then act accordingly.

So, if your ex keeps on updating you on everything that’s happening in his life, even though he might be the dumper, in these moments he wants you back.

It’s a sign he still needs you and because of it is likely waiting for you to make a move and get him back.

6. He Isn’t Dating Anyone New

One of the most baffling and infuriating moments in my life happened two weeks after Gabriel and I broke up for the first time…

His reasons for wanting to break up back then was because he wasn’t ready to settle down and wanted to experience love and life.

I was obviously heartbroken but accepted where he was at and went on a two week sailing holiday.

I came back dreading that he will already be with some other girl…

But to my surprise, he did not see anyone while I was away, he said he was taking a break from dating for the time being.

If a guy broke up with you supposedly because he fell out of love or didn’t care about you as much as you cared about him but he isn’t trying to move on and date anybody new, it’s a sign that he is likely still hung up on you.

He is likely battling some attachment/commitment issues and is waiting for you to help him break out of them.

7. He Texts or Calls Late at Night

People often judge drunk calls or booty calls but the thing is, alcohol lowers our inhibitions. When we’re drunk we often go after things we want but wouldn’t have the courage to try when we’re sober.

The same is true about being lonely and horny late at night…

If your ex drunk texts you or gives you a booty call, know it’s a sign he is missing you at that very moment.

It’s an indicator that at least part of him is still waiting for you and secretly wanting you back.

8. He Tells You He Misses You

Have you ever had your ex say to you: “I miss you” and felt like he can’t possibly mean it, because if he did he wouldn’t have broken up with you in the first place?

The thing about breakups is that they never really are straightforward.

More often than not, the dumper is only doing it as a last resort to communicate that something really isn’t working for him in the relationship.

They’re not actually wanting to break up.

They want you to get them and possibly stop doing something that’s really hurting them.

Unfortunately, his rejection hurts A LOT too.

So much so, that when an ex who dumped you says that he misses you, you might just discard it as though it meant nothing.

However, him saying something like this to you is pretty much straightforward admitting that: he is waiting for you and wanting to fix things so that you two can get back together.

9. He Talks to Others About You

Couples who have been together for many years can sometimes have trouble communicating without fighting. When a relationship reaches this stage, breaking-up often seems like the only option to escape the cycle of endless hurtful fights.

However, it doesn’t help with resolving anything.

People are desperate to find solutions to things that hurt them and can find creative ways of doing so. Some of our coaching clients have utilised this hack: communicating through friends.

Even though it’s not the most effective way of communication, it’s better than nothing.

So if your mutual friends have been telling you that your ex has been talking or complaining to them about you, know that this isn’t accidental. He meant for you to get this message!

Chances are this is the only way he can currently try to reach out to you. He might be so hurt and bitter that he simply can’t do it directly.

Even though this might be infuriating (because he seemingly could just tell you these things himself) it’s a sign that he is thinking about you and waiting for you to do something to fix things.

How to Get Him to Openly Want You Back

It’s all well and good to read the signs that he is waiting for you and to know that he secretly wants you back but that’s just the first part of getting out of this tricky situation.

Reversing a breakup can take anything from one simple text in some cases to weeks or even months of long conversations and rebuilding trust.

Ultimately the goal here is to get him to openly want to be with you again and also to prevent any further breakups from happening.

Every situation is different and so are couples paths to reconciliation.

If you’re looking for personalised advice on how to approach your ex to break through his barriers and let you in, this is something we can help you with in a coaching call.

Here we listen, empathise and help you make sense of your situation. We will also give you tips on exactly what to say and do to fix things and get him to want to commit to you again.

Click Here to Check Out Our Coaching Calls

In case you’re curious and want to know more of our story and how we got back together be sure to read: How I Got Him Back - 4 Ways to Make Your Ex Want You Again

Karolina

How to Be a Better Girlfriend – 5 Things That Matter Most

How to Be a Better Girlfriend – 5 Things That Matter Most

Photo by Luis Zambrano

How do you become a better girlfriend? I used to ask myself this question in the past a lot too.

