When you’re in love with someone there’s nothing you’re prouder of than to tell the whole world about it and how special they are.
Sadly, however, there are situations where a man will want to hide the fact that he’s even in a relationship.
None of them are good.
12 reasons he is hiding his relationship (and why none of them are acceptable)
Why is he hiding his relationship?
Let me start by saying there are many various motivations why a guy might do this, but it’s never acceptable.
Here are the reasons.
1) He doesn’t know how much he likes you
One of the top possible reasons he is hiding his relationship is that he doesn’t know how much he likes you.
He wants to wait this out and see if you end up winning his heart or not.
But for now he’s fine with keeping your status in a kind of gray area in which you aren’t committed but you’re not fully available to date others either.
At least you as the woman don’t feel you’re free to.
Whether he is or not is another question which I’ll get to in point two.
Even if he’s only with you and not seeing anybody else, it doesn’t mean everything’s fine and that his hiding of your relationship is no big deal.
It is a big deal, and it’s unacceptable:
If he doesn’t know how much he likes you then why is he in a relationship with you?
Break up or step up, if you ask me.
2) He’s ‘benching’ or ‘pocketing’ you
The second very distinct possibility as to reasons he is hiding his relationship is that he’s benching or pocketing you.
Benching refers to the practice of when a guy keeps a team or roster of women at his beck and call and occasionally hooks up with them or shares romantic, couple-style moments.
But none of them are really his exclusive or special girlfriend, even though they may think they are.
He just pulls them off the bench now and then to have sex with or enjoy some time. Then he benches them again, hiding the relationships from the rest of his roster.
Pocketing is basically the same thing:
He wants the feeling and advantages of a relationship, but not the full commitment.
In short: he wants you fully focused on him but he doesn’t want to fully focus on you.
“‘Pocketing’ means something like ‘keeping’ in your pocket. It’s like when you’re not ready to fully commit to someone, but you still want to keep them around.
You could be dating or in a relationship with this person without committing 100%.”
3) He’s lying about his feelings
Next up is one of the most disturbing potential reasons he is hiding his relationship:
He’s pretending to care about you but he doesn’t.
For this reason, he doesn’t want to introduce you as his girlfriend or share you with the public.
While he craves the intimacy and companionship you offer, he doesn’t actually see you as a long-term partner or love interest.
You’re more of a “good enough for now” option.
Needless to say, this can be a very disturbing thing to find out as a woman who’s dating a guy and believed in his declarations of love or that you’re special.
While this article explores the main motivations for a guy to keep you under wraps, it can be helpful to speak to a relationship coach about your situation.
With a professional relationship coach, you can get advice specific to your life and your experiences…
Relationship Hero is a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations, like being into a guy who won’t go public about you being together.
They’re a very popular resource for people facing this sort of challenge.
How do I know?
Well, I reached out to them in the past about a similar situation and they were incredibly helpful.
After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.
I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
4) He’s a sex addict and you’re an obstacle to that
He may be cheating on you and being open that he’s not single would be an impediment to that, as I talked about in the early points.
An added layer is that this guy could be a legit sex addict.
Sex addiction is a serious and sad problem often rooted in childhood trauma and abuse.
A man searches for emotional fulfillment in the arms of as many women as possible, never finding it and ending up more addicted than when he first started, forever chasing that perfect “hit” that will give him the fix he needs.
This kind of addiction can obviously get directly in the way of any committed monogamous relationships.
And no matter how many promises he makes, including sincere ones, the sex addict is like a gambling addict promising he won’t role the Baccarat dice ever again while standing right in front of a table and being given $500.
He’s going to do it again.
5) He’s in an on-again-off-again relationship with someone else
Another of the top possible reasons he is hiding his relationship is that he’s actually on-again-off-again with someone else.
This is in the same category as benching or pocketing, of course, but slightly different.
It may not be that he wants to take advantage of you or lie to you, but he may just genuinely be unsure of where things are at with another person he cares about.
But here’s the thing:
No woman wants to be the one who isn’t chosen by a man she loves.
And no woman deserves to be anybody’s fallback plan or the one who’s kept hidden as insurance in case someone else he’s on-again-off-again pulls the plug for good.
If a man is hiding you because he thinks he might have a chance to get back together with someone else, there’s a simple message he needs to hear:
Be a man and make up your damn mind.
6) He’s ashamed of your appearance
This one’s very emotionally upsetting, but I won’t mince words:
One of the possible reasons he is hiding his relationship is that he is ashamed of his partner’s appearance.
He finds her unattractive, fat, strange-looking or otherwise not up to the beauty standards of the society in which they live or the peer group that he and his colleagues are part of.
This is a really disappointing sign and if true it also brings up questions:
In particular, why is he worried if others find you look bad or weird if he himself is attracted to you?
Is status and perception of you by others more important to him than his own love for you?
Secondly, is it also that he himself finds his partner bad-looking? Because that’s a much bigger issue.
7) He’s recently broken up but not sure how long it will last
Another way in which he could be using you as insurance is that he’s just broken up with someone else and is not sure how long it will last.
He likes you, but he likes this other person more.
You are a plan B, nothing more, nothing less.
Sure, he’s into you, but he wants to delay making the relationship public knowledge as long as possible in order to give the other connection time to potentially come back.
Situations like this seem to crop up way more than they should, don’t they..
