Relax and just enjoy the time you do have together. Don't obsessed about this. If he doesn't seem to want to spend time with you, find something else do that you like to do. Make plans with yourself and stick to them. Don't chase any man except the ice cream man. He might be going through some things he's not ready to share. Or, he might just be stringing you along. You don't know. But, there's no reason to worry about anything unless you know there's something to worry about. There are plenty of things you could be doing to make yourself happy and keep busy (in a good, happy, productive way) even if you are dead ass broke. Keep yourself entertained. If nothing else, if this guy isn't ready to be a grown up yet, if you are doing something you love, you will meet other people that have the same interests that you do. You might not meet prince charming, but you will meet some good friends that have the same interests that you do. And remember: you don't have to be soulmates with someone to go see a movie or have coffee. I'm about a hair away from aetheist, and I have friends all across the board. You don't have to have everything in common with a person to be friends, or be friendly or just hang out. Wish you the best of luck with your dude and everything else. Big hugs.
These men who pull away have an avoidant attachment style. Read ‘Attached’ by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller and ‘avoidant, bad boyfriends’ by Jeb Kinnison. After reading these I realised that I’d been unhappily married for over twenty years to an avoidant man. I’ve since met someone with a secure attachment style and the difference is night and day. Unfortunately most secure men pair off youngish so the dating pool is disproportionately full of avoidant men. DO NOT MARRY one you will be miserable.
Good points! However, I repeatedly see men staying with a “comfortable” woman who doesn’t challenge them, or with a controlling woman who commands them what to do, while they’re not satisfied and look elsewhere for love & trust, still don’t leave the woman. I mean, not every man wants to commit himself to an open, authentic woman. Many prefer to have a comfort zone and wander around. Many have been raised with wrong behavioral patterns that doesn’t allow authenticity in themselves & others. I’m not blaming men. Many women are like that too. What I’m saying is being authentic doesn’t… Read more »

Your articles always leave me teary-eyed, Renee. They are full of brilliant and compassionate insights. You speak of being authentic, you speak of trusting in the infinite perfection of the universe to give back what we put in. You speak of having a pure open hearted connection and leaving our fears at the door. This article made me cry. And I think it’s because it rang so true. We all want to be admired and trusted. I feel like whenever a man fell in love with me, it was after he revealed something shameful to me and I just accepted… Read more »


Another frequent error is wanting to talk constantly about the past in your messages. You have to stop focusing on your nostalgia and on what you’ve experienced together. You ex needs something else. It’s of course tempting to send a little message saying, “I miss you,” “I love you,” or “My feelings for you are still strong.” Truth be told, during this stage these types of things can damage your odds of success so refrain from sending them.
Keep him on his toes a little to make him wonder where you stand sometimes. Asking him what he is doing every minute of every day and planning things to do without giving him the opportunity to say yes or no can be signs you are becoming clingy and falling too easily for him. As we all know, it should be a mutual chase between the man or the woman. If the balance is off, it becomes too easy for him to take you for granted.

Behavior is the key to creating change because, unlike emotions and often even thoughts, behavior is the one aspect of ourselves that we can truly control. Action gets you out of the emotional mud and is an excellent antidote to depression and feeling trapped. So give your partner a hug five times a day whether you feel like it or not and see if it doesn’t change the emotional climate in the house.