There is so much pressure on us women to look perfect, be perfectly kind, considerate, caring etc…

But at the same, I’ve made this observation over and over again (and I’m sure you did too):

There are women out there who act like total b****s sometimes, yet they have their partners follow them around like a puppy…

So what is it that men really want from their girlfriends?

Does your boyfriend want you to be gentle, kind and caring? Or does he want you to be strong, confident and challenge him every now and then?

The answer to these questions is likely a bit of both….

Some concepts are easier to understand by painting out their opposite. That’s why to get you to fully understand what men really want in relationships and how to become a better girlfriend, I’m going to start off by defining everything that you want to avoid being.

What is a Bad Girlfriend?

When my boyfriend, Gabriel and I got together, it was my first serious relationship. Because of that I wasn’t sure how relationships really worked which led me to doubt myself and wonder whether I was being a bad girlfriend.

If you too are doubting how good of a girlfriend you really are, these points are bound to put you at ease.

1. A Bad Girlfriend is Dishonest

Nobody (man or woman) ever wants to be lied to and betrayed.

It is hard to bring up difficult topics in a relationship sometimes. But when you’re intentionally hiding things you’re risking destroying your partner’s trust.

It’s ok to lie about liking your partner’s new shirt just to make him happy, but cheating, lying and hiding important things definitely make a bad girlfriend (or boyfriend for that matter).

2. A Bad Girlfriend Is Entirely Self Absorbed

A certain degree of selfishness is perfectly normal and healthy to have in a relationship.

But a woman who ONLY ever thinks about herself is bound to be a pretty terrible girlfriend.

3. A Bad Girlfriend Is Manipulative

Much like when it comes to being lied to, no one ever wants to be manipulated into things.

Never asking for what you want and trying to force your partner into giving it to you by scheming and manipulating always inevitably backfires.

It’s also something that makes a bad girlfriend.

4. A Bad Girlfriend Is Cruel

Wanting to intentionally hurt somebody should not be something anyone ever does, period.

Cruelty damages relationships often beyond repair.

Being cruel not only makes a person a terrible girlfriend, it also makes their relationship a toxic one.

5. A Bad Girlfriend Is Unavailable and Dismissive

Being cold, distant and actively dismissing your boyfriend’s feelings is definitely damaging to a relationship and it’s also something that makes a person a bad girlfriend.

What Are the Qualities of a Good Girlfriend?

Now that you know what it means to be a bad girlfriend, you can probably guess that being a good one simply requires you to have the opposite of all the above mentioned traits.

The biggest and most important qualities of a good girlfriend are as follows:

1. Honesty

Everybody craves to be able to draw a sense of safety and stability from their relationship. It’s one of the most fundamental and strongest human emotional needs.

What your boyfriend really wants is to be able to count on you to be there for him for big as well as small things.

Being reliable and honest is one of the biggest prerequisites for building trust in a relationship and no relationship can function without trust

Being a woman of your word, meaning what you say, being trustworthy and reliable are all qualities that not only make you an amazing girlfriend, they make you an amazing person too.

2. Being Considerate

Every man wants his girlfriend to care about his needs and preferences.

This is true for small things as well as big ones.

It’s not about being endlessly giving and sacrificing your needs to make your boyfriend happy. A certain dose of selfishness is absolutely normal and healthy in a relationship.

Being considerate is all about finding the right balance and making your boyfriend feel like you care about what he wants.

This is definitely a quality of a great girlfriend.

3. Being Open and Communicative

This one quality is something I used to struggle with a lot actually. It takes guts to own what you want and then ask for it.

It can feel like a scary or risky thing to do…

But it’s a risk really worth taking, communicating your needs openly is much more effective at actually getting you the results you were hoping for. It can prevent countless hurtful relationship fights and misunderstandings.

Being open and communicative are qualities that definitely make you a really good girlfriend.

4. Being Kind and Caring

Another big thing every man deeply craves is to feel taken care of in his relationship. This might mean a variety of different things big as well as small.