Why is that?
Have you ever asked yourself why love is so hard?
Why can’t it be how you imagined growing up? Or at least make some sense…
When you’re dealing with confusing relationships and feeling like someone won’t acknowledge you as their partner, it’s easy to become frustrated and even feel helpless. You may even be tempted to throw in the towel and give up on love.
I want to suggest doing something different.
It’s something I learned from the world-renowned shaman Rudá Iandê. He taught me that the way to find love and intimacy is not what we have been culturally conditioned to believe.
In fact, many of us self-sabotage and trick ourselves for years, getting in the way of meeting a partner who can truly fulfill us.
As Rudá explains in this mind blowing free video, many of us chase love in a toxic way that ends up stabbing us in the back.
We get stuck in awful relationships or empty encounters, never really finding what we’re looking for and continuing to feel horrible about things like worrying that our partner is not proud to call us their own.
We fall in love with an ideal version of someone instead of the real person.
We try to “fix” our partners and end up destroying relationships.
We try to find someone who “completes” us, only to fall apart with them next to us and feel twice as bad.
Rudá’s teachings showed me a whole new perspective.
While watching, I felt like someone understood my struggles to find and nurture love for the first time – and finally offered an actual, practical solution to relationship miscommunication and disappointment.
If you’re done with unsatisfying dating, empty hookups, frustrating relationships and having your hopes dashed over and over, then this is a message you need to hear.
I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
8) He’s testing how much he likes you before committing
Another of the top reasons he is hiding his relationship can be that he wants to dip a toe in the water before diving in.
He’s testing how much he likes you before he really makes it official.
While you may have the impression that you’re definitely a real couple and you may indeed be such, he might have a different idea.
While you’re in fifth gear, he’s cruising in third and just kind of checking out the sights and scenes.
This must be love, you’re thinking.
She’s OK, let’s see how this goes, he’s thinking…
This kind of reluctance can be a positive thing, really. Falling in love too fast can be dangerous and break hearts like fragile glass.
The problem comes in in terms of why you have the idea that this is potentially more serious than it is…
…And what he said or didn’t say to give you that impression.
Lapses in communication are never a good sign, particularly at the commencement of a romantic relationship or when it’s about important topics like your status as a couple.
9) He’s worried you might reject him
Another option here is that this guy is super insecure.
Many men raised by single moms in a more feminized society are much less direct communicators.
They communicate indirectly and may be shy, insecure and unwilling to face rejection square on in the way a man of the past would be.
For this reason, it can be that a fear of being rejected by a woman he’s into causes him to not ever fully commit.
Sure, he’s “sort of” dating, but he’s not really into talking about it right now…
…And he’s not too into labels or having to define it too much.
Is that just him being an easygoing dude?
I mean, it’s possible.
Far more likely is that he’s got self-esteem issues and is scared stiff that you’re going to show him the exit door and break his heart.
Sad, but hard for anyone to make us feel good enough when we don’t feel it already inside ourselves!
10) He’s afraid his friends or colleagues might disapprove of you
Another thing is that he may be afraid his colleagues or buddies wouldn’t approve of you.
Your appearance, your vibe, your beliefs, your job, you name it…
Something about who you are and how he thinks this will impact his friends causes him to be cautious about introducing you as anything more than a friend or some girl he knows.
Here’s the thing about this unfortunately common issue:
If he’s ashamed of what his friends will think of you that is his problem and his friends’ problem.
Secondly, if he has friends who wouldn’t appreciate their buddy’s new girlfriend and maintain an open mind because he likes her then they’re probably not very good people.
11) He is emotionally unavailable or commitment-phobic
Next we get to the commitment phobic and the emotionally unavailable.
This is one of the very common reasons he is hiding his relationship:
He’s deathly afraid of commitment.
Trauma in early childhood or other difficulties have caused this man to embrace the avoidant style in relationships, and he fears getting to close to someone and being “trapped” or obligated in the relationship.
This keeps him forever running and being in between in his romantic life.
He wants love and something real, but he gets petrified when it starts approaching.
This kind of emotional unavailability can be really difficult to deal with, and is something he has to face and his partner.
That could involve therapy, communication, sharing and opening up in many ways.
But even though it’s a legitimate issue, that doesn’t mean that his partners have to accept that he won’t commit or want to go public with the relationship.
Remember, you have your needs, too, and sometimes a label on the relationship and a public acknowledgment of it are one of those needs.
12) He’s turned on by others flirting with you or checking you out
Another of the possible reasons he is hiding his relationship is because he gets turned on by watching others hit on you and try to get your attention.
He likes knowing that he “has” you but others still find you hot.
You’d be surprised how common this and how many guys get off on watching men salivate over their girlfriend.
The basic idea here is he wants to keep your relationship a secret as a kind of power play or trump card.
Sure, you can flirt and laugh with other guys or even trade numbers and revealing pics by texts.
But at the end of the day he has your heart and body, and he gets off majorly on the power and validation of knowing that.
Immature and slightly creepy? Pretty much.
The bottom line about hiding his relationship
Regardless of the reason or reasons that a man is hiding his relationship, it’s really not acceptable.
There’s no good reason why he would not want others to know he’s taken or would be hiding a relationship from you as his date.
Open communication is crucial in the foundations of a relationship and going forward.
If he won’t do that much then you definitely have a problem.