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26 surefire signs he doesn’t like you

So you’ve been dating this guy for some time and you feel like things are going okay, but not great. What do you do?

Do you keep giving the relationship time and energy, or do you call it a day and go home?

It’s not that you aren’t interested, but you feel like maybe he’s not as invested in the relationship as you are.

It’s a hard place to be because you will start to feel like everything he does or doesn’t do is a sign that he’s not that interested in you.

If you’re struggling to decide whether or not he’s into you, here are 26 surefire signs he doesn’t like you.

Let’s go.

1) You have to initiate all of the conversations.

If you only talk to this guy when you make the effort to send him a text, email, or you pick up the phone and call him, he might not be that into you.

Professional matchmaker Kimia Mansoor says that when a guy is smitten, he’ll want to learn as much as possible about you.

Yes, he may be nervous and intimidated by you because he likes you, so you’ll make want to make sure that isn’t the case first.

But if you are making all the effort and he’s not even responding, let alone starting the conversations, it might be time to move on.

2) You notice him flirting with other women in front of you.

If your guy hasn’t let go of his flirtatious behavior after dating you a few times, it could be that he’s not really invested in the relationship the way you are.

It’s likely that this bothers you more than you are letting on so be honest with yourself about whether or not you think it’s okay for him to do that and then make a decision about whether or not to carry on in the relationship.

He’s probably not putting that much thought into it so maybe you shouldn’t either.

After all, flirting may be natural in some cases.

According to David Givens, an anthropologist, “when you have to get males and females close together to exchange genetic material, there are signs that have evolved to show safeness and interest…There are the signs and signals that make up our flirting, and they go way back some 500 million years.”

3) He doesn’t seem to care if you flirt with other men.

In retaliation of his flirtatious behavior, you start to flirt with other guys and your man doesn’t even seem to care.

It could be that he’s comfortable with your relationship and trusts you not to cheat, but it’s more likely that he just doesn’t care what you are doing because he’s not interested in making this relationship stick.

Relationship expert Dr. Terri Orbuch says:

“Jealousy is among the most human of all emotions. You feel jealous when you think you are going to lose a relationship you really value.”

If he’s not getting jealous, perhaps he just doesn’t care enough.

4) He doesn’t protect you.

A surefire sign that he doesn’t like you is if he doesn’t protect you against the big and little things in life.

Does he make sure you’re safe when you cross a busy road? Stick up for you in a verbal argument with someone else? Or simply put his arm around you when you’re feeling vulnerable?

There are many ways for a man to protect his girlfriend or wife.

The key thing is that he should want to do this. Because it’s built into a man’s DNA to seek out relationships that allow them to feel like a protector.

Men have a thirst for your admiration. They want to step up to the plate for the woman in their lives and provide for and protect her.

This is deeply rooted in male biology.

There’s actually a psychological term for what I’m talking about here. It’s called the ‘hero instinct’. This term was coined by relationship psychologist James Bauer.

And the kicker?

According to James Bauer, it’s up to women to bring this instinct to the fore in men. Yes, a decent will have deep protective instincts towards you but women can still trigger these in him. And doing so is one of the keys to relationship happiness.

To learn how to trigger the hero instinct in your man, check out his free video here. James provides several unique tips to make him feel more like your hero.

I think the hero instinct provides a compelling explanation for what drives men in relationships. Because I can relate to the psychology behind it in my own life.

I’m not the most alpha of males. Sure, I drink beer and watch football, but I’m also a keen student of Buddhism, I’ve written a book about mindfulness, and I’ve never fixed a single thing around my house.

But the drive to provide for and protect the woman in my life is an extremely strong one.

Here’s a link to James Bauer’s video again. Some ideas in life are game changers. For relationships, I think this is one of them.

5) He doesn’t ask you to hang out.

You always have to ask him to do stuff like going to the movies or out to dinner.

If every date is your idea and your man doesn’t offer any suggestions to hang out or even watch television together on a Saturday night, he’s already checked out.

He might just be a relaxed type of guy that doesn’t like to initiate, but most likely, he just isn’t invested enough to make a time commitment.

It’s time to move on and give him an ultimatum. Don’t waste your time trying to get him to hang out.

6) You feel like he’s not listening.

When you are together – which isn’t very often – you feel like he’s on another planet or has his face buried in his phone. Is he listening? Who knows!

But if you feel like he’s not, you are probably right. You can try testing him to see if he is, but more often than not you’ll just find yourself frustrated with his lack of interest in your conversations.

According to professional matchmaker Coree Schmitz:

“In today’s society where being present in a conversation is one of the hardest things to do, giving a new person full attention during [a conversation] is one of the highest compliments.”