A kind and caring girlfriend is someone who listens to her boyfriend about his problems.

Someone who is patient and understanding, someone who is genuinely trying to help when she can and is generous with reassurance in the relationship.

Being kind and caring makes you an absolutely great girlfriend!

5. Being Emotionally Available

Last but not least, sharing a special bond and feeling a strong emotional connection is the very foundation of true love.

It’s not easy to maintain the spark in a long term relationship though.

Being vulnerable and letting your boyfriend in emotionally is what can bring him closer and strengthen the chemistry between the two of you.

It’s also another important quality that would make you an amazing girlfriend.

Does Being Good Looking Make You a Better Girlfriend?

Now that you know the five most important qualities of a good girlfriend, you might be wondering, but what about the looks?

Us women are made to put so much emphasis and effort into our appearance.

We have all been told that men are visual and that you need to look sexy in order for your boyfriend to find you attractive.

I used to feel really insecure about my weight or my asymmetric face and worried that these things could be serious factors that could prevent me from finding happiness in love.

The reality of this matter is, looks actually play much less of a role in a relationship (and even in attraction) than most of us have been led to believe.

Not to say that taking care of your physical appearance doesn’t matter.

It does matter, it’s just NOT something that can break or fix your relationship.

It’s enough to read some Hollywood gossip, to know that one can look amazing and still be a terrible girlfriend/wife.

From the same source, you can also learn that being attractive won’t protect you from being treated unfairly by your partner.

When it comes to having a healthy and happy relationship, there are things that are far more important and can have a much bigger impact on how happy you and your boyfriend are together.

How to Be a Better Girlfriend

Now that you really understand what it means to be a good or a bad girlfriend, we can finally get to the five most important ways you can be a better partner for your boyfriend.

When it comes to the matters of evaluating oneself people often tend to jump between two extremes.

One moment they might feel like they are being an amazing girlfriend.

And then something happens, insecurities kick in and the same woman might suddenly feel like she is a terrible partner.

I used to overthink and jump between these two extremes too.

The best way to snap out of it is to embrace the fact that we are all both: pretty bad girlfriends (at times) and amazing girlfriends too!

We are all human, we make mistakes.

Nobody is perfect.

At the same time, we often try to do our best and are kind and caring.

The ultimate trick to becoming a better girlfriend is to try to minimize the bad and to boost all the good behaviors.

1. Make an Effort to Be More Honest and Open

Honesty is one of the big qualities that makes a good girlfriend. Yet being completely honest is often something that is easier said than done.

Being honest can be difficult…

It forces you to reveal your true feelings and face relationship problems.

Hiding things that could potentially trigger a fight can seem like the better and more reasonable solution in many situations.

This kind of attitude always backfires in the long run though.

Even though honesty can trigger arguments sometimes, it also removes emotional barriers in your relationship and will bring you and your boyfriend closer together. This in turn, will make him trust you more.

One of the most important ways you can be a better girlfriend is to keep less secrets from your partner and try to be more honest with him instead.

2. Try to Be More Considerate

Happy relationships are all about compromise, right?

Or is compromise just another word for ‘Settling for things you don’t want’?

Always giving in and doing things your boyfriend’s way will inevitably make you bitter and resentful.

At the same time, you being the one who decides and controls EVERYTHING will have the same effect on him.

It can be tricky to find the right balance between being considerate of boyfriends wants and needs, and not sacrificing what you want for him.

Different couples are often on different sides of the scale when it comes to this.

Sometimes it’s the man who is sacrificing himself more. Sometimes it’s the woman.

Depending on the situation in your relationship, in order to become a better girlfriend you might need to be more considerate towards what your boyfriend wants and needs.

But if he is the one who is calling most of the shots and you often end up sacrificing what you want for him, then maybe you need to be more considerate towards yourself.

In this case, being more selfish is actually what would make you a better girlfriend.

3. Communicate as Much as You Can

Much like with honesty, communication is something you can never have enough of in a relationship.