Similar situation, Charlotte. I’ve been going through some rough anxiety and depression and have been moody a lot and he decided it is not right for him. We had planned a life together. We were so sure we were meant for each other. I am trying so hard to get back to myself with a change of medication. It’s difficult because we do work together. I’m devastated and lost.
big problem here. my ex and I have been broken up for about 2 years. HOWEVER none of his relationships have progressed into anything and have always ended horribly. we have maintained contact since but I was the one who first initiated no contact and he always broke it. I sent him an apology letter in the mail and he and I eventually got back together after our neighbor had a talk with him. my ex suffers from "lone wolf syndrome". he hates any kind of attachment, is extremely stubborn and doesn't like anyone telling him what to do. one common thread is he always comes to me when his relationships fizzle out. I have no idea why because I have always maintained that I agree with being friends with him (since we broke up he insists he just wants to be friends but I HATE IT) and I strive to be the best one he has. I try to build him up and make him feel like he's doing the right thing with his life (when he gets down) and he has been helping me out too. even this past memorial day we had a REALLY good time with my friends (I introduced them to him because he had been feeling down). but recently he's fallen back into his shell because of some really stressful things going on in his life. I had texted him to see if he had wanted to come over and hang out to get away from it and he didn't text me at all. TWO WEEKS passed and I barely heard anything from him other than seeing he had been online. so I texted him saying I felt hurt and neglected and he responded with "I'm sorry you feel that way, I just want to be friends" now I can't stop thinking about what he said and I want to get OUT of the dreaded friendzone and get back to being his girlfriend. advice please! thank you :)...
Hi Lauren- I broke up with my ex the night before he was moving out of state (not cool, I know). I needed some time to figure things out and work on myself. I want to try again. I wrote him an apology for ending things the way I did 2.5 weeks ago with no response (he also did not respond to a simple email about his mail 1 month ago). Is it still a good idea to send the "I want to try again" letter? I'm at a loss what to do. Our relationship was not bad, but he was pulling away and I didn't know what to do so I ran. He seems either angry or distant or not wanting to engage and since it has been 2 months I'm not sure how much more time I should give this. I feel like we could have something wonderful given another chance (I have the tools now but I'm not sure he is ready to try). Do I call and say it? Send a letter? Send an email? Do nothing? I am in CA and he is in MO so meeting would be hard, but I would be willing to go out there for a weekend. I really want to try but I don't know what to do... If he doesn't want to try I will accept that and move on. Carrie...
My vibe was affected by stress of school and radiated out into other areas of my life without my realizing…granted my ex never communicated how I was making him feel, but the breakup made me realize what had happened and how i can get those stress levels down and vibe up…I am prepared it is too late…he will never be able to share those vibes. But if he doesn’t hes also missing out because I feel good, a little sad it didn’t work out, but good overall.

Lauren, I believe your advice about giving the ex space is on point and I wish I had given mine a lot of space. I broke up with a man who suddenly dumped me with a phone message when he knew I was not home. Friends of ours told me to give him space, and I did not; big mistake on my part. He is with a woman he and his parents know, she is old enough to be his mother. He sometimes chats when he sees me in the area. I began to feel like I'm sitting on the back burner and decided to just greet him and not chat unless he wants to chat. A good male friend told me to give him six months, it has been three months, so I'll see what develops....
He knows I hate when he ignores me and sometimes I feel he does it purposely. It will only be a few hours so I know I’m also being irrational but during those times I completely get beside myself thinking he’s with the woman he slept with. Last night I went to his house and he basically kicked me out at 2am bc he was doing paperwork (taxes). He called me crackw%^*# and a liar, I’m not even sure why he would call me such filth and told me I’m too independent and I need to learn to be more submissive. Instead of arguing I should be making him dinner and cleaning his house. Other times he adores and worships the ground I walk on. This all started when I wouldn’t move in to his house bc I felt if he truly wanted to live together we could move into another house together. Plus he absolutely hates my dog, my apartment and basically everything I do. I ask him why he’s even with me if I have according to him so many “hang ups”. Advice please.
Hi am haleemah my boy friend broke up with me early this month he saw some messages o my phone chatting with other guts , have been neging him to please giveme a second chance but he wouldn’t listen ,I mesg he several times but he said he is no more interested but the truth is I love him and I didn’t cheat on him intentionally ,I only did it because of my ex but he didn’t believe me.pls I never your advice