So if he isn’t listening, it might be a sign that he doesn’t respect you.

It’s best to find someone else to talk to if you feel like he doesn’t care to listen to you.

7) You have no idea who his friends are.

A guy who has no interest in continuing a relationship won’t invite you to meet his friends. If it’s been any length of time and you’ve heard all about his buddies but he’s never introduced you, be aware: he might not want them to meet you.

It could be that he’s embarrassed about the kinds of people he hangs out with, but if you couple that avoidance with everything else he’s been doing, it’s more like he doesn’t want his friends to meet the person he’s dating.

8) You can only hang out when it works for him.

When you set up a date, he never makes concessions to make time for you and always puts his job, friends and family first.

While that seems noble and loyal at first glance, it’s pretty annoying after a while and you might start to feel like you are not a priority for him in his life.

According to Venessa Marie in Insider, relationship strategist, flakiness is a huge sign that someone doesn’t really like you all that much.

If it is only one time, that’s acceptable, but if it is a regular pattern, that could become a problem.

9) You don’t think he’s trying hard to get your attention.

Guys like it when girls pay attention to them. If your guy isn’t making a fool of himself in some way, at least some of the time to try to get your attention, it might be that he doesn’t care if he has it.

It’s hard to hear, but guys have telltale signs of being into a girl. Wanting to be close and trying to get your attention are always at the top of that list.

Remember, his actions are the best guide you have as to how he feels about you, according to psychotherapist Christine Scott-Hudson:

“Pay twice as much attention to how someone treats you than what they say. Anybody can say they love you, but behavior doesn’t lie. If someone says they value you, but their actions indicate otherwise, trust their behavior.”

10) He doesn’t seem to give you any extra attention.

Not only is he not trying to get your attention, but he’s paying you none in return. This relationship is stale and he’s not into you. Call a spade a spade and move on.

You’ll save yourself the heartache from investing any more time into someone who doesn’t pay attention to you.

According to neuroscientist and psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Amen:

“Falling in love — or rather falling in lust — activates those pleasure centers housed in [the basal ganglia] which causes an immediate physiological response. The heart beats fast, your hands will get cold and sweaty and you’re super-focused on that person

11) You question the relationship.

If, even after all of this has been proven wrong, you still feel like he’s not into the relationship or you wonder if you really are, it’s time to consider your options.

You might be wondering if things will get better or if he’ll come around. Do you really want to wait around to find out?

Make your choice and go find a man who wants to be with you and is deserving of your time, energy and affection.

12) He’ll lead you on and then fall off the map.

Everything seems to be going great when you are together but then you don’t hear from him for days on end.

He sends you sexy texts but then doesn’t respond. He doesn’t return your calls. He isn’t available. What’s up with that? He’s not into you if he’s not making the effort.

13) He’ll ignore your calls and respond late to your messages

He calls when he wants to talk but he won’t take your calls no matter how many times you dial his number. Is there another woman? Is there another man? What is going on exactly? Who knows!

But one thing is for sure, if he wanted to talk to you and had an interest in being with you, he’d pick up the phone or answer your message immediately.

According to certified counselor Jonathan Bennet:

“One of the surest signs someone likes you over text is a rapid response. “This shows that the other person is excited to receive your messages and wants to keep the conversation going. It demonstrates that answering you is a priority, even above and beyond other commitments.”

So if they’re taking forever to reply to you and they’re not even giving you thoughtful answers when they do reply, then it likely that they might not like you.

14) He’ll avoid setting a time for another date.

You’ve had a few dates but when the conversation turns to lock in a 3rd or 4th date, he turns cold. You can’t read him and he seems to be overly busy from now until the end of time.

Tracy K. Ross, LCSW, a couples therapist, told INSIDER that making someone a priority is a key indicator as to whether they like you or not.

You might give him the benefit of the doubt, but your best bet is to give him the old boot and move on.

15) He only calls you for sex.

He might not pick up the phone when you call, but he sure does remember who you are when he’s feeling frisky in the middle of the night or on a random Tuesday evening.

You can’t get a read on his intentions beyond the bedroom. Give him a test and see if he accepts: invite him to dinner or a movie where clothes are not optional and see if he’s down with it. If he’s just playing you for sex, he’ll decline.

According to Heather Cohen, a research scientist, “putting allo your positive ‘eggs’ in the sex basket is risky”. The truth is, if a guy really likes you, they’ll enjoy many different aspects of the relationship.

16) He’s all over the place emotionally.

If your guy seems to be hot for you one minute and then ice cold the next, you might be wondering what’s going on.

You’re not alone: it’s hard for girls to read guys whose emotions are unpredictable. It’s usually the other way around, truth be told.