Yet, it’s also something most couples struggle with too.

It is often easier to just imply things and hope that your partner will get the hint… But doing this unfortunately, often leaves the other person feeling a bit manipulated.

We all resort to manipulation sometimes (often without fully realising we’re doing it).

We throw tantrums for an effect, storm off in the hopes that he will come chasing after you or give silent treatment to show how hurt we are about something.

Unfortunately, all these kinds of manipulative behaviors are destructive. So much so, that they can even drive a man away.

One of the most important ways you can become a better girlfriend is to make an effort to try to manipulate him less and communicate more openly instead.

This way, not only you are much more likely to actually get more of what you want from your boyfriend, but will also make room for him to express things more openly too.

It’s one of the most powerful and effective ways to improve a relationship and also to be an amazing girlfriend.

4. Try to Be More Kind and Caring

People rarely think of themselves as cruel. Yet we can often be incredibly hard on ourselves.

I used to think things like: ‘why am I so lazy?’, ‘why can’t I just get this done?’, ‘why am I being so difficult about this’ etc.

The thing about being tough on oneself is that it is borderline cruelty.

Moreover, we relate to the ones closest to us the same way we relate to ourselves.

So if you’re being unreasonably hard on yourself, chances are you’re just as unreasonably hard on your boyfriend too.

Everybody has their flaws and limits. At the same time, we mostly try to do our best and life can be really difficult at times.

The only way to become a more kind and caring girlfriend is by becoming more patient, understanding and kinder towards yourself first.

Less toughness and more kindness can work wonders for you and your relationship.

It’s also what you should strive towards in order to be a better girlfriend.

5. Be More Emotionally Available

Even though it’s men who are known to often be emotionally unavailable, women too have their own ways of acting distant and dismissing their partner’s feelings and needs.

It’s normal to need time and space for yourself. Everybody has their limits.

When I come back from work tired and frustrated, there is no way I can be particularly emotionally available towards Gabriel.

After having rested for a bit though, I always try to make an effort to connect more so that we can feel closer again.

Being a better emotional girlfriend is all about being receptive to where your partner is at, making room for him, being understanding and empathizing with him.

It also means being reassuring and telling him how much you love him

This kind of exchange always feels very nurturing to both sides.

Being more receptive and less dismissive of your boyfriend’s thoughts and feelings is the last big way you can be a better girlfriend.

How Do I Start Being a Better Girlfriend

When it comes to starting with new things, in my experience, it always works out best to begin with what feels easiest and most straightforward.

Implementing any of the above mentioned steps is bound to help you out in becoming a better girlfriend.

Relationships are complicated. Loving someone is never easy!

All couples fight, face unforeseen challenges, make mistakes.

The first years of my relationship with Gabriel were extremely tumultuous. I knew he was very special to me. Yet, at the same time, we had problems and would sometimes feel like maybe we’re just too different to even make it work.

I often blamed myself. I felt like maybe I’m just not good enough to make a man want to commit to being with me.

The truth is. Nobody ever taught me how to do relationships.

Being a good girlfriend is not something you’re born with, it’s a skill.

And skills can be learnt. 

Being good in relationships is extremely rewarding, as it brings you and your boyfriend closer physically and emotionally.

It took Gabriel and me years to figure out our problems. We were stuck in endless fights and even broke up a few times. But eventually we figured it out!

Now we teach others how to do relationships the right way.

We used all our knowledge and experiences and put together an online course: Rebuild Your Relationship to help women transform their love lives.

Here we will give you step by step guides complete with phrases you can use to become a better girlfriend.

You’ll learn all the typical mistakes and pitfalls women fall into in relationships and how to avoid them.

We’ll also give you tools on how to get him to love and appreciate you more, so that you won’t have to doubt yourself anymore!

Click here to check out Rebuild Your Relationship

If you have any questions about the qualities of a good or a bad girlfriend, or any of the tips mentioned above, leave me a comment below and I’ll get back to you.