Erika, thank you for that. After a 13 year horrible marriage and another 2 year relationship, I felt broken. I am seeing a guy who has been through something similar. He has told me he has a hard time expressing feelings. Now, he is pulling a way a little. I feel depressed, as if I am not good enough. But your response, helps me to realize: Slow is good and he and I both need time. When we are together, things are fantastic. I will give it time and see what happens.
Be calm and confident in yourself and what you think you can contribute to her life. In the time you've taken to improve yourself, hopefully you will have evidence of that change. If the cause of your breakup was that you did not have enough time for her, show that you've altered your work schedule and made time to volunteer or pick up that sailing hobby you've always dreamed about. That will show you're willing to make time for things that matter to you. See where I'm going with this?
Hi Chris my boyfriend ended our releationship because his mother came in between us he tried to get back together but she threatened to kick him out now he’s telling everyone it’s my fault as he paid for everything when we were together(he didn’t) I’m devestated because I love him and felt we had overcome so much and it is worth saving I’m in no contact and he’s now ignoring me anyway I don’t know what else to do and am hoping for a miracle
I’ve been with my ex for 4 years. My first love and vice versa, and we intently spoke about marriage. We broke up a year and a half ago because I was too stubborn to listen to him. He told me I needed to open up more, to communicate better but being an introvert this was extremely difficult for me…so he left. I’ve been trying really hard since and got better at it.
I really love your blogs, they make a lot of sense, and I need your help with something. I’m 39 years old and I’m engaged to a woman I adore. Here’s my problem, she nags me all the time. I want to be there for her but it feels like she’s always demanding so much time and energy. I know you’re supposed to “compromise” in a relationship but it seems like I’m making all the sacrifices and I’m starting to feel like this relations...
HW (Helen), I'm so happy to hear those books and resources were helpful to you in a difficult time. I'd have to know more about the relationship to give you a more confident answer but if you feel like there was a big enough bond between you in the first place, then you could always try sending this letter. Worst case scenario, he doesn't respond and you've got a clear answer so that you can move on. Hope this helped!
We texted incessantly for a month and went on our first date to an ice cream festival called The Scooper Bowl. I missed the train, and we kissed. We began a summer fling where we’d walk around Boston holding hands, eating pizza, and watching TV cuddled up on her couch. She made that summer in Boston perfect. It was only two months, but it was unfiltered romance.
Im dating a man who is being very consistent with his communication and we see each other every weekend. He is always making plans with me and he reaches out to me all the time. The only issue is that I’m having a hard time feeling like he desires me the way a man should desire a woman. We hang out, we talk, we have so much fun together, we have sex but it feels more like a friend I’m having sex with than a romantic partner. Im physically and romantically attracted to him but I can’t help but wonder if there is a physical attraction issue on his part. He doesn’t seem “into” me like I’m used to. I’m a pretty woman but I know I don’t have those super pretty girl looks so I don’t know. Nonetheless, he isn’t pulling away per se, he just isn’t romantically present. I don’t hear anything sweet or flirty or sexy from him. When I do it to him, he just says thank you and tells me how much he enjoys hearing me say stuff like that. We have a lot in common and we have a great intellectual connection. He’s told his mom, dad and friends about me. But I’m worried because I feel like he doesn’t feel strongly about me in romantic way, even though he spends time with me, talks to me all the time, and admits that he has the most fun with me. It makes me sad because we both talk about how we are happy to have met someone like each other but I can’t help but wonder if having all these things in common and both of us being capable of loving each other the way we always wished someone would is somehow STILL not enough. It makes me very sad.
Alright, assuming you successfully engaged your ex boyfriend and got a decent response you can move on to this section. I’ll admit that you will have a distinct advantage here if you had a long relationship and made a lot of great memories. If your relationship was brief then this part of engaging your ex may be a little bit more challenging. However, that doesn’t mean anything bad it just means you might have to get more creative.
It is natural to feel scared about going up to someone who has rejected you. You may be worried that he won't talk to you, won't be friendly and perhaps won't answer any questions you may have. All of this is natural and normal. If you really want to approach him to ask him something, consider going with a friend you can rely on and perhaps having them doing some of the talking on your behalf. Choose somewhere neutral and calm, and have a good excuse to leave quickly if things seem too awkward for you, such as "Thanks for the quick chat, I have to get to an appointment now". Most of all, realize that if you don't get the answers or discussion you'd hoped for, that it's not a reflection on you, as you've shown much courage, but is about your ex-boyfriend's method of dealing with the situation in his own way and isn't a slur on you.