If your guy is not showing up for you consistently, it’s time to look for someone who can.

17) You can’t count on him.

Speaking of consistency, you can’t count on this guy to show up for dates he’s confirmed and you know he’s not going to call you back even though you left four voicemails.

What are you doing? Ask yourself that question and then get real so you can get on with your life.

If you can’t count on him when there’s nothing at stake, what will he do when there is?

18) You don’t know who he hangs out with.

You’ve been off and on for a while but you’ve got no idea about his life outside your relationship. He doesn’t know your friends and you don’t know his.

What’s his mother’s name again? Who knows! He never told you. He’s keep you at a distance because he’s not really interested in taking this relationship to any level, let alone the next level.

19) You’re not having sex.

Rather than bugging you for sex, this guy isn’t even trying to get in your pants. If he’s just hanging out and happy to watch television and not interested in taking your relationship to a new place physically, something’s up.

It might be that he just wants to be friends, but it’s more likely that he doesn’t see this going anywhere and he’s not getting emotionally involved.

20) He’s not made a commitment to you.

If he’s running around with other women or is downplaying other causal relationships he has had in the past, it might be a warning to you that he’ll be seeing others whether you like it or not.

If you see him with another woman in public, don’t panic. But do make time to talk to him about your expectations of the relationships.

Don’t be surprised if he says he’s not interested in a long-term relationship right now though.

21) He’s downright mean.

Look, if this guy is treating you like crap, it’s on you that you aren’t getting the not-so-subtle messages that he doesn’t want to be with you.

Take your pride and your worth and go find someone who will be nice to you and love you for who you are.

Don’t get caught in the trap of thinking that bad attention is, at least, attention. You deserve more.

RELATED: What J.K Rowling can teach us about mental toughness

22) He’s not looking for a relationship right now.

We make a lot of assumptions about people, especially when we are just getting to know them. Just because he’s single doesn’t mean he’s desperate or lonely.

We often assume that single people want to be in a relationship, but those are just our thoughts projecting onto them.

This guy might be perfectly happy being your friend. He might not be interested in a relationship right now. It might be helpful for you to realize that not only does he not want to be with you, but he doesn’t want to be with anyone.

There’s nothing wrong with him for putting himself first.

23) You’re not the right fit for him.

If he is looking for a relationship and you think you fit the bill, don’t be surprised when he says you are not what he’s looking for.

Just because you are friends or even get along doesn’t mean you’ll be a good couple. He might not like you in that way.

And that’s okay. It hurts, for sure, but it’s better to know that you are not his type than to wonder why this thing isn’t going anywhere.

Again, just because you think you are the perfect girl for him doesn’t mean he feels the same way.

It might seem obvious to you that the two of you need to be together, but you need to respect that he might not feel the same way.

24) He doesn’t like the way you act.

Here’s the thing: you need to be yourself, no matter what anyone else thinks of you.

So if this guy doesn’t like the way you are or the way you act, the way you talk or the clothes you wear, that’s a good thing. It doesn’t feel good at the time, but you don’t want to be with someone who settles, even if you are the one he is settling for.

And you don’t want to be settled on. Trust us. Rather than try to adjust your behavior to get this guy’s attention, pay attention to the guys who like the way you act.

There are plenty of people out there who will appreciate you the way you are and won’t need anything else. Instead of being heartbroken by his dismissal, take it as a sign that you will find someone who loves everything about you.

25) He sees his life going in a different direction.

He might not be into you because he doesn’t have time for a relationship or because he’s leaving the country.

Hey, it happens! Some guys are just caught up in themselves and their careers and starting a relationship complicates things for him.

If he knows he’s leaving town in a few weeks, he’s not going to get into a relationship that will only end in sadness.

Traveling for work, getting a new apartment, or even changing jobs is going to mean he needs to dedicate his attention to things other than a relationship.

This might not be the only reason he doesn’t want to be with you, but if he’s got a lot going on, it’s a solid reason.

26) The timing is terrible.

Look, people are busy. We’ve all got a lot going on all the time. Relationships really put strain on our attention span and pull us in directions we might not always want to go.

If he’s rejecting you it might be because he just got out of a relationship and isn’t ready to dive back in. He might be considering his options in life and thinking about big changes.

He might have just lost his job. His grandmother might have just died. Don’t assume anything about him. If you find yourself face-to-face with a rejection, you are free to ask what’s up, but don’t be surprised when his answer has nothing to do with you and everything to do with his circumstances. It’s easy to get wrapped up in our own drama when people don’t want us.

But that’s not always the case. Give people the benefit of the doubt and then move on to find someone who does want to be with you.

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Lachlan Brown

Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 6 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter or Facebook.
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