You also might want to check out Gabriel’s post: 5 Important Things Men Want From Women for more guidance on this topic.

Karolina

He Gets Defensive When I Tell Him How I Feel – How to Get Through

He Gets Defensive When I Tell Him How I Feel – How to Get Through

Photo by Rodnae Productions

There’s something on your mind, and you want to tell him how you feel.

No, at this point, you NEED to tell him how you feel…

In the past you’ve gone above and beyond, tried everything and no matter what, it’s like you’re walking on eggshells…

The moment you open your mouth to say something.

He gets defensive.

  • “Why are you complaining about this again?”
  • “I’m always doing everything to make you happy!”
  • “Is it simply never good enough for you?”
  • “I’m done talking about this!”

He straight up ignores, denies or retaliates.

And once again, you’re left by yourself. With the feelings you wanted him to acknowledge, totally ignored.

And it hurts.

Now, I hate to tell you this…

…But I was once that defensive guy.

My girlfriend Karolina, who runs this blog with me, would come to me about feelings of hers.

And I would immediately go on defense.

It often didn’t even matter what she tried, I would almost always take things as criticism, even if it wasn’t about me, or she didn’t mean it that way!

But over time she DID eventually get through to me.

We figured it out together and also noticed that it was actually a very common complaint from women in our friends circles, about their boyfriends or husbands.

So what’s behind all of this over-the-top defensiveness, and how do you disarm a defensive person?

In this post, I’m going to tell you how Karolina and I overcame this problem and how you can too.

What Is Defensiveness in a Relationship

Defensiveness in a relationship is when he puts his walls up and retaliates against you, without provocation.

The first part is putting up a barrier, also known as stonewalling, which in itself, is definitely considered a defensive behavior.

(Stonewalling is when he shuts down and doesn’t let you in emotionally.)

It’s also often followed by a guy saying he needs some space, shortly after.

The second part of defensive behavior is often retaliation, where he verbally attacks and justifies himself.

Now, there are of course degrees to this behavior…

When Karolina would want to talk to me about feelings that were weighing on her, for certain topics I wasn’t defensive.

Like her feeling frustrated about not doing enough new things. Or her being upset about our weekend plans being postponed.

Those things were totally fine to talk about for me.

But some other things, like her complaining about feeling alone, for some reason I could get really defensive.

Likewise, in your relationship, there will be areas with him that are more touchy than others.

Why Does He Get so Defensive When I Tell Him How I Feel

Some of you asked…

Why does my boyfriend get mad when I talk about my feelings?

Or…

Why does my husband get angry when I tell him how I feel?

Whether you’re in a new relationship with your boyfriend or you’ve been married to your husband for decades…

All men get defensive in the same ways.

And sometimes this even reaches a point, where you might not be able to talk without arguing.

But why do men take everything as criticism or an attack?

This was the same question Karolina put to me.“Why do you think I’m criticizing you? I’m just trying to tell you how I feel!

To which I would respond…

But you are attacking me! You are criticizing me! How am I supposed to not get mad about that!?

It was next to impossible for me to not perceive what she was saying as an attack…

So the real REASON why men get so defensive, when you tell them how you feel, is because they THINK you are attacking them!

In their minds, that’s what’s happening.

Even if you’re NOT.

That is why they react so strongly and defensively.

When somebody thinks they’re being attacked, they’ll try to defend themselves.

What Does It Mean When a Man Gets Defensive

We also need to talk about this point, because some of you might be wondering whether getting defensive is a sign of cheating.

The truth is, that it CAN be.

It makes sense, because when cheaters are confronted, they often act in a guarded way or can be oversensitive.

And if he simply won’t answer a direct question, and you really suspect him of being a cheater, maybe you want to know how to tell if he is lying to you or the warning signs he may be a player.

BUT there are other things that can cause defensive behavior, that are unrelated to cheating.

As mentioned, with Karolina and me, it was enough to only THINK that she was attacking, to make me very defensive.

And I’ve seen this pattern countless times with other couples.

