The Excuse: He says he doesn’t have time for a relationship.
She thinks: I’m busy, too. I don’t see why we can’t make this work.
He really means: I don’t want to make time for you. Relationships look like too much work. How about we just hook up instead?
Reality Check: Hello, we’re in college. We’re all very busy. The best thing to say to this guy is, “I don’t have time for a relationship, either,” and then walk away. Find someone who will make time for you; someone who will fit into your life and will let you into his. But if you’re looking for a hook-up buddy, he could be a good candidate as long as you know your emotions won’t get in the way.
The Excuse: He says you deserve someone better than him.
She thinks: When did I get to be such a good person? Maybe I need to take it down a notch, so I’m not too good for every guy I meet.
He really means: I think I might cheat on her.
Reality Check: Why yes, you do deserve to be with someone who is actually interested in you. But that’s nice of him to let you know he’s not good enough for you. Fight the urge to comfort him. And, whatever you do, don’t put yourself down! A guy who says this can’t match your affection, your ambitions or some other aspect of your life or relationship to him. Take it as a compliment and find someone who is more on your level.
The Excuse: He says he doesn’t want to ruin the friendship.
She thinks: How nice of him for not leading me on. He must really care about me, which makes him great boyfriend material.
He really means: I know her too well. I’ve seen what she’s like when she’s in a relationship. She’s a nice girl but kind of crazy.
Reality Check: Something had to bring up this conversation. Maybe you already hooked up with him, or maybe you drunkenly confessed your true feelings to him one night at a party. Maybe you just told him you liked him as more than a friend. Whatever the case may be, he knows you want to be more than friends, and he doesn’t want to go there. If he suggests being friends with benefits, even as a joke, you need to put him in his place. Just because he doesn’t want to date you, that doesn’t mean he gets to use you instead.
The Excuse: He says he doesn’t want to force anything but wants to stay close and see what happens.
She thinks: He just wants to take it slow, and that’s okay. I’ve moved too fast in relationships before, and those didn’t turn out too well. This is for the best.
He really means: I’m waiting to see if someone better comes along, but if that doesn’t happen, then I have you.
Reality Check: Don’t be fooled by this one. He’s keeping you as an option, and as the saying goes, “Never make someone your priority if you’re only their option.” You may be tempted to think that he’s just being cautious. Don’t. He’s just trying to keep a hold over you and secretly hoping you’ll do all the work while he sits back and enjoys the show. But, ultimately, by saying, “Let’s not force anything,” he’s really saying he doesn’t want to date you. Do you want a guy who takes no initiative in the relationship, or do you want a guy who knows he wants to be with you and does what it takes to make that happen? The answer seems pretty obvious, right?
The Excuse: He says he could imagine dating you someday, but you know he has a girlfriend right now.
She thinks: He’ll break up with her soon, and then he’ll be all mine.
He really means: Sweet, I think she’s buying it. Now I have a back-up plan and an ego boost on speed dial.
Reality Check: He’s stringing you along. For an extra safety measure, he might add heavy doses of flattery to the mix. These phrases are relationship insurance policies to him. He includes enough key words for you to latch on to, giving you a little bit of hope, but really, he’s just leading you on. Not only is he somewhat cheating on his girlfriend, but he is making most likely to be empty promises to you. Guys who use this excuse and others like it are jerks, and they should be avoided at all costs.
Now you have the eight most common excuses guys make to not date you and what they really mean. The truth may sting for a little while, but we promise it will help you in the long run. Instead of pining for Mr. Commitment-Phobe, move on to that cute guy in your class who keeps making eye contact with you. You deserve someone who’s into you, so what (or whom) are you waiting for?