Hi, I have been talking with a man that is older then me. He is very private and he needed space so I gave it to him. Out of respect cause I once was in his shoes. And found myself again when i had my own time. We haven't had sex in the months we been together. Just talking and enjoying one another company. There are times he asks me to stay with him more now days and I do. Still no Sex, alot of kissing and holding. Then we both stop one another before it goes further. Why? Idk but we respect one another more. But I have noticed we have recently stopped talking like we use to. The convos shorten. Our conversations are about our days, and some sexting or just straight talk n tease about being romantic. We just have fun. I do know he dont to hurt me, n he is afraid of his own actions. He's the touchy feely type with women. And it surprises him I don't get mad or jealous. He tells me he ain't use to the way I act towards stuff like that. I've asked him if he's trying to push me away he says no then he says maybe... I don't feel he is cheating, I just think we are both scared to take the next step. Cause we both hurt and was hurt in our last relationships. Getting confused need some advice.
I remember when my husband and I moved in together, after about a month he pulled away for a bit. He wasn’t really rude about it but i think he just needed some space. I think he was just getting tired of me, like it was romance overload. I ended up burying myself in my own hobbies for a while and I think he ultimately appreciated me for giving him space. I think it’s hard in the moment but if the girl enjoys some time to pursue her own interests for a bit and waits for the man to resume… Read more »

Big or small, you have a few options. You could try and sort this out on your own (you’ve probably already tried that); do nothing and see if it somehow gets better (probably not), or you could take the plunge and go see a professional – a couple therapist (a decidedly better if somewhat scary idea). The therapist has a leg up over the other options in a few ways. One is perspective – she is looking at your relationship from the outside, rather than in the emotionally stuck middle that you are undoubtedly in. Not only does this make it easier for her to be a voice of reason and reality, but she can also see the greater gestalt that, up close, you cannot. But the other big advantage is that she probably thinks about relationship problems and solutions a bit differently than you might. 
Understanding that you do not need a man in order to be the best version of yourself is crucial. Loving yourself and doing exactly what makes you happy is key, which means that you need to know how to be happy alone. When you have this type of mentality, you will be able to spot red flags instantly and become more admirable. If a man wants to be with you, he will make it known throughout the relationship. He will make it known in healthy ways of properly courting you. He’s not going to send you the late night 11 pm or 1 am text for you to come over and “watch a movie.”
Advice from a male perspective anyone? I am dating a man who is 11 years older, I’m 26 and he is 37. He works out in the ocean and a lot of times we have minimal conversation via text/call. But when we are together everything is great and we get along very well. When he doesn’t have to wake in the wee ours or work out of town, he is with me every single weekend. We have been together six months and I have met all his close friends and friends kids. I have done well so far in respecting his space and he respects mine also. When he’s a weekend away with his guy friends, I am understanding and just ask him to contact me once when he is back in town so he feels he is not missing out on what he loves. However, this past weekend he had a sailboat race on the weekend which he let me know in advance and we made had plans for friday night. He reached out friday night saying that turns out he had to be at the venue in the wee hours so he would not be able to make our plans. I was emotionally unstable that weekend due to some work stress and family leaving so I needed him the most that friday. I did not think of my actions and instead of politely rescheduling for Monday, I blew him up – sent him various texts showing how I did not appreciate he canceled although it wasn’t his fault. I called numerous times in the weekend and texted many times while he was supposed to have time with his friends in the tournament. On Sunday I was so desperate that I passed by his house. His roommate was there and told me he hand’t come home yet. Since I blew him up friday, I have had no response to any of my texts nor has he answered any of my calls. I am very afraid that I scared him away and threatened his freedom. I also came out as desperate for going to his place. Today is Wednesday and I hadn’t reached out till Sunday. I sent him a very short/casual text today apologizing for taking out my stress on him and for not letting him have his space, to which I got no response. I am going to wait a few days and hopefully he will come around, as our relationship has matured and he’s told me how much he cares for me. Did I blow this up completely since it has been 4 days with no response?
I don’t know what to do. I met this guy. Stayed the night with him since DAY ONE. Five and a half years. It was an extremely rough relationship. Started fighting after six months. I couldn’t forgive him for all the bad things he had done to us. Lie after lie after lie. He went away for six months best the end of our relationship and we talked on the phone every single day. When he came back home, we both said that we would do whatever it takes to make things work for good. No arguing, etc. I couldn’t let go of the past and I started arguing with him about EVERYTHING. Especially if he even looked at another woman. Things got really really bad at the end. I started treating him like crap and didn’t care how I talked to him. After we broke up we still talked almost every day. He would still come over and be with me. But, I kept messing things up. I still would start arguments because I was afraid that he was putting other women above me. He’s dating one of our co workers now. And he moved in with her too. We’ve officially been separated for six and a half months now. He officially started dating her after I snapped at him one last time back in the beginning of February. I don’t feel the same tension that I did. I don’t feel the same hate anymore. I love him so much and I want him back. I got upset with him in the beginning of March and he teared up and told me that “I wanted it to be YOU!!!” But, he’s with this new chick. And he said that it’s a new relationship. How do I get him back? I know he loves me. I know it to be true. We all three work together but rarely do I see her anymore. Please, help me. I did the no contact rule for 30 days. April 2nd, before leaving work I apologized for being so selfish during the breakup and told him that I it makes me so happy to see him happy. He sincerely said “Thank you”. After he was shocked that is. After that day, we started having more laughs at work. Then I text him something funny the other day after we got off work and he responded “lol”. I haven’t heard from him since. I’m worried that he’s too happy and comfortable in his new relationship that I won’t be able to get him back into my personal life again. What am I to do?
Just a heads up as this is an extremely important section. Remember when we talked abut how you are going to implement the no contact rule for about a month (30 days?) Yes, well you are not going to just sit on your butt and twiddle your thumbs during this time. No, you are going to work towards your goal of a new and better relationship by focusing on the one thing you can control, yourself!