Where the guy has nothing to hide, but is very quick to take things personally.

So it can also simply mean that your boyfriend or husband may not know any better way to react, then be defensive.

How Do You Communicate With a Defensive Partner

So now we’ve talked about defensiveness being when he puts his walls up and retaliates against you, without provocation.

We’ve uncovered that the reason he gets defensive is that he thinks you are attacking (blaming or faulting him, even when you’re not!)

… So how do you talk to someone who misinterprets everything you say?

The key to avoiding and stopping these kinds of overreactions, is to approach him the right way and say the right things.

Because I can tell you from my own experience, just how overly-sensitive I was about this stuff.

So when you approach him, try to keep these 3 things in mind:

1. Try Not to Be Defensive

I know it’s easier said than done.

Especially when he’s all fired up and accusing you of attacking him.

But if you also get defensive at this point, in his mind, it CONFIRMS that you were blaming him.

Aha! You’re getting upset, because I’m seeing through your attack!

You then tell him that’s not true, he insists that it is, and it can escalate into a full-blown fight.

So in moments where he reacts in a guarded way, try not to be defensive.

Because he’s locked in his narrative of you blaming and faulting him for something, and will look for any indication that this is true.

And if you go on defense, he’ll see it as proof.

2. Don’t Let Him Shut You Down

Now, just because he’s defensive and preoccupied with himself, doesn’t mean you should just give up and bury your feelings.

When your needs are pushed aside, they don’t magically disappear…

They come back at a later time, often as stronger emotions.

And your feelings matter just as much as his do and shouldn’t be ignored.

So instead, try to be gentle with him, BUT insist on being heard and understood.

3. Make It About Yourself Again

And finally, you need to make the conversation about yourself again.

Whenever he veers off into his defensive state, he’s making something about himself that was actually supposed to be about you.

So try and help him see that you’re NOT attacking him. (Even if the issue is related to your relationship)

That you just need him to listen and give you room to express your feelings.

This way, you won’t trigger his defensive mode…

Since Karolina and I both fought a lot over this very issue ourselves, and it took us years to finally figure it out and fix this problem.

We were sure to go over the solutions in greater detail in our Rebuild Your Relationship course.

In it, we cover how to express your feelings to him, so that he doesn’t get defensive.

So that he finally gets that it’s not about him, that you’re not attacking him, but you just need him to listen and understand.

We put this course together, so other couples don’t have to go through the tedious process of figuring it out too, and instead get the results they want now.

If you’d like to learn more about our course, you can click here to check out Rebuild Your Relationship.

If you have any questions about men getting defensive when you express how you feel, leave them in the comments section below, and I’ll get back to you.

You can also read more about how to rebuild trust with him which is sometimes tied to defensive behavior.

Gabriel

Why Do I Need Constant Reassurance in a Relationship

Why Do I Need Constant Reassurance in a Relationship

Photo by Анна  Хазова

If you find yourself constantly needing reassurance in your relationship, let me first tell you, I’ve been there.

I struggled with endlessly needing to hear that everything was okay ALL THE TIME in my relationship.

“Do you love me? Are you gonna leave me? Is everything okay with us? Are you mad at me?”

It’s a miserable place to be in.

Because your mind is never at ease, and you’re dealing with the constant fear, doubt and worry of something bad happening without warning.

Not to mention my girlfriend, Karolina, had given me no reason to worry!

So on top of it all, I was persistently worried about annoying her too…

But in time I learned why I had a constant need for reassurance, where it came from and finally how to overcome it.

And I’m going to explain how you can too.

What Does Reassurance Mean in a Relationship

Starting with what might seem obvious, but is actually a common question people ask.

What exactly does reassurance mean?

Simply put:

Reassurance is your partner putting you at ease about a relationship worry you have.

For example with Karolina, I would often worry about her secretly judging me as lazy and in turn an unsuitable partner.

So even after a hard day’s work, if I decided to just watch YouTube to relax, and she’d walk in, I was worried she was silently judging me as lazy.

I would express my worry, and she would reassure me:

No, Gabriel, I don’t think you’re lazy, I’ve actually always seen you as hardworking.

THAT is what reassurance means in a relationship.

You have a constant worry in your relationship, and then your partner contradicts that worry.

Is It Ok to Seek Reassurance in a Relationship

As though needing reassurance wasn’t embarrassing enough, I also felt guilty about needing it!

And it’s a catch-22 scenario, because you might feel reluctant to ask for reassurance because it’s a vulnerable thing to do.

But once you muster the courage to ask, you might immediately feel like you SHOULDN’T be needing it.

Personally, I had all sorts of judgements tumbling through my head:

“Is wanting reassurance bad? Why am I so insecure? Why do I need constant reassurance? Why can’t I just get over it!”

You know, uplifting stuff.

So I definitely needed to build a lot of trust with Karolina before jumping into it…

And being stuck in this position makes an already difficult situation trickier.

Because YES, seeking reassurance is absolutely OKAY!

Not only is it okay, it’s NECESSARY.

What do I mean by that?

As we grow up, reassurance is crucial because it’s what allows us to have our thoughts and feelings validated by an external authority.

It’s what helps us form a sense of confidence and certainty about ourselves and the world around us.

But when we lack that -*cough* emotionally unavailable parents. – then we never get to build that foundation that everybody needs and deserves.

So we become insecure in our relationships.

Because we’re not sure whether we can trust our thoughts and feelings in a situation.

So later in life we have to play catch up on all of that missing reassurance.

I had to get the reassurances I needed much later in my life too, most of it in my 30s in fact!

And this catching up often happens in our relationships, just as was the case with Karolina and me…

How Do I Stop Being so Insecure

In order to stop the overthinking, insecurities, and constant need for reassurance, we need a couple of things:

Awareness of your situation, which you’ve already completed since that’s what got you here.

So well done on finding the courage!

Next, it’s important to understand that your insecurities are driving a constant need for reassurance.

When I needed reassurance from Karolina about something in our relationship, it was always about something I was insecure about…

For me, it was generally an underlying fear that she would ultimately change her mind about us and decide to call it quits.

But by becoming aware of- and understanding my own insecurities, I was better able to ask for the reassurance I needed.

And finally…

Ask for the reassurance you need.

Simply getting the right kind of reassurance is the BEST way to overcome any insecurity.

As previously mentioned, this kind of validation is something we just inherently need to feel confident in ourselves.

And when we don’t get enough of it in our childhood, we need to catch up on it later.

Brushing up on our communication skills can also help with this.

Which leads us to our last point.

How Do I Ask My Partner for Reassurance

This is the most crucial step, but may also be the most scary.

Because you have to ask for reassurance or attention without wanting to seem needy.

I would know, it’s a vulnerable position to be in.

You should remember though, that men actually need constant reassurance as much as women do.

You might even say it’s their greatest weakness…

For me, it actually turned out that reassurance was a love language of mine. (words of affirmation) and a really important one at that.

So know that it’s NOT just you who needs constant validation.

It’s men, it’s women, and it’s everybody to a greater or lesser extent.

Now, as for how to ask your partner for reassurance while maintaining your dignity.

As previously mentioned, you can of course just ask for it.

In addition, there are specific ways to ask for reassurance that guarantee you get it and make you feel empowered while doing so.

Since this challenge was such a big part of my own and Karolina’s struggle in our relationship, we were sure to specifically add how exactly to get the validation and reassurance you need in our Rebuild Your Relationship course.

We designed it especially for women and in it, we show you the exact phrases to use to get what you need from your man.

We also teach you how to build confidence so that down the line, you rarely even need reassurance because you will feel secure in your relationship.

If that sounds like something that can help you, you can click here to check out Rebuild Your Relationship.

Otherwise, if there’s something I missed, or you have any other questions, leave them in the comments below, and I’ll get back to you.

And if you’d like some related reading to the topic of constant reassurance, you might find How to Make Him Listen to You interesting.

Gabriel