Hi Lauren, I have a question that is related in a big way, but not too related in others. You mentioned the concept of men doing the pursuing and women doing the recieving. I'm on my 4th Mars Venus book - Mars and Venus on a Date - and I noticed that this is a huge theme in the book. So my question is: What do you do if a guy gives you his number and says "call/text me"? When I first met my ex, I felt like I was pursuing him a bit because this is the way he approached me. We met working on a project, but to build off of our newfound friendship I attempted to flirt and create the opportunity for him to pursue me. We dated for about a year and I thought he could have been the one - until recently when we hit a wall in communicating that I felt I had to end it (since then I've been educating myself through therapy and Mars Venus books!). But, while at the time I never questioned the success/failure in me doing some reaching out, looking back now I'm wondering if that's something I could have done differently? The problem is, I wouldn't know how! It's a tricky situation. What happened was, like I said, he gave me his number (without me asking for it) and said to contact him. So I did and it went well! Then for our first date, from what I remember, I suggested that it would be nice to get to know eachother more. He told me to let him know when I wanted to go out. I pushed back this time and insisted that he should be the one asking me out, but he refused. To refrain from more back and forth, I planned the date. After that he became much more assertive and started asking me out and presenting me with ideas. But I'll be honest, I was a little turned off at his insecurity at first. He later told me he wanted to ask me out but was just very nervous, so I decided not to dwell on it and just appreciate that it worked out despite how it happened. But because I didn't want to do the pursuing, how would I have gotten him to do it?
Hi Chris my boyfriend ended our releationship because his mother came in between us he tried to get back together but she threatened to kick him out now he’s telling everyone it’s my fault as he paid for everything when we were together(he didn’t) I’m devestated because I love him and felt we had overcome so much and it is worth saving I’m in no contact and he’s now ignoring me anyway I don’t know what else to do and am hoping for a miracle
Similar situation, Charlotte. I’ve been going through some rough anxiety and depression and have been moody a lot and he decided it is not right for him. We had planned a life together. We were so sure we were meant for each other. I am trying so hard to get back to myself with a change of medication. It’s difficult because we do work together. I’m devastated and lost